Thursday, March 29, 2012

The little things

This week has been an emotional roller coaster. It has not been a bad week, per se, just stressful. My to-do list seemed to be getting longer without anything being crossed off.

I was beginning to feel defeated by life.

My son (yes, my 8 month old baby boy) helped get me out of this self-pity, life-loathing, don't-want-to-get-up-in-the-morning, every-day-feels-like-a-Monday (you get the idea, right?!) kind of mood. He reminded me, today, to take time to enjoy the little things.

He exemplified this so many times today. He laid on the couch and let me tickle him for a good ten minutes - he just laughed and laughed. We took time this afternoon to have a picnic in the yard and he just loved playing with his toys, taking in the sunshine, and watching Daddy work on his motorcycle. His favorite thing to do is watch Norah and laugh at her silliness (chasing and biting at bugs, running away while we chased her, and throwing sticks around as she played with herself). Then, as we were about to go inside, I wanted to make sure we got any un-welcomed friends (read: bugs) off the blanket. As I shook the blanket, Connor giggled and giggled. He makes my heart happy.

Sometimes, it's just about the little things in life. Thank you, son, for teaching Mommy these things. :)

Wednesday, March 28, 2012


I am certain that all of you moms, soon-to-be-moms, and maybe-one-day-moms will all be able to relate to this post.

Every woman who is about to embark on the greatest adventure of her life as a mom has the same thoughts, feelings, and plans as any novice parent does - I will spend all free time with my kid; my kid will not watch tv nor will they eat fast food; we will have arts and crafts every day; their toys will be picked up every day; etc, etc, etc. On top of that, if you're a stay-at-home mom you are convinced that by the time your husband gets home from a hard day of work in order to provide for your family, the house will be spotless, laundry folded and put away, dinner on the table, and a happy baby smiling and ready to embrace Daddy with open arms as soon as he walks through the door. You have the image and confidence of being a supermom!

As the days push on and things don't fall into place as you had imagined, you begin to feel like a failure (or maybe that's just me?). My child is only 8 months old, but I am learning that, even though not all of the supermom traits are that far-fetched, they do require a whole heck of a lot of effort and time. Speaking of time, did you notice I mentioned something about "free time" above? - what exactly is that?!

I have the absolute pleasure to be at home with my sweet baby boy day in and day out as well as having a job that I can do while sipping coffee and staying in my pajamas. However, learning to manage my time has become a top priority. Often times I feel like a clown in the circus - juggling many things all at once. Granted, I put a lot (okay all) of the pressure on myself to be this supermom. In my mind I can do it all and do it well. I feel like the Little Engine that Could...I CAN spend all of my time with my child... I CAN get all of my work done while he's napping... I CAN make sure the house is clean, dinner on the table, and laundry done before Keith gets home... I CAN find time to train for a half marathon... I think I can...I think I can...I think I can.

I take my job as a homemaker seriously. Aside from being with my kid all day, I look at it as an opportunity to serve my husband. He works extremely hard day in and day out in order to provide a roof over our heads and food on the table. The least I could do is provide a clean, happy, healthy environment for him to come home to at the end of the day to relax and unwind. I strongly desire this for him and would hate for him to ever loathe coming home every day because he has a wife who nags, lays around doing nothing, and an unruly child to tend to.

If you know me, you know that I put more stress on myself than needed. If one or more of the things on my to-do list doesn't get done for the day I automatically feel like a failure. And, if I ever coached you in any sport, you know that my downfall is that I always tend to focus on the things that need to be improved rather than rejoicing in the things that were accomplished. (I apologize to all of my former athletes - SORRY!!) I had this very conversation with my mother-in-law just the other day as I was having a mental break down. She said something to me that I have taken to heart and actually relieved some stress (at least for a minute - until I remind myself...over and over and over again). She said to me, "Liz, it is OKAY to let some things go for the day. Just tell yourself that you will get to it the next day. It is OKAY to give yourself a break every now and then." Those were sweet, sweet words to my soul.

Dear friends, I share with you the words of wisdom from this woman - it is okay to give yourself a break every now and then. I hope you cherish these words as much as I do.

