Our January So Far!

Good morning everyone!! I hope your year is off to a great start. Can you believe we are already nearing the end of January? It’s been a pretty eventful one for us, in both great and other not-so-great ways 🥴. I’m going to share it all today!

Zipping all the way back to December 28th, I picked up a shift at work and was greeted by this beautiful sunrise heading out the door. Usually I leave in the pitch black, but my shift started later this day. It was a nice start to the morning. I also got this picture below while Quinn was at daycare 🥰.

That afternoon, we FaceTimed with my siblings, niece and nephews. It was fun to see everyone. Andrea is coming in from Colorado at the end of the month, so we’re excited for that! She hasn’t seen Quinn since July!

We jumped on the call fresh off a walk outdoors, hence the wintry getup, hah!

December 29th was a very special day. We celebrated Christmas with my Dad-in-law’s side of the family in the evening. It was a reminder of how wonderful it is to live so close- it was tough to get all our schedules to match, but when you live in such close proximity, you can even celebrate Christmas a week later on a week night!

One tradition DJ did growing up, and I would love to continue with Quinn, was having a birthday cake for Jesus on Christmas. How adorable is this?!

I had a moment of total nostalgia. We had Moose with us, and I had a flashback to last year’s Christmas when I was sitting by the fire with Moose when we he was just a puppy and I was still pregnant. Now there he was, a full grown dog, lounging in the same spot, and Quinn is now here with us too. Wild how things change in a single year!

Quinn got after the gifts! She loved trying to eat everything per usual. In her mind the whole world is edible. Bow? Yum. Tissue paper? An appetizer. Cardboard? Main entree, fiber.

She was spoiled by her Sissy, Poppy, Aunts and Uncle! We had a blast the next day diving into the gifts. How adorable is this little turtle ball pit 😍.

That afternoon of December 30th, I decided to try the stroller again for a walk. With Moose, I don’t feel comfortable putting her in the carrier while walking him since he tugs on the leash when dogs pass. She enjoyed the stroller much more without the car seat. She just happily took in the views and crisp air while clutching her best friend, Violet.

New Years Eve, I was in the mood for a festive brunch. I decided to make a “beermosa” with non-alcoholic malt beer from Two Roots. This is fantastic non-alcoholic beer and award winning for a reason. Mixed with the orange juice it was a great combo. For brunch I made veggie egg scramble with a slice of Dave’s bread topped with Crofter’s berry jam.

It was a fun, chill day at home since DJ had the day off too! In the evening, Quinn got to experience her first fine dining experience.

We were going to a restaurant called Ken Stewart’s Lodge, so it seemed appropriate to put her in this outfit 😊.

And we’re off!

She started off in the high chair but didn’t last very long before we started passing her around. This social butterfly was ready to socialize.

For my main, I got scallops over butternut squash risotto (containing butter) which were divine. At that time I was adding back dairy into my diet in small amounts since Quinn had done well with yogurt and cheese. I had a little creamed spinach too. Unfortunately the next week, all her symptoms of cows milk intolerance returned, so I’m going to wait until she’s closer to a year to try again.

Quinnie girl got her own side of mushrooms, but was not super interested. She way preferred a couple bites of my risotto.

Here she’s reaching for the dessert menu. Girl knows what’s good!

Overall, she did well! It was a longer (albeit delicious & wonderful) meal. We were there from probably 530 to about 730, and she usually goes to bed no later than 7- but she was ready to push back the time on NYE! I probably should have brought more distractions though. At one point we used her shoes as a toy/teether- I mean they never actually touched the floor so they were probably fine?! 😅 It was so good to see our family and chat about everyone’s plans for the coming year.

January 2nd, DJ had the day off again! We had been wanting to take Moose to PetSmart to do his Christmas shopping, just never found the time until then.

Yes, we were bad parents without getting him anything to open on the holiday, but to make it up to him we thought it’d be fun to take him to the store and let him choose his own gifts/treats! If he really seemed excited about something we loaded it up.

The nice thing was pretty much everything he wanted was on sale after the holidays. Thanks for being a cheap date, Moose 😄.

Moose also so sweetly sniffed out some holiday cookies to take to his friends at Aunt Marie’s. Thoughtful guy, that one.

After getting Moose’s goodies, we took Quinn over to admire the birds and fish. I had her outward facing in the carrier, and she just loved taking it all in! This would be a fun rainy day activity for us to do in general.

That afternoon, we snuck in a family walk between the rain storms.

We started Quinn in the stroller, but she was over it halfway through and wound up in the carrier. We laughed because DJ was left pushing Violet in the stroller and no baby. Quite the look there, Deej!

That evening held another cherished memory ❤️. We went to Gigi and Gordie’s for Christmas!

They even had a stocking made for Quinn 💕.

We had fun opening gifts with Quinn (again trying to keep her from eating all the wrapping paper). She was sooo spoiled by all her grandparents!

