Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Mother's Day wish list

With the beginning of May, stores and commercials start reminding us that Mother's Day is quickly approaching. Usually this just means I attempt to remember to buy and mail cards for my mom and grandmothers. But this year is different. I'm a mom this year so I guess that means I get to be celebrated. 

I honestly don't want much for my first Mother's Day. I'd like to sleep late. I'd like to cook one of my favorite dinners slowly and quietly with a glass of wine. I'd like to  go to the park with Wilson and Caleb. Id really like for Caleb to help Wilson make some sort of "craft" but I realize that's pushing it, so I'd settle for a thoughtful card from them. Id like to stay up late and drink a good beer with Caleb after Wilson goes to bed. 

That's about as close to perfect as my day could be. It's not much, but it's what makes me happy. 

However, if my husband or anyone else reading this want to go above and beyond for me, here are a few ideAs. 

1. Herbs for a herb garden. We have an adorable window planter box outside under our kitchen window. It's currently full of weeds, but I have been itching to plant something in it since we moved in December. We went to look at plants for our flower beds over the weekend and there was a whole wall full of fresh herb plants and I knew what I had to do with my window box. I never cook with fresh herbs because they are slightly expensive  and never get used up but if I could grow my own, both problems are solved. I'm really excited about this idea. 

2. Perfume. I mentioned that I really wanted some on my birthday, but ended up getting other things. So I'm still in need of some. Yves Saint Laurent's Parisienne or Dior's Miss Dior are my favorites. I often struggle with feeling pretty or put together in my new mom role, but I believe in the power of beautiful fragrance to help anyone instantly feel better about themselves. 

3. A manicure or at least nice new nail polish. This kind of goes with #2. Prebaby, I almost always had my nails painted. Since Wilson arrived, I think I might have done my nails 3 times. I love a pretty manicure. Again, it instantly makes me feel pretty and feminine. I need more of that in my life. 

4. Cookbooks. I've been feeling a little uninspired in the kitchen lately. I really love trying new things but can't seem to find the "right" things to make at night. Most things I've been making just seem so plain and boring to me. I need culinary inspiration. Pretty much any style of cooking or cuisine would be alright by me   As long as it's fairly simple, reasonably quick, and big on flavor. 

Would it be too obvious for me to email this post to my husband? ;)

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

6 years

Sometime around the end of April and the beginning of May is Caleb and my 6 year together anniversary. We never really became "official", we just spent every day together and eventually started throwing around the boyfriend/girlfriend titles after a few weeks. 

It's hard to believe that we have spent 1/4 if our lives together already. It's also hard to believe that we somehow "made it" as a couple through college and growing up. Most 18 year olds don't start dating the person they will end up marrying. I certainly didn't think I was in the beginning. But over the months and years, it became so obvious that we should get married. We fit together so well. Our personalities couldn't be more diiferent, but we even each other out. We have always wanted the same things in life, even if I might have been on a faster time line. 

I'm so grateful that we got irresponsibly drunk that one random night when we were in high school. If it hadn't been for that night and that bottle of tequila, we would have never in a million years have gotten together. It blows my mind to think how that one night changed my whole life. Who would have guessed? 

I love Caleb and our life together. There is no one else in the world I would rather spend my life with. Everyday I'm glad he is by my side. Our relationship and our family is the best. Even when we fight and are too tired to be nice to one another, he is still the best. 

Ok. Enough of the mushy stuff. I'm really not a romantic or lovey dovey person.  :)

For fun, here are some pictures of us over the years. Please note how freaking skinny we both were! Maybe we can get back there one day. Ha. 


The first photo I have of us, about 8 months before we started dating. We were 17. 


High school graduation and dating about 3 weeks. 


Freshman year of college at Ole Miss. 


St. Louis, summer 2009. 


Junior year of college at Delta State.


Engaged! 


Honeymoon in Disney World. 


First year of marriage. 


Preggo second year of marriage. 


Our first family photo


And us now. :) 

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Newborns

I think every other lady-blogger I seriously follow is either pregnant or just had a baby. Just this week, 3 (!) blog friends had baby boys. It's crazy. 

