Thursday, December 31, 2015

Happy New Year!

I don't know about you but I am super excited for the new year! I look back very fondly on 2015, the year my baby was born and the year I grew so much as a person and as a mother. It really has been a whirlwind of a year but an amazing one as well! 

Here are some goals for 2016:
-Pay down some of our student loan debt. We have a plan for that and it's exciting!
-Get moving! I really want to get walking way more and eating at least a little healthier. 
-Along with the last one, I'd like to jog or at least walk/jog my first 5k. 
-Grow more as a mother, as Elsie grows. Plan fun things to do with her and help her learn about so many things. 
-Travel. We haven't traveled nearly as much as we wanted to and with only a little over a year left we need to get moving!

This is my first time ever actually writing out a list of resolutions or goals for the new year. Even if I don't accomplish all of them, I think it's important to have some things to work towards. 

Happy New Year everyone! I wish you all health and happiness in the new year!

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Toys Elsie Loves: 10 Months

Elsie loves to play with her toys! When she is in a good mood she can sit and play by herself for hours. Here are some of her favorites lately:

Little Tikes Activity Garden Baby Playset : Like most of the toys here, she got this for Christmas and absolutely loves it! She likes to climb in through the slide and out through the door. I also love that the it can be setup more than one way to change things up if she gets bored.

Fisher-Price 3-in-1 Bounce, Stride and Ride Elephant : She loves to push this guy around the house and listen to his songs. She doesn't sit on it yet but I imagine she will when she gets a little bigger.

Munchkin Squirtin Bath Toy : These bath toys are a lot of fun in and out of the bath! She loves to chew on them right now too! Teething babies!

Disney Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs Little People Figure Set By Fisher-price : Little people toys are the best! While these are normally marketed for toddlers, we went ahead and gave some to Elsie for Christmas and they were a hit. She can't play pretend yet so she pretty much just looks at them or chews on them but she really likes them.

The best part about these toys is that most of them can grow with her and be favorites for awhile!

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Elsie's First Christmas

 Here's a video of Elsie opening presents on her very first Christmas! 
She's practicing present opening for her birthday! haha 

It's a long video (might be hard for some to watch all of it) but we wanted Elsie's grandparents to be able to watch her excitement on Christmas morning just like if they had been able to be here.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015


Elsie has pretty much hated Santa this year. 
She's seen him 3 times and the last time she didn't cry but I can't really say she enjoyed it. 
Maybe next year! 

Monday, November 30, 2015

Elsie's 9 Month Update

Little Elsie Mae is 9 months old tomorrow!
Time is flying by! I can't believe she will be a year old in only 3 months!

It's harder to get her to sit still for pictures than ever before as she's always crawling around and climbing up on anything and everything. 

This month Elsie:

Started sleeping through the night!!! That's the biggest update. She's been doing that all month now. She even did so in the hotel for us when we went away for the holiday!

Eats about 29 ounces of formula a day, in about 5 bottles. She also eats some solid food at breakfast and dinner and I'm trying to get her started on lunches but she is iffy on that. Her favorite foods are sweet potatoes, any type of fruit but definitely bananas, and the baby cheese puffs. She also likes oatmeal for breakfast.

We just went to the doctor for her 9 month check up and shes just over 21 pounds (85th percentile) and 27.75 inches (58th percentile) long!

As I mentioned before she climbs any and everything. She also will walk while holding on to her walker or anything else that she can manage to push. And she scales the couch. We are gonna have a walker soon >.<

She loves books and I read to her before bed every night.

She still loves Elmo. She will smile at him no matter how sour of a mood she is in.

She also loves to play with animal magnets on the fridge. Most of the time it will keep her busy while I cook dinner.

She still only has two bottom teeth but there's one on top that is starting to make an appearance. Should be through the skin any day now it seems.

Hmm I think that's all for this month. 
She's a busy little bee, always playing and on the go! 

Sunday, November 1, 2015

8 Month Update

Elsie Mae is 8 months old today! 

