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So much to be thankful for/happy 6 months

I don’t know just where to begin. I’ve had such an amazing holiday weekend. Having my daughter here had made the holidays brighter. So excited about Christmas! We didn’t do anything major just came down to Indy to stay at my parents house. They adore their granddaughter. My brother came down and we actually celebrated thanksgiving on Friday because my brother is a Firefighter and had to work on Thursday. This was actually really nice since we weren’t rushed getting down to Indy on Thursday.

My baby girl also turned 6 months old. She’s becoming such a fun little girl. Interacting with me and others more. Always laughing and babbling on about something. When she sleeps she’s breathtaking.

Over the past month she has started to do the following:
Makes gurgle sound
Loves oatmeal
Pushes herself up very well
Laughs at everything
No more bald spots
‘sings’ herself to sleep
Recognizes daddy when he gets home

We got her 6 month winter/christmas theme pictures on Saturday. I’m so impatient to get them. We ended up being there for 2 hours and did 7 or 8 outfits. Wowza. The photographer took over 300 pictures. So stoked.

As we steer packed up and ready to head home I’m torn because I hate leaving my parents house but it will be nice to have our old routine back.

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I hope everyone out there in blog world had a wonderful holiday and safe travels wherever you went!!

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One Lovely Blog Award

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WOW!!! Thank you to Bespectacled Mother for nominating me for this award! It was a nice surprise when I woke up this morning. I love reading her posts, if you aren’t following her then you should definitely check her out! Sorry it took me a little bit to make a post; my daughter decided again that naps were overrated today!! I’m still pretty new to the blog world but I’m learning more each time I sign on. One thing that I have noticed is that everyone I’ve chatted with in comments or messages has been so incredibly nice. The kind of people I would interact with in the real world. It’s nice to know there are such lovely, supportive people in the world. I will do my best by following all the rules.

Here are the rules:

•Thank the person who nominated you for the award=check
•Add the One Lovely Blog Award logo to your post and/or blog=check
•Share 7 facts/or things about yourself.
•Nominate 7 bloggers you admire.

7 facts:

1. I’ll start with what comes to mind first; which once you read it you may think I’m a little strange. I’m very afraid of squirrels. CANNOT stand them. They are creepy, and big around where I live. I’ve been afraid of them since as long as I can remember. Do you remember the song by Ray Stevens ‘The Mississippi Squirrel Revival’?? I guess I watched that too many times when I was a kid. Not sure what I’m talking about or now you are singing the song and want to watch it again… Well it’s your lucky day here is the video (Mississippi Squirrel Revival). You’re welcome.

2. I love to read. I wish I had more time to read. I wish I had taken more time when I had it to read. I did a challenge a couple years ago where I read 1 book a month. Now, this isn’t too much as sometimes I can finish a book if it is really good in a day or two; but it was nice to turn off the tv and get lost in a book. I hope to pass that love of reading onto my daughter. I am thinking of a way to add onto my blog regarding books and getting back to reading more…. more to come on that later.

3. I’m still not over the lose of my Granny from just over 2 years ago. I think about her every day, if not multiple times during the day. I have a new outlook on life after losing her. I absolutely hate that it took losing her to step back and enjoy my life more. I know though that she would be proud of my new insight regardless. I truly wish she could have met my daughter. It breaks my heart every day. Something I’ve never shared with anyone because I don’t know how they would respond and I’m not quite sure I understand the feeling myself but since her death I’ve become afraid of dying. It sounds crazy I know, but I guess I never gave it much thought before. These feeling were really amplified after having Carolina. I watch these sad movies, listen to the sad songs about losing someone, watch the news how children have to grow up without a parent…. it’s torture. I know there is no way of knowing what the future holds but that alone is frightening to me. So I try to be in the moment, every moment so that she gets all of me while she can. It’s also not the act of dying that scares me its the thought of being gone and missing out on everything to come. That scares the HELL of out me.

4. I’m kind of obsessed with my dogs. I have a black Labrador named Kona and a Golden Retriever named Sadie. I’ve had Kona since she was 6 weeks old and she has been my world since then. She will be 6 in December and she suffers from arthritis in her back leg so she isn’t as active as she used to be. She still loves her tennis balls, the ‘chuck it’ balls, basically anything that resembles her ball. She is extremely well behaved. She never needs to be tied out (and we live on 3+ acres not fenced), she knows every dog command (some people believe she understands me when I talk to her like a person). As a lab she has never chewed anything in the house when we are gone. Just a great dog; we got lucky. She is a sweetheart but when she is in pain she can be kind of moody. Sadie will be 3 this December (pure coincidence both birthdays are in December). I got her in June of 2012 when she was about 1.5 years old. She came from good people but they didn’t really work on good puppy behavior. She is a licker and she likes to have a paw on you constantly. She is a little rambunctious but she is SUCH a lover. She is the sweetest dog who wants nothing more than to make you happy and to cuddle. She is simply A-M-A-Z-I-N-G with Carolina. Carolina just smiles and laughs when Sadie comes around her. My husband finds her a little of a pest (but I think its because she can be a lot like him and just pick on someone constantly). But I know he loves her because I’ll find them cuddling at night. Who can resist a good dog cuddle; not even my manly husband. My day just isn’t complete if I’m not with them.

