Monday, December 31, 2012

Slowing Down for 2013

Just in the nick of time, I managed to get all the Christmas decorations down and am very ready to kick off 2013. This past year has been beyond crazy. We moved to a new city, lived in three different houses, finally became pregnant and gave birth to another beautiful baby boy. Life has been wonderful to us this year, but it certainly hasn't been without its challenges. I told my husband that our main goal for 2013 should be to make things as uneventful as possible! No moves, no major purchases and no getting pregnant. 

In 2013, I'm simply hoping for life to slow down. I want to soak in all the little moments and put my main focus on my children. This year will be all about getting back to basics: running a more efficient household, strengthening our marriage and becoming more financially fit. I'm also ready to kick this post-partum body to the curb and get back to a new and improved "me". 

These may not be lofty goals, but they are the important ones. Cheers to you and yours on this New Years Eve!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Top Posts of 2012 and Pinterest Favorites

I hope everyone had a fabulous Christmas. We certainly did. I might not have gotten to do as much as I would have liked with Ethan this Christmas season, but I think we did pretty good considering. 

Ethan loved his new train set although I do think we will be DIY-ing a train table sometime soon. Jackson was perfect angel and slept through the whole thing. It was certainly nice for us to not travel and I have to say having my husband home these past two weeks has been more like a vacation than any we have been on in the past two years. I'm thinking "stay-cations" are the way to go!

Now we've entered that time of year where we start reflecting and looking forward. To kick everything off, I thought I'd share my top posts of 2012. 

Top Posts of 2012

Pinterest Favorites from Years Past

Thursday, December 20, 2012

A Little Update

We've almost made it through our first week as parents of two although in reality my mom has really been handling the first  born along with all the cleaning and cooking while I've mostly been sitting on my rear end with a baby snuggled on my chest. 

Next week it will be back to reality...our new reality...somewhat. Michael will be here with us so I still won't be on my own, but we won't have any additional help so things should get interesting. I have to admit I'm semi (ok, very) fearful of being on my own with two. There were plenty of days where just the one about did me in, so imagining two makes me shiver in fear a bit. But as always, I'm sure I will get it figured out once I'm thrown back into the fire of things. That's just the way things are sometimes.

Life with baby has been so different this time around. Things are just easier. It makes me laugh at how difficult we thought things were with just the one. And really, it was difficult. It was difficult because everything was new and we knew nothing about what to do with babies. This time I am just so much more confident in my parenting skills it just makes everything easier. 

Jackson and I are both recovering quite well. I had a little scare with a possibly infected incision, but things are looking better. I'm returning to the doctor tomorrow to have stitches removed and I have to be honest...I'm deathly afraid of getting them taken out. I'm sure I'm making it worse in my head than it really is, but it's just one of those things I fear. Yuck. Jackson is doing well. He lost quite a bit of weight before we left the hospital, but I can happily say he is quickly gaining everything back. He also has a little bit of jaundice, but after multiple tests it looks like it is slowly taking care of itself on it's own.

Ethan is doing pretty well in his new role of big brother. He looks several years older to me now in comparison to Jackson. He's mostly been ignoring the fact that there is a new little being in our lives, but occasionally comes over to kiss on the baby. Thankfully grandparents have been here to keep him busy, happy and distracted, but next week should really put him to the test although I think he will handle the transition well!

I hope to write Jackson's birth story soon. It's not too eventful since it was a planned c-section but there is still a story to share. I also hope to post some non-instagram pictures of the newbie, but its hard to hold a camera when you never set the baby down.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

New Arrival!

On Friday December 14th, we welcomed a new little boy into our family. Jackson Reed came into this world via C-Section at 7:47AM weighing in at 8 pounds 11 ounces and measuring 21 inches long. 

We are now home and trying to recover and adjust as quickly as possible. I'm so in love with this new little guy and plan on spoiling him immensely. I refer to him as "my little kitty cat" because his favorite place to curl up and sleep is on my chest. I have to admit I hardly ever put him down and I don't feel bad about it in the slightest. It's funny the things you do differently the second time around. I'm sure there will be more on that later. 

