Category Archives: Hannah

Hannah is Nine Months Old!

What a big month for baby Hannah this has been! Hannah has hit so many fun developmental milestones during this last month. She loves playtime, especially if her brother or her dog shows an interest in her.

Hannah’s stats:

  • Weight: 20 pounds 9 ounces {84th percentile}
  • Length: 27.5 inches {40th percentile}
  • Clothing size: 6-12 month or 12-18 month
  • Number of teeth: 0
  • Eye color: bluish turquoise – they’re pretty striking. Her doctor said they’ll stay!
  • Words: dada
  • Favorite foods: mac & cheese!, banana, smoothies, cheese, broccoli!, carrots, raspberries!, pancakes… basically anything we give her….
  • Least favorite foods: jalepeno

One of my favorite things that happened during the last month has been that Hannah has started to feed herself. Watching a baby learn how to feed herself is one of my favorite parts of parenting an infant.

Hannah loves to eat whatever we’re eating and I love to share with her. I can tell she’s really proud of herself too. She has been working on her fine motor skills with picking up little bits of food I put on the tray of her high chair. Her accuracy rate is pretty high for getting the food in her mouth, though holy cow, we have to deep clean the high chair almost daily right now!

In big body movements Hannah has made tremendous growth over the last month. She is rolling and scooting and pivoting all over the house – part of me thinks she’ll skip crawling and go right to walking. I feel like she can get to whatever she wants so she doesn’t really think about a more efficient movement? We’ll see!

Just last week she started pulling herself up to kneel, all by herself, and she’s started pushing herself up into a sit, all by herself. I love watching the day-to-day progressions she’s making. It’s remarkable how much strength she can gain in a day.

Over the last month or six weeks I have been saying Hannah had been at the age of frustration. She just couldn’t quite get to what she wanted or do what she wanted. I sort of think that’s over {at least for now!}. She seems more content and while she hasn’t figured out crawling she can get herself across a room just fine.

One of Hannah’s favorite activities is reading books. I feel like I’m constantly reading to her and if she’s ever upset all I need to do is pull out a book. She especially likes the touch & feel books that are more interactive for babies.

One of Hannah’s least favorite activities is being in her car seat. There are some days during the week where I feel like we’re constantly on-the-go and those are her least favorite days, understandably. I try to balance the car time with lots of floor playtime for Hannah whenever I can during those days.

{I can’t believe HOW BIG she is in her car seat! And obviously I buckle her in…}

We’re in a funky sleep pattern right now. The only predictable part of Hannah’s sleep is that it’s unpredictable. I’d say at least 6 out of 7 nights a week she stays asleep during the times I am asleep; however, it’s been common lately for her to wake up several times between when I put her down and when I go to sleep. I have a feeling all of the major development going on with her {plus the fact that she’s been sick for more than 5 weeks} is just messing with her sleep. Is cold and flu season over yet!?

Hannah is still nursing to sleep at night and for most naps that happen in her crib. Until recently I haven’t cared much to change that habit – we’ve both really enjoyed our run with nursing. Now that Hannah is older she is getting SO distracted while eating and it’s become really difficult to fall asleep at night while nursing. Not to mention it makes it hard impossible for anyone else to put her to sleep. So that’s on the docket for the nearish future to work on changing.

One of my favorite parts about nine month-old Hannah is how LOUD she is! Her brother has always been noisy and it seems like Hannah tries to go a little louder to keep up with him. She squeals and shrieks and screams in the best way. Her smiles are full body wiggles from her toes all the way up to her head. She’s just the sweetest.

A couple weeks ago Hannah and I started attending a music class together. She has a BLAST. Not only does she love the music, she loves seeing the big kids. It’s so fun to have a mama and Hannah activity we can do together. She also loves attending co-op with Ben – they do music at co-op once a month, too, and it’s a hit with Miss Hannah.

Some other fun facts about Hannah are: she can wave, she gets SO excited when she figures out it’s bath time, she can bang two blocks or drumsticks together, and she adores her dog!

I’m so excited to see what is up ahead in the next month for Hannah. We’ll see if she ever starts crawling or just jumps ahead to walking.

Ben as a nine month old

Chronicles of a Stay at Home Mom: The Beginning

Nearly two months ago I transitioned into my new full-time role as “mom.” So far I’m loving the new gig and I can already tell it’s a good fit for me and my family.

