Friday, December 17, 2010

A Few of My Favorite Things - Volume One

New year, new series!  My new goal for Fridays is to let you know about a product that I can't live without!  As a new mom there is so much out there to choose from that it's hard to know what is and isn't necessary.  While every child is different, my goal is to share with you the products I trust and rely on.  Our first favorite thing is...

The Arm & Hammer Diaper Pail by Munchkin!

I grew up babysitting and nannied through college.  During that time I developed a distaste for diaper pails.  They never seemed to work right, were hard to use, didn't contain the smell.  I wasn't even sure if I wanted one.  When I saw the Arm & Hammer Diaper Pail I was intrigued by the concept of using baking soda to contain the smell.  It was touted as easy to use by their website, reviews and a friend who had a baby three months before I did.  I figured, what the heck, and added it to my registry.

Five months later and I can tell you that I never thought I would love a diaper pail!  First, it is easy to use.  With my infant on my hip I can easily open the pail and put the diaper in.  Second, it does a fabulous job of containing the smell!  I love that it disperses baking soda EVERY time I close the lid!  Not to mention it does this cool, twisty thing that seals the bag after each nasty diaper is deposited.  No longer am I confused and frustrated trying to switch out the bags either!  You just snap the bag shut and take it out to the trash!  So easy!

As an added bonus, and an example of how well this pail works, I went away for a week at Thanksgiving.  Having major mommy brain, I forgot to empty the pail before I left.  There wasn't a hint of odor when I returned a week later!  Who would have thought that a diaper pail could mask dirty diapers for a week when they're just sitting there!  I am truly in awe of this diaper pail!

If you're in the market for a diaper pail, I highly recommend picking up this fabulous find!  You won't regret it!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Sweet Bliss

Motherhood is one of those roller coaster journeys.  There are ups and downs.  A day that is a slow climb and seems like it will never end.  Then there are the days that zoom by and you wish they would slow down so you could enjoy the moment.  Don't forget the days were nothing goes right and both baby and mommy are crying.  And then there are those blissfully sweet days were things just seem to go right.  Thankfully, just when I thought it was going to be a day where nothing went right the roller coaster took a sharp turn!  Today, as I was about at the brink of frustration, my husband came home to drop off gear and rescued the crying fussbucket from his bouncy seat enabling me to enjoy the rest of my shower scream free.  Then the fussbucket sat in his Bumbo while I did my hair enabling me to have a fro-free day!  (Which is much appreciated when I have a meeting with the principal!)  But it doesn't stop there.  Liam just got changed, ate and went down for a nap at naptime!  What?  This has been pretty unheard of lately so I am ecstatic that he is back on schedule today!  I am in awe of the quiet in my house right now.  Of being able to each my lunch with both hands!  And thankful that my husband had to switch out gear, triggering these moments of bliss for this mum.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Thin Down Thursday - Week 10

Well, I've been on a Thin Down Thursday hiatus.  This is not a good thing!  With family in town, I've let my weight loss goals fall to the wayside a bit.  I honestly have not been making the best choices and am afraid to step on the scale!  So, Thin Down Thursday is probably on hiatus until after Thanksgiving. I'm going to try to stay on plan and track.  That is the least I can do.  But for now, it is what it is.  This is short, but I didn't want everyone to think I'd given up.  I guess I've just been sitting on the bench wishing I was playing.  Time to get back in the game!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Giving Thanks

Every day I am thankful for my husband, but as we gear up for deployment I am reminded each day how much I love him, depend on him and need him.  Yes, I am a capable and independent young woman.  (Well, at least I still feel young most days!)  After all, I have lived on my own all over the world and supported myself.  I could do it again if life necessitated it.  Mind you, I have no desire too.  I love my husband.  I love being married.  I love motherhood.  All the ups and downs make life exciting.  Each challenge is worth conquering.  There is a reward smiling up at me every day.

