Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!!

Its Grayson's first holiday- so of course we tortured him a bit.

Carving his pumpkin with Daddy

He liked standing in the pumpkin...he was in there for about 20 minutes before he got sick of it.
Getting ready to go Trick or Treating with our little monster
Hope everyone got lots of candy- Grayson came home with a container of formula, some puffs, and some chocolate that he has decided to share with Mommy and Daddy.
Happy Halloween Everyone!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

One Year

One year married.
Three hundred and sixty five days of being married to my best friend.
We've been together nearly 8 years now, and I still get butterflies when he walks in a room.

I feel like the luckiest girl in the world to be married to such a wonderful guy, and I couldn't think of a better Daddy for our little man (and the pups!).

There have been countless adventures and I never want them to end.
Im so happy we chose to spend our lives together and I can't wait to see where our lives take us next, now as a family of five.

Love you husband- here's to a million more anniversaries, because there is no way Im letting you go anywhere.

Remember, this is for-ev-er.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Anniversary Gift

Tomorrow we will have been married for one year.


But seriously, its amazing how fast a year can go.

We agreed to stick with the traditional wedding anniversary themes, and the first one is paper.  Since tickets to somewhere fantastic like Mexico were not in the budget, Grayson Boy needs to eat and have some clean diapers after all...I started thinking about what I could make.

The hubs has been saying he wants to start a gallery wall in our front entry way, so I thought that might be a good place to start. 

I saw similar projects like this out there, but I cant find them to link back and give credit. (If this was your idea, let me know and Ill link you up!)

This is the finished product:

Super easy and super cheap.  I bought a frame from Ikea ($9.99), and printed maps from Google Maps of the places we met, the Church where we got married, and our current address.

Then using Word I made the We Met, We Wed and We Love labels. 

After printing I made a heart template, and traced it out on the maps.  Then I made a slightly bigger one to cut out a backing to make the maps stand out a bit.
A little rubber cement later and voila! A super cute custom piece of art.

Oh and the best part...this guy helping me out the whole time:

LOVE that kid. (Even if he does make it really hard to cut out hearts and glue things together)

Friday, October 28, 2011

Fall Failure

I had plans, lovelies. 
 I wanted to be that Mommy who decorated for every holiday and came up with all of these traditions for Grayson Boy. 

So far, I have a pumpkin (uncarved, that's our Saturday Morning task) on my porch, three fake fall-ish colored flowers on the steps (I cant keep a real plant alive to save my soul) and two scare crows on either side of the steps to the porch.

Inside I have fall leaf place mats, and a haunted house candle holder on my kitchen table.

That's all.

Epic decorating failure.

Maybe this weekend when the hubs is home to help with the Bean Ill break out some of our other stuff, but its all the way on the third it's a bit unlikely.

Here's hoping I get my act together before Thanksgiving, cause we respect the Turkey in this house.

We did take Grayson to his first visit to the pumpkin patch, so I guess I'm not failing on the tradition part.  Its give and take with a newborn and right now sleep > digging out decorations!

We took our first trip to Sorgel's Orchard when Aunt Christine and Uncle Zach came to visit.

The 30 pound pumpkin Daddy picked out...he wanted one big enough to put Grayson inside.

"Ma! Quit with the pictures! Im trying to enjoy my nap on the hayride!"

There were so many fun things for kids to do there, I can't wait till he's bigger next year and is hopefully awake for at least part of the outing...cause he was def passed out the whole time we were there this year!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

DIY Alphabet Art

Today Mr. Man had to go to the doctor for his one month check up.

Hello my baby weighs 10 pounds and is 22 1/4 inches long- stopppp growing so quick please?!?

  He received his HepB shot, so that gave Mommy some nice project/cleaning/napping time this afternoon while he was in coma mode.  I looked at his room and figured I needed another piece of art, so off I went to the web.  I fell in love with the alphabet signs that are out there but again- not about to pay $26 bucks for one.  So Microsoft Publisher once again came in handy. 

This one took a little bit of time, there were lots of letters to fit in and play with.  I wish I could upload the document to blogger, so if anyone wants it they just have to change the big letter and click print; but I have no idea how to do that.  If anyone wants it, just shoot me an email and I'll send along the file!

