Friday, December 30, 2011

Goodbye, 2011

Last year, I took a look back and made a list of things from the previous year for which I was thankful.  This year, I thought I’d do the same thing.  Christmas was a great end to the year and made me feel so loved and so blessed.  And now, since there is only a couple days left of the year, here is what I’m thankful for in 2011. 
1.The absolute JOY that our daughter has brought to our lives.  She’s such an enormous blessing.


2. Getting to watch our family enjoy Dinah.  Grandparents, cousins, aunts, uncles, great-grandparents, great-aunts…that girl is truly loved. 
3.   An impromptu road trip to visit (and surprise) our sister. 
4.   Siblings.  I love ‘em.  All of them.  Dean and I both have the best siblings anyone could ask for.  My heart is always full after a visit with any of our siblings.  And, for a girl who grew up with only brothers, it’s amazing to have 3 precious sisters. 
 
5.       A new car after the old one completely died, and one that is reliable.  I love my car. 
6.       Being able to check off several items from my wishlist when I felt like it would be years before I got it whittled down. 
7.       My mom driving down every single week and spending half the week to babysit Dinah so I don’t have to pay for daycare or leave her with someone else.  It’s a little trying at times, but such a huge help and such a precious thing for Dinah and her Grandma. 
8.     Our dogs.  I’m not as crazy about our dogs as some people are theirs, but I really enjoy being welcomed home with such genuine excitement and I love how protective Musket is of Dinah.

9.    No more construction.  No more living in a partially unfinished house. 
10.  And, as of this week, thanks to a collaborative effort by our parents, a fully functioning TV.  No more watching movies & Netflix on the computer.  No more watching movies on a borrowed TV. 
God has been so good to us, and has again used our families and friends to bless us in so many ways. 

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Christmas Through the Eyes of a Child

Something different happened for Christmas this year in our family…children.  Our families are so far apart that there’s just no way to incorporate both in the same holiday.  When we first got married, we tried, but it was just too much.  We spent more time in the car than we did with our families.  So, now we alternate, Thanksgiving with one and Christmas with the other, and switch it the next year.  I got to spend my niece’s first Christmas with her, but that meant that Dinah’s first Christmas last year was with my side of the family.  This was the first Christmas for them to spend together.  And, it was wonderfully sweet. 
My SIL bought them matching pajamas for the occasion, and they were pretty precious in them. 

I loved watching them open their gifts from Santa, and see what was in their stockings on Christmas morning. 

(Lyla sat down with Dinah, and then asked me to take a picture of them"agether")


They talked, they played, they shared, and they laughed.  They loved every minute of each other.  And, I loved every minute of seeing them together. 
And, for your enjoyment, here is a video of them in the new car Grandma bought for them. 


It was the first of many Christmases to come, shared with children.  Next year, we'll be with my side again for my newest niece's (on the way) first Christmas.  The year after that, we'll have THREE little ones on Dean's side.  What fun!!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Decorations of Red

I promised to post pics of our meager Christmas decorations.  While I miss my big pretty tree, I’m happy with what we’ve done this year.  Someday I’ll put my big tree up again, but this will do for now. 
Since our tree is so small, we thought it needed to be elevated so we put it on the piano.  It’s safer there anyway, so it’s out of reach of our little monkey, which is important since I accidentally bought breakable bulbs to put on it.  I’m willing to bet that if we’d left the tree within her reach, she’d be toddling around the house, dragging the tree behind her and leaving a trail of broken bulbs in her wake. 

Even though we don’t have room for the big tree, the house is finished enough this year that we were able to add some other decorations elsewhere.  We have brick where the wood stove sits, so we hung garland and lights on it, so it’s almost like a fireplace.  Cozy.  Well, except we still haven’t gotten the stove pipe installed so it’s not actually functioning yet.  Details. 
Then, we wrapped garland around the beam and made it look all festive.  There’s just something about having a wood beam in a living room wrapped or draped with garland.  I love it.  And, when I say “we” here, I mean that Dean did this entirely.  He took over a lot of it, because he’s much more meticulous.  I just tell him what I want. 
And last but not least, my wreath, or letter “A” rather, that I made for the door.  I was feeling crafty.  I also learned that I don’t have time to be feeling crafty.  It was kind of fun, though. 

*As always, please excuse my lack of photography skills. 