I hope to post more on the birth and our first few days at home later on, but as you can imagine life with 2 is slightly hectic at the moment. Thank you all for your prayers and congratulations. This is a very special time for our family!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Baby Jackson's Elephant Nursery

Tomorrow is the big day! Baby Jackson should arrive by 8AM if all goes well. My nerves at this point are at an all time high so I thought this would be a great time to distract myself by posting fun photos of his nursery! 

I absolutely love the way everything finally came together (and by finally...I mean last night). It is so different than Ethan's nursery and while I loved that one as well, I love this one in a different way. Ethan's was very craft-tastic, but for Jackson's I took the easy way out and mostly used Etsy (and my mom) for all the details. I guess that still makes it craft-tastic...just not by my hands.

Pregnancy does funny things to your brain. With Ethan, all I could see were birds for his nursery. This was elephants. Pregnancy has also made me use some very bold colors in the house (let's hope I still love them tomorrow when I'm officially un-pregnant right?) and Jackson's room was no different. 

So without further adieu....


Wall Color: Silver Lining
Crib: Previously owned...purchased at JC Penney's but can no longer find
Crib SheetsPottery Barn Kids
Dust Ruffle: Made by my mom
Vinyl Wall ArtVinyl Concepts
Elephant MobileSugar and Spice Studios
Rug: Greek Flokati Rug in Natural Grey from Rugs USA
Dresser: Previously owned...purchased at Flea Market, repainted in Valspar French Olive
Elephant PrintDelivered by Danielle ; Frame: Michael's
Stuffed Elephant: Ikea
Glider: Previously owned...USA Baby - Jory in Chocolate Brown
Elephant Pillow: Made by my mom
Every Little Thing PosterDean Works Studios

InspirationE, Myself, and I

I hope you all love it as much as we do! Can't wait to have Jackson in it. Prayers and good vibes would definitely be appreciated. We will be heading to the hospital tomorrow morning at 5AM to pick up the final piece that will make the nursery truly complete. I'll be sure to post pictures at some point to keep you all up to date! I'll probably post on Instagram or Facebook first in case you just can't wait for the blog post :)

Please take a second and hit the "Like" button...

Monday, December 10, 2012

The State of Things on Monday

Time is definitely nearing for baby J to arrive. Friday is baby day in fact. Yeah, this Friday. EEEEKS!!!

My mom is coming today to help us finish getting ready for baby-time and Christmas-time. Michael and I have been working our behinds off trying to get this new house feeling like a home and set up for baby, but there is still a lot to do. Isn't there always? All of my Christmas decorations are still sitting on my dining room table. The tree has lights, a star and two paper ornaments that Ethan made at school. To be honest? I'm scared to put anything else on it. Anyone else feeling like Christmas is one big..."Yes, son it is pretty, sparkly and tempting but for the love...stop touching it!". Sigh. 

The nursery is pretty much complete at this point. I am waiting on one other piece to put up then I will be ready to share the final product with the rest of the world. It turned out super cute and so different from Ethan's. 

Speaking of Ethan...I'm planning on soaking up as much time as possible with him this week. He has been quite a handful lately and I'm hoping it's just all to blame on him sensing the change about to come. I envisioned these last few weeks being a special time for us, but's purely just been frustrating. I'm hoping with my mom here, I will get to have the opportunity to do some special Christmasy things with him this week. 

I kinda forgot how much preparation was needed for a new baby. All the washing, the assembling, the planning and the cleaning. Yeah. Lots has fallen by the wayside this time. I think part of it has to do with the fact that I've put the actual birth to the back of my mind. Don't get me wrong...I am SUPER excited about holding a squishy newborn again...I'd just like to skip the surgery part. It's scary. It hurts. It makes me anxious so I've just been trying to put it to the back of my mind. 

I guess I should get back at it. There's a carseat that needs installing, a swing that needs assembling and a bag (or two) that needs to be packed....just a few more days!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

How to Remove Old Stains from Baby Clothes

Like many moms, I packed all of Ethan's old baby clothes in hopes of being able to use them for baby number two. Unfortunately when I pulled them out of storage I found most of them to be covered in stains. I'm fairly sure these stains weren't there when I originally packed them away, but stains are tricky and tend to come out over time.

