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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Today I confess...

-I am being a terrible contributor over at Poop Whisperer. I can barely crank out one post a week over there, I have a ton I need and want to write for them, but instead I sit and type this. Not to mention, having corporate blogging as my at-home job, too--you know, the one that makes me money, also kind of takes the fun out of my regular blogging.

-I'm thinking about only writing here a few times a week versus everyday. Well, granted--I know I don't always "write" everyday (ie: posting pics), but I at least post something 5 days a week, and often times, 6 or more. I'm not posting because I *have* to--I just want to, and feel this looming need to do it. But I don't really want it to be like that.

-I unfollow people on Instagram when they have posted approximately 394830948 pictures in one day of themselves, in the mirror, and every single one looks identical. Look, I like a good mirror picture. I take them sometimes, too. But don't go and overkill it. 

-On that same note, while I appreciate some OOTD ("Outfit of the day") pictures or blog posts....I mean, every single day? That's a bit much. I'm glad you like your outfit that much to show us every day. I mean, that's great. Fabulous, really. Also, why does everyone (and sometimes I catch myself doing it) stand pigeon-toed in the mirror while taking self-portraits? Did you notice that, too? Now you'll notice. Trust me. Also, on the outfit blog-posts, some peeps kind of look like they're about to tip over with those fancy-schmancy poses. You'll now notice this too. Promise.

-Emeline has now officially entered the picky-eater stage. I remember so naively writing one of her monthly posts back-when saying what a great eater she was....how she wasn't picky at all....and how I hope it stayed that way. WRONG. My hoping didn't help, apparently. She pretty much hates everything that I'd like to feed her. 

At least she looks cute when she's refusing her lunch. Yea?

Yepppp. Those are tears in her eyes.

-My good friend, Jess wrote a post today about Toddlerhood and it's pretty fabulous. Go check it out

-Whenever I have a ton of things to do, I sit and do nothing instead. My closet is packed to the brim with clean clothes, all folded, but ALL OVER THE FLOOR. They need to be put away, in a major way. My bedroom is a mess, I can't remember the last time I cleaned my kitchen floor, and I let the dishwasher sit unemptied yesterday for an entire day (I never do that). I am putting all bets on the fact that my Erin Condren planner is on the way to me this week and that maybe, just maybe it'll bring a little sanity to my life. 

-I didn't buy trip insurance for our vacation to the Florida Keys. Oops. In light of all this hurricane talk, not to mention the new ones out there at sea swirling around, you'd THINK I would have done that. The problem is this, every time I look into it? It confuses me. A lot. There, I admit it. It almost looks like they cover NOTHING in the end and the fact of jumping through hoops to only recoup a little bit of money sounds incredibly annoying. I am banking on prayers & the fact that God knows we needs this sooooo badly that hurricanes will stay away. Call it naive. Call it hope. Call it what you will. That's what we get for planning a trip during hurricane season. 

-I'm planning my next tattoo, and it's going to be a large one. I don't particularly care about anyone's views on tattoo's, I love them. Like, love-love-love them. I need more of them in my life.

-I haven't put my camera down since it came. I'm amazed by it, and I'm trying to recoup the time I lost while waiting for it to get here. I may, however, develop carpel-tunnel because it's SO heavy. But I know I'll get used to that.

-I have developed a major love for dyeing my own hair.  I went even darker again last night. I used to do it all the time, then I stopped for a while, and now I'm back on that kick since I'm sporting The Dark Hair Look. I absolutely love my hair dark and it makes me feel 1,000x prettier than light hair ever did. I'm secretly jealous of all of you naturally-exotic, dark & gorgeous types. 

***

Go ahead. Confess. It feels great ;)

Wednesday's should be....wordless?


Nope. We don't have any fun at all around here. 

***

Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

It came! It came! My camera came!

I just feel so much better with a huge hunk of camera in front of my face. It feels....so....homey. And I am finally, finally feeling that again. You don't even know how weird it was not having a camera at my fingertips for the last three weeks.

Honestly? My iPhone didn't do my life justice (sorry, it's true), not to mention my disk space on my phone clogged up like 3290381 times. 

Needless to say, I'm so glad to have a hunk 'o camera in my life again. 


A few of you have asked about what I ended up with camera-wise. We decided it was time for an upgrade from my little old-faithful Rebel XS, and now I have the Canon 7D. I'm ridiculously stoked about it. And have so much more to learn, even. I mean, yes--a dslr is a dslr--but there are a lot of new things on this camera and I can't wait to mess with it more.

I need to dig out my old Photography class lessons from my college courses, for real. I have some brushing up to do.

I also have started to save my pennies, sell old things I don't need, and whatever else I can do to save up for some new lenses to pair with her. Luckily, my other lenses all work because my previous camera was a Canon too. But, lenses are as addicting as tattoo's :)


Anyway. I'll leave you with a few pictures, because--I can.



It was about time I get to show some nicer photos around this place again.

***

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, August 29, 2011

A little DIY wreath action

This weekend while prepping for Miss. Irene, I got bit by the craft bug. When it happens, it happens. There's no denying it.

Lucky for me, I had an 18" straw wreath I bought over a month ago sitting in my living room, needing some desperate love and attention. 

I'd been eyeing up some yarn wreaths on Pinterest for a while, knowing I wanted to make something involving yarn-wrapping and then adding my own fabric & felt flowers. 

Well--here's what I ended up with. Please note: I am beyond bummed I don't have my nice camera to take photos with yet. These are iPhone pictures and they do NOT do it justice. 


Step 1: Get a wreath or whatever you want to use as a wreath (I know people are using flexible tubing now, too). Start wrapping with your favorite yarn. I had this in my closet from my old scarf-making days. I like it because it has different textures to it.

Step 2: Keep wrapping. It takes freakin' forever. Make sure not to leave gaps. 

Step 3: Admire the fact that you wrapped that about 2938203982 times and how nice it looks.

