Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Christmas List 2011

Here is my official Christmas List this year.

I would like a little more time.

Time with these two handsome boys.
And our wonderful families.

Time focused on and appreciating the Birth of Our Savior.
Time to eat some yummy Christmas Food.

And some extra time for sleep.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Asher at ONE

Weighs 22 lbs (50th percentile)
26 inches long (95th percentile)
Dr. Petelos said he is just adorable and extremely good natured.

Wears 12-18  month clothes and size 3 diapers.
  • Is puling up on everything.
  • Trying to walk and is cruising all over the place.
  • Points.
  • Books are his most favorite toy.
  • Loves taking things out of something and putting them back in aka making a mess.
  • Shakes his head and nods it indiscriminately.
  • Loves to hand you things and then say Thank You (Tay Too) when you take it. 
  • Also says, Kitty Cat (kika), Mama, Dadda and More (mohmoh). Has also said, "Here you go." and "Right there". But only once, so I wouldn't put it into his regular repertoire just yet.
  • Sings and dances along to music.
  • Points to my mom's dog and says "Woof! "
  • Knows how to throw a fit.
  • Gets upset when he can't get puzzle pieces to go in the right way.
  • Tests me. On everything. For example, he knows he is not allowed to play with the outlets. Even though we have covers on them. He will crawl over to one, look at me and smile, and slowly reach toward it to see what I will do. He usually stops himself. He just wants my reaction. But when he gets in trouble he just laughs. If I smack his hand, he laughs and claps like I was giving him a high five or trying to play patty cake. The word "NO!" is the funniest word he has ever heard. He is definitely going to be my strong willed child. So far, time out is the best thing for him.
  • Bites. He only bites me. I think it is an affection thing. He gets really excited, hugs me, buries his face into me and bites my shoulder. I know he isn't trying to hurt me but he needs to learn that is unacceptable.

He is still our little entertainer. He loves attention from anyone that will give it to him. The other day we were visiting a church in Tuscaloosa for Orphan Sunday and he reached for complete strangers. Not so sure how I feel about that just yet. But I do love watching him flirt with everyone around him. We make friends every where we go because people are just drawn to our little man (or girl as they usually say).

He eats like crazy. This kid has a stomach that is a bottomless pit. He eats pretty much anything and everything now a days. Especially things he can feed himself. He gets impatient when we are feeding him. He used to cry for yogurt but recently wants nothing to do it. He wants finger foods that he can pick up. That's fine with me. It's easier to let him handle that task on his own. Some of his favorite foods are cheese, animal crackers, mandarin oranges (I'm pretty sure he just swallows them whole), ravioli and beans. He made the switch from formula to milk with out issue and has dropped the bottle with out any struggle as well.

Wakes up at 6:30 like clock work and eats breakfast. (usually a waffle and some fruit and milk)
Snack at 10:00 (O's, animal crackers or something along those lines)
12:30 - Lunch (ham, cheese, cut up fruit or veggies and crackers)
Nap from 1:00-2:00
3:00 - another snack
5:00 - Dinner (If we are having something kid friendly, he will eat that. If not, pasta, veggies, applesauce, edamame, etc.)
7:00 - Bedtime story and milk
7:30-8:00 - Bed time.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

How to be a Disciple

A good friend of mine shared this in our devo this morning and it spoke to me. I am sharing it in case it might speak to your heart as well but also so that I can have it somewhere that I can access it whenever I need to reread this. Hope it blesses you.

An excerpt from How to be a Disciple by Dallas Willard.

The description Peter gives in the first "official" presentation of the gospel to gentiles provides a sharp picture of the Master under whom we serve as apprentices. "You know," he says to Cornelius, "of Jesus, the one from Nazareth. And you know how God anointed him with the Holy Spirit and power. He went about doing good and curing all those under oppression by the devil, because God was with him" (Acts 10:3)

And as a disciple of Jesus I am with him, by choice and by grace, learning from him how to live in the kingdom of God. This is the crucial idea. That means how to live within the range of God's effective will, his life flowing through mine. Another important way of putting this is to say that I am learning from Jesus to live my life as he would live life if her were I. I am not necessarily learning to do everything he did, but I am learning how to do everything I do in the manner in which he did all that he did.

That my actual life is the focus of my apprenticeship to Jesus is crucial. Knowing this can help deliver us from the genuine craziness that the current distinction between "full-time Christian service" and "part-time Christian service" imposes on us. For a disciple of Jesus is not necessarily one devoted to doing specifically religious things as that is usually understood.