I sprayed them with some stain remover, tossed them in the wash and hung them to dry in hopes that they would come out. 

Old stains are tricky though. Apparently they didn't like my usual way of doing things.

Attack number two on my list was to call my mom. 

Mom's know all the tricks right? 

Well, at least experienced moms. 


I'm still earning my badges here people. 

She recommended Biz laundry detergent which I had never heard of...probably because it's the old powder kind. I don't even remember using powder in my lifetime. She said it was tricky to find, but after searching for awhile I did find some at Wal-Mart. 

I carefully measured warm water in my washing machine. I'm weird I like to follow directions to the T. In case you were wondering a small load in a (non HE) top loader contains about 12 gallons of water. Biz recommends 1 cup of detergent for every two gallons of water, I'd read elsewhere to do 1 cup per gallon so I split the difference and added 8 scoops. You can presoak from anywhere between 30 minutes to overnight. I went the overnight route just to be sure. 

The next day I ran the rinse cycle then washed as usual with my normal detergent. 

I had about 25 items in there...sleepers, bibs, burp cloths, outfits. It saved all but one! And, I'm fairly sure that one outfit was one of the ones on top that might not have gotten a full soaking.

I wish I had taken a before and after picture, but alas, I really didn't think it was going to work. 

Biz doesn't know who I am. I'm getting nothing out of this. I just simply wanted to pass this fabulous trick along. 

Save some money, buy some Biz and get to saving those baby clothes folks!

If you found this post helpful, you might like these as well:

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Monday, December 3, 2012

Ethan's Favorite Things (18-24mo.)

It's that time of year where everyone is looking for the perfect gift ideas and sometimes the best ideas come from seeing what others like and enjoy. Not every kid is into the same thing, but I figured I would share with you what some of Ethan's favorite toys have been in the last 6 months. These have all been tested and Ethan approved!

1. Toystate Caterpillar Construction Mini Machine 5-Pack - These little trucks are so amazing that we own two sets of them and if we received another I wouldn't complain a bit. They are perfect for the sandbox, the bath tub, the car and my purse. They literally go everywhere with us and we must have the complete set at all times because you can't have a bulldozer without a backhoe to scoop up the dirt and you can't have a backhoe without a dump truck to dump it into....or so Ethan says.

2. Melissa & Doug Wooden Take Along Tool Kit (24pc) - Ethan doesn't use everything in this set, just the tools really. He's not so much into putting things together, but hammering...yeah, we are into that. In fact, the hammer is so awesome I was able to put an Ikea dresser together with it. Don't ask...

3. Tourance Baby Blanket - This was originally suppose to be for Jackson, but as soon as Ethan laid his hands on it, he decided it was his favorite and I personally can't blame him. It is the softest most luxurious blanket I've ever felt. I ordered him a toddler sized one just recently from One Kings Lane (the cheapest place to buy them) and I'm hoping I can switch him over. Heck, if I could afford the adult size I would be sleeping with it every night too. 

4. Toystate CAT Big Builder Skid Steer - Ethan has a ton of truck...a ton. This is one of his newest additions and current favorites. I really think it has to do with the size of it more than anything else. It is very easy for him to carry. It lights up, shakes and makes sounds although that isn't necessary for him (he enjoys making his own sounds), it is a bonus. 

5. My First Truck Board Book  - When he can't play with trucks, this book is the perfect thing to satisfy his strong truck addiction. We take it in the car and I leave it with him in his bed at nap time. If your kid isn't into trucks (and your still reading this) I do strongly recommend any of the "My First" board books. They are some of our favorite.

6. Toy Guitar - This little guitar came from World Market and Ethan loves it. He has a couple that light up and make music, but this is his current favorite. He can make his own tunes and it looks like the real deal. 

7. Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site - Forget Goodnight Moon, this book is right up Ethan's alley. My mom recently gifted this to him and now we read it every night after we put his trucks to bed. Yes, we put the trucks to bed. I highly recommend it. We usually only look at pictures for most books, but he actually allows us to completely read this book. 

