Tuesday, March 26, 2013

The Monthly Asher: 29

One of my favorite things that Asher says is, "We not know!" He says it in the cutest little voice and usually in response to his own questions without even pausing for someone else to answer him. For example, he'll say, "Where's my bee ball? We not know!"

Cozied up with his stuff, watching Phineas and Ferb.

Asher gets super excited about a lot of things. If you ask him if he wants to do something he's excited about or tell him we're going to do something fun, he does this crazy high pitched laugh and starts dancing around.

Asher has started to hit and to bite (but only to Reed, not to other kids or adults), and I'm not really sure why. We're working on it--hopefully we'll figure it out soon.

Any time Asher sees a camera pointed in his direction, he turns and cheeses. Then his eyes disappear.

Asher has started doing school with us and he loves it. He now asks if we can so "cool" several times throughout the day. And he surprises me with what he already knows all the time--I think I forget how big he really is because I've got Reed, too, who seems so much bigger than Ashie.

Race track on the stairs.

Asher LOVES the show Phineas and Ferb. One of my favorite things ever is Asher trying to say "Doofenshmirtz" (the villain on the show) and listening to Asher sing along with the title sequence.

He was very, very excited to see the cars go down.

Asher loves books. Any time I'm feeding Lila (which is a lot!), Asher grabs a book and brings it to me, then asks me to read it to him. His favorites right now are King Bidgood's in the Bathtub and any Arthur book. He has King Bidgood mostly memorized.

Ashie LOVES tape measures.

Ashie can take himself potty, including turning on the water and washing his hands. If he needs to sit down he does need help getting onto the potty. He can also put his underwear and shorts on by himself.

Asher loves music--everything from Postal Service and Lost Lander to primary songs and nursery songs. He knows the words to a lot of songs and likes to sing along.

 He's such a goofball.

If Asher is mad at Reed or trying to instruct Reed to do something, Asher calls Reed "little boy." As in, "No little boy! You need to give me that!"

Asher loves to help change Lila's diaper. I generally change her right after I feed her, so he waits and the second I'm done he says, "Let's change her bum bum now!" He grabs a diaper and a wipe, then tries to pull off Lila's pants and undo Lila's onesie unsuccessfully. Once I undo her, he undoes the straps on her diaper. And when we're done, he asks me to "count him" (time him) while he runs to throw it away.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

The Monthly Lila: 2

Weight: 11 lbs., 3 oz. (60th percentile)
Length: 22.25 in. (50th percentile)
Head: 16 in. (85th percentile)

 LJ loves this little bunny/mirror combo on her chair. And this chair? One of her favorite places to be.

Lila has turned into a smiler! She is so sweet. If you talk to her, she will generally reward you by smiling and smiling--she already has us wrapped around her tiny finger.

 Lila tolerates tummy time pretty well. She is getting pretty strong, too!

Lila started to "talk" this month. When you talk to her, she smiles and coos in return. The other day I was talking to her and she responded with "Hi!" I know, I know, she didn't really say hi. But it certainly sounded like a hi.

Her big head makes rolling over pretty easy :) 

Lila started rolling from her tummy to her back pretty consistently this month. She generally rolls over right away when you put her down for tummy time. Then you roll her back over and she rolls over again. Reed thinks Lila's rolling abilities are awesome.

 All three of our babies have worn this shirt on St. Patrick's Day (Reed here, Asher here). I'm a sucker for traditions.

Lila had her first cold and spent several days quite stuffed up. She's finally almost over it, but the stuffiness has definitely affected her sleeping habits. Her naps have shortened (due to gas issues, too, I think), and she's still waking up twice at night.Hopefully we'll drop one of those night wakings soon :) Because her naps have shortened, she's eating more often, too--about every 2-2 1/2 hours during the day. We're working on it. She wakes up with the sun (about 7 a.m.), but isn't ready to eat yet, so just coos in her bed until we get her out. Then she'll smile at us for a while until she's ready to eat. That morning time is the sweetest--I really love it.

