Tuesday, January 31, 2012

I Want to be a Boy Mom - End. Of. Story.

When I was pregnant with J, I just knew we were having a girl. Every fiber of my being was screaming girl!

When you're pregnant, whether it be for the first time or the third time, knowing every little detail becomes so important. Things that never crossed your mind before are all you think about. Or, at least, that was the case for me.

Was I carrying high or low? Could you tell from behind I was pregnant? What did my routine morning {all day} sickness mean? What did the Chinese calendar say? What did my intuition say? What did everyone else say?

At 17 weeks, the answer to all of those questions pointed straight to a girl.

But then at 18 weeks a room full of six nurses told me we'd be expecting a baby boy. I made those poor nurses stand there and stare at his little weenie just to be sure. And, well, as we all know, they were right.

I can't lie, I was disappointed. As I laid there, my tummy covered in goo, I wondered how my motherly intuition could've been so wrong. How had it failed me already?! Meanwhile, the hubs was doing a celebratory lap around the hospital {not literally, but you know}.

As women, I think it's something we have to come to terms with, being a boy mom. Most of us don't grow up thinking, oh I can't wait to be in a house full of boys! Umm, no, quite the opposite actually! We run around dreaming of finding the biggest bows and frilliest dresses for our little girls. We dream of prom, sorority rush and wedding planning.

Now that I'm 10 months into this mommy gig I can say I absolutely love being a boy mom. I'm not the first to make this proclamation, no, many of you have also come to this realization. I think its just a right of passage.

Several weeks ago, one of J's daycare teachers commented that he is "all boy." Her comment kind of caught me off guard, what exactly did she mean by that? Well, since then, I've paid close attention to J's mannerisms. And you know what I've seen? That she was spot on. My little boy is just that, all boy.

Among many, many things that are wonderful about having a boy, like not having to have the cutest matching ensemble each day, J has a certain essence about him. He exudes a sprit of adventure {hence a reason for our birthday theme}.

As I read all of your blogs chronicling recent pregnancies and new ventures into motherhood, I can't help but think about our {maybe} Baby #2.

Before meeting J and becoming a mom, I thought that we'd try for #2 and if all went right it'd be a girl. One boy, one girl. Perfect, no?

Now, when I think about our {maybe} Baby #2 I see a little boy. I see J running around showing his little brother how to fit into spaces far too tiny to crawl through, the way teasing the dogs can be endless hours of entertainment, that if you throw food the dogs will catch it, and that if you get a little dirty mom will roll her eyes and give you a big ole smile.

The days go by and the more I dream about completing our family I see Baby #2 in our future.

However, the dreams I had of sorority initiation and tea parties are fading into baseball games, boy scouts and messy excursions. And that is quite alright with me.

Monday, January 30, 2012

The Goal: Month 1

Back in December I declared this year my year. I plan to kick its butt and by the time Christmas rolls around we'll be seeing an entirely different version of me.

This transformation is something I'm working on from the inside out. From the job I have, to the company I keep, to what the scale says and most importantly how I feel about the woman looking back at me in the mirror.

As I look at my calendar, I'm in shock that in just a day we'll be thinking pink and all things Valentine's. Is it me or did January fly by? I feel like it was just yesterday that we were all making our resolutions, stepping on the scale and welcoming the new year.

Enough with the blab, blab, blab, let's get to the real reason for today's post. An update on the journey to my goal.

Good news and, well, good news.

I've been steadily losing weight over the last {almost} two months. It hasn't been drastic, but it's happening and that's what matters. Several people have stopped me to take note that I'm slimming down. These people are officially my favorites.

Although my journey began in December, I'll be updating each month of our new year. Hopefully each time with good news.

A big part of my weight loss thus far has been my workday eating habits.

Rather than venture out of the office each day for lunch {and snacks} I've stocked up on healthy choices at the office. In one of my desks, yes I have two, I had a completely empty drawer that is now full of my favorite granola bars and mini rice cakes. These two things alone have been key in my slimming down.

So, today, I thought I'd share this little list of healthy munchies. Because for me, snacking can make or break my diet.


I'm certain that at least several of you have also committed to shedding those extra pounds this year. You'll be surprised how minor changes, like new snacks, can make a noticeable impact.

Go out there and be healthy this week. Your body will thank you.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Dear Neglected Blog...

To describe how I've missed you this week might make these wonderful readers think I'm crazy.

But oh, how I've missed you!!