What are some of your kid-tested and approved favorites??? I'd love to know! Santa might not be completely done shopping yet :)

Thursday, November 29, 2012

37 Weeks and Why I'm Choosing a C-Section

Weekly doctor visits really make the reality of what's about to happen sink in. With only 1 maybe 2 visits left I'm starting (yes, starting) to realize that maybe asking some questions about things might be a good idea. You see, I usually just use the avoidance tactic when an uncomfortable experience is on the horizon. If I don't think about it, don't talk about it then it's not going to happen right?


Um, no.

Pretty sure this c-section thing is going to be happening again and very soon. And yes, I'm a planned c-section. No, I'm not trying for a V-BAC. I know *some* people frown upon planned c-sections. It's like they think it's the easy way out. No work, just lay there and have the baby cut out of damage to ahem certain areas below. 

I did not want a c-section the first go around. I cried when they told me there was no other option. I tried to wait for Ethan to come on his own, I had to be induced and went through all the motions...even the pushing and he just wouldn't come out. A big baby plus a small pelvis equaled c-section in my case.

I felt like I failed.

I felt like people thought I'd given up.

Sometimes things just are what they are.

This time around I expected a c-section. I did not investigate a V-BAC all that much. There are some people out there that really have a strong desire to have a natural birth and have that true birthing experience and that is amazing. I personally am concerned with the baby getting here and everyone being healthy. I'm not saying that the other people aren't...I completely understand where they are coming from and fully support it...but my desire for that just isn't quite as strong. I see a V-BAC as a risk to both my health and my baby's health. Situations could arise that would land me not just in a c-section, but an emergency c-section and could possibly take away my chances of having more children and those risks are just not something I'm willing to take on.

With that said, I have to admit that I am beginning to get extremely nervous about this upcoming surgery. I didn't have much time to think about what was going to happen when I had one with Ethan, but this time around I feel like everything is going to be so...well...operational. I get nervous about getting my blood drawn, so you can imagine the anxiety I feel about having my abdomen sliced opened. And yes, I've done it before...and no, that doesn't make me feel any better about it.

Last week we had an accidental ultrasound. I was seeing a nurse practitioner instead of my regular OB and somehow landed in the ultrasound room. I asked why I was there, but I guess my confusion did not seem to matter to them. I found out that my fluids were just fine and that I have a BIG healthy boy growing inside. At 36 weeks he was weighing in at 7 pounds 6 ounces and is on track to be a 9 pound baby. Of course those are just estimates, but it would not surprise me any seeing as how Ethan was 8 pounds 7 ounces although he was born at 41 weeks and Jackson will be at 39. 

Those numbers kind of solidified things for me. There is no way this baby would have even been able to come out the natural way with numbers like that. My body just wasn't made for it. My hips just never widen. A c-section is definitely the right choice for me

Birthing and raising babies are so very personal. Everyone has different ways and beliefs and that is just a-okay. In the end, there are no trophies handed out. And I wish there was no judgement passed, but there is. All that matters though is that we get to come home with our little (or big) bundles of joy and do our very best to raise happy children. We all just take different paths to get there and that should be respected.

Linking up with Things I Can't Say for Pour Your Heart Out.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

2nd Child Syndrome

We are 16 days away from Jackson's scheduled arrival date. Yes, that's roughly two weeks. Hello, Laura....are you reading this? You have 2 weeks to get your arse in gear! People are constantly telling me I will go early and at one point this weekend that little possibility hit me hard. Don't they know this freaks the mother out? Oh that's right...they aren't thinking about that.

Yes, he is low. 

Yes, I look like I could pop at any moment. 

No, I won't have this baby in your can now relax and leave me alone to do my shopping.

I've reached the point where a shirt that reads "Please keep comments to yourself" would come in very handy. 

My head is swirling with to-do lists. Mommy brain is already in full effect. I'm pretty sure I'm in denial that this kid is not going to just wait around until I get everything checked off my list. 

At this point with Ethan I was busy scrubbing baseboards and freezing countless amounts of casseroles. 



Oh how things have changed. 

The good news is that if this baby did decide to come tomorrow I have all the essentials. They aren't prepped and ready to go...but I have them.

It will be a miracle if everything comes together in time, but honestly, I'm not freaking out...a lot anyways. I do twitch from time to time, but it usually subsides fairly quickly. 