I’m really approaching this as if it were a “real” job {and let’s be real – it is most certainly a job!} – having goals, expectations, and really thinking through it. If it had been a job, though, I would have had a bit more prep time and maybe a job description to help with the adjustment. I’m improvising and still trying to figure out the ropes quickly, as I dove into this rather suddenly.

If I’m being honest, I have always envisioned myself as a stay-at-home-mom – or is it a career mom these days? I don’t even know. Once Ben was born, though, we found an incredible nanny and I loved my job, so I kept working part-time. That allowed me some adult time, challenged my brain and also enabled me to have some personal time to get a few things done while Ben was in the capable hands of our wonderful nanny. Sure, it was hard to balance everything, but having good childcare makes all the difference.

Even in retrospect, I don’t think I’d be as confident in my role as a career mom if we had made the decision any sooner than we did. I think we needed the challenges we experienced so I could feel certain I was making the right decision. Leaving my job was not something I took lightly – I loved my job and it was not easy to give it up. I knew I wanted to stay home with the kids eventually and thought maybe at the end of this calendar year, but when the writing was really big and bold on the wall, I finally saw it and things happened very fast. I had no time to plan or prepare for the transition – it took me a while to stop feeling like I was just winging it every day.

Being a full-time mom is a tremendous sacrifice and I’m still working on carving out time for myself. Our little family is so close-knit that it’s hard for me to want to step away from our family time during our precious little weekend time together as a foursome.

Having “me time” is an element that has been the hardest so far but I’m working on improving this. I’d get a big old check mark in the “needs improving” box of a performance evaluation. I think part of my failure here was that I dove in so suddenly that I really sacrificed myself in the turnover and as I’m coming up for air I’m discovering my needs.

We do have a few babysitters we can pull from for me to get a little time to myself or get a few things done. It’s just hard to stomach paying Seattle babysitting rates when I’m not bringing in any income.  In any case, I’m challenging myself to get together at least once a month with a girlfriend for a glass of wine after our littles are in bed. No babysitter needed! 😉 And! I’m dialing in on our routine/schedule throughout the day to make sure that I get a “nap time” break at some point.

Of course there are other challenges that I’m experiencing, though I have to say, our new arrangement is so much easier on our whole family than what we had going on before. The stress of our ever changing childcare was really wearing on us all.

In the limited time since I’ve become a career mom Alex and I, along with Ben’s teachers, have noticed significant changes, especially in Ben. His teachers have commented in particular how they’ve seen such a confidence boost in him recently. We attribute that to the continuity I’m providing and the simple fact that he feels secure.

At home, Alex and I have noticed a tremendous leap in his communication and expression, his happiness and how well he’s doing with potty training {well, most days!}. Ben has become so much more interested in Hannah and is showing signs of real empathy and compassion and has been making friends! 

Additionally, right from the onset, I made some adjustments to my parenting style. I realized right away I needed to tow a firmer line on some elements and establish clear boundaries on others. Those lines have been heavily tested recently and I’ve held steady!

We’re having the time of our little lives during the day. We go on nature walks, Ben has been practicing riding his balance bike, we’ve had picnics, we’re loving hopscotch and drawing with chalk, Ben has been playing catch and practicing hitting a baseball off of a tee, he’s been helping me cook and having some true chill time. We love reading books together with Hannah, putting on musical performances {usually for Hannah}, building tower houses with blocks, driving toy cars on the “road” {aka painters tape on the floor!}, doing art projects and taking Jackson for walks.

Ben occasionally still asks me if I’m going to work today, and I always remind him that my job is to take care of him and Hannah now, and that I have the best job in the whole world. And I sure do mean it when I say that. Being their mama is my dream job.

