Friday, October 31, 2008

potty partay

Let me just start by saying that my friend Jennifer is just fab.u.lous.

Last night, she and her husband brought their daughter's crib over for us to use until Avery is ready for her "big girl" bed. We are so excited that we don't have to foot the bill for a new bed while knee-deep in home renovation craziness. It's so great!

Free = Fabulous.

Avery was thrilled to have Jennifer's daughter Emma visit her house last night, and happily showed her all of her toys. As long as Emma didn't touch any of HER stuff, things were good.

Shortly after touring our palatial estate house, Emma spied Avery's beloved Elmo potty.

In 2 -year-old world, all potties must be conquered and claimed immediately and Emma took the job very seriously.

She impressively whipped off her diaper with ONE hand while Avery stared, mouth slightly ajar.

Then she confidently sat on the potty and began to take care of business. Just like a little pee-pee-making pro.

Avery, although clearly impressed with Emma's potty-going ability, simply could not allow someone else show her up at HER house on HER potty. So - she began to remove HER diaper and insist that it was her "tuhn" to sit on the potty too.

Thus began Dancing with the Potty, or The Great Potty Stand-off, or Battle of the Wills - the Potty Version (insert lame t.v. reality show joke here)... Who would be the Ultimate Survivor?

It was a bit like watching a tennis match. Only with pee-pee. And a talking Elmo potty.

Emma. Avery. Emma. Avery. Emma...

Being a good little bloggy girl, Jennifer casually said, "Oh. This would be a great blog entry."

Being an equally good little bloggy girl, I ran to grab my camera - because she was right.

I'm so bad. OR am I so GOOD??? You tell me...

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

36 weeks and dreaming

I had my 36 week check-up today. Today's appointment was the first of my weekly doctor's visits. You know what that means...the END is near. I'm not quite sure how to feel about the end finally being here...I guess somewhere between elated and totally freaked out sounds about right.

We had to wait quite a bit longer in the waiting room today than we normally do. Long waits can be completely disastrous with a toddler. Thankfully, Avery did a great job entertaining herself by entertaining US.

David and I dutifully played the part of attentive audience members while Avery did hand-stands, ballet moves, twirls, and fantastically realistic imitations of frogs and bunnies. She's a mess.

Things are going really well. Charlie's heartbeat was nice and steady and he is growing just like he should. My weight is good, my blood pressure is good, my blood sugar is good. Basically, Charlie and I are very... good.

Without going into graphic detail (because - ewww), I'll just tell you that the doctor surmised that Charlie isn't going anywhere for now...which is FINE with me. In fact, I'm ok if he stays put all the way up until my scheduled C-Section on November 21.

I say that now, but I have a feeling that in a couple of weeks or quite possibly a couple of seconds, I'll be singing a different tune.

When my doctor asked me if I had any questions/concerns, I had to share my crazy dream with him. Because that's what I do. I share. It's my thing. My friends nicknamed me Barbara Jean. I'm owning it.

(By the way, my mom told me that she doesn't read anything on my blog because I'm too wordy. She just looks at the pictures. I laughed. It's true. I know.)

Anyway - back to my story...

Last night, I dreamt that I gave birth to a beautiful baby... cat.

I'd always heard that pregnant women are prone to have that dream, but never experienced it until now. It was pretty upsetting.

In my dream, I gave birth to my sweet little fur-ball in the bathroom(!). A few seconds later, I proudly showed my meowing, scratching, bundle-o-joy to my friends who were having dinner at a nice restraunt. To my surprise, they all laughed at me.

I know... So unrealistic, right?

Who would laugh at a cat baby? That's just silly.

Honestly, I think I was more upset over being laughed at than giving birth to a cat baby in the bathroom. What does that say about me? Hmmm....

Good news: My doctor told me today that he's never delivered a cat baby before. I'm thinking I can rest easy.

almost wordless wednesday

This is from our recent trip to the zoo...
It was just too funny not to add it.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

what a weekend!

Things have been totally crazy around here lately. Our entire weekend was booked from start to finish with all sorts of busyness. I'm a little worn out - to say the least!

