Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015's Highlights

2015 is coming to an end. I have neutral feelings about this year even though without a doubt it was a epic life changing year. These are probably my favorite moment's from this past year

1.  Starting my mom gig
       I was not one of those glowing pregnant women cooing about their beautiful connection with their unborn baby. Basically I would like to cause physical harm to those fools. Like whatever... you and your magical mommy uterus. Ha! So while I did not thrive as a pregnant woman, I feel like motherhood has gone well and we made the transition well. Little Man is the happiest, most curious little man. I loved the newborn stage, and have loved all the baby stages that have come after.  I absolutely love this current phase watching his personality really show through a little more each week. Things that I worried about before becoming a Mom like the lack of sleep, public meltdowns, and a few other things were not as scary as I thought. It is actually really impressive how little sleep I actually need anymore.  There have been days when every time he cried so did I but those are just the special memories for the two of us :-)

2. Seeing my Grandmother
   Seeing my Grandmother and introducing her to her first great grandson. My extended family isn't super close but my grandmother has always been a special soul to me. She introduced me to Jane Austen, Anne of Green Gables, cross stitching and Dove chocolates. These all remain some of my favorite things. She lives alone now in an assisted living and has Alzheimer's disease. I don't know much she understood while we were there but her smile while look at the baby totally made the weekend trip to PA worth it.

3.  Auntie came home
  My little sister came home from China this year. My sister and I grew up a little closer than most siblings due to the life of being missionary kids. So when a huge piece of your heart packs up  and leaves for a 15 month adventure in Asia; it is a big deal when she comes home. Some people talk about adventures but she actually does them and that is cool.  I'll always support those adventures as long as she brings me home presents. But having her home is a 2015 highlight and meant for a lot of fun adventures. 
4. Life with my China Man.
       He may hate trimming his beard, basically lives in the same 2 flannel shirts all winter and doesn't like chocolate but 150% he is my absolute everything. I don't think he has ever said no to any of my ideas or schemes. Usually he does everything he can to support it. I wanted to learn to quilt he bought me quilting supplies, I wanted to have a garden he planted a zillion seedlings for me and when I said I was thinking of starting a blog he bought me a laptop because he knew the old computer wouldn't survive. I have the confidence and security to try things because of him. We are a good team and best friends.

5.  Friendships
     My homie for life I really can't picture life without this gem. Hands down the funniest soul I know, has appropriate appreciation for Pioneer Women, Dancing with the Stars, Dunkin Donuts and loves mason jars. All critical elements to friendship. Without her I do not know how I would have survived pregnancy and would not have been prepared for labor or life after having a baby.We don't always get to see a lot of each other but we keep each other company everyday.  So much so that when my husband comes home he not only inquires about my day, but he checks in on her day too.

So long 2015 and welcome 2016. I have an idea of some things you might bring but I feel confident you will have a few surprises thrown in too! 

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Things that Always Makes me Happy

I like lists. They are orderly, they help me stay focused and sometimes they help me stay calm. Off and on for years I have made lists in my journal about blessings in my life and honestly I think the happiest I have been is when I was doing it on a regular basis. So here are some things that make me happy on a semi regular basis.  ( also for the record these are not listed in priority or anything like that. They are just being typed in the order of which they come.)

It is true. I would like to say I savor my cup of coffee every day but that would not be true. I do not even remember my first cup of coffee. I do however appreciate my 2nd and 3rd cup of coffee quite a bit. So much so that I reheat them like 10 times before I finish them.  And don't get all judgy mcjudgy on my caffeine intake, remember I have a baby with erratic sleeping patterns. Plus I do lots of other healthy things to balance out this addiction. 

     Texting allows me to still feel like a normal human being. I am relatively cut off from the world during this current phase of life. My biggest excitement is going to get groceries during the week. But texting with my friends seriously cracks me up all the time. Just sharing funny things we find online, silly things that is happening during the day, the amazing dance that we just watched on Dancing With the Stars or books that we are reading. The conversations always make me smile. Especially when they send silly things like these

3. Clean Sheets 
     Now this may seem weird, but keep an open mind. There is nothing better in my world than clean sheets. The soft flannel that smells great and is so soft. I think a bed with clean sheets even feels more comfortable. When we stay at hotels, I always get excited about the clean sheets on the bed every day. You can ask my husband. It is an emotional moment if they don't change them every day. Clean sheets actually make changing and washing the sheets a tolerable job. It hands down always makes me happy. 

