Monday, March 31, 2014

Weekend + What We Ate This Week


We had such a fun, albeit busy, weekend, but it was one we wouldn't trade for anything! The weather was absolutely perfect; those spring weekends in Texas that have everyone working in the yard, sipping drinks on a patio and posting an overload of pictures declaring it the prettiest weekend we've had in North Texas in a while. We did all three! I'm honestly really sad to see this weekend go! 

Friday:
Walker and I decided to have a spontaneous lunch with Brandon at a little Tex-Mex place by his office. Before we went to lunch, we got to show Walker off to Brandon's co-workers, and let me just say…he got a lot of lovin'! 

…and this is exactly how Walker and I both felt about it being Friday: 


I think I might be going crazy, because I went to the gym {and the grocery store!} on a Friday night. I tweeted that my college self would definitely be LOL'ing at me for that! 

Before I went, however, I had to snap a quick picture of Walker in the Baby Bjorn. I always said I wouldn't be that crazy person who gets one of these things, but alas, I broke down and did. The Moby Wrap just wasn't working for us, and he absolutely loves this thing. It helps us get through "witching hour" every. single. day. 


Saturday:
The little man was up and at 'em around 6:45 a.m. Saturday, so after I fed him, we had play time in our bed until nap time. Before he was born, getting up at 6:45 a.m. on a Saturday was absolutely the worst thing ever, but seeing this precious face and hearing his sweet little laughs make that hour so much easier. Brandon and I just had a cup of coffee and played with Walker, did a little tummy time and enjoyed being together with this sweet boy! 


And excuse my make-up-less self {scary!}, but I had to document that Walker rolled over for the first time - belly to back - on Saturday morning! He was doing tummy time and got so mad that he figured out a way to get out of it: rolling over! I was so happy and excited for him, and he just kept looking at me like, "What?" 


Since we were up bright and early, Brandon and I decided to get a move on things and get started on our Saturday projects. His was to update the yard and mine was to paint this mirror of his grandmother's that his mom gave us. 

As I've mentioned on this blog before, both of Brandon's grandmothers passed away before we started dating, so I never got a chance to meet them. As sad as that makes me, I love having a few of their pieces in our house to remember them by, and Brandon loves seeing them and remembering them in their homes. So, when my mother-in-law asked if we wanted this mirror, I enthusiastically said, "Yes!" It's been hanging in this spot for about two years, and I finally decided it was high time for me to do what I've wanted to do to it since we've had it: paint it. 


So, after Walker's nap, I bundled him up and took him outside with me for some Vitamin D and painting! It was a true Texas spring: cold in the morning and warm in the afternoon. So, the little man hung out in his bouncer while I painted the mirror with Annie Sloan's Chalk Paint in Old White


Brandon worked so hard in our backyard all morning and afternoon, and I'm so pleased with how everything turned out! 

We have a small border around our concrete patio that used to house monkey grass, but it had a really hard time growing there. So, he pulled all of that up, removed the soil, added some liner and put a rock border in its place. I wasn't sure I was going to like it, but I really do! 


He trimmed hedges, trees and bushes; added a door mat...


Planted my basil and cilantro; went to Home Depot for potting soil, fertilizer and pots; planted a pretty arrangement in the big pot from a local "Mom-and-Pop"-type nursery...


Made our yaupon holly tree stand up straight with a little wire...


…mulched all the back flower beds and planted this gorgeous plant…


…and a myriad of other things I'm sure I'm forgetting at this time. Our little "L"-shaped backyard may be tiny, but Brandon has really utilized the space and I'm so proud of him for it! {And I'm glad one of us has a green thumb because it is certainly not me!} 


After lunch, we made a quick Target run, where Brandon insisted Walker have these little baby sunglasses for summer. I couldn't stop laughing at the cuteness! 


And speaking of Target, a quick PSA for all you Diaper Genie-using moms out there: I actually prefer Target's "Up and Up" brand refills to the actual Playtex refills for this thing! They seem to fit better and the diapers go in smoother to me. And, they're about $5 cheaper! Can't beat that! 