Since the hubs will be gone for Thanksgiving this year, we decided to appreciate our time together and  do Thanksgiving early.  So last night was Thanksgiving at our house.  We had turkey, stuffing, green beans, mashed potatoes and my "famous" (according to Cody) pumpkin pie.  Everything was delicious!  And, in the grand scheme of things, way too much food!  But it was nice to take a minute to enjoy our family.  To thank God for all that he has blessed us with.  It's not often enough in our every day lives that we take a moment to do that.  I appreciate Thanksgiving for forcing me to reflect on what I have and I'm glad I got an extra day where I looked around the table, at all my boys, and remembered that no matter how far apart we are, we are truly blessed.  Not everyone is as lucky as we are.  Not everyone is as loved as we are.

So, whether it be a minute or a day, I am thankful for every bit of time I have with my husband.  I am thankful that he gets to see our youngest grow and change as much as possible.  I am thankful that he can get up in the middle of the night with him.  I am thankful that he can wrestle with our oldest.  That he can help him with his math homework.  I am thankful for the laughter and love that fills our home every day, both when he's home and when he's away.  And I'm thankful for the two little men who remind me each and every day what an amazing man I am married to.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Vaccine Adventures!

Liam - Three Months

Yesterday our wee man turned three months.  Today we celebrated with shots!  I don't know how, but we are just starting his rounds of vaccines.  He was behind as he got hep B at his one month appointment and didn't have a two month appointment.  I assummed he'd get them yesterday at the doctor's office, however, due to some changes in NC state programs our small pediatrician's office doesn't have vaccines anymore, so we were sent to my favorite place, the Naval Hopsital, for them.  After a two hour wait Liam finally got his vaccines.  (Hence why the Naval Hospital is my favorite. ;) )

Originally I had planned on using Dr. Bob Sears' alternate vaccine schedule.  DH and I were both irritated by the two hour wait and he and the nurse talked me into getting the full round of two month shots.  That's six vaccines versus the two I had planned on him receiving today.  BIG MISTAKE!  Liam was not a happy camper.  He was inconsolable.  His legs were so swollen and red.  His thighs were the same size as his ankels, literally.  It was so sad.  A little Tylenol and a lot of rest and he seems to be a much happier baby.  Hopefully tomorrow he'll be back to normal.

Needless to say, there are a few things I learned from this experience.  First, trust your instincts.  Mommas know their babies and we should follow our heart when it comes to these matters.  Even if the hubby or the nurse thinks you're crazy!  I had decided on the alternate vaccine schedule and I will return to it.  No more than two shots at a time for Liam.  It's just what's best for our baby.  Second, give your little one a dose of Tylenol about an hour before the shots.  It really will help prevent the pain so that no matter how many shots they get, they'll hopefully be a little happier afterwards.

Of course, you should always consult your doctor and do what you think is best for your little one.  Like I said, trust your instincts.  Hindsight is 20/20, but I really wish I'd gone with my gut.  In the future, I'll listen to the advice, but this mommy will not be swayed from her decision.

**EDIT** Below is Dr. Sears' vaccine schedule:
Please use this list as a tool to disuss vaccinating with your pediatrician.
Dr. Sear's Alternative Vaccine Schedule
  • 2 months: DTaP, Rotavirus
  • 3 months*: Pc, HIB
  • 4 months: DTaP, Rotavirus
  • 5 months*: Pc, HIB
  • 6 months: DTaP, Rotavirus
  • 7 months*: Pc, HIB
  • 9 months: Polio (IPV)
  • 12 months: Mumps, Polio (IPV) 
  • 15 months: Pc, HIB
  • 18 months: DTaP, Chickenpox
  • 2 years: Rubella, Polio (IPV)
  • 2 1/2 years*: Hep B, Hep A (start Hep B at birth if any close relatives or caregivers have Hep B)
  • 3 years: Hep B, Measles
  • 3 1/2 years*: Hep B, Hep A
  • 4 years: DTaP, Polio (IPV)
  • 5 years: MMR
  • 6 years: Chickenpox
  • 12 years: Tdap, HPV
  • 12 years, 2 months*: HPV
  • 13 years: HPV, Meningococcal (once Meningococcal vaccine is approved for age 2, Dr. Sears will move it there and delay Hep B by 6 months)
Please note, they do not break up the MMR vaccine anymore so use your judgment when administering it.  

