Friday, April 26, 2013

Splish Splash

Now that Abby's taking swim classes each week with Ryan she's both loving her bath and learned how to make a huge mess.  Of course, things like kicking and splashing are perfectly fine (and fun!) in the pool.  She doesn't know that the sink is not the same :O)  She is pretty cute about it though.  What's a little water on the floor anyway?

Thursday, April 25, 2013


It's clear that someone loved the newest toy we bought her!!  Monday night it was actually warm enough, and sunny enough to spend some time outside.  Ry and I bought this swing for Abby a few days ago and it was finally time to get it into the tree. 

Gotta take a the opportunity to get in front of the camera whenever you can.  Messy hair, work clothes and all. 

I'm pretty sure this was one of her very first pushes.  She's her Daddy's daughter for sure.  She loves getting tossed into the air, being flown across the room, and now swinging.  You might notice in the videos that Ry seems to push her a little more wild than I would, but she was happy so who am I to judge.
Safety first Daddy!

Check out all those sticks on the ground.  Those are courtesy of Staley.  She loves that she's got a huge hard to run around in and protect from all those other dogs.  She also loves that there is a never ending supply of sticks for her to chew up and litter the yard with. 

She's laughing so hard she's drooling!

It's blurry, but this is one of my favorite pictures from the day.  Thank goodness for my awesome camera, I'd have never gotten these gems without it.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

1 Family x 12 (April)

A little teaser to a post that's coming up later this week.  Here's our family picture for April.  Family pictures are hard when there's no one around to take them for you!! It took both our hands but this one turned out pretty good.

For those of you just tuning in, I vowed to take one family picture of us each month.  It's just another reminder to slow down and enjoy the time we spend together.  The days go so fast!  Can you believe I've got an 8 month old already?? 

Friday, April 19, 2013

Mary Mary, quite contrary. How does your garden grow?

Guess what mah man helped me with this past weekend.  If you've been keeping up with my posts, I already spilled the beans that I'd have a garden post coming soon.  And, if that wasn't enough to tip you off then maybe the title of this post did.  In any case, it's hard to resist a man with big tools (and tall boots with tall socks *smile).  Anyways, enough chat about my sexy hubby (keep your hands off ladies, he's all mine). 

We staked off a mostly unused and hidden area of our yard and thanks to a little spray paint, I was finally able to visualize what I wanted.  I started out thinking I wanted 2 4x4 beds.  I guess I'm visual, or bad at spacial awareness, so I needed to see it drawn out.  After he marked that out for me I knew immediately I wanted more.  So, we settled on 2 - 4 feet by 20 foot beds.  I have no idea if that will mean I'll have enough veggies to feed an army, or just little old me (because we all know Ry isn't going to eat anything that I grow in the yard - unless it's meat or carbs, it's a hard sell for him). 

Then, we were ready to till it up baby!!  We borrowed this guy from Jamie and Zach, or really from Mr. Ware, but it worked wonders.  After slowly walking behind it to get it from the truck to the garden spot Ry was surprised how fast it went when you let it dig into the ground.  I wish I had a video of that....boy was he surprised!!  Sadly, you'll have to use your imagination and just watch this one.

If you know me at all, you know that I'm mean, and watching him struggle with this made me laugh hysterically.  Actually, it was even funnier when we were finished and he ran across the yard behind it to get it into the shed.

Long story short - I've got a garden in the works.  I've never really grown anything before.  I started to planters full of herbs last year at the town house, but between living in the city for 8 years (no garden space there) and then in the townhouse for 3 years (we didn't technically own the grass/yard) I finally have a space to call my own and a big enough yard to make room for a garden and I'm taking full advantage.  I can't wait to show you all the progress of my newest project.  You know I love a good project!  I'm going to run out of time though one of these days.  Good thing the daylight hours are longer in the summer.  I've got my time.  That math works, right?  HA!

I'm planning on planting loads of yummy things.  I've got raspberry plants already in the ground, they take a few years to fruit, and asparagus plants on their way to my house.  They also take a few years to start producing.  But, for this garden space I've got a huge pile of seeds just waiting for the ground to dry out a bit.  I've got onions, green peppers, tomatoes, beans, zucchini, carrots, potatoes, beets, watermelon (!), and a ton of other ones that I can't remember at the moment. 

Look forward to gardening posts alongside my other favorite hobbies - Abby, knitting, photography, reading, and just plain life!!

That reminds me!  (Man, I'm rambley today).  Do you guys have interest in reading blogs on the books I'm reading.  Can't decide if that's a "blog worthy" topic or not.  Thoughts??

