30 July 2012

Slowly Getting Back into the Groove

We had quite the whirlwind of a weekend. A wedding, a 4 hour drive to the shore (that should have taken less than 2), a day on the beach and a night out on the town. By the time we got home yesterday we were maxed out and indulged in a marathon nap session followed by late night takeout. We are all still a little exhausted today, Lucy included who slept in this morning until my mom came to pick her up at 7:30.

I'm trying to get back into the DIY groove. I have so many projects in my head that I want to start, finish, plan, explore. With Lucy's birthday party behind me I feel like I have a clean slate to really get my butt into gear. Bear with me the next few days as I get my things back in order.

Here is my current to-do list:

- First and foremost, our house is a bit of a catastrophe. Our dining room is filled with leftovers from Lucy's birthday party and I'm making a point to find a night this week and get it cleaned up.
- Sharing a closer look at some of the DIY decor for Lucy's birthday that I'm hoping to transition into her bedroom.
- I've made a few changes in our master bathroom with new goodies from West Elm and I've updated our bedroom a bit with more in the works.
- I need to get back to painting more of these that I'm hoping to build up enough of a collection to open my own Etsy shop. I've also had a few requested custom orders.
- I'm treating myself to this workshop after which I plan to work on some new wall art, including a great quote that I'm itching to frame above our bed.
- We have some furniture to juggle around the guest room and finally get to hanging some things up in that room, painting the inside fo the closet and maybe actually finishing it.
- Finish a share with you a vintage sewing stool that I'm updating for a friend of mine as a housewarming gift. Side note: she moved months ago.. and I started this project months ago. That's how far behind I am.
- Get this blog organized and have a real working DIY page with easy-to-find links to popular projects and tutorials.

We have two more weekends of trips planned out in the month of August which will cut into my only time to work on projects, but I will take advantage of the nights after Lucy goes to bed as well as a stay-cation I have planned for the the week of August 13th.

I promise to be back with some real updates soon :) Happy Monday!!

27 July 2012

Happy Friday!!

This week has been pretty low-key in the DIY department. I can't believe how fast the past year has flown and how quickly Lucy's birthday came and went. I decided to take a break this week from doing projects around the house and just spend some time with our big girl. I don't ever want to feel that I don't give her the time she deserves because I'm too busy painting a room, doing some craft, or planning my next project.

Jordan and I are off to a wedding tonight then heading straight down the shore tomorrow morning to meet up with our girl and his parents for the rest of the weekend.

Be back next week!

25 July 2012

Lucy's 1st Birthday Party

Lucy's birthday party came and went in the blink of an eye. I can't believe after all that time planning, crafting, and even stressing, it's all over.

We lucked out and had a gorgeous day. We held her birthday party at my parents' house since ours would have been to small for the guest list. We did easy food, ordered a tray of sandwiches and a few guests took turns bringing side dishes. My good friend Allie (and Lucy's godmother) made her famous cupcakes with coral icing, per my request. 

Rather than try to explain all the details, I'll let the pictures speak for themselves.

Above: All the DIY decor I made for her party. I now realize I missed a picture or two of a few things, but that day was so busy that I was too distracted. We also have matching serve ware from Target. The last picture was a book I picked up from Target that we passed around the party and had all the guests write a note to Lucy. I loved seeing everyone really putting in a lot of thought into what they wanted to write to her. 

24 July 2012

12 Month Milestones

Lucy's first birthday crept up on us and I can't believe both her birthday and party are already over! We had such a perfect day for her birthday party. Family and a few close friends gathered at my parents' house for food, drinks and to watch the birthday girl dig into her cupcake. Lucy had a great time. I can't wait to share some pictures with you all.

Now that Lucy is officially a year old, I've really been taking the time to slow down and really take it all in. Sometimes I will just sit and watch her in her highchair, feeding herself and laughing along with Gabba. My favorite moments are the ones that she doesn't know I'm watching her. When she's falling asleep in my arms at night I look in amazement as her long legs are draped over my arms I can't believe I once fit her entire body in the crook of my elbow. 

Lucy is growing like a weed and learning so many new things everyday, and even though I am so proud of her and love seeing her develop, sometimes I wish she would just slow down a little. 