Step 4: Make fabric flowers/felt flowers*, add lace & whatever else you want to make areas of your wreath stand out. Lay things out before pinning down/or gluing down. *You can find tutorials all over the internet on flower making if you don't know how. 

Step 5: Use fabric, ribbon or lace as a way to hang. Step back and admire your good work. :)


I may have this intense urge to make wreaths for all over the house, and every time/season/holiday of the year now. 


Happy wreath making.

**Update**

Pictures with a nice camera. Woop!




Sunday, August 28, 2011

Hey-Irene. Are you done yet?

We're here, and doing fine. Somehow, in the midst of thousands upon thousands of power outages, our little townhouse development managed to keep power. We had it flick on and off, and even go off for a few hours in the middle of the night. But, we were able to have a hot breakfast this morning, and--coffee? Yea. That, too.

Oh thank heavens.

Meanwhile all my family is dealing with over 12 hours of power outages so far. I've offered up our house for showers/food/comfort, but so far, no one is out on the roads at all and I'm not even sure it's safe to drive with wind like this.

Overall, the storm here was less than we expected, but last night with the tornado warnings, I admit I got legitimately nervous. The weather lady came on, saying that there was a tornado heading right for our exact city at 10:59pm. I have never, in my life felt such a serious urgency. We don't live in an area with a lot of extreme weather (although this week? earthquake...hurricane...tornado? Umm. WHAT?) so I tend to air on the side of caution when these things happen near us.

I scooped Eme up from her cozy crib slumber and we went to the basement. We watched the news for a few more minutes and I just felt this sick feeling of nervousness. Honestly? I think a lot of that comes with this responsibility of taking care of someone other than yourself. Being a parent now just takes that to a whole new level.

We huddled in the basement, with some couch cushions & pillows, meanwhile trying to keep my family without power up to date on what the news was telling us. Thankfully the tornadoes took a turn and we didn't face any real issues with that. I just felt this nudging that it was better to be safe than sorry. So we did.

Today we're still dealing with some seriously strong winds and rain...and praying that as this storm keeps making its way up the coast that everyone stays safe. 

xoxo

Friday, August 26, 2011

Umm....yikes?

So we have a hurricane coming our way. I know we're inland a bit, but we're definitely in the so-called areas of extreme/high weather conditions this weekend.

I'm not gonna lie, it can be a bit scary thinking about it all. I never would have cared all that much prior to having a child. But having a little person in my care? All my responsibility? A little different, and definitely adds a level of worry.

We aren't in evacuation territory, but it seems as though we are looking at extreme winds, loss of power for god-knows-how-long, and of course, torrential downpours/flooding. We'll see what actually happens, because you just never know what'll end up going down or if the storm will head out to sea. We're in the Sunday AM red area.



If it's quiet around here, you know why. A lack of power, a potential loss of cell phone service--oy ve. This could shape up to be a long and quite interesting weekend, as I also have a little nephew who was expected to have arrived by now. 

So, keep all the people in harms way in your thoughts & prayers---and I'll see you on the flip side.

xoxo

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Tug. Pull. Stretch.

Lately, that's how I've been feeling. In a major way, I can feel myself being tugged and pulled in all different directions.

Declan and I have a lot going on right now in our lives. A lot. I know it's easy to judge others situations without knowing the full picture and think 'yea right, they have a lot going on?'---I've been guilty of doing that to others. But, how wrong of me--really.

The truth is, we very rarely have the full picture on all the goings-on of everyones lives. For lots of reasons. Sometimes because there are personal things going on that just simply cannot be shared. Sometimes because your way of coping and dealing with the busyness of life is being humorous, or maybe even avoiding talking about it all together. Or maybe, like me, you'd rather use your space (my blog in this case) as an outlet--to remind yourself of the things that bring you joy (like taking photos), or to hold true to the things that make me, me. Because sometimes, in the midst of chaos, busy-days and schedules, you still have to have time for you.

If you give and give and give of yourself--what's left of you? You know what I mean?

The other night I was just feeling super overwhelmed with life. I cried (yes, okay, sometimes I cry.) to my husband about how I felt like I wasn't doing anything "great". I absolutely suck at the balancing act sometimes.

I struggle to know how to do it all, and to do it well. I'm struggling with the work-at-home balance. And then being a great mom, too. I'm struggling with being able to keep my house up. Or, hell, even managing to cook dinner. I'm struggling at being a good wife. I'm letting friends down, and I've lost friends because of that it. I have a lot of responsibilities with our Church...helping do some admin, we lead a small group during the week, and Declan is in charge of the finance team. It's a small start-up Church, and the work that comes with that? Endless. I'm struggling trying to keep the new connections we're making. Having a husband (who is awesome) yet in a stressful time of the year with work, too. I feel like time is just running by FAST. I worry that we aren't doing enough as a family. And making memories. And then add in a whole other slew of things that I can't even write about. It just gets...overwhelming.

Everyone is overwhelmed. I get that, and I respect it. We all have different seasons of our lives. Some are way less stressful than others.

Right now? It's a stressful one here. This season will pass...or at least look different. I'm confident of that.

One thing I've been thinking about lately is how everyone's situations are so unique to them. We all have different levels of tolerance, and what we can handle. It doesn't mean we should discount someone else's feelings or things they're going through because "I have it worse"-type thing. There is nothing more hurtful or annoying than someone with the I-have-to-one-up-you attitude. Nothing.

This is something even I'm working on being better at. Your feelings and stressors are valid. My feelings and stressors are also valid.

So, while I'm here in my own little tug-pull-stretch of life, I know lots of you are, too.

It's okay to vent about it. We'll get through it.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The gut instinct to laugh, why I like Dora, and REALLY? Way to make a girl feel all self conscious.

You know when the ketchup bottle is at the end of it's little ketchup-bottle life?

You know--you squeeze it, and in my husbands case, in desperate attempts to get whatever is left out of it because his beautiful, gorgeous, kind and loving (hehe) wife forgot to purchase a new one for her ketchup-loving husband.

We're all adults here, right? Well, you know that sound that ketchup makes--when it's on it's last leg?

