Friday, March 30, 2012

ten random things (v6)

It's back! Get excited.

1. We now return to your regularly scheduled sleeping habits. I'm going to say this quickly and quietly so as not to jinx it, but I think I have my little sleeper back. It's been about two weeks since he woke up before 7am and we're all feeling better for it. Now I'm sure teething will come along and just jack that all up, but I'll take what I can for now.

2. I miss Chick-fil-a. We used to get texts from the Chick-fil-a in Summerville so we'd know when they were having promotions like Military Appreciation Day, when we'd get a free sandwich for showing our ID. I got one of those texts yesterday and it made me sad. Mostly because I miss Charleston, but also because I miss the #1 combo.

3. Flowers! They're blooming! There are - count 'em - THREE daffodils in my back yard, a vine that has bloomed some sort of yellow flowers and a tree in the front yard that is just starting to show it's leaves. I've never appreciated Spring as much as I do now.

4. Babies are expensive. And take up a lot of space. In the past two weeks, I've purchased a high chair, a car seat and a jogging stroller (although that could be considered a gift for mama). But seriously, there is a lot of bulky plastic stuff up in here. Related: when did my boy get big enough to sit in a high chair?? Wasn't he this little wad just a blink ago? Waaah!


5. Speaking of jogging strollers...I'm doing it, y'all. I've never run farther than the length of a tennis court, but I'm doing the Couch-to-5k. And don't you even dare laugh. All I know is that there are times when I've got to get out of this house and MOVE and there's only so much I can do with that sweet little one, so I'm giving this a go. I know I can do it, I just have to DO IT. And I know I'll feel better and more confident if I complete the program. What if I ran a 5k? What if I did that?! Anyone want to be my long-distance accountability partner?

Couch to 5k

6. Birds! One thing I didn't love about our neighborhood in Charleston was that it was so developed and populated that there weren't ever any birds around. But here? It's like an aviary in my back yard. Right now, it literally sounds like I have one of those nature CDs turned up super loud.

7. I should take more and better pictures. I take a LOT of pictures with my iPhone because it's always with me and for a phone, the pictures aren't that bad. But I also have this really nice DSLR that would take ever better pictures and there's really no reason why I shouldn't be documenting more than just Jack's chubby little face, which is what most of my iPhone pictures are. I'm making that a goal for April.

8. I got my hairs cut. As mentioned in the magic sunshine post, I chopped my hair off. I thought I wanted to grow it out but it was just a mess. And I never did anything with it except pull it back because a) I didn't have time and b) there's a grabber amongst us. Also, with the lovely postpartum shedding issues that no one bothered to tell me about, Jack just ends up with fistfulls of my hair. Not to mention the strays that I find everywhere. Andrew even found a few in his sea bag on his last underway. So anyway, it's gone. And I love it!


9. Yard sale. The amount of stuff we've accumulated over the years is quite remarkable. And since I've put my hands on everything we own in this unpacking process, I've gotten serious about what to keep and what to give away. So I'm having a yard sale! I'm oddly excited about it, actually. I'm looking forward to organizing everything for it and maybe! using! my label maker!

10. The accents up here still catch me off guard. There's really no explanation needed on that. Every once in a while, I'll overhear someone say something and I think, where in the world are you from? Then I remember. I live among the people with the accents and really, they should be asking me that. Oh dear.

Happy Friday, friends :)

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

magic sunshine

There's a hair salon up here that sends out an email every morning with open appointments for that day and if you take one, you'll get 20% off your service. Seeing as how I haven't had a haircut since before Jack was born, it was time.

The mane. It was unruly.

I was a little rushed to make it on time because Jack decided he wanted a leisurely lunch and then I got stuck behind a school bus and then I turned right instead of left and then I had to hurryhurryhurry to get Jack strapped into his stroller because I knew he'd be happier there than in the carseat while I was getting my hair did. By the time I walked inside, I was all out of breath and sweaty and talking fast because that's what I do when I'm stressed. Then I sat down down and noticed that I had paint in my hair and an orangish stain on my pink and white shirt.

Hot. Mess.

