June 27, 2010

prayer request (updated)

I put up a prayer request yesterday for our sweet little friend, Layne...When I went to update it last night, I accidentally deleted it and thought "well, no one really reads my blog anyway"... I thought wrong! 2 emails this morning asking about little Layne!!

So, here's the update:

2 night ago, Layne started vomiting uncontrollably, vomiting blood, and then couldn't breathe and went limp in her Momma's arms. (you have chills, don't you? As a Mom, I can't imagine what Megan must have felt) 911 arrived and transported Layne to the nearest hospital. After many tests, they decided that she needed to be transferred to another hospital for emergency surgery for intestinal blockage. Once at the new hospital, they decided to wait on surgery and run some other tests.

Clover and I got to go visit little Layne-fish yesterday, and she was in much better spirits - color on her cheeks, giggling with Clover, requesting food, etc.

Instead of trying to put it in my own words, this was Megan's fb status last night when Layne got to go home:

"Layne has been released and we are home watching her. Right now we are still awaiting test results back for a possible egg and/or dairy allergy. They are also fairly certain she has Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome. But, it will take time to determine the severity. She also continues to have trouble with severe constipation, so we are watching to be sure the nociception they saw on the x-ray does not return. It's a very frustrating set of circumstances because we can't 'fix' her and just have to wait and define patterns.

I am feeling a bit down knowing that the GI issues I've battled have obviously not skipped a generation. Never wanted my kids to go through this crap :(

THANK YOU EVERYONE for all your thoughts, well wishes, prayers, vibes and messages. We felt the love. And, Layne is feeling quite a bit better."

Please continue to pray for this amazing family and beautiful little girl!

"Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything
that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven. For where two or
more are gathered together in My Name, I am there in the midst of them." -- Matthew 18: 19-20

June 24, 2010


Okay, she didn’t get a strike, but Clover DID go bowling for the first time yesterday and had a blast! We went with our bff’s Megan and Layne (and Landon, too!) They put bumpers up on the sides of the alley and then a little ramp in the front so the girls could put the ball on the ramp and push it towards the pins! It was a little close to naptime, so Clover didn’t quite last til the very end, but she still had so much fun. After she woke up from her nap, in a sleepy haze she said “layyneee… balllll”, so I think she may have dreamed about her first bowling adventure.

Here are some great pictures Megan took:

Clover and Layne checking out their bowling shoes:
Clover's were a size too big, but so cute!
My little bowler:
Water Break:
and this is how she ended the bowling game...

I'm forever grateful for Megan capturing these precious "1st" moments! She has such a gift of photography and I'm constantly impressed by her work!

Just a little bonus

Remember the bonus questions on tests in high school? You could miss five real test questions, but answer the un-related bonus questions and still get a 100% on the test.

I wish life was like that.

For instance, when you do something totally selfless and for someone else, you should get an extra surprise $100 in your checking account. Or if you pick up the nasty little spider and put him outside instead of flushing him down the toilet, the bonus would be all the other little spiders would leave your house and never return.

Now, the key to the “bonus” is that you never know if and when it’s going to happen. But when you do something really selfless and “bonus worthy”, without expecting something in return, then BAM! a surprise bonus magically appears!

I’ve been working out for the past month and trying to eat better. I’ll just throw it all out there… I’m the biggest I’ve ever been and I honestly need to lose about forty pounds. The hard part isn’t working out. I love the feeling I get after accomplishing a really hard, hot, long 4 mile walk. I just wish there were a few little bonuses. Like last night when Dustin wanted pizza for dinner and I decided (a little reluctantly) to make whole wheat spaghetti, a romaine lettuce salad and grilled vegetables for dinner instead. Yes, it was SO much better for me than pizza, but I think I also deserved a little extra weight loss for my efforts. Not much, just a little bonus weight shed for doing something better for my body.

June 17, 2010

Hypocritical Mind

I’m an optimistic person. I try to see the positive in most things and people. I try not to dwell on the bad, and I try to have a positive outlook on life.