Seeing all these fresh new babies all over Instagram has really opened my eyes to how much Wilson has grown. I know that at almost 8 months, Wilson is still "a baby" but he is so far removed from that newborn-ness. In the last month, his personality and abilities have exploded. He moves where e wants. He lets us know how he is feeling. He has teeth. He has strong likes and dislikes. He interacts with us. He weighs over 20 pounds. 

He just seems BIG and halfway grown up already. Everyone said when he was born that he looked and acted more like a 2 month old than a newborn. And I think he just kept growing 2 months ahead of schedule. I feel like his time as an itty bitty baby was so short. Too short. 

Don't get me wrong. I love my advanced kid. I love that he hits milestones early and easily. I love watching him grow. I think this age is my absolute favorite this far. Wilson is just fun to be with (mostly). 

But seeing all these new babes makes me want to turn back the clock, for just a minute. I want to hold that little bitty, fresh, new baby. I want to cradle hold him and watch him nap. I want to hear all those silly newborn grunts. 

Since time machines don't exist yet, the only way I'm getting that newborn period back is by having another newborn. Which believe me, I am counting down the days until we are ready for another. But for now, I'll just live vicariously through other new moms and look at the pictures from Wilson's birth 58482946 times a day. And dream of the day when I'll have newborn snuggles again, for just a short period. 


Friday, April 25, 2014

The fall

Yesterday, Wilson took his first big tumble. We were playing on the floor and he wanted to stand and "walk" along the edge of the couch. 99% of the time, I keep my hands on him, just in case he loses his balance. And 99% of the time he loses his balance and falls, he just falls on his booty in a sitting position. 

Well, not yesterday. I was holding him up but I could hear Caleb's voice in my head telling me that I need to give Wilson more "space" and let him fall sometimes. So I was giving him just the tiniest bit of space for just two seconds when he lost his balance and fell straight back and hit his little head hard on the hardwood floor. 

I immediately scooped him up and held him close. It took him a second to start crying, like he couldn't even believe what had just happened. But then he started screaming. I cuddled him as close as I possibly could with one hand and frantically started texting Caleb and googling "signs of head trauma" with the other. After a few minutes, I was pretty sure Wilson didn't have a concussion and his screaming quieted down. 

But he just held his little head on my, softly crying. And then I lost it. We both sat there on the floor, holding on to each other for dear life, quietly crying for quite some time. 

It was in that moment that I realized that no matter what I did or how much I wanted to, I couldn't take away my baby's pain. He was hurting and I couldn't do a thing about it. Of course I could soothe and console him, but the pain wouldn't go away. And that this fall was just the first of many. One day I'll have to see my baby in pain from everything from scraped knees and broken bones to heartbreak and disappointment. And as much as I want to, I can't make it better. He will have to hurt. He will have to experience pain. 

I know that a little hurt in life will help build Wilson's character and make him tougher, but I feel like there is sometimes too much pain in life, that not all pain is productive. Hopefully his little life will be absolutely happy, but undoubtedly there will be hardship and hurt. I don't want my sweet, innocent boy to feel that. Because pain can leave you tarnished. What makes you tough can also make you calloused. Hurt can do irreparable damage. 

So I cried for my little boy and his future pains. I plan on doing everything in my power to protect him as much as I can from the painful world. At least as long as he will let me. 

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Sadie and Wilson

While I was pregnant one of my biggest fears was how our rescue dog Sadie would react to a new baby. You see, we adopted Sadie from our crummy local animal shelter. She was very sick when we got her and we had absolutely no background information on her, except the small town where she was found. She was a typical puppy around is, but we soon realized she had some serious issues with strangers and children. We did our best to socialize her as a puppy, but she never could be around children. That leads us to believe she was abused in some way by rough-playing children before we got her. Of course, once we recognized Sadie's fear and aggressiveness towards kids, we made sure she was never, ever around children. I don't think she would hurt anyone, but I want to keep everyone safe. 

So I knew my sweet Sadie may have had some issues with a baby. She had never been around a little baby, so I was hoping that she would see Wilson as her "puppy" and sense how young and fragile he was. But I was still terrified that she wouldn't adjust well. I was scared she would bark at him or act out from the lack of attention. My ultimate fear is that I would have to make a choice between Sadie and Wilson. Obviously I would have chosen Wilson, but Sadie is my baby, too. 

