Thursday, December 29, 2011

A brief Christmas recap...

We had a wonderful Christmas, thanks for asking! Little man loves to take things out of things (ex: emptying dresser drawers, removing books from shelves, etc), so he greatly enjoyed removing gifts from his stocking.

We kept Liam's gifts to a minimum considering he has too much to begin with! My favorite gift we got him is the Little People Nativity. He loves to carry around baby Jesus and even lets him drive the dump truck sometimes!

Liam also really likes his bug puzzle that we got for him!

We had a nice relaxing day at home. Ryan outdid himself with wonderful gifts for me, we listened to lots of great music and ate lots of great food!

I can't wait for more Christmases with my sweet family and for Liam to grasp the true meaning of what we celebrate!

"Let's sing out with joy for the brave little boy who was God, but he made himself nothing." -Andrew Peterson

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Christmas Decorations: with a toddler

It's the most wonderful time of the year! This is Liam bird's second holiday season, but last year he was still a non-moving, sleeping all the time little babe so it seems like this is really his first Christmas. I love this time of year and enjoy Christmas decorations so much!

We don't go all out or do a theme, but I think our home always looks festive. This year, we had to adjust our decorations a bit for safety reasons. I did not feel comfortable putting out all of my beautiful snow baby ornaments so we bought some cheap, quilted-ish ornaments to go with non-breakables we already had.

I stole an awesome idea from a friend to use sheet music to make paper chains, she provided the paper for me as well, thanks Becca!

I have my beloved nativity up on the mantle with a few other things.

Each year, the tree stand next to my store gives everyone a free wreath in exchange for coffee and I made a little sheet music bow for the center as well.

Liam has his very own tree! I always wanted a tree in my room growing up, so I must say I am a bit jealous. :) We used his special first Christmas ornaments from last year as well as some colored balls, he seems to enjoy the lights.

So, that's our simple, homespun Christmas! And, we love it.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Thursday, December 1, 2011

14 Months!

Dear Darling Liam Bird,
You are fourteen months old today!  Little man, you are growing so big, so fast!  We adore you more than we can ever express, but trust me kid, you are loved.

I have no idea how much you weigh (scale needs new batteries) or how long you are, but you are definitely still growing away.  You are still wearing size 12 month clothes.  You refuse to wear sock or shoes of any kind; we put them on, you pull them right off.  It's getting pretty cold, so hopefully you figure out soon that we aren't trying to torture you and keep them on!

This past month you got your front two teeth!  Yay, we won't have to wish for them for Christmas!  You have also been working on the two teeth next to them and they are both half way through, so four-ish teeth in one month!  You have been such a champ about them, but definitely chewing on everything to find relief.  Your bed is beginning to look like a beaver sleeps there!  You love having your teeth brushed and will sit and let me brush them for several minutes, so sweet!

Your new teeth have aided in your desire to eat everything in sight!  You are still loving food, you especially loved the pumpkin pie with fresh whipped cream you got to eat on Thanksgiving!  You eat three, fairly large, meals each day with three 6-8 ounce sippy cups of whole milk.  Right before bed you have a smaller sippy cup while we snuggle and read books just to make sure your tummy is full before bed.  You love all food, but especially: sweet potatoes, black beans, breads, cheese, squash, and applesauce.  I'm so thankful for your good appetite, I hope we can continue to cultivate a little foodie!

Your communication skills have grown so much this past month!  You are now saying: "dada," "mama," "book," "milk," "hi," and "no."  You don't necessarily say them perfectly (the k's are left off of book and milk), but you say them well enough that we understand you.  You have also started to make a hilarious trilling noise when you are throwing a fit.  Imagine someone rolling their tongue while crying, it's pretty silly!

You are still on the brink of walking; so stinking close, but so uninterested.  We know you can do it and are trying to just give you all the space and adventure you need to take those first steps!

Liam, you are a hoot to hang out with.  You laugh and clap a lot, and you squeal and babble along all day.  You are very independent while playing and I am sure you will be a "I do it by myself," kind of kid.  You know the ins and outs of all of your toys and love to just sit in your floor and play by yourself.  Often, if we get in the floor to play trucks or something else you take that as your cue to go to the other side of the room to play with a different toy.  You love to read and have begun tearing the flaps off of all of your "lift the flap" books, destructive little angel.  You are constantly trying to engage Gus in a toy to no avail, I'm hopeful that one of these days he will stop being afraid of you and play!

You are such a sweet little boy.  You have a tender heart and can turn on the pout at any time; but your eyes are usually sparkling with happiness.  Your daddy and I love to walk into any room that you are in because you light up and squeal, while crawling a fast as you can and reaching up for a hug! We are so excited to celebrate your second Christmas season and are looking forward to teaching you about the real meaning of this holiday.  We love you so much, sweet baby.  And continue to count you as are biggest blessing and our greatest joy.

