Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Life Interrupted.

The past week has been one big nebulous blur. It's hazy, it's foggy, it's cloudy & I have yet to calm the stirring within me enough to process all that the past seven days have encompassed. On one hand I feel like last Tuesday was an eternity ago & that my mind will forever grapple to retrieve some of the events that took place. Yet on the other hand, there are moments that step out from amongst the fog & are so real, so vivid, so crystal clear & alive in my mind that they replay themselves over & over again as if they happened just yesterday.

Pellucid moments like the one where I picked up my phone last Tuesday to realize I had two missed calls from my brother & a text message from my dad that read,
Call me as soon as you get this message. 
I'll never forget the lump in my throat that formed instantaneously. I wanted to turn my phone over. My heart told me to ignore it. I wanted to deny the fact that something bad was happening. I wanted to pretend that I didn't know exactly who it was happening to. I simply wanted life to resume & not ever know the dreaded answer that waited on the other end of the line.

{Insert blur}

Vivid moments like the one where I strained to understand the words in my brother's trembling, shaking, desperate voice as he explained through the phone that our mom was having a heart attack & being loaded onto a helicopter to be Life Flighted. Life Flighted. I found myself fighting my own trembling as I became stern in my voice & demanded my brother to get it together & be strong for our mom. And then I myself crumbled to pieces just as soon as our call came to an end.

{More blur}

Distinct moments like the one where my best friend sat next to me on my couch, her arms wrapped around me, giving me strength that I so desperately needed in that moment. The good Lord knew that I would need a source of comfort with me when that news came through & I am still thanking Him for that Tuesday morning playdate.


Definitive moments like the one in the hospital waiting room when it hit me like a ton of bricks that there was a chance for earth shattering news to come walking through those waiting room doors.

The relief that came over me when the doctor walked in with a smile on his face.


Unclouded moments like the one my mom & I shared, hand in hand, just the two of us in her hospital room. Tears fell as we shared our hearts, talked about how far our relationship has come in the past year, the miracle that God has worked in restoring & redeeming the mother/daughter relationship we were meant to have in this lifetime & the shame it would be to have come this far in our blossoming relationship only to have it ripped from us. We mourned at the thought of Jett growing up without the infinite love from his "Ma-maw". What would he do without those phone calls every single day checking in to see what he's up to, what new things he's saying, what kind of trouble he's giving his momma, when his next doctor's appointment is...etc...etc...etc? Who would would care to know every single detail of his life the way she so desires to? There isn't a soul on this earth that could replace "Ma-maw". There isn't a soul on this earth that could replace my mother.


And that's how this past week has continued to go. Details that are sketchy & scattered, sprinkled with profound moments which are vibrant & clear. It's much like a dream. Only it's not a dream at all. The pieces are real, are raw, are truer than true.

"Live life to the fullest."
"Never take a single moment for granted."
"Live today, for tomorrow is not promised."
"Say what you need to say."

The list goes on & on.

I'm here to tell you, until a life that you value so dearly is just a second from slipping away, these endless quotes are just words on paper. Their impact comes from experiencing their meaning. And my, have we experienced their meaning-- probably more than we are even able to realize at this point.

Our lives have been interrupted. Every single emotion on the spectrum has been tapped & we have tasted of a bitterness & of a sweetness that had until this point in our lives, remained unawakened. We have learned firsthand just how fragile this life is & we have come face to face with what our Lord means when he tells us that our time here on this earth is but a vapor. We have felt the pang of hurt that comes along with the mere thought of losing somebody we love so much & we have come to the realization that even another second of breath in our lungs is a gift. We have gained a thankfulness for the lives God has given to us & we have formed a heart of gratitude for another day that we get to wake up & tell our loved ones what they mean to us. We have a value for life that is deepened & broadened more now than ever before.

A life interrupted forces your eyes to open, forces places of your heart to be revealed, forces growth in ways you didn't know you could be stretched. A life interrupted is uncomfortable, is life changing, & is sometimes just exactly what you need to come along & shake you up.