The Happenings

Gosh – it’s late March. Spring is here. We’ve been super sick. Our life is in four and three-day increments as we’re sharing our time between The Lodge. Ok – you’re caught up! Here are some photos to better tell the story…

{We’ve been loving sitting out on the stairs on our deck while we watch Ben play in the yard/driveway at The Lodge. He is such an outdoor kid!}

{Our friends Carrie and Patrick and their daughter Roslyn joined us up at The Lodge a few weeks ago. We loved seeing the two tots play together and sharing our home with our friends.}

{I didn’t get a single day of downhill skiing in this year, unfortunately. It feels less disappointing since we’ve been able to get so much cross county skiing in. I have really, really grown to love it! This is Ben and Roslyn.}

{The days have been sunny and glorious lately! My big helper is an expert at watering our new plants.}

{Time to pull out the picnic blankets! I am dreaming of summer right now and of all the fun things I can do with my littles. We’re going to have a blast!}

{These two! Loving life in Leavenworth.}

{Ben just jumped up to size 3T clothes! Loving his new dinosaur jammies!}

{Thanks for the ice cream cone, Nana! It was delicious!}

{We’ve had a rough March with illnesses plaguing our household. While Alex was out of town Ben got croup. He’s had it twice before and it wasn’t a big deal. This time it was and we ended up having a 911 call and a hospital visit because Ben was gasping for breath. It was a scary experience and we’re glad it’s behind us.}

{Once Ben seemed on the mend from Croup we all came down with the flu. Thank you, Emergency Room, for spreading your germs!}

{I’m not used to having Ben nap anymore but he’d go and climb into my bed and curl up with his choice of stuffed animal and fall asleep!}

{Sweet Hannah has entered the age of frustration. She wants to do so much more than she’s physically ready to do. I’m sure it’s especially hard having an older brother. She wants to do everything he is doing.}

{The Lodge is finally DONE. We have received the certificate of occupancy and it’s done!! Check out the new deck railings. I think they complete the look of the house so well. We have been up here basically every weekend and are really feeling settled.}

Hannah is Eight Months Old

Miss Hannah is eight months old and full of joy, squeals and smiles. She is getting more animated and excited about everything by the day. It’s hard to keep up with her frequent changes!

Hannah’s stats:

  • Weight: not sure – heavy! 20-22 pounds??
  • Length: not sure – getting tall!!
  • Clothing size: mostly 6-12 months – inching towards 12-18 in certain brands
  • Number of teeth: 0
  • Eye color: still blue!
  • Words: I’m pretty positive she’s saying “dada” and it is so dang cute!
  • Favorite foods: BANANAS, cottage cheese, smoothies, hummus… anything!
  • Least favorite foods: avocado

Over the last month or so Hannah has been working very hard on moving. She is doing barrel rolls like it’s her job, she loves scooting around the room and can do pivots on her back or tummy. No crawling yet – I thought she was closer than she actually is. She still needs to get up on all fours so I think she has a little ways to go before she starts crawling.

Hannah is making her opinions known and shares them loudly! Hannah is so noisy. She squeals with excitement and screams out of frustration. Sometimes to an untrained ear it’s probably hard to tell the difference.

Our sweet girl loves to be a part of the action. She loves attention and will most certainly let you know if you’re not giving her enough. She shrieks and squeals and makes all sorts of wild animal noises to communicate what she wants.

Lately Hannah has really become a dada’s girl. She has been saying “dada” or “dadadada” and gets super smiley and squealy when Alex comes near her. It is adorable.

Ben is Hannah’s first love, though. Anything and everything he does can get a giggle out of her. Ben loves to roar like a dinosaur to try to make Hannah laugh – he has a 99% success rate I think!

Oh my – eating is Hannah’s favorite pastime! For her first seven months I could say she would nurse all day and all night if I let her – now, she would eat solid food all day and all night if I let her. In the last month I’ve noticed a big shift from her milk consumption to solid foods. She has made a big change in her calories and the amount she is taking in from breastfeeding.

It’s really hard to narrow down Hannah’s favorite foods. The only thing I’ve given her that she doesn’t like is avocado, otherwise she’s loved it all. She can eat a tremendous amount of solid food, too. She has been known to down a pouch and a half in one sitting before {that’s a lot for a 7-month old!}.

I have started feeding Hannah the Once Upon a Farm pouches – in my limited research these seem to be the real deal and Hannah LOVES them. She quickly figured out how to eat straight from the pouch, as opposed to from a spoon – this is much faster and far less messy. Once recently, Hannah got frustrated with me spoon feeding her from a pouch and grabbed the pouch, put it in her mouth and fed herself. This girl knows what she wants!

Hannah has been playing very independently lately. She is very much in the stick-everything-in-her-mouth phase, so she loves teething toys. She also loves our activity cube, a toy we got when Ben was a little older than she was. This is our tried and true attention holder toy – it is so wonderful and Hannah is so into it.

