Being a young mom means we met a little early, but I get to love them longer.

Here are some links to helpful posts I have done in the past :)

Learn about car seat safety HERE!

Need breastfeeding advice? Click HERE for lots of helpful tips!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Our future home.

We're not planning on buying a house until a. we can afford one we want to live in for the rest of our lives, and b. we know if I'll be able to get a job in this area.
So this is me planning WAY ahead. Although, I always do that, right?

Through Pinterest, my future home is coming together. I'll be all set to decorate once we actually have a house!

Our bedroom:
I'm obsessed with yellow and gray together, which is strange because I'm not a big fan of yellow by itself. But when these two colors are together, it's just so beautiful!

Painting circles is easy enough, right?
 I really like the first bedspread. Simple, yet elegant. I also like the pictures above the bed. However, I like the yellow walls in the second picture. Basically our room will be the first picture, but with pale yellow walls (minus the chandelier).


The living room:

I LOVE the color of the walls. I picture lighter floors and dark brown couches/chairs, though, with throw pillows that accent the walls.  

The kitchen:

I can't really find much that I would want for my kitchen. I think I would have to actually see it first, but I really like this color scheme. I could definitely see my kitchen being these colors!

Back yard:

We WILL have this in our backyard. 
There will also be a grill and patio furniture. We love to eat outside when the weather is nice. 

Kids' rooms:
This will mostly depend on how old they are/what they are into at the time. I have a ton of neat ideas pinned, but I can't say that I would definitely use them. 

I did find one thing that I think I could incorporate no matter the theme or colors...
I would do one for Grace and one for Brentley. I think I might actually go ahead and do something like this... maybe as a Christmas gift or birthday present? 


Now, here's my random quirkiness coming through... I think it would be really neat to have quotes from books randomly placed throughout the house.

Like this...

Or this...

I showed this one to Brittany... I think it would fit in our bedroom. 

These are just a few. There are lots of others, but I plan on putting them in places where they fit with the room. And mostly only quotes that are meaningful.

And yes, I am taking over the decorating. Chris said he didn't care how we decorated our future house as long as he had a garage or "mancave" that he could do whatever he wanted to. I'm totally fine with that lol. 

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Writing.

As I've mentioned once before, over the last few months, I've discovered that I like to write. It has become an outlet for stress and something I really enjoy.

This came as a shock to me because I've never enjoyed writing for school. I never considered English or Literature to be my favorite subjects. I've always considered myself to be better at Math and Science... concrete subjects with definite answers.

However, I discovered a tab on my student account that allowed me to view my ACT scores. I always remembered my composite score, but I didn't remember individual scores. I scored higher in both English and Reading than I did in Math and Science. My highest was in Reading with a 29.
I also noticed that I scored for Honors in English on my High School Graduation Test, which is the highest category you can score.

 I never realized that Math and Science weren't truly my best subjects. I never considered myself to be a bad writer. Heck, in high school, I won a make-over for Prom with an essay I submitted. And I also was awarded two scholarships that were both based off of  my academic standing and an essay.

Still, I never really enjoyed writing. Having never really tried to write anything for myself, I was always told what to write and how to write it. I realize now that this is what I hated. The limitations. Not being able to express everything I wanted.

I do remember one particular time where I enjoyed writing. In my tenth-grade Lit. class we got to choose either a person or a decade to write about for a research project. I was fascinated with the 1920's, so I chose to write about that decade. We were allowed to include pictures and weren't restricted to only a few pages. I loved writing for that project. In fact, my teacher kept it because she wanted to use it as an example for future classes. I wonder if she's still using it almost five years later?

I now realize that I enjoy writing if it's entirely my creation. I choose what to write about. I control the story. I decide when I want it to end.

It's amazing really, writing a story. It's like reading a book. I don't know what's going to happen next until it comes to me. Except, with this story, I will be completely satisfied with every last detail. Currently, the story I've written has 30 chapters and almost 82,000 words. And this is just the first book. I know there will be at least one more book, and possibly two more depending on where the story goes.

Now, I have no idea where this will take me. The couple of people who have read it have said they "genuinely enjoyed it" and that it was "just like reading a book bought from the store." Once I have 100% perfected it, I plan on sending it to a few agents and also submitting it to a writing contest that Amazon.com holds once a  year. I feel pretty confident that it is worthy of publishing, and I would absolutely love to see that happen. Although, if it never gets published, I would never regret writing it. I have gained so much from the process. I understand other stories better. I can pick up on underlying meanings. I can also somewhat understand what is going through the author's head.

