Kellen: Three Weeks

Sizes: NB in onesies and some outfits, 0-3 month footie pajamas, size 1 diapers (because we ran out of newborn ones. The size ones are a little big still but he doesn’t leak through them, so it’s a good trade-off.)

Eating: I’m still struggling with that same latch issue which makes breastfeeding really painful. During the day we usually manage a pretty good latch but at night, when I can’t see and the options are between Kellen crying because I’m taking too long and me crying because I’m in pain, I usually go with option two (because I cry quieter) and regret it later (or even immediately, but when you’re trying to keep two other kiddos asleep in the same room… It’s hard.)

But, at least Kellen is getting plenty to eat and seems happy and healthy. I’m glad we’re not having supply issues or allergy issues or any of the other myriad of problems we could be having. We’re going to keep trying together and we’ll figure it out! (And I might be meeting with a lactation consultant soon, if I can get into town.)

ETA: all of a sudden his latch got much better – like, seriously overnight. I don’t know why but I’m not going to question the miracle! ๐Ÿ™‚

Sleeping: Three week olds don’t sleep. The end!
Correction: they do sleep, at entirely the wrong times… Like during the day, when a visiting family member is holding them, when normally at that time any other day they’re cranky and won’t let you accomplish a thing, so OF COURSE when you have help they’re blissfully snoozing away. 

Also, Kellen is still battling a cold (so are Dan and I) so when you lay him down he’s so stuffy/congested he can’t breathe. The humidifier helps a little bit. Propping his mattress up doesn’t help much. Letting him sleep on my chest works…for one of us. (So basically, I’ve had lots of three-hour nights of sleep, and in other news coffee coffee coffee coffee coffee.) 

New This Week: This was our second normal-ish week, with using the cabin, Dan working, and no one in the hospital (actually I did have to go to the ER for something stupid but that’s another post). I wouldn’t say we’ve settled into a routine, but we’re working on it.

I tried carrying Kellen in the Baby K’Tan, which I haven’t used since Damien was a baby. It’s a little tight (I shrunk it washing it back in 2012, which is why I stopped using it then) but according to the manual it’ll stretch with use. What I really love about it is once Kellen is in, I don’t have to readjust at all. My other go-to newborn carrier, the Maya Wrap, is awesome but does need adjusting pretty frequently, especially with such a tiny baby (I’m kinda paranoid.) Just being able to put him in and have us both be comfortable was amazing! It’s nice to have a couple carriers to use until he’s big enough for my beloved mei tai.

Oh, this week Rowen started really noticing Kellen and giving him’Kellen Kisses’ – now if I could convince the older boys not to kiss him when he’s trying to sleep… 


Damien Lately – 4 years 4 months


Just hanging out on the roof of the playhouse…

Sizes: Damien is growing out of all his clothes! He’s still squeezing into 5Ts but the shirts and pants are getting short; really he should be wearing 4/5 or even 6 in boys. (WAHHHHH. So grown up. We bought him underwear in the ‘big kid’ section last week and I was TOTALLY LOST becaue I don’t know about kid sizes.)


We found a park with a bunch of these wooden bridges. Damien liked them. ๐Ÿ™‚

Favorites & Interests: Damien likes to watch Paw Patrol and SuperWhy on TV. On tablets, Damien watches The Super Mario Bros. Super Show (yes, the one from the ’90s) and Larva (which he refers to as “the weird worm show” and is potentially the most annoying show ever, lol.) Damien found a toy banana and strawberry from his play kitchen that are approximately the same shape/color as the two main characters in Larva and acts out adventures with them. It’s a little weird but super cute. ๐Ÿ™‚


He and BB-8 were playing dress-up together… BB-8 is wearing Dan’s sock and Rowen’s tshirt

Lately Damien has been very interested in bugs. He’s always on the lookout for a ‘Bug Friend’, which he’ll play with until he loses it (or in some rare cases, it dies… sorry bug friends. But usually Damien is really gentle with the buggies.)



Ladybug Friend (and loooong eyelashes!)

Damien likes to play outside and when he plays at the playground (either the one in our apartment complex or a public playground) he almost always finds a friend to play with, which of course makes me a very happy mama. Lately Damien is trying to play more with Rowen, but it kind of backfires because he wants to play with Rowen like he’s a big boy and Rowen is still much smaller and more fragile, so Rowen ends up getting hurt. It will be a relief when the two of them are closer to the same size, or when Damien gets to interact more with kids his own age.


