Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Haircuts for Everyone!

Brenna and I had a girls day out yesterday. We headed to Salem so that my friend Janelle could cut and color my hair. I called Jonathan on the way and asked if he was okay with it if I had her trim Brenna's "bangs" because they were getting in her eyes - he said it was fine as long as I took pictures.

I wanted something different with my hair because it's been almost the same since I met Jonathan. I was picturing a little lighter color than last time and a cute, choppy cut at about my shoulders. So Janelle picked a great color and went to town. While it processed, she trimmed Brenna's hair. She even gave us a certificate and a little bag with her hair in it! So sweet.

The beginning of Brenna's cut

"Mom, this isn't so bad!"

Then, time for my cut. When she put her hand about where I was thinking, she said it was almost ten inches. A lightbulb went off in my head and I asked her how much you had to donate for the minimum length for Locks of Love. Wouldn't you know - 10 inches. So, after almost hyperventilating, I just went for it. It felt good to be able to donate my hair for that great cause, and I really do like the cut. It's BARELY long enough for a ponytail, which was pretty much my only requirement. Check it out for yourself - but ignore my no-makeup look. It's pretty common during the summer!
10 inches of hair gone - SCARY!
from the front (obviously)
from the back (ignore the ponytail lines!)

Monday, June 28, 2010

Things I Will Miss

Lately it seems like Brenna is changing so fast that I can't even keep up. I've thought a lot about all the things I'm going to miss when she's out of this stage. I know we have a ton of things to look forward to, but it hurts my heart to think about losing some of the things we're experiencing now. I guess this is why people have more than one kid, isn't it? Anyway, the things I will miss...
1. Her sweet little toothless grin. Oh my word, it melts my heart. It's the most fun thing about her, no doubt.
2. Her baby smell. I know soon enough she'll smell like green beans, pees, avocados, peaches, applesauce, and cereal. But for now I will just enjoy her milky little baby smell.
3. Her carseat/stroller combo. I LOVE having her face me when I put her infant seat in her stroller. The one time she rode facing outward, it drove me nuts. Do they make mirrors for strollers like they do for cars?
4. Her long naps. On days when two of her naps are long (like today) I'm in heaven because I spend the first nap cleaning up, washing diapers or clothes, steaming bottles, making muffins, planning dinner, ironing, doing the dishes, etc. Then I can join her for part of her 2nd nap and spend the rest of it blogging (like now!) Oh, these are the days!
5. "Firsts". It seems like everyday she has a "first". On some days it's big firsts - rolling over, laughing, pulling up. On other days they aren't so big - wearing jeans for the first time, putting her paci back in her mouth, noticing Maggie. But they are all important to us and I'll miss having things to celebrate most every day. Soon it'll be her first dance recital or volleyball game, first time on the Honor Roll, first prom, first date (eek!), first vacation without us..... then her first dance with her new husband, her first baby, and then she'll get to go through what we are getting to go through now. Time never stops, does it?
6. The questions/comments from strangers. I'm sure people comment on and ask questions about toddlers, but man babies just draw attention. And I just love bragging on her.
7. The newness of it all. She's almost four months old - and in some ways it seems longer than that. A lot of people say they can't remember life without their baby/kids. I remember life before her. I could nap when I wanted, go to the gym when I wanted, go on vacation when I wanted, sleep in, enjoy dinner out with just Jonathan. I also LONGED for a baby of my own. I thought about it all the time. I wanted to be a mommy long before I said "I do" two years ago. And now I am. I remember what life was like, and although sometimes it was easier - it didn't hold a candle to the way I feel about our family now. One day I really won't remember life without Brenna, and I'm okay with that. But I do enjoy the newness of it all and learning to be parents with the most amazing hubby and daddy ever!
8. Our routine. My type A personality loves having a routine and my right-brainedness loves adventure. I definitely like knowing what to (kinda) expect during our days here at home together. But I'm sure it's fun to wake up each day not knowing, too!
9. Her little baby babble. She has SO MUCH to say and I love hearing her express it (even though I have no clue what she's saying). It will be fun to carry on a conversation that we both understand one day, but I love hearing her just babble and giggle away. It's just pure innocence and I adore it!
10. Introducing her to the important people in our lives. Most all the people we love the most in the world have met her, but a few still haven't. I'll miss that feeling of seeing friends and family meet and hold her for the first time as a baby. It's just such a feeling of love!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Who Are You?