Sunday, November 14, 2010

My Sick Wishlist

Today I'm sick.  I'm crabby and needy and sick.  And there are a host of things I want when sick.  Of course, I want to feel better, but here is a list of things that would help me feel better today:

1.  A quiet house - Ha!  Ok, we can all stop laughing now!  Let a woman dream!

2.  Someone to run and pick up everything I want - If only I had a personal assistant!

3.  A  nap - Ha!  Try that in a house full of boys!

4.  Diet gingerale - Because I'd rather save my sugar and calories for other things on the list.  See #5

5.  Donuts - I know they will not help my weight loss goal, but they sound fabulously delish right now!

6.  Chicken noodle soup - Comfort classic and we're fresh out

7.  Control of the clicker - Because cheesy chick flicks would be much better than syfy and action movies

8.  Tea - with milk and two equals. 

9.  Cozy PJs - Yep, I don't plan on getting out of them today

10.  Warm socks or slippers - Because cold feet get us nowhere!

I'd include a picture, but no one wants to see my sick self.  I've got a stuffy nose, a sore throat and a sty in my eye!  Here's to hoping my wishlist comes true and I'm better soon even if it doesn't!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Miscellany Monday

1)  Hiatus - So I've been on a bit of a hiatus this past week.  Life has been busy.  My hubby came home, my parents are in town and I have an infant.  Busy is a good thing, especially when I am blessed with time with family!  I guess the blog can wait!

2)  Dedication - We managed to sneak in a baby dedication yesterday!  I was so excited to get this in before the hubs deploys and while my parents were in town.  It was very special and Liam got his first Bible.  Thank you to First Baptist Jacksonville for accommodating us on a busy Sunday!

3) Harvey Mansion - We ate at the Harvey Mansion in New Bern last night.  Oh.  My.  Goodness.  So delish!!!!  I had a lamb shank ossu busso and it was A-MAZ-ING!  I highly recommend you check out this supposedly haunted spot and enjoy their fabulous cuisine!  It's a little pricey, but totally worth it!  (And they have an early bird menu till 6:30pm that you can save a little cash with if you're worried about the price!)

4)  Day Late and a Dollar Short - Yep, I'm posting on a Tuesday!  It's just that kind of week!  But I love my fussbucket and am thankful my parents are here to help!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Miscellany Monday

Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters

Happy Monday Everyone!

1)  Crazy day!  So today was just nuts!  Liam was fussy.  Very, very fussy.  And contrary to popular belief, I am not lying about this!  I know he's a happy baby, or at least appears so in my photos, but he isn't always that happy!  After all, who take photos of their babies screaming their heads off?  (I'll admit, I took one...)

2)  Cutest Knight & Dragon Ever!  Nuff said!

3)  Wine Lessons - She might kill me, but I'm featuring my friend Jennie in this post!  I love Jennie, but she had never opened a wine bottle before.  Oh, the shock and horror!  So, I deemed it my responsibility to teach her!  The kids watched "How To Train a Dragon" and the mommies had "mommy time" in the dining room.  It's always great to catch up with friends, but it's even better with a glass of wine!
Jennie's birthday wine ready for the tasting!

I taught her how to use the "ghetto" opener!

And now we can drink the wine!

4)  Eleven Weeks - Liam was 11 weeks on Sunday.  He was adorable in his "1st Boo" onsie.  What a pity he only gets to wear it once.  I still find it a little ironic that I have a child who can wear orange. ( I would look like a pumpkin if I did!)

5) Thumbsucker! Yep, it's official, Liam is a thumbsucker!  I hoped it wouldn't be, but far be it from my infant to listen to me.  I'm already looking for tips on how to break it!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Cake In A Jar

This is my all-time favorite homemade treat to send in care packages when my hubby is deployed.  It stays moist and fresh until it's opened and enjoyed!  Recently a few friends have asked me how to make the infamous cake in a jar so I thought I'd post the instructions right here for everyone to see. 

