Thursday, September 30, 2010

Only a year?

Can someone tell me how it takes only one year to go from this....

to this?

Slow down baby girl.

One year.

Well, the day has finally arrived. One moment I feel like running around shouting for joy that we've made it to this point, the next I feel like crying when I think of how quickly it took to get here.

One year.

I keep thinking that maybe if I ignore it, then it wouldn't be official yet. I could still walk around saying I have a baby and not a one year old. To say I haven't been trying to push it to the back of my mind all week would be lying.

I'll never forget how scared I was walking into the OR or in the moments before they pulled you out, thinking how my life would never again be the same. I'll never forget the first time I laid eyes on you and cried. I looked you at you for the first time, but yet, I had known you my entire life. I'll never forget when I first held you and the surge of peace that settled over me.

It's truly been a year of it's ups and downs, but one I wouldn't trade for the world.

My heart breaks now thinking that I can no longer hold you in my arms like a baby anymore. Those days slipped through my hands so quickly. Everyone told me to soak them in while I could, but I didn't, and now they seem to be a distant memory. What I would do to cradle you in my arms again for one more day.

It's been a year of exciting moments, frustration, lots of crying (for both of us), lessons learned, lots of laughs and smiles.

That smile. It melts my heart every time.

You have such a big personality in that little body. I pray everyday that I can nurture it in the right direction.

I wanted to write a more meaningful post, but every time I sit to write, all I can do is look at your pictures and cry. This year has flown by.

So, all I can say is Happy Birthday Baby Girl! I love you more than you'll ever know and as Taylor Swift says...."You are the best thing that's ever been mine."

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Mid-Week Randomness

~OK's 12 month molars are finally breaking through and David has work functions the next three nights, so I'm going to have to go through this torture alone. It's going to be a long day...ugh! : (

~I have an apology...I've become really bad about commenting on other's blogs. I pretty much just check my Google Reader on my phone now and I haven't found a easy way to comment through it, so I just read them. Any seasoned blogger knows that if you want comments, you gotta leave comments. I love getting comments and I know how they brighten my day, so I need to start doing better to brighten others.

~Fall is finally here and I'm loving it!!! I turned off the air and have had the windows open the past three days!

~I've been complaining for the last month that I have no fall decor and how I need to start buying some, but every year by the time it goes on sale, I'm ready for Christmas and pass by the fall decor sales. Evidently, I shopped them one year because I found a box of fall decor in the attic. It's not much (definitely not a post worth), but it's a beginning.

~Y'all are going to be so proud....we've become addicted to a mainstream television show!!! When I say a mainstream television show, I'm talking about something not on PBS or TLC. We become Glee fans towards the end of the first season and now we've become addicted. Don't be surprised if I just start bursting out in song and dance in everyday life.

~Speaking of which....did you see the Sister Wives on TLC Sunday? Oh, you know I watched it and I have to say I loved it! It was so interesting. You gotta watch it.

~The paint-the-ginormous-living-room project is completed and I'm officially sick of painting. For now.

~Our neighbors are moving for a job transfer and their house is for sale. I really want someone I know (and like/get along with) to move next door. Preferable someone with small children (or one of Olivia's grandparents) who can grow up with my kids (or send her over on days like today). No I don't have any specific family in mind (besides grandparents), I'll be taking applications if anyone is interested.

~Just because....

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Hesitations & Letting Go

Part of the reason I was missing last week was because I finally decided to look for a Mom's Day Out program that Olivia could attend a couple days a week. Let's just say that I wasn't as excited about it as I originally thought I would be.

I could only find one place in our immediate area that would take younger kids and I've heard nothing but great things about this church's children program, but when I called, I was given the sad news that Olivia was too young to attend their program this year. So, I did what everyone does now a days and asked for help on my facebook status. I got several suggestions and decided to call the one's that would work best for us and then set out to visit the places.

On Tuesday, I made my first visit and I can only say that when I got back in the car from the visit, I was filled with hesitation. I'll even be more honest....I got in the car and cried. Why? I guess it was just the fact that my baby was growing up and I had to picture my baby walking down the hall of a preschool carrying her lunch box (which they said she was expected to do). How had we come to this point so fast? Where had this year gone? Was she ready? Was I even ready? Of course, I did what every other woman would do, I called my mom, my mother-in-law, and my best friend for their opinions. I couldn't figure out what was causing such the hesitation. I'm usually one of those who will willingly hand off my child to any responsible adult who wants her (within reason of course). I told them all the rest of the details that would happen during her school day there and there was one factor that bothered all of us....since she is a good walker, they expected me to drop her off in the carpool lane and have a teacher walk her to her class. I just kinda stared at the director in disbelieve when she said this to me. I was so stunned that I couldn't respond. I just told her we would see her next week and walked out.