New poll! I want to know who's reading the blog. So, go ahead, tell me how you know us. There is even a button for you, Erin and Merritt (and EMU), that I'm worried might get the most votes. How embarassing would that be?

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Brenna's First Wedding

Last weekend we loaded up the car and headed to Jonathan's parents' house to start celebrating Jonathan's cousin, Kevin's wedding to his very patient fiance Julianna. These two had dated for five years and had been engaged since around the time we got married - two years ago! Julianna waited for Kevin while he finished his Masters in Statistics (yeah, genius) at NC State and she finished her time at Radford. Kevin is honestly one of the nicest guys I've ever met - he is always sincere and loves the Lord with his whole heart. He's also head-over-heels for Julianna, which is just adorable. Julianna is a super fun girl who was just giddy all weekend. It was so fun to celebrate with them.

We headed to the Rehearsal and Rehearsal Dinner (alone! The in-laws kept Angel Face for us so she wouldn't be a distraction at the rehearsal.) on Friday night. It was so fun to catch up with some of Jonathan's family. When Jonathan, his brother Brandan, and his cousins Stephen and Kevin get together - nobody can keep a straight face. They are hilarious. Jonathan is usually the instigator, which may surprise you. But oh gosh, these guys have some stories.

Then on Saturday I got Brenna ready while Jonathan helped Bill rake and put up hay on the farm. I also watched in admiration as my mother-in-law made their groom's cake - I knew better than to try to help. Sweet little Brenna slept all the way there AND through the whole wedding, thank goodness. I then fed her betweent he wedding and reception and she was awake during the reception to be passed around by no fewer than 20 friends and family members. It was HOT in the reception hall, but she was such a good sport. Jonathan was the DJ for the reception, so it was nice to have lots of people help me with Brenna so I could keep him company. Everything was beautiful, and both cakes were DELICIOUS. Brenna wants to try some cake at her next wedding - but I think she'll have to wait because we have 3 more weddings to go to (Chuck's, Sheri's, and Lisa's) before she turns 6 months old! Shew! Here are some pictures so you can see the sweet girl all dolled up at the wedding (and a few of us, too!)

Jonathan and Erin at the Rehearsal Dinner
The boys - Brandan, Jonathan, Kevin, and Stephen
sleeping through the wedding
Julianna and Kevin during the wedding
yummy cakes
Brenna at the reception with Nana
my hubby, the DJ
family photo
The groom giving Jonathan some instructions.
Brenna with her 2nd cousin Brooke
Brenna with her 2nd cousin Carrie
her first "dance" with Daddy at a wedding
double fourth cousins - Brenna and Stephen
(Jonathan's grandpa and Stephen's grandpa are brothers. Jonathan's grandma and Stephen's grandma are sisters. Yes, this is legal. This is also how he's kin to Kevin, the groom.)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Jonathan's 1st Father's Day

What a fitting day to do Jonathan's Father's Day post. 11 of you voted that Brenna looked like Jonathan and a mere 2 of you voted that she looked like me. I'd be willing to bet that whoever the two of you are that you don't know Jonathan. Even I voted Jonathan! It's a good thing I think she's cute.

So who are the 13 of you who voted anyway? I thought my only readers were Kelley, Erin, Merritt, and occasionally Sheri or EMU? Come on, delurk people!

Anyhow, back to Father's Day. We "celebrated" last Thursday because we left on Friday to go out of town for the weekend. We went to look at some houses and I told Jonathan to pick where he wanted to eat. He picked PK's - a yummy pizza place in Blacksburg that has Tijuana Toss on Thursdays. You order a large pizza and then the manager flips a coin before you pay - and if you win, your pizza is free. Best part of his Father's Day meal? It was free! Ok, we added two toppings so it was $5.00 including drinks. Yep, such a steal. And delicious as well.

When we got home we gave him his gifts. He got a personalized card (that's a whole other story for another day) with pictures of him and Brenna. He also got a personalized calendar with pictures of Brenna, too. So cute! He got a book called I Love You, Daddy and one called Happy Father's Day with Little Critter. He also got a Carl Edwards tshirt (redneck? yep!) He loved it all!

Friday we headed to his company's summer picnic and then off to his parents' house so they could watch Brenna while we headed to Kevin and Julianna's rehearsal dinner. On Saturday we got him a cookie cake for Father's Day that we're still eating on! ;) Then on Sunday we went to dinner at Fatz on the way home to celebrate Father's Day for Jonathan and Bill! It was great.

