My little family!

My little family!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Benjamin is 11 months!

11 month stats:
Weight: 27 pounds. I am not kidding.
Height: I'd guess roughly 32 inches?
Eating: Lots. Everything. He still gets about 4 bottles a day. Will be switching to organic whole milk soon.
Clothes: 18 month, 18-24 month and yes.. even 2T. Catching up to your sister ;)
Diaper: Size 5 (since the age of 3 months, lol)  

My gorgeous brown-eyed boy....

11 months. SO quick and yet... I can't remember what life was like before you? Or maybe I just don't want to. You fill me with such happiness and love. I am forever kissing your sweet face and giggling along with you. You love to climb in my lap and gently rest your head while sucking your thumb. It's so sweet and innocent.

Your so big -- it's so cute. Your hands and feet are giant - your still chubby but you're continuing to slim down the more you move. And move you do, constantly!! You are very fast and always on the go -- you are amazingly quick when you crawl and you're so good at standing & cruising on furniture. I think you'll be walking soon -- any day, in fact. You have no fear and will try anything so one day, I know you'll take your steps and soon after you'll be running around with Layla.
You have lots of cute tricks -- you are really good at "SO BIG!" and waving bye-bye. You love to yell and scream (LOUD!) and love to laugh and fake laugh. You use anything & everything as a push toy. You love to play with Brian, your favorite stuffed animal. You like when we make castles with blocks so you can knock them down. Your favorite toy is a ball - you can have a catch for a long time. You love the stroller and to take long walks, especially outside. It's a good thing we're in Florida for a while - we've been taking daily walks and you just sit and stare at the birds & trees. You love to point to the sky when we mention there is an airplane!

Your not very into the TV (except for Jacks Big Music Show) -- so opposite of your sister. You LOVE music and always dance if something comes on. So cute!!!

You are a master sleeper. I'm SO proud of you -- I was worried you'd have trouble since we're in Florida for a while, but you've adjusted beautifully!!! You sleep every night roughly 6:30-6:30 (waking earlier here but staying in your crib until 6:30) -- you nap twice a day, 1-2 hours each. I'm so lucky you've turned into a great sleeper!!! Right now, we're using Tylenol because you have your 4th ear infection (had to go to the Florida doctor yesterday) -- poor little thing. But you're a champ!!
You are getting very good at talking!! You say Yeh, Hi, Mama, Dada, Layla, Dog, Cat & Ball.
You're a great eater and will pretty much eat anything we have... I hope this continues!!! Your sister was also a great eater around this time and now she's so picky! Hopefully you'll continue to try new foods and enjoy them all. You don't love fruit (but you love your fruit pouches) -- I think it's a little sour for your taste? You love sweet things and I'm excited to see you eat your first piece of cake at your birthday party!!!
We have been in Florida since the 16th and we're here until the 30th.. so great to spend so much time with your family. This is your 5th trip to Florida, pretty crazy!!! Mama & Dada went to Jamaica last week -- it was the first time we were away from you and we missed you SO much. You did great while we were away and when we got back, your eyes lit up and you SCREAMED in delight!! So sweet and loving. My little boy.
We stopped nursing about 4 weeks ago. The last time was a Sunday morning - it was early and everyone else continue to sleep. You played with my cheeks and brushed my face and it was so gentle and sweet. I really miss nursing you and wish we could have continued -- I loved nursing you so much and will cherish those moments.

We sent the invitations on Monday -- I can't wait for everyone to get them!! We are having a big mustache bash -- it's a music class party and it will be so much fun. We can't wait to celebrate you!!!

We love you so much sweet boy. I'm sorry this entry is so late -- please know how special and amazing you are. I can't believe you will be turning ONE so soon!!!!! We have lots to celebrate and do -- your birthday, your party and then... DISNEY WORLD!!!

Love you Benny Boy,

Monday, December 9, 2013


Happy Monday, ya'll!

With the temperatures below freezing and the snow covering everything in sight, it felt only right to cozy up in the corner of my sofa and write a bit.

We had a lovely weekend despite the frigid air. We made our way to Sesame Place on Saturday -- after much confusion (we got there at 11:15 AM and realized the park doesn't open until 1:00 PM... ah!), we were able to squeeze in the last reservation for the lunch with the characters. It was perfect, per usual - Layla loved seeing everyone from Elmo to Telly, even Santa! Benny was completely indifferent - he stared at the characters but didn't smile or cry. Just looked and went back to eating. The kid is amazing.

