Monday, January 30, 2012

Miscellany Monday

Miscellany Monday @
lowercase letters

~Design Mode~
I am so very excited to redesign this precious little house that is home to A Daisy A Day...
And I am loving all things Shabby Chic!
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The Weekend after Valentine's Day...Mom and I are in full force design mode.  We will be patching, painting, cleaning, SHOPPING and making A Daisy A Day a home away from home!    

All Images Courtesy of Pinterest!

A therapist from Catholic Charities of Atlanta came to one of our Mom's Circle meetings and helped us with stress relief.  It was an awesome meeting and the therapist gave us some amazing advice on how to destress our lives in easy, every day ways....We are moms...who has time to go to therapy!

My favorite from the presentation was Lavender!  The woman had a bottle of lavender oil.  Something similar to this
Lavender 100% Pure Essential Oil  10 ml  12.99
You put a small amount in your hands and take deep breathes, breathing the fragrance in....INSTANT relief!  

And because my mom is just awesome, she remembered me telling her about this great tool and she bought me lavender bar soap, which is just awesome because it mixes two great ways to destress...

A Hot Shower and A Bar of Lavender Soap....Try It...It will seriously change your life!

~Tax Season~
I am so happy....Our Federal and State Taxes are filed and we should get a nice deposit into our checking account in the next 2 weeks!  And this wonderful check will bring us one step closer to being DEBT FREE!  As of next month...Zach and I will be debt free in the credit card department and only have 1 student loan left to pay before being DEBT FREE (aside from our mortgage, of course)!  Life is Good!


Can't wait for the premiere of Smash next week on NBC!

What randomness is going on in your life?



Friday, January 27, 2012

Our Week

Evan has been on his medicine for a week now...and I do think it is starting to help.  He doesn't seem to spit up as much...but he still does.  And it is now possible to have some tummy time without Niagara Falls.  I hate that Evan isn't as strong as he should be because I don't want him to loose his entire lunch by putting him on his tummy....but he is getting there.

Tummy Time...sometimes he loves it...
Sometimes he doesn't...

 Check Out those Brows!
 Monday was a NASTY day!  I mean downpour!  But I was not going to let it stop us from going to our first Toddler Time at the Library.  Suwanee Library hosts Toddler Time for 2 and under...and Zoe LOVED it!!!  The woman who leads is so great and their were lots of songs, interactive play, visuals and, of course, a story.  Zoe had a blast and I can't wait to take her again!

I made Skinny Crockpot's Taco Soup....Yummo!  My Mom and Dad joined us for dinner which was so nice!  We also played Monopoly The Card much fun!  

Tuesday was full of errands.  Thankfully it was gorgeous out...and like 66 degrees.  In between some errands, we grabbed lunch at Chipotle and KK got to meet us.  We sat outside and just soaked up the sun we have missed so much lately.  Tuesday night was Mr. Church's visitation, so we all got dressed in our flannels and jeans (his "uniform") and headed to St. Oliver's.  And I must say that in times like these, I am so beyond grateful and constantly reminded of how important it is to have support from friends and your community.  To see all the people who Arnie touched in his life was beautiful!

And it begins!
 Poor Evan!
Wednesday was Mr. Church's funeral...what an absolutely beautiful Mass to celebrate the life of this man, full of many tears, many kind words and many, many memories.  It was surreal being there...I couldn't really believe it was all happening.

Wednesday night, we headed over to The Picture People to use our Groupon!  Unfortunately, Zoe had not taken but a 15 minute nap in the car the WHOLE DAY!  Yikes!  But I kept telling myself...All we need is 1 good picture!  And luckily we got 1!   

Thursday we had a pretty laid back day and I made dinner again...So proud of myself!  I made Parmesan Garlic Chicken with Roasted Broccoli...and everyone loved it!

