Monday, January 27, 2014

My Heart

I can't believe my baby is going to be 2 years old next week!!!

Today was his second time to go to school, and he did great!!! He cried when I left him, but thankfully his teacher said it wasn't for too long.  I can't lie. I loved having 5 hours to get some much needed things done. However when 2:30 rolled around, I was so glad to see him,  and I think he was kind of glad to see his mama, too!!! I know he won't be little forever, so I am trying to soak in all these precious moments with my sweet boy.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Hodgepodge of Happenings

Hey Ya'll!!!
I just realized I haven't been keeping up with our latest happenings, so today you are getting a bunch of randomness.

1.  A couple of Fridays ago, I took J to The Little Gym.  I have been wanting to take him to one of their classes for a while.  We didn't have a lot to lose because the first time you go is free.  J had a lot of fun.  If it weren't so pricey, I would be more likely to sign him up, but I am on the fence.  Plus, you have to pick one class you want to go to every week.  That's hard with my work schedule constantly changing and all of J's therapy appointments.  I think we might sign up eventually, just not right now.

2.  After Little Gym, we went to the car wash for the first time in FOREVER.  I love J's reaction in this next picture.

Then, we came home and ate Christmas mini M&M's we found in the pantry.
And later on that night- I came into the living room and found this!!! Boys will be boys!!!
3.  The next day I felt icky all day.  I didn't have a lot of energy, and I didn't eat a thing all day.  I sat on the couch the majority of the day, which is so unlike me.  It was nice to just chill and watch Notting Hill and Lifetime Movies all day.  Can I say I love a silly Lifetime Movie?
4.  Mickey Mouse Clubhouse is J's newest favorite thing.  They have free shows on InDemand.  We usually watch an episode every day with him .  He LOVES the first 3 or 4 minutes when the crew is singing and dancing, and then the last 2 or 3 minutes when they are singing and dancing "Hotdog."
5.  Aaron had MLK day off, so we went to the mall to do some more Christmas returns. We went to Northeast mall and had lunch in the food court.  There is an amazing little cupcake stand.  That of course, we had to try.  I got the flavor, red velvet volcano.  AMAZING!!!
6.  My mom has been wanting to get us a new light for our breakfast room.  She ordered one before Christmas, and she finally had it installed on MLK day.  I just love it!!!  It really makes the space look more modern.  It definitely fits our style so much better than the last light.

7.  I made this strawberry shortcake for Aaron for his birthday.  It's the easiest recipe.  I have made it countless times, and it's always delicious.

8.  This past Friday night Aaron and I celebrated his birthday by going out to dinner.  We went to Cacharel for the first time.  What a little gem in Arlington!!! It is seriously the best food I have had in the longest time.  It's pricey, but the food is high quality and so delicious.  It's also quiet and peaceful, which is hard to find in a restaurant anymore.
Cream of Asparagus
Pecan crusted chicken
Chocolate lava cake with Grand Marnier cream sauce
Phyllo dough with white chocolate mouse layers
A big thanks to my mom for watching J overnight by herself, so we could have an evening to ourselves!!!
Well, we are now kind of caught up!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Happy Birthday Aaron!!!

Today is my sweet hubby's birthday!!! In honor of that, he gets a special post!!!

Today was a simple day. We didn't do anything big.  No big, splashy party. (I did that 4 years ago for the big 3-0!!!)  Just dinner with our family of three.  I made some of his favorites- baked ziti with Caesar salad and garlic bread.  And for dessert.  Nope, not cake.  Aaron likes cake okay.  I mean really what won't Aaron eat!  He's not picky which makes him so easy to cook for. This was his request--
Yes, that would be strawberry shortcake.  It's a tried and true in our house.  I have made this simple recipe countless times because that's what you do when your husband doesn't want birthday cake and instead prefers anything with strawberries. :)
J and I are very thankful to have such a sweet, kindhearted Christian man in our lives!!! Life wouldn't be the same without you, Daddydoo!!!
Happy Birthday Aaron!!!  We love you.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Five on Friday

We made it through another week, and I am so glad it's Friday!!! 

Here are my five for the week-


Last Saturday we went to Addi's birthday party.  It was supposed to be the weekend of the ice storm in December, but needless to say it didn't happen. We got to the party after the swimming was over but just in time for cake. Despite the five year age gap, I hope J and Addi are friends as they grow up.  Addi is a sweetie!!!  I can't believe she is seven years old!!!


Our children's minister, Emily, had a party for her two year old nephew, Lincoln, who was in town last weekend.  Since there are so many little boys about that age at our church, she invited some of us to help them celebrate at Babe's after church.  A lady at our church makes decorated cakes, so Emily had Minion cupcakes made.  They were so cute!!! Too bad J didn't enjoy them at all. ;)

J's first day of Mothers Day Out was Monday.  I had been dreading the day the whole week.  I know in my head it would be good for him, but I still didn't really want to take him.  So on Monday morning, I got him to his class at Tate Tots around 8:45.  Thankfully, he did great!!! Better than I did!!  He didn't realize what was going on, and I was told he didn't cry when I left.  Unlike me, I cried in the director's office after I left him.  His day went GREAT!!! He even took a one hour nap on his nap mat.  Complete shocker for me!!!   I thought for sure he would be thinking, "You want me to sleep on the floor?"  When I went to pick him up at 2:30, he burst into tears as soon as he saw me.  It was the sweetest thing!!!  I think he realized he had missed his mama.  My only worry now is that when I take him again next week, he really will cry because he will know when we get to his classroom that I am leaving him.  I guess we will cross that bridge in two Mondays.