This really is simple!   You just need a box of your favorite cake mix, the ingredients on the package and nonstick spray.  So, here goes:

1.  Preheat oven according the directions on the box.

2.  Choose your favorite boxed cake mix or recipe and prepare according to the directions.  (I made my cake today in the WW fashion with a can of diet soda instead of the oil and eggs.  Shhhh...don't tell the Marines receiving these! ;) )

3.  Liberally spray inside of clean, wide mouthed Mason jars with Pam, or other nonstick spray.

4.  Fill jars halfway with batter.

5.  Place on cookie sheet and into oven to bake for about 30 minutes.  (The cookie sheet simply makes it easier to get the jars out of the oven.) 

6.  Place lids in boiling water while cakes are baking.

7.  When cake is done, remove from oven and place lids on jars one at a time.  (I use tongs to pull them out of the boiling water.)  Then screw on second part of lid.

8.  Listen for a "ping" as the jar cools which lets you know the lid is sealed.

9.  Once jars have cooled the cake will pull away from the jar slightly, but it should slide out easily.  (So long as you got wide mouth jars!)

10.  When you pack it up be sure to include a tub of frosting, plastic forks and knives, paper plates and to bubble wrap it for it's journey overseas!

Cody's favorite part of the process is that I usually save a little batter to make cupcakes or a small cake for us to enjoy at home!  He has been waiting "forever" for me to make these cakes so he can enjoy them.  I made cupcakes today.  Yummy!

Next I'm going to try banana bread and see how that bakes up!  Here's to all the military members overseas.  May they enjoy a little piece of home as often as possible!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Thin Down Thursday - Week 7

Weight Loss: -1.6

Struggles: The baby has been very fussy and clingy lately.  Does not make fitting in exercise easily.

Non-Scale Victories: I tracked all week and met my goal of exercising three times this week!

Goal for next week: Exercise four days this week.  I figure one more day shouldn't be too hard to fit in.

Reflections: Wow, what a difference a work out makes!  I can't believe how great this week was!  I haven't seen a number like this week's since my first week of WW.  I'm so stoked!  My new goal is to exercise four days this week.  And of course to continue tracking!  These things are obviously working!  I'm beyond excited and motivated!  Hopefully this will continue.  One week until the ball so every little bit helps me fit into my dress!  Until next week!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Miscellany Monday

Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters

1)  Super fun weekend, but super exhuasting!  The in-laws were in town and we always have a blast with Mimi and Paw Paw!

2)  Mike's Farm - Went to Mike's Farm for the first time this weekend.  Liam was not fond of being woken up from his nap for his first hayride.  This made for cranky pictures in the pumpkin patch.  Oh well, it was still fun.  He got an itty bitty pumpkin and Cody searched for a tall one!

Liam's First Hayride

Picking a pumpkin with his Paw Paw

Cody loves his "tall" pumpkin

3)  Dinner Theater - Each year Cody's school does a dinner theater fundraiser.  The stars of the show are the fourth and fifth graders.  It's a fun evening and amazing to see what a bunch of 8-11 year old kids can do!  We are very blessed to have a fabulous music teacher who is passionate about his job and make these opportunities possible for our kids.  (I was going to post a video, but it just doesn't seem to want to load, so I give up!)

4)  Halloween Party - The boys got dressed up for our squadron Halloween party.  Cody had a blast jumping on the jumper, popping bubble wrap and playing football in the hanger.

5)  Sick - I've been battling being sick for a week now.  I am so ready to feel healthy again.  I know that lack of sleep is probably not helping, although I think Liam sleeps pretty well for a 10 week old.  However, when you're sick you need extra sleep and that just isn't happening here!

6)  Ten Weeks - My baby boy is ten weeks old!  I can't believe how quickly he's growing.  Yes, I know I say this every week, but with how quickly babies change I am constantly in amazement at the difference in him from week to week!

7) Weekend Roundup - I'm realizing that's what these posts have become.  It's a great opportunity to share our weekend in a nutshell since we're normally so busy throughout the weekend that we don't get to post!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Thin Down Thursday - Week 6

Weight Loss: -0.4

Struggles: Being sick with digestive issues for half the week.

