Can Somebody Build me a Time Machine?

When I look at Violet and Olivia, I no longer see babies. I see two dramatic girls standing up on their own, fighting over who stands in front at the baby gate blocking them from the hallway while they wait for their bath water to fill up, and signing “more” when they want more of whatever they’re being fed, or “milk” when they want to nurse. Olivia knows where her belly button is and Violet points to the bananas hanging in the kitchen when I ask if she wants more banana. Where has the time gone? They’re turning into toddlers.

cms_1012(photo credit: Courtney Contreras; outfit credit: Frayed Knot Lakeland, LLC)

It’s hard to believe they were premature. I considered doing a post on how prematurity has affected my parenting, but aside from holding off on giving them baby food until eight months, I don’t feel like their prematurity has affected them, therefore it cannot affect me. I have had tons of people tell me, “they’re so tiny,” but I don’t dwell on their stature because I am petite, and their pediatrician is totally okay with their measurements because they have always followed a growth curve. Their teeth took a little while to come in, but once the first tooth broke through their gums, they’ve steadily been coming. Violet army crawled up until a year, but she was pulling to stand by ten months and has been shimmying down the couches, tables, and walking with her push toys everywhere since then, too. Olivia has always been slightly ahead, but never so far ahead that we were concerned with Violet’s development.

Here we are at fourteen months and they’re standing on their own, eating tons of “table food,” drinking apple juice (and whole milk… yuck!) out of straw sippy cups, and babbling away in their own language. They both put remotes up to their ears like they’re talking on the phone, and sometimes they’ll nod their head up and down like they’re saying “uh huh” to somebody or they’ll shake their head side to side in pretend disagreement with the person on the other line. Violet has three teeth with one cutting the gum now. Olivia has one prominent tooth and three cutting her gums. Their hair seems to grow much like Harry Potter’s, and they get a kick of out shaking their head “no” before doing something they aren’t supposed to. Violet loves to share, it doesn’t matter what it is, she’ll offer it to you. Oh, and Olivia can throw one hell of a tantrum. She cries and somehow manages to roll her tongue while doing it. The noise is like nails on a chalkboard for Erik. I don’t like it either, but I really dislike when they throw themselves backward. Olivia doesn’t care if she’s on a hard floor or not, she will throw herself back so fast… and Violet does it when I pick her up in mid-air. Talk about an adrenaline rush. *insert eye roll*

img_8266(Thank God I had the Tula on!)

We are still breastfeeding with no signs of stopping. Violet has been nursing more frequently than in the previous months, and I think it has something to do with her teeth coming in. Their separation anxiety is out of this world, and it is becoming more evident when they need to sleep. They get CRAAANKY. They love playing with (and fighting over) toys, especially ones that light up and play music. THEY LOVE MUSIC. I wish you could see them dance to Beyoncé’s Formation. It’s seriously their favorite song. They also love 60s music and Stevie Ray Vaughn.

img_8625(gorgeous weather calls for enjoyment!)

(in the toy box their Papaw Roger built for them; Erik providing entertainment)

At times it is definitely challenging, and on certain days it’s a lot harder to keep our cool than others, but we are so blessed to be their parents and we are so happy God chose us to raise these angels. They are daring, they are emotional, but most importantly, they are thriving.

 

DIY magic baby oil (cloth diaper friendly)

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I recently ordered the Gentle Baby essential oil blend after reading about it in my EO pocket reference. Olivia had a pretty gnarly drool rash on her chin the day it arrived in the mail. I applied 1 drop mixed with 1 drop of coconut oil to the area before I put her down for bed because the pocket reference said that it was good to use on rashes, and I swear to you, the next morning her rash was completely gone.

After witnessing her rash get better literally overnight, I decided to put it in a rollerball so I could just swipe it wherever I needed it instead of worrying about diluting it every time I wanted to use it.

You Will Need:

  • 10 mL glass rollerball, preferably dark glass to preserve oil potency
  • YL Gentle Baby essential oil blend
  • YL Lavender essential oil (optional since lavender is in GB)
  • cold pressed, organic coconut oil

Before I tell you how I concocted this magic diaper potion that can be used on so more than just baby bums, I want to introduce you to the oils you’ll be working with.

Lavender – antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, antifungal, relaxing. (can go on skin alone)
Gentle Baby – a blend of coriander, lavender, lemon, and a handful of flowers like jasmine, rose, and geranium. (needs to be diluted 50/50 with a carrier oil) Good for relaxing pregnant mamas, improving stretch marks, chapped skin, and cranky babies.

Directions:

  1. Pull the roller ball off of the top of the vial
  2. Add 20 drops Gentle Baby + 10 drops lavender
  3. Top off with coconut oil
  4. Pop roller ball back on the top of the vial
  5. Apply to chapped skin anywhere on the body (or on the back of neck/bottoms of feet before bed) and enjoy the soothing properties of the oils along with the glorious scent.

Chemical-free Carpet Powder

If I was a part of the crew who helped build my house back in 1982, I would have suggested putting hardwood floors throughout. Carpet is such a hassle to keep clean, especially if you have dogs… or kids. We have one room with carpet in our house. Unfortunately, that one room with carpet is the living room, our busiest room with the most foot traffic.

Erik and I are loyal carpet powder users. It just adds an extra something. They smell great and they are a fantastic way to make sure you’re really vacuuming the entire space because you can see where you’ve missed. Did you know, though, that extra something is actually a TON of toxic chemicals being sprinkled into your carpet? Can you imagine your children crawling around after you’ve vacuumed with those commercial powders? Residue getting on their hands, their hands going in their mouths and eyes… I’ll stop there and let you visualize what I just described.

With only a few ingredients, you can make your own all natural carpet freshening powder that cleans better than the ones at the stores.


You Will Need:

  • Baking soda
  • Young Living Thieves essential oil blend (smells like fall and is a great multipurpose oil used for cleaning and naturally killing germs), Lemon essential oil (also smells great and used as a disinfectant), and Tea Tree essential oil (used to penetrate any microscopic creepy crawlies our dogs may bring in in their fur)
  • Mason jar with sprinkle top lid, or an old glass jar with holes poked in the lid.(I used an old jelly jar and a nail and hammer to make my holes)

How To:

  • pour baking soda into bowl – I use about 2 cups at a time
  • 10 drops each oil into baking soda
  • using a fork, combine the oil into the baking soda by mashing the powder like you would mash potatoes. You’ll notice the consistency of the baking soda changes and becomes more flour-like
  • pour into glass jar and enjoy at your leisure


This stuff is not only extremely easy to make, it’s also really affordable! The baking soda was $2.13 after tax and Thieves + Lemon essential oils come in the premium starter kit. If you don’t have tea tree, peppermint is a great alternative, as is lavender, and both of those come in the starter kit as well.

If you have these ingredients on hand, I highly recommend you making this for your household. It smells great and puts my mind at ease knowing that there are ZERO CHEMICALS in my carpet powder.