While we were in the hospital after Wilson's birth, Sadie stayed at home and either Caleb or our friends (who Sadie adores) would check on her throughout the day. When we came home, we took Sadie to be boarded for a few days while we adjusted to our new baby. After 3 days, I was missing my puppy so we decided to bring her home. Maybe it was the post partum hormones, but I cried scared, nervous tears as Caleb drove to get Sadie. 

To my absolute surprise, Sadie didn't care one bit about the new addition. She came bursting through our front door, just happy to be home. After she settled down, Caleb took Wilson and sat on the couch next to Sadie. Sadie sniffed at Wilson for just a second and then turned her head back to her new bone.



And for the next 3 months, that's pretty much how things went. Sadie barely acknowledged Wilson's presence, which was fine by me. She didn't act out too badly, just getting into the trash or dirty clothes while we were gone. She still was her loving, lazy self with Caleb and me. 



After Wilson started getting more active, Sadie paid a little more attention to him. She would watch him play and go lay next to him. She would give me a concerned look when she heard him cry. But mostly, they both still ignored each other. 

Around the 6 month mark, Wilson became fascinated by Sadie. He watches her run and play. He starts smiling and laughing whenever she gets close to him. He wants to pet her all the time. He loves her. And I can see Sadie warming up to Wilson, too. She acknowledges his presence now. She sits patiently by his saucer or high chair waiting for Wilson to drop a snack. She comes close enough for Wilson to pet her. When she hears Wilson waking up in the mornings, she jumps off our bed and goes into his room, looks at him through the crib, then runs back to our bed and stares at me like "Hey, mom. The baby is awake. You going go get him?" It's really sweet. 




So in spite all that worrying I did, Wilson and Sadie are getting along great. In fact, they are starting to bond. I can't wait to see their friendship grow over the years. 

Monday, April 14, 2014

A trip to the zoo

We took Wilson to the Memphis Zoo on Saturday. He he a little small to really take it all in and enjoy it, but I still think he had fun. Wilson's favorite part was the petting farm where he could get close to the animals. He particularly liked the chickens and goats. 




He and I also got to get really close to one of the panda bears. I have a life long obsession with pandas, so it was a really special moment for me that we got so close together. After visiting the pandas, we went to the panda gift shop and Wilson got his first stuffed panda. I was so obsessed and in love with my panda collection as a kid, so I got really sappy over starting one for Wilson. And to my surprise, he already loves his panda. He held onto it the rest of the day at the zoo.




We got to watch a few minutes of the sea lion show and listened to a "keeper chat" at the elephants. Wilson was pretty uninterested, but Caleb and I love learning about the animals. Overall, it was a pretty fun day. We were all exhausted afterward, but I love exploring the world with Wilson. 



What a difference a year makes, right? 

Monday, April 7, 2014

Monday randoms

These posts seem so scatter brained lately. I don't know why I can't come up with something coherent to write. Considering I have to pass a "writing" exam in two days, my brain better be able to write something coherent. 

Which speaking of the writing exam, I just want to rant on how ridiculously stupid it is that I have to take the Praxis 1 to get into grad school. First, if I had gotten a traditional, undergrad teaching degree, my ACT score waived me from taking it. It should still he waived. And second, I have a college degree. I even graduated with honors. I think it should go without saying that I am proficient in reading, writing and math. It's ridiculous that I have to pay $150 and make the time and effort to take an exam that tests such basic skills. 

On the bright side, I realized the other day that since I majored in French, I have plenty of hours to get a K-12 French endorsement on my license. Which is kind of a random thing to be certified for along with my 4-6 license, but whatever. I'd be thrilled to teach French or elementary school. Or teach French in elementary school! That's kind of my (pipe) dream. 

Moving on, I ordered another dress from Rent the Runway. I'm kind of obsessed. This one is for Easter and it's another Kate Spade. I bookmarked 20 and then had my husband chose the one he liked best and it just happen to be another Kate Spade. Which is nice because I knew what size I would need. One of the things I like about the service is that I get a dress that fits me now without purchasing a dress that will (hopefully) be too big in a couple of months. I'm excited about it. 

And speaking of clothes, I am trying this thing called ThreadUp, a service where you clean out your closet and send them in for ThreadUp to consign. I had a closet full of clothes that haven't fit for years or that aren't "mom appropriate". I'm skeptical about how much money I will get back, but anything is more than just having the clothes sit in my closet. 

