--One of my dear friends wrote a wonderful post yesterday about Keeping up with the Jones'. In it, she reflects on her life, from the early days of marriage to their infertility struggles. Everything she said was so true, and I encourage you to go read it...I hope it speaks to you as much as it did me.
--As I've mentioned just a fewhundred times, I'm so behind on responding to comments & emails. It really is something I feel bad about, and I want to be better at it. Unfortunately there are just so many hours in a day, and things have been busy. I really do appreciate people taking the time to read and/or comment, so I feel bad when I'm not able to do so in return. I'm still trying to figure out the best way to manage all I'm trying to do currently. :) In the meantime, I thought I'd do a question post...so if you have a question, please ask in the comments or email me at sjg_ou at yahoo.com. I have some questions I get on a regular basis that I will go ahead and answer too.
--Today at Kelly's Korner the topic is where you shop for kid's clothes. I did a post on shopping for Manny awhile back, and if you're interested, you can see it here.
--I am SO excited that fall TV is here!! It seems like there are so many good shows on, and I know I'm missing a lot of them. Yes, this is important - ha! What are you watching this fall? I keep meaning to record the X Factor but haven't seen it yet. If you've watched, how is it? What about Pan Am? Seriously...so many shows, too little time.
I know this is random, but what kind of sheets do y'all recommend? We are in desperate need of new sheets, so if you have some you love I'd like to hear about them please. :)
This weekend we decided to head out to the fair! Let's be real...I was going to try all the food. And of course the family fun was a plus...but that food. Some think it's gross, but I get giddy with excitement over fair food! I started off strong with a corn dog and fresh squeezed lemonade right when we walked in the gate, and I certainly was not disappointed. We had a lot of fun just people watching and checking out all the sites. We looked at the Clydesdales for awhile...Manny was fascinated. They are so beautiful and just huge! I love watching them prance...I know there's an official name for it, but I can't think of it. They also had a little petting zoo where you could feed the animals. They had goats, llamas, kangaroos, a zebra, and a few other things. The zebra looked depressed and never would come to the edge...poor guy. But it was fun to see Manny interact with the animals. He wasn't sure about some of them, but liked it overall.
Then when we were leaving there, The Village People were coming on stage, so we decided to check that out for a little bit. Talk about entertainment! A.) How OLD are these guys?! and B.) Definitely some of the best people watching I've experienced in a long time. Am I the only one who likes to people watch? Anyway, we only stayed for 2 songs but Manny really liked it. In the bottom right picture he was jamming out to Macho Man but it was hard to get a picture because he wouldn't sit still. Great times at the fair...I'm so glad we went.
September 17 - This is me and my friend Cassie right before the wedding I was in that day. The bride paid for us to have our make-up done, and I will say I gasped when I looked in the mirror after she finished. I thought it was way too much make-up, but I got used to it and it photographed well I think. I need to get better about actually doing my make-up (I don't mean this much) but I'm just not good at it....specifically eye make-up. If you have any tutorials you'd recommend, please do share!
September 18 - We stayed at a hotel in Tulsa so we wouldn't have to drive home after the wedding, and this is my dad and Manny at breakfast the next morning. It was a little cold so I tried to get Manny to wear his hood, but he was not going for it.
September 19 - My brother, sister-in-law, and their daughters Lani & Laci came to OKC for some appointments. You might remember Laci got a cochlear implant last November, and next month she is going to get the other ear implanted. She is the funniest thing, and Lani is so sweet and mature...I just love them both to pieces. We were able to have lunch with them while they were here, and it was so much fun! Manny was sad to see them go.
September 20 - We found a great new grocery store to shop at, and Manny LOVES it because it has a car thing in it. He steered both steering wheels almost the whole time. Anything with a steering wheel he loves right now.
September 21 - This was the day we were at the park and saw the dog. Shortly after that, Manny was running and took a little fall, so Patrick picked him up to calm him down. I couldn't resist this picture of them cuddling.
September 22 - Manny shopping at Target and munching on some Earth's Best sweet potato cinnamon puffs. Those things are good!
September 23 - We went to the mall this evening and Manny was riding in the stroller. A sales lady walked up to us with this firetruck buggy thing and offered to let us use it. We said no, that's okay...but Manny had other plans. Yes, we gave in and let him ride in it and he was absolutely thrilled.
