Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Loving it...

January is coming to an end (thank goodness...its always long to me) so I thought I'd share what I've been loving this month.

1. The BIG winner this month...

Downton Abbey

Heaven help me....I don't know what it is, but I am addicted to this show! I mentioned a few weeks ago that I keep hearing about this show on a few of my favorite blogs so decided to check it out. I watched the first season in 24 hours and yes, my child was totally ignored that day...I threw food at her between each episode and she survived. I find myself watching the re-runs that I watched just the week before on Friday nights when Davids at work and interrupting David as he's trying to make new friends at our new church, just so we can hurry to make the new episode on Sunday night. I decided the other night that one of the reasons I love it is because its not smutty like everything else on tv these days. No offense to anyone, but I cannot stand a minute of The Bachelor or The Kardashions. Those types of shows make me sick. Downton Abbey is full of "adult situations" but you can seriously watch it in front of your kids. I seriously love everything about this show and will cry when it ever comes to an end. Season one can be found on Netflix and season two is currently on Sunday nights at nine. There are a lot of different story lines & relationships going on between the characters so I highly suggest you watch season one to figure out what is going one before just picking up with season two.

(My apologizes for the one continuous run on sentence that paragraph turned into)

2. Runtastic Pro App on iphone

(via)

I mentioned I was doing the couch to 10k program and I've had great success with it so far. Its a walk/run method in case your not familiar with it. However, its more based on time at this point in the training. Sometime after week two, David asked me how much I was actually running distance wise and I has no clue. Hard core runners use special watches to track distance, pace, heart rate, etc. and I would eventually love one, but they are pretty pricey. I told myself I have to keep up with it for a good six months before investing in one. I found this app on my phone and wasn't sure how well it would work, espciecally since it was free, but I've been pretty impressed. It works well with my couch to 10k app and its fun to see how far I'm actually running now. I'm not sure how correct it is in actual pace times, but its a nice start to get somewhat of an idea. It even tracks what elevations I've ran and shows graphs at when I peaked and slowed down. Its been fun the past two weeks to go back and review my runs afterwards.

3. Frozen Grapes and Blueberries

I'm not really a fruit fan, however, that's all my daughter would eat if I'd let her. Its not like I'm the first one to come up with this, but it came out of a necessity a couple of weeks ago. Olivia loves fruit but of course what she'll eat changes like the wind. I buy most of our fruit from Sam's now and of course she was dying for grapes a few weeks ago when we were there, but then refused them the next week. So I had 3.5 pounds of grapes sitting in the fridge going to waste. I normally don't do grapes unless they are smashed up in a bottle. I remembered seeing something on pinterest of freezing grapes to help chill white wine, so I decided to freeze them. I just washed them, separated them into baggies, and Olivia and I have been addicted ever since. A few days later, I did it to our blueberries and they were even better. I pull a bag out, set them on the counter for a few minutes, and then we proceed to down a bag of whatever it is in mere minutes. Try it if you haven't, its delicious.

What have you been loving lately?

Monday, January 30, 2012

The sweetest words ever heard.

The only thing better than hearing your baby saying "mommy" for the first time...

Is hearing them say "i love you momma" for the first time.


Saturday, January 28, 2012

This weeks smiles.

This week was definitely filled with its ups and downs, but thankfully our downs seem to be behind us and we're going into a low key weekend with good weather.

However, there were still plenty of things to make me smile this week...

1. A new *free* toothbrush from my dentist appointment last week...

2. "Meme Jr." with the napkin in her shirt...

3. Real Tea parties with Nina....

4. White Irish Sangria...

5. Date Nights with this handsome man...(Calm down Ladies, he's taken!!!)

5. Lunch Dates with Grandpa...

6. Gifts of sand from my favorite two year old...

7. A front porch big enough to allow us to play while it rains...

8. Our crazy kitty...

9. Running in the sunshine after two weeks of rain...

10. Impromptu ice cream/park trips...

11. Still having a "baby" some nights...

12. Park dates with friends...

13. Being barefoot while reading on the porch in January....

What made you smile this week? : )


Friday, January 27, 2012

There is a happy ending.

