Thursday, December 10, 2015

Update: I Should've Known...

So remember how I built this whole plan to get healthy? And how that was only a few days ago?

And then also remember how I'm pretty sure Milo started teething immediately after I posted it?

Yeah. So I'm in a fun place. I'm still trying to keep to my plan as best I can but it's not terribly easy when Milo is waking up more times per night and earlier in the morning. The day after I posted, Milo woke up at 5:30 am. So painfully early. I did get a lot done (4 loads of laundry including all his clothes, all our sheets, and all the blankets, 1 load of dishes, vacuumed the top 2 floors, went grocery shopping, still tried to exercise and eat right, made chicken and dumplings for dinner, and had our friends over for lunch), but I'm really feeling it today.

Milo is currently down for his first nap and I'm probably going to do a short workout but I don't know if this headache plus being crazy tired is really going to help.

And on teething... It's really great. All the shouting and fussing and waking up at night... it's all just so fun. NOT. Guys, teeth are the worst.

It's fine. Really. But it's definitely not easy or fun. Luckily, Milo is a trooper and will still laugh and be cute even when he's in pain.

So I'm gonna go ahead and eat my breakfast and do some exercise. Probably.

Love, Miss Ellen

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Healthy Ellen 2016: My Postpartum Goals

Hey, you guys!
So I, like a good portion of postpartum moms I'm sure, have been feeling particularly lumpy and gross since Milo was born. And I've been feeling awful about how lazy I've become about it. So naturally, I took to pinterest for answers. Turns out, 4 is to 4 1/2 months is when your body is in peak condition to get back in shape. So I'm feeling a little bit better about things.

But it really doesn't help that I haven't lost ANY baby weight. That's right. I weighed less right after Milo was born, of course, but over the past few months, I've somehow managed to gain it all back. I don't feel any larger, so I'm hoping a chunk of that weight, no matter how small it might be, is in hidden muscle from all the stairs I've been climbing and the 16 pound baby I've been carrying around lately. However, I'm definitely ready for this mom-pooch to go and for the diastasis recti to recover (for those who aren't familiar with the term, it's that thing where your ab muscles aren't exactly touching any more).


The goal: flat tummy, under 140 pounds. I don't need fancy muscles or whatever, I just want to feel as close to regular again. I don't need to fit into my old clothes because new clothes are also nice. And a lot of my clothes are from a period of my life when I didn't exactly understand fashion but was working towards it. Anyway... Until, of course, I reach that goal and somehow magically we're ready to have another baby. Which I'm sure is going to happen seeing as how my goal is 12+ pounds away and it takes forever to shed baby weight (according to my research).

The plan: exercise and healthier eating.

Easy enough to say, but it's pretty vague if you think about it. So I scoured pinterest for a postnatal workout that would fit my schedule, ability, and desired results and this is what I came up with.

Exercise Routine
Daily during Milo's morning nap, I'm going to complete this routine:

  • 20 ski-squats (squats with a ski-style jump between each)
  • 25 pelvic lifts (also known as bridges)
  • 30 second plank 
  • 5 pushups (so few because I hate pushups)
  • 20 clamshells per side (something my physical therapist wanted me to do to help hip pain during pregnancy and could still help now)
  • 20 weighted squats
  • All while wearing a belly-bandit type girdle thing. 
It kind of looks like a lot but it can all be done in like 20 minutes. Then I figured I could fit little bursts of exercise in while I'm playing with Milo. Here's some of the things I can do then:
  • Bridges with baby on tummy
  • Squats while holding baby (instead of weight)
  • Sitting twists while holding baby
  • Baby lifts (while laying down)
  • Plank over baby
Healthy Eating
Eating healthy is one of the biggest challenges in my life. I love eating healthy foods, the problem is I don't like cooking or they take too much time to make or we don't have fresh fruit and veg because I don't know how to eat them in their peak ripe times... It's all a mess. But I'm going to make a serious effort because even if it's just breakfast and lunch that are somewhat healthy, it's better than eating a can of pringles, a can of coke, and some fruit snacks for any meal.

