Wednesday, January 25, 2012

wordless wednesday {snow baby}

being an iowa native, i am still shocked that we didn't get enough snow to play in until mid-january this year.  it was worth the wait though, as this little boy couldn't seem to get enough of it!

in fact, his two most used words currently are "side" (outside) and "snow".  he did a great job keeping all his snow gear on, which was good because it was super cold.  

while he complained that he was cold after a while, he was really upset when we came inside.

i am really thankful for hot cocoa,

and a wonderful daddy who is willing to tromp in the snow with our little guy....

happy winter all!

linking up this wordless wednesday post with:

Monday, January 23, 2012

goodbye morning nap

our little peanut has crossed yet another milestone that pushes him farther and farther away from baby-hood and closer and closer to toddler-hood.  

actually, the other day while i watched him sitting on the couch, holding onto his elmo movie case, totally engrossed in his show; i thought i almost saw a glimpse of the toddler-hood slipping into boy-hood.  

he is growing up.

despite my attempts to keep his schedule sacred, he has officially given up his morning nap.  for four days in a row nowhe has only had an afternoon nap.  

while there are moments (a few of them even extreme) during the morning when i know he is grumpy just because he is tired, this whole schedule shift is reinforcing a longer afternoon nap and seems to be giving him the energy to enjoy his evenings right up until bedtime.  this is so important since those are the few precious hours that daddy gets to see him during the week.

he is still really attached to this blankie......and he needs his paci to sleep too.  we have started keeping those two items sacred for sleeping time only; leaving them in the crib when he wakes up.  this seems to be fine with him, and seems to help solidify the sleep routine as he is excited to go get his blankie and paci at night-night time. 

i can't believe how much he fills up his crib in comparison to how tiny he used to look in there. 

September 2010 - 2 weeks old

and i really can't believe that for as much of a monkey-boy as he is everywhere else in the house, he hasn't attempted to climb out of it yet.  (knock on wood)

but i love how sweet and angelic and even baby-like he looks when he sleeps.

he is still my sweet baby boy.

he always will be. ;)

Friday, January 20, 2012


you are never fully dressed until you are appropriately accessorized. 
(i love how the necklace is hanging off his ear.....)

even if you are just planning to sit in your rocker and watch an elmo movie.

i really don't know if this is something he learned from me (very possible) or from his bestest gal pal, flora (who loves necklaces, hats and shoes!), but he has refused to take these off since he put them on several hours ago.  

i wonder what his daddy will think when he gets home......

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

what happened to date night?

so back in my early baby-bump days my hubs and i made an agreement to never let go of our regular date nights.  we were thrilled about the upcoming arrival of baby baum, but we knew that one of the best things we could give to him/her was a strong and healthy marriage.  of course date nights weren't always fancy, and often involved ramen noodles and our favorite episodes of csi; but the point was that we were choosing to focus on and do things that were about "us".  

the hubs and i.  
just the two of us.  

 i love date nights! i love the excitement of having the undivided attention of my best friend.  i love going out to eat at fun new eateries or simply lovin' on our old favorites.  i love holding hands in the movies over a box of popcorn.  i love just sipping lattes together while reflecting on fun past memories or daydreaming about the future.

these sorts of dates have been fewer and farther between since hendrix made an appearance in our lives.  as our family moved from two to three, our emphasis on date-nights simply moved to the back burner.

at the beginning it was because he was breastfeeding and didn't take a bottle well.  this limited us to short outings. then when he started sticking to a relatively structured routine, i think we were afraid to throw it off, so we simply stayed home.  then it seemed like he was just growing and changing so fast and just so much fun to spend time with that we didn't want to waste those precious weekend moments away from him. 

oh, and when you add the cost of having a nights have now doubled in price......

i wanna change this.  
i wanna make time for us.  

not just a little bit of leftover time at the end of a long day when we both collapse exhausted.....but some of the real 'us'

this past weekend we asked my folks to watch hendrix overnight so we could have an evening of fun with some other couples, stay out however late we wanted, sleep in, enjoy a relaxing breakfast with no elmo movies or thrown pancakes....

well it didnt happen quite like that as i came down with the flu, and hubs had a head cold induced migraine.....but you know what?  

we wont give up that easily. 
we will try again. 

because us is important.

date nights, here we come!

