July books

In July I read 14 books!! Yep, it was a good month for reading! In previous months if I read a lot it was because Reagan was keeping me up all night. This month, thankfully, I was able to read so much because Reagan was going to bed early and sleeping late! Granted she wanted me with her and to be nursing, but at least that meant I was able to lay with her and read the whole time! πŸ™‚

July Books:

Summary

Bare It All was the second book in Lori Fosters Love Undercover Series and it was so good, I also went ahead and pre-ordered the third book in the series! In addition, it got me thinking enough about previous books that I went back and re-read Trace of Fever and When you Dare. Both of these books were slightly related to the Love Undercover Series and definitely worth the re-read.

Destiny of the Republic was AMAZING. That’s all I can say about how a non-fiction book which drew me in from the first couple of pages and didn’t fail to keep me on my toes and fascinated the whole way through. The book is about the assassination of President Garfield, but in actuality it was about so much more than that. It weaves a story that includes the background and history of the assassin (Charles Guiteau), as well as the stories of Bell, Lister, and Chester Author!

What the Duke Desires reminded me of why I like Sabrina Jeffries so much. This book was entertaining and kept me on my toes wondering what was going to happen next and if the “real” Duke would really be found! This also led me to a previous book, ‘Twas the Night After Christmas. This was another really good book that kept be guessing and wondering pretty much the whole way through!

Sarah MacLean’s Love by Numbers trilogy was an amazing find! I’d never read any of her books before, but after getting started, I just couldn’t put them down. I’m always a sucker for a good historical romance and MacLean’s are just enough different from your average historical romance to make them interesting and hard to put down!

My Mom picked up one of the Forbidden Lord books and after reading it, I had to get the next one in the series! Once again, I’d forgotten how much I enjoy the characters and plot twists in Jeffries books!

Train Dreams was probably the worst book I’ve read in years if not ever. There was no plot, no story line, and the main character was impossible to connect with. I read it for our book group, otherwise I would have stopped after the first chapter.

Ties that Bind was an old Krentz book that I hadn’t read before, but saw on a discount on Amazon and decided to pick up. It was pretty good, but a typical Krentz book.

Forged in Fire was by a new author I hadn’t read before and was a pretty good read; good enough that I went ahead and pre-ordered the second book in the series!

Overall a good month of reading (Train Dreams excluded) and I look forward to seeing what I find for next month!!

Check out the other books I’ve read so far this year:

Labeling

Saturday James showed Reagan how to use the label maker and we may have created a monster!! A cute monster, but a monster obsessed with the label maker all the same!!

Time to label!!

Time to label!!

Reagan learned how to press the print button and operate the cutter on the side, and even though I had turned it off, she also figured out how to turn it back on and make her own labels!! Yeah, we’re definitely in trouble!

"Fixing" the machine!

“Fixing” the label maker after James unplugged it!!

Tomato planting

Saturday afternoon Reagan helped me plant tomatoes. I know it’s a little late to be planting, but spring didn’t work for us this year. Back then Reagan was not sleeping well at all (which means Momma was not sleeping either), it was beyond crazy and stressful at work, and we were gone on vacation for almost two weeks during prime planting season. So, I guess we’ll take what we can get and try to do better next year!

On our back patio area around the pool I have four huge planters that I normally fill with beautiful flowers over the summer. This summer I’ve been growing some really tall and depressing (and half-dead) weeds.

Depressing weed filled planters.

Depressing weed filled planters

While at Lowes earlier this week, picking out carpet for our back deck, I wandered into the plant section and found some mostly grown “patio” tomato plants. They looked pretty hearty and were made for planters, so I decided to go ahead and get four; one for each planter! Saturday afternoon Reagan helped Mommy plant them!

Lots of help from Reagan!!

Lots of help from Reagan!!

Reagan was a huge help and pretty cute, and in no time at all the depressing weed filled planters metamorphosed into pretty tomato filled planters!! Can’t wait for our first “crop” of fresh tomatoes! πŸ™‚

We now have tomatoes!!

We now have tomatoes!!

Nineteen month update

Little Miss Reagan Kay is nineteen months old!!

Nineteen months and loving the pool and being outside!

Nineteen months and loving the pool and being outside!

Here is some of what Reagan has been up to this month:

  • Climbing: Reagan has turned into quite the climber this month… Climbing her rocking horse, up onto her rocking chair and over it and onto her bed, onto Daddy’s chair, onto the kitchen chairs, and anywhere else she can manage!
Ok, I don't think anyone is watching!

Ok, I don’t think anyone is watching!