Miss chubby cheeks loves to smile. 

Lila loves grabbing on to things and has a super tight grip.  If you put a small toy in her hand, she'll grab it and hold on to it forever. She's also good at following movements with her eyes and head. Reed has a game he likes to play with her where he raises his arms up and puts them down over and over, while Lila follows him. Occasionally  she'll put her arms up and down, too, but I think it's a coincidence.

 Little Miss has started drooling a ton. I had to document her impressive spit bubble cluster.

Lila has been having gas issues of late. She doesn't burp a lot of spit up much, but she has man farts, seriously--they are so loud and are quite smelly. It's hard to believe they're coming from her! She has also started drooling a lot. Reed always thinks she's spitting up. 

All ready for church.

Lila has become quite proficient at getting her hands to her mouth and enjoys sucking on her fists.

We love Miss Lila Jae!

Saturday, March 23, 2013

St. Patrick's Day

I was excited when I realized that St. Patrick's Day came on a Sunday this year, because otherwise Ryan would have missed out on our St. Patrick's Day festivities. And no one wants to miss out on St. Patrick's Day (proof here and here).

I was a little behind this year on St. Patrick's prep (not that it requires a lot of prep--but I had done literally nothing until 10 p.m. the night before). Then I decided that we definitely needed to have cinnamon rolls on St. Patrick's morning and I was really behind. I found this Overnight Cinnamon Roll recipe from Our Best Bites and decided it was perfect--no morning spent in the kitchen for me! Then I finished making the dough and read the rest of the directions: I was supposed to let the dough rise for two hours, then use it to make the rolls, then put them in the fridge overnight. It was 11:00 p.m. already--no way I was going to be finishing cinnamon rolls at 1 a.m. Fail. So I did what anyone would do: I let the dough rise for about 4 hours until Lila woke up to eat, then put it in the fridge. The next morning, I let it come to room temperature again and used it to make the rolls. And guess what? They were still delicious. I put green glaze on them, which was a mistake: they looked way more delicious pre-green glaze.

After solving my cinnamon roll problem, Ryan and I went to bed so the leprechaun could come wreak the havoc he had planned. 

The next morning, Reed came running into our room, yelling, "There's a GREEN path! In MY ROOM!" We made him contain himself for about twenty minutes until Asher woke up--then we set out to see what the leprechaun had done.

We deduced that his starting point was the boys' bedroom window, which had been left open for cooling purposes. After a quick stop at their easel to write a note, he went to the bathroom...

...where he dyed the toilet water green, the trickster. Next, we followed his trail downstairs. It went straight to our leprechaun trap! And the trap had been tripped! Reed was much too nervous to open it, but luckily Asher was brave. 

Sadly, we were outwitted again. The leprechaun ate our lucky charms and took our coins and escaped from our trap; but he did leave us a little something: chocolate bars that look like $100 bills. 

Before the leprechaun left, he made a quick stop at the fridge...

...where he dyed the milk green...

 ...which was perfect to eat with the lucky charms the boys had while waiting for the cinnamon rolls. (By the way, I've misspelled "cinnamon" every time I've typed it in this post. Good thing I learn from my mistakes.)

 Later, we tried to get a picture of the kidlets, but Miss Lila wasn't having it.

So Daddy had to step in:

We rounded out our St. Patrick's Day with church, a fabulous corned beef/baked potato dinner, and lime sherbet slushes for dessert. Happy St. Patty's Day!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Pinterest Challenge Week 3: Making My Feet Less Gross

I did not inherit good foot genes. From my dad I inherited the awkward second toe gene, in which my second toe is longer than my big toe. Other members of my family (who will not be named, you're welcome) have second toes that are do long the toes look fingers and make holes in socks. I also inherited really dry foot skin that is prone to calluses (tmi, yes. Just be glad I didn't include pictures).

