Friday, January 30, 2009


What do these things have in common, you ask? Cupcake by Kooky Culinary Give up yet??????

Answer: My recent conversation with Grace!

Goes like this:

Mama: "Grace, you're going to be 2 really, really soon! What kind of birthday party do you want to have, pumpkin?"
Grace: "Old McDonald Elmo birthday party with pumpkins!!!!!!!!!!!"
Mama: "Okie dokie, pumpkin, your birthday is in March, how about 2 out of 3?"

So knowing how much Grace loves animals we were able to scope out a local farm that could accomodate our birthday request. We went out to check it out a couple of weeks back and Grace got SO excited - she talked about it for days, "And there was a duck, and a pig, and a joey (yes, they even have a baby kangaroo!), and an ELEPHANT!! (not sure where this came from - no elephant, although they do have a zebra and a camel???)". They even have a cow print mini choo-choo for the kids to take a little ride through the farm and will let the kids feed and pet some of the baby animals - can't wait to see Grace's reaction!

So there it is, we're having an Old McDonald Barnyard Bash Birthday Party (and I'm sure we can squeeze in some cupcakes of her beloved furry red friend somewhere in there :)!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Lifesavers Candy

I've got Spring on the brain...and all thanks to my mom!

I volunteer in a Paired Reading program with first graders at one of our local schools and an unexpected glitch in scheduling left me with 1 1/2 hours of free time this morning before I needed to pick up the little pumpkin at MDO.

I immediately called my mom since I remembered she was headed to Ann Taylor Loft in search of some spring pieces and asked if she minded a tag-along. So off we went. Me with the intention of only helping her shop...after all, we're in the middle of putting together Grace's big girl room and Hudson's nursery.

Of course, my no-shopping rule was short lived :) She did find some fabulous pieces and somehow I came home with two candy-colored tops and a little lilac cami I can't wait to wear. The first was a great steal, one of those shopping moments when the clouds part and sunshine just streams in as you realize that you've just found a great deal (can't you just picture Stacy and Clinton from What Not to Wear in the background - ha, ha). It's hard to tell from the pic but it's a canary yellow and white tweedy jacket that just makes me think SPRING! Never mind that I can't button it right now and that the belly makes it even more cropped than it's intended, it made me smile, esp. when the sales girl told me it was $30 from $129! I may even have to work out a whole Easter outfit around it :)

The second was this tangerine shrunken cardigan that I paired with a ruffly lilac cami - so fun! The colors make me think of lifesavers :) I think I'm going to wear it with my favorite chunky turquoise bangle and some not-recommended-to-wear-while pregnant stacked sandals that I just love. Thank goodness, we didn't hit a shoe shop! Hurry up Spring, I'm ready!

POP! goes the belly

Don't know if it's because we've been reading lots of Dr. Seuss books lately, but everytime we read Oh, the places you'll go, I immediately think of Hudson and the size of my belly, as in oh, the size you will grow!

Here's a pic back in December a couple of days before Christmas

And here's a pic from this week - definitely lots pointier! At my last OB visit (15 wks.) I was telling my doc how huge I felt compared to when I was pregnant with Grace. She politely told me that I had only gained 3 lbs. since my first visit. Not possible, I thought. Well, I'm sure that's all bound to change at my visit next week since this week I've been HUNGRY!

Now that the nausea seems to be gone for the most part (happy dance, happy dance), I'm starting to enjoy food again :) Blueberries, Totino's canadian bacon pizza (fake pizza as I like to call it), Fuji apples, Country Time lemonade (powder mix not the ready-to-drink kind), Krispy Kreme donuts, and Coke icees - bad I know. Now if I could only get rid of these headaches...

Sunday, January 25, 2009

One busy weekend

What started as one project soon turned into a major overhaul. Tell me I'm not alone in this, this happens at your place too, right? You start out working on something, a contained project if you will, and next thing you know, you realize this needs to be done before that can be done and this other thing would make the first thing even better and on and on and on...home improvement/decorating domino style.

