Tuesday, June 30, 2009

How did we not post 'Dega pictures??

Let me first state that I am completely not a NASCAR fan, but now I get the appeal. My BIL Alan got the VIP treatment at the Dale Jarrett Racing Adventure: 20 laps around the track (at speeds reaching 185 mph), virtual simulator, etc, etc. Cool anniversary gift, Sandi! So we made the morning trip to watch, and I really just wanted to try out the new Nikon zoom lens that Grandma lent me (thanks Grandma!). Rather than go on and on, I'll just post some pictures!

Goin' Solo

This week, Meredith is in Auburn with her danceline for their camp/competition, so that has left yours truly on baby patrol from yesterday morning until Thursday afternoon when she returns! I think it has been much harder for Meredith to be away than for me to keep MA by myself. I was a little nervous about this due to the fact that MA is teething, but she has been unbelievably good. Or either she is a terror at daycare all day and hits the happy switch when I pick her up (which I doubt). The hard part has been leaving the house at 6:30 so I can get to work by 7:30, then leaving in time to pick her up. Did I mention that daycare is 30 minutes away?? Which is usually super convenient beacuse it's 5 minutes from where Meredith works, but for me...30 minutes minimum. Good thing I like talk radio! When we get home, its usually almost 6:00 so its mealtime, bathtime, playtime, then bedtime. I think the best moment of my day is right after she's finished her bedtime bottle, and she just wants to lay with her head on my shoulder and rock for a minute or two. That just seems to melt the stress away more than anything else I can do! I always wondered what it would be like to be a dad. I was never anxious about whether or not I'd be a good dad; it was more just wondering how I'd handle those moments when I just wanted to dive out our upstairs window from exhaustion! When you see other babies, it is hard to remember that your child was that SMALL just a few months ago. I guess when you see them everyday, you son't notice the incremental changes, until you say, "Wait, these PJs fit last week!!". It is quite the phenomenon.

SO, my message is: so far, so good. Of course, as soon as I say that, tonight will be a long night, but the good ones more than make up for it :).

Friday, June 26, 2009

I've been tagged...

My friend Tipi tagged me on this one, so here it goes! I just want to say that I love reading her blog, and she and her husband Wes are a very inspiring couple.

8 x 8

Things I am looking forward to:
1. My 30th birthday
2. Getting a Shark Steam mop with my b-day money (if I get any)
3. The whole month of July and being work-free
4. Seeing my parents today
5. Going to camp next week in Auburn with my dancers
6. Hearing reports from Hays about how he handles being "single dad" while I am gone to camp
7. This weekend (no plans, AMAZING!)
8. Every second with my baby girl

Things I did yesterday:
1. Walked/jogged 3 miles
2. Went to practice
3. Took MA to rhythm and rhyme story time at the library
4. Went to my dancers' dress rehearsal
5. Devised a plan to keep the girls from getting pink armpits (long story)
6. Ate at Frontera with friends Lindsey and Michael
7. Talked to my mom on the phone about 3 times
8. Babysat doggie Sophie

Things I wish I could do:
1. Wiggle my nose and have my house deep cleaned
2. Go right now and buy the Shark Steam mop and then proceed to clean all floors
3. Pay off my debt
4. Take a 2nd honeymoon
5. Go to the beach
6. Go to the lake
7. Go outside without sweating profusely
8. Wiggle my nose and lose 10 lbs!

Shows I watch (all year)
1. Grey's Anatomy
2. Private Practice
3. House
4. Real Housewives of NJ
5. Tori and Dean (sad, yes I know)
6. Intervention (I find it SO interesting)
7. Lifetime movies (Go ahead and say it, I love crap TV)
8. Criminal Minds (almost forgot the BEST one!)

Favorite foods
1. My Aunt Donna's spaghetti and meatballs
2. Guacamole from Cocina Superior
3. Fresh fruit
4. My pot roast w/mashed potatoes
5. My mom's meatloaf (also with mashed potatoes!)
6. Wedding cake
7. My mom's country fried steak
8. My Aunt Donna's cheesecake

Places I've traveled
1. Bahamas
2. New York City
3. Colorado
4. All over the southern appalachians
5. Charleston, SC
6. Gulf coast
7. Amarillo, TX (not very exciting)
(I am not much of a traveler, I guess!)