Anyway, we spent the rest of Saturday lounging around, and Walker enjoyed watching himself in his play mat mirror, which of course I find absolutely adorable. :)


I finally finished the mirror, and I think it turned out well! I wanted it to be really aged and not quite so "perfect," and I think I accomplished that! It looks great hanging in its former spot and I smile every time I walk past it now. 


Later Saturday afternoon, my friend Liz texted me and asked if they could stop by for a minute, as they were on their way back home from Tyler. Of course we said, "Absolutely!" and had a glass of wine waiting for Liz and a beer waiting for her husband, Chris, when they got here. {Any car trip with two babies deserves an adult beverage, don't you think!?} 

We just hung out on the patio, fed and held babies, changed diapers and just relaxed. I love friends that just come over and fall into the rhythm, and I love just hanging out and loving on babies. 

Liz's oldest daughter, Parker, is such a natural with babies and I had to get a picture of her with Walker! I just adore Parker and think she's the funniest thing ever. After this picture, she said, "Okay. I'm done!" and ran off to play. 


Saturday night, Brandon and I cooked dinner and enjoyed it on the patio, admiring Brandon's handiwork. 

Sunday:
We went to church, and Walker went to the church nursery for the first time! Of course I was super nervous leaving him for the first time, but the nursery workers said he did great, even giving them some smiles! It made me so happy to know he was comfortable with them - and with us leaving him - and he was a sweet boy for them! 

I thought he looked precious in his little Janie and Jack collared shirt from my grandmother, so of course I had to take a picture. Love this little sly grin! 


Walker fought nap time Sunday afternoon, so we finally gave up and put him in his swing all swaddled up. He then gave up, and we all fell asleep for a good hour in the living room. I absolutely love Sunday afternoon naps! 

My aunt then came over to visit, and she had supper with us and just hung out. Walker absolutely loves her and was giving her the biggest grins all evening. So sweet! 


And speaking of supper, here's what we had to eat this week:


I add chicken for protein and swap the olive oil for Balsamic Vinaigrette, but this stuff is amazing. And it's even good the next day {cold} for leftovers! 



These are quick, easy and most importantly: yummy! My mother-in-law was over when I made these, and she liked them so much she made them the next night. 



You would laugh if you knew how easy this meal was! Just pop a few ingredients in the Crock Pot on "low" and let it go all day. You can use this chicken for a myriad of things: over rice; in tacos; in a salad…the list goes on and on! This time, I used it to make quick, easy quesadillas on the stove top. I just use La Tortilla Factory low carb, high fiber tortillas and add a sprinkle of Monterey Jack cheese…then do as we did in college and pop that baby in a pan and let it simmer for a few minutes, flip and do the other side. Easy peasy! 


Since we had Walker's shots this week, we did eat out twice {well, in, since Brandon picked it up and brought it home}, but I'm hoping to cook more this week. 

I hope y'all had a great weekend and have a wonderful week! 

Friday, March 28, 2014

Five on Friday


Happy Friday! This has been a doozy of a week, so I'm very thankful to be authoring this Five on Friday post and ushering in the weekend! Thanks to the fabulous hostesses of this link-up: A. Liz Adventures, Carolina Charm, Hello! Happiness and [the good life blog]


-ONE-
The latter part of this week was rough because Walker got his two-month shots Wednesday. It absolutely broke my heart to hear him scream and see him cry. It was definitely a "pain scream" and one I've never heard before. I was crying, he was crying and my doctor was alternating between patting and rubbing my back while the nurse administered Walker's shots and I held his little hand - but I absolutely hated to see my baby in so much pain and know I couldn't do a thing to make him feel better. 

He had a pretty tough go-round on Wednesday afternoon, night and Thursday after the shots. He would just whimper, sleep on and off and when he was awake, would just scream. So, I'm very thankful it's Friday and that our little man is starting to act more himself again! And Daddy will be home alllllllllll weekend to help, ha! 


Poor little guy. 

-TWO-
You know you're a coffee fiend when this is delivered to your front door from Costco...


Why, yes, that would be two giant 80-pack boxes of Donut House Coffee and 10 18-pack boxes of Sleepy Time Tea. I'm sure our UPS delivery guy thinks we're nuts. 

