Wednesday, March 31, 2010

One bare foot

I went to check on Barrett, one last time, before I headed to bed the other night. 
This is how I found him...

This is how my baby sleeps...
One sock on, one sock off.
A stack of books in the corner of the bed.
Sippy cup of water in case he gets thirsty.
An abundance of pillows, blankets and stuffed animals to cuddle with.

Most of the time, after we put him to bed for the night, he's out like a light...not making a peep.
But there are those few nights when it takes him awhile to fall asleep.

On those nights,  we sit out on the couch, listening to him read books to himself, talk to himself, and sing to himself.

He is one of those that MUST be covered up with a blankie at all times.
(I think he gets that from his mommy)
And when that blankie's not over him just right...
We hear "Mommy/Daddy, cover up."
(The above phrase is repeated, until one of us goes in to cover him up)

Even though sometimes I have to pause American Idol, and I take a deep sigh about having to get up again,
I love it that I get to go in and cover him back up...
it means one more kiss from my baby.

The truth is, I would go back in there over-and-over-and-over...
because I know there will be a day soon, when he won't need his mommy to cover him back up.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

What about this "Spin Dip" stuff?!?

After my last post (and mentioning something on Facebook), I've had many inquiries about WHAT IN THE WORLD this "Spin Dip" stuff is! Well, my's Spinach dip (no artichoke included), and it's YUM-O!

Credit for the recipe goes to my good friend, Christie. She introduced it to me many years ago (my recipe cards says 2004). It's super easy to make, and I make it a lot. My family requests it every Christmas, and I make it for many other occasions.


10oz. package of chopped, frozen spinach (thawed)
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 c. shredded Monterrey jack cheese
(I can never find a bag of Monterrey only cheese, so I usually get a mix that has Mont. in it)
10 oz. can Rotelle, drained well
1/4 c. cream (half and Half or whole milk)
1/3 c. chopped onions (or more)
salt, pepper, garlic salt-all to taste

Combine all ingredients in greased 8x8 pan
bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes

*Sorry I didn't get a pic of the end result! Tonya, Heidi and I were too excited to dig into it :) It's a hot, cheesy, bubbly pan of goodness! I served mine with On the Border Chips and a few of the new Tostitos BLUE chips mixed in. I call those my K-State chips though...I think they look purple!

Happy Palm Sunday! I was sad we didn't make it to church today. Last night, I didn't think Barrett was feeling well enough to go, but this morning he seemed to be better. Runny nose and lots of coughing. He played outside with his cousins this morning though, so he was ready for a nap. Hopefully it's nothing big...we have a trip to Nebraska coming up soon!

Since Barrett didn't get a palm branch this year, here is a pic of him from Palm Sunday 2009.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Not quite as planned...

You might remember me mentioning my husbands plans for a "survival trip" last week in my {Ten} on Tuesday Thursday post. I wasn't too thrilled at the idea of him being out in the wilderness with no tent, sleeping bag, cell phone, food or matches.  BUT I knew that it would be a great time for he and his brother to spend together, and this sort of thing really is right up Justin's alley! So, I went with it, and tried my hardest not to worry....until last Thursday afternoon when he packed up and was ready to head out.

It had hit me just a few hours before, that this would be the first time Justin would be away from me for so long (three nights). I go on mini trips with my family and girlfriends every once in a while, but he seldom does. Usually when he's away from home, it's for family trips, so Barrett and I are with him. Besides the fact that I hate being home alone (I hear every single mouse squeak), I was just going to miss him.

Justin's sister made the guys these journals to keep details of their trip in

Barrett and I gave him lots of hugs and kisses, and stood at the back door watching him leave.

We had many plans to keep us busy over the weekend :)

Thursday, Our first night home alone without Daddy:
We went to dinner with Gigi and Papa.
I put Barrett to bed at his usual 8-8:30 bedtime, and I worked until around midnight. I tip-toed into his room, picked him up out of his crib, and carried him into my bed. Oh mercy, was he sweet! (I have never had him sleep in our bed for an entire night) Our bed sits pretty high up, so before I brought him in, I'd lined up pillows along Justin's edge of the bed. I had a cozy and safe little spot ready for Barrett. He was half-awake when I laid him in the bed, and he opened his eyes, sat up a bit and said, "watch tb, Mama"? It was adorable! I said, " no baby, it's time to go night-night." Then he laid his head back on the pillow and we snuggled up nose-to-nose! We both slept like babies...until 6am, when he cried out. He was looking for his Biggie, that had gotten pushed under the sheets. I pulled it up, and covered him back up. He dozed back off until almost 9am! I heard him stirring, but I kept my eyes shut, pretending to still be asleep. Next thing I knew, he was right over me, kissing my cheek! Ahhh...goodness, gracious, melt my heart!!

