Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Sit, puppy, sit.

A few months back I had a conversation with Dr. Meyer (Abby's pediatrician) about sleep training. First let me just say that this man was born to work with children. I was referred to him by many families and after my first visit, I could see exactly why they praise him like they do. Dr. Meyer is very laid back, can keep a parent calm in any situation, has a soft voice, kisses babies heads, lets them suck on his (clean) fingers, and tickles them until they can't laugh anymore. Most importantly, I feel confident with his medical advice and the care that he provides.

Anyways, I had talked to Dr. Meyer about sleep training and questioned whether or not a 6 month old could truly go twelve hours without eating. Of course, now I know that the answer to that question is ABSOLUTELY and PRAISE GOD Abby sleeps 11-12 hours each night!

Amongst that conversation, I remember Dr. Meyer saying "Babies are like puppies." Hmm, interesting analogy doc, yet brilliant. Babies really are like puppies. They watch your every move, listen to you babbling away, and whine when they want your attention. Abby soaks up EVERYTHING and takes EVERYTHING in. It's so fun to watch her take in the world around her and learn new things.

About a month ago, Daddy taught Abby how to clap along to "If Your Happy and You Know it." Of course, every time I pull out the camera these days, it's like she completely freezes. She is more interested with the big, black object I shove in her face day after day than clapping for us while we sing. So... I give up... defeated by a 10 month old. Here's the best video I could get... pardon the clarity (and Daddy's new lyrics), I couldn't focus in time!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Relaxing by day, partying (somewhat) by night.

A perfect weekend doesn't come along too often, but this weekend was just that. Perfect. We spent a lot of time at home, just being together as a family. Usually we are always on the go... meeting friends for playdates, trips to Target, and making up things just to get out of the house for a bit. Those things are always fun, but it's good to just take a break once in a while.

We had a quiet night at home Friday, doing some laundry and cleaning, but mostly watching TV and relaxing. On Saturday, Abby and I spent the day at home while Jim was at the field. Lots of playtime, cupcake baking, and naptime in between. It was nice to just relax and stay cool. It's SO HOT outside. Saturday night was a night of celebration. We had a babysitter for Abby Babbles (nickname courtesy of Ms. Katie). The Piersolls joined us in celebrating the hubs birthday. Not only was it his birthday, but his golden birthday... 27 on the 27th! After a wonderful dinner, lots of laughter at the comedy club, and a late night stop for a few more drinks and appetizers, the four of us were still awake to see 1 am. That does not happen often! What a fun and much needed night out!

Saturday night "loves"

1.) Love that the hubby talked me out of wearing flip flops with my dress. Doesn't every woman love a new pair of heels?! Thanks, babe!

2.) Love this. Us. The nights we spend together as husband and wife, instead of Mommy and Daddy. Parents need this every now and then!

3.) Love great friends. It makes a night out even more fun!

4.) Love that I drank a fruity cocktail with dinner and not the usual beer or wine. Yummy!

Sunday was a lazy day around the house for the most part. We all slept in, even Abby .... thanks to Ms. Katie, you rock!! Other than eating at Chipotle for lunch and grocery shopping, we stayed at home. It was Jim's actual birthday so we ate cupcakes and he played around with his new golf net and mat.

Weekends like this are perfect. Time to relax, unwind, spend time together as a family, and have a night out! Just perfect ...

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Monday, June 21, 2010

This girl eats like her Daddy.

Seriously. If you've seen Abby eat, she can keep going and going and going. She loves food, and loves almost everything. Bananas are just about the only thing she doesn't like (so far), although she does eat banana flavored yogurt or puffs. Weird. Abby enjoys veggies, fruits, hummus, yogurt, pickles, pasta, cheese ... and now pancakes! As she gets older and more teeth poke through, we'll be able to try different foods.

So, when I say this girl eats like her Daddy... I mean it. Abby eats a lot and almost anything. I'm very thankful for this because as most of you know, I'm a picky eater. I sure hope our little girl likes to try new things. I hope she likes seafood... sushi... thai food... so that she can enjoy a variety of foods. Being a picky eater isn't so much fun....

Abby eating pancakes for the first time. Excited much?

Sunday, June 20, 2010

It's all about "Da Da" Today

Growing up, I sure knew what it was like to be a Daddy's girl. There is a special bond between a father and daughter that is unexplainable unless you've experienced it. So thank you Daddy for being the best ... Happy Father's Day, I love you!!

