Thursday, July 31, 2008

I'm so excited...and I just can't hide it!

Today is my LAST day as the Executive Director of the Arts & Humanities Council! I've been here for almost four I am a little sad, but mostly excited! Excited because I kissed my baby boy goodbye this morning, knowing that after today I'll be home with him everyday! My office is bare. I cleaned out all my personal items yesterday afternoon and took them all home. My work is all caught up; files are neatly organized and ready to pass on to the next person. All I have to keep me occupied this morning is this computer. I'm only working half a day, then going to lunch with my board of directors. Could the minutes pass any slower?

Tonight after I put my Little Bear to bed, I'm going out for *DrInKs* with two of my best girlfriends! I can't wait! I love spending time with my girls, just chatting about everything and nothing all at once. I think they are just as excited about my last day as I am...they've been by my side and supporting me through some last minute drama. I don't want to go into it's over and done and I'm moving on! I've gotten cards and gifts from so many people congratulating me on my "retirement." The bfe's sent me the most beautiful flowers on my last Monday! They are so thoughtful and it was just what I needed to brighten my spirits that day!

I am so blessed to be able to stay home with my baby and pursue my elephant juice designs business! My husband has been behind my decision from day one, when I brought it up and didn't think there was any way in the world we could make it work. He is so wonderful and supportive! I just hope I can make this work, and I look forward to putting my all into it!!

What am I planning to do with all that time at home, you ask?!?! I'll be....
kissing baby cheeks * organizing kitchen cabinets * designing invitations * taking Barrett to playgroup * swimming at Gigi's * blogging * painting my bathroom * having a garage sale * singing 'the wheels on the bus' * finally finishing my pregnancy album (yes, it's still not done!) * taking Barrett for early morning walks * helping my dad design a new office * organizing the office * selling some stuff on ebay (it's been sitting waiting on me forever) * visiting Gigi at her school * reading Goodnight Moon, Rainbow Fish, and many more * taking little road trips * play dates with Lydia & Norah Kate * painting my kitchen * catching up on Barrett's scrapbooks * Going to 'Baby Sing & Sign' classes * changing diapers * cooking suppers * watching Ellen (I'll try not to watch too much tv, but this one is a MUST) * kissing my husband when he leaves for work, and when he gets home * pulling weeds * planting flowers * learning Photoshop & Illustrator * feeding my baby-and NOT pumping everyday! * being an active member of Young Professionals * helping pick paint colors and signage for the local Chamber (my dad is always volunteering me for stuff!) * visiting Amber & Hadley in Oklahoma * most importantly... spending time with my Little Bear and watching him grow into a handsome and happy boy!
I know Barrett will keep my busy, and he is my FIRST it might take me a few years to get to everything on this list :) But, it's just a start! The RIDE starts here!! HOLD ON TIGHT!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Let it snow, let it snow...

Barrett had his first experience with garage sales this weekend! I used to go with my mother-in-law and sister-in-law all the time in the summer. They would pick me up before 7am (this was very early for me before I became a mother), and we'd have a list of addresses to hit. It's so much fun to see what kind of treasures you can find! I hadn't been a single time yet this summer, since someone was keeping me busy at home in the mornings. Saturday morning, we were up before 7am, as is the routine around here with our own "little alarm clock." Justin was making coffee and I was playing on the floor with Barrett and kept hearing car doors slamming out front. I opened the front blinds to see cars lined up all along the street. I told Justin there must be a garage sale down the street. Barrett and I walked out in the front yard to take a peek and noticed Grandma Sandy's car parked across the street, so we waited in the front yard to see her.
After that we loaded up to hit some of the other sales around town. Barrett was awake for the first few, so we got him out with us. Then he fell asleep, so we took turns getting out at each sale. After we'd been to all the sales on our list, we got McDonald's breakfast...ahh, guilty pleasure--Cinnamon melts...and went to the park to eat. While at the park, we noticed the local Farmer's Market was going on, so we put Barrett in the stroller and browsed the homemade jams and candles and yummy produce. I love small town Saturday mornings!

One of our favorite finds from Barrett's first weekend of sales....these SNOW BOOTS!!! They look brand new and we got them for the bargain price of $1.00!
They're a bit big for this winter, but he'll have so much fun playing in the snow one of these years.
If you love sweet, chubby, chunky, rolly-polly baby thighs...enjoy these pictures!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Just for FUN...clock design

Not too much going on in my little world this Friday, and I didn't have time to find any good "flashback" pictures for today. So...I thought I'd share some pictures of a custom clock I designed.