Love you forever,

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Thankful November: Day 29

Today, I am thankful for our new (refurbished 1st generation) iPad! I know it's material, but it's so much fun! I'm enjoying using it for lots of things, and playing games with Liam. There are so many apps for toddlers! Ryan is already loving it, he's been able to download a bunch of apps for school stuff. I am also excited about using it for entertainment when we fly to Colorado in January!

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Monday, November 28, 2011

Thankful November: Days 25, 26, 27, and 28

Day 25: I was thankful for leftover cranberry salad! It's my favorite part of thanksgiving.

Day 26: I was so thankful for a fun date night with my sweet husby. We haven't had time to schedule a babysitter for a date since our anniversary in September. We had a great time eating yummy food, exploring old churches, talking, and walking around the mall.

Day 27: I was thankful for a gray rainy day to enjoy lots of snuggling with my little family. My favorite days off are lazy days at home. Perfection.

Day 28: I am thankful for audible. It's an app on my phone with audiobooks! I love listening to books while I am doing laundry or cooking and especially while I am driving in to work in the wee hours of the morning. I'm currently re-listening to "Catching Fire," from the Hunger Games series (I might be obsessed).

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Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thankful November: Day 24

I am so incredibly thankful for all of the loving family that I have! I am blessed by your love, prayers, and friendship. I was raised by some pretty awesome folks and I have two amazing sisters who have husbands and children that I love so much! I married into an incredible, large, loud, loving, and funny family that I love to bits! I am so thankful that God knew just the right people to give me as in-laws, I don't see them much but I love them more every time I do! I am also thankful for two families that I am technically not related to, but have been a part of for countless years: the Garton and Pohle households. Their girls have been my other sisters and I have been blessed to be loved and included as their own over the years! I'm a pretty lucky girl to call four families my own! So thankful for ALL of you! I wish I could hug everyone one of you right now! Next year, why don't you all come to Nashville for a change? Good idea! :)

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Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thankful November: Day 23

I am so thankful for my sweet friends. I have been blessed by a lot of wonderful friendships here and around the world, but my true best friends are in Arkansas and California. I am terrible at talking on the phone, and I have a weird schedule so I am even more thankful for texting and facebook to interact with them throughout the day. Thanks, Mae, Kir, and you girls and so blessed by your love in return.

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Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Thankful November: Day 22

Today, I am thankful for boogie wipes!

Have you used these? You should! They are made with saline so they don't dry up/irritate sweet baby skin. They also smell fresh. Perfect for my runny nosed, teething little man!
I should really just say that I'm thankful for all of the "modern-day-mommy-conveniences" in my life. :)

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Monday, November 21, 2011

Thankful November: Day 21

Today I am thankful for the fairness of State Farm insurance, and God's overwhelming provision in our lives. We were graciously awarded much more than the trooper was worth, as well as an additional medical settlement. So thankful to be able to replace the beloved trooper without having to add a car payment.

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Sunday, November 20, 2011

Thankful November: Day 20

I am thankful for the incredible nap I just woke up from! It's a gray, rainy day--perfect for nap taking! I may regret it when my 8pm bedtime arrives, but for now, I am thankful for the extra rest.

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Saturday, November 19, 2011

Thankful November: Day 19

I am thankful for SEC football! I'm so proud of my Razorbacks, and excited to hopefully see 3 SEC teams ranked in the top 3 tomorrow! Woo Pig Sooie!

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Friday, November 18, 2011

Thankful November: Day 18

Today, I just want to publicly proclaim that I am thankful for the television phenomenon known as "Friends." It is seriously my favorite show of all time! We recently got rid of cable so I am also thankful that I own all 10 seasons of the show! I really don't think I will ever get tired of watching it because each episode brings back different memories for me. I've been watching this show since middle school, so I associate different episodes with different times in my life. So many great quotes and great memories. Love.

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Thursday, November 17, 2011

Thankful November: Day 17

Today I am thankful for Skype! We don't utilize it as much as we should, but it is nice to easily see loved ones who live far away. We loved getting to see our monkey nieces and nephews for a minute tonight. :)

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Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Thankful November: Day 16

On this wet, chilly day I am thankful for comfort food and the ability to make it gluten free!

White chicken chili, cornbread, and cider. Warm and delicious.

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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Thankful November: Day 15

Today, and everyday, I am thankful for my husby! He never ceases to make me feel special, funny, loved, and beautiful. I am so thankful for his friendship and his partnership; we are an amazing team! He is a full-time stay at home dad, a part-time tutor and a more-than-full-time graduate student. He is an incredibly hard worker and a dedicated student (seriously, he writes papers weeks before they are due!). He is truly a hands-on dad, I am so proud of his relationship with Liam and his confidence in caring for him. I am so blessed by his tender heart and commitment to me, Liam, and the Lord. Thanks, loverface!