The past week with all its blurriness & fuzziness was a doozy & I have to say I am glad to be setting it all aside for awhile. This week we'll focus our eyes on the celebration of life. We'll celebrate second chances & second birthdays. We'll look around the room at Meatball's big birthday bash on Saturday afternoon & be thankful for a "Ma-maw" amongst the crowd who gets to watch her grandson turn two & we'll praise the Lord for a little boy who fills up our hearts with the sprite of life. We'll laugh & love & will take not a single moment for granted. We will embrace the numbered days we've been given with one another & the memories we walk away with will be truly treasured ones. And I hope we always continue to live our lives this way.

But I also hope that we never set aside the lessons that have been learned, the lessons that continue to manifest daily out of the fog, the lessons that came about from that hazy week where life was interrupted.

Having fun with Grandma's hospital bed. He only pushed the CALL NURSE button three times.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Happy Sunday

Happy Sunday, friends!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Sneak Peek: Window Treatments

Okay, so I can't go & show you the entire room just yet {one: because it isn't finished & two: because I want to have a great big grand reveal}, but with all the late night hours we've been putting in on Jett Jett's big boy room, I figured a little sneak peek never hurt anybody.

Drumroll please....

Check out these way cool window treatments!

I am so super dee duper excited about these curtains. I think they turned out pretty awesome & are the perfect fit for a certain new big boy in town.

I originally got the idea from here. It looked simple enough. Curtains, stencils, paint--how hard could that be, right? Wrong. I'm not gonna go tell'n ya this was an easy task. In fact, about three quarters through my little project, I just about wadded up the whole panel & chucked it in the trash. I even, at one point, calmly told my husband that if he didn't quit telling me how great he thought my ugly curtains had turned out, that I was going to go ballistic on him. These innocent looking suckers 'bout shot my blood pressure straight through the roof.

All my letter edges turned out jaggedy {my brain simply cannot do jaggedy} & I could not for the life of me get all that stuck on, dried on, paper off my poor curtain. I ended up taking my foam brush & just free-handing the edges until they looked nice & straight. After about an hour of perfecting, they finally turned out great & I was thankful I didn't end up trashing the whole thing midway through.

In case you are wanting to make some of these curtains for yourself, allow me offer you a little advice:

1) Don't make your own stencils. Just buy the ones at the craft store. Yes, even if they aren't the exact size & font you have in your perfectionist brain. 

2) If you must make your own stencils, don't use the janky method that I did {manilla folders}. Use vinyl or contact paper or something that won't bind your stencil to your curtains like glue. I've used my manilla folder method for other stenciling projects in the past & it's worked like a charm. Not so much this time. I spent a long time trying to pluck dried up leftover folder remnants off of my curtains & I could have spit I was so annoyed. 

3) Don't use a regular art paintbrush. Use a foam brush {I figured this out late in the game & sure wish I'd known at the beginning}. 

I do think this could be an easy project--as long as you don't do it the way I did it, that is. So don't be discouraged if it's something you want to try. I say go for it. But don't come back tell'n me how easy it was for you, either. I may just go ballistic on you. =)

Okay, onto part two of these awesome window treatments--the curtain rod.

I got the idea from here.

And this project was much easier than the previous one. Well, it looked easier, anyways. I wasn't actually the one who whipped it up--that would be the handy hubs of mine.

I absolutely LOVE this look. It's so industrial & gives such a nice little touch of detail to the room. Whoever said decorating a boy's room was no fun clearly never had a little boy to decorate for. I'm having a ball with it.

Here's a list of all the supplies used to get this look:

Stenciled Curtains
*navy blue curtain panels- purchased at Target {I most certainly wouldn't go painting on Pottery Barn panels}
* Tulip Fabric Paint-purchased at Hobby Lobby
* Foam paint brushes-purchased at Hobby Lobby
* Stencils

Curtain Rod
* 3/4 inch galvanized pipe-purchased at Home Depot
* 3/4 inch elbow fittings for galvanized pipe-purchased at Home Depot
* pipe threading done at Ace Hardware {Home Depot's threader was broken or we would have just had it done there}

So there you have it, some pretty rockin' window treatments, if I do say so myself! I can even say now that they were worth every bit of trouble they gave me.

