Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Our Big 5 Year Old!

I know I've been terrible at blogging, and as I was looking back at previous posts, it occurred to me that this blogging hiatus I took happened right around the time we started Kindergarten! It's been crazy and busy, but it's been fun! It has just taken a lot of re-prioritizing from myself. When I have 3 loads of laundry waiting to be folded, 2 more than haven't even been cleaned, diapers that need to be stuffed (which I know drives my husband crazy that I don't stay on top of that even though he's so sweet and never says a word,) a shower that needs cleaned, and children that need momma time, sitting down to the computer to write a blog doesn't really seem like the smartest choice. But I do love my blog. And I know there are people out there that like the updates...right?

Anyway, this is supposed to be about Hunter, isn't it?
Well he has been doing SO well with school! It has only been a little under 2 months and it amazes me even to compare his writing skills from the beginning of September until now. He has such better control!
Here's a paper with his name written on it from one of our first days of school.

And here is from a couple weeks ago:

Writing was actually a fight everyday for a while until I showed him his improvement in such a little time. Now he actually enjoys it, and asks to do it even on the weekend! Here is a paper from yesterday. I was so proud of how neat he wrote his R's!

He is doing absolutely amazing with phonics too, and he's starting to try to read anything around the house that he can. We know sight words "the" and "a" and we're just starting to learn our first phonic rules. He is way ahead of our curriculum according to his ability so I am constantly challenging him passed what the curriculum tells me to do. He can already read a simple 4 letter word like "belt" or "must" and I can even say a three letter word, like "can" or "bun" and he will spell it out himself and write it down. He is quite an easy child to teach! He's so smart. We don't have too many lessons left in our Kindergarten math curriculum (because we started that last year) and we should be moving onto 1st grade level math by the beginning of January. He really is doing so well.

And just this past weekend, our big guy turned 5! I cannot believe it has been 5 years already since I became a mom. He is such blessing though and we love him SO much!

His birthday fell on a Saturday this year so we were able to have is party on his actual birthday!

The theme was construction!

I usually get the majority of my birthday ideas from google, but I was especially proud of his invitations because I thought of the idea all on my own. They looked like this on the front:

 And this was the back:
I designed it in Publisher, and printed both sides on orange card stock, cut them, and hot glued them together. Since most of them were hand delivered, I hot glued a Popsicle stick in between them too as a handle. The ones that were mailed didn't get that finishing touch. I can't take credit for the wording on the back. I got that from the internet too.

We got hard hats as party hats for all the kids.
And my kids loved them!

And I made signs to hang all around the house. We had plans to do so much outside with decorating and playing, but Hurricane Sandy had other plans.

This was on the garage since the overhang protected it from the rain,
and Greg hung Caution tape on the mailbox and a couple other places outside.

This was our front door,

And throughout the house were other Construction Zone and Detour signs that I made too but don't seem to have a picture of.

I also put this one on Hunter's door:
This one on the bathroom door:
This was on the door wall since we were originally supposed to do games outside:
This one was on our master bedroom door:
And this was on the back of the front door for when people were leaving:
Greg did the decorating while I ran to the store for a few last items. He did a great job hanging caution tape everywhere! We also had orange cones throughout the house in random places. Here's a couple pictures of his decorating skills:

I tried to make the food as construction themed as possible, along with my "Dig In" sign behind it.

We had Nuts and Bolts and Orange Cones,
and Wrecking Balls.

 And the kids' favor bags were labelled as "Sack Lunches" in brown paper bags.
And the cake was my personal favorite.

It's hard to tell in the pictures, but I excavated a piece off of the cake, flipped it over and set it next to the hole to make it look like the truck was digging a hole. I used crushed Oreos to look like dirt. (All this was another idea from this blog post! But it was fun making it myself. I used her cake recipes too, and they were really good! I only used my own recipe for frosting.)
Hunter loved the cake! I was so glad. :)
 We had lots and lots of people here! There were 18 of his closest friends. :) (That's not including the adults that brought all those friends!)

It was pretty crazy with all those people since we couldn't go outside, but everyone had fun and we all made it out alive with no major injuries.