But, I knew that wasn't going to fly with me and that I wouldn't be okay with that anytime soon. I mean...she is only 12 months old. Being that I spent years working in daycare, I understood why that was more convenient for them and even though the director said something about teaching her age kids to be more independent...I'm not ready for my baby to be THAT independent yet. I can deal with her carrying her own lunch box, I'm not ready to deal with dropping her off at the door. I then spent the next 24 hours going back and forth with deciding that maybe this is the norm that I hadn't yet been exposed to or whether I just wasn't as ready to send her like I thought I was. I'll be completely honest, I went back and forth for awhile. Then my MIL reminded me I had nothing to compare this place to, so go and check out the next place on my list and then see where I stood. If I was still hesitant, then I just wasn't ready for her to go.

So, on Wednesday I headed out to see the next church on our list. My hesitations had vanished by the time I walked out of there. The teacher of her class was super nice and it wasn't just one of those things that she was being nice because she had to (which was the impression I got from the last place). She explained everything to me, answered all my questions, and we even talked about other interest we shared. She even did all this while taking care of the other kids. She just put me at ease about the whole thing and I walked out knowing that I had no hesitations leaving my child with her. I walked out knowing that this place was going to work for us. The class size was a little smaller and I didn't have to worry about her carrying her lunch box down the hall just yet since her class eats in their classroom. The clincher for me though was when I asked the director how they handled the drop off/pick up. I told her that we had visited another program and they wanted me to drop her off in the carpool lane, she looked at me like I had just told her to jump off a cliff. Then she said to me "honey, for my own sake as a mother, I wouldn't feel comfortable dropping my baby off at the door." I told her we would see her next week and this time I meant it.

(First day of Mom's Day Out, with her lunch box Aunt Nic got her for her birthday)

So yesterday morning, I took my baby into her first day of Mom's Day Out. Believe it or not, for how much I cried about it last week (Nicole can vouch that she had to talk me down off the ledge several times last week), I didn't shed a single tear. David was off, so it was kinda special that we got to experience her first day of "school" together. We spent the morning have a day date and did exactly what we usually do on our dates, we went to the book store and a movie (Easy A~it was hilarious!). We went and picked her up a little early and it was a good thing because she was quickly losing it by the time we got there. They said other than the last ten minutes, she did great, played the entire time, and ate all her lunch. I must say that it was nice to get a little break and I'm looking forward to some time by myself. I think this Mom's Day Out thing is going to work for us after all.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Our Little Monster turned 1!!!!

The past week has been CrAzY!!! I have some other stuff to share about it over the next few days, but I thought I would start with the major highlight of the week....Olivia Kate's 1st Birthday!!!!

I've debated on how to go about posting it. Nicole was in charge of taking pictures and she came through with taking over 170!!! I promise I won't post all. So far I've narrowed it down to around 40, but that still makes for a long post. Plus, I feel like some words are needed to be said, so that would make for a really long post. I'm going to post the "words" part tonight and you'll have to come back for the pictures tomorrow.

So.....I started debating a few months ago on what exactly I wanted to do for her birthday. I pretty much have had the theme set in stone since May, but I debated on how big we wanted to go. I was afraid of hurting peoples feelings for not inviting them, but when it came down to it, small was the way to go for us. For the record...I have nothing against big birthday parties...if they are your cup of tea, go for it...I personally, do not enjoy them (especially when we're talking about kids parties). It was quickly realized at just a couple of months of age, that Olivia Kate shared her momma's dislike for big parties. I've on several occasions mentioned that she does not do well in large crowds, especially large crowds where she is the center of attention. So, after adding up first the number of family members coming, we decided to invite only family, the Pope's, and the Benefields. We kept the guest list pretty much to people she see's on a daily or weekly basis, that way she wouldn't be so freaked out.

It worked perfectly!!! She was in the best mood she could have been for the entire party. It helped that her everyday playmates Josie, Matalie, and Baby V were there. The girls played together the entire time and it kept her distracted from all the people who were there to see her. I'm serious...we were all pretty concerned about it. She only had one little meltdown when we started eating dinner, but after we set Matalie next to her to eat too, she was okay. Other than that, she was in a great mood until later that night (more on that later).

Since we were having family (and due to David's schedule), I decided to provide dinner for everyone. I somehow got the idea I wanted to do tacos, but after thinking about it (and getting about 5 different opinions), I decided to go with spaghetti. It's also one of Olivia Kate's favorite meals, so it seemed fitting. I've learned whenever throwing a bigger event like that, it's always best to do as much as possible the night before. I did pretty much everything but ice the cupcakes and cook the noodles the night before, so the actual day of the party went stress free.

