Thursday, October 1, 2015

A Birthday Cake Kind of Day

Today was some kind of day. I went non stop all day long and did not complete my to do list, despite working on it steadily. I've been exhausted all week (remember that sleep training I mentioned a couple of posts back? yeah, still training...making progress...I think....) and was a birthday cake kind of day.

There's something you should know about me, I LOVE cake. Delicious, store bakery, birthday cake. It must be yellow or white, marble will do, but NEVER chocolate. It must be traditional buttercream frosting, not that RIDICULOUS whipped mess, but thick, sugary, yummy buttercream. Cupcakes are awesome as well...but unimportant to this post.

Tonight as Eugene was coming home he called and asked if I needed anything. I jokingly said, "A birthday cake!" Sometimes the only thing that will make you feel better is cake. Eugene is aware of my love for cake and it is not unusual for me to joke about it. 10 minutes later my husband walks through the door with a birthday cake.

A beautiful, delicious birthday cake just the way I like it. He took the time to find the one with the most frosting...because he knows me, oh so well.

So my birthday cake kind of day...ended not so bad after all, because I have a husband who knows when my joke about birthday cake needs to be taken seriously...he's the best.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Our Love Story

Today makes three years since Eugene and I's wedding day.

As I mentioned in my very first post, I've been in love with Eugene my entire life. Our story is an interesting one and I thought today was an appropriate time to share.

For our wedding I created a webpage, for info and RSVP's. There was a spot to share our story. So Eugene and I both sat down and wrote our own versions...

My Version
Eugene was my first crush. I was 7 years old, he was my best friends big brother, and he was my hero. I eventually moved on to the "ew, boys are gross" stage...but like all stages it passed and at 13 I was crushing again. At this point I was a very practical 13 year old and told myself I might as well get over my school girl crush, because it was never going to happen. He left for college, and was out of my life for 9 years. Well, for the most part. We saw each other on occasion; when I attended his graduation from State with his sister, when he moved back home and I saw him briefly when we bumped into each other at the grocery store, a family function here and there that I attended with his sister, his sister's wedding where he was my escort down the aisle. These occasions were few and far between, brief encounters, but always long enough to show me some things never change. I still had a crush on him and to him I was still nothing but his little sisters friend. I got the same pat on the head and patronizing flirting i had always gotten. He didn't even notice that I wasn't the same freckled face 7 year old with stars in my eyes, or the awkward 13 year old with a crush. Ok....I may have still had stars in my eyes and definitely still had the crush, but I was now a 21 year old woman and he didn't even notice the difference. Some part of me had always loved him, but once again I was resigning myself to the fact that it would never happen. Then things begin to change, I began to question if his flirting was patronizing or something more serious....eventually he told me. Then the most wonderful thing occurred....the impossible happened....he fell in love with me.

Eugene’s Version
        I have known Case almost her entire life. Growing up she was my little sisters, little friend. They would have play dates and sleep overs and I would do the natural big brother thing, always crash the party. But it was difficult for me to ever see her as anything more than a little girl. I knew she had a crush growing up, but so did a lot of Sissy's little friends. I was the big brother, which automatically made me appear cooler than I really was. This relationship continued. As she got a little older I would flirt, only because I knew she was crushing and I thought it was cute. When I left for college, she was still just a cute little girl. I was in Raleigh for a solid six years, very seldom visiting home, and not really visiting anyone but immediate family when return visits did occur. Case was pretty much "out of site, out of mind". Until I came home for Sissy's wedding, and guess who I was to escort? You got it, little Case. Only this time she wasn't so little. In my absence cute little Case had grown up into a beautiful woman. Really, for the first time, I had seen Case in an entirely different light. At the wedding I flirted, but this time it wasn't  cute and funny as so many times before, it was for real.

       In no way do I deserve someone as wonderful as Casey Erin. I have no idea why she chose to spend the rest of her life with me, but Im glad she did. From cute little girl, to beautiful young women, to, soon to be, Mrs. Casey {...}. That's our love story 

My wedding day was the happiest day of my life. I've fallen in love with my husband every single day since and I'm positive I'll continue to fall in love with him every day from here on out.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Mommy Hacks

Happy Sunday!