It's amazing really. Also, the strangest thing happened the other night. I literally dreamt a part for the second book. I instantly wrote it down when I woke up. It;s as if the story is literally a part of me now. It progresses even in my sleep. Crazy.


Sunday, March 17, 2013

Heartless.

There is a girl who I am friends with on Facebook (we'll call her H)... we went to high school together and were friends in high school. In addition to hanging out at the mall and such, we went to Gatlinburg together with three of our other friends when we were 16, and she was at Grace's baby shower.
We don't talk as much now, but we do keep in touch.

H was pregnant and on Mar. 15th they couldn't find a heartbeat. She delivered her precious angel on Mar. 16th. A tiny baby girl. My heart is literally breaking for her. I just can't imagine.
She posted a picture of her holding the baby and her boyfriend was next to her. I'm not going to lie... it was a very sad picture. The look on her face was one of total heartbreak. However, I completely understand why she posted that picture.

Then I get on Facebook today and see this status...
First off, let me say that I can see how some people might find the picture unsettling. However, I find this status much more unsettling than the picture! The status is completely heartless and judgmental! 
For one thing, I happen to know that the girl who posted this is NOT a mother, and to the best of my knowledge, she has never been pregnant. How can she say "NEVER under ANY circumstances" and "absolutely DISTURBING." She has never been in those circumstances, so how would she know??? 
Although, the thing that really got to me was, "Are you really that desperate for attention?" and "What the hell is wrong with some people?" 
I wish I was mean enough to ask her that very same question! 
If she would've posted something like, "I find it disturbing that people post pictures of their deceased babies," I wouldn't have agreed with her, but I would've scrolled right past it because that's just her opinion. No judgment. No callousness. 
However, given the status as it is, I couldn't scroll past it. I usually avoid Facebook drama, but I couldn't bite my tongue on this one... 


You get the idea of how I feel about this from my comments. I just love how it seems like she thinks she is speaking for everyone. And she is just so sure that the picture was posted for attention.

Also, I would like to make it clear that all that can be seen in the picture is the baby's head, and the baby looked NO DIFFERENT than a premature baby. I really don't see how anyone could see it as disturbing. And like I said, I completely understand why she posted it.

I am so very thankful to have two healthy babies, but I have no doubt that if I would've been in this heartbreaking situation, I would've posted a picture (if not more than one) as well. I would want to share my baby with the world, even if my baby was already gone. And I would like to believe that I could do that without someone making such a harsh status about it the DAY AFTER I lost my baby. Posting this status achieved nothing except making her look heartless in my eyes. 

Again, I'm not upset that she found it disturbing. I don't know why she did, but that's not what bothers me. It's the way she assumes that she knows what is going on in H's head. And that she seems to think she is speaking for everyone. What arrogant things to assume! 
Also, this may be breaking news to some, but you DO NOT have to post every single thing you think/feel to a Facebook status. 
I respect that it's her opinion, but I don't understand why she felt the need to post it. She had to know it would achieve nothing and possibly hurt someone. I just don't understand some people...

Also, if you pray, please say a prayer for H, her boyfriend, and their families. They really need it right now :(



Thursday, March 14, 2013

Update on the little ones!

Grace:

She is now three years and four months old. Oh my, she is so outgoing! Nothing holds her back.
Her favorite song is "We Are Never Getting Back Together" by Taylor Swift. I have a video of her singing it, but it won't load on here, so click HERE if you want to see it on youtube!She is always singing that song or the song that she is going to be dancing to at her recital in April.

Which, by the way, she is pretty good at ballet. She knows all the moves to her dance and has no problem executing them, but she wants to go back to gymnastics. And Chris and I both think that she's better at gymnastics. She's just to rambunctious and, well... not graceful for ballet. Yep... Grace is not the least bit graceful lol. So we're going to switch her back to gym after the recital. Only reason we haven't already switched her is because we paid $50 for the outfit. I'm not going to take her out before she has to wear it lol.

Other than that, this child wants to go to school so bad! I think it's because she knows I go to school all the time. And Chris just recently started taking night classes two days a week, so now daddy is going to school, so she is dying to go to school. I have been doing some mini lessons with her, which she loves! (I'll be doing another post about those soon!) Grace loves to learn. She is currently learning to right her letters. Her current goal is to be able to write her name. She is always asking me to write it for her. She's also learning the difference between uppercase and lowercase letters, which she is picking up very quickly.

