Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Recent Etsy Purchases...

After seeing this post on Leslie's blog (one of my very faves!), I'm taking a page out of her book and sharing some of my most recent Etsy finds.  Like Leslie, I love being able to support small businesses and to score unique, handmade items.  These are just a few of the things I've found recently.

Brown Leather Cuff with Stitching by Farmgirlpaints

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(Becky's shop is closed until September 3rd, but you can bet your Manolos that I'll be the first one to click over once it re-opens.  Her bracelets are so gorgeous and creative!)

Fabric Flower Headbands by SecretBlossom

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(I get a lot of compliments on Grace's headbands.  I really, really love this and will definitely be ordering more as she gets older.)
Baby Book by TheSweetRhino

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Monthly Onesie Stickers by LucyDarlingShop

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Return Address Stamp by HolmesStamp

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(I'm having trouble finding this particular shop, but there are dozens of different address stamp shops on Etsy.  We love ours - it makes addressing envelopes feel so fancy!)

Alright, now spill!  I want to know about your favorite Etsy purchases!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

That time I made my mother want to crawl under a rock...

It was the third grade. 

I was a funny little kid with a quirky sense of fashion and a penchant for wearing my bangs in a mini-ponytail at the very top of my head, Pebbles style.

It was Parents Night at my elementary school, and my mom had left work early so that she could make it, excited to see the "surprise" I told her about the day before.

"I worked on it all day," I told her.  "I can't wait for you to see it!"

As she walked into my favorite teacher's classroom, she headed over to the wall where I told her it would be. 

The heading at the top of several dozen construction paper creations read, "When I Grow Up."

"Look for my name," I had explained.  "You'll know it's mine when you see the girl with glasses."

After a few minutes, she spotted my self-portrait.

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I mean, hello.  That's obviously me.  I was always walking around in a purple lab coat and black witch boots with a keyboard and computer monitor floating above my head.

I often wonder what her first thought must have been when she saw my picture.  Did she think that maybe my dream was to be a doctor?  Or even a lawyer (with terrible fashion sense)?  How prophetic would that have been?

After reading the description next to the picture, I bet she wished I had wanted to be a lawyer.

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Let's take a closer look at that flawless cursive.

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"When I grow up I want to be a romance novelist or a writer would be fine.  Just getting to write about faraway places where no one's ever been before and flying horses with horns on their heads just makes me exited [sic].  I plan on getting my books that I've already written published.  My family and [sic] thinks I'm a great writer.  Most of my books are about 'me.'  They mostly start in second grade.  It's really neat too.  I hope I'm a big success."

I wanted to be a romance novelist.

Now, to be fair, the "romance novels" that I had written (starting in the second grade, apparently) consisted of me explaining why my boyfriend was too immature (apparently his "roses are red" poems weren't quite up to par) and why I was keeping my options open.  The title of my last book (which, unfortunately, I never finished... the fame must have been too overwhelming) was called "The Three Other Boys." 

Players gonna play, y'all.

I feel sure my mom was mortified.  Standing there in a crowd of parents whose children probably wanted to be teachers and firemen and racecar drivers, while I wanted to follow in the footsteps of Nora Roberts.

But she couldn't help but love this part.

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"I hope I'm a big success."

Apparently I didn't lack for ambition...

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Reasons I'm happy...

Life is good, y'all.  Here are, in list form, a few things keeping me smiling lately.

1. Project Life.

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Before Grace was born, I decided that I wanted to try and keep up with pictures of her, but I knew that I couldn't commit to a full-fledged scrapbook.  So I bought the Project Life:  Amber Edition core kit, a big variety pack of photo pocket pages, and a 12 X 12 album and vowed to keep up with it once Grace was born.  That obviously didn't happen, but I am working on getting caught up.  I love how simple it is, and it's not at all time-consuming.  I'm definitely pleased!

2.  Friday Night Lights.

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We finished the series finale on Friday, and it was strangely bittersweet.  Now we're in need of a new addiction.  Any suggestions?

3.  These two.

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We all crawled into bed and went back to sleep after she woke up and ate on Saturday morning (we almost never put her in bed with us, but I was in need of some cuddles).  She was just waking up again when I snapped this picture, and I just love her little sleepy face (and bed head).

4.  Cody and Emily's wedding.

Micah's best friend got hitched on Saturday evening, and we had a blast.  We left Grace with my aunt and uncle for the evening, and she did wonderfully!

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(And holy cow... how gorgeous is my husband?)

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6.  This website.

Have you guys seen this yet?  I just love it.

Alrighty, friends.  What's making you happy this week?

Monday, June 17, 2013

Grace: two months

My darling Grace,

You are TWO MONTHS OLD, pretty girl, and you are getting more fun each day!

