I Need To Toughen Up.

I'm sensitive. There's no doubt about that. I cry at sappy movies. I scream and almost cry when we almost hit a squirrel. I definitely tear up when others cry, even if I have no idea why they are crying. Oh, and weddings, don't get me started. Thank goodness I don't cry every time Audrey cries. We would be in trouble then.

I'm sensitive about my baby and being a mom. I know people mean well when they say things, but sometimes, just sometimes, I look into what they say waaaay too much. Like Audrey's size for example. I KNOW it is not a big deal about how big she is. But it still gets to me when I hear "she is so little." Seriously, I know it is nothing. But I seem to get defensive and say "she is bigger than most babies her age." Then I feel stupid for getting defensive. Oh, and I hate getting asked questions like "so, is she crawling yet?" Again, I get defensive and answer "no, but she is scooting herself backwards." Again, completely silly. But that is how I am.

Comparison between babies is the worst. EVERY baby grows at a different pace. Just like how pregnancy is different for everyone and labor. But then why do so many people judge, ahem, I mean compare?

Okay, I better stop there. My rant is over. I am going to toughen up. I can take it.

P.S. I blame part of this rant on me going swimsuit shopping and only coming home with the realization that I MUST workout before purchasing one.

The Dreaded Purchase.

I have to do it. I have to make the post-baby swimsuit purchase. I wanted to wait until I lost more weight. But, um, then I realized that probably is not going to happen. Or at least for a while. I went to the pool for the first time on Wednesday. And I wore what I thought was a cute, black, halter, one-piece. Until I put it on. And it brought back all the memories associated with it...like wearing it to the summer camp I worked at everyday like four years ago. I really don't want to wear a four year old swimsuit. And it definitely wasn't flattering. Like I pictured in my head. And I am not even going to attempt my bikini from last year. However, is it wrong that I might want to try-on-a-two-piece? Yeah, you are probably right. I shouldn't try to fool myself. Oh, and notice I said two-piece. Because that is exactly what it would be. Nothing crazy. Because, let's face it, I am nursing, and well, you can guess the rest. I don't want to be one of those moms. You know, the one that walks up to the baby pool and the moms around whisper, but clearly loud enough for you to hear "she should not be in that swimsuit."

All that said, I am hoping tonight I can talk the husband in to going with me to look. He does not know this yet. If you have any suggestions on swimsuits, throw them my way.


You Capture: Family

I am glad I have You Capture to motivate me to get blogging. I can't believe it's been a week since I posted. Actually it was kind of nice to be blogging MIA. Sometimes I think we just need a break from the Internet craziness. I can get attached too quickly. It can consume you. One minute I am quickly checking my email and the next thing I know it has been 45 minutes and I am looking up wet bags on Etsy.

Okay, back to the topic. This week's challenge was family. You would think with Memorial Weekend I would have snapped lots of family photos, but somehow I managed to get my picks from a softball game and an afternoon at Sonics [The place with the most delicious extra-long coney dogs. You know, I had one].

Shot #1- Audrey with her Grandpa. I love this shot because Audrey is mesmerized by his beard. She is so focused on it. I love how her lips are even curled in. This was taken at our weekly softball game we attend. It is quite the family event with my husband, brother, and dad that all play on the same team.

Shot #2-Audrey with her daddy. AKA- the most awesomeness husband, ever. You can't really tell, but Audrey fell asleep on him. I love it when that happens. I especially like how she is holding on to his shirt. Like, "don't leave daddy, I'm right here." And if you look closely, you can see the start of her rolls that continue down her legs. I just want to squeeze them and kiss them. Oh, wait, I do that.
These are the family moments I cherish. We aren't doing anything extravagant. Just enjoying life at the baseball fields or going to relax while slurping down an old-fashion root beer. We don't need much to make us happy. Just family. Really, that's all.

P.S. I just looked back at my post and realized part of Grandpa's head was cut out of the picture. Stupid layout must have done it. Sorry. The picture looks a lot better when you can actually see both Audrey and Grandpa's head.


You Capture: Sweet.

I am super excited to finally be participating in You Capture. I love, Beth's idea of challenging us to capture a certain moment. This weeks challenge was trying to capture sweet. And I have two sweet moments to share.

I love this shot because I totally forgot about the challenge and then when I looked at my photos I took this week, it was quite obvious which one was sweeter than honey. What's sweeter than two cousins wanting to holding hands while shopping? And I love how they are looking straight at each other. Jonathan and Audrey only 3.5 months apart.

I also find my peony bush that just bloomed in my yard very, very sweet.

If you want to see more sweetness from others, go check it out here!