Ahem. Yea. That one.

Well this weekend? We discovered that Emeline giggles hysterically when she hears it. 

And you know what my husband immediately says? "Why did you teach her that?!"

Say WHAT? You can blame her knowing how to say "1-2-3" on me, or her knowing her eyes, ears, nose, mouth, or her new words of "bible" and heck, even knowing the key dances in Dora the Explorer. But you absolutely may not blame me when our kid just naturally laughs at the ketchup bottle farts. Mmmk? Some things are just gut instincts.

****

Speaking of Dora. I really like that show for Eme. I don't really get all the parent hate of Dora. I mean, I get that if you sit there and watch the show intently, I'm sure its repetitive and annoying. Aren't all kid shows? That's exactly why I don't sit there and watch it. Luckily my living room and kitchen are basically connected and I can sit here with one eye on the dora-lovin' girl, yet pay no attention to what's going on. In fact, I just play Pandora.

And you see what else? I absolutely love the bits and pieces of Spanish she could potentially pick up on. For us, that's an important thing. See, we are in a community of friends and part of a multicultural church with a lot of Spanish speakers. They have already been teaching E little bits and pieces of spanish, so much in fact that she will pick up an imaginary phone and say, "HOLA!" (sometimes said like "hola-la!") sometimes before she even says "hiii!" And I love that.

So for us, we're Dora fans. It works. And I think she's quite adorable with her little blunt bob.

***

And really? Yesterday, 363 of you watched our Weight Watchers Vlog.  That is scary. Yet, only a few of you said a darn thing about it. Look. I don't mean to be all "OMG YOU DIDN'T COMMENT", but you could have at least been like, "Oh hey Katie, your hair looks nice". Or, "Wow, Susan, your face is so skinny!" You see? When you put yourself out there like that, a little feedback is nice. And then to see that so many people actually watched it (yes there are stats on that ish) and then didn't say anything? Makes a girl a little self-concious.

Just sayin'.

****

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

8 months on Weight Watchers...and a Vlog about it.

Sorry I went MIA yesterday. It's way, way, way unlike me to not post during the week, and even more unlike me to not post on a Monday.

But, the last few days I've been in the foulest of foul moods, and that does not translate well into writing. It was better to just stay away. I can hear your chorus of thankfulness through my computer screen. You're welcome.

---

Anyway, my sister & I got together yesterday and we decided it'd been way too long since we'd recorded a vlog about Weight Watchers. In fact, we went back and had a giggle at our first & second vlogs, and admired how our faces got progressively thinner. Hey, losing 40+ pounds will do that to you :)

This vlog just focuses on the difference we feel from the start of weight watchers until now (8 months later), and should hopefully be a little boost of encouragement to those of you just starting out, or a few months in. 


And lastly, I've recently updated the "Lose It" tab on my nav bar, where you can see updated weight loss pics, and the dreaded before's paired with it. If seeing my fat pictures after baby doesn't motivate you, I don't know what will.

***

Thanks again for your all your encouragement along the way, ladies. 

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Silent'ish Sunday. See also: Missing my camera like whoa.

It is absolutely killing me not having my camera. Literally, if this isn't a test in patience I don't know what is. Color me lame, but I miss my baybeeeee. I need my new baybee here like, yesterday.


So this is a glimpse into our last few days through instagram pics.


Happy Sunday!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Saturday Morning Scene

Wanna link up?
1. Take a picture of your Saturday Morning Scene.
2. Blog about it.
3. Grab the button and add it to your post.
4. Add your (direct) link to the linky at the bottom.
5.Jump around and see what everyone's up to!
(Links that do not go to SMS will be deleted.)

Saturday Morning Scene


(Having trouble grabbing the button? Try highlighting the link, using "ctrl C" to copy & "ctrl V" to paste.)




Friday, August 19, 2011

Friday Fragments and such.

-If you live in my area or surrounding, you know we had one heck of a thunderstorm last night. It was NO joke. I am normally the girl who sleeps through storms, and all, "Whha? there was a storm last night?" (as in, clueless)--but not last night.

My house was shaking. The sky was an endless light show of lightening. The cracks of thunder were so loud that at one point Declan and I both SHOT OUT of bed and to our feet. I even started panicking the lightening had to have hit something close to us, and for sure something had to be on fire. I was officially freaked out.

I went to bed too late as it was, then the storm started, then it woke up my baby, and then my sister & I were texting scaredy-cat messages back and forth because of the flicking on and off power, and then my adrenaline was pumping so hardcore--so I didn't even attempt to fall asleep until after 2am. 

But then the awesome (read: not awesome at all) thing? Emeline decided to be up the rest of the night. I have no idea why other than it looks like that stupid eye tooth is finally poking through and it's probably pissing her off. 

So yea. I am sitting here, chugging my coffee...because today I'm playing the leading role in Mom Zombie. Effing A.

-I get to take Eme to not one, but two doctors appointments today. It will be SO!much!Fun!

*crickets*

Yea, it won't be. Her 15 month appointment is in an hour and a half, and then later this afternoon I'm taking her to the chiropractor to get her adjusted. Did you know that there is all sorts of research that lends to chiropractic care in infants being linked to reducing ear infections? Me neither. So I'm all about trying something like this before we visit the ENT. Not to mention, this particular chiropractor believes in it so much that he'll treat infants age 0-2 free of charge.

Um, hello? We are so there. I'll let you know how it goes.

-Hi my name is Katie and I was suckered into a major trend. Seriously, for weeks I have been seeing tweets & blog posts about the ErinCondren.com Life Planners. Like, an old school paper & pencil planner book. For your life. If you have no idea what I'm talking about, you're living under a rock. Go to the website & watch the video. Be warned that it may suck you in.*

Since I am SO not a type A planner girl--I would see the pictures, read the blog posts, and think "ha, I would so never use something like that" and then move on. 

