Friday, November 19, 2010

birthday bash

Oliver's birthday party was amazing. We had so much fun with friends and family. I just wanted to share a few of the highlights in pictures.... enjoy!

Birthday camera

He couldn't get over us singing Happy Birthday... adorable! 

Playing Hide-n-Seek with auntie Molly


My version of the layered rainbow cake - I'm no baker, but it turned out pretty good if I can say so myself. 

Dash love

Banners - The top is cut from brown paper bags (I love to recycle) and painted by Oliver. The lower is cut from a vintage children's book that was pretty much destroyed already (but it made super cute banners!)

Some of our adorable little friends 

Be still my heart! I just love this boy! 

Cody piled tons of leaves in front of the slide =)

I love this photo of my friends little girl eating cake... she looks like a little angelic garden gnome with her party hat

Me + cake

I couldn't resist getting some rainbow birthday streamers! 

Friday, November 12, 2010

Oliver Cole

Birthing you was the most challenging fight that I've ever won. Raising you has tested everything that I thought I knew about myself. You changed me. You forced me to grow and mature. You taught me how to love unconditionally and sometimes beyond that. You turned the light on in my heart the moment I knew I was carrying you in my womb and I would never go back and undo all that we've done together.
You are my firstborn and I can't even describe how funny and original you are. Sometimes your daddy and I just stare blankly at each other in amazement when you say something incredibly smart and humorous. I wasn't sure how you would handle becoming a big brother, but again, you amazed us with your love and compassion for your new little brother-friend. You are passionate, kind, smart, witty, and super stubborn - and I love you exactly that way.
My hope is that you always feel secure in our never ending affection for you. That you always stay true to yourself, even now. And that you follow wherever your passions may take you in this life.

Little one, today you are 3 years old and I feel like I can't claim you as little anymore, but you'll always be my baby.  Now lets party!!

-Your mama                                                




Monday, November 8, 2010

On the cheap

Our house is slowly (think snail's pace) coming together. It is very exciting! We've moved so much in the last 5 years that I've never really wanted to put a lot into accessorizing my house, but now that we've purchased a home I'm loving all the little details. Here is a look at a few recent - super cheap- purchases I've made lately. All of the free item were gifted to us by my parents.

Owl candle holder from Marshall's $7.99

Owl statue that makes me laugh - free

Throw pillows - Marshall's $5

New (to us) sofa c/o Kristina $100

Shaggy area rug (detail photo) - free! 

Target plastic cups (plus 2 ladybug ones that I couldn't find?) $0.90/ea

Little plates from Target $1.25/ea purchased 4

"Good Night" pillow cases (photo taken on my couch) c/o Urban Outfitter's online $4.99/set 

Target 3 tiered serving tray - $6

Coffee thermos Marshall's $7

Table for kitchen nook - Free! 

Vintage detail seat cushions for kitchen table - Free! 

There are still tons of things that I want to get/do with our home.  Since we are on a pretty tight budget it is a slow work in progress, but I'm loving the adventure of trying to find things 'on the cheap'.

I know these photos suck! All I have is a little point and shoot cannon. Hopefully there will be a shiny new camera in my future!

Friday, November 5, 2010

blog feature

My gorgeously talented baby sister started a blogspot. She featured some of her photography from my pregnancy. Go check it out and be sure to follow her because she is extremely creative and has an eye for design. There are sure to be endless goodness coming from her page! 