We met Mimi, Kylie and Emily at the park for a picnic lunch and play time. The weather was beautiful and Barrett loved it! 

Then, at about 4pm I heard the familiar grumble of Justin's truck pulling into the driveway! My heart started to pound. I had NO idea why he would be home. They were completely dedicated to this trip. I immediately started thinking he'd cut off a finger or something traumatic like that! Turns out he'd woken up that morning with one of his horrible headaches. I don't know that they're technically migraines (he's never been to see a doctor for them), but I do know that they make him completely miserable. He can't eat, he throws up, and the only thing that gives him relief is just to pass out and sleep them off. 

He said he'd had it pretty much the whole day. Probably thanks to not eating in close to 24 hours, not much water, exerting lots of energy on their shelter and hiking, and going without his daily caffeine. After he got home, he threw up a few more times, made himself some eggs and toast, then passed out on the couch from around 6pm-midnight! I woke him up at midnight, and then he got in bed and slept til morning. Thankfully he was better in the morning. 

I was grateful the trip had been cut short, because Friday night a huge snowstorm came through. I would have been worried sick, if there were still out there in that!

Here are some of the few pics they got to take on their trip...
 Justin's brother, Jeff, trying to stay warm in their shelter

We'd already made some plans for Saturday, since we thought Justin would be gone. So, he went out to his parent's to hang out with his brother all day, and Barrett and I went ahead with our plans. 

Saturday morning, we had a playdate with some of Barrett's friends...
Barrett doesn't have very many friends that are boys, so he was very excited to get to play with Grant and baby Hayden. He loved all of Grants cars and trains!
Lydia, Norah Kate, Barrett, Hayden & Grant

These pictures are all from the point-and-shoot, and I have no desire whatsoever to edit them at all (not even the red-eye), so sorry for the poor quality.

That afternoon I made spin dip. I was having some girlfriends over that night to hang out after Barrett went to bed. Barrett rode his bike around in the kitchen while I worked.

So...the weekend didn't go quite as planned, but in the end I was very grateful to have Justin home. Hopefully they will plan their next survival trip for a warmer time, and coffee will be added their list of "things that are allowed."

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Miss Caroline Reid

One of my best friends welcomed her 2nd child on Monday! I was anxiously looking forward to yesterday afternoon, when Megan and I could go up to visit them in the hospital.

Meet Caroline Reid
(Congrats to Audra, Kane & Lydia)

Born March 22, 2010
8 pounds, 2 ounces
20.5 inches

She is tiny (compared to her sister's 9 lb., 2oz. birth-weight), with a quite a bit of dark hair! The first picture I got of her, I thought she looked just like her big sister. So I had to go back and pull out my pics of Lydia in the hospital, or course! I know Audra has one of Lydia brand new, that looks a lot more like Caroline. I think Lydia's a day old in this one I have.

lots of dark hair :)

I think she likes her Aunt Lala...She's looking right at me in this pic, and I think she's smiling! Thanks, Megan, for taking the pics of me with Caroline. I look like I'm praying over her in the other one!

With Aunt Megan
Daddy was changing her diaper here, and she was not happy...but her cry was so cute!

Congrats to the {H} family!!
I can't wait to snuggle Miss Caroline again very soon!
We love you!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Flashback, Memory book & digital photo organization

My print lab was having a sale on their little bound books, so I thought I'd take advantage of it and print a whole book of Barrett's 2009 Memories. It's nice to have the Blurb books of my blog/our family scrapbook, but I don't actually PRINT OUT our everyday pictures often enough. I'm excited to get it and see if I want to make one for 2008 too!

