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Friday, January 25, 2013

Parker, Lately: 8 Month Post

I can't believe my baby boy turned *8 months old* last Saturday! (Yes, I am a bit late getting this post out there...)

Here is a run down of Parker, Lately.
Our baby boy loves, loves, loves to smile and laugh! He loves his Mommy and his Daddy and is absolutely crazy over his two dogs. He loves to bite (or gum in his case) our fingers, his toys, really anything. He is extremely curious about the world around him and wants to get a better look at pretty much everything. He goes to anyone easily and is a very social little baby boy.

Sleeping - Twelve hours at night. Yup, 9 pm to 9 am. Every. Night. (Yes, it is very nice!) He also naps in the morning and afternoon anywhere from 50 minutes to one and a half hours. 

Nursing - Parker Bear *loves* to nurse and so does Mommy. Clearly he loves it, have you seen those rolls? We are nursing 5 times each day at 9 am, noon, 3 pm, 6 pm and 8:30 pm just before his bed time.

Solids - These were touch a go for a while there. So, we took it easy, went on his cues and didn't force the issue. Finally he taught us that he simply wanted to *feed himself*! Well ok then, whatever works. Now that we got that out of the way he lets Mommy feed him most of the time but he still likes to show us that he can do it. He is 8 months old after all!

Feet - His feet have become a major part of play time! He finds them every time he's on his back (usually because he's getting his diaper changed) and he has also started noticing them when he's sitting up too. (Hey there they are again!)

Laughing - Parker's laughter comes *frequently* and *easily*. He loves to laugh and we love hearing it. He laughs at the dogs, at his feet, at Sophie (the giraffe), at the mirror, at Mommy, at Daddy, at his toys. He's just a happy little laughing baby!

Dogs - Our little boy loves, loves, loves his dogs! He loves for Cash to lick his face and hands and he also loves to grab fistfuls of hair or dog ears. Cash Dog *loves* his little baby brother so much that he lets him do whatever he wants and wags his tail the whole time just waiting for the next opportunity to lick!

Hands - Parker has learned that he has two hands and he has full control of them! He uses them to grab anything and everything he can. He loves exploring with his "busy little hands". It is so cute when we hand him something and he sticks both hands straight out and takes hold of the object!


Sitting Up - He has started sitting up! He can sit on a flat surface unassisted and play. It it just adorable! We are the typical, over-the-moon, proud parents at this milestone!

Jumping - Parker is crazy over his jump-a-roo! He always has the *biggest smile* when he's in it. He even wants to jump when he's not in the jumper if you hold him with his feet touching the floor. He loves to jump!

Crying - This is a rare one for Parker. He cried pretty good when he had an ear infection. He cries when he gets shots. So far that's about it! He doesn't *exactly* like getting his chubby arms pulled through his long sleeve shirts or onesies so he complains a bit when he gets dressed. Aside from that he's a *very happy* baby. For that we are extremely thankful!

Teeth - No sign.  

Rolling Over - No interest. 

Parker Bear, Mommy and Daddy love you so much! You have brought more joy into our lives than we ever could have imagined. Your little personality has just melted our hearts and we love to watch you as you explore the world around you. We are so blessed to be your parents and fall more and more in love with you with each and every passing day.

Happy Eight Months Baby Parker!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

The Very Ugly Cry

We've all done it. We've felt it come over us and we knew it wasn't going to be good. It takes hold and when it does... there is no. going. back.

The Ugly Cry.

I hadn't seen the ol' Ugly Cry in a while but as I am learning both from those who have gone before me and from my own experience there is nothing like parenthood, er motherhood to bring out the Ugly Cry.

It happened to me a few weeks ago. Baby Parker was napping and Honey and I were just talking about being parents and how much our life has changed. We started reminiscing about when Parker was a newborn. We talked about our 2-week-stay at the Children's Hospital in the NICU and then... I felt it... creeping up... the Ugly Cry.