We had Gigi’s chili for dinner too- my favorite!! She puts the big chunks of tomatoes in her chili, and I could eat it on repeat for days 😋.

Also I had to share how many EmergenC packs we were gifted for Christmas- clearly everyone knows we need them 😂.

January 4th was a tough one! I was using my back cam in the rain while backing into a gas station spot and didn’t see a pole since it was blurred in the cam 😭. I took out my back bumper and a taillight. Thankfully Quinn was not in the car (I was on my way to daycare when it happened). It’s all sorted now, and thank goodness for auto insurance, but was such a hassle, and I was just so mad at myself!

But this girl can turn any week around! On January 6, it was flannel day at daycare so I put her in this sweet outfit 🥰.

That day I started feeling under the weather, and it got worse as the day went on. I was so nauseated by noon/had no appetite, and I couldn’t eat anything the rest of the day. That is highly unusual for me. By the evening I felt so weak and tired that all I could think about was getting into bed. Overnight, it hit DJ too. It was very clear by the next day we had the stomach flu. It was the single hardest day in parenting we had faced yet. We were so weak and sick, we set our alarms every hour to alternate caring for Quinn. Gigi graciously stopped by to relieve us for a bit too in the afternoon. We survived the day, and thankfully Quinn didn’t seem to get it as bad as we did (she did throw up once but seemed her normal, happy self most of the week). We turned the corner Sunday and started getting an appetite back. We loaded up all the bland food items.

We even had enough energy to set up an obstacle course for Quinn that afternoon. She had so much fun with this!

My milk supply plummeted after the bug, but two weeks later thankfully it has come back to baseline. I basically just had to eat a LOT and drink a lot of water to get it back.

Monday January 9th Gigi sweetly watched Quinn while I zipped to drop off my beat-up car and pick up a rental.

January 10th, Quinn and I played in her playpen after breakfast.

I then got Quinn ready for the day and realized we unintentionally were matching, hah!

I finally got Quinn’s eight month photo just a little late!

January 12th I had off work. Quinn and I had a blast just hanging out together all day and cooking.. I made a vegan shepherds pie from scratch. DJ and I didn’t love it- I should have known it wasn’t our cup of tea looking at the ingredients. But Quinn, now that girl loved it!

That week we decided to give the full on baby led weaning a go again! It’s been much less stressful this time around (also she has 7 teeth!). Quinn has been enjoying it, and meals tend to last longer since she really has fun munching on her foods. So far, we have done egg, avocado strips, tomato wedges, zucchini spears, sweet potato wedges, sardines, whole asparagus, broccoli florets and pineapple BLW style! We still give oatmeal for breakfast and purées to make sure she’s getting her iron, but it’s been an exciting and fun endeavor!

January 13th, my birthday, I decided to start the day with a different type of breakfast! I gave the shepherd’s pie a second chance and put an egg over it. It transformed the flavor, and I had this on repeat for several days after!

I went for a massage that morning and returned home to a sweet edible arrangement from DJ. It was so thoughtful of him to get this. I couldn’t really do cake this year with the dairy/soy allergy, but this was a very sweet alternative ❤️.

Rachel stopped by and brought me food from Town Hall in Cleveland knowing I would be able to order something from there! Again, so thoughtful 🥹. I had their beyond delicious Brussels sprouts and spicy salmon roll. There is so much on their menu I want to try!

It was so much fun chatting away with Rach! When she headed out, I opened my gifts from DJ- I have to share this one with you all because it’s one of my most treasured gifts I’ve ever received.

Best gift ever 😭.

That weekend was a much needed chill yet productive weekend. We got so much done and spent quality time together as a family. Moose loved the relaxing weekend too. I thought it was so sweet he took a nap on her baby blanket 🥹.

While Quinn insists I’m physically in the playpen with her 90% of the time, sometimes when I run over to do dishes or get my cup of coffee real quick, I’ll return to her making the silliest faces through the mesh 😄.

On January 15th, Gigi and Gordie offered to stop by to watch Quinn while DJ and I celebrated my bday out! We decided to go back to Michael Angelo’s. I had a giftcard, and I wanted DJ to experience their yummy food!

It always feels so weird when we get into the car without Quinn or Moose. We realized we hadn’t had a date since October! Crazy how time flies. We decided we want to be more intentional on finding time for dates out this year.

We shared a flight of wine to sample some different ones. Our favorites were the 2021 Rose and Wildflour Cabernet.

For my main, I got vegan rigatoni. It was fine, but when I brought home leftovers I was able to doctor it up with my own vegan cheeses and butter to take it to another level 😋.

I also gobbled up their asparagus salad which I had last time and loved!

DJ enjoyed their carbonara!

Car selfies always and forever.

We stopped by our land after to see it in the winter! So fun to dream about the future.

And I’ll wrap up here for now considering this is plenty long enough!

Thanks for reading :).

Questions for you:

– What’s everyone reading right now?

– Highlight of your January so far?