Last time I was scared. I had no idea what I was getting into. This figure things will just work themselves out.

Who have I become?!?! 

Is this what being a parent has made me?

As much as I want things to be the same for Jackson as they were for Ethan, I know deep down that they just won't be.

I've changed. I've grown. I can't possibly do things the same way.

I might not be as on top of things as I once was, but I am more relaxed. I can roll with the punches a little more easily. 

I probably won't have time to take 800 pictures in one month of just Jackson like I did with Ethan, but I'll get the important things. They will be less blurry, they will be of better quality.

Jackson will have to wear hand-me-downs, but he will get new things too and probably of better quality since I don't have to buy mass quantities of things this go around.

I probably won't write as much about Jackson's life as I did Ethan's. It doesn't mean that I don't care, it simply means that I got things figured out the first go around. Every little stage won't be such a traumatic change.

Yes, there is such a thing as 2nd child syndrome. It's called being an experienced parent (ahem...I say that very loosely). Things may not always be tied in a pretty little bow around here, but Jackson is going to have it pretty good. No worries there.

Monday, November 26, 2012

A Holly Jolly Giveaway

The lovely November Sponsors of The View From 510 have come together to give one lucky reader a $25 Starbucks Card, $25 Erin Condren Gift Card and a Mint Teardrop Necklace.

Good luck and Happy Holidays everyone! a Rafflecopter giveaway

Another Christmas Mis-Adventure

As a mom, I feel like one of my roles is to make sure childhood is special for Ethan. People often tell me "He's two, he's not going to remember any of this." and they are probably right. He won't exactly remember every little thing we do for him, but I do feel like it will make some sort of impact on him in the future. Traditions will be ingrained, thoughts and feelings will be formed and if all else fails there will at least be photographic and written proof for him to look back upon one day. 

Sometimes though I wonder if I'm forcing things too much. Take for example our Christmas tree adventure this year. And no, this isn't our first Christmas tree fact, it tends to be a fairly consistent thing for our family as described in this very old post

Being back in East Tennessee made me want to introduce Ethan to the whole chop your own tree down experience. The past two years we've tried but failed (due to my utter hatred for pines) to find anywhere amazing to take him to get a tree and the experience has been a little lack luster to say the least. So this year I decided to make it extra special.

It turns out that our new home is only a mere 2.5 hours away from the home of the beautiful Frasier Fir tree (my absolute favorite type of Christmas tree). It only grows in North Carolina and possibly Colorado due to the elevation requirements so it is sort of an unique experience. I envisioned a pancake breakfast, a fun ride of Christmas carols, Ethan being in awe of so many trees and maybe some hot chocolate. 

Obviously you can tell where this is headed. 

Apparently I had forgotten I had a two year old. 

The pancake breakfast that I was sure would be a hit ended up with me mostly eating alone (not that I minded) and my husband taking wild child toddler outside so we didn't disturb the other patrons. The Christmas carols were sung amidst the screams of an unhappy car rider who insisted on telling us he was "stuck" in his carseat the whole way. Yes kid, you are strapped in and have been all your life. 

We arrived frazzled, but hopeful to one of the largest tree farms I've ever seen. As we received our instructions on tree hunting Ethan spotted a tractor and was overcome with joy. As we headed for the trees he began pulling back saying "Tractor! Tractor!" and I knew that our trip had ended before it have even begun. 

He could have cared less about the trees. There was no magic. It was a battle of wills until the end. Quickly the special tree hunt became like one of those bad grocery store trips in which you just grab and go. Except tree hunting is a little more time consuming and difficult. 

It wasn't all a total loss though. He did become fascinated with the farm animals long enough for me to finally find a tree. And of course we finished off the experience with the hay ride he was just dying to take. 

The trip home isn't even worth mentioning. It was a complete disaster due to an overly hungry toddler and our lovely Garmin taking us in a direction of absolutely no civilization what so ever. 

Life with children is such a delicate balance. Sometimes even the best laid plans can turn disastrous.

As my husband started to lose his cool, I wondered why the heck I had even tried. I began to feel sorry for myself and even began to question my true reasonings for the trip. Was I just being selfish and trying to do this solely for myself? Instead of a magical trip of fun, everyone was just frustrated.

