617 is the number of bags of milk for Grayson I have stored in our freezer, and that's as high as it will get. I have about 3 days or so before I'm officially done pumping, but am not producing enough to freeze any extra. I think I've spared you enough details the past six months, so one post about this won't kill you :)

Other fun facts (ha):

-I will quit about 2 days short of the exact amount of time I spent pumping for Connor.
-I believe I ended up with 444 bags for Connor when I was done.
-There are 6 ounces in each bag, so that's nearly 29 gallons of milk. Sorry. No idea what prompted me to do this math and comparison.
-This will not last Grayson a year, but it will get him close.
-I again recorded every pump session, the time of day, how many minutes spent pumping and the ounces I got. This started way back with Connor when we were at Children's and for whatever reason, I never stopped and then recorded every session for Grayson, too.
-In case you don't know me really well, I have never nursed either of my children, I just pump.
-There is not one minute that I don't despise pumping, but, it's good for the baby, good for me, and saves money.
-I am SO ready to have my kitchen counter back and about 2.5 hours of my life back each day (between pumping and washing, etc.)
-We also are in desperate need of freezer space, but that'll be a few months yet.

Again, I realize many of you really could care less (okay, all of you), but hey, this is my journal, right?


picking pumpkins

A little family ride on the 4-wheeler this afternoon brought us to our neighborhood 'pumpkin patch' to pick out our pumpkins for the front steps. Connor thought we needed 10. We thankfully got away with only 6.

scoping out the selection

Connor thought this one was appropriate for Grayson :)

scrapfest firsts

This weekend marks the 5th year Sarah, my friend from college, and I have gotten together for Scrapfest. Scrapfest is an annual event put on by Archivers. They have classes and vendors set up at the Mall of America. So for the past 5 years, we've gotten a hotel  near the mall, attended some classes and scrapped away at our hotel in the evenings. This year, we've spent our weekend a little differently :)

-We ran the Dave Ryan Special Olympics 5K. Sarah put together a team for her work and so I did it along with them. I actually had hoped to do the 10k as part of my training for the Mankato half marathon. You know, that race I said I was going to do but never registered and the training plan is still laying on my printer tray (but at least I printed it).
-We went to bed before midnight one of the nights. It's typically one of the downfalls of our weekend, we stay up too late and get potentially less sleep than at home with our children. Worth it, but still, it was great to actually get some sleep :)
-We even took a 2.5 hour nap. It was awesome.
-We never made it to the Mall of America. The funny thing is, each year we register online for classes and every year, it's a little stressful. Sarah and I are on the phone the night before and the morning of registration opener, planning our classes, trying to make sure we get into the same ones, etc. (trust me, I realize I'm painting quite a dorky picture for you all) I sent her a text one day telling her we had missed registration, neither of us were too disappointed. We decided to just camp in our hotel and focus on getting caught up on our books. Or closer to caught up.
-We paid more than $40 per night for the hotel. In years past, I've always scored a hotel for less than $40 on priceline.com and I think for 3-star hotels, too. I finally got one for $41/night and had to downgrade to a 2.5 star, but the Best Western here in Oakdale is treating us just fine. Always a little nervous as you have no idea where priceline will put you, but knock on wood, it's always worked out.
-This isn't technically a first, but neither of us were pregnant. Three of our five years one of us has been and so for the first time we even took a relaxing dip in the hotel's hot tub, right after the 5k. It was wonderful.
-We have a picture of ourselves from the weekend, I am pretty sure this is a first, sadly enough.

That's all I can think of for now. We'll try and get a few more pages done in the morning then we'll pack up all of our crap and be on our way!

Sarah and I before the race. 


Grayson: Six Months

My baby is six months today. I will again go with the cliche, it's going too fast :( I seriously LOVE babies. It's my favorite stage, always has been. I don't remember missing Connor during the day as much as I miss Grayson, no offense, Connor. Maybe there is a small part of me that knows this could be my last baby and that's why I can't get to daycare fast enough to pick up all of his chunkiness. He's such a good baby (insert loud knock on wood) and I just cherish my time spent cuddling with him, even if that means the laundry gets a little behind :) So, here comes the standard list of what he's up to, but thought I'd try and add a few more photos to the mix. 

- still eats like a champ. School gives him oatmeal + juice and then a half of veggie a day, at home, if it works out (sometimes timing is just hard, if he's too hungry, he wants a bottle) he'll get another 1/2-1 veggie and then of course, lots of milk. Still 6 bottles a day, 4-5 ounces each. I think Connor was down to 5 bottles by this time so I feel like I should work on that, kid could stand to take in a few less calories :) Oh, and green beans have been the favorite, peas he hated and last night he chowed down an entire squash for the first time. Bring on the orange nose. I think that will coordinate just fine with our family photos this year.

- sleeps. well. Love it. He goes down between 830 and 930, and probably every other night gives us an entire night, getting up around 5 or 530 to eat, which conveniently works out with Bryan's sleep schedule and nearly every morning, Bryan feeds him. The other nights, he gets up around 3 for whatever reason, eats and goes right back to sleep until about 7 when I typically wake him up. Good thing is he doesn't seem to need a bottle those mornings so I don't have to feed him again before taking him to school.  Comparing to Connor, I actually think Connor slept a lot longer? I should see if I blogged about it at some point, but I vaguely remember I had to wake Connor up every day to get him ready for school, but he was also WAY more addicted to his nuk and I believe it was around the 6-7 month stage where we had to do the cry it out method, as we were going in 3+ times a night to put his nuk back in. But, it's all a blur.

