Wednesday, September 28, 2011

A month before 2? {23 months}

Dear Brady, 
Can this really be the last month before you turn TWO? My heart looks at you and feels like you were just born but yet I feel like you have been in my life forever. I thought that you turning one was hard but oh, baby, two is harder. I look at you and I no longer see a baby but a boy, a boy who I'm ever so proud of. 
You started sleeping in your BIG boy bed. I have beens so proud of you and love how proud you are of yourself. You crawl into that bed like you accomplished something big and that you know what a big step this is. You have done well with it, better than mommy ever gave you credit for but you surprised me, son. Then, last night, mommy heard a big THUMP. I ran to your room, expecting to hear you cry and found you sound asleep on the floor. I scooped you up, put you back in your bed and giggled to myself as most times you wake up to the slightest noise.
We said good-bye to summer and welcomed fall. The weather has been amazing lately
We soaked up every last minute outside in the hot weather and are so loving the cool breezes.
We discovered a pear tree in the common ground behind our house. You call them apples and LOVE to help mommy pick some from the tree. You know to be careful and not touch the ones that dropped to the ground as they are full of bees!
 I laugh so hard at some of the things you do and say. One of your new words is MEATBALL. I chuckled when I heard you say it. You finally call Grandma Michele something and it sounds like you are saying, dumb, but we know you are trying to say, Grandma. You've also started calling every horse or animal resembling a horse, 'Annie,' since you know that Nana has a donkey named Annie.

I have to watch what I say around you. The other day, you had a rare treat of a few M&M's and you pointed to them and said, "Nana.'' I asked you if Nana gives those to you and I said, "oh, sneaky Nana'' and you repeated, 'sneaky Nana!' Oh boy.

You crack me up as you call all kids, even kids that look like they are almost teenagers, babies. You get so excited when you see another kid, mommy and daddy are looking into schools you can go to.
I feel like you have offically hit the curious and terrible twos. Mommy stayed home with you the other day from work and I had though you had FINALLY fell asleep (molars are not fun, you will not remember them but THIS momma will never forget!) and heard a giggle. I walked in to find the entire room covered in baby power that you had somehow found in a drawer tucked away. You offically love to throw yourself on the floor too! Mommy loves that trick!
Then, you can be so sweet. You love to help mommy out around the house. You put the kitchen towels away for me even without me asking. You pick them up and run to put them into the drawer. You love to sweep, swiffer and wash the windows. You're a big help with the laundry too.
Your favorite thing at the park has always been the swing but recently, the slide is in the running. You make sure you tell other kids on the playground if they are doing something 'wrong' by saying, "NO, baby!"

You're favorite toys are still things that go! Cars, trucks, trains...if they have wheels, you love them! You do the cutest noise when you 'fly' your airplanes. Grandpa gave you a trunk full of odd toys he's saved up over the years when you were in mommy's belly and we found them the other day. You picked out all the matchbox cars and always carry one in your hand. One night, you slept with one in each hand!
You are a very dramatic child. You get SO very excited over everything. I hear, 'oooh, wow, and woooah' all the time. I love that about you and I think that is one thing you get from me.

You're interested in the potty and love to wear your big boy undies but haven't quite made it farther than that but it's okay, mommy is in no rush. The other day, you decided you wanted to wear them outside. So, you picked pears in your underwear.

Speaking of pears, you love to eat. You love fruit, veggies, fruit pouches and still love that milk. I wonder if we need our own cow sometimes.
Your hair has finally grown back from mommy's hack job she did and I have to say, that while it's wild and crazy, I love it. You wake up in the morning with the biggest, curlies mohawk and while you despertly need a haircut, I'm keeping it for a bit. You're hair is stil speckled between blond and brown and you're eyes go back and forth between blue and green. I cant decide what way they will go!
Brady, one of the things I love about you most is your big personality. Last week, you decided you wanted to take 'baby puma' and 'baby' on a walk. I though you would get tired of caring them but you didn't. You crack me up on a daily basis and I sometimes do not know what to expect next. Sometimes you are so sweet and run up to everyone in the house to give them a BIG hug. A few weeks ago, you took a bite of deodorant. See what I mean, buddy?