The weekend started with a trip to the Preschool's Fall Festival on Friday night.
The next day, we went to our little friend Faith's 2nd birthday party and then David came home to paint baby Charlie's room (!) and our new addition (!).
Saturday evening, Avery and I celebrated my mom's birthday with her. We took at little shopping excursion to my favorite store - Ann Taylor LOFT and helped her pick out some cute, cute, cute clothes. I was a little jealous!
After church on Sunday, our church held it's Fall Festival.
Then we went home and crashed... Big Time.

Here are some of the pictures from our weekend:
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Saturday, October 25, 2008

happiness is...

a present from a sweet, precious husband...who REALLY listens to me. In my world, new shoes are even BETTER than a dozen cupcakes.

We were in Target the other day when I spied these little beauties... David went back later and bought them for me. Isn't that the best? After 8 years of marriage, he definitely knows the way to my heart.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

almost wordless wednesday

Question: What do you do when your mommy is pregnant and grouchy?

Answer: You go to your Happy Place.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

fall is here

...and it's time to get out my beloved Space Heater.

It's been a real trooper over the years, that one.

While we lived in Ohio, it braved cold, snowy, winters (and even some spring and summer days) and faithfully kept my toesies nice and warm. Our relationship was a tight-knit one. One-sided and slightly needy, but tight-knit none the less.

A few years later, our family returned South and our relationship took a turn for the worst. Winter months were chilly, but the long Summer months were unbearably hot. The mere sight of my once-loved Space Heater made me want to pummel it across the room.

My long-suffering friend remained steadfast and endured a summer or two of solitude in the closet where it quietly waited for the seasons to change and our Love Fest to begin again.

The weather is finally becoming chilly-ish and the time has come for my Space Heater's long-awaited return to our drafty, old home. It has assured me that it's ready to get Mavricky on the coldness.

I've missed you, my friend.

Someone else has too...

Monday, October 20, 2008

how i spent my weekend

My youngest sister, Katharine, came over on Saturday night.
We had some c-r-a-z-y fun together. The kind of fun that EVERY teenaged girl dreams of having on the weekend: take-out and a rented movie with her pregnant, 30-something-year-old sister, brother-in-law, and their two-year-old.
Good times.

Avery LOVES her Aunt Ka-Ka and I do too. We relaxed and talked about how awesome college is going to be for her next year and how bad it stinks to be in high school. Because it really does.

Anyway ~ that pretty much was the highlight of my weekend.

Here are some other not-as-fun things that I did:

First, I stole from my neighbors.
Well... no... I guess I really did.

It was for a good cause: a little something I like to call Project Keeping Pregnant Lady Sane.

I wanted to fill my s-weet new door basket with beautiful fall foliage. Since it's still stinkin' 80 degrees here, we don't have much of that yet.

So, I bought 2 bunches of slightly over-priced fall flowers at one of my favorite boutiquey garden stores here in town. I couldn't afford to fill the entire basket with flowers AND because I'm chatty and an over-sharer, I shared that little tid-bit with the owner of the store. She suggested that I put some Magnolia leaves in the basket to fill it a little more. Genius, right? I mean, what Southerner doesn't like Magnolia leaves?

Sometimes, it pays to be chatty.

The only problem is that I don't exactly own a Magnolia tree. My across-the-street neighbors (affectionately known as 4:20 around here) do.

Being the crazy, pregnant FREAK Crafter that I've become, I decided to walk across the street and ask my neighbors if I could have some of their branches.

I felt really brave until I started picturing 4:20's reaction to my request (kind of a cross between pity and confusion). Then, I started getting a little nervous.

I half-heartedly knocked on their door and waited approximately 4 seconds before determining that no one was home. Then, I just said to myself, "Oh, I'm sure they won't care if I just take a few leaves..." and quickly grabbed the leaves and ran back home.

Nice. Really nice.

Here is a picture of the stolen goods in all their glory -

Next, I worked on a canvas for Charlie's room.
I wanted to match the cars in his bedding - which is a hodge-podge assortment of sale items from the Pottery Barn Outlet and Target.

Side Note: I'm obsessed with the blue and green color combination lately. So fun.

Side Note to the Side Note:
In this picture, all of Charlie's stuff is sitting on top of Gunner's crate (that's a crate cover in green and pink that you see).

