Sunday, January 30, 2011

heartaches and late nights.

This weekend my in-laws came in town and gave me and the hubs TWO date nights. Friday night we saw Billy Elliot the musical, which was beautiful. I watched a 12 year old do like 15 pirouettes in a row. That is not easy stuff, folks.

Saturday night, we went out for dinner and had such a good heart talk. We talked about the present, and the future, hopes, dreams, and fears.

At one point I was sharing about the heaviness I had in my heart for multiple friends of mine struggling with infertility. The injustices of our broken world just really gets me riled up. I find my heart asking "why" often. Yet, I have no other choice but to believe in Love, to believe that miracles are for today. In the quiet moments, I catch myself praying for miracles, not in words or even thoughts, but deep heart-aches.

I was telling James how brutal it must be to be struggling with infertility, how I just couldn't imagine life without our Adoration Joy. James said to me, "you are thankful for that little girl?"

"Yes. I am so thankful. She is such a blessing. It overflows...I am thankful every.....
(how do I even express the depth of gratitude I feel for this beautiful little person? to be entrusted with this holy task of loving her all my life?)

and then, I started crying, right there in the restaurant.

"........every time I look at her. I am thankful every time I look at her. "



Some times God can seem so far off but I know He is real.
And sometimes I have trouble believing in miracles, but they are real too.

I often look at my daughter and think, "where did you even come from?" My heart knows the answer. She is my miracle. Living and breathing and beautiful.

Sometimes I have trouble believing in miracles. Then I look my daughter, my living proof, and I believe. I gather up all my ragged, scraps of faith and I pray for other little miracles yet to be conceived.




* to my struggling friends. I love you and I pray for you with heartaches and late nights.

Friday, January 28, 2011

oh happy day.

Yesterday, I had the most fabulous day. One of my mama friends had some lovely ladies and their kiddos over for a play date. We are all part of a group called "the Wives Club." We get together every other week, talk, laugh, pray, and at least one person usually cries (it's the rule.) This little group has been such a blessing, especially entering in to this new season of motherhood. It's just good to have other mama friends.....and they are all beautiful, authentic, endlessly creative, inspiring and all sorts of wonderful qualities.

We decided to start having a play group because a bunch of us are stay-at-home mama's. And though I wouldn't trade being a stay-at-home mom for anything I get a little stir crazy sometimes and a little starved for adult conversation. I was looking forward to this play date allll week. Apparently a couple other of the gals felt the same way because we stayed from 11am till 5pm! The time just whooshed by. The playgroup is really more for the mama's than the kiddos ;) but I think the kiddos enjoyed it just as much. Thanks Jess, for being such an awesome host and providing a much needed outlet for all of us!


* I didn't really take any pics cause I was just too busy enjoy myself but here are some of the p'nuts hanging out. All little girls.
from left to right: Micah Lyric and Sparrow Song chilled out. Adoration Joy(my patoot) and Isabel Aviah Eden sharing secrets. (Don't all our girls have such pretty names? I think so.)




and totally irrelevant, but I am just lovin' this show. Some funny for your Friday.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Dress Up and Sentiment



Dear Adoration,
We had fun playing dress up the other day! I had a fun scarf on and you seemed to think it was fun too, so I draped it over your head. You looked like a little baby Spanish senorita. I look forward to many, many more days of playing dress up with you. Even though I am all grown up, playing dress up is still one of my favorite things. It's part of what makes being a girl so much fun.

As I sat there looking at your little cute face with a scarf draped over your head, I found myself thinking that one day you will be walking down an aisle of some sort wearing a veil. One day you will grow up, get married, and have children of your own one day. I admit it was an odd thing for me to be contemplating, because right now, that day seems so very far off. But it is true that this life is but a vapor and passes with a blink of an eye.

Sitting there, and feeling sentimental, I found myself whispering a prayer for your future husband. I hope he is like your Daddy, full of integrity, kind, generous, fun, confident, forgiving. As you grow up and boys come knocking, I would hope that you would look at your Daddy and how he loves me as an example for how you should be treated and loved. I pray that you would not settle for any less than that because you will always be worth it. If your future husband loves you like your Daddy loves me, my prayer would be answered.

