What a Great Weekend!

I hope everyone had a Happy Thanksgiving! We had a wonderful long weekend. My parents and neice came into town and stayed with us, we had a full house on Thanksgiving and Mom and I made Nora's Christmas outfit (it is SO CUTE!). I'll be hitting you with several posts in the next several days, so watch out!

We're in teething H-E-double-hockey-sticks around here. NR is working on her right front tooth and it is being a beast. She has slept through the night since she was about 8 weeks old (please don't stone me...), but has gotten up at least once for 4 nights in a row. Bleck. Seems like all my friends with little ones about NR's age are going through the same thing, so at least we can suffer together.

We are super blessed to have several friends both in "real life" and "cyber life" who have kids about the same age as Nora. One friend from work has a daughter 6 months older than her, one couple has twins 12 weeks older than NR, there are several children at church around her age and two couples in our small group have babies a few months behind Nora. And those are all "real life" friends, not even counting people I keep in contact with through facebook!

I remember being surrounded by very close friends while growing up--from birth all the way through high school. I have two friends who I literally have known since birth. I have no memory before knowing them. There were four of us who were inseparable all through growing up--we even drove to Florida together the summer after we graduated! Even now that we're scattered all over (no two of us live in the same town anymore), they are still the friends I miss, still the friends I know I can tell my secrets to. I pray that Nora knows that same kind of friendship as she grows up and that she has the support system that I experienced.

What kind of things do you want for your kids that you had growing up?


Thanksgiving Plans?

It's two days before Thanksgiving. Do you know where your co-workers are? Today it's likely they're sitting next to you, behind, around, in the next office, etc. But where will they be on Thursday? Will they be stuffing their faces with turkey and pumpkin pie with their families, or will they be sitting alone in their home or apartment? Sure there are lots of festivities you can partake in from home alone: watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, the dog show (does a dog show come on immediately after the parade for everyone?), football, Christmas movies and, of course, Black Friday commercials. But those "Thanksgiving Things" just aren't as festive when you're alone.

This Thanksgiving, talk to your coworkers, friends, neighbors, and church family about what their plans for Thursday are. If you have an extra space at your table, set it for someone who needs a family. Someone you see every day could be suffering and lonely without you ever knowing. Ask. Do it today! I guarantee you'll be blessed for it!


Parenting Poll

So Mommies of the internet, I have a question for you.

I've been seeing a lot of hub-bub about parenting lately online as far as making the best decisions for your kids, how you should teach them this-or-that, what you should-or-shouldn't do, etc. Usually I make a habit of reading blogs and articles by people who understand that there are many methods of parenting and many ways of doing things with and for your kids. However, recently I've been seeing a lot of somewhat vindicitive articles popping up in mainstream news and across the blogosphere that assert that it's their way or you're a bad parent! Crazy!

So here is my question: How much of parenting do you feel is intuitive vs. learned? How often do you think you would already make the right choice for your child without a book, blog, wikipedia, your parents or your pediatrician weighing in?

I feel like it would be pretty high on the intuitive side. Maybe 85/15 or 90/10.

If you're feeling ambitious, how do you gauge what's "right"? Do you go by AAP guidelines? Or is there another pillar of "right" that you navigate with? Am I a bad parent for letting her chew leaves to get some cute pictures, haha? (I really didn't let her actually eat them!)


Baby Update and Zach's Big Feat

It is November 15th. November 15th! What? Where has this year gone?

We've been busy around our house with baby things. NR will be 8 months old a week from today (again, what?!). She has become quite the proficient Army crawler. She scoots herself all over the floor using her hands and elbows, belly on the ground, mostly dragging her legs. She is giving the dog a run for his money!

She has had two bottom front teeth since September 7th. Sunday, November 13th, her top front left tooth broke through. Yesterday, her top right lateral incisor (the one next to the front teeth) broke through. That right front tooth on the top is not far behind, either. She's going to be eating steak before we know what happens!

She has also learned to pull up on her bed rail. Both the army crawl and the pulling up were pretty close to overnight feats. She was pulling really hard on things, and then one day she was able to stand up. With the crawling, I literally had just laughed about how she would lay on her belly and flail in "superman" position and think she was going to crawl and the next day she was scooting all over the place!

It has been so fun to watch her grow and change and learn. I think she is so smart and definitely funny! She has a delightful personality--loves people, doesn't know a stranger, always has a smile for you, loves kisses and peek-a-boo, loves animals and has a little sass about her, too!

Zach fixed our van over the weekend! It wasn't overly broken...at least to start. Several weeks ago, he changed our brake pads. Our friend Sid showed him how to do the front and my Dad showed him the back. Well, since then there has been a thump...or a knock...some kind of sound that I'm not sure how to describe going on when we would brake. Dad said it could be something with the caliper and it just needed to settle in and would stop when it did.