Brentley:

He will be 19 months on the 26th! Which, or course, means I'm already beginning to plan his birthday party! Lol. It's going to be a Hungry Caterpillar theme! I'm excited, but I'm in no rush. I don't want him to turn two! Not yet! I can't believe it's only 5 months until his birthday!

He is incredibly smart! So smart that he does even realize he's a baby. When we're out somewhere, if her sees a baby, he'll point and say "baby!" And I'll tell him he's a baby, then he'll look at me as if I've lost my mind lol.
Seriously though, he's turning into his own little person. He's still very laid back. He likes to observe before he jumps into something. Except for dancing. He will dance to any music. But he loves to dance to the Gilmore Girls theme song and the Pretty Little Liars theme song. And he absolutely LOVES to dance with Ellen. We have to watch Ellen everyday just so he can dance with her lol. Maybe he will be our dancer?? :p
Other than that, he has zero interest in television. Well, I take that back. He has recently somewhat decided that he likes Word World, but it doesn't hold his interest for more than 5 minutes. He'd rather be playing, which I'm totally fine with.

His language is developing quickly! He can say phrases now. He'll say, "excuse me," "thank you," "I love you, too." Things like that. He said the word "tunnel" yesterday just as clear as day. I love when he says new words! He can also say "Grace," but he usually calls her "sissy." Oh, and he randomly said, "My shoe is blue." Chris and I both heard him and we looked at each other like, did you just hear that?? He was referring to his sock, which was indeed blue. He can also count to two and he loves to try and sing the ABCs. He hasn't quite got the letters yet, but he's got the tune, and when we get to the end he always sings, "MEEEEEEE!" Lol.

My little buddies!

He was saying, "Cheeeeese!"

She's so silly!

And sweet at the same time!

This was on the first semi-warm day. We went outside and ran around!

My handsome baby!


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

I'm never informed.

My school has failed me yet again...

I knew that I had to fill out the application for the Early Childhood Education (ECE) program. Luckily, I found out from another STUDENT that it was due the 30th of this month. Thank goodness! I would have been so upset if the only reason I didn't get into the program in the fall was because I hadn't turned the application in on time.

However, I found out (from the same student) that I missed the deadline for turning in the application for my Associate's degree! Ugh. I'll still get it. I just won't get it until after the summer semester is over instead of at the end of this semester.
It's not a big deal because I'm not planning on looking for a job until I get my Bachelor's. But I'm still annoyed that I never even heard about this! No one EVER explained to me that I needed to fill out any paper work for it. I tried looking it up on the school website and I can't find a single thing about it on there either!

One would think that the Head of the Education Department would at least send out some sort of email to all the students. Or that our advisers would make sure we knew what to do. I don't expect them to do it for us, but I do expect them to at least inform us of what we need to do!

Crazy thing is, my adviser is one of my professors this semester! Only by accident though because they had left me under an adviser who no longer worked at our school! They can't get anything straight in their advisement/enrollment departments.

I mean, I get that we're not in high school anymore, so they expect us to do these things for ourselves. But when no one has even so much as mentioned the Associate's degree to me and I can't find anything about the process on the website, one would assume we can't just magically know what we're supposed to do. It's impossible to ask questions about something we didn't even know about. I just assumed it was something we did near the end of the semester. Not something you had to do before the semester was even half way over.

And I still don't know what I'm supposed to do. I went to the wall of paperwork (where they have all sorts of forms for different things). I found the application for the program, but I couldn't find anything to apply for the Associate's degree, and there is NEVER anyone in the Education Department. I'm going to try to talk to my adviser/professor tomorrow to see if he knows what I'm supposed to do. Although, I'm not holding out hope because he usually can't answer my questions. I don't know why they made him an adviser. He just directs me to the Head of the department who is NEVER there. If he can't help me tomorrow, I'm going to see if I can't schedule an appointment to get this all squared away.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Consignment sale season!

It's that time of the year again!!

I didn't find as much as I usually do, but I am extremely happy with the things I did find!!

This is the stuff I found for Brentley. All of this together was $13.

I found this dress for Grace. I'm thinking it will be her Easter dress! It was $8.50.

Then I got all of this swimming stuff for them.