Anything that Ben has is of tremendous interest to Hannah. She is so curious about everything her big brother does and has and this is a great source of frustration for them both.

Since she was about 10 weeks old, Hannah has been sleeping through the night. The last five weeks or so have been more hit-or-miss, I think with the changing environments since we’ve been back and forth to The Lodge a bit more. More often than not she is sleeping through the night – sometimes she just wakes herself up and, really, I probably go in there too soon out of fear that she’ll wake up her brother.

One of the biggest challenges of having two young kiddos is managing the logistics. Hannah’s naps have been so inconsistent. When given the opportunity, she’s a great napper, and when being carted around from here to there she finds the chance to take cat naps and then falls asleep a little earlier at night. These days she’ll either take two or three naps during the day, depending on what we’re up to and how mobile she is. She is such a trooper with sleep, though I do wish I could consistently allow her at least one long nap every day.

This sweet little girl continues to light up the room and our little house. We adore her so very much!

Ben at eight months old – they had so much in common!

Hannah is Seven Months Old!

Our sweet baby girl is rounding the corner and headed straight for age one. I know it’ll be here before we know it. Just like most months, this last one was a blur – especially blurry in fact.

Hannah’s stats:

  • Weight: not sure – 19 or 20 pounds maybe?
  • Length: not sure
  • Clothing size: mostly 6-12 months, though she is starting to outgrow a few things already!
  • Number of teeth: 0
  • Eye color: still blue!
  • Words: we swear she’s working on saying “dada” – it’s the absolute sweetest Hannah is SO LOUD. She squeals and shrieks with excitement {or exhaustion} and loves to be part of the conversation. She’s a chatterbox!
  • Favorite foods: bananas, applesauce, CHILI
  • Least favorite foods: avocado

Hannah continues to bring our family so much joy – lately in the form of whole body smiles that include exasperated leg kicks, cackles, squeals and giant ear-to-ear grins on her face.

She loves playing and being included in whatever is going on. Alex likes to have her chase Ben around the house – everyone gets a good laugh, especially Hannah.

Over the last month Hannah has become more comfortable eating solid foods. With all of the craziness we’ve had going on I really haven’t made as much of a point in trying new foods with her as I should. Once things settled down I got a little more creative and offered her new tastes. She absolutely loves to eat!

One of my favorite recent memories was one of our first dinners at home as a family of four after our families left and after our au pair left. We had chili for dinner and Hannah devoured it! She loved eating the soupy part as well as very small chunks of meat and beans – her first experience with that consistency and also that much flavor. Chili is one of my favorite winter meals to make and eat and it brought so much enjoyment to be able to share it with both of my kids and have them love it.

Developmentally Hannah has been working on getting stronger and stronger with sitting up. She’s at the point where we can really plop her down anywhere and she will be okay for the most part.

Hannah is putting eeeverythingg in her mouth right now. Her favorite teething toys are these and these. She is a major pacifier lover, which at this point I love. She adores her lamb wubbanub pacifier.

As a new 7-month old, Hannah is just starting to be on-the-move! While she’s definitely not crawling yet, she is scooting and rolling and figuring out how to get where she wants to go. She has quite a bit of figuring out to do, still, before crawling comes, but she’s a mover, that’s for sure.

Hannah absolutely adores her brother. She loves getting attention from him and enjoys sitting and watching him be goofy. Her sweet squeals and wide open-mouth smiles light up the room and Ben gets the best show from her.

One major change for Hannah this last month was moving into her brother’s room – now dubbed the “kids room.” The transition has been so much smoother than I could have expected. Hannah is sleeping well and she and her brother rarely wake each other up. I think they both like to be nearby each other. I have a few things I found to spruce up the decor in here so stay tuned for an updated photo.

Thankfully Hannah has been a great sleeper and that continued to be the case during her transition to sleeping on her stomach. She typically sleeps through the night and is transitioning to a new self-led nap schedule. She’s been taking one very long nap during the day, usually in the morning, and then a shorter nap in the afternoon. Of course this all depends on the rhythm of the day – if we’re just hanging out at home she’ll take longer naps, while if we bounce around town during the day she’ll get a few cat naps in and be ready for bed a little earlier in the evening. She’s pretty darn flexible.

It’s going to be so much fun seeing what happens with Hannah in her eighth month now. I’m excited to see what she’s up to and what her favorite things are. Now that I’ll be home with Hannah 100% of the time I just absolutely can’t wait to experience the little things that happen during the day with her. We’re going to have a blast!

