Black & White Christmas

Who needs gifts when you have shiny, brights lights and a very compliant puppy?
 Not to mention a mother that highly encourages such behavior...
Poor Huckleberry. 
We love you. 
Thanks for being such a good sport.


Jack | 10 Months

Sorry for the grainy photos. I'm having camera issues.. I swear one day I'll read that darn users manual...

But, in other news, Jack is 10 months old! 10 months, guys. 
Seriously, this growing business just needs to slooooooow dowwwwwwwn.
 10 month old Jack loves...
his mommy
his dino paci
Huckleberry and Herschel
his push walker toy
being chased
being held
pulling the ornaments off the Christmas tree
 10 month old Jack hates...
diaper changes
his carseat 
Health: Jack is a healthy boy and growing like a weed! He is now in all size 12 month clothes and almost ready to move to 18 months in onsies. He is still in size 3 diapers during the day, but size 4 overnight diapers at night.

Food (Nursing): Jack has actually dropped a couple feedings this month. Usually only nurses 3 times during the day and 2-3 times at night. (Which I know is still pretty terrible and unnecessary for nighttime, but, hey, I'm a pushover.)

Food (Solids): Jack still loves to eat solids. His favorites right now seem to be berries (especially blueberries), cheese, and butternut squash. He usually isn't a picky eater, but he did recently turn his nose up to oatmeal. I don't think it's the oatmeal that he had a problem with as much as he just didn't want to be feed with a spoon ;) He pretty much only wants food he can feed himself. A new food this month was eggs... jury is still out on whether he was a fan of it or not.

Sleep: If sleep is a measure of success as a mother, I am a failure for sure. He isn't waking as many times as he has been in previous months, but he's still waking 3 times or more at night. Jack was such a great night time sleeper until he hit 6 months. I don't know what happened to set him back then (teething, 6 month sleep regression, etc...), but ever since we just haven't been able to get it together in the night time sleep department. Naps are usually good. He is on a 2 nap schedule still, lasting anywhere from an hour to an hour and a half each.

New this Month: Jack still loves chasing Huckleberry with his walker toy (like in the video I posted last month), but his dexterity with that thing has now really improved! He can pretty much maneuver his way into even the toughest nooks and crannies around the house to terrorize Huckleberry with that thing. I can also now really see his critical thinking skills at work while he playing. Loves cause and effect games and those toy shape sorter games a lot. Most exciting of all this month though is that on December 12th Jack took his first steps! He isn't full out walking yet, but he does let go and take 3-4 steps here and there. He actually had a pretty long walk the other day (7 steps to be exact) and took a pretty hard tumble. But this little man is all boy and it didn't even phase him! (SCARED ME HALF TO DEATH!) Also, Jack has become increasingly interested in what's going on in the kitchen. He's always pulling on my legs begging to be picked up if I'm chopping vegetables, scrambling eggs, pouring myself a glass of water...you name it! He just wants to be lifted up so he can witness all the excitement. Who knew I lived such an exciting life?? Oh the things babies can teach you ;)

Looking forward to: Babies first Christmas and a visit from Grandma and Grandpa Carroll right after the holidays!
Jack Jack! Your daddy and I love you so much.
Thank you for being such a joy to us and making us smile each and everyday.
Happy 10 months, little man.


Happy December & a Free Advent Devotional

I'm sipping on some hot chocolate and enjoying some Trader Joe's ginger snaps (I'm obsessed with these things!). The Christmas lights are up, the baby is sleeping, and Huckleberry is resting at my feet. Really, it is quite the perfect evening. 

I really love this time of year. There is simply something magical about the lights and Christmas music, and just the general feel that accompanies December and seems to last through the holidays. It's really easy for me though to get caught up in all the colorful lights, gift giving, and festive flavored coffee consumption (!!!!). And all too frequently, this results in me neglecting the real reason for celebration this month... 

I don't know about you, but that seems to be a recurring struggle for me year after year after year. It's kind of embarrassing actually --instead of using this time of year to reflect on and strengthen my faith, I allow myself to get distracted by all the wonderful, but worldly things, that accompany Christmas well.  So for advent this year, I am reading this devotional by John Piper. I really want to focus on adoring Jesus this holiday season. I'm still going to enjoy all the amazing magical(ness) that goes along with this month, but I want Him to be in the center of my heart and thoughts this Christmas. I simply don't want to get distracted by all the loveliness around me like I usually do, but rather keep my eyes on Him. He is the reason for the season after all!

So are you reading anything for advent this year? And how do you keep the true meaning of the Christmas season front and center when it's been so commercialized? I'd love to hear your ideas!

If you'd like to read The Dawning of Indestructible Joy for Advent this Christmas, too, you can download it for free here.

Happy December!