Thursday, April 18, 2013


This past weekend it FINALLY started to feel like Spring!  On Sunday it was nearly 70 degrees outside and the sun stayed out for most of the day.  Since Abby was too little to spend much time outside last fall, she really hasn't had a chance to play in the grass or just sit outside (especially since she couldn't really sit until the winter months).

I plopped her down on a towel with some toys while Ryan and I worked on some outside projects.  Well, I suppose I should say that Abby and I watched Ryan work on outside projects.  I did a lot of pointing and suggesting while he did all of the hard work (stay tuned for a post on that adventure tomorrow). 

Gotta throw in some doggy love every now and then!

How can you resist a cute baby in spring colors sitting in the sun?  It didn't take me long to snag my camera and do a mini photo-shoot with the only person in the family that entertains photo shoots.  Ryan cries like a baby and the dogs scurry away.  Luckily, Abby can't scurry anywhere just yet.

One of my favs!  Selfie with my peanut!

Abbers loved it outside.  She was perfectly happy and content sitting there with her toys watching us work.  She even found the grass.  I had her on a towel, mostly to keep the mud off her cute outfit, but when I came back to check on her she'd pulled the towel onto her lap so she could play in the grass.  She was just softly touching it, getting to know what grass feels like.

Another fav.  This one is defiantly going in a frame somewhere!  Isn't her little hat from Grandma the cutest?

This one made me laugh.  Looks like she's eating my leg.

Being tossed in the air is one of her new favorite things to do.  She starts giggling and laughing as soon as she hits the tops of your hands!

Don't mind the loud noise in the background.  It's just Ryan working.  There will be an entertaining video on that tomorrow. 

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Buffet table - finally!

You might remember a few months back when I told you all about this beaut that I bought at a thrift store.  I'd been on the lookout for a buffet table for our dining room for a few months and waffled between getting something new (and paying a stupid amount of money for it), getting something already redone (and still paying a pretty penny for it) or just doing it all myself.  When I stumbled on this guy, 30% off the $40 price, I called Ryan, we hitched up the trailer and brought this baby home.

It took me a few hours of sanding, 4 coats of stain and 3 coats of poly, some new handles and a quick wipe of the lemon pledge (Ryan was very specific on that detail) and this is what we've got now!

Well, slap my knee and call me Sally, this baby is finally finished!

Complete with pictures of the family and an owl or two for good measure.

I'm really happy with how the color came out.  It's showing up a little redder here than it is in person, but it matches our dining room table and kitchen chairs almost perfectly. 

*Don't look at my lamp shade!  This project has been done for about a month now and I've been waiting to officially blog it "DONE" until I finished up my lamp shade project.  I wanted something bright and after looking everywhere I decided I'd just recover a plain lampshade with some fun fabric.  Well, it didn't turn out like I'd hoped, so I'll be re-doing (ie. just buying!) a new one here as soon as I find something I like. 

So, what do you think?  Do you love it as much as I do?  I swear, finding furniture pieces for less than $50 is hard to do these days.  With all the DIY blogs/shows out there now people are snapping these things up quick.  I was so excited when I found this guy AND Ryan agreed that it would work for our house.  We went through quite a few "nopes" before we got to this one.  And by a few I mean, like 100!

Monday, April 15, 2013

A post about Hooters

***Men - I'm warning you now, this post is not what you're hoping it is.  Turn back now :O)

Ok, so, now that it's just us ladies here we can talk for real.  Pictures like this one have been rare around our house:

You see, up until a few weeks ago, I was still exclusively breast feeding Abby.  So, for the last 17 months I've been the only thing keeping this little lady alive, through pregnancy, birth and infancy.  I both loved and hated the responsibility of it.  It meant that every 3 hours I got to sweep her away from whatever was going on and snuggle with her in a quite spot.  But also that she wanted me at 3am and no one else!  I got to bond with her and talk to her when no one else was listening.  It was time for just her and me, and I've loved doing it. But, with that comes a lot of responsibility! 

Up until the other night, Ryan had only put Abby to bed once or twice since she'd been born.  In fact, I could count on one hand the number of times that I hadn't put her to bed.  It had always been a routine for us that I'd get her ready for bed, feed her and put her down.  It's both liberating and sad to think that now I can hand him Abby, and a bottle, and walk away to do something else.  I seriously teared up as I gave him the run-down of the routine on how to turn this little toy on and put her head here, and give her this blanket to snuggle with.  This had been mine, and now I was having to share.  Of course, at the same time, I could walk down the hall and grab myself an adult beverage and sit down to watch some gloriously stupid television while he did the hard work! 