Two posts this week, that's all you got. I've been an awful documenter this week and well my excuse? Does a sick baby and a crazy boss sound good enough? No? Well, its all I got!

You see, blog, J has been sick for three weeks now. Yes, three. That is far too long for my tiny 10-month old baby to be sick. It started with an ear infection, then it turned into a virus, then back into an ear infection then back into a different virus.

Holy toledo my heart has been breaking for my handsome dude. But after three weeks and very little sleep my heart is now breaking for me and the hubs {and J}. Trust me dear blog, the entire family is now suffering.

On top of this I've had some craziness at work. I wish I could say it's been crazy busy, but that'd only be partially true. Mainly I've been dealing with some crazy co-workers. There are far too many details and I'd hate to bore you.

So here I am. It's Saturday, the house is a semi-mess {big thanks to the hubs for cleaning yesterday!} and J has been fussy to say the least. I just marked my entire google reader as "Read" even though 564 posts have most assuredly gone unread. Hopefully my sweet friends will forgive me and welcome me back next week.

This weekend I'm praying for health. Health for sweet Baby J and health for me. Well, really more strength and motivation for me. Yep, that sounds right.

Tomorrow, dear blog, we're going to lunch with another young, new-parent couple and I'm excited. They have great potential to be good friends. Wish us luck, blog.

Also, I have a big secret but I'm keeping it to myself for now. But I promise, blog, I will not neglect you the way I have this week.

Now, go enjoy the weekend!

Love always,

A working mama trying to conquer the world one sick baby, crazy co-worker and messy house at a time

Happy Saturday, Friends. Miss you all! Hope your week was filled with happiness. I'll be back on Monday for our regularly scheduled week of craziness. 

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Southern Women: The Role Model

Hurdles are being flung at me one after another this week and it's only Tuesday. On weeks like this, I often have to remind myself exactly why I strive so persistently towards {my version} of perfection.

Simply put, it's a Southern thing.

Like most Southern women, I come from a line of dominant ladies who orchestrate not only their family's lives but also a career, a household and philanthropic obligations. It's no easy thing being a Southern woman, which is why I tend to believe we're always glowing.

There are two {southern} women who have inspired me from day one. 

My grandmother, lovingly known as Lady, and her twin sister, Billie.

Several years ago, we lost Billie rather suddenly. 

She was one of the most unique women I've had the privilege to know, even more, claim that I am related to. This time last year, we {her family}, along with many others celebrated her contributions to the game of golf as she was inducted into the Georgia Golf Hall of Fame along side some of the greatest golfers of all time. 

Billie wasn't a professional golfer. Nope, she chose to remain an amateur because, for her, it wasn't about the money. It was most sincerely about the game.

In my lifetime, I'll considered the terms "Billie" and "golf" synonyms. She diligently spent her life making it possible for women of all economic backgrounds and races to get their turn on the green. She did this all while being the first woman to earn a doctorate degree from the University of Georgia and teaching for her alma mater for many, many years.

Now her memory will live on in the Georgia Golf Hall of Fame.

How can one not be motivated to make the most of their lives with role models like that?

As I face a tough personal decision, I think of her strength, her perseverance and am inspired.

That's the thing about Southern women, we're steadfast in every sense of the word. Being a Southern woman is something I consider a blessing. It has given me the influence of grace and faith which keep fighting the good fight.

"To be born a Southern woman is to be made aware of your distinctiveness. And with it, the rules. The expectations. These vary some, but all follow the same basic template, which is, fundamentally, no matter what the circumstance, Southern women make the effort." Garden & Gun

Monday, January 23, 2012

It's Party Time: Theme Reveal!

This post had previously been scheduled for tomorrow. I thought announcing J's first birthday theme on his 10-month birthday would be quite fitting. That is, until I got to daycare this morning and realized today is the 23rd not tomorrow! Holy cow, my baby is 10-months old today

So, without further babbling...



A tale of true love and the spirit of adventure

Yes, I think that sums up the year we've had perfectly.

photos via
My little baby, who's not so little anymore, will be turning one on March 23. Two months from today.

I had several themes in mind. Some that I even wrote about when J was still a little newborn. But once Up was added to the mix,  it quickly became an unrivaled choice for his first birthday theme. So, in preparations, we re-watched the movie for a little inspiration and a party-planning kickoff.