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Christmas to Christmas

Last year about this time, I was writing about having started back to work after maternity leave.  I miss maternity leave.  Well, I miss everything except getting behind on the bills.  I’ve been part-time for a year now.  It sure doesn’t seem like it, but I’m so grateful that I’m not working full-time and that I still get some time with my little monkey. 
When I went back to work after my maternity leave, this is what I left:
And now, this is what I leave:

I still don’t know how this happened.  She has had strict instruction not to grow up.  Clearly, she takes me seriously.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Deck The..uh..Walls?

I love decorating for Christmas.  My brother’s birthday is early in December, so growing up; our tradition was to wait until after his birthday to decorate for Christmas.  After he moved out, I ditched that tradition and started decorating right after Thanksgiving.  And, since Thanksgiving was yesterday, it’s TIME!!
Walking in the house with a Christmas tree lit up fills me with joy, every time.  To me, the perfect sized tree is one that almost scrapes the ceiling once you get the angel on (or if you’re like my younger brother, the star).  Last year, I was so excited to get to put my tree up again after not being able to decorate the year before.  This year, having more furniture and a toddler instead of an infant, there just won’t be room so it’ll be another year without my big pretty tree. 

However, I don’t intend to let my lack of space stop me from adequately decking my halls, or more accurately, walls.  I’m in the process of making a (sort of) wreath for my front door.  I got the idea from this blog, which I found through Pinterest.  I’m doing it a little different, so I’ll be sure and post pictures of the finished product.  I’m also thinking some garland hung on the beam in the living room/kitchen, and a miniature tree on the piano.  We’ll see what else we can come up with. 

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

A Look Back

I sometimes struggle with keeping this blog alive.  I slack off in writing.  I start thinking there’s no point.  But, the truth is, it’s serving its purpose.  My goal in starting this was to give me a way to document life, and to give me a way to look back in the future and remember what I was doing and thinking and struggling with and achieving.  The other day, I actually went back and read some of my old posts.  It was so nice to be reminded of what’s happened in the last two years.  Some of the things I wrote about I had forgotten.  Some things I remembered, but this gave me a clearer picture of my emotions during each time.  It’s amazing what has happened in my life since I started this.  When I started, we had just moved out of our apartment and were living in a hotel.  We went from there to living in a travel trailer, to house-sitting and then staying with our pastor and his wife, to finally moving into our house.  We sold our vehicles and bought different ones.  We faced a layoff the same week we found out we were expecting a baby.  We went from two incomes to one and a half.  We became parents.  The list goes on.  Things have turned completely upside down, for the good and the bad.  And this is where it’s all documented.  It’s amazing to look back.  If you don’t blog, or keep a journal of any kind whether online or paper, I highly recommend it. 
This week, I’m looking back on everything, and giving thanks.  I’m still standing.  My husband is still standing beside me.  God is good. 
Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Beauty Products

I’ve found that when it comes to makeup and hair, but particularly makeup, I don’t just walk in the store, grab what I need and go.  Dean doesn’t understand why I don’t just grab what I used the last time and get on with my life.  Well, if I find I like it particularly well, I do just grab the tried and true.  But, if it didn’t stick out in my mind, I peruse the aisles and wonder if there’s something better out there.  Every so often, I get a wild hair and read review after review of products trying to find that extra special product.  It doesn’t usually amount to much. 
I am by no means someone you’d go to for style or beauty advice, but sometimes you find the best things just by comparing notes with people you know.  So, here are a few of my favorites and/or go-to items. 
1.   Almay Smart Shade FoundationI’ve been using this for the last few years.  I wanted to try it when it came out, because I liked the idea of not having to match the right shade.  Since I started using it, they have come out with Smart Shade/Smart Balance and Smart Shade/Anti-Aging.  I’ve used them all.  I didn’t notice much difference between the normal and the smart balance.  Most recently, I decided to try the Anti-Aging, and it’s not as runny as the others.  I’ll probably stick with this one. 


2.   CoverGirl LashBlast Mascara
I tried this mascara and liked it, so I bought it the next couple of times.  The last couple times I’ve bought mascara, I tried something different.  Once my current tube is out, I’m going back.  It’s by far my favorite. 

3.   Napoleon Perdis Mighty Concealer Pen
I haven’t been using this concealer long.  I haven’t tried a ton of different ones, but I’ve never found anything I like.  I found this one at Ulta.  I was looking for something to cover the dark circles that plague me thanks to a teething baby, but I didn’t want it to settle into the creases like the others I’ve tried.  It’s definitely pricey, but so far it’s much superior to anything I’ve tried in the past.