To repeat, I am learning from Jesus how to lead my life, my whole life, my real life. Note, please, I am not learning from him how to lead his life. His life on earth was a transcendentally wonderful one. But it has now been led. Neither I nor anyone else, even himself, will ever lead it again. And he is, in any case, interested in my life, that very existence that is me. There lies my need. I need to be able to lead my life as he would lead it if he were I.

So as his disciple I am not necessarily learning how to do special religious things, either as part of a "full-time Christian service" or as part of a "part-time Christian service". My discipleship to Jesus is, within, clearly definable limits, not a matter of what I do, but of how I do it. And it covers everything, religious or not.

I don't know about you, but for me this is GREAT news. I no longer need to feel the burden to do everything Jesus did. I don't even have to feel the burden to do everything my neighbor does. I am merely called to do what I do. I do not say that to let myself off the hook. But to allow myself to stop comparing my life with everyone around me. To rest peacefully in knowing that God has me where he wants me for a purpose. His purpose. And as he walks with me every second of every day as I do everything I do. From the mundane to the magnificent, he is teaching me to be a disciple and hopefully being glorified though it all. Good news. Indeed.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Autumn Chopped Salad

Do yourself a favor and make this salad. Even my I-only-meat-husband liked it. Of course I found it on Pinterest. That's where I find everything these days. Mainly because I keep my head buried in it 99% of my waking hours.

It's basically just lettuce, pears, dried cranberries, pecans, bacon and feta cheese. Topped with a mixture of poppy seed dressing and balsamic vinaigrette.  So so yummy. And really it is a meal all on it's own.

Click on picture below for the whole recipe.

Also, if you are like us and are trying to go organic (trying being the operative word) I made this little sheet to keep in my purse when I am shopping to help me remember what I can skimp on and what I need to be more careful purchasing. These are the Dirty Dozen (i.e. always buy organic) and  The Clean Fifteen (i.e. go ahead and buy it in the cheap produce section).

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Asher - 11 Months

At 11 months Asher is pretty much turning into a little boy. He loves people. Loves to entertain people. Loves to make people smile. I am so grateful for that. His dad and I can't seem the wipe the smiles off our faces when we are with him.

He loves Mickey Mouse Clubhouse - Mickey especially, and The Hot Dog song - he will stop in his tracks and crawl toward the TV and laugh when it comes on.
He also dances. If he is sitting he will kind of bob up and down. But if he is standing, oh my - if he is standing, he will shake that little butt of his like no one's business. Watching him dance naked in the bathtub brings me an endless supply of laughs.
To sing (jibber jabber in a sing-song voice)
He can stand at an object if you help him up but doesn't really "pull up" just yet.
He has figured out how to get the foam letters to stick on the side of the bathtub and is very proud of himself for it.
He is a good little eater. Eats lots of table food now. And lots of it.
Believe me or not but he loves Rachael Ray. Seriously. I don't know if it because her kitchen is so bright. Or because she talks to the camera. But she captivates him. And I love having him as an excuse to watch the Food Network now. :)

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Asher at 10 Months

Asher is quite his own little person. At this age he continues to charm us and we love our little social butterfly.

He's learned a few new tricks this month. He can now go from laying to sitting. Something that was causing us a grief due to the fact that he would get from a sitting position to his tummy and then cry out when he couldn't get back to sitting up. I spent a lot of time helping him out in that department.

He's not quite crawling but don't be fooled. He is mobile. He can scoot, roll, slither and squirm to wherever he wants to get.He can get to all fours. And will rock back and forth but doesn't go anywhere yet.

And now he is even pulling up. He's pretty sturdy too. He has yet to fall. When he gets tired of standing he lets us know we have to help him back down.

He loves to share. He will offer you a bite of his food and even tries to put his paci in your mouth.

He mimics a lot now too. Here are some of my favorite things he is doing. And I love it because it is all because he sees us do it.

Singing - this cracks me up. I sing to him ALL the time. He LOVES it. Last month we traveled to Nashville to meet up with my family for a mini birthday celebration. It was interesting traveling by myself with a 10 month old. He slept about half way there and then woke up and wasn't happy to find himself locked into his carseat. So in order to appease him, I sang for the next 1.5 hours. I was hoarse and pretty tired of hearing myself sing Old McDonald, There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly and 5 Little Monkeys by the time we arrived at the hotel. But little man had a blast.

