Bug LOVED the window in our stateroom and enjoyed looking out every chance he got

Cruising with a Toddler

Last November, our family went on a Caribbean cruise! I had been on a cruise 10 years earlier and loved it. This was the first time Bug and Jon went sailing into the middle of the ocean with no land in sight. My sweet husband was reluctant to go so far from the safety of land but I (and in the end, he) was so glad he did! (As he put it, he has seen Titanic. And it did not end well.)

Bug LOVED the window in our stateroom and enjoyed looking out every chance he got
Bug LOVED the window in our stateroom and enjoyed looking out every chance he got

Even as excited as we were (…I was), there was still much trepidation about traveling with a toddler. We had ventured to Canada to visit Jon’s family 4 months before the cruise which helped us prepare. We were able to get a better grasp on what we would need to bring for Bug – and our test-run was done where we were able to get something if we forgot. (Of course, in the middle of the ocean, you’re out of luck if you need something.)

A friend asked for tips on cruising with a toddler shortly after our return. I formulated a list of my thoughts and want to share them with you. Continue reading

Cutting the Cable

Last month – I had to double-check because I couldn’t believe it’d been that long – Suzanne and I officially cut the cable and turned in our cable box. No more movie package. No more DVR. No more hundreds of channels with barely anything worth watching. Done.

We’d talked about it for months. Probably longer. But we never really got serious about it. Then it came time to pay July’s cable bill and I was like, “I really wish I didn’t have to pay this bill.” At $160 for cable and Internet, it’d grown pretty large. Sure, I could have called and gotten them to move us to a new promotional plan, but that’s a hassle. I guess I’m the kind of customer they like.

I figured I could get away without cable pretty easily. Most of the time I’m watching a St. Louis Cardinals’ game on MLB.TV or using the computer in the evenings. Occasionally, I’ve even picked up a book in my recent efforts to make time for the things that I’ve often said I don’t have time for. And with football season around the corner, the majority of those are on broadcast television. I can also usually find an online stream with racing on it if I really want to get my racing fix.

So for me, I didn’t foresee it being a problem. But Suzanne is at home with Micah all day long. I know it’s an easy thing to watch to keep some level of sanity during the day, so I didn’t want to be the guy who took away an escape for her. And if I brought up the topic, I was afraid she’d just agree with me without really being totally for it. So I said, I’ll let her bring it up. Continue reading

Micah: 10 months

8-13-14 (40) Length:  29 inches

Weight: ~15.5 pounds 

Likes

The little Bug loves moving. All.the.time. He cannot sit still and I am exhausted trying to keep up with him all day (I know…I know…”just wait until he’s walking”). Speaking of that…he is so close to walking independently. He will walk while we are holding his hands/arms with no issue but he still does not walk with his walker or along furniture. We think it is a confidence issue and a weight distribution issue (too tall and skinny…lol). However, we think he will get it very soon. There is little doubt in our minds. When he does, there will be no stopping him. Continue reading

Micah: 9 months

Mom, this is boring. Are we done yet?
Mom, this is boring. Are we done yet?

Length:  28.75 inches

Weight: ~15 pounds  Likes Moving and grooving! The Bug is on the move! While he has mastered moving around by rolling and army crawling for several months now, he has picked up a lot of speed. He is across the room in 10 seconds or less. No longer are the days that we can set him down long enough to switch a load of laundry and come back to find him in the same place. He is also a fan of the solids we have been trying. Although he has not been too adventuresome, he has enjoyed most of what he has tried. Our new food is yogurt – and that, I do believe, has been the biggest hit of all of the foods. Continue reading

Micah: 8 months

6-13-14 (390)Length: 28.5 inches

Weight: 15 pounds (??)

Likes

This sweet little boy loves to smile at everyone. He is a huge flirt with the ladies, it does not matter whether that is at the grocery check out, the church nursery, or walking around the neighborhood. He is a flirt.

Micah also loves to giggle and watch his puppies. Jax is, by far, the most humorous to watch; Marble is the most fun to grab and hold onto. Both dogs are such good natured about Bug interacting with them, for which we are thankful. Continue reading

Micah: 7 months

More interested in the bear than looking at the camera - on a side note, he is the same size as the bear!
More interested in the bear than looking at the camera – on a side note, he is the same size as the bear!

Length: 28 inches

Weight: 15 pounds (??)

Likes

Bug loves observing his world. He enjoys looking at everything and refuses to simply kick back and watch things go by him. He loves riding in the cart at stores but struggles to enjoy facing backwards, and is most often twisting himself so he can see where he is going (when facing backwards, the view doesn’t change much as all he sees are Mommy or Daddy). This little guy is such a flirt, too. He loves grinning and talking to all of the ladies he encounters (we’re going to have to watch out for him as he gets older…..). Continue reading

Micah: 6 months

Big grin!Length: 27.5 inches

Weight: 14 pounds, 4 ounces 

Likes

This guy loves his puppies. He is amused highly by their playing, roughhousing, and general silliness. His favorite thing to do is sit in his jumper and watch Mommy or Daddy play with the puppies while he laughs hysterically. Bug loves his bedtime routine: Daddy comes home from work and they go play in his room before his bedtime meal. Continue reading

Most useful baby items

I may not know many things about raising a child, but in my short three and a half months as a new mom, I have learned what some of the most useful baby items are. I want to share these items with you in order to make your life easier as a new parent.

For Out and About

Stroller frameFirst and foremost, I must say that this is the best and most used item that we have received: a stroller frame. This is a lightweight stroller that a car seat can click into. In order for it to be used and must have the car seat, unlike the traditional stroller that comes as part of a travel system. Many of these stroller frames have a basket beneath the car seat to carry your belongings, and some even have cup holders to carry a drink (obviously, specifications vary depending on the brand). These frames are very lightweight and easy to stowaway in your trunk without killing yourself. The frame that I use, is about 10 pounds. The stroller that came with my travel system, weighs about 20 pounds. And that is a big difference, especially if you are in and out of the car multiple times with the baby. For someone who has trouble carrying the car seat, this is a huge help. Aside from being lightweight the frame also folds up smaller than the travel system stroller. If you have a small trunk like me, this is very important. Continue reading