Monday, April 1, 2013

4 months

We had our 4 month well check up and surprisingly Bixby is tiny. She looks so chunky to us but for her age she's small. Here are her stats:

• Now weighting in at 13.5 lbs that's in the 33%
• her length is 23 inches so barely 10% for height
• then her head is 16 3/4 so 75%.

She's in the same growth pattern since birth so the doctor said there is nothing to worry about. Compared to Baines she's 1 1/2 lbs heavier and an inch shorter at this age. The nurse measured her 3 times to make sure because she was in such a low percentile. She keep saying this little one doesn't look small (the chunky cheeks throw people off). The most obvious difference between the two girls is the hair. Baines had tons that never fell out and Bixby is only left with little whispies at this point.
Her newest developments are using her arms and legs more. Last night she discovered splashing in the bath. She was going crazy legs trying to kick a rubber ducky. Then at the doctors office when she realized the table paper made noise when she moved, she went crazy again. I totally should have gotten a video of both but I was too sucked into the moment laughing with her.

She has an amazing low giggle and is super ticklish. It's so low it almost sounds like she's crying. When you tickle her tummy and chin(s), she cracks up.

Continuing to be the sweetest baby ever my sister-in-law said we shouldn't have any young impressionable teenagers watch her because they'll think it's like having a doll and want one of their own.

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

New Bed!

McCall and I have needed a new bed for a few years now because the generic memory foam mattress we bought about 6 years ago had lost shape. The sleeping areas where each of us lay at developed into deep craters, leaving us with very few comfortable sleeping options. Compounded by my back problems and recent spine surgery the bed only felt worse. The only thing was we loved our memory foam bed, especially before the pits of despair developed. We only paid like $600 (king size) for it, including shipping, so it was not a total loss. But we also did not want to buy another one like it just so it could do the same thing over again. And I for sure did not want to buy a name brand one at a name brand price in fear that it could happen the same.

Since McCall and myself have different preference to how we like our mattress I thought a Sleep Number bed might be a good idea for us. A friend of ours recently got one and loves it so we decided to go to a showroom and give them a try. I liked them from the start, McCall was a little "iffy" but we both agreed that we really liked the one with the built in Memory foam topper. The problem with that was it was WAY too much money to spend on a bed, especially when you have a house under construction and two young children. The bed was $3,700 when you add tax and shipping it would come to about $4,100!!!!! I was thinking to myself "$4,000 for a fancy camping air mattress!"

at the store I was examining the way the mattresses were made (assembled) and the differences between the entry level model to the one we really liked. The differencein cost between the two was $2,700 but I could not see where the $2,700 was justified. To me it looked like all they did was add, a nicer mattress cover with 3" of memory foam built in. So I asked the sales rep, "what's the real difference? Do they use different pumps or air chambers?" He told me no, that the base equipment was the same on all of them, the only difference was the plushness and covers.

So, knowing that, I decided that I could buy the lowest level King size sleep number, buy a gel memory foam topper at Costco for $160 and assemble the bed myself to make my own mattress that would feel similar to the $4,000 mattress they were selling. Now I knew it would not be exactly the same since the cover they build is what actually creates the mattress (see the photos below) but I remembered that I have a fully enclosed cover on our existing memory foam mattress that would hold it all together as one. I was convinced it would work out; so all I had to do was get McCall on board. Luckily Sleep Number has a 30 day return policy so if my plan was a failure then we would just be out the shipping cost. We decided to go for it.

The Mattress, tax, shipping, memory foam topper and  some cheep egg crate foam ended up costing us a total of about $1,400. We've been sleeping on it for almost a week and so far and I love it. Currently I have mine set at 80% and McCall sleeps at 55%. It's nice being able to roll over and spread out without being stuck in a crevasse. The memory foam topper is soft yet the air mattress below keeps the bed firm (set at 80). One thing I like about it is, if one day I feel like sinking into a soft bed after a long day, I can just adjust it down. When you set the mattress down to like 30 you sink in and the whole thing wraps around you.

I took a few pictures to show the process while I built and set it up. You'll note that we only bought the mattress, no base mattress or stand, since we already have the bed frame my Father and I built together a few years ago. I love that bed frame because it has large drawers and storage underneath the mattress. The storage was an excellent place to put the air pump and  the solid plywood platform was perfect for the Sleep Number air chambers.

part of the platform removed to place the pump and run the hoses.

pump in place, two side drawers are slid out.

Here the plywood platform has been put back and the mattress cover (hollow mattress) has been laid out on the bed frame. With a Sleep Number you actaully have to assemble the mattress and it shipped to us in two smallish boxes. You start with 4 foam pieces that make up the boarder of the mattress. They are cut so they puzzle piece together.

looks like a mess. That's the way I work.
Next you install the two air chambers and the thin foam divider between the two chambers. The air hoses hook up to each air chamber and then you can inflate them. This help it hold its shape while you work. You'll note the mattress cover has a soft top rolled over in the top left hand corner. It's attached by a zipper. The other cover you see hanging at the foot of the bed is a cover I pulled off our old memory foam mattress, I laid that down first and it will eventually zip around everything. 
starting to make a mattress
Now that both air Chambers are full you can spread the top cover over and zip closed. We ordered the lowest model of Sleep Number bed they had so when I told the person at the store what I was doing they let me know it would be a good idea to put some egg create/foam on top of the air chambers like the upper models do because it will cut the noise from the pump and the air chambers. Plus another inch or two of padding never hurts.

