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Three Months of Tommy

This past week, Tommy turned three months old.

Tommy 3 Months | http://www.roseclearfield.com

We don’t have to go back to the doctor until the four month mark, so I don’t have an updated weight and length for Tommy. He’s been right at the 50th percentile for both weight and length, which most likely puts him at 15 pounds and 24 inches long right now.

Tommy remains a super chill baby and isn’t very fussy or picky. The only things he really doesn’t like are getting his nails clipped and getting out of the bath. He loves the bath but hates getting out of it. I’m not sure what changed with the baths this past month because he was doing okay at two months. I’m hoping it’s just a phase and he’ll get better with the transition again at some point.

Tommy 3 Months | http://www.roseclearfield.com

Tommy is giving us social smiles and talking every single day, and we can’t really get enough of either. Sometimes he’s just testing making different noises while other times he’s really trying to participate in a conversation. He’s figured out he’s controlling his hands and will make fists and study them when they’re right in front of his face. Tommy doesn’t quite do full on laughing yet but we get occasional baby chuckles, which is pretty great, too.

Tommy is improving his focus more and more every week. He looks at anyone who comes over to him – family, at church, at restaurants, etc. He’s also started to focus on other items, including small stuffed animals and books. He’ll grab his blanket, stuffed animals, and items hanging in his activity gym and bouncy chairs. He loves when we sit with him and read short books. While Tommy hates tummy time, he does well sitting on someone’s lap to work on his head skills. He can’t sit up independently yet but is getting closer every day.

Tommy at John's Wedding 9.22.17 | http://www.roseclearfield.com

The biggest event for Tommy this past month was my cousin’s wedding in Milwaukee in mid-September. We got to spend time with my parents and mom’s mom, all of whom have met Tommy before. He got to meet two of my cousins (I only have three cousins and he actually met the third one over the summer), both of my mom’s brothers, and quite a few other extended family members. The necktie outfit was a hand me down from friends. Tommy also wore it when Jake’s middle sister got remarried on Tommy’s one month birthday.

Tommy remains a champion sleeper, sleeping his longest stretches at night. A few weeks ago, he was still waking up once at night, usually around three or four in the morning. Now he’s consistently sleeping through the night from 10:30/11:00 p.m. (sometimes a little later) until 8:00/8:30 a.m. Depending on when he went to sleep and what we have going on in the morning, he’ll often sleep a couple more hours in the morning.

Tommy 9.21.17 | http://www.roseclearfield.com

Tommy is also a champion eater, which largely contributes to why he’s sleeping so well at night. He eats 3-4 ounces every 2-3 hours during the day and 4-5 ounces first thing in the morning.

Tommy is solidly into three month clothing now, wearing three month onesies, pants, shirts, and jackets. We’ve been gifted a few larger (9-12 months) hats, which already fit him. Of course, for the most part, it’s been too warm for hats (no complaints!), but he’s wearing the bigger hats (like the one in the pictures in this post) because the 0-3 month hats are already way too small. Tommy just transitioned from size 1 to size 2 diapers. He still keeps his feet uncovered as much as possible.

Tommy 3 Months | http://www.roseclearfield.com

The more Tommy is able to interact with us, the more we feel like we’re getting to know him. We’re so excited for all that the future holds with him.



July/August/September: What I Read

September 2017 Reads | http://www.roseclearfield.com

I’ve been having so much fun sharing my recent reads that I’m continuing the series. Not surprisingly, my reading has slowed down a little bit since we got Tommy. I’ve also worked my way through several long (10+ hour) audiobooks, which has lowered my total. But I’m still reading and am excited to share my reads from the past few months with you today.

Over the past three months, I’ve listened to:


  • Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen. I waited over half a year for this 18-hour audiobook from the library. I really wish I didn’t get it three days before Tommy was born. I pushed through it, though. I’m sure it’s not shocking that Bruce Springsteen is a decent writer. This remark may be incredibly obvious, but a lot of the book is very lyrical. It’s a long listen but worth it.


  • Open by Andre Agassi. Open is…humbling to say the least. If you know anything about Agassi’s story, I’m sure you can imagine that large chunks of Open are pretty tough to process. Honestly, I wasn’t sure I’d make it past the first few chapters, but I’m glad that I did.


  • The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman. The Ocean at the End of the Lane is so different from anything I normally read, which is a good thing. It was a great change of pace after reading two 18-hour autobiographies. I’m not burning to read a ton of Neil Gaiman, but I can definitely see his appeal. I’m sure I’ll read at least a couple more of his books at some point.