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Monday, November 14, 2011

Thankful November: Day 14

Today I am thankful for Liam's clapping! He is so sweet and proud of himself.

YouTube Video

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Sunday, November 13, 2011

Thankful November: Day 13

Let the Holiday weight gain begin! :)

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Saturday, November 12, 2011

Thankful November: Day 12

Tonight I am thankful for a quite evening with my husby. We are snuggled up on the couch eating leftover chili and watching the Hogs beat Tennessee. My kind of Saturday night.

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Friday, November 11, 2011

Thankful November: Day 11

Today, on Veteran's Day, I am thankful for my sweet Pepaw. I was truly blessed to have him in my life for 26 years. He taught me a lot about life, baseball, solitaire, flag etiquette, and love. I am proud to be his granddaughter and be a part of his legacy. I strive to be as kind and as loved as he was; I already know that I am just as stubborn! Thanks, Peeps.

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Thursday, November 10, 2011

Thankful November: Day 10

Today I am thankful for the joy of watching happiness through my child's eyes. After Liam's afternoon nap today we stood and played with his bird mobile, made by Auntie Mae, for a while. His face would just light up as we watched the birdies spin around! Touching them while they passed brought on laughter and squealing! What a simple pleasure.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Thankful November: Day 9

Today I am thankful for cloth diapers! Seriously! I am so glad we chose to use them. They save us about $50 a month and they're so darn cute! :) And the extra cushioning provides ample support when our toddling little man collides with the floor!

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Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Thankful November: Day 8

Today I am thankful for my education. I attended a fabulous public school system and went to a renowned private Christian college. Both experiences molded and shaped me into who I am today. I learned a lot from books, but more from the people I shared those experiences with. I'm thankful to have had the privilege to attend JBU, even if my grandchildren will be paying off my student loans. :)

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Monday, November 7, 2011

Thankful November: Day 7

Today I am thankful to have a job that I truly love and am, somewhat, good at. I am blessed with incredible benefits: vacation, full medical/dental/vision, stock grants, discounted prices, free coffee! I work with, and for, incredible people who challenge and motivate me. I have a fairly flexible schedule that still allows me to spend a lot of time with my family. And, I get to pay my bills! It's a great job, and I'm honored to have it!

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Sunday, November 6, 2011

Thankful November: Day 6

Today I am thankful for a relaxing day off. We have had a long and stressful week so a day of errands, laundry, and photo taking in a beautiful park was much needed.

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Saturday, November 5, 2011

Thankful November: Day 5

Today I am thankful for my goofy puppy, Gus! We have had, and loved, him for 3 years now and he is truly our fur child. He is very protective of his family and is such a curious dog. He and Liam still need to work on a few things with their relationship (like Liam's incessant need to terrorize him), but I am confident they will eventually be buddies. I never thought I would love a dog as much as I do, but Gus loves me so much that it's impossible not to reciprocate!

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Friday, November 4, 2011

Thankful November: Day 4

I am so thankful for all of our "Nashville family," who love on our family. From work people, to church/home group members we have a really wonderful support system here. It's hard to be away from family members, but wonderful to have adopted family! Thanks for being awesome!

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Thursday, November 3, 2011

13 Months!

Dear Liam bird,

You turned thirteen months on Tuesday!  You are such a spunky, busy, sweet little boy and I love each and every moment I get to spend with you!

Your personality truly shines, you are a little boy to the core and you love to have fun!  Your are also a supreme mess maker, no clean surface is safe!  You take clothes out of drawers, hampers, and clothes baskets.  You remove folded diapers from their storage container faster than I can put them into it and you could gold medal in how quickly you can strip a bookshelf of its books!

I haven't weighed/measured you in a while, be we know you are growing because it happens right before our very eyes!  You are wearing mostly 12 month clothes and we have had to adjust how we snap your diapers so that they fit you better.  Your feet are still teeny tiny, I bought a pair of 6-12 month slipper-type shoes recently that are too big!

You have gotten two and a half new teeth this month, you now have four bottom teeth and part of a top tooth.  You are actually a pretty good little teether, you love tylenol and ora-gel to ease your pain.  You are using those chompers to eat everything in sight!  Seriously, you love to eat and we still haven't found anything that you turn your nose up at!  Favorites include: bananas, apples, cheese, quinoa, squash, peas, and pasta.  You eat three substantial meals a day and have three 6-8 ounce sippy cups of whole milk as well.  I am still nursing you right before bed, but that is mainly because it's the only way you will sit still and let me hold you and not because you need the nourishment.