5. I love to bake and cook. I enjoy baking treats more. I like to bake my dad things because he just gets so excited about everything. I often don’t eat a lot of what I make. Not because it’s not good but I have more joy in making it than eating it. I have a tendency to not use exact measurements when baking/cooking so it’s hard to make the same thing twice.

6. My favorite college course was a Wine Tasting course. I’m not joking…. it was a class where every session we sampled 6-8 different wines. We learned about grapes, how wines were made, stored, etc. We learned about wine pairings, and how to properly taste wine. We even took field trips to very nice restaurants in downtown Indy and have a 3-4 course meal with different wines. Does it get any better than that?!?! UM no! I actually developed a love for red wines in that course. Now for everyone thinking how does that class help you in the business world? easy… ever been to a business dinner? Well you can suggest a good wine and it’s a good conversation piece at the beginning. See. I applied it to the real world.

7. I love, love, love music. There isn’t a day that goes by where I don’t listen to music and get up and move. I have a wide range of music that I like. I listen to music that allows me to feel something, think something, escape from something. Primarily I listen to country music and rock music. I also listen to music primarily from years prior. This could be a whole post on just my music choices. I love Conway Twitty, George Jones, Tammy Wynette, Bob Wills, Johnny Cash, Buck Owens. I love the Bakersfield sound! I am kind of obsessed with my man GEORGE STRAIT!!! (the perfect man) lol! I’ve seen probably 50-75 country artists live. I also love love love classic Rock; Beatles, Zepplin, The Who, Hendrix, Dylan, The Doors, The Stones, The Eagles (I have every song), my all time favorite Van Halen, The Zombies, Hall & Oates, Buffalo Springfield. I love good R&B: stevie wonder, Michael Jackson, Marvin Gaye, Prince, Vandross, Otis Redding, Smokey Robinson. I also love classical and jazz music. I listen to classical and jazz because I like that it doesn’t have words, as a listener you can go wherever you want to go. You can listen to the same song day after day and you may not hear the same thing or feel the same way. I love that about music. Carolina and I have music time everyday where we listen, sing, dance. My favorite radio station on Pandora right now is Lite Rock Songwriters… OMG every song is AWESOME!!!!

8. (because I’m an over-achiever) I love COWBOY BOOTS!!! I would have 100 pairs if my husband would let me store that many! :):)

phewwwww. All 7 facts are done. Plus one!

Last rule is to nominate 7 people. This is where I struggle because I don’t know if you have been nominated for this already so please ignore if you have and I apologize I double nominated you. I’m picking these blogs because I enjoy reading their posts/blogs.

1. SimplyHonest.SimplyReal

2. The Dazed Mommy

3. LittleNugget_BigNugget

4. No Fruit for You

5. MeaningfulMommy

6. A Woman’s Lifestyle

okay I only have 6. Again I apologize if any of the 6 listed above have been nominated before.

This was pretty fun to do. Have a great night everyone!!!

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The Gift

It’s that time of year when I get sucked into Lifetime and Hallmark’s holiday movies. I re-watch all my favorites as well as look forward to the new ones. This year is different from previous ones because it is as if I’m watching the movies through a new pair of eyes… the eyes of a mother. Most of the time this fact is a wonderful one and gets me so excited about the holidays and the traditions that my family will have. Unfortunately, the movies that aren’t so fun to watch are the sad stories about losing a loved one or even worse a sick child. I can cry just reading the descriptions of the movies. I never thought about those events before becoming a mother, so watching it unfold on tv it gives you that image that you don’t want to imagine.

There was a movie on today called ‘The Ultimate Gift’. It was about how this man is forced to complete 12 life-changing tasks before he can receive his inheritance from his rich grandfather that recently died. In the middle of him completing these tasks he befriends a young girl with leukemia and her mother who is dealing with all that having a sick child entails. I know that this is a movie and these are characters played by actors but I’m aware that somewhere, there is a family experiencing these struggles for real; and that breaks my heart completely. I can’t imagine the pain involved. I can’t imagine the strength that these children have to face such horrible illnesses. I can’t imagine the strength of the parents to keep a smile on their face for their child and possibly more children at home. I can’t imagine being the medical staff having to share such difficult news. I don’t know if I would be that strong faced with these situations and I hope I never have to find out.