4.   Aquage Uplifting Foam
This is THE best root lifter I’ve tried.  Thanks to my growing addiction to pinterest, I found this great hair blog.  If you’re on pinterest, you’ve probably seen it.  That’s where I heard about this product, and because my hair can always use help in the volume department I decided to try it.  It’s also a little pricier than I’ve used in the past, but so worth it.  My hair has looked worlds better since I started using it. 

5.       Redken Body Full Shampoo
Another discovery thanks to my new favorite blog.  It costs about 3 times more than what I usually spend on shampoo. I had some Amazon gift cards, so I decided to use those and give it a try.  It lathers really well, though, so I use about a third of what I normally use.  It cleans pretty well, and like I said, my hair has had much more volume lately, but I attribute most of that to the root lifter.  I don’t know how often I’ll splurge on it, but by the looks of it, I won’t run out for quite awhile.  So, we’ll see how much I think it’s worth it by then. 

So those are my current favorites.  What do you love? Please share!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

As The Cold Wind Blows

Possibly one of the best known facts about me is that I HATE FALL.  Yes, I had to emphasize it.  Plain text would not do if I was going to convey my sentiments accurately.  I dread fall and, worse, winter all year.  I’m not kidding.  In the middle of summer when it’s 110 degrees outside, if the thought of winter comes to mind, I cringe.  Yesterday, after I stepped out work, my fears were realized.  It was cloudy, 45 degrees, and windy.  Because I hate cold, and unless I move it is unavoidable for the next few months, I’ve decided I need to come up with a list of things about Fall/Winter that I like.  I guess you could say I need to look on the bright side, find the silver lining.  So, here’s my list in progress.  Please share yours with me.  I can use all the help I can get. 
Reasons to love tolerate Fall/Winter
1.       Boots
2.       Fireplaces
3.       Starbucks

Okay, so that’s all I’ve come up with so far.  It’s going to be a LONG winter. 

Friday, October 28, 2011

Treasure

"The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn the more places you'll go." — Dr. Seuss, "I Can Read With My Eyes Shut!"

 
Before Dinah was born, Dean and I bought her some books.  We thought it would be cute to incorporate some of our childhood favorites on little shelves as part of the nursery d├ęcor.  Our intent, however, did not end with mere decoration.  We read to her from the time she was born.  While I was still on maternity leave, we would sit in the rocking chair and I would read aloud to her whatever I was reading at the time. 
Now, she has grown a little collection.  We keep them in a basket next to the rocking chair, and she loves to go through them all and scatter them.  She also enjoys being read to, although her attention span isn’t long so we don’t usually make it through an entire book before she’s ready to move on to the next.  She owns two books that she actually enjoys enough to listen to the whole thing. 
This is one of the books we bought her before she was born, because we both loved it.  We haven’t shown it special attention though; she has come to love it on her own. 

I found this book on sale before Borders went out of business.  It’s a touch and feel book, and she loves to feel of the different textures. 

She has been given several books that I had never read, some of which are really fun.  Her Grandma gave her Do You Have a Hat.  It takes a simple theme, written for young ages, and incorporates historical figures.  Her Aunt “Mimi” & Uncle Josh gave her If You Give a Cat a Cupcake for her birthday.  It’s just fun. 
I’m looking forward to seeing how her reading habits and tastes develop as she gets older. 
"There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate's loot on Treasure Island."
 — Walt Disney

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Saving Some Dough

Remember how I was trying to save money, and entertaining the idea of starting to coupon?  Yeah.  I kind of fell off the wagon.  I’m going to get back at it, though!  I think it might be easier to have the Sunday paper delivered to me, but around here, it’s more expensive that way.  Paying extra to have it delivered kind of defeats the whole “saving money” idea.  I’m in town for church every Sunday, anyway.  And, there’s a little grocery store down the road, so if all else fails I can get a local paper from there.  It’s not the paper from the closest biggest city, but it would do in a pinch. 

Once I convinced her not to eat it, she set about squishing it and putting it in a cup, and I set about making my laundry detergent.
Below are the recipes, and my estimated savings.
Laundry Detergent (recipe from Why Not Sew)
1 bar soap (any kind)
1 cup Borax
1 cup washing soda
water
Grate soap into a big pot; pour in 1 gallon of water.  Cook until soap dissolves.  Add Borax and washing soda and bring to a boil.  Turn off heat.  Add 1 gallon of water.  Stir well. 