Here are my "mostly healthy" lunch ideas in case, you know... someone needs some ideas:
  • steamed broccoli and shrimp
  • lasagna roll (a lasagna noodle with pasta sauce and cheese, all rolled up)
  • tuna sandwich
  • hard boiled eggs and avocado
  • chef salad
  • smoothies
  • banana and egg pancakes (because if you mix 2 eggs and 1 banana, it apparently makes a good batter. It's worth a shot, right?)
  • tortilla pizza (with or without pepperoni)
  • peanut butter and bananas (as is or on a sandwich)
  • baked Italian chicken (chicken breast with Italian seasonings, tomato, and mozzarella)
  • baked chicken flautas (shredded chicken wrapped in a tortilla and baked, serve with guac, sour cream, and salsa)
  • fried eggs and wheat toast
  • baked potato (with healthier options like broccoli or just salt and pepper. but still a little butter to soften it up. What? I said "mostly healthy".)
  • avocado slices with salsa and homemade tortilla chips
  • turkey or ham sandwich and some healthy chip alternative once I find one.
Daily Routine
And if that's not enough, I've also set a better schedule for myself because waking up when Milo does makes my day a little more rough because then I don't know when to shower. Showering is an important part of a good day, in my mind. Night showers never go over well for me and my hair...
  • I wake up at 6:15 and jump in the shower before Sean and get ready for the day (mostly in exercise clothes so I can get the workout in easier). 
  • Milo usually wakes up when Sean's in the shower between 6:30 and 7, so I get him up and dressed and fed. While he plays, I'll eat breakfast.
  • During his morning nap I'll exercise and do some chores (i.e. load some laundry, put dishes in the dishwasher, pick up stuff in a room)
  • Put on grown-up regular clothes. Or not. Depending on the plans for the rest of the day... some days yoga pants are a perfectly acceptable outfit. Especially the days I don't plan on going anywhere or seeing anyone.
  • During Milo's midday nap, cook and eat lunch. No more top ramen, easy mac, corn dogs, frozen burritos, etc. Unless, of course, it's some occasion where these foods are acceptable (for example, starving and haven't gone to the store yet.)
I'm posting this as a 2016 goal but I'm trying not to make it a resolution because we all know what happens to most resolutions. And I really tried to build it to fit my lifestyle so I wouldn't be so tempted to fall away from it, like nearly every other exercise plan I've ever had. And I'm not opposed to changing up the work out, so we'll see how things go. I've only done it for a couple days, so it's not fool-proof, but I do feel better since starting it. Now to keep it up! 

In sharing this and all the ideas I have, I'm hoping I'll better be able to stick to it because it's out in the world and I know a few other new moms read this and it might help them. You're welcome to try it out with me and change up a few things, whatever works for your schedule, body type, etc. If you want to do something similar, let me know and we can work on our goals together and share progress and stuff! I'm all for giving support to other moms doing their best! And, honestly, without Sean's cousin's wife being a friend who's doing a lot of mom-stuff at the same time as me and giving me advice, I don't think I'd feel as good about things as I do (Thanks, Kember!!!). It's good to have people in your court and I'm always happy to be one of those people. 

Love, Miss Ellen

p.s. CONGRATS to my brother and sister-in-law on their sweet little girl, Aurora Grace! I can't wait for her and Milo to be best friends! (Guys! I'm finally an aunt!)

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Minnesota Milo: The Story and Tips for Travel

Buckle in. This is gonna be a long one.

Yesterday we got back from a fun weekend trip to Minnesota! Our friends got married on Saturday and we decided to take the trip. We knew traveling with a babe would be a challenge, especially after accidentally booking a 7 hour layover, but we did our research and I prepared prepared PREPARED.

I wrote out list after list after list to make sure everything got packed and we got everything done that needed to be done (I'll share these on a second blogpost for those of you wanting some tips). I'm a pro list-maker so it was great. I'll just go through how we did things and give tips along the way. Ready?


Security & First Flight

We started out our first morning of travel with an upset Milo. For some reason he wouldn't eat. He ate as much as he could (without screaming...) and then took a nap while we finished packing up and getting ready. We got to the airport early and found a parking spot.