- the above outfit is 18 months. Before you judge on how tight it appears, it IS the thermal kind where they're supposed to be tight. (smile and nod) 

- official stats from his appointment this morning:

Weight: 20 pounds, 9 ounces - 92nd percentile
Length: 26.5 inches - 55th percentile
Head Circumference: 17 3/4 inches - 85th percentile
(sorry, can't find Connor's stats so there will be no comparisons this time)

Appointment went well. She suggested introducing more solids as he should be starting to drink less milk, we're thinking he has eczema so I need to be better about applying lotion, not too concerned about his stools but going to introduce fruits to see if that helps keep things moving, and everything else was all good. She's not concerned he's not very mobile, or at all mobile, thinking it's more that he doesn't have the desire to move, rather than it being a physical issue (unless you count that his tummy is so giant it's hard to roll it over :)) So, all is good!

Until next month :)


art project

Every so often we get some homework for Connor. Most of the time, I try really hard to make sure we do it (okay, I think there have been some times I've forgotten a hat for him on hat day or something, that doesn't really count, does it?). My favorite are the 'all about you' projects where you get to put anything and everything that the child likes on the page. So, I enlisted Bryan this time around and the logical place to start for Connor is the equipment magazine. So, they went page by page and if they saw a piece of equipment that Bryan has, they cut it out and glued it on. I at least advised to put a picture of him and a picture of Grayson, but the only place there was room was on the back. I had to hold back the scrapbooker in me that really, really wanted to come out and adjust the layout...ha, but I think it turned out better this way anyways :)

No idea where Bryan found the glue, and you can kind of see what Connor's page looks like, right beneath Bryan's hand. I would love to see him tell his teachers and friends what every piece is, and probably the model.


Mount Grayson

our little active volcano...

He goes in phases of doing this all the time, but thought I'd capture it this time around :)



Today marked Connor's first day in the second pre-school room at his daycare, the Snuffy room (you know, Snuffleupagus, yes, I had to google how to spell it). For the most part it goes by age, you're a Cookie when you're 3, Snuffy when you're 4 and a Big Bird when you're 5 until you go to Kindergarten. He's not 4 yet, so that probably meant there was a big group of kids that needed to be moved to make room for younger kids in another room (definitely a domino effect), so a Snuffy he is :) Thankfully, I think we're over transition issues between rooms because the three pre-school rooms interact together quite a bit, and they're all right next to each other so there was no change in drop off, etc. Whew. Room transitions pretty much suck for this guy. Won't be long before Grayson moves to Infant II (Tigger), but that transition is easy, since he still has no idea what's going on and as long as they feed him he's a happy camper :)

his new favorite place to play, and clearly I need to clean my windows


2011 Bocce

Every year our friends Matt and Lora host a bocce ball tournament. This is the third year that Bryan and I have made it (it was their 10th annual this year) and I'm proud to say I was champ in 2007, however haven't made it near the leader board ever since. Bryan always shows up a bit late because he's on his way back from his golf weekend, and somehow this year even though he missed the first round completely, he got 4th place.

 Bryan and Ang

 Me and my partner, I know, he looks thrilled. However, he was doing something inappropriate with his bocce balls, hence his facial expression, however whoever snapped the picture smartly forgot to get that part into the frame.

 Bryan's flight.

 and again

Ang and I

Thanks to Matt and Lora for yet another fabulous time! If you're at all interested (ie if you were there), here's a link to the rest of the photos from the day.



 Been a lot of this happening this weekend.

While on a self-induced house arrest this weekend (trying to focus on Connor's toilet training) we've had Grayson working on rolling (not successful), sitting (fairly successful) and eating vegetables (tremendously successful, I think he ate two entire containers of green beans yesterday with enthusiasm). The living room has been taken over by Connor's job sites (nothing really new), but laundry and dishes are caught up which makes me very happy :) Bryan gets home this afternoon and then providing Connor is doing okay we will hopefully sneak off to the annual bocce ball tourney at our friend's place. Thinking I should try and accomplish a project or two tomorrow, we'll see :) Happy Labor Day weekend!


Labor Day Tradition

Every year over Labor Day weekend, Bryan and his brother, Aaron, and friends Trav and Craig go up north to golf. Bryan, who is getting more tech savvy every day, just emailed me this picture from his phone so thought I'd share :) I'm not too jealous that he gets to be away every year because conveniently Scrapfest always comes a few weekends after, so I'll get my own time soon enough :)

 Bryan, Aaron, Trav and Craig


grayson's first 4-wheeler ride

Grayson spent the day at Grandma and Grandpa Bode's getting spoiled so I could have some one-on-one time with Connor. (have today and tomorrow off as Connor's school is closed this week) Thought I'd share a few pics, thanks for taking these, Cheryl!

I don't know about you, but I had a little deja vu when looking at this one...

So I had to dig up Connor's first four wheeler ride shots. They are probably within a week or so apart in age here. I think it's pretty obvious they're brothers, Grayson's head does seem more square...and just larger in general, but, similar expressions. Ha.