Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Happy (belated) birthday Daddy!

Since Mike was out of town for his birthday last week (which he doesn't even like to celebrate to begin with), we had a dinner out tonight to celebrate his belated birthday enjoy some family time and cash in Mike's free birthday meal. Turns out we discovered Troy's favorite meal ever - stirfry loaded with tons of green veggies. He ate all the veggies out of his bowl and then all the leftover veggies in Mike's bowl. He LOVES veggies!

Cassidy decided to have a mega blow-out (and I was just bragging earlier how she didn't have many blow-outs any more) as soon as we arrived at the restaurant. I had no clean onesie or shirt with me so she went topless. Once we started eating, a group of kind ladies actually commented on how they used to do that when feeding their babies all the time back in the day. Pretty sure they thought I stripped her down intentionally :/

After Flat Top, we walked over to Coldstone (ah summertime on campus!) and cashed in another birthday coupon to enjoy some ice cream. Troy likes ice cream more than stir fry evidently :)

No boundaries...

Cassidy has been on the move for quite some time, but we've been in that blissful phase where she stayed in the same general area I put her down in. Now we've moved into the phase where everything is up for grabs and she knows no boundaries. Like when she found this shortcut from the living room to the kitchen this morning, and came crawling under the coffee table. Never a dull moment!

First Trip of the Year to Curtis Orchard

Well we were *supposed* to be hanging out at Clinton Lake playing in the beach sand and water for this day in late July, but a chilly weather forecast led us to Curtis Orchard on what felt like a perfect fall day instead.

As we got out of the car, I had a moment of nostalgia as I remembered my last trip to the Orchard, just hours before Cassidy was born!

Troy is even MORE obsessed with the kittens at the Orchard this year and spent the vast majority of our visit chasing them around and picking them up. I laughed out loud (and then rushed over) when I saw him lumbering towards me in typical Troy fashion saying "Mommy, I have TWO cats now!" as two poor kitties dangled from each of his arms. Funny, this one below was actually purring in his arms when I touched it. They don't seem to mind!

At the very end of a long and enjoyable morning, Troy ducked into the playground area that we've never played in because we were under the impression you had to pay to play there. I called him out and a worker interrupted me and said it was fine for him to play on the equipment, you just had to pay to play mini-golf. Not sure if that's really the case, but the kids were all pretty excited to play in there for the first time. Especially in this "rock pit" below!

Neighborhood Playground

All this time and energy being put into moving to Mahomet hasn't gotten in the way of enjoying our current neighborhood during our time here, whether it be one more month or one more year. We've been walking down to the neighborhood park in the evenings more, one thing I really like about this neighborhood. There have been more families at the park than in summers past, so more kids to play with. These "big boys" played a game of pickup football and several littler guys went over to get a closer look as to what they were doing. The boys were incredibly kind and even though they didn't really throw it to them, they didn't ask them to move or anything and just kind of played around them :) Troy thinks he "played" football now :)

Cass prefers to swing her time away while we're at the park!

Vist from the Grammas

Troy and Cassidy's Gramma and my Gramma (or Beema, to the kids) came down for a day visit this past weekend. Mike was on a trip and I was thrilled to have some adult company (and helping hands!) for the day! A couple highlights:

The kids both adore playing with their Gramma, so they spent lots of time hanging on our freshly cleaned carpets playing with a few small toys from Gramma's house that made the trip.

My Gramma and I got out for a little bit and we ended up at Custard Cup to pick up some cool treats. Safe to say her treat of choice got a two thumbs up! Thanks for coming down for the day, Gramma and Beema! :)

Monday, July 28, 2014

sly girl

She thinks she's pulling a fast one on us and sneaking in her own iPad time :)

Bike Riding: July 2014

Troy is getting really great at riding his bike! I was so proud of him for actually riding to a destination for the first time this week when we walked to the neighborhood park. It was the first time we weren't just "practicing" out front or back and had a destination in mind!