I have been looking forward to Friday since we heard Ringling Bros Clowns were putting on Story time at Hamilton Mill Library.
 It was AWESOME!  We read Dr. Seuss's If I Ran The Circus and they acted out so much of it!  They got all the kids involved with pretending to eat popcorn and making tiger sounds and giving a big drum roll on their laps!  And they even played some tricks...which caused one little girl in the front to stand up, put her hands on her hips and scream..."Don't play tricks with me Clown!"...I kid you not!  And I could not stop laughing!
 Zoe had kind of a rough night of sleep...well we all did!  So she was a little tired at the show, but she did great.

  'Say Cheese'...or make a really awkward face
 Another great week we had!  

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Our Week

Y'all....I am absolutely loving this new way of life!!!

Yes, the mornings after I work are a little tough.  I wish I could just have an IV of coffee, but once I get one cup in....I am good to go.

Here is what we did this past week!

Thursday Morning, I woke up refreshed and ready to jump right into what I hoped would be our new routine.  Zoe woke up saying "Watch" and I said "Not today, Sweetie!"  And she didn't ask again.  We played with play-doh this morning.  I let her tell me which color she wanted and she said "Blue" after we ate breakfast at the table, I got her blue play-doh and you would have thought it was Christmas Morning again...the girl was so excited.
 We practiced rolling and patting.  I got one of her play knives and the roller from her kitchen and we cut and counted.  She was so precious.  We made letters and shapes.  She just loved it.

After playing, we had to run to the grocery to pick up Evan's medicine and get all the ingredients for dinner.  Once we got home, we had some reading time and played in Zoe's room before nap time.  I guess I didn't wear Zoe out enough this day because nap time was darn near impossible.  Zoe has gotten over her fear of getting down off her bed.  We would close the door and next thing you know you would hear little feet tapping and her pans being hit together.  After about 10 times of going in to tell Zoe to get in her bed...her room feel silent.  When she finally woke up and I went to get her, she was on the top bunk....oy vey!

Thursday was a gorgeous day, so we headed outside to swing and run around!  Zoe just loves to be outside and so does her Mommy.  And so does Evan!

And Thursday was a complete success in the kitchen!  I made Skinny Crockpot's Balsamic Chicken....SO GOOD!  I found too, and yes I know it is just one day, but my house stayed cleaner!  Keeping Zoe eating in the dining room and not having the TV on meant no vacuuming the living room rug and she brought no toys into the living room...they all stayed in her room!  Yes and Yes!!!

Friday was jam packed for us!  I worked Thursday night, so I was nervous that my exhaustion would get the best of me....but staying busy really helped.  We woke up and had breakfast and got right into our morning activity.  Finger Painting!

I put on Pandora for some fun kid's music and she just loved it.  A Mickey Mouse Clubhouse song came on and she recognized his voice right away....she just smiled the whole time!

Finger Painting was such a success!  She constantly was asking me if her painting was pretty.  And we talked about which colors she was painting with and which shapes she was making.  Evan is learning how to play in the exersaucer.  He is getting stronger and stronger every day!  And as you can just wears him out!

The Dacula Library had a Puppet Show Friday so we headed to the library.  I wasn't sure how Zoe would do sitting still, but she did great!  The theme of the show was winter and they performed some books.  She made it through 2 shows, but didn't last for the 3rd.  Once she was ready to move, we headed to the kids section and she picked out books to read.  Zoe would find herself a spot and sit and look at the pages.

Nap Time was in order for all!!!

After nap time, it was party time to celebrate our sweet Ella Kate at Catch Air!

 And after the party, we got to go see Carson and Colin!  Zoe just adores Carson!
And all of this happened with only about a 1/2 hour of TV.  After Thursday morning, she never really even asked!  


Monday, January 23, 2012

Living with Purpose

"So many people walk around with a meaningless life.  They seem half asleep, even when they're busy doing things they think are important.  This is because they're chasing the wrong things.  The way you get meaning into your life is to devote yourself to loving others, devote yourself to your community around you, and devote yourself to creating something that gives you purpose and meaning."