She has been on my mind for the last two weeks.

She's crossed my thoughts at least a hundred times a day.

The tears have started to flow again for her on a regular basis.

On Sunday during worship, I bawled for her. It felt like my heart was breaking in two again and it just seemed to all come out at that time. I thought I was done, but Monday during my run, I cried for her again.

I missed her. I was missing her like crazy.

I wondered what Christmas would have been like with her. I could only imagine how excited it would have been for her just after seeing her reaction on this one day. I wondered how school would be going right now and if we would have decided to homeschool her by now. I wondered where the relationship between all of us would have been like now four months later.

And then, the what-if's have started to play over and over in my mind.

"What if I would have fought harder for her?"

Oh, I fought....but I didn't fight for her.

Someone very close to me told me at the time that I needed to realize I would never get her out of my mind and I didn't believe them. But, they were right. There isn't a day that she doesn't cross my mind.

There isn't a day that I don't live without the regret of what all happened.

But last night, I got a phone call telling me that it was official. Things had been approved and she was officially going to her forever home soon. I know her new forever family through association and from what I know, they are awesome people. They are honestly better parents for her than we ever could have been and they deserve a kid as awesome as she is. They can and will give her the life that she deserves.

Though I was truly happy to get this news, I was surprised when the tears started flowing again.

Tears of joy for her and her new family, but once again tears of loss for myself.

Though I knew there really was no going back, there was still always that thought of "what if?" But my heart now needs to know it can move on because though we might not be involved in it, there is a happy ending.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

I just want to run...again

Remember how I mentioned a few weeks ago that I have one goal this year???

Well, I feel ready to share now.

I just want to RUN again.

When the end of 2011 came rolling through, naturally, I started thinking about 2012 and what I wanted to accomplish in this upcoming year. I'm a sucker for a new year and a fresh start. The first thing that crossed my mind was the usual "I want to get in shape and lose weight." We all know I was not ashamed to partake in the usual holiday over eaters club.

However, that's been my goal for the last two years. Though I have somewhat accomplished that goal, I wouldn't say that I officially succeeded at it. I'm sure I've stated it before on here, but I ate everything but the kitchen sink when pregnant with Olivia and walked into the delivery room weighing more than my 6'2 husband (I'm only 5'4). Over the last two years, I've lost all but the last five pounds.

Honestly, 9 out of 1o days, I'm comfortable with that extra five pounds. I'm a firm believer in no matter what you weigh, we all have those fat days. I'm still in my "healthy" weight range and my doctor complimented me on losing the weight at my last yearly, so I started with being honest with myself in that number on the scale didn't really bother me.

I decided that "losing weight" was no longer motivation for me. I needed something more to work for in the physical area of my life.

After doing lots of thinking, I realized my mind kept coming back to one thing....I wanted to start running again on a regular basis. I wanted to be able to call myself a runner again.

I'll be honest with that I usually have a shot of jealously when I see people out running. I wanted to be able to call myself a runner. It may sound silly, but I'd love to say "I run seven miles four days a week," just like the mom I saw on the Today Show last month. Its bad enough that I honestly get jealous when I see everyone out running early in the mornings when we're on our beach vacations. I want to be the girl who gets up and runs on vacation because its something I enjoy doing. It may be silly to some, but it really is a dream of mine.

I say again because I spent most of my childhood running. Both my parents ran track or cross country in high school, so they naturally signed me up for the local track and field team when I was 7. I then continued to run track through out high school. However, when I got to college, I quit.

I've tried to get back into running off and on for the last five or so years, but each time, I've failed after only a week or two.