Friday, January 13, 2012

money resolutions

this is the time of year for starting things anew; and this post seems appropriately timed as the follow-up to my post about our son's newly acquired saving habits. neither one of those factors, however, weighs nearly as strongly in our new money resolves as the course we just completed by dave ramsey.

i admit that i was somewhat skeptical and hesitant about this subject material for our most recent church small group study. the men in the group seemed pretty jazzed about it, and in an effort to not be the heel dragger, i went along for the ride with a smile on my face.

don't get me wrong here -  i didn't think that we had it all figured out when it comes to money, BUT i was worried that this strange guy was going to insist we do radical things with our income.

we are about average as they come.....mid-twenties couple with two incomes, a mortgage, a sweet toddler and lots of daydreams about how we want to live out the american dream.  we had already started our retirement planning (insert pat-on-the-back), opened an account to save for our child's college education, and had a little nest egg saved up for a rainy day.  basically i thought we were doing what everyone else was doing and it seemed perfectly fine to me. why fix it?

fast forward three months to the completion of our course and the hubs and i were doing some online vacation planning last night.  I got an email from macaroni kid with a link to a fun family resort in florida that is really close to the aquiriam where winter the dolphin lives.  Since our son adores animals, loves swimming and will still fly free until next fall it sounded like the perfect inspiration for our 2012 family vacation!

we found a super quaint beach house to rent (travelling with a toddler sounds more appealing when the accomadtions include a kitchen and a separate bedroom for baby's pack'n play), the location in florida sounds super tempting for spring break in the midst of an iowa winter, and the flights are actually not so bad if we leave on a friday and come back on a thursday.


as we started to tally up the total cost of this trip (don't forget to add the car rental, aquarium admission, grocery budget, new swimsuit purchases, etc...) and compared it to the sinking fund vacation account that we started a couple months back, we had a serious imbalance in the budget.

what to do now?

we actually quite easily looked at each other and agreed - we better stay closer to home (within driving distance) and plan our vacation a little later in the year so our budget has time to grow a little first.

wow. what a change of heart.

last year we would have thrown it all on the credit card without hesitation because we wouldn't want to miss this awesome opportunity to create fun memories with our kiddo.

this year though, we have made paying off our debts  a priority (2 credit cards down and auto loan/school loans we are coming for you next!), we have created a budget and resolved to make only choices that stay within it, and most importantly we are talking about money and making decisions about what we do with it TOGETHER!

so all those nagging what if's -

what if winter isn't there in a couple years when we can afford to pay cash for this trip?

what if hendrix doesn't like dolphins anymore then?

what if we have another child by then and we won't all fit in that cute beach house?

what if we are missing a once in a lifetime opportunity to create fun family memories?

are replaced with our resolve that -

getting out of debt is the right thing for us to do for our family's future.

spending less money doesn't mean that we are going to have less fun.

and by doing this now so we can become debt free in the next couple years, we will be able to afford even better vacations in the future!
we can't wait ;)

so i suppose for now we will just go watch dolphin tale again and revisit trip planning again in a few weeks.  if you have any great ideas for family fun, please share!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

wordless wednesday {saving for college}

putting money in his "pinny bank" is definitely one of hendrix's favorite activites.  ever since we deposited all the coins that he had acquired into his bank account, he has been obsessed with filling it back up.  he finds coins on the floor, digs them out of our pockets, or puts them in his pockets to save for his 'pinny bank'.

keep it up pal.  college is pretty expensive!

linking up this wordless wednesday post with:

Sunday, January 8, 2012

favorite photos from 2011

recapping the previous year seems like a fabulous way to start a new year.  

there has been a recurring trend that i have noticed among some of my blogging friends to post the 'top 11 photos of 2011'.  
i imagine that many of them didn't have some 350+ photos of each month of last year to choose from....

this was the best i could do.

enjoy my meager 28 favorite photos from 2011.

here's to another year! 

happy 2012