Last Friday, I received a phone call from my mom.  It is kind of crazy how immediately you know something is wrong.  I missed her call and even before calling her back, I knew something wasn't right.  My mom let me know that my best friend from my childhood, Kara, lost her unexpected and so heart-wrenching.
Kara and I have known each other since kindergarten...Mrs. McClusky's KB class at St. John Neumann.  Mrs. Church always tells the story of remembering the first time she met me.  I had my desk turned away from the rest of the class because I couldn't stop talking...some things never change.  And so our friendship began.  Majority of my memories growing up involve Kara.  We were in girl scouts together, swam on swim team together, spent every birthday with one another, had slumber parties and went to camp together during the summer.  She is the one who told me I should be shaving my legs and introduced me to bras.  We went to NSYNC concerts and on spring break together.  Mrs. Church always made me chocolate chip muffins and would always have waffle crisp when I spent the night!  Their family constantly reminded me that I was never allowed to wear white...because whatever I would end up on my shirt.  The Church family instilled in me a love for the lake!  We would swim with the farting fishies and the tooting turtles....we would tube and tube and ask for whirlpool after whirlpool.  We would sing Dixie Chicks at the top of our lungs and just soak up the sun!  Mr. Church treated me no different then one of his own.  He made me give him foot massages if I wanted to go on the boat.  He taught me to ski and showed no mercy on that tube.  He joked with me and said my zodiac sign should have been a fagasauras since my birthday always feel on the weekend of the Gay-Pride weekend in Atlanta.  My memories could go on and on....

And then came high school and for the first time...Kara and I were separated...and from then on we both have been growing in different directions, but she has always been someone I hold dear to my heart.  

And now...I am holding her...crying because of the loss of her dad.  

Mrs. Church wants this quote to be included in the program....isn't it beautiful!  Just another reminder of how precious life is and how God made us to do great things.  We are meant to make relationships.  We are made to love!  We are made to LIVE and not just walk around doing the mundane things of this world.  Are you LIVING!?!  Are you really living with purpose and does your life have meaning? 

I ask you all to include The Church Family in your prayer tonight and pray for the repose of Mr. Church's soul.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

She Does Him Good...

So I came to a huge realization....another one.....what is with me this week!?!

Zach and I argue...I know, I know...hard to believe!  Last night, we argued about him helping me around the house.  Ever had this argument....glad I am not alone!  If you haven' went something like this.

"Zach, after I get done feeding Evan, can you swaddle him and put him in his crib?"

Roll of the eyes and whisper under his breathe..."As if I am doing nothing right now."  

And that is all it took to send me into complete hysteria!

Now, I know I am a woman.  I should take complete pride of keeping my home super sanitized, organized and smelling great.  I should have dinner on the table promptly at 6:00.  Clean clothes should always be folded and put away, not a wrinkle in sight.  And my children should sit still and say please and thank you, yes ma'am, no sir...on que.  But I am a woman, unfortunately...who doesn't take pride in this....

....until now!

After our argument....where I explained to him that I can't do it all by myself (and shouldn't have to) and he made the comment that he works 40 hours a week and I work 12...aaahhheeemmm....TWELVE!!!...

I had a thought....or maybe the Holy Spirit was talking to me...a come to Jesus kind of conversation....and I realized something...

Maybe if I did take pride in these things...if these things were to somehow bring me happiness...then maybe we wouldn't have this argument....and we would be happy!

You see...if you want something to must change yourself...if your goal is to change someone else...good luck (I've doesn't work ;) )!

"She does him good, and not harm, all the days of her life."
Proverbs 31:12

So my thought continued on....If I do good to him, what would he most likely do in return....


If I make dinner....he will love me and in the dishes!

If I do his laundry and fold his clothes....he will love me and in return...put the clothes away!