--Well, I caved in and tried the gel nail system from ULTA....aaaand let's just say I'll be leaving the gel nails to the professionals. It was a hot mess...they were clumpy, the color was uneven...and it was just not a good experience. Fortunately I was able to take it back for a full refund. I know the feedback I got on it was mixed, but I knew until I tried it myself I would always wonder. I think I would've gotten better at it over time, but it just wasn't for me. Not ready to close the DIY door completely just yet, I picked up this french manicure pen at Target. No, it won't give me gel nails...but maybe I can at least give myself a decent manicure from time to time. We'll see. :)
--My sister forwarded me a devotional the other day, and I thought it was such a great message I wanted to share the link to it. You can go here to read it. It's from a daily devotional through Proverbs 31 Ministries called Encouragement for Today. It is one of my favorite email devotionals...always very relevant messages. If you're interested, you can sign up to receive the daily emails here.
--Manny absolutely loves his TOMS, as in...they're the only shoes he'll wear. To put any other shoes on him results in an all out wrestling match to say the least. Well wouldn't you know that one of his TOMS went missing last week. We searched high and low, but couldn't ever find it. So getting him dressed was always fun because he'd throw a fit when it came time to put on shoes. How does this happen so young?! Needless to say, we finally located the missing shoe....when Patrick emptied the Diaper Champ the other night. Yep, that's where it was hanging out all week, and boy is it rank. I washed it in the washing machine, but that didn't help at all. My sister suggested vinegar, so I figure I'll give that a try...hoping it will work! This kid is a mess.
--Last week we went to the park one evening, and there was a huge dog there. Manny is not around dogs much, so is pretty scared of them. We are trying to get him around dogs more so he's not afraid though. Anyway, when he saw the dog he kept pointing and wanted to go over to see it. At first he was a little unsure...then as you can see in the next picture he started growling at the dog. :) But finally, he decided to pet the dog, and he loved it! In fact, when the owner and the dog left, Manny started crying and ran after them...it was so cute. :)
Happy Monday friends...my mom is coming to stay with us for a few days and help get settled...I can't wait!! :)
I've been taking my pictures, just haven't had the chance to blog them. And I've made it too far to quit now. :) Here are the last 3 weeks of project 365! August 27 - I can't remember if I've mentioned this on here yet or not, but Manny is totally obsessed with his belly button. Especially when he's tired or grumpy...it's kind of like playing with his belly button soothes him. That sounds weird, but it's true! One afternoon I had put him down for a nap and saw him on the monitor reading a book and playing with his belly button...so sweet. :) August 28 - And what do we have here? Ah yes, more belly button action while watching Praise Baby. August 29 - I mailed my hair to Locks of Love on this day. I had so much hair she had to cut it in 5 ponytails! It was weird to see it in a bag like that. August 30 - Manny loves Sonic lemon water almost as much as I do. I caught him hiding behind a chair drinking it...he's so funny. August 31 - This was the first day in our rent house! We were trying to unpack, and well...Manny wasn't all that much help. All he wanted to do was climb in the cabinets and take out everything we'd just unpacked. September 1 - We went to SAM'S to get some groceries, and Manny entertained himself by balancing his snack cup on his head. He thought it was hilarious. September 2 - We went to Target to grab a few necessities, and he loved riding in the cart. He's ridden in this kind before, but not often since we didn't have this kind at the Target by where we used to live. I'm glad the Target near us has these - so much easier to shop with him when he's riding in it!