It's all coming full circle now, as I get to watch my husband form a special bond with our first baby, our daughter. Anyone can see that Abby will be a Daddy's girl... there is no doubt about that. I love how she smiles at him so big when she first sees him in the morning. I love the excitement in her eyes when he comes through the door after being away from home. I love the way she laughs with him when he lifts her upside down. On this special day, I wish for them to share this special bond for many years to come.

It was the perfect day, minus the breathtakingly humid Florida weather. We had breakfast at the house and playtime with Abby before her morning nap. After a relaxing morning, we headed to the driving range to meet up with the Piersoll clan. The daddies hit some golf balls, the kids played in the entertainment area, and we had some yummy pizza for lunch. It's always nice to share these special days with friends we call family!

Abby was wiped out from all the driving range fun and had a great afternoon nap. She woke up ready to play! Daddy and I witnessed one of her "firsts" together. Abby pulled up on the sofa for the first time. She has been pulling up on things, but nothing with this height! Yikes! Won't be long before she is cruising around on all the furniture. While Abby and Daddy had playtime, I cooked dinner. ::gasps:: Yes, I actually cooked!! Usually Jim is the head chef around here because I'm at the park with Abby around that time. So it was extra special that I was able to cook a meal for my husband on Father's Day! :) Days like this are the best. No big plans ... just being together, as a family.

Abby is one lucky, little girl to have such a wonderful man to call her Daddy.

Just another reason why I love this man. Jim takes the extra time to do special things for his little girl. This is his latest project... remodeling a dollhouse, bought at a yard sale for five bucks. A few weeks later, the dollhouse has new wallpaper, a fresh coat of paint, and even little flowers (that he made!) in the flower boxes.

Friday, June 18, 2010

10 months today & wearing the cutest onesie EVER

Happy 10 months Abby Grace! You are such a delightful baby... full of expression and emotion. Just as I typed that, music came on tv ... you started to dance and then looked at me as if for approval. My heart melted. It's the little things. You are such a special blessing in our lives and I can't say that enough. Mommy and Daddy love you so much!

Sweetest Baby. Cutest onesie.
You amaze me with how brave you've become. As soon as you started to crawl, you saw the world in a whole different light. Now, you pull up on almost anything and can walk easily when we hold your hands. It won't be long before you are looking more like a toddler on those two feet of yours.

Sweetest Abby, at 10 months you are:

~Finally getting your two bottom teeth!!!
~Crawling and sitting on knees
~Trying to pull up on everything, but only successful if it's not too high
~Still saying "Da-Da", working on saying dog .. sounds like "duh"
~Clapping when Mommy and Daddy sing "If You're Happy and You Know It"
~Dancing to music
~Crawling after Max
~Recognizing many words
~Wearing size 4 diapers
~Drinking 4 bottles (usually 6-8 oz. morning/night and 3-4 oz. daytime)
~Eating solids 3 times a day, with snacks in between
~Taking two naps a day and sleeping 11-12 hours at night (Usually 8-7:30)
~Still disliking car rides :(
~Loving books, especially "Peek a Zoo"

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Before I accept this lovely award, I just want to say how interesting and exciting the whole blogging community is. I love reading blogs written by people who share such wonderful stories about their life.

With that said, Melissa over at The Life of a Sippy Cup Mom and Carol of Knee Deep in Mommahood both awarded me with the Beautiful Blogger Award. Melissa is a blogging friend of mine, who I found through the D-List Blog Party a while back. She blogs about her everyday life with a toddler, reviews products that other mamas would be interested in, and highlights guest bloggers often. Check it out!! Then, there's Carol. My bestie. I absolutely adore her two little girls! Most of my readers already follow Carol's blog too, so you know what is in store if you visit her blog! :)

This award comes with a few rules.... thank those that gave this award to you (Big Thanks to Melissa and Carol!!) and tell seven things about yourself that readers may not already know.

So here you go!

~ I love making to do lists and the feeling it gives me when I get to scratch something off the list. When I was teaching, I did this A LOT. Now, things aren't getting scratched off as quick as I would like.

~ December is my favorite month of the year. I love everything about it. My birthday, Christmas, New Years Eve, Christmas carols, decorating the house, making cookies, being with family. There is just something magical about this time of the year!