If I clean the house....he will love me and in return...not leave his stuff all over the place!

But even if he doesn't....I should still do him good....All the days of my life!  (and pray really, really hard that he does the same in return).

So here is to a new way of thinking, living, cleaning, and doing some good!  

Prayers Welcome!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

A New Routine

Something is in the air people....I have already folded a load of laundry, washed and dried another and started a third.  I have cubed potatoes, sliced carrots and diced onions (tear) and dinner is in the corckpot.  I have feed my little man twice, fed Zoe breakfast....and now have both of them napping....AT THE SAME TIME!  And fixed Zach lunch during his quick lunch break home.

All without coffee....I totally forgot!

What has gotten into me!?!  I am usually about to get off the couch from morning cartoons and think about getting something done at this point in the day!  Part of it, I think, is because I might have gone to bed last night at was great.  And another part of me thinks it is because this is the way I want my home to be...the way our days go!

I am super-duper excited about Zoe attending PreSchool this fall at Prince of Peace!  Zach and I looked at 2 different schools and both fell in love with just know right!  Well, I go to fill out the application and they have a section on learning about your child.  Good...I love this...I get to tell them all about what we do and how great Zoe is....and then they ask how much TV does your child watch?

And I immediately want to lie!  How bad is that!?!  But really I am just lying to myself in thinking that how my home is run right now is healthy.  It is not!  I write down 1 1/2 hours and then a movie later....and I feel guilty.

Truthfully, we watch about 3....cringe.  Our morning consists of breakfast and TV....and some more TV.  No, Zoe doesn't sit and watch TV all 3 hours, but it is on.  She is usually running around, playing with Evan, or sitting on the couch for those 3 hours before her nap.

And I think....This has got to stop!

Here is my plan!

I want our mornings to be more scheduled, maybe just more organized.  I want there to be more structure and more education in our day...for both of us!  I have things I need to get done too in the day in order for our home to run smoothly.

I want our day to start at the kitchen table (not the coffee table).  I want to either make breakfast together or eat cereal or waffle at the kitchen table.  This will help with messes and start a good habit of only having food in the dining room.

Afterwards, I want to have some sort of activity for Zoe to do, whether it be coloring, matching, finger paints, playdough, whatever while listening to music....something hands on and creative!  And I would like this to be something she can entertain herself with so I can get dinner prepared or laundry folded or dishes in the dishwasher.  I am hoping this will last us until oooo 8:30.

I really, really want to start working with Zoe on her education.  By, September when she starts school, I would like her to know the alphabet, be able to count 1-10 and know most of her colors, if not all.  And this is not going to happen watching 3 hours of TV, people!

Between 8:30-9:30, I am going to get together some great educational resources so we can work on different skills.  I want this to be fun for her and different I am really going to need to get creative.  Each week, I want to try and work on certain things, like the letter A, number 5 and color blue for example.  And I want it to be FUN!!!!

Another goal is to get Zoe more interaction with other children.  Whether we go to story time, kindermusik or a playdate, I want her to be with kids her age!  I have signed Zoe up for Kindermusik, which I am really excited about, and there are so many different libraries in our area that offer story times or puppet shows every morning around 10:00.  So on days we are on the GO...we will leave around 9:30 to get to our specific activity.

On days we stay home, around 9:30 we will do one more activity or play outside.  At 10:00, Zoe's favorite show right now, Little Einsteins, comes on and we can watch that if she wants to until 11:00...then we will have a small snack, reading time and nap by 11:15. you think it will work?

I know everyday will bring about something new....but I would love to stick with this basic routine for our mornings.  Another reason for this new schedule is because I want the transition of going to school to be an easy one for Zoe.  Going from sitting on the couch for 3 hours to being in a classroom with other kids and a quite a change! So I want to start making positive improvements now!

Plus....not sitting on the couch for 3 hours will help me get more done around our home too!  It is a win-win!