4. Working out 
That quote seriously never gets old for me. It is also so true.... not that I would ever cause harm to my China Man. If you are grumpy, cranky, sad or any other unpleasant emotion a workout will change everything! One of the highlights of my day is when a favorite song comes on Pandora and I can just turn it up and run. For those few minutes nothing else matters and when I am done everything seems brighter. Pitbull has been my long term running partner, he has been dancing in the clubs and I have been hitting the pavement/treadmill for years together. It has been a fruitful relationship. Now I also listen to "dubstep". I do not even know what it is but Pandora recommended it and I feel so hard core when I listen to it. Just even typing this makes me happy thinking about running with favorite music. 
5. Getting Little Man out of his crib after a nap or in the morning 
Do I really need to say more? It is impossible not to smile at this little face 

Weekends with my China Man 
          Because of his work schedule he is not home most evenings. Which is not the end of the world by any means but on the weekends when I have my main squeeze home to eat dinner with ( which is really us sitting on the couch watching How I Met Your Mother reruns) and just be lazy together is so nice. It is a highlight for me every weekend.  Just having someone home to make the coffee for the next day seems so nice.  I mean, I do kinda like the guy ;-) 

Gilmore Girls 
    Legitimately the best show on the planet. If you disagree then you need to spend time getting right with God because obviously you and the Grinch have the same size heart. 

 So these are just a few of the little or not so little things that bring me daily joy in my little world. It was fun to think of the things that consistently make me happy. I probably could have kept adding things because once you start listing the things that make you happy it is amazing how fast they starting adding up. Gilmore Girls with my lunch. 

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

First Snow!

Now any good Mainer would tell you that snow watch basically starts like mid-October. That may seem odd but we really have had Halloweens that have been blizzards. Thanksgiving and Christmas are almost always white or at least by Christmas we have had some snow. This year... not a flake. We had the warmest Christmas in like history I think. I mean good grief the day after Christmas we went for a little mini family hike 
Not a flake of snow to be seen and it did makes it seem a little less Christmas-like this year. I told China Man so many times in the weeks leading up to Christmas that I just knew it would snow immediately after Christmas. Guess who was right? 

It was only 3 inches of snow but after months of no snow and absolutely no warm up... this seemed like a lot of snow! So naturally like any good first time Mom, I bundled up my Little Man and we went outside to take pictures. Yes, we spent more time getting bundled and un-bundled but it was totally worth it. 

He didn't really know what to think but I think he liked it. He definitely didn't like the too small snow suit I shoved him in that limited his movement. Sorry Little Man, in my defense I really thought it would fit. He just looked around a lot, smiled and laughed. Then right before we went inside, he thought it would be a good idea to go face first into the snow. No pictures of that moment were taken because I was busy wiping his face off and China Man was busy laughing. 

  So now his first snow day is over with, and only like one billion more to go. No, that isn't over dramatic at all either. We live in Maine, you never know how much snow can come. Last year the week that Little Man was due, we had a snowstorm EVERY DAY that week. Not just a few inches kind of storms either. Like several feet, lots of ice, wind and shut down the whole state kind of storms. I just cried every day. If we had only known that he would be two weeks late and have to be (sorta) induced. Another day, another story ;-) 

Tuesday's Blessings 
  1. Fresh sourdough biscuits. Fresh bread is always a win! 
  2. I had the best run today. A good run means a happy more zen like Mom. 
  3. I think the new snow is kinda pretty 
  4. My Little Man was not epically cranky and after yesterday, that was a huge blessing. 

Monday why must we do this to each other?

Oh Monday we started with such promise. When the baby was awake, I actually woke up and felt…. well dare I say it? I felt refreshed and like I had actually had a good nights sleep. I made homemade buttermilk pancake because honestly what day doesn’t need pancakes? Especially ones with actual real buttermilk? ( also for the record sometimes the most random ingredients appear at my house. I did not buy that buttermilk but it was left at my house). I even got to do a workout and take a shower all within the same hour. UNHEARD OF! ( sometimes shouting while typing is oddly satisfying. Especially since I never shout in person) Then I even was given the greenlight to run to the store without the man child since China Man offered to stay on baby duty. As someone who likes to cross things off her lists and get things done. This was a very promising day!
Then I came home and put my baby to bed with smiles and kisses. He had only slept for 30 minutes in the morning so my mom gut told me that this baby would take a long afternoon nap. During this nap I would clean, I would organize, I would work on this blog and make it look like a real blog. 30 minutes later while I was settling in for my “Mommy break” with a big salad, diet coke and brand new episode of Hart of Dixie,  that not so gentle wail of a child let me know that there would be no mommy break. We tried snuggles, we tried nursing, we tried tv, we tried singing, we tried a little tough love, but ya’ll ( sometimes I like to talk southern while typing too. I read too many southern bloggers I think) that child would not sleep and was not happy about. He little knocked his baby toe on the doorway and wailed like he had broken a bone. Offering him pasta for dinner just about required an intense therapy session ( for both of us) due to all the wailing and rolling around. Dinner was consumed in my arms while I walked him in circles and popped bites of sweet potatoes and cheese in his mouth. I fully intend to raise a disciplined and polite child but sometimes, you just raise that white flag.  Another point for team baby.  I like to think I won the ultimate battle as he went to bed early, I finished putting a new set of shelves together, cleaned up the house, did a load of laundry and spent way to much time trying to make this blog look legit.20151228_161344
Sometime a day like today would really upset me that half my house still looks a small tornado went through it ( and it did in the form of my son) but for some reason today, I just accept it. Perhaps that is just the hot cocoa and sugar cookie flavored cookie crisp talking ( dinner of champions folks) but tonight I am counting my blessing.
Monday’s Blessings 
 1. I do have a spiffy little shelf now in my downstairs closet/pantry to help my little condo look a wee bit more organized.
2. I do really like hot cocoa. I have one more week before I can’t justify drinking it by the gallon.
3. New epsiodes of my favorite tv show definitely makes a Monday a little better.
4. There is no one on this planet who loves me more than my child currently. It is probably the closest I will ever come to being a celebrity. Albeit it is a bit draining to always have him attached to me in some form. He is the best sidekick.
5. My husband totally washed all the bed sheets for me. That is a huge domestic win.
So good night little internet. If you need me I will be enjoying another round of hot cocoa and Hart of Dixie pretending that I don’t have a date with my treadmill tomorrow morning first thing.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

