Friday, May 27, 2011

For the Love of Walmart

First off, don't judge. I know you wouldn't, but in case you get tempted to, don't. So here goes: I am absolutely, positively, over-the-moon in love with Walmart. It has become my favorite place on planet Earth. Literally.

As you may or may not know, the little one and I are together 24/7 (one of the perks of medical life), and so sometimes Mommy needs a break but has exhausted all of her options (Dinosaur Train, playing outside, the playroom, reading books, taking a walk, the park, food, milk, etc.).

This is when Walmart steps in.

Just about every day, and at least every other day, the hubbs will ask me something like, "Will you pick up some of my face wash?" Or I'll notice that we're almost out of milk. Or whatev. And I know--I know--I could nip into Walgreen's, or wait and just go one day a week and save blah-blah-blah in gas and it's safer and yeah yeah whatever I don't want to hear it.

"Of course I'll get your face wash, honey!" And there it is: my excuse to go to Walmart. I know I must sound insane. I know that most moms despise Walmart or going shopping with their little ones. And trust me, it's not because my son acts like some saint while we're in there that I love it so much.

It's big. It's cold. I can go in my workout clothes. As long as I throw the first thing I see at my son (a box of Oreos, a bag of turkey, a package of M&Ms) and he has something to entertain himself with, then we're golden. I walk up and down the aisles. I know all the old ladies that work at Walmart and how old their grandchildren are. I know where everything is. And the good thing is that ever since I got married, I've become more and more frugal (NOT in an annoying way), and so I'm not even slightly tempted to get anything other than the face wash. And who cares about the extra gas money to get there and back at least five days a week? Momma's happy. Baby's happy. And honey, you can't ever put a price tag--even with a rollback--on that. :)

Gone Fishin'

Just like some people cannot bear the thought of starting the day without a cup of coffee, my son is a sweet terror until he has his (entire) bowl of Apples and Cinnamon Quaker oatmeal. This morning, I was distracted because my husband was in the kitchen, thus my timing was off for shoveling the oatmeal into little one's mouth every five seconds. "Mow (More)," he said. And just as I was spooning mow oatmeal to give him mow, he reached down into the crevices of his highchair, pulled out an old goldfish, and popped it into his mouth. He proceeded to do this two more times during his breakfast when Mommy wasn't fast enough at delivering the food. That's right, my son is storing away food like a little squirrel. He's hoarding away his cheddar explosion goldfish for when the long, foodless seconds arise. :)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Three Years Ago

Journal entry from October 22, 2006: "Whoever marries this boy is a lucky girl!"

Three years ago today--that would be May 24, 2008--my sweet boyfriend (now hubby) got down on one knee at Cedar Falls and popped the question. I can still remember looking down, seeing him on one knee with a ring, and hearing him ask, "Will you marry me?" What a sweet, sweet day that was! :)

You can see the ring box in his pocket! :)

Cedar Falls

Video: That's One Way to Teethe

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Video: A New Trick

Trip to Texas

I had so much fun this past Friday and Saturday! I flew to Dallas Friday afternoon (amid the lovely storms) and got to visit two of my best friends. We had a blast doing a bunch of wedding stuff, eating at amazing restaurants, and catching up on each other's lives. It had been a little over a year and a half since we'd seen each other. (We've since promised not to go that long without visiting!) Although, we will all be seeing each other in August for Kacie's big day! :) Here are a few pics of the weekend happenings in the Lone Star State...

Okay, first I have to post a picture of us "back in the day." Our good ole' Baylor days...

The gorgeous/breathtaking/stunning/awe-inspiring church where the wedding will be taking place...

Downtown Fort Worth...

Lunch date at Uno's...

Our completely unhealthy but seriously delicious pizza...

A picture from the plane ride back to Arkansas...

My guys were so excited to see me that they got on their phones and did some work ;) ...