September 3 - We went to Target (again) and Manny loved getting a shoulder ride from daddy. Pretty sure he squealed non-stop! September 4 - Manny loves to try to turn the TV on when he wants to watch something. Our remotes are so complicated I'm lucky to figure out how to get the TV on, so luckily this isn't something he's mastered yet. It's cute to watch him try though. September 5 - As I just mentioned, he gets fixated with the remotes. He has started building stacks of stuff so he can climb up on the ottoman, and SIT in the tray where the remotes are. It's like his new favorite seat. September 6 - This was Manny's first day of Mother's Day Out. Already seems like so long ago! September 7 - We went to Oktoberfest with a few of Patrick's new co-workers. It was nice to get out of the house and meet some people! Manny was not too happy about getting in his stroller at first, but he adjusted. :) September 8 - I tried to take some pictures of Manny before MDO, but he kept running off. He is impossible to photograph!! September 9 - We headed down to Dallas for Ashley's baby shower. We went to HEB (best grocery store ever - I miss it so much!!) to get stuff for the shower. Manny loved the car shopping cart. :)
September 10 - While we were preparing for Ashley's shower, she took Manny and Ava to the awesome playground behind their house. She pushed him in this little pink car and he just chilled. She sent me this picture and it just made me laugh...no shirt and playing with his belly button. Just the way he likes it. :) September 11 - We headed home on Sunday, and Manny was chatting away 90 miles a minute, then suddenly got quiet. I turned around while at a stoplight, and saw him conked out. He was even drooling already. :) September 12 - Manny has really started playing with cars a lot more. When it was naptime, he did not want to put his cars down, so I just let him take them with him to his crib. He was so cute when I laid him down - he was smiling ear to ear like he was proud to have his cars with him. September 13 - Nothing better than a back ride from daddy! These two are so fun to watch together...they have a blast wrestling and playing. :) September 14 - I was eating a BBQ hot pocket (random, I know) and set my plate down for a second to go do something. I came back in the room, and Manny had helped himself to it. He loved it! September 15 - Remember how I said he likes to get on the ottoman and sit in the trays? Well he always dances to the hot dog song at the end of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. So here he is STANDING on the trays dancing. This kid is a mess. September 16 - Our rent house has a lazy susan corner cabinet, and Manny is absolutely fascinated with it. He gets stuck there at least once a day.
Back when I had a real job in corporate marketing, I always took the time to get my nails done. Now that my days consist of keeping our house clean, chasing Manny, and well, doing damage control after he smears the contents of his diaper alllll over himself and the crib during naptime (true story - wish it wasn't)...the priority to get my nails done just isn't there.
As I mentioned, last week I was in a wedding. So I decided to get a manicure, but just had my nails polished with pink to match the wedding colors. And I kid you not - Patrick was all, "Wow! Your nails look so great!" And for the first time ever, admitted that he misses me getting my nails done. He said it's not a big deal, but he just thought it looked really nice. Which it did, especially considering what they look like now.
I've gone through stages of painting them, but unfortunately, my nails do not keep polish on well at all. In fact, it's not even been a week since I got them done and the chips are already horrible. I've heard some people talking about using gel nail polish, and how it works so much better for them, so I thought I'd give it a try.
I went to Ulta yesterday, and got so overwhelmed that I left with nothing, of course. Because turns out, you don't just paint on gel nail polish (duh Sarah). It's like, a whole system. There are a few different base polishes needed, plus an actual LED light to cure the gel polish. Which looks really cool and official, and could be very cost effective in the long run...but I'm just wondering if it really works or is worth it?
So that's what this post is all about, friends. Anyone have any experience with DIY gel nails? Or even just how to keep your polish from chipping so bad when you paint your nails with regular polish? I would love any feedback you have to share. Thanks, & happy Wednesday! :)
P.S. It is really weird for me to write a post without pictures, so I thought I'd just find an image online to share...turns out that was a bad idea. A little tip? NEVER google ugly nails. Disgusting.
Today I am sharing one of my favorite cupcake recipes at Holy Turf. It is usually made as a cake, but as you all know, I am a huge cupcake fan. And since cupcakes are ideal for tailgating, I thought this would be a fun treat to share. Click here to view the recipe.
Of course if you're serving cupcakes, it's always great to have something fun to finish them off! :) So I designed some football themed cupcake toppers in a few different colors. If you would like to download them, please click on the images below.
To assemble your cupcake toppers, follow these simple steps.
1. Print out the design of your choice on white cardstock.
2. Punch out designs using your choice of 2" punches from Hobby Lobby or Michael's. I used a circle and scallop shaped punch for these toppers, but any punch with approximately a 2" shape will work.
3. Attach to a lollipop stick (also found at Hobby Lobby or Michael's) using glue dots or scotch tape, and you're done!
And I can't end this post without mentioning the most important thing...BOOMER SOONER!! :)
--So things have been a little quiet around here lately, and I hate that. Not that it's any big deal, it's just that I really do enjoy blogging and want to stay up with it, but the days have just been SO busy and I haven't had the time to blog like I'd like to. I know eventually I will get caught up...just ready to not be so behind in everything!
--I was in a wedding this last weekend, and it was such a great time! I don't want to post any pictures of the bride until she does, but here are some pics of me with my sweet family and my friend Cassie, one of the other bridesmaids.
