Headshot Project 2018: January

Back at it again, for the third year running!  Honestly, it has become a bit of a chore to get pictures taken and updates written each month, but looking back on these entries I am filled with so much purpose and gratitude and know that it is my calling right now to try my best to keep at it.  So I may be half a month late in getting this published, but I at least need to get these pics internetized so that I can have them forever!  These boys are at golden stages and it is just a joy to belong to them.

Auggie is just so magical.  He could seriously murder someone and I’d be like, “Oh, he didn’t mean it!”  I am his slave in the best way possible!  And he is talking so much but I’m still the only one who can understand most of what he’s saying most of the time (I have a feeling he’ll need speech therapy!) but I like having our own little language.  I feel like every fiber of my being is connected to his–I just want to absorb him!!  He is so random and funny.  He has major texture sensitivities but loves to eat dirt like it’s chocolate.  His gag reflexes are super weak, which makes for some hilarious encounters with other kids’ boogers or dirty diapers.  We finally shifted him to sippies (for the most part) and he feels like such a big boy, much to his chagrin.  He’s the best baby at being a baby I’ve ever known.  He’s been climbing into our bed early in the morning to snuggle before everyone is awake and I low key need it in my life every day.  One day Charlie asked Auggie what different animals say and then asked what Mommy says.  Auggie replied with a loud dinosaur rawer…….Then Charlie asked him what Dad says and he replied, “Good Job!”

Charlie and I are closer than ever.  I attribute it to take naps every day together.  He was off of naps for almost 6 months before I realized life would be better for all of us if he napped again.  So it has turned into special snuggle time with he and I together and I also get to nap!  It has improved his behavior in every way!  He’s rested, yes, but also he feels more secure in our relationship.  I definitely honor the struggles of being the middle child and know he often feels unheard.  So this daily nap thing has been special.  He’s the most dreamy, sweet as honey love bug on the planet when he’s in a good mood!  Four years old has been hard, though.  He has break downs often and out of no where, so we do our best to avoid anything that makes him panic emotionally or escalate his frustration.  In a way, he sort of owns the family.

Trusty ol’ Jameser.  Best of boys.  He may be the loudest kid in the zip code, but he protects my heart as much as he can.  He pesters Charlie and they fight and he likes to control him, but he’s a great biggest brother.  He’s reading so well in school–He’s level F when they expect kids his age to be a level C at the highest!  He’s made some great friends in school and is sad to leave them when we move next month.  His teacher, Mrs. Flores, has been great and warm and inviting while still being very professional. James is definitely the class clown!  But he’s also very tender-hearted.  His teacher has privately told me of times she’s noticed him being concerned for other kids’ feelings without being prompted to be.  One morning he also told me, “Mom, my goal today is to be calmer.  If I can be calmer I can be a better brother.” 

 

JESSENTIALS 2017: Food!

 

Premier Protein Shakes

A complete staple for me.  Delicious and super low sugar!

Flaxseed Meal Energy Balls

These are perfect for when you need that little spot of sugar in the afternoon. Find the recipe in my saved stories under “Jessentials”

Peanut Wok Noodles

Our favorite meal from this year.

Homemade Buns

Never buy buns again!

JESSENTIALS 2017: Household!

 

Shark hand vac

This is  a must!  Great for the car, little spills, the couch, and having kids participate in chores!

carpet cleaner

This has been a life-saver, especially since we started boarding dogs!  It’s also great for the couch, too.

generic spray mop and disinfecting disposal wipes for it

This just makes mopping easier.

trader joes herbs and cheap clay pots

These make your kitchen pretty.

 

JESSENTIALS 2017: Family and Child!

Here is a list of things that our family has loved this year!

Rover App

This has been the most wonderful source of extra spending cash for me!  We have on average two dogs a month and the boys love each one.  I tell people the only thing easier would be if I got paid to watch my own kids.

chart illustrations

This is one of my projects that I am most proud of and felt most inspired to do.  Having a chart full of pictures of what’s expected when has changed the game in our home.  I don’t have to nag, I don’t have to yell, I don’t have to explain–they just refer to their chart to stay on task (specifically for the mornings to get out the door on time for school).

tablet arm for car

This saves us on road trips!

bob books

James learned to read from these and it was the most painless process ever.  Each page built his confidence and now he reads on a second grade level (he’s in Kindergarten).  We will be starting with Charlie soon, too!

sleep sacs

These were the only thing that would keep Auggie in his crib at night.  He’s since grown out of them and doesn’t need them anymore but they were sent straight from God to some exhausted parents!!

fake snowballs

The SINGLE MOST LAUGHING I HAVE EVER DONE IN ONE SITTING!!!!!  These come out regularly at our home.  Such great, spontaneous family fun!!