But this story is about the stain. I suspect that it was from the lilies that were in the bouquet of flowers my parents sent for my anniversary. Or it was baby poop.

I really hope it was the lilies, so let's just go with that.

Anyway, when I got that shirt out of the dryer yesterday, the stain was still there. Did I mention that the shirt was new and I'd only worn it once?

The shirt was new and I'd only worn it once.

When I noticed the stain, I groaned because a) the shirt was new and I'd only worn it once and b) I was reminded of how momish I felt that day at the salon, all frazzled and disheveled with questionable stains on my shirt.

So I draped the shirt over the chair in the sunroom to see if the stain could be bleached out. Did you know the sun can do that? It's magic like that. And as of this morning, the stain is officially gone.

Consider that your helpful tip for the week.

The end.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

house progress: the living room

After 26 days of being in this house, I finally feel excited about one of the rooms. I've been excited about the potential for every single space in this house, but the to-do lists and paint buckets and unpacked boxes have gotten in the way a little bit. But we're making progress, people!

First, let me tell you a story about paint.

I picked out paint colors weeks ago and when Andrew's parents came to help with the move, they got the first coat up in the living room. Shoreline by Valspar. A lovely buttercream color that just made me feel so happy as it was going up.

Notice the fireplace because it got a makeover, too.
But then it dried. And it just felt off. There was a touch of green to it that I didn't like. Even after the second coat, it just wasn't working for me. And so, after two weeks of trying to make it work, I finally gave myself the permission to repaint. Hooray!

Six samples later, I landed on the perfect color. Faint Maple by Valspar, lightened by 25%. I'm picky, no? Luckily, they were able to adjust the formula in a gallon of Shoreline I had leftover, so I only had to buy one more gallon. Hooray again!

I tell you this so that you can appreciate all the work that went into this room. And now I'll show you the quick picture I took today. This particular styling includes unhung pictures, two drinks on the coffee table, a dog toy, a bag of candy on the end table and a folded up highchair against the wall. That's real life, y'all.


There's still a lot to do, but I finally love the direction this room is headed. And I am in love with the white fireplace. LOVE.

Here's a little breakdown of what's what (in black) and a few to-dos we have left for this room (in red):

LR comments

We're getting there, people! I think it's going to look so great once we get some art on the walls and find some house plants to liven up those two corners. And we're thinking of DIY-ing a new coffee table, kind of like this one. Although that feels a little bit like a baby death trap, what with the sharp corners and stuff, so we'll see.

Until then, I would like to never paint again and I would like to go find that bag of candy. Amen.

Friday, March 23, 2012

milestones: rolling over


I was on the phone with my brother this morning and I was telling him that I was a little worried that Jack wasn't meeting certain milestones yet. He didn't seem interested in rolling over, he isn't sitting up on his own yet, he doesn't really like to bear weight on his legs, etc. As I was jabbering away, I put Jack down on his blanket in the sunroom and when I turned around less than 10 seconds later, he had rolled himself over. And he had the grin to prove it.

The kid's making a liar out of me.

Then I spent the rest of the morning memorizing everything about 159-day-old Jack because before I know it, he'll just be rolling himself down the hall to kindergarten.

Hold me.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

move-in day

When I think back to moving day, I simultaneously want to break out in laughter and in hives. It was that fun. It wasn't too chaotic, just a lot to handle when you're by yourself with a baby on your hip. Not to mention all the other random stuff required on moving day: internet setup, phone setup, getting the locks changed, getting your oil tank refilled (aka: emptying your bank account into that big black thing in the basement), ordering pizza for the movers, etc, etc. Thankfully, our realtor (aka: gift from God) offered to come and be an extra set of eyes and hands. If it weren't for her...well, maybe we just shouldn't think about that. My skin is getting blotchy.

I haven't told you much about this little abode of ours, but you should know that it's adorable. When I pictured our first home, this is always what I had in mind and I can't believe we actually found it. It's a three bedroom, two bath with a partially finished basement (which we'll use as the family room/guest room). And the unfinished part of the basement is huge, perfect for storage and Andrew's workshop.