This month she:

-eats cheerios (and would eat them all day if we let her) and eats purees 2-3 times a day

-drinks about 28-30 ounces of formula a day

-pulls up to stand on everything she can

-crawls everywhere and has a super cute fast crawl reserved for when she's really excited (she usually snorts whole doing this haha)

-she has slept through the night for one week now (!!!!!) and fingers crossed that she has just figured out that's what she should do haha 

-her favorite thing in the whole world is Elmo. She absolutely lights up when she sees him or when I put on Sesame Street. She watches it every morning.  

-She can say "bababa" and occasionally will throw in a "mamama" she also makes a cute chewbacca like sound

-she's wearing almost all 9-12 month clothes,  size 4 diapers,  and her chunky little toes barely fit a size 3

I can't wait to see how much shes grown at her doctors appointment at the end of the month!

(our little leopard a few days ago)

We love love love her!

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Ludwigsburg Pumpkin Festival

A couple of weeks ago we went to the Kurbisausstellung in Ludwigsburg, Germany. This is the largest pumpkin festival in Europe. 

Contests are held for the largest pumpkins in Germany and in Europe. These are huge pumpkins!  Last year the heaviest pumpkin was 1054 kg!

This festival is also huge. It doesn't look that big when you first arrive but the majority of the festival is located behind the palace.

There are a variety of pumpkin foods as well as typical German foods. I went out on a limb and tried the vegetarian pumpkin burger. It was delicious!

The pumpkin sculptures (I guess you could call them) were very impressive!

We bought two small pumpkins, which I let Elsie pick out.  I never knew the were so many types of pumpkin!

We had a really good time at this festival and I would highly recommend it! 

Monday, October 19, 2015

Baby's First Cold

A few weeks back, Elsie got her very first cold. She had a very stuffy nose for a few weeks and then got a cough. We are lucky she didn't get sick at all until she was almost 7 months old! So for my future reference and anyone else who's battling baby's first cold, this is what worked for us.

Boogie Wipes Natural Saline Kids and Baby Nose Wipes for Cold and Flu, Unscented, 30 Count (Pack of 3) : for those crusty boogers, and to keep baby's nose from getting sore from all the wiping

Little Remedies Noses Saline Spray/Drops, 0.5 Ounce : to keep thing moist (yuck)

Nasal aspirator: we have the good old fashioned kind, and I'm probably the last mom on the planet to have not used the Nose Frida, but we have managed to suck out many a boogie with the basic aspirator

Crane Usa EE-3186 Elephant Cool Mist Humidifier : works wonders on stuffy noses! I put it on at night and during nap times. I actually plan to use it in Elsie's room all winter because we have radiators here which dry up the air

Also, for really stuffy nights, I have elevated one end of Elsie's crib mattress which seems to help a bit.

It's really tough when baby catches a cold because they just don't understand why they feel so gross but it will pass.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Elsie's 7 Months Old!

Elsie is seven months old today! 
We took some pictures outside and some pictures inside because it is really really sunny this morning!

"I'm gonna eat this"

It has been quite a big month for Elsie! 

This month she:
-started eating a lot more purees about 6-8 oz a day. She had tried pretty much all the stage 1 and 2 purees that don't contain meat. She loves sweet potatoes and bananas but hates green beans. She also tasted a pickle and made a really silly face. 
-also, she started eating puffs and yogurt melts and LOVES them 
-got to spend a week and a half with her Meme! (we miss her!)
-learned how to give sloppy kisses
-got her first 2 teeth! (two middle bottom)
-got her first stuffy nose (we've been lucky)
-started sitting up by herself
-started sleeping on her tummy (but still gets up several times a night)
-started crawling!!
-pulls up to stand
-loves peek-a-boo

Our little girl is so much fun! I can't believe how big she's getting!

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Elsie's Favorite Toys (6 months)

Thought I would do a post on what Elsie enjoys playing with most at 6 months.  This is constantly changing but here are some of her faves
Fisher-price rock-n-stack- loves knocking this over and has even tried to put the rings back on it but she isn't that coordinated yet. 

Exersaucer- the past month or so she's really gotten in to this.  She would sit in it before and pay with the toys but now she LOVES to bounce in this.  She really gets in the zone while bouncing haha.