The recipe my SIL uses (linked in text above) differs in that it makes a bigger batch, and that it uses Fels-Naptha soap.  This recipe makes 2 gallons.  I used Ivory soap this time, but I may try Dove in the future just to make it a little easier on the skin.  How much am I saving? Let’s compare!
All Laundry Detergent:  $4.77 for 32 loads --- Homemade $0.32 for 32 loads 
Play Dough (recipe from Skip to my Lou)
1 cup flour
1 cup warm water
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon oil
¼ cup salt
food coloring
Combine all ingredients except food coloring in a medium saucepan.  Cook on medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens into dough (about 1-2 minutes).  Place ball of dough on wax paper and separate into fourths (Dinah is playing with one fourth of the batch in the pic above).  Add a few drops of food coloring to each section and knead. 
I didn’t have cream of tartar, so I substituted a splash of lemon juice and it worked like a charm.  I put the sections in a Ziploc bag with the food coloring and kneaded so I wouldn’t stain my hands.  Dinah enjoyed helping me knead the dough to get it colored.  SO easy! I believe 4 cans/colors of play doh costs about $5.00 in the store.  Estimated cost: $1.16. 

What do you do to save money?  Please share!!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Thoroughly Persuaded

“No distance of place or lapse of time can lessen the friendship of those who are thoroughly persuaded of each other's worth.”                 Robert Southey
When I was in high school, I had a teacher that would have a quote written on the chalkboard everyday when we came to class.  This quote stood out to me then, because my best friend had recently moved over 1200 miles away.  I’ve never forgotten it, and it still resonates with me now that we live 160 miles from our nearest parents and siblings.  As I’ve gotten older and learned to appreciate family more, I’ve often wished we could be closer to our family.  I often feel pressure from my side of the family to move closer, but it’s a catch 22. 
I love my family.  I love the landscape of the area where I grew up.  But, aside from those two factors, I hold almost no fondness of the place.  I miss my family, especially my brothers, and I want our kids to grow up as friends like my cousins and I did.  The problem is, the closer we got to my family, the farther we’d be from Dean’s side of the family, and they are just as dear to us.  And then there’s the area we live now.  This place has been home to us both for 7 years now.  We’ve grown so much in so many ways since we’ve been here.  It’s where we met.  We may not have as many friends here now as we did while we were in college, but we love the area and we LOVE our church. 
The simple truth is that we have to resign ourselves to the fact that we will never live in a little cluster with all of our parents and siblings close by.  It’s harder for me than Dean, because he didn’t grow up as close to his family as I did.  It’s still just as hard for him to be apart from his siblings, though. 
This past Sunday at church, I sat and listened to a great message about prioritizing your life.  Abraham was willing to do anything God asked of him, even when God asked him to sacrifice his own son, Isaac.  We have to be willing to sacrifice, and put nothing ahead of our obedience to God.  If we do that, he will be faithful, like he was to Abraham in giving him a son in his old age and then again by providing a ram to sacrifice instead. 
So, I will be obedient to where God leads.  If He leads us to move closer to one side of our family or the other, or if He leads us in the opposite direction of either, we’ll follow Him.  If He wants us to stay right where we’re at, that’s where we’ll be.  And, even when we’re miles and miles from those we hold the most dear, our ties to them will remain, because we are thoroughly persuaded of their worth.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Here

Good news.  I didn’t fall off the face of the earth.  I am alive and well.   I’ve just been a little uninspired, and a lot tired.  The weather has been beautiful around here lately, but this week we’re expecting our first frost.  I’m not looking forward to that or to the cooler temperatures this week.  It’s going to hit me like a ton of bricks that winter is just around the corner.  Words cannot express the depth of my contempt for winter.  For anybody that knows me, that’s no secret.  It’s dreary, void of color and life, but mostly it’s cold.  Cold makes me absolutely and utterly miserable.  I need to find a way to tolerate the season better.   Maybe if I invested in a bunch of cute winter clothes, or better yet, SHOES.  Hmm…yeah that’s not going to happen.   What can I do to lessen the impact of the impending doom winter?  I’m open to suggestions. 

Thursday, September 22, 2011

The First Birthday

Well, it happened.  Today, my baby turned ONE.  I’m not quite certain how this happened.  I don’t recall giving her permission to turn one.  But, she’s so darned cute, so I think I’ll let it slide.  As long as she promises not to ever turn sixteen. 
A lot has happened in the last year.  I went from being an elephant to being a normal human being again.  I went from sleeping to not sleeping.  Mostly, I went from a household of just me and my husband to a household of me, husband and baby.  People always tell you that when you have kids your life will be turned upside down.  Our lives are entirely different, and yet, it’s hard to imagine what life was like before. 
It all started like this.  
 One year ago, she entered our lives; our beautiful baby girl. 