I love this movie. A love-story told in just seven minutes. Simply put, it's beautiful. You can't watch this movie without feeling true love tug at your heartstrings. And my friends, that's exactly what this year has been. One huge tug-of-war between true love and my heartstrings. It's been the greatest journey I've ever been blessed to travel.


Prepare yourselves, this mama is officially in party-planning mode. And I have a feeling I'll need your help along the way. Ideas for printables, banners, treats, gifts, whatever you loved most about your parties are all welcome!

Let's get planning lovely readers!

Friday, January 20, 2012

My Pregnancy Secret

Did you jump over here thinking you were about to stumble on yet another blogger pregnancy announcement?!

Well then, I gotcha!

No pregnancy to announce here {at least I hope not}, but with my Twitter feed being filled with morning sickness woes, I thought it was time I shared my pregnancy survival tip.

You see, this little blog never chronicled my pregnancy, in fact I didn't start this blog until J was two months old.

Why? Because the nine months prior to that I spent all my time with the toilet. Yes, from the day I found out we were preggo to the day we watched J breathe his first breath I was getting to be BFFs with morning {all day} sickness!

I wish severe morning sickness like that on non one! Ok fine I could maybe think of a couple people, but we'll stick with no one.

Like most pregnant women, I jumped on the Zofran train. But it was like popping a gummy bear. Nothing happened. It may have calmed the storm in my stomach for an hour or two, but that was on a good day. My OB continued to suggest Phenergran but that stuff knocks me out. Not sure how the family I was working as a Nanny for would feel about me needing more naptimes than their little dude. So, that was out of the question.

I was left with one thing. Hope.

Hope that by the time my second trimester came around the sickness would start to fade. Well folks, half-way into my second trimester I was still seeing just how good of friends me and every public bathroom could become. And you know how much fun that is. Yay for public bathrooms! ::insert sarcastic face here::

So, I bit the bullet, faced my fears and headed to see the acupuncturist my Dad had been suggesting.

Yep, that's it.

Acupuncture.

All you needle-phobes are about to click out of my blog, but wait!

It's not nearly what you imagine. In fact, it wasn't bad or scary at all. I'm a major needle-phobe. Like whoa. They terrify me something fierce...for the record anything medical terrifies me.

But I laid there, my eyes tightly shut praying not to die out of shock that 15 tiny needles had just been stuck into various places on my body. I quickly realized the worst part isn't the needles, it's laying there for 20 minutes being still!

I went back for acupuncture treatments several times. And while my nausea never completely went away {like I said, severe morning sickness}, after three visits I no longer needed to run to a toilet any time someone decided they wanted to eat lunch or wear perfume.

Really and truly acupuncture was my Godsend during pregnancy. And I can say with all certainty that I will begin treatments much earlier the next time around.

If you're thinking of having acupuncture treatments done or are curious about this method in regards to pregnancy please feel free to ask! I'd be glad to talk with you.

Happy Friday, everyone!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Perfected Poppyseed Chicken

As a Freshman at the University of Alabama, I pledged a sorority. One of the major perks? Having home cooked meals even though you're 8 hours from home.

Miss Lily was our chef. And my goodness, could she cook.

I practically sprinted to the house each time she was to make her poppyseed chicken. When I left Alabama I had to find something to satisfy my poppyseed craving. So, I started flipping through my cookbooks. And thanks to an old church cookbook, I found this recipe and over the past few years I've perfected the proportions.

Here she is in all her glory -- Poppyseed Chicken Casserole


Nom, y'all.

Nom. Nom. Nom.

Ingredients:
16 oz sour cream
1 can cream of chicken (healthy request - lower salt content)
1 pound chicken breasts
1-2 rolls of Ritz crackers
1 tbls butter
poppyseeds

Directions:

1. Bake the chicken {whatever your preferred method may be}
2. While chicken is baking mix together 3/4ths of your jar of sour cream. Yes, just 3/4ths of it. Trust me. Now add the entire can of cream of chicken.
3. Crunch 1/2 roll of crackers and add to mixture.
4. Once chicken is done cooking shred it, slice it, dice it, whatever you like. Then add it to your sour cream mixture.
5. Once that goodness is stirred together, douse it with poppies. I typically do one good layer of them {see below}


6. Stir together and place in your casserole dish.
7. Crush remaining crackers and sprinkle on top of casserole. Finish it off with a few pats of butter.
8. Bake at 325 for 20 minutes and enjoy!


This is a must try meal. It's quick, comforting and so scrumptious. What more could you want?