Yesterday was filled with snow so we spent the day at the gym, followed by playing, napping, eating, playing, outside time and more.

Now it's a new week and I thought it would be fun to change it up a bit -- my beauty regimen.

I always see these on blogs and take notes of new or cool products.

Recently, I've decided to (drastically) change the products I use on both myself and my babies. I'm trying to stay away from chemicals and use lines that are way more organic and body friendly. This isn't easy but I'm heading towards a good routine. It all started after having a fabulous facial & massage at a local spa thanks to Livingsocial -- it's called Eden Organics and I'm completely hooked.

I told the woman doing my facial that I've had horrible skin since 7th grade and pregnancy/nursing hasn't helped. Combined with my current Mirena, my skin is breaking out circa 1995. So she reminded me it's important to use good products that aren't filled with bad chemicals. I also recently discovered Arbonne after my friend Shannon started selling it. It's a great line that is organically made and really good.

Ok, so moving on. My routine. If you have any products you love, please let me know -- I'm learning (at the ripe age of 30) how important skin care is.

Andalou Naturals Meyer Lemon Creamy Cleanser is my new (and very nice) face wash. I use it every night. It's soft, smells great and is really good for your skin full of natural products.

Two to three times a week, I use Earth Pure Organics Ultimate Pore Refining Exfoliating Cleanser. This makes me skin feel incredibly soft and I love it. It can be drying (so I'm told) so I limit the use.

Every morning (and most nights if I remember) I use Earth Pure Organics Sheer Essential Moisture. I was never a nighttime lotion user and I'm learning this was a big mistake!

I currently use Clean & Clear spot acne treatment but I'm searching for an organic spot treatment.

I just got two new eye products from Arbonne - I can't review them because I've literally used them twice but I like them a lot and can't wait to see results!! I'm using the RE9 Advanced Corrective Eye Cream at night and the Calm Soothing Eye Gel in the morning. that's that!!! I'm going to switch my make-up too but I'm slowly going to get there. These products aren't cheap but a little goes a long way and I'm happy to take care of myself. I'm also switching the kids shampoos, body wash and diaper creams to more natural.

So.. any products you can share that you love??

(I wasn't paid or asked to write this - all opinions are my own and for fun!)

Friday, December 6, 2013

Layla: Version 2.5

One day old. Cute as a button. 

My Dearest Layla.... 

It's been 6 months since I last wrote you. After 2 years of monthly letters, it seemed silly to continue the trend. But now I realize these are the precise months I SHOULD be writing you - these days seem to be zooming by and you seem to be changing almost daily. 

You are two

You are discovering, testing, learning, loving, emotional, dramatic and a bit sassy. You are a sponge and soak everything up around you. 

How you look... You are petite. We haven't been to the doctor in a while (knock on wood) but I think you're still hovering around the 25/26 pound mark (same as your brother!). You are just so little - it's so cute. You are tall but seem to be around average for the kids in your class. Your hair is SO long - after a recent haircut I swear it seems longer then ever. It's a beautiful shade of light brown. Your eyes are the most gorgeous shade of blue. Your skin is so fair and I'm careful to not ruin that. 

Your Schedule....Right now, you go to school 3 days a week (Monday, Wednesday, Friday). Tuesdays are spent with Benny & I. Thursday are spent at Mom-Mom & Pop-Pops. And the weekends are our favorite... we always plan fun things to do (mainly based around you!) -- you love to play with all of your toys and every weekend day is spent napping with Dada in the afternoon. You LOVE to nap in our bed and it's always 2-3 hours. During the week, I'm lucky if you nap an hour in the crib. At school you nap perfect. At Mom-Mom & Pop-Pop's it's always hit or miss. You go to sleep beautifully between 6:30-7:00 PM every night. We read the Lorax to you in our bed, you put your "red" (it's actually white) sleep sack on and into the crib you go. You still use the sound machine and love a nice, dark room. Your current sleeping buddies are Mr Bear, Kyle, Peter, the frog & Kermit. You also like to sleep with the big Princess blanket we bought you for Hanukkah. You're so cute when you're falling asleep, always one hand by your hand (same as when you drink milk). I'm nervous for the inevitable switch to the big girl bed that's coming soon but for now we're sticking with the crib!j

Your Likes....It's all about princesses. I mean.. they seem to be taking over our lives. Cinderella. Ariel. Rapunzel. Tiana. Jasmine. The list goes on.. you love them all. I can't wait until Disney World in January.. I think your head is going to explode when you meet the princesses in person. You still love to watch movies (we have 51 movies we switch through). You love the read books. You love to do puzzles. You love to color. You love to do puzzles on the iPad. And you REALLY love to watch the most random videos on You Tube. These include (but are not limited to): Play Doh videos, princess videos, Disney World videos, Disney on Ice and random people playing with toys. So strange. You love to play in your kitchen. You love to play in the basement in the ball pit and with your princess castle. You love music and to sing & dance.  You love to brush your teeth, wash your hands, put on "make-up" and look at your clothes. 