Now, I need to go find my cape because this not-so-supermom is feeling refreshed and ready to tackle the day!

(I also need to say one thing to my amazing sister, Stasi. Something she doesn't hear me say often were right)

Thursday, March 22, 2012


My sweet baby boy has allergies. Quite frankly, it sucks.

He is acting his normal, energetic, happy self; however, the flood gates have opened in his nose and the clear liquid keeps pouring out! Needless to say, the orange nasal aspirator is getting a workout and has also become Connor's least favorite thing. Every time he sees it he begins screaming.

The worst part was last night. You know the feeling...sinuses draining but as soon as you lay down to go to sleep you, all of a sudden, can't breathe and that liquid magically "dries up". My poor guy woke up every two to three hours crying because he couldn't breathe. As soon as I picked him up and laid him on my shoulder, he was fine. We even raised his crib a little bit hoping to give him some elevation, but it didn't relieve him very much.

If you are reading this or think about him throughout the day, please say a prayer for him. I know that God's healing power can relieve him of any discomfort - and ease his fear of the dreadful orange nasal aspirator.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Mama's Little Boy

When I first told people that we were expecting a little boy I heard from a few different friends that "little boys are the best!" I must say, I don't have anything to compare to it yet, but I am starting to see why they told me this.

My sweet baby boy is starting to show his mama more and more affection. And I love it!

Don't get me wrong, he's always been affectionate and for the most part favored me holding him rather than his daddy. But, I blame this on the fact that I stay home with him every day and I have (and still do) breastfeed.

No, the affection he shows now is different. He gives me hugs now and burrows his head into my shoulder or chest or arm (really, anything he can reach at that time). And just yesterday, after dinner and right before bed time when we were winding down, he cuddled with me in the chair while we watched a little TV. Yes, we cuddled. He sat next to me with his head on my chest and we held hands. This melted my heart and I soaked in every moment of this magical experience.

I guess he didn't get enough because at 4am he started crying. He wasn't hungry nor did he have a dirty diaper. No, he just missed his mommy. My sweet boy was having separation anxiety. He isn't at the age yet where he knows I'll be back in the morning just like yesterday. No, he just sees me leave and knows I'm gone. He didn't need me to hold him or even touch him this morning at 4am. No, he was content with me standing over his crib just looking at him. When I walked away to leave the room, he started crying again. I took him in my arms and just soothed him (I am taking advantage of this since it won't happen much longer). I spoke softly telling him how much I love him and that I promised to return to him in just a few short hours. I know he didn't really understand what I was saying, but after a few minutes, I laid him back down and he was fine.

Although waking up in the middle of the night is not my idea of good quality time; it's totally worth it when I know I get to wake up in the morning to a sweet boy who just wants to love on his mama.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Spring Forward

As we all know, the time changed this past weekend. I absolutely love this! I mean, who doesn't love an extra hour of daylight?!

I wanted to keep Connor on schedule even after this magnificent event, but didn't want to blindside him after the fact. So, my idea was to start him a week early by altering his schedule by a half hour or so. I thought by the end of the week, he would be used to the new upcoming time change. I don't know if my kid can read my mind or if the Lord knew I really hate for my routine to be messed up so he wanted to save me the frustration, but my kid apparently was looking forward to an extra hour of daylight like his mama. Last Monday (yes, a week BEFORE the actual time change), Connor woke up an hour early (so he woke up at 7am instead of 8am but 7am last week was like waking up at 8am this week...make sense?!) and stayed on this schedule all week!! So, he put himself on the time change...a week early!!

An update on the teething front...Connor already has his two bottom middle teeth (he has since he was 4.5 months old. He also has his two top middle teeth coming in (they've cut through, now just pushing down). Well, this morning I looked in his mouth and his two bottom teeth on either side of the middle two (forgive me, I don't know teeth numbers) are also cutting in!!! This kid will be ready for a rawhide before I know it!

I'll leave you with a few sweet pictures of my adorable son. We were at Daddy's soccer game yesterday and he enjoyed playing in his Go-Pod while sipping water and nibbling on Cheerios :)

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Blissful Escape

Today has not been a rough day by any means. However, sometimes I just want to escape and find myself in a blissful foreign land.