That being said, I am an incredibly bitchy person sometimes. I have a million pet peeves. I have a hard time seeing things I don’t agree with and letting them go.

It’s weird.

So, my mind often thinks random thoughts like this:

“Wow, that lady is really fat. I pray to God I never look that fat. Why the hell is she eating McDonald's? Doesn’t she know that will just make her more fat? Gross….Well, you know, I wouldn’t want someone to think that about me. I’m sorry. At least she’s walking. Or maybe that’s all she can afford. That’s mean to call her fat…”

It’s been hot hear in Georgia. Hot and humid. Hot and disgusting. Hot and sweaty. And just HOT.

And the AC doesn’t work in either of our cars. It makes me so mad I want to just give my car away. Yesterday I needed to go to the store, so I figured if Clover and I were going to be drenched in sweat by the time we got there and back home, we might as well walk. So, we walked the 2.7 miles (mainly uphill one way) in the blistering heat. I’m not sure why I thought that would be better than driving with no AC, but I felt good about the exercise.

I'm also very conflicted right now. I hate my car. I want to get rid of it and get a new car with AC. I don’t care if we have to do away with trash service, the bug guy (aka the exterminator) and a few other luxuries – just so long as we have a car with working air conditioner.

Then…I feel like I’m not grateful for what I have. We have two cars that work. The one I want to get rid of is paid off and gets good gas mileage. It’s only a couple more months of summer and then it will be cold again.

But, did I mention that the driver’s side window quit working too?

June 16, 2010

2010 Baby Bowl

My best friend, Jessika, and her husband Matt are expecting a baby boy in early July! Of course I couldn't resist throwing her a baby shower!! It was a co-ed shower, so in order to incorporate the boys, we decided to do a super bowl theme and call it "Baby Bowl".

Here are some pictures of the football theme diaper cake I made for them! They are doing a lot of guitar type things in his room, so I added a mini guitar to the cake!

Jessika’s friend, Laura, helped me plan the shower and took care of all the food! We had wings, mini-egg rolls (Jessika’s favorite), several dips and chips, fruit tray, veggies trays and more!

For the decorations, we kept things simple, yet detailed. The diaper cake was the center piece of the food table. I also found two football flags at a craft store. I originally could not find any table cloths that I liked, but immediately fell in love with the flags and decided to use them as table cloths!

One of my biggest philosophies is “why buy something if you can make it?” So for the Baby Bowl sign I searched and searched for some great cardstock paper with footballs on it. I finally found some at a scrapbook store and cut it down for the background of each letter. I then printed green letters and mounted them to the football paper. The roman numerals represent Jessika’s due date. 
I love the way the sign turned out!

Being a co-ed shower, I didn’t want to bore the boys with too many games. So when they guests arrived, I had a piggy bank set up near the food and drinks for people to donate to baby Hudson’s college fund. It was a cute way to involve the guests from the beginning and start the little one’s college savings off right! I also made a “Guess the Kick Off Date and Time” calendar for everyone to guess when Hudson will be born. 

The first “real” game was an instant hit. I bought 6 bottles that Matt and Jessika had previously registered for (so they could take home after the shower), and also brought 7 others from home. We filled 12 bottles with beer and 1 with sprite (so that Jessika could play the game too). The goal was to see who could drink all of the beer out of the bottle first. Everyone was a little apprehensive about playing the game at first, but once I went around and handed out the bottles, they were excited to play. 
What guy can resist a challenge? The game was hilarious and a lot of fun.

Jessika, and the winner: 
(that's right, all the competitive guys got beaten by a girl!)

Next, we had everyone group off into groups of 4 or 5 people. I had Matt and Jessika head into the living room where the present opening would soon take place (and this allowed a nice little break for Jessika to prop her feet up!) Back in the kitchen, I gave each group a plain white bib. I then set out a bunch of fabric markers and different iron-on pictures. I told each group to design a bib for Hudson and afterward Matt and Jessika would choose their favorite bib and that team would win. Each team member was required to write their name on the back of their team’s bib. This was a great way to not only give the parents-to-be a bunch of bibs, but they were also bibs that their friends had designed AND it was a good remembrance of everyone who came to their baby shower!