--Manny is doing great at MDO. Aside from the first day, he has napped every day, which totally surprises me! They said he is doing really well so that makes me happy. On the other hand? He has started crying and clinging to me when I drop him off. It makes me SO sad! I usually stand around the corner to listen before I leave, and he never cries longer than a minute but still...I hate that he cries. They say he has great days though, and he's always happy when I come to pick him up, so I guess all is well.
--Tomorrow I am sharing a recipe on Holy Turf, an awesome college football website. As part of that, I will be sharing some free printable cupcake toppers here so be sure to stop by to grab those for your next game day celebration.
A few weeks ago I shared the invitations for the Little Man Baby Shower we were planning for Ashley. Well, this last weekend was the big event and we had a great time! (For more information on ordering these invitations, see the bottom of this post.)
Here is Ashley with her sweet family. How precious is Ava?! I can't wait to see who Judd favors.
We had so much fun putting this shower together. Yes, it was a little crazy as each of us are pretty busy right now, but it came together perfectly in the end. I love this group of girls - they have become such sweet friends to me and they were great to do this event with! I am so sad, but we didn't get a group picture of the hostesses with Ashley. Everything just happened so fast, and we were all a little tired from the fun slumber party we had the night before. :) So this is the best I can do for a group picture - clockwise - Ashley, Angie, me and Jenn. Sheila, Ashley's SheShe Made business partner, also helped hostess, but I didn't get a single picture of her! Serious failure on my part.
Jenn made this fun wreath based on this idea via Pinterest.
Sheila made several cute tie onesies for a clothesline, and we hung some of them over the food table, and the others over another window in the main area. It was really hard to get a picture of all of these because of the back lighting in the room. These pictures don't do it justice at all - they were super cute!
We had SO much yummy food! I seriously get hungry looking at these pictures.
Ashley's mom was kind enough to help out with the food, and made some amazing pimento cheese sandwiches, as well as a few dips and hawaiian rollups...delicious!! Angie made cucumber & cream cheese sandwiches...seriously? Best things, ever! She posted the recipe on her blog, so be sure to check it out here. They are so good and simple to make!
I saw the idea on Pinterest for miniature fruit pizzas, and I thought it'd be fun to make a miniature fruit pizza bar, where people could build their own fruit pizza. For the frosting, we just mixed a jar of Jet Puffed Marshmallow Cream and a block of cream cheese. It's simple and so good! I've also made these before using this recipe for the frosting. Oh and for the sugar cookies, we just used a roll of Pillsbury cookie dough. :) These were a hit! Nevermind the fact that I may or may not have been the reason they were nearly gone.
We had plenty of delicious sweets! Jenn's friend Molly is THE best cookie maker. EVER. She made a few different designs - ties, Judd's monogram, a polka dot onesie, and a mustache. Not only were they adorable, but they are seriously the best sugar cookie I've ever had. And trust me - I've had my fair share of sugar cookies. If you are in the DFW area and ever need cookies, she's the person for the job! Her email address is welovetheperfectparty at gmail.com if you'd like to contact her.
We served cucumber & blueberry water, sweet tea, and punch to drink. They were all SO good! I cut a few mustaches on my cricut, then we just taped them to straws. I also cut some mustaches on vinyl to stick to the cups for a fun touch.
For favors, Molly made some mustache cookies, and I made this sign based on some posters I'd seen on Pinterest. Made us laugh - ha! :)
Well I think that covers everything. It was such a great time and now we just wait for sweet baby Judd to arrive! We're so excited for you Ashley! :)
Yesterday was Manny's first day of Mother's Day Out, and it went great! I was more emotional about it than I thought I'd be, BUT I didn't cry when we dropped him off, so that's good...ha! The night before when I was getting his stuff ready it just hit me how fast time goes by. Cliche', yes, but it's so true, and I know he'll be starting kindergarten before I know it! He wasn't really in the mood for pictures, but he looked SO cute in his SheShe Made outfit.