Most of the time I dream of tropical places. You know the deal...sunbathing, drink in hand, waves crashing onto the shore....ahhhh...sounds wonderful. However, I am usually awaken from my mental escape by a hungry baby needing his mama.

Not today. No.

Today, I find myself wanting to escape somewhere much closer to home.

I can just picture bubble bath, candles lit, some Norah Jones (you know she's my fave) softly coming from the speakers, and a glass of wine in hand.

Yes, today I believe I will find my blissful escape...after the kid goes to bed :)

Tuesday, March 6, 2012


This has become a common hash-tag for my Twitter account. (Yes, I gave into another form of social media...)

I know what you're thinking; "why in the world would she want to run a half marathon?!" Trust me, I asked myself the same question today during my six mile run. This is what I have come up with...

I am stubborn.

That's it; that's the simple and most explicable answer - I'm truly stubborn.

Where did it all begin? Well, I ran track in high school and ran my first 5K (3.1 miles) while living in Florence and got hooked! I love the way it makes me feel. And, if I'm being 100% honest, I love the free t-shirts to show off my accomplishments. For years I have been saying that I want to run a half marathon (13.1 miles). Why? Just to say that I did. To prove to myself that I can. Oh, and of course for the free t-shirt and medal (everyone gets a medal)! But, really, that's all it ever was for me - just talking about it and never putting it into action.

This all changed this past year when I met this girl who has also wanted to run a half. We tried to find a race that we could both run together, but things never worked out. I figured I could run one by myself and began searching for a race. The race in Nashville caught my attention since Keith's family is near that area. I saw that the race is at the end of April. After finding a basic training regiment off a credible running site, I quickly realized that I was already 3 weeks late in beginning my training. Given this time frame and the fact that I should have been running 4 miles a day comfortably even before beginning the training plan, I realized I needed to get my butt in gear and start running.

That's just what I did. I bought myself some running pants (this was motivation in itself because they aren't cheap), put Connor in his winter gear, strapped him in his jogging stroller, and hit the trails.

I started by running 3 to 4 miles a day for the first couple weeks and then started getting into 5 and today 6 miles. I will say that I can comfortably run 3 miles without feeling too terrible. However, today, while running my 6 miles I will admit that I had the same thought you all have - I am crazy for thinking I want to do this!! I kept going though and finished my 6 miles. And, I did that in 1 hour which is a 10 minute mile while pushing a stroller. (If you've never run while pushing a stroller then you are truly missing out on a good workout!) I felt great afterwards and actually began looking forward to another run tomorrow!

The only thing that got me through my run (with the help of water and a package of GU) was pride and stubbornness. I have always been one to push and refuse to disappoint myself.

So, why am I sticking with this goal of mine?

I'm doing it for me.

Questions: What goal do you have that you've been thinking about for a long time but haven't started? What motivates you? 

I don't have "out-laws"

I do not have the stereotypical in-laws. You know the kind...the mother-in-law who is always in your business and not very tactful in giving un-solicited advice or the father-in-law who stays quiet and plays an inactive role in building a relationship with his daughter-in-law. No, my in-laws are not the typical "out-laws" that you hope never visit or call. In fact, they are the exact opposite.

Keith and I both get very excited when his parents call and say they want to make the five and a half hour trek across TN to visit us or they plan a weekend for us to visit them or even better, they plan a trip for the entire family to vacation in a foreign land!

I don't dread their upcoming visit or even loathe their stay while they're here. In fact, one of the last times they came to visit I encouraged them to stay longer than their planned weekend stay and they hung out with us for a week and a half! Does this sound unusual and hard to believe for you? Well, it's because you don't have my in-laws! And no, I'm not trading them or giving them away for anything!

Why do I absolutely love hanging out with them? If you have ever hung out with them, you would know! But, in case you haven't had the pleasure, I will share with you only a few reasons.

They are TONS of fun!! They love to have parties, go dancing, kick back and have a brew-sky, go rock climbing, and take on any adventure you throw their way. They truly are 30 year olds in 50 year old's body.