And of course, there's the sunroom. My happy place. I can't even put this room into words because it's just that amazing. Right now, I'm sitting at our patio table and looking out into the woods behind our house. And when the leaves come in? Gracious. For now, it's kind of foggy and has a Wuthering Heights vibe going on, which I like. And we're having a split-rail fence put in as we speak so our little Rudiger will have some space to run free. So charming. In short, you should hop the next plane to come and drink coffee with me in here.

Anyway, back to what you people came here for. The pictures! I was able to snap a few before the boxes took over, so hopefully you can get a feel for what we're working with. Our project list is long, but in a good way, and I'm eager to get started. I'll try to post some progress pictures over the next few days so you can see what we've done so far. Hooray!

There she is! Cute little picket fence and everything. You can't tell from the picture, but the shutters and door are sort of a peacock blue. I don't dig it. We're thinking of charcoal gray shutters with a red door. One thing at a time!

The living room and dining room area. I know what you're thinking. You're so jealous that YOUR house didn't come with seafoam green and mauve curtains with giant rosettes. Curtains that don't close all the way, which kind of defeats the purpose of curtains. SO jealous.

From the living room, looking into the dining area and sunroom. Love those double doors! And they have built in blinds between the glass panes, which is a great feature.

The sunroom! The beautiful sunroom!

This blurry little picture is looking into the foyer, from the living room, and down the hallway where all the bedrooms are.

The kitchen. This is probably the room we're most eager to update because HELLO hunter green countertops.

The other side of the kitchen. It's quite small, actually. Only about 9ft wide.

What you don't see are the bedrooms, bathrooms and downstairs area. Just use your imagination. Here, I'll help you:
  • Bedroom #1 (to be used as office): 9x12 room, full of boxes, with awful curtains.
  • Bedroom #2 (Jack's room): 9x12 room, full of baby stuff. It, too, had awful curtains when we got here.
  • Bedroom #3 (master): 9x15 room, with awful wallpaper border, awful mini-blinds and a shiny! hunter green! ceiling fan! 
  • Bathroom #1 (upstairs): Lots of purple. And a vanity/mirror that was maybe built for hobbits? And there was a straw hat with fake flowers adorning the wall when we moved in. Faaaancy.
  • Bathroom #2 (downstairs): Your basic bathroom, only if you're taller than 6'1", you can't stand up straight until you're in the shower. Again I say, faaaancy.
  • Basement: big room with burgandy-ish carpet. And white walls.
Can you visualize it all? What do you think?

Monday, March 19, 2012

jack: five months

Picture 1

This sweet boy.

Looks like he hit a growth spurt this month! Almost four pounds in a month, the little chunk.

He seems to be sleeping better since we've gotten the crib back and is happier during the day because of it. As am I.

Someone told me once that seeing things through your kid's eyes is one of the best parts of being a parent. I'll second that. He's growing so fast and learning things so quickly and we get so much joy out of watching him discover. He's thisclose to rolling over and even sitting up on his own. Where did that squishy little newborn go? I've got myself a baby, y'all.

The weather is getting warmer and we've been trying to take more walks to enjoy it. He loves to the be in the stroller, face turned toward the sunshine or the breeze, just taking it all in.

He's happy almost all of the time and shows it with squeals and giggles and smiles and legs that move about like he's running in place. He can't let Rudy pass by without trying to grab his ears. He'll smile at a stranger, but it's cautious. He adores his daddy.

And when I pick him up in the morning, he rests his head on my shoulder for a second, then leans back to get a good look at me. He puts both hands on my face, smiles reeaaally big and brings my face to his for a kiss.

And it's overwhelming how blessed he makes me feel.


Sunday, March 18, 2012

catching up

People! I've missed you!

My mom sent me a text last week that said, "I'm getting complaints from the public about updates to the blog." So this is for the public.