You are such a good sleeper.  You prefer to go to bed by 6:30pm and sleep until at least 7:00am each morning.  You're still taking two 1-2 hour naps each day and you wake up happy and ready to play!  Our bedtime/naptime routine is pretty simple.  You get your paci and your lovie (only at nigh-nigh) and we turn on your noise machine and you usually go right to sleep!  Love it!

Besides the occasional "dada" you aren't really talking.  You do babble and squeal all the livelong day, so I'm sure the day is coming when the words will be constant!  I swear you tried to call Gus the other day while sitting in your high chair and holding out puffs.  It sounded like, "Guhh," and he came!

You aren't walking independently yet, but cruise around furniture with great speed and grace.  When you realize you are standing alone you quickly drop down to a sitting position, I think you just need to gain a little confidence and you will be off and running!  You crawl at warp speed and are a pretty good little climber as well, heaven help me!

At thirteen months, you love: food, chewing on anything, books, your lovie/paci, being thrown in the air, bath time, running water, Gussy (even though he is gruff with you), blowing raspberries, getting into Gus' bowls, music, dancing, "little people" (toys, not midgets), drumming, and mommy and daddy.

Wiggles, you are seriously such a fun baby!  Everyone comments on your sweetness, happiness, and general easiness.  And it's true, we are blessed beyond measure to have you as our little baby!  You have made our, already pretty great, lives so much better that sometimes I feel like I will literally burst with love.  And it's a love that you have to do nothing to earn and nothing to keep; being a parent truly has given me a tiny glimpse of the Father's love for us in a tangible way.  How great, how vast, how wonderful.

Love you forever, and ever,

*I have had a hard time getting this post to work out and load for me!
*Photos are from Halloween, Woo Pig Sooie!

Thankful Novemeber: Day 3

Today I am thankful that my husband did not suffer any injuries in the accident that totaled our beloved Trooper this morning.

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Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Thankful November: Day 2

I am so thankful for the beautiful fall we have been having. The weather has been beautiful lately, crisp in the mornings and warm in the afternoon! The trees are so pretty, I am always amazed by their different colors. We've got our down comforter on the bed and wiggles is sleeping in fleecy footy pajamas again, it's the most wonderful time of the year!

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Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Thankful November: Day 1

In honor of my favorite holiday, Thanksgiving, being in the month of November, I want to blog something that I'm thankful for each day!

I am immensely thankful for my little boy, Liam David, who turns 13 months old today!

Check back later for his 13 Month letter.

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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Thankful Thursday

I am thankful for:
*a healthy and happy family
*cold dreary days that are made for snuggling
*Cracker Barrel
*my husband's silly made up songs
*Liam's new shriek of delight when he sees us
*a full Sweet CeCe's punch card
*getting to see a lot of family this weekend
*going to see the Razorbacks beat Vandy on Saturday!
*seriously, this baby

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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Backtracking: JBU Homecoming

A few weekends ago we made a super quick trip to Arkansas to see family and attend our college homecoming!

We were so thrilled to be able to see so many members of both of our families, Ryan's parents even drove out from Colorado!

Every year Ryan plays in the alumni rugby game at school and this year was no exception. The alumni have won seven years in a row now! It's always so much fun to relive all of the old games and see so many friends. We were truly blessed to attend such a wonderful school and I love getting to see so many of my old mentors when we go back.

The only pictures I have from the trip are from the rugby game. My phone crashed last week and I lost everything that wasn't backed up, fortunately I had sent these to Ryan. :)

It was a lot warmer than I packed for so I had to make Liam a shirt. The front said JBU Old Boys and I thought it was pretty cute!

I love this picture of Liam with his Papo and Great Grandpa Doug!

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Thursday, October 20, 2011

Liam's Latest

This little boy cracks us up! Lately he has been obsessed with the wipes container. He has so many toys that I'm banning anymore as future gifts (that means you, grandparents) :) but he spends his time trying to get the wipes down to play with!

He also is apparently a bit of a stripper! I came in to get him after his morning nap and found him half clothed! He must have really been wiggling a lot!

We love this little baby so darn much and are enjoying this stage of his life immensely!

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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

One Year Check-up

Liam had his one year check-up this morning and I wanted to record his official measurements here!

He weighs 22 pounds 10 ounces, 50th%, and is 29 3/4 inches long, 50th%. His head is 47.2cm, 75th%. He is developing right on track and our doctor seemed pleased with all of his progress.

He did have a to get a couple of shots and he was not too happy about that! He's taking a good long nap now to hopefully sleep the grumps away!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Happy Homecoming Day, Liam bird!

10/01/10 may have been Liam's birthday, but 10/10/10 was the day he came home from the NICU! We are still so thankful that he only had to stay nine days! When we came home from the hospital, Liam weighed 4 pounds 13 ounces--he almost weighs 20 pounds more than that today!

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