Tip #1: Sean had Milo in the Moby which was perfect because then he could do everything with both hands. If you have any hands-free baby carrier USE THAT. It was so non-bulky and everything went more smoothly.

We checked our bag and our carseat, which I was told would be better with a garbage bag but they had one for us. When we go again, it would be nice to have a carseat cover so we could stow some more blankets or coats.

I was sure security was going to be a nightmare but the line went quickly and we got to go through the simple metal detector and Sean only had his hands checked and that was it, simple pimple. We grabbed our stuff and went to feed Milo.

Tip #2: Talk to your doctor before you go! They will probably have some good ideas for you or (like ours did) give you the 'okay' and dosage for some sleepy medicine. 

Milo was well asleep for the first 3 flights, but the last one came at an odd time so we couldn't give him the sleepy meds for it. It was definitely more of a struggle, but Milo is an honest-to-goodness trooper.

The Layover

We got to Denver at about 1:30 and ate lunch then set up camp near our gate. We found an open spot by the window and laid out a blanket for Milo to roll around on and we got out his toys. He took 2 naps at the airport (one with me and one with Sean) and it was just fine. We watched some Netflix, ate some food, and read some books. It was honestly not as bad as I thought. 
Naps rock

The camping spot

Tip #3: Check your layover time BEFORE YOU BOOK.  This is probably an obvious one, but sometimes it just goes under the radar. If you only have the option of a layover, try to choose the shortest one. My ideal layover would be about 6 hours after your first take-off (because that's how long sleepy meds last). It was good to have some time to feed and play with him though.

Tip #4: Pack good distractor toys! and enough food (if you formula feed). Check out my list-post! It was seriously a lifesaver having Milo's favorite toys. 

Tip #5 (for formula feeders specifically): Make sure you have food prepared before you board. If your plane was anything like ours, there won't be enough room to properly portion and mix food. 

Tip #6: If you have a baby, you can board first. Do that. This might just be obvious, but listen for the first boarders and go with them. Get comfy before the single business man comes and sits next to you and looks disappointed that there's a baby next to him (because that happened on 100% of our flights). This.

Flight #2 was just fine and we got to Minnesota safely. Sean's parents were there just in time to pick us up. MSP was so much easier to navigate and find all our stuff than SLC... but it's fine. We made it, all is well.

The Stay

I really do love Minnesota and would love to live there someday. We stayed with Sean's parents for our trip. They had a pack n' play ready for Milo to sleep and an air mattress for us and we were all comfortable. Milo's sleep schedule was a little weird, but he still got enough naps and always slept through the night (with only 2 night-feedings the whole trip). He even slept through all the noises because he was just in the dining room while the rest of us were around the corner watching TV. I'm just really impressed with that boy. As are his grandparents.
 Milo and Grandpa

Reading with Grandma

We left Milo with them while we went to our friend's wedding and he was just fine and got to bed without any worries. I'm never really worried about him because he's a good baby. We had tons of fun at the wedding and got to catch up with some good friends and dance to our hearts' content. My voice was gone and my knee hurt by the end of the night, but it was well worth it. And my legs would be killing if they weren't already being regularly exercised by the stairs. 

 Sean dancing with the groom

Family photo!

We had a family/friend get-together on Sunday night and it was nice seeing more people and finally meeting Miss Parker (Milo's future girlfriend ;) )
The lovebirds

Monday we were in Mankato and hung out with Bloom while Missy was in school and then I got a haircut by our friend Kate (Yeah, my stylist is in Minnesota). The rest of the day was just relaxing and getting re-packed.  

Going Home

Tuesday, we headed for home. This was probably the hardest day of it all. Bloom took us to the airport (with a Hardee's pitstop) and we got there nice and early. Security was fine - about as easy as it was earlier - and we found our gate. Our flight was delayed an hour, Milo ate and fell asleep, we boarded, I watched a movie on the flight, it was not bad. The layover that time was only a couple hours. We all ate, we played a little, and then prepared for boarding. This time though, because of the hour delay, we couldn't give Milo any sleepy juice. 