Summer Bucket List: Amish Country

One of the items on our summer bucket list was to visit Amish Country. I needed to pay a visit to Beachy's Bulk Foods in Arthur to pick up a few kitchen staples and *thought* the kids and I would make a day out of it. Alas, after we made our grocery run, we were basically done for the day. I've told Troy, "We can't do fun things if we're not being good listeners". So back home we headed, with no Amish food indulgences to show for our day. Probably for the best, I suppose :)

Since I took no photos, here's a link to an article I wrote last year about Beachy's, in case you've never been. I LOVE this place. And BONUS, they accept credit cards now! WOW. Amish food store that accept credit cards!

Check it out, you won't regret it!

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Happy Birthday Mike!

Mr "I don't like celebrating my own birthday" figured out the ultimate way to avoid celebrating his birthday this year... plan work travel! Haha, in all fairness, I'm sure he had to be there regardless of birthday :) So since I couldn't do anything in person, I threw him a party on social media by posting up a couple of his childhood photos.

Like this one, below. From his first birthday. This is the EXACT same look I get when I walk in on him having a treat or snack he didn't plan for me to see him munching on.

Last year I wrote a post on 37 things I love about my husband. Every one of them is still true (with some slight adjustments, like he got some of the "good" pillows back now that I'm not pregnant!) and I love him more than ever. Happy Birthday, Mike! Here's to another year! (And sorry, I haven't "caught up" to you in age yet!)

Mommy has a 9 month old!

My kids get regular updates on them all the time but I thought it was time for a brief (or not so brief) Mommy update. The Cunningham fam blog isn't typically a health and fitness blog but since I share all kinds of different things I thought I'd post what's been going on with me the last nine months.

Here is this photo, 3 days before I delivered Cassidy. Oofta.

I tend to gain a ton fair amount of weight with my babies. This pregnancy was 45 pounds total (still less than Troy, thankfully, when I was 50+ pounds). And since I'm otherwise healthy while pregnant, several of my midwives told me not to sweat it and its just what my body does when I'm growing a person :)

So after I had Cass, thanks to breastfeeding and just normal life, I ended up losing 25 pounds of that. And then it just stopped. Case in point, this photo below from January (I had been at this weight since mid-December, excuse the poor photoshopping).

By the time March rolled around, I knew I had to do something to lose the rest of the baby weight (around 20 pounds). I started (sort of) watching what I ate (at least tracking it) and found myself running a couple times a week. I've just starting using Daily Burn too, because, as the commercial says, "the hardest part about going to the gym is going to the gym." Truth.

Here I am today! Down another 18 pounds. I'm about 2 pounds over what I was when I got pregnant with Cassidy but even though the scale's not changing I'm seeing good results in the last week or so. Felt pretty good to dust off some new old jeans this week from my closet :) And I feel really good, too!

The exciting part for me is that I'm not done yet! Just because the baby weight is *almost* gone, I have plans to keep going and to work off even more in the year to come (goal - 20 more). Hopefully, this next year will bring some more regular sleep so I can get up early consistently and inevitably I'll try some new things, too. Plus I *could* stop making excuses and really watch what I'm eating day to day :)

My friend and doula Jill told me after I had Troy, 9 months on, 9 months off in regard to the baby weight. And thankfully, that's been pretty close to true in both instances for me! Thanks to the many of you who have encouraged me as I work this weight off!

Now back to your regularly scheduled programming, otherwise known as Cunningham kid cuteness :)

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

County Fair

One of the items on Troy's summer bucket list (this was something he talked about since we first drove past the fair last year), we made a visit to the Champaign County Fair tonight. Animals and "fun things", Troy was interested :)

I had been the fair once before with my sis in law Daria, when we were bored one night and went to the demo derby. Yes, the demo derby... I think our city girl eyes were both opened wide to a whole different culture that night, haha!

We headed in and first went to see the animals. The prize winning livestock wasn't very impressed with us, but we enjoyed looking at them!

Next we walked past the track and watched a little motorcycle racing. We had heard them revving up when we arrived because it was LOUD. Thankfully our kids don't mind loud noises and they were both fine watching. Troy said he wants to do that when he grows up. I suggested he show a sheep for 4H or something :)

We let Troy pick a couple rides to do in the carnival area. He LOVED the ones he picked. When he didn't get to ride them ALL he was a little pouty, but he came around and eventually admitted they were fun, even if we did leave without doing them ALL.

