Baby. Breastfeeding. Bottles.

Last week our littlest turned 7 months. 7 months has never gone faster. I swear that time goes faster with each child! This is my first baby that has had mostly breast milk for this long and that feels pretty good. He has only had formula twice when I felt like I just couldn’t keep up with his appetite.

While breast feeding has been the easiest with him of our 3 children, it didn’t come without struggle and we had to supplement with pumped milk for the first few weeks. I’d nurse him on one side and use a silicone pump (like this https://amzn.to/2jJjfSw ) on the opposite side and then have a bottle ready to transfer it to for supplementing.

At this point I’m just not responding to the pump as much as I did when I first went back to work. I’ve tried power pumping, tried using heat, massage while pumping, changed all my pump parts, drinking 100oz of water a day, drinking body armor. I don’t know what else to try.

I have a few bags of milk in the freezer and I pump about 5oz in 2 pump sessions when I’m at work, which is only one of the bottles he drinks while I’m away. We love Playtex Ventaire bottles, you can get them here https://amzn.to/2SeKm4s . We might get through this week without supplementing with formula, but supplementing with formula is coming soon. I’m trying to be alright with that, formula is a wonderful thing that keeps babies fed ♡. My goal was only breast milk until 1 year, I’m trying to be gentle on myself and telling myself that I have done the best I can. I hope to nurse him when we are together, just like I do now until he is a year old.

Tell me, did/do you breast feed, combination feed, formula feed?

xoxo Amanda Jo

Tropical Storm/Hurricane Barry

J was scheduled to work this weekend. Then tropical storm/hurricane Barry decided to come. His job told him to pack enough for the weekend, he will be at work until Monday. We are missing him like crazy and the kids don’t understand any of it. We are ALL stressed.

Camper living and tropical systems don’t go too well together, so last night all 3 kids and I slept in my old bedroom at my mom & dads ♡ M mentioned that it was the best sleepover ever! We are spending one more night in the house since the weather could get rough tonight too. Better to be safe than sorry!

Today M & C played with a cousin for HOURS outside in the mud! R even got a little muddy (from a kiss from M). They played so hard that at 5:30 this evening M was asking if he could go to bed. 

I got so many hurricane snacks at the store, we haven’t NEEDED them, but they sure are yummy!

What is your favorite hurricane snack? Who did you hunker down with?

xoxo Amanda Jo

Rain Rain Go Away

Today started off very WET! We needed rain, just not this much at one time.

I am so thankful for my mom every day, but today she was a hero for me!

Rain was pouring down! There was no way I’d get the kids to their house without them getting drenched. I didn’t call her for help, just to make sure she was awake. Next thing I know she is at the camper door with a rain coat and umbrella. She took the kids one at a time to the house while I finished getting ready for work. Then she brought me her shrimp boots so my feet wouldn’t get soaked!

In the 15 minutes it took me to finish getting ready, the rain stopped and I was able to quickly get to the house and tell the kids bye (multiple hugs and tight tights required from the big boys). In the 7 minute drive to work the sky opened again. Thankful for my inverted umbrella for keeping me dry from my vehicle to the door at work!

You can get one here https://amzn.to/2LSucwq

Anyone else worried about the tropical weather coming this weekend? My biggest concern is the river levels that are predicted to be at an all time high at the Carrollton Gauge. With the river having been so high for so long the increased level of the river has me more worried about it than normal.

So tell me: How did you make it through the rain this morning? Are you concerned about the tropical weather/river level?

xoxo Amanda Jo

Extended Holiday Weekend

I hope everyone had a wonderful 4th of July! We spent most of the day doing a few fire works, grilling, and swimming. We had a good day until GPaw passed out and was taken by ambulance to the hospital. Turned out that he had pneumonia and was dehydrated. He came home on Sunday ♡ The grown ups were all pretty scared. M & C were brave and held Gpaws hands and helped show the medics where he was.

J was off this weekend from his regular job, but Friday and Sunday he spent some time working around the house and doing his side hustle (inflatable rentals). You can follow our inflatable business page here https://www.facebook.com/JohnsJumpersLLC

Saturday was a family day. We spent some quality time together, we needed it with the way he has been working and the chaos of getting the house ready and us moving into the camper. We went to check out the alligators at the diversion first.

Then to Sam’s Club for a new TV for the camper, diapers, paper plates & bowls, dog food, and a few other things. We also had lunch at Sam’s. What do you like to get from Sam’s Club? After shopping we stopped at the new Sweet Rolls location in Destrehan, it was delicious and the kids loved watching them make it!

Then it was back to the diversion to feed the alligators some bread and pizza crust. M & C loved tossing food to the gators! We counted around 50!

Finally we made it back home (to the camper) and after dinner we went for a swim. I think we all needed that quality time together!

