Tuesday, April 30, 2013

one year favorites

It's been a little while since I've done an updated favorites list, so I wanted to share what we're loving right now! All of these items have been approved by an adorable 1 year old and her parents ;)

one year favorites

{click set for details}

Nuk Forks: Now that Jaqs is trying to feed herself WITH utensils, I decided to give these a try. They're great! They're not sharp, and they are easy to hold. Perfect for learning and the toddler years, too.

Munchkin Snack Containers: We use these snack cups pretty often, but especially on the go. They definitely don't prevent all spilling, but they at least keep it to a minimum!

Aden & Anais Security Blankets: I'm sure I've mentioned our love for these before, but Jaqs is seriously obsessed with her blankies. We try to keep them in the bed for the most part, but if she isn't feeling well or bumps her head, they always comfort her. She LOVES them. I'm not sure if she could sleep without them ;)

Boon Grass Drying Rack: I was so excited to get rid of the bottle rack sitting on my counter at a year, but then I remembered we'd still have sippies. I thought if I have to have one, then at least it can be semi-cute! Insert this cute drying rack! I considered going with the lawn, but figured the grass would be perfect for what we need right now which is usually a couple of cups and some utensils. It's not super spacious, but it's perfect for now!

Take & Toss cups: These little straw cups are CHEAP, so if you lose one, it's not a big deal. My only complaint with these is that the straw can easily be yanked out by little hands ;) If there was some sort of stopper, they'd be perfect, but for the price? WIN.

Board Books: Jaqs is finally LOVING to be read to, and board books are a favorite for all of us because she can easily turn the pages without ripping them. Sandra Boynton books are well-loved around this house!

Britax Marathon: We switched the girl over to this seat around 8 months, and we've had no complaints! She's still rear facing, and this seat is easy to get her in and out of. It also has excellent safety ratings, and she will eventually face forward in it as well.

Brica Cup & Snack holder: Our car-seat doesn't have cup-holders like other brands, so we decided to attach this to it, and it's been perfect! It's nice to be able to remove and clean it, too.

Radio Flyer Pathfinder: Jaqs loves, loves, LOVES her wagon! We go on walks every day, and she just thinks it's the best thing ever. We also purchased the canopy that clips on, and that provides her some nice shade. We cannot have that sweet little skin getting sun-burned!

Are there any other amazing toddler products out there that I need to know about? Do share!

I'm linking up with Kristin for Baby Talk!

Monday, April 29, 2013

it's Monday again?

Why do weekends FLY by?! 5 minutes ago I was like, "YES! It's the weekend! Family fun!!" Now I'm whining that Spring Ball starts tomorrow, and we can kiss daddy goodbye for a little while again. Ah. Such is life!

*By the way, Rob loves his job, so don't hear me complaining about THAT. It's just hard when they're gone for so many hours a day.*

Anyway...we had an awesome weekend! Seriously, one of the best ones in recent history, I think. Jaqs and I kicked it off with lunch with our buddies, and she definitely enjoyed it because she had her FAV: macaroni & cheese. The girl can put it away, let me tell you.
mom fail: forgot the bib. that shirt is going to need some serious sun.
 We met daddy after school to play at the field house/work-out, then we just had dinner and parked it on the couch for the rest of the night. Good way to end the week, if you ask me!

On Saturday after a late morning nap, we headed about 25 miles down the road to Waco for Pei Wei and the zoo! Pei Wei is ALWAYS a win in this house. We love it and can't get enough. It's probably a really good thing that it's not actually in our town.
Jaqs had a great time strolling around the zoo and checking out the animals that she loves so much. The weather was beautiful, so it was a perfect day for it!
how adorable is J's little romper?? thanks again, mateya! :)

 The lions (of course), bears, and fish were some of her favorites.

I'm constantly snapping pictures of Rob and Jaqs together because I just can't get over the sweetness of their relationship. He adores her, and she is definitely enamored by him, too. It's really such a blessing to my momma-heart to see!
 We had dinner with friends when we got back that evening, and even got really wild and stayed out until 8:30 p.m. with them! Jaqs was feeling spunky, I suppose ;) It was such a fun day! Once again, Rob & I parked it on the couch to end the day, but this time with a movie! We watched Parental Guidance, and it was cute! We laughed at ourselves because we noticed that it was 'PG.' We must be getting old! I do have to say though, it's nice to watch a movie without the F-bomb being dropped every 30 seconds...I hate that!

Anyone else have kids that wake up EARLIER if they go to bed LATER than normal? It makes no sense to me, but that's what our little angel does. I can't tell you how much I enjoy waking up at 6 a.m. on a Sunday morning. NOT.