~ I find it refreshing to change out the placemats on our table every now and then. Adding a vase of fresh flowers in the center is just PERFECT!! I just did this a few days ago to add some summer colors to our house.

~ I absolutely love cheese. Too bad it's so bad for the ticker.

~ I can't wait to hear what Abby's voice will be like. I look forward to our conversations together.

~ I love Florida, but sometimes really miss the country. There is just something about a gravel road, lots of trees and water, and the way the breeze smells.

~ When I was in first grade, I missed our first field trip to the zoo because I had chicken pox. I was one sad little girl!

Now I get to pass this award on ..... I'm giving the award to a few bloggers I recently discovered. If you haven't already, check them out! Enjoy :)

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Simple things ...

It's the simple things in life ... like meeting friends at the park at the end of each day, that make me smile. Something so simple, yet so refreshing. The same group of mamas and their kiddos have been meeting at our local park every weekday for a loooong time. Even while I was pregnant with Abby, I would join in. Why not get the best advice from these awesome mamas before my little one arrived?!

We meet at the park, let the kiddos play (in my case, Abby swings until she gets bored, crawls around a bit trying to eat twigs and sand, and then is attached to my hip for the rest of the time), but most importantly we meet to gab about anything and everything. That's where the refreshing part comes in. It surely isn't the 92 degree weather, with humidity that makes it feel like 102. Even with the sweat dripping down our backs, it's a great way to bring an end to the day. In fact, I look forward to this time with my friends and their kiddos. It really is the simple things ...

Huge shout out to Carol ... she brings her camera more often than me and is able to take some great snapshots of all the kiddos. Thank you!

Abby & Mommy

So happy!
Even after she bumped her head ... and ate some grass.

Say cheese!

Friday, June 11, 2010

I'll always remember ...

... this day. June 11th. The day that our first little baby was due. June 11th. The day we could have been celebrating a first birthday. I will always remember this day, yet be so thankful for this little life that we have, one who makes me smile and laugh everyday. I cannot imagine our lives without our sweet Abby Grace. There isn't a day that goes by that I don't thank God for the most wonderful gift of all ... the gift of a healthy, loving, beautiful baby.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Max, it's showtime buddy.

Thanks to the hubs, Abby has a new found love for bubbles. She loves when the bubbles float through the air and then pop on her skin. As soon as she sees the bubbles coming towards her, she starts kicking those feet and flailing those arms. Enter Max. Apparently he loves bubbles just as much, so I guess we'll let him steal the thunder this time. Poor guy sure doesn't get attention like he used to.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Fun is what it's all about.

This weekend reminded me how easy it can be to have fun with friends, even with a baby around. Sometimes, it gets hard to be a part of social events due to the baby's bedtime, nap schedule, or the need for a babysitter. However, this weekend ... we were able to enjoy time with good friends and forget about the small stuff.

On Friday night, we had friends of ours come to the house for dinner. Jim researched some new recipes (great ones at that!) and he grilled away! Abby was ready to play when they got here, so Brian and Diana were able to squeeze in some baby time. After bath and bottle, Abby went to sleep so the couples could eat a nice meal together. It was a great night of food, dessert (Thanks D!), conversation, and even a little "Say Yes to the Dress." Another friend of ours was on the show, so we had to watch ... and the guys were good sports about watching it. So instead of getting all dressed up and heading out to a fancy restaurant, we were able to have the same fun (if not more) in a more relaxed, cozy environment, all while Abby slept peacefully.

Diana & Brian enjoy their baby time :)

Then, on Saturday night ... all routine went out the window and it was GREAT! Abby and I went over to Carol's for a little playtime with Chloe and it turned into a whole night of fun! I love how a playdate turned into bath time for two little babies, Abby asleep in the pack-n-play, Chloe and Camdyn sound asleep by 8, an adult only dinner, and a nighttime swim with beverages! It felt good to let go of the normal nightly routine and just enjoy time with friends. If only we could party past 10 ... next time! We woke Abby around 9:45, brought her home and she went right to bed until 7:30 this morning. It was another night of good food, laughter, and great friends!

(Yet another great pic from Carol)

Lesson learned from this weekend.... You can always have fun with friends, even with a baby around! Sometimes, the everyday routine has to be forgotten about. It's all about having fun, and that's just what we had this weekend... FUN! :)

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Sweetie, please don't hurt your neck.