Stay tuned...who knows, I may just have another sneak peek cookin'!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Terrible Two's

There's no sugar coating it. The Terrible Two's are knock'n at our door.

Oh who am I kidding? The Terrible Two's done beat down the door & barged right in.  

Be afraid, people. Be very afraid.

I'm talking out of this world fit throwing, complete with body convulsions. Temper tantrums starting out with a harmless pouty face then quickly evolving into a top of the lungs wail. Blood curdling screams that come out of nowhere. Toys being chucked across the room sending Momma & Daddy ducking for cover. Tables, walls, & furniture being hauled off & hit & kicked at at in a fit of anger. Flailing around like a crazy person during diaper changes. Burping as loud as he can. Smiling when he's being disciplined. Flinging spit. Dinnertime wars. Spatting the word "NO!" all. day. long. 

Oh, this is some fun stuff.

I can't say that I was completely blindsided. I mean, I've taken care of many a child in my day & I've witnessed what this whole Terrible Two's phase is all about. But c'mon, I thought we could at least hold off until the birthday candles had been blown out. I thought I still had at least a few days left of baby bliss. Geesh, he doesn't turn two for another thirteen days!

I find myself questioning what in the world I am doing wrong--I mean, here I am doing the very best I know how to do as a mom-- I spend hours reading books, I stretch out on the floor & play trains, trucks, hotwheels & powertools, I rock in the rocking chair when a little extra snuggle time is needed , I kiss boo-boos away, I sing the ABC's song ninety-seven times a day because it makes him smile & say, "Again!". I stop what I'm doing numerous times throughout my day to just be present & spend these special moments with my little boy. I show love & grace & mercy when sometimes all I actually want to do is scream, yell, throw myself to the ground & show him the real stuff a hissy fit is made of. I keep my patience in check {most of the time} & I certainly don't slam my fists against the table, throw my belongings across the room, or reach out & smack somebody when I'm angry. 

Where is he learning this stuff? 

I've had to remind myself lately that as incredibly sweet as my little boy looks, he's no angel. I've even taken a look for myself & just as I suspected--no halo underneath that bedhead of his. The truth is, my Jett Jett is no more than a human being. And I have to remember that I cannot expect perfection out of him. He's just a little pint sized version of myself, really. Nobody has to teach him to do naughty. He came fully equipped with that. We all came equipped with naughty. Not one of us has to be taught how to do wrong. It's the good, the doing right that we must all learn. It all boils down to a little something called sin nature--the sin nature that makes him test his authorities & inch as close as he can to his boundaries, the sin nature each & every one of us was born with & the exact sin nature that gets me into trouble to this day. I may not be the tender age of two, but I still manage to have my off days where my behavior is intolerable. The only difference between myself & my little guy is that I can't simply toss my behavior into the Terrible Two's category & call it a day. 

Meatball is transitioning through a time in his life where he's beginning to recognize the very will that lies within him. He's figuring out that he has his own thoughts about things. He's forming his own ideas, likes & dislikes & he's learning how to express it all--boy oh boy, is he is he learning to express it all. He's quickly discovering that rules are a straight drag & that it's way more fun to go your own way {Oh, just wonderful. I now have Fleetwood Mac's "You Can Go Your Own Way" blasting in my brain. Nice.}

It's a rite of passage, these Terrible Two's. It's a phase that every parent & child is destined to go through & I have no doubt that we'll get through it. We may even look back & share a few chuckles about the whole ordeal. But I'm also not oblivious enough to believe that as soon as the Terrible Two's wrap up their visit, it'll be smooth sail'n after that. There will come another phase...& another...& another after that in which I have the responsibility to teach, to nurture, to instill good in my child's life. It is my responsibility as a mother to offset that naughty he came equipped with & slowly begin to replace it with kindness, gentleness, meekness & goodness. Just as I, myself am learning, growing, & evolving every single day into the human being I am meant to be, so is my little *almost* two year old son. I have a Father in heaven that takes all of my imperfections, blemishes, & plain ol' rottenness & he slowly chips away at it. He has softened me, changed the very person that I am & is continuing to mold me daily into a person that looks just a little more like Him. He doesn't examine at me at any particular phase in my life & question where in the world He has gone wrong. He doesn't throw the towel in on me or label Himself "Worst Father Alive". No, instead he continues to show to me a constant, steady, unmoving flow of grace, mercy, love & discipline in my life. I can't think of a more perfect example of parenting to follow.