The finished product:

Looks like Im headed back to JoAnns for another frame!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Newborn Photos

We recieved the CD with Grayson's newborn photos today! I get so excited over things like that these days...and other strange things like sleep, poop, and baby smiles. I guess that Johnson and Johnson commercial is really true: having a baby changes everything.  Here are just a few images of my little nugget thanks to Caitlin Thomas Photography.  Seriously, if you're in the Pittsburgh area look her up- she's fantastic and super, duper sweet.

Oh yes, this picture will be shown to all future potential girlfriends.

What can I say, I love this kid.

DIY Custom Birth Statistics Wall Art

Grayson's nursery needed some art, with 10 foot ceilings sometimes it needs a pop or two of color.  I knew I wanted to do something with his birth statistics, like this from The Bellingham Baby Company

 Gorgeous, right?! But $26 dollars for an unframed piece of paper just kind of goes against my cheap-skate ways.  I started to wonder, could I do that myself on the cheap? 

 Enter Microsoft Publisher. 

I started by selecting a blank 8 x 10 document and adding text boxes with my little bean's info.  I turned some text, changed fonts, played with font size and color until I got the look I wanted.  I clicked print, and this is what we got.  

All it needs is a mat and a frame, and I've got some JoAnn's coupons for those babies!  It really took me about 10 minutes to figure out, and then when I was done I made one for a friend  as well.

It really was super easy, to change all of the info and colors took less than 3 minutes. Now, if a technology challenged, sleep deprived, un-showered Mommy like me can do it- you can too! 

The best part, the cost = totally free!  So I can take my $26 bucks I would have spent on this and buy something else...because that Bellingham Baby Company can get me into some SERIOUS trouble with the hubs and the bank account!  ;)

Linking Up to:
Making Monday Marvelous Linky Party

Monday, October 24, 2011


Its Monday. I hate Mondays. I always said life should be more like Survivor, and we could vote Monday's off of the island.
In order to make this Monday a little more interesting I'm trying the 10 fact post I've seen floating around the blogosphere.
1. I love to cook, and can cook almost anything. I do tend to get annoyed if the food that I am making takes more than 30-45 minutes, because I don't think it's fair that it takes me longer to make it and clean it up than eat it. So Rachel Ray= my hero. Despite my love of the culinary world, I can not bake to save my soul. I don't know if it's due to the fact that I hate to measure, or lack patience, or just stink at it- but its not my deal. I usually only attempt brownies from a box, because of the dark color you can't tell if I burn them.
2. I am technologically challenged. Usually the kids in my classroom have to fix my smartboard, turn on my DVD player, un-freeze my projector, tell me how to use my ipod, etc. I bought photoshop CS5, and have never used it because I can email, text, and sorta kinda figure out blogger. I'm good to go in my eyes.
3. I have an un-healthy obsession with Unsolved Mysteries on Lifetime. LOVE that show. Hate the new host, give me Robert Stack any day.
4. I have had the same pillow since I was a little kid, and its a nightly battle in our house because the hubs is always trying to steal it.
5. I love crossing things off of lists. It gives me a sense of accomplishment and control. Sometimes I even add things that I have already done to my to do list, just so I can cross them off.
6. Sometimes when the husband isn't home I leave the house to run a quick errand in clean pajamas.
7. I sleep with the TV on because I'm scared of the dark. Yeah, I said it. Yeah, I know I'm almost 27 years old. Don't care, still scared.
8. I hate to drive. I would love to win the lottery so I can afford a chauffeur...I would rather sleep or spend my time in a car looking around. You can't do that when you're driving, its dangerous.
9. I think that the best smell in the world is fresh baby. I love to smell new babies. Its a family thing. They just smell so sweet and good...well until they fill their diapers...that you just have lean in and give them a big sniff. Trust me, if you've never done it, give it a try. I spend most of my day snuggled up with Grayson Boy, just sniffing till my hearts content.
10. I love to create things. Crafting, scrapbooking, sewing, re-purposing, photography- I love it all. I'm not the best at it, and I'm trying to get better and I hope to post lots of projects on here. Now, just to find the time...
Does anyone else have these weird things in their lives? Let me know so I don't feel so alone!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Month One Must-Haves

I may not be an expert at being a Mommy, but I know what my kid likes. I've seen other bloggers review and recommend the products that their little nuggets love; and I got a bunch of helpful advice from them and learned about alot of products I had not heard about before. So in hopes of helping someone else with our successes and failures, here it goes.