Baby is napping and I wanted to share a couple of mommy hacks I've come up with.

Now I may not have invented these. I'm sure somewhere there's a mommy of five kids who discovered these tricks with her first kid and has been doing them for years...but in the story of me...I came up with them all on my own!

First of a first time mommy, before baby came I had a whole list of must haves. Obvious things: crib, carseat, baby monitor. Like to haves: diaper pail, swing, cute diaper bag. And (as I later found out) not really necessaries; white noise make (phone app is way better!), cute wipe case (the big box of individual wipe packs is less expensive then the big box of two large packages from which you can refill) and 537 bottles of Johnson & Johnson lotion and body wash (you'll end up with an eczema baby who cannot use any of these products and have to give them to your sister-in-law).

I vaguely remember somewhere in this list of things, at some point, thinking I needed to get one of those cute little doo-doo bag holders that clip onto your diaper bag. You know, that holds the little scented trash bags to put dirty diapers in when out and about. I'm pretty sure as soon as this thought occurred to me, I forgot it, because once baby got here I had no doo-doo bags.

The need for this item did not occur to me again until our first doctor visit with Ro-Ro. We're getting ready for his weigh in and have to remove his wet diaper...except it wasn't just wet. No problem here, I've been changing baby diapers since I was ten. I whip it off, get him cleaned up, and the nurse sweetly says, "Let me get you a bag for that." Me (with my sleep deprivation, sore, stitched up lady parts, huge leaky breasts, and post-partum emotions) is thinking, "Um...the only thing he's pooping is breast does not stink...why the need for a bag?" and then the whole doctors office...sanitary needs clicks with my poor new mommy brain. I smile sweetly (well I thought it was sweetly, it probably came out as more of a lopsided grimace) and thanked her as I bagged my 4 day old baby's diaper and mentally berated myself for being such an ill prepared, failure of a mommy (post-partum emotions, remember?)

This was nothing compared to the mental beatdown I delivered to myself 3 days later at  a lactation consultation in the same office, when I forgot diapers completely and had to ask the wonderfully nice nurse practitioner if there were any available. After these experiences I vowed I'd be better prepared, then holed up at home for 4 weeks.

So after my 4 week recuperation I found diaper sacks at Wal-Mart. A little, inconvenient zip lock bag of 50 diaper sacks. I decided this would suffice until I could find one of those cute little diaper bag attachments. After going through my 50 sacks I did find the attachment. I did not realize that refills for this

are $6 for two. Two of these

That are maybe 30 diaper sacks, each. So finally...after all that back story...doggie doo-doo bag refills work JUST THE SAME. And are way cheaper.

This pack of 6 refills, from TJ Maxx, cost $3.99 and were super easy to install:


They fit, they're scented...and work just the same!

Second mommy hack: Ro-Ro is constantly dropping his teethers when we're out and about. All that's needed to remedy this is a bead necklace.

(on the left is one of Ro-Ro's favorite teethers) Simply loop the beads onto the teether:

Then loop the other end of the beads on your wrist:

Now while you're holding baby, during church, walking around the store, etc. when they drop the toy it doesn't hit the floor.

A couple of precautions. DO NOT leave the baby unattended with the beads, um yeah, choking hazard. I only use this method when Ro-Ro is being held and supervised. DO NOT loop the beads on your baby, ONLY on you.

The beads also come in handy if you forgot a pacifier clip (once again, attached to you, NOT your baby) because 4 months into this whole mommy thing and I'm still not always prepared ;)

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Brain juice: low

I just realized it's been a bit since my last post. Unfortunately, I have nothing to give.

Eugene and I were away from home Monday night, I got home late Tuesday afternoon and was away most of this morning...I'm a little tired.

Monday night was a Gala for Eugene's work and I can't wait to post about it, but that will have to wait for more brain power.

I did want to quickly share this blog post I ran across the other day. It addresses time management (something I constantly struggle with) in an amazing way and I found it very inspiring and wanted to share.

Have a good night!

Saturday, September 12, 2015

For your viewing pleasure....

Just so ya'll can appreciate the severity of the spider incident, I present to you a picture of Hugo

See, I couldn't give a picture earlier because he wasn't available for a photo opp until this evening.