Your Dislikes: You don't love the bath (or water on your head, in general). You don't like being away from your mama for too long. You don't like when Benny takes your toys (but otherwise, you're Benny obsessed). Your tantrums are far & few between -- but don't get my wrong, you are two through & through. You love to test your boundaries and want so badly to be a "big girl" sometimes. You're currently in a mama phase -- you want me, quite often. I know this bothers Dada and can be a bit taxing on me when I'm needed elsewhere but of course I secretly love it. 

Your loves: You really love Mama, Dada & Benny (and sometimes smother us in hugs & kisses). You are obsessed with your cousins (all of them). When we're all together, you run from cousin to cousin screaming and yelling "HI ABBEY! HI AVA! HI MARLEY!" -- it's so sweet and genuine. You're in between the ages (the big girls - Ava, Abbey, Marley) and the little girls (Remi, Sami) so you get the best of both worlds. You love your grandparents so very much. We FaceTime daily with Grandma & Grandpa and try to see Mom-Mom & Pop-Pop as often as we can. It's a wonderful connection you've made with them and I love it. You LOVE school - your really in love with your teachers (Miss Jenn, Miss Ashley... and also Miss Lizzie from last year). You talk about all of your "friends" at school. You also really love Isabel, a friend you made at music class. I love her mama so this works beautifully - we've gone to the movies twice with Izzy and you remember both times, talking about them often despite it being a long time ago. Your memory is quite good! You love Disney World and always ask about it. 

Your Food: Whole milk, all day everyday... haha. Still quite a picky eater, you have your few foods that we know you'll always eat. Danimals (yogurt drink), bananas, yogurt, cheese, snacks, pork roll, french fries, matzah ball soup, chicken nuggets. Oh and chocolate, of course. You're sometimes willing to try new foods and you'll randomly shock us by eating a full steak or 3 meatballs. But it's rare. As you're getting older, you're getting better at trying -- also, if you're around a big kid who is eating something, you'll try it. ;)

Your Thoughts: Your speech is incredible -- we have full conversations now. You repeat everything and remember a lot. You are getting really good at your colors. You are good at your letters (but we're working hard to perfect them). You know lots of basic questions (name, city, age, school, teacher's name, mama's name, Dada's name, brother's name). You know the words to a lot of songs and can sing them (somewhat) on key. You are good at your shapes. You're so very observant and soak everything in -- between learning at home & learning at school, you're amazing and so very smart. 

I could go on & on ... my dear girl, my love grows for you every single day. I love when you climb into our bed every morning and snuggle into me while you drink your milk. I love when you ask if I want to sit with you to watch a movie or do a puzzle ("Mama, wanna sit with me on this couch?") I love how you say Hi BENNY, hi BENNY all day, everyday. I love how you just want to play with him all day and always tell him to come near you ("Come here, Benny.. come here!!!"). I love how you ask where Dada is all day and then calmly say "Oh, he's at work Mama!". I love how sweet you are and always ask everyone how they are doing. I love how I ask you if we should have another baby and you always reply with "YES, baby Ellie!" I have no idea where you heard the name Ellie but rest assured, should we have another baby girl, we will need to name her Ellie. You have a very sweet and gentle soul and I am so lucky to call you mine. 

Two & a half is such a special and fun age... I can't wait to see what these next 6 months will hold. Of course your 3rd birthday is already being discussed  and I can't help but think about how fast time is going. I adore you, my sweet girl. You are very special and very loved. 

Happy 2 1/2 birthday!!!!!!

Sunday, December 1, 2013


Hi everyone!!!!

While the kiddos are playing by themselves (and ever so nice, might at add) - I figured I'd update!!

The past week has been nothing less then extra special.