I finally decided to do something about it. After perusing pinterest, I found a few suggestions--yes, I'd heard them before, but a reminder is always good--and got started. First, I spent a few days slathering my feet in lotion, then putting on cotton socks. If you know me, you know this was difficult--I am so not a fan of socks. But I took one for the team. Next, I found this nifty little tool at Wal-Mart when I was searching for a pumice stone:

Dr. Scholl's Exfoliating Stone File, formed specifically for heels. Perfect. After soaking my feet, I went to town. Then I repeated the lotion sock combo.

Long story short: one week later, my feet look so much better. So much. Like I might not even be embarrassed to wear flip flops now. I realize this isn't a one and done fix--I'll have to keep doing it for my entire life, likely--but I'm glad to have a go-to solution for my dry feet!

Friday, March 15, 2013

{Book Review} Rudy: My Story

A few months ago, I found out about BookSneeze.com, a website that sends books to bloggers in exchange for bloggers writing reviews of the books they receive. I barely met the requirements to be a reviewer, but was excited to find out that I was accepted to review books. This book is my very first BookSneeze.com review. BookSneeze.com provided the book, but the summary and opinions below are completely my own.

Rudy: My Story
By Daniel “Rudy” Ruettiger

I'm a sucker for the sports motivational genre. I blame my dad, who is the ultimate sports motivational genre fan. My family’s collection of DVDs is housed near the TV. My dad has his own private collection of sports motivational movies that are housed right next to his bed. If you want to watch one of his movies, you first have to go ask for permission—he’s very protective of them. And if you can’t think of a gift to give him on a holiday? Find a sports motivational movie he doesn’t have (if you can), because you know he’ll love it.

On one of my first dates with Ryan, we watched the movie Rudy. Rudy is one of my dad’s all-time favorite movies, so I had watched it many times before. Ryan successfully made it through the movie without crying (a first for him; he was still trying to impress me) but I didn’t. I love the message behind the movie. So when I saw Rudy’s new autobiography available to review on BookSneeze.com, I immediately knew I had to read it. For those of you who haven’t seen the movie or read the book—watch or read it now—Rudy Ruettiger is a man from a small Illinois town where he was likely to spend his life working in the local power plant. He didn’t do well in school because of an undiagnosed learning disability, didn’t have a lot of money, didn’t have a lot going for him. But through a lot of perseverance, he got accepted into a community college, then into Notre Dame (his dream school), and finally made the Notre Dame football team as a walk-on, which was his ultimate goal. Rudy: My Story isn’t just a repeat of the movie. The book goes into depth and presents story lines that the movie doesn’t have time to develop. Ruettiger gives more of his background in the book than in the movie, which makes his motivation and his passion more understandable for the reader. Ruettiger also describes his college life outside of Notre Dame football more in depth, detailing experiences that aren’t included in the movie at all. And finally, Ruettiger tells his post-Notre Dame story, including the process of turning his life into a movie, which may have taken more perseverance than making the Notre Dame football team as a walk-on.

Overall, I enjoyed this book immensely. Before reading the book, I was a little worried that I was going to be reading a replica of the movie. However, I was pleasantly surprised to find that, while the movie stayed true to the theme and the major points of Rudy’s story, the book held many interesting and important details that I enjoyed learning. I found myself even more impressed by Rudy’s character and stamina after reading the book. Although I did enjoy the book overall, though, I did not particularly enjoy the beginning or the end. The introduction felt repetitive to me—honestly, I’m not sure I needed to read it at all. The last two or three chapters also felt a little repetitive. I already got the message of Rudy throughout the book, and the last few chapters just seemed to repeat the message over and over…and over again. By the last few pages, I was just ready to be done—which was a little disappointing, since I’d enjoyed the rest of the book so much.
If you are a fan of sports motivational books—or just need a good inspiring book to read—check out Rudy: My Story. It’s certainly worth the read!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com <http://BookSneeze®.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Pinterest Challenge Week 2: Lasagna Soup

Ryan and I are on yet another quest to eat lighter and to lose weight. I feel like we do this a lot. Anyway, because of our goal to lose weight, I've been trying to make dinner at least five nights a week. I've gotten a little tired of our go-to light recipes, so I've been trying recipes that have been pinned to my Savory Pinterest Board for ages. I tried this recipe for Lasagna Soup this week. (That is an inordinate amount of links for such a short paragraph. I'm kind of impressed with myself.)