But I made the big friggin' mistake last night of going to the website, and then I started designing my planner cover...and the next thing you know my finger clicked buy and my credit card number mysteriously got typed in. I DON'T KNOW HOW IT HAPPENED.

I was possessed.

You all are such bad influences on me.

I better use it, and it better be more than just a coloring book for Eme. 

***

On that note? Have a good one.

*If you do buy a planner, make sure to google coupon codes & promotions first. They are out there!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Where I talk about my love for braids.

I kind of have an obsession with braids, and not just the past few years, even when they've become all the hair craze. I honestly have loved them since I was little.

When I was in grade school, I taught myself how to french braid my own hair, by just practicing over and over and over again. 

In my teen years, I became the friend to go to when you wanted your hair braided. It was known that while I wasn't always "gentle" (come on, everyone knows that gentle braids fall out), my hairdo's always looked pretty fabulous.

In fact, I did many-an-updo for proms, miscellaneous school dances, for bridesmaids in weddings, and I even did my friends hair on her wedding day last summer. 
And look? Surprise, surprise....there was even a braid or two.

Anyway. All this to say---Pinterest has only made my love for hair grow stronger. And I pretty much adore all the awesome braids that are being pinned. They are seriously fabulous and it makes me wish I had a guinea pig (um, more like a person, with long flowing locks, I'm looking at you, sissy!) to practice all these fun ideas on.

Instead? I just have myself. And so that's what I do when I'm dying for a new mom-do. You know, when I didn't have time to shower, so some sort of hidethedirtyhair do needs to be in place.

Here are a few things I've tried recently.

[Also, how I wish I had my camera. These are all iPhone pictures and frankly, they suck.]

****

First, Chelsey at The Paper Mama always has really fun hair tutorials. That's where I got the general idea for this one. However, her hair is 10x cooler than mine and also much longer. Therefore I could not make mine look as awesome. But, the idea of two braids I adapted, and well--it's kind of fun. And the day I wore my hair like this my almost 5-year-old niece said, "Whoa, Aunt Katie! Your hair is so cool!" So I'll call that a win.



Then, I saw this idea on Pinterest, and I decided to try it. The verdict? I LOVE it. Although in the future I will keep the leftover part of my hair a bit wavy versus straight. 

It gives off such a fun little vibe. 

I still have to work on perfecting that one...but this was my first try.

And then yesterday, I was scouring Pinterest for yet again, more braid ideas. I saw this one and fell in love, because I love me a side pony, and I also ADORE any type of wrap/headband, etc (as you know). I'm all about the accessories.

So, since I have endless amounts of foldover elastic from my headband making days, that's what I used, and this is how I wore my hair yesterday.

  
***

So that's been the hair-fun I've been up to. Do any of you also use Pinterest for Hair Inspiration? What have you tried? Care to tell me how ridiculous I look? Don't you dare. 

Have a happy Thursday!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

You know what makes me smile?

When my husband says something that just makes my day.

Last night we were out at a short meeting for our small groups at our pastors house. Naturally, Emeline comes with us, and naturally it's hard for me to pay 100% attention to what's going on because I'm chasing said toddler around the house. Trying to keep her from breaking something. Finding lost sippy cups. Trying to keep her from pulling the dogs hair. Etc. You get it.

We come home, put Emeline down for bed. We go into our bedroom and let out a sigh of relief to get into our comfies (our slang for pjs) for the night.

Then he says..."hey babe?"

     "yea?"

"You know what I noticed tonight?"

   "what's that?"

"You are looking so good. Like, I was just watching you tonight thinking how skinny you are."

    "Oh yea?"

"Yea. You're hot."

Then I proceeded to do my you think I'm skinnnnnyyyyyyy, you think I'm sexxxyyyyyyy dance around the room. Because I'm classy like that.

But, seriously--he's such a good encourager. And I love him for that. And when he says things? He means them.

So, that. Made me smile last night.


***

Happy Wednesday.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Parketiquette?

I like going to the park. I do.

I thank God for parks. The chance to just throw your needs-to-expell-energy-kid in the car, a sippy cup of water, and your camera. Then you're good to go. It's free entertainment, and fresh air, and I like it. For her. And for me.

The thing is...I feel like there needs to be some general park etiquette in place sometimes. People live in their own little la-la lands, and perhaps I'm just way-too-intune with what's going down most the time? But, for serious, park-people. Watch your children.

One of the parks we go to has this tiny-little toddler playground, and then this massive, huge, awesome playground for the big kids. Honestly? If I were a 'big' kid I would want nothing to do with that tiny little nothing of a playground for the 'babies'. But, that's not the case here. It seems like these big honkin' kids always come a blazing through, practically knocking my little toddler girl over. And frankly, it's SO annoying.

The kids barely fit in this thing, yet they come pushing aside my little 2 foot nothing 15 month old? I get it. Kids are totally delusional to the outside world sometimes. But--please, go play on your amazeballs playground and leave us to the little dinky one, kthanksbye.

The playground bully. 

Don't.even.get.me.started.

Too late.

And where are this kids parents, you might ask? On the bench. Both of them. Reading magazines, and playing on their phones. Not noticing a damned thing. 

He's the kid who climbs up the slide the wrong way, purposefully, as other kids are trying to slide down correctly. He's the kid who runs around with his fake gun out pointing it at other little kids saying things like "BAM! YOU'RE DEAD!" He's the kid who tells the other kids they aren't allowed in the higher tower, because it's all his. And sometimes? He's the kid who actually touches & hits other kids on the playground.

Well I call BS on that. 

I get it. Kids will be mean sometimes. And even right there in front of us at times. But this particular case I witnessed? The parents didn't even peak their eyes up from their magazines. They seemed disinterested to even glance up, let alone make sure he wasn't being a little jerk to the other kids.

Now, Eme is young. Almost too young to get bullied on, except--I've seen it in bits already. It makes my mom-claws wanna come out like whoa. My little girl is social. She adores other kids. She will wave, and say "hiiii!" to all the other children playing. So that older girl standing right next to her? Ignores her. And says, "I don't play with babies"  or tells her to "Move little girl!" in a sassy-5-year-old-tone, and for a split second I contemplate hurting a child. Not quite. But close. 