Places I would like to travel:
1. Italy
2. London
3. Australia
4. New Zealand
5. Alaska
6. British Columbia
7. Las Vegas
8. D.C.

People I tag:
1. Mandy McPherson
2. Anna Barron
3. Laura Graham
4. Marcia Lamar
5. Sara Allred
6. Fran Skipper
7. Lauren Beck
8. Bre Davis

Monday, June 22, 2009

And the winner is...

Congratulations Anna and little Miss Elle! I hope she is born with hair, but if not we will find a way for her to wear them. Anna, email me your address!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

We are THROUGH

With the paci! I didn't want to say anything about it because I didn't want to "jinx" it, but we are going on about 2 weeks of being paci-free! I know that a lot of people thought it was too early to take away the paci, but I just felt like it was time and that it was the right thing to do. It has been WONDERFUL. I know every baby is different and I know that my advice may not help anyone, but I am going to tell you all how I did it so if you ever need to get rid of a paci, maybe this will help.

I first let her only have it in her crib. For the first 3 days, she would get a little whiny without it, especially when it got close to naptime. But basically it seemed to me like she didn't even notice that it was gone. She did start babbling a LOT more without that thing in her mouth.

After I realized she could do so well without it during the day, I was a little terrified of how she would ever go to sleep without it. We started putting her to bed without it to see what would happen, and for about 3 days (I swear, it seems like three days is the magic number for babies for some reason), she would be pretty upset when going down for a nap. Not so much at bedtime though, which was great. She would wake up about 3-4 hours after we put her to bed and after making sure she didn't need anything, I would just stay awake and keep watching her while she cried it out. The 3rd night was the hardest. She cried for a little while longer that night and while we were waiting for MA to go to sleep Hays and I talked and questioned whether or not we were doing the right thing. We got our answer the next night... she has slept through the night without her paci ever since. I actually think she sleeps better without it.

Now, my reasoning behind taking it away is that I thought it would be so much harder when she had a real attachment to it. I also thought it would be harder for ME when she could verbalize that she wanted it. So there you go. Believe it or not, I thought I would be one of those moms that would never use the paci, but I QUICKLY changed my mind about 2 weeks in. Don't get me wrong, I have loved our relationship with the paci. It served us well and helped us through some really tough times! No judgement on those who keep the paci for a long time, I know as a mom you do what you have to do to keep your sanity. Good luck to any of you who try this! I will be asking for advice on many things to come, I am sure.

And by the way, You all need to go back to my original paci post here and read the second comment by Ladd. It wins the award for FUNNIEST BLOG COMMENT EVER!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

A GIVEAWAY!!!!!

If you have a little girl, or you know someone who does, than you will definitely be interested in these...OR these....That's right folks! I taught myself how to make hairbows. No more going to the store and paying $5 or more for a bow for this mama! So I wanted to be able to share my excitement with all of you. The lucky winner will receive FOUR of my handmade hairbows! You can either choose your color or you can let me choose for you.

Here's how you can enter:

1. Comment on THIS post.
2. Post on your blog mentioning and LINKING to my giveaway and put a link to it in the comment section of THIS post.
3. Become a follower of my blog.

You can do one of the above or all three. Yes, you can enter up to three times! The contest closes at midnight on Sunday night, so get busy! Here is a little information about my hairbows and clips.
Some have embellishments, which I have glued on REALLY well but if you don't want your child to have one with the embellishments then I won't send you one. All bows are on the little alligator pinch clips, which I have found hold hair really well.
And if you still aren't sure that you want to enter, check one out on my model.
And by the way, she will be selecting the winner on Monday. Stay tuned, and get busy entering!

Playdate #2

This week was my turn to host the playdate! Unfortunately Charlie Hill was sick with an ear infection, so he and Jamie didn't make it. We missed him, but it was fun.
We played in the baby pool (which I didn't want to get my camera near) and then came inside for bottles and a little dry play time. Andrew is a MESS, and he is SO cute and sweet. Margaret Anne may have a hard time trying to choose between him and Charlie. Andrew is 2 weeks younger than MA, and he is much, much quicker than she is!

"This BlackBerry tastes GOOD."



Just playin' with some toys

Moving all over, and very happy about it!

