Friday, May 30, 2014

Bluebonnet Pictures

Back in April we had some bluebonnet pictures taken of our boys. My friend Amanda told me about a girl, Courtney Hanson, that works with her husband and does photography in her spare time. She was offering bluebonnet mini-sessions and we didn't hesitate to grab a time slot with her. Both boys are Texas-born, so pictures in our beautiful state flower are a must! We are very pleased with how they turned out and can't wait to print them and get them framed!

Also in April, my friend Ashli at ArtsyMagnet was updating her website and looking for some breastfeeding mothers to photograph so she could have some examples of her work for her site. I eagerly offered to help her out and in exchange got some images from our session. Don't worry, there is nothing graphic in the images below - they are safe to view! I am so happy I chose to do this with her and excited that we caught these special moments on camera.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

The Daily Life of a Robison Boy

If you know me well, you know I love a good schedule. We follow it almost to a fault, as I only deter from it when absolutely necessary. This does mean I put most of my own desires second, but this stage of our lives is so short, yet developmentally important for the boys, and in my opinion it's a small sacrifice to make for large long term results. This is my full time job, and I take it very seriously!

We are in a really good groove around here and I wanted to document how a normal day looks for us. Mason is out of school for summer and while I thought he'd get a little bored staying home every morning so that Harrison could nap, he's actually having a blast and really looks forward to "Mommy and Mason's special time" while Harrison is asleep. I make every effort to accomplish several things every day for the boys: book time, learning time, outdoor time, physical activity time, alone time, free time, family time, time with a friend(s), and obviously meal time and rest time. With the schedule we follow we usually cover all those categories. I'm having a blast watching them learn, play, and grow and they are both happy as can be. Here's a snapshot into their days:

7:00 -  wake time (pretty much on the dot for both kids). I feed Harrison while Mason plays quietly in Harrison's room or climbs into bed with Sean for some cuddles.
7:15 - cartoon and milk for Mason, bouncy seat in bathroom for Harrison while Sean showers
7:45 - Mason and Harrison play together in one of their rooms
8:00 - family breakfast
8:30 - boys get dressed for the day
8:45 - hop in the stroller for a walk with Hazel. We are on the look out for friends and if we see them, we play for half an hour, if not, we take a longer walk
9:30 - naptime for Harrison and free play for Mason (this includes anything from playing in the backyard, to listening to music and playing in his room, watching a cartoon, or anything else in the house he wants to do, within reason of course).
10:00 - Mommy & Mason's special time. During Mason's free time I prepare his daily activity. It changes every day but it's usually some creative, hands-on activity that works on math, language, science, or art through play. I have a book I downloaded called Three to Five Playful Preschool that gives me some ideas, or sometimes I just come up with something on my own (a big hit last week was painting with Lego's). Some times we just head outside and play - make believe, water play, digging rocks, etc.
11:00 - Clean up our activity and prepare our bags and lunches for whatever adventure we have planned for the day.
11:30 - Harrison wakes up and eats
11:45 - head out for our small window of time between naps!
12:00 - lunch and our daily adventure (last week we did the following: open gym at the rec center on Mon, lunch play date with a buddy at our house on Tues, park with friends on Wed, arboretum on Th, Perot museum on Fri)
1:30 - we aim to be home by this time so I can put Mason down for his nap before 2 - if I try anytime after that, it's a 50/50 chance that he'll fall asleep
2:00 - naptime for Harrison
4:00 - both boys wake up, bottle for Harrison
4:30 - Mason gets on his bike and Harrison in the stroller and we troll around the neighborhood looking for friends. Sometimes we just end up at a sand pile down the street and play there. For the next two weeks, Mason has swim lessons in the afternoon so that changes this a bit.
5:30 - home for dinner. Boys play together while I get it ready
5:45 - dinner for both
6:15 - play around the house or in the yard waiting on Sean to get home
6:30 - playtime with Sean - sometimes a family walk
7:00 - bath time for Harrison
7:15 - bath time for Mason and bottle for Harrison
7:30 - bedtime for Harrison
7:30/8 - Bedtime for Mason

*Mason is in swimming now, and has several summer camps, swimming lessons, tennis lessons, and possibly gymnastics coming up, and Harrison will be starting Gymboree in the next month or so. This is an example of a M-F day with none of that on the calendar!

Our days are busy, but I found myself having a short patience level by the end of the day when we weren't so regimented. Two days a week Mason has quiet time instead of nap time. He didn't nap on school days and we learned that his weekly intake of sleep was just where it needed to be when he skipped those two days of naps. He gets an average of 12-13 hours of sleep a day and Harrison gets about 15.

When I can, I squeeze in a work-out for myself. Sometimes we go to the Y for our mid-day activity out of the house, sometimes I do one at home while they sleep, and sometimes I just consider running around all day exercise enough. :) Ideally I'd go to the gym early a couple of times a week before they wake up, but I just haven't motivated myself to get started on that yet.

So, there's our day in a nutshell! Things change so rapidly with little ones so this could change next week, but we're at such a good spot I had to document it!

Water play in the backyard and making Play-Doh monsters

Having fun at the park and painting with Lego's

Left pictures are at the Perot museum, top right is Mason doing a learning activity and bottom right is Harrison being cute. :)

Exploring the children's garden at the arboretum

Making colored rice! (Mason's love for blue is going strong and we wear the same shirts A LOT. This is also a glimpse at his new "cheese" face).