I still can't believe that this time next month, you'll be two. I keep saying that each age is so much fun but it's because you make life that great. I love you, bubs. I can't wait to celebrate your birthday next month!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Day of Play

Our school district hosted a Transportation Fair this weekend and to say it was a hit it a BIG understatement. Every morning, he watches the "Oool Bus' drive by. Saturday, he not only got to TOUCH the school bus but go inside! I think I heard him say, 'Ooooh' and "wow' repeated at least a hundred times. 

 Um, talk about getting choked up watching your toddler walk down the aisle on a school bus.
 He climbed in the seat, patted it and asked me to sit next to him. Then, my heart exploded. He sat there like he rides the bus all the time. He loved every second. I thought I would have to drag him off kicking and screaming but when he found out there were OTHER things with wheels, he was eager to get a move on.
 The electric company had a big truck and gave out fun headbands (that actually freeze to keep you cool but it was so perfect out, we certainly didn't need it that day!) He reminded me of the Karate Kid. I had to promptly take it off so I would stop laughing because all I could think of was, "wax on, wax off.''
 He got to play on the big kids playground and they had SAND....
 and a fun slide.

 Somehow we had to make a second round to all the trucks and he climbed into the drivers seat. I had a mini panic attack thinking of him driving one day. Mommy is not too sure of that idea ever.
 He walked around in a daze of wonder and excitement. Then, the firetruck and ambulance had to leave for an emergency and I have never seen the kid sit so still.
 The tires were bigger than he was and just touching them was so exciting!
Then, he sat up like this and there was an emotion inside of me that I could not define. I could picture my baby boy as a school aged kid, riding the bus with his friends. In a month, he'll be two and before I know it, he'll be old enough to ride a bus like this.

 So, we took seize of the day. Spent our waking hours outside and a trip to our favorite park.
 He pointed at all the horses and called them, "Annie!'' Nana has horses and a Donkey named 'Annie' so every horse he sees bears the name 'Annie,' well, except for the giant horse (Daddy!) and the miniature horses who were all named, baby!
I often wonder where time went and how my baby grew up so fast. I watched his eyes light up as he went down the slide and back down again and again. Days like this I wish I could bottle up. 

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Worldwide Day of Play

As a child, I remember running around outside catching lightning bugs and coming inside when the sun went down. I feel like my parents who you know, 'walked ten miles to school barefoot,' when I say things like that but in reality, it's true. Sadly, many kids would rather sit inside and watch TV or play video games.

I remember the fun we had and the memories we made. The simple smell of summer brings back those memories of those carefree summers. I always said I wanted my children to have those memories. Luckily, my own child would prefer to live outdoors so we spend a lot of time running around. My mom said to me the other day, "I can't believe you're letting him play in the dirt!' but why not? It's just dirt and he was having the time of his life. Dirt can be washed off but memories last forever even after the bubble bath has washed away the grime and his clothes have been washed.

As you can see, he likes to get dirty. His favorite thing to do is to just run around in the backyard or go on walks. Nothing makes him happier than that. It's the first thing he asks for in the morning and we practically have to drag him inside at the end of the night. It does nothing but make me happy though to see him enjoy the outdoors like that.

Growing up, we did spend a lot of time outside playing as my parents would take us floating and to places in 'nature' all the time. Actually, my grandfather started an organization that helps clean Missouri's streams and rivers. We grew up around the water and spent a lot of time playing in it, catching frogs and chasing fish. Those are nice memories to carry with you. Luckily, we have a tradition we can carry on with our grandchildren just as my grandpa did with us.

It has always been important to my family to spend time outside and as adults, we still do. With today's obesity rates continuing to rise in children, I can instill this into our lives and hope that my children will do the same with theirs, even in the fast paced world full of technology at our fingertips. I hope Brady's love of the outdoors will never fade and I will do what I can for it to remain that way. Last summer, we started biking and it is something we still do as much as we can. We take nightly walks, trips to parks and zoo's and alway are on the lookout for something new!