Happy cooking, ladies.

**linking up with How To Mommy, The Sasse LifeMake Ahead Meals for Busy Moms**

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Baby Blues

Just 9 months and 3 weeks ago I was lost in these baby blues.


These days I'm staring into something much different.


More like baby greens.

Just like his Dad.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Green Envy: Not My Best Color

As I sat at a stoplight Saturday night, I whipped out my phone for a quick look at my Facebook feed. Gah, yes, I said it. I looked at my phone while in the car. Get over it. Please. And to my dismay one of our friends from TN had posted "It's official, we're having another baby! Baby #2 will be here early September!"

I almost vomited right there in the car.

I was not happy for her at all.

I was too jealous to be happy for her.

You see all those I's? Yeah. How vain is that?

You see, this girl, graduated after me, her hubs worked with mine in TN and well she gets to stay home. I have no idea how they are able to do it financially {and yes, it's none of my business} but it makes me jealous. I half want to ask them just to get some budgeting tips. But that would be rude.

Also, their son is three months younger than J. So if we're doing the math, their son is only 7 months old and she is pregnant, due in September. That's a 15 month gap in birthdays. Am I the only one who thinks that's a little nutty? I could never do that! I'm still dealing with so many postpartum complications I couldn't face morning sickness. End. of. story.

Really though, that moment created such a realization for me. It made me realize how badly I want to have more time with J and even our {maybe} Baby #2. I so strongly wish that I could be home with J and our {maybe} Baby #2. And my current 5-year plan had put these goals on hold until B could support us both.

But why not find my own way to still supplement my income and stay home. Why should it be up to the hubs? He works hard and I have no doubt one day he'll get there. But what's the harm in doing it myself?

Let's just say my weekend was inspiration filled thanks to her baby post and several other things that we can talk about another time. I guess I almost owe this friend a thanks for this slap in the face, oh and a congratulations on baby 2.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Nursery Tour

Do you remember way back when we bought our house {in September}, I promised to show you around?

Well, I have failed to uphold that promise. Can you forgive me?

From here on out I'll be sharing our little abode with you one project at a time. Now be prepared, most projects in our house are works in progress. With only three days a week to play Tim the tool-man Taylor, it's tough getting everything done! I'm sure y'all understand.

Now onto the good stuff!

What better room to start with than J's nursery?!


There's just one catch though, this isn't his current nursery.

Nope, this is his first nursery. It holds a special place in my heart.

The entire wall of bookshelves is by far my favorite feature. It was perfect for the millions picture frames and books we quickly stocked up on. Although, it has made it quite a chore to transition into his new nursery!

Our theme for his room -- elephants {obviously}.

When finding out we were having boy, I had a major debate as to the theme for his room. Then things just fell into place after discovering his bedding. And my MIL? Well, she has made sure J now owns any elephant she's come across over the last year.


changing table: Graco Lauren laundry basket: Koala Baby Hamper 



Of course no nursery is complete without a changing station. Oh, and that laundry hamper? Is ah-mazing! It has a removable netting liner for those super dirty baby clothes.

I found a mixture of baskets from Wal-Mart and Target to store all of J's blankets and clothes. You see all those shelves? Yeah, they were our substitute for a dresser. I loved it. More floor space for this new momma to run around in. 

Well, there you have it, the room where we brought J home. 


**I'm sure you noticed this is not Fun with our phones Monday...I will no longer be co-hosting that link-up, but please jump over to Savanah's blog to link up your photos!**


***linking up with A bowl full of lemons***

Friday, January 13, 2012

Tid-Bits About J

Every month, moms declare, "it's my favorite!".

Let's get real though, not every month is great. At least not around here. Month six? Horrible. Bleh, absolutely dreadful! Month 7? Better but still pretty bumpy. Month 8? It was kind of fabulous. And so it turns out, month 9/10 is going to be one of my top picks of our first year.

J's personality is developing at a rapid pace. His tendancies are so adaorbale right now that they're deserving of their own post.

Here goes:

1. For starters, he's a flirt. Any girl, teen, woman he comes in contact with is greeted with a big open-mouth smile. And typically a cute little gasp/squeel. It's a classic J noise.

2. Any time someone picks him up he attempts to bend backwards. He loves being upside down. It is far more entertaining than anything else.

3. Actually, the only thing more entertaining than being upside down is sitting on Daddy's shoulders.

4. If we're in the car you can count on hearing a plethora of crazy mouth-made noises. You know, like farting noises only they're coming from his mouth. Yeah, such a boy.