WHAT IS WITH KIDS SOMETIMES?

And most of all--will my kid turn out this way? Because, God, I hope not. 

And lastly--

The swings.

There is one baby swing at this park. So STOP PUSHING YOUR FIVE YEAR OLD IN IT. They are more than capable to sit in the regular swing.

And also? Five minutes, tops. If someone is waiting, this should be a no brainer. If your kid keeps asking for more? At some point you have to tell them another person is losing their mind waiting patiently for the swing, too.

See? The park?

Is.So.Much.Fun.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Monday bullet points.

-So my camera bit the dust for a very sad reason. Luckily, it wasn't some devastating fall or anything like that, but--I put a broken SD card (I had no idea) into the card-reader slot, causing it to bend a pin or mess up something with the reader. The cost of the repairs isn't out of this world, but for someone like me who has already been eyeing up upgrades for a while--I just take it as a sign I'm ready for a new camera.

A sweet blog friend of mine is likely taking it off my hands, paying for the repairs, and will likely get some good, happy years out of that beauty. I love that camera. She's my 'ole faithful.

-But, on that note--it's time to move on. I'm giddy with excitement over my upgrade...and she's in the mail to me as we speak. More on that later.

-Oh this past weekend? Definitely had it's up moments, for sure. We had a great girls night out to celebrate Lyryn's birthday. Besides, it's always fun having a night out to dress up and look all pretty.

And, you know...take photos in parking garages.

Or in elevators. I guess I was channeling my inner Kelle Hampton.

It was a blast if you couldn't tell. Oh, and run over and tell my sister-in-law, Lyryn happy birthday. Today's the day :)

-So last night was fun. Cue sarcasm. Apparently 8 straight days of ear infections/virus/teething wasn't enough for my sweet girl. Yesterday she was getting cold-like symptoms. Okay, I can deal with that--except, it sucks for her so much because she's so sensitive to even a small virus, getting inflammation, then it causes breathing issues. So we woke up to the screams of a wheezy baby last night, gave her a breathing treatment, and luckily she slept the rest of the night.

Her 15 month appointment is this Friday, and I have lots of things to talk to the pediatrician about. Being a mom is no joke, that's for sure.

-This week without my camera should be....interesting. I guess that means I'll have to actually, you know...write blog posts versus post pictures. Hopefully the ideas will come to me. Do you have anything you wanna hear about? Just curious. 

-Oh, and one last thing-just two months ago I bought Declan the Nook Color with high hopes he would use it. And sadly, he really doesn't. So, we're selling it. It has barely been touched...we have an anti-glare screen on it, a really nice cover with magnetic close, and the box & accessories. We're selling it for $200 including shipping. I have a few people semi-interested. At this point, it's first come, first serve. Email me: LovesofLife@hotmail.com  **sold!**

On that note...my coffee is calling, and so is my weekly work meeting. 

Monday morning hugs to all.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Saturday Morning Scene

Can we have a moment of silence please....? Something terrible has happened:


To put it mildly, I feel like a limb was cut off of me. It feels so horrible to not have my camera at my fingertips. The only upside? This means an upgrade is in my near future. I loved this baby, though. She was a good girl.

***

And? Last night? We had a girls night to celebrate my sister-in-law, Lyryn's birthday. It was soooo much fun. I wish I had more photos (I took them with her camera, so I don't have any but these.) but it was such a good time. I honestly can't remember the last time I stayed out till 1:30am. I'm too old to do that more than once a year ;)

my new dress.....................................me & my sister.......................Lyryn & my sissy
***

Wanna link up?
1. Take a picture of your Saturday Morning Scene.
2. Blog about it.
3. Grab the button and add it to your post.
4. Add your (direct) link to the linky at the bottom.
5. Jump around and see what everyone's up to!





(Links that do not go to SMS will be deleted.)
Saturday Morning Scene



(Having trouble grabbing the button? Try highlighting the link, using "ctrl C" to copy & "ctrl V" to paste.)



Friday, August 12, 2011

Stop and smell the roses.

I have real words, you know...mom-things written over at The Poop Whisperer today. An entire post devoted to baby-proofing, and some weigh-in needed. So go check it out and then come back, mmmk?

-----

So, my girl is feeling so much better. We had almost 8 days of pure yuckies, and I am beyond grateful to finally see my goofy kid back again. I was beginning to think this was her new personality (sad/sick/miserable) and it scared me. I think I was just in a foggy haze. But, phew. All is well, and she is back to normal. Thank you for all your prayers. 

Yesterday we headed out to Longwood Gardens, where we have season passes. It's such a gorgeous spot with acres upon acres of flowers, greenhouses, a children's gardens, a water area for the kiddies, and most of all? Serenity. Dude, the place is peaceful as whoa and it's so vast...and spacious...that even when there's a lot of people you just kind of feel....calm. It's so nice.

I managed to snap only about 10 minutes of our fun with cousins before my camera battery died. Yea, that totally sucked. But, maybe it was better that way. I got to just soak it in without the camera in front of my face.

I swear, she was trying to jump in that water. Girl is courageous.
What? You don't wear a tu-tu to gardens? {perks of having a little girl I guess... :) }

She was so cute...pointing at everything, and going up to all the big pretty flowers, sticking her nose in them and sniffing them (her PopPop (my dad) taught her that). She was little miss independent just walking/running around, and trying her best to keep up with her 4.5 & 3 year old cousins. 

I was impressed. 

It was a good-for-the-soul day. After so many days of being inside and feeling so miserable. The weather was gorgeous, and there's something about that place that just rejuvenates you.

****

Have a great weekend, loves.

{Pssttt....don't forget to go check out my other post.}



Thursday, August 11, 2011

The fashionista in me & what.the.heck.