The importance of play is so important to the development of a child but did you know how important physical activity is when it comes to academics? Studies have shown that active kids do better in school!

On September 24th, Clorox2 and Nickelodeon are teaming up for Worldwide Day of Play to turn off the TV and play outside! Clorox 2® is a proud sponsor of Nickelodeon's 8th Annual Worldwide Day of Play and encouraging kids to get off the couch and get dirty!

Want to take part in the Worldwide Day of Play? Join the fun and sign the pledge here:

By entering the pledge, you have a chance to win a family vacation but also find activities for your family to do! There are some great tips and you can learn how important playing outside really is!

Follow along with Clorox on facebook and twitter to learn more!

We signed up and will be spending the day outside. I hope you'll join us!

  I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Clorox2® blogging program, for a gift card worth $40. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


Most evenings when it's nice out or I don't feel like I'm going to fall over from exhaustion, we walk around the neighborhood. He likes to listen for airplanes, pick up acorns and look for any sort of creature. The kid would rather walk so we rarely use the stroller.

Last night, he decided to take a few friends along.

"Baby Puma" and "Baby'' the musical lion decided to watch the neighbor cut the grass.

 He carried them like it was his duty. 
Well, that was until he found a patch of acorns he wanted to play with.

 Poor baby puma and baby got tossed aside. Abandoned. Luckily for them, they had each other. In fact, this next picture might not be G rated....look away if you must.
 They were reunited once again.

 Then, we went to the backyard to let him run off some energy. I then learned that the kid now knows how to open the darn gate and decided to make a run for it into the common ground. So, after I wrangled him, we picked a few pears from the tree back there and he enjoyed his 'apple.'

Hmmm, I wonder why I'm so tired.

If anyone has any great pear recipes, I'd love to hear them! I'm not a big pear fan but these are some darn good pears!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Ten Truths For Today

1. Toddlerbed 2011 has continued on without much of a fight or the world ending which I was sure  was about to happen when things started out so smoothly. I won't lie and say that it's been easy and that he's slept well but I think it's more related to him being a wound up, full of energy, molar sprouting toddler (seriously, this child is the slowest teether, ever!) than moving him to a new bed. He's been uh, more full of energy lately, if that is at all possible and hard to get to wind down. Period. Toddler bed or crib, he's just a bundle of energy. Does anyone know how to get some of that because I can't keep up!!

I'm so proud of him though as nothing has every been simple or easy for that kid and it makes me smile to see the person he has become.

2. Salted Caramel Mocha. Move over pumpkin spice latte...because this is the most fabulous creation ever to be invented. If you don't see any posts for a while, it's because I had to get a 2nd job to pay for my newest addiction.

3. My child took a bite of my deodorant last week.

4. I wish I could say that last thing was not true but it is. My kid has Fresh Scent breath and my deodorant has teeny little teeth marks that I see every morning. At least, it makes me smile.

5. He also continues to call everything puppy do-do. On Sunday, we took a trip to Barnes and Noble while I browsed the Nook covers (which I am a new owner of and LOVE) and he played with the trains (which of course, he loves.) A kid came over and started playing and passed gas really loudly. He, being 5 (at the oldest,) turns to Brady and says, 'It's okay, that was just my butt making noises.' I then realized, that the puppy do-do is the least of my worries and something I'll be living with the rest of my life.

6. I told Brady we were going to Babies R Us the other day and he looked confused because since we practically live at Target. I told him it was babies store. He seemed upset when we walked in and  I couldn't figure out why. It dawned on me that he calls all kids, babies, and I think he thought I was taking him to a place where there would be 'babies' to play with. Since then, we've been looking into daycare and preschools to send him and most likely will be sending him part-time starting in November. I think he'll still go to Nana's once a week and the current sitter will stay with him once a week too to keep her in his life for a bit.

7. I know understand why parents cry on the first day of school. I know that I'll be all tears dropping him off somewhere else for the first time but I know he's ready...I just have to get there too.