-THREE-
We're doing a ton of yard work this weekend and I'm really excited about it! We're planting jasmine, day lilies, and more roses; pruning our current roses; and removing monkey grass to make a pretty rock pathway. This weird Texas winter has been awful for our backyard, and I can't wait for it to look like this again!


-FOUR-
My birthday is coming up, and I have sent Brandon a laundry list of gift ideas, per usual. Ha! Here are a couple of things I wouldn't mind receiving this year…!








-FIVE-
Speaking of my birthday, I can't believe we're nearing the end of March and about to enter April! I feel like March has absolutely flown by and I'm honestly dreading having to leave my baby and go back to work in exactly one month from today. {Tear!} However, there have been some really good changes made since I've been on maternity leave that make going back not quite as hard. I am just not looking forward to that first drop-off day at day care; I know I'm going to be an absolute wreck! Have any of you other mamas dealt with this? Any tips to making it any easier? 


I hope y'all have an awesome Friday and a great weekend! 

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Four Years Ago...


Four years ago today, Brandon got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife. While we had absolutely zero idea what we were getting ourselves into, I'm so glad I said "yes" and so thankful to God for the gift of marriage. 

I'm also thankful for Brandon and truly do love him and respect him more now than I did when he proposed four years ago. We were such babies {and I had blond hair!}, and thought we were so in love. And we were, but we are much more in love - and have so much more mutual respect - now. 

I love you, Brandon, and I'm so thankful you asked me to do life with you on March 27, 2010.


"I have found the one whom my soul loves." 
Song of Solomon 3:4 

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Walker is Two Months Old!


Walker, you are TWO months old! Where is my baby?! Time, stop! 



Feeding:
Since we put you on a schedule this month {more on that later}, you went from eating every three hours to eating every four hours: 7 a.m., 11 a.m., 3 p.m., 7 p.m., 10:30 p.m. and you wake up once in the middle of the night to eat - somewhere between 2-5 a.m., but it's usually closer to between 4-5 a.m.

We moved you to the Baby Wise 3-6 month schedule this month. You were pulling four-hour {plus} stretches in the middle of the night, so we knew you could do it during the day. And you can - and do! 

You love to eat and get so mad if I don't get things going for you fast enough, and you do not like when we have to change sides! You are still a spit up machine, and your Dad and I are amazed at how far you can get that stuff. {Ick!} The baby Zantac really seems to be helping with your reflux, however, and you're not grunting as much after you eat. You still take .9 mL of that twice a day. 

You are still very good at taking a bottle if Mommy has to go to a doctor's appointment or do something during your feeding time, but I still try to nurse you exclusively as much as possible so I can save what I pump for you when I go back to work next month. {Sniff, sniff.} Plus, I just love that special time with you. 

I saw something on Facebook on Sunday night that said, "We know a lot of you are waking up in the middle of the night with your newbies, but in the stillness of the night is when some of the most precious memories are made." I couldn't agree more! As tired as I am, holding you close in the middle of the night and cuddling with your sweet, sleepy body is what I will remember most. 



Sleeping:
Since we put you on a schedule this month, your sleep has been MUCH better! Mommy and Daddy are actually feeling alive! You also started sleeping exclusively in your crib this month. It was hard for Mommy at first, but I know you're sleeping better - as are we - and it's best for all of us. 

We started you on Baby Wise's 0-3 months schedule, but you were sleeping more during the night, so we knew you could do it during the day. Like I mentioned above, we moved you to the 3-6 months schedule and you're doing great! You now wake up at 7 a.m. and nap from 9-11 a.m., 1-3 p.m. and 5-7 p.m. We lay you down for bed around 8:30 p.m. after your bath, and I wake you up to eat at 10:30 p.m. Then, we let you tell us what time you're hungry in the middle of the night. You pulled your first sleeping through the night stretch on 3/16-17: 11:30 p.m.-6:30 a.m.! It was wonderful! {Although I am 99% sure that you cried in the middle of the night, but I don't know because your Dad turned the monitor volume all the way down and I didn't know it until the next morning. #parentingfail} 

We moved you from the Summer Infant Swaddles to the Halo Sleep Sack this month; you were a master at getting out of that swaddle and I think you really enjoy having your hands free at nap time now. You still like to be swaddled at night, however, and the sound machine and Sleep Sheep really help lull you to sleep. This month, you have really had to be rocked for a good 10-15 minutes before you fall asleep at night, though. I truly believe you don't want to miss a minute of anything {just like Mommy!} and therefore we have to work at getting you to go to sleep for bedtime. 