I'd wanted to be done breast feeding her by my 30th birthday.  It was arbitrary but I had to pick a date, because if I didn't we'd still be here a year from now talking about how I was still breast feeding her.  It was easy to say "just one more day", and never stop.  You see, when I went back to work, I fought with supply issues.  It was hard going back.  My emotions were in turmoil and I just wanted to be with my Abby.  I called in all the Mommies I knew and want to thank them profusely for helping to talk me down off the "I can't do this ledge" (Thanks NS, MJ and KS).  I got so caught up in the "she's drinking 15 oz's at daycare and I'm only making 12" that I sort of lost sight of how I actually enjoyed the process.  Don't get me wrong.  I hate pumping.  It's just so weird.  I felt like moo-ing every time I walked down to the wellness center at work.  After doing it for over 5 months now I still don't love the idea of it (and all the bottle pieces to clean!), but what I did love was that I was doing everything I could for my baby.

To all you formula Momma's out there, I'm not judging!  Not one single bit.  I went into this whole breast feeding thing like I went into the whole motherhood thing.  I had an idea of what I wanted (cloth diapers, breast feeding, normal birth-with pain meds! etc etc etc), but I wasn't going to make myself crazy with the things I couldn't control.  I've got one friend who had her baby at 31 weeks!  Her body just wasn't ready to breast feed her baby and her little guy is doing just fine!  I've got another friend who was cursed (sorry if I just put that word in your mouth) by having only one breast that could produce milk.  She ended up formula feeding her first but was DETERMINED to make it work with her second and she's doing great with it!  Then, on the total other end of the spectrum, I've got a third friend who is able to pump enough to feed her own little guy AND another baby that was born early.  And yet another Mom who was pumping today to feed her little guy tomorrow.  Here was I was, with over 100 ounces of milk in reserve stressing over what I was producing each day (thanks NS for telling me to pump often when I was on maternity leave and build up a supply).  These Mom's, they just amaze the crap out of me.  Here I am, with things working just about normal, and these ladies are moving mountains!

So, I'm finding this moment a little bittersweet.  I will miss every second of the time we spent together while breast feeding.  I'll miss that closeness and that bond.  But, I love that Abby is getting more independent; and that Ryan is able to help a little more.  Maybe that's what parenthood is all about.  Giving your all until they don't need it anymore and then being able to take a step back and see how they manage without you.

Here's to one baby step closer to being not a baby any longer.  It's scary and exciting at the same time.  I just want to squish her back into being a teeny tinny baby 5 lb. baby again!  I guess that's how we end up having more :O)  (No Mom, I'm not pregnant again!).

And with that, the booby talk is over.  Cheers to all you Mommy's out there that have made it work one way or another.  A friend told me the other day "You've got this, you're doing great".  It's my new mantra as a Mom and I want you all to adopt it too.

Say it with me.  "I've got this!  I'm doing great!"  Because, at the end of the day, we all are!  We are all doing the best we can with what we've got and that is all that anyone can ask of us.

Go Mommies!!

Friday, April 12, 2013

30: Part II

I know these are the ones you've all really been waiting for.  I'm so happy I brought my camera along and turned it over to my friends to record the night.  I'd have never gotten these without them!

Don't worry Amber, you can have him!  He's all yours :O)  This must have been just before he got a little too crazy!

Zach somehow made friends with this lovely gentleman. 

Nice Jamie, nice :O)

I think we need to frame these two and put them side by side for posterity.

See Amber, I told you you could have him.  This must be just before someone took my lovely hubby home and put him to bed.  Thanks to whoever did that for me!

Maybe I will put this one next to the pic of Ryan and Zach.  Love it B.

Sure, can have him too.  You and Amber can fight over him. :O)

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

30 isn't so bad....

Especially when you've got friends like mine!  I turned 30 last week (on a Tuesday...blah!).  So we decided to celebrate on the weekend.  My mom came in to watch Abby for the night and Erin even made it back for the party!  Pictures speak louder than words so I'll keep it short and sweet.

I'll start with the most normal pictures from early in the night :O)


Kyle and Amber had the longest drive of anyone.  They came all the way from Freeport to celebrate with me.  Kyle's birthday is one day before mine.  We spent our 21st together.  It only seemed right to ring in the 30's together too.  

Oh wait...!!  That's a total lie.  Erin came the farthest.  So fun to have her here with us!!  

Love her!

I was so excited to have Lo and Brain there with us.  Sunday they left for L.A.  They are moving there for Lo's job and I know we are going to miss them to the moon and back!  Ry and I are already talking about a trip to Cali next year to visit them.

It's a bit blurry but I had to post it.  The last picture of the 4 of us before the left to Cali.  Missing you guys already!!

So...that was the tame set of pictures.  Come back in a day or two for the second half of the night.