Glow worm- not so much a toy as it is a bedtime item but she loves it!  I play it for her when she's falling asleep.

Monkey- been a favorite for awhile now,  he talks and songs and she gets the biggest smile when I bring him out

Wooden Blocks - I just brought these out this week but they are already a big hit!  She loves to pick them up out of their cart and knock them over if I attack them up for her. 

Also, in general she loves any plastic/rubbery toys that she can pick up and chew on. 
And now that's she's getting around she loves anything she isn't supposed to have haha.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Us Lately

Thought I'd do a post on what we've been up to lately.

Elsie is starting to get mobile. But she loves to sit and play with her toys.

She also loves to get into the dvds. She can even slide the door open to get to them!  (Sigh)

We had my mom/ Elsie's Meme visiting for a week and a half. Time absolutely flew by! 

The weather is getting a bit chilly so I'm starting to make fall/winter food like this beef roast in the slow cooker. I absolutely LOVE making food in the slow cooker because it's so easy! 

I also got a new shelf for the living room that is, thankfully,  out of reach of Elsie's little hands.  I moved some picture frames up there because Elsie goes for anything she shouldn't have haha.

Talk to you soon!

Sunday, September 6, 2015


We recently started making weekly vlogs on youtube! It is quite the learning curve but I think it will be so fun to go back and watch them when Elsie gets older. 

Head on over to youtube and subscribe! :) 

Monday, August 31, 2015

Elsie Mae is 6 Months Old!

Elsie Mae is six months old!

I can't believe our little lady has been in our lives for a whole half of a year! Even though nights can be long, getting up with her two to four times a night, time is absolutely flying by! (And I think my body has just adjusted to less sleep.)

She is quite the busy little bee these days! 

She started eating pureed foods and baby cereal at around five months. She was eating forty ounces of formula a day and I just felt she was ready. It took a couple weeks for her to really get the hang of it but now she is eating three to four ounces of purees a day. She's just now starting to drink a little less formula too. She loves fruits and will tolerate most veggies as long as it's not peas. She hates peas. 

She is quite a big baby! At a park the other day, a man was stunned that Elsie was only six months because she's so big and his baby was seven months and quite a bit smaller than her. She weighs about 19 pounds and is about 26 inches long. I'll have more exact measurements when she goes to the doctor tomorrow. She's a little chunk but her weight gain has definitely started slowing down,

She is determined to be mobile! About two weeks ago she started lifting her belly up off the ground and then shortly after started getting on her knees. She is now rocking back and forth on her knees all the time trying to figure out how to crawl. Also, around the same time, she figured out rolling from front-to-back and from back-to-front. Needless to say, we are babyproofing. 

She still likes going for walks but doesn't like being in the stroller once you stop walking. She wants to be out of that thing seeing what's going on. So she sits in a highchair at restaurants now. 

She is teething like crazy! I swear she will have teeth any day now. The drool has been excessive and she chews on any and everything. 

She's still our happy baby girl! She loves to smile at everyone most of the time and doesn't fuss too much. She can also give some really funny looks, like above, "what do you mean don't chew on that?" haha

I can't wait to see what next month brings! 

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Elsie Mae is 5 Months Young

Every month brings so many changes!

She is weighing roughly 18 pounds. She's a chunky little nugget haha. She was 25 inches at 4 months and I haven't measured her but she probably only grew a inch or so.

She can now sit unsupported. She only falls over every now and then. I can sit her up in the pack n play and she will play like that for a really long time.  If she does fall over she normally just flips to her back or belly.
She quit rolling over. She just doesn't seem interested. When she's on her belly now she tries to go forward, kicking her legs like she's swimming haha. She wants desperately to go forward but ends up just scooting backwards. She can get pretty far doing this but it makes her mad since she ends up so far away from her toys.  She doesn't pull up to her knees yet.  But she can rotate to each side to get toys.

