Monday, July 16, 2012

Dear Boys

Today I'm feeling a bit nostalgic. You're growing too fast.

JJ you have all your teeth, including your 2 year molars. You climb everything, harass the dog, eat like there's no tomorrow, and rarely let me sit down. You are a joy. You are a challenge. And I'm loving every minute of it. Almost. :) I thought I'd have so much more time as you grew up, but I find myself constantly being the one to catch you, save the dog, feed you, and run to fix the things that might have just been been broken. I can hardly wait to channel your energy for good. Right now I'm just trying to keep up.

D you are the joy in my world. You are so kind loving. You're learning at an astonishing rate and you're vocabulary is exploding. You are becoming so independent, and although that makes for occasional standoffs between the two of us, I'm amazed at what a good kid you are. You want to please, you want to make others happy and it is a joy to be your mom.

I love my boys. They are as different as night and day, and yet I wouldn't change them for the world.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Breathe. Be Happy.

I'm having one of those weeks.

The kind where I think, what the crap was I thinking?

I had it good.

Money, prestige, time, sleep... all the things that I use to have.

Now I have a dirty house. No clean laundry. Two screaming boys. Intermittent naps (no longer a full night's sleep).

What the?!?!

Choosing to be a mom was the best choice I've ever made, but it isn't always a glorious choice. Especially when I feel like half the time I'm walking around with spit up on me.

I have to constantly remind myself that I made this choice. That I wanted this. That I prayed for this. And I have to shake myself and think of the good. The fact that Tank wakes up the happiest kid of all time with huge smiles and hugs. That Bug is learning at an astonishing rate and his imagination makes me smile all the time.

And sadly, I know this is just a phase, and soon my little babies will be boys, and then teenagers, and then gone. I know how fast this is going to go. So why am I not cherishing their hugs? The fact that they aren't embarrassed by me? The fact that they only want me? The fact that when I kiss their owies it is magically better?

But I'm human. And sometimes selfish.

So I went to my roots and make a 5X7 image to put in a frame on my mantle. This week it is a gentle reminder that when life gets away from me to take a step back and breathe. Count to 5 (the round circles) 5... 4... 3... 2... 1... and then be happy.

For myself.

For my boys.

For the chaos that I wouldn't change... even to get the money, prestige, time, and sleep back.

Because happiness is a CHOICE.

I need that visual reminder that I really do love my life. Even when the moments can be hard to live through.

And next week when I need a different reminder, I'll make one. Cause it's easy. Cheep. And fast.

Lets face it. That's all I have time for running after Tank.

Maybe next week I'll remind myself to shower! HA!

Monday, February 27, 2012


After a lot of thought I've come to realize that I can't do it all.

In my head I get this glorious plan. I like to plan. It makes me happy. A schedule is a thing of gloriousness that comes close to chocolate.

But as Tank has gotten bigger, and a lot more mobile, my life with this little guy is nothing short of chaos. My first boy lulled me into a false security. I thought I had it down. I thought, HEY! This is totally doable.

Then came Tank. And my life as I knew it was over.

There is no sleep in my house.

There is no schedule.

There is no plan of action... because then Tank destroys it.

Now don't get me wrong. Tank is all smiles and happiness. He plows trough life with a kind of joy only dreamed about. He is the reason people want to bottle baby energy. He makes my days full of laughter, but also makes me fall into bed praying he will stay asleep. I love my little man, but he must be supervised... at all times.

Or bad things happen.

Very. Very. Bad.

So this blog is going to morph into what it was meant to be from the beginning for me. A way to breathe for a minute. Maybe post a funny picture or tell a funny story... and when I actually have time post something creative I've done.

Because it has to.

I am mommy first. And that's exactly who I want to be.

Friday, October 21, 2011

The Shagnasties

Tank is sick. I. Mean. Sick. As in, if he doesn't pass his physical today he will be hospitalized. Mommy is sad. And busy holding a baby. Today I am MOM! Go BE!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

You just THINK I've been slacking!

This is most of the things I've been compiling/organizing for the upcoming months of projects. I've got my ideas for gifts/house/personal projects coming out of my ears and I'm way excited. I've found that putting my family first right now is paramount for my happiness as well as my little minions. Bubby is having a way hard time now that Mr. ITICB is gone all the time. His neediness = my playing catch up all day long. I get it, I'm okay with it, and I embrace the fact that I'm loved.

BUT... that being said, I also am trying desperately to find projects that I can do WHILE I watch/play with/attend to the needs of said minions.

So, here is the break down of upcomingness...

Curtains for the kitchen and family room
Wall art for my family room
Vinyl for the bulk head in the family room... eyesore that has to be prettified!
Front door wreath
ABC bean bags (going to be a Christmas present for Bubby)
Tank's flannel blanket (also a Christmas present)
Shhhhh... Christmas present for amazing friends
Shhhhh... Christmas present for amazing family
Crochet School... I've been silently stalking it... Look here if ya wanna join. It's frankly AWESOME and I love the Crafty Minx.
Halloween costume. I'm gonna be a book fairy.
A rag rug for under my kitchen table. I've always wanted one... I found a tutorial... I WILL make one.
A tie skirt... or something fun made out of DI ties.
ABC wall art for the kid's rooms.
I'm also going to do a "tree of life" for my kid's bedroom. I'll paint the tree on the wall free hand and then I have 11 pictures in awesome frames that I'm going to hang off the branches. As they grow I can trade out the pictures for different things they like. As of now I'm going to put different religious, and family pictures in them.