Well, instead of better, it got worse and was knocking from 0mph to about 30mph and then it would stop. Then, of course, it would knock again as we slowed. Zach went to take the tire off and look at the brakes again and see if he could tell what was making the noise and one of the lugs stuck. When he gave it a little more elbow grease--and weight--to get it loose, the bolt broke off! So the van became undrivable and had a new thing that needed fixed.

Well, after having our friend Sean come by and help for a while (to no avail--we didn't have the tool they needed to finish the fix) and then being rescued tool-wise by our friend Sid (he's the man!), Zach was able to replace the bolt, adjust the brake, but the tire back on and we drove on it without the wheel falling off or anything! I am so proud of him! If you don't know us personally or don't know us well, you should know this is a HUGE feat for Zach because apart from changing oil and jumping a battery, he really knew nothing about cars until the past few weeks!


Flower Hair Clip and the cutest Kitty I've Ever Seen

This week I made an amazing, season-defying, simple, *almost* no-sew flower hair clip for NR. Do you like all those adjectives? I do.

My unbelievably talented cousin, Nici, had a couple of adorable hair clips made of felt when she took NR’s pictures at about 5 weeks and I fell in love with them. So, the last time I was in Hobby Lobby I picked up some felt. The deal was 4 for $1, so I picked up white, black, orange and yellow. I also picked up a bag of metal hair clips. They’re the same ones every hair bow and do-dad is attached to. They were somewhere in the 3-4 dollar range for something like 20 of them. Not bad. I had flowers on my mind, but as I was checking out, the cashier said something like, “making Halloween projects, I see” and suddenly my mind was filled with jack-o-lanterns and candy corn. I didn’t make any of those for Halloween this year, but did end up making something else Halloween-y…more on that at the bottom of the post.

First, I took a plain piece of paper and sketched out a flower, then cut it out and traced it onto the yellow felt. I used a plain pencil, but chalk would have worked a lot better, I just didn’t have any on hand. I tried using pinking shears to cut it out, but it didn’t look right, so I went to straight scissors. The petals ended up just a little lopsided, but I figured since this was my maiden voyage into the waters of felt flowers, it would be ok. Then I traced another flower onto the orange felt and cut it out.
The yellow flower turned out smaller than the orange because I had to cut it down after the pinking shears didn’t work. So I hot glued the yellow on top of the orange and placed a green button in the center. (I got 100 assorted buttons for $5 at hobby lobby) Then I just sewed the button on through both layers of felt. I made sure to sew the button on REALLY WELL because NR inevitably pulls headbands off in the car and chews on them and I didn’t want her choking on the button. As a matter of fact, I usually take her headband off before putting her in the car seat to prevent such gnawing.

Then I cut out a small rectangle of white felt and glued the clip to the felt, then the felt to the flower. It looked OK, but wasn’t really necessary.

Finally, I decided that it needed a leaf. I pulled out some green rickrack that I’d bought for NR’s Christmas outfit and cut off a piece. After struggling for a few minutes to figure out how to make it look like a leaf, I took it in to my husband and asked him what he thought and in 2 seconds flat he’d folded it to look like a leaf. Sickening, but I’m glad I have him, because I’d still be standing there trying to figure out how to make that rickrack look leaf-ish without him. I glued the little leaf to the back and put a small square of white over the edges so they won’t ravel or scratch at NR’s head.
It doesn’t look fabulous, but that part is against her head or the headband, so it’s fine for now and I’ll think ahead a little better next time.
Voila! My flower hair clip is finished! It defies seasons because the colors look either summery or autumn-y depending on the outfit you match it with.
Here’s NR on her 1st Halloween wearing the other thing I made with my felt—two little kitty ears!


Check me out on Playdate Crashers!

I got to do a guest review on Playdate Crashers today! Thanks, Jamie and Krista, for the chance to review the LeBibble on the site! (BTW, the more I use it, the more I like it...)

If you want to be a mom, are a mom, or mom of multiples, this site is for you! Check out their product reviews, podcast (makes me laugh out loud every episode!), and blog just to start! There's tons of great stuff to find on Playdate Crashers. Their tag line is "Where Real Moms Meet", so if that's you, you're a playdate crasher.

The Playdate Crashers

Life's a playdate. Crash it.



Wow! Haven't been here in quite some time! It's been such a busy...well, month! I'll hopefully get some more detailed posts on here later, but these are the things we've been up to lately:

  • I turned 27 and one of my Nieces turned 9 on the same day--My parents came to visit bringing her and her sister along for some family fun

  • Zach turned the big 3-0, so we had a little shin-dig

  • We made a trip to Indy to see some of our favorite bands in concert

  • Hit Nashville, IN on the way back home for some small-town fall shopping

  • NR had her first 2 overnights away from us

  • Our church partnered with two other westside (yes, in Evansville that is one word) churches for the first ever westside Trunk-or-Treat

  • I proposed a huge makeover for our church Nursery to the board (hoping to hear back with approval on that soon...)

Whew! And those are just the highlights! What happened for you in the merry month of October?