Quick house update: The contract we had on our house got cancelled, but it’s now on the market! Fingers crossed we get another offer soon! You can see the listing here https://www.gardnerrealtors.com/property/385341022/452-BARBER-Road-Paradis-LA-70080

Tell me, how was your holiday weekend?

Xoxo Amanda Jo

The First Week

We have been living in our camper for a week now.
So far we have done a lot of reorganizing and adjusting to having such a small space. The big boys M & C have been pretty good with the adjustment so far. R is struggling with night time sleep though. He has only slept all night once. The first night we got a total of 3 hours of sleep.


Here is what our evenings look like:
5pm-ish we eat dinner and then the littles play
7pm-ish- R is nursed and then patted/rocked to sleep. While I do this M & C have tablet time or watch a movie
8pm- bed time for M & C. We put on pjs, potty, brush teeth, and get tucked in. Once tucked in I tell a story (I used to read books, but now they want me to tell them about adventures that feature them!) Following the story I sing a few songs (the only people I sing for are my littles, I promise you don’t want to hear that) and then wait until they settle down and leave the bunk house.
9pm-ish: I do some quiet tidying up, shower, make bottles, and write. 11pm-ish: I try to go to bed if Reid isn’t awake

Camper living means limited cooking space. So I’ll be using the crock pot a lot! I LOVE my Hamilton Beach programmable one!

You can find it here https://amzn.to/2LB7pVV


I don’t know about you, but I don’t particularly enjoy washing dishes – in comes crock pot liners! You just place the bag in the crock pot, put your food in & cook like normal! So easy!

You can get some here https://amzn.to/2FLkrfO.


A few nights ago we had ravioli, peas, carrots, and garlic knots.
The carrots were left over from a few days ago. The peas were from a can and I added some salt, pepper, & butter. The garlic knots were the marketside ones in an oven bag from Walmart (they are my FAVORITE).
And the ravioli was cooked in the crock pot.

This recipie is so yummy! It satisfied adults and the kids!
Here’s what you’ll need.

1lb ground beef
2 bags frozen cheese ravioli
1 can crushed tomatoes (28oz)
1 can tomato paste (6oz)
1/2 cup water
3 cloves garlic (crushed or pressed)
1/2 of an onion (diced)
1tsp oregano
1tsp thyme
1tsp basil
2 tbsp brown sugar (to cut the acidity)
Salt & pepper to taste

1- Brown the beef and drain
2- Saute the onion & garlic in the pot you used to cook the beef.
3- Add the cooked beef, crushed tomato, tomato paste, water, oregano, thyme, basil, brown sugar, salt, & pepper to the onion & garlic & stir
4- Put both bags of ravioli in the crock pot and pour your sauce mixture over it. 5- Stir to combine and cook on high for 3 hours or low for 5 hours.
With sides there was enough for 7 adults & 2 kids to eat

😊

Let me know if you try this recipe!

xoxo, Amanda Jo

Backstory

Before I can begin with the current adventures, I need to explain how we got to this point.

A few months ago, a childhood friend said he was selling his house when he was done with renovations. We went look at it, it is perfect for us! So, we made an offer and signed a contract. Usually the home buying process takes 30-60 days, but we aren’t set to buy it until November. Which is great because we needed to sell our current home first. We started de-cluttering and packing what we don’t use regularly. Moved the camper, boat, and 4 wheelers to my parents house. Got the house and yard all cleaned up, ready to market the house. The process of getting our home ready took 2 months! Phew! The first person who looked at it made an offer, which we accepted. Now our home is ‘under contract’ and we are waiting on inspections next week! I was not anticipating it happening that fast.

Since the house is in a ready to be shown state we didn’t want to have the kids there constantly dragging things out and making messes for us to continually clean up *hello stress*, so we brought our necessities and started living in the camper in my parent’s back yard! J has been working so he has been sleeping at the house still so he can get some rest without the disruptions of the kids.
The first night was a little rough and the big boys, M & C, woke up the baby, R, 5 minutes after he fell asleep. R has only slept through the night once since we started camper living. M & C are getting the hang of our new normal.

If everything goes at planned we will continue to live in the camper until the new house is ready for us in November. That means 5.5 months of camper living for 2 adults & 3 kids. There is a bet at work on if I will make it to November with my sanity!

I’m in the process of making a list of items to buy for the camper to make life a little easier while it is our home. I hope you follow along on our adventure!

xoxo Amanda Jo

This photo is 6 months old – I need a new photo of the 5 of us!

The Start of Something Good

Hey Readers!

Welcome to my new blog!

I’ve started a blog many times, but nothing ever came of it. So many ideas gone to waste because I didn’t have the motivation to keep going. I’ve also never been this enthused about starting a blog.

I used to think my life was boring or plain. Nothing interesting that people would want to read about. Lately our family’s life has gotten pretty interesting and I’d like to document it and share it in hopes of making connections and sharing our successes and failures. I’m so excited to share our adventures with YOU!

xoxo Amanda Jo