It has been so pretty here the last few afternoons.  This afternoon we played outside for about an hour before Daddy got home.  Love this boy!!!
I am so glad it is Friday.  Because of testing at my school this week, I had to work every day.  While I only worked all day Tuesday and Thursday, it still made for a looooog week.  It is good to have a four day weekend.  Thank you MLK!!!
Have a great weekend!!!

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Almost Famous...

Not really, but something super cool happened today.

I got an email from a lady at  She came across by blog and specifically my recent post about our family Christmas card.  In my post, I mentioned I had used Tiny Prints for our cards this year. Because I mentioned Tiny Prints in a positive way, I mean our card was pretty cute!!!  She asked me if I would link to their website's Christmas cards page.  In return, she is sending me a voucher for $30 to use at Tiny Prints in the future.

How cool is that!!!  I LOVE Shutterfly and Tiny Prints.  They seriously have the coolest stuff!!!

Anyway, I had to share my fun news.  And tell you that people that work for Tiny Prints are paid to look around blog land and find people sharing the love for Tiny Prints.  I want that job!!!

Friday, January 10, 2014

Five on Friday

It's the first full week of the new year, and I don't know about you, but I've been having trouble getting back into the groove.  I had the hardest time getting up and out on Tuesday for work.  I guess I just didn't want the two week break to end. 
Despite my struggle, I have made dinner four nights in a row.  Woohoo!!! I always feel so good about myself the weeks I do my meal planning, go to the store, and feed my family from home four nights in a row.
 I have kept on top of my laundry, too.  I have done at least one load every day.  That's a wonderful tip my mom taught me after J was born.  Do one load of laundry every day.  Before him,  I was horrible about doing the laundry every Saturday or Sunday.  It would pile up and up, and then every weekend it would take FOREVER to get it all caught up again.  While I don't always do this, I did this week which means my laundry basket is empty right now.  I love that feeling!!!
So here are my FIVE this Friday--


This is what we were greeted with on our return home from our cruise on Saturday night.  A freshly painted and organized garage.  My parents had the guy that organized their garage a while back come in and redo our garage while we were on vacation.  I cannot tell you how much better it looks.  Our garage was embarrassingly filthy and so disorganized. Now, I feel like I have more spaces to put things.  Our house has been feeling so small since we added J, and this is going to help us be able to live in our small house for a bit longer.  Thanks Mom and Dad for being the most thoughtful parents!!! They are constantly doing big and little things that catch us off guard and surprise us.

I have been using this stuff for almost a month now, and it's AMAZING.  This is Mary Kay's TimeWise Microdermabrasion set.  It exfoliates the dead skin and leaves your skin feeling so soft.  I use it at least once a week when I am taking a shower.  Then I follow up with the replenish cream before putting on my moisturizer and eye cream.  I can tell such a difference in the smoothness of my skin since I started using it.
-THREE-Cinnamon Frosting 1.3 oz. Mini Candle - Slatkin & Co. - Bath & Body Works
I have been burning this candle all week when we are home and it smells sooooo good!!!  I also love the fact that Jackson know about candles, too.  Anytime he wants to smell the candle or any candle we have out he starts sniffing and then points to it.  This means he wants you to take the top of the candle, so he can smell it.  He also knows when it's burning that it's hot.  He says, "aught, aught". So cute!!!

I read this book on our cruise and loved it!!! I don't read that much because I don't have time to sit down and read.  When I knew we were going vacation, I knew I wanted to read a fun book.  This was a historical fiction with religious undertones.  A good read for sure if you like that kind of thing.

I couldn't end a post without a few pics of my boy.  And yes, he is eating in every single one.  This little boy has started showing some 2ish tendencies lately, but I am proud of his eating the last couple of days.  Yesterday, he ate six chicken nuggets from Chick-fi-la.  I know to most that's not a big deal because most kids eat chicken nuggets, right?  Well, not J,  he is more into carbs than meat and veggies, so this was a wonderful surprise.  Then, today at Mimi's he ate five of her homemade meatballs.  As if that wasn't a lot, we had turkey sausage for dinner and he ate that, too.  My carb loading boy has turned into a carnivore over the last two days.  Who knew?
Have a great weekend!!!

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Disney Cruise 2014

Hey ya'll!!!  We just got back from our Disney cruise yesterday.  And it was FABULOUS!!!  If you like Disney and you like going on cruises, this is the vacation for you.  We seriously had the most relaxing time without Jackson.  That being said if you plan to go on a Disney cruise, DON'T take small children!!!  When I say small children, I mean 5 and under.  There were tons and tons of families, of course!!!  I mean it's Disney, right? Aaron and I were so thankful to be there as a couple and not a family with small children.  Our final discussion yesterday in the airport concluded that kids 6 or 7 and up would be perfect to take, but the little littles not so much!!!

