Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Stay at Home Mama Musings

We're a month into this whole stay-at-home mom experiment, and I have lots and lots of thoughts about it. I'll preface this by saying that it doesn't seem "real" yet, since I'm always off during the summer. There is also a chance it might not last as long as we'd hoped, since our house still hasn't sold, and we just can't cover 2 mortgage payments on one salary. So, here's hoping that it'll be officially sold this month!

*Naptime is my biggest stressor. I know it shouldn't be, but it just IS. Take today, for example. I was ready to finally go to one nap a day. But, then she got tired this morning, wanted to go down, and went to sleep for a good hour and a half. So, of course she got tired again this afternoon. But, sleep? Nah. As of about 15 minutes ago she was singing some jibberish song. I should be able to enjoy that sound, and just not worry about whether she's actually asleep or not. But, I'm not there yet. I'm trying. Okay, and I just checked the monitor and it looks like she's asleep. Geez.

*We read a lot LOT of books. We keep about 20 or so downstairs at any given time. Today we read about 14 of those in one sitting. I started making a pile of the ones we'd read, and wouldn't reread them. Babygirl LOVES books. And this makes me one happy mommy!

*Our babysitter Kate found an awesome park at a church near our house. I take Brenna there a lot. I met a girl who I think could be my BFF. We have a few mutual friends (who knew?). Great timing to move 2.5 hours away!

*Our couch pillows and ottoman make a great tunnel.

*Brenna lovessss to be outside. Whether it be on the deck, on a walk, or at the park, she's happiest outside. Not so much happiest in a buggy anywhere. That makes running errands fun.

*If you lose your dog's collar or your husband's iphone case, let your 16 month old find them. She probably hid them both.

*Your baby will think EVERY man is Daddy while he's gone. No holds barred - fat or skinny, tall or short, black or white, ugly or hot, young or old, cartoon character or drawing - they will all be called DADDY. Loudly. And the creeper target register guy will ask you if you'll make him dinner since your kid called him Daddy. There is no point in getting embarassed.

*This is hard, ya'll. It's fun but it's hard. Especially with a husband who's in another state 3-4 days a week. I feel like I'm in stay at home mom bootcamp. At least once we officially move he'll be around at night most of the time to break the monotony.

*I wouldn't trade it for the world. Her giggles alone, which I hear a LOT make it worth it. Lucky me!

Monday, July 4, 2011

16 Months Old!

Dear Brenna,

You're another month older - and this month was an extra special one. It was the first of many months that I get to be your stay-at-home mommy. We got to spend lots and lots of time together, since Daddy was gone a lot to NC for work. It made me look forward to all the days we'll be spending together in the weeks, months, and (hopefully) years ahead when we're home together each day! We've read about a half-million books, played peek-a-boo more times than I can count, and had a few lunch dates, play dates, and park trips, too!

You adore books, Brenna. I really hope that continues when you are able to read them yourself. Right now some of your favorite books are the jolly barnyard, hello, bugs!, Elmo & Friends, an ABC flip page book, and any book with pictures of Elmo or animals. You LOVE animals. You know lots and lots of them and the sounds they make. My personal favorites are when you say "turtle" and when you make this silly sound and make your arm into a trunk when someone asks you about what sound an elephant makes! It makes me laugh, even if it's the tenth time in a day.

You're sleeping really well right now. I put you down about 8 each night, and you usually sleep until 7:30-8:00 each morning. Your naps were crazy for awhile, but you've been napping like a pro again lately. You nap from about 10:00-11:30 each morning and 3:30-5:00 each afternoon. As long as you take 2 naps easily, we're going to stick with that! You like to sleep with your two pink bears now, so I wonder if you're going to start getting attached to your stuffed animals. You also like to have at least 2 pacis, just in case!