My heart-prayer released, I looked at you again with your chubby cheeks, holding your arms up to balance your wobbly sitting, and I was brought back to our current reality. A young papa and a young mama, with a beautiful baby girl and world of adventures still to be had. And many, many more days of playing dress up.

a thousand kisses,

Your Mama




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Monday, January 24, 2011

Nesting


Here it is, Adoration's little nest! (Here was the sneak peek.)

In my Charley Harper post, I talked about how I was inspired by the artwork in a Charley Harper memory game I had gotten for Adoration. I used the vibrant colors and the nature-y theme as a jumping off point.

If you can believe it, I spent less than $200 on the entire room. We were on a budget so I wanted to spend as little as possible on the nursery. Thanks to hand-me-down furniture (ALL of it) and some creativity I accomplished that!




(left) My childhood quilt on the end of the bed.
bedcover: Anthro, tablecloth found on super-sale, repurposed as a bedspread.
frame: thrifted and spray painted
letter "A" : anthro


mobile- crafted with love

lamp shade: urban (on sale)
lamp base: thrifted
80's jellies: mine when I was an itty.





crib skirt: scarf from Mexico
These pictures are combined from the last place we lived and now it is set up just a little different.
I've also removed the bird houses from over the crib. I decided I didn't like them. :)



I think I would like to have this off-centered over the crib instead :)








favorite things

Adoration had her 7 month birthday on Jan. 16th. My how time flies! Every mama out there tells you that the time just goes by so fast when you are pregnant. I would just hold my belly and smile. I am living the truth of that statement now. Watching Adoration grow is glorious, but the effects on my heart are bittersweet.
I was talking with another mama friend whose daughter just had her 1st birthday. She was saying how she wish she could have JUST ONE DAY to have her be a teeny baby again. That would be oh, so nice. Since no time machine exists, I will just have to soak in every magical moment with every ounce of my being.


Here is the pa-toot, just "talking" away, telling me all her thoughts.


And what I just can't get enough of......


Dear Adoration,

You are growing to be oh so beautiful! Every day I think, "How are you SO beautiful?" I have so much fun with you and enjoy every little moment (even the cranky ones.) I just love you that much.

I thought you might want to look back and know some of your favorite things at this stage in your life.

Favorite Activities- smiling, bath time, snuggling, riding in the Ergo, "talking" (you can already say 'dada', 'mama' and 'baba' !)

Favorite Games- flying through the air, Peek-a-boo

Favorite Toys- your Ikea stacking cups, Sophie the giraffe, stuffed monkey

Favorite Book- The Very Hungry Caterpillar

Favorite Food- smashed up Avocado

Favorite Songs- kid songs:"I am so proud of you" "Slippery Fish"
anything danceable: "Boom Boom Pow" Black Eyed Peas and "Dog Days are Over" Florence & the Machine


Guess what MY favorite is?
YOU and YOUR DADDY !!

I love you Adoration Joy. There is no one else like in the whole world.

a thousand kisses,

Your Mama

Friday, January 21, 2011

All Things Beautiful: Charley Harper

I am just smitten with Charley Harper illustrations.I'm a fan of his vibrant, minimalist depictions of nature. Before I got pregnant, when we were just entertaining the idea of having a baby, I decided our future baby needed this:

So I ordered it off Amazon. It was the very first thing that I got to go in the nursery for our future baby that we had yet to conceive. This one little thing ended up being the inspiration for Adoration's entire nursery. Here is the sneak peek. (whoops, never gave you the full "reveal" on this blog. I'll get on that.)

This is a Charley Harper needlepoint. lovin' the the homespun mixed with the modern. It would go perfect in Adoration's room:

I wish my Biology books were this pretty. It would've kept my attention a whole lot better:


I'm smitten over these children's learning books, 123's and ABC's, featuring Charley Harper amazing-ness.