This Terrible Two's phase is only one tiny piece of the big picture I signed up for when I took on the role of motherhood nearly two years ago. This won't be the last of the tangos Meatball & I dance--teenage years, anyone? He's going to love me, hate me, make my heart swell with pride & make it ache with sorrow throughout this lifetime. It doesn't make him a bad kid or me a bad momma. It just makes us human & nothing more than simply that. We're in this together, this journey of parent/child adventure & I believe every bump, every hiccup, every single phase of it is an opportunity for growth--on his part & mine. 

So sure, at the moment there's a pretty good game of Battle Of The Wills going on at our house.  And why yes, yes that was indeed my child you heard in the grocery store screaming his head off. And nope, I'm not too proud to admit that some nights I say a thank you prayer & take a giant sigh of relief that his little jammied butt is finally in bed & that I can actually sit down in the quiet & settle my frazzled nerves. 

But in the long-run, I know that these infamous Terrible Two's are a gentle reminder to me that we all need a little space in this world. A little space to spread our wings, a little space where we learn the consequences to our actions, a little space where we are able to flourish & emerge on the other side a better individual. 

So here's to giving a little grace, giving a lot of love, & giving some wide open space for these Terrible Two's to go ahead & do their thang.

***Disclaimer: No, I was not provoking my child to anger & tears in the above photos. I was attempting to get some two year old photos for his scrapbook & this is what I ended up with.  He was dressed cute & my finger was on the clicker so I captured what I could--Terrible Two's at its finest.***

Monday, January 16, 2012

Coming Up For Air

Hiya friends! Longtime no see.

It's crazy-nuts-busy around here. But it's the good crazy-nuts-busy, so we're good. 

This little stud muffin is turning two very soon:

If you look closely, you can see in the reflection of those shiny aviators that I am bribing my child with a package of fruit snacks. Oh the measures I go to for a simple smile {or smirk, rather}.

And it's a darn good thing I've got three projects juggling in the air at the moment or I'd probably be bawling my head off that he's growing up on me... that his little life is going by much too fast...that it seems like just yesterday...okay, I'm stopping there. No tears. Only celebrations.

Speaking of celebrations, we've got one super cool birthday party in the works for our little man. It's his first big shindig & we're pulling out all the stops. We had a small party for him last year, but I like to keep the one year old party intimate, so it was pretty low key with only family invited. But the two year old party, now that's a whole 'nother story. We're going all out for the big T-W-O. We've invited all his little friends, have pint sized activities planned & are anxious to send hyped up kiddos home with their very own treat bags. 

Oh, sweet childhood. 

I've got to take a moment here & give some major props to that husband of mine. While it's me who is the mastermind behind the whole shabang--I dream up a theme, see to every last detail, assemble all the bows & banners, make list after list after list, & scour the shelves of JoAnn's & Hobby Lobby, it's definitely my husband who brings my whole vision to life. He does the sawing, spray painting, building & constructing & I know without a doubt that I couldn't pull it all off without him {well, I might be able to, but I really would rather my baby not come out with two heads--pretty sure sniffing paint fumes is a no go for pregnant girls}

He's right there with me during the late night hours of assembling push pop aircrafts & gorilla glueing jet packs together. And though every once in awhile he'll sigh heavily or scratch his head at one of my far fetched ideas, he usually gives me my way & gets down to business.  

I knew I married me a handy fella for a reason.

I love this part of being a mom--the late nights, the errand running, the painting, cutting & glueing--it's worth every bit & more. For at the end of it all, when the Happy Birthday song has been sung, when the gifts have been torn open, when the decorations have come down, it's the everlasting, sweet, childhood memories that will be left standing.

Oh, sweet childhood.