We also got the cutest gear for him from SheShe Made...he was definitely styling for his first day! Thanks so much Ashley...we (and everyone else!) love it. :)
You might have noticed in the pictures above that Manny had two tubes of ointment in his hand. He is real funny about choosing a random object each day and that's what he likes to take with him everywhere. Well yesterday he decided the tubes of ointment would be his sidekick. I had to laugh when I saw him grab the ointment and his backpack and drag it to the front door...he was ready to go! :)
When we got there, he went right in and started playing with toys. He didn't cry at all, which made me so happy! It would have been really hard to leave him if he was crying. The director is great and sent me this email after he'd been there a little while...it made me SO proud! :)
Here are a few more pictures of the day. Top left is another of him ready to leave...he stood at the door forever waiting on us. The top right picture is right after we dropped him off and he ran over to play. I took it with my cell phone and zoomed in so it's really grainy. The bottom left picture is from when I came to pick him up. He was coloring and it was SO cute. And I didn't notice this til looking at these pictures just now, but if you look closely the first toy he picked up when I dropped him off was Minnie Mouse, and he still has her with him at the end of the day when he's coloring. :) Can't say I'm surprised since he's always attaching to something.
The last picture is just of his report for the day, and so of course I had to document his first "report card". Yep, I'm totally, without a doubt, "that mom".
Two things I do want to ask about:
1. You'll notice from his report card that he didn't nap at all, which I didn't expect him to really. You know how you'll see kids asleep in strollers, or falling asleep in exersaucers or playing with toys? Well that has NEVER been Manny. If there is any kind of activity going on, he can't sleep. He naps great if he's in a room by himself, but I'm so worried he's never going to nap there. He doesn't take a paci or stuffed animal or anything, so that makes it hard. They were very nice about it but I was just wondering if anybody has had a similar experience with their child? I know it was his first "group napping" experience, so it will take some time...but if you have any input I would love to hear it.
2. He also barely ate any of his lunch or snack. In fact, if they hadn't sent the report home, I would've thought he didn't eat anything at all because the containers basically were full. They don't feed him anything - only items I send, so I know he didn't eat other stuff. I know it could have just been the whole first day experience causing him not to eat. But again, if you've had a similar experience I'd love to hear about it.
We are officially moved, and I am officially exhausted. And overwhelmed. Moving is crazy, especially with a 15 month old! But we are making progress, and slowly making our way through the stacks of boxes. I'm just ready to be settled, you know?
Manny is adjusting really well. The first couple of days he was a little clingy and would get scared if he realized we weren't in the same room as him, but now he's back to his normal ways of roaming the house. And thankfully he's still sleeping great at night!
When I was unpacking his room, I came across some clothes my good friend & college roommate April gave us. She has a little boy that is a couple years older than Manny, and she dresses him SO cute. I was thrilled when she gave us some hand-me-downs. At the time I packed them away because they were way too big, but turns out my little guy has grown, and now a lot of them fit!
These pj's with the cape just crack us up. Manny loves to race around in them...it's like he feels the super hero powers! :)
I also just wanted to mention that I know I owe some of you emails, and I'm so sorry I haven't been able to get back to you yet. Things have just been so busy, but I promise I am going to catch up on email soon...hopefully within the next 2 weeks. And I know many of you have asked for a post on our weaning experience, so I will be posting on that soon too.
I hope everyone is having a wonderful Labor Day weekend...it seems fall might be here! :)
August 20 - As I've mentioned before, Manny insists on feeding himself yogurt. And sometimes, he likes to style his hair with said yogurt. This would be one of those times. August 21 - Sunday after church we took a walk. My nieces were with me for the week, so Manny spent a lot of time chasing them & trying to keep up. He was so proud of himself every time he'd catch them. He definitely thought he was a big shot! August 22 - We went to the splash park and the kids had a great time. Manny loved waving around the water guns, and I just couldn't believe he was tall enough to reach them! He has grown so much lately. August 23 - Today we went to the playground at the mall. Manny loved crawling through the tunnel, and would do it over and over. When he wasn't climbing up slides, that is. Yep, he can climb all the way to the top now! August 24 - This is my niece Olivia. I had fixed her hair, and then then she came downstairs with a headband on too, saying she wanted to wear both. It looked funny because it scrunched her face up so tight! She lasted for about 5 minutes before taking it off because it hurt. :) August 25 - We hung out at my friend Aprils beautiful home for awhile, and had so much fun! Manny kept carrying around this little chair. He seriously thinks he has to carry everything around. August 26 - After Manny and I got our haircuts, we went to Hammontree's for some yummy grilled cheese sandwiches - seriously the best ever. Manny was still trying to figure out who I was since I'd just chopped off all of my hair, and was being super clingy to Patrick. It made me sad that he wasn't sure of me, but it was so cute to see him love on Patrick.