It all started last Friday -- Layla was Shabbat girl for the first time at school. Every Friday, the kids celebrate Shabbat by saying the prayers, singing songs and eating Challah. Each class selects one kid to be Shabbat boy or girl - and on Friday, 11/22, Layla had her chance. I was a little nervous because at her first (and only) public appearance at school for Purim in April, she had a total meltdown when she saw me. This meltdown resulted in me having to sit on the stage during the Purim Show. Talk about embarrassing... BUT.. I had high hopes because Layla is now TWO.. independent and loves the stage.

I was happily right. She rocked it. My dad, Josh & myself when to see her... she was incredible. She said every single part, said all the prayers, picked her own special Shabbat song (entitled Princess) and was really beautiful to watch. I was so proud of her and ultimately realized she has no fear of public speaking and loves the spotlight. It was great.

On Saturday, 11/23, Josh & I took part in something really amazing. I had been reading about these local BYOB painting facilities. Basically, it's an open art studio - you are free to bring in all you can eat and drink. I set up a private party and about 15 of us went to paint. It was SO much fun I can't begin to explain. I have zero art background and enjoyed every second - it was actually therapeutic. We already scheduled our next private party for 2/15 and I cannot wait!!

On Sunday, I hosted a little "mini-mall" at my house.. I had 5 vendors selling various items! It was a lot of fun - a bunch of women came and Layla was in kiddie heaven. My basement was swarming with kiddies!! We also collected a lot of food for our local food bank - very cool and exciting.

The fun doesn't stop there.

On Wednesday, we started off the holiday but having Layla's Hanukkah show at school. Once again, she was amazing -- singing and clapping on stage! Great performance by the cutest little two year olds you've ever seen. After the show, the school served donuts and latkes. So cute and sweet. My mom and Abbey came to see the show along with Josh so it was really nice.

Wednesday night was the first night of Hanukkah -- we lit the menorah and gave the first night's gifts. I gave Josh a Banksy print, the new Artie Lang book and a new game for his new Xbox 1. He loved it :) I gave Layla a Rapunzel doll and horse (she screamed in excitement) and Benny got this amazing activity box with puzzles and assorted other things. It's great and a really fun first night. Shari & Brian came to have dinner with Josh & I and it was a lovely night with friends, per usual.

Thursday was Benny's first THANKSGIVING!!! We spent the day lazy (besides an early morning work-out, go me!) -- that night, my brother Adam & Heather hosted 30 people for the dinner. It was SO SO SO nice - a perfectly fun night and yummy too. My mom has hosted Thanksgiving for 30+ years so it was weird not being there, but the whole night was a huge success. Layla & Benny both got amazing gifts from Mom-Mom & Pop-Pop and we did the kids swap as well. I had Ava & Abbey - Danielle had Layla & Kim had Benny. The greatest gift we got was an amazing authentic UCF football helmet for Benny - too cute.

Friday, we took Layla to her first ever theatre production. This was her major Hanukkah gift - we saw Beauty & The Beast at Academy of Music. My parents watched Benny for us. On the way downtown, Layla passed out -- we woke her up and hurried inside with 5 minutes to spare. We had 6th row seats -- the show began and Layla was immediately mesmerized. She loved the music, dancing - all of it. Of course, she kept asking where Belle was if not in stage, but who can blame her?! She behaved better then all the children around us and they were all much older. She's incredible! I was so proud of her. I can't wait to take her to NYC to see a Broadway show!!!

Saturday, the fun continued. We went to the movies to see Frozen with my brother Matt & Ava - last night Josh & I snuck away for a date night to see Hunger Games 2... and now, here we are. A lazy Sunday.. everyone is napping. Josh made a lasagna crock pot. My parents are coming for dinner.

Oh, and it's DECEMBER?! Insane.

I'm so sad to see this weekend come to an end.. I love having Josh home with us, Layla takes epic afternoon naps, Benny can't get enough Dada kisses... so much fun. Happy holidays everyone.

Next up... Layla's 2 1/2 on the 6th, Benny is 11 months on the 14th and we're heading to Sunny South Florida soon!

Oh this boy <3

Playing while I cook dinner... those are K-Cups and spatulas ;)

My little lady.

Enjoying snacks after the Hannukah show - Layla & Abbey

Hannukah show - wearing the t-shirt she made!

At the Hannukah show - sitting next to Ariella!

Josh with his gifts.

Benny with his gift.

Layla with her gifts.

Two little butts looking outside.

Turkey fun! lol

4 generations... Mom-Mom Millie, my mama, me & Layla

Passed out on the way to Beauty & The Beast

We made it!

So excited!


