Thursday, May 16, 2013

Noisy Dress Shoes

When I was little my cousin had this obsession with "noisy dress shoes."  She insisted, emphatically from what I can remember, on wearing shoes that were noisy.  Because noisy equals fancy, and fancy equals pretty, and what little girl doesn't want to be pretty?

A little while ago my grandma sent Lyla this cute little pair of shoes, and immediately she was in love.  As soon as I opened the box she insisted I put them on, and ran around the house so proud of her new shoes.  As she ran around they made this cute little "click, click" with every step, and I couldn't help but remember the noisy dress shoes.  My little Lyla finally had her very own pair. 

To this day they remain her favorite.  She often comes out of her room with her dad first thing in the morning wearing jammies and her noisy dress shoes.  Most of the time they don't match at all, but she loves them, and I swear she holds her head just a bit higher whenever she has them on. 

Here's some pics of her very noisy, fancy, pretty shoes from the first day she got them, and of course one in her jammies too.  :)

- K

Monday, May 13, 2013

Mother's Day

Last year was my first Mother's Day, and going into it I was like, "Woohooo!  I am a MOTHER!  CELEBRATE ME!!!"  And when it wasn't all flowers, and candy, and gifts, gifts, gifts, me, me, me, I was like, "hmmm, Mother's Day, huh?"  I think it probably didn't help that I'd also just moved to this arctic wasteland, and was a liiiittle bitter.

Anyways, this year was so low key, and completely fabulous.  I loved every second and was just so grateful for how blessed I am with an amazing husband that bent over backwards last week to help me get out of a funky mood I just couldn't kick, and my sweet little girl that always manages to bring a smile to my face.

Moral of the story, I guess I'm kind of a spoiled brat.  I'm trying to work on the bratty part...while maintaining the spoiled part.  ;)

Also, I'm pretty sure I have a future tomboy on my hands, and I'm a little scared at the prospect of having a boy someday.  Lyla is the most wreckless little daredevil, and I can't even imagine how much worse it could be with extra testosterone added to the mix.

Hope you mama's had an exra special weekend too!

- K

Friday, May 10, 2013

Love Letters: Dear Lyla

My Dear Lyla Rose,

I wanted to write a letter to you today, mostly for my own reference in case the time comes that I need some reminding.  I love you, baby girl.  Oh, how I love you.  With my whole heart and soul, I love you.  You’re a sweet little thing with the slightest streak of naughty that makes me love you all the more.   The thing is, you’re just a baby now, and we still share such a close and precious bond that today it’s easy to love you.  With your crazy hair, dark brown eyes, chubby cheeks, knuckle dimples, all those rolls, your sweet hugs and kisses, the way you lean on me to read books, and so much more…how could I not love you?

But I realize that some day it may not be so easy.  Some day you might make a decision I disagree with, or life choices that I can’t understand.  There will be times I’m mad at you, or you at me, but I want you to know that no matter what – NO. MATTER. WHAT. – I love you.  Forever and ever you have my heart and my undying, unconditional love. 

I pray that as days continue to fly by that I will remember this.  That you will feel it.  I hope you have comfort in talking to me about anything and everything – the good, the bad, and the ugly.  And more than anything I hope that my response is loving and graceful.  That my response let’s you know that no matter what, it’s ok.  Because it is.  I am yours, and you are mine and you will have my love, support, respect, and praise until the end of time.  No matter who you become, YOU are my dream come true.

Because, as that dumb book that makes your silly mama cry every single time says – I’ll love you forever, I’ll like you for always.  As long as I’m living, my baby you’ll be.

- Your Mama

P.S. Daddy says “ditto.”  And also that he’s always available for beat up duty.  Any time.  Any place.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

15 Months

It seems a little cruel and unusual to celebrate age milestones with doctor visits and shots, but thankfully we had our last two little pricks until her second birthday today!  The poor little thing had a much harder time this go round, complete with pouty lips and nasty looks to the nurse.  Pretty sure she got that from me.

I'm proud to say she's a healthy little bug, growing and developing just as she should.  A lady doesn't share her weight, but she's at 90% for weight, and 32 1/4", which is 93% for height.

Other details not to be forgotten about this precious 15 month stage:

Her can-do attitude: This girl believes she can, and then she does.  And does, and does, and does.  The only time she slows down is when she's sleeping.  No joke.

Her "leadership" skills: I saw once that we should tell little girls that they have good leadership skills rather than that they are bossy.  I'll just leave it at that.

Her communication skills: She is quite clear when communicating what she wants.  She only says a handul of words, but she's found that screaming and pointing are also strong indicators.  When she gets something on her mind, she let's you know, and she will not forget.  That whole "out of sight, out of mind" thing?  Doesn't work in this house.

Her politeness: We've been teaching her a little bit of sign language, one of the signs being "please"...mostly due to her leadership skills.  My theory is if you ask politely, you usually get what you want.  And getting what she wants is exactly what she's interested in.

