Tuesday, March 31, 2009

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, AINSLEY!!!







I can hardly believe that it's already been a year!






Friday, March 27, 2009

Birthday FYI (repost)

In case you are interested in giving Ainsley a birthday present (not required or requested...but in case you feel the desire to do so)...we have created a birthday wishlist for her. You can access it via the link on the left hand side of the blog page. If you would like to give her clothes, she can use 18-24 month size clothing (not all sizes are created equal, so for sizing purposes, she is about 25lbs and almost 30 inches).

Friday, March 20, 2009

Pictures!

I finally pulled all of the zillions of pictures that we've taken of Ains off my camera, my brother's camera, and my mom's camera. So here, in no particular order, are a bunch of long overdue pictures for your viewing enjoyment. She climbed into the basket on her own. Apparently diapers aren't just for bums anymore.

Ains asleep downstairs on the changing pad.


Ainsley and Uncle Alex. She pulls the hats out of his hat basket on a routine basis. The ears are one of her favorites.







Yes, I am a NW girl with my little fleece vest on...




Reading her book about babies...she loves looking at pictures of babies and this one makes her laugh every time.


Ains was very quiet for a moment and this was the reason why...she pulled 23 wipes out before we caught her. She was very proud of herself. It was hilarious.



I've got an elephant...and I'm not afraid to use it!



Happy girl!



Wearing Uncle Alex's beanie...





Yes, those are prunes all over her face...and on her forehead....






Getting a massage in the chair...

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

To tide you over...

I have a much better (and longer) video of Ains performing her latest walking skills...but this should do for now...
video

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Clapping and singing

A little more ATV for your viewing pleasure...


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One more for the day...

...just in case you haven't heard...Ainsley took her first steps on Monday!!! She's still figuring out that she can do it on her own, which is pretty entertaining. Video to come...

Fuzzi Bunz

Since I'm up early--and Ainsley is playing happily--I thought that I should finally post about our cloth diapers. When we bought them, I promised (in an earlier post) to give my review once we had gotten a chance to use them for a bit. Well, it's been almost four months, so I think that an adequate amount of time has passed. :) Even before Ainsley was born I wanted to use cloth diapers. They seemed like a much better option than disposables for many reasons: they are reusable and thus more earth friendly; there are no chemicals hanging out next to baby's sensitive skin for hours on end; the cost is far less over the course of a year; and they seemed overall to fit with our lifestyle and life choices best. In spite of how passionate I was from the get-go about cloth diapers, it took us almost nine months to actually buy them and get started. The reason for this was two-fold: we didn't have a lot of money and the amount you spend to get started isn't small; and I couldn't decide which diapers to go with. After a LOT of research, informal polling of other cloth diaper using parents, and cost comparisons, we decided to go with Fuzzi Bunz. They are a pocket diaper, which means that you can customize the absorbency for your baby's needs. We also had several friends who were using them and LOVED them. On Black Friday we got an AMAZING deal on the diapers (and accessories), so we took the plunge and haven't looked back.

We have all loved the FB's since the first one we put on Ainsley. Joshua and I already knew that we were going to love them, but my mom took some convincing to even agree that they were worth a try. Now, she's probably the most enthusiastic supporter of them out of all of us! They are easier to use than disposables because of the snap system they have. You always know exactly where to snap them--so even with a very wiggly baby like Ainsley you get the tabs right where you want them every time. They are super soft (who wouldn't appreciate soft fleece by their unmentionables?!?). And one of the best (unexpected) features is that they don't smell like disposables do. Weird, but true--when Ains is wet in a disposable you can smell it, but because there are no chemicals in the FB she doesn't smell at all. It's fabulous!

I know that some people might be put off by the idea of having to wash diapers--especially when it comes to the poopy ones--but I haven't found this to be an issue at all. Wet ones are easy--you just shake the insert out (you don't even have to touch it) into your diaper pail and then drop the diaper in as well. Poopy ones take a little more work, but with a diaper sprayer attachment it's pretty easy. In fact, I wouldn't do cloth diapers without the sprayer--it makes them so easy! Besides, she doesn't leak in FB's, so all of the clothes that I was having to rinse out have been eliminated and now I only have one diaper to rinse. Not a bad trade off in my opinion.

