Caden: One Month

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Caden has been peacefully napping for about 35 minutes as I sit down to write this. Which means, I have anywhere from zero to 10 minutes until he thinks his nap is over and is screaming his head off. Fun times. Therefore, in the spirit of the fastest four weeks of our lives, below is a quickly typed list of Caden’s one month favorites.

LOVES…

  • To be held by anyone and everyone
  • Being worn in the Solly wrap (…which I borrowed from a coworker because I rarely, if ever, wore Rylan. I absolutely adore this wrap and wish I knew about it last time)
  • Eating every 2 – 2.5 hours
  • Milk. From mom, a bottle…he doesn’t care where it comes from as long as it’s ready for him upon waking from his pathetically short naps
  • Kisses from Rylan
  • Rock n’ Play sleeper
  • Peeing on anyone and everything when we don’t move fast enough during diaper changes
  • Stroller walks

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Making His Mark: Caden’s Early Days

Through the years we’ll get to watch Rylan and Caden come into their own, and it will always be interesting to observe their inherent differences and similarities. We’re closing in on four weeks as a family of four and let me say, they couldn’t be more different…both in their features (check out the side by side! Ry is on the left) and in their early personalities.

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As I sat down to write this post (yesterday…could never get enough time to finish it) my eyes are swollen and bleary. I can count on one hand the good days/nights of sleep since coming home from the hospital. With Rylan it was polar opposite. I could count the bad days on one hand as he loved sleep but fought me on eating.

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Welcoming Caden: A Birth Story

Apologies for the long post but I wanted to get all of the story written down before the details start to fade…

I am a type-A planner. Therefore, having a scheduled induction date once again for baby #2 was right up my alley. On the night of Oct. 30 we’d check into the hospital and welcome our little on the next day…a Halloween baby. All was set.

Oh wait. The moment you think things are “all set” as a parent, reality hits and you’re thrust into chaos. Enter Caden Earl Anderson.

Since finding out ‘Pint’ was on the way, I have remained uncharacteristically laid back and somewhat unprepared for the arrival of number two. I never packed a bag and certainly didn’t pre-install the car seat like we did for Rylan. We dug baby essentials out of the attic a week or two ago and my plans to fill the freezer with healthy meals was essentially laughable. I had to be reminded to make many of my doctor’s appointments and forgot how to access the labor & delivery floor of the hospital after-hours (which comes into play later).

Let’s rewind to the morning of Saturday, Oct. 22, when I was officially 38 weeks along. I had just returned the afternoon before from my company overnight in Vail and had confidently declared “see you Monday” to all of my coworkers. I casually mentioned to Mike on Friday night that maybe I should get a bag together but took no action. We woke up bright and early on Saturday and headed to the zoo for Boo at the Zoo with Rylan and his best friend Naomi. We walked around the zoo for hours with Naomi and her dad and I felt great. I took a few opportunities to sit down toward the end but had no inkling of the evening to come.

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Hormones and “That Song”

Thirty-something week hormones + playing super old music on your iTunes is a recipe for some major emotions and tears. Good tears, but cue the solo “ugly cry” nonetheless.

On a recent 30+ minute drive back to the office from a client meeting I decided to listen to the first Dixie Chicks album. Their songs played on constant repeat in my car junior and senior year of high school. They sang about heartache, of which I knew nothing about, as well as great love…something I really had no clue about at the time either.

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A Surprise Sprinkle for Little Pint

Little Pint ~

Happy (expected) birthday month to you! Because of my scheduled 39 week induction on Oct. 30 we are watching the calendar closely for your anticipated Halloween arrival. If you do indeed follow “the schedule,” your birthday month will always be marked by gorgeous fall colors, pumpkin spice everything, candy corn, pumpkin patches and hay rides, cozy fall clothes, tricks and treats. What a wonderful birthday month for a little one that is already loved so much.

Speaking of how much you are loved, this weekend I was completely and utterly blindsided by family and friends at a surprise sprinkle celebration for you. I thought I was going to a pre-baby girls brunch with a few close friends. I raced to the restaurant, hair still damp, after watching Ry play soccer. Sunni, Paige and Kimbra had already arrived and were sitting at a small table while our table was being cleaned…or so I thought.