Love this photo. Summer at its finest.

Cass assuming her favorite stroller pose. This is her "I'm watching my brother do fun things" position :)

Tuesday, July 22, 2014


We grow consistent children. Comparing 9 month stats, Troy was 1 oz heavier than Cassidy and .25 inches longer. They may be two totally different people but they seem to be growing similarly.

Cass had her check-up today, including two shots. The nurse hit a vein and blood spurted (TMI, but that's never happened with either of my kids and I was a little freaked out). Thankfully she's fine.

She weighs 21 pounds, 10 ounces (90th percentile) and is 28 inches long (78th percentile). Proud of my growing girl and marveling at the fact my body (milk) continues to nourish her as she grows. Its still amazing to me!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Cassidy is 9 months old!

Cassidy is 9 months old TODAY! (Silent Mommy fist pump for remembering to blog about her ON her "month day" now.) I sat her down to take this picture today and Troy said, "She wants me to take the picture with her!" She certainly didn't seem to mind. She loves her brother very, very much!

Eating: Cassidy is still eating all three meals with us and two snacks, morning and afternoon. She loves to eat corn, black beans, avocado, banana and a new favorite, PEACHES. She eats meat like crazy and eats whatever else is available. Today she nursed around 6 times during the day, but most days its between 6-8. Plus at least one overnight.

Sleeping: A month of ups and downs! We traveled a lot this month and she cut lots of teeth this month so I tried my best just to roll with it and remind myself "It's just a season..." She's not a fan of sleeping in her pack and play much when we're on the road so we co-slept a lot. It definitely has its pros and cons. The main pro being we were able to sleep. But I don't feel like I sleep anywhere near as deeply when we're in the same bed. I never co-slept with Troy at this age, so it was a new experience for me. I'm just glad we got rest on the road! But now that we're home, and she's back to her crib, things seem to be settling down a little. She's been going down around 7pm, waking up when we go upstairs to bed around 10, and then waking up one more time between 10 and 7am or so. An incredibly welcome change to only have to wake once in the middle of the night for me! She takes two good (for Cassidy) naps a day, around at hour or a little more. All that activity all day is helping her rest a little better!

Playing: Anything she can pull up to. Like at the coffee table or train table. She likes to bang a duplo block against a table and make loud noises. And she just likes to watch her brother play in general. And he loves to play with her! They ACTUALLY play together. This sibling thing is downright awesome :) In fact, I texted a friend with a newborn and an older child a pic of Troy and Cass playing together one day this week and told her in 8 months or so this would be her house too :) It feels like its so far off when they're brand new, but then bam, all of a sudden you have two kids that play together. Amazing!

New things she's doing: Crawling on hands and knees! Pulling to a stand AND as of this weekend, cruising along furniture. As Mike said today, she is very pleased with herself to be "walking". I honestly think she'll be taking a step or two on her own by next month. Today she acted like she wanted to let go of the coffee table and walk to the train table a foot away. Cutting teeth (four of them through now, #4 had been poking through for about two weeks and finally broke all the way through yesterday.) Sitting herself up easily from her belly and just moving a lot in general :) LAUGHING a lot! More than even before. She's a happy girl! Saying "mama" and "dada". Waving hi and bye a LOT. I'm trying to teach her a couple baby sign language signs since she's so into the waving thing (and totally understands what it means). I didn't do any signing with Troy but I'm trying to give it a shot with her. Growing enough hair to actually clip a bow onto :) 

Clothes: 12 months. Size 3 diapers. 

Likes: Her brother. Eating meals. Watching people, like if we're all sitting around a table together. Music/dancing. The water (yay!)

Dislikes: Going to sleep. She does NOT like the realization that sleep is imminent!

Stats to come after her check up on Tuesday. She's an incredible girl! We all adore her!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Homer Lake Play

We love the playscape at Homer Lake! It's on our summer bucket list :) So we headed out through the cornfields to visit it this morning as a family. It did not disappoint!

Mike took Troy "exploring". He really, really liked that :)

A nice view on a beautiful summer day.

Another kid playing there found a "wooly worm" that they all started clamoring for. Eventually Mike and Troy went looking for another wooly worm so he could have his own. Success! I'd never seen one of these furry little creatures before. Quite cute (if you can say that about a bug!)