Just like all babies, there are several things that can capture my daughter's attention in a split second. Things like ... Elmo's voice, a bird flying by, or a tiny piece of carpet fuzz from the area rug in our living room. However, there is a new Huggies commercial that puts her in a trance. It's serious you guys. I'm sure those of you with kiddies that watch the Sprout Network know what I'm talking about. If you haven't seen this commercial yet, check it out.

I'm not sure whether it's the stylish toddler walking down the street that captures her attention, the creepy voice of the man speaking, or the denim fashionista diapers themselves. Whatever it is though, Abby gets HOOKED every. single. time. She could be playing with blocks or crawling after the dog, but when this commercial comes on, she whips her head around so fast and stops everything. So Huggies ... congrats to you, my daughter may get whiplash but you sure are able to capture her full attention.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Yay! Cute! Crap.

Abby Grace is officially on the move! She has been trying to crawl for a few weeks now and began the ever so cute army crawl a few days ago. Just like the flip of a switch, she took off today on all fours. Yay! Seeing those chunky legs move her from place to place is so stinkin' cute! Then reality set in, and crap. I have so many things to do to make our home a safe environment for this little crawler!

Home, SWEET, home!

When Jim first told me the news that we would be returning home to Sarasota (for his elbow rehab), I honestly was a bit let down. All kinds of different emotions swept over me. Of course, it would be fun to go back home, to our house, but this is the time of year I get to see my family the most. I was saddened because this is the first baseball season where I actually felt like we made a home in Baltimore. There was something about the cozy apartment, with great views of the water and city, that I fell in love with. Having to pack up everything, leave the apartment, and say early goodbyes to family, was a bit difficult to say the least.
Then I started to get excited to have our normal life back. Playdates, park time, meeting up with friends. Jim and I are truly blessed to have found a place that we can call home. Although it's not always easy being away from family, the friends that we have made here have become our extended family.
So for now, Jim and I are enjoying this time together... as a family. I like to think of our stay at home as just a mini vacation to break up the long baseball season. I'm happy to be here, however long it lasts and will be happy to return to Baltimore when the time comes. :)
This weekend was spent hanging out with great friends! There is nothing like an evening full of grilled grub, pool time, and laughter. Looking forward to more of these nights together!

Chloe & Abby
Such sweet babies, happy to be together again!

Abby loves the ball pit ... and Mama LOVES this picture.
Thanks Carol :)

Which kid had more fun?

Friends Family :)
Nothing gets better than this!

Thanks to Carol for pictures 1, 2, and 5. You captured some great moments! :)

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Tag, your it!

Actually, I'm it right now. My BFF Carol, from Knee Deep in Mommahood tagged me today. If you haven't already, check out her page for stories that make you laugh out loud about being a Momma of two beautiful girls.

So here are the rules of this bloggy game of tag:

Go to your photos > the eighth folder > the eighth picture
Then tell the story.

Here it goes! This picture was taken outside of my portable classroom at the beginning of the 2008 school year. The girl on the left was a student of mine the year before. She was a sweet girl, with a BIG heart, who enjoyed school. Her mom was a local artist in town that specialized in large murals and hand painted wooden cutouts. Since my classroom was a jungle theme, she made this beautiful giraffe welcome sign for the outside of my classroom door. What a perfect thank you gift! In four years of teaching, this was the most special gift I have ever received. Here is one more picture to show you the giraffe up close. The detail makes it look alive! If you are reading this, thanks LS!

After seeing what this momma could do, I hired her to create the decor for Abby's nursery! If you don't remember what that looks like, check it out. She is simply amazing! :)

Now it's my turn to say, "Tag, your IT!"
I'm tagging ...

- and -

Looking forward to seeing your pics ladies! :)

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Just call me ... slacker.

Things have been SUPER busy lately, so needless to say I haven't been blogging or taking a lot of pictures. We are finally settled back home in Sarasota... together, as a family. My parents have been in town, along with my sister for the holiday weekend. It's always nice having them here and hard to see them go..... but we'll see each other soon!! :)

I will post later tonight, with more pictures and highlights of our weekend fun! Here is something to hold you over until then.....

Abby and Mommy (somewhat matching, and no... not on purpose!)
Abby also shows off her sparkly sandals :)