Thursday, June 28, 2012

dear laken

dear little baby laken,
you are growing up to be such a handsome little guy. and i thought you were cute right outta the oven.. who'd a thought you'd be THIS cute.
you are a little firecracker. i love waking up to your face. well, sometimes i think... come on laken... sleep just an hour longer! but then i look at your little baby blues and your ear to ear smile and i join along with you in your stretching! you're a fighter little guy, just like your momma. however, you like to fight the wrong things... your sleep and your bottle when its in your mouth... then you get mad because you want the bottle or you want the sleep. and i know when you're older you're gonna wish that you took better naps. i promise.
you eat like a monster, sometimes you eat too much and then we both get to wear it. you just fuss too much until you get a bottle (it is sometimes the only thing that will soothe you - chunk butt). oh boy, you little piece of work. i love ya anyway!
you're not quiet wearing 0-3 month clothes and you hardly fit in newborns anymore... i wish that hanging around in diapers was acceptable, but when you are in diapers i feel like the bad guy when i am patting your back.
when you're in other peoples arms you're always looking for me. like you think i'm the prettiest girl in the world... even when i'm greasy looking like a potato chip. thanks for that, but you'll soon see that these people that have you in their arms are pretty good looking too!
thank you for sleeping throughout the night and being the best part of my day. love you little guy to two infinity and beyond!


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

party decorated in 2 hours

well, my nieces are in town and their birthdays just past. they were expected home from the water park yesterday and due to have some family over at my mom's house for some cake and ice cream. the horror to my ears knowing there wasn't going to be any kind of decorations... i had to put together a couple things. i didn't spend any money, just used things i had at house and had a friend come over to hang out with laken while i got a couple things together.

if you'd like to try any of these simple crafts out just to spruce up a dinner party or celebration, i hope you find these tutorials helpful.


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with the desired inside-pattern of the paper facing to you, you will choose a corner of scrapbook paper and push the brad through the punched hole coming from the backside of the paper. you'll have to pull it towards the middle and bring the other edges going clockwise or counterclockwise into the brad. (these will layer underneath the first edge).

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i used different lengths in size dowel rods to position them in the vase better. i used marbles for the bottom, but you can get creative with your vase... just letting you know how to make a pinwheel.

Bunting Flags



you will then take your twine and tiny cloths pins and pin the triangles. pick a pattern if you're using different colors/patterned triangles. i spaced mine about two inches apart. you can make a more permanent bunt by using thin ribbon, painters tape, and a sewing machine. the only thing you'd do different is tape the triangles in place on the ribbon and then run a straight stitch through the ribbon and then remove the tap. (the tape will be sewn too, but you'll remove it.. be careful when removing it too - don't want to tear the paper).

Napkin Holder


i decided to make this this way because wrapping the silverware wasn't looking too good with the way the napkins themselves were folded out of the package. Photobucket
then you stuff the envelope with the napkins, fork, knives, spoon... chopsticks, whatever! :)

Sunday, June 3, 2012

the bare necessities at 5 weeks

just a quick update on a saturday night, (well now its sunday).
i forgot to link this blog up to my blog... little over a month ago i was asked by Beth Ridings to write in a feature "Why I Blog" in the blog "Until only love remains." She is currently fundraising for Walk for Life... you can read more about it here. Pretty great stuff. My feature was posted back on my due date - so i was so wrapped up in that that i forgot to mention it in my blog.
here is the link if you'd like to read it.

anyhow, the last post I posted cause quite a stir, and I just want to say that we have all made our own choices in our lives and we chose to live with them. this isn't a competition between the dad and i of who has done better or who is worse off. i can speak for myself that i am very happy with my choices and i don't wish anything bad upon him - only good things.

another thing... i appreciate all the awesome and positive feedback i do get on my blog, i write to kind of let other women know that they aren't alone. i want people to be able to see themselves in my blog, because blogging is not only about me, but its about the reader as well.

ok, i wanted to post this at the month mark, but...... i've been in austin and then have been busy spending time with loved ones. tonight i had a baby sitter (my momma) so i could go enjoy a night on the town, but i ended up staying in and putting this together. these are the things that have gotten laken and i through these past 5 weeks and 3 days.

