Jan 30, 2013

Sydney Lee: 3 months Old

Hard to believe but our little Sydney turned 3 months last week! She is beginning to smile and giggle/coo more and more every day. She eats anywhere between 4 and 7 ounces at a time, averaging about every 3 hours or so. And Sydney is only getting up once a night to feed, most of the time. Plus, she waits to complain about a wet diaper until 6 or 7 AM. 

Unfortunately, she does have a nasty case of cradle cap. London had it too and for her I would rub oil in her hair at the start of bathtime and wash it out at the end. We've stepped up Sydney's bath routine to do the same. Hopefully we get some control over it soon. I'm not sure we can pull off nightly baths, but we are trying most nights. 

Sydney came out with pretty strong head control and she only improves on it everyday. She has been caught with another cold but she seems to be working through it and her projectile spitting up has subsided some. Unfortunately, I feel the colds are stifling her practicing to roll over, as more often than not, we place her in a boppy pillow to elevate her head some. When she is completely flat she has more of a tendency to spit up thanks to post nasal drip. 

Sydney is also creating her own bedtime naturally, as she is usually ready to sleep around 8 PM. London is going down around 7:30 these days so it allows us only a brief amount of time with her alone each evening, but we'll take it.We've also found that putting the girls down to bed each night can take almost an hour, between baths, London with teeth brushing and a book, and Sydney taking a bottle before she goes down. The child is a slow eater!

We are desperately missing our swing as it died at the beginning of the month. Sydney isn't quite ready for the exersaucer and demands to be held at times when we really need to get things done, but we know we need to enjoy the cuddles while they last. Sydney is definitely more of a cuddler than London was, even at this age. Sunday, while at the grocery store, Syd had had enough riding in her car seat (or the chair of torture, as we have been calling it since London resisted it, back in the day), so Cameron ended up carrying her the entire shopping trip!

We have been placing Sydney in the Bumbo chair (supervised at all times, of course) to work on her sitting and neck muscles to prep her for when she can play in the exersaucer. Hopefully, that day is not too far off. 

Sydney is also more interested in her surroundings and toys. Her favorite is a stuffed dog with ribbon tags all over it that she can grasp at. The other night, she entertained herself with it while I picked up her room and put away her laundry.And last night it helped me get dinner on the table for Cameron and myself. 

All in all, Sydney has been a perfect little addition to our family and quickly we are forgetting what it was like with just London. We definitely barely remember what it was like when it was just Cameron and I.

Jan 28, 2013

Sacramento's Home & Landscape Expo

We didn't have gran plans for this past weekend. Saturday I had SacFIT and a hair appoint - oh so exciting, huh? Don't get me wrong, I love that I am back running - or trying to. I'll post a little more about that soon, but for now I will focus on Sunday. 

Cameron had heard that the Sacramento Home & Landscape Expo was taking place at the State Fairgrounds over the weekend and he asked that we go on Sunday. We love going to these shows for ideas and possibly to source out building resources. One of these years we do hope to hire someone to build a pergola in the backyard.

As planned, on Sunday, we packed up the girls and the two strollers and braved the cold. Luckily, most vendors were located indoors. And while we did see some interesting things and took pictures of ideas to reference later, we weren't that impressed. We actually felt we were seeing the same vendors and displays from a show at the Fairgrounds we attended last year. 

Turns out, we missed HALF the show! Cameron figured that out last night after perusing the show guide. Take note - always take a moment to look at the entire map of the show guide or you will wind up like us and miss stuff, like the HGTV meet & greet room!

The day wasn't a total loss, though. I found the first piece I need to start decorating our new entrance hall. I always said we would need to start with a rug. And low and behold, there was a rug vendor in one of the pavilions we did walk through. Selling rugs up to 80 percent off to boot! Ok, so the company is actually going out of business and that was the reason for the heavy markdowns, but still. The best part was they had a nice selection of hallway runners, and Cameron and I found one we liked. The one we purchased was only 60 percent off, but still, it was a great bargain.

Which leads me to think that the first project I will tackle this year in the house will be the hallway. Cameron actually completed the taping and mudding of the outside office walls last weekend while the girls and I were in Tahoe, so really there is just texturing before I can paint the new walls and the rest of the hall. After some baseboards and door trim we can put down the new carpet. All that we really need after that is a hall table and a mirror. Ok, so it may take me until June to even paint the walls and trim, but I have a project to focus on. 

I'd supply a picture of the new rug, but I didn't take one at the show and we won't be unrolling it until the texture, paint, baseboards and trim are done. Stay tuned!

On a side note, it was quite encouraging and heartwarming to see how nice people were attending the show. It's a bit of a task to get in and out of the heavy expo doors when you are both pushing a stroller. We also discovered half of the automatic doors for those in wheelchairs weren't working. But plenty of people were quick to grab and hold a door open for us when we were trying to go in or out of a building. While London is getting too big for a stroller most days, places like these it is so important as there were lots of people, even for a Sunday on the last day of the event. She is a bit stubborn about holding hands, particularly when she is tired and she could have easily gotten lost or we would have had to leave early had it not been for the stroller.

Jan 25, 2013

1st Annual Girls with Kids Weekend

A few years ago I was invited to a "Girls" Weekend up in Tahoe with my friend Emily and all her lovely gal pals. We had a fabulous time and wanted to do it again, but life seemed to get in the way. Suddenly we were all having kids. Of course, when ever we talked about that weekend, we all kept saying we should do it again. And finally someone suggested we bring the kids with us. So last weekend, I took off Friday and packed London & Sydney into the Tahoe. I don't think I could have put more in the car. 