  • The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher. Raw. Honest. Funny. Carrie Fisher presents a candid, hilarious, touching perspective on the early Star Wars slice of her life. She strikes the perfect balance that you’re looking for in a celebrity memoir with just the right mix of personal background, behind the scenes peek into show business, and priceless famous people stories.


  • Grace, Not Perfection: Embracing Simplicty, Celebrating Joy by Emily Ley. Ley should include a disclaimer that she’s writing Grace, Not Perfection for new, Christian moms. The book is really not applicable to any other audience. For this audience, it’s a great resource. My biggest gripe with Grace, Not Perfection is that she mentions her planners about 10 too many times. The book just reads too much like an ad for the planner line. You can take her tips for achieving grace over perfection without purchasing her one of her planners.


  • Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain by Oliver Sacks. I read Musicophilia after reading Waking the Spirit, in which the author mentions it several times. The subject matter is fascinating. I learned a lot and enjoyed so many of the case studies. Musicophilia is medicine and psychology heavy. Even listening to the book, it took me a few times checking it out to get through the whole book.

Over the past three months, I’ve read:

  • Reached by Ally Condie. If you’ve been reading my book posts this year, you know that I’ve been working my way through Ally Condie’s Matched triology since the spring. I really enjoyed all three books. I still haven’t read the Divergent series (and probably won’t in the near future since I just finished this series), so I can’t compare it to that series. It’s not quite as good as The Hunger Games but is definitely worth a read. The premise is more like The Giver than The Hunger Games, which I like.


  • What to Say Next by Julie Buxbaum. What to Say Next is one of my favorite books of 2017. I absolutely loved Buxbaum’s Tell Me Three Things and didn’t anticipate liking What to Say Next more, but I did. Her writing style is fabulous with well-drawn, interesting characters and a plot that keeps you turning pages right until the end. I don’t understand why books like What to Say Next get labeled as YA just because they have high school aged main characters. It’s a much better book than so many best selling fiction books.

[Disclaimer: All book links are affiliate links. Thanks for your support!]

What have you been reading lately?

I’m always looking for new recommendations!

More reading posts:

My 2016 Reading List + Tips for Reading More Books | http://www.roseclearfield.com

My 2016 Reading List + Tips for Reading More Books

May 2017 Reads | http://www.roseclearfield.com

May: What I Read

June: What I Read | http://www.roseclearfield.com

June: What I Read


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Braces as an Adult: Month 7

Braces as an Adult: Month 7 | http://www.roseclearfield.com

This past Saturday marks seven months with braces. (Not that I’m counting it to the day or anything.) When I wrote my initial post after month 1, I said that I would put together a few more posts about this process. I’m not going to share monthly updates, details about exactly what I’m getting fixed, or lots of before/after photos. But I am putting together periodic updates, talking about what this process is really like as an adult.

In my initial post, I talk about why I need braces and what prompted me to get braces at this point in my life. Long story short, I’ve needed braces since HS. This spring I finally bit the bullet because I need a night guard and can’t imagine wearing one with the way my teeth fit together right now. I’m at a point in my life where time, budget, and general life circumstances (i.e. not planning to move in the foreseeable future) allow for braces, so I went for it.

I’ve been in a funk about this process.

About a month ago, I went for an adjustment. Now that we have Tommy, I’m scheduling my appointments on the one weekday afternoon Jake has off from work. The office the orthodontist has open that afternoon is about 45 minutes away. The closer office is 20 minutes away. It isn’t a big deal to drive further. However, instead of getting an adjustment, the orthodontist looked everything over and then told me I was making good progress and that they’d see how things were going in another six weeks.

So I drove an hour and a half roundtrip for what turned out to be a five minute checkup on the one weekday afternoon Jake has off from work. Yes, everything is going well, which is good, but it still felt like a huge waste of time.  I was also completely blindsided because I didn’t even realize that this could happen. Now I wouldn’t want to get someone else to watch Tommy during an appointment because I’d feel awful if this happened again.

I know it sounds like a stupid reason to be in a funk about the process. I’m just frustrated about scheduling future appointments. And I feel like I’m in the dark about what’s really happening right now because it’s been almost 12 weeks since anyone talked to me about my progress for more than a few minutes.

I’m due to go back next week, so hopefully I’ll get a real adjustment (never thought I’d say that) and a few more details about my progress. I also have an extra teeth cleaning scheduled at the end of this week, in between my regular six month checkups. It is completely optional. But I can’t wait because I never feel like my teeth are really clean with braces. Also, I can’t floss on my own, so having the hygenist do that for me will feel so good, too (again, I know it sounds pretty crazy, but I’m sure those of you who have had braces as adults get it). Plus, I’ll be able to vent to the hygenist about how much of a drag it is to have braces. She’s been much more sympathetic than anyone at the orthodonist.