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Here are your two-month stats:

Two Months at a Glance

Weight:  11 pounds, 10.5 ounces (52%)
Length:  22.5 inches (75%)
Eating:  3.5 to 4 ounces per feeding
Sleeping:  6 to 7 hours at a time at night
Diapers:  size 1
Clothes:  some 0-3 months (but you're so long that some are getting hard to snap!) and 3 months
Things You Love:  your MAM pacifiers, cuddles, Dr. Brown's bottles, bath time (as long as we keep your legs covered with warm wash cloths), being swaddled, conversations with Mommy and Daddy, being held upright, your play mat, sleeping in your crib
What You Can Do This Month:  smile in response to our smiles, laugh (we've only heard a few so far), hold your head up even better than last month, watch Mommy and Daddy move around the room, roll onto your side from your back, "stand" (with Mommy and Daddy's help!), "talk" (although only you know what you're saying at this point!), lift yourself up on your arms during tummy time

You've started "talking" to us this month, and we love it. You've also started smiling at us when we talk to you. It's the sweetest thing, and we do just about anything we can to get a grin. You're sleeping better and better at night, and you're napping like a champ during the day. You're on a great schedule, and Mommy's so thankful that you're so predictable. Basically, you're a dream baby. We're the luckiest parents on the planet. :)

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Eating:  It turns out I was overfeeding you when we first started formula last month.  After a few days of you fussing and spitting up after each feeding, I bumped back down to 3.5 ounces, and you did much better.  You're still taking 3.5 ounces for the daytime feedings, but I let you have 4 ounces during the night.  Since I'm no longer breastfeeding, we switched to Dr. Brown's bottles early on this month, and they seem to really help with fussiness and spit up.  You still spit up occasionally, but not usually very much.  I may try the Playtex bottles with drop-in liners once we bump up to the 8 oz. bottles, but for now we're sticking with Dr. Brown's.

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Sleeping:  We started sleeping you in your crib for naps at 5 weeks.  You did amazingly!  So we made the transition at night shortly thereafter and you did just as well.  It was hard to move you out of our room, but we all sleep better this way, and now you definitely prefer sleeping in your crib to anywhere else.  We swaddle you for naps and at night and will probably do so until you can roll over completely (although you have, a few times, rolled over onto your side - you surprised the heck out of Mommy when I looked at the monitor!).  Although you consistently go 6 to 6.5 hours at night between feedings, Mommy has been having to wake up and give you your paci.  But last night you went 7 hours and 15 minutes - no paci needed!  You woke up once and fussed for about 10 minutes, but you put yourself back to sleep.  Fingers crossed it wasn't a fluke. :)

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You're still oh, so happy most of the time (despite what the picture above suggests :)), and being around you is so uplifting.  Everyone who meets you comments on your crazy hair and your pretty face.  You're a doll, love. 

See how you've grown?

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Can't wait to keep watching you grow!


Sunday, June 16, 2013

A few good men...

There's no question that my Daddy is one of the best there is.  For the man who coached my basketball teams, kissed my boo-boos, made me feel beautiful, walked me down the aisle, and paced a hole in the floor of Baylor hospital the night Grace was born, I am grateful.

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My father-in-law may be the most giving, selfless man I know.  For the man who raised my husband to be a kind, considerate, generous, honorable man and who adores his grandchildren more than life itself, I am grateful.

After my parents divorced, my mom was lucky enough to find her perfect match in my step-dad.  He is brilliant, witty, sensitive, loving, and an incredible addition to our family.  For the man who put my mom back together again, and who has loved my brother and me as his own children in a way that makes me feel as though he has always been a part of our lives, I am grateful.

And as for my husband. 

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He is my dream come true.  And Grace is the luckiest little girl in the history of daughters.  For the man who has the bluest eyes in Texas and is most definitely my better half, I am so, so, so grateful.

Happy Fathers Day!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

A (belated) announcement...

I suppose it's not really news that we had a baby. Ha. :)  And as my best friend's husband said, I've already blasted Facebook and Instagram with a ridiculous amount of pictures of our sweet girl, so birth announcements were probably not strictly necessary. 

But I couldn't resist.

And since I couldn't send each and every one of you an announcement (even though I wanted to!), I'll just post it here for you guys.


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Tuesday, June 11, 2013


I'm trying to figure out why it is that I can't seem to post very often lately.  Aside from the obvious (any free time that I stumble upon is usually reserved for sleeping/cleaning bottles/picking up the house), I think it's really because our days are so chill and relatively uneventful.  I definitely wouldn't have it any other way, but it just means that I don't have a lot of riveting news to share with you guys. 

But I feel like you need an update anyway, so here we go. 

1.  The little princess is just as adorable as always.  I'm trying to be better about busting out my big camera (because iPhone pictures just don't always cut it), so I snagged a few shots of her this morning.

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And she's still a happy little thing.  I caught a little grin today.

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I know I comment on her hair a lot, but seriously, y'all.  It's the funniest thing. 

2.  We made it to our neighborhood pool last Friday with my sister-in-law and niece.  Stella and Faith had fun enjoying the (very cold!) water, and Grace snoozed in the shade and loved the breeze.

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3.  In other riveting news, Grace wore one of my very favorite outfits this weekend.
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It's got fairy wings and everything! :) 

4.  I had ordered a customized leather cuff from Farmgirl Paints and it came in this weekend.

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(It says "amazing grace.")