Here are Lucy's 12 Month Milestones:

- At her 12 month appointment, Lucy measured 29.75 inches long and 17 pounds, 7.9oz. 
- We have 6 teeth! 4 up top and 2 on bottom.
- Lucy's appetite is great. There is nothing she's tried that she won't eat (she now eats green beans!). While she didn't gain much weight since her 9 month appointment, the doctor assured us not to worry. Since I have always been a thin person, she may have inherited the same genes. That being said, we got the green light to start adding some serious calories to her diet. While we still do some baby foods, we are trying to get her to eat more of what we eat, or at least have a taste of what we are eating. 
- Solid foods include: pasta with butter, Cheerios, pancakes with a small amount of syrup, fruits (strawberry, mango and bananas are the favorites), veggies (zucchini, avocado, cooked spinach with butter, corn, peas, green beans), cheese (girl loves cheese like her mom), crackers, and usually a taste of whatever we are eating. We have not started any meats, although we were told that we could give it to her if they are ground (ground beef, chicken or turkey).  

- Her vocabulary is growing each week. Most common words include: shoes, toes, da-da, wassat (what's that), whossis (who's this), quack, arf/woof, kit-cat (or other forms of cat/kitty cat). She can also point out animals, bees, and other things I ask her in books. 
- When asked, Lucy can point to her toes, belly, nose, ears and mouth. Sometimes the mouth and nose get mixed up. :) When we tell her 'yes!' she starts clapping and you can tell she's so proud of herself.
- Clapping and laughing. This girl could do nothing but clap and laugh all day and I'd be thrilled. I love that squeaky laugh and can't wait to hear how she sounds when she really starts talking.
- Dancing. All. The. Time. We love it. 
- It's never too early to teach them to clean up after themselves. Lucy is great at putting her bath toys away after the bath. She gets excited and we make it into a game of tossing her toys in the basket. 

- Of course I'm dying to get her to be artsy. I bought her a pad of drawing paper and crayons. She will sit on the floor with the crayons and either draw a few lines or spend 15 minutes dumping her crayons and putting them back in the box. 
- She is in the middle of a very clingy stage where mama or dada are always wanted. She is great with both sets of grandparents, but past that she is very cautious and unsure. 
- We haven't started walking yet. She cruises along furniture, will stand up against me and even take a few steps holding my hand. I was even able to get her to stand independently for a few seconds.
- We have done a sleep over at each of her grandparents. One in February for Jordan's birthday and one a few weeks ago. This weekend we are going to have our first two night sleepover away from Lucy as we have a wedding this weekend. Jordan's parents are picking her up Thursday and taking her down the shore with them. We'll be heading down there early Saturday morning after the wedding to join our little girl for a weekend of fun in the sun.

Happy 1st Birthday, Lucy James! 
We love you!!

19 July 2012

Guest Post from Jordan. A Daddy's Point of View

About a week ago, Jess asked me to write something for "the blog" for Lucy's 1st birthday.  Obviously, I agreed to do so.  Why wouldn't I?  It's easily been the fastest year of my life.  My tattoo artist told me that having a kid was a "game-changer."  He couldn't have been more right.  This is my perspective; the "Dad" perspective.  

The minute I knew Jess was pregnant with Lucy, I was thrilled.  People say that your life flashes before your eyes when you die; that your whole life is condensed to a few seconds of flashing images like a strobe light and that is what you see before it's all over.  When Jess told me, crying in my arms, "I think I'm pregnant," the same thing happened to me, but I saw the future, not my past.  I saw all of the things that I wanted to do with my child (since I didn't know yet whether "it" was a boy or a girl).  It was exciting.  It was terrifying.  It was ups and downs.  It was smiles and tears.  It was everything I wanted.  

After all of the appointments, ultrasounds, emotions, cravings aches and pains, I was never so relieved as when I knew Jess was scheduled for induction on Sunday, July 17th, 2011.  I knew I would get to meet my little girl soon; not as soon as I thought, but soon enough.  It only took one 16 inning Red Sox vs. Rays game (which Boston won 1-0), one sleepless night of nurses (who were amazing) checking on Jess every hour on the hour, one failed epidural (and subsequently the 2 most helpless hours of my life), countless text messages updating my entire contact list on our status, two Wawa runs, more prayers than I had said in the past 10 years, 28 hours of total labor and just twenty minutes of pushing before I was able to finally meet Lucy.  Let me say first that there is no woman who I respect more and who I would call more tough than Jess.  What she went through from November 2010 until July 2011 was nothing short of amazing.  She was (and still is) nothing short of amazing.  Now, back to Lucy.  She was perfect.  She was red, crying, shaking and beautiful.  I kissed her and Jess more times than I can remember.  I have never been so proud and scared at the same time in my life, but looking at them both made me realize that I had nothing to worry about.  While the nurse was conducting the initial standard procedures on Lucy, she called me over.  She had just taken Lucy's footprints for her birth record.  She had me lean forward and pushed Lucy's feet onto my chest, leaving two perfect inky footprints on my white t-shirt.  I still have the shirt.  It's never been washed since that night and never will be.  It is one of my most cherished possessions (yes, more than a Kevin Youkilis autographed helmet, a Jon Lester autographed picture and my entire music collection).  