Ben at seven months old

A New Chapter

We are at the beginning of a very new, big chapter in our lives. Our mountain house is {basically} done and we’re in the process of moving in. We’re planning on spending as much time out there as possible as we build a new life for our family. Additionally, I recently resigned from my job running a small non-profit and am changing careers – my new job title is: mom.

We’ve been in the process of beginning our mountain life now for more than a year and a half, since we bought our property in July 2017, and we’re over the moon to finally be moving in.

Alex and I have been dreaming about having a second home in the mountains ever since we moved out to Seattle. We have vivid memories from one winter early on in our time in Seattle with our very dear friends, Carrie and Patrick, where we rented a cabin near Crystal Mountain Resort one weekend a month for the whole ski season. We had a taste of cabin living and we were hooked.

Both of us, along with Alex’s parents, who we will share the house with, have worked tirelessly to pull our resources together and make it happen, both from a financial standpoint as well as a design and management position.

I don’t quite know how having The Lodge will change our lives, but I know there will be dramatic implications. We hope to spend most weekends out there and have Alex’s parents join us for extended stays, as well as my parents, the rest of our family and our friends, too. We hope this house will bring our families together more often and we hope to provide an opportunity for our friends across the country to come and see our little piece of paradise and spend time with us.

The timing for me to leave my job came up suddenly; however the time was right for a number of reasons. I think it’s perfect that it coincides with The Lodge being complete.

Our new au pair had started with us in late December and after a month we knew if just was never going to work. I had an extremely difficult transition back to work after my maternity leave with Hannah – our childcare situation was in a constant state of flux and I never felt like I re-entered my job or could give it the focus and dedication the organization deserved.

Finally, I got a crystal clear sign it was time to move on from our au pair. I had really hoped we could make it work with her – while I knew at some point in the future I wanted to stay home with the kids, I wasn’t quite ready to step down from a career I loved so much. We made the decision very quickly and we are very confident it was the right choice.

Over the last 14 or so months our childcare and school arrangements never felt consistent or long-term and caused Alex and me tremendous stress. There’s nothing quite like worrying about the care your child is receiving in your absence. I’m a very diligent and involved parent and there were several times over the last year that my mama bear instincts told me that things weren’t quite right. In the course of that time I’ve spoken up, been far more direct than I normally care to be and advocated for the well-being of my children. I finally reached the end of my rope and decided I’d rather take over myself.

Ben will remain in preschool four mornings a week this school year and then will transition to a Montessori preschool, four mornings a week, in the fall. I signed him up for gymnastics one afternoon a week and a few week-long morning camps this summer. The rest of the time we’ll spend bouncing around the city, playing at the park or the beach, going to the zoo and doing toddleriffic projects at home. I can’t wait to have more time with my kids to explore and check out new things in this beautiful area we call home. I also hope we’ll be able to spend more time up in the mountains together.

I’m truly overjoyed to be starting my new career as “mom” – I have been yearning for more time with my kiddos for quite a while. They’re growing up so fast I can’t stand it. They’re not going to be this little for much longer and I want to savor this sweet and special time with them.

It’s the beginning of a chapter with no end in sight. Alex and I can’t wait to finally feel settled in our lives, something we haven’t felt in years.

Kids Room

Well, it’s official, we have a “kids’ room” – not just Ben’s room anymore.

If you’ve been to our house before you know it’s on the small side of the size spectrum. Our main floor is around 1,000 square feet and is where all the action happens and where life is lived. Our little 1909 house has a circular floor plan with compartmentalized rooms and no insulation. That being said, it’s loud, creaky and closed off. What it lacks in modern day function for a family with two young kids, it makes up for in charm and character, thankfully.

Hannah spent her first six months in a pack & play {a portable crib} in our bedroom. You could draw a 10 foot line from the kitchen stove straight to Hannah’s pack & play. Not the most ideal place for baby Hannah to sleep in the evenings when Alex and I are trying to clean up the house, get coffee ready for the next morning or make Ben’s lunch for the next day.

We decided to take the band-aid approach to merging our two kiddos into the same room. We pressed “order” on the crib for Hannah and then shortly after it came we made the time to assemble it and re-arrange the spaces. That happened about 10 days ago.