I am going to use the rest of this week to get organized and start planning out some fun activities...any suggestions?

Sunday, January 15, 2012

What is Zoe Zoo Up To?

  • Zoe is now 26 months old.
  • Zoe wears size 5 diapers or 2T-3T pull-ups.
  • Zoe wears 24 months pants (2T are too long) and 24 months and 2T shirts.
  • Zoe is 33 1/4 inches tall.
  • Zoe weighs about 30 pounds.
  • Zoe sleeps like a champ.  She takes one nap, lasting for 2-3 hours, in the early afternoon and goes to bed between 7:30-8:30 every night and wakes between 7:30-8:30 every morning.
  • Zoe has started having 'reading time' before bed to let her calm down and she loves to look at her books!
  • Zoe always wants ride in Daddy's truck, not Mommy's she says.
  • Zoe loves to play and she lets us know by saying, 'I playin Mommy, I playin!'
  • Zoe loves to talk on the phone.  And she now introduces herself saying 'Hi, I Zoe...How ya doin''.  Whenever she says goodbye, she usually tacks on 'see ya' or 'see ya later'.
  • Zoe has started to think anything and everything is hers...constantly saying 'Mines!'  And this is when we talk about how nice it is to share.  She does like to point out what is Evan's....his pacie, his swing, his bed, his carseat...or what is mine and Zach's...Daddy's juice, Mommy's Cup, Daddy's shoes, Mommy' mone (phone).
  • Zoe is a frequenter of time-out.  The biggest thing she goes for is telling Mommy and Daddy 'NO!' or 'NO WAY'...we can tell her to go to time-out and she goes straight to a chair in the dining room, turns it around and takes a seat.  She doesn't really cry anymore, but boy is she excited when we tell her she can get down.
  • Zoe loves to climb on her bunk beds and she loves to jump...from anything...the stairs, a chair, on the trampoline, off boxes...she says, 'I jump'...which really helps us when she wants to jump from the top bunk...we appreciate the warning.
  • Zoe loves her brother.  She is finally calling him Evan or 'Eban', but also calls him Buddy, Baby Buddy, Bud and Baby.  Evan is the first thing Zoe asks for in the morning now.
  • Zoe asks to 'Watch' and points to the TV or says 'oovie' for a Movie.  She also knows her favorite shows and characters...She has grown to love Little Einsteins and loves to pat her lap and raise her hands and scream 'BLAST OFF!'  She also knows each of her favorite movies.  Beauty and the Beast she says just 'Beast', Finding Nemo is just 'Nemo' and she says all of Lion King.  In each movie she loves certain parts and it is so cute seeing her get excited.
  • Zoe says she is 'ungry' alot...but most of the time it is because she is bored.  She will stand in front of the pantry or pull on the fridge door and scream, 'I ungry, Mommy'.  She also knows what she wants and doesn't want to eat...and doesn't hesitate to tell you.  Her favorites are yogurt, cheese, chips, crackers, waffle (baffle), green beans, chicken, ice cream, peanuts, mac'n cheese, tacos, cereal and apples.    I think she would eat all day long if I let her. 
  • Zoe loves to ask us for 'a bite'.  Even if we are eating the exact same thing as her, she would rather eat ours.
  • Zoe is eating really well with her utensils.  She knows spoons, forks and knives by name.  Sometimes she gets frustrated and uses her hands though.
  • Zoe loves to scream.  She has quite the vocals.  If Zoe is trying to get our attention, she starts with Mommy or Daddy and if we don't answer she starts calling us by our names 'Sak' or 'Gecca'.  It is quite funny.
  • Zoe doesn't like to have her hair played with.  She says 'no hairs'...but her long blonde locks just beg to have your fingers run through them!
  • Zoe loves to be outside, rain or shine, hot or cold.  She just runs and runs...thank goodness we have a great big yard!
  • Zoe is such a good helper.  She loves to help Mommy with switching the laundry and emptying the dishwasher and we are working on cleaning our room and picking up toys when we are done with them.  She helps with Evan by giving him his pacie and she loves to push him in the swing and tell us when he has spit up.  Zoe always goes and gets her diaper when it is time for a diaper change.  She also loves to help Daddy bring in the firewood and sweep the floors.
