My Mommy Mind: 18 Month Update

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100 boxes of diapers, 1,000 bunches of bananas, 1 ER visit (cashews are a no-go,) countless kisses, (are these things supposed to go in order of quantity?) 1,000,000 giggles, and 1 red balloon (minus the great green room) later, Lincoln turned 18 months old this week. My perfect, precious peanut.

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I now understand what everyone meant when they said you snap your fingers and your baby is off to college. Those early days are so long and hard, and sometimes it feels like you’ll never make it out the other side, then you wake up one day and all of the sudden your newborn is eating a ham sandwich, saying puppy, throwing things away in the trash can, and is signed up for “school” in the fall. It hit me as I was doing the laundry the other day that I am literally powerless to stop him from growing up. What a scary and honestly gut-wrenching feeling as a mother. No matter what I do, some day he won’t be at home and with me all the time. I know I’m getting ahead of myself to the tune of 17 years, but I don’t think there’s a mother on the planet who doesn’t hurt about that.

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On a lighter note, while there’s nothing cuter than a newborn, these last few months with a toddler have felt the sweetest. It’s such a game changer when they can finally walk and engage in outside activities, and Ben and I have loved taking Lincoln everywhere from the zoo, to the Botanical Center, river walk, library, community center, gym play place, and traveling with him to Savannah and Virginia over the past 6 months. It’s such a joy to see your child having fun!

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Working from home with a toddler continues to be extremely difficult, though our twice a week sitter is a Godsend. She and Lincoln have a blast together and by now she knows him as well as any family member. On the days when she isn’t here, and I need to steal 10-15 minutes to check email or make a quick dish for the blog, I usually give Lincoln free reign on the pantry and a few select cupboards filled with pre-approved toddler-friendly items like bowls, funnels (my God does that child love funnels,) and strainers. Anything for a little break!

Other than that we fill our days with playtime at home, trips to see Grammie and Dada at work, errands, and at least one “Lincoln-centered” activity whether that be a trip to the library, community center for the play place/open gym, or mall so he can run around. We’re recently down to one nap in the afternoon, so we’re still figuring out the new timing of our day. I continue to get the bulk of my work done during nap time, nights, and weekends.

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Lincoln is pretty shy around other little kids (although thankfully he’s getting better,) but he loves flirting with older ladies at the grocery store and restaurants, and makes me laugh at least 100 times a day. He’s a total goofball!

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Eating is going great! We introduced utensils around 13 months or so after seeing babies L’s age using them (I texted my SIL asking if I was a terrible mother because I didn’t think kids learned how to use spoons and forks until they were like, I don’t know, 2?) Anyway he’s slowly picked it up over the past couple of months and is now using them pretty consistently. Like I mentioned, the kid eats like a horse. Here’s a typical day’s menu:

Breakfast: banana, slice of bread with peanut butter, mandarin orange, and maybe some Cheerios.

Lunch: Some type of meat/protein (meatballs, salmon, chicken, eggs, deli meat sandwich) green beans, strawberries, peanut butter crackers.

Afternoon snack: Apple Pie Larabar

Dinner: Spaghetti with Vegetable Ragu (I like the Barilla pasta that’s made with vegetables – HyVee has a version too,) peas, applesauce, butternut squash.

Evening snack: a few whole wheat crackers

(Look at that determination!) ;)

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Likes: playing in his tunnel, HIS DAD (or more accurately dada! dada! dada!) books, his vitamins, Larabars, watching me do the laundry, chips and salsa, knocking on doors, being outside, walking backwards, the E! News theme song, watching videos of himself, the community center, Taylor Swift, getting his teeth brushed, puppies, and kisses from Mom (ok I put that in there for myself.)

Dislikes: sun in his eyes, when Dad hangs up the phone after talking over the speaker, not being the center of attention for more than 10 seconds, and wearing his winter coat in the car seat. Oh, and socks.

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Around the time Lincoln turned one the questions started rolling in – when are you going to have another?! The answer is, I don’t know! We’re in such a great place right now with finally being able to communicate well, feeling comfortable and excited to travel as a family, going out to dinner whenever we want, etc. Life finally feels “normal” so it’s hard thinking about going back to the chaotic world of having a newborn. (I’m not saying everyone’s life with a newborn is chaotic, but for us it sure felt like it!) There’s something to be said about getting the really difficult years over and done with all at once, but there’s also nothing wrong with like, taking a minute. That said, I do want Lincoln to have a brother or sister in the future so that chapter in our lives is still TBD!

Right now I’m enjoying every moment, adventure, and sweet snuggle from my bubba, my baby, my heart and soul. Can’t wait to see what life has in store for our little family next.

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Cedar Wood Nativity Puzzle Giveaway

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We couldn’t forget the kiddos during the Month of Holiday Giveaways now could we? Let me tell you about one of the most inspiring Mamas I know, Melissa from Bless This Mess. With four young children and a hobby farm to look after, Melissa also sews, cooks, bakes, crafts, remodels…

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Day in the Life…

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It’s been a hot minute since my last day in the life post when Lincoln was just 4 months old, and it was one of the biggest requests from my reader survey a few weeks ago, so I thought I’d fill you on what a day in the life of a work…

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Mini Turkey-Lentil Meatloaves For Toddlers (Freezer-Friendly!)

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Mini Turkey-Lentil Meatloaves are packed with protein, vitamins, and iron. Gluten-free, dairy-free, and freezer-friendly too, these bites are the perfect size for little hands. At nearly 14 months old I think it’s safe to say we’re entering toddler territory. Land o’ sippy cups, snack traps, tentative steps, first words, and new foods….

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My Mommy Mind: 1 Year Update + Party Pics!

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Holy cow, folks, ONE YEAR – we made it!!! When I look back at photos of Lincoln from when he was just a few days old, I am flooded with so many different emotions and can put myself right back in that hospital room feeling more joy than I ever knew existed coupled with…

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