"The most beautiful discovery true friends make is that they can grow separately without growing apart." -Elizabeth Foley

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Medical Wives

This past year, I have had the immense pleasure of being in a Bible study with other medical wives. I have felt beyond blessed by this amazing group of women who have gone through it all in terms of kids, residencies, fellowships, moving away from friends and family, away rotations, on and on and on.

I have been in so many good Bible studies over the years, but I've never taken away as much as I've taken away from this group. I remember the first time I heard about the Bible study, I thought, Thank goodness! There needs to be a group for prayer and support over medical wives! And the first time I came, I remember that I wanted to collapse in tears. I was overjoyed!

Understanding is a powerful thing, and it felt so refreshing to be with other women who understood what I was going through. This year, we read through The Power of a Positive Wife, which is a book that I would highly recommend to any wife. More than anything that I gleaned from the book though, I watched the women around me and how they conducted themselves as moms and medical spouses, and it inspired me (and continues to inspire me) to be a better person. I am so grateful that God put these precious women in my life!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The Pirate Predicament

For the past several months, I've been walking around town looking like I could bellow out, "Raise the Jolly Roger!" and use words like "Landlubber," or "Ahoy!"

That's right. I've been a modern-day mommy pirate.

It's amazing to me that I can't feel my earring being pulled out of my ear and clattering on the floor in Hobby Lobby or Babies R Us, or that no one stops to say, "Excuse me, ma'am, but your baby just violently yanked your earring out of your ear and everyone except for you just heard it and saw it happen."

But, alas, no. What winds up happening is that at the end of the day when my husband gets home, he inevitably looks at me and asks, "Where's your other earring?"

Shiver me timbers! Ugh. Not again.

So yes, Pirate Mommy here, saying that if you see me out and about with only one silver hoop earring in, I do want you to know that I am perfectly aware of the fact that I look like a pirate. :)

Monday, May 9, 2011

Kitchen Hutch

I have walked past my brother's old desk in pieces in my parents' garage about a gazillion times. But tonight, I stopped, looked at it, and asked my dad if we could have it. "Sure," he said.

So we threw it in the back of the truck, set it up in the kitchen, I painted a green border around the bottom surface, put out some of my Lenox Opal Innocence tea cups and saucers, an Arthur Court piece, and some other odds and ends, and voila!

Saturday, May 7, 2011


Tomorrow is Mother's Day, and I couldn't possibly be more excited. I've wanted to be a mom since I was a little girl, and I don't know that there is a more fulfilling, scary, joyful, challenging, exhausting, life-giving role on earth.

Now that I'm a mom, I appreciate my mom like never before. I truly believe that you cannot fully understand your parents until you are one. Nearly every day, I think, How did Mom do all this!? And then I pause, am encouraged, and think, If Mom could do this, then I can do this. She is a constant encourager and presence, even when I'm not around her. I think of all the times she had to drive for hours listening to screaming, all the bows she had to tie and scraped knees she had to bandage, all the sleepless nights, giving birth FOUR times, getting up every single morning to pack our lunches, balancing driving us back and forth between piano-ballet-volleyball-oops! Mom, I left my book at school-softball-cheerleading-gymnastics-tennis-on-and-on, tucking me in every night, always making me feel unconditionally loved and cherished. I have learned so much from my mother about how to be a wonderful mom. I still hear her advice ringing in my head when I encounter situations day to day. Thank you, Mom.

I will never forget when I stared down at the floor at the pregnancy test and saw it there: pregnant. I walked, weak-kneed, into the bedroom, and literally collapsed in my husband's arms with tears of pure joy streaming down my face. I was going to be a mother. I was going to be a mother. I was going to be a mother! I felt so blessed and so excited.