These little bound books are what I use for my clients' proof books/keepsake books. It is a collection of all their edited and final session images, with a custom cover, and spiral bound. I've always said they are great to stick in your purse, or give to grandmas as brag books...but I've never actually ordered one for MYSELF! Hello!!

This is what they look like:

{A peek at how I organize my pictures}
I am in NO way a pro at organizing my personal digital images.  My way is pretty much a no-brainer. Nothing incredibly genius! I would love to hear how some of you do it, if you have a system that works for you! I'm SURE there is a much better way than what I do!!

I organize my pictures in folders by year (2008, 2009, 2010).
In each of the yearly folders, I have folders for every month (January, February, etc.).
Everytime I download pics, it creates a folder named for date they were taken (example: 2009_10_04)

At the end of each month, I drag all of the dated folders for that month into the main monthly folder.
If there are special events for the month, I will name the folder for that, (Halloween, Brandon & Jenn's Wedding, etc.) instead of keeping it labeled with the date. 

Here's a screenshot of my picture filing ---->
My October 2009 folder has all of the random "date taken" folders in it. I like to keep them named with the date taken, so I can go back and easily find pictures I'm looking for. OR when I look back, I quickly know that the picture was taken on October 4, 2009. Halloween was a special event in October, so it has it's own folder.

Now, does anyone know how to manually arrange my folders, or arrange by date?? It drives me crazy that it's alphabetically, and they're not in chronological order. I'm pretty sure on PC's there's an easy way to choose between alphabetical and chronological, but I can't figure it out on my Mac. Help!

Back to Barrett's 2009 Memory book...
I just went through each of the monthly 2009 folders and picked a a handful of my favorite pics for the book. I'm not even sure how many I ended up with! Close to 100, I think :) 

While looking back, I found these pictures (some of my favorites of him) from March 2009.

Happy Monday! Enjoy the SUN!
As soon as Barrett wakes up, we're off to music class! friend Audra had her baby this afternoon!
It's a GIRL!!! 
Caroline Reid
8 pounds, 2 ounces, 20.5 inches.

I can't wait to meet her tomorrow, and have pictures to share.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Lost Pictures: January & February 2010

These days, I always have our little point-and-shoot (Sony Cybershot) in my purse. I would love to be able to take my big camera with me everywhere, but it's just not practical! So, it's nice to have the p&s so I don't miss any fun moments with Mr. B.

I don't however make it a habit to download the pictures on a regular basis, like I do with my professional camera. Justin was planning to take the camera with him on his "survival" trip, so it forced me to finally get them downloaded. There were pictures on there from the beginning of January!!

So, enjoy some of our LOST pictures from January and February...

(I know this was very early January, because the tree is still up behind us!)
We were both decked out in our new NU shirts from Uncle Bobby and Aunt Jenn.
Barrett's face cracks me up!!

Just messin'! I try to use the p&s to take pics of Barrett and I as often as I can. They're not exciting, most always blurry, and they usually look about the same (except Barrett grows and changes), but I know I'll be glad to have them.

These are from our last Friday of Tot Gym and Tot Art.
They were activities Barrett took during January and February through the local Rec and Arts Center.

He loved the gym time...all the space to run, balls to throw and bounce, scooters, bats...he was in heaven! His friend, Norah Kate, was also in the classes. Mimi came to play with us on the last day. Barrett called it "gym balls." :-)

 The Art class was great too! Each week had a new theme (snowmen, penguins, Olympics), and we came home with lots of great crafts. Barrett had his first experiences with glue and scissors, and did great! It was fun to watch him exploring and learning these new things. At the end of the craft time, all the kids would sing a few songs, and then they got snacks on the way out (quite possibly Barrett's favorite part).

We are so fortunate to have such wonderful opportunities in our community! Next week, Barrett starts a new session of Toddler Art, and a new class of Rhythm and Rhyme on Mondays!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

{Ten} on Thursday

Welcome to the {Ten} on Tuesday Thursday post!
I'm obviously a little behind this week, but still had some of my random tid-bits to share!

{1} I think I cursed myself with the last {Ten} on Tuesday post! I mentioned my obsession with vacuuming, then the next time I went to get out the vacuum it was making a horrible noise! It was SO loud, and Barrett was sitting up on the couch covering his little ears! Justin took it all apart, we cleaned it out really well, checked the belt...everything looked fine. Obviously an issue with the motor. Justin called a vacuum dealer/repair store in Ark City and was told that vacuums bought at Wally World were meant to be disposable. Lovely. So, after not even two years, we're having to say goodbye to Kermit! Seems like just yesterday I got it for Mother's day and took these pictures of baby Barrett sitting on the box.