Welp, I can't stick around tonight. It's only 8:30 & I've got more work to do. The final pages of Jett man's two year old scrapbook need finishing & there's a big boy room down the hall that has been primed, painted, has big boy furniture sitting in it & is just waiting on a momma & a daddy to put the finishing touches on it.

Turning two is a big deal, folks.

I'll be back up for air in a few days. Until then, have a happy week!

**Holds breath & goes back under**

Wednesday, January 11, 2012


It isn't something we held our glasses high & clinked to at the strike of midnight on New Year's, but it is something that Jared & resolved to do many months ago. And being that it's worked out quite beautifully for us, & that we're not too far into the new year, I figured January 11th would be as good a day as any to share our little secret of happiness with the rest of you. When I find a way to overcome obstacles in my life, I like to spread the wealth with you all in hopes that just maybe, you too might benefit one day down the road.

I like to think I'm generally a glass half full kind of gal. I have slowly learned over the years to ease up on my expectations of others, to let my skin thicken up a bit, & to let unimportant things kind of roll of my back. I try to make the most of what I've got, find the positive amidst the negative & find pleasure in the regular, simple moments. I certainly cannot say I've perfected this art or that I've become some laid back, easy going, nothing bothers me kind of person, but I am learning it's a much happier way of life to simply let go of some stuff & try & live life to the fullest.

And even though I know it makes for a healthier, happier me to not get caught up in all the junk of life, you know what I still find myself doing from time to time? Stewing, griping, complaining, festering, judging, & letting my heart be sown with seeds of bitterness.  I let my thoughts become infiltrated with negativity, I let my heart be robbed of the joy it should be filled with, & I become consumed with bitterness, nastiness & flat out ugliness. And I don't really like myself much when that happens.

It's so easy to do, isn't it? To overlook our blessings & become solely focused on the things in our life which we feel aren't perfect. And don't just go taking my word for it... just check out facebook if you don't believe me. You'll quickly be slammed with status update after status update of things like--I hate my job, I can't stand this person, my life is so horrible, blah, blah, blah. I don't mean to be insensitive here, really I don't. I realize that there are individuals going through more than I will ever understand, people who have real things to grieve about, friends who are facing giants in their lives, but that's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about the garbage that people think is real reason to be unhappy. The very same garbage I allow myself to be consumed with much more often than I'd like to admit. And just because I don't go smearing it all over my facebook statuses doesn't mean I don't do the exact same things within the walls of my own mind & heart. I become that facebook status that I simply can't stand--the one I cringe at--the one I want to shake the owner of & say, "Get over it! Where is your joy?!"

It was definitely time for a gut check in my life & I won't ever forget the day that my little "ah-ha moment" took place.

Jared & I were driving home together, Jett snoozing away in the back seat, & let me tell ya, we were on a roll. We'd just left a less than desirable situation & we were pissing & moaning about every single detail of it. I bet we'd spent a good half hour griping about this individual & that individual & how awful, terrible & disgusting we found the whole scenario to be when finally, one of us put the conversation to rest {I can't actually remember who brought the self wallowing to a screeching halt, but I'm gonna go with my husband on this one. He's pretty good at finding the silver lining while I'm still frantically running around in the thunder storm}. We took a step back, analyzed, & came to the conclusion that, you know what? In the great big grand scheme of things, our lives are pretty darn great. We are healthy, we are loved, we are raising one heck of a beautiful family. Why in the world are we allowing a select few people or a select few situations to take the light off of all that we have to be grateful for? It just didn't make any sense. And right there in that moment is when we adopted our little family motto--something we call The 90/10 Rule. We made the decision to start taking the 90 percent of our lives that rocks our socks off & focus, focus, focus on it. To treasure it, to meditate on it, to become completely consumed with joy & thankfulness for all that we have been given in this quickly fleeting life. And that last little 10 percent that ain't so pretty--to let it go. It's simple, really. An "accentuate the positive, eliminate the negative" way of life. Easier said than done, right? I know, I know... it takes some practice.