Any Big Brother fans out there? [Don't get your panties in a wad. If you aren't a BB fan, this entire post will NOT be about the show. Mmk?] ::sheepishly raises hand::

We are Big Brother fans in this house. We are. It's just a fun summer show, that often leaves us on the edge of our seats--and well, upside? It's on 3 days a week. And that's awesome.

Anyway.

You know Daniele? Yea. Her. The hot brunette in the house? I think she is supah pretty. I love her hair, her clothes, her style, her sass....yea. All of it. 

Last week, I dyed my hair this dark brown color (I.love.it) because I wanted my hair like hers. This week while at Target with my sister, I picked up a pair of feather earrings, and shouted to my sister in the next aisle over, "I have to get these! Did you see Daniele had a feather earring in last week?"

To which she replied, "So what is she, your fashion icon or something?"

And I was kind of like, Um. So maybe she is. And ohmygosh did you see the red Toms she was wearing a few weeks ago? 

You see, I'm never the girl who really likes everything about someone's style/look/etc--that is totally rare for me. But I'm a big Daniele fan. If you couldn't tell.

***

I very, very rarely look at my stats. Because, I just don't care. Last night I went on quickly to get a gist  of them because I may have been begging a certain company to do a review and needed ammunition for the heck of it. 

I started to to look at my search keywords--and frankly? Was appalled. Besides the million creepers readers who search in my FIRST AND LAST NAME and get to my blog on a daily basis---I also had some that left me with that feeling of, you know, wanting to jump off a freakin' bridge. (I kid. But really.)

I mean, seriously...."Flabby+Mommy" led you to my blog? REALLY? How's that supposed to make a girl feel?

How about (wait for it........), "Swimsuits for bigger thighs". For the LOVE.

Okay okay. I can handle that. But then, add on "Postpartum hips" and "SO MUCH WEIGHT" and it's like BAM! In your face McFatPants. Screw you and all the work you did to lose so much weight. 

I felt like google was mocking me. 

And it hurt a little.

So to that I say, thanks a lot, Google. I thought we were friends. 

****

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Today, I have a 15 month old.

Does anyone know where my baby went? 


Le Sigh. What a doll-baby. 

***

Today, she is 15 months old. And the sweetest little love I could have ever imagined. 


***

Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Be intentional to encourage.

To Encourage. To inspire (someone) with the courage or confidence to do something

I think at some point in time or another, we all could use a little boost...a little praise...or a little job well done, and you can do it. I think that as humans, we kind of tick that way. It's this internal need to know we are valued, loved, and to need that boost of reassurance sometimes.

I was beginning to lose myself in all this miserable-babydom over here. It was seriously wearing at me. I was behind in all housework, regular work, I hadn't had interaction with friends in a week, and overall, just felt worn out and weak. Literally, the almost non-stop-crying was tearing me down. There is something that just makes you feel so failure-like when you cannot soothe your own child.

My husband happily sent me on my way last night to go shopping with my sister while he stayed home with Emeline, bathed & put her to bed. It didn't come out of left field, I mean...I called him earlier in the day and it kind of went like this: OhmygawdifIdon'tgetoutwithoutthebabymysanitywillbeatstake.Ihave'ntsleptindaysandI'mgonnadie.IneedtobeME.Notmom,justKatie.I'mgoingouttonightandyoucan'tstopme.

Well, I didn't say the last part. But, yea. You get the gist. I was thisclose to losing it.

You know what he said so sweetly on the phone? (Which set my crazy-talk-gonna-lose-it into a mushy oblivion?)

"You deserve it, and I value what you do."

That was it. 

When we crawled into bed last night after I had a few blissful hours just hopping from store to store with my sister, not having to strap a kid in & out her carseat at every stop, not having to worry about leaving the cart 10 feet behind me, or feeding snacks & playing a peek-a-boo with a toddler---I thanked him. Just a simple thank-you to say that getting the time out, even though it meant not really seeing him that night, meant a lot to me. 

He began to encourage me. He told me what a great mom he thinks I am, and how well I do when handling her, especially while she's feeling so sick. 

It meant a lot. 

It got me to thinking---

A little bit of encouragement can go a long, long way. Let's take my weight loss for example--the encouragement you all have given me along the way has helped in so many ways. I try to do the same for others. 

But I need to be better and more intentional about encouraging others. The intentionality factor is the one I want to work on. Being purposeful about encouraging those around me. Whether it be face to face, in an email, on a blog post, through twitter, or on the phone. 

Because I don't necessarily think it's always about the way the encouragement/uplifting words come, but that you know there is someone in your life rooting you on. We all need that to some degree.

So that...that's where I'm at today.

via
Does any of this ring true or hit close to home to anyone else?


Monday, August 8, 2011

Thankfulness amongst The Sick, and a photo.

It's not wise to write a post when you're feeling bad and your kid has been sick, whiny and foul for days on end. Or else everything you write comes out as intense whining. And whiny posts? Are so annoying.

I will annoy myself.

But I kind of want to do a "Wahhh she's still sick! And I was up 6x last night with her! And she's still getting fevers! And the crying, oh the crying!"

I'll spare you. 

So here's my list of things I'm thankful for when dealing with sick-child: (See? bright side.)

-I'm thankful for coffee. For without it, I would be up a creek without a paddle. I need some boost after being up all night with said grouchy toddler.

-I'm thankful for ibuprofen, because tylenol sucks and doesn't work. At all. The few hours of relief it provides a night for painful ears, I am thankful for. 

-I'm thankful that getting up lots of times a night again reminded me how I am so.not.ready for another baby. Nope, not yet. I'm not.

-I'm thankful that friends like Jess are always there when I need mom-advice. With four kids, she's pretty much got all the tricks, and I love her for that (and lots of other things). She reminded me this morning that I could make Eme a smoothie (since she won't eat)--and I packed it full of yogurt, fruits, milk, etc--and I got her to drink some. Yay! I will take anything at this point. 

-I'm also thankful for friends like Gina, who remind me when I'm in sickies up to my eyeballs, and begin to lose a bit of myself--that I should enter a photo contest. For me. Friends that can encourage you? Are awesome. So thanks, Gina.