Tip #7: Wait to feed until takeoff if your baby is awake. This was one I wish we had paid better attention to for the last flight. He ate before we took off in an attempt to get him asleep before take-off but that was in vain. Save the food for take-off. I think if we had done that, he would've fallen asleep at the right time anyway. It's fine.

We boarded while Milo was tired and he fell asleep pretty easily without any help. However, people on our plane who were on a delayed flight from Houston made us late and Milo woke up. So basically, that flight was the worst. We got to Salt Lake eventually and got off the plane. We went and waited for our luggage for forever, then eventually had to go find our carseat at some other baggage claim thing and Sean went to get the car because it was freezing out. 

20 minutes later, Sean called. The car wouldn't start. So not only did we have to deal with a distressed baby for the past 2 hours, but now we were trapped. Plus my phone was dying. So. Sean eventually found a help phone and someone came and gave us a jump and we were all good. 

One more problem. A flight from LA to Paris had a bomb threat and was diverted to SLC. Yeah. So Milo and I waited out in the freezing cold for like 10 minutes while Sean had to come around again. We got home, took care of  business and all of us crashed hard. There was no midnight feeding, no bathroom trips... In fact, I'm pretty sure I didn't even roll over until like 7. Milo slept in until 8:30 and we're just readjusting and putting things away today. 

Tomorrow, Milo gets his 4 month shots and Sean has his first eye doctor appointment. Then we're not doing ANYTHING until Thanksgiving. And even then, we'll stay relatively close to home. 
See you again in July, Minnesota!

Thanks for reading! Check out my packing/to do lists and ideas HERE.

Love, Miss Ellen 

Travel Lists!

1: Make one of your carry-ons an all-inclusive diaper bag. We used an Oakley backpack like this one:
Here's what was in it:

  • 12 diapers - We also bought a pack of diapers while we were there so we were sure not to run out.
  • 1 pack of wipes 
  • 2 receiver blankets - we use these for changing pads and burp cloths, whatever is needed at the time. 
  • 2 burp cloths
  • 3 Dr. Brown's 9 oz bottles
  • 1 sectioned formula rubbermaid - enough for 8 oz. of formula per section with 3 sections. These are at Baby's R' Us.
  • nursing cover - just in case. Or if you use that. 
  • bink/bottle wipes
  • 1 first aid tote with
    • 3 spare ziplocs of 2 sizes
    • 2 spare binks
    • diaper rash cream
    • lotion 
    • 2 bibs
  • toys in a ziploc - We had:
    • Sophie la girafe
    • Dr. Seuss books/Veggies with Wedgies book
    • Elephant crinkle toy
    • chain toys
    • Mickey crinkle book
  • swaddle blanket
  • plushy Blanket (the one with baseballs from the pictures)
  • spare outfits/jammies
    • Tip: If traveling in cold weather, find long sleeve/pants onesies with easy access to diapers. These were the best outfits.
2: We also had a carry-on backpack with things for Mom & Dad:
  • ipad/ipod (charged) and laptop - these were all easy access for the security check. 
  • chargers - wrapped and in a ziploc
  • earbuds - these were in with the chargers, also wrapped/stowed
  • gum and chapstick
  • book - I'm reading Why Not Me by Mindy Kaling
  • list book - I'm a list freak. Plus it was helpful for when I was repacking so I didn't miss anything and leave it there.
  • baby's birth certificate - we were told they might want to check it like they do adult ID's but they didn't. It was still good to have just in case they did.
  • wallet - this also needs to be easy access for them to check your ID or in case you need money or something.
  • any additional information - we needed to bring some extra paper work and we kept it in the list book so it was easy to find. 
  • any other entertainment items

3: Then we checked a suitcase:
  • Mom and Dad
    • any specific outfits needed - dresses, ties, etc.
    • enough underwear and socks for the trip - all in ziploc bags with the air pushed out
    • 1 pair (or 2) pants per adult
    • enough shirts to last the trip
    • 1 hat for all (including baby)
    • 1 spare pair shoes per adult
    • any jewelry or other accessories (scarves, belts, etc.)
  • Bathroom - in a travel bag
    • toothbrushes for all/travel toothpaste
    • make-up 
    • combs/brushes and hair products
    • deoderants
    • q-tips
    • other necessities - you know you... pack it.
  • Baby
    • jacket and 3 pairs pants - in a ziploc
    • onesies - enough for 2 per day, be sure to pay attention to the weather (in a ziploc)
    • socks - in a sandwich bag
    • swaddle wrap - or not if your baby is too old to swaddle
    • shoes - or not. 
I always love coming home to a clean house, no matter how long I'm gone. It takes the stress from the trip and makes it easier because there's one less thing you have to do. 

