Simple Days

Simple Days

by Erica Lea


July Goals

I know, I know, it's a bit odd to be posting my July goals in the middle of July.

But I feel like July got off to a fast start with the long 4th of July weekend. Better late than never, eh?

So here are my goals for July:


I decided it was time to start exercising again. So I'm doing Lindsay Brin's Postnatal Boot Camp again. It's harder than I remembered...


This one is going to be hard to do. It's just a challenge to be ready for bed before 11.


I decided to plant some herbs. I think once-a-week-weeding sounds doable.


Haven't had to do this yet since it's been raining so much. Woot!


Otherwise it gets to be a jungle out there.


It's so important to get (safe) sun during the summer in Minnesota. Gotta store up vitamin D for the winter!


Summer is so short here. I want the kids to be able to enjoy swimming as much as possible.

So those are my July goals. Do you have any goals this month, or are you just chilling for the summer?


Five Months Update | James

5 months
5 months old.

21 Weeks
21 weeks. At the family cabin. He didn't like his hat.

5 months
5 months old.


  • * He's still in size 3 diapers, but I'm going to start putting him in a size 4 overnight - he'll leak right through his diaper and wake up early.
  • * He wears 6-9 month clothing.
  • * As you can see from the photos, he's sitting up independently! He started doing it about a week and a half before his 5-month birthday, so he was 4 months old. :) I was really surprised by how quickly he learned - he went from completely wobbly and couldn't stay up at all to fairly stable in a couple of days! 
  • * He's starting to make new noises - I know he has no clue what he's saying, but he did make a "mama" sound. :D
  • * He's into shaking anything that rattles. He can get pretty crazy sometimes!
  • * He HATES his carseat. 
  • * He takes 3 naps now, but they aren't very predictable. Sometimes he'll take one 2-hour nap and two 45-minute-1-hour naps, but sometimes he'll nap longer. He's sleeping about 10-11 hours at night. I wish he would sleep more!
  • * He pushes his chest up pretty high when he's on his tummy. I think it won't be long before he tries crawling. He's definitely mobile - when I leave him on his tummy he'll skooch around to get at stuff.

So there's James' 5 month update!


Four Months Update | James

June 6, 2016 (4 months)
4 months old

May 13, 2016
May 13, 2016 (14 weeks old)

May 21, 2016 (15 weeks)
May 21, 2016 (15 weeks old)

May 23, 2016
May 23, 2016

May 30, 2016 (16 weeks)
May 30, 2016 (16 weeks)

June 4, 2016 (17 weeks)
June 4th, 2016 (17 weeks old)

June 4, 2016 (17 weeks)
June 4th, 2016 (17 weeks old)

June 4, 2016 (17 weeks)
I just love this guy so much!

  • * He continues to be an easy-going little boy. So patient. 
  • * He weighed 16 pounds when he turned 4 months old!
  • * He wears size 3 diapers.
  • * He rolled over (back to tummy) a few times! 
  • * He LOVES to sit up. If I put him in his bouncy chair, he tries to sit up. I'm hoping he'll be able to sit unassisted soon.
  • * He's much more coordinated with grabbing things now. He would get so frustrated when he reached for something and couldn't get it.
  • * He really likes Helen. She can make him laugh like no one else! See THIS video.
  • * We successfully transitioned James out of his swaddle! He's been totally swaddle free for a few weeks now. I'm using this organic wearable blanket to keep him warm at night.
  • * I *think* James is down to 3 naps a day now. He has two shorter naps and one 3-hour nap. He can usually stay awake for 2 hours between naps. And he's sleeping for about 10-12 hours at night (with a few wake-ups for feedings).

So there's James' 4 month update!

NOTE: Some links are affiliate. All opinions are my own.


Dandelion Crown

Dandelion Crown
Dandelion Crown
Dandelion Crown
Dandelion Crown
Dandelion Crown

Helen is obsessed with dandelions. 

One Sunday she picked a bunch of them and pleaded with me to make her a dandelion crown. I agreed, even though it almost made us late for church, and it stained my khaki pants. 