So, since I'm kinda notorious for starting things and not finishing them I need to actually finish these things.



Saturday, October 1, 2011

This week has been a whirlwind. I'm doing a lot of adjusting in my life because of the changes that just keep coming. I'm grateful for these changes, but holy cow... it's wild!

So, in order to make my life a little bit less hectic I'm trying out a new way of cooking... the CROCK POT! I love to eat and so does Mr. ITICB, our two boys are looking like they are following suit... so since I barely have 2 minutes to rub together any given day, the crock pot is turning into my favorite kitchen gadget.

This past week I've made 3 meals with it. Since our boys are little and eat small amounts, it makes for good eating all week long with leftovers for lunch. I've also found that I love Crock Pot Girls (don't judge them by their ugly website, they are in the process of changing it). I've found good recipes on their website and am following them on Facebook.

So here are my recipes of the week:
1) Chicken and Dumplings
          Ironically I've never had it before. It is a good starter recipe because the most you have to do is cut up an onion and dump in frozen chicken. It's quite good and way easy. It's going on the list of once a month comfort foods.
2) Cafe Rio Chicken
          Although it doesn't taste like Cafe Rio's chicken to me... It's still quite tasty. I've put it in quesadillas, burritos and on a salad with ranch dressing. But I have to repeat... It isn't Cafe Rio's chicken... Just yummy chicken that tastes great.
3) Paula Dean's Taco Soup
          I LOVE this recipe. Not only does the woman do good butter, but she does amazing comfort foods. My husband loves this recipe because it isn't a "one note" recipe. It has lots of flavor and gets better and better with time.

So this week I'm a Crock Potter!

Go BE!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Baby Blankets

Two and a half years ago I went to a baby shower for my husband's cousin. At the baby shower she got the cutest blanket. It had these little fringe things all the way around, and as I asked to look at it closer, I thought to myself, "I could do that!" (My mother is a seamstress and I have a high opinion of the fact that I know a little bit. Enough to get myself into trouble and have to call my mom.)

Needless to say, I quickly went to the store and bought myself some fabric. I was pregnant at the time with my first son and thought that the blanket sizes they sell in the stores actually work. So I bought 1 yard of each flannel I liked and went home a happy girl. 

Then I gave birth. To a normal sized little boy (8lbs 1oz, 21 in). Who quickly grew to the 90%. He's still in the 90%. When swaddling babies store blankets don't work. And if they do, someone tell me what I did wrong that my kid always found a way to get out of them and then scream bloody murder because they weren't swaddled anymore...

So... the fabric for the blankets that I hadn't gotten around to suddenly looked small. But I still wanted them! So I went back to the fabric store! I got 1.5 yards of fabric this time! (I thought I was really smart...) And 1 whole blanket got made! Out of 7! The rest... nope... they never got made. 

So now baby number two gets to have a new set of blankets! The big ones... and I made the other set of three to give away as gifts to moms that I know will have smaller boys than mine.

First start off with your fabric. You will want 2 pieces (top and bottom) of coordinating fabric of 1 yard each or 1.5 depending on if you have big babies or not. Some will say to pre-wash. I don't. I'm sure someone out there is cringing. Have the fabric placed right sides out! Match up the top and bottom pieces and pin around the edges and in the middle to keep the fabric in place while you sew. (Some don't pin... but I'm not that good so I pin.)


After pinning it's off to the sewing machine.  My (piece of crap) sewing machine died. So I borrowed my mom's. It's much nicer than mine, but all you really need is a straight stitch. I chose this one, thinking in my head it would be nice and durable. It's the one with 3 dashes next to each other. I'm probably overkill here. I'm sure just the single straight line would be fine.

I went in about an inch to an inch and a half all the way around the edges.

More accomplished seamstresses will also sew in the middle of the blanket so it doesn't shift. If you care about this, go for it. I don't.

After sewing around the edges you take your scissors and go around the edges cutting up to your sewing line. (Making fringe.) As a caution at this point I would recommend doing this at a table otherwise you're bound to cut into your favorite pair of sweats and cry a little.

The next step is to throw them into the washing machine and watch the fringe fly! You will want to be prepared with those rolly-tape-pick-up-lint things, or a good amount of boxing tape to take away all the extra frayed pieces that come off. You'll also have to vacuum. Just warning you.

They will continue to fray for the first few washes until they are done with the fraying part, but I can't tell you how much I seriously love these blankets. They are a great weight for summer nights and into the fall. When your kid is in a thicker jammy set up they do great in the winter too. You can throw them down just about anywhere and for some reason the kids love the fringe! Both my boys are really tactile, and will play in my hair... the fringe works the same way. So... yay! I'm done with a project I've had for 2.5 years. Better late...

On a complete side note. This is what I came downstairs to after my shower this morning. He got into them all by himself. The look is saying... maybe if I don't acknowledge that I did something wrong I won't be in trouble... That is also the much loved fringe blanket that I made next to him. :)

Go be!