It took Hannah a few nights to adjust to her new crib and surroundings. Her new room is much different – Ben sleeps with white noise to help drown out the sounds coming from throughout the house, as well as a night light and a heater that makes noise. It’s loud in a different way.

I’m happy to report that it seems like Hannah has fully transitioned to her new space. She’s been napping so much better in her crib than she did in the pack & play {honestly, I almost never had her nap in the pack & play because the naps were so short! Probably because it was so awful and uncomfortable… sorry Hannah!}.

It was an adjustment for Ben, too, and I think he really loves having Hannah in there with him. He is such a caring big brother. Ben woke up too during first few nights when Hannah would wake up upset. When I’d come in to comfort Hannah Ben would ask if I was going to rock her or feed her. If I’d say I was going to take her out and feed her he’d ask if I was bringing her back, then he’d wait up, quietly in his bed, for her to return safely before falling back to sleep.

My office just got cleaned out downstairs {more on that to come!} and I made a super quick turnaround to turn that into an alternate play space for Ben to use if Hannah is napping upstairs. So far his quiet time {usually on the couch} and afternoon play time has coincided nicely with Hannah’s naps and hasn’t been a big deal… yet!

I think that having Hannah move into Ben’s room has been one of the first big steps into the sweet sibling dynamic. Ben has been really interested in Hannah this last week. He makes sure to hug and kiss her goodnight and he’s been trying to play with her or help her lately. The sibling love is pretty much the sweetest thing ever.

Ben & Hannah

People ask me all the time if I think that Hannah looks like Ben, or if I think she looks more like her father or me. Some people think Hannah is a spitting image of Ben, others think she and Ben look nothing alike. To me, I see some resemblance but they have some very different features, I think, and it’s also tough because at this age they’re at opposite ends of the weight spectrum.

I’ve been having fun with Google Photos and their historical photos and collages they put together. It seems like Hannah is hitting her milestones at about the same date that Ben did, so Alex and I have been loving all of the “on this day in 2017…” photos of Ben learning to sit up.

I certainly think their eyes are similar – and, at least for now, Hannah has kept her blue eyes, just like her big brother. Alex and I aren’t convinced they’re here to stay, though.

Maybe I’ll dig up some old pictures of Alex and me and we can see if our kids look like us when we were babies? Stay tuned…

Hannah is Six Months Old!

Sweet Hannah Max has been with our family for half a year now and it feels like she’s always been here. Hannah continues to be an absolute delight. Her smile brightens up anyone who looks at her. I get so many compliments when I’m out with her about how happy she is.

Hannah’s stats:

  • Weight: 17 pounds 15 ounces {80th percentile}
  • Length: 26.1″ {60th percentile}
  • Clothing size: 6-12 months
  • Number of teeth: 0
  • Eye color: still blue!

As a six-month old Hannah is mostly still sleeping through the night and takes about 3 naps per day. Usually two cat naps and a longer snooze. Her schedule is somewhat predictable and driven by a combination of the day and Hannah – for the most part she goes with the flow.

We’ve had a tremendous amount of change in the last month or so and Hannah has dealt with it okay. I’ve noticed that she has been rather opposed to spending the day, or really any amount of time, with a stranger or any new person. She had a rather lengthy adjustment period when Anna, our new au pair, arrived.

In the last month we started introducing solid foods to Hannah. It has been so much fun watching her get used to the idea of eating foods and seeing the look on her face when she tries something new. So far, we haven’t found anything she doesn’t like.

We knew Hannah was ready for solid foods a while ago when she’d start reaching out and grabbing the food on my plate and bringing it to her mouth. She’s been so curious about the concept of eating for quite some time.

I’ve had a very laid-back and stress-free approach to feeding Hannah. At this point my goal is merely to get her used to the idea of eating. A few foods we’ve tried with her include: bananas {her first food!}, avocado, sweet potato, cucumber, red pepper, pear, yogurt, cheese and oatmeal. Over the weekend we checked “peanuts” off the list. Fingers crossed for no allergies!

Just a few days ago we made the call to say that Hannah is officially sitting up! She loves being able to have a different outlook on her surroundings. I think she really enjoys watching her big brother play nearby, too.

Hannah is SO CHATTY! She’ll interrupt a conversation or dinner to tell us a story or just start talking out of nowhere. She loves being included in what’s going on. Once she has the words I have a feeling she’s going to figure out how to use them rather quickly! Right now she just sounds like a typical 6-month old baby: a pterodactyl!