After the teams were done decorating their bibs, everyone moved into the living room. Matt and Jessika picked a 1st and 2nd place bib and each team member got a football water bottle as a prize.

The last game was Baby Bingo. This game is my favorite way to involve everyone in the present opening, and prevent glazed over eyes during the process (especially for the boys). Prior to the shower, I printed out BINGO cards and randomly wrote in numbers 1-6 under each letter. I then printed out little pieces of paper with B1-B6, etc. on them. When each guest arrived with a present, my “assistant” (Laura’s son), took each present into the other room and taped a number/letter on it. Before each present was opened, Matt called each number/letter out until we had a winner! The guests were so into the Bingo game that they wanted to continue to play for a 2nd place winner!

Overall, the shower went smoothly, everyone had fun (even the guys) and Matt and Jessika had a blast! I can’t WAIT to meet their little Hudson!

If you're looking for a party planner (specializing in children's parties and baby showers), send me an email for more information! 

Also, I designed the invitation, but for professional graphic design:

And lastly, for event photography, please contact:

June 09, 2010

19 months old hurts!

Clover turned 19 months old today, and ended the day with a massively large shiner on her forehead. She was running around playing with Daddy and slipped and fell head first onto the hardwood floors. 

Other than the huge goose egg, I think Clover is really going to like being 19 months old.

She is so smart, so fun, so sweet...and so independent and challenging at times.

Teeth: At 17 months old she had 6 teeth, by 18 months old she had 12. She still has 12.

Favorite books: One week, the only book she would let me read at bedtime was Outside Over There - over and over again. When Miss Opinionated allows me to read other books, her current favorites are Peter Spit a Seed at Sue, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Where the Wild Things Are, In The Night Kitchen, The Pout Pout Fish and Goodnight Moon.

She loves to "sing" and has become really good at "singing along".  She especially likes to sing the abc's, twinkle twinkle little star, open shut them, and ring around the rosie (which sounds a little like "do blah da djklow fjkldow DOWN"). 

She is now a pro at repeating things she hears.  Like the other day when a car cut me off and I slammed on my breaks and said "shit!"... she repeated "shit! shit! shit!" about five times... She might still say it on occasion...

She loves Curious George and Sesame Street.

Her favorite foods are black beans, cheerios, any and all fruit, and pizza.

She loves music and is a really good fist pumper dancer.

She loves going to the zoo, playing at the park, lounging in the pool, playing with jewelry and carrying purses, singing, dancing, painting, reading and going out to eat with JuJu.

She desperately wants a bike.

I leave you with a few cute photos my ever talented friend, Megan, took of her and Layne in the pool the other day! How cute are they? 

June 07, 2010

My First I Heart Faces Entry

Although I frequent the I Heart Faces Photography blog and enjoy looking at all the contest entries each week, I have never actually entered – Why?

First, I'm definitely a beginner photographer. I only own a point and shoot (albeit a really nice point and shoot that I love and am extremely grateful for!) Second, I’m a little shy to put myself out there for others to critique. I was an art major for two years in college, and peer critiques can be intimidating.

However, this week’s theme, “Play” really jumped out at me and I decided to enter!

Clover has really started to develop an imagination and I absolutely love watching her play, actually play, with toys. I immediately thought of a picture I took when we were in Indiana when she was “feeding” her doll. I love the way her mouth is wide open while she pretended to share her snack with her doll.

June 05, 2010

We Belong in the Zoo

My Dad and Step-Mom, Melina, got us a zoo family membership for Christmas! When Dustin's parents were in town a month ago we went for the first time.

Clover loves the zoo. She has always been really into different animals and animal sounds, so this is a great place to take her!  Her favorites are the giraffes and monkeys.  In fact, I didn't even know she could say giraffe until I was unloading the dishwasher the other day (ha! who am I kidding? I was probably checking my blog) and she was watching Sesame Street and started yelling "ERRAFFE! ERRAFFE!" I thought, wow, that sure sounds like giraffe, and sure enough there were giraffes on the tv!

my baby sister, Ava True; my step-daughter, Rylee; and Clover Anne

Clover and I definitely belong in the zoo!