For me personally, this 90/10 Rule of ours means spending my time focused on being a present momma, being the kind of wife that my husband needs, & becoming the woman of God that Jesus Christ so desires for me to be. When I have my eyes fixated on the things that make my joy full, like my Lord & Savior & the blessing of family he has given me, I radiate that same joy. I radiate light. I radiate a life that others want to be a part of. I don't have time to huff & puff about people or things in my life that I'm not overly fond of. But when I focus on that teeny, tiny ten percent of life in which I cannot change & that I wish were different, I become a bogged down, discontent, ungrateful person that even I can't stand to be around. I never want to look back on this life with regret that I missed out on the big picture of beautiful, meaningful events because I stood staring for too long at all the crap that truly doesn't matter.

"Whatever you feed grows & whatever you starve dies." True dat.

Something else that has helped me in my journey to have a joy filled life is to surround myself with people who bless my life & keep the ones who don't at bay. I have finally given myself permission to cut loose individuals who are toxic to me. Individuals that once I leave their presence, I feel disheartened, discouraged, & less myself than I did when I walked into our encounter. This isn't always the easiest thing to do. It often comes along with heartbreak & tears, but in the end I have found that it reaps peace in my life.  It most certainly doesn't mean that I don't love these people anymore, it simply means that I can't have them in my day to day life. Now, I'm not suggesting to go & eliminate every person out of your life that you don't see eye to eye with. Some of my most valued relationships are the ones that have taken years to work through & numerous obstacles to overcome in order to salvage. Some of those relationships have been worth every bit of the fight & I would fight that fight ten times over. What I'm saying is that some relationships & some people are just draining. Sometimes they continually hurt, sting, & burn & once in awhile the decision has to be made to love those individuals from an arms length away. I know in the depths of my heart who genuinely has my best interest at heart & I keep those very precious people close to me. I lean on them, I learn from them, I grow from them & all the while they help me along in this journey of becoming my most genuine self. They accept me, they build me, they encourage me, & yes, sometimes they even fail me. But it's all good & dandy because I know their motives are pure. But I also know that not everyone set in my path truly has that level of care or interest in my life. I know there are pot stirrers, joy stealers, people who desire to tear others down & I have no place for that in my life. My joy can only be sucked, my pot can only be stirred, & my sense of self only torn down if I allow it to be. And I won't allow that. Nobody should walk away from somebody else feeling beat up. I cannot change the behavior of others. I cannot force them to live up to my expectations. What I can do is love, pray, be my genuine self & try to have a pure heart & motives at all times. Not always easy, I'll admit. But in the end, I am responsible for me & the actions that I exude. Giving myself the go ahead to set healthy boundaries in my life as far as who has access to my life & who doesn't has been one of the biggest burdens lifted from my shoulders. I'm lighter, happier, more free, more me. 

Our 90/10 Rule is simply a reminder to get over it & get on with it. To accept that life isn't ever going to go exactly as we'd always wish, but that it doesn't mean our lives can't be full. To stop ourselves mid sentence when we begin to fuss & bellyache about bumps in our road & to turn our eyes upon the good stuff. Ultimately, I want our children to see our 90/10 Rule as a way we lived our lives. I want our rule to become something that is natural for them. I want them to take the good with the bad & realize that in the grand scheme of things, life will throw nasty weather, nasty circumstances, even nasty people their way, but when weighed in the balances, their blessings will always outweigh their curses if that's the reality they choose to cling to.

I whole heartedly believe that everybody has their own 90 percent to be thankful for--no matter what they're going through in this messy life. Everyone has a part of life where joy, blessings & a fullness of life can be found. Sometimes it just means to stop dead in your tracks & let go of the things you cannot change. Sometimes it means to set free some of the individuals that bring constant hurts, & sometimes it means to just buck up & repeat to yourself over & over "90/10, 90/10, 90/10". I can't promise it'll work for you, but I can say it has sure worked nicely for our little family.

My wish for you this year is that you're able to find your 90 & kick your pesky 10 to the curb!

Happy Wednesday, my friends. Be filled with joy.

Monday, January 9, 2012

What Happened to Winter?

I'm one of those crazy people that believes if it's going to be wintertime, then by golly, there'd better be some snow on the ground. Now, now-- you haters can quit cursing me. I'm sorry. I can't help it. I just love it--a hazy gray sky, a blanket of glistening white, flurries floating softly through the air. It's true. This girl loves a good snow.