Layla's napping?? Great.. I'll bash her baby doll ;) lol

Monday, November 18, 2013

Bottle It Up!!!

Some recent moments I'd love to bottle up and take with me everywhere. 

1. Benny's New Dance Moves
Recently, Benny learned how to dance. He is SO proud. He rocks his all body back and forth and is pretty good at it! If he's sitting or laying, he'll rock his head back & forth. It's the cutest thing I've ever  seen.  

2. Layla's Cousin Obsession
I'm not kidding when I say Layla has a very strong, very real obsession with her cousins. She loves them all so much but her latest crazy addiction is Abbey. She can't get enough. It's a true love and it's so pure and real. Last night, Abbey came over for dinner and Layla said "HI ABBEY!" about 575867 times throughout the night. 

3. Random Warm Days
For some reason, it's strangely warm. Yesterday, we were able to head to the playground and Layla was in heaven. Benny seemed to really like the swings too (he likes the swings but not nearly as much as Layla) -- while we were there, we ran into my nieces Ava & Marley. I thought Layla's head was going to explode - unplanned play dates with her cousins tops her list of favorite things. 

4. Disney World
Yes, it's Mid-November. Yes, we have a million amazing things between now and the end of January. But every single day, Layla & I talk about Disney World. Multiple times. We discuss the rides, the princesses, the food. She asks questions. She is so excited. She's so curious. It will be so magical and I can't wait. 

5. Monday Lunch
Since Layla was 3 months old, my Dad & I have had lunch every Monday. It all started because music class was Monday mornings. With Layla in school on Mondays, Benny has taken her place. It's so special and fun and I really love it. 

6. Breaking Bad
Ok, I know. It's a show. But I love it - and I wouldn't mind bottling it up and re-watching it over and over.

7. Josh
Sometimes he makes me laugh. Hard. Like, doubled over and stomach hurting. Last night, while laying in bed, we had the most random talk about the Hunger Games movie that only he & I would understand or find funny. And I just laughed until tears were streaming down my face. I love that man.

8. Friends
Saturday night, 10 of us went out to celebrate Shari's 30th birthday. It was so so so nice to be together and just relax while eating yummy food. I am so lucky to have such lovely girlfriends and equally lucky to enjoy their husbands <3 

9. Haircuts
This past Saturday, Benny had his first haircut and Layla had her third. After waiting an hour, the kids were so good and well behaved. During the haircuts, they were perfection. They BOTH sat perfectly still while the stylists worked their magic. They look so cute and stylist ;) 

... OK, that's it for now. Thanksgiving is fast approaching along with Layla's 2 1/2 birthday. DAHHHH!!!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

10 months old!!

Teddy & Benny

oh man, oh man.

Looking outside.

I could bite this face. And sometimes, I do.

Mama.. really?

Are we done…???

10 month stats:
Weight: I'm guessing a bit over 26 pounds? 
Height: I'm guessing around 30-31 inches!  
Eating: 3 meals a day. Snacks in between. Breast milk every 2-4 hours.   
Clothes: 12 months (rarely, too small), 18 months, 18-24 months and 2T.
Diaper: Size 5.