Statistics:
We had your two-month pediatrician appointment today. You weighed 11 lbs., 6 oz (90%), were 22.5 in. (95%) and your head was 16 inches (90%). You also got five shots (DTap, HIB, IPV, Hep B and Premar) - and it broke this mama's heart to hear you scream. You were so inconsolable that we had to nurse in the doctor's office to calm you down, but eventually you did calm down and gave me a big grin when it was all said and done, so I felt a bit better about it all. But you did not like those shots - and I don't blame you one bit! 



Development/Milestones/Firsts:
You have started to recognize yourself in your play mat mirror; it's so adorable! You will look at yourself and just grin and grin. You have also started to really notice ceiling fans in every single room of the house and will arch your neck to watch them. This month, you've started to "talk" to us a lot more in the form of cooing and loud screeches. You always respond to me when I say in a high-pitched voice, "Talk to Mommy!" and "No way, José!" You gave me your first big, long smile - reacting to me saying "I love you!" over and over this month. You gave me {and then your Dad} a huge, open-mouthed smile and kept doing it for a good five minutes the first time, and have continuously done it thereafter. 

You are still not loving tummy time, but I make you do it after each nap and before you go to bed. You are so strong and hold your neck up, even though you whine and fuss while you do it. You also scoot yourself across the play mat during tummy time; I am convinced you're going to crawl early. 

You have started to kick your legs when you get excited and/or are happy, and you clench your little fists while you do it. You are definitely recognizing more people this month, but still love to hear Mommy and Daddy's voices. I came home from a doctor's appointment recently and you were dead asleep in Mrs. Leigh Ann's arms. When I talked to her, you opened one eye and craned your neck so you could see me. That melts my heart! 

You had a few firsts this month: sleeping exclusively in your crib; first shots {sniff, sniff!}; going from eating every three hours to every four; your first church service {you didn't make a peep!}; your first St. Patrick's Day; and your first March Madness {your Daddy made me add that one in}. 



Clothes:
You are still in 0-3 months and a few three months outfits {the Carter's brand are the only three months outfits you can wear right now}, but I can tell we're going to have to start pulling out more three months clothes in the next few weeks. You are so long! You are also still in size one diapers. Since you are a spit-up machine, your outfits also still consist of a cute bib and burp rag…or two! 

You absolutely hate things going over your head, and if we don't get you dressed fast enough, you fuss - DRAMA! 



Behavior/Demeanor:
You are SUCH a sweet baby! You only cry if you're hungry, have a dirty diaper, we put something over your head or if you are overtired. {But don't we all?} 

You have really started to develop a little personality and it's so fun to see! You love to "talk" to Mommy and Daddy, and you cut people the side-eye from time to time if they're being loud while you're trying to sleep or eat. {Son, you get that naturally from your Mommy!} 

You have started to love the bath, and it's our nightly ritual with our little family. We affectionally call it the "spa" for you. Ha! You also love your play mat and to kick, reach and play on that after your naps. The car is kryptonite to you, and I can never get you to wake up in it! You love to be held; the ceiling fans; Mommy rubbing your nose/forehead to make you go to sleep; and your Soothie pacis. My favorite thing to watch you do is stretch when I unzip the swaddle after your naps or in the morning. It is so cute!

You do not like: clothes going over your head; being cold; if I take too long to feed you; tummy time; or people holding you on their right side - you can't look to your right, which you love. 



Nicknames:
You still have your same nicknames from last month: Walk, W, Dub, Buddy, Baby, Love, Boo Boo, WaMack, and anything endearing that comes out of my mouth. However, your Foxy has started to call you "Grunt" since you do it so much! 

We love you to the moon and back again, Walker! We still can't believe you're two months old. Pretty soon you will be walking out the door to go to college! {I can't even begin to think about that, though!} Time, slow down! 

Love, 
Mommy and Daddy

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Hey, It's Okay Tuesday


I'm bringing back another installment of "Hey, It's Okay Tuesday…"! 