Hugo only comes out at night. It adds to his general creepiness.

As I came inside tonight from taking the picture Eugene asked what I was doing:

Me: "Taking a picture of the spider."
Eugene: "WHY?! Why would you do that?!"
Me: "For my blog. What'd you think? I was going to frame it for you?"
Eugene: "Well, I don't know. People do mean things to me with spiders."
Me: "When have I ever done something mean to you with a spider?"
Eugene: "Maybe you just haven't got mad enough yet."

Oh the tangled web we weave...

Thought I'd take a moment while the baby's napping for a quick post.

From the title you probably are thinking this post is going to include a tale of lies or confusion, or some such life lesson, but its not. The title refers to a very literal web...and a very real spider.

You should know that Eugene has serious arachnophobia. I mean his fear of spiders is very real. They terrify him. Me on the other hand, not so much. They don't really bother me. I don't love them, but I have no qualms with getting near enough to kill one.

A little over a week ago, a very large spider set up resident in the entrance posts to our front porch

In the right hand corner

If you look really hard at the the above picture, you can see the web. 
(I need to work on my photography skills. My husband got me an AWESOME Cannon for my birthday last year and I have yet to discover all it's secrets.)

Jump ahead a week or so, from the building of this web, and Eugene is leaving to go pick up some dinner. He walks out on the porch and I'm standing in the doorway. 

As he steps out on the porch he comes to the horrific realization that the spider is moving. 

Eugene has this "pose" he goes into whenever there is a spider spotting. Its sort of like the fetal position, while standing. His fingers seem to fuse together, while curling in towards his palms. At the same time his arms curl towards his chest and he doubles over. It's really something to see, I have yet to catch it on camera.

So as he sees Hugo (the spider, that's his name. I mean he's obviously a Hugo) moving, Eugene goes into his "spidey" pose. He starts exclaiming, "AH....I can't do it! I've walked by it for over a week and its fine when he's not moving, but I can't do it when he's moving! What am I going to do?!" All the time curling and uncurling from his spidey pose. (In all fairness, Hugo is a BIG creepy spider. They don't bother me, but watching Hugo move gives even me the heebie geebies)

I stand there, with our kid on my hip, talking him down....or up I guess, to get passed the spider. The conversation went something like this, with me talking in very reassuring, calming tones:

"Its fine, its way up in the corner. The web doesn't stretch all the way across..."

"He'll jump on me!!!"

"I'll stand right here and watch..."

"What! Watch while he jumps on me?! Yeah, that'll work!"

"No...I'll just tell you if he gets close. It's fine..."

"I can't! He's moving, I can't look at him!"

"Ok....turn your back and go down the steps. Just watch the steps as you go down and don't look behind you. You can do it! Go on three! Ready, you can do it....1...2...3!"

Eugene runs, SHRIEKS as he goes through the post, sprints down the three front steps, and goes halfway up the hill that is our front yard before he stops.

He then turns around, shakes it off and goes to the car.

Yes, what a tangled web we weave. Or rather that Hugo weaves, apparently just to terrify Eugene.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Organizing My Life

This is how I've spent my free time the last two days:

Organizing MY LIFE. Ok, maybe not my ENTIRE life. But my recipes and menu plan.

And I created daily schedules for Ro-Ro. He's been having sleep issues so we are doing some major sleep training here at the house of Gryffindor (this is another Harry Potter reference, since I can't refer to our home as the {insert our last name here} household. Yes I'm somewhat of a geek and no I'm not apologizing for it ;)

So...sleep training going on here and I think a strict schedule may help with this, we'll see.

I've also come to the conclusion that it is IMPOSSIBLE to keep a clean house. But I have to at least try, so I also formulated a weekly plan.

Mornings we're going to be busy with Kindermusik, Story Time at the Library, and craft time. Then I separated the cleaning and laundry to be done on different days during Ro-Ro's nap time.

For example on Mondays I'll clean the upstairs and do Ro-Ro's laundry. On Tuesdays I'll clean the Main Level and do a load of Mine & Eugene's laundry. And so on and so forth. By the end of the week the plan is that everything has been cleaned and laundry is done.We shall see...

Any other mommy's out there have a "plan" that works for you when it comes to keeping up with housework?