  • Snuggling: When Reagan slows down and is tired, she is a little snuggle bug. Otherwise she doesn’t have time!
  • Body parts: Reagan not only knows her body parts, but is now easily doing it for her body parts as well as Mommy & Daddy’s!
  • Books: Goodnight Gorilla and Goodnight iPad are still the favorites
  • Talking: Earlier this month while home with Daddy, Reagan strung four words together to say, “I want my mama.” Yep, blew us away as well!! Otherwise she just does a lot of repeating of what we say and a little bit of her own thoughts.
  • New Words: Mow! Mow! Mow! Ok, she’s said more than just mow this month, but she’s probably said mow more than any other word this month! When she says mow, she means anything that has to do with the tractor or the lawnmower and wagon, and wow does she love being on the tractor and pulled around on the wagon!
  • Bossy: Miss Reagan has turned into a bossy little thing and is quick to show Mommy and Daddy exactly what she wants them to do or where to go or where to sit!!
You can put my blackberries right there!

You can put my blackberries right there!

  • Helping: Reagan has turned into quite the little helper and is quick to help Mommy and especially Daddy do things. Reagan’s favorite thing is to help Daddy when he is using tools to do something! Girly loves her tools!!
  • Playing: Reagan is doing more independent playing and is adorable to watch as she “talks” to her toys while she is playing with them!
  • Outdoors:Β  Reagan LOVES being outdoors, but especially picking blackberries and doing anything that involves the tractor or riding in the wagon! She is addicted and will stand outside the door or look out the window and point outside saying, “mow” “mow”…. too cute!
  • Pool: Reagan is enjoying the pool and is especially interested in her duck and dolphin (which are actually used to dispense chlorine tablets). She likes playing with them in the pool and moving them around up and down and all over. She also really likes the pool PH test strips and will dip them in the water and then do her best Daddy imitation as she compares the colors on the strip to her duck an dolphin!
Fun in the pool!

Fun in the pool!

  • Attached: Reagan is still pretty attached to Mommy, but will quickly go to anyone who offers to take her outside or on the tractor!!
  • Getting into things: Reagan is into EVERYTHING. I know I’ve said this many months in a row, but really, she is into everything! She can now reach a lot more drawers and is quick to open and empty them!!
  • Nursing: Reagan is still a good little nurser and enjoys her momma milk in the morning, throughout the day if I’m home, and nurses to sleep (and throughout the night).
  • Solid Food: Reagan is hit and miss on eating a lot of solids every day, but still has a pretty wide range of foods she likes and will eat. She just isn’t always in the mood to eat solids; which is when I am especially thankful that she still nurses! Looking at her pictures, you can tell she definitely isn’t underfed! πŸ˜‰
  • Sleeping: Reagan has been sleeping better lately. Pretty much no wake ups in the middle of the night, but she does like to dream nurse on and off during the night.
  • Favorite things: Reagan’s favorite things include: being outside, riding in the wagon, riding on the big tractor, and eating blackberries.
  • Surprises: What has surprised us the most this month is how bossy little Miss Reagan is. She definitely likes directing Mommy and Daddy around and having us do what she wants us to do! For example she directed us to do the following the other day: Daddy, hold Mommy’s hand and dance with her. Now hold my hand and dance with me. Now all three of us hold hands and dance.

Reagan is an amazing little girl and it’s hard to believe another month has passed! We can’t wait to see what next month brings!

Happy Nineteen Months Baby Girl!

Happy Nineteen Months Baby Girl!

Last of the blackberries

Friday night we went outside to do our normal routine, but as we stopped at the berry bushes we noticed that it was a lot harder to find blackberries. Alas, it seems that our run on blackberries was just about to an end. πŸ™

Luckily we were still able to find some, which kept little Miss Reagan happy!

Reagan enjoying the last of the blackberries!

Reagan enjoying the last of the blackberries!

On the high side, while blackberry season is coming to a close, peach season is just gearing up!! Our peach tree, even though small, it’s loaded!!

Time for peaches!!

Time for peaches!!

After checking out the berries and peaches, we went back to the barn and Reagan decided she needed a ride on the big tractor with Daddy! She really does love driving/riding on the tractor!!

Time to drive Daddy's tractor!

Time to drive Daddy’s tractor!

Ok, let's go!!

Ok, let’s go!!

Riding on the tractor with Daddy!!

Riding on the tractor with Daddy!!

A hairy adventure…

After digging holes and eating blackberries outside, we came inside to get cleaned up and go into town. Before we left James went to show me something on the can of Urethane (Minwax Helmsman Spar Urethane – Clear Satin Finish) he was using on the back porch. As he picked the can up the piece of plastic the can had been resting on came off and landed right on the crown of Reagan’s head. Urethane and all. Yes, my baby girl had the top of her head covered in Urethane (a sticky nasty think gooey water resistant mess)!!