Anyway, all that to say - I sing to him all the time. It always works to cheer him up and now he has started singing himself. He does it in the car a lot. Always the entertainer. Even when he has no audience.

Waves Bye Bye - he's still perfecting this one. But it is adorable. A lot of times he will wave with the hand you can't see.

Reading - okay, he's not technically reading but he does try to. I try to read to him as much as I can. Ben and I both love to read and I really want Asher to appreciate the hobby as well. He will entertain himself for a long time by holding a book in front of himself and loudly yelling in jibberish whatever it is he thinks is on the page. It's adorable. He even turns the pages. Funny little man.

He has so much personality. And while he has found his opinionated side he still manages to be an easy baby. We just adore him and watching him develop into a his own little person.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

My Son is NOT a Girl

I know he's pretty. And I really don't take offense to it anymore. Your skin seems to get toughened after hearing it on a daily basis. But last night took the cake (or the birthday cake, as the case may be).

While at my birthday dinner, Asher charmed the waiters and surrounding customers. As always. He makes a game of getting people to smile at him. Several waiters fell prey to his cunning little game of I-just-droppped-my-bear-on-the-ground-can-you-get-it-for-me ploy. One particular waitress walked by and Asher caught her eye. And of course she obliged as well. And thennnn.....

She spent the next five minutes telling us how Asher was the most beautiful little girl she had ever seen. And how she "has two girls and wouldn't trade them for anything! Aren't little girls the best??? Mine only wear dresses. I bet she (meaning Asher) will do the same! You might want to trade her in at about 13 or so. hahaha" yada yada yada...girls, girls girls...

Awkward smile from Ben and I.


"Is this a girl or a boy? I am just now noticing that he is dressed in all blue."

As sweetly as I can, "Haha, yeah...I'm sorry. He's a boy."

I assured her we get that all the time. Because we do. ALL. THE. TIME.

I know my child is pretty. His eyes and curls make him look like a doll. But a BOY doll, people. A BOY DOLL!

Monday, August 15, 2011


Today I am 29 years old. Except for a small panic attack last night when Ben whispered in my ear as I was falling asleep that this was my last year in my twenties, I am handling it pretty well. I honestly am.

I have never had such a deep rooted joy in my life. Jehovah Jireh (God Our Provider) has blessed me. Blessed my beyond anything I deserve. I'm not talking about worldly blessings. But a joy that can only come from the Father. He has blessed me in ways I didn't even know I needed.  He is Good. He knows me better than anyone. And loves me anyway. I am so thankful for that.

I am so thankful that he is active in my life. And not just mine. The life of my family. I am thankful that I have a husband that loves God and tries daily to follow Him while leading his family closer to Him as well.

As I contemplate the goodness of my life, I am sad for the people that do not experience this kind of joy. Either because they have decided to turn away from it or because they do not know how to access it. I want to share His Love.

We have recently made a decision to follow Him somewhere that I honestly don't think I ever believed He would take us. I will reveal more about this as things develop. But in the meantime, I am basking in the glory of my Father. And content to my core in knowing that HE is paving our path.

This next year holds so much promise. A promise of the Lord's goodness. Happy Birthday, to me!

"God has been gracious to me and I have all I need." -Genesis 33:11 

Monday, August 8, 2011

Asher's 9 Month Photos

Just a few of my favorites. It was so hard to choose. Kristin did a great job as always!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Busy Weekend

This weekend...
  • We took family portraits and Asher's 9 month pictures. Still waiting for all the mosquito bites that I got during our shoot to go away.
  • Ate at CPK. I HAVE to figure out their ranch dressing recipe.
  • Swept, vacuumed and steam mopped all the floors in my house.
  • Cleaned two bathrooms and half of the other one.
  • Dusted.
  • Cleaned the kitchen, including the inside and outside of the fridge.
  • Completed FIVE Paper Nest orders.
  • Took care of my sick/teething baby.
  • Got excited when Ben spotted Asher's new tooth. Top right tooth arrived on Sunday.
  • Organized Asher's toys and books.
  • Watched Ben kill a Black Widow spider.
  • Also watched him take up all the rubber mulch and replace it with pine mulch so our friggin' HOA will get off our back. I strongly dislike those guys.
  • Watched The Dilemma (two thumbs down) and The King's Speech (two thumbs up).
  • Roasted summer squash. SO YUMMY!
  • Taught Asher to hold his bottle. FINALLY.
  • Fed him squash and wheat Club crackers. He is starting to eat more and more on his own.
  • Put up Asher's baby stuff (sniff sniff). No more floor gym, bouncy seat, boppy, bumbo, or baby bath tub.
  • Read Deceptively Delicious and Double Delicious by Jessica Seinfield.  I am about to completely change the way this family eats. Excited about learning to cook with better ingredients and eat less processed foods.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Timeline Blogging

As you may have noticed I am trying to catch up on my blogging. I am finally able to get pictures from our camera onto our laptop. Before I was doomed to using the desktop upstairs. And when I say it took a long time, I mean, come back tomorrow to see if 10 photos were able to upload.