Clover loved the petting zoo! My fearless child walked right up to each animal and tried to poke their eyes out.

and this is just a pretty funny blooper:

Our 2nd trip to the zoo was with my good friend, Megan, her husband, Brent, and their two kids - Layne and Landon.  Layne is a year older than Clover and Clover absolutely loves her.  Megan has become a great friend to me and we share so many qualities, ideas, parenting styles, thoughts, dreams... ok, kidding on the last part...but our birthdays are exactly one month apart.  Anyway, the funny part is, neither of us is that girly... But our daughters?  They are 100% girls. Love jewelry, love purses, love pink. They are 2 peas in a pod.

On this particular trip-to-the-zoo day, Clover decided that she had to wear 4 of her plastic bracelets into the zoo.  I told her she needed to make sure to share them with Layne. Well guess who walked pranced in with her own plastic necklace... 

The lighting is horrible, but the subjects are adorable! (too cheesy?)

I just love her hair in pig tails:

And by the way, I'm sure my pictures don't even compare to the ones Megan took!  She's an extremely talented photographer.  Me? Not so much.

June 04, 2010

I took the plunge...

I've been wanting to try cloth diapers for awhile now (nevermind the fact that Clover was 18 months old when I started) and everything I read said to just dig right in.  I guess, like most things in life, you'll never know til you try.

So, I asked lots of opinions, read several blogs (like this one), forms (Mothering.com is my favorite) and decided that I might like the pocket diapers the best. Why? Because they dry the fastest and are the closest design to disposable.

My first buy was the Tiny Tush Elite One-Size. After using it for a few days, and thinking it was pretty cool, I decided I probably needed another one.  So my 2nd buy was Bum Genius 3.0, which I read is a favorite amongst cloth diaper Mommas.  Even though I read that the snap ones are better than velcro, I still went with the velcro.  Also, (if you are a rule follower don't read this) I wash them normally, with regular detergent, without a 2nd rinse and I lay them out to dry.  I know, I know, the instructions say not to do any of that except lay them out to dry (the one rule I follow).  But honestly, I don't care if they last 10 years. I don't have the money to buy special detergent. I don't have the time to set my washer to another rinse cycle, and frankly I want it to be as easy as possible.

Anyway, after using 2 diapers most days for a couple of weeks, I can honestly say I like them a lot!  They're easy, soft on the little butts, last longer than disposables, don't sag down when they're wet and I'm helping the environment!  My only complaint about the one-size diaper is that there are snaps on the outsides of the diapers (to adjust the sizes) and I think they push up against Clover's leg sometimes. However, they don't leave marks and she doesn't seem to notice. Also, I like the Tiny Tush one better than the Bum Genius 3.0.

Some of my initial fears:

1. Cleaning up after poop! I think it's gross and unsanitary.  I don't want to wash it or touch it.

How I've adapted - I try to put Clover in the cloth diapers when I know she probably won't poo (since she's older, she tends to only do it about once a day). However, she has pooped in them twice and each time I flushed the poo down the toilet (sorry if this is TMI for you!), threw them in the wash with some towels, washed them on hot and added some bleach and then washed them again on cold without bleach.  Yes, they say no bleach, but again, who wants to follow EVERY rule?? I'm using them at least, right?

2. They are expensive and I won't be saving any money.

Here's the breakdown:
2 cloth diapers = $35.90
A box of 140 Pampers Cruisers diapers = $41
Use two a day for a month saves about 60-70 disposable diapers, a MONTH. After 2-3 months, you are already breaking even and saving money! Plus, you don't have to keep buying more, like you do with disposables!

So, my advice, if you've even been entertaining the idea of trying out at least one cloth diaper, go for it! Yes, you might spend $18 on a diaper, but after you break even, each time you use it, you're saving money! In fact, I'm thinking next paycheck, I might get Clover another Tiny Tush diaper!