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Kids Playing

This new stage of my kids playing together is awesome. Downright great. I love seeing them play together and even when they're just playing side by side.... it's amazing. To think that just a few months ago Cass couldn't even hold a toy and now she's pulling up next to her bro and playing with the same things he is! So much cuteness from their playtime tonight after dinner that I have to share :)

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Dells Vacation: Third and Final Day

Troy mustered up enough energy to rally for our last day of vacation before heading out of the Dells. Here he is bright and early ready to head to the hotel pool (we were at the Hilton Garden Inn at this point as our time at the Wilderness had come to an end).

After the pool, we told Troy he could pick our very last thing to do before we left. We gave him three choices: 1) Deer Park, 2) Timbavati Safari Train and 3) Circus World. He chose Safari Train!

Cass knows all about train rides at the young age of nearly 9 months :)

The boys were armed with their cup of carrot sticks for all the animals.

The animals came right up to the train. The train operator warned us about this guy AFTER he started sticking his head in the train. "I stay real close right here with him," the man says. Step away from my son, animal!

As I was taking this photo Mike said I might want to watch Cassidy's toes, since they might look like carrot sticks to animals...

Later on the ride, we got out to see and feed the camels and giraffes!

Our attempt at a photo of the four of us (plus giraffe!) Mike's face is priceless. A great last activity in the Dells!

Dells Vacation: Day 2

Time for another fun day! Our morning started off with breakfast with Gramma and Grampa. They whipped up a special treat for Troy - chocolate chip pancakes! Surprisingly he didn't eat much of them. They looked amazing to me. I think he was pretty excited to get the day started though.

Grampa doing his grampa thing :) This is probably about the time Cassidy pooped on Grampa. Poor Grampa :(

We were waiting at a different indoor waterpark (because there were so many to choose from!) when it opened. Got a great spot and hopped right in. Cass seemed like she might nap but alas... too much fun to be had for awhile!

Like bouncing in one of these awesome things in the water!

Troy and Daddy went to take on one of the biggest slides there while Cass and I watched. And waited and watched.

Side story: I had time to admire this lovely machine that carries the gigantic family style tube up the four flights of stairs. When my dad saw this later he was quick to remind us of all the family vacations he single-handedly carried those tubes up flights of stairs for us (no machine did it for him!) Thanks Dad :)

Eventually they came flying out!

When Gramma and Grampa arrived later, Mike, Troy, Grampa and I all went down in one tube together. The more weight in one of those tubes = the more whooshing and "I feel like my 3 yr old is going to go flying out of this tube" feeling. You can see we're practically sideways.

Cass napped with Gramma :)

Gramma and Grampa were such a great help "on duty" with both of the kids quite a bit, I was happy to see them get just a little relaxing time in the hot tub :)

Where Troy spent the majority of his day. We all took turns watching him/chasing him up there. There was so much squirting water, dumping water, etc. it made it hard to navigate, let alone watch a kid. Look for Mike and Troy just below the spinning green/yellow thing.

And another shot while Mommy played the "let's watch my kid shoot out of a slide at some point in the near future" game.

Remember that time Troy took his sweet time getting out of the slide and the 16 yr old lifeguard showed no sense of urgency to get him to move? And remember when Daddy almost took him out 20 seconds later?

Lunch was had overlooking the waterpark. It was fun to watch everything from above and not wonder where my kid was in the midst of it for a little while :)

Afternoon crash. This happened while regrouping from the waterpark before heading out for dinner and such. Sleeping photos of my kids never, ever, EVER get old.

We stopped for a few spins around the go kart track before dinner. Troy rode with Mike and I rode separately. I drove crazy slow the first time but picked it up a little bit later. To say I was a little frightened by the 11 year old boys that were like 1 inch taller than the height minimum to drive is an understatement!

We visited the famous Moosejaw Pizza for dinner. Here's our first attempt at several of us in one picture. Yea....

Mommy Cass moose selfie!

A very sleepy Troy enjoyed wearing his moose antlers sideways during our dinner. Whatev, Troy.

And there it is folks, the only photo of all of us together. Haha!