As a parent, I'm realizing that special memories and traditions don't just happen on their own. There is always some effort that has to be put behind it. I guess I never saw that as a kid. I look back so fondly on my own childhood Christmas traditions now although I'm sure my parents have some stories like these of their own. Visions dashed, frustrations high. It might all seem to be a lost cause at the time.

Deep down I know that I do partially do these things for myself. I want to experience special moments with my kids. I don't want to feel regret for not putting in the effort. I want my kids to feel loved, to feel special, to have wonderful memories. I know in years to come that Michael and I will be laughing about this trip just as we have with all our other Christmas Mis-adventures. And no, Ethan won't remember this particular trip, but hopefully over time (and many more trips) he will develop a love of Christmas traditions and pass that on to his own family one day. 

The toddler years are tough, and sometimes I have to remind myself that it's truly the simple joys that make him happy. I know that elaborate plans aren't always necessary, but the effort is always worth the memory. I don't regret a single moment of this trip. Everything may not have been picture perfect, but I know that one day we will all look back upon it fondly. The memories of frustration will fade into laughter and the spirit of tradition will hopefully live on. 

Monday, November 19, 2012

Choo-Choo - Win a train set from Melissa & Doug

Ethan's big Christmas gift this year is going to be my old train set I had when I was a child. I've been browsing for some fun add-ons like extra trains, tunnels and bridges for quite some time now so when Melissa & Doug contacted me about their Magic Mine Wooden Train Tunnel Set I jumped at the chance! 

I obviously haven't given this to Ethan just yet, but I just know he is going to love it and your little one will too! The set comes with 5 pieces that connects to most brands of wooden tracks. I googled to find out if my old track would work and fortunately it does! The engine and empty cars pass through the tunnel to magically reappear filled with treasure! Magic treasure? I'm sold!

Melissa & Doug's wooden toys never disappoint me. I am always in love with their quality and look and this set is no different! Please use the Rafflecopter form below to enter. Contest ends Sunday at 12AM EST. Winner must respond to my email within 48 hours or someone else will be chosen. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

What Happened to the Calm Before the Storm?

You know the old saying..."The calm before the storm"? 


Well, it's lying.

I'm pretty sure that having a baby is considered a "storm" in some ways. And by storm I mean the sweet, cute bundle of non-sleeping constant diaper changing type of storm. At exactly one month until D-Day you would think I would be entering the calm phase right?

Well, it looks like life has other plans for me.

Kid #1 has decided to no longer sleep past 5ish AM. You know what happens when your kid wakes up every morning at 5AM? You begin to look like a zombie. Black eyes, swollen face, you lose your ankles and have a huge growth in your mid section...oh wait...that's really all to blame on 3rd trimester pregnancy. You might also get told by your two year old son that you have "shoo-shoo hair" because you never get to shower.

He's also decided that napping in the big boy bed is for the birds. So, he's still in Jackson's room which crazily enough besides paint still looks like Ethan's old room. I refuse to put new bedding on that crib until E is officially out and I'm beginning to wonder if I will even have a finished nursery by the time Jackson arrives. 

We also have a billion projects going on in the house that are all half finished. The house is constantly a disaster zone and every time I think I can check something off my to-do list at least 3 new things get added. 

Sometimes I wonder how in the hell we will be able to make it with two. I mean...who thought this was a good idea...(**cough, cough** all elbows pointing at this gal). I'm beginning to wonder how I will ever have hope of getting life under control with new baby if I can't even get it under control pre-baby. 

I know we will make it.

I know things will be fine.

Yes, this post is a whine-fest.

Did I mention the lack of sleep??? 

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Melissa & Doug Terrific Twenty List and Giveaway

If you are a parent then you probably already know all about the awesome products Melissa & Doug has to offer. Some of Ethan's favorite toys have come from this company. His favorites being the metal shopping cart, the construction truck puzzle and wooden tool box. With Christmas right around the corner, I know we are all looking for great toys to give to our little ones and Melissa & Doug has come up with the perfect way to tell you about twenty of their top products! 