5. Speaking of noises in the car, he always "talks" while we drive. And this kid is a professional babbler.

6. J's voice is my favorite thing. I can't wait for more words. If my suspicions are right, he'll be the top student in his Spanish class. Are you thinking, wtf? Well, ever since we began daycare he had some awful congestion causing him to gurgle when he first began to babble. And now that the congestion is gone? The kid still sits in the back sit rolling his r's and sounding like a foreign little man. Love this quality, it's so uniquely J.

7. Aside from being obsessed with his actual dogs, he is in love with the Scout we got for Christmas. Scout is his official crib toy and has helped Mom and Dad catch a few more zzz's while J stays entertained with him in the mornings. Win.

8. Late night silliness. A couple weeks ago, I whispered into J's ear that I loved him. Something I do every night as we finish his bottle and rocking in our chair. What did he do? Giggled. So I whispered again, and more giggles. B walked in, looked at us giggling, and said "what's going on in here?!" HA! Loved that moment this month.

9. J is already a social butterfly. He loves to be out, no matter where that may be. The store, lunch, a family members house, whatever. He soaks it up and talks to everyone!

10. That big open-mouth smile. {see #1} It never fails that when me or B walk into a room, he lights up with that big smile and typically a gasp/squeal. Makes my heart happy and reminds me how blessed we are for our little miracle.

Month 9, thanks for being pretty good to us. {minus more ear infections!}

Thoughts on a Friday

I could dance around screaming T-G-I-F right now I'm so excited for this weekend!

Not only do we have a few things planned{we'll discuss in a moment} but this week at work has blown big time. So, yay for a little breather from the madness!

Our weekend plans?

Oh, you know, just taking my first ever photography class! Squeeee!

I am beyond excited. Erin over at Blue Eyed Bride metioned taking a class from a local photographer a few months back. What a genius idea! Photographers teaching others the art of getting out of auto. I love using manual with my new lens, but I could certainly use some pointers. So I tracked down the class she took, but that photographer had cancelled anymore classes. Her friend, however, was planning just one more!! It was fate, people.

So, tomorrow morning I'll put on my birg girl pants, get past my nerves and head to the photography class. I'm hoping I don't a.) embarass myself or b.) embarass myself. Yep, that's about it. I can't wait to share what I learn with y'all!

Then, if that's not enough photography in our lives for one weekend, we're having J's 9-month photos done on Sunday.

Confession: He is only one week away from being 10 months old.

I guess that's what happens when your actual 9-month birthday is 2 days before Christmas. Awful, awful timing. Sorry, dude, hope you forgive mommy.

Here's where you lovely readers come in...I need your opinions.

Since he's almost 10 months old should we just dress for winter rather than the more Christmasy outfit I had planned {reminder: his official 9-month b-day Dec. 23}?? Or just get over the fact that we don't really have 9-month photos and embrace that he's a totally different munchkin than he was 3 weeks ago. Because, for real, he looks so different now than in his Christmas photos! His hair has gotten so long this month. {I love it!}

There it is, my photography filled weekend ahead. I am pretty damn excited about it.

Happy Friday ladies!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

The Way it Went on Wednesday

I left for work filled with optimism only to be shot down like a paparazzi chopper in the no-fly zone at Kim Kardashian's wedding.

Without going into too many details, our office manager {also my best friend's mom} has acted in unreasonable and unprofessional ways over the last week. She's been gone from work for over a month due to a rather major surgery and she has now returned in a complete frenzy.

By lunch she was badgering me about leaving for my break. What she doesn't know {since she's been gone} is that I haven't left for lunch in forever. I eat at work. Saves on gas and money.

But due to hearing her rip one of my coworkers a new one for the most insanely ridiculous reasons I was about to lose it. So, I grabbed my purse and sprinted for the door.

I was shaking.

I wasn't even hungry. I didn't have any errands to run. Nada. Nothing.

So I thought I'd go see J. But when I pulled up to his daycare, the light in their room was off. That means most of the babes are asleep. I couldn't bring myself to go in to disrupt them.

But just two doors down was the entrance to the church. You know, the church which hosts his daycare; the church I grew up in as a member. After Tuesday's post and all of your comments and emails I had church on the brain for sure.

I walked up to the door and asked the secretary if the sanctuary was open. It wasn't. But she told me the chapel was. Oh, the chapel. My heart felt lifted when she said that. She began to show me the way but I told her I knew where it was.

