The stars at night are big and bright! Or, Violet’s birthday party.

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So if you haven’t caught on, the theme was Texas. (Obviously a great theme!)

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Here was the cake my wonderful mother made for the party and the super cute banners I made. (They were so easy and I’m kinda proud.)

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Here was the smash cake she made. She’s pretty great huh?

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And Rudy’s BBQ was on the lunch menu for the day.

We also had bourbon pecan prailines as a favor for the grown ups. Yum! For the kiddos we gave out bags of “loot”. (Or chocolate coins.) Those were a big hit!

We had only immediate family in attendance. We just hung out went swimming, saved violet from choking, played with fake moustashes and lawn games, and generally enjoyed each others company. What a great day!

One year down, many more to go!

Violet is 1 today. I can remember the nurse asking me if I wanted her skin to skin immediately after birth. I remember the tears as they told me I could start pushing and the nurse telling me I wasn’t supposed to cry yet! I also remember someone saying they had never seen someone laugh during labor.

And for those that know me, the obgyn did tell me to stop talking. :/

This year had been an awesome adventure! I’ve seen more snow than I care to mention. We went to Niagra Falls! I’ve made new friends and kept in touch with old ones. But most of all, I’ve watched my girl grow, and I’ve grown more and more in love with her each day! I am not a great mother yet, but am seeking advice from reliable sources and growing with my girl every day! I have a long way to go! I can’t wait to see what the next year holds or where we will end up! This time next year we will be living in a new city and getting settled in again. Life is exciting!

Thank you Lord for getting us through the first year in Cleveland, and please bless our next year here as well!

Baby girl can:
1. Say Mama and Dada
2. Walk
3. Climb the stairs
4. Eat finger foods
5. Recognize and follow simple instructions like, “Get your chupie.” Or, “No.”

She likes:
1. Eggs and pasta
2. Boomer
3. Other children
4. Mom or dad spinning or swinging her
5. Tickles
6. Hanging upside down

She’s been to:
1. Jamestown TN
2. Dallas TX
3. Austin Tx
4. Weslaco TX
5. St. Louis MO

Updates and Lists

So I’ve been absent for a long while. I’m sorry I’m not sorry. I’ve been enjoying my baby and enjoying being able to take her outside FINALLY!

Violet has been making lots of progress in her development over the past 2-3 months. Let’s see… At the ripe old age of 7 months she can:
1. Crawl
2. Pull herself up to standing
3. Sit unsupported
4. Growl
5. Screech like a velociraptor (or pterodactyl)
6. Eat real food
7. Make me laugh like nobody else can

So as you can see, she is a genius. I’m already writing her acceptance speech for the Nobel Prize, or the Award for Most Beautiful Amazing Person Ever. It is a very prestigious award.

I am really hoping to take advantage of the nice Cleveland summer. Here are some of the things on my summer to do list:
1. Run a race
2. Take Violet to the park
3. Take her swimming
4. Go to the zoo
5. Take her to the farm park (a working farm)
6. Farmers markets!
7. Find an Amish place and check it out!

So far it’s a short list, but don’t worry, we’ll add more!

Don’t get Cocky

Seriously. Don’t even think about it. You will regret it every time. Well, except for the one time it doesn’t blow up in your face and causes you to rationalize every other cockiness attempt.

Every parent does it at one point. You can’t help it. Your sweet little angel is being so good! How could they turn on you and remind you that THEY, in fact, are running the show?

So just in case your imagination fails you, I will cite some completely fictional examples.

1. When your daughter falls asleep in your arms and you think you can just place her in her crib to get chores done… DON’T GET COCKY! She will wake up and not be able to be put back down until midnight at least!

2. You go the the store or run one quick errand without much of a fuss from your daughter. This gives you the confidence to try and accomplish one or 2 more errands. DON’T GET COCKY! She WILL have a melt down and cry the rest of the way home!