Benjamin Sawyer,
Here we are again. 10 months old. A measly two months until your very first birthday. Another 4 weeks -- and boy are you growing by the second. This month was full of new things - you are constantly discovering, learning,  moving. You are so sweet, so loving, so ADORABLE. I mean your face is just the cutest. 
You are so handsome - and yes, you're still a BIG boy I have to remind everyone you're still a baby. You are still hanging on to your rolls but you are definitely starting to thin out more and more. I hate it! Your big brown eyes take everything in and you stare at everyone so intently. I wonder what you're thinking? Your hands and feet are SO big - my little sports star in the making. 
You have perfected crawling -- and you stand up on anything and everything. You also are now "cruising" along furniture which makes me think walking is in your near future. AHHHH! You don't need to rush it, my little love!! You love to stand up on your Mama, Dada & Layla the most - you think it's so funny. You are pretty good at waving bye-bye. You love to put your hands up to have someone pick you up - and you LOVE to do "SO BIG!" The coolest trick of all is you have learned the sign for "more" - you are so so smart. Baby sign language is amazing. You can also high five! You are quick. Your favorite things to play with are the remote, shoes (yuck) and the cats. You love to torture Shluffy & Rigby -- it's so cute but they get annoyed. 
You LOVE to play -- your favorite toy BY FAR is a ball - of any kind. You can sit and have a serious catch for a long time - I think your favorite ball is the basketball (Go Heat!) -- but of course you want whatever toy Layla is playing with. You guys get along great but she's starting to realize you want to play too - I mostly let you work it out between the two of you. I can see how much you love Layla and she is always asking about you and watching you. She makes sure you have water, food and toys at all times. The cutest. A few times this week, the two of you sat on the floor and shared yogurt bites - it was so simple but you both understood sharing and always made sure the other was happy. You recently took a slight interest in TV.. but the only show that holds your attention is Jacks's Big Music Show (so opposite of your sister who was TV addicted by 10 months). 
We are on a good sleep streak thanks to re-sleep training earlier this month. You go to bed promptly at 6:30 PM and sleep until roughly 6:30 AM every morning. I don't get you out prior to 6:30 AM and you're good at occupying yourself if you wake up before that. You will sometimes wake once in the middle of the night but if I go in to pat your back, you'll go back to sleep. You are a great napper (except for right now, ha!) -- you nap twice a day  - two hours in the morning and 1-2 hours in the afternoon. You now sleep with two stuffed animals (Teddy and Brian.)
Talking is slow and steady.. right now you say DADA, CA (Cat), MAMA (rarely), YEH and BALL. You are learning and taking it ALL in. 
FOOOOOD you love it ALL - anything I put in front of you, you'll eat. Your breakfast is always oatmeal mixed with prunes. Your lunch is usually yogurt, cheese and a banana. Lately, dinner is whatever I'm eating! Very cool and fun. You can eat a lot and fast -- plus you love water. You drink around 3-4 zippy cups of water a day. You are still nursing but I'm noticing your starting to self-wean. I hate it but I know the time is nearing when we'll switch to bottles (for a bit) then zippy cups. You have snuck your sister's milk cups and made a funny face when you drink it but hopefully you love milk as much as Layla! 
You have 6 teeth - 4 on top and 2 on the bottom but I think you have at least one more tooth trying to poke through. I know it hurts and I wish it was a much faster process!!
Today was your last day of music class - it was great to watch you participate the past 10 weeks. I know when we do it again in January, you'll be even more involved. It's fun to watch you shake the instruments and you are so in love with the teacher, Miss Sandy - you snuggle with her all class and she adores you. 
The temperatures are starting to really dip but you don't seem to mind at all - you still love it outside so hopefully we'll get to play outside (once we bundle up!). 

We have lots of fun things coming up it never ends!! Your first Thanksgiving, your first Hanukkah  your first New Years, Your 4th trip to Florida (including your 1st time away from me for 5 days, YOUR FIRST BIRTHDAY and your first trip to DISNEY WORLD!!! So much good stuff -- I can't wait to make millions of memories with you. 

Your 1st birthday party is all booked and set - a music class mustache bash!! I have mostly everything ordered and I'll be working on your invitations soon. We love you, we celebrate you, we want nothing more then for you to be happy, healthy and grow!! You are the perfect baby brother, my sweet boy. 

We love you!!!
mama, dada, Layla

creepy and cute.


Your first halloween - the cutest Mickey Mouse around!

The best we could get of the 3 of us <3 

Feed me woman!

Just hanging out in Layla's doll's stroller. 
Looking outside at the cars.

Little man!

Thumb sucker!

Post bath cuteness.

love you.


Thursday, October 31, 2013

Bottle It Up.


(I'm writing this in between episodes of Breaking Bad... do you watch? Holy amazing show. I'm half way through the 2nd season and flying through these episodes in between naps/bedtime)


How is everyone??

It's a lovely, gritty, cool (although a random 70 degree Fall day) and eerie Halloween. This is the first holiday that Layla is truly aware of.. I have to say, it's pretty amazing. I am not sure she fully understands the whole trick-or-treating part, but she loves the idea of yelling HAPPY HALLOWEEN and of course loves the dressing up part. Layla & Benny are Minnie Mouse & Mickey Mouse this year and if I could, I'd eat them up for dinner while they wear their costumes. So adorable.

I'm starting a new weekly update... titled Bottle It Up. There are so many moments in my life I'd love to bottle up and remember forever -- but with the days flying by and months turning into years, I need to remember the small moments. The every days.

Sometimes this stay-at-home mom gig is tough... I sit on the verge of tears because it's hard. Way harder then any job I've ever had. And it's literally 24 hours. There's no break. Nap time usually means my first chance to sit in quiet - but I'm always cleaning or doing laundry or balancing the checkbook.