I'm not breast feeding, but the boppy was one of the best things we bought. Grayson boy loves to be snuggled, and I can lay him in this and lift the ends up to wrap around his legs and he thinks hes being snuggled. Plus, when his stomach is upset we can lay him on his tummy on it and he loves it.

S1 by Safety 1st Satellite Premier Play yard

I love all of the storage available with this pack n play, it gives you a place to put diapers, wipes, burp cloths, blankets...anything you may need in the course of your day. We live in a two story house, and its so nice to not have to go up and down the stairs each time G-man needs a diaper change or needs a blanket or a burp cloth. Plus it has a hamper which is great to keep dirty things in one place and off of the floor.
Gumdrops Pacifier

We love the binky- this is the one they gave him in the hospital and I'm so glad you can buy them at the store. It has a great cut out so they don't push up on his little nose, and he loves when you put your finger in the hole and he can gum down on it.
Dr Brown's Bottles

Love, love, love these bottles. We started out using Tommy Tippee, but he was sucking so hard he was collapsing the nipple and sucking in so.much.air. Seriously the kid was a gas bubble waiting to explode out of both ends. We tried Advent, and they worked better- but we still had to fight him for a burp. My mom bought one of these on a target trip, and we tried it. You didn't even have to pat his back to get him to burp, just sit him upright and out it came. So great if you have a fussy little one who's gassy.
Fisher Price Travel Swing

We received the Mamaroo as a gift for our baby shower...and I adored it. Its adorable, super soft, makes a bunch of different motions, and it plays my ipod as well as other sounds. Its also expensive- $239 expensive.

Well, I loved it- Grayson wasn't crazy about it at all. It didn't go fast enough, and he got annoyed with it fairly quickly. He went to his friend Marley's house and she had this little swing; so I decided to give it a try. He LOVED it and passed right out. So off we went to babies r us to get this $70 swing. Hopefully he'll learn to also love the Mamaroo, because otherwise that was a terrible waste of money. It just goes to show you that sometimes its not the new fancy things that kids like the best.
The Baby K'tan

The bean LOVES to be snuggled, and this makes my life so much easier. During the day I can just put this on, stick him in, and hes a happy camper. You can wear it 8 different ways (it can even accommodate twins), and it doesn't hurt your back at all. The best part is once hes secure, you have two free hands to do crazy things like dishes, typing on the computer, brushing you hair, even laundry if you re feeling really wild. I also like to use this when we're out shopping, its much easier to navigate through the store without the stroller/car seat. Once they're in they feel so secure, you don't worry about them falling out. Its also super easy to figure out how to wear, unlike the Moby wrap which I couldn't figure out to save my soul.
Gripe Water

If you don't know what Gripe Water is, you're missing out. Its amazing. Grayson was recently diagnosed with acid reflux and this stuff cures his hiccups almost instantly. Its amazing for upset tummies, and I would buy this in bulk if I could. Everyone I know who has used it has said it is invaluable. It even helps babies with colic, and not much soothes them. If you haven't tried it, trust me, its wonderful.