I went into what was our children's chapel when I was little. I slid into a pew and knelt.

Then, I prayed and cried.

That was just all I had in me. The intense work environment I've had the last week has made me feel, well, weak. All of this on top of everyday trials of life is proving to be too much.

After I couldn't pray anymore. I sat back and looked around the chapel. And? It's the exact same it was over 8 years ago. There was just one different thing, a plaque above the piano. This plaque dedicated that chapel the the minister whom I grew up with at church. It was such a sign to me. On the way to the church/daycare I was thinking about that minister and what a great man he is. I know that's off topic but it made my heart smile to see that plaque.

I then went back to work still feeling shaky and a bit off.

An hour later daycare called saying J's ear was draining blood. Crap.

We have just finished up antibiotics from a double ear infection which began new year's eve. Can this poor kid not catch a break? To be honest, he was doomed, me and the hubs both had awful, ongoing ear infections as infants.

So, I called the pediatrician, ran out the door at work. Oh and I should mention when I told the office manager something was wrong with J and I had to run she got a bit snoody asking if I was leaving in the middle of something! Um, hello, how about "how's your baby, is everything ok?" Gah!! Moving on.

J is such a good flirt sport. He hammed it up at the doctor's office. He patiently waited his turn to be seen as he chased around the cutest 3-year-old girl and smiled at all the nurses. We are in for it with this one. Such a ladies man, already!

We went home and had to CIO because he was thrown so far off schedule. Sorry dude, you needed to go to the doctor! But after a good nap he was back to his smilin' self.

My day couldn't end without a trip to the grocery though. You know, because apparently I forgot half of the stuff we needed during my weekend trip. As I snagged a spot in self check-out I had everything bagged and ready as I reached for my wallet only to {just then} remember I moved my wallet to the diaper bag. Fail!

I was a bit mortified. This has actually never happened to me. I looked at the guy manning the self-checkout area and begged for him to hold my gallon of milk, cheese and cereal. When I returned 10 minutes later {thank God we live so close to the grocery} he kindly had my stuff waiting! If only he knew how much that little gesture of kindness meant to me yesterday.

Whew. It was a long day.

Are you still with me? Really? I'm glad.

I began this post flustered and tense, but I'm feeling like at least a little of this weight has been lifted. Thanks for listening ladies.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Found in Faith, Lost in Church

This month J turns 10 months old. I honestly can't believe it. The last ten months have flown by like a quick spring breeze. And just like that I realize I've put off my baby's baptism for almost ten months.

And this, sadly, makes my heart hurt. It's not that we don't have the time, no it's much deeper than that.

My husband and I both grew up in church. However, our church denominations are quite different.

B was very involved with his church. I went every Sunday, attended Sunday school but wasn't involved. He found his faith within the community of his church. I found mine at my summer camp, eventually the place we'd get married.

We both lost our faith as young adults - each for different reasons.

After losing my relationship with God, for what was a very dark time in my life, I found prayer and a new, stronger sense of faith about six months before finding out about Baby J. And now my relationship with God is at its greatest point, ever.

So, why hasn't J been baptized?

While my relationship and faith with God are great, our bond to a church is not.

Like I said, me and the hubs grew up in very different churches. This was never an issue before J or living in South Carolina because honestly {as bad as it sounds} we didn't have time for Church. B always worked Sundays, Wednesday, any time church might be held he worked. Or I worked. Or had class. Whatever the excuse, they were abundant.

B's church does not baptize children. My church does.

This was the initial reason we didn't baptize J. And then? After months of debate and explantaion the hubs graciously agreed to the baptism.

An even bigger issue, where to get him baptized. My mom's church which I like {not love} was the obvious choice. But they are asking us to become members to have J baptized there. And that's just something I'm not sure I'm ready to commit to.

Our views on church differ immensely, but we both easily agree that being raised in church helped shape who we are and that's something we certainly want for J.

I would love for the three of us to go to church together each week {every other week, whenever really}. But, B's place with God is different than mine and I respect that. However, it's time for us to get to church.

Now the question becomes, where?

I want to have J baptized before his first birthday and this may prove to be an obstacle if I can't choose a church for us. 

Do I find a church where J and I will be happy? Perhaps the church where he goes to daycare? It is the church I grew up in. My mom's church? The Pastor there is very kind. Or do we start looking around? I don't even know where I'd begin. Perhaps, my Grandmother's church. It has the most mixture between our denominations. Do I agree to become members at my mom's church so that we can have J baptized and then continue looking for the right church for us?