foam and zipping up the cover. The Sleep Number is officially made.
Now that the actual Sleep Number mattress was made it was time to add the memory foam topper that I got from Costco. Seems like foam toppers are never cut to exact bed dimensions. The King size bed is 76x80, almost square, (a pain in the rear end when you're trying to figure out what way a fitted sheet goes) I think they cut this topper to 76x76. 
almost done
Now that the topper was on all we had to do was zip up the other cover. The cover we used came off our old 14 deep memory foam mattress. The new mattress plus 1" if foam and the 3" topper comes out around 13 so the cover fit over it all nice and easy.

I straightened out the cover after I took the picture :)

So there you have my workaround to get a mattress similar to the $4,100 one sold at the store for less then $1,400. If anyone is thinking about doing this, give me a call and I can explain in more detail, also drop my name as Sleep Number has a referral program. $100 for each referral, a couple referrals and I could buy their full cover.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

So proud of myself

After having Bixby I set a few goals for myself to get back in shape. When I got pregnant I was the most fit I had been since high school and I wanted to go right back. My first goal was going back to work at my Pre pregnancy weight. Ive been getting up every morning at 5 am. I have to nurse Bixby then pump the other side. By the time I get myself ready it takes me about an hour to leave the house. Then I work out hard for an hour. It's paying off, I have 1 lb to go!

I also participated in the Lakewood city run last year and it was perfect timing to run again. I wanted to do the 10k But I've had issues with the ligaments in my knees after the pregnancy. I did run the 5k today and kicked its ass.

In a little over a month I turn 30 and I refuse to do it without feeling awesome about myself. This year I'm really trying to make a better me, feeling confident and healthy.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

3 months old

Bixby is now three months old and still so much fun. She is giggling and laughing all the time now. She loves to sit up and look around. She's so strong and already has great control if her neck. She is now starting to reach for objects and opening her hands more. I love it when she talks to me and gurgles. It's so cute. She also blowing spit bubbles. My favorite nickname is Bixie Bee.

Baines is starting to express more interest in her. She talks to her, kisses her forehead and sings her songs. When ever Bixby cries Baines says "Mom Bixby is crying!!! Help her!!!" It cracks me up because she announces it like I can't hear her.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Fairy wings

"Mom, these fairy wings are broken. I can not fly."

Friday, February 22, 2013

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Potty training an emotional experience

The Epic Potty Training weekend is over and I'm left feeling extremely emotional over the experience. In all the information I read it neglected to mention what an emotional toll it takes on the parent. I had to be glued to Baines' side for 3 day and nurse Bixby as well. Every moment was spent making sure she didn't pee on the floor, constantly persuading her and reminding her she wasn't wearing a diaper. Whenever she had an accident I couldn't help but feel I didn't watch her enough or take her to the bathroom enough. I found myself feeling really frustrated and guilty. Also both girls came down with colds and fever that added to the stress.

We tried several different methods in one because honestly I had no idea how she would respond. She's such a wild card! We did nothing below the waist which ended abruptly when she crapped in the middle of our New bedroom then threw a ball in it and ended up somehow with poop in her hair??? Ya, that happened. I had to leave the room for a breather on that one. (Parenting is hard).

I thought Underpants were a great incentive for her because we got princess and Dora prints but they felt too much like she was still wearing a diaper. So she wet herself constantly. We then opted for the loose fitting pants only method and that worked the best. She still had accidents but it was uncomfortable and made her aware of the mistake.

The hardest part for me was reminding myself that she wouldn't be completely potty trained after the weekend but starting the road to success. I was getting so frustrated with her because she's so smart and I know she understands the concept and knows what to do. We even went for the bribes. She had two gift bags one for pee and one for poop. She got candy for pee and a small activity toy for poop i.e. paints, stamps, book.

She really wanted one of the prizes but she couldn't figure out. She had not yet learned the signals her body was giving her when she needed to go. That's what this weekend was really about teaching her to recognize that.

As I said I was so frustrated and on edge after the first two days. I was so short tempered with her and it wasn't going as well as I hoped. On Monday night I learned that someone I know lost her 8 year old niece to cancer. It broke me hear the news. All the frustrations I was feeling then turned to gratitude for the experience. That I am able to be a mother, a teacher, a comforter, and a best friend to this little person. I can't take for granted any moments spent with my children good or bad.

I started letting go and instead of pretending I was having fun making her use the potty I actually started to. If she pees her pants its fine she'll get the hang of it soon enough. I am proud to say that today she didn't have one accident and even ran to the bathroom to poop all by herself. Ya that's a huge deal. So I definitely think it was a success. We're so proud of her and SO lucky to be her parents. My love for her gets bigger everyday.

PS. she only has 2 more squares to fill up on her chart before she gets the "ballerina" dress, owl socks, and fairy wings.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Epic Potty Training Weekend

It starts tomorrow and hopefully after day 3 we'll be diaper free!

Thursday, February 14, 2013