8. Then, I think of think of the 'testing the limits' kinda stuff he has done lately and I get less sad. Dumping half a container of Oregano on my just freshly mopped floor (what is with this kid and the darn baking supplies,) selective hearing, climbing on the window sills, climbing onto the kitchen table, ok, climbing on everything, coloring on anything other than paper, ripping up a newspaper...ok, you get the point.

9.  Then, I reailze that in 5 weeks,  my baby, the teeny tiny little creature who eats deodorant, will turn two. I can't believe it but each day, I look at him and amazed at who he has become. The kid has more personality that some grown adults and I think that is what I love about him most..well, besides the part about him being my child. I used to hate the thought of him growing up but as he gets older, I find that parenting gets more enjoyable (not easier, ha!) and that I of course, love him more. While this age has new challenges, I really enjoy this age and the excitement in his eyes. I think this will be the most exciting holiday season yet.

10. Reading this post makes me tired. No wonder I've developed an addiction to coffee.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Back to Beauty with Eversave: A giveaway

The new SJP movie,"I Don't Know How She Does It opens September 16th and there are many scenes in the trailer  that very closely mirror my life. There is a scene where she is lying in bed compiling her ever growing to-do list. As a mom, a busy working mom who is away from my house 50 plus hours a week, I have found myself doing this all while trying to check off half that list and attempting to fall asleep.
I used to wonder how some moms just seem to have it together all the time.  After two years knee deep in the trenches, I have learned that the 'doing it all' thing doesn't exist. Just because I know it's not humanly possible to 'do it all,'' I can't help but wonder how the mom behind me at Target seems to have it together while my child is attempting to hurl himself from the shopping cart and I'm busy wiping snot off my shirt with my cell phone in one ear trying to put out yet another fire at work all while attempting to re-avert my child back into said cart without injuries or tears shed. 

When I convinced myself that we all struggle to 'do it all' (even when some appear that they have yet to change an explosive diaper or pulled a booger the size of a basketball out of a 28 pound toddler,) I found myself putting less on my plate. Sometimes, I literally find myself saying, 'screw the dishes,' to run outside or  to just be okay living with a little clutter so that I can sneak a cat nap in while the toddler has finally stopped moving for ten seconds. 

At the end of the day, I'm exhausted and am craving some much needed 'me-time.' At the end of the day, this 'me-time' could come in almost any form, a glass of wine, a run around the block or getting lost in a good book but as long as I get some time in, I can get through everything and could almost do it all. I can be my own version of Super Mom! It refreshes me for the next long day ahead of me. I won't lie and say that I get much of that time (fifteen minutes is almost heaven) or that I don't end up sound asleep without reading a single word but devoting some time to myself saves my sanity. Last month, I snuck away and got a much needed haircut and I felt like a new momma woman! Heck, it was like a mini vacation for me!
Today, Eversave is co-hosting a Blog Carnival with Audrey McClelland, author of "The Digital Mom Handbook' and throughout the day she will be posting tips from mom bloggers on how they 'do it all!" So, head over to MomGenerations to see how other mom's 'do it all!' 
'Eversave surveyed over 700 moms and 35% percent said they find time for themselves once a month and their preferred way to spend that time is pampering themselves with manicures, facials and other spa treatments. That is my kind of me time!'
Once a month, ladies! Once a month? I know we are all busy but we can do better than that even if it is a few minutes here and there and I can help. 

For all the mom's who 'do it a'll', Eversave is offering spa-centered deals today! Check out what today's save is in your area so you can get "Back To Beauty!'' 

For my St Louis, mommas, today's save is fabulous. Get a spa mani-pedi for $29 at Color Fx in Kirkwood (a $60 value!) If you are new to Eversave, you can get it for a bit cheaper with $3 off your first purchase! 

Eversave is giving away a mani-pedi for one St. Louis momma and two friends at Color Fx! 

To enter:
Please comment on this post and tell me how you find time for yourself or your favorite 'me-time' activity. 

For extra entries:
Follow Eversave on Facebook
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Subscribe to Eversave
Follow me!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Paper Coterie Winners!

The winners of the Paper Coterie Giveaway are...

Ladies...get ready.....