I'm stuck. All I know is I want my baby baptized in the next 70 some odd days. And that time, my friends, will go by very quickly.

Opinions, thoughts, experiences, etc. on baptism or joining different religious preferences once married with kiddos are very much welcomed below.

#14

Alabama broke several records last night. Just in case you missed it...

via
The Tide Nation can now claim 14 BCS National Championships.

The youngest quarter back to win a BCS National Championship.

The only coach to win three BCS National Champtionships.

The first team to finish with a shutout in the BCS National Championship.

I've said it before, but really and truly my heart changed the day I stepped foot on the University of Alabama campus. And to this day nothing makes me more proud than watching our team uphold the tradition and legacy that is Alabama Football.

There's nothing like being able to end a game with a good Rammer Jammer!



If you'd like to see a dear friend's blog and hear what she really thinks of me hop over to her blog and check it out! 

ps - to my Twitter friends who could care less about Alabama football I hope my twitter feed last night didn't drive you too crazy :)

Monday, January 9, 2012

Fun With Our Phones Monday

You know the drill, post your phone photos, grab our button, and link up with me and Savannah!


Alright, I've got good news and I've got lame news.

The good news is, J spent Saturday night with his Sulli {grandmother}. Which means B and I got to sleep. And oh-em-gee did we sleep. It was wonderful. Aside from a minor panic attack just before bed I did good without my little man at home.

My lame news?

I don't have phone photos for today. Yes, I got to catch up on sleep, but last night we dealt with a screaming, teething baby. So, you can blame tooth #4 for the lack of today's photos.

I do however have another photo to share from the weekend.


Happy Monday people, here's to hoping it goes quickly.


Friday, January 6, 2012

Denying Milestones

Throughout the last 9 months we've "ooed and ahhed" over all of J's milestones, whether they're major or minor. But a couple weeks ago {I don't know the date, possibly a major mom fail} we hit a milestone that I'm still refusing to accept.

J woke up from his nap giggling. Those are always the best naps, don't ya think? So, I prepped his bottle and went in ready for smiles and hugs. But I walked in to something much different....

As I opened the door, J smiled his big open-mouth smile and out of no where I heard two little sounds...

"Ma MA"

Yes, said just like that. The second ma was more pronounced. Like he got excited about saying the word.

I stood there frozen. In shock -- complete shock.

Can a 9 month old really say his first word? Was he really correlating that word with me?

I hadn't encouraged him to say mama or dada, at all. And I didn't even realize that we hadn't been encouraging this until he blurted it out. So, I thought it must be the craziest coincidence ever.

That was three weeks ago.

Since then, J has repeated this endearing mama three other times. Three! I've melted into a mommy puddle every time he said that sweet, sweet word.

Mom's I need you to help me out here...can I count this as his first word or was it a fluke?

And just for good measure, one of my favorite photos.

{photo from J's 6-month session}





Thursday, January 5, 2012

A Smorgasbord, If You Will

With so many thoughts scurrying around my mind already this week, I feel as if I can't form a complete post. So, you'll be getting bits of would-be posts today. Sound good? Good.

Can we start with a weight date?

All in all, up to day 5, I'm doing good this new year. As you all know, I began my weight-loss journey Dec. 10, 2011 with a challenge to lose 60 pounds by the following Dec 10. Christmas certianly didn't help, but the stomach virus I had did. I wish I was kidding.

As it stands, I've done well using My Fitness Pal to log calories. {if you're on there come find me! my user name is magnoliamom365}. With the start of the new year I decided to begin my workout plan all over again. So here I am on day 5, it's a break day. Who knew that jumping jacks were hard. Um, yeah, a body that still has the sickies and hasn't had any good cardio in forevah, that's who! Thank you break day, my stomach forgot it had muscles.

Next up on our plate of smorgasbord details {I just love that word}....it's January. You're thinking, duh, Erin! What I'm getting at here is that it's Januray and in 77 days my baby becomes a 1-year-old.

::sigh::

On top of the typical mommy emotions that come along with your baby growing up, I'm a nitpicky planner and an extremely indecisive person. This is already proving to be a challenge for birthday #1. But all that? Yeah, that's a post {and possibly a poll} for another day.

