Curly Crafty Mom: August 2009

Monday, August 31, 2009

My Little Helper

Oh, the pre-kid days were so easy, I could vacuum the entire house in 15 minutes, have the weeds pulled out of the garden as soon as I saw them popping up... but, now... oh, now I have a little helper...

Yes, my little helper loves to help me water my flowers... he loves it so much that he has to have his OWN watering can.

My little helper loves watering the flowers SO much that he asks (ok, demands) that we water the same flowers over and over, until... well, until they are overflowing and drenched with water.

My little helper even wants me to give him the hose so he can fill his watering can that holds maybe 1 cup of water. Yes, the watering can that just empties itself in a mere 5 seconds. Somehow, that watering can just keeps needing to be filled up.

Oh, then somehow my little helper decides that Mommy needs to be watered too... oh, and then my little helper decides he needs to water himself.

Oh boy.

Yes, some people are glad to be up high... especially after my little helper splashes me in the face with ice cold water. Lucky them. Sure, ha, ha! Laugh all you want!

After changing myself and my little helper into dry clothes I decide to vacuum the house... and while I am vacuuming I am holding a screaming little non-helper that hates the noise of the vacuum in one arm and I have my little helper with his toy vacuum trying to vacuum where I need to vacuum. I get asked questions like, 'Mom, why doesn't my vacuum have an on button?' 'What does this hose on my vacuum do?' 'Oh look, Mom, look what is inside my vacuum!' 'Can we vacuum my room next?' 'Oh, wow, my vacuum hit your vacuum!'

Yep, this is exactly why it takes me ALL day to do one chores! (Oh, and I forgot to mention how I had 100,000,001 Hot Wheels and oh maybe 989,000 Thomas trains to pick up PRIOR to the start of the vacuum. Ahhh, yes, I remember the simple days. ;)

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Sunday, August 30, 2009

Autumn's 9 months

Happy 9 Months to Autumn Nicole!

Yesterday we took Miss Autumn to her 9 month well visit at Dr. Atteberry's office. Here are her stats:

Length: 28.25" (70%)
Weight: 16 lb 2 oz (7%)
Head Circumferance: 17.32" (50%)

The appointment went well, and we were told to keep Autumn on finger foods in addition to adding meat. Tonight Autumn had chicken and carrot ravioli (Gerber bite sized ones) and we also bought her some lunch meat (turkey) that she'll have later this week. The nurse told us that she could be fully on finger foods and we could stop feeding her the baby food. However, I do plan to buy a few jars to mix in with her rice cereal that I feed her 3x a day.

I also discussed with the nurse about how my milk supply has gone down. I was pumping 4 bottles a day at the beginning, then went down to pumping 2 bottles, and now I get 1 bottle when I pump 3 times! I have a LARGE freezer supply, but I counted the bags this weekend and there is only 20 left. I told the nurse that I am afraid I won't have enough milk to last until Autumn is 1 year. Autumn drinks 2-3 bottles while I am at work so when my freezer stash runs out I will need my mom to give her formula for 1 or 2 bottles. This really bothers me because with Nathan my supply lasted until a year, but he also started solids at a snails pace. The nurse told me to hang in there because at 11 months we can start doing half breastmilk and half whole milk, however, I think in another 15-30 days I will have no choice but to put her on 1-2 bottles of formula even if its just for one month. Sooooooo... such is life :o)-