Non-Scale Victories: My pants definitely feel loser.  I've still got a ways to go before I fit in my pre-pregnancy size, but my "fat pants" are a little loser.  Every inch, or centimeter even, is one step towards meeting my goal! Oh, and I did I mention I did great at tracking?  So proud of myself!  More info on that below.

Goal for next week: Exercise three days this week.  Trying to build it into my routine and not make excuses.  (i.e. The baby is hungry, the baby's diaper needs changed, etc...)

Reflections: So this week was interesting.  Looking back at the week I did pretty well at tracking.  I only skipped two days this past week!  I will continue working on tracking this week so that I get into the habit of tracking.  They say it takes three weeks to build a habit so I will do my best to stick with it!  I am so grateful for the iPhone ap which allows me to track on the go, or even when stuck on the couch nursing the little man.  It's a lifesaver!

I'm disappointed in my loss this week.  It's a loss and I have to be satisfied with that, but it's not what I was hoping for.  I worked very hard to stay on plan and track what I ate this week.   I didn't get a ton of exercise in with being sick, but you would think that being sick would have helped me drop the weight.  It's very frustrating, but a loss is a loss.  I just have to remind myself that every little step is a step in the right direction.   

I'm choosing to focus on exercise this week because I have really slacked since having Liam.  I walked almost every day I was pregnant with him so I should at least be continuing that!  I also need to exercise and tone up to fit into my dress for the Marine Corps Ball this year.  I decided I didn't want to spend money on a new dress this year since it's our sixth ball so I could easily wear something no one here has seen.  Plus, it's good incentive to fit into something I already own.  It won't be last years dress since that was at my official pre-pregnancy weight, but it will still require some work to get into the dress I plan to wear!

P.S.   A little off topic, but you have to see my cute little blogging buddy today!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Wordless Wednesday - Furbaby Edition

Oh the life of a dog.  Do you think Shadow, the bigger one, could be any more relaxed?

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


Sometimes I just want to watch my baby sleep.  On my lap, in his crib, in his bouncer.  I love watching his peaceful little face.  I love his periods of active sleep.  I love the rise and fall of his chest. 

Snoozing on my lap at three days old.
But, sometimes I think I should be making better use of what little free time I have.  I should be working out.  I should be doing the dishes.  I should throw in a load of laundry.  I should dust the house.  I should bake cake in a jar to send to the Marines. 

Almost a month old
And yet, I just stare at my little man in awe.  Feeling blessed to be his mom.  Amazed that he is a little me and a little Den.  Grateful that God gave us the most precious gift, a child.  And I say to heck with it all...this is a good use of my time!  There will always be dishes, laundry and working out to do, but Liam will not always be this little.  I need to eat up every minute while I can!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Thin Down Thursday

And so begins a new chapter in my blogging life.  A very personal one.  I figured I am not the only new mom who is struggling to lose the baby belly.  I know it just falls off for some people and they bounce right back to their pre-pregnancy body, but I am not one of those people.  I have lots of baby weight to lose and a lot of clothes that DO NOT fit in my closet.  I have joined Weight Watchers to try to help me through this journey since they have helped me before.  (Lose the freshman 15, happily married 20, etc.)  I also like that they do account for breastfeeding, even if that's a struggle, and a whole other post, for me.  I'm finding this journey harder than before.  I always have a harder time when Den is home so the first few weeks were tough.  But it's also hard because I have to get rid of all the bad habits I let creep back in while I was pregnant.  I love ice cream.  It is delish!  I love pumpkin donuts.  Yum!  Oh, and can I just mention the french fry craving I had when pregnant with Liam....  But these do nothing for my waistline.

My current motivation is to look somewhat good for our Marine Corps Ball in a month.  I know I can't undo nine months of pregnancy weight in one month, but hopefully I can take a bite out of it and start the process to feeling good about myself again.

So each Thursday I will post how I did that week.  No where will you find my weight.  (Sorry, I have my limits and insecurities so it will not be posted on the web for all to see!)  However, I will post how much I lost, or didn't lose.  I will tell you my struggles, my little non-scale victories and any tricks I learned this week.

Thin Down Thursday Stats - Week Five*

Weight Loss: - 0.8 (Trying to remind myself that every little bit adds up and I am not a contestant on the Biggest Loser here!)