Next on my list of random thoughts...I've been thinking of switching to Wordpress. And I'm looking for your thoughts, advice, tips, favorite designers. How did you make the switch? Was it easy? And so on and so on.

I've used WordPress before and liked it, but I've just become so used to Blogger I'm getting nervous to make the switch. Will you PLEASE comment below if you have any experience in switching from one to the other or if you have any thoughts on this topic at all! Peas and thank you.

There it is, my thoughts on a bloggy platter. Happy Thursday, friends, hope the new year is treating you well.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Candy Cane Kiss Brownie Bites

I know I did my Christmas wrap-up yesterday and you were all thinking FINALLY! No more Christmas! But, I've got one last thing to share with you.

I mean really, Christmas couldn't come to an end without a seasonal treat now could, it? No, no, it couldn't. Besides, I needed something simple and scrumptious as a holiday treat for J's teachers, co-workers and for a little family get-together.

After wracking my brain and countless hours on Pinterest, the perfect combination hit me. 

Hershey Candy Cane Kisses and brownies. 

I found a Reese's brownie bite recipe a while back, but that's not very festive, right? But get one of those tiny pieces of heaven known as candy cane kisses and your  life will forever be changed. 

It's no secret I'm a chocolate lover. If you didn't know that, you do now and {please} never forget it. 

So, that was it, simple and scrumptious. There was just one problem. Finding those tiny bits of magnificence proved to be near to impossible. After multiple trips to Wal-Mart and several other stores I finally found 2 bags of candy cane kisses! 


I kid you not, these little brownie bites are so good J's daycare called me at work to get the recipe before the holidays began and they didn't see me again! Who knew they were basically chocolate gold?! I may be considering buying some in bulk to tide me over until next season. 

Now, before you run out to find the left over bags of candy cane kisses, let's see what else this recipe entails. 

Oh, wait. That's about it. 

A bag of kisses and a box of brownies. Simple as that.



Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. 

2. Line mini muffin pans with cupcake liners or spray {very} well with cooking oil.

3. Mix the brownies as directed on the box. Pour into cupcake pan.

4. Bake for 14 minutes {ovens will vary}

5. Place a kiss on each brownie. Give them a moment then push them down into a puddle or leave them standing if you prefer.



Voila. That's it folks! This is worth breaking your new years resolutions. I promise I won't tell. You can thank me by leaving sweet comments below.

*linking up with The Sasse Life, A Bowl Full of Lemons, The How To Mommy, Crazy For Crust,Uncommon Designs Online*

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Gone in a Flash aka Christmas 2011

Did I say gone in a flash? Yeah, right. More like "never thought it'd end."

Don't get me wrong our first Christmas turned out pretty good. But, as we finished round 3 of Christmas this morning when the in-laws finally went back to TN I could have jumped with joy.  

I've shown you our Santa stash, our christmas wreath and even a recipe perfect for sharing with the family. So that should be it, right? Wrong. I have photos galore that you need to see. Yes, need to. 


You see those stockings, I made them! AH! I really did! Along with the help of my Grandmother, I got this ready for us just in time for the big day. I was inspired by some stockings I found on Etsy. Yeah, they were going to cost me $80, these cost $30 plus an afternoon with my Grandmother. I'd say these were a major win!

And then there are some of the little details of Christmas...


But hands down the best part of this Christmas was taking a step back and enjoying my little family. I am so blessed to have a loving husband and a little dude who is the light of our lives. 



I can't wait for next Christmas when he is running around as an almost 2-year-old. For now, though, I am so glad all the Christmas stuff is in the attic!

Monday, January 2, 2012

Fun With Our Phones Monday

Happy New Year wonderful readers!!

Our new year's eve was rather uneventful. I can say that the hubs and I both made it to midnight though. So that's something, right?

Before I get off on a rant, don't forget to post your phone photos, grab our button, and link-up with me and Savannah!


Now, where was I? Oh yes, new year's eve.

Most of you areprpbably off work today. Not me. I have packed up, left the babe with his grandmother and am unhappily sitting at work.

After two weeks of a broken office chair, I finally got my new one!!


Also new to my year is coffee. I hate coffee. Or should I say hated. And now that motherhood, marriage and work are taking over my life, I've decided it's time I learn to love it. So, since I only survived Christmas this year thanks to coffee it may stick around for a while.

To help me out with my new friendship...


Now I'll let you lovely readers in on a secret...

The boss man let us go home early! So, I'm off to hang out with the hubs, or perhaps take a nap.