Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Changing Direction

When I started this blog a few years ago, I wasn't exactly sure what I wanted to do with it and where exactly I wanted it to end up. I wanted it to be a journal, from me to you. But I also had this idea that it could be a way to not only connect with family that I don't speak to on a regular basis, but also a way to connect with other Mom's over the internet and share ideas. Having concentrated on the latter two for the past couple of years, I have found that I was censoring what I was writing for fear of Oversharing. I know that the internet is vast and literally anyone can read my words and see the pictures I post. I was cautious of that. I didn't want to put you, or anyone else, in danger. So I would be vague and dance around the point sometimes in order to not offend any readers. Then one day, I was thinking, "This is for Madi. Not everyone else in the world. Who cares what they think?!" So, like the title says, I'm changing direction. I made the blog private (where only I can see the posts) and from now on, this will only serve as a journal. From me, to you.

I definitely feel more open to the whole thing now. I don't have to worry about using too many details or being absolutely honest about anything. This is OUR space. No one else's.

I do keep a written journal for you, which I cherish so much, but I've found this to be so much easier. I'm afraid to take the journal away from the house for fear I might misplace it so the only time I can write is when I'm home and have a free minute. However, when there's a 3 year old around, free time is few and far in between. I always have my phone or tablet with me though. So this is definitely more practical. Though I will do my best to keep the journal alive.

Anyway, you're growing, like a weed. You are FUNNY. Yesterday we were having lunch at Panera Bread and a college-aged girl walked by in a shirt that showed her entire stomach. Like, it stopped right under her boobs and her pants were low. You said, "Mommy, why does she have a baby shirt on?! She's a big girl. I can see her belly button!" You were so shocked and I couldn't stop laughing, though you didn't notice. The girl and her friend sat down at a table near us and you couldn't quit looking at her. I said, "Baby, it's not nice to stare." "I... can't... stop... staring..." you replied. You have the opinions of a 10 year old, I swear. You tell me I should re-polish my nails when they get chipped, you compliment me on my jewelry, and tell me when what I'm wearing looks bad. I can't wait to her your opinions when you actually get to be a teenager. Whew.

You've also taken an interest in dressing yourself lately. The only days I get to pick what you wear are the days that you go to school, and that's only because I get your dressed while you're still half-asleep and you barely know what's going on. When you are awake, you say, "I can't pick out my clothes, I got it!!" I have to admit, you do a very good job. Some fashion rules are broken but you always get compliments on how beautiful you look.

You're getting better at communicating. Instead of throwing fits (which you still do sometimes) you tell me what you want. There's still a whine in your voice, but hey, we're getting there. This morning you said, "I want to go to the library reeeeeally bad. Can we go?" Though that may not sound like much, it is. A few months ago it would have been, "Library, NOOOOWWW!' So, like I said, we're getting there.

Michael and Shannon recently found out that they are expecting their second baby. We talked about how there is a baby growing in Shannon's tummy and that we don't know if it's a boy or a girl, but that we would know soon. It's supposed to be a secret, per Shannon's request, but you are so tickled that you tell just about everyone we see, even if they are complete strangers. It's like you suddenly remember, get excited, and blurt out, "SHANNON'S HAVING A BABY ITS IN HER TUMMY GROWING AND WE DON'T KNOW IF ITS A GIRL BUT WE WILL ONE DAY ITS GOING TO BE SO CUTE" or whatever combination of those sentiments. You have a baby radar just like Mommy :)

I'm going to do my best to post here about every week. Hopefully this will be a good place to share stories and updates easily.

I love you.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Sneak Peeks

Since Madi will be three soon, I wanted to get some pictures made, not only of her, but of the both of us together. I take pictures of her constantly but I'm rarely in them. So, a couple weekends ago, we drove to Montgomery and met my cousin Melisa {Sour Apple Photography} to do a photo shoot. Well, today I got some of the "sneak peeks" back and I'm in LOVE. Melisa, you never disappoint. Can't wait to see the rest!