3. You have been having a good day and her day has gone completely on schedule. You then decide to go out to eat hoping she’ll sleep the whole time. DON’T GET COCKY! There will be so many new things to see that you’ll have a cranky mess on your hands that is too stimulated to sleep.

4. When your daughter cries all the way from your parent’s house to the airport (45 minutes or more), then when you finally make it to the airport and drop off your step-father, she finally dozes off. You decide that since she’s finally asleep back there, you’ll make a quick stop to Wataburger. NOOOOO! You got cocky! You will now have another 45 minute long cry fest.

So to sum it up, the lesson nobody teaches you beforehand. Don’t get cocky.

Mom like me

My mother and I are close. I KNOW a lot of people claim that, but for us it is true. We talk about absolutely everything. She truly is my best friend. It wasn’t always that way of course. During my teen years I was SO embarrassed by my over protective mother who wanted to call my friends parents to confirm any plans we kids would make. If that wasn’t humiliating enough, she wanted to do this for my dates as well! Didn’t she know she was supposed to blindly trust her teenage daughter and the other kids she wanted to hang with? Didn’t she know she was supposed to turn a blind eye to any antics and let me do whatever I wanted? Didn’t she know that being involved in my life would ruin it?

I look back on that and am so thankful to have a mother that cared enough to embarrass me. And now, like I said before we are besties. I watch shows like Gilmore Girls and am truly happy because what me and my mom have is , perhaps, even better than that!

Now I look at the angelic face of my daughter. I hope I can be as embarrassing as my mom was, and yet be cool when she needs it. I want to be her protector and grow into her best friend. I see other women, like my step sister for example, and I think they are such better mothers than me. God did not make me a patient person. It is something I struggle with every day. My niece Janie supposedly cried a LOT. I mean a lot when she was little. They soon found out she had reflux, got her on meds and everyone is much happier in their house. Anyhoo, I say that because I look at Aleaha and think she is super mom. When Violet cries and fusses I’m so quick to be mad and frustrated. I yell and get upset. Then, when I’ve had MY tantrum, I’m left feeling guilty because I think of Aleaha and Janie. Violet doesn’t have reflux. I am blessed. But, Aleah said something that rang true with me the other day. She said, “Every time a baby cries it feels like forever, you are a good mom don’t feel bad…”

This statement made me think. I think God places us in our daughter’s (or son’s) lives on purpose. He gave me the mom I needed. Janie has the loving patient mom she needs, and hopefully, Violet has the mom she needs. I couldn’t be a good mom to Janie because God knew she needed Aleaha, and the same with Violet. We all just have to strive to follow The Lord and try to be the best mother he wants us to be for our children. You can’t compare because no to moms or babies are alike. I love my little bunny and I can’t wait to be her bestie.

Aleaha, I still think you are super mom though! ūüėČ

Violet on Tour

So I am retrying my hand at blogging with¬†a new site! ¬†My goal is to post approximately once a week. ¬†We’ll see.

On to my thoughts this week. ¬†Traveling with an infant… Alone. ¬†Yikes! ¬†Well first of ¬†all, nobody told me that changing her routine would lend to a fussier version of my sweetheart. ¬†She has been fabulous, but when you aren’t used to fussiness it can be hard to handle!

When grandma suggests a stroller take her advice! Even this baby wearing momma needed one for the airport.  I felt crazy trying to juggle a huge diaper bag, backpack, baby, and carseat through the airport.  Also, I should have counted on that car seat becoming so heavy as I had to walk all the way to the farthest gate in the airport.  Rest breaks were a must!

I was also able to drive 14 hours across the country from Tennessee to Texas without too  much drama from her!  She can barely drive to the store, but 14 hours? Easy peasey!

Hopefully when you travel you have an awesome stepsister who lets you borrow a bassinet and a bumbo and also lets you try a selection of her cloth diapers. So all in all my advice for moms traveling alone with a baby is have an awesome stepsister, and try to prepare for everything while ¬†knowing in the back of your mind you’ll never be prepared for the curveballs your sweetie throws you!