So on that note, here's my entry for The Paper Mama's, 'Whatever' photo contest.

She's totally moody & sick here...but her eyes are so pretty. Hey, true life. :)


***

Happy Monday, friends. [It should be noted that I first typed, "Happy Friday". Clearly, I am delusional. And now? Sad. I need a weekend re-do like naow.]

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Silent Sunday...or not really.


Can I first just say that I love this photo? It is so far from being technically good--I mean, it's blurry, the focus was completely off, but her face? I just love it. I feel like she's kind already like, "Mommmmm, more kisses?!" And it makes me laugh ;)

***

I'm sitting here at my kitchen table, with my iced coffee...staring at my sleeping 15 month old on the monitor. I'm finally, after the last few days, feeling a slight sigh of relief.

I know this is ridiculous...kids get sick. And honestly? When I see other friends or bloggers dealing with some serious, serious issues with their sweet babies, I kind of want to slap myself. But then again, I remember that it's my job to care, it's my job to take care of her to the best of my ability...and it's my job to treat even the smallest of sickness with care. After all, she's my baby. 

I should have known. The on & off fevers lasted for way too long. I didn't get her into the doctor in time before the weekend crept up on us. I hoped that if I wished whatever it is she was dealing with away that it would, in fact, go away. It was stupid of me--because it's always better to be safe than sorry. That is one lesson I've learned so far, if any.

But apparently I hadn't really learned my lesson...I guess. So last night? While I was up soothing my miserable little girl, and she started pulling and tugging at her ears while shrieking in pain--I knew we were dealing with ear infections. Again. And I wanted to punch myself in the face for not taking her to the doctor. She could have been getting antibiotics in her, sleeping better, and just not dealing with all the pain of infected ears had I taken her.

warning: image may break your heart.
taken last night before bed.
I got her soothed & calm--and back to sleep.

I crawled into bed at 5:45am and started to sob. It was probably from the lack of sleep the last 4 days, but I also just felt so terrible. And as a momma, all you want to do is take the pain from your baby. It's miserable. 

I laid in bed and started googling on my phone for urgent care places. I couldn't imagine going another day (to wait for Monday) to get this situation resolved. After all, I'd already let it go on for too long. 

Turns out, there are all sorts of Urgent Care options around for us. Funny how you don't really know until you look into it. And so first thing this morning we headed to a Doctors Express. And let me just tell you--we were treated like gold. They got us in immediately, made us a priority, even called our insurance company to see how they could work with us (didn't cost us a dime!), and most of all, treated Emeline so well. 

My gut was right-- with a double ear infection and a prescription in hand, we left for the pharmacy. 

Finding another resource for your family (for us, it was Doctors Express*) is SO relieving. I cannot praise them enough for a job well done and being there when a momma & child in need is, well...in need

I'm hoping to see my peppy little into-everything little lady back soon. I miss her.

***

*I use their name because I fully know that the internet listens. It's a small place after all. I think that good customer service should be praised. So, kudos Doctors Express...because today? You were my hero.


Saturday, August 6, 2011

Saturday Morning Scene(s)





Wanna link up?
1. Take a picture of your Saturday Morning Scene.
2. Blog about it.
3. Grab the button and add it to your post.
4. Add your (direct) link to the linky at the bottom.
5. Jump around and see what everyone's up to!


(Links that do not go to SMS will be deleted.)
Saturday Morning Scene




(Having trouble grabbing the button? Try highlighting the link, using "ctrl C" to copy & "ctrl V" to paste.)




****


Friday, August 5, 2011

Miserable sprinkled with some good. Some awesomeness, really.

The last two days have been miserable. Emeline has been burning up, running high fevers off and on. She hasn't been sleeping....even remotely, because of this.

I have been a mom-zombie. I'm so tired that I can barely even work up the strength to lift my coffee cup to my  mouth. I'm not even kidding.

There is something so sobering, and so...so...sad when you wake up to the shrill screams of your stingy-hot-feverish child. Literally, last night her body temperature was so high, it was stinging me. All she wanted was to sleep on me. Or be with me. We were up at 4am watching Friday Night Lights in the living room, that's how little sleep has been.


We're doing the motrin/tylenol dance, the warm baths and last night I even tried a cool wash cloth to help bring her body temperature down. I honestly don't know if we're fighting a virus, or something as simple as a tooth--but whatever it is, I'm kind of over it.

Oh yea, and yesterday was our anniversary, but you knew that. Honestly? I probably would have forgotten since I am in a sick-baby-delirium over here, but my husband? Yea-that guy. He rocks. And so he did this little diddy where he put little post-it's all over the house in random places with reasons why he married me. It was insanely sweet. It was definitely a bright spot in my otherwise crappy day. I think there were a total of 16 notes when all said and done. 

I had to laugh because one of the last ones I found was on Emeline's door. I had been in and out of that room a few times already before I even noticed it. Out of it much? I think so.

Since Declan and I scheduled a late anniversary/2nd honeymoon trip to the Keys, we kind of wanted to keep our anniversary celebrating kind of simple. I insisted to Declan that all I wanted was to go to dinner out someplace...exchange cards...and that's it. (Honestly? I was shocked that we still had willing parties to babysit our sick child, but we're blessed!)

We snapped this in the car right before leaving the house.
You know? He abided, but of course he took me to a freaking gorgeous restaurant, on the water, in Philadelphia. I probably would have been happy with On The Border (I know, I'm hard to please) or BoneFish. But, no. He likes to go all wow-factor on me.

Including one of those desserts where they write on your plate. Um, I'm not even kidding when I say that I've always wanted one of those--but he never knew that. I may have squealed a little when it came.



When we got home and had heard from my mom that Eme had already woken up once crying, I knew...I just knew it was another precursor to our night. 

I was totally right. But despite the suck that is dealing with a sad, sickie-child--my husband truly does know how to make a girl feel good.

Now, if you'll excuse me. I need a nap.

**

Happy weekend!