To Do list:
  • clean
    • vacuum and sweep floors
    • dust and pick up trash
    • keep up on dishes and laundry
    • put away all that crap that's just around - turns out, having a baby is automatic stuff everywhere always
  • make sure there's enough food for animals
    • also make sure there's someone to care for the animals!
  • pack! - I do this gradually over the course of a couple days so that if I remember something, there's still time to put it in. 
  • load up the entertainment - make sure you have all the music, games, and movies you could want. You can always delete things later.
  • take care of yourself! - I made sure to have my nails done, everything shaved, washed, and trimmed before we left.
  • take care of the baby! - duh. just duh. but I also had to make sure Milo's nails were trimmed before we left and that we got his face rash under control before we left.
  • talk to your doctor - they can tell you things you might not know that could help ease travel (i.e. the dosage for benadryl, what to do to take care of rashes, etc.
  • double check and triple check - airports have almost nothing for babies so be prepared.
  • make a game-plan for travel day - When will you leave? Where will naps be? Who will get ready first? Who's going to carry what? 

Here are some tricks I use when packing:
  • If you can't already tell, I LOVE ziplocs. I always label them and then sit on them to get the air out before closing. Everything is organized and easy to fit.
  • If you have any travel totes (first aid totes, travel kits, etc.) use them. Again, things are organized and easy to find.
  • Wrap the cords and put them in a ziploc - cords are the worst and the less you have to hassle getting them out to be checked or used, the better.
  • Make sure your electronics are easy access so getting them out and shoving them back in is quick and easy during security check.
  • Make your tee shirts into burritos. Here's how:
    • Put your shirt on the floor front side down and fold the bottom under about 3 inches.
    • Fold the arms over on the top, like you would to fold it regularly.
    • Roll the shirt up from the neck down.
    • Flip the folded part of the shirt over the burrito.
    • Pack.

Good Luck and Happy Travels!
Love, Miss Ellen

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Halloween Story

This is a truly true story.

One year for Halloween, I went as a tired housewife. I had a bathrobe, curlers, a baby doll, slippers, make-up bags under my eyes, the full package. It was cold cold out and wet, so I put bags over my slippers to keep them dry (which pretty much defeated the purpose of them). 

I am proud to say that a number of years later, I am a housewife and I am NOTHING like that (besides, of course the tired part. Once you've lost so much sleep as a new mom, it's almost nearly impossible to get back. The "sleep when your baby sleeps" thing is harder than you'd think). I rarely wear my bathrobe, my slippers are shoes enough and I only wear them to do tasks, the baby doll is an actual baby, I don't wear curlers (because duh. short hair. Also, it's already curly enough.), and the bags under my eyes are well hidden by a special cream I put on every day (that and mascara are my only make-up usually). 

Anyway. I'm just super excited for the day Sean and I get to take Milo out trick-or-treating. This year, we're staying in and handing out candy and making sure Milo gets to bed on time... Super festive. Sean and I went to a fun Halloween dinner party yesterday and we dressed up as Bob and Linda from Bob's Burgers. No one know who we were.. but Sean dyed his mustache and I dyed my hair, so It was still fun. 

Happy Halloween!!!

Love, Miss Ellen

Monday, October 26, 2015


I honestly feel like Milo grew up overnight.

Let's start out here:
This morning, he woke up earlier than he usually does and I was sure I could get him back to sleep by rocking him. Wrong-o. He started screaming and Sean woke up and went to get him a bottle. He ate a little bit but wouldn't stop squirming.

Lately, he's been having a lot of tummy troubles and it's only incredibly difficult. We've tried several formulas, I went off dairy for a week (hardest week of my life), and it hasn't gotten any better. We are going back to the first formula he ever had, because that was when he was pooping best, and hopefully that works. We have a doctor's appointment in a couple weeks so, if it's not all cleared up by then, we can get some direction with all this.