This project was for a local arts & crafts festival. The year's theme was "Time of your Life," so individuals were invited to create clocks. When you signed up, you were given a kit that included: 18" square of rough, plain 'ol plywood, a clock mechanism, clock hands and numbers. You could do anything you wanted with your kit.

I started with a trip to Michael's! I love pink, brown and white I was on the hunt for the perfect paper to cover my plywood with and of course some ribbons and other embellishments.

I covered the plywood with a pink and brown floral paper, then used an empty white picture frame for the center where the clock face would be, and tied coordinating ribbons all around it. Inside the frame I used a bronze metallic finish paper. On the edges of the clock, I used a pink and brown polka dot ribbon to cover up the plywood.

There you have it! A custom clock in a couple of hours....

They auctioned the clocks off at the festival as part of a fundraiser. Mine went to a sweet little girl. I wonder if she still has it?

If you've got a space at home that needs the perfect custom clock, I hope I've inspired you to try to make one of your own!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Letters to my Little Bear-Eleventh Edition

Happy Birthday to YOU! You were six months old on Friday, July 18th! It's been awhile since Mommy wrote a letter to you. Things seem to get busier and busier! Last week you had Baby Sing & Sign in the mornings and then you had swimming lessons in the evenings, so we were always on the go! It was your second week of Aqua Babies and you were really starting to get the hang of it. We still have three more classes. We've learned lots of different ways Mommy can hold you in the water so you can kick your feet and use your arms. They give us little balls to put out in front of you in the water, to encourage you to move your arms. Your favorite part is when we get in a big circle at the end of class and sing "The Wheels on the Bus." The water always feels so good and we have so many friends in the class, it's so much fun!

Baby Sing & Sign was a one week class we went to every morning from 9-9:30am. I was never quite sure how it was going to go each day, as this is your morning nap time! Most days you did pretty long as you had something to put in your mouth! Mrs. Lori has the neatest instruments and toys. You favorite were the pint-sized maracas! We took this class with Lydia and Norah, and there were also two other babies. We learned lots of fun songs and signs, and even sang a song about hats!

You are now sitting up like a pro...hardly any weeble-wobbling at all! Sunday night while Mommy and Daddy were eating, you manged to get from your tummy to sitting up!! We have no idea how you did it...we just looked up and there you were!
You can really scoot and squirm now too. If you've got your eye on something and it's out of your reach, you won't give up until you've got it in your hands or mouth! If we want to show off your scooting skills to our friends and family, all we have to do is set the remote just out of your reach. You will always go for that! You can also get on your knees and rock. It's so cute to see you rockin' with you bum up in the air. Gigi was the first one to discover you could do this. I had to tell her not to encourage crawling! I'd like to put that off as long as possible :) Mommy just keeps packing up more and more of your sweet little're growing too fast! We've already filled up one bin, time to go get another!

You still love bath time! We've taken the sling out of your tub now and you just sit up and play like a big boy while Daddy washes you up. I can already tell you're going to be wanting to stay in the tub and play all night when you get a bit older.

The exersaucer is great at entertaining you while Mommy and Daddy enjoy their supper. You also got a Johnny Jumper from your friend Addison. We hang it in the kitchen doorway, so you can play while we're cooking supper. You love to bounce!! Gigi has a bouncer at her house for you and you can really go to town in that thing!
Mommy only has SEVEN more days of work, and she is really counting down!! You are supposed to go have your six month shots on Thursday, but you haven't been feeling well the last couple of days. All it took was ONE week of activities with other kids and you caught the yuck! Your nose is runny, you have a sad little cough and you're not eating or sleeping very well, because it's hard for you to breathe. Mommy just wishes there was something I could do to help you feel better, so we might have to go see your doctor tomorrow, so he can have a look, and wait till you're all better to have your shots.
Have a great week Little Bear! I love you!

Monday, July 21, 2008

I miss you already!

This morning I said goodbye to my brother (Brian), sister-in-law (Sarah) and two nieces (Emma & Lauren). They are moving to South Carolina on Wednesday and I won't see them again until Christmas! Hopefully Barrett and I can go visit them sometime before that with Gigi and Papa, but we haven't worked any of that out yet.

