Sunday, December 28, 2014

Vacation Begins: On the Road

This is the beginning of our Christmas vacation to Wyoming and Utah to visit Phil's family and see the lights on Temple Square. We rented a car and were supposed to spend 2 days driving with one hotel stay. Wyoming though, is a cruel stretch of interstate and we stopped for an extra night due to weather and the interstate being closed for a wreck. 
Selfie while waiting in traffic
I just liked Pete's snarl smile. 
Nora snoozing. I took it from the front seat without being able to see through the camera. 
Wyoming landscape. 

The kids were both surprisingly great for the driving on the trip. Pete only watched about 1 movie a day and played with his toys the rest of the trip. Nora just got fussy when she was hungrym, so we'd stop and I'd feed her. She never got mad about driving. Thank goodness my kids are amazing at this!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Halo SleepSack Review

HALO Innovations is dedicated to putting the health, safety and well-being of babies first. In fact, over 1,200 hospitals use our HALO® SleepSack® wearable blankets through the HALO Safer Way to Sleep Initiative.  This summer we launched our new bassinet, the HALO™ Bassinest™ Swivel Sleeper, furthering our commitment to helping babies sleep safely.

This is Nora on one of the first nights that she was home from the hospital.  She's in her Halo SleepSack Swaddle that we were given in a goodie bag from our hospital.
KCH (Kosciusko County Hospital)is one of the hospitals that uses the Halo SleepSack Swaddles instead of the traditional swaddle blankets for use while in the hospital.  We absolutely loved them while we were in the hospital and were very excited to have one to bring home.  Alas we didn't get to use the one from the hospital for long because it was June and we don't have an air conditioner so fleece really isn't optimal for us.  We had some leftovers from Pete that were another brand, but we discovered that Nora was quite the Houdini and wouldn't sleep unless she was swaddled.  We tried the Halo SleepSack Swaddle and discovered she wouldn't try to get free.  Sleep was again a possibility in our home! We ended up purchasing a cotton jersey one from amazon.

Now that Nora is getting bigger and older (almost 6 months!). It was time to stop the swaddling. Luckily for us Halo had asked us to try out their SleepSack and review it on the blog. I never used a SleepSack for Pete so it was new to me as well as Nora. 
We've been trying it out for the last couple of weeks and have been happy with it for multiple reasons.  First the fleece is nice and warm for the winter weather. The SleepSack doesn't have sleeves, which seems like it would keep Nora too cool, but it also makes it possible to put her in jammies and customize her warmth so she doesn't get overheated.  

Halo embroiders "Back Is Best" on all of their SleepSacks and SleepSack Swaddles, which I have found great for grandparents that watch her because of the change in sleep suggestions from when I was a baby until now. I like to have it written out so there is no question for caretakers so they don't have to worry and neither do I.

 The SleepSack wearable blanket is ideal for Nora since she would pull a regular blanket over her face. She tries to do this in her carseat but she has a big brother who doesn't mind pulling them down while we're driving. Also the SleepSack is "hip healthy" so it doesn't interfere with proper hip development; this is something we are concerned about in regards to the carrier and products we put Nora in like jumpers as well. She spends much more of her day sleeping than in a jumper or carrier so it should also be okay on her hips.

The zipper is another feature that we are sold on.  It seems backwards at first to have the zipper start at the top and zip down, but middle-of-the-night diaper changes are so much faster since I don't have to undo the whole SleepSack to get to her diaper for the change.  Personally, quick diaper changes make the difference between a good night's sleep and a very long night: If Nora wakes up too much while changing her diaper then you can kiss sleep goodbye.

All in all the Halo SleepSack and SleepSack Swaddle are a must in our house.  I know she will be comfortably warm and safe.  They wash nicely and have the instructions listed on the tag so it doesn't get ruined or get stuck to anything else in the wash. Plus do you see how cute that ladybud is?!
If you would like to learn more about Halo products they have a great website and active social media, including facebook, twitter, instagram, google+, youtube, and pinterest.
I received the Halo SleepSack for free in order to review, but all comments and reviews are my own and not that of the company's.  Some of the pictures are my own while other are courtesy of Halo.

Saturday, December 6, 2014


We had a great Thanksgiving this year. We stayed home as usual and went to my parents' house. Matt and Tashina and the kids came up and the grandmas came over. I didn't take many pictures but but I couldn't resist these two. 

Lactation cookies

1 1/2 cups flour ( I use up to half whole wheat flour)
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon 
1/2 tsp allspice
1 tsp vanilla 
2 eggs
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup shortening
4 tsp brewers yeast
3 TBL ground flaxseed 
1 1/2 cups oatmeal
1 cup walnuts
1 bag chocolate chips or a mix of different chips butterscotch is great with the oatmeal. 

In mixer combine shortening and sugars mix well. Add eggs and vanilla. Add dry ingredients and mix well. Finally add chocolate chips and walnuts. Bake at 350 for 8 minutes. 

Also this recipe works well for "slice and bake". Make the dough into a tube and wrap in plastic wrap. Freeze and cut off what you want to bake for fresh cookies without the mess. They may need baked a bit longer if baking from the freezer. Also they make great gifts for new moms or breastfeeding moms during growth spurts. 

Friday, December 5, 2014

Nora visits Santa

Tonight Santa came to visit the kids after the nativity play at church. I'll post about it later because I can't load videos on the app in using on my iPod. 
Amazingly enough no screaming! Pete's first couple years he freaked. My kids seem to be opposites of each other!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

So Much Love

I know I've bragged on Pete's big brotherly ways before but man he is good with Nora. She seems to adore him and is always trying to watch him play or do whatever thing Pete does. They are just so good together. I'm hoping that stays that way and we won't have issues (yeah I know I'm dreaming)  

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Pete's Preschool Program

Last week Pete had his Thanksgiving program for school. The kids sang a couple songs, told the story of the pilgrims with a color bracelect they had made. The class also made the snack for the event during school-pumpkin pie and pumpkin ice cream. White Grandma (my mom) and Skypopo and Skypopo Grandma (Phil parents) came as well, I love it when trips line up so nicely!
Pete in his costume he painted. 
Pete, Mommy and Nora
Pete and White Grandma
Pete modeling with his class turkey. Every family made a feather. Ours is the bottom one on the right.