Building ‘ancient Egypt’

Skills: Damien is learning to write letters (it’s a slow process, both because he’s not overly interested in it and because I don’t always have time to help him). He can climb everything and plays without fear at the playground. He’s learning how to make friends with strangers (a skill his parents haven’t figured out yet…) and rode a bike with training wheels at the store (but we don’t have anywhere to put a bike so we can’t get one for him yet.)


Dan found this baby carrot with legs, so he drew a face on it for Damien…lol!


1/16: And now it’s time for the chubby Rowen babe!

1/17: (playing with SW toys) You know me; I’m a stormtrooper.

1/18: Mama, you’re so pretty, but why aren’t you wearing pants?

2/20: (while dumping water onto the ground) More puddles today, Ro-ro!

2/21:ย  Mama, Rowen’s arms are cute! He has cute little armies!


Ice cream at Six Flags! Yum ๐Ÿ™‚

3/4: I’m glad I have a new bug friend, and I’m glad it can’t fly away! (His last bug friend was a ladybug; this one was a snail)

3/20: (watching Dora – they need to change a fire truck tire & are consulting Backpack) I think the fire truck would have a wrench or something. Because firetrucks are really strong!

(he found a ladybug at the park and was playing with it) “The ladybug went down the slide! … Ladybug, have you ever been to a ladybug picnic? … (How tall is Rowen?) How tall is the ladybug? … (after the ladybug flew away) I’ll just try to remember the pictures and find a new bug friend.”

4/7: (tattling) Dada, Rowen said ‘stupid penis’! (little boys are the best, lol)

4/12: I’m Super Damien! Rowen, you can call me Super Buba.


Playing dress-up (as what, I don’t know!)

4/16: (about to watch The Force Awakens) I’m so excited! I’m starting to cry!

4/19: You’re going to find out if the baby is a boy, or an awesome girl! (Sorry Damien, it’s just a boy…haha)

4/26: Mama, cheese sticks and pretzels sure make a good snack!

4/28: We got the stuff for your mother’s day cake, Mama! And Dada says mothers like dumb cards. (this made me laugh for about five minutes straight)

5/2: (hands me the Batman tag off his new pajamas) You’re an hon… honory… You’re an honorary member of the Batman club!


This is a text I got from Dan one day… I wonder if the two were connected? Haha

And some more pictures:


Proof that Ripley is the most patient dog ever!


Damien on Cobra, his favorite roller coaster at Six Flags


Cheesing it up by a koi pond!

July the Fourth

I am so behind on my summer blogging, and I’m only a few weeks out from school starting again (!!!), so I really need to get on this. So here it is, over a month late: our Fourth of July!

Milking a 'cow'

Milking a ‘cow’

Little farmer!

Little farmer!

Rowen 'sharing' his empty cup

Rowen ‘sharing’ his empty cup

Unlike years past, we had a seemingly endless variety of options for where to see fireworks – I swear every town in the Napa Valley decided to host its own celebration, which seems kind of ridiculous given 1) fireworks are expensive, and 2) the drought has turned California into a tinderbox, but the Napa Valley is showy like that. Anyway, we chose to go to the Calistoga fireworks show, because it featured a one-day fair with unlimited rides attached to your ticket – and our kids were both free. Dan and I were hoping for fair food, and while there weren’t as many options as at the bigger fair in Napa (or the really, really big State Fair in Sacramento) we managed.

Damien-on-rides pics:


Damien REALLY liked this weirdo train tunnel obstacle course


I was surprised that Damien wanted to go on this slide (which ended up in a pool of water) but he really liked it (much to Dan’s disgust… the water was pretty ew.) Unfortunately there was a bully on the slide (a 10+ year old kid when most of the kids were under 5) who I actually called out before moving on to another ride – Damien luckily understand what was going on.


Damien and Dan in the belly of a giant spinning bear… Fairs are weird!


Damien and Dan on the ferris wheel – the one ride we all went on


Rowen and me on the ferris wheel


The fair from the top of the ferris wheel


So pretty!

IMG_20150704_180442018ย ย  Along with the rides, there were also cute kid activities, and a really awesome area for small children to play. I was SO grateful for an area to put Rowen down – he didn’t want to be held all day but since he couldn’t walk, usually my options would be find-a-vacant-field-somewhere. This was much better (and cleaner.)