I needed to write these things down today, because the fact is that motherhood is enormously rewarding and enormously exhausting. I have barely slept in the past five days, and the little one has just about been driving me loco. I needed to stop and remember what I wrote in my Mommy Journal one year ago:

Dear Tiny,
      Today is Mother's Day, and I've been thinking about you all day! I can't wait to see your face, hear you laugh, and hold you in my arms. I love you!
                                         Love always, Mom

As tired and as much as I'd like to rip my hair out and go to bed for the next 24 hours, I still remember the moment when I held my precious son in my arms and felt his warmth against me for the very first time. I love being a mom more than anything else in my life other than loving and serving my precious Lord. Thank You, God, for the blessing of children! Thank you for the tears, heartache, exhaustion, joy, love, laughter! Thank You for using my son to show me, more than anything else, just how much You truly cherish me.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Busy, Busy!

The little one and I are so busy! We have been soaking up this wonderful sunshine lately, and loving every second of it! :)

We've been out to the Big Dam Bridge...

We've been to the park...

We've been on picnics...

We've been to the Old Mill...

And of course we've been playing in the front yard nearly every second that we're not running errands...

I love being a busy bee with my sweet honey! :)

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Being Silly!

We're a silly couple, we are! We laugh, we play tickle monster, we rub food on our noses! What can I say, we love, love, love being silly! We listen to silly music in the car; we pretend to be lions and dogs in the playroom; we always add bubbles to the bathwater; we let each other drink out of each others cups--momma trying the sippy cup, little one trying the glass cup; we go on a walk every day and stop when we hear dogs and birds, which we of course refer to as "dog" and "dir"; we roll the windows down when we're driving around town; we knock things off the shelves at Walmart and say "UUHH OHHH" really loudly in silly voices; we wake up from naps and play hide and seek, with mommy doing the hiding around the crib and little one hitting his forehead on the crib to find her; we call each other silly names like "Goose-ta-loose," "Nater Gater," "Butch Cassidy," and "Vanilla Puddin"; we hop like bunny rabbits when we read Guess How Much I Love You; we spit out our chicken and macaroni and cheese when it's not warm; we rip apart the playroom mat and chew on it ferociosly; we play outside in the grass every day, and each time a car or truck goes by we say "CAR!", and each time a person walks by we wave and say "HI!"; we tear the grass out and toss it around; we clap clap clap and shake our heads nooooo; we sing silly songs and tap our feet in the kitchen; we play "see if I can stay on the changing table" during a diaper changing/wresting and wriggling battle; we brush our teeth by chewing on the handle of our green alligator toothbrush. We absolutely positively love being silly!

Monday, May 2, 2011

My Celebration

That's right, I'm celebrating on this cold, rainy day! Why?

Because my husband is halfway through with medical school!

Unless you've actually gone through medical school/been married to someone who is going through medical school, I'm sorry, but you just cannot know the sheer joy that these little landmarks bring! I won't go into the heartache, unbelievably long hours, exhaustion, giddy laughter, fights, stress, sleepless nights and zombie-like days that make up going through medical school. All I will say is that I am happy that those exhausting first two years are O.V.E.R. :)

I am beyond proud of my husband, who studies anywhere from (at least) twelve hours to eighteen hours a day (that's seven days a week) and is an amazing husband and father. Way to go, love!! These two years have been hard, but I would not trade them for anything (yes, that's right). Medical couples, I think, have a unique opportunity to grow up real fast in terms of understanding that love means not fighting when you want to so badly, being committed to each other when you don't know where you're going to be in a few years or what you'll be doing, seeing each other sometimes only twenty minutes all day, and carrying a general feeling of stress around twenty-four seven. I'm not making it sound very glamorous am I? Well, folks, it's not.

But, how did I celebrate!?

I greeted my hubby at the door, gave him a big kiss, told him I was proud of him....

...then promptly dropped the sweet baby in his arms and headed back to our room to take an hour-and-a-half long bubble bath, where I relaxed and read April and May's Southern Living magazines cover to cover. For me, this was the perfect celebration. :)

Sunday, May 1, 2011

A Raging Stream Runs Through It

My husband took this video behind our house.

My question is: Inner tubing anyone?