Happy Halloween

Little man wants to wish you all a spooktacular Halloween! He was very excited to take his tractor to day care today :)



  • I know I'm always talking about how crazy/busy/hectic life is, but this week really has been terrible. I've been the point person on two large events within 24 hours of one another. Never again.
  • Thankfully, our luncheon yesterday went really well. Now I'm just keeping my fingers crossed that tomorrow's Jamboree is also a success.
  • I also had an event to attend last night. I'm starting to think it was totally unnecessary to use vacation time for Monday, since I'm easily putting in a full 40 hour week and then some.
  • Mister is teething and he hurts so bad it makes me sad.
  • I started a weekend wrapup post on Monday but never finished it ... but our 5K last weekend went really well! The beginning was a bit rocky for me, as I couldn't get my music or map my run app working. Once I got that figured out, I realized my shoe was untied {no, I don't knot ... but next time I will!} Thankfully, the race began on a downhill slope, so I had a great time of 8 minutes for my first mile, and ended up finishing the race with a 29:32 time. And third in my gender/age division. Woohoo!
  • We're still running, and debating purchasing a treadmill to get us through winter. I also decided hubby and I would do the 300 ab challenge. So he convinced me to lift weights (upper body with him.) Yes, we're doing it a bit in reverse by getting in super great shape at the end of summer, but oh well!
  • Temperatures have dropped about 40 degrees in the past 24 hours. Ouch.
  • I'm not thrilled about the cooler temps, but wanting it to balance out so my allergies line out. I'm losing my voice :(
  • And because no blog post is fun without a sweet picture ...

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Cooper:: 11 months!

Yes, I'm a day late ... yesterday was a crazy busy day and I didn't get a break at work, plus I'm a huge ball of hormones about my baby growing up.

Denial. That pretty much sums up how I feel about my {baby boy} being less than a month away from a year old. How on earth is it possible?

So ... I'd say the biggest update is your eating habits. You love food! The other night, you seemed hungry, so I gave you FIVE cubes of spaghetti {normal is four}. Then you still acted hungry, so we did some puffs. You still seemed hungry, so you had a small container of applesauce. And you ate from my plate. Hungry, hungry hippo you are. Some days, I have to bribe you with puffs to get you to sit still long enough for me to buckle you in to the carseat.

You're still enjoying your breastmilk, and we nurse morning & night, then you have 12 ounces over two to three feedings while at the sitter. We are working on transitioning you to the sippy cup.

Cooper, you typically take two naps a day. But on the weekends when we all sleep in {you have slept as late as 9 a.m.!} you'll usually just take a long nap later in the morning and that's all you need!

You are a boy on the move! And into everything. No full-on walking yet, but you stand on your own for longer & longer, and you have taken a few steps unassisted {things like getting from the couch to the ottoman.}

Super Cooper, you get on your mama's nerves. A lot. You want to be in everything, but not everything is suitable for a little boy. But you have a sweet smile and I forget it all in no time.

You are starting to show a bit of sass and attitude. If you aren't happy, you definitely express that! You are really enjoying being held ... which is great, except when I need to do the dishes, get dressed, etc.

You enjoy our evening runs. You love your horses and Coco, the "da."

You've learned how to clap. You give the best kisses. Playing with my pots & pans and spatulas is one of your favorites.

I never imagined life with a little boy could be so sweet! You are a very loving little guy, and I am so lucky to be your mama.


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Life lately

  • How it's already mid-October is beyond me. In fact, I'm still dating some things as September!
  • I've been a bit hit and miss here lately, so of course I have tons of updates on Mister Cooper. But since he's going to be 11 months next week, I think I'll save them for then.
  • I'm on a mini vacation through Monday. My sitter's off because her son is getting married and I decided instead of trying to line up people for three different days, I would just stay home with Super Cooper.
  • The idea of spending three days with Cooper as a "single mom" is actually a bit frightening to me! He's just at the stage where he is in to everything and I really need to work on patience, so I'm trying to find something for us to do and get out of the house daily.
  • How weird is that? Six months ago, I would have given almost anything to be a SAHM or WAHM, and now I can't fathom the thought.
  • We are running another 5K this Saturday. This one has a large hill at the end, so I'm a bit scared. Also, my times lately have sucked - Sunday we were running about half of it in horrible wind (while pushing a stroller I might add) so my pace for the third mile was 11:34! Then last night the road was busier than usual and I had to run into the grass twice, which I know slowed me down. Ugh!
  • Taking all this into account, I've decided that as long as I finish in less than 30:31 (my time for the last 5K) I will be alright with it.
  • Last week, I got the stomach bug. From my child. For the second time in four weeks. Needless to say, this has also put a hitch in my training.
  • It has been good for the weight loss, however. I've had a lot of water weight lately between muscle soreness and being sick, so I'll probably do an "official" weigh in some time next week
  • Will you keep me in your thoughts tomorrow? Well, my mom actually. She's having a really basic procedure, but good thoughts and prayers are always appreciated :) 
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Making baby food

I knew pretty early on in my pregnancy that I wanted to make my own baby food. The storebought stuff looks funny and is so much more expensive. I think it tastes funny, too - and there's no way I'm making my kid eat something I wouldn't eat.