She didn’t do much, aside from sleep, eat and poop.  And yet, we were enthralled with her.  We thought she was so much fun. 
But then, she became even more fun. 
And more. 
She’s brought such immense joy to our lives.  A smile from her can brighten my day quicker than anything.  A giggle makes my heart overflow.  The way she points and grins when I walk in the door makes me feel more welcome and appreciated than I’ve ever felt before.  She’s such a friendly, happy girl.  She makes an impression wherever she goes.  We love her more with each passing day. 

Happy Birthday to our precious Dinah!
 

Friday, September 9, 2011

A Fair Weekend

It’s fair time around these parts.  I haven’t been to the fair in a few years, but when I was growing up it was a big deal.  Dean and I will probably take Dinah to the local county fair this weekend.  She loves animals, and she loves being around people so I’m excited to see how she reacts.  My cousins’ kids have projects in the fair, and one has sheep to show in the county fair back home this weekend. (Good luck Samantha, Jessie & Waylon! Love you all!)
Growing up, I was in 4-H so I spent my summers making projects to enter in the fair, and even showed lambs a couple years.  My first lamb was a Southdown named Shari.  I was nine years old, and worked my little tail off taking care of and working that lamb.  A few weeks before the fair, my brother’s dog attacked her and I nursed her back to health, which included doctoring her wounds and giving her shots every day.  Yeah, I’m pretty hardcore like that.  We spent so much time together that summer.  If I had her out of her pen working with her and wanted to go inside for a drink or something, I didn’t even bother putting her up.  And, all the while I was inside; she would stand at the back door and bleat until I came back.  My grandpa thought it was the funniest thing, and came up with a little poem:
Rachel had a little lamb
its fleece as white as cotton
and everywhere that Rachel went
the lamb came a trottin’

Friday, September 2, 2011

This Time of Year

When I was in high school, I couldn’t have cared less about football for the most part.  I went to all the games, simply because I was in the band.  Sure, I cheered my team on (especially if it was a particularly good game), but I still didn’t care that much.  I didn’t really understand it, either.  I never bothered to.  I never felt school spirit.  I didn’t have a bad high school experience, but I never felt many ties there.  Last night was pretty much the biggest game of the year for my high school; the rivalry game.  I still don’t care. 
After high school, I went to a small college close to home for a couple years.  I had a little more school spirit there.  I did to start with anyway.  By the end, I hated that place.  When I left there, I transferred to a bigger, more respected university.    And then, something happened.  The place became dear to my heart.  It was home.  I cared more if we won or lost.  I felt a connection to the players, whether I knew them or not.  And, I began to love football.  I began to understand it better, because I wanted to understand it better.  At first, I only cared about my team, but as the time has passed, I’ve begun to develop opinions and loyalties of other teams as well.  I’m not a huge football fan.  I don’t care much about the NFL, but I love some college football. 
I’m proud of my alma mater.  I know the songs and chants. (I never knew the words to our high school fight song).  When I graduated from there, I felt as though I had accomplished something worthwhile.  I love the campus, and the buildings.  I loved the time I spent there.  Some of the best people I’ve ever known, I met there.  I worked harder there than I had ever worked before.  I learned more than I’d ever learned before, or since.  So now, I get excited when this time of year rolls around, because…
It’s football time in OKLAHOMA!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

The Way I Was Raised: A List

·         Be Honest.  Don’t lie, don’t cheat, and don’t steal. Telling half the truth is not the same as telling the truth. 
·         Don’t start fights, but finish them.
·         Don’t half-way do something.  If you’re going to do it, do it right and do it as best you can.   
·         Two wrongs don’t make a right. 
·         If you’re tired, or don’t feel good, it doesn’t give you the right to treat others poorly. 
·         Family takes care of each other.  Not just when it’s convenient.  Not just when they’re being attacked by an outside source.  Always.  Even if you have to sacrifice something. 
·         The American flag deserves respect.  Always stand for the Pledge of Allegiance and the National Anthem, take the hat off your head, and put your hand over your heart.  It’s a symbol that means something.  People sacrificed everything for that flag. 
·         Help those in need. 
·         Everything looks better with a coat of paint. 
·         Work hard. 

Thursday, August 25, 2011

The Mother of My Mother

My Grandma is awesome. 