{SMS will be up tomorrow.}

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Great pair.

You know? Me & him? 

We make a great pair.


And four years ago today I married this man. This amazing, incredible, loves-me-to-pieces, man. 

I am grateful, eternally, for the gift I have in him. 

***

Happy Anniversary, baby.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

When it happens on your watch & a few photos.

I have a post up over at The Poop Whisperer if you want to check it out. It's all about when your kids get hurt & those mom-fail type moments. One you may want to weigh in on. So go take a look

***

Last night we were at my parents for a little bit with some out of town friends. Declan and I snuck away to the hammock for a few minutes--just to talk, unwind a little bit, you know. 

When we were playing patty-cake with Emeline, I saw my sister out of the corner of my eye creep up with her camera. 

I appreciate these few photos so much because usually? I'm the one with the camera. I'm the one creeping up on sweet moments trying to savor them for people. I sometimes, but rarely am on the receiving end of that. 

So, these are special to me.





Don't forget to go chime-in over at PW. See you there...

***


Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Bits & Pieces

-Chocolate covered strawberries are bad news. Bad, bad news. I mean, they are insanely delicious, and probably? My most favorite dessert of all time if I had to rank it. But they are all sorts of tempting...and easy to eat, because-Oh, it's just fruit. You know, slathered in chocolate. Next thing you know, you ate five of them and your belly hurts.

Speaking of which, are they suitable breakfast foods? Because there is a slight chance I'm eating some with my coffee this morning. See? So bad. But, so so good.

-This morning, Declan came up to me while Eme was in her highchair eating breakfast--and he wrapped his arms around me. He started telling me about how in the book he's reading, it talks about how great it is for your kids to see their parents show affection. I think he's right--and lately I've just been very convicted when we argue or have any type of conflict in front of Emeline. I need to be better about this. Also? My mouth. It can be filthy sometimes, and it's just not the type of example I want to set.

One of my friends, Laura, wrote a really great post about this topic last week--you should check it out.

-Lately we play this game with Emeline...."Can you say _____", and then she will repeat whatever it is we say. So, in the car, when I'm trying to distract her from how tired she is, and Justin Bieber is failing me, we'll sometimes play this. Her vocabulary is still limited, but at the same time, feels like it's exploding. Obviously not every word sounds exactly like it-but she totally tries. So we'll go through her normal words: Mac-a-boy (yes, she says this, and its DARLING), thank-you, night-night, food, water, more, all done, uh-oh, ball, puppy, duck, please, Momma, Daddy, Pop-Pop, shoes, etc. 

For some reason it works, and totally keeps her distracted. 

So does playing with baskets on our heads.


-Lately I have the urge to redo all the bathrooms in my house. The problem is, I don't have the motivation. I have the urge...the desire...but no real 'umph' to actually do anything about it. So, that sucks. Or, maybe it doesn't? It's better for my budget, I guess.

I blame pinterest, though. It truly makes my desire to up and re-do my entire house really, really high. And that's really, really bad.

-My four year anniversary is THURSDAY. Whoa. 4 years. Not to mention the other 6 years of dating prior to that. We're so...old. I love it, though. I love my husband so much and am truly so blessed to have him. We're gonna keep our celebrating pretty simple with dinner out (but where we go is a secret apparently)--since we have already scheduled a big trip for September. Still, though? A night out-? Totally looking forward to it.

Time to finish my coffee...

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Hat-wearer.

I'm the wearer of many hats. Maybe some of you are, too.

You put on a new hat depending on the situation you're in. It doesn't mean you change as a person, it's just that, with that hat--your focus changes.

You know, I have my wife hat. The one that I wear virtually all the time, but I can wear almost solely when I'm out, alone, on rare occasion with my husband. Or in those late night pillow talk moments when there are no distractions. When I can be all-wife. You know, like on this trip we've booked? (Yes! We booked it! Yay!) That'll be mainly my wife hat.

I like that hat a lot. But, it gets gradually more intense and takes a lot more work when you add in the dynamics of a mom hat. You know, your mom hat is demanding. A little more shabby and less glamorous. While I adore it, it's intense, and time consuming (and I only have 1 kid), and truthfully? You basically can never take your mom hat off.

Then, if you work--either outside of the home or you work at home, you've got your work hat on, too. Maybe it's the business-professional hat, maybe you have to roll with the big guys, or talk corporate-type talk. Maybe you teach kids, and you have your teacher hat on. And heck, as a teacher I know personally that can also involve a counselor-type-hat, then your colleague-to-colleague type hat....oh how the list goes on and on.

I also do some things for my church...some secretarial-type-things...entering information, sending weekly emails, keeping up with new member information, helping with the service schedule's, and leading small groups. So, add that hat in with all the other ones. 

How about your sister-hat, daughter-hat, your homeowner (and the issues that come with it) hat, and maybe your friend-hat, auntie-hat, etc..etc...

Sometimes? I feel like a circus-act. I'm sure I'm not alone in this. It's like the clown, you know...on a unicycle, balancing multiple hats on his head--trying to keep them all in tact. Quite the visual, I know. But it's true. 

The problem is, with all these hats--I just feel sometimes that I cannot wear any of them right. Or give them all the appropriate amount of time, and care they all need. I fail. Over and over again. 

Sometimes I fail my friends. Sometimes I fail my own family. Sometimes? I fail my husband and I'm a sucky wife. 

Trust me when I say this...this is not a pity party. It's just a reminder. Life is a juggling act--you add something more to your list, throw in curveballs of stressful family situations, or health-issues, or the unexpected-life-scenarios that just...happen....and it seems something goes by the wayside. It's really hard to be 100% in every area.

And this is my personal reminder that it's okay

Life is about balance. It is. But your real friends will understand that and extend grace when you let them down. So will your family. Your husband will probably even forgive you when you've had a bad day and treated him poorly. And the people that matter and love you will keep on walking with you. Because, after all--we all have our own hat-wearing we do, and we all mess it up sometimes.

Today I'm reminded of that.