This past Christmas, while spending time with family, I overheard something that someone very close to me said and it hit me to the core. I wasn't even involved in the conversation, just walking through the room, however that statement was one that had the power to change my entire outlook on the whole thing and that person doesn't even know it.

What was said... "If I'd known I was going to live this long, I would have taken better care of myself."

I sat on that sentence for a good week, it constantly playing over and over in my head.

Suddenly, I started looking at the running in a whole new light. It wasn't about just calling myself a runner or losing weight anymore, it was about taking care of myself. Not just physically, but also emotionally.

I've seriously spent the last five plus years thinking about getting into running again. But like I said earlier, I always failed. It was becoming an emotional thing because it was a dream I was continuously quitting on and was starting to feel like a failure. It is seriously one of those things that I know I would always regret because I did and still do actually enjoy running. It's one thing that ALWAYS gives me a sense of accomplishment when I'm finished.

As the new year rolled in, I decided that this year has to be the year. There were no more excuses. I wanted to do it and I have to do it for my own ego.

So, as I type this, I'm now halfway through my fourth week of the couch to 10K program.

Yeah, I decided to skip the couch to 5k.

This week is a big deal for me because I have never before made it past the second week and I've successfully now been plugging at it for a full month (this weekend).

And, I've been loving it again.

So much so that I've now started craving my runs if I take more than a day off.

I'm not ready to officially call myself a "runner" yet. And yes, I have a few running goals this year I'll share later and I have a whole lot more I want to talk about on the subject but I already feel this post is getting wordy.

So, there it is...what I've been working on this past month.

I won't lie though, when lacing up for my run on Monday, I felt already a little bit of accomplishment when Olivia looked at me and said "you running momma!"

Yes, I'm running....again.

Monday, January 23, 2012

A Mommy Confession

I have a confession...

I'm not a fan of "getting on the floor" and playing with my child.

It's nothing against my child personally, it's any child. No matter how hard I try, I just cannot enjoy sitting down and playing.

It's my down fall as a mom, I suck at the "get on the floor" and playing thing.

These past two weeks, like the rest of the country, we've been stuck inside due to the rain and I think I've sat down and played with her more than the last two years combined.

Regardless, I just cannot get in it when we do. I sit there thinking of a thousand other things I could be doing and as stupid as it may sound, her and I usually end up arguing over something. Yeah, I can argue like the best of them with a two year old. But, I'm trying. I'm really trying. It may sound bad, but even me sitting down to play just once a day for 15 minutes is really good for me.

Before you report me to family services, I want to state that David more than makes up for my sucky-ness at getting on the floor and playing. Every single day, he walks in the door and the second thing out of her mouth is "let's go play daddy!" and he's awesome in the fact that even after a fourteen hour day, he obliges her EVERY. SINGLE. DAY!

I do pour into her in other ways throughout the day. We've in the past month or so, settled into a nice routine in the morning of cuddling in our bed while watching Curious George. We also have "quiet time" (aka reading time) at least once a day if not twice most days. Plus, we're big believers of her learning already to help around the house. Any chore I attack during the day, she's right there beside me. The girl can already fold a washcloth like she works at a laundry mat and she knows where the dishes go when unloading the dishwasher better than her daddy. True story.

Oh and I'm the official coloring partner...

That is one Mommy job I'm awesome at.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Things making me smile this week...

A sleeping baby in the back seat
Okay, I guess I should technically say "toddler"



Lunch dates at Atlanta bread



Cleaning out half of the garage, so I can get my car back in it.
You guys know I've been complaining about having to get in it in the cold.



Clear Blue Skies



Having enough leftovers in the fridge that allow me to get away with not cooking a few days.



Finally starting on a project that has been on the project list awhile now.


Realizing I only have 200 pages left in a book it feels like I've been reading forever.
I cannot seem to finish it, yet I cannot just abandon it.