But it's perfect, too. There are these small moments in the middle of the day where Benny climbs me like a tree and buries his head in my neck and I smile because if I were at work? I'd miss it. I miss those small, teeny moments.

A few "bottle it up" moments from this week.

1. The other day, while getting ready for school... I asked Layla to put her boots on. Her response?
"Mama... 5 more minutes!"
I almost peed my pants.
Sassy little two year old ;)

2. Benny is getting really, really good at having a catch. His favorite toy by FAR is a ball - any, name it. He will have a catch for a long time and is getting good at throwing & catching. Layla is also pretty amazing but at 9 months, Benny blows me away.

3. Bedtime is a science in our house (that's a post for another day)...and lately, after I get Benny to bed.. Layla asks me (over & over)...
"Mama, wanna read me Lorax?"
It's in the sweetest little voice. And I love it so much. 
Then Josh carries her into bed.. it's just a lovely minute.

4. Layla's obsession with her cousins. I mean.. it's a serious, sweet, adorable addiction to her cousins - specifically Abbey. If she sees Abbey, all bets are off....
Over & Over & Over.

5. Every Monday, my Dad, Benny & I go to lunch. It used to be Layla - now that she's in school, Benny has taken over her spot. When he first started sitting in the high chair at restaurants, he was fairly miserable. Now that he eats real food, he's (usually) a breeze to go out to eat with. This past Monday was one of his finest afternoons ... he stuffed his face with eggs, hash browns, pickles, puffs... anything I put in front of him, he ate. He looked all around at the busy restaurant, people watched and was a perfect gem.
I love my sweet boy.

OF COURSE there were 5867699 million more moments and I can't remember any of them... my goal is to write them down as they happen.

Benny's up. Byebye!!!

Monday, October 21, 2013

Top 5!

Top 5 things on my mind....

1. I'm tired. I mean.. what mama of two isn't a little sleep deprived? After months of pretending I could get away without (re) sleeping training Mr. B, it was time to start again. It all began leading up to the Outer Banks.. and since then, Benny's sleep has been less then stellar. Some nights are better then others..but it is exhausting. It's my own fault for constantly nursing him at night to avoid the alternative (a crying, non-sleeping babe at 3 AM) -- so last night began the real deal of sleep training. He woke once around 11:15 and it took a little over and hour (and LOTS of tears) before he fell back asleep. We went in every 15 minutes to console him and eventually he gave in. I'm hoping it gets better as the week goes on and I can get in some long stretches of sleep.

2. Jamaica! In less then 2 months... the 4 of us will be en route to South Florida for our longest stay to date... we'll be with our Florida family for 2 1/2 weeks! Pretty amazing!! While we are there, Josh and I are escaping real life and heading back to Jamaica for 5 days. Plans include SLEEPING, eating, swimming, drinking..and sleeping some more. I'm SO excited but of course SO nervous. That trip will be the first time I leave Benny Boy and the 2nd time I'll leave Layla for more then a night. It also means  I will need to end nursing Benny. We will be a bit shy of a year of nursing (same as Layla) -- except this time, I'm SO SO sad to see it end. With Layla, I was ready to have my boobies back (ha!) but with's different. I am not sure why? SO.. while I'm SO SO SO excited for this trip, I'm a bit sad too.

3. TV. I have ONE more episode of Parenthood to go... then I'm all caught up and able to watch live. This show is fantastic. The writing, characters and overall theme of the show is insanely good. I relate to it and I'm really bummed that I can't watch multiple episodes in a row anymore. On a happy note, it's time to move on to a new show... Breaking Bad! I know I'm late to the game but I'm excited to be in the BB family ;)

4. Money. Last week, I decided to write down a list of ALL of our bills and the total (per month) was insanely high. That amount wasn't including FOOD - whaaaaat? Without my salary, we need to seriously re-evaluate our spending and makes sure we're being smart. I never want to get into a debt situation and I always want to have a big savings for an IN CASE situation. As a side note.. we spend about $280 PER MONTH at Dunkin Donuts. That's insane.

5. Layla. Last night, we had my entire family over for dinner (minus Michael, Abbey & Danielle) -- it was so much fun and yummy (Josh & I made slow-cooker meatballs) -- while everyone was here, I watched Layla playing with her cousins and my heart grew. She gets SO SO SO happy and excited playing with the kiddos and it is so incredible -- we've had lots of play dates recently and I'm so happy and proud of the little girl Layla is growing into. I am teaching her to share, to be kind, to love and to be nice. She is going into time-out about 5 times a day but I think she's starting to learn it's important to be nice ;) Love her so much.