It took hold of me and I started crying, pretty suddenly. Before I knew it the Ugly Cry grabbed me and I started shaking and sobbing. Unable to speak in words that sound anything like the English language.

Of course Honey was so sweet and tender but at the same time he had no idea what had happened. Why was I crying? He knows I'm not a frequent crier and he was concerned.

A part of me woke up that afternoon. A part of me had not fully processed what happened during those tiny small moments after Parker was born. 

Of course Parker is fine now, we're all fine now, but when I look at my healthy, bouncing, baby boy and I recall the tiny little baby, the baby with what looked like hundreds of tubes and wires coming out of him in that infant hospital bed... I just can't believe it. 

I can't believe that THAT baby, that little tiny baby, the one who sounded like a kitten when he cried, that THIS baby. Is this SAME baby.

We are so blessed. So very blessed.

During the time that we moved to the NICU and lived with tiny Baby Parker for two weeks, I had my emotional moments FOR SURE but I also had what Honey and I refer to as mission-focus. I was very focused on the doctor's words, their action plan to get us home, meeting each milestone, keeping diligent records, while at the same time amazed at our sweet baby and the fact that we were parents, that I was a mother. I was cradling, nursing, and loving on my newborn. But to put it simply, it was a lot.

My mom even asked me once, long after Parker's birth, how did I do it. How did I get through that experience with (what looker to her like) such strength? I took that as a compliment, that I appeared to have strength (me?) through the toughest trial of my life.

You know how when you're IN something you can't always SEE it? That's what happened to me. I was in the middle of it all and I was certainly scared and emotional but once it was done and we were released, our new life started and I went right along with it. Which I think was a very healthy thing to do.

But somewhere deep inside me there was a mommy scared to death, relying on nothing but the words of the doctors, her husbands tight embrace, her new found love for a child she just met and her unwavering faith.

And that mommy needed to cry. The Ugly Cry. 

And with my husband holding me on the couch, letting me cry, it actually wasn't ugly at all.

And when that baby woke up from his nap, we held him and played with him and laughed. And I might have cried a bit more. But they were tears of joy. My beautiful family. My healthy baby.

And I decided sometimes it's ok to have an Ugly Cry. Sometimes in it's own way, it makes life a little bit prettier.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

So What Wednesday

Half way through another week? Well it must be time to say SO WHAT! As always I am linking up with Shannon at Life After I Dew.

So What Wednesday

So What if...I didn't blog during the holidays? Oops!I'm looking forward to getting back on track in the new year! (And I will get a Christmas post up, even if it's no longer December!) 

So What if...We didn't leave the house all day on Sunday? It was rainy and cold and well we just didn't want to go anywhere! So we didn't! And Parker Bear doesn't look at all unhappy about it!

So What if...Some people at work tested my patience this week? Ugh!

So What if...It was 68 degrees on *January*? That was lovely!

So What if...You realize how annoying late-night fireworks are after you have children? Yes, neighbor 5 houses down, I'm talking directly to you. PS, it's not New Year's anymore. Don't worry, we're plotting sweet, sweet revenge... 

So What if...Parker Bear and I had the best weekend together? Even though we missed Honey, I loved having the baby to myself all weekend long!

Happy Wednesday! Be sure to check out all the great So What Wednesday posts linked up this week!

Mommy + Baby Weekend

Baby Parker and I had such a super fun weekend together! Honey was out of town and while we both missed him terribly I *relished* in the fact that I got to have a Mommy + Baby weekend with my favorite Bear Cub!

We kicked off the weekend a little early by heading out to my favorite local sushi restaurant for dinner on Thursday night. Parker was adorable and loved looking at the light fixtures and wait staff as they bustled around the restaurant. I was proud of myself for managing to bring the baby, his chair, his diaper bag and myself into the restaurant in *one piece*!

Ready for our "Date Night":

Friday night we stayed in and I managed to wrap up my work day a *little* early so I sent Nanny M home so that Parker and I could get to *playing*! We played the evening away and it was so much fun!