7 Months 7 Pictures.

My sweet baby girl is now 7 months (as of yesterday). Isn't it funny how I find it shocking how much she has put on the chub, ahem, I mean grown, in just 7 months, even though I am with her every single minute of every single day? Each month on her birth date I snap a picture so I can look back and be that mom that sobs at her daughter's pictures and say "my baby has grown up, where did time go." And then look at my husband with a puppy-dog look and say "can we please have another one."

Enjoy scrolling through the pictures while I go get myself a tissue. Taken on the 18th of each month for the last 7 months.


But I Want It.

Since I am home with Audrey, I do my best to stretch our dollar. Because our dollar has to go very, very, very far. Humor me while I share some of the ways I try to save. [This list is also secretly a way for me to justify not following 'code of conduct' sometimes aka buying things that aren't "needs"]
  • I am a coupon mom. I google EVERYTHING before I purchase it to see if there is a coupon or discount online for it.
  • I cloth diaper.
  • I make Audrey's baby food.
  • I pack Andrew's lunch.
  • I unplug everything if it is not in use. (coffee maker, ipod, computer, etc.)
  • I shop garage sales, Goodwill. [Actually, I really enjoy doing this. I love when I find a steal.]

Now, don't get me wrong. I don't do all of those things all the time. But I do try my best.

Sometimes, though, I just need that Starbucks white chocolate mocha. Or most recently (and the whole reason why I wanted to write this post), I need to buy this beautiful, large 8x10 rug, to fit nicely in our front room. I have already come up with multiple reasons in my head why I need it. For example, our whole house is wood floors, and Audrey needs a more stable flooring to practice crawling and eventually walking. I even had a dream about the rug last night. Is that pathetic or what?

Fine. I will admit it. I don't need the rug. But I just want it. Badly. That's all.


Guess What.

One of the funnest [I don't like saying 'most fun' you should be allowed to say funnest] games ever: Guesstures. Maybe because I secretly wish I was an actress [if I didn't ever have to go Hollywood]. Or maybe because it is a hilarious game for capturing pictures. Either way, it is just plain fun. We played the game tonight with a bunch of friends. Guys vs. girls, of course. And let me just say, I got six points for our team. In one turn. While carrying Audrey in the sling. [Yes, I just patted myself on the back].
My favorite word I had to act out: midwife. My team even guessed it right too! Here I am getting in position for "birth." Hence the legs spread apart and my intense look. What the picture doesn't reveal is me pretending to give myself a needle and then becoming the "midwife" and shaking my head 'no' and using breathing techniques instead. Holla!

BTW- My husband offered multiple times to hold Audrey during the game. My friends offered too. But I enjoyed having my partner in crime right next to me. AND I wanted to show that you can doing anything with a baby in a sling. Even play Guesstures. Which leads me on a tangent...(Get ready, it really is a tangent).

Since Audrey was born Andrew and I 'vowed' to not let our life stop just because we had a baby. Yeah, it has definitely changed. But we didn't want to be one of those couples that all life ends because of children. Sometimes we may have to leave a place a tad bit early or you may have to listen to a crying baby, or I may be nursing right next to you, but we will be there. Audrey has a bedtime, but is she asleep every night by 8:30? Ha, no. Not even close. In fact, right now, at this very moment (10:31pm to be exact) she is hanging out with her daddy, typing messages (aka-letters and numbers with lots of spaces in between) on Facebook. I guess my point is, with all of our non-parent friends, we just want to be an example that life does get better with kids. And life goes on. And you can still live it. That's all. Okay, done with tangent.


Strawberries and Cupcakes.

I have fifty different things I need to be doing right now while Audrey sleeps. BUT instead, here I am. And I have two things to share that made me happy today:

1) I love my town. Especially when it gets warm out. Today we went to the Strawberry Shortcake Festival in our Downtown. There was music. Strawberries (duh). And LOTS and LOTS of kids. Andrew even took his lunch break to come visit with us. It was super sweet [both the food and Andrew].

2) I went to Michael's today to find crafty things to do. And I walked away with lots of fun stuff for Audrey's birthday. [Wait, you ask, when is her birthday? Um, not for another 5 months. Is it wrong to start planning this early? Okay, don't answer that.] In the dollar section I found the perfect theme-- CUPCAKES! I got napkins, plates, stamps (so I can make the invitations), thank you cards, ribbon, and the most adorable favors. The cupcakes in the picture open up to stick fun favors in! I am getting giddy just looking at the picture.


Blogging Blues.