Anyway, I unwrapped him, changed his diaper, and played with him for a little bit while Sean slept. We went to wake dad up and then he got in the shower. As he was showering, I put Milo in tummy time and he rolled over by himself! I went and told Sean. Thinking this might be a fluke, we tried it again. Success! Sean finally got out of the shower and he did it a 3rd time before being done with it. Yay Milo! He's done it one other time since then and I am SO proud.

Here's the other thing: THAT'S NOT IT!
I was putting him down for his second nap today and he would not calm down in my arms. Usually, I can get him mostly asleep before putting him down and walking away with him still asleep. His naps have gotten SO much easier this past month. Anyway, I figured he might be a little hungry still, so I put him in his crib and went to get him some food. When I came back, he was asleep. ALL BY HIMSELF.

Guys. I can't even begin to tell you how happy I am. He's a really good baby.

But even good babies have challenges...

Next month, we're going to MN for a wedding and we accidentally booked a flight with a 7 hour layover in Denver. So, naturally, I had a meltdown when I found out. Once I composed myself, I researched the cuss out of flying with a baby and NOTHING had any layover advice.

So we're still a little lost. But we've never been flying together (Me and Sean or Us and baby), so maybe it won't be as bad as it could be. #prayingsohard we can all be okay and he'll still get naps and that he'll sleep on the plane. I've actually only ever flown twice. So. But at least I won't be by myself. At least.

And I am possibly the most organized, over-preparing, person I know, so maybe that will help. I have several lists going of things to do, to pack, where to pack, questions for the doctor, etc.

Oh, he's awake now. Better go get him.
Love, Ellen

Monday, October 19, 2015

3 Month Update!

Yeah, so I'm not great at blog updates.

SO MUCH HAS HAPPENED! Milo is so smart and strong already, I don't know what I'm going to do. Here is a bulleted list of Milo updates.

  • He loves to stand up so much that sometimes, I have to manipulate him into sitting. ALREADY. That's like a 2 year old thing. I sure hope I'll be able to handle his inevitable rambunctiousness...
  • Milo is SO close to rolling over from his tummy. I just need to be persistent with tummy-time so he learns to use his legs instead of just being a superman all the time. But I wouldn't be surprised if sometime next week he was rolling over. No more immobile baby for me... 
  • Today, he played with his first toy for real. He grabbed the Sophie la Giraffe toy and tried eating it. He was coaxed a little bit, but only to separate his hands that have been recently glued together by spit. 
  • Oh, yeah. He's started sucking on his hands hardcore. Sometimes when we're driving places, you can hear popping and sucking noises coming from the backseat. The days of silent driving are over, that's for sure. 
  • He is laughing! It cracks me up to see him laugh. His smile is the biggest smile I've ever seen ever, I'm pretty sure. He's got his mouth wide open, his cheeks bulging, and his eyes are the happiest. 
  • He's taking regular naps! It's not always a walk in the park to get him down, but he's sleeping on his own for about 40 minutes at a time 4 times a day. Hallelujah. He's still doing really well at night and I'm just really proud of him. 

As for the rest of us:
  • Sean and I have been married for a whole 3 years! Time flies. Also, it's felt like forever. In the best way, of course. I sure love that guy and I'm the happiest ever to be married to him. (ahh... mushy gush)
  • Sean is doing so much at his new job but it's all super impressive. Right now, he's working on furnishing a mother's room that's going to be in FORBES MAGAZINE. Guys. That's so impressive. I'm so proud of him.
  • I never in my life thought I would be going up and down so many stairs. Having lived a good third of my life in single-floor homes, all I wanted when my parents moved into a real house was stairs. Now I have my own house and a good third of my house is stairs. With three levels, not including the unfinished basement, I spend all day walking up and down stairs. In fact, all in the time it took to write this, I've had to go up to Milo's room and back to the computer approx. 6 times. And I'm so not complaining. My legs look awesome because of it. 
  • Tonight, we're going to Cornbelly's with some of Sean's old work friends! I'm excited! We're definitely going to eat deep-fried treats, which is the best. 