Luckily, there are so many resources available and I have a good friend who made all of her kid's baby food and had a great experience with it. Even though Coop began eating baby food in the summer which was super hectic for me, it was so easy, so I'm glad I did it! We've saved a ton of money, and he's loved it.

First off, there is a great website to reference, If you have even the slightest idea that you might want to make some of your own purees, bookmark it. Now.

This website is so helpful, because it not only makes recommendations based on baby's age, but also gives tips on how to puree, store, etc. I referenced it a lot for ideas, or to see when a food was "OK" for Cooper. Aldi has a lot of produce sales, so I wanted to take advantage of them, but not buy the food so soon that it was in the freezer for a long time.

I also spent a lot of time in the baby food aisle, looking at combinations that are sold :)

Anyhow, for every pin and website, there is a different suggestion on the best way to make baby food. So now I'm going to share mine!

I used both fresh and frozen produce. It depended on what was in season and how much time I had. When I purchased frozen, I would buy the cheap bags at either Aldi or Walmart.

Anyhow, I would cut it up (if fresh) or pour out the bag and put in a saucepan, just covered with water. As a rule of thumb, your fruit needs less, because it has so much water in it.

Boil until done. For frozen, it's pretty much ready once boiling, but obviously fresh takes longer.

Once done, use a slotted spoon and put the food in your food processor. We bought a Ninja and it works great! As an added bonus, we can use it well beyond making baby food :)

Then, add some of the water from cooking. I usually would add about 2 inches. I've read where you can also use formula or breastmilk for this step, if you want to add a little more fat to your food, but I've always done water. Even for foods I bake, like sweet potatoes, I would just add filtered water.

Next, go ahead an pulse to puree. And I eyeball the consistency. In the beginning, it was more whipped, but now it's like a chunky salsa sort of consistency, since he has teeth and can chew.

Now all you need to do is spoon it into your ice cube trays and you are done! I would typically allow mine to freeze overnight, if not, I felt like they had some ice crystals on them. I'd then bag them up in Ziploc bags. Bananas and avocado were two of my favorite to make, because you skip the cooking step!

Of course, we followed the four-day wait rule in the beginning and had veggies for about a month before introducing any fruits. Like I said, Coop likes all foods, except has decided in the past month or so that he is no longer a fan of avocado.

Once we decided Coop was ready for meats and more "meals," I also consulted WBF. For the most part, he has three suppers: spaghetti (made normally - 1/2 lb. meat, 1 can sauce, mixed with 1 box noodles), chicken & rice, turkey & rice and regular chicken and regular rice. My friend who taught me how to make the food told me she would sometimes make casseroles and puree them as well.

I probably won't be doing that because right now, I am really working on transitioning Cooper to table food. I strive to get supper prepared early enough that he can eat with us - last night, he had chili! But the baby food works great for when we are on the road, in a rush, and for daycare, where he probably won't transition to table food until he is 1.


Mother of the year again

Last night my sitter stayed up late polishing my Mother of the year trophy.

Why you might ask? Oh, instead of taking my son's prepared bottles, I accidentally grabbed the two with extra milk. No nipples, no straws. Five ounces of milk - he usually has 12. Ugh. Thankfully he does a great job of eating real food and did very well.

Not to mention, he did his typical head-banging against the wall while getting dressed. So hard that he knocked a picture frame off the other side.

I'm currently working on my acceptance speech :)


The Great Debate

Hubs and I are debating a lot of things around the house these days.

Whether to get some cleaning help weekly or bi-weekly.
How extreme I should go with first birthday party planning. 
What came first ... the chicken or the egg {OK, I just threw that one in for laughs!}

But, by far, the biggest is what Baby Coop should be for his first Halloween. 

In surprising Michelle fashion, I'm actually advocating for no costume, just a cute kid. I mean, seriously ... in all likelihood, he'll still be crawling. Most costumes that are appropriate for an 11-month-old are the plush, super-heavy ones. My kid sweats. A lot. I'm not putting him in something like that. Plus he won't keep anything on his face these days. 

We won't go trick-or-treating. Coop obviously isn't allowed candy, and we live out in the country, so other than perhaps visiting a few friends {and mind you, Halloween is on a Wednesday this year} the only purpose a costume serves is to give into society. I'd much prefer to spend the $$ on a cute outfit he can wear several times. Maybe I can pin a sign to it that says "my mom is cheap?" :)

I really want your opinion - did you dress up your kids for their first Halloween? How? Because other than a cute kid with a cheap mom, a little farmer is my only idea right now - after all, I already have the bib overalls!

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