Ben is still pretty much the only one who can get a laugh out of Hannah. It is really sweet. Usually Hannah cracks up at Ben being a goofball – sometimes Alex will involve Hannah in Ben’s evening rumpus and she loves it.

Another fun milestone for Hannah in the last month is that she’s been able to ride in the stroller seat and the shopping cart. I have really enjoyed this as a way to interact with her a little more.

Our sweet Hannah girl is all smiles these days. She is the happiest, most content baby I know.

#Momlife

I’ve been moming real hard lately and it has been wonderful. We have had so much going on recently and I have really savored the time I spent with my littles, in particular the one-on-one time.

The one-on-one time I have been able to spend with Ben recently has been extra special. With all of the people around for the holidays and all of the change we had going on I was really missing my biggest little and I think the feeling was mutual. It’s so hard when there’s so much going on to be able to break away just the two of us and have some mama/Ben time. I was so grateful for more opportunities when December turned into January.

I have built-in time with Ben, just the two of us, four mornings a week when I take him to preschool. Once a week I stay for the two-hour class at his co-op and we get to play together. He absolutely loves co-op and that time is really special for both of us.

Usually co-op ends with a steamed milk or a hot chocolate – partly as a special treat for keeping his pants dry and partly because I’m a softie. I never thought I’d be a softie but I totally am. And I’m ok with that!

Ben has been growing up so fast and I can’t stand it. It’s hard to think how close we are to times when he’s not going to need us as much and when he’s going to be so independent he won’t want our help constantly, and, heartbreakingly, the time will come when he won’t want to cuddle or be picked up all the time.

Obviously I want my kids to grow up and be independent and self-sufficient but I love so much this beautiful season that we’re in right now. I know every milestone and every phase results in more and more fun but I’m getting so much joy from where we’re at that I want to relish it as long as I can. My babies aren’t going to be babies for much longer, after all.

My littlest is growing at warp speed. It did not go this fast with Ben as a baby, that’s for sure. I hope that life starts to slow down once our weekends will be spent together as a family in the mountains. Something tells me that’s naive.

I also savor the moments, though, when I can enjoy my coffee + biscotti in the morning, read my book {currently reading Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine}, cook and plan out the week. My time cooking is extremely limited these days, as is my computer and planning time. I have become much better at making the time to have some coffee and read in the mornings by purposefully waking up early. I absolutely love sitting in silence in the dark, enjoying the calm of the morning.

If I’m being honest, the part of #momlife I like the least right now is trying to schedule in time to pump. I’m constantly on the go for my job and it is really tricky some days to make the time. My work schedule is flexible but some days there is simply not enough time between appointments. Thankfully I’ve been able to have a low/no-stress approach to this so far and while I’m hoping to be able to keep up with Hannah’s needs with breast milk, I’m totally fine if we need to supplement with formula.

{cup of ice from the coffee shop to keep the milk cold!}

I’ve had a bit of an interesting go of things recently as a cat mom. Poor Henry got injured a few weeks ago and has required quite a lot of follow-up treatment as a result. We were at the vet every day last week and I’m happy to say Henry has made a complete recovery now. My sweet Ben melted everyone’s heart at the vet, though, when we had to drop Henry off and say good bye – Ben bent down in front of the door of Henry’s carrier and said “Bye Henry! I hope you feel better. Have a good day!” There’s nothing quite like a 2-year old.

The best moments as of late are the evenings, right around 7:00, when I’m sitting down to feed Hannah and Ben comes in to say goodnight to us. Hannah always takes precedent over me. He comes in, wraps his little arms around his baby sister and gives her a gentle squeeze then makes sure to give her a kiss – sometimes on the head, other times on the hand, and then, so sweetly, says “goodnight Hannah!” and then I look up at his father and we acknowledge that we know we’ve done something right.

In “#dadlife” news – Alex has also been dading pretty hard, too. He and Ben have had some really special time together over the last few weeks. They went rock climbing, swimming and to the gymnastics gym recently. Ben and Alex are two peas in a pod and Ben is so much like his dad. It melts my heart watching the two of them together.

While I have such limited time to myself right now, it’s so hard to imagine life before kids these days. These two little humans have made my heart {and life!} so full. I wouldn’t have it any other way.