You eat lots of different things. You are sometimes picky and don't eat much, and other times you eat like crazy. Your "staples" that you'll always eat are grilled cheese sandwiches, green beans, all fruit (especially berries), Teddy Grahams, Puffs (we SO thought you were done with these), flatbread crackers, shredded cheese, hot dogs, cucumbers, carrots, and noodles. You drink milk really well still, and you like water when it's hot outside. You're always worried your food is hot - and you to blow on your food, just in case.

You also learned how to "smell" things, and you love to smell flowers. Nana loves when you do that at her house! It's so fun just to watch you learn to do "everyday" things. You're such a little lady. We're working on manners a lot. You say please and thank you - sometimes even without being prompted. I love seeing you be polite all on your own. We're working on "asking" for things instead of grunting and fussing. You have a strong personality, but are usually easily convinced to calm down. We've played in your pool on the back deck a few times, too. You'd rather stand on the edge and play in the water, but I'm trying to get you more used to being in the water. Oh, and speaking of water, you're favorite activity is still brushing your teeth. You start saying "teeth, teeth" as soon as we go into your room at night. Keep it up!

You're growing right on target. About 2 weeks ago, you were 21 pounds, 15 ounces and 31.25 inches. You wear mostly 12 month or 12-18 month clothes. Sometimes you still sleep in your 9 month onesies. Your feet are finally growing, too, and you sure do like having shoes on - because it means you are getting to go outside. You're MUCH happier when we leave the house to go to the park, rather than to get groceries or run errands. Your patience for these things isn't quite what it used to be. We're learning about timing though, and hopefully our routine will just keep getting better.

We celebrated Father's Day with Daddy while he was home. We got him a nice, new patio set, which you like because it means we spend more time on the deck. You were a flower girl in Carrie and Eric's wedding this month and you were adorable. You were a little too scared to walk down the aisle, which didn't surprise us too much. Everybody enjoyed seeing you all dressed up - and you were in a great mood for the beginning of the reception, before Nanie took you home to try to nap. I hope you'll get to be a flower girl again at some point, and can enjoy the experience more. Luckily we have lots of pictures from your first chance!

You are talking up a storm, and it's so fun to have "conversations" with you. You love to point out people you know in pictures. On the days when you wake up and Daddy isn't home, you go from room to room looking for him, shouting "Daddddddy!" It's kind of pitiful, but cute at the same time. You are most definitely a Daddy's girl. You adore him - and he adores you. It's nice on the days he's here and we all get to hang out together. Hopefully before your 17 month old update we'll all be together in NC and getting to spend lots more time together! Until then, we'll enjoy our time together. It's exactly the way I've been longing to spend my days for the past 16 months.

I love you, my little Sprout!
Love, Mommy

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Pinterest = LOVE!

Thanks to Kelley, I'm obsessed with Pinterest. If you don't know about it, you're missing out. It's a little confusing at first, but it's awesome! It's pretty much a bookmarking site where you can share ideas about anything under the sun. You can pin images or websites to look at later and share with your followers. You just need to go try it! My main motivation was to actually DO some of the ideas that I found, so I did just that this weekend! Below are some of the yummy creations that I created thanks to Pinterest this weekend! If you follow me (or want to!), all of these are on my boards!

Friday dinner - Lasagna Cupcakes (will make again!)

Friday dinner - Parmesan knots (will DEFINITELY make again!)

Friday dessert - Oreo mini cheesecakes (will make again with a different cheesecake recipe on top)

cute Oreo imprint

Saturday breakfast - 4th of July toast (should probably do something more yummy next year!)

Saturday lunch - pesto/ham/mozzerella/tomato on focaccia bread (SO DELICIOUS - thanks Merritt!)

Saturday dinner - baked zucchini chips (awesome when warm)

Saturday dessert - Strawberry lemonade bars (not a fan - Jonathan liked them)

....and this isn't a Pinterest find, but it was my craft project yesterday. They are for my new nephew. Want me to make you some?

*I also made a few other craft projects off Pinterest for Brady's shower - pictures to come later!
*We hit up our local antique store today and got a few more supplies for some projects.
*I bought a few more household items for some other projects to work on this week, too.
*Where did the non-crafty Erin go???