Another topic that came up at the appointment is that Autumn goes to bed between 7:30-8pm and then normally wakes around 10:30-11:30pm and then again around 2:30am-4am and then waking for the day between 5-5:30am. I get up for work around 5am, so the early wake is ok, but, I won't be bummed out when she starts to sleep in because having a baby crawl around my feet and pull up on my legs while I am putting makeup on or doing my hair can be quite a task. The nurse told me that Autumn should be sleeping through the night and we are not sleep training her by letting her feed at night. She said Jeremi needs to go in to put her back to bed if she wakes mid-night, and she may throw a fit but she will learn quickly to self-soothe herself back to bed. I am not sure if I am crazy, but... if she wakes I am going to continue to feed her. I did this with Nathan and he sleeps great now, I just think a baby is a baby and until they are 2 they are going to go through different sleep cycles and sometimes sleep better then others. There was a period a month ago where Autumn was sleeping from 8pm-6:30am without waking, then she learned to crawl and pull up and we went through a rough patch... Jeremi does go in to put her to bed sometimes, it just depends on the night and if I cannot drag myself out of bed.

Autumn's is starting to babble finally, and she says "Bah-bah-guhrl", which her brother tells her she is a "Bad, bad, girl". I can't believe these are her first words! I sort of think she is saying "Da-da" as well. She just started to wave bye-bye and loves peak a boo and patty cake. She can stand up and even cruise across the entire coffee table if we leave food out... This girl is the opposite of Nathan in that she sticks everything and anything in her mouth- wooden blocks, rocks, Hot Wheels, you name it... so, yes, we have been baby-proofing. Just recently she loves to play with doors- swinging them back and forth and she LOVES listening to DVD's where there is a lot of music such as the Gymboree DVD. She also loves anything that is Nathan's... :o)-

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Saturday, August 29, 2009

Bye, bye pull ups...

Nathan is officially an underwear boy as we have taken away the pull ups that he was wearing during the night. We noticed he was not wetting the pull ups and also pee'ing a lot in his potty in the morning so we decided it was time to take them away. Also, I was getting near the end of a pack of pull ups and just did not feel like spending money on a new pack. So, YAY for Nathan! (Although, Grandma has some and I guess we'll save them for Miss Auttie when the time comes...)

Just had to share the good news... it is so nice to have only one child in diapers! (pocket book-wise and sanity-wise!) Ahhh, life is getting just a little bit easier...

Next, we are going to work on having Nathan undress and dress himself for bed time. We know he can do it, so its more of a control thing at this point of time... So, wish us luck.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Hit Lamberts on way home... oh, yum!

We had originally planned on hitting Lamberts (home of the throwed rolls) on our way to Gulf Shores, as there is one in Foley. However, we decided to visit the one is Sikeston, Missouri (2 hours away from St. Louis), because we had never been to that one AND we'd be driving past it right at lunch time. It was a little crowded, and we had to wait 30 minutes, but it gave Nathan plenty of time to play on the huge wooden train that they have outside infront of the restaurant. Nathan was in heaven and did not want to leave to eat, he wanted to play on that darn train! ha!

Here is the train

Misc. train pictures

Autumn's throwed rolls bib

Inside the restaurant they throw you rolls, it is so fun! Sometimes they are thrown to you from across the restaurant, so pay attention!

Autumn's eyes almost bugged out when she saw her roll

They also bring by SO many goodies while you are waiting for your meal, and its all for free... such as fried okra, apple butter or honey for your rolls, tomato mac and cheese, black beans and fried potatoes... I was so stuffed by the time my meal came.

I got the vegetable plate with sliced peaches (I know, not a veggie, but they let me have it), candied sweet potatoes, baked potato and cucumber and onion salad. YUM!

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Saturday, August 22, 2009

SeaNSuds, Hope's Cheesecake, Sweet Home Cheese and Oyster Company

Well, I was all ready to write about our last day in Gulf Shores last night, but the internet connection was low at the condo, so I am writing about it tonight. We are actually on our way home now and staying overnight in Mississippi.

Our last day in Gulf Shores was a rainy one, so we did a lot of indoor things... which was still FUN!

I got a photo of the condo complex in Orange Beach (Palm Beach) that we stayed in 2 years ago

I got a picture of the Alabama sign (we were in Florida just briefly)- see the storm clouds?