This story line hits close to home but not in the way you would think. I never got to meet my husbands sister who battled her own illness. I don’t know the whole story as this is ( and understandably so) still hard for my husband to talk about. I would never want to cause or remind him of this pain by asking questions. Throughout our relationship I have learned bits and pieces about her; her amazing strength; and the life she had from him, his parents, and other relatives. My husband constantly thinks about our daughter and he will ask me constantly if she is napping or even really quiet if she is okay. I go and check in; to ease his mind. Part of me thinks this is in part of what he went through when he was younger. At first, I didn’t understand why he was so adamant about checking. The first week she was born and after we brought her home he would ask me “is she still breathing” every time she was sleeping. It later dawned on me what could be making him so worried; from then on I don’t make a big deal about it… I just go in and check. It takes a couple seconds to do.

While watching this movie I’m reminded of a gift that we received after my daughter was born. It’ll be a moment I hope I never forget. As I’ve mentioned before my daughter was born on May 27th @ 8:32am. She was the first girl born that day… Actually the first baby that day. A few hours after she was born there was a knock on our door; a nurse entered with a gift bag. At first I thought maybe a family or friend stopped by but that wasn’t the case. The nurse explained that a lady stopped by earlier with this gift for the first girl born on May 27th. She didn’t leave a name. I opened the gift and inside was a beautiful little dress outfit and a card.

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My mom read the card. My mom explained that 17 years ago she delivered twins (boy & girl) on May 27th. Sadly,her daughter didn’t make it and for the past 17 years she always drops off a gift to be given to the first girl born on May 27th. What a moving way to honor her daughter. I was so touched by her story but I was so emotional from everything I wasn’t quite ready to read her words in that card just yet. I finally read the card after I got home from the hospital. It was touching; I cried and hugged my daughter extra tight. I can’t imagine her pain. My daughter has wore this out quite a few times and each time I put it on her I think of that women and her words. I always give my daughter one more extra hug.

I’ll never get rid of that dress. I’ll always hold that moment dear to my heart.

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Creating a monster

It is becoming very noticeable that my daughter notices when I leave the room. And by notices I mean screams until I return. I’ve tried leaving when she isn’t looking and that doesn’t even work. Now that she has started to reach out for me (which is the most adorable thing) it’s hard to resist her.

My husband works a lot and so he doesn’t get to spend loads of time with her. I feel awful when all she does is cry in his arms when he tries to play with her. I just don’t know what to do to help. I am with her all day everyday but I don’t hold her all the time but I also cannot ignore her. I try to give her time for independent play.

My brother and his girlfriend was over last night and it was hard to get her to stop being so fussy because she wanted me to hold her. My mom also came into town and she does it a little bit with her.

A part of me secretly loves that she wants me around her all the time; I mean I love love it. However, I want my husband to enjoy his time with her more. Do I just back away and let others do more no matter how much she fusses or will she grow out of this?

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“You know when you know”

How many times in our lives have we heard or said the above phrase “you’ll just know when you know”?

Earlier today I was talking to a new mom of a beautiful 3 month old and we were discussing bedtime rituals and the struggles with that. All moms (and dads) out there you know what I’m talking about. She asked me “how do you know when it’s time to put your daughter to bed”?….Let me back up for a minute and explain our bedtime ritual… We start by having bath time and I always give my daughter a little massage in the water l. We keep things pretty mellow the whole time. After bath time I rub lotion on her and put on her pjs. I give her to daddy for him to say goodnight, hug, and give a kiss goodnight (she can get a little fussy during this part because I’ve walked out of her sight and well that’s pretty traumatic for her these days lol). While daddy and her are having their moment I get a small bottle ready. Her and I then go to her room and I rocked her gently while she has her bottle. I keep her room dark with no lights and just the sound machine playing (rain sounds). I don’t talk to her I just hold her. After her bottle I rock her until she’s ready to be laid down in her crib.

My friend has a similar routine but she said when she lays her daughter down she just cries and takes forever to fall asleep so she asked how do I know when it’s time.

I had to take a minute to think about it because I didn’t know how to answer her. Even my husband had had problems getting her to relax and go to bed. I finally determined the only answer I could give she wouldn’t like. The answer: “You just know when you know”. I put my daughter to bed every night (something I’m kinda stingy about because I absolutely love to… I’m working on letting my husband hehe) so I know my daughters body language. I’m with her all day everyday so I know her very well. Sometimes rocking her takes 5 minutes of and other times maybe 30. I don’t rush her bedtime, even if my favorite show is about to come in or if I have to go to the bathroom (this is what my husband struggles with). I just relax and let her do her thing. I personally think that’s important in anything with my daughter…. Be present. I’ve come to thoroughly enjoy that dark, quiet time just rocking her. Just her and I.

I explained to my friend there comes a moment when my daughter is not quite asleep but is still and just peaceful. When this moment happens I pause and embrace that moment because I know these days won’t last forever, and then I lay her in her crib. From there she falls completely asleep within a couple minutes.

I certainly hope I was a little help to her because I know I got so much help and advice from others so it’d be nice to pay it forward.

Looking back to day one of finding out I was pregnant I haven’t stopped reading articles, researching theories, etc…but I’ve made every decision for me, my daughter, and my family based on how I feel and living by the phrase “i’ll know when I know”.

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