Any suggestions for my next vacuum?!?!
{2} I had a little down I piddled with some menu buttons for the top of my blog.

Okay, I really didn't have "down time." I've been sick for the last couple weeks (but I think I'm finally better), and luckily I didn't have any photo sessions scheduled during that time. Between all the coughing and blowing my nose, I had plenty of other projects to keep me busy! Designing birthday invites, birth announcements, save the date cards, and wedding invites for clients, and several print orders.

So in the middle of all that, I thought it would be fun to make these buttons :) Hopefully I'll be able to use them as an easy way to find posts I've done on certain things. I plan to add more posts for the photography tips, crafty corner, and interior design categories too.

{3} I also added this Google search box.

I don't know if anyone else uses it, but I am loving it to search my own blog!! I just used it for item #1 in this post! I searched "vacuum" and found that I've written SIX posts with the word "vacuum" in them! Too funny!! But I quickly found the post with the pictures of when we first got Kermit. I could also search in my "edit posts" tab (in the dashboard), but it's not as easy to find what I'm looking for. Searching on my blog homepage gives me results like this:

{4} I finally got our office cleaned up and organized!! It feels so great! I really hate clutter, so I don't know how I let it get so out of control, and stay that way for so long...but I did! Maybe because our house is so "cozy," and I don't have a basement or garage to store anything in! So it all drifts into the office. I think Justin was about to recommend me for an episode of Hoarders! Although I told him it wasn't about hoarding, it was just a BIG MESS.  I have no problem with getting rid of anything!  I probably throw away way too much, actually! And I pitch things into the "garage sale" box just because I don't want them laying around. It's nice to finally be able to leave the office door OPEN!

{5} In just a few days, one of my best friends is having baby #2!! They are one of those couples that likes to be surprised on "birth day," so they don't find out the sex at their 20 week ultrasound. I have NO idea how people do that, but it is fun to keep everyone guessing! My guess is a BOY. Even though I'm thinking it will be a girl...I'm just holding out hope that Barrett might not be the only bfe baby boy anymore!

Can't wait to cuddle Baby {H}!! Lydia Grace is going to be a great big sister! (I took this picture of her in September, and I think she looks so little)

{6} I did another blog design for a fellow blogging friend! They are also photography clients of mine. Their little girl, Ansley is so adorable!! Melissa gave me some of her handmade bows and headbands to use for my newborn sessions, in exchange for the blog design. It was fun, although I can't figure out why the background pattern isn't showing up when I view it from our PC in the office.  I know I love my Mac, because it doesn't make everything looked stretched and blown-up like the PC does, but WHY is it not showing the pattern? It's frustrating me, now that I'm doing blogs for others...made me realize that most clients are probably not viewing my photography blog (or THIS one) the way it's meant to look! 

Here's what Melissa's new blog looks like on my screen (viewed with Firefox), is this what you see?  ---->

{7} Gosh, I'm wordy with these {Ten} on Tuesday Thursday posts! I can't help it!!

{8} American Idol eliminations were last night! It's now down to 11. These are now my TOP picks:

I love them both for their sound and style. I would buy their albums.

This is the first season though, that I really do like several of the contestants. I just probably wouldn't buy all of their albums.

{9} I LOVE Lady Antebellum! I've loved them since the first time Ellen introduced them to the world! So WHY do I still not own their new "Need You Now" CD?!?!?! Maybe the Easter bunny will leave it in my basket? 

{10} This afternoon, my husband and his older brother, leave on their "survival" camping trip.  You know, Bear Grylls style? I'm not quite sure how I feel about this. Three nights in the wilderness. A knife, one canteen of water, no matches, no tent, no sleeping bag, no cell phone, no firearms, no food...and the weather forecast says "snow" for Saturday! They plan to hike away from the truck this afternoon, and not see it again until Sunday. They will be boiling their drinking water, making their own traps to catch their meals, and building shelter. Justin has given me permission to write a post about this trip, so more on that later!
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