Saturday we headed to a *unique* and *delicious* local eatery for lunch to celebrate Parker Bear's eight-month-birthday! Again I was happy to get everything into the restaurant and Parker was such a good baby boy. I never get tired of people coming up to us to comment on how good he is! I'm such a M-O-M!!

We also went for a walk because it was *68 degrees*... in January!

It was a *great day* and again I loved playing with my little boy and just spending time with him... all day long!

Sunday we got up and dressed and almost out the door for church. Right before we were going to leave, the light rain we had the night before transformed into a horrible, awful, monsoon! A little rain? Sure I can do that. But with this downpour? No thank you. Fortunately our church broadcasts online so I fired up the mac and we got to playing! Parker Bear was down for his morning nap when the sermon started - *perfect* timing!

Cash took advantage of the rainy weather to dream about chasing ducks.

Even though we were all *dressed up* with *no where* to go we loved the rainy day to stay inside and play!!

It was such a fun weekend, I wish I could rewind it and start over again!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Get It Organized: Pantry

Today loyal reader I am bringing you a twofer! I hope to someway make up for my lack of blogging over the holidays! Also? I don't want to miss out on another great link up! I am once again linking up with Ashley over at I Love You More Than Carrots to share my New Year's Organization Projects!

Like I'm sure you did too, I got the organizing itch after New Years. Ha! That was funny! Oh, who am I kidding, I have that itch pretty much year round. So while Hubs and Parker Bear were both feeling  under the weather and resting, Mommy rolled up her sleeves and organized the heck out of some highly deserving spaces!

I didn't take any before pictures because quite frankly I couldn't wait to get to work! I organized my closet, the baby's closet and our pantry. Today I am sharing the results of the pantry organization. Truthfully I originally organized this space a while back so this project was really to whip the pantry back into an organized space.

Here's what I did:

*Note: before I started this project you could hardly see the pantry floor. With all of the holiday cooking and baking I did our pantry was barely able to contain all of the supplies I purchased.

I love that we have this pantry and I love the shelving! To organize the shelves, I grouped like items together and then corralled them into pretty woven baskets:

I have one for all of my baking stuff, one for nuts, one for snacks, and another one for bags of chips.

Now that's back in shape I LOVE going in there. I find excuses just to walk into the pantry. Do you do that when something has been cleaned? (Please say yes. Please say it's not just me!)

Cheers to more organizing in 2013!

Pintastic: DIY Christmas Card Holder

I am super excited to be linking up with Ashley over at I Love You More Than Carrots to share a "Pintastic" way to share and display all your Christmas Cards during the holiday season. 

So quick confession, I believe that link up is supposed to be used when you re-create something you have pinned on Pintrest but this is actually my very own pin that I pinned on Pintrest. Yes I try to not only repin others ideas but also occasionally pin something of my very own! 

Even though the holidays are over I hope this is something you will enjoy looking at and even consider for next year.

Problem: Christmas cards in a box or basket or overlapping each other cluttering up your refrigerator door.

Solution: Quick and easy way to beautifully display your Christmas cards and give each one the space it deserves to be enjoyed all season long!

Supplies: Clothespins, Pretty Holiday Ribbon, Simple Christmas Decoration (I used a pretty package topper), thumb tack and Christmas Cards

My Christmas Card display hangs on two walls in our home that divide the dining room from the living room.  Usually the walls look like this:

When it comes to holiday decor, I pack up everything a few things we usually have out and replace them with my Christmas decorations. The sconces are no different! They come down for the season and return again sometime in January.

To get started, cut the pretty holiday ribbon to the length of your card display. Mine aren't exactly long enough so I actually end up attaching more ribbon halfway through the season. Once the ribbon is cut, glue it to your pretty Christmas Decoration. Once those are attached, pin them to the wall.

It should look something like this:

That's it. No, really that's all you have to do! Once your Christmas cards arrive simply use the clothespins to clip them to the ribbon!