It's one of my favorite things about living in the midwest, getting to experience every bit of four seasons. Canon balls in the Summer, underdogs in the Spring, pumpkin picking in the Fall, snow angels come Winter. I've got a soft spot for every season that rolls around & I honestly don't think I could ever give up even one of them.

But unfortunately for me, we've yet to see what I like to call a good snow around these parts. And I'll admit, every time I turn on Fox 4 News to the Long Ranger & see 50's & 60's in the forecast, I bum out a little. I watch our window of Wintertime slowly closing in & I fret that this year my little boy may not zip around on a little green sled, pack a snowball, sprawl out & do a snow angel, or come in from the cold with a cherry red nose. Boo hoo.

But Meatball?

He's got absolutely no clue what he's missing out on.

He'll take a 62 degree January day & run like the wind with it.

And when I say run like the wind, I mean it literally. Once this kid feels the outside air in his lungs, his feet blaze against the ground & they don't slow for a second. And man, is this kid fast. {I think he may just have some Daddyboy genes in those legs of his}. While I try my best to encourage him to stay in the grass while practicing his Buzz Lightyear blastoff skills, lo & behold, I find myself holding my breath as he goes zooming across the cement driveway time & time again. He falls, he skids, he wipes off his scratched up hands & banged up knees & gets back up & goes at it again. I shudder, I imagine broken arms, knocked out teeth, emergency room visits & ruined clothing. *Sigh* Boys will be boys.

When those little egg beater legs aren't pelting all over creation, you'll find our Meatball in the next door neighbors yard, stomping in the dirt & smashing down the mole hills. My husband is about to go into a tizzy over all those mole hills. He's dreading the day when that pesky little rodent pops through the soil on our side of the property line.  But Jett, he seems to have no problem with that mole & the trail of dirt he leaves behind.

Daddy should be less worried about what a little mole is going to do to his lawn & pay a tad more attention to the destruction that this Power Wheels toy & the crazy driver behind the wheel have the potential of creating.

He hasn't quite got the art of driving mastered just yet. He stomps the gas, but has no idea that he needs to steer as well. This usually ends up with me chasing beside him, cranking the wheel, trying to keep up & not get run over at the same time. I'm sure the neighbors get a real kick out of the pregnant chick who is squealing & hobbling alongside an almost two year old & his motorized vehicle. Fun times for all.

 Of course Monkey comes along for the ride. We strap him in safely. Wouldn't want the poor little guy to get barreled over like Momma's feet do. It hurts.

As much as I get a jolt of excitement from waking up to the beauty of a fresh fallen snow & the endless possibilities of fun that a blizzard packed snow front brings to our doorstep, there's absolutely no denying that these past few days of nice weather have been nothing short of glorious. 

You won't find me inside pouting when there's sixty degree weather outside our door & a speed demon begging at the glass to go out & play in it.

But you also aren't going to find me bidding snow, slush, & ice good-bye just yet, either.

I have a feeling Old Man Winter may have a few tricks up his sleeve yet.

Here's to hoping, anyhoo.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Off To A Great Start

It's been a fabulous 2012 thus far. All four days of it.

I am thoroughly enjoying the breath of fresh air a new year fills my lungs with. I get a roller coaster kind of thrill by looking forward & anticipating all the potential that lies before me.  And I'm especially liking this whole new 'embracing' thing I've decided to resolve to.

2012 is off to a great start, indeed.

Let me tell you about the little kick-start Twenty-Twelve got.

Friends--fabulous friends. Friends who loaded their car, packed their suitcase to the brim, & toted their sweet little ten month old baby along for a six hour roadtrip to visit us.

They rolled into town on the eve of the new year & just in time for one out-of-this-world party. I have to admit, things got pretty crazy. Maybe even slightly out of hand. So the cops were almost called--big deal. What can I say? We're one rowdy, uproarious bunch. I mean sweat pants, purple Happy New Year glitter hats, jammied babies, & the clinking of cups filled with sparkling grape juice--does it get any crazier than that?