Our Weekend in San Antonio

Over the weekend, we made the drive to San Antonio with Nonna, Papaw, Michael, Shannon and Kylie. We had breakfast and then headed that way. After a few snack stops along the way, we made it to the hotel and settled into our room. The very first thing Madi did when we walked into the hotel room was to find the bed farthest from the door, declare it hers, and JUMP on it. Kylie soon came and joined in on the fun while the rest of us unpacked.
We went out for an early dinner and then came back to the hotel room to swim. Madi, of course, stayed in the hot tub. If there's one, she doesn't care about the pool. Kylie made two friends and they played Marco Polo for hours. Madi's face was red and she was sweating by the time she finally got out of the hot tub.
The next morning, we got up early, had breakfast and drove to Sea World. It was HOT. The park wasn't crowded like I expected though- at least not at first. I was a little worried about how Madi would react with the shows, but she once again surprised me. There was only one show that she got a little freaked out at. It was called Pets Ahoy and it was all about shelter pets doing tricks. Well, towards the end, a cat ran along pegs around the walls of the theater and when he got to the back of the theater, birds flew from the back to the front. It was a pretty cool trick, but it scared Madi a little bit. She hugged Nonna until the show was over. But other than that, she danced, clapped, sang, and cheered during all of them. I was pleasantly surprised. Michael and I rode the Great White three times, one was videotaped (below). Michael, Shannon, Kylie and I went on a water ride while Madi slept in the stroller. We waited for about an hour in line to ride it. The whole time we were teasing Shannon that she would be the one to get soaked. Guess what- We were right. I barely got wet and she was dripping. So worth the 1 hour wait ;)
You can't see much, but it still makes me laugh. :)
We stayed from 10 in the morning until 5 in the afternoon. It was hot and we were all tired and hungry by the time we left. We went back to the hotel, got cleaned up, and headed to Saltgrass for dinner. Needless to say, we all slept very well that night. Sunday morning we got up and had breakfast and then on our way back home we went to the Tanger Outlet Mall. It was a nice little stop before going back home. We got a few things, some chocolate at this little store, Madi and I got to pet this adorable little Bulldog, and then we headed back home.
It was such a nice little weekend away before school starts back up for Madi and I. Sea World was wonderful but the time bonding with family was even better.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Vacation 2013: Santa Rosa Beach, FL!

I kind of dropped the ball on this one. Ok, really dropped the ball. We got back on the 20th and I am just now sitting down to write this wrap-up post about our Vacation.
Never in my life has a family trip been so chaotic. It all started the morning we were leaving. As we were packing the truck with suitcases, Madi started puking. This lasted the entire drive there (12 hours with all the stops) and until Tuesday. She did NOT feel good. The ride there was pretty smooth, Madi just slept when she wasn't sick. We got to the room, and settled in. Madi's spirits were high, considering, and she was really excited to "get to bacation." She loved our balcony and she really loved running all around the condo.

Kylie missed her parents- a lot. Her being upset plus Madi being sick definitely added some stress to the whole situation. But family vacations usually aren't that relaxing, right? ;) Kylie was only upset at night for the first few days, then she got into the swing of things. Plus, by Tuesday night or so, Madi had kicked whatever bug she had and was ready to roll. We spent a lot of time at the beach, and at the pool. Madi loved playing in the sand and getting in the "warm bathtub" as she called the hottub. She was scared of the ocean though. She kept saying that the waves were going to get her. Kylie had a lot of fun in the waves though. She wore Papaw out in the ocean. Daddy and I had to take turns with her. But Madi was content to sit in the sand and play with the sand toys. Though Kylie and I did find a sand crab one day. I saw it poking its head out of a hole in the sand, so I stuck a toy shovel right behind it to block it and pitched it up. It landed on the ground with it's pincher's up. You should have heard the squeal that came out of Madi. (and Kylie & I...)


We spent one day at the Gulfarium, which we do every year. It was especially cool this year because Madi was old enough to really know what was going on. She loved the sea otters, who she said were just like puppies. One of them put their face right up to the glass where Madi was, and Madi loved it. We saw the dolphin show and Madi clapped the whole way through. It was a lot of fun. We picked out some cool toys at the gift shop (highlight of the trip for both of the girls, lol) for family. Madi picked out a sand toy thing that was an ice cream making kit. It had scoops, a half gallon bucket, a sprinkle shaker, etc. Both the girls played for hours in the sand with it.

We also had dinner at the Boardwalk, something else we do every year. Madi played on a playground on the beach at sunset, we walked the pier, had a nice dinner, and got Italian ice cream. Also, that was an "unplugged" night. Meaning, I had my phone off. So, no pictures. But turning it off was definitely worth it. You can't enjoy a sunset on the beach if you can't quit staring at your phone screen...
We visited the Baytowne Wharf again this year also. Madi rode the carousel and played on the playground. Our festivities got cancelled though when giant black stormclouds began to form overhead. Everyone was running back to their cars. Luckily, we got back to the truck before the sky fell out.
We left early (3am) Saturday morning hoping for an uneventful ride home. That wasn't what happened though. We got rear-ended in Louisiana. No one was hurt but it did some damage to the truck. This vacation had quite a bit more twists and turns to it than normal, but I know one thing to be true. We'll definitely look back on it and laugh later on. ;)
More pictures...

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Madilyn, 7/12

A picture of Madi, once a month, for a year.
I managed to get so many good pictures of her while we were in Florida, but this one is my favorite. She looks like she's posing. Right now she is looking forward to her birthday! She talks about it constantly- who's going to be there, if there will be cake, if we will sing to her, etc. I can't wait to see how she reacts when it all happens next month!