Side Note to the Side Note to the...Side Note:
I'm going to have to (sadly) put Gunner - and his ENORMOUS crate - in our room after Charlie's arrival (the curse of itty-bitty house syndrome), so I'm craft-blog searching for easy-peasy, no-sew solutions for a new crate cover like a mad-woman.

I free-handed the cars (after eye-balling the ones on his crib sheet) on canvas and then painted them with acrylic paint. Sadly, it wasn't until I was about half-way finished that I noticed that the color is a little off, but what-evs. It's done now.

It's time to move along and NOT obsesses.
I'm definitely not obsessing.
Definitely not.

I kinda copied the canvas idea from my friend Maribeth. She did something similar with a train in her little boy's room.

There I go again...stealing. What have I become?!?

Finally, at 11 Saturday night, I had the sudden, Craft-Blog-induced urge to distress my cabinets. So I did.

David and I got a lot done this weekend - laundry, painting, etc. But that's boring and who wants to read about that, right?

Of course a weekend wouldn't be complete without the obligatory trip to Target for diapers and browsing... and the equally important trip to Archiver's for... well...the purchasing of lovely things.
Who says you can't buy happiness?

There you have it: confessions of a crazy, crafting Clepto.
I feel better.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

not gonna do it

Just look at him. He's mocking me. He's saying, "Gotcha now, Sucka!"

It's true and I hate him.

I've tried to keep this from happening...

I've begged.
I've pleaded.
I've coerced and bribed.
I've kicked and screamed (in my heart).
I've prayed for mercy and just a little more time...

All to keep my little sweet'ums from potty training.
It's not working.

Someone is determined.
Someone is obsessed.
Someone is even more strong-willed than her mommy.

I've been purposefully ignoring signs of potty-training readiness for awhile now. It's becoming painfully obvious that the signs will no longer be ignored.

Sign #1
Following me into the bathroom and watching my every move while providing riveting commentary on the action:
"Mommy. A pee pee in potty."
"Mommy. A paper. He-ah go (Here 'ya go)."
"Mommy. I wash hands too."

Sign #2
Pointing out the status of her diaper at various points in the day - to which I typically respond with something purposefully casual and blatantly non-committal like:
"Oh. Cool."
"Oh, really?"
or "Hmmm."

Sign #3
Removing her diaper approximately 20 times a day despite my threats of Time Out and 'Pankin's. Then - proceeding to urinate on the floor in almost every room in our house.

Gunner was very confused by Sign #3. As he was checking out her vast array of "territorial markings", I thought I glimpsed a little flash in his eyes. One that said, "Oh. So we're doing THIS now? Cool."

Quickly, I looked at him and said, "Um... NO. We are NOT doing that now. Move along, Mister."

Sign #3 was the breaking point for me and David. Sign #3 drove us to finally give in and buy the most obnoxious potty in the entire world.

Avery adores it.
She begs to sit on it a million times a day.
She presses Elmo's evil little hand and listens to his bi-lingual phrases of encouragement with sheer delight.
Occasionally, she even does her "business" in it (a fact which shocks me).

I'm not warming up to do the Happy Dance just yet, though.
Why? Because I'm a Realist, people.

I know that in a few weeks, when our little Charlie enters the picture, Avery will regress and all of my stress, hard work, sticker charts, and candy bribery will be for naught.

So - I've made a decision. I will not drive myself crazy trying to do this nightmarish process with her right now. I just can't. It makes me tired to just think about it. I'm 34 weeks pregnant for cryin' out loud!

In my mind, I still have a good year before I need to feel any sort of pressure to get her out of diapers and I plan on taking full advantage.

So --- Here's the plan:
Let her use the potty when she wants to, BUT DON'T pressure her OR myself with expectations of any sort.

In other words, become something that I'm not: laid back.
No problem. I can do that...

Alright, now He's really mocking me.
I can almost hear his obnoxious laughter ringing in my ears.


Friday, October 17, 2008

house update

Some of my friends and family have been asking about the house progress. I am happy to report that things are coming along. It is VERY exciting!

We still have some work to do on the landscaping. We are hoping to add some more shrubs, another window box, and to plant grass seed in the yard within the next couple of weeks or so. We will have some shutters made for the addition soon as well.