First, we had lunch at this restaurant on the beach called SeaNSuds. It is actually behind one of the condo complexes, so you have to park across the street. Jeremi dropped me and the kids off so that we didn't have to get too wet while he parked the car.

There is a long wooden bench outside the restaurant with lots of initials and names on it.

View from inside the restaurant. I just ordered a hamburger, but I got their salad bar with it. Their salad bar was really fresh and had a lot of different toppings. Yum! My hamburger had a great juicy red tomato on it. We also got a free cup of Gumbo (coupon on their website) but I didn't eat any of it. I don't think I'd like Gumbo... but, my husband enjoyed it! While we were leaving I was cleaning up the mess under the table from Autumn, and the manager came over and told me to leave it, that it was their job to clean it. I thought that was really nice!

Then, we had sweet tooths so we decided to check out the popular cheesecake place in Gulf Shores which is Hope's Cheesecake. Inside they have a huge map and you take a pin and place it where you are from.

We tried the chocolate kahlua, key lime and turtle cheesecakes. Delicious! They were a tad bit frozen, though, but once they thawed out at our condo they were even better.

It was still raining off and on, so we decided to go see the Sweet Home Cheese Farm. I was not really sure what to expect because it does not say much on their website, but I did see a few small reviews about the place online. We decided to check it out because BOTH kids were asleep in the car, and it was a 28 minute drive from Gulf Shores down 59. It was really easy to find in a small town in Alabama called Elberta...

As soon as we got to the farm, we saw all of the cows with their babies... awww! I wish Nathan had been awake to see it, but I wasn't about to wake him either ;o)-

Just some more pictures of the farm... You don't get to take a tour, you mainly just see the cattle.

This is building that you go inside to get your cheese, and it does look a little 'hole in the wallish', but it was small but nice and clean inside. There was two ladies inside and there was a huge counter with different cheeses that they made on the farm with just the cattle that you saw outside. They let me sample almost all of the cheeses, encouraged me to... it was so much fun! There were two other customers in there sampling the cheeses as well... YUM! Jeremi and I took turns going in since one of us had to stay in the car with the sleeping babes... They are only open Fridays and Saturdays from 10-5pm, so we lucked out that it was Friday!

I got crackers and garlic gouda (gouda is my favorite cheese!)

Jeremi got Montabella and Jubilee - can you tell we are cheeseaholics? They gave us a plastic knife and we couldn't wait till we got back to the condo, we ate some cheese and crackers while the kids slept.

We saw this 'Roadkill Cafe' on our way out of Elberta, and I just had to take a picture of it. Ew!

Then, we decided to have our last dinner at the Oyster Company, which several people that had stayed in our condo had raved about in the 'Guest book' that is in our condo. Oh my, it was AWESOME, by far the best atmosphere, kid-friendly, service and food (and in no particular order), plus it was only 8 minutes from our hotel. We went at 5pm and they got us right in, but when we left there was a huge line, so go for an early dinner... there are so many cute boutique and tourist shops you can browse before or after eating that are clustered around the restaurant.

Like LuLu's, this restaurant is on the marina and the view from our table was breathtaking... Nathan saw fish jumping out of the water, he loved it...

The waitress we had was so nice and brought the kids out mini alligators.

Even Autumn enjoyed playing with her alligator.

I got jumbo scallops in a lemon butter sauce with baked potato and cheesey grits. They also had an AMAZING salad bar offered as a side for $2 extra...

Jeremi loves these claw things, you eat just the meat-- ew!! Not for me!!

Anyway, that is it... and like I said, we are half way home tonight and will be home tomorrow.

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Thursday, August 20, 2009

Alligator Farm, Wales West Railway and Eats

Today I wanted to take Nathan to the Wales West Railway, because I saw on their website that they offer train rides from 10-5pm daily. However, we got there at 10:30am, and there was noone in site and it was closed. This place is a little strange as it has train rides, but it is also a RV park. Yes, strange... we were going to do the alligator farm tomorrow, but decided to do it today since it was only 5 miles away.