Oy. Since we were all up at the crack of dawn, we decided to be productive! We had all of our laundry and grocery shopping done by 10 a.m., and the baby even had a 2 hour nap before heading to the 11 a.m. church service. I'm sad to report that she did NOT make it the whole time in the nursery this week, but that's okay. I would much prefer for them to call me than for her to be miserable, and we'll keep trying! I'm sure she will have fun with it eventually.
 She looked darn cute though, I can tell you that! She's practicing her roaring on the left there ;)

We celebrated one of my great friends and her baby girl coming in June Sunday afternoon, and I can't wait to share that shower with you! It was so sweet.
yes...there's a baby in there! can you believe it?!

It was another whirlwind weekend filled to the brim with fun, and I think I hear Target calling my name to help me cure this case of the Mondays....

Friday, April 26, 2013

Why I Blog...

I originally began this blog as a way to document our lives...the big stuff, the little stuff, and everything in between. I just figured it would be our "scrapbook," and it has served that purpose as I have had each year of this blog printed into a book. I love looking back at times that would otherwise be pretty foggy in my mind.
What I never imagined would happen would be the connections I've made in sharing my heart and at times, being vulnerable. If you told me 3 years ago that I would have FRIENDS from blogging, I would have looked at you like you had 2 heads. It's just something that you don't understand until you experience it. My blog friends prayed me through infertility, they rejoiced with me when we found out we were expecting, and they've encouraged me through motherhood so far. Two friends in particular, Mateya & Beth Ann, have even sent gifts to Jaqs on more than one occasion. It's an amazing thing, really, to have people that you've never met show your child love!

I've connected with people around the U.S., but I've also reconnected with people from my hometown that I may not have otherwise. My friend, Jessica, for example went to the same college as I did, but we never really knew eachother. She has a little girl just a few days younger than Jaqs, and we've had so much fun sharing stories about them and providing each other with encouragement. Now if only we could have play-dates!

I've said on more than one occasion, "I wish my internet friends lived here!" It's a funny thing, this blog world. It has been such a blessing to me, and I'm grateful for it. I will likely never have the "popular" blog or make money from this gig, but the friendships I've gained are worth much than that to me. I wouldn't trade it!

....but I mean if someone wanted to pay me, I definitely wouldn't say no ;)

I'm joining A Blonde Ambition for her "Why I Blog" link-up!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

this week's randomness

Things have been pretty low key for us this week, but that's kind of been the norm lately which is nice but can be monotonous as well. I know there will be a time when we have older kids that we'll be go-go-going, so I try to keep that in mind when I'm "bored." There's always something to be done around the house, but that's not exciting!

Moving along...

Jaqs has decided that she can feed herself this week which is both great and frustrating. She has been self-feeding with her hands for awhile, but now she's interested in the spoon/fork when one is necessary. Usually this is only at breakfast when yogurt is involved which ends up in a BIG MESS. If I put the bite on the spoon & hand it to her, she always gets it to her mouth. The frustrating part is when she wants to dip it out herself...YIKES. When I give her a fork to use at dinner, she places the bite on the fork with her hands then puts it in her mouth. So adorable.
Oh, and let me not forget to add that J has had TWO teeth come in in the last week. When she starts up with teething, she goes all out! Her teeth have all come 2 at a time. I am so not looking forward to molars.

We've had another spurt of cool weather this week which has most of us Texans all kinds of riled up. We're used to sweating to death by this time of year, so it's sorta nice, but not so much for those of us with littles who like to be outside! It was still 60 yesterday, so we did get in some outdoor play once it warmed up from the THIRTY degrees that morning. Brr!
I got this little silverware caddy from Target to put on our kitchen table, and it's really making me quite happy! I love having necessities in one convenient place, plus I think it's pretty cute, too!
 I {big, puffy heart} love paper straws! Are they not just cheerful?! Love. I can hardly bear to use them because I like looking at them so much.
You'll be so pleased to know that Jaqsy's father is teaching her valuable life lessons. The girl has been sniffing her socks for some time thanks to him, but now she has taken this to a new level. When we take off her shoes, she holds them up to her nose, sniffs, then puts them in our faces so we'll say "EWWW, STINKY!" all while giggling like crazy. What a girl! She is quite the character, and I'm just so thankful her daddy is teaching her these things ;) God help her if she ever gets a hold of one of his shoes. She might pass out!
(sorry babe, you know it's true.)
 The girl has also discovered ketchup....SHE. LOVES. IT. Proof:
 Our vacation with our besties has officially been BOOKED! Julie & I text about it constantly and can hardly even contain our excitement! It will be a much-needed getaway for all of us, but I will SO miss my girl. I'm not going to go there yet though...too sad!

Who else is happy it's already Thursday?? It's our last weekend before Spring ball begins, so we are just planning on soaking up our time together this weekend! Seriously, is there anything better? 
I love being with my people.

Monday, April 22, 2013

weekend lovin'

Hey y'all! How was your weekend?? Ours was, as always, TOO SHORT. Yeah, yeah I know I'm a SAHM and all, but I still look forward to the weekends when our family of 3 is complete!