David has been sheet rocking and dry walling all week.
Poor guy.
I have to say, that I'm kinda happy that I can't be involved in that process. It looks pretty horrible.

He joked that breathing all that drywall dust took a couple of years off his life...I didn't laugh. That's NOT a funny joke - especially when you're pregnant.

He tells me that the room should be ready to be painted this weekend. After that, our friend Brad will help him put up the trim and carpet the room. Originally, we were hoping to hardwood the room, but hardwood isn't as budget friendly as carpet. Plus - we figure that Charlie and Avery might enjoy having one room with carpet to roll around on.

The first picture was taken just after the slurry coat was put it isn't quite dry in the picture. It's dry now and completely matches. Hooray! I also included a picture of my new lantern. I just love it.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

one for you. one for me.

After making my Halloween banner, I decided to make a banner for my friend Jamie. Her baby is due just a few weeks before Charlie. I loved it so much that I decided that I had to make one for my little man too.

I'm planning on using it at the hospital as a door decoration and again for his homecoming.

I love making things for my little guy.

Here's a peek or two:

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

34 weeks and... c-r-a-z-y.

I think I have a new love language: It's Drywall.

Drywall dust has never looked more attractive. I sincerely mean that.

When David emerged from our room addition looking like this, Avery almost lost her mind. She kept saying, "carey!"

It took a little convincing before she recognized that this strange, ghostly-looking man was indeed her daddy.

Gunner took one look at him and went nuts too. I thought that he was going to eat David. He was not happy about Mr. 'Carey Dust Man. Not at all.

I have to say that I'm so proud of my Handi-Man. He's been working his rear-end off to help get the house finished for Charlie's arrival.

I've been working around the house too. Sort of.

When I was pregnant with Avery, a nice bowl of ice cream could calm my raging hormones and clear my racing thoughts in no time. A big 'ol bowl of cereal could almost make me forget about my lack of sleep and massive leg cramps.

There's nothing like a mint-chocolate chip milkshake to make all your troubles disappear...

With this pregnancy, however, I've been forced to think "sugar-free" and "low carb" when it comes to comfort.
If I eat one more stinkin' cheese stick I may go completely nutso.
It turns out that Comfort Food has a serious problem with being low-fat and healthy.

My solution? Crafting.

It's low-carb.
It's sugar-free.
More importantly, it's not a stinkin' cheese stick.

What WAS a brilliant solution has become a little bit of a problem, as of late. It seems that I've turned into a decoupaging-scrapbook-paper-buying-crazed-lunatic.

Here are some examples of my obsessed craziness from THIS WEEK:

First, I made a little sign for our door.
Because it was completely necessary.
It's all about practicality, people.

Then I made some blocks for Charlie's shelf in his room.
Again, totally necessary and practical.

While I had the Mod Podge out, I made these little frames with scrapbook papers and ribbon.
I liked them so much that I made some for Christmas too - 'cause I'm going to NEED those later.

After that, I started the "Halloween Craftiness Kick" that I've settled into for the last couple of days.

Funkins were 50% off at Hobby Lobby, so I decided to carve this one for Avery's room. I put one of those little fake lights inside to turn on at night.
She loves her "birthday cake" light and tries to blow it out at least 20 times a day.

Then, I made these votives out of food jars and crepe paper.
Avery painted the Mod Podge on the the outside and helped me put the paper squares on the jars. She kept saying, "I hep Mommy. I paint."
Then she got "diwrty" and decided to stop.
That girl can't stand being dirty.

I found this cute little project on another blog and decided that it would be fun to make. It's a candy cane garland - varnished to keep away the bugs.
This one almost made me nuts.
Just so you know, stringing candy corn is NOT recommended if you are preggo...especially if you have "The Sugah".
Too tempting.
Too frustrating.
But thankfully, also "too cute".
I only cheated a couple of times...

I decided to make these little gifts for Avery's teachers at preschool.
I had to make one for myself too, of course!