Here's some pictures!

Thursday, October 8, 2015

A Few Things...

1. I'm the queen of "spoke too soon"
Example 1: "Milo is finally asleep!" (cries from upstairs). Every. Time.
Example 2: I should make me something to eat... (cries from upstairs)

2. When Milo takes longer naps, I don't know what to do with myself... Eat more food? Browse more Pinterest? Check on him again? Nap? I just don't know! But that's certainly not saying I like the shorter naps. Don't think that.

3. I'm going to decorate my house for halloween! I'll try try to post pictures.

4. I'm so excited to wear sweaters again!

Friday, October 2, 2015

Mad World and the Job of a Mother

I'm sitting in Milo's room holding him as he naps in hopes for a possibly extended nap because he's been too tired all day. Naturally, I was just perousing Facebook and only everything I saw was some sort of devastation or corruption. As if it isn't hard enough to stay positive in this ever depressive world...

All any mother wants is and has been for their children to grow up in a better world where violence isn't around every corner and fearing for their lives isn't something struggled with on a daily basis.

To be honest, I would much much rather see everyone's baby pictures and puppy pictures and good news posts than everyone being mindless bullies with poor grammar and a high wall to hide behind. I know this world has always been full of hate and malice; it has to be if we are to have our agency. The problem now, though is that every devastation is broadcast through the most public means and all the bad guys get credit. The heroes get as much recognition as some ridiculous dance craze and 2 weeks later we've all but forgotten who is responsible for the tragedy.

My poor baby will live in this world like the rest of us and all I can do is show him what it means to be responsible for his actions and make sure he knows that kindness and generosity are important.  All I can really pray for is that he'll be the one who will make friends with everyone and that he can show his friends that even if someone has opposing views, they still matter as a human. He can be the hero without getting credit and I will always be proud of him. If I can just do these seemingly simple things, I feel like I can change the world.

Isn't that what being as mother is really all about? Taking a child in our arms and making sure they are loved and can show love to those around them?

I know I still have a long way to go and a lot to learn, but I'm starting to know that my job on this earth as a mother is way more important than I ever imagined. And, if you'll excuse me, I'll go back to staring at my precious boy until he wakes up.

Love, Miss Ellen

Monday, September 28, 2015


Although there haven't been any floods, zombies, or earthquakes today, the Blood moon has certainly affected our house.

Here is a list of my day's challenges so far:

  1. Milo woke up like 10 times after we put him to bed. He just wouldn't stay sleeping and kept squirming all over. 
  2. The dog has pooped the carpet twice.
  3. Milo is having a an impossible time napping, doesn't really ever feel like eating  (but does), and keeps screaming his tired scream.
  4. McDonald's computers had to reboot as I got to the window. This forced Milo into hysteria because he hates sitting in the car when it's not moving. 
  5. Sean is reportedly "feeling out of whack".
It's been quite a day. But I'm pretty sure everyone has days like this.... Right? 

Here's more pics ofor you:

Monday, September 21, 2015


Milo is so great. The last 3 nights in a row, he's slept 8 hours straight with only 1 early morning wake-up each night. He's still not in love with napping, but he knows night time and rocks it.

Here's how we did it:

Up until a few weeks ago, we focused on teaching Milo the difference between night and day - lights on, windows open, all volumes regular.

When he turned 7.5 or 8 weeks, we started a nighttime routine:
1: Sean gives him a bath with the special bedtime bath soap.
2: I dry him off and put on a new diaper.
3: Sean lotions him with the bedtime lotion and we put on his jammies.
4: He gets wrpped up in the SwaddleMe swaddle wrap (you can get at target).
5: I sing while he fusses himself to drowsiness.
6: I put him in the crib just before he's all the way asleep and he finishes drifting off by himself.

It works like a charm, basically and I'm super proud of him.

Other than that, he's been so happy! He smiles all the time (besides right before sleeping times) and loves having his face tickled. He's the happiest boy in the mronibg and likes reading books and getting mommy kisses.

For the first time today, he sat in the high chair while I made and ate lunch. Yay!

