Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

If you're new to my blog, click here to read about Tipsy Tuesday and to grab the button! As always there's no requirement to be a mommy, nor do your tips need to be baby related! And I'm still looking for that tip of how to sharpen crafty scissors!!

My tip for the day? Cleaning baby toys!

In this household we have an extremely old dishwasher! Uber old! Like came with the with house old... all that to say, I'm not convinced on how RINSED the dish soap gets off the dishes. Now to date Cascade has not killed me, I don't think I'm getting dish soap buildup in my lungs or belly, but still - I'm always paranoid to what Ace is consuming. So I was on the hunt for a different dishwasher detergent to clean the baby toys with and I found one! Seventh Generation! I know they are amazing right - in fact the back of the bottle says "if consumed drink a glass of water" No need for poison control! So what better to use on my baby's toys that he slobbers all over than a detergent that requires a glass of water if you consume the detergent directly?! So that's my recommendation and it's helpful for the environment too!

Secondly, there are SO many toys that require "topical only" cleaning. Can't wash them, can't throw them in the dishwasher (who came up with these toys?!) Anyway - for those rather than break out the Dawn dish soap and run the risk of being unable to get all the soap off OR getting it so wet that I might have well put it in the washer I use the Pampers Clean N Go Wipes. Now I am sure it's not cleaning ALL the germs off - but then again not all germs are bad right? So far Ace has only had colds passed on from his parents and he's only been sick one time with the flu bug we passed around, so I think we've done pretty well in the germ department around here. So those are my tips for cleaning baby toys! I welcome others!

Can't wait to stop by your blogs to see all of your tips! Link away!



Be sure to grab the banner for your blog!
If you've provided a tip this week, just add a comment and add your link below!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Chaos & Lawyering

Life is often chaotic and beyond our control. I think that is part of why I became an attorney. That even amid chaos and conflict, there is the ability and knowledge to fight for what is right - and that doesn't always mean the law or at least the law of the "land". Many people asked me (including my grandma) when I was young why I wanted to become an attorney. Growing up in the church, being a Christian, these things didn't seem to mesh well with the ever famous attorney prominently featured in a handful myriad of jokes. I told people then and I still tell people now, I want to help people. I want to fight for what is right. I wanted to do the job the way a Christian should do it, because why many people despise attorneys sometimes they are necessary.

It is a blessing that I am able to use my knowledge to help settle my grandmother's estate. It is nice that I am able to help out friends and family with real estate transactions or even answer simple legal questions to put people's minds at ease. I only wish I had an infinite amount of resources and help available to me to help more. Since I am now a SAHM I no longer have insurance or a firm to back me and it makes helping out on large scale events nearly impossible. That and Ace also contributes to the inability to become knee deep in paperwork anytime soon.

I guess all of this to say, I wish I was licensed in Utah and I so wish I could help my dear friend Lori with her custody battle, but while I can't help legally much I certainly can help in praying for her family. As chaos continues to ensue, continue to pray for their family. Continue to pray for peace and enjoyment of this time even amid the chaos.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

And the NEW Winner is...

Well, on the 17th of this month I chose the winner of the Mommy Relax Giveaway and to date that individual has not contacted me, and since the rule was within 48 hours I think two weeks is more than sufficient to establish they don't want it. I even emailed them! Siigh. So without further adue! The winner of the Mommy Relax! Giveaway as chosen by Random.org is #24:

LenaLoo said...
I'm not a Mom, but that Relax kit sounds pretty well rounded to me :) Happy Spring Fling!
March 10, 2009 4:27 AM

So hopefully LenaLoo will contact me, she has been emailed! Congrats to the *new* winner!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

In Memory of Grum

I find music to be very therapeutic. When my dad passed away there were a few songs that got me through that time. When my dad passed Brad Paisley's When I Get Where I'm Going helped me tremendously and I first heard it within days of his passing. Today, a little under two weeks of my Grandma passing I have found Sissy's Song by Alan Jackson. I truly believe these songs were provided to me to help me heal, God uses many different avenues to provide comfort. For me that comfort is found in certain songs. They make me sad, happy, reflective and a whole other slew of emotions. Today they inspired me to put together some pictures and video of my Grum, so please enjoy and turn on your volume for this one.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Standing!

Of course there was bound to be a post about my son's latest milestone - did you waiver in your faith of such a post? Did you think that I'd forget to post a blog solely dedicated to his latest venture in mobility?! Never! Don't you fret there is indeed a blog! Ta-da! As I mentioned in my previous post he learned this fabulous new skill in California. He had been testing the waters here at home for a few days with our sunken living room step, but in California is where he really took over. He already has started to learn to sit down before proceeding elsewhere and he has started to move around the objects that he is leaning around - although the corners of the ottoman tend to be a hurdle he has yet to master. He also is quite the speedster on his knees. But wow at just shy of seven months less than three weeks after the official crawling started, my boy is standing. Anyone want to wager a guess at when walking will take place (independent of furniture)? My mom thought 6 week from early this week. And you?