We planned to simply finish emptying the guest room and prep it for Grace's big girl room transformation. That led to the hall closet needing to be reorganized, baby gear needing sorting, the kitchen drawers needing cleaning out, the recipe file organized, bins of clothes needing to be separated into sell/donate/keep piles, Grace's toys needing sorting out, dust collectors - I mean stuffed animals - bagged for donation (yeaaaaaay!), and the list goes on...I still haven't tackled my mess of a closet, although that is next on the list.

Amidst all that, we've been working on this:

So far, Grace just likes to sit on the potty with her clothes ON - not to keen on going diaper free just yet.

And here's the little pumpkin excited over the pink paint in her big girl room Do you remember that spinning arts & craft toy (like the ones used in pottery) that you could squirt paint in while it was moving and it would make a little modern art piece tie-dye style? EXACTLY what we feared would happen to the room if Grace was in there "helping", so right after that photo Grace and I left for a couple of hours to do a little shopping for baby brother :) Had to get out of the house...every couple of minutes she would run to the (locked) bedroom door and say, "You in there, Daddy? I know you in there Daddy. Daaaaaady, DAAAAAAAADY!!!!"

You know that quote, "the way to a guy's heart"...well, the way to a pregnant woman's heart is to help her carry out all the projects she comes up with and to do so while at least PRETENDING to be happy to do so. Lance was so great this weekend. Not only did he humor me with my projects, he did all the lifting, moving, and painting AND he let me sleep in this morning, cooked Grace breakfast, and when I emerged from my 2-hour hibernation (Grace has suddenly decided that waking up 3-4-5 times a night is the cool thing to do), had scrambled eggs, bacon, and toast with jelly ready for me. Gotta love him! Thanks, hon!

A very productive weekend indeed! Hope you all had a great weekend, whether filled with projects or project free.


This weekend Mimi & Pop came over so that Pop could help Lance move a huge HEAVY tv out of our guest room - the final step to emptying what will soon be Grace's big girl room. Amidst the furniture moving, we took a time out to "play" one of Grace's new favorite games. This one has Lance written all over it, I tell ya!

So what is this game you ask? Well, let's see how to explain it...a picture is worth a 1000 words, right? But first, I must say I found out about this father-daughter Saturday morning ritual a couple of weeks ago when the sweetest fits of laughter were coming from Grace's playroom :) You're still wondering right? Well, you see that is Lance lifting Grace waaaaay up in the air to place plastic Easter egg halfs on the ceiling fan blades. On this day, Pop was there to help steady the fan blades and to help with the lifting after the "Again, again" requests from the little pumpkin. Even Mimi got in on the action You're still thinking, "what is so fun about that" right? Well, the fun part for a two year old comes when you TURN ON the fan and the plastic eggs go flying everywhere! Giggles guaranteed. Although I'm sure this should come with a hazard warning, a "do not try this at home" of some sort - at least make sure the fan is not going very's to the simple joys of childhood!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Noonie's Little Sidekick

Two weeks ago my mom had a birthday or a "Happy Noonie Day" Party as Grace called it. Grace wasted no time helping Noonie blow out her birthday candle, not once but twice!

Noonie's actual birthday (when you ask Grace to help blow out candles, she does the funniest bunny-teeth expression and then blows through her teeth) Check out the sly smile at the prospect of cake! And later on that weekend during her dinner party Here Noonie, have a little taste test Strawberry pie EVERYWHERE! Happy Birthday Mom/Noonie!!!! We love you!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Hudson's Nursery

S.O.S. HELP!!! 'Been looking for bedding for Hudson's nursery and I can't find any that make me go, "THAT ONE - that's the one". It doesn't usually take me long to decide what I like and once I pick something I usually just run with it, but no such luck on this one.