I'm in love.

5.  Because I'm not in love with the Boba 3G carrier I ordered before Grace was born (it's too backpack-y, I picked up a Moby wrap this weekend and tried it out. 

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It's much more comfy and not nearly as hard to figure out as I expected.  Grace liked it too and fell asleep within minutes.

6.  We've got a relatively busy week ahead.  Micah's best friend is getting married this weekend (yay, Cody and Emily!), so we've got the fun pre-wedding festivities to look forward to, as well as the big day on Saturday. 

Hope you guys have a fabulous week!  (And I'm really hoping to be able to contribute a little more substance here soon.  :))

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Baby talk: newborn must-haves...

When I was pregnant, one of the things that stressed me out the most was trying to figure out what things I'd need once Grace arrived.  I read tons and tons of lists and sought the advice of many friends (and you guys!) in an attempt to be as prepared as possible.

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Grace, 6 weeks

As with most things in life, you can't be completely prepared for your baby, emotionally or otherwise.  Every baby is different, so things that friends swore by were useless to me, and Grace was crazy about things that others had said I wouldn't need.  So I wanted to share a few things that saved our lives during those first few weeks for any of you who might be as curious as I was.  I'm planning on doing a few more comprehensive lists later by category, but for now, I'm going to stick to just a few.

Long-sleeved onesies/zip-up pajamas with built-in mittens.  It might seem strange that this is the first thing to come to mind, but newborns have crazy nails, and if you're like me, you'll be too scared to clip them at first.  Grace loved to have her hands by her face, so she was constantly scratching herself.  We tried the standalone mittens, but they're hard to keep on those tiny hands.  The built-in mittens worked amazingly for us.

Swaddle blankets/swaddles.  My sister-in-law got us a package of adorable, lightweight Summer swaddle blankets.  Micah mastered the swaddle in the hospital, and Grace absolutely loved to be wrapped up so tightly. But after we got home, she'd often break out of the blanket, so we assumed that she no longer wanted to be constrined.  A friend later gave us some of the Summer Infant SwaddleMe swaddles, and I tried one at naptime on a whim.  They've ended up being lifesavers (although the blankets are still my favorites for the carseat and stroller - I don't worry about her suffocating on them since they're so breathable).  Some babies don't like to be swaddled, but Grace will sleep significantly longer if she's swaddled.  I'll probably try and wean her off at three months, but for now, we're keeping her cuddled up. :)

MAM pacifiers.  We got several different kinds of pacifiers at our shower, so I had a few to choose from.  Grace just ended up preferring the MAM pacifiers (and I've heard that a lot of babies do, as well).

Lansinoh Lanolin.  If you're breastfeeding, this stuff is absolutely a necessity.  Promise.

ItzBeen Timer. 
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This little timer helped me keep track of when Grace last ate, when her diaper was last changed, and how long she's been sleeping. After awhile, I got better about keeping time in my head, but it was really helpful at first.

Boppy nursing pillow.  Some people don't use their Boppys, but I couldn't live without mine!  Mostly because I'm a wimp with poor arm tone, so constantly holding and feeding Grace started to kill my arms.  The Boppy takes the stress off your arms and makes feeding time, in particular, much more comfy.

Fisher-Price Deluxe Newborn Rock 'N Play Sleeper. 

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Another gift from my sister-in-law, this served as our bassinet for the first few weeks.  The cool thing about is that it's small and versatile (and much cheaper than traditional bassinets/cradles!) and super cuddly.  And even though Grace is now sleeping in her crib, we still have the Rock 'N Play set up in the living room for when we need to set her down for a few minutes.  It's also super portable for taking to grandparents'/babysitters' houses.  

Dr. Brown's Bottles.  Even if you're planning on breastfeeding, it's probably smart to have at least one bottle sterilized and ready to go... just in case.  (And while you're at it, grab a small can of formula [we ended up using Similac Sensitive] if you don't get a free can mailed to you... somehow every mom I know ended up with free formula without knowing where it came from.)  Grace needed formula supplements because she had lost so much of her birth weight because my milk took so long to come in, and it was nice that we had a few ready to go when we needed them.  Dr. Brown's seem to be best (at least for Grace) for preventing gas, but they've got a million parts so they're a pain to wash.  For us, though, it's worth it.

PRIMO EuroBath Kit. 

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I had registered for a different bather that sits in a bathtub, but one of my friends offered to get me this freestanding tub (that works for infants and older babies) that sits on top of the counter.  I've ended up really, really loving it.  It's got the perfect little spot for Grace's body, and it's so much easier than bending over the bathtub or trying to keep her upright in the kitchen sink. 

I feel like I'm missing some things, but it's about time for Miss Priss to wake up from her nap, so I'd better go get a bottle ready. :)  (Feel free to shoot me any questions you have about baby gear.  Realize, of course, that I'm still a newbie... although I do consider it an accomplishment to have kept us both alive and happy for seven weeks!)
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