Her tenderness: She is in the most loving stage, and it completely melts me.  She hugs, rocks, and kisses anything she can get her hands on.  And she's so tender, and sweet.  Loving little pats here and there, and leaning her head on you for a second before running off to the next activity, sweet little hugs, and constant kisses.  I pretty much turn into a puddle 500 times a day.

Have I mentioned I love this girl?

- K

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Dad's Turn- Father Daughter Weekend

I have to admit, when Kas said "Oh, by the way next weekend I have to go to Virginia for the Gold Cup..." I was a little scared.  I mean, I have taken care of the babe by myself many times.  Just not for a whole weekend.  Then I got to thinking how valuable a few focused days with my daughter would be.  A chance to connect just one on one the way her and her mother do almost daily.  So I decided if we were going to do it... we were going to do it big.

And we did just that...

Friday night we dropped mama off at the airport and had happy meals, then took a bath and read every book in the book shelf. 

Saturday we had eggs and bacon and hit the swing set before nap time.  Then we worked out and had lunch before second nap.  Then we shopped for puppies and went to Champps for dinner and the Kentucky Derby.  Lyla loves ponies.

Sunday we had waffles and went for a morning trip to the play ground before nap.  After nap we spent an hour reading every book in the Barnes and Noble kids section and grabbed sandwiches at Panera before picking mama back up at the airport.

In the end it was too short. And I have caught myself several times this week thinking about my baby girl and the fact that she really isn't much of a baby anymore.  I love that little girl so much and her youth already seems so fleeting.  Especially since in the not too distant future to spend this kind of quality time with her I will have to beat up her boyfriend and ground her... I better soak it up while I can!

- R

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Virginia Gold Cup

Last weekend I got to go to Virginia for a work event at the Virginia Gold Cup, a steeplechase horse race held every year on the same day as the Kentucky Derby.  The weather was gorgeous, the hats were amazing, and I even managed to NOT trip and break two gigantic bottles of Kettle One all over myself before the races even began (which is exactly what happened last year...long story.)

Lyla and Ryan also had a fab little daddy-daughter weekend, which you'll hear more about tomorrow!  :)

- K

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Love Letters: Feeling Like a Failure

Becoming a mommy has made me realize what is really important in life.  Some days are some days I actually feel like I want to give up.  I feel guilty when some days I get up and just go through the mom motions without finding much joy (don't get me wrong, this isn't often, and I do LOVE being a mommy, but it does happen).  Somehow I get caught up in society's idea of what a mom should be.  The pressure to look a certain way after giving birth, to be crafty, happy, up before anyone, with the house spic-and-span, laundry not only washed, but folded AND put away, dinner cooking by 9am, tomorrow's dinner being planned while we do our daily one hour workout, immediately followed by doing our hair, makeup, putting on the nice clothes that we had plenty of time to shop for, then getting the supplies out of the perfectly organized, PINTEREST inspired closet to do the 5 art projects planned for the afternoon.  In reality, it's 7am, the baby was up all night with a fever...or just because he has decided that at 20 months old he still doesn't want to sleep through the night.  We get our coffee (AHHH, sweet coffee) and our mind already starts thinking about all the stuff that NEEDS to be done, and all the stuff that most likely WILL NOT get done. So already, at 7:30am, you feel like a failure as not only a mom, but also a wife.

My new quest, as a mom, a wife, and a friend, is to remember what is important.  To look at each laugh, new word learned, every time Carter learns to jump off of something new without falling, each new animal sound, every time my husband has a home cooked meal that is "actually pretty good", and every time I look at the laughing, smiling, happiest faces of the two loves in my life and know that I have succeeded.  A good quote from a fellow blogger, "We make mistakes, we just have to learn from them.  We're out of breath, racing, and exhausted, but truly not failing.  Failing means stopping.  Not getting up, not trying, not giving.  That's not me."

So, as I post this today, I am not failing, I am going.  I may not be going fast, or forward, but I am going.  I know God gave me the chance to be the mommy to an amazing boy and the wife to this wonderful man and he won't let me fail at that!

Every night I go in to watch Carter sleep before we go to bed.  As I stand there, I quickly forget all the struggles of the day and am again just smitten with this perfect little boy that I get to call my son.  There is no job more difficult or more rewarding than this right here...and this right here is all that matters!

- Charlotte Collins

Facebook: Charlotte Christine Photography


Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Minnesota Zoo

While my fam was in town last week we took a quick trip to the zoo to see their baby farm animals exhibit.  Is it weird that there's a farm at the zoo, or is that just me?  Anyways, we had a blast, which included lots of running and screaming from Lyla, goat petting, and maybe just a little verbal abuse for the teenagers working at the cluster F ice creamery. 

Here are some pics from the day.  :)

- K

these guys were cute.  until you looked into their eyes.

and i thought nursing was rough...these gals have it bad.


there's spit in there somewhere.