  Merry Christmas!! It is hard to believe that Christmas 2015 is over. My little baby's first Christmas is over. It is also hard to believe that he turned 10 months on Christmas. How is it possible that he is only 2 months away from being a year old!?

  Christmas Eve was pretty quiet in out little condo. We mostly spent the day cleaning and getting ready for having my parents and sister over. We do not have a big family and the 5 of us is as big as a family gathering gets!
( Note to self, if I am going to pretend to be a blogger, I really need to work on my photography skills) We sat around our beautiful Christmas tree, ate way to much food and had a nice visit. I think the star of the show was the eggplant meatball sliders. I am not a vegetarian by any means but I do enjoy a vegetarian meal once or twice a week. Honestly that is all my China Man can tolerate before he suggests that meat would be nice.

   As a first time mom I was really looking forward to Christmas morning. Even though I had been told to have low expectations and I knew my baby would not fully understand Christmas.... I was still excited for him to open his presents and experience Christmas.
Yes, I was that cheesy Mom who bought her baby a silly Christmas outfit. Because honestly, I brought him into this world I can be as cheesy as I want! And seriously... he looks cute. We won't talk about how I held my breath during his last growth spurt recently and just prayed he did not grow out of this outfit before we could wear it! Naturally in true 10 month old fashion, he soaked the outfit in drool within 3 hours but we got our pictures worth :-) 
   We opened presents at home just the 3 of us and had our cinnamon roll casserole, a rare Cota tradition. As a young "ish" family we don't have a lot of traditions but cinnamon roll casserole is one of the few things I have done since China Man and I have been together. Although my husband did just inform me that he had no memory of ever eating the cinnamon roll casserole before...  
    My Little Man was pretty pumped about ripping the paper but I can't say that he fully grasped the coolness of his presents until his dad turned the toy on and it started making noise and being obnoxious. 
   Then we drove to my parents and had another round of presents and Christmas fun.  My sister basically got me set up with Essential Oils so that is exciting. I have really wanted to use them more. Before Christmas the only 2 that I have tried were peppermint oil and tea tree oil.  Since I received my nifty stash, I did mop my floors with patchoili oil and tangerine oil mixed with baking soda and castille soap. The floors looked clean enough to me but holy wow.... did the house smell strong! Even the next day the house smelled like I had just cleaned. 

I guess that basically sums up Christmas 2015. We ate a lot of food, basically stared at the baby and kept him from destroying everything and enjoyed relaxing. 

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

I think this time I may actually start taking this blogging seriously. Because really who doesn't need another mommy blogger on their reading  list. I don't really have niche in something that I am super good at. But maybe that will be my thing, I honestly am just your everyday stay at home mom trying to raise a decent little human being, maintain a happy marriage and live a happy life.
Beach to Beacon 2015 10k   ( running 10ks on 4 hours of sleep is totally the best way to run them) 

My sister has always told me I should have a blog. I think it might have been easier for her because she actually was traveling in China doing all sorts of exotic things when she blogged. That gives you all sorts of topics to blog about. lol! 

  Perhaps I should blog about the 20 Christmas cards that I ordered from Snapfish and only to larn they have a typo. Like seriously I don't even know how to sign my family's name apparently. I can't wait to see who is the first person to mention that gem to me. My husband did already very cautiously mention it to me but he doesn't count. I am just hoping people just focus on the cute baby picture and ignore the error. :-) 

Well either way it should be interesting. Especially if you consider my husbands ancient desktop computer is what I am trying to do this from. I think I can hear it sigh from exhaustion every time upload a new photo. And we won't even mention the wonky ( a word that never gets used enough) internet connection I have. But I will have faith and believe my sister and the hundred of other mommy bloggers that say this is a good hobby to have. 

just seemed like an appropriate time to throw a baby picture up