Anyway, as I blog I am going to leave the new posts at the top for a few days, but eventually will re-date them chronologically. Which means they will move down on my blog. I know this means nothing to you, but there you have it anyway.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Family Rules

I made this a couple of weeks ago. I printed it on 11x17 paper, laminated it and am hanging it on my fridge. I have seen some really cute ones that are done on wood and hung more like art work. Maybe one day. For now, here is my easy version.

Come Apart in Wal-Mart

So last weekend I noticed that Asher was outgrowing his pajamas, yet again. Misty was babysitting him Friday night and I left him with some footie PJ's. When I picked him up that night he was definitely trying to pull off the "off the shoulder" look as Misty called it. His 6-9 month jammies were obviously too short for my long baby.

Cut to the next day - we are in Wal-Mart picking up some necessities and I told Ben I wanted to run into the Baby Section to see if they had any pj's. I located the sleepwear and realized that they only go up to 6-9 months in the BABY section and that I would need to look in the TODDLER section for something in his new size. I literally walked over to the cart to tell Ben and started boo hooing right there next to the milk.  My baby. Yes, BABY, was supposed to wear big boy jammies? And then - to kick a horse when she is down, I saw their selection. Sponge Bob, Cars, Camo, lots of screen printed, tie-dye looking stuff. They expected me to put my baby in that? Oh me. Rough day.

I realize that one day he is going to cry and tell me he just HAS TO HAVE those pajamas. But until then - no way, Jose. I did finally find some decent stuff but this week I had some soft yellow cotton one piece outfits appliqued with a teddy bear. I can't fight this battle. My baby is growing up and there is nothing I can do about it. The bittersweet life of a momma I guess.

Monday, July 18, 2011

My Favorite Pasta

When Ben is in class and I need a quick, easy and delicious meal for one - This is my go to dinner.

Combine any kind of pasta (I prefer bowties, or a short cut pasta because they seem to combine well the with sauce and catch all the goodies easier) with any of the following ingredients:

Parmesan Cheese
Red Pepper Flakes
Roasted Cherry Tomatoes (Or even raw is great too)
White Wine
Lemon zest and juice
Roasted Asparagus Tips
Salt & Pepper
Shrimp (if you wanna have some protein in there)

My all time favorite version goes like this:
  1. Cook pasta according to directions on package. (I like Wacky Mac Veggie Pasta)
  2. Heat a good bit of oil (I'd say about a third of a cup) in a small sauce pan until good and hot.
  3. Add whole grape tomatoes to oil and cover.
  4. Let them cook just a few minutes until they burst then reduce heat.
  5. Add lots of grated garlic, about a 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes and capers.
  6. When pasta is done, drain and add the whole pan of oil and ingredients to the pasta and mix.
  7. Add chopped fresh basil, the zest and juice of one lemon and a sprinkle of parmesan cheese to the pasta. Mix.
  8. EAT!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Asher - 9 Month Stats

Saw Dr. P this morning. Asher is right on track. Only thing he is behind on is separation anxiety. Dr. P said usually the 9 month appointment is hard because the baby doesn't want the doctor. Not with Asher. He was smiling like crazy at his favorite doc this morning.

Height - 29 inches (75th percentile)
Weight - 20.5 lbs (50th percentile) He hasn't gained any weight since our last appointment?
Head - 18.5 inches 

He got 2 shots and a finger prick. He smiled right through the finger prick, too busy flirting with the nurse to even notice. But he did NOT like his shots. One in each leg.

At his next appointment he will be ONE! I can't even wrap my head around that.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Asher's First Night Out

Last Friday night my friend, Misty, kept Asher for us so we could celebrate our anniversary. From the looks of these photos he had a great time! A special thanks to Emily & Kendall for being such great helpers!

Where's Waldo Asher?

Jamming Out - Only a baby boy that is this cool can pull off a hot pink guitar.

A duet with Kendall.

Please, please. Hold your applause.