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Real Answers to 34 Week Questions

Alas, I’ve entered the final weeks of pregnancy. And I seem to have forgotten one detail about this stage since my pregnancy with Rylan. EVERYONE HAS AN OPINION.

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Looking down at 34 weeks

I must have blocked from my mind all of the weird things people say to you at this stage. I get it. It looks like I swallowed a basketball, I am waddling and sometimes groaning, and you have questions. Let’s have some fun with the real answers rather than the ones I politely provide.

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How Are We Almost There?

Nearly two months ago I apologized to Pint in a blog post. And now, here we are. The “summer of Ry” has come and gone.

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I am 32 weeks with seven to go until my scheduled Halloween induction. We have taken perhaps a handful of bump pictures and are skipping the professional maternity ones this time around to save money. Sometimes I wonder if I’ll even remember this pregnancy compared to the way I savored every moment of Ry’s.

Warp speed.

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Pint, I’m Already Sorry

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Dearest “Pint…”

You’ve lived in my tummy for nearly 24 weeks. You are endlessly active and I believe you have learned how to roll, kick and punch simultaneously.

You are already quite different from your big brother.

You like to make me dizzy when I stand up too fast. You made me nauseous for the first 12 weeks, though luckily never fully sick, and still give me waves of it even today. You didn’t like a lot of foods, especially anything along the lines of ramen or Thai. There is still one specific dish that I used to love that makes me turn green just thinking about it. You haven’t let me sleep through the night more than once a week since we found out there was going to be a “Pint” in our lives. Do you sit on my bladder at night?

Despite all of these differences from my 39 weeks with Rylan, I am the one who should be apologizing. Already you are so clearly the second child. Of course we already adore and talk about you constantly. You do even have a secret Pinterest board where I sometimes aimlessly save ideas for redoing the room you two will share. Ha. HA HA.

By now Rylan had probably close to a dozen blog posts dedicated to him. I blogged for weeks in secret about the little “Sprout” in my belly, documenting the earliest of weeks. We took pictures every few weeks of my barely-there belly. We framed ultrasound pictures and shared every BabyCenter weekly email update with family. We signed up for baby classes and attended showers graciously thrown by family and friends. We sat at night, just Mike and me, and watched my belly wiggle and jump. I spent hours picking out every detail for the nursery.

I want to be completely honest with you sweet Pint. Your ultrasound pictures are laying on the desk downstairs. I have little to no plans to make any changes to the room unless you happen to be a girl, in which case I have a few little touches in mind. Maybe. We were so lucky to receive an incredible amount of stuff for Rylan that I am honestly a little relieved not to be the center of attention again at more baby showers. I am debating a CPR refresher class but may watch a few YouTube videos instead. I’ll be lucky if I blog a handful more times before your arrival.

But there is an up side to all of this. I am relaxed and confident that you are going to adjust just fine. Your big brother loves to talk about you, kiss my belly and throw toys in your empty crib so that you have plenty to play with when you get here. Your grandparents, aunts and uncles are anxiously counting the weeks until you join us, as we all believe you will be the last sweet baby for both sides of our family. Oh you will be so very spoiled little one. I want to hold you more, and for longer, rather than obsess about every sleep training rule. I cannot wait to sit alone with you for hours while I am on leave and Rylan is at daycare enjoying his “big boy” routine, knowing that all of your firsts will probably be our lasts as parents. I am going to be more selfish in your infancy. I just know I will. I think your dad will be too.

Pint, unless you have other plans we’ll meet you in about 15 weeks. Your home will be ready and waiting, in whatever state, full of love. Until then, grow strong. I simply cannot wait to hold you, get to know you and even more precious, introduce you to your incredible big brother.

We love you Pint.

Review: Babyzen Yoyo Stroller

Disclaimer: I was graciously given a Yoyo stroller by Babyzen to test as part of being a StrollerTraffic Scout. However, all opinions are 100% my own. 

Rylan is over 2.5 years old, which means we’re in the awkward stage of needing a stroller in many cases while also begging him to stay seated in it in others. There is nothing more frustrating than lugging a giant stroller to an event, only to push it empty as Rylan walks alongside. On the flip side, when I refuse to bring a stroller he doesn’t want to walk and gets heavy FAST.