Forget the wild & crazy days. A relaxed evening at home, surrounded by the loves of my life & super awesome friends is all the crazy this lil' momma will ever need.

Over the next couple of days, we managed to balance on the go with stay home & veg out in your pj's quite beautifully. It was a perfect balance.

 Little sweetie girl

 Jett loved having a little girl in the house. He was so sweet with her.

No friends of ours are going to visit Kansas City & not see just how fabulous of a city it actually is. We jumped on the chance to show them around to some of our personal favorite 'hot spots'. 

Crown Center:

...like a kid in a candy store.

...guess the apple didn't fall too far from the tree.


The Plaza:

 Dinner at Bucca di Beppo. Deliciousness.

Dessert at Cupcake A La Mode. Divine!

Our final evening together was concluded with bellowing laughter, birthday party planning & of course, talks of a summer visit. Once morning came, we hugged one another, swapped babies for smooching, & instead of goodbye said, "See you next time". 

What a amazingly sweet, good for the soul, kind of time we've shared with our friends over these past few days.

If the start of 2012 is any indication of how the whole entire year is going to go...

it's gonna be one really great time.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Memory Lane Monday: It's A Boy!

** This post is part of my Memory Lane Mondays Series-- a little place where Jett Jett's "in utero" stories get told **

We just did the big behind the scenes story of our journey to finding out we are having a little girl & all of that excitement swept me right back to another cloud nine kind of time in our lives. A time when we found out we'd be welcoming a warm little bundle of blue into the world.

Here's the inside edition of us finding out our hearts would be snatched up by a sweet baby boy:

A homemade card.
My favorite baby boutique.
A delicious little outfit & blankie tucked inside a perfectly packaged gift box.

Sound familiar?

Why go & mess with a good thing, right?

It may have been the same little system, but it clearly resulted in two very different outcomes!

Jared & I had slipped away from our jobs early in the afternoon to meet up for the big appointment--the appointment that had been keeping us awake all hours of the night, the appointment I had played out in my head over & over again, the appointment that I had literally counted down the minutes to.  Excited doesn't even begin to scratch the surface on the feelings we were experiencing. 

Frogs, snails & puppydog tails? 
Sugar, spice & everything nice?

This was the determining moment. A glob of jelly on my tummy & a quick swoop of an ultrasound wand & the answer was sign, sealed, delivered.

Let me just take this moment to say that our Jett Jett's feet were NOT crossed at the ankles, but rather, fully spread apart & at one point during the ultrasound, we saw two little legs sticking straight out & as clear as day, between those legs dangled a little 'something'.  I saw it. Jared saw it. Diana {the ultrasound tech.} tried to convince us it was the umbilical cord. But we knew. We just knew. 

Even though we pretty much knew in our hearts at this point that we were having a boy, we still followed in pursuit of our perfectly laid plans. After all, a scrumptious little outfit was waiting to be chosen, a card had already been sealed up in a crisp, white envelope, & dinner reservations at the Melting Pot had been made well in advance. The show had to go on.

What do you know... A BOY! {& the cutest stinkin' boy that was ever made. Just sayin'}

Finding out that a baby blue nursery, pee-pee tee-pees, cars, trucks, & trains were in our near future was absolutely the most fun we'd ever had. But you know what was even more fun?

Announcing that big news to everyone else.

Here's how we announced to our families:
I feel bad, I really do. But given the opportunity, I'd probably lie again. They {my family & Jared's} had asked again & again what date we were having our big ultrasound. They didn't know this, but there was absolutely NO way they were getting that info out of me. So after dodging, ducking & weaving away from having to answer them, I finally just flat out lied. I gave them a fake date. 

Oh, don't judge me. I had a plan. 

A really good plan, if I do say so myself...

You should've seen their faces when we walked in with those adorable little cakes. Some immediately figured out what was going on, some took a minute to figure out that we had been fibbing all along, some counted the question marks to see if there was some way of determining the answer by the number of pink & blue on the cake.

And in the end...

Everyone celebrated the little boy that would soon swoop into our lives & gobble up our hearts.

Oh how we all thank the Lord everyday for that little bundle of blue.