Last Thursday, Jaqs and I went to play at the play-place in the mall because the weather was cool and rainy. We had the place to ourselves, and she had a BLAST running around like a crazy girl. I always thought those things were a germ-fest (and they probably are) before I had a kid, but now I understand that cabin fever sets in QUICK with an active toddler. By the way, I still refer to her as a baby 9 times out of 10. Anyway, definitely eating my words on the whole mall playground thing! Isn't the first time, and won't be the last, I'm sure.
G-Pop decided kinda last minute to come hang out with us this weekend because my mom was gone, and what's the fun in spending the weekend alone?! Jaqsy girl LOVES playing with her GP! She pretty much has him wrapped, and I think she knows it ;) Hehe!
She even helped him with a little home-improvement project that I'll share with y'all this week!
The Pea was too worked up from all the fun and playing to nap well, so she was exhausted by bedtime. I woke up in the middle of the night Saturday to see her SLEEPING like this:
Silly girl! She is a CRAZY sleeper. I watched her for a few minutes, and she eventually just toppled over.

Dad left early Sunday, so we caught the late service at church and decided to take Jaqs to the nursery for the first time. It was kind of sad, but we know it will be worth it in the long run! Thankfully, we had no tears with the drop off, and our number didn't pop up on the screen to go get her. When we picked her up, she was sitting in one of the girl's laps eating graham crackers. They said she was fine, but got a little fussy towards the end. I'd call it a success! Hopefully she'll have fun in the Sundays to come!
We were soooo getting the stink-eye when we picked her up. She might have been a little mad at us for leaving her, but she got over it pretty fast! Funny girl.

J had her vaccines 2 weeks ago, and she is COVERED in a rash right now which I can only assume is related to the MMR vaccine. Poor thing. It doesn't look that bad in the picture, but she's covered. We tried to perk her up with a trip to Target & PetSmart followed by a popsicle after dinner! She was pretty excited about all of it!
The girl loves popsicles now, so we may have created a monster with that one! Oh well, Summer's coming, and Lord knows we'll be eating 1000s of them to stay cool.

Linking up with Sami's Shenanigans

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Super Simple Birthday Wreath

Y'all know I love a good wreath by now, so of course I had to come up with something fun for Jaqsy's birthday party. I searched Pinterest high and low, but I couldn't find anything just right, so I actually did something with my own brains. Novel idea, eh?

We did the tied ribbon wreath for her nursery, and I love it, but it takes A LOT of ribbon not to mention a decent chunk of time, too. That was fine while I was pregnant, but now that she's out, spare time is precious ;) I found some ribbon at Hobby Lobby that I loved, so I decided to do a simplified ribbon wreath.
sorry, only had an iPhone pic
Foam Wreath
Whatever variety of ribbon works for your theme
Hot glue gun

Cut your ribbon into pieces long enough to wrap around your wreath one time...mine were about 5 inches, I'd say. Then all you have to do is wrap them around and secure with a line of hot glue on the back. Overlap the ribbon a little as you go so as not have any foam showing through until you've covered the wreath. It's as easy as that! I chose to keep the rainbow pattern going, but you can mix it up and do different widths of ribbons, too.
Side note: I said "ROY G. BIV" in my head about 27 times while making this! Ha! 
Once you're done wrapping your wreath, hot glue one or two embellishments on there to celebrate your occasion! My number 1 came from Hobby Lobby and was already white, so I didn't even have to paint it. Score!

This wreath is still hanging on our front door...I can't let it go just yet! I figure I can get away with this for the month of April, right?! It IS her birth month, after all.

One other thing: I'm guest posting over at Ripples & Waves today! Check it out if you're curious about when Galusha baby #2 may make an appearance...

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

1st Birthday Party: Abilene Edition

Since we were going to be in Abilene for Easter, we decided to have a pizza party celebration for Jaqs' birthday that Saturday so our friends and family there wouldn't feel obligated to come all the way to Temple for her party. It worked out perfectly as Rob's mom and grandparents don't travel as much and the rest of my family could be there, too! It was a low-key, FUN evening spent with people that we love and that love our baby girl!

Here's a picture overload from the party at Grammie & GPop's!
I promise she was happy! Just not into pictures ;-/
my cake's on fire, people.
neat cake-eater, apparently
Jaqs playing with Kenlee...cutie girls!
love my bestie!
popo & nanny
grammie with the baby girls!
my cousin jessica & me with our girls
nanny & popo are the ones that got jaqs her beloved wagon!
we still can't believe we have a toddler!

We love, loved getting to celebrate Jaqsy's birthday TWO weekends in a row! What a diva with 2 birthday parties, eh? We just felt like it was necessary this year :)
Thank you to all of our Abilene family & friends for celebrating with us!

If you missed her "Over the Rainbow" party, see it here!
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