The pack of swim diapers is unopened. I got it for $4. 
The sunglasses for Grace are also brand new (tags still attached). Only $3.
The swim shoes for Grace were $2.50.
The swim shoes for Brentley were $2.00.  
Both of the bathing suits are brand new (tags still on them). Grace's is from Children's Place. It was $8.00.
Brentley's is from Carter's. Now, this one was pricey... *deep breath* $18.00. I have NEVER paid that much for an outfit at a consignment sale, but I made an exception this time. 
I went looking for swim trunks and a swim shirt to match because Brentley sunburns incredibly easy. But I couldn't find any that matched. I'm a stickler for matching. Then I found this one. If I had bought it in Carter's it would've been $40 (that's what it says on the tag), so I can handle $18 because I really wanted him to have a swim shirt. It looks huge in the picture, but it's a 2T. 
Then I went looking for a sun hat to match. I could only find one that matched (the one in the picture). It was $5. A little more than I wanted to pay for a hat, but (again) it had to match. Plus it's Baby Gap, so at least it's brand name. 

I decided I'm going to give them all this swim stuff as part of their Easter baskets. I can't wait until we can take them swimming, and to the splash park, and to Coolidge park! 

All together, it came out to right at $70 (with tax). Not too bad. I usually get more than what I got for $70, but I still think I got some good deals. 

Finally!

I got my computer fixed! It was in the shop for over a week, but I got it back today! I should have several posts coming soon because there has been quite a bit going on while I was computer-less. 

Friday, March 1, 2013

Books.

I've never really thought about it before recently, but I used to read all the time when I was a kid.

I started think about it the other day,and I decided to post them all here so I could remember them when the kids are old enough to read.

  • Countless Magic Tree House books
  • Countless Magic Attic Club books
  • Countless Boxcar Children books
  • Most of the A to Z Mysteries books
  • Some of the Junie B. Jones books
  • Some of the Saddle Club books
  • Some of the Nancy Drew books
  • Some of the Dolphin Diaries books
  • A few of the Baby-sitters Club books
  • The Borrowers books (5)
  • The Spiderwick Chronicles books (4)
  • The Little House on the Prairie series (8)
  • The Shadow Children series (7)
  • Running Out of Time
  • Don't You Dare Read This Mrs. Dunphrey
  • Just Ella
  • Turnabout
  • Take Offs and Landings
  • The House on the Gulf
  • Double Identity
All of the above, I read before high school. I'm sure there are more, but those are the ones that I remember. 

I didn't read as much in high school. The first two years, I was adjusting to actually being in school (for those who don't know, I was homeschooled for K-8). And the last two years I was pregnant/a mommy. But there were a few I remember.

*I should've been in the Honors Lit. classes, but being homeschooled messed that up. If I would've been in Honors, I would've been forced to read more.
  • Go Ask Alice
  • Double Helix
  • Lord of the Flies (for a class)
  • The first four books of the Immortals series (Evermore, Blue Moon, Shadowland, and Dark Flame)
  • All four books of the Twilight Series
There may have been more here as well that I have forgotten.

I just recently discovered my love for reading again. In less than a year, I have read:
  • The Hunger Games Series (3)
  • 13 Reasons Why
  • If I Stay
  • The first two books of the Harry Potter series (currently reading the third)
That may not sound like a lot, but with two young kids and going to school, it's a lot for me. And again, yes, I realize these aren't challenging books. With going to college, I don't want challenging. I'm looking for entertaining.

I have Where She Went, the first City of Bones book, and Divergent that I'm planning to read, and a whole list of books I want to read.

I also have a book called I Won't Learn From You that I have to read for my EDUC class.

All of the books I remember reading as a kid, I would love for Grace and Brentley to read. I don't really care if they (more than likely Grace) wanted to read the Twilight Series or the Immortals series, but I'm not a big fan of the underlying messages in them. Dig beyond the sappy love stories and (to me) they're both about girls who can't survive without a guy. I actually gave up on the Immortals series because I got tired of the main character's whining about not being able to have sex with her significant other. Yes, you read that right. That became the whole focus of the book eventually. Not exactly the type of thing I would want Grace modeling. Still, I don't plan on keeping them from reading anything as long as it's age appropriate. 

I would love, love, love for them to read the Harry Potter series. I wasn't allowed to read it as a kid (witchcraft and all)... I really wish I would've been. It seems like I missed out on the magic (no pun intended) of being able to read it as a child... when I still had that childhood imagination. I won't do that to my kids. 

I would be okay with them reading The Hunger Games series in middle school. Yes, it can be violent, but the violence isn't celebrated. 

Go Ask Alice, 13 Reasons Why, and If I Stay would all be high school books. The themes are much too mature for anyone younger. Although, I do believe 13 Reasons Why is a must read. 

So, there's my reading history in a nutshell. I'd estimate that these total out to about 120 books all together, and I know I'm forgetting some. 

I really hope the kids love reading as much as I did when I was young!