Wilson and I are going to spend a week in Southaven tomorrow. Caleb needs time to study for his comps (which are next week and graduation is in a month!!!! Crazy!!!) and I had to go up for my Praxis anyway, so I figured we could make a big trip out of it. It'll be nice to have someone cook for me and not have to worry with cleaning. And several sets of grandparents and great grandparents to help with Wilson. But I'll be the only one up with Wilson at night, if he wakes up. That may not be an issue at all or it could be hell. Pray for me that he sleeps well that week. 

We are taking Wilson to the zoo on Saturday along with several of his cousins and other family members. I'm excited but also a little intimidated by such a big outing. He hasn't really been on a big day trip before and I hope it doesn't stress him out. I'm most excited for the petting zoo so Wilson can get close (but not actually pet) to the animals. I think his Grammy is going to keep him either Friday or Saturday night so I'm sure Caleb and I will have a mini-date night. I'm really excited for that. 

Like I said, this is so completely scatter brained. Maybe I'll come up with something coherent next time. Not likely, but maybe. 



Saturday, April 5, 2014

Wilson -- 7 Months

So baby Wilson is on the downward slope to being ONE. I've already started a pintrest board for first birthday party ideas. These first 7 months have gone by in a blink and I can only imagine the next 5 will go by just as fast. Time needs to slow down. For Real.



- I'm guessing Wilson weighs around 21 pounds and is almost 29 inches long. His little legs seems so much longer than other babies. Maybe (hopefully) that means he will be on the tall side.

- He is wearing size 4 diapers.  His clothes are some 9 month, mostly 12 month, and even some 18 month clothes.  They seem to stop making onesies and footed pajamas at 12 months, so Wilson has been wearing proper t-shirts and two piece jammies. They make him look SO GROWN UP.

- Wilson takes an 8 ounce bottle at 9, 1, 5, and 9. He will usually take all 8 ounces in the morning and at night time.  The two mid-day bottles are hit and miss; sometimes he takes it all sometimes only half. But his doctor said that he was getting plenty to eat, so I'm not worried.



- He loves to feed himself! He goes crazy for puffs or yogurt melts. He knows what the package looks and sounds like and if he sees or hears it, he demands snacks. He also likes to eat table food, especially bananas, beans, corn, bread, and berries. He has been uninterested in his purees (that I just spent a fortune stocking up on, go figure).  I think its mostly that he wants to feed himself.

- I feel like his social skills made huge leaps this month. I can tell he is starting to be unsure of "strangers" but he also remembers and recognizes people, like his grandparents. He has also developed a "fake" cry that he uses to tell us he is unhappy. It usually happens when he is bored or we are making him do something he doesn't want, like change his diaper or take his medicine. He smiles and laughs all the time.

- His sleep took a two week period of regression this month. He went from sleeping soundly throughout the night to waking up 4-5 times per night. I'm not sure what happened, maybe teething or separation anxiety. But he slept fairly well this week and only woke up 1 time a night and usually put himself back to sleep. He goes to be between 9-10 and wakes up between 8-10.



- Wilson is officially trying to crawl. He rocks back and forth whenever he gets on his hands and knees. If the cat or dog is around, he will try his hardest to scoot to them. If he isn't trying to crawl, he is over sitting or rolling. He wants to stand up all the time. He can balance and hold himself up if he holds on to the side of his crib or the couch. I think he really just wants to bypass crawling and go straight to walking.

- I can see the very top of a little, white tooth trying to peek through in his bottom  gums. 

- Other new skills he has are clapping his hands together, drinking from a cup with a straw, babbling "mama" and "dada" constantly, sitting up from a lying position, and "responding" when he is being spoken to (usually in the form of a yell, squeak, or roar).



- He adores animals. He has met three dogs and he loved them all. It is really sweet to see him light up and squeal in delight watching animals. We are hoping to take him to the zoo next weekend and I think he will really love it.

- Likes: his cup, snacks, when daddy comes home, the walker, Sadie and the cats, Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood, being praised, being tickled, and kisses

- Dislikes: diaper changes, changing clothes, loud noises, bath time, not getting his way or having something taken away from him