Here's an example: Grace's crib bedding was a discontinued, no-return Wendy Bellissimo set that I bought from a boutique in California BEFORE we knew she was going to be a girl - I just knew in my heart of hearts that she was a girl and luckily I was right, otherwise I don't think our son would have enjoyed the "Vintage Sophia Leopard" bedding as much as Grace has. So I need ideas from all you creative minds out there. Crib sets you've seen, color suggestions, good online sources, etc. Here's what I don't want: any type of strong theme like puppy dogs, sailboats, or anything like that - one exception, I do like to incorporate vintage elements and images, like vintage planes, football, etc. And although we are big LSU fans, I do not want a purple and gold nursery, though I'm certain we'll throw in some fun LSU items here and there :)

So far, this is what I've come across - I like certain things about each one, just not one that's the whole package.

Monkeys from Pottery Barn Kids - I like the modern colors, the crib skirt, and stripes on the wall (and I do have a little weakness for sock monkeys even with my theme aversion :) Asher Collection by Serena & Lily - this is probably what I like the most thus far, but they don't have this design/color scheme in a crib set . I really, really like that shaggy rug! All-American by Rosenberry Rooms - similar color scheme as the Asher set above but probably more red than I want Denim Patchwork crib and twin sets by Rosenberry Rooms Rex by Serena & Lily - simple, clean lines Skip Hop Mod Dot - color possibilities Alphabet by Dwell Studio for Target - colors and retro feel of the alphabet Pinwheels by MiGi Collection for Target - just because I like that old-fashioned pull toy dog! Any help will be greatly appreciated!!!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Oh, no...Brother Sister sets here we come!

I've crossed to the dark side, yes "dark side" as in star wars. I'm not much of a star wars fan, but a very fitting analogy right about now. One of those things I said I would never do when I was in my 20's child free and care free. Funny how all those comments come back to haunt you, huh? Fast forward ten or so years and BAM! I've purchased boy-girl matching sets for Grace and Hudson. And here comes the kicker, NOT for this year, for NEXT Summer at that, when they're 3 and 1. Couldn't help myself, the force was too strong.

So what did I purchase, you ask? A little brown checked bloomer set for Grace and the coordinating jon jon for Hudson
big sis Grace

little bro Hudson

And as if matchy-matchy wasn't bad enough, they reverse to matching puppy dogs :O

Oh, well, they were on sale so I'm trying to tell myself that 4 outfits for $60 is a pretty good deal!

I have a feeling they'll be wearing them on the puppy side a lot more than the ice cream side since Lance will probably think the ice cream is too girly for Hudson, but maybe I can sneak a little picture of the two of them barefoot and enjoying some ice cream cones during those hot summer days in their matchy-matchy sets :)

Monday, January 12, 2009

Project Time

Every time I tell Grace we're going to do a project her little face lights up and she gets that same sweet grin from when she was itty bitty - I. LOVE. IT. She also runs to grab one of her aprons to wear - too many baking projects?? :)

Deciding where to put valentine heart stickers is serious business :)
The paper punch was definitely a hit. White glue (messiest of all) - her favorite. Little hands busy at work. Thank goodness for re-positionable stickers! Grace had definite ideas as to where she wanted them to go. A little more glue never hurt anything, right? Add a little love note... (and a couple of decorative marker strokes to her chin :) and voila! When I stuck it on the refrigerator Grace told me, "It's SO pretty, Mama" As part of our "love project", I asked Grace who she loved so I could capture it on a little memory sticker for years to come. Here are her five answers in the order she gave them to me:
1. Elmo's world
2. Cookie monster
3. Jaxon (our dog)
4. My family
5. Crayons
Later, to finish off our valentine decorating Grace had fun showing her Daddy exactly where to place the vinyl stick-ons :) ...and yes, she was still wearing her apron ;)

Friday, January 9, 2009

Valentine Party for the Pint Sized Set

Cute, cute, cute dress from HarmonyWear on Etsy!

Since I feel like I'm starting to get a little bit of my energy back (yeaaaaa!) I decided to plan a mini Valentine Party/Play Date for a few of Grace's little girly friends the week of Valentine's Day. Hmmmm...maybe it's just an excuse to set up a sweet table, make some yummy pink treats and come up with creative activities??? Excuse or not I'm excited as is Grace as she keeps telling me "pink hearts pretty"! All in all we'll have three little girls 5 and under, two of their little brothers who are both about 18 mo. and I figured could play together while the girls did girly stuff, and Grace - so 6 kiddos altogether. Now that I think about it, other than our 4th of July party this may be Grace's biggest playdate yet! Hopefully not too many tears or squabbles ***fingers crossed***.