I don't really even know where to start after our little hiatus, so I'll start with pictures and then jump into the fun stuff like Jack's five month update and (finally!) a look at our house. Until then, here's a glimpse into the last two weeks:

Picnik collage

+ Moving is messy. And those curtains? Blech. Those came down immediately.
+ Organized chaos.
+ So far, only a few things have been broken. And nothing that I'm too sad about.
+ Grandpa and Jack discuss the game plan for the day.
+ Bed buddy.
+ Jack's room is mostly done, with the exception of hanging pictures on the wall. Hooray for progress!
+ He requires a lot of stuff while sleeping.
+ Moose baby!
+ Taking a break from unpacking to go for a walk.
+ Waiting for Andrew's submarine to pull into port!
+ He gets more handsome by the minute, if you ask me.
+ Beautiful sunset.
+ Feet!
+ He's flexing his muscles.
+ Quesadilla from a food truck. It doesn't get any better.
+ Stroller nap.
+ Connecticut might be cold, but it sure is pretty.
+ Tummy time!
+ Is there anything snugglier than a baby in a towel? I submit that there is not.
+ Green or no green, I still want to pinch those cheeks.

Is the public satisfied now? I promise not to let so much time pass before sharing more pictures of that baby.

I don't want anyone to get the shakes.

Friday, March 9, 2012


I Won't Give Up by Jason Mraz on Grooveshark

I've declared this song our anthem for this season in our lives. Navy life is hard, no?

Yesterday was our anniversary. Four years. And at the exact moment when, four years ago, I was at the end of an aisle promising to love and cherish, I was driving along the sea to pick him up. With our sweet baby boy in the backseat, we were going to get Daddy. He had unexpectedly come home early from an underway. Best anniversary gift ever.

I've been in awe lately at the amount of life that's been lived since that early spring day in Chapel Hill when I noticed him for the first time. Since that spring day a year later when I promised to be his wife. And since that spring day a year after that, when we made it official.

The next year, we spent that same spring day wondering if the Navy was an option for us. The year after that, we were apart - he was in Rhode Island for OCS. And the next year, we celebrated at dinner the night before he left again, this time for training in Connecticut. We didn't order wine because there was a fresh new life growing inside me.

And now here we are. This early spring day doesn't feel much like spring up here. Boxes are all around me in our first home, our boy is sleeping in the next room and Andrew is back at work, hoping for an early release before the weekend.

See what I mean about the life that we've lived? And have you noticed how this time of year brings major life events for us? Go big or go home, I guess.

The honest truth is that this whole life of ours is quite heartbreakingly beautiful. When, four years ago, I promised to follow him, I didn't have this in mind. These long hours and separations and solo-parenting. That's not what I thought I'd be following him into. But He is good. And so is Andrew. So good. He is the best person I know. And that's not just mushy-gushy, obligatory anniversary speak. He is the most amazing person I could even dream up, for a hundred different reasons. Following him is so easy and so worth it, because I know his head and heart are in the right place. I feel so blessed in that way.

So while, in a lot of ways, this is the hardest life I could have imagined for us, I think it might also be the happiest. Ironic, right? Because of that, I'll continue to follow that man around. And every day I'll be thankful for it.

Happy Anniversary, my sweet adventurer. Thanks for choosing me to be a part of it all.

Picnik collage

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

updates from among the boxes


+ We're all moved in! And by "moved in" I mean that our belongings are here and we sleep here. But we are by no means unpacked or settled, although we've made a LOT of progress.

+ We? Is there a mouse in my pocket? No. Andrew's parents have been here and have been AMAZING. Unpacking, fixing, setting up, cleaning, Jack-watching, painting and being excellent company for my boy and me. I maybe had an ugly cry after I dropped them off at the airport this afternoon.


+ Rudy likes it here. I'm starting to see pieces of his old personality and that makes me happy. We haven't gotten the back yard fenced in yet, but he spends a lot of time in the sunroom watching the squirrels run around.


+ Cute baby!

+ I miss my husband, dangit. He should be here, you know? Not because of the honey-do list, but because this is our first house and it's a special time for our little family and I wish he was here to smile at every once in a while. I'm ready for that boy to come home from wherever he is.

That's all for now. Let me get just a teensy bit more settled and then I'll put all kinds of pictures up for you. You can't stop me.
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