Tiny ballet flats



Weather warm enough to allow our restless self's some outside time


A pant-less girl sporting her mama's shades


Late night forts


Putting up tents in the middle of the playroom


A certain two year old suddenly deciding she'll eat some type of meat
Disregard the fact its fried and dipped in Chic-fil-a sauce....baby steps, baby steps...


Coffee Dates with the hubs


Good dental check ups


What's making you smile this week?

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Eight Things

I honestly for the life of me can not find the motivation to blog more often.

I even had a couple of weeks over the last few months that I contemplated shutting down the good ol' blog, thinking that maybe my blogging days were over. I don't see myself blogging forever. I look at it as just a hobby that I'm into at this season of life. However, though I know that I'm not completely done since I find myself thinking about it at least once a day, if not more. Its just actually making myself sit down to write that is the problem.

Anyways...I'm sure y'all love hearing my excuses every time I actually get around to posting.

Moving on.

1. It seems like we've been really busy lately. I was talking with some friends the other day at a birthday party on how it seems like we're always glad for the holidays come to an end because it means we have less going on, but I've realized that its just not true. I looked at our calendar the other day and realized we have something every single weekend from the beginning of January till the last weekend of February. Though the fact it is "birthday season" in our circle of friends, might have a little something to do with it.

2. Have you heard of Downton Abby? I had been reading on a few of my favorite blogs how people were really getting into that show, so I decided to check it out. David and I are both hooked! We both started watching it together, but I may have spent an entire day watching the rest of the first season by myself last Friday. He was a little ticked with me when he came home and found me watching it without him, but I promised to not start on the second season till he caught up. He finally caught up last night, so we can finally move on to the first two episodes of season 2. It is on your local PBS station, so you'll have to check your listings for when its on.

3. Olivia's eye is back to normal for those that have asked. After a few days, it finally started to look more like a scrap and I didn't have to worry about being reported to DFACS any longer. The scab (that just sounds gross, I know) fell off by Thursday and she looks good as new.

4. We got invited to a visit a new church a few weeks ago and we (Olivia and I) finally got to make it this past Sunday. I loved it....like really loved it. It was the first church that I had been to in awhile that I couldn't find something I didn't like about it. We had a list of criteria we were looking for in a church and this one so far has meet all the requirements but one (which wasn't a deal breaker one). I cannot wait till David has a Sunday off to visit. I don't like saying it after just one visit, but I really can see our family there long term.

5. I'm still planning on sharing my New Years Goal for 2012. I'm just not quiet ready to share yet with the world.....that makes you wonder, huh?

6. I've become addicted to Instagram since getting my iphone. I'm anmabrey on there if you'd like to follow me. Let me know if your on there so I can stalk...I mean, follow you too! I seriously look at it a hundred times a day!

7. Its that time of year and I'm itching for a new blog layout. I've been narrowing down a few of my favorites and hoping to get a new one installed by the end of next month.

8. I've decided that I'm purging this year. I've got way too much junk that we do not use. I guess it could technically be one of my New Years goals, but it needs to be done regardless. We've been discussing possibly moving within the next few years for Davids job and I've decided I do not want to move all this junk with me, so I've slowly started purging room by room. I come from a family of hoarders (not bad enough to make the tv show, but we're pack rats for sure) so I come by it honestly, but just the thought of having to pack up all this junk I have in about three or so years, makes me ready to rid of it all.

That's all I've got for now. Off to do something with my house since we have guest for dinner tonight.

Happy Tuesday to you all! : )

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Olivia and the driveway got in a fight...


And Olivia lost.

I left her with her daddy for an hour and came back to find her all bloody and bruised. The story is she fell in the driveway while they were playing and it doesn't surprise me one bit since the child is clumsy.

I freaked out when I first saw it because it was a bit of a shock and Dave didn't have enough time to warn me before I saw it. Unfortunately, my little freak out scared her and she's been pretty upset about it since.

I know its just a bruise and scrap, but its still heart wrenching to have your child tell you repeatedly "it hurts, momma!"