I met Emily and her son Elijah, along with her best friend Heather and her daughter Skylar in Auburn for lunch. After a nice lunch at Ikedas, we caravaned up to Tahoe. Sydney did rather well considering ears were popping left and right for me.

I wasn't the only one that packed up their car either. Once all the cars were unloaded we decided we could get snowed in for a month and not run out of food! Later that evening we were joined by Ashley, Emily's sister-in-law and niece, Abby.
In total, we had 4 adults and five kids ranging in age from 2 1/2 years to 3 months. Elijah is about 9 months, Skylar 13 months and Abby almost 2.
We had a great time over the weekend, lounging around and catching up and eating really good food. Unfortunately, all the kids were on different schedules so a trip to the snow park wasn't possible. Luckily, out back was enough of a hill to entertain London and Abby with some sledding. I definitely got a workout in just pushing London back up the hill only to go back down again.
We plan to make this an annual weekend for all of us and I am sure as the kids get older, the days will be more adventurous and coordinated. All the same, it was nice just sitting back and relaxing. But, by the time I got home Monday, I was exhausted. That last night, Sydney and London both woke up several times.
I didn't get as many pictures as I would have liked of Sydney, though she lounged indoors almost the entire weekend, minus one walk in the stroller - which she slept through.
What was even better is I managed to get one on one time with each of the girls. It seems when I am at home there is always something to do that I can't just sit and enjoy the girls as much as I should.

Jan 13, 2013

London's Room: The Reveal!

At last, here are shots from London's room, when it was finally all put together:

As you enter, is the coat rack and a water-color my mom made
The curtains & pelmet box
And there is the dresser, London's name, shelves and night stand
I found color-coordinating shelve boxes for toys at Target
Close-up of one of the shelves
I found this lamp at Target as well - I added only the sequins at the top, not the feathers

The other shelf - Minnie doesn't stay up there often

The silhouettes and frames

All the pillows

Jan 8, 2013

What to Expect on The Duck Call this Year

It's obvious I've taken a bit of a break from the blog lately. You'd think while I was on maternity leave I would have had plenty of time, but alas, the holidays grab more and more of my energy and attention each year and what energy was left was spent on Sydney.

But it does have my thinking on how I want to use this blog this year. One thing I have decided is you don't need weekly weekend updates. No body really needs to know about our boring weekend - like this last weekend. Honestly, it was kinda sad - we literally ran errands and cleaned the house which meant taking down the holiday decor, which is sad in its own right. So I am only going to recap the fun and interesting weekends. I promise one is in the future. It involves the girls and myself and snow.

Don't expect if the blog posts are fewer and farther between. I'll post craft projects, changes to the house and updates and pictures of the girls when I feel we have something to share. Pulling back on the blog will help me just enjoy Cameron, the girls and the animals more versus feeling like I have to get something up. Which should free up your time and make you feel like you are still up to speed on us at the same time.

Both girls are growing up so fast and I don't want to miss it. Sydney is already two months old and won't be a snuggly baby much longer. I gotta get all I can out of her. And what may be a blessing in disguise, her swing died last night which means all we can do when she is fussy and needs soothing is hold her. And London is growing by leaps and bounds every day. Looking back at pictures from a year ago and thinking about her developmentally at her birthday, she is entirely a different kid - a kid, not a toddler.

So stayed tuned and I will post when I can and when I really have something to share.

~ Sarah

Jan 3, 2013

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!

We had a wonderful holiday season catching up with family and friends as well introducing little Sydney to many of them. But now it’s time to get back on track in more ways than one.
To start, I am back to work both mentally and physically. I was able to work from home through the holidays but I have to say I am glad to be headed back into the office and establishing a more consistent schedule for our family.

Sydney started daycare mid-December. Between that and the change back to Gerber Good Start she is a different, non-fussy, wonderful baby. She actually comes home pretty tuckered out from daycare, which makes getting dinner on the table much easier.
Cameron and I are also working on getting back into meal-planning for the week, which results in us eating healthier meals. We both have some weight left over from the pregnancy that we would like to lose. We started the process over the holidays but not with as much focus as we now have.

I will also start my running routine on Saturday when SacFit starts up again. I’m not sure if I will be ready to run a half-marathon in 16 weeks but we’ll see. I’m hoping my body bounces back into running more quickly than I'm expecting it will. There’s gotta be some muscle memory in there, right?

I’m not sure how I feel about resolutions this year. My resolutions for 2012 went out the window and were revised when we found out we were having Sydney. Right now, with our home, I would like to focus on Cameron’s and my bedroom and bathroom, given we have been in the house for 3 years and the only finished rooms belong to the girls. We’ll see how I stick with it, though it does help that we have a paint color picked for the house. Maybe I will at least get our room painted. I have already purchased a new comforter set for our bed, so that’s a start.

We also want to finish the hallway downstairs that was created when we enclosed Cameron’s office. The outside walls into the hallway still need to be taped, spackled, textured and painted. Then baseboard can be added. Once this is done I can start thinking about how to decorate it to suit our functional needs without cluttering it up at the same time.

The only other things I want to work on is the large wall up in the loft and Sydney’s Christmas stocking. The wall I want to paint olive green and make the family picture wall. I have several shadowbox frames to create to add to this wall. And obviously it would be nice to have Sydney’s stocking ready for Christmas. Only time will tell how much if any of this gets done this year.

Mainly I want to focus on enjoying my girls, husband, dog and cats. Running and being healthy come in a close second. Anything else would just be icing on the cake. Stay tuned to see how 2013 plays out for us.

Oh, and I have some reveal blog posts coming up to showcase both London and Sydney’s completed bedrooms.

~ Sarah