I would love to say that all the decor ideas were my own original ones, but that was not of course the case. Back in May, I came across this post about a cute monster party and I knew instantly that was perfect for Olivia. She always has this opened mouth smile that reminded me of the smiles on the monster's faces. I sent a link to Nicole asking if she thought people would think I was crazy for doing a monster party for a little girl and she told me that it was too Olivia to not do. I cannot tell you though how many people looked at me like I had lost it when I said it was a monster party. I'm so glad I went with it because it was so cute. I basically just did everything that came from the original post. I just didn't go all out because we were having a small party.

Olivia was blessed with plenty of gifts. I honestly was worried that she was going to get a ton of toys, but she actually got more clothes than anything. It worked out perfectly because she needed some for fall. I guess it's still hard to stay away from those cute girl clothes. Plus, she got a bunch of books.

My only complaint about the party was that I felt like I didn't get to talk to anyone. This afternoon, David and I were talking about how we thought it went and he referenced a couple of conversations he had with a few guest and I didn't have a chance to sit and talk with anyone. I just hate when that occurs. I did though make sure to take time out to hold the newest member of our family baby Travis (whose less than a month old) and I now have some major baby fever.

I think it's safe to say that the party was a success. Though, I wish I could say the same about the after party, but we ended up having a horrible night. I guess the overwhelming of it all finally caught up with her after she had went to bed. She woke up at around 10:30pm and honestly did not stop crying till after 4 am. It was a loooonnnnggg night!!! We were all so tired for from the day and I hate to say it, tensions were high and did not help the situation. The only way we could get her to stop crying was holding her and walking around the house. As soon as she would fall asleep, we would try to lay her down and she would start screaming again. We could not figure out what was wrong because she was acting like she was more scared than anything. We think it was a combination of a tummy ache and the excitement of the party. When she woke up around 8:30 this morning, she was fine and back to her normal self. So, who knows? She has another exciting day tomorrow, so I'm praying for a better night tonight.

Pictures to come in the morning!!!!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Everywhere but here

Obviously, I haven't gotten around to blogging this week. There is a lot going on in the Mabrey household. I have so much I wanna share and discuss with everyone, but I haven't been able to find the time to sit down for a long post. I will be back next week with the details from Olivia's 1st birthday!!!

Until's a monster face to tide everyone over till the weekend.

(Don't you wonder what's really going on at others houses? This picture would leave me wondering)

There's your first hint of her birthday theme....

Monday, September 20, 2010

The Weekend in A few Pictures

We had a nice weekend.

David actually had a real weekend off. Real meaning a Saturday and Sunday off. Yes, he gets like two real weekends a year and oddly enough, we had zero plans.

David somehow roped Grandpa Wayne into coming down to help him build a brick wall for a patio we've (we as in "he") been working on. While the men sweltered outside in this 96 degree, I hung out inside with little bit.

I'm going to go ahead and come completely clean...I suck with giving gifts. We always end up giving each other gifts before the designated day. While I sat there playing with Olivia, I decided that I wanted to give her our birthday gift a week early. It's been hiding in the closet (like she was going to know what it was) for a little over a week and I would be lying if I said I didn't at least once each day think about giving it to her.

So on Saturday afternoon, with David's permission, I broke out our gift.

I pretty much had my mind set on a cozy car for awhile. I wanted to get her something that would last for years and she could play with outside. We decided to buy a brand new one since most of the ones for sale in consignment stores or sales are usually pretty banged up already. We wanted one that would last through a few kids hopefully.

I now see why everyone buys them used...the thing came in a thousand-and-one pieces. It took two of us almost an hour to put it together. I'm sure though having a little someone who kept stealing the screws and putting them in her mouth had nothing to do with it. I promise she didn't swallow any.

I can say that I'm glad we went with it because it has been a huge hit this weekend. She played with it the remainder of the weekend. She's not overly thrilled with being pushed in it yet, but she loves getting in and out of it. She loves just sitting in it with her "ugly" baby and her cell phone.

Nana came down on Saturday afternoon to visit and I'm sure had to help her get in and out at least a thousand times. Nana and Grandpa stayed for dinner and some loving on Olivia before bedtime.

The rest of our weekend was a lazy one since David and Olivia have both come down with colds. We spent pretty much all Sunday laying around the house and getting some rest. It was much needed and we enjoyed the quiet day. This next week we'll be a little busy with Grandma coming into town and preparing for someone's 1st birthday party!!!