Struggles: A very busy weekend with a lot of eating out!

Non-Scale Victories: Bouncing back from a hard weekend to get on track during the week.  Actually cooking a meal for Cody and I that didn't involve the word "cuisine" and a microwave twice this week!

Goal for next week: Track everything I eat so I am accountable to what is going in my mouth!

* I am starting with week five as it correlates to the number of weeks I have been doing Weight Watchers.  I'll never remember what week it is unless it matches the week in my WW book!

So how about you new moms?  How are you feeling about your postpartum body?  What are you doing to lose the baby belly?  How are you feeling about the process?

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

I Believe

...that the smiles and laughter of my boys make the trials of life worthwhile

...that God answers prayers and miracles happen every day

...that a good glass of wine can make even the darkest day fabulous

....that nothing is sexier than a man in dress blues  (Well, really, than MY husband in blues, but I'm biased!)

...that military wives are a special breed of women.  There is just something different about us that makes us capable of being a family, when the head of our household, our best friend, our partner is gone

....that I have the cutest baby on the planet

...that I rocked childbirth thanks to the Bradley method and my fabulous hubby

...that I've experienced a lot of issues with breastfeeding that I didn't expect

...that puppies are in tune with how you're feeling 

...that I miss home

...that I am blessed beyond belief with great family and friends all over the world

Wordless Wednesday

I'd like to introduce you to my husband's mistress.  Her name is Harley.  She is black and wears lots of chrome.  He asks more about her than anyone else now that he is gone.  He even has the audacity to ask me to kiss her goodnight!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Miscellany Monday

Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters

1) Surprise! I'm surprised I have time to blog today! Our weekend has been super fun, but super busy!

2) Football Roundup - Cody's football team won their game on Saturday! They are doing so well this season! I'm so proud! He had a great tackle that he is calling the "game winning tackle"! We celebrated afterwards with a fun BBQ with his teammates. It's always fun to party with friends and the day just flew by!

3) Mumfest - We had a great time with our P'cola family at Mumfest. (Well, minus our hubbies!) Leann snapped THE CUTEST photo of her Alex with Cody! You all must see it! Liam however, spent most of the day sleeping.

Cody playing with his "cousin" Alex

4)  Sleep - Liam slept through the night for the first time at eight weeks!  It might have been one of the happiest moments of my life to have eight hours of uninterrupted sleep!  Hoping it continues!

5)  Eight Weeks - Where does the time go?  Liam is now eight weeks old!  I cannot believe how quickly he is growing.  His new trick is that he laughs when I tickle his belly.  It is adorable!

6)  Long Distance Relationships - They stink!  'Nuff said!  Love and miss my husband mucho!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Mommy Brain

When you're pregnant you seem to become extra forgetful.  Everyone claims to have "preggo brain".  Unfortunately, it doesn't go away, it just changes  names.  I now have "mommy brain".  While it's a fabulous excuse for being forgetful or absent minded, it's also slightly embarassing and inconvenient.  It's only 8:30 in the  morning and I already have two prime examples of mommy brain.

First, I was looking through information to register Liam with our insurance.  I have to go down to the office today and was looking through things in his baby book where I had stored his temporary birth certificate.  I thought his footprints from the hospital were there, but they weren't.  I start freaking out that we don't have them!  I remember my friend Michelle showing them to me in the delivery room.  But between the rest of the delivery process and Liam not pinking up fast enough and being taken to the nursery I wasn't sure exactly where they were.  I thought we had them, but there was that moment of panic.  Fortunately my "mommy brain" cleared up long enough for me to look in a folder that had my pre-registration info for the hospital in it and there they were!  I knew I'd kept that folder for a good reason!

Second, I made myself a yummy and healthy breakfast this morning of oatmeal with banana and a serving of golden raisins in it!  In the process of mixing in my mushed up banana and raisins the fussbucket went at it.  I went to change him, walked around with him for a bit, put him in his bouncer and then went to the restroom.  When I came back out to the living room I smelled something burning.  What????  Yep, I left the burner on so there is now a layer of burnt oatmeal on the bottom of the pot.  That should be fun to clean!  But at least what survived my "mommy brain" is tasty!