Melissa & Doug is currently doing a twenty day giveaway of their favorite toys. Just check out their Facebook page to find out how to enter! Want some more awesome news??? Melissa & Doug has also graciously offered to do a giveaway just for MTU readers! I'll be back with more details soon on that one so stay tuned! You won't want to miss it!

**I was gifted a toy to keep in return for sponsoring this post however all thoughts and opinions are my own.**

Monday, November 12, 2012

32 Days

We are officially 32 days away from Jackson's arrival. I'm fairly sure by this point I had every single thing I needed for Ethan's arrival last time. Room done. Necessities purchased. Basically I was twiddling my thumbs.

This go around?

Room isn't done. Things are ordered, but nothing is here. Hell, there is still a kid in the room. Try as we might to get him switched to his big boy room, Ethan is just not fully there yet. Nap times would be non-existent and mama needs those nap times! 

I could not go to sleep last night just thinking about what all I might possibly be overlooking and turns out it's a lot. Well, I say that, but in all honesty I have the necessities just not all the little extra touches. As of early this morning I put in an order for more burp cloths as I realized all my old ones had E's name monogrammed on them. I also begged a lady from Europe to rush knit baby Jackson some cute booties to come home in. As much as I'm against trying to keep shoes on babies, I've realized that I'm going to have to succumb to that debacle with this December baby.

I have yet to drag out any of our old baby stuff so I have no idea what we have clothing wise. I did finally make a few new clothing purchases for Jackson over the weekend though. Kid needs some new things of his own right?

My lack of preparedness isn't the only difference this time around though. I think overall I've been waaaaay more laid back about this pregnancy. After all the fight of trying to get to this state, I think I decided to take a backseat and just go with the flow. I haven't read a single baby center email. I barely even remember what week I am when asked. In fact, there have been several times when I've forgotten I'm pregnant all together. 

For whatever reason, this pregnancy has been so much easier on my body. I feel I'm in better shape. I weigh less...I'm gaining the same amount, but overall...I still weigh less. It probably helps that I"m not having a nightly ice cream sundae every night like I did with E. Whoops. My rings are still on so swelling has been less than last time around. Tiredness isn't as prevalent. My boobs are at least twice as large as last complaints there! And instead of the baby being on my chest like Ethan was, Jackson has decided to hang out soooo much lower. Although I am enjoying breathing this time around, I do have to say that a low baby has some disadvantages of its own.

I think I've been so caught up in everything else going on around here that I just haven't had time to freak out about the fact that I'm about to have 2 kids. TWO! How we are going to keep everything together is a mystery to me. I think my motto this year has just been to tackle things as they come and this will be no different. 

In 32 days....we will be parents of two. I keep repeating that little tid bit to myself, but I'm not quite sure I believe it just yet. 

Monday, November 5, 2012


At 5:30 this morning I was awoken by a knock on our bedroom door. My husband opened it to find my two year old standing there with two opened yogurts in his hand. He apparently had escaped his new big boy room. He had climbed over the baby gate and gone down the stairs in the dark, made his way to the kitchen, climbed into the fridge and retrieved his beloved yogurt. He had taken the tops off and helped himself to the silverware drawer to grab a spoon all while my husband and I were blissfully sleeping.

At what point did my child get so dangerously independent?

Two days ago, out of the blue, he told my husband he wanted to poo-poo on the potty. We have haphazardly been putting him on the toilet to pee every now and then with success, but we have never poo-pooed (or shoo-shooed as I like to call it). Low and behold he shoo-shooed! In fact, he did it twice that day. And here I was thinking I wasn't going to potty train until spring when I got this newborn thing under control. 

I remember the days when I was pushing Ethan to do things faster, maybe before he was ready and now...he's the one pushing me. I feel like my baby is speedily turning into a self sufficient kid and that scares the living shit out of me.

I know that sounds crazy. I clearly remember the newborn days when I was all "I can't wait until you can just get your own food and wipe your own butt!" and now that my kid is on the verge of doing those things himself I realize how scary your own child's independence can be. 

Ethan is determined to learn to do everything by himself. In fact, he's capable of quite a bit I would have never dreamed he'd be ready to do. It's exciting but sad at the same time. 