Shoot me an email and I'll send you your code! Congrats!

Big boy

My baby tucked in all his 'babies' 
 Mommy removed seven of them as ten babies in one bed does not make room for a Brady.
 We did out nightly routine. 'Blue baby', Ernie, Elmo and Brady all got kisses from momma.

Somehow my baby boy grew up, sleeping in his 'big boy' bed for the first time. Sniff Sniff.

I have to say (as I knock on a lot of wood) that the first night went really well. He did wake up REALLY early but stayed in bed chatting to his babies about mommy, daddy, poopy and everything else he knows how to say.

I've been going back and forth on switching him for some time but when I found a spring from his bed late last week, I knew it was going to have to be sooner than later. The kid truly bounced the crap out of his bed and luckily before he catapulted himself right out.

Saturday (or the day I will deem as the day from hell) when he decided not to nap and had a momentous evening full of tears and wine (the latter for me, duh!) The next day, a friend loaned us a toddler bed. I almost waited until the weekend to try it out but after seeing how excited he was...we dove right in.

The true test will be naptime but until then, I am going to go knock on some more wood. 

Monday, September 12, 2011

We remember.

I was looking at our wedding pictures last night and it occured to me after looking at a series of pictures like this one, that there are seven people who are no longer here. While that is a sad and disheartening, I found a little comfort knowing that there was one day, we were all together. All in one room. 


On Saturday morning, Matt's family, friends and those who love him all gathered to celebrate what would have been his 30th birthday. We sent balloons up with messages of love, memories and life written across and held in our hands. We lifted them up and watched them float away silently. 

Brady sent up his own balloon too. 
Happy Birthday, Matt. You are greatly  missed in our lives. 

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Soap Time: Winner!

The Soaptime Giveaway winner is......


Congrats, Katie! Shoot me an email!

True Random Number Generator  4

Thursday, September 8, 2011

My song of the moment.

Since I've started listening to Mat Kearney's new album, Young Love, I cannot get this song out of my head.   It just makes me happy. I like happy. 

 I sing it to Brady and he just laughs. Momma, he says to me as he tosses his head back in a chuckle, and I say, "Hey, Momma!'' 

It's a good change aside from toddler tantrums, Elmo and kid's music. I love how you can hear a song and it brings back a memory. I think this song will do that for our  Saturday morning dance parties, which I have to say, are pretty awesome. I find myself singing, "hey momma'' all the time which is kinda funny since my own child is chanting the same thing. I think he just has good taste in music.

The whole album is pretty awesome so I can't even say it is my favorite song because they all have such a different style to them that I can't just pick one. The whole album leaves me with a smile on my face! Mat, (you know, we are on first name basis right now since we spend so much time together,) has rejuvenated my of my love of music and I've finally updated my iTunes play that is just for me but I think I can still share him with Brady for our dance parties.

Find Mat Kearney here, on Facebook, iTunes,

What is your song of the moment? Anyone else a fan of Mat?

Disclosure: I received the Mat Kearney “Young Love” digital album from the One2One Network. All opinions about the album are my own because I truly love this album. 

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

22 Months: These boots were made for walkin'

(I'm so late on this but before I forget, I have to write it all down!  Also, winners for the giveaways coming soon!)

Dear Brady,
This month has been amazing. I swear you grew up before my eyes this month because you are doing so many new things and jabbering up a storm.  I also swear you have lived in your rain boots, which oddly enough, we have not had much rain. Boots to Target, boots to the park, boots around the house. You love those things, well, you love shoes but those boots are a big hit. 
 You've always been a big help around the house but you've started really getting into helping mommy cook. You still love to help clean things like wiping down anything (even mommy) and sweeping.
 Somehow you literally got so big you can play on the playground by yourself. You shocked me because you normally would rather just run around and would rather stay for hours on end in the swing but you decided you wanted to go down the slide, by yourself. Of course, the day you decide to do this, we are at a park where the slide is very high and almost gave mommy a heart attack.