Merry Christmas! Whoops... Happy New Year!... but keep this in mind for next year!! Be sure to check out Ashley's "Hey That's Pin-Tastic" post for tons of other great ideas and other bloggers who stop pinning and start doing!

i love you more than carrots

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Today. Three Years Ago.

Three Years Ago Today...

I boarded a plane.
I was headed to a *first date*.
When I disembarked, I saw such a handsome man I couldn't believe he was *my* date for the weekend!

I knew him, but I hadn't seen him in *fifteen years*! Back in 1995 we were in the same art class in high school. After a little reconnecting on Facebook took place, followed by a year or so of emailing, followed by a break up for each of us, the stars finally aligned and Honey asked me on a date. 

On our *first date*. A date that will go down in history as one of the best first dates ever!

Since we lived four hours apart, our first date wasn't your typical first date. He flew me to his where he lived and we went to an Army Ball together. Seeing him in his dress blues nearly sent me into a tailspin. He was so handsome!

Here we are on our first date:

I stayed in his home that weekend - in the guest room of course! - and he treated the whole weekend like an a real date and was such a perfect gentleman!

One month later he told me he loved me (Feb 2010).

Five months later he proposed (July 2010).

 Nine months later we were married (May 2011)!

Twelve months later we had a baby boy (May 2012)!

 And it all began three years ago. Today. 

I was and am still smitten by that solider and I will follow him anywhere. Happy First Date Anniversary my Love!

We Have a Winner

Yes! We have a winner for the Thirty One Product Giveaway! 


Thank you so much for all who entered the giveaway and welcome to all new followers!

Thank you also to loyal followers who put up with my hijacking my very own blog to promote the Virtual Thirty One Party I hosted in December. It was a very successful party and I had so much fun with it!

 I am looking forward to the new year and getting back to regular blogging.

Thank you again, CONGRATS KAITLIN, and Happy New Year!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Top It Off

I am so glad that the cold weather is back! Mainly because I got our little one four adorable hats to wear this year and I LOVE putting them on his adorable little head!

I have had several people asking me where I purchased such cuteness so I thought I'd write a quick post about them. All the hats came from Etsy (of course!) and here are the details you have been waiting for...

First and foremost, the absolutely adorable BEAR HAT. Parker wore this all over New York on our trip there earlier this year and got so many compliments. I have to admit, it will probably go down in Snowden History as my favorite baby hat!

I purchased the Bear Hat from Carolina Knots and she was great to work with. She had me measure his head to make sure the hat would fit perfectly!

I also purchased what I call Parker's "church hat" - a blue and grey stripe hat that he wears when we need to be a bit more, umm, subdued. Yes, hard for me but everyone needs "church clothes". Even babies. I do love how sophisticated this little grey hat is!

Next up is Parker's PUMPKIN HAT! I purchsed this hat from Caroles Cozy Comforts. He wore this every chance he had during October and November! It is so cute on him and I love the stem and leaf on top - precious!

I also purchased Parker's SANTA HAT from Carole. She was wonderful to work with as well! She didn't have one of the items in stock so she knitted it up the next day and sent it out. Talk about customer service!

Now not nearly as cute as his hats but certainly functional for cold Tennessee winters the sweet mittens he needed. I love that they connect so that I can run them through Parker's jacket or sweatshirt and they won't get lost! (Wish I could do that to some of his cute booties that sometimes want to slip off of his tiny feet!) I purchased the mittens from Karen Fudge and since Parker was in between sizes, she knitted up a pair of mittens that were in between so they fit him perfectly! Again, can't beat that kind of service!

I had so much fun shopping for these hats and have loved putting them on his adorable little head every chance I get! Even going to the mailbox often requires a cute little head accessory!

If you need a cute hat for a little in your life I would encourage you to check out these ladies Etsy shops!

*I was not paid or reimbursed by any Etsy shop for this post. This post contains my thoughts and my thoughts alone.

Happy New Year!

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