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Seven Months Old


Ace is on the move! Everywhere. Ace's last month has been super eventful and adventurous to say the least. Many different things have happened over the last thirty days.

New firsts for Ace's seventh month of life: crawling, sleeping through the night, first word, standing, Disneyland, and his first funeral.

In early March Ace started to crawl. He had been rolling around for a bit and even scooting but by the 5th of March he had it figured out and a few days later the gates went up on the bottom level of our house. On the mid-level we have a sunken living room- I thought I would have had several weeks with that step to create a contained area. Nope! Within days of crawling there my son went up and over that step in his chase after one of our cats.

That's another new obsession. Ace has always notices the kitties and squealed when they walked by, but in recent days he chases them. Tort will have nothing to do with him and usually avoids Ace at all costs, but Nick knows where the attention is and finds it the perfect location to be. He will lay right next to Ace and just roll over. Now, if Nick was one of those cats that allows babies to chew on them, then I'd have no problem.... but Nick is NOT that kind of cat. No, Nick will bat at the baby's head as a "warning" swat... problem? Ace doesn't understand it's a warning - so I have to shoo off Nick at every chance - at least until Ace is old enough to understand and/0r get away fast. It's quite the challenge.

Also in Ace's 7th month of life included another visit from his Aunt Becky. He really enjoyed visiting with her. Ace also has been spending more time with his dad in order to allow mom to enjoy some adult time with her past times and not have to have the boy with her at all times. It has been a nice time for everyone.

Ace enjoyed his second trip to California this month for a much sadder reason than his previous visit roughly six weeks ago. Ace and I ventured on a plane together on St. Patty's day because Grum passed away. It was very sudden and sad, but we all understand she's in happy place. The flight was good and Ace proved once again he is a great traveler! While in California Ace really started to get the hang of standing up, everywhere! He is still a little wobbly, but he's figuring it out pretty quickly.

In honor of Grum's life we all decided that celebrate her life and go to The Happiest Place on Earth: Disneyland!!! Husband flew down that day to join us and we all had a great time. Ace did GREAT, never once fussed when he was tired he just went to sleep, otherwise he was looking all around and soaking it all in. His first ride was of course the Nemo ride and he loved it.

On Monday Ace attended Grum's funeral and he did well. Wasn't fussy or upset. Although he did choose to eat at an inopportune time... that being when people came by to offer condolences to the family. So people were trying to hug me while I'm nursing ... wasn't working out so well. :)

Final thought for Ace's seventh month is that we have a problem with his monthly picture location... the rocking chair. He won't stay still, even with distractions. :) So we shall see as time goes on... but enjoy a few outtakes below (the one of him crawling is after tumbling off and he didn't skip a beat) and the final picture might be our compromise!


Sunday, March 22, 2009

California

Mommy and Ace got on a plane all by themselves and flew to California.
We picked up some shades, because this bright thing in the sky was bothering Ace's eyes.

Uh oh we also out grew our bassinet feature on the pack-n-play because Ace learned to stand!

AND Ace met his Uncle Derek for the first time.


Grandma was so glad to see Ace

Here Ace was moments away from the Happiest Place on Earth ...
And he took to it like a Nemo to water!!!

He looked at everything and not once was fussy!


A little fun for the girls on of course Thunder Mountain Railroad
Visiting the Happiest Place on Earth because Grandma is in the Happiest Place EVER!


Spending time with family and celebrating the life of my Grandma.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Optimism

What is optimism? According to Merriam-Webster it is:
1 : a doctrine that this world is the best possible world
2 : an inclination to put the most favorable construction upon actions and events or to anticipate the best possible outcome

Living in a sinful world I choose not to believe that this world we live in is the best possible world; that is saved for heaven when we leave this earth. I choose to accept the definition of optimism as that of the second: anticipating the best possible outcome. True optimism I believe involves faith and understanding. Faith that God will provide and understanding that what God will provide isn't always what we want, but that He will provide what we need.

My dear friend Lori is well aware of this. I choose to use my blog once again to bring light to their story. Their adoption of Matthew is being contested. It is a very sad and scary time in their family. However, optimism holds strong in their hope and in their prayers. They are hopeful that they will keep Matthew, but also they are prayerful for what is best for Matthew. Amid this fear is an amazing optimism and clarity that God is in control. They are relying on faith and through their optimism they are able to enjoy every second they have with Matthew.

Please stop by their blog and show them