Friday, August 31, 2012

looking out

I wasn't going to post today, but then I snapped this picture of my boy this morning and I can't just keep it to myself. It's too precious.

I'd give anything to know what he's thinking when he looks out. Sweet baby.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

a then a week went by

Sometimes I think about blogging and I think that it's been a couple of days, when it's actually been a lot longer.

My bad.

But I have a good excuse! I good, sweet, handsome excuse.

My boyfriend's back!

Also, we had visitors! Andrew's parents spent the weekend with us and I don't even have the pictures to prove it. Only because it was an incredibly lazy relaxed weekend and we did very little besides drink a lot of coffee and dream about the future and eat some lobster. In short, it was pretty perfect.

But right now, I'm looking forward to a long weekend with just my guys. We've got lots to catch up on.

PS: How cute is his little hand on his daddy's shoulder?

Happy weekend, y'all.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

no-sew kindle (re)cover

I can't really call this a Kindle cover because the essence of it (the cover itself) was purchased on clearance at Target. I picked it up on a whim because I didn't have one and it was only $9. Score. 

But it looked like this and was just a little bland for my taste:

The night before my trip back to NC, I decided that it was time to spruce it up. You mean you don't make decisions to do a little crafting at 10pm the night before a big trip? That's odd.

So how do you cover a Kindle when you're impatient and short on time?

Heat-n-Bond, baby.

I used two fabrics, just because I couldn't decide which one I wanted to use. I ironed on a green floral first and then cut the other print a little bit smaller to stick on top so there would be a border. I just cut the fabric + heat-n-bond to size and then ironed it right on. And I used a low setting because I wasn't sure how the leather would do under the heat, but it worked well. Now I have a cutie little Kindle cover.


Wednesday, August 22, 2012

home again

I have to admit, when my dad offered to fly Jack and me home for a weekend, I hesitated.

The last time I flew with Jack, he was content to sit in my lap - which made the nonstop flight quite easy. But while he's still an easygoing baby, he's a mover and a shaker these days. And there is no nonstop flight to Raleigh, which meant wrangling a baby through a flight change. Yikes.

Also, the last time we traveled Jack decided that sleep was for the birds and woke up every two hours. And then we came home to a flooded basement. So I guess all of this was fresh on my mind when I was considering the trip.

In short, I was skeered.

But I decided that I didn't want to miss out on an opportunity to see my family and I definitely didn't want to be the reason that they missed out on seeing Jack. That kid is a treat and he should be shared.

It was a nice little escape and it did my heart good to get back home. Jack surprised me with how well he traveled and despite a little fever that popped up on Saturday, he was the same baby that I left Connecticut with. He ate well, played well and slept well. What more could I ask?

And as usual, I was spoiled - especially with the food, most of which came from my parents' back yard or off the coast of North Carolina.

Lucky for us, Jack's Great-Grandma Emily lives just 20 minutes down the road, so some of the Castrodale family gathered at her house for a couple of hours on Saturday afternoon to visit. That sneaky little fever left my boy feeling a bit pitiful and clingy, but he mustered up some smiles and cuddles for everyone. He's sweet like that.

I was also able to steal some time away with my brother while my parents stayed with Jack - I'm sure they spoiled him with non-stop attention. Or maybe he spoiled them?

When I was packing my bags to leave on Monday morning, I felt like the trip had been too incredibly short and I was already counting on my fingers and toes the number of days between now and when they visit for Jack's first (gulp) birthday. I'm also looking forward to a longer trip in the spring so we can see some of the others we've been missing and wishing we could visit more easily. Hey Nanny Johnson! Hey Aunt Shelly! Hey Sarah!

I come from good people, you know. And it was nice to get back home and be reminded of that.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

ten months with jack

Baby Jack,

Double digits? No way.

I had planned to put you in some dapper little outfit and take you down to the beach for your 10-month photos. But as I watched you this morning, I realized that this is exactly how I want to remember you at this age: in my favorite onesie, with no pants on, crawling around the sunroom looking for things to get into.

That's my boy.

This month, you've learned to crawl and it's like you're seeing the world for the very first time. I guess you kind of are. And as exhausting it is to embark on this new stage with you, I love it. I see more and more of your personality every day and I couldn't be prouder to call you mine.

You're sleeping like a champ these days. Going down easily and sleeping for 12 hours or more, depending on how tired you are and what we did the day before. And while your afternoon naps are hit or miss, you'll give me a solid two hours in the morning. It's nice to have that time to get things done, but I always miss you. Judging by the smile on your face when I open the door, I think you miss me, too.

You will eat, literally, anything I put in front of you. You do a happy dance when I break out the Cheerios or your sippy cup. You like to look at books, but won't sit still long enough to be read to. It's okay, I understand that you've got places to go.

You would spend hours in the bathtub if I let you. You hate to have your diaper changed, but are easily distracted by little things like the lotion bottle. You're trying so hard to pull up on the furniture and get frustrated when you can't. I know it's just a matter of time before you've mastered that, too. You've started saying "wassat?" for "what's that" and it's the sweetest thing ever. You whisper it, like you've just discovered a secret. 

You like to play this game with people where you tilt your head to the side and wait for them to do it back. I always feel sorry for you when strangers don't pick up on it. But you aren't discouraged, you just smile and keep on doing it and they think you're just the sweetest baby.

And if they knew you like I know you, they'd know that you are.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

he crawls!