We left bright and early Tuesday morning to catch our flight to Houston and then grabbed a shuttle ride to Galveston.

This cruise we wanted to make sure we took advantage of all the fun things they had planned.  On NYE before our late dinner at 8:30, we went to their theatrical performance, The Golden Mickeys and sat in on a trivia game show, Mickey Mania.  Both were a lot of fun!!!

 This was inside the room where they had a lot of family game/trivia shows.  I snapped a couple of pics of the walls lined with ABC/Disney shows.  Nashville is one of my favs, and my mom LOVES Kelly and Michael.

 In our NYE attire!!!  I was trying to be a little sparkly.
NYE dinner in the Parrot Cay Cafe

We ran into Goofy after dinner, so Aaron wanted a pic with him.
 We were greeted by a snail friend when we got back to our room on NYE.  We were so tired from our early flight that we didn't stay out all night.   We decided to ring in the NYE from our room.
Day 2: We were at sea.  This is the view from our room. 
 We finally rolled out of bed and got down to have breakfast on Deck 9 at 10:30 just before they closed the breakfast line.  Then, we found the adult only section with a coffee bar.  We sat out on the deck for a couple hours reading on our Kindles and drinking lattes. 

 Next up, Frozen in 3D.  A really cool thing about this cruise was the movie theatre, where they were showing new release movies (Disney, of course!!!)  I can't say enough good things about Frozen.  It was amazing!!! We LOVED it!!!  It was totally not a movie I would normally go see.   After all, with J now we see a lot fewer movies, so we tend to be more choosy.  I mean if you're going to get one night every so often to go see a movie, you have to make the movie count. 
Before dinner the second night, we went and saw Toy Story the musical.

Day 3: Cozumel
We chose to do the excursion, Salsa and Salsa, as in making homemade salsa and salsa dancing.

 Aaron was chosen to be our Table captain, so he had to get up and dance a little here and there.  He's doing a figure 8 shaking his hips in this pic.

 Our table comprised of a family from Boston and a couple from the D.C. area/Toronto.

We made a basic salsa, tomatillo salsa, guacamole, pico de gallo, tropical pico de gallo, and a dessert salsa.  It was a fun experience!!!

We headed back to the ship for more Kindle reading and eating on the deck before going to see Saving Mr. Banks. Another amazing movie!!!  I really want to watch Mary Poppins, again!!!
After our movie and some more reading in our cabin, we headed up for night 3 of dinner.  This night we were in the Animator's Palette dining room.  It was super cool!!!  You walk in and everything is black and white with no color.  By the end of the night, all the pictures and walls were glowing in colors.  Then, the night ended with a great song and dance by the waiters and waitresses along with a visit by Mickey Mouse himself.

Little did Aaron and I know before going on the cruise (we obviously didn't read our itinerary very well), our third night was Pirate night.   We literally thought that only the kids would be dressed up like pirates.  No, no, no!!!  There were plenty of adults, too.  It was actually kind of funny to see so many dressed up in pirate costumes.  Unfortunately, I didn't take pics of all of the costumes around us.  Oops!!!  We did go up to Deck 9 for the Pirates of the Caribbean dance party and fireworks show.  It was a lot of fun!!!  The entertainers on this boat were phenomenal.  They danced on stage for a good hour!!! You could tell they were having so much fun, but I was exhausted and amazed watching them.  Especially the Disney characters in the big heavy costumes!!!

Then, Aaron karaoked.

Day 4: We were at sea, again.  Which means we did more of the same.  We ate.  We read.  We drank mocha lattes.  We saw the movie, Thor: The Dark World. Then, ate some more.
The only thing unusual about the last day was how rough it was at sea. I mean rough!!!  Like stumbling around the boat because it was so bumpy.  Thankfully, neither of us get sea sick because it would have been miserable!!!

Last dinner with our friends we made over our 4 nights along with our servers, Kamil and Raka.  We ate every night with 2 mother/daughter pairs.  Vicky and Tanya are from NW Arkansas.  Vicky is also a school counselor!!!  And Rachel and Kayla are from Houston.

Our night ended with a Farewell from our Disney friends.  They reminded us it's not Goodbye but it's See You Later.  They are hoping we come back and spend lots of money with them in the future. :)
Seriously, we had the BEST time.  It was so nice to sleep in, not be on a schedule, and read an entire book!!!  I love, love, love my boy, but with little little ones you are at the mercy of their napping and eating schedules.  Being a parent is lots of fun but also lots of work.  It was nice for Aaron and I to have some time to ourselves to repower our battery to start a new year.  I truly hope we are able to do a trip like this every few years. 
A huge shout out to my amazing parents who watched J from Monday night to Saturday afternoon.  We could not have done this without them so willingly wanting to watch J.  I left J knowing he was in good hands, so I didn't worry one second about him. 
If you made it to the bottom of this post, thanks for reading!!! It was an extra long one!!! :)