I haven't blogged in a couple of days because, well, I just get intimidated. I love to spend my sparetime reading other blogs. Wait, I don't have spare time. Let's call it "time I could be doing many other things, but instead want to look at wonderful blogs." But then I doubt myself. Am I really cut out for all this blogging stuff? And twitter? And Flickr? And, geeze, I feel like I am joining everything. But is it really for me? I want it to be for me. Because I love it. It is an outlet for me. It is a way to connect with others. Like today, I came across this blog. And wanted to go to NC just to meet this cool chic. [No seriously, I have always wanted to just pick up and go somewhere. Even just for the day.]

But then, I go and doubt myself again. Which is kind of weird for me. Because I do consider myself a rather confident person. I mean, coming from a family of six kids, you have to be able to stand your ground.

Really, I don't think I can just stop blogging. There are too many inspirational blogs out there for me to stop. I hope one day I can be inspiration too. Even if it is just to one person.

P.S. I am sure my feelings are partly due to the dreary, cold, rainy weather right now. I am one of those people who totally let the weather affect them.



Question: So what do you get at a graduation ceremony where you are suppose to shake hands when receiving your diploma, but the Swine Flu could be lurking nearby?
Answer: You get the Chancellor "fisting" at every graduate. [You know what I mean, right? The knuckle to knuckle thing]. It was hilarious.

But what I find more amusing is the fact that there was still skin to skin contact. You think the Chancellor at the Kelly School of Business would have had a brighter idea?

And I totally laughed out loud when the Chance [I can call him that because he is like a bud now since he "fists"], did a double knuckle fist with the diploma in his mouth. Yeah, I said, in. his. mouth.

Don't worry, we take all precautions at the University. [insert chuckle here]

At least it made the ceremony a tad bit more interesting to watch.

Afterwards, we had fun at good o'Applebees.
At least events like these are a fun excuse to totally dress up your baby. Audrey sported her hand-made IU hairband, an IU bib, and a Ralph Lauren dress with her cute cow print leggings.



I was just trying to get caught up on ordering pictures [Like ones from some of my baby showers. Yeah, I am that far behind.] and I came across this photo. There is nothing like a day in the hot July sun walking around following your husband while he golfs at 30 weeks pregnant. It made me smile. Especially on this gloomy, rainy Wednesday. It also kind of made me miss being pregnant.

P.S. Let's not forget that shadows are actually larger than the person. Ahem. Okay, that's all. Thanks.

While I am at it, let me share this photo. Just because it is cool. And I stumbled across it today too.

This was taken in the Sears Tower in Chicago- I mean, how cool is that?


Three Little Kittens.

This past weekend I went antiquing with family. It was lovely. I got the cutest, hippest salt and pepper shakers ever. And the best part was, they were a gift! Check out my sweet Jadite shakers.
Don't you just want to come over to use them? Well, you are invited. I used salt last night on my meal just because I wanted to use the shaker [no, seriously].

I also bought the most adorable vintage shirt for Audrey. It says "Three Little Kittens" on the front. It about makes my heart melt whenever I look at her in it. Of course, it doesn't take a shirt for that to happen. And did I mention, I got it for $2.50. Probably one of the best ways I have spent $2.50 in a long time.

Today she sported the "Palm Tree" clip. The hairclips were a success!


I Love Having a Girl.

I just spent the last hour making these for my sweet little girl. What are they, you ask? Teeny tiny hairclips, of course.I can't wait for Audrey to model them all. I had a glimpse of hope that her hair was growing tonight when she went to sleep with "messy" hair after her bath. Messy in the sense that it was sticking up just a tiny bit. Which means long enough for a clip, right? Oooo, she is going to look so adorable. Stay tuned for pictures tomorrow.


Moms Aren't Allowed to Get Sick.

I am totally feeling like Steph at Adventures in Babywearing. Where is our Union for mothers? We can't ever check out. Even when sick. My husband has been sick for a couple of days, so all duty has been on me. I found myself actually getting jealous of him. Jealous of his sniffling. Jealous of his ability to lay in bed all day. I actually wanted to be sick. Then I thought about it. Nope, I don't want to be sick because my duties wouldn't end. I would still be getting up around 4am every morning to nurse. I would still be running up the steps with a load of laundry so Audrey wouldn't realize I was gone. So even though I am still jealous of my husband being able to lie around when sick, I am very thankful I don't hardly ever get sick.


April Showers Bring May Flowers (well sort of).

May is here. It is raining [again]. But there is sunshine and flowers blooming where ever Audrey is! I took this picture at my home. Using my new duvet as the backdrop. I am kind of proud of how it turned out. I was working on "6 month" pictures. And I am too cheap to hirer a photographer [although a good friend will be coming over soon to take some out of the kindness of her heart!], so I just take my own. Then edit like crazy in Google Picasa.