Alligator Alley

We are ready to go in... there was a lot of rain and thunder on our way there, but luckily both kids fell asleep in the car so we waited it out.

We made it in time for the feedings, which... YUCK... they threw WHOLE feathered chickens in... YUCK, yuck!

The trail was SO wet because of the rain...

My flip flop got stuck in the mud and when it got unstuck, I flung mud all over my back, and over my head onto Autumn's hat! lol! I felt like a little piggy in a pig sty!

Jeremi got to hold an alligator whose mouth was tied shut with electrical tape

Nathan pet it

Lots of friendly alligators... I had no idea until today that alligators HISS when they aren't happy.

Captain Crunch alligator

Sneaky alligator

We went on this wooden bridge that went on and on and the alligators were below us. I seriously have NO idea how they repair or fix this bridge with all of those gators hiding in the murky water and tall grass! Eek!

Turd looking things that they gave us to feed the alligators with

Pretty trees

After Alligator Alley, Jeremi wanted to drive back to the West Wales Railway to see if it was open. We got there, and again, the place is empty... but, low and behold, a lady came out and said they'd give just us a personal train ride. She told me they are looking into getting Thomas the Train at their site and that the Thomas lady was coming by Saturday. She said they mailed her a 50 page manual of what they have to do on their end to get Thomas at their site. She told us they get their main business on weekends, and they do a haunted train ride as well as other things such as field trips/birthday parties, etc.

Here is the sign, and, yep, there is an RV park next to it.

Cute building

Diesel Engine train and Steam Engine train. We got to ride on the Diesel train

Here we are on the train... Nathan had a blast, and Autumn was giggling the entire time, too!

They were starting to set up for their 'haunted' train ride so we saw some of that on the 15-minute ride, but I thought this was cute so I snapped a picture

They are getting a lot of things ready for the Thomas lady, such as building this dinng car.

After we visited Wales West Railway, we decided to try the #1 Gulf Shores restaurant on Trip Advisor... and, well, nope, it is't #1 to me. Its better then Red Lobster, but, oh my, King Neptune's (more on that later) is MUCH better.

The #1 restaurant in Gulf Shores on Trip Advisor was the Wheelhouse Restaurant.

We got fried dill pickles for an appetizer

I got a shrimp basket with steak fries, 2 hush puppies and cole slaw.

This restaurant also has a few bakery items such as cookies, brownies and pies. We tried the rocky road and chocolate cherry cookies. Yum! All in all, not a bad place, but oh there is just much better here in Gulf Shores!

On the way back to the condo, I couldn't resist taking these two photos... Piggly Wiggly is a grocery store and a store namd Lil Bit (we used to call Autumn 'Little Bit'). I thought my Mom would like to see the Lil Bit picture, since that is what she knicknamed Autumn from day 1.

Yesterday I took so many pictures of Autumn on the beach, so today was Nathan's turn!

Our walk to the beach

Two helicopters that flew over us, they were really low!

Nathan with his choo-choo train

Closeup of the train

Nathan working on his masterpiece

Our feet. I love how tiny Autumn's is!!

Nathan and Autumn in the pool

THIS is my favorite seafood restaurant in Gulf Shores, Alabama. Our travel agent suggested it to us when we came here 2 years ago, and you just cannot go wrong at this place. It looks like a hole in the wall, but it is popular and sooo good. I got the pick two platter with HUGE scallops and 6 jumbo shrimp. They were both breaded ever so lightly and the breading was delicious. Both the shrimp and scallops were so fresh and tasty. Under it all I had french fries and 2 hush puppies... YUM!!! Of course, I took this picture earlier in the day because I knew we'd send Jeremi out to get it to go since we have been out at the beach/pool till close to the kids beds times. I ate my meal while holding a sleeping girl so I did not get a picture of it, sorry!

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