One Month Old

Dear Grayson,
You are one month old today. Wow. Time sure did fly by on us baby seems like just yesterday people were still saying "Still no baby?" as I waddled through the halls of school with you in my big old belly.
It seems like time is flying by, I only have one more month with you before I have to go back to work but I plan to make the most of it. There are a few things that I don't want to forget about our first month together:
  • You eat like a champ. Even in the hospital you were eating 4 oz every 4 hours during the day, and you go for longer at night. Usually you go to bed after eating between 8:30 and 9, and you usually wake up around 3 or 4- but you have gone as long as 5:30. You did that twice, and you were Mommy's favorite baby that had been months since I had slept 8 hours straight.
  • You're growing WAY.TOO.FAST. Not really according to the doctors, but its way to fast for Mommy's liking. At birth you were 7 lbs 11 oz, and were back up to that when we left the hospital. When we went to the doctors on 10/18 you were up to 9 lbs 8 oz. I bet you'll probably be 10 lbs when we go next week for your 1 month well visit.
  • You HATE to be cold. Its the end of the world for you. Your little chin quivers and you cry like were torturing you, until we snuggle you in a blanket and then all is right with the world again. In order to have you sleep we have to put fuzzy socks on you, then put you in fleece jammies with a hat on your head. You're like your big cousin, Gavin, he would only sleep in a snow suit- and I bet when it REALLY gets cold, we'll be breaking out yours.
  • We had our first day together on 10/12, because Daddy had to go back to work. When you woke up for your morning feeding I told you that it was just you and me...and you gave me the craziest face I'd ever seen from you. It was a "You crazy lady" face that I'm very used to seeing from my students- but not from you!
  • We found out that you have some acid reflux and problems digesting cows milk, but a little zantac and soy formula and you re back to being my sweet boy. You rarely cry, unless you re hungry, cold or in need of a diaper change. Oh and if your bink falls out- you've loved that thing since Miss Sue, the nurse, gave it to you in the hospital.
  • You learned how to blow bubbles and smack your lips, and Daddy and I both think its the cutest thing ever.
  • Daddy is in charge of bath time, and he has made sure to read you a book every night before bed. You just stare up at him and listen, and I know that's his favorite time of the day.
  • Last night, you spent the first night in your crib and you did much better than Mommy did. Until then you were sleeping in your cradle that Pappy Mike made for you in our room, but you love the mobile in your crib so much we decided it was a good time. I woke up every 30-45 minutes to make sure that the monitor was working properly, and I snuck in to check on you at least twice. Daddy laughed at me, but I heard him go into your room at least three times himself last night. Then he was sleeping on the futon this morning, he couldn't stand you being so far away either.
  • You love music. If you're upset, all we have to do is sing to you or turn on your mobile and you stop crying and listen.

Well, my sweet Grayson Boy, that's about it for now. Thank you so much for being the little boy that you are; Daddy and I both fall more in love with you each day. Being your Mommy is the best job Ive ever had, and I can't wait to see what month two has in store for us!

Love Always and Forever,


Can I get a nap?

Let me start out by saying I love being Grayson's Mommy. I do. I love that kid more than I ever thought I could. But at 3 AM when he eats, then decides rather than going back to sleep he'd just like to stare at me and look around; I'd really love to have a nanny.
Momma is tired, folks. Daddy, bless his heart, doesn't seem to hear the kiddo when he's crying in the middle of the night and even if I wake up the hubs and say "Get the baby" I can't seem to fall back to sleep until he's out. Then he likes to make little crying noises every so often in his sleep that wake me right up. I think its his way of saying "HA, you aren't going back to sleep are you, Ma?"
I read somewhere when I was pregnant that in other countries they send Mom home from the hospital with a paid for nanny for up to a year...come on USA, get with that program!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Grayson's Birth Story