Jonathan is a better dad than I ever thought he'd be - even though I knew he's be amazing. He loves Brenna (and me) more than anything and his face just lights up when he's with her. She loves him too - he can calm her down or put her to sleep way better than I can. I love to watch them together and I can already tell she is going to be a Daddy's Girl.

Since my dad died in 1998, Father's Day has really stunk. This year was different and it was great. It was so nice to have a reason to celebrate this special day. I can't wait to see Jonathan grow even more in his role as daddy. Brenna is surely a lucky girl, and I plan to always make sure she knows how lucky she is to have such a great father who loves her, her mommy, our family, and the Lord with all his heart. How did we get so lucky?

Monday, June 21, 2010

Guess What!

My baby girl rolled over!! She has been so, so, so close for a few weeks - but one of her arms was always in the way and trapped under her. On Friday (as we were packing to go away for the weekend) she finally figured it out. I caught a few pictures right before she got her arm out, but Jonathan didn't have time to get the video camera unpacked and hit record - but he was so close!! I did catch the tail end of her 2nd attempt on video last night. I'm so proud of her and I can't believe how fast she's growing up! Such a big, big girl!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

What a difference a year makes...

Today was my first "official" day of summer vacation. Last year on my first day of summer vacation I took a pregnancy test (or 3...) and found out I was going to be a mommy. This year I spent most of my day staring into the bluest, most beautiful eyes of the sweetest 15 week old I've ever seen! This has been the most exciting, challenging, and life-changing year of my life. The only scary part is that in one more short year I'll be spending my first day of summer vacation hanging out with a 15 month old and wondering how in the world my baby grew up so fast. What a difference a year makes, huh?

And to celebrate this day - I've made a poll. Check it out on the right side of the blog. :)

Just for Fun

Since my angel baby is napping (for going on an hour and a half - after sleeping from 11:30 PM to 8:15 AM, yep) I thought I'd just post a bunch of fun pictures of her over the past little bit. She's too cute not to show off! Enjoy! :)

She's recently fallen in love with her doll!

Do you like my headband?
Sleeping in my buggy PJs that Mommy LOVES!
Tummy time
I'm not a fan of my tummy!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Just like Mommy

I have an awesome sleeper. Seriously, amazing! I think my one biggest fear when I was pregnant was that my baby wouldn't sleep well. During that first month or so I thought I would die when she woke up once or twice every night - usually she would sleep from about 9 - 12 on the couch with us, then from 12 - 4 and 4 - 6ish. But, honestly, I do know how lucky we were even back then. Since then she has been sleeping all night (11:30 - 6:00) and so have I! I know this is rare with such a young baby, and I'm just thankful that she appreciates sleep as much as I do!

Just this week she's started sleeping until 7:00 or 7:20 every morning and going to bed about 11:00 or 11:30 for good. That's about 8 hours - which is more than I got when I was pregnant!! She actually falls asleep between 9:00 and 10:00 most nights and sleeps until I feed her before putting her in her crib about 11:00 or so. Then she sleeps all night, eats when she wakes up, and then usually naps for another hour and a half or so from 8:30 until her next feeding about 10:00. Then there are usually 3 more naps each day! I think that's why she's such a happy, fun baby - she's super well rested. I think we may try to drop her late night (11:00) feeding in the next little bit and see if she'll sleep through from 9:30 to 7:00. I definitely wouldn't mind getting into bed a little earlier, so I'm cool with that!

I know not all babies do this (ahem, LONDON!) and I'm thankful mine does. I'd love her the same if she woke me up every 30 minutes.....but I'm sure thankful that we seem to have this sleeping thing down pat. Oh, and don't ask me for advice. I don't think it's anything we did - except maybe trying to keep her on a pretty consistent schedule. We're just blessed. SO blessed!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

The End...and the Beginning

Today I cried. It was the last day of school - the day I've been looking forward to since Brenna was born. But, for some reason, I cried when I was telling them our final goodbyes. They are a super sweet group and I really am telling the truth when I say I will miss them terribly. Of course I'm excited to spend my days with Brenna. But I will miss them nonetheless. I wonder if being a Mommy is to blame for my over-emotional goodbye. I think that's probably the culprit!

Jonathan brought Brenna to Field Day today. It was a blast. The kids couldn't get enough of her - and they didn't even care about the movie on the big screen TV in our room. All they wanted was some baby time. I can't blame them there.