So I think the whole idea started when my friend Michelle told me about these cute owl plates from Target. I love little owls so of course I had to go check them out and they were indeed too cute for words, as were the matching placemats and sparkly cups (Grace's favorite). Next came these little princess wand making kits I spotted on clearance at Michael's for $1.49!! And I also picked up some 99c foam hearts for the girls to decorate with stickers, glitter and what not. And of course we'll make some cute cupcakes and decorate them with not just sprinkle hearts, but "shiny sprinkle hearts" as Grace pointed out to me :) So far the table is looking pretty cute, I think! And yes, it is set even though Valentine's is still a month away (I had to do a trial run since I like to visualize the whole thing :) I got the turtle plates for the two little brothers and their sparkly cups have dinosaurs instead of girly owls and hearts, and I figured all the kiddos could take home their plates, cups, and mats as party favors so clean up should be a breeze! I'm thinking about getting the boys (or even making some) king crowns like these from StoriaHome on Etsy, but I'm not sure if they're too girly or not??? All this boy stuff is new to me, but so far it's pretty fun! So if you have little boys in your life tell me what you think, crowns or not?

And totally unrelated to the party, but I found this sweet little swimsuit the other day at one of our local shoppes and just had to get it for Grace (yes, totally broke my New Year's resolution of "less shopping" BUT I did resist the matching flip flops and terry cover-up :). I know it'll be a while until Summer, but maybe I'll even stick it in her valentine basket since it's pink and red and just so darn cute :) So have fun planning your own Valentine's Day (or hallmark holiday as Lance calls it), whether romantic for the grown-ups or just plain cute for the wee ones :)

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

It's a...

BOY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So excited! We found out today during my 15 week OB appointment. I've been having horrible migraines and I think the doc felt a little sorry for me so she gave me a little pick-me-up in the form of a little "sneak peek" ultrasound. Here's what we saw:

One VERY active little baby (HB = 155) wiggling all over the place and practicing soccer kicks. And yup, those are little boy parts according to the tech and then the doctor. I know one thing for sure, I never saw anything like that with Grace so I'm hoping they are right, otherwise we'll be in for a big surprise! I know they are pretty accurate these days, but you still hear of the occasional "we had everything set up in pink/blue and then BAM! our little he turned into a she and vice versa" YIKES!!!

Most importantly, about a week and a half ago I had the nuchal translucency ultrasound which measures the amount of fluid in the back of the baby's neck and other markers such as the nasal bone, etc. as a screening for Down's and other chromosomal abnormalities. The ultrasound combined with the bloodwork I had at 11 weeks is what I guess they call the "first trimester screening" (I don't know if this is a more popular elective screening now, or if it's due to being 30, but I don't remember having this with Grace). Anyhow, everything came out normal, and we're so excited that baby seems to be a perfectly healthy growing little bean!

At first, baby wasn't in the right position for the neck measurement so after walking around/drinking water/prodding the belly/learning more than I care to know about what a partial contraction of the uterus looks like on screen/asking baby to listen to his/her mama and TURN because it had been over an hour and Grace was growing restless, I decided we needed to switch gears and look at baby's other end :) Julie, the tech, humored me and we soon saw what looked to me like a little pyramid (he, he, he) - not quite the "turtle" that everyone kept telling me about for boys. Though she wouldn't commit to typing "BOY" on the ultrasound picture since it was so early, she said if she had to guess, she would say boy and printed this little picture for us:

Excited but wanting to wait until we had confirmation that baby was indeed a boy, we figured we would have to wait until the "big ultrasound" at 19 weeks. But today, a little peek-a-boo surprise...So all this to say it looks like Hudson Rowe will be joining our family this June! Hudson because we like the name and Rowe in honor of Lance's grandpa Woodrow. Thank you God for the blessing of this little boy!