Perhaps I shouldn't have started this post by claiming to eat lighter because there is certainly nothing "light" about this soup. At all. But at least I made dinner, right? I found the soup to be tasty, but not amazing as rumor had it on Pinterest. Ryan enjoyed the soup more than I did, which is surprising because he's usually a tougher critic than I am. He might have just been being nice, though, because I had a day that day, if you know what I mean. The soup was hearty and I really enjoyed the ricotta mixture in it. I'm not sure I would take a bite of it and say, "Wow, it's like eating lasagna in soup form," but there were certainly many of the same flavor profiles. (I learned the phrase "flavor profiles" from Food Network. I hope I'm using it correctly.) And, though I wouldn't say it was my favorite recipe, ever, the soup was definitely good enough to add to our "make again" list of recipes. 

And guess what? I made it through two entire weeks of my goal. There is hope after all!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Pinterest Challenge

Sometimes I need a project. Being a mom of three has increased that need, I think--I need time to do something I want to do during the day. I also find that unless I have some kind of goal or deadline--accountability of sorts--I don't actually finish projects. I start them, yes, but I don't finish them. Another problem? I pin and pin and pin on Pinterest, but I don't ever actually do the things I pin. Enter the Pinterest Challenge.

I've seen a few Pinterest Challenges floating around the interwebs over the past few weeks. First I found a month-long, daily Pinterest Challenge here and here. I knew that wasn't feasible for me with a new baby; I don't want to set myself up for failure. Then I saw a one-and-done Pinterest Challenge here. But I saw the challenge the day before the deadline and I wanted to do more than just one project. So I came up with my own plan: a weekly challenge. My goal is to complete one pin each week, be it a new recipe, a kid's craft, a DIY project for myself--whatever I feel the urge to do that week. And I'll report the pin here, on the blog. I've started a Pinterest Challenge Board with projects I know I have the materials on hand for, in case I happen to run short on time or inspiration during the week.

Guess what? I already did week one! Project: Muffin Tin Crayons via Our Best Bites. (By the way, I am loving all things Our Best Bites lately. Best recipes ever and projects to boot? Yes, please.)

Basically, we turned our old broken crayons that we've been collecting for quite a long time--as in pre-move long time--into new, awesome crayons. First we peeled the paper off, which took forever. I must admit, I didn't read the directions carefully and missed the part that gave a helpful tip: soaking the crayons in hot water for a few minutes makes the peel slip right off. Next time.

Then we put the crayons in muffin tins, melted them in the oven, and voilĂ ! Muffin tin crayons. The boys think the crayons are the coolest thing, ever, and I'm not going to lie, I think they're pretty cool, too.

Bam! Pinterest Challenge Week One: Check.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Life with Three

Lila's first week was perhaps one of the hardest of my life. Seriously. I was even living at my parents' house, and my mom took a week and a half off work to help me--so I had help twenty-four hours a day. But I felt a horribly crushing sense of just being so overwhelmed by everything I had to do. I couldn't stop thinking about the next week when my mom would be back at work and I would have to take care of the boys on top of taking care of Lila. And of the week after that, when I would be moving to Vegas and Ryan would be working a ton of hours going into tax season. I couldn't imagine how I would possibly get anything done, ever. Or have a minute for myself again. Lila's sleeping issues didn't help the situation. She pretty much didn't sleep at all her first three or four nights. Literally. Even if I was holding her or rocking her. I couldn't even nurse her to sleep. And during the day? She'd only sleep if she was held.

