Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Little Feet

Little feet, you fascinate me. With your chubby dimples and wiggly toes. You start off so tiny, so fragile and small, yet full of potential.

Often playing second best to little hands but you are just as important. Where will you go? Will you follow or lead? Will you take the road less traveled? There are many adventures in your future. Someday you will climb mountains, wander through cities, traverse deserts and fields. You can accomplish great things. But for now you will grow.

Toddle about and splash in puddles. Stomp and slap out a staccato rhythm on the floors. Wriggle and squirm. Yes you will get dirty and stinky. Sometimes you will get hurt by stepping on the wrong things. Inevitably, there will be a misstep, a turn down the wrong path. Know that I will be here to help you turn around. I pray that you will always walk in our Lord's purpose. And I hope that no matter where you roam you will always return home. Don't grow too fast. Stay little, little feet.

Joshua 1:3
I will give you every place where you set your foot

Monday, March 30, 2015

The Gypsy Tour, Final Chapter: Chillin' with the Greats

We had a jam-packed couple of weeks but the best part was being able to spend time with family. Rory and Milo were definitely spoiled by their great-grandparents! We miss these guys so much living far away so visiting them was a big treat! Nothing beats family and we can't wait to see everyone again.

Friday, March 20, 2015

The Gypsy Tour, Chapter 2: Maple syrup-ing

My favorite adventure from our trip was the Saturday we spent at the Cincinnati Nature Center during their Sweet Maple Days event. Being an avid lover of all things outdoors and everything maple syrup, this day was a treat for me. The snowy atmosphere made for a very pretty hike that soothed my Yankee soul which has spent the past three years languishing in the humid steam pot that is Louisiana. We had so much fun and learned all about how maple syrup is made.

 Cincinnati Nature Center has the cutest all-natural children's discovery area. Rory enjoyed playing in the tree fort.
 The maple syrup tour included a tasting of fresh syrup. Rory would not take his tongue out of the sample cup. No more Mrs. Butterworth for this boy!
 And what better way to end an adventure than with peanut butter chocolate malts from UDF! This malt was supposed to be shared with me but I had to wrestle it away from him to get a sip.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Portraits of 2015: Weeks 2, 3, & 4

Time to play catch up for the last 3 weeks!

Week 2

I love this sweet picture of my boys and their daddy. Even if Milo looks like he is plotting something.

 Also love love love that I was able to capture this moment of Rory kissing Milo's head :)

 Week 3
 Their relationship grows daily and it is a beautiful thing to watch.

 Week 4
Sassafras! He gets it from his mommy.

 Milo and his Poppy.

The Gypsy Tour, Chapter 1: In which my children are introduced to hotel rooms and snow.

Rory, Milo, and I just returned from a 2 week visit back home. My mom was kind enough to fly down in order to accompany us on the 15 hour drive from Fort Polk to Cincinnati, Ohio. This trip had been in the works for a long time and my mom had entitled it the "Gypsy Tour" because 2 women and 2 babies road-tripping across the eastern US in a Toyota Tundra is practically the same as living in a caravan. Here is a picture of us prior to departing. Notice the smiles and the lack of screaming? Yea that didn't last long. All I can say is thank God for portable DVD players, Goldfish crackers, and Starbucks coffee.
We had to split the drive north into two legs, thanks to both boys losing their cool around 7 hours in. Thankfully we were able to find a hotel that wasn't chockablock full that also had an indoor swimming pool. We got up to our room only to discover that Rory is apparently terrified of hotel rooms. As soon as the door opened he took one look and started screaming. 30 minutes later, after some hugs and assuring him that this was a Comfort Inn and not the Bates Motel, he settled down and we all got some shut eye. 
The next morning we woke up early (some of us bright eyed and bushy tailed, others not so much) with plans to burn some energy off swimming. This was Rory's first time swimming in a pool and he loved it. He also enjoyed the tasty chlorinated water that he drank when mommy wasn't looking.

The second leg of the drive went well except for one major Milo meltdown where he decided that the car seat was trying to kill him. We reached Cincinnati right before the snow hit. Living in the deep south, my boys haven't been introduced to Winter so I wasn't sure how they would react to the cold. Never fear! Rory loved it! Milo thought it was ok too, so long as he was snuggled up against a warm body.

The next 2 days were spent enjoying the white wonderland and spending time with family. More pics to follow from the rest of our trip tomorrow!

Friday, February 20, 2015

Portraits of 2015: Week 1

A miracle occurred this afternoon. 

Both of my children napped.
At the same time!
"Oh frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!" She chortled in her joy.
Of course Milo woke up as the paparazzi was sneaking away.
That's what happens when you get cocky.
It was glorious while it lasted.
On another note, I'm 7 weeks late to the party but I've decided to document pictures of the boys to see how much they change within a year. As they say "better late than never". Best excuse for procrastination ever.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

shout outs

Shout out to the Hubs for making this nap possible. My man knows that the best way to a woman's heart is to let her sleep. Many thanks for dealing with all of the toddler shenanigans while said nap was taking place. Also, how cute is my partner in crime? Nothing beats baby snuggles.

Shout out to Disney and Pixar for giving me 1 hour to do laundry, make dinner, and enjoy a cup of coffee. Kudos to you and the animation magic you weave that entrances toddlers and renders them still and silent. However, I do have a bone to pick. Do you take pleasure in the fact that I bawl my eyes out every. single. time. I watch Up? Oh, the feels!!