avent soothies - laken didn't get a pacifier for a while. i was trying to make sure that he didn't get nipple confusion. i threw a fit when they wheeled laken back into my room after being in the nursery at the hospital for a check up. however, i tried all kinds... i tried the tommy tippie ones, too big. i tried the gumdrop ones, too hard. i tried the nuk, he used them but they were alot different than the nipples on his bottles. the soothies were the only pacifiers that i didn't buy, and they work great. thanks celeste. :)
swaddle-me blankets - i am officially the worse swaddler in the world. i need to practice more of have a bigger blanket, or rubber bands to finish up the job. these swaddle me's get the job done in a snap (or well a placement of the velcro). i was so relieved once laken finally grew into them. he doesn't like waking up in them, but they do keep him asleep. his flailing arms are his worse enemy.
munchkins pacifier wipes - these are great for pacifiers or bottles when you're out and need to wash 'em and really can't. i don't like to, but if you're somewhere where you have to just rinse your bottle these are great to help clean 'em.
sleep sheep - this has become a great thing for laken when he is sleeping. i am starting to only use it when its time for him to go to bed for his long night of rest. the noise drowns out everything else and helps calm him to his happy sleeping place.
gumdrop bottles - the night that laken had to have an actual bottle with formula i grabbed one of these little guys off the shelf for him. i have spent money on tons of different and EXPENSIVE bottles. the nipple flow of all the others are just too much for him to handle. these are just perfect for him.
medline remedy foaming soap cleaner - this is probably one of my most favorite things ever. i use this on laken when he really needs to be cleaned up and there isn't time for a bath, and i used to use this on me all the time when i was out and smelling of breastmilk or spit up. it smells so great and really leaves you feeling clean.
medelda hydrogels - these really help your cracked/soar nipples. let me just tell you... i loved these things. i'm sure there are stuff out there that are better, and i'd love to know more tricks so that my next attempt at breastfeeding is more successful. there was just so many things i'd love to of known before it was too late and so many things i wish i could change and do again.
burp rags - do not even get me started unless i have one of these. i have them everywhere, and they are a MUST. don't ever leave anywhere without one. everytime i see a kid with a messy face i wanna clean it, and now that i have my own... his face is always clean.
twilight turtle - i'm sure laken will appreciate this guy a little later. it projects stars onto the wall. i love this little guy so i can check up on my sugar plum while he is sleeping. it comes in different colors and it is just too awesome! love, love, love.

its already two in the morning! time flew... gotta go to bed, church in the morning. good night!

Friday, June 1, 2012

not a parent, solo-rent.

doing things solo
most of you know that i started this parenting thing as a solo project. at first of course i didn't know what the outcome would be. i never knew if the dad would come around, and towards the end of the pregnancy i was afraid he would and relieved he hadn't. i can't really see myself sharing this precious little one with anyone. of course, if he did have a change of heart then i wouldn't be the one to stop him - (because his heart would be changed -- hopefully to a better place). i wouldn't do that to laken... be the one who got in the way of having a relationship with his biological father. anyhow... while writing this blog and going through the building a home and preparing for my little man process i have become so proud of myself. i wasn't ever the person who thought about what their kid would look like and what they would do. all i knew was i was going to have a boy who would have brown hair and brown eyes and his name would be julian (after the lead singer of the strokes, yes)... well God blessed with me a little boy would has blue eyes, redish tint brown hair and his name is Laken.

i'm not trying to air out my dirty laundry and talk about my past, but the fathers side insisted that i was having this baby to have people feel sorry for me. however, when i truly started to become aware (i finally got direct responses from the dad instead of hear-say from his "team") that this was a solo thing, that was when the mentality of "plenty of successful women raise children alone" just rang in my head all of the time. there wasn't room for anyone to feel sorry for me, and there wasn't a shred of myself feeling sorry for myself - i just felt blessed.

the number one question that is asked is if bubba has seen his son, they're always very shocked when i say no. they're never surprised that his family has come around and has seen him/ask about him. in reality they really aren't truly THERE for him, and that is ok.

as a mother to laken, i can only give him all that i can... and i have been blessed with a helpful, loving family that has enough love to act as if they were 5 different sets of families. (of course there is never enough love a person can have/recieve.)

after getting all the "heavy" outta the way i wanna take a little turn and talk about the things that have helped me these last 5 weeks that touch up on being a solo-rent.

-if someone has arms to hold the baby - go run and do something for yourself.

-single parent or not... you should have a baby monitor, i don't. its rough.

-don't be afraid to call up someone and ask them for help. i'm horrible at asking anyone to help. i am so independent i'll do it myself. however, i am not afraid to ask my mom to come over to help me clean up my apartment. :)

-i can use the restroom with my baby in my lap. i don't like to do it, but i will if i have to. i can even wash both hands while holding him. i pray i don't have to do that when he gets heavier.

-i don't ever complain about night time feedings. i am surprised how much people talk about the stress of having to get up and how their partner isn't helping. i just do it because if i don't who will. i couldn't imagine how aggravated i would be if i did have a partner who wouldn't take turns with me during the night to feed.

-make friends with friends that cook. or grandmothers or mothers. most of the time they'll wanna hold your baby so you can eat. its a definite win-win situation.

-understand that you can't just get up and go with a baby - no matter how much of a tumbleweed you once were. prepare the day before or hours before you leave somewhere. a little at a time. it took me 7 hours to leave to austin last friday. can you say nightmare!

-confide in a friend/relative that you admire to get parenting advice. parenting is a learning game, ask someone how they did things... ask a few people and get a variety and do what works best for you and your little one.

-the stress of doing things solo will get to you, so just vent it to someone that you look up to. (mothers, grandmothers, aunts... they know where your heart is and most of the time they've been through it before.)

-give it up to God. talk to him, ask him for strength each day. he blessed me with my miracle, he can bless me with the strength to survive it. :p

happy thursday everyone!! :)