I freaked out and without thinking was going to go for water, but luckily James stopped me and handed me the thick gooey cleaner used to get the stuff off. It was nasty and gross and we had to smear it into Reagan’s hair and rub it all around while she was fighting us and trying to get her hands into it. I picked her up to block her hands, but then we realized we weren’t sure how to wash everything out of her hair. She’s too young to listen to “close your eyes” or “keep your eyes shut,” so our normal hair washing methods were out of the question because we couldn’t get this stuff in her eyes. I then thought of the kitchen sink!

James cleared off the counter by the kitchen sink, we put a towel down, and we then tried to lay Reagan down with her head hanging over the edge of the sink. This was a no-go and Reagan was flipping out trying to get up and out of there. In desperation, James told me to try nursing her. At that point I was willing to try anything, so while Reagan was laying on the counter I stood up and nursed her while James washed all the gunk out of her hair and then washed her hair with regular shampoo. As long as I was nursing her, Reagan was an angel, the picture of calm and relaxed as James got her hair cleaned out!!

Thankfully we were able to get everything out of Reagan’s hair, but it was definitely an interesting team effort!! All I could think about while James was washing her hair was how funny it would have looked if someone walked in on us! Ah, adventures in parenting! πŸ™‚

Daddy time

Thursday while at work I got the following email from James:

I don’t know about tomorrow [whether Reagan should go to the babysitter or not]. Reagan could help me mow; she might be in the way on the post holes, but it might also be a good experience for her to learn how to mix concrete. On the other hand, I get a lot more done when she’s not here, but she’s probably needing some daddy time.

Yeah, it made me smile. Especially the part about it being a “good experience” for Reagan (at almost 19 months) to learn how to mix concrete. Obviously Daddy knows how much his little girl is into tools, building stuff, and anything that has to do with outside!

Thursday afternoon when I got home, Reagan was already out on the tractor with Daddy. Yet, once I got there we went out to the berry bushes as a family so Daddy could dig the holes for the concrete. He is planning on securing the posts holding up the wire for the berry bushes to climb on.

James digging the new holes for the concrete and posts!

James digging the new holes for the concrete and posts!

Of course while we were out there we had to pick and eat some blackberries! Reagan definitely loves blackberries and was actually getting into picking them; normally she wants us to pick them for her!

Picking blackberries!

Picking blackberries!

Lots of fun times out in our yard!!

Summer walk

Wednesday evening it was a cool 70’s and beautiful outside, so Reagan and I took a walk in town to the playground. We don’t do this very often because I have to drive to the end of our half mile gravel driveway and then get the stroller out for our walk. The walk to the playground is pretty much a straight path from our driveway and Reagan seemed to enjoy the new sights and sounds. Yet, when we first got to the playground she was not sure at all that she even wanted to get out of her stroller!!

Definitely not sure about whether she wants to get out or not!

Definitely not sure about whether she wants to get out or not!

I eventually got her out of the stroller and onto the playground equipment, but she was pretty hesitant about everything and mostly wanted to watch what the other kids were doing.

Looking at what the other kids are doing!

Looking at what the other kids are doing!

Eventually Reagan warmed up and then was a little daredevil! She was all over the place and seemed to have little to no fear about climbing up and over things!! She definitely kept Mommy on her toes!!

Climbing around the playground!

Climbing around the playground!

Fun on the bridge

Tuesday evening all of us went outside on our nightly pick blackberries, go on a wagon ride, and swim in the pool routine! Yet, different from most nights, we ended up at the bridge.

Checking things out!

Checking things out!

Reagan enjoys looking over the edge of the bridge and checking out the creek running below!

Looking down at the water!

Looking down at the water!

Looking out over the creek from the bridge!

Looking out over the creek from the bridge!

Yet, what she likes even more is throwing rocks over the bridge and into the creek!

Time to thrown some rocks!

Time to thrown some rocks!

Throwing rocks could probably keep her busy for hours, but the rock she is throwing is expensive and we really don’t want the creek full of rock, so way before Reagan was ready, we had to get her interested in something else. So what did we do? Had Daddy show off his berry catching abilities! That always makes Reagan laugh and smile!!

Laughing at Daddy!

Laughing at Daddy!

We then moved to the pool part of the evening! I gave Reagan an old PhD test strip bottle with some used strips and this kept her pretty busy for a while.

Checking PH levels from the test strip container!

Checking PH levels from the test strip container!

Reagan then spent the rest of the evening moving her duck and dolphin up down and all over the place! There were a few times she was reaching out or up for one of them that I swore she was going to slip and go under, but she kept her balance and had a good time “playing” with her pool toys!

Get back up here duck!!

Get back up here duck!!

Time to get out of the water dolphin!

Time to get out of the water dolphin!

Moving duck out of the water

Moving duck out of the water