Family art session

Family art session

There were a bunch of easels and chalk, but Rowen preferred the eraser

There were a bunch of easels and chalk, but Rowen preferred the eraser

Posing in his cute 4th of July outfit :)

Posing in his cute 4th of July outfit ๐Ÿ™‚

Damien and Rowen in the baby box

Damien and Rowen in the baby box

Bowling in the kid area

Bowling in the kid area

The one problem was that it was a very LONG day with two little kids. If we lived closer I would have gone home midday and come back for the fireworks, but for us that would have been an hour round trip (plus we would have had to retrieve our car from the fair parking lot, which was a pretty long walk we weren’t wanting to do more than we had to) so we stayed put. Near the end of the day we did find an air conditioned building with arts and crafts activities for kids, and Damien spent 45 minutes “building the Axiom” (which looked a lot like a clay mountain).

This, it seems, is the Axiom

This, it seems, is the Axiom

Nighttime rides!

Nighttime rides!


Finally we were able to wander over to the racetrack, where they would be shooting off fireworks after dark. A lot of people sat in the grandstands but we crossed the track and went to the grassy field in the middle, where a band was playing (they did covers of all different styles of music and were really entertaining) and the kids could dance around and be crazy and no one cared. When the fireworks show finally started it was one of the better ones I’ve seen in years… and amusingly, Rowen fell asleep in my lap halfway through. He seemed pretty interested until all of a sudden he just went unconscious, haha. Damien enjoyed it, though not quite with the wonder of last year (granted this was now the second time he had seen fireworks so he was an old pro.)

January Photos

…Random photos that didn’t get their own post.


Bathtime in the little tub…


Fish towel! (AKA the mudkip towel)


…bathtime in the big tub.


Love these coffee filter Eskimos Damien’s class made! Damien says his only has hair and eyes “because I don’t know how to draw mouths”… ๐Ÿ™‚


Damien with his girl posse at preschool – there’s only one other boy in his class (who he’s friends with too) but he mostly plays with these three


Brother cuddles!


Rowen selfie… hahahaha. He steals my phone and tries to eat it.


And a dipdog too! (Ripley, what are you even doing?)

Photo Dump: Winter Edition

Damien cheesing it up at dinnertime

Damien cheesing it up at dinnertime

Nommin' his delicious finger

Nommin’ his delicious finger

Standing on the changing table

Standing on the changing table

Family cuddles on the couch during Christmas break!

Family cuddles on the couch during Christmas break! Rowen just barely made it in there. ๐Ÿ™‚

Cute nursin' hands

Closeup from that same cuddle session, complete with cute nursin’ hands

So, I accidentally left the bottle of bath paint on the side of the tub and looked away for a second. I looked back, and it looked like a Smurf exploded.

So, I accidentally left the bottle of bath paint on the side of the tub and looked away for a second. I looked back, and it looked like a Smurf exploded.

Ripley's raincoat, lol

Ripley’s raincoat, lol. She doesn’t like to pee in the rain, so we dress her up and she looks ridiculous but at least she goes outside!

I was pulling an all-nighter last quarter... unfortunately, Rowen decided to stay up with me, which made things a bit more complicated.

I was pulling an all-nighter last quarter… unfortunately, Rowen decided to stay up with me, which made things a bit more complicated.

Bapa/grandson pile!

Bapa/grandson pile!

His propped-up foot made me giggle

His propped-up foot made me giggle

Rowen is so cute when he sleeps


Mommy/baby selfie

Mommy/baby selfie

Daddy & Baby

And now Daddy & Baby time

Damien wanted to hold Rowen. Rowen was not amused.

Damien wanted to hold Rowen. Rowen was not amused. (I totally was, at least once I saw this photo!)


We shared a delicious root beer freeze at A&W!

Rowen's first time in a high chair!

Rowen’s first time in a high chair!

Once he saw Rowen in a high chair, Damien decided he needed one too! I was kind of impressed he still fit.

Once he saw Rowen in a high chair, Damien decided he needed one too! I was kind of impressed he still fit.

Aaaand this is exactly why I used up an entire blog’s worth of space in three years. I’m getting a good start at filling up this new blog too! ๐Ÿ™‚