And I wouldn't mind this present for the coffee table: a book of his collected works.
Happy Saturday!

img one, three, four, five, six-amazon
img two- here



Tuesday, January 18, 2011

DIY: coffee table tray


Who doesn't love a good DIY project, right? I've decided to try to incorporate some DIY projects into this blog. I can't commit to weekly, but perhaps monthly. Finding more time for creative endeavors was part of my New Year's Resolutions so hopefully this will give me a reason to get crafty. I love being a mama, but creative expression is oh so good for my soul.

One of my favorite DIY's for around the house is using old picture frames for different things. There are countless ways to use a good thrift-store picture frame.

Frame+chicken wire= earring hanger
Frame+plywood+chalkboard paint= chalkboard

and the one I'm featuring....

Frame+fabric= coffee table tray


I found this frame at a thrift store and thought the upturned edges would make a good tray. All I did was add some scrap fabric to it. easy-peezy.




Saturday, January 15, 2011

Steppin' Out (in real cloths)




I decided to team up with Harper's Happenings and do Steppin' Out Saturday today. What is "Steppin' Out Saturday" you ask? Well, it's basically a "what I wore" post. Which means, you dear readers, get the prize of seeing what I wore today. Try to contain your excitement.

A "what I wore" post is a rare occasion indeed on this blog. First of all, let's be honest, most days I wear YOGA pants or LEGGINGS. I don't even do yoga for goodness sake. It is a good day if I have showered. If I miss my shower "window" during Adoration's first nap, well, so much for getting fresh. Also I am 100% less likely to do any form of working out if I get cute for the day. Oh, the sheer EFFORT of showering, putting on real cloths, doing my hair, putting on MAKE-UP. I sure wouldn't want to ruin the cute with gratuitous sweating. The way I see it is I have two choices before me 1) wear my ratty yoga pants and possible engage in some kind of exercise or 2) wear cute clothes every day and get fat.

But I digress....

So today I actually made the effort and put on real clothes. I wanted to properly document the moment.

Here I am, in all my awkward trying to be fashion-y posing, glory. I never how to pose for the camera when it's just me and I'm trying to show you my clothes. So I did what I see other people who are cooler than me do, turn toes in, hand on hip, look off into the distance. Call it the "fashion stance." You also get the blurry i-phone photo version. (Getting my camera back will surely revolutionize this blog. I miiiiss it. *whine*)

cardigan: f21
top: Anthropologie (on super-sale.)
jeans: f21
shoes: vintage, thrifted.
oh and my beloved Petunia Picklebottom diaper bag in the background.


And me with Tooters. (Less awkward because I can hide behind my baby and just do the smile at the camera thing.)

The Patootie is wearing

shirt: babyGap (hand me down)
skinny jeans/jeggings: H&M
boots w/ the fur: Target
headband: Nordstrom (gift)
hair: Awesome

And my shoes really do deserve a close-up. When I found them and discovered the were my size I squealed and hugged them. They have a white chunky heel and I just love the mod look. I'm pretty sure they are vintage circa 60's. swoon.

Well, that's all folks. Hope you are having a happy weekend. The Pa-toot is down for the night and it's time to cuddle with the hubs while he watches the Falcons and I pretend to be interested. *wink*


Monday, January 10, 2011

Delirious Happiness

Today it SNOWED! Down here in the South, snow is a rare occurrence. We usually get what weather people call " a wintry mix," which means cold, wet, grayness. Snow is so much better. It softens the whole world and makes everything postcard pretty.
Another added bonus of snow in the south is that pretty much everything shuts down. When it snows, the south collectively hides from it's normal every day grind and makes a play day out of it....or a sloth day. Both as a student, and then as a work employee, snow days were cause for DELIRIOUS HAPPINESS. Now as a stay-at-home mama, they don't cause quite the same delirious excitement (because it means our ability to leave the house is impaired) BUT snow days are still a happy occasion, indeed.

I layered Adoration up in lots and lots of layers (alas, no snowsuit) and introduced her to her first real snow.

She surveyed her surroundings with a tentative smile.
I think she kinda liked it.
Then she just looked cold. And then her lip kinda of trembled. Time to go back inside.
I stripped off her wet layers, and back in the warmth, she quickly returned to her normal state of smiley-ness.
As I was clicking pictures I started telling her to "Work it, girl, work it!"
She took heed and this next succession of pictures is what I got:





You've got to admit, the girl knows how to work it.