Margaret Anne says,"I can't keep up with him, Mama!"

Thanks for coming over Elaine and Andrew. It was fun for me to have another Mama to hang out with for a little while. Can't wait for next week!

They already like the same outfits!

Lucy and Fran stopped by for a visit! It was hilarious that Lucy ended up with the same outfit as Margaret Anne, just different fabric. I decided to let them model...

These models aren't always very cooperative, but they make up for it with their photogenic skills. That's Margaret Anne's "Magnum," by the way.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Playdates








Sorry its been a few days since my last post! I am working on a few things around here. One of which is... A GIVEAWAY!! Get excited people! I am going to be posting about that pretty soon.

We are going to try to have weekly playdates this summer with My friends Jamie and Elaine. Jamie has baby Charlie, and Elaine has Andrew. MA enjoyed her first "date" with them last week. We went over to Elaine's and played at her pool. MA seemed to enjoy it. I like how in that first picture Charlie has his hand on her knee.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Baby scootin' boogie

video

Her methods may not be very traditional, but they get the job done!

Apricot Chicken and a funny website

Tonight I made this SUPER easy and good meal: Apricot Chicken


Here is the recipe for anyone who is interested:

1 jar Apricot preserves

1 pkg Onion soup mix

1/4 cup Mayo (I used reduced fat)

1 1/2 lbs boneless skinless chicken tenderloins

Preheat oven to 350. Arrange Chicken in a 13 x 9 inch pan. Mix together preserves, soup mix, and mayo and pour on top of chicken. Bake uncovered for 35 min. I serve mine with brown rice, and make sure you put lots of the yummy juices on it!

The first time I saw this recipe I wasn't sure I would like it, but I really do! It almost tastes a little like sweet and sour chicken.

I also wanted to let you guys know about a website that I found called Awkward Family Photos. Hays and I look at it every so often and laugh and laugh!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

(Sun)Bathing Beauty!







This weekend was also Margaret Anne's first experience with the swimming pool. Sandi got her an awesome little float with a canopy. She had such a good time in the water! She wasn't quite sure what to think of the pool and water at first, and she held on to me very tightly. Then she got a little more relaxed and let us put her in the float, and then she started laughing, splashing, and kicking her legs. She really liked to put her hands in the little waterfall that goes from the hot tub to the pool. Thanks for having us Alan and Sandi, we had a great weekend!

Visit with Grammy and Grampy

Grampy with Chipper and Max

Margaret Anne and Allen (Grampy)

Margaret Anne and Ronnie (Grammy)

Margaret Anne enjoyed getting to see her Grampy and Grammy this weekend! MA loves them and she was very interested in Chipper and Max (two of their dogs). Too bad they weren't as interested in her! Sparky, the other dog, felt a little jealous I think, so he went upstairs and wouldn't socialize.

Hays' Reunion

This weekend was Hays' 10 year high school reunion. In the morning on Saturday there was a breakfast at the school, and then Saturday night was a nice dinner at a really cute place in Dothan called Maria's Vineyard. We really enjoyed ourselves and Hays got to catch up with some great people that he hadn't seen in a long time. Everyone was so nice!
Kristyn and Rosemary. Rosemary was SO cute when she would drink out of her bottle. She would tip it back, cock her head to one side, and take a swig at a time.

Margaret Anne after a snack bottle at the breakfast.

Before we went to the dinner. I felt like we were taking prom photos!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Its got to go...


Ok, several of you out there might not share my opinion on this, but I am going to open it up for discussion anyway. We are trying to help Margaret Anne kick her paci habit. So far I can't get her to put anything in her mouth except that dang pacifier. She won't feed herself or drink out of her sippy cup unless I am holding it. I think it somehow must be tied to the fact that she always has a paci to stick in there instead.
So the past few days I have been only giving her the paci when she is in her crib. I am hoping she will eventually get used to not having it, and she has been doing pretty good with it. I have no idea how I am going to get her to sleep without it, but baby steps, right?
My next question is, does anyone have any tips for getting her to self feed? She will eat little finger foods like puffs and yogurt melts, but she wont put them in her mouth herself. Suggestions?