It isn't enough for ME to be crafty crazy...evidently, my innocent little one has started to catch the "fevah" too.
This craft is decidedly not super-original, but she LOVED painting her pumpkin cut-out for her daddy.
You should have seen her run up to him with that little pumpkin in her hand when he walked in the door after work.
She was so proud of herself and so pleased to give it to him. It was a really sweet moment.

There you have it.
Some pregnant women may eat pickles and ice cream...THIS pregnant woman is channeling Martha.
I'm officially crazy.

almost wordless wednesday

I LOVE this picture! It's from our morning outing to the Zoo last week with our friends Faith and Kris. The girls decided that they wanted to hold hands all on their own. You should have seen Kris and me scramble to get pictures of the preciousness! Mine were all terrible, so I stole this one from Kris' website... I'm not ashamed either. So there.

Here's another one of the girls actually sitting next to each other without (gasp!) moving:

Notice that there's no blurriness in this picture. Getting this shot was lots of work for Kris and me. The two-year-old stillness lasted for approximately 2.4 seconds and involved some serious begging and bribery. It cost me the promise of one "lellow" starburst, a bite of my carefully rationed cheese stick (which she promptly spit out), a few sips of my diet coke,

...and what was left of my dignity.

Worth it. Totally.

Can you see now why I can't title this post as "Wordless Wednesday"? Chattiness has always been my downfall.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

avery the animal lover

Poor Gunner. He can't seem to catch a break when it comes to Avery these days. It seems that two year olds are quite good at tormenting animals.

How did you like the part when Gunner made a break for it while she was distracted by her fancy bracelets? Pretty clever, huh?

It didn't take long for Little Miss Sassy Pants to put a stop to that nonsense.

By the way, did you notice that I did nothing to rescue poor Gunner from his tiny tormentor? In fact, I pretty much encouraged her somewhat delinquent behavior...because it made for good footage and a laugh or two.

Pregnancy has made me such a meanie.
Mean, mean, mean.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

pretty papers and the VP debate

Oh how I wish, wish, wish I had a better camera!

Maribeth and I went to an Archiver's class last Wednesday night and got all inspired 'n stuff.

After the class, we spent approximately a year-and-a-half picking out fun papers and over-priced glittery what-nots to make our very own Halloween banners to hang in our houses...we could have stayed even longer had the Archiver's ladies been merciful enough to listen to our shameless begging for longer store hours.

Heartless Scrapbooking Meanies. ;-)

Maribeth and I are both married to Political Science Majors and self-professed Political Junkies and decided that watching the Vice-Presidential debates with them would be something short of water-torture.

I'm not lying when I tell you that the Presidential Debates are even more exciting to David than watching the Super Bowl.

SO last Thursday night, after the kiddos were tucked in bed, Maribeth came over to my house for some crafty awesomeness and David went over to watch the debate with Josh (on their big 'ol flatscreen - of course... because how else would you watch the Presidential Debates?).

A couple of hours later, David came home after all wild-eyed and jazzed up from heated conversation and debate madness.

Maribeth and I were wild-eyed and jazzed for a different reason... one not involving pausing the DVR and discussing in excruciating detail the various implications of each statement made in the VP Debate, but glittery prettiness and papered cuteness.

Here is the best photo I could find out of like a million-and-one possibilities.

Sadly, you can't see any of the teeny tiny glittery details in my picture, but they're there! I'm sure Maribeth's photos will be fabulous (since her husband is a photographer). Maybe you will get a better idea of the cuteness if she posts hers on her blog.

I am enjoying my Halloween banner so much. Every time I walk into my kitchen I get just a little happier. Cute things can boost my mood almost as much as this place. ALMOST.

By the way - if you live by a Graeter's Ice Cream Shop, you may be the luckiest person in the universe. We lived near them in when we were in Columbus, Ohio. I miss them like crazy.

Wonderful. Oh, so wonderful.

During my pregnancy with Avery, I had to force myself not to stop there every day. I'm not exaggerating when I tell you that Graeter's is the best ice cream in the WORLD. It'll make you want to slap somebody. Seriously.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

almost wordless wednesday

While drying my hair the other day, I noticed that the house was unusually quiet. After a little investigation, this is what I discovered:

Thankfully, I discovered the little stinker before things got ugly.

Lesson of the day: Silence can be deadly if you are a MAC.
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