They are also super easy to talk to. If you ever have the chance to just sit and talk to them, you will find yourself opening up and talking about things you would never dream of talking about with your in-laws. And you know without a doubt that your conversation is being kept confident. And even when Connor was born, they never once gave unsolicited advice on how to raise our child. They offer advice when asked and are very respectful of his schedule that I have him on.

They will call or text (especially when they know you hate talking on the phone) just to say hi and see how things are going. They always call on your birthday to sing, yes SING, Happy Birthday to you. You look forward to it every year. :)

And when they come to visit, it's a blessing! They understand that being a stay-at-home-mom sometimes means that there is no "me time". So, they offer to take their grandson to run errands so you can get work done and just have some alone time. It's a win-win for all of us. I get "me-time" (even if it is working, I don't have to worry about keeping up with the kid) and Connor gets to hang out with his grandparents and they get to spend time with him!

Keith's dad will drive in for a weekend just to help us with projects around the house. Keith's mom will back out of a girl's weekend so she can drive up here to stay with me while Keith is out of town and I have to work.

When they are here, they help in any way I need. For instance, Keith's birthday shindig was this past weekend. Darcy left bowling early with me to help finish getting food ready before people came over and once Teresa got home she came straight to the kitchen to see what she could help with. After she did that task, she immediately began cleaning up dishes until I could come up with something else that I needed help with. Oh! And they also help cook! Yes, even Ron :) In fact, he even helped make Connor's baby food so Teresa and I could work out.

Again, these are only a few reasons...I can definitely come up with many many more!!

They are truly selfless. And not only are they our family, they are our friends. I am so blessed!

Friday, March 2, 2012

PIctures of Connor

Here are some pictures of one of my favorite guys...

 Playing with sweet potatoes

 This is way more fun than actually eating them 

 Working on feeding ourself

 Playing in my crib while mommy cleans my room

 How can you not love this face?!

Jumpy Jumpy!! 

Catching Up

I know I haven't posted much lately. To be honest, I've been super busy kid :)

 He is definitely becoming more active these days. He hates laying down unless it's nap time or bed time; he would much rather be sitting up, bouncing, standing, or walking (with help, of course). He still doesn't crawl or scoot or anything else like that, but he does try to stand up by pulling on anything near him. I'm okay with him not being mobile yet. I am learning to truly be in the moment and soak in this "baby time" because before I know it we'll be celebrating his 1st birthday. I'm not ready to even think about that.

He has started to enjoy his solid food much more now. Sometimes, it's almost as if we can't shovel it in his mouth fast enough. It's quite funny.

Oh! He likes to play this new game where he screams and then just looks at you with a smile on his face as if to say "haha you're turn". Well, Keith plays along and Connor loves it. I think it's quite funny...until we get out in public. Yesterday we were running errands all around town and as we're walking through the store he starts screaming and then looks at me with this huge grin on his face. Haha. I try not to play along because I don't want this game to continue...especially in public.

Speaking of my child and being in public...

He is ALL SMILES ALL THE TIME!! He truly is a happy baby. People will comment all the time about how happy he looks and how cute he is. Well, apparently this nine year old boy thought the same thing but instead of telling me, he began taking pictures of Connor on his dad's cell phone. WHAT?! I told him to please stop taking pictures of my child. I'm sorry, but that's just weird...not flattering. His dad saw how disturbed I was and apologized and made his kid apologize. He said he also made his son erase the pictures. Whether he actually did or not, I don't know. That was the first time I've ever had to say something out loud to someone in regards to protecting my child. I know it won't be the last...

In other news...Keith and I are having people over for his birthday tomorrow. We decided we wanted to get some more decorations up in the house. In usual Keith and Liz fashion, we wait until Wednesday night to begin these not-so-small art projects. Needless to say, as I'm typing this (9pm), Keith is outside still working on one of his projects. I'll post pictures once it's all finished. He is quite the crafty guy though :)

I'll try to post more often and with pictures of my sweet kid for my family who doesn't get to see him. :)