Shout out to the kind Korean lady that entertained a screaming Rory in the check out aisle of Walmart. My child instantly fell in love with you and deemed his mother's feeble attempts at candy bribery second to your charms. You will never know how much of a Godsend you were at that moment. I hope you and your family enjoyed the potato salad and macaroni salad you purchased.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

I got this

It's hard to verbally express exactly what becoming a mommy entails. People will tell you that it is either;
  1. "A magical time full of joy and love. Your heart will never be the same after you hold that little baby." Usually said by grandmothers who have been long enough removed from the trenches to fully remember the horrors that occurred there.
  2. "SO MUCH FUN!!!! Kids are awesome!" This expression is often proffered by the parents who have been gifted with an angel-child aka child that never screams/flings poo/tries to stick metal objects into electrical sockets. That or they are just having a rough time of it and are trying very hard to convince themselves.
  3. "Exhausting. You will never sleep again." A little bit pessimistic but trust the person that imparts this gem of wisdom. They may be a Debbie Downer but they speak the truth.
To be honest, it is probably impossible to describe the transition into the role of a mother. Especially seeing as no one experience is the same. However, after almost 2 years of being a mommy myself I have gathered enough evidence to safely say that there are in fact two transitions every mother goes through. The first begins when your new little bundle of joy is placed into your arms and you realize that, no, your life will never be the same again. I call this the period of adaptation. Here is where everything is a first and there are a lot of "what-the-*&#%" moments. This progression always coincides with the first child and will continue to occur sporadically for the 18 years following their birth. Anytime there is a new development/milestone a mother will have to adapt, call it mommy evolution if you will.

The second transition is the period of reaction. Here is where the mother has either seen it all before or no longer fears the unknown. Her mantra has become "I got this" and she handles all that is thrown her way with strength and cunning. She is the Mommy Veteran. And believe me you know when you have reached this level of expertise. This mom can:
  • Simultaneously breastfeed an infant while spoon feeding yogurt to a toddler who is jumping from couch cushions to throw pillows across a bed of molten hot lava.
  • Use the toilet with one foot propelling the swing that is holding a screaming baby all the while thanking her lucky stars that the toddler is napping and not in the bathroom with her unrolling the tube of toilet paper.
  • Eat a meal in 1 minute flat.
  • Save a baby from being suffocated by a training toilet without batting an eyelash while photographically capturing said event for future memory. Because these moments must be treasured. Case in point.......

  • Use a promo code and score her kids an entire wardrobe for pennies. Yet somehow cannot find a pair of jeans that fit right postpartum.
  • Chase the toddler in circles around the shower with a soapy washcloth and avoid stepping in the fresh pile of poop he just deposited on the tile.
  • Coerce the toddler to tinkle/poopy/ "oh for goodness sakes at least fart!!!!" on the potty by bribing him with mint M&Ms. (Are you noticing a trend here?)
  • Take professional quality photos of her offspring.

                                                          err....umm...wait a minute....

                                                  there we go.
  • Write an entire blog post while her children are napping. Woot woot!
  • Reenact WWE Smackdown with the toddler in the cereal aisle of Walmart in front an entire audience of Wal-martians.
  • Expertly catch vomit with the nearest receptacle, whether it be trashcan, blanket, or her hands. At this point we can say that the Mommy Veteran is an expert in all things involving bodily functions.
  • Dress her children. This is not as easy as it sounds.

                yes he is wearing a pair of lacy underpants around his neck. don't judge. 
And last but not least she can...
  • Laugh her way through the hard times and shake it off (insert annoying pop song here).
I hope that my scientific research into the throes of mommy-hood have enlightened you. If you are going through either transition, hang in there, its a grand adventure. If you have yet to have children.......


Thursday, January 15, 2015

Smoothie Week #3 and #4

Day 3 we woke up with a case of the sniffles so a dose of vitamin C was in order. This smoothie, Tropical Sneak Attack, fit the bill with an added bonus of iron from the spinach. Gotta love those sneaky vegetables!

  • 2 bananas
  • 1 cup frozen pinneapple
  • 6 oz coconut greek yogurt
  • handful of spinach
  • 1 1/2 cups orange juice
Day 4's smoothie,  Strawberry Lassi, tasted exactly like a milkshake! It totally blurred the lines between meal and dessert.

  • 1 1/2 cups frozen strawberries
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons honey
Hope you enjoy these 2, we sure did!

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Smoothie Week #2 Apple Pie a la Mode

Remember that oatmeal/chia mixture from yesterday? The remaining half gets added to this delicious shake.

Combine in blender:
  • remaining oatmeal mixture
  • 1/2 cup milk of choice
  • 1 banana
  • 1/4 cup applesauce
  • handful of ice cubes
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
Blend, pour in glass and top with sprinkle of cinnamon. This one was even easier than smoothie #1 and is just as tasty. Bottoms up!

Monday, January 12, 2015

Smoothie Week #1 Peaches 'n' Cream

Like shark week only with tasty, fruity beverages! Rory loves to have smoothies for breakfast but we often get stuck in the rut of drinking the same one every day. This week we are branching out with a new recipe each morning. We started off our Monday with a creamy dreamy yet healthy peach and oat smoothie. The Kiddo loved it, score! Here's the recipe:

The night before combine 1/2 cup quick cook oats, 1 tbsp chia seeds, and 1 cup milk (cow/almond/coconut, whatever floats your boat). Let sit overnight to soak.

In the morning place 1/2 of pre-made oat/chia mixture in blender. Add 1 banana, a handful of frozen peaches, 1/4 cup greek yogurt, 1/4 milk of choice (I used cow but feel free to use almond or coconut), and a couple teaspoons of honey to sweeten. Blend until combined. Pour in glass and enjoy! How easy was that?! Join us tomorrow for smoothie #2.