Dispsables still have a place in our lives. We use them for overnight and when cloth doesn't make a lot of sense (like longer trips, etc.). But I'm very pleased with our choice to switch to cloth and wouldn't go back to all disposables for anything. We hope to have the next baby (no, we're not expecting one yet) in cloth from the very beginning.

One final note...we are using the FB's that come in sizes, but there is now a one-size option. I am contemplating these for our next diaper purchase instead of the small size because they will grow with baby. I probably would have gone with these to start with if they had been out when we switched over. Either way, cloth is fantastic and we are all so glad to have taken the plunge.

For adorable chubby babies...


Every week or so, I receive an email from Graco letting me know about their new products and whatnot. I've been impatiently waiting to hear about their new carseat. It's the Snug Ride design with the Safe Seat weight and height limits. We have the Safe Seat, and I'm very glad that we went with that option because Ains ended up being in the 95th percentile most of her first year for both height and weight. She would have outgrown the standard Snug Ride much earlier than she did her Safe Seat. However, I have always like the Snug Ride design better--plus it always gets great reviews from Consumer Reports and other folks. So needless to say, I was stoked to hear that Graco was making the Snug Ride for chubbier cherubs like my own. It actually fits babies up to 32 lbs. and 32 inches, which is amazing! Anyway, I just wanted to share my excitement with everyone else. Hooray for baby stuff makers who actually make stuff that's useable for as long as it needs to be!!!

Monday, March 09, 2009

ATV (Ainsley television)

I have been accumulating videos of Ains and for some reason (probably not a good one) I haven't been posting them. Silly me. Anyway, here are a few for your enjoyment...

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Helping Papa read the Velveteen Rabbit

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First guitar lesson

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Overdue...and we're not talking library books here

So I was looking at our "recent" posts and realized that I haven't really written anything much for a LONG time. Man, what a slacker I am! I don't really have a good excuse, so I won't try to make any. My last substantial post was the beginning of January--yikes! Since then a lot has happened. One of the biggest changes is that Joshua is no longer with Starbucks. We came to the conclusion that he needed something that brought in more money while he is getting his photography business of the ground, and so a change was needed. In February, he started work at the Social Security Administration Teleservice Center. So far, he has spent long hours in the training classroom, but his schedule is now consistent. No more 3:20am alarms to wake up to! Hooray! I'm now officially a stay at home mom, and I couldn't be more thrilled! I may have a short employment opportunity in April, which would be nice. Other than that, I'm planning on being a SAHM and probably pursuing Bradley Instructor training.

Ainsley will be one in a few weeks. This is completely mind-blowing to me. I can hardly believe that a whole year has already passed. She is still quite a happy little girl. She loves having Grandma, Grandpa, and Alex around all the time. I am constantly amazed at how smart and good-natured she is. Ains can point to things to identify them--including ducks and doggies in books (and real live dogs, too). She chatters or sings all the time and will be talking before we know it. She cruises around like a champ, will walk holding on to just one of our hands, and is contemplating walking on her own. Once she figures out how to keep her balance after moving one foot forward, there will be no stopping her! Belly buttons are a source of endless fascination for her and she like playing "peekaboo" with them. It's pretty funny. She is also a very big fan of dogs right now. She gets VERY excited when she sees or hears one, and her stuffed dogs are currently her favorite toys.

We are looking forward to having our own place in the next few months. First we have to pay off the credit card debt that we still have from the move, as well as save up for a deposit and other move-in expenses. It will be very weird to not be living with my parents anymore because it has been such a wonderful experience for us. However, it's getting to be time and I'm sure that they will enjoy the quiet that will return once we are moved out. In the meantime, we are enjoying all of our time here.

That's all for now...but I'll try to be better about posting news as well as pictures. :)