<3,

Mackenzie

13 thoughts on “Our January So Far!

  1. Best post! So many adorable photos of Quinnie! 8 months old and she is so sweet, pretty, happy and eager! She’s perfect! The holidays- wow- best ever! (Except so sorry you and DJ) got so sick!
    Books- Just finished “The Marriage Portrait” by Maggie O’Farrell and was very impressed with it. Great in all ways. What writing! It’s a new book by her. (Her blockbuster book was “Hamnet”- reading that soon.) Last year, my favorite book was “Life in Chemistry”. Everyone loves this book and so did I. (GiGi has it if you haven’t read it yet.) love to you and your little family!

    1. Aw thank you, Jena!! Thank you tons for sharing what you’re reading! I value your literary opinion lots, so definitely adding these to the list 🙂 happy Friday!

  2. Great photos. Quinn is adorable! You had a birthday! Happy Happy Birthday! 🎂🍦
    One time, I was backing our car out of the garage and I misjudged the distance between the mirror on the passenger side of the vehicle and the wall of the garage. I ripped the mirror right off the car. It was horrible. I felt so bad. These things happen Mackenzie. 🤨🙄
    I’m reading a cozy mystery, a White House Chef Mystery.

    1. Thank you, Kathy ☺️.

      Aw not that I wish that happen to you, but does help to know I’m not the only one! Thanks for sharing with me.

      A cozy mystery is hard to beat! Thanks for stopping in, friend ! Have a great weekend!

  3. Happy 2023!! What a nice update about your holidays. Quinn looks like such a happy baby, and I’m excited she had a great first Christmas and New Year. The book about how much Quinn loves you is so sweet, and your land looks *dreamy* in the winter! And as always, you’re such a trooper for continuing to avoid and soy.
    As for books, I recently wrapped up “Heart: A History” by Sandeep Jauhar and absolutely loved it. It is essentially the professional memoir of a cardiologist, so there’s a bit of a personal development storyline, but it weaves in a lot of history about the heart and our medical advances in cardiology. It is one of the books I’ve most enjoyed recently. I just started “Beloved” by Toni Morrison–quite a mood change, but I’m liking it so far!

    1. Happy 2023 to you too, friend! I’m glad I’m actually messaging back while it’s still January and that’s still relevant to say lol!! Thank you for your sweet words 🥰.

      Oh this book sounds soo up my alley. We may have already discussed this but have you read When Breath Becomes Air? I think you’d enjoy it- but it is very heavy as a warning.

      I have never read her books but know they’re really popular! Going to look into it!

      Thanks for stopping in 🙂 hope you are doing really well!!

      1. I loved When Breath Becomes Air–you completely understand my style in books! A good memoir really gets me, especially when it uses the author’s life story as a narrative arc for a lot of other good tidbits (like medicine in Heart: A History or general life purpose, like I read WBBA to convey). When Break Becomes Air did make me cry, but I almost think that made it better–it upped my investment at least!

        Happy weekend!

  4. Quinn is perpetually happy and what a wardrobe this young miss has! January’s weather is likely the same as yours – great for getting walks in (around the raindrops anyway). I told myself I have to push away from the computer more and go back to reading. I used to be an avid reader but between my walking regimen and blogging it is now non-existent. So I went on “Goodreads” to hold myself accountable – I pledged to read 25 books this year. I’ve read “Dreamland” by Nicholas Sparks and now am reading an older book called “A Walk in the Woods” by Bill Bryson. Whether I make he 25 books is anyone’s guess, but it will be fun trying.

    1. We are so lucky on the clothes front to have so many stylish people in the family who have gifted her most of these outfits!!! 🤩I can’t take much credit!

      Oh I am so in the same place as you with reading! I’ve tried to be better and put on my daily “to do” list a certain number of feasible pages to read. I love “checking it off”, but also really end up enjoying the reading time and often go over what I set for myself. I have got to set up a good reads account! I know people love using it! Thanks for sharing those titles- happy happy reading ☺️ and happy Friday too!

      1. Well Quinn is a cutie pie to begin with and the bows and cute socks and outfits just enhance her looks.

        I have to be more disciplined as to reading. I follow Dr. Sanjay Gupta on Twitter and at the end of last year he mentioned shutting off the computer one full hour before bedtime instead of the recommended 30 minutes. So I thought I’d try that and read … it is an idea better on paper however! Signing up for Goodreads I thought would make me accountable!

  5. I am so sorry that you all were hit so horribly with the flu, but I’m very grateful you were able to recover quickly, enjoy a date night, and soak up all of this time with Quinn! Her smile is so beautiful! I cannot believe she has so many teeth. She sounds like she’s doing fantastic with food! I certainly hope you all stay well and have a stellar end to this first month of the year. It’s already flying!

    1. Thank you, Kori!!! I’m so glad you all recovered from your bug too. Let’s all leave the crazy sickness in 2022 😅. It really is flying, going to be another fun one with our girls 🥰.

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