I'm beginning to see the edges of the future. The future that does not require mommy's help for every little thing. 

His feelings and understanding of situations around him are starting to kick in. Conversation has gotten more complex. Questions have begun. I thought I had more time to prepare for all this. I'm realizing now how much more responsibility is involved when trying to protect your child from certain feelings and being exposed to too much. They are sponges that soak everything in, but can't always make sense of what's going on. 

Where did my baby go? 

When did he start acting like a kid? 

Parenting is tough. It makes you do things before you are ready. It reminds you of how quickly time goes. It makes you feel like you have no time for yourself only to quickly remind you that there will soon be a day when you are barely needed at all. 

What an emotional roller coaster!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

So What Wednesday!

Today I'm saying "So what!" if....

  • I feel like a total slacker mom for basically ignoring a holiday. E's worn his costume once (and hated it). Due to weather I don't think we are going anywhere tonight and we haven't even gotten a pumpkin.
  • The major reason I'm concerned about missing Halloween is solely because it will be obvious in our annual photo book.
  • I think I might literally explode if I hear one more family member whine. I'm the only whiner allowed around these parts!
  • I ate half a roll of cookie dough last night while mindlessly watching TV.
  • I desperately need my hair dyed. Grey's are blatantly obvious annnnnd I don't even care....much.
  • I attempted to make my own cinnamon syrup because I am craving a Starbucks Caramel Apple Cider and the nearest Starbucks is an hour away.
  • I'm partially excited but mostly bummed that my husband and I are about to start Dave Ramsey's Total Money Makeover at the beginning of the year. Adios fun purchases right?
So What Wednesday

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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Life and a 32 Week Update

I had one of those mornings today where I had a mini mommy breakdown. There were no tears involved, but I was overly flustered. More than I should have been probably, but sometimes you just get to that point where enough is enough. 

I can't exactly say that things around here have been going badly, but things just haven't been smooth sailing. We finally conquered the stomach virus. Everyone but me got it (Praise the Lord for that one!). Even the dog was throwing up (which, if I'm being honest, isn't that abnormal). 

Sympathy pukies I guess?

How thoughtful.

Michael and I informed Ethan this weekend that he had one goal in life. That goal...was simply to make it to school today. He's missed 6 days in a row thanks to sickness and various other things. I'm surprised they aren't out for me for truancy! Low and behold he woke up yesterday from his nap screaming bloody murder pointing at his ear. 

Hello, first time ear infection. 

I should probably consider myself lucky for him making it this long without one. Part of me just wanted to scream though. I'm no nurse. That is for certain. Sickness is not my specialty. 

Thankfully ear infections do not require E to stay home from school. We both were ready for a break of being cooped up in the house together. Most importantly today was the Halloween Parade at school and I was determined for Ethan to wear his costume at least once this year. Thanks to this foul weather I doubt there will be any Pumpkin Patches or Trick-or-Treating in our future. 

My little ray of sunshine decided he was no longer interested in being the cow that we had been building up for months and months. It was an epic battle getting him in his costume this morning and obviously picture taking did not go well.

Even though the focus is horrible, I'm pretty sure you can read exactly what those eyes are saying to me.

I'm pretty sure I was the only crazy driving to school with the windows rolled down this morning in our beautiful 39 degree weather. 

Oh well. Toddlers right? What can you do?

Things have been crazy lately and I know I'm going to want to slap myself later for saying this, but I'm looking forward to having Jackson because it will be a reason to slow down. 

That's right. 

I said having a newborn meant things were going to slow down.

You can officially put me in the looney bin now.

We are now a mere 6.5 weeks away from delivery and still have a billion things to check off our Pre-Baby To-Do List.

Scarves make objects appear smaller than they actually are...

This pregnancy has been so much easier than my first. I'm not sure if it's just because I've been too busy to focus on it or if I'm just in better shape this time around. I'm still on track to gain near 40 pounds this go around much to my dismay. I think I'm at a 30 pound gain at this point and I'm just throwing my hands in the air. Apparently it's just my number.

I feel good though. This baby moves around like crazy (probably just to remind me that it's there). I'm emotionally ready to have this baby now. I'm ready for newborn cuddles. I'm ready for it to just be time. 

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