...and with that, I'm going to catch up on cleaning and rest a bit. Lots of love, until tomorrow!

Flashback to Layla ... can't wait for Halloween this year!!!

Monday, October 14, 2013

Benjamin turns 9 months old!!!

The real Batman.

What up, Ma?

A boy and his bear.

This face slays me.

9 months young.

Laughing at Layla!



Benjamin Sawyer.


9 month stats:
Weight: 25.6 pounds (97th percentile - back on the chart baby!)
Height: 30 inches (95th percentile)
Eating: 3 solid meals a day. Breastfeeding every 2-4 hours.  
Clothes: 12 month. 18 month. 18-24 month. And the occasional 2T ;)
Diaper: Size 5.  

Oh my sweet, sweet boy. Another month has come and gone and here we are again. My big boy. You have grown leaps and bounds this month - I don't mean physically (in fact.. I think you're starting to slim out which breaks my heart) -- I mean you are a boy on the GO! You crawl fast and every which way. You climb in everything and stand up on anything you can (the couch, the fireplace, the wall). You love to hold things and throw them down over & over - especially in the kitchen. Loud, repetitive sounds are your favorite! You love to empty things full of toys (making a huge mess for mama!) and of course everything goes in your mouth. I watch you drink everything in with your big, brown eyes. You stare at me so intently (especially while nursing) and it's the sweetest look. 
While you are my big boy, it makes me so happy because you are still my little baby. You always keep an eye on me and while you are playing, if I call your name you immediately crawl over and climb in my lap. You love to be held - if it's getting to be bedtime (or nap time) you want to be no where but in my arms. Not always easy but I try to enjoy every second because soon you'll be running away from me!! Your hair is so light and pretty -- and LONG. I want to cut it but Mom-Mom is requesting I wait until your 1st birthday so it seems you'll have a mullet a little longer, my friend. I can't wait until I can put it in a Mohawk again! May need to use some hairspray to make it a super-hawk ;) People always comment on your big eyes - they really light up. 
Your new tricks include clapping, high-five and waving bye-bye. You love to dance (sway back and forth) when music comes on. You also "sing" along with Layla & I when we are singing out loud -- it's the funniest face. You open your mouth really loud and sing a deep note. I love it. You don't seem very interested in TV unless it's a sport. Pretty funny - Layla LOVED TV at this age and you would rather play! Your favorite toys are books, cars, remotes and ANY ball - you can seriously sit and have a catch with me. It's insane. You roll the ball directly to me and I feel like you would do it for hours if I let us. A future sports star, perhaps?
Sleep - the ever evolving topic. At the current moment, you're sleeping fairly well at night. You go to bed at 6:30 PM and wake up between 6:00 - 7:30 AM every morning. You still wake up once (sometimes twice) to eat. Every so often you'll sleep through the night and it's a great treat. I keep talking about how I need to sleep train you because I know you don't need the night feedings anymore -- one day soon, I will. You are an EXPERT napper. I don't know how we got so lucky. You nap in the morning for 2-3 hours and in the afternoon for 2 hours. It's incredible and I know I can't complain. You now sleep with a little guy lovingly named Brian -- we'll see if helps you sleep better at night. 
Foooooood - your favorite. You love everything!!! Every morning, you have oatmeal mixed with prunes. For lunch and dinner, it's a fruit or veggie puree. I'm starting to tear apart pieces of food and give it you - you LOVE cheese and bread and anything else I'll let you try. You also like puffs and teething biscuits. And of course - you love nursing. It's such an amazing bonding moment and I'll be SO SO SO sad when it ends. 
You have 6 teeth and I think more coming in - they're so cute!! 
We go to music class every Thursday and you're really enjoying it. You crawl around to all the kids (and parents) and smile at them. You like the music and you love to dance with Layla & I. 
I can't believe it's Fall - the weather is cooler and you look adorable in all of your long-sleeved clothes!!! I can't wait to see you all dressed up for Halloween and celebrate your first Thanksgiving!!!

With 3 months until your 1st birthday, I'm officially in planning mode. I have the date and venue picked out, the cake paid for, outfits bought for me, you & Layla (we still need to get one for Dada) - it will be the cutest mustache bash!! 

We love you so much my dear boy....

Always together... soon to be Mickey & Minnie Mouse!