There's been a lot going on lately that I keep thinking I should post about but then I get sidetracked or take a nap or I just don't think it'll go over well, so I don't.

I will try to post more often, though.
Fun thing: Milo is napping on me as I write this and he just smiled and chuckled at whatever his dream was. What a cutie.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Lovin' It

It's hard to be a mom and there's very little reward at this point, but I am more than in love with it than anything else I've ever done.  Right now, I'm on my couch, holding my beautiful sleeping baby, watching tv (no star trek today because our bluray Netflix thing is down and I don't know how to fix it) and there's nowhere else I'd rather be. We cleaned the entire house on Saturday so I get to feel much more relaxed than the last few weeks where things have all gone by the wayside, but I wouldn't have it any other way.

I'm still learning. I think I'm finally being able to let Sean take him without feeling guilty, which I know is ridiculous, but new mom syndrome is tough. And I know Sean is working on not feeling bad if he has to give up. It's definitely a process.

Milo has been sleeping a solid 5 hours at a time at night, which is awesome. Naps are still tough, but we're working on it. He's getting more smiley and cooing a lot, which I love. He's getting big, but is still really little. I love him nonetheless.

If my phone does the blog thing I want it to, here are some pictures.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Hanging in There

These last few weeks have been a little rough. He's been less willing to take naps, going to bed is a fight some nights, and I've had a few meltdowns.

I get that we're still learning. He's only 7 weeks old, but it's definitely difficult. It's like a puzzle that randomizes itself every hour and you have to find the new set of tricks that will work each time. There are so many things that I want to do for him or for Sean and it's just not always possible and I have to accept that as much as I'm in charge, it's him that's running the show.

We've spent a good 80% of our days this week sitting on the couch. Who knew being a mom would be the perfect opportunity to binge watch all the shows. Netflix is a real new mom blessing.

It's also pretty crazy seeing how I have had to change my diet. Doing so many simple tasks is a challenge now. Eating takes coordination, planning and sometimes doesn't even happen. Showering is truly a feat. Getting chores all the way done is almost a distant memory.

But, like I said, we're still learning. And I love that my doctor has validated my meltdowns. I'm not crazy, it's a good mix of hormones, sleep deprivation, and baby talk.

I can handle it. And I will handle it. I can't always promise that Milo will be able to keep it together, but we'll do our best.

Love, Miss Ellen

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Taking Naps and Cutting Slack

I'm not going to dance around it, being a mom is a pretty hard job. Even though I've only been at it for a month and a week, I've already learned so much, one thing being that I have a LONG way to go.

It took Sean and I maybe a whole day or two to figure out (and then for me to come to terms with) that Milo has grown. He is officially out of newborn diapers and clothes, and into size 1 diapers and 0-3 month clothes. But he stayed in the newborn size for a month, so I shouldn't be complainy.

I can tell overall that he has grown, but it's still a weird thing. He's so little! But at the same time he's ginormous compared to other babies or still just little... it's a hard thing to explain, but I'm sure some of you get it.

Sometimes I freak myself out thinking about how in a few months he's going to be sitting and playing and laughing and I might never get anything done ever again. But at the same time, that freak out is overshadowed by how extremely excited I am to have fun with him instead of just taking naps and changing the diapers and feeding.

I have really great neighbors that have come to visit and offer help as well as having had in-laws here for the past weeks. Honestly, having Sean's mom here was a huge blessing. She let us have a date night and took him in the mornings so I could catch up on sleep. She's really an excellent woman and I'm so glad she raised such a good, responsible son that I could then marry and have a son with.

We went to a Bees game

Sean's brother, Brady, ran a race as an eggplant against other produce and got 3rd place, which was fun and we the Bees Won!

Sean gave Milo a blessing and then we had a party at our home afterward that people came to and it was great. (Also, we took a not-great picture before church. Hurray.)

We went up to the Spiral Jetty and took some pictures. 

Sean and I went on a date night to a pizza place and then Provo Beach Resort where we won the hilarious Husky plush. 

And we had lots of fun with family.

Overall,  things have been going pretty well and I think we'll be able to make it.

Love, Miss Ellen