Jess was obviously the first to hold Lucy, but I can tell you exactly how it felt when I held her for the first time.  She was perfectly swaddled and cozy, just looking back at me like she had known me forever.  I felt the same way when I looked into her eyes.  I just sat and stared at this amazing person.  I had not a single care in the world.  Everything I needed was there in that room with me.  I didn't want to ever put her down or let her go.  She was mine.  I took this as an early opportunity to begin teaching her about life; mainly telling her that I loved her and always would, that she was beautiful and always would be and that the Yankees were evil and that the only way she could ever let me down would be to bring home a Yankees fan someday.  

When we were moved to our room for the night, I remember not being able to sleep and just wanting to hold Lucy.  I felt like a kid on Christmas morning who knew there was a room full of gifts downstairs.  Sleep wasn't an option.  I am very proud to say that I was the first to change one of Lucy's diapers (and countless since).  This may seem insignificant, but I'm proud of it.  It's not a "cool guy" thing to brag about, but let me tell you, it takes a real man to do such a thing.  There is a picture I have of the next morning of Jess sitting on the edge of her hospital bed holding Lucy in her arms.  It is one of my favorite pictures.  If someone asked me to show them what "love" looked like, I would show them that picture.  

The next few days and weeks were great.  Aside from it being the hottest July on record, going home with my girls was a great feeling.  Having time off from work to spend at home with my girls made all the difference.  Getting to show off our girl to our friends and family was more than exciting for us and I must say that I have never been more proud of anything than I am of Lucy.  There is no doubt, and there hasn't been since day one, that she is and will be a "Daddy's girl."  That phrase never made sense to me and still doesn't.  It's backwards.  The phrase makes it seem like it's the girl who relies on the Daddy, but trust me, it's the opposite; and I wouldn't have it any other way.  

In the last year, I've seen our "Bug" grow in leaps and bounds.  The fact that she can say some words, point out her belly when prompted, laugh and point whenever Lyla runs into the room, stand up and cruise around the room and smile when she sees me are all mind boggling.  It seems like yesterday she was just a thought in the future of Jess and I.  I've been told that if I thought the first year went by quickly, then I should brace myself for what is in store for the years to come.  Well, if the future is a fraction as exciting as and makes me a fraction as happy as I have been over the last year then all I can say is "Bring it on!"

I love you, Lucy James.  Happy 1st Birthday.  Love, Daddy.

You can read my (Jess) version of the birth story here.

Happy 1st Birthday, Lucy James

I can't believe it's here already. Lucy's first birthday. I've said it a dozen times, but it is truly crazy how the past year has flown by. I love this girl more than I ever thought I could love someone.  Her laugh, those eyes, the way she wraps her arm around my neck and plays with my hair when she's falling asleep. I treasure every little moment from the sleepless nights to the first smile. 

Come back later today for a guest post from Jordan about our little girl and tomorrow for her 12 month (or should I say 1 year) milestones.


18 July 2012

Lucy's First Year Through Instagram

Lucy's Birthday Week is finally here. I've been scrambling to finish up tons of last minute projects for her party this upcoming weekend, but I'm making sure to squeeze in a few blog posts here and there about our little birthday girl. Still to come this week: Lucy's 12 month milestones, a guest post from Jordan, and an update on my life as a mommy. And of course, I'll wrap up the weekend with a post to share all the DIY decor I worked on for the party.

Now for today's Lucy post...
I feel fortunate that we are in the age where you can have a camera on hand at every moment through your cell phone. Most of my favorite photos of Lucy are the candid ones I take with my iPhone when I catch her in a funny or sweet moment. I didn't realize just how many Instagram pictures I've dedicated to our little bug until I started to gather them for this post. I can't help it, she's our world. 

Enjoy a quick view of Lucy's first year through Instragram.