I was not in a good place that first week. I'd talk to Ryan every night and just bawl about how I wasn't up to having three kids and how it would have been smart to wait longer between. Don't get me wrong, I love Lila, Reed, and Asher and couldn't (and can't) imagine not having them. But I felt crazy for choosing to have three kids in four years. (Because really, it is kind of a crazy choice!)

Thankfully, life got just a bit easier each day. Lila started sleeping at night (waking up to eat, of course) and I felt like a new person. When my mom went back to work, I made it through the six hours she was gone--and we were all clothed (in sweats, but clothed) and fed. I didn't break down every night. Then we moved. I was still a little worried, but Lila suddenly turned into a good sleeper and would sleep in her bed, meaning I had time to actually get unpacking done, to make dinner, play with the boys, and to sneak a short nap in for myself.

(Yes, we do wear "chillers" 90% of the time. The boys are all about comfort.)

And now here we are, six weeks Later. Lila is a decent sleeper most of the time--not always, and sometimes you really have to work to get her down, but in general she does pretty well. The boys aren't fighting quite as much, though they still have their crazy days. Some days are still quite difficult and I find myself counting down to bedtime by 1 pm. Some days Ryan comes home to me, sobbing, still not quite sure I can handle three kids and pretty sure I'm doing a lousy job. But a lot of days I feel pretty good. I have three beautiful children and a wonderful husband. I might not be the best mom, but I am doing the best I can. Some days my best is better than my best on other days. But you know what? I'm happy where I am.

Friday, March 8, 2013

A Name and a Blessing

On Sunday (3/3/13), we blessed Lila at church. (If you'd like a little more information about baby blessings, go here.) The blessing was beautiful and we were grateful to have so many family members there. Lila wore the blessing dress I wore when I was blessed as a baby and, thankfully, didn't cry at all during the blessing (though someone else may have. I'll let you guess who.)

Far left: my dad and me on my blessing day; Center: me on my blessing day; Right: Lila, wearing my blessing dress.

The night before the blessing, we had all these Hambly grandkids over for a cousin sleepover. The sleepover was loud and a little crazy, but fun.  Reed was in heaven--he loves his cousins so much.

The rest of the Hambly crew:

We don't go to church until 2:00, so we had a family lunch before the blessing. The luncheon made Ryan and  I feel like real adults--it's the first time we've hosted so many people in our own home. And in true Hambly fashion, the food did not disappoint. (I can  say that because I didn't make it--Ryan did.)

The Rolfes:

And quite a successful picture of the Hambly five:

Reeder and I did a mini photo shoot with Lila. Asher got bored quickly and wandered off to play, but Reed stayed for every last picture. Here are my favorites of our beautiful girl:

Reed thought she would like to hold his shamrock.  He was right:

Little miss couldn't keep her eyes off Reeder--she loves her brothers!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

In February...

(According to Instagram)

Little miss doesn't do a lot of big smiles, but we do get a lot of this little contented face.

We made some crazy good pizza dough from Our Best Bites and used it for taco pizza (via Newly Woodwards). The dough was so good we decided to use the same recipe for bread sticks a few days later.

We love this little lady!

Our library has a program called 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten. We finished our first 100 books in only 10 days! We got to get our first prize--a library card holder--and our next sheet to fill in our next 100 books.

The boys LOVE to hold hands with Lila and do so at every opportunity.

I emptied these bins while unpacking and the boys spent a lovely afternoon playing with them. Asher kept saying, "Where's Ashie?" then popping out.

We went exploring on a whim in the redrocks one Sunday afternoon. Well, I fed Lila in the car while Ryan and the boys went exploring. Soon she will be big enough to join the fun!

We did some cleaning in our underwear!

Lila took a lot of naps.

The boys love to read books and Reed will often read to Ashie--cutest thing ever.

I love baby toes!

You can tell when I need to do laundry, because Lila ends up in boy jammies :)

And that was our February!