Now to go wolf down said remaining breakfast so I can feed the fussbucket!  Hopefully my "mommy brain" moments for the day are all checked off and I can function like a normal human being!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Miscellany Monday

Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters

1)  I should be napping, but I'm not.  I'm so tired!  Liam thought last night was playtime.  If  I wasn't holding him he was screaming his head off.  I finally put him in the bouncer and went back to bed.  Now he is still sleeping.   Why am I blogging instead of sleeping?  I'm a glutton for punishment I guess.

2)  I really need to work on my golf game.  That is the moral of the weekend.  Had a fabulous visit with the in-laws.  We went to the Golfin Dolphin on Saturday since Cody's game was canceled and hit up the driving range and played a game of mini golf.  Liam slept the whole time and I was reminded how long it's been since I golfed.   To be quite honest, the last time I golfed was pre-Liam.

3)  Liam is seven weeks old!  Time is flying by.  He is so much more interactive now, it's crazy!  I love that he laughs and smiles back at me.  It melts my heart.

4)  Donuts.  I really want to run out to Dunkin Donuts and get a pumpkin donut.  But I won't.  Why?  Because I need to lose the baby weight and a pumpkin donut will do nothing for that goal.  But man, they are so good!

5)  I love this weather!  Now if only all my fallish clothes fit.  But they don't.  Hopefully soon I'll be back in my jeans.  But for now I'm enjoying the cooler temps.   I don't even mind the gloomy weather out when I can sit at home with a cup of tea and enjoy it.  It reminds me of Dublin and San Francisco.  I miss both of those cities more than you know.  Maybe I'll be nostalgic and look through old pictures today.  That sounds like a good compliment to my cup of tea.
Dublin, 2002

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Gretchen Proof Baby Gear!

I am not the most coordinated person in the world.  'Nuff said.  I was so excited about using slings, wraps and carriers to have my hands free with Liam.  I had a particular wrap I really wanted to try, but it seems it is far too complicated for me.  It scared me off of all wraps, slings and carriers so I haven't used any of them for the past six and a half weeks.  (Well, besides the one huge FAIL of an attempt to use my wrap...)  Since there is a monsoon outside I decided to try out my Baby Bjorn.  Wow!  What a difference.  Either I'm getting more sleep and it shows, or it is immensely more user friendly than my wrap.  I was able to use it without even reading the directions!  So you know it must be easy! 

The best part was that after putting Liam in it he had such a fun time taking a tour of the house, checking everything out, loading the dishwasher and then, falling asleep!  He was so adorable sleeping on my chest and I wasn't stuck sitting on the couch or walking in circles with nothing else to do!

Even better, when he was out like a light I was able to move him from the Baby Bjorn to his pack n play without any trouble!  Miracles do happen!

I cannot thank the makers or the givers of the Baby Bjorn enough!  I am a hands free mama now when I need to be!  So, thanks a million!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

Ok, I can't go without any words.  So here is my precious wee man at six weeks old.  Isn't he cute?

Friday, September 24, 2010

Fall Favorites!

Today is the first official day of fall.  It doesn't much feel like it with temps in the 90's outside, but hopefully fall weather will soon be on it's way.  I love fall, and I love lists, so here are my top ten favorite things about fall.

1.  Cooler temps!  That's right, I am over the 80s, 90s and 100 degree temps we've had, not to mention the humidity.  At this point I'd be happy to be able to wear jeans and a t-shirt, but in NC that is still a ways off!

2.  Football!  I love me some football!  Whether it's watching the Saints, the USC Trojans or Cody's 49ers play I love cheering the teams on!

3.  Pumpkins!  Whether it be pumpkin patches, pumpkin donuts, pumpkin pie, pumpkin muffins...I love it all!

4.  Halloween.  I love Halloween for two reasons.  First,  who doesn't love all the fun Halloween candy.  Yum!  Second, I love seeing what all the kids dress up as.  I have no desire to dress up myself, but I love their costumes.  I can't wait to dress Liam up for his first Halloween!  He's going to be a dragon.  So cute!  I'm trying to convince Cody to be a knight, and not one of the jedi variety either!  How cute would it be to have a knight and a dragon out trick-or-treating?