 We went to the zoo for the first time in a while and the excitement just grows each time we go. You ran around there with a big smile on your face. You sat and watched some of the animals like you were studying their every move. The snake is still a favorite but....
 the guinea pigs at the kid's zoo won your heart. You kept calling them puppies. You patted them so gently and when you noticed there was one just one on the other side but were ecstatic. Sorry buddy, we are not getting one!
 It's been so hot we spent a lot of time outside in the water, which if you are outside, you are happy.
 We went to Grant's Farm and you picked up a few new words (DEECOCK!)

Speaking of your new words, you have so many I can't keep up. Yesterday, you said, 'school bus' which is another favorite thing of yours. You've also started calling me 'Mommy' instead of "momma' and while it comes out so stinking cute, it makes me sad. Sometimes you call me momma, mommy, amy, or even Momma Amy. That personality of yours sure is something!

You have started using more and more phrases too. You told Nana after she asked if you had pooped, 'No poopy, Nana!' Actually, a lot of your phrases have poopy, do-do or pee pee in them, which I'm sure will not get any better as you get older.

New words/phrases: Abby, Ernie, School bus, Puma, Peecock (deecock!), daddy's blue baby, blue owl (actually, blue anything), ice cream, 'uh oh, puppy pee', blue baby, puppy's baby, puppy's ball, elbow, puppy do-do, big ___ (big dog, big ball, big boo boo, etc), stinky, pew-wee poopy, mommy's all done, Bobby.

There are so many more that mommy is drawing a blank but it never ceases to amaze me what actually comes out of your mouth. You repeat the words that I would never expect.

You've also started saying, "I want ___." The past few nights, as we are watching Elmo, you jump up and run to the kitchen screaming, "I want Ba'  (banana) You are pretty much a bottomless pit and really started loving 'blue fruit' (fruit pouches) and love your 'blue milk' (the lid is blue!)
 You got into things you were not supposed to. Mommy's makeup, diaper creme, garlic salt (and mommy has the evidence for 2/3 of those!) You are a busy, busy bee and you never stop moving.

You've started this laugh where you crinkle your nose and laugh with your whole body. You think a lot of what Grandma's puppy does is just downright hysterical.
I always talk about how you love being outside, which of course you still do, but you gather and touch every single thing possible. Pine cones, acorns, pine tree branches. You of course see anything not green and call it "Puppy do-do,' which is not my favorite new phrase you've picked up. I've deemed you the neighborhood maid. You take any newspaper, sticks, acorns on the side walk and throw them into the street or grass. 

 You are a nature boy at heart. You found the one patch of dirt in our yard and sat and played for a while which doesn't happen often as you tend to move from one thing to the next pretty quickly.
 We've always looked for the 'kitties' on our walks but you've decided that all cats are now called, pumas. You decided to look for the "Puma's'' under those blocks.
 You had your first trip to Build-a-Bear and guess what animal you picked out? A puma! You wanted to carry the box but the thing weighed more than you! Puma, along with Elmo and Ernie sleep with you every night.

Let's talk about your little friends, Elmo, Ernie and Abby are the most used words in this house and the most loved. You decided this month you are completely head over heels for Elmo. When Mommy brought home a little stuffed Ernie, you're eyes lit up so bright. You immediately ran over, picked up Elmo and said, "Ernie, Elmo' over and over, like you were introducing them.

You get blissfully excited over anything with wheels. Cars, trucks, buses, airplanes, even the mailman. Each time you see one, it's like you see one for the first time. You play with your cars, trains and arts/crafts most often. You love to color and play with play dough. You probably spend half of your day coloring. You know the color blue and it's used in half of your phrases. In fact, you've called a few kids at Target, "blue baby.'

That is what cracks me up about you, your attention to the details. We were at Target and you saw a Gatorade, which the sitter always brings with her and you pointed to it and said her name. You know how to unlock mommy's phone and turn the computer on. You don't miss a thing, my dear. 
Whew. See buddy? You have grown so much this month and as we move into a new month, I can't believe you'll be two in two short months. I say all the time how much you light up our lives but at this age, I feel like there is nothing greater then watching you experience all the joys in life.  Nothing is better than that.

Love you, bubs.