She eats 36-40 ounces of formula a day.  (I know!)
Since she eats so much, and she sits unsupported, and grabs at food and puts it in her mouth... We felt she was ready for some solids.
She's had pureed squash, sweet potato, peas, bananas, carrots, and green beans. She's also had rice and oatmeal cereal but we don't feed her cereal every day. I try to offer her food twice a day. Sometimes she does better with it than others.
She's also had carrot sticks and cucumber to chew/suck on. She likes this way better than purees. She hates me feeding her and wants to do it all herself. Grabs the spoon and gets mad if I take it back. So I let her do what she can. I have some squeeze pouches to put the purees in but she hasn't figured that out quite yet.

She's horrible at sleeping now. Up 3-4 times a night.  It's pretty rough but I think it might be teething related. I'm not sure but we are working through it. 

Things she loves:
Her dogs! Well...All dogs really. 
Going for walks in the stroller or the carrier. 
Sitting on my lap.
Smiling at her daddy.
She doesn't really have a favorite toy but loves the crinkly soft books and other toys that crinkle. Or anything that she can chew on. 

She's such a sweet baby! 

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Our Weekend

We had a busy busy weekend! Saturday we went to Schierstein Harbour Festival. I'm pretty sure that this is now my favorite fest, so far, in Germany. Before, my favorite was Wilhelmstrassen Fest, and while I still do love that one, I like how this one is on the river. It was a very large fest with numerous food stands and a ton of rides and games for kids, as well as a market. There were also dragon boat races on the water with plenty of seating to just sit and watch in the shade.

I managed to actually take pictures this weekend! (go me)

Sunday we went to see the Dalai Lama speak. Definitely a once in a lifetime kind of experience! 

He was speaking in the park and there were thousands (maybe?) of people there. We got there quite early so we had fairly close seats but were in the sun the whole time. 

He spoke in English and then a translator translated to German. The speech was great, all about peace and unity in the world. Very humbling. 

I forgot to bring Elsie a hat.

That was our weekend! What did you do?

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Our 4th of July Weekend

To sum up the weekend... It was so HOT! We spent the majority of the weekend trying to escape the heat. We don't have AC because we aren't allowed to have it in our apartment so we relied on several fans to try to keep us cool. Saturday I think it reached 100 degrees and Sunday it was like 103 I believe. Yuck.

I really felt bad for Elsie. She obviously can't yet understand what it means to be hot and she was a little fussy. I gave her cold pacifiers and a cool damp wash cloth to keep her cool. Also, nightly cool baths. Poor baby.

Needless to say she didn't wear her 4th of July outfit for very long. But it was super cute!

Saturday we had a cookout with some friends. Despite the hot weather, it was still a lot of fun! We stayed under a gazebo for shade and in the evening we had a little breeze which made it bearable.

Sunday we escaped to the mall for a few hours to get some relief. 

I failed at taking pictures of our weekend :( I blame it on the weather.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

4 Month Update

Today Elsie Mae is 4 months old. She's getting so big! At her doctors appointment today she weighed 15 pounds and 14 ounces (diaper off...woah) and is 25 inches long. That's the 91st and 80th percentiles.

Some things she does now:

Rolls over from front to back (at least she has a handful of times)

Sits up supported. Can mostly sit by herself if her hands are planted in front of her. 

Drools...a lot.

Sucks/chews on her fingers.  She doesn't favor any particular finger just all of them.  But hates the pacifier.

She eats a lot. About 31 ounces a day right now.  On average. 

Smiles and laughs. She can really get a belly laugh going if she thinks something is funny.  And she gives out smiles freely. She's really a happy baby.

She doesn't really fuss much.  Only if she's hungry or tired until she gets fed or falls asleep.  And rarely actually cries. 

She loves her exersaucer.

She also grabs at toys now and holds them and puts them in her mouth.  And if they don't fit in her mouth she tends to get mad haha. 

We are working on her sleeping in her crib versus the rock n play. She definitely still favors the rock n play but she's outgrowing it.

She likes watching cartoons but I try not to let her watch too much tv. I think she just enjoys the bright colors.  

Hmm I think that's all the highlights.  We are so crazy about our little girl! 

Some pictures from play group today