5.  Sweaters.  As a So Cal girl my obsession with sweaters is a little odd.   Can't explain why, but I do love them!  I have way too many for the climates I live in, but at least I get a little use out of them here in NC. 

6. New TV!  What can I say, I'm a bit of a TVaholic I guess.  It's only gotten worse since I got married to a fellow TVaholic.  Tonight alone I'm excited for the Bones and Grey's Anatomy season premieres.  And that is just tonight!

7.  Crock Pot Meals.  There's something comforting about the smell of dinner simmering away throughout the day.  And knowing that it will be ready after football practice or whatever else we have going on is a weight off my shoulders.  Warm, cozy, comfort food makes the season.

8.  Wine shipments.  What can I say, I love wine.  We are members of Opolo Vineyards in Paso Robles, CA and normally get two shipments in the fall from them.  Delicious vino puts a smile on my face!

Check out Opolo HERE!

9.  Marine Corps Birthday Ball.  Every year the Marine Corps celebrates it's birthday with a party.  Each squadron hosts a ball to celebrate the heritage and traditions of the Corps.  It's an awesome experience and we love attending.  Plus, my man is just handsome as can be in his dress blues!

10.  Thanksgiving.  I love Thanksgiving.  I love turkey.  I love cranberry sauce.  I love stuffing.  Most of all, I love all the wonderful people and things I have been blessed with.  I am a lucky girl!

Monday, September 20, 2010

What a Difference a Month Makes!

Liam is now one month old!  I cannot believe how time has flown.  He is so much more alert than he was when we brought him home.  I love to see him smile and listen to him coo.  (I could still do without the crying! ;) )  He is now in size 1 diapers and is quickly growing out of his newborn clothes.  Probably because he is tipping the scales at around 10 lbs!  Who would have thought our little one would gain two pounds between his two week doctor's visit and his one month visit!  It's just crazy!  For a fun comparison, here are two pictures of him in the same newborn outfit, which barely covers his tummy anymore!  The comparison definitely shows off how much little man has grown in his first month of life!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The Dog Ate My ________!

No, not my homework, the dog ate my nipple shield!  Yep, left it sitting on the end table after feeding the fussbucket (aka Liam) when we ran to pick up C from football practice and grab dinner.  (The immense failure at cooking due to my exhaustion meant a not so healthy fast food meal...again.)  When we got home the hubby says, "What is that?" in alarm and is analyzing the floor.  I thought for sure there was a giant bug on the ground, but no, it was the nipple shield. In pieces.  Oh joy.  Since we took our roadtrip up to PA fussbucket has been, well, fussy about latching so the nipple shield is my saving grace.  I was nearly reduced to tears when finding out the dog ate it.  The fact that the dog even found this appealing is gross and hilarious at the same time!  So first thing this morning after I have C out the door to school we are running out to Target to pick up a new one, or maybe two so we have a backup...just in case.

And because one "tragedy" isn't enough for a night when you're working on a couple hours of sleep, I joined Den in the "showers of love" category last night.  Not only did Liam shower me, he shot it up and over the changing table and all over the car seat which was sitting right next to the pack n play.  So, we had to disassemble the car seat to wash it all.  Good times.  Now I am left with the fun task of putting it all back together.  Mind you, with Den about to leave this is probably something I need to figure out anyways.  Can't depend on him for these things as I'm sure it will need to be washed for many reasons in the future.  But seriously, on a morning when I want to run an errand ASAP?  Probably not the time for me to read instructions and struggle with a car seat!

And so continue the joys of parenthood.  However, when I look at my little man's face and he cuddles up on my chest it's all worth it!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Four Weeks!

Liam is four weeks old today!  I cannot believe how much our lives have changed and how much he has changed in so short a time!  To celebrate we took some pictures.  I'm no professional, but I think they came out great!  Thank God for the little bit of editing I can do in iPhoto.  Our little man is growing and I'm grateful we can document every moment so we can remember how little he is.