These scenarios are exactly why we loved testing the Babyzen Yoyo stroller. It literally folds up to be slightly larger than my diaper bag and has a shoulder strap for carrying when not in use. It is truly the very best option for those “we may need a stroller, but I don’t really feel like dragging one,” independent toddler years.

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And speaking of folding, it fits in an overhead airplane luggage compartment! Overhead. Just like a roller bag. Genius. I am chomping at the bit for our July flight to San Diego so I can finally test this out.

Rylan gave it two thumbs up as well. He said “this feels niiiice” when he climbed in and the generous sun shade saved us during one very sunny outing to the zoo where I forgot sunscreen. On that same outing I heard multiple moms walking by me say, “woah, look at that stroller. I need that” Here in Colorado it’s almost the law to have a BOB stroller so the Babyzen was chic, small and unexpected as we navigated the crowded zoo walkways.

Babyzen Dog Walk

Some of my other favorite features:

  • The tiny compact frame, when folded, leaves so much more room for our giant 85 lb dog in the back of my Subaru wagon. The Yoyo is Kona approved!
  • The storage basket underneath is actually functional, not always the case for small strollers. And I tend to still overpack my diaper bag so a basket is critical.
  • It rides surprisingly smoothly on bumpy surfaces (our neighborhood sidewalks are a wreck).
  • I know my mom will have a much easier time getting it in and out of the car, and unfolded, when she and Rylan go on their adventures.
  • The zippered storage pouch is perfect for a cell phone and small wallet (aka, morning or afternoon Starbucks run up the street).
  • The fabric feels extremely high-end and durable, especially the padded shoulder straps.

The Babyzen Yoyo is an investment, without a doubt. But if you’re a family who enjoys being on-the-go, it is such a smart, space-saving investment–especially if you also live in a small house or condo/apartment with limited storage options for strollers amidst all of the other bay gear.

A sincere thank you to Babyzen and StrollerTraffic for trusting me with a Yoyo!! Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have questions.

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How I Wake Up

Not everyone understands how I’ve adopted to a 5am/5:30am workout schedule during the week, typically at least three but normally four out of five days Monday – Friday. Today when I arrived at a 5:30 a.m. yoga sculpt class I must have had a look on my face that portrayed the internal battle I had just finished fighting in order to drag my exhausted body out of bed only minutes earlier. I chatted with my instructor and I said that it came down to the following: I could get 45 or 50 more minutes of crappy sleep feeling guilty about skipping the class, or just get up.

I got up. Class was challenging and invigorating. I left with all the energy I needed for the busy day ahead. I was done with my workout before many of my friends were even awake. The sunrise on the way home was gorgeous.

My instructor suggested I blog about the very real early morning workout wakeup struggle and the voices I (and I’d assume everyone) battle in my head when it is still black as night and my bed is it its coziest. So, here’s how I wake my butt up…

  • Is the one hour of sleep going to change anything? Is it going to be good sleep or will I lay here feeling guilty?
  • Mike’s alarm is going to go off in 30 minutes. Will I really fall back asleep after that or will I lay
    here annoyed?
  • I think there are going to be treats at the office today. I know I am going to eat some no matter what, but I will enjoy them more if I’ve already worked out.
  • It is the only hour I’ll get to myself today. Period.
  • I’ve never regretted getting up. Ever. Just get UP.
  • Classes get a lot harder when you skip. Don’t skip. You will really regret it tomorrow.
  • Tomorrow Rylan could be sick or I could be sick or Mike could be busy. I have to go today while I can. While it is even an option.
  • Summer is coming.
  • I have money on this class. Do I really want to lose a class and the money? I am already awake. I am too cheap to lose that class.
  • Shorts and bathing suit season.
  • Get. Up. Alexis.

Do I go through all of these every morning at 4:45 a.m.? No, but I’d say at least half, yes. I am a morning person by nature but that means around 7 a.m. Nothing about the 4 0’clock hour is humane, especially in the dead of winter.

But the alternative, for me, is so much worse. Stress. Anxiety. Feeling lazy with no natural energy. No thank you.

How do you GET UP for workouts, work, family, etc.?

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