We had Awards Day this morning where we celebrated some of their accomplishments this year. Then I showed them a DVD I made them with all our pictures from this year. So fun! I even gave them each a copy of it to keep! Then they gave me a gorgeous Silpada necklace and a sweet card and we gifted Mrs. Anderson, too!

Then Field Day!! We played lots of fun games - foot races, cone races with soccer balls, hula hoop contests, shoe-flinging contest, water balloon fights, and bobbing for apples. They had a blast! We also ate some food from different countries to go along with our "Exploring Diversity" theme. We had nachos, Indian Naan bread, ravioli, apple enchiladas, rice, and fortune cookies. It was all so yummy!

So, the end of the year has happened. Thirty minute faculty meeting tomorrrow and I'm done (not including 2 math conferences for the next 2 Mondays....bummer!). The summer is beginning. Brenna and I are joining a new gym tomorrow that has free childcare. Beach body, here I come!

Sad day. Happy day. Oh, how being a mommy changes things!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Dear Finley

Dear Finn,

Don't worry. I do it, too! It was on my butt, too! We're so cool.


Thursday, June 3, 2010

3 Months Old!

Dear Sweet Brenna,

Here we are, another month under our belts. Three months already? That's a big milestone. They say you aren't a newborn anymore. That's a pretty sad thought for me - your first "stage" is over! However, your third month has been a big one for you, and we've all really enjoyed it.

Your little personality is developing by leaps and bounds. You absolutely love to smile. You also giggle a lot, which is totally the best sound on earth to me! You will smile at anybody - and I just love to see you be so sweet to people when they try to talk to you. You've started trying to talk - and it's so sweet when you link a few syallables together. I can just tell that you have so much to say. It'll be fun to have conversations with you as you grow. I hope you always keep that sweet spirit and love all the people who love you. It's so nice to be able to leave you with friends and/or family when we need to and not worry about you. Thanks for being so flexible.

You've learned to touch your toes and you LOVE it! Today you almost put your foot in your mouth. I wonder if you'll be a gymnast? You also really love your playmat and playing with your toys on it. If the tv is on, though, you'll turn to watch it instead of your toys. Uh oh! The other day we were waiting in the car at Walgreens and you figured out how to pull your little vibrating hanging toy on your carseat and I was so proud. Oh, the things that make a mother smile. I couldn't wait to tell Daddy - and then you showed him how you did it. It's fun to watch you learn. Always value learning new things! You've played with your rattle a little bit, and even hugged your "first doll". Sometimes you even entertain yourself with your burp clothes. Gross, but true. I'll admit you are more high maintenance now - you must be entertained all the time. But, that's okay. We love entertaining you.

Nanie and Nana have enjoyed babysitting you over the past 2 weeks. You've been a good girl and been on a really good schedule. They both are going to miss you so much when they aren't getting to see you every day. We'll have to go visit a few times this summer!

We had our first Mother's Day together this month. It was priceless. Daddy made it so special for me - he made a frame full of pictures of you, a mold of your sweet hand, and a necklace engraved with your name and birthday. Such special gifts. We enjoyed time at church and then just some family time, which was perfect! I am excited to spend many, many more Mother's Days with you. I sometimes wonder how it'll feel to see you become a mother. But, we'll cross that bridge when we come to it! I can barely remember life without you. It seems like you've always been here and that you just got here - all at the same time. I'm pretty sure that might never change.

You are almost out of all your newborn clothes. Most of the 0-3 months fit okay but are a little big. You can still wear some of your newborn onesies and most all the newborn shorts, but the pants are just too short. You're so long!! You have a TON of 0-3 month clothes to wear, so that'll be fun! People love to buy you clothes (Mommy included) so you've got LOTS to choose from. Your diapers fit much better now and you look so cute in your colorful little diapers!

I only have 5 more workdays of this school year and then we'll have the whole summer together. I am SO excited about this! Sometimes I get so sad when I don't get to spend much waking time with you - so being able to be with you all the time again is going to be a very welcome change. Being a working mommy is hard, Brenna. I pray I will soak up all the time that I do get with you and not take it for granted.

I couldn't love anyone more than I love you. I hope you always know how much I love you - and I hope I am able to be the mommy I've always wanted to be. I would do anything for you, and I want you to know that I'll always be your biggest fan.

I love you my little Sprout - and we're off to month 4! What will it have in store for us?