My family is very close and we spend every holiday and lots of weekends together, so it's hard for me to imagine not seeing them for several months. This is ALL of us...before Lauren & Barrett! We had it taken in October 2006. We need a new picture :)

My brother is being transferred for work, so we're hoping they'll be moving back to Kansas in two or three years!
I miss you already girls and Aunt Lala loves you VERY MUCH! Send me lots of pictures and call me anytime. I want to hear about your new house and your new friends! Don't grow too fast!

Emma Jean & Aunt Lala

Lauren & Aunt Lala

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Save me, Batman!!

It's almost midnight and I'm exhausted and ready to crawl in between my fresh, clean bed sheets!

But, first...I just had to tell you that I went to see The Dark Knight with my little brother tonight and it was AMAZING!!! I haven't seen a great movie in a long time. I'm typically not an action movie kinda girl, but I do love the Batman movies and this was the best of them so far! Christian Bale, a.k.a. Batman was beautiful as always, and can save ME any day :) I've been a fan of Christian since he played Jack in Newsies! I used to watch the Newsies VHS over and over and over with my friend much so, I think we literally wore out the tape!

Anyway...Heath Ledger as the Joker was Brilliant! I won't say anything else. You've all got to make plans to GO SEE. It is action-packed and will not disappoint! Enjoy and let me know what you think!!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Flashback mother, like son

I's been forever since I did a flashback! Well, here are a few!

My mom has been digging out my old baby pictures recently. It's fun to see Barrett doing some of the same things I did. We got Barrett's first 'grasp' of the beer can over the Fourth of July weekend, so Mom found some pictures of my first beer too.
Mommy was a Budweiser girl...Barrett prefers Bud Light!

And, it appears we have the same "taste" in other things too...

Me with my a foot in my mouth. I prefer the left.

Barrett with a foot in his mouth. He prefers the right.

We also have the same sleeping style...

Me with my butt in the air. I am a little older, so apparently I slept this way for several years. And, NO...I'm pretty sure I don't sleep like this anymore :)

Barrett with his butt in the air

Thursday, July 17, 2008

our week in pictures

Yes, I am still alive! Just BUSY! I know I haven't posted since here are some pictures of what we've been up to :)

Aqua Babies swimming class on Monday & Wednesday evenings. Daddy came with us last night to get some pictures. It must have been Daddy night, because Norah and Lydia's dad's came too. They were all so proud standing along the edge of the pool snapping pictures. Oh...wait, maybe that was because they'd had strict instructions from their wives to get lots of good shots!
Doing our practice laps
Megan & Norah Kate practicing kicks
Barrett loved trying to grab the ball!
This is what happens after swimming is over...we lay all the babies on the grass to change them into dry clothes. This is Barrett, Lydia & Norah
Barrett and his favorite ducky toy...we stole it from Gigi's toy basket! Sometimes this is the only way to "distract" him, so he'll hold still long enough for me to change him!

A new addition to the family!! No, not another child, and not a pet. It's Kermit! Justin and Barrett let me get a new vacuum! If you know me, you know I LOVE to vacuum! Before my little angel came along, I would do it almost every-other day! The same obsession for vacuuming must be in Barrett's genes...look how excited he was!My house is small, so it only takes me about 20 minutes to buzz through the whole thing. Anyway...Our last vacuum bit the dust and we'd been using one of my parents (really old kirby) for several months. It was a great vacuum, but soo heavy! I'm happy to have a shiny new GREEN vacuum with fun gadgets! It's got a little duster wand on the side, after you use it to dust, you put it back in the holster, crank a knob, and ta-dah, sucks the dirt and yuck right outta that thing! You know I can't wait to dust all my fans and blinds this weekend and try that feature out!

The invitations are DONE! It spent every evening over the weekend working on these puppies! The bride picked them up Sunday and had them in the mail Monday morning! Now onto my next clients...

Barrett got a new toy! His friend Addison let him borrow her exersaucer, since she's too big for it now! It's made dinner time at our house much more fun...for Mommy and Daddy, that is! Justin and I can actually sit down and eat a meal while he entertains himself in the exersaucer. AND he loves to play in it outside. On Saturday evening, I took him outside with me to pull weeds. It got so nice and COOL out early Saturday evening, so we took advantage of the weather. He just played alongside me in the driveway while I pulled weeds in the flowerbeds. I still have a ways to go if you'd like to volunteer your weed pulling skills, stop by!
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