  • Zoe is remembering peoples names.  And if we remind her, she can say almost anyone's name.  Sometimes she can even remember when we go certain places, who is at that place.  She knows she sees Papa at Church, she knows Grammy and Papa's house, she knows when we are home when we pull on our street, she knows Greg and Ria's house and usually says 'Be Nice, Greg' when we pull in their driveway...and this makes me laugh!
  • Zoe loves to tell us when we have arrived somewhere and screams 'We're HERE!'
  • Zoe is such a cuddlier now and she will sit on my lap and watch cartoons with me.  I love this!  She also asks to be help by saying, 'I hold you'.
  • Zoe loves to throw 'I throw Mommy' and catch and says 'Good Throw' right after...unfortunately a lot of things get thrown at Evan.
  • Zoe loves to be sung to...and she will say 'Again...Again' until you sing the song to her again.
  • Zoe loves the Moon and Stars.  She tells us they are in the sky and points to them.  Most nights, we take her outside and she screams 'THE MOON'.  It is so sweet.  She also knows the clouds and sun are in the sky and always points out airplanes she sees.
  • Zoe is learning the Sign of the Cross.  She now touches her forehead when we say 'In the Name of the Father' and before we get to the Holy Spirit, she is screaming 'AMEN'.  During our blessing over meals, Zoe must hold hands...and now she always wants to hold Evan's.  Zoe also knows we pray before bedtime and she clasps her hands together while we pray and it could just melt my heart!
  • Zoe is starting to learn to count.  If we start counting, she knows two comes after one and four comes after three.  We are working on getting her to count by herself to five.
  • Zoe is so stubborn when it comes to colors.  She knows how to say blue, purple, pink, yellow, green, red, white...but will only say something is yellow.
  • Zoe asking more whats and whys....which I have mixed feelings about.  I love that she is curious and wants to learn, but she will say what a millions times...'What...what Mommy, what!'
  • Zoe is getting better at taking pictures.  She loves to say cheese and make silly faces.
  • Zoe always needs a boo-boo kissed.  Sometimes, she will fake getting hurt, just so she can get an all better kiss.  Zoe also lets us know when she falls down that she is fine by saying 'I okay Mommy, I okay'.
  • Zoe is obsessed with her 'shwankie'...which is her blanket.
  • Zoe is getting so good at playing by herself and imaginary play.  She loves to build towers out of her new blocks and make food for us in her kitchen.  She still doesn't quite understand dress up, but loves changing a million times and putting on the accessories.
  • Zoe loves playing with her Bitty Baby and feeding her its bottle.  But sometimes she gives me her baby to feed and puts her right to my chest...she hasn't tried to feed her that way yet though.
  • Zoe can lock doors, but not unlock.  I have been locked outside once.  Thank goodness for hide-a-keys.
  • Zoe loves shoes...her boots are her favorite!
  • Zoe loves to dress herself.  She doesn't pick her clothes out yet, but she loves to pull up her pull-ups and put her pants leg at a time.  She also is obsessed with socks and loves wearing them. 
  • Zoe is curious about the potty, but not ready for potty training yet.  She tells us when she poops sometimes, but still could care less that she has a dirty diaper.  She loves to sit on the potty and she pushes and squints her face...and loves to wipe...a lot...but no consistency.  I am not going to push it.
  • Zoe is loving, playful, funny, silly, and just everything I could hope for...she makes me look forward to waking up every morning and I love that my days are filled with teaching her, seeing what new things she can do and hearing that sweet voice say 'Mommy'!  What a gift she is!