I had the best birth story ever. Usually when you talk to someone they have these birth stories that make you say "There is NO WAY I'm having a baby!"
My best friend had her little girl three weeks before Grayson was born- 22 hours of labor, 4 hours of pushing and an emergency c-section later she told me "It was horrible!! I don't know if I can do that ever again!"
So here I was, terrified of giving birth to the kung-fu panda in my belly.
I was terrified of a few things- needles, blood, pain, my water breaking while I was teaching a room full of 9th graders, not being able to get pain meds, the whole birthing process- I was a nervous wreck.
But ya'll, I had the best labor and delivery anyone could ask for. I felt absolutely no pain at all. The worst part was getting the IV put in my hand- no lie.
At the end of the work day on Thursday, which happened to be school picture day- lucky me, I dropped my keys off and said "See you tomorrow, there is no way I'm having this baby tonight."
Life went on as usual. I came home, made dinner, ate with hubs and we watched some t.v. I graded some papers, and made a key for the test I was giving the next day. Totally normal night. We went to bed around 11 after watching an episode of CSI. Everyone kept asking if the baby was still moving, because when he settled down that meant he was ready to come out. Well, during CSI he gave me my usual beating; kicking, rolling, punching, wiggling. He was quite an active little buggar. Nothing out of the ordinary there.
At 1:03 AM I woke up to pee, a normal thing when you have a wiggling watermelon on your bladder. As I hit the hallway I felt a warm liquid seep out of me and soak my pj pants half way to the knees. My first reaction was that I had peed my pants, but I realized that wasn't me I had no control over that- my water had just broken. Uh-0h. I changed my pants and went to wake up the hubs. I said "Babe, you need to wake up my water broke." His response "Ill fix it in the morning". My husband is not a person who likes to wake up. I shook him again and repeated my statement and this time he heard me loud and clear and proceeded to leap out of bed.
We called the doctor, and got to the hospital a little after 2 AM. I had two complaints about the hospital- the first was when we went to check in they left us sitting there for 30 minutes before the lady came out of the back room. Hello??! I'm in labor here- I'm not checking in for a flight and got there an hour early. The second was the fact that there was zippo water pressure and hot water was hard to come by, which made for some cold post baby showers.
When we got to the labor/delivery room they confirmed that my water had in fact broken (yay for not peeing myself!), and hooked me up to the monitors. The little bean's heart rate went from 80-160 and was bouncing all over the place. I was also not contracting, at all. The doctor arrived, and checked me and couldn't tell much from the vaginal exam, so in came the ultrasound machine. After looking at everything they told me my cervix was behind his head. So that right there put me on bed rest, because they didn't want the cord to prolapse. After wheeling the machine out, they came back and the doctor told me they could try drug A to soften the cervix, then start pitocin..or they could do a C-section.
Now kiddos, when they say the word c-section within 30 minutes of you getting to the hospital- they pretty much know that we're going to end up in the OR at some point. I asked the doctor, who was also pregnant, what she would do. She told me she would take him now if it was her- so I told them to go for it.
Yes, the woman who usually needs bribed with presents to get a flu shot was electing to have major surgery.
My husband nearly fell off the chair. He said later he didn't know what was more shocking, how calm I was or the fact that I opted to be cut open.
Twenty minutes later they were walking me down to the OR and giving me the spinal. Now, I have to be honest- it didn't hurt at all. The local anesthetic felt like a small burn for 5 seconds, then the next thing I knew my foot was twitching because the needle was in my spine and I didn't feel a thing. I then told the anesthesiologist that I loved him, because at that moment he was my favorite person in the room.
They had already started cutting when the let Patrick into the room, and my loving husband took one look at me and said "Ya dead, mon?"
(I guess I did kind of look dead, but come on, I was giving birth to his child- a little sensitivity would have been nice!)
At this point, I felt like a disembodied head, and even when they said Id feel alot of pressure it didn't hurt at all.
Then at 6:11 AM they walked the most beautiful little nugget around the curtain and said, "Meet your little boy!"
And then my sweet little boy proceeded to pee on his Daddy. It was official, I was in love.
They got him all cleaned up and then they brought him over to meet me, and I just remember tears running down my face and kissing his little cheek. I couldn't believe I had done it, I was a Mommy and this was the little guy who made me one.
They took him off to the nursery and my husband went with him while they stitched me up and got me ready to go to recovery. I was in and out in an hour and a half, and only spent two hours in recovery. They did bring the baby in while I was in recovery to let me see him, and to let the hubs name him. Surprisingly, it only took him a few minutes to name him...I was worried it would be a two day process.
I was up and walking the next day, and have felt almost no pain as I healed. The spinal and the morphine did make me sick to my stomach, but I had been getting sick the whole pregnancy so it wasn't too different. It was all worth it, because that little guy made us a family and from the moment he was born neither of us could imagine life without him.
(Please forgive my appearance, no sleep + c-section + morphine= drugged up momma!)
So that was it. Quick and painless. No contractions, no pushing, no Lamaze breathing (I'd like a refund for those classes, please!), no real pain. Sure it was invasive and uncomfortable at times but it could have been worse. My baby was healthy, happy, beautiful and here- what more could I have asked for?