But it was worth it to make her happy. 


Three Months Update | James

Reading to James
Helen reading to James. They both really enjoyed it.

James 4-8-16
9 weeks old.

James 4-21-16

James will be content in the bumbo for a little while. It buys me a few extra minutes so I can fix myself some food or snap a few pictures.

James 4-29-16

12 weeks old.

James 5-5-16
3 months old.

James 5-5-16


  • * He's been wearing size 2 diapers most of this month, and he CAN fit size 3 already!
  • * He weighs 15.5 pounds.
  • * He's been able to roll over (tummy to back) for a few weeks now.
  • * He's been trying desperately to figure out grasping objects the past few days. He gets so frustrated because he's not too coordinated yet.
  • * He can lift his chest up when he's on his tummy pretty well. He hates his tummy time a lot less now that he can pick up his head better.
  • * He seems to like Helen - he started to almost laugh when she did one time. And he'll smile at her.
  • * We're still swaddling him for sleeping, but we're going to transition him out of it...soonish? We've started a couple of times, but he just doesn't want to sleep well without being swaddled. We were going to stick to our guns and train him to sleep without it this past weekend, but then I got sick so we decided my sleep was more important. If you have any tips for transitioning out of a swaddle, leave them in the comments, please!
  • * He's getting into more of a routine with sleeping. He usually takes 4 naps a day: around 8:30 or 9:00 in the morning, 11:00 or 12:00 in the afternoon, 4:30 or 5:00 in the evening, and then 7:00. His first or second nap is usually 3 hours long. Oh yes. It's glorious. His other naps are about 45 minutes to an hour. He goes to bed between 9:00 and 10:00 at night. He wakes about 2 times at night to feed, usually at 1:45 and 4:45. 
  • * He's still such a calm baby for the most part. He cries most when he's tired. 

And there's James' 3 month update!


Out For a Walk

Out For a Walk
Last Wednesday (April 27) we decided to take the kids out for a stroller ride in the woods. As you can see, we don't have a double stroller, so Helen just sits on the front. It works.

Out For a Walk
I didn't tell Reuben, but my main reason for wanting to go on a walk was to photograph the beautiful hepaticas.

Out For a Walk
I'm so glad that spring is finally here in northern Minnesota. Now I can take the kids outside without worrying they'll catch their death of cold. ;)

What are the first flowers of spring where you live?


Two Months Update | James

Getting some sun!

looking up at dad
Looking up at Dad.

5 weeks old
5 weeks old!

5 weeks, almost 6 weeks old
A quizzical expression. Almost 6 weeks old. 

tummy time on the boppy
Tummy time on the Boppy!

8 weeks old
8 weeks old.

8 weeks old - smiling!
Smiling for Mom.

I had heard about a mythical thing known as an "Easy Baby" -- I thought it was something I would never have. I was wrong.

James is such a sweet boy. He really doesn't cry much. Helen still cries more than he does.  

Lately he's been all smiles. And he's been cooing so much lately. I love talking to him and getting him to respond.

He doesn't really like his tummy time. I keep trying, but he's only content for a few minutes before he starts fussing. 

He's been kicking his legs a ton the past few days. And I'm pretty sure he's been trying to bat at objects.

He takes 3-4 naps a day, one long (3+ hour!) nap, plus a few more 45 minute to 1 hour ones. His nighttime sleep is kind of hit or miss. Sometimes he'll sleep peacefully, but sometimes he's so squirmy! It drives me nuts. But I'm feeling so much stronger and less like a zombie now. He'll sleep 8+ hours total, but he wakes 2-4 times to eat.

He weighed 12 pounds 4 ounces at his 6-week checkup, and we weighed him on April 7th and he was 14 pounds! 

I think this little boy is going to have light hair and blue eyes. 

He still doesn't spit up very much, which is such a blessing!

My cousin threw a baby shower for James on April 1. We got so many cute things and it was so much fun to see everyone.

So there's James' 2-month update!

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