We ran to the store for some ice cream for her on Saturday and I was surprised how many people commented on it. No one was being rude or mean, but its made her self continuous about it. She's asked me several times to make "boo boo go bye bye" and she freaked out when she saw it in the mirror for the first time later that night.

She won't even allow me to take a picture of it, so I've been trying to sneak them.

Her busted eye has served as a lesson for me personally. It has surprised me how sensitive she's been about it and its served as a reminder to watch even more what I say around her.

Even at two, she's already developing a complex about herself and her looks. That scares the poop out of me. I want more than anything for her to grow up with a healthy self image. I try really hard to not talk about my looks in a complaining way, but lets be honest, we all have those days that we feel ugly.

We tell her constantly that she's beautiful, but I know that won't be a solve all. She's going to grow up and develop her own view of herself, there's no way around it. And can I be honest, that's one of the things that scares me the most in raising a girl. There is so much pressure on females and their looks and it only seems to be getting worse.

This post is not one where I feel like I shell out advice or a "how to" raise a girl with a healthy self image. Believe me, I have no clue. Its just a reminder to myself that she is listening and I want her to pick up only the positive.

Black eye or not, she's still the most beautiful girl to me.


Sunday, January 8, 2012

Happy New Year,,,,,eight days late!

Happy New Year!!! Is it okay to say that on the 8th of January?

Good, cause I just said it.

I obviously took a little break last week without even meaning too. It was a hard "back to reality from the holidays" for me this year.

It seriously wasn't until Thursday that I felt like actually getting up and doing something productive and that was only because my husband needed some uniforms washed.

It also could be contributed to the fact that it was 30 flipping degrees here most of the week. You all know just how much I love the cold weather...cough, cough. I may or may not have refused to leave the house on the coldest day of the week, with my excuse being that it was "too cold" to go outside. Luckily, it was in the 60's by the end of the week and I could leave the house again.

I may or may not have been begging David to ask the Waffle to transfer us to Florida these past few weeks. The older I get....the more I cannot take the cold.

Okay, I quit my whining now. Considering its only January and y'all know you have at least a whole month and a half more of me complaining.

Despite my hard come down to reality and the cold, I'm excited about the new year. Between facebook, blogs, and even pinterest, I noticed it was either "2011 was the best year ever!" or "good riddance 2011!" I'd say we were in that later group.

We were excited to see 2011 come to an end. It was a tough year for us. I won't relive it all since I've talked about most of it on here prior, but its simplest to say....lots happened.

However, we've decided that it wasn't all in vain and have marked it as the year of lessons learned. We both feel like we've walked away from 2011 learning more about ourselves, our marriage, our role as parents....the list could go on.

We've spent a lot of time these past couple of weeks talking about this past year and what we expect from 2012. We've decided for 2012 we're making no plans for our family this year.

This year, is our year of now.

Our goal this year is to live in the day and enjoy the moment we're in now. Yes, I know we should be doing this already, but we're both by nature planners. We're the type of people that as soon as we reach one milestone, we're planning for the next. We're always planning something, especially when it comes to our lives and this year the only plans we have, are two (hopefully, if not one fore sure) awesome vacations.

No job plans, no adding to the family plans, no major house plans....

Obviously things will happen throughout the year, but those things will be whatever comes our way, nothing that we've tried to plan.

Does any of this make sense to anyone but us? I'm thinking probably not.

We're looking at it as taking the year off and enjoying whatever comes our way.

I do have one goal I'm working on for this new year for myself, but I'll share that in a later post. I don't like the word resolution, so I stick with calling them goals.

I was looking over my goals for last year and I was shocked to see that I was pretty successful on three out of the four! I think that pretty good results, especially since one I wouldn't call so successful, I still actually kept up with till Summer before I fell off the wagon....I'm sure you can take a wild stab at which one that was!

So, we're heading into this year with excitement and no plans! I can say that after only eight days, things are already looking good.