 I’ve always loved the woman, but the older I get, the more I realize how great she really is.   She’s not perfect, but we all know that nobody is.  When I was a little girl, I remember looking at the pictures in my great-grandmother’s house of her kids, and then running to my mother and announcing that “Grandma is the prettiest of all her sisters.”  My mother agreed.  My grandmother never would.  She sells herself short.  She always does, and looks is just the beginning.  She has a great sense of humor.  She doesn’t know it.  She’s a very intelligent and wise woman.  She doesn’t know it.  I hear stories about other people’s grandmothers, including my mother’s, and I know how blessed I’ve been that God gave me the two Grandmas that He did.  A few weekends ago, my Mom and I took my baby girl and visited my Grandma’s sister.  It was fine.  She is always pleasant to me.  But, I think back on her life, and I hear her stories, and I always leave there grateful that I am my Grandma’s granddaughter and not someone else’s. My Grandma may not be perfect, but she loves her family.  There’s never been a doubt that she loved me, or my brothers, or my parents or aunts and uncles, or my cousins. There’s no doubt that she loves my daughter either, or any of her other great-grandkids for that matter.  And she loves them and knows them all individually.  Now that I have a daughter, I realize how different she is from my own great-grandmother.  She’ll do anything for any of her kids, grandkids or great-grandkids.  She never thinks about what we can do for her, but rather what she can do to help us.  My other Grandma was like that too.  It’s only now that I’m older that I realize how rare that is.  I’ve written about my Grandma before, but she’s fresh on my mind, her birthday is coming up, and I’m so thankful to have her in my life. 

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Spotlight on Family: Brother-in-Law

This little series of mine is coming to an end.  When I started it, I had my reservations.  I still kind of do.  Mostly because these people mean a great deal to me, and I want to do them justice.  I’ve come to realize, it just isn’t possible to convey in words what they mean to my life.  They’re family, after it all.  That kind of sums it up.  You doubt it as a teenager, but when you get older, you realize that nobody loves you like family.  There are certainly some families who, for some reason, don’t have that relationship.  They have relatives that are just not devoted, loyal, loving, caring family members.  I’ve seen it, and it breaks my heart.  I, however, have been lucky.  And, I still believe that I am not in the minority.  So, I will keep up the trend, and tell you about my second brother-in-law. 
His name is Pepper.  Well, it is now anyway.  Our sweet little niece unknowingly renamed him when she couldn’t say his name.  I feel like we have several similarities.  It stands to reason, being that our spouses are siblings, and the two of them have several similarities.  He’s kind of quiet at first, but he’s a lot of fun.  He loves to laugh, and he has a heart of gold.  My favorite thing about him, though, is the way he treats my sister (okay, technically sister-in-law, but try telling that to my heart).  He makes her happy, he treats her well, and he puts her first.  I can’t ask for more than that.  I love the way they complement each other.  The other thing about him is that he’s such a sweet uncle.  Besides my daughter, and our mutual niece, he has one other niece (who is also an absolute doll, by the way) and they all three think he’s pretty great.  He’s pretty laid back, but I have a feeling if anybody messed with his nieces, we’d see a whole different side of him emerge.  Good ol’ Uncle Pepper. 

Friday, August 19, 2011

It's Sneaking Up on Me

This is my sweet baby the day after she was born.  It’s one of my favorite pictures of her. She was just so precious and peaceful (and, if you ask me, looking pretty darn cute for a newborn).  I wish she was still this size.  Except I don’t.  Except I do.  Oh, the conflict of a mother’s heart.  So happy to watch them grow, and yet so sad at the same time. 

This is the same sweet baby just last week.  She’s changed a bit.  Sigh. 
Where on earth did the time go? In a little over a month she’ll be turning ONE.  As in, ONE YEAR, a whole stinkin’ year!  Birthday plans are in the works.  I’m not good at planning events, but I’m doing what I can.  Dean wanted to have a cookout at our house, so that’s what we’re going to do.  He also wanted to have a yard full of grass.  That will not be happening.  With the month of July in our state being the hottest July on record of any state, and a dog who digs hole after hole after hole to try to keep cool, it’s been a losing battle to try and grow grass. Rain would do wonders, but we just haven’t had enough to work the magic we’d hope for.  It’s not going to be a huge party, but I think (and hope) it’ll be fun.  My goal is for everybody to come together and enjoy each other, and celebrate the first year of our sweet girl.  I want Dinah to be able to look back at pictures when she gets older, and feel how loved she was from the very beginning.