On the move

Margaret Anne has started moving everywhere! We don't have a crawler though, she is more of a "scooter." She sits on her bottom and scoots wherever she wants to go. I think it is because she hated being on her tummy, so she doesn't have that much upper body strength.
When she first started scooting, she would only go a short distance, to get her paci or her hairbrush. Now I can't turn around good and she is all over the place. Today she has taken an interest in drawers. This morning I let her watch Baby Einstein (I swear we don't do that all day long, it just sounds like we do) while I was finishing up the dishes. When I walked into the kitchen, she was in the middle of the floor, and when I came back a few minutes later she was doing this:

This was last night. She likes to scoot over to the edges of the furniture and try to pull up, but she can't because she gets her legs under the furniture. It is really sad and funny because she tries so hard but hasn't figured out how to get her legs out from under there yet.

She has started saying a lot more lately too. She loves to say "Uh Oh," Da-da, Na-Na (which my mother loves because she is Nonna), and every once in a while we will hear a "mama" but not very often. She is growing up so fast!!

Before and After

Yesterday (well, last night) I went to get my hair cut, as mentioned in the previous post. It was fantastic, and I had been looking forward to it since Monday when I made the appointment. I really like my hairdresser and I love that she works me in on short notice. So, here is my hair before (pic courtesy of Hays)

And here I am after. I took this picture in the mirror this morning, so that is why it looks like everything is going in the opposite direction!

You guys may not be able to tell a big difference, but to me it looks and feels so much better. She basically had to cut my hair twice, the first time to get all of the extra hair out and then the second time to actually style it. She had to give me a haircut so she could give me a haircut! Next time I will try not to wait months and months before I go!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Today has been GREAT so far! My official first day off was spent like this:
3:30am - Wake up with a terrible headache, take advil, get heat pack, go back to sleep
5:40am - Wake up with headache COMPLETELY gone and feed sweet baby her morning bottle, knowing that I didn't have to go to work today.
6:00am - put on Baby Einstein video for baby, wash clothes and put them away
7:20am - Vacuum house while baby is in Jumparoo
8:00am - Put baby down for morning nap, take shower and check out blogs
9:00am - baby wakes up WAY too soon, so she talks to herself in her crib for 30 minutes while I eat breakfast
9:30am - get baby up and dressed, she plays with her hairbrush (she loves this for some reason) while I finish getting ready
10:00am - feed baby "snack bottle"
10:20am - go to Wal-Mart!


Now, It may just be me, but I felt like it was 3:30pm when it was only 10:30 in the morning! I have GOT to learn to just sit and rest!
MA took a great 2 hour nap this afternoon and gave me a chance to watch the Bachelorette that I missed on Monday night. Is is just me or is this season extremely boring? Jillian needs to put some excitement into it like DDAnna did. Also, foot fetish guy creeps me out so bad that it is really hard to watch.

Tonight I was able to make dinner. I made these enchiladas and they were great! I had dinner basically ready when Hays got home from work which may have been a first for me.
In a few minutes I am leaving to get my hair done (which hasn't happened in months) and I am really excited about it. I love getting my hair done and I will get Hays to take a before and an after pic so you can see the results.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Many things have happened... (VERY long post!)

SO much has happened in the last few weeks! I just got out of school TODAY, and I haven't had much time before now to blog. So this should catch all of you "stalkers" out there up on our lives lately!

My mom retired! This is at her retirement party.

Margaret Anne tried out a new look.

She hung out with Charlie Hill.


They watched some "Baby Einstein" together.



Hays' Mom (Mimi) came to visit.


So did Gigi and Grandan (Hays' maternal grandparents).


And Uncle Jordan came to visit, too!


We went to Noccalula Falls.


And this is us waiting for the train ride to start!


By the falls

We went to a surprise Bday party for my friend Beth! This is Haley's daughter, Campbell. She just LOVED Margaret Anne and kept her very entertained.


Group shot of my sweet high school friends. True friends are hard to find, and these girls are the best of them.


Hays decided he needs a Snuggie. I like to call it the "Slanket." Any "30 Rock" fans out there know what I'm talkin' bout?

Margaret Anne got tired of us documenting every second.

But then she forgot she was tired of it when she looked at her Nonna. She loves her Nonna so!
That was our past month in a nutshell. Hope you enjoyed it as much as we did!