Friday, June 28, 2013

Madilyn, 6/12

A picture of Madi, once a month, for a year.
Two pictures for June because I couldn't pick between the two. Her sitting still and smiling for the camera is a very rare event these days. We're constantly swimming (hence the tan) and playing. Summer is in full swing around here!
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Saturday, June 22, 2013


Things around here have been pretty quiet lately. I'm not sure I can put into words what I feel, but I will certainly try.
When I first started this blog, I wanted it to be a journal of sorts. I wanted to document Madi and her milestones, our relationship, and our adventures as she grows up. But slowly but surely, I feel like my relationship with this blog has morphed into something very different. I am an avid follower of many blogger mama's and I love reading their stories. Some of them post everyday, if not every other day. I started posting at least two times a week. Then it got a little higher, but then I would - to say it simply- run out of things to say. I find myself searching for topics to write about here, when all I should really be doing is enjoying moments and blogging when I WANT to. I'm afraid that I've fallen away from the true purpose of starting this blog. I know a lot of Mom's nowadays struggle with this. Instead of enjoying time with your kids, you worry about taking the perfect picture, or capturing what's going on, instead of actually *being there* yourself. Keeping up a blog is time consuming and does require thought to keep up. I'm just not sure if "keeping up" is what I should be worrying about. It all sort of seems irrelevant that I'm trying to generate posts for others to read when the real purpose in the beginning was to keep this for myself and my daughter.
I have toyed with the notion of going completely private. If I do that, only people specifically invited will be able to see my blog (and blog posts). I think that maybe if I go private, I can get back to what I originally wanted to do here: journal. Also, I find myself sheilding what I post and what I say because vitually anyone can read my material. If you search "Madi and Me" on Google, my daughter shows up. While I know that pictures I post on the internet can be seen by anyone (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc) I feel like I'm spending a lot of time being vague about where we are and what we're doing. Instead of saying, "We're at her favorite park {insert name here}" I say, "She loves going to the park." It's just not as intimate, because I have a fear of oversharing when the wrong people could be reading. I feel like maybe going private will allow me to still write, share with family and friends, and I can be as open and honest as I want to.
Because I want my daughter to be able to read this later in life and laugh and smile at the things I write, I don't feel like I should censor what I say and share.
I'm not sure if any of the things said above remotely make sense. It's something I'm struggling with and feel like I should share. I haven't made a decision yet. Just contemplating my next move.
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Thursday, May 30, 2013

Madilyn, 5/12

A picture of Madi, once a month, for a year.
Completely loving spending her days outside in the sun, and being in the water as much as she can.
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Tuesday, May 28, 2013


Watching: Her forever favorites are Dora The Explorer and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. She's also sort of discovered Doc McStuffins but hasn't really made up her mind whether or not she likes it. She really likes watching Fox & The Hound II and Despicable Me. She giggles for days at both of them.
Reading: We made a Barnes & Noble run a few days ago and got some new books. She loves to read and has a full shelf of books. But a girl can never have too many books, right? So we picked up Octopus Alone, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, and Corduroy. I can remember reading the last two as a kid, and she enjoys them both so much. Octopus Alone drew her attention just by the cover art and she loves the pictures in it. She points at the seahorses, and counts the jellyfish. I'm still not sure though if the Corduroy book we bought beats the lift-the-flap Corduroy's Birthday book she's been obsessed with for months though. Time will tell.

Loving: We went to Splashtown today with Clayton, Sherry, and Brody. I kind of thought that she would be scared of a lot of the stuff and we'd spend a couple hours there and call it a day. Boy did she surprise me. Like always. We spent very close to SIX hours there. We pretty much had to drag her out of the waterpark. She played in the kids area, the wave pool, we floated the lazy river, had snacks, then did it all over again. She was having such a good time. She's really getting the hang of the swimming thing too. We got her some good floaties and she got it down quick. Watching her dance and swim in the water was the cutest thing. I'm so glad we went. She'll definitely be talking about it for awhile. :)

Listening to: Well, we listen to a LOT of Kenny Chesney. If you know me, that doesn't come as a shock. But this little girl loves all music. We were in the wave pool today and all kinds of music was playing (Pit Bull, Jake Owen, Switchfoot, etc) and she was rocking out. When a song would end, she would say, "Make them play another one!" She's got rhythm too!

Making her happy: This is a long list... swimming, playing in the dirt outside, letting Mommy spray me with the waterhose, feeding PupPup sticks (lol), throwing rocks in the pond, picking Granny and Pawpaw flowers, babysitting Brody, going to Splashtown, hanging out with Izzy and Holly, going on dates with Mommy, eating dessert before dinner, Dora gummies, new babies from Nonna & Papaw, getting my nails painted, sharing homemade smoothies with Mommy, pet rocks, building "castles" out of blocks, singing songs before bedtime, cuddling in bed after waking up, going to the toy store, singing the "happy birthday" song, playing outside in the sun all day long.
As always, this post was inspired by the lovely Dani Hampton over at Sometimes Sweet.
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