And from now on, pictures of him will be blurry. Forever.

The Saturday that Aunt Rita was here, he got bold and crawled across the living room after a stack of magazines - that he promptly scattered around the room. We made a big fuss (about the crawling, not the magazines) and he hasn't slowed down since.

I was hoping that he'd ease into the whole crawling thing, but if anything, it's like he's just discovered the world around him and there's no way he's going to miss any of it. In the time it takes for me to step into the bathroom to wash my hands, he's down the hall and headed for Rudy's water bowl. In the time it takes for me to fold a towel and put it away, he's in my closet and chewing on a flip-flop. He gets stuck under coffee tables and behind chairs and between the open door and the wall.

And as exhausting as this week has been, trying to keep him contained and away from sharp objects, it's been a blast. He's wearing a permasmile all day long (except for when I keep him from the flip-flops) and literally squeals as he goes, because he's so happy. In fact, it's the squealing that often alerts me that he's on the move. One of these days, he'll learn to do it in super secret stealth mode.

PS: I love how he looks both ways when he comes to the threshold, like he knows he's making a break for it.

Monday, August 13, 2012

a girls' (+ Jack) weekend

Since I was in middle school, my Aunt Rita and I have had these epic girls' weekends. I'd visit her wherever she was living at the time and we'd shop and watch movies and eat a lot. She introduced me to chick flicks and showed me just how great Pretty Woman and Ghost really are. She introduced me to the world of mani-pedis and facials. And with spur of the moment trips to Charleston in high school and college, she taught me to love that city for all that it is.

Around the same time one year, we both met these fellows. And I'd be lying if I said I wasn't scared that they were going to jeopardize that precious girl time that I'd loved and looked forward to for so many years. But during the first spring break that Andrew and I were together, he spent his time doing relief work in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina and she and I skipped off to Charleston for some pampering (yes, we felt a little guilty while we enjoyed our steak and lobster...) I realized then that our time together was not threatened at all. We'd always make time for those weekends.

And when she emailed me on a Monday and asked if I wanted company that weekend, I was reminded again that no matter the boy or the baby and no matter how many states are between us, those girls' weekends aren't going anywhere.

She got in around dinnertime on Friday and we chatted through dinner until we both realized just how tired we were. We reconvened at breakfast, enjoying that happy baby and talking about our plans for the day. After Jack's nap, we headed to the mall where she treated me to some much needed grown-up makeup and picked out a few outfits for the boy, who is quickly growing out of the 9-month size and into the 12-month size. I don't want to talk about it.

Then we made our way to downtown Mystic, where we had lunch at the famed Mystic Pizza and over-ordered and enjoyed every bite like we'd never had pizza before. We tend to do those things when we're together. From there, we checked out the shops with the most patient and charming baby in tow. He never made a peep - he just took in the sights and had a little cat nap here and there.

After resting up at home, I had a sitter come out and take the boy off our hands so we could enjoy a nice dinner out. But not before we watched him crawl for the first time. Then it was off to S&P Oyster, with a table by the water. We dined on soup and lobster and oysters and scallops. The food was delicious and the company was ideal. I always, always treasure those dinner conversations with her.

The next day, we'd had enough of the un-air conditioned box that is my house and decided to take advantage of someone else's AC before she had to leave for the airport. We headed to Skipper's Dock and sat at a table with a view and enjoyed burgers and fries and beer. Because we were still on vacation, you know. And as for that baby, he was happy just scanning the crowd, looking for someone to flirt with.

She left that afternoon and I cried a little - because I was back to an empty house and because I just like her a lot.

As Andrew said in an email later that night, "She's good people and I know that it did you good to spend time with her."

He's so right.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

trunk sale table inspiration

Hey hey, my friends.

I just had the most perfect weekend with my Aunt Rita, who came to visit for a last minute girls' (+ Jack) weekend. There's more to share on that, but only after I finish gathering all of the various iPhone pictures that we took. Apparently I've forgotten how to use a real camera, so...three cheers for camera phones!


I'm participating in my first trunk sale/craft fair this weekend! And to-date, I have one (yes, ONE) item packaged and ready to go. So while I'm taking advantage of every second during naptime and burning the midnight oil after bedtime, I thought I'd share some ideas I have about setting up the actual table.

I don't want to spend a whole lot of money on this part, but I do want it to look nice and get people's attention. Here's what I'm thinking:

  • A lovely tablecloth, like this one from Target. I think it's colorful without being so loud that the products get lost in the pattern.
  • Chalkboard signs, a la Lady Lee and Drew Jones. But maybe instead of making a chalkboard table, I'll make little signs to sit around the display?

  • A pretty fabric bunting and maybe a nice rug in front of the table, a la Oh, Sweet Joy. 

  • Maybe some wire baskets to hold my products? I've seen some cool ones at HomeGoods and TJ Maxx lately, so I might need to go check that out.

  • I love the idea of using clipboards to display some of my prints, a la Yellow Heart Art.

Lots to think about! And only a few days to think about it...

Saturday, August 4, 2012

the daddy book

Before Andrew left, I put together a little photo album with pictures of him for Jack to look at while he was away. I wasn't sure what he'd think of it - if he'd recognize his dad in the pictures or if it would just be confusing. I think it's safe to say that he knows his daddy. And loves him a lot.

And now we have a new morning ritual...

Hurry home, Jack's Daddy! We sure do miss you :)
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