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Wet, Drooley Rraspberries

Today has not been a productive day. Since becoming a stay at home mommy I have all these aspirations, ideas, strategies, and organizational plots to become SUPER MOM!

Today I would have settled for functioning mom. Notice the lack of glory in this title, no capital letters.

To break it down, I've been working on limiting my pepsi, my first step being to limit myself to 1-2 cans a day. Right now I'm dying for a third! Just because it's been one of THOSE days. The only thing I accomplished was making a to do list, which I did not do.

I did not work out (although this was a somewhat conscious decision since I was limping up and down the stairs all day due to the after effects of yesterdays work out. Which is better than last time I started working out. One work out and the next day I was bouncing down the steps on my butt, because it hurt WAY TO BAD to use my legs. So, eh, some improvement.)

I guess I can say my family is fed (although I'm not really sure it counts when your husband picks up take out) and my baby is clean, happy, and in the bed.

Bedtime tonight was a fun little game. Ro-Ro was past tired tonight, he'd been up a little too long and instead of a quick nap I decided on an early bed time. We did bed time routine, bath and a story, then a last feeding for the night.

At the end of his feeding he was fast asleep, so as I go to transition him to his sleep suit and bed, he of course wakes up. I don't mind some snuggles in the rocker before I lay him down and he's so sleepy, I assure myself he'll be back out in seconds.

But as I'm rocking him, in an obvious attempt to try and stay awake, he begins practicing his new trick. Blowing raspberries. Big wet drooley raspberries. With his paci still in his mouth. It was quite a feat. And he was very proud. But it wasn't sufficient entertainment and he had to succumb to sleep.

I think I should follow him and try again tomorrow for the SUPER MOM title. I have to admit though, its hard to feel too defeated with a sweet, round, butterball baby, blowing wet, drooley raspberries just for his mommy.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

A moment at the library

     Today was our first story time at the library. Story time was really great, better than I was expecting, considering the group is for 1-2 year olds and Ro-Ro is only 4 months. There were songs, and finger rhymes and of course the story. However, this is not the experience mentioned in the title. That experience happened prior to story time.
     My momma went with me today so she could get a library card. She sat at a table filling out the form and I parked the baby's stroller beside her while I went and browsed for books. I was behind a shelf when I heard a loud, slightly slurred "Hi" directed to someone on the other side, which was quickly followed by a shush. I realized from the speech that the greeter was mentally challenged and had just been shushed by her caregiver. I didn't hear the response of the person she had greeted and a moment later I heard her telling her caregiver, "I'm going to go look at these books" as she wondered around the shelf I was standing behind. She was slightly hunched, with short dark hair, glasses, and wearing a pink hoodie. It was hard to tell but I would say she was at least in her twenties, we'll suffice it to say she wasn't a child or teenager. I admit as she came around the shelf I avoided eye contact. I didn't want the attention from the other patrons, that was sure to come if I entered into a guaranteed loud conversation with this young lady. She moved back around to the front of the shelves as I continued perusing titles.
     A moment later I heard my little Ro-Ro headed my way with his Memaw so I walked around the shelf just in time to witness the young lady enter into a conversation with my momma. She looked at my baby and exclaimed how cute he was then asked momma if he was hers. I was approaching from behind, put on a big smile and said "No, he's mine". She looked at me and immediately exclaimed, "He looks just like you!" I smiled some more as I went past her to put my books in the stroller. As I was turning back around she was saying, "I know how to get him to smile!" and as I watched, she covered her face in preparation for a game of peek-a-boo. In the seconds between her covering her face and then exclaiming "peek-a-boo!" I pasted on another smile and was all geared up to explain how tired he was so her feelings wouldn't be hurt when he didn't smile. I was watching my baby, mouth opened to explain, and as her hands came off her face and she exclaimed "peek-a-boo!" Ro-Ro gave her the sweetest smile. I teared up as she hastily removed her glasses and covered her face again to repeat the process, earning her another smile. Then she asked me his name, I genuinely smiled and asked hers. I told her thank you for playing with him and we headed off to story time.
     As we entered the elevator I praised Ro-Ro for being such a sweet baby and smiling at the nice lady, as if he'd done something extraordinary in being kind to the handicap lady. As the words left my mouth I realized he had no concept of how special she was. All he had observed and responded to was another person who had paid attention to him. He's very smiley and social for a 4 month old, but he doesn't always respond to strangers, just whoever he happens to take a fancy to. He saw no difference in her and every other stranger we meet that exclaims how cute he is and tries to get him to interact.
     His precious, innocent view of the world made me consider myself. As adults we allow our past experiences to effect our reaction to current situations. In most cases, this is a valuable life skill, enabling us to avoid past mistakes. There are certain times however when maybe we would benefit from letting go of any preconceptions, previous thoughts, and past experiences and just view the world as a child, innocent and free of any prejudice and misconceptions. I believe there are times when, if I allowed myself to do this, I could enjoy life's moments to the fullest. So, I'm going to strive to do this and pray for the wisdom to discern those moments in which I should "let go" and switch to the innocent view of a child.