I’m over having food stuck in my braces.

My other major frustration right now is that even though eating has gotten much better over the last few months (more about that in a minute), I’m over having food stuck in my braces. Everything gets stuck in braces, even (especially?) foods that you wouldn’t think would be very difficult to manage with braces. For example, rice is terrible with braces. I’ve always been paranoid about food stuck in my teeth because they aren’t very straight. I’m really ready for it to not be such an issue.

Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Muffins | http://www.roseclearfield.com

Eating has finally gotten much better.

On the plus side, I can finally say that eating has gotten almost normal. I definitely couldn’t say that at the four month mark and am so happy to have seen such a difference over the past three months. I’m still avoiding raw carrots and celery, cashews and other full-sized raw nuts (I do okay with small pieces in a salad or dessert), cereal, pretzels, granola, caramel corn, and anything sticky (i.e. caramel, hard candy, dried fruit).

This summer, I did eat corn on the cob a few times. I certainly wouldn’t eat it every night with braces, but a few times didn’t hurt anything. While I wouldn’t eat straight granola, I have eaten a few granola bars. Again, I wouldn’t eat them every day, but once a week or so hasn’t been hurting anything. I have started to eat regular butter popcorn again, which has been great. It does make a big mess in my teeth, but popcorn makes a big mess even without braces. Kettle chips and tortilla chips have been okay, too, in moderation. I braved biting straight into apples when we went apple picking last month. It was manageable but only for a short period of time. I still do better cutting up apples.

Otherwise, I’ve been able to eat what I would normally eat. I don’t have to cut up all my food into small pieces, and I’m not ripping up sandwiches and other finger food (as much fun as it was to do that in Europe).

The improvements have been significant already.

Despite the lack of information I’ve gotten from the orthodontic staff about my progress and what they expect to see over the coming months, I can still just see a huge amount of progress without anyone having to explain all of it to me. Nearly seven months after I had two top teeth pulled, my top teeth have spread out a lot, and it’s sloooowly starting to look like I don’t have gaps in my mouth. My front four teeth have straightened significantly. The two teeth that will now be on either side of them are gradually moving into place and straightening out. I’ve never had room for those two teeth, and they’ve always stuck out a lot. It was actually really uncomfortable when I first got braces because I didn’t have room for them anyway, much less with braces. They now have room and aren’t sticking out, even with braces.

Finally, one other positive is that the last time I had a real adjustment (not the last appointment where it turned out to just be a check), the hygenist offered to let me brush and floss my top teeth before she placed the new top wire. In five months, not one hygenist had made this offer. It was such a simple gesture , but it made such a difference. It also really helped me appreciate how much progress I’ve made. My teeth have always been very tight, which makes it difficult to floss. I couldn’t believe how much space I’d gained in just five months.

Writing updates about braces every three months or so has worked out pretty well. I’ll plan to post the next one sometime in mid-winter.

To those who are sticking with me, reading these lengthy updates about my experience with braces as an adult, thank you. If you have personal experience with braces as an adult, I’d love to hear about it in the comments.


First Month with Braces as an Adult | http://www.roseclearfield.com

My First Month With Braces as an Adult

Braces as an Adult: Month 4 | http://www.roseclearfield.com

Braces as an Adult: Month 4




Baby Favorites: 2.5 Months

Baby Favorites: 2.5 Months | http://www.roseclearfield.com

I know that I promised a baby favorites post within a week of my two month Tommy update. The post has now stretched into a 2.5 months favorite post. I’m sharing just a few of the items we’ve been loving over the past ten weeks or so with our little guy. Baby favorites posts have been so helpful for me to figure out what I needed. I hope this post will be helpful for others as well.

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For the Love of Fall

New England in the Fall via Photoz Hub | http://www.roseclearfield.com


You all know that I love summer. But as we move into the official fall season this week, I’m trying to stay on board and embrace the new season. For the first time, I have a general seasonal board on Pinterest with all things fall, For the Love of Fall. Throughout the season, I’ll be posting recipes, crafts, outfits, stunning scenery, and other general inspiration. I’m sharing just a small selection from the board here today.  Hop over to the board and follow along, so you don’t miss out on any of the autumn fun this season. (I still have my Fall Photography board from last year going strong as well!)

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