My husband and I have been married for 5 years, as of this past July. It seems strange. Not strange in a negative way, but mostly because we got hitched when I was at the tender age of 18. So young. Yet we knew exactly what we wanted - whether we waited another 1, 2, 10 years - we knew that we wanted to be together forever, so why wait.
For us marriage has been wonderful. We've pretty much grown up together. I cannot even list the ways that we have changed since we met - surely it ranges in the thousands - but we've stayed true to one thing... our love and friendship. We didn't plan many of the things that we've had to face (such is life), we started our family WAY earlier than we originally anticipated, but I can honestly say that it has ALL been good. We've had our fair share of disagreements, especially in the parenting department, and we have definitely learned that neither of us are anything close to perfect. But imperfections make it that much more beautiful, because it is real.
Everyday when my husband is at work I miss him. I still get excited when I know he is driving home to us- and it isn't just because now I get help with our little handfuls. He makes me laugh like nobody else. He teaches me how to be a better person. He knows how I like to talk through everything I'm feeling, but also that sometimes I just like to sit and stare. He respects me. He loves me without fail. He is exactly who God created for me.
I have a lot of friends who are having rough patches in their marriages right now. It breaks my heart. I cannot imagine how hard it must be to have to contemplate giving up on each other, but I can understand how it can happen. Love is a web of intricate baggage. Two people attempting to share a life together when there is so much individual past between the two. There is nothing easy about sharing your life with someone, in fact, it is one of the most constantly challenging things ever.
So as much as these stories of my friends' lives hurt my heart they make me thankful. So thankful for what is right in front of me everyday- My marriage, with its ups and downs and endless flaws.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

park days

I'm super excited to spend the afternoon with some of my lovely lady friends and their sweet cheek babies.
Kristina and Adoration (of this blog) and Jessica and Kael (of this blog) - if you haven't checked out their blogs you are missing out! Be sure to Vote for them at topbabyblogs.

We're excited about our park play date! I will post some photos later!

In the meantime here is some link love from around the web:

- I LOVE this post from Cup Of Jo - Breastfeeding in public

Calendars are cute - decor8

- Babies in sushi clothes

The photos in this post make me wanna dance - blackeiffel

Monday, November 1, 2010

you win some, you lose some

I love nursing my baby. I'm providing for him something that only I can, I'm nourishing him and protecting him with the antibody rich goodness that he receives. For us it feels just right. But I'm not going to lie breastfeeding can be as frustrating as it can be beautiful. 
My little lovey refuses to take a bottle of expressed milk so leaving him is incredibly challenging. Most of the time this really isn't a big issue, he comes with me almost everywhere, but sometimes it just isn't appropriate or it isn't fair to him and his bedtime routine. When it came to my first baby I really didn't leave him a lot. At the time I had lost most of my friends (life changes, moves, marriage) so there weren't a lot of parties or reasons to leave him behind. Cody and I would go on dates every once in awhile but my first born was just fine with taking his bottle...easy. However, in not leaving him much he was incredibly attached to me and he still gets moody when I'm not around to put him to bed...a little annoying for my husband/babysitters.
This time around I had planned on doing things differently. I didn't want to leave Dash all the time, obviously, but I wanted him to be comfortable with other people being involved in his routine. I wanted the liberty to do things - especially with my friends since I am just starting to get some real gems in my life. And well, not taking a bottle kind of pushes that idea out the window. I have a time frame of about 2.5 hours (sometimes it can be pushed to 3, depending on how well he nurses before I leave) and that sounds like a lot of time. But once you start considering travel time and say the duration of a movie or the length of a party things start to get tricky - not to mention being anxious the whole time that he is going to randomly need to eat and having to rush back to do my mama job. 
It's easy to start feeling lonely and isolated. Sometimes I am with my children so much that I have to remind myself how wonderful a life I have and how incredibly grateful I am for it. But that is just the truth, I am grateful. I may have to sit out on some parties or miss out on dates with my husband or sometimes just feel frustrated that someone else is so dependent on my body. So right now I am losing some me time, but I have not lost, not in the least. 
So soon my baby will not need to nurse or have me rock him before sleep. Too soon following that he wont need me to dress him or make him lunch and then I know when the day comes that he doesn't need me much for anything I will wish that he was once again a little baby that needed to be nursed and held by only me. I'm not going to cry over missed events or dates when I have two beautiful children in my possession. I am a mom, this is my life.