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Friday, January 7, 2011

All Things Beautiful: Penguin Classics for Children



It's been awhile since I've done an "All Things Beautiful" post but here is my current craving: the new cloth bound penguin classics for children books. Well, I wouldn't mind the adult penguin classics either but I am REALLY loving the children's ones.

Penguin just recently released these wonderful hardcover, gorgeously embossed, brightly covered gems. *drool*

I just love a pretty book. I'm not gonna lie, I totally "judge books by the cover." Not people(well I try really hard not to), mind you, just books . About 85 % of the time, how I decide whether or not to read a new book is by a pretty or interesting cover. I'm shallow like that.

Classics, however, are a different story. I just LOVE me some classics. Give me a book that could be on a high school AP English class list and I will burrow into it and get lost in the story and language that made the book enduring through time and the critique of a cynical world. I'm deep like that.

Another thing I love are children's/ young adult books. I reread them over and over again. Anne of Green Gables. The Secret Garden. A Wrinkle in Time. The Giver. Number the Stars. The Chronicles of Narnia etc. etc. I love the timeless themes of LOVE and HOPE and ADVENTURE and SACRIFICE and REDEMPTION that always seem to appear in these books. Stories that
spark the hearts and imaginations of children, that as adults we return to and feel safe. It's really the seemingly simple themes in these children books that we discover as adults, will take our whole lifetime to learn.

So three things I love in a book: 1) a pretty cover 2) a classic 3) a children's book

oh Penguin.....you went straight for my book-lovin' heart with
these:



I would love for these to sit on Adoration's book shelf. I hope that she would be lured by it's prettiness one day, open it up, and discover the world within, hiding under her covers up way past her bedtime reading it with a flashlight. I will discover her sneaking her reading and I will tell her she needs to go to bed. I will close the door and smile to myself and not be mad at all if she decides to ignore my warning and keep burrowing into that book. Or maybe one day we will be reading out loud the book together, chapter by chapter.

Either way, I do hope to pass on my love of reading. It's a well-honored "Garrett" *my maiden name* tradition.


So if you are thinking, "Hey, for some reason I just feel like giving that cute baby girl a gift (or her mama)," these books would be pretty much perfect. *wink, wink* Not that I'm trying to solicit gifts or anything.



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Tuesday, January 4, 2011

cuteness withdrawal

My beloved camera is STILL at the camera doctor. Thus, the tragic lack of cute Adoration pictures. I don't want any of you to go into some kind of cuteness withdrawal so here are some pics from the other day.

We had taken off her shirt for her meal time and she was just wearing her tights. It was a "I just can't handle it" moment for sure. So I snapped some pics with our point and shoot. Her cheeks get bigger with every month.


This little girl is growing like a weed. This sixth month has been a huge milestone for her, growth wise and developmentally. She was nursing more than she was when she was a newborn and she was waking up often to eat in the night (which she hasn't done for the last few months). After about 3 weeks of that pattern, patootie had noticeably grown BIGGER and was doing lots of things developmentally she wasn't doing before those 3 weeks. Talk about a growth spurt.
Growth spurt= ONE TIRED MAMA.

Things have pretty much evened out now though and we are back to the normal feeding/sleeping schedule. phew!

I have to admit I feel a sense of pride when I look at Adoration's growing and know that I provided the fuel she needed for all of that hard work. Breastfeeding can be challenging but my healthy, growing girl makes all those trying times worth it!


Dear Adoration,

You are my beautiful, growing girl! I so love being your mama. I prayed for you before I conceived you, I prayed for you in my womb, I pray for you today, and I'll pray for you always. When you were in my belly I asked God what you would be like. He told me that you would be both peaceful and joyful.

God does not lie.

Peace and Joy. Those are the two words that most describe your personality. Knowing God spoke those words to me about you and seeing the truth of those words in your life is a sweet gift I hold deep in the secret places of my heart.

Thank you for being you. You are ALTOGETHER BEAUTIFUL my darling, there is no blemish in you.

You are my sunshine. I am proud of you. I love you forever.

a thousand kisses,
your Mama.


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