Welcome to my pensieve....

     So you may be wondering, what in the world is a pensieve?! Well, those of you who have ventured into the wonderful, magical world of Harry Potter already know (and no, the movies alone do not suffice! you cannot truly appreciate Harry Potter unless you have read all 7 books ;). For those of you who haven't, let me explain.
     Dumbledore, the greatest wizard of all time and a mentor of sorts to young Harry Potter, owns a pensieve. The pensieve is a shallow stone basin filled with a silvery substance that is neither liquid nor gas and continuously moving. "One simply siphons the excess thoughts from one's mind, pours them into the basin, and examines them at one's leisure." - Dumbledore, "The Goblet of Fire". Once the memory is added to the basin one simply submerges their head in the substance and then enters the memory as an observer.
     Hopefully that sufficiently explains what a pensieve is (by the way, pronounced pon-siv. This pronunciation is garnered from Severus Snape's reference to the pensieve in the last Harry Potter movie. This is the only authority I have to go on since I can't personally ask JK Rowling). Now the question is why, "Welcome to my Pensieve"? Well, to once again quote Dumbledore, "I sometimes find, and I am sure you know the feeling, that I simply have too many thoughts and memories crammed into my mind." These are my feelings exactly. I'm a first time mommy to an adorable 4 month old. When we found out we were pregnant I was just beginning my first semester for my MSW (Masters of Social Work) so I finished that semester then decided to put my education on hold to be a full time, stay-at-home mommy. This is completely new territory for me and I have recently found the need for a "creative" outlet for thoughts, feelings, ramblings, etc. This blog will be a work in progress, as am I.
     Here I'll be sharing every day mommy experiences, some craftiness, literature references, and a whole lot of "me". What I hope you see along the way is:

  •  My deep love and loyalty to my amazing husband. I am completely, head over heels in love with him and have been for four and a half years (well actually since I was 7 years old, but that's a story for another time). 
  • The mommy in me, because once that little boy entered my world it changed everything and he became his mommy's heart. 
  • My deep belief in family. I am blessed to have both my parents and I have 3 wonderful sisters as well as an awesome sister-in-law and great in-laws. We're a close bunch and that's the way I like it. 
  • Most of all I hope you see my love for my heavenly Father, to whom I owe everything; love, loyalty, praise, very breath of life.

     I have blogged before, but it was a private blog with only a few invited. Public blogging is a whole new experience for me. I won't be using real names. I'll refer to myself as KC, my husband is Eugene, and my sweet baby is Ro-Ro. Oh and I'm mommy to a fur baby, Aurora. That's her real name as I feel no need to protect her identity seeing as she's a dog ;). In order to protect my friends and family's personal information any and all names will be nicknames and I have yet to decide on whether or not to post pictures. Maybe some of you more seasoned bloggers can advise on the safety of that. I do ask that those of you who know us personally will respect this and when commenting will refer to us by our "blog names".
    Now you should know up front my grammar, when writing, is not great. Its a miracle I made it through my undergrad and one semester of grad work passing all my classes. I, commonly, misuse, commas, ;) and I thank God for spell check otherwise that would be another area of concern. I'm looking at this blog as an opportunity to improve on this. I also do not have everything on the blog here filled out, tweaked, set the way I like it. I'll be working on that. Bare with me. 
     There you have it. Welcome to my pensieve!