And funny story. A lot of the kids were playing in Hunter's room during the party. For much of the time, this was happening on one side of the room. (Take note of the crib in the corner of the picture)
And this was happening on the other.
He seriously slept through all the commotion happening right next to him! It cracked me up.

Hunter had such a wonderful time with all of his friends and he is enjoying his new toys.

Thank you everyone who came out to his party and helped make his day so special!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Allergic to Almonds

So, I have this beautiful, sweet girl.
 She loves bubbles, choo-choos,

the moon, and playing with baby dolls.
She looks like this when she puckers for kisses,
like this when she prays,

and like this when she sleeps.

A girl that gorgeous doesn't have too many downfalls. But she has certainly proved to be our problem child, medically speaking. She suffers from chronic constipation, and reacts TERRIBLY to bug bites, even if it's just a mosquito. And just a couple weeks ago, we discovered our baby girl is allergic to almonds. We gave her half of an almond one night before bed, and the next morning she looked like this.

And it just got progressively worse throughout the day.

She woke up from her nap way worse that when I'd put her to bed so I took her to urgent care. Even her poor face was taken over by hives.
They gave us steroids and it calmed the hives down, but once it wore off, she would break out again. It lasted about 3.5 days until finally it was out of her system.

I feel so bad for her, and I now have to read my labels with everything. The doctor said that every reaction will get worse than the time before and I do NOT want her to have an anaphylactic reaction where she has trouble breathing. I've been surprised at what could actually contain traces of almonds now that I've been looking. And this makes it harder at restaurants, and even potlucks at church. I can't just let her eat anything from anyone now.

So that's just one thing we'll have to adjust to for the safety of our sweet girl. If I ever come across as a bit too straightforward concerning food we may be around in the future while I'm around you, please just know that I'm just trying to protect my baby and I don't mean to be rude.

Blogger Catch Up Months 5 & 6

Oh my goodness I have been so bad about my blog lately... I have missed a ton. I will try to catch up as much as I can. It may not be in chronological order though!

Let me update my monthly photos for Gunnar. Here is month 5. It's a little out of the ordinary compared to other months. Big sister waned in on the fun and as soon as I snapped the photo, Gunnar took a dive. This first photo makes me laugh every time. Don't worry - he's fine! Greg was just out of view of the camera and grabbed him.

 After we took Kylee out of the shot, all he was interested in was his diaper!

And on to month 6...

This boy is growing! We took him for his 6 month check up last week and he is 19 lbs 8 oz, and 29 inches long! That puts him in the 75th percentile for weight and way above the 95th percentile for height. He's a big boy. He has even surpassed how big his brother was at this age. He's in some 12 and some 18 month size clothes because of his length! He's also in a big boy car seat since our arms were about to die with the infant carrier. People expect him to be physically capable of doing more than he actually can because he's so big. We've actually had more than one person ask if he and his sister are twins when they're in the double stroller together! Um, no!

He can't quite sit up yet, but it's not because of strength. He actually can support himself just fine and sits straight up. He just needs to get the balancing act down. He pushes up on his hands when he's on his tummy and it's just barely figuring out how to get his knees under him. Also, just in the last week or so, he has said "mamamama" and "dadadada." But just FYI, he did say "mama" first. ;)

He's such a sweet, happy boy. It really takes nothing to make him laugh or smile. When he first wakes up and I go to get him and smile at him, he laughs out of pure joy! He melts my heart.

His eyes are becoming more brown by the day, and I've been told that you can't tell in pictures that he has auburn hair. I snapped this photo the other day so you could see his true features.

He LOVES to eat (obviously, considering his size.) We're working our way through all the jarred fruits and veggies, and he hasn't met one he doesn't like yet. And now that he's on 3 meals a day, I'm being smarter than I was with Kylee and breaking him of nursing at night NOW and not waiting until 12 months. His 20 minutes of crying is way better than 3.5 hours. In a night or so, I'm hoping he'll get the idea for good. (I just started a couple nights ago.)

He loves being with us. Besides hunger or fatigue, the only other thing he will fuss about is if he thinks he's alone. If I'm cooking dinner, I just have to pull his highchair up next to me in the kitchen so he's right with me and he's a happy boy. He loves being on the floor with his brother and sister too.

I can't believe how big he is. How is he halfway to a year already?!