Hey, It's Okay…

…that your sweet son is completely dressed in an {adorable} nautical stripe by 7:30 a.m., while his Mommy is still in her spit-up stained pajamas and hasn't even brushed her teeth. 


…to spend an entire day at your in-law's house because a dummy in the neighborhood hit a transformer and knocked power out to 70+ people. Us included. I can't deal without power and an almost-8-week-old! 

…to have your husband bring home Tex-Mex for dinner because of said power outage and not wanting to cook after that joyful ordeal. 


{via}

…to spend half of Walker's morning nap watching "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills": Reunion Part 2. Complete trash TV, I know. 


{via}

…to be completely obsessed with turquoise and robin's egg blue this spring. It started with new couch pillows before Walker was born, and now it's like IWANTALLTHETURQUOISETHINGS!!! The House of Turquoise Blog is not helping my obsession. 


{via}

…speaking of décor, I have not stepped foot in HomeGoods since before Walker was born. I deserve major kudos for that. It's been a HomeGoods intervention! 

…to know you're old when you're looking forward to spring-ing your backyard over the weekend! I've been pinning so many new things to add to the backyard and am getting so excited about pulling weeds, clearing out leaves and planting new flowers. You know you're old when… 

…to pretend to be asleep at 6 a.m. when Walker cries out and let your husband get up to pop the pacifier back in his mouth. What? 

…to already be planning Walker's first birthday. Ha! 

And there's a random Tuesday blog post! Have a happy day!

Monday, March 24, 2014

HomeGrown


Happy Monday! {Is there such a thing?}

I have shared with y'all before my mom and her friend's business, HomeGrown, but I wanted to share with you some exciting news that they are now on Pinterest! 
{Follow them here.} 

On their Pinterest page, you can see samples of their fun repurposed furniture; vintage jewelry; handcrafted items {including their Seasonal Boards, my personal favorite!}; and more. Check them out! If you'd like to contact them, just email them at: homegrownlivingston@gmail.com


I also wanted to share with you their newest items: School Spirit Seasonal Boards! 

Of course, the Baylor one is my favorite! I just love the interlocking "BU" in the heart, right where Waco is. I ordered one and can't wait to hang it on my front door!


And for my University of Texas alumni and/or students, the UT one is perfect for you! 


And now, this might be the only Texas A&M item you'll ever see on my blog…ha! I know many Aggies out there, and I think this Texas with the "ATM" in the heart right where College Station is is pretty dang cute. 


Honestly, how adorable is this Louisiana State University one? And how perfectly cut out is that Louisiana?! 


The great thing about the gals at HomeGrown is that they will personalize and create anything for you! Like what you see above? Contact them to order one! Want one in your own state and/or school? Let them know and they'll work to create your vision. 

Check out their Pinterest and Facebook pages for more! Also, follow them on Instagram for the latest! 

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Weekend + What We Ate This Week


Happy Sunday! Brandon and I have both been sick, coupled with a small fever {99.5} for Walker, so we laid low this weekend and just enjoyed being home. 

I ran to the grocery store, where I picked up these gorgeous {cheap} flowers that now adorn the table in our foyer...


…waited for 15 minutes at the nail place to get my eyebrows waxed -- because they were clearly busy...


…and enjoyed a tiny glass of red wine in a lavender Epsom Salt bath - and yes, I also stole some of Walker's lavender-scented Bedtime Bath. 

{Also, I need to get a spring pedicure. Haven't made it around to that yet!}


And because my best friend Lindsey asked me to bring this back {hi, Lindsey!}, I'm giving you: "What We Ate This Week." I always love finding new recipes to try, so here are ours: 


This is such an easy, yummy staple in our house. It's one of Brandon's favorite meals I make, and it makes for great leftovers! 



The filling alone is worth eating; these were so yummy! I did these in our panini press, as opposed to a skillet, and I think they turned out great.  



This salmon definitely lives up to its name: it truly is perfect! {And easy!} And while the asparagus orzo isn't exactly healthy, it's the perfect side dish to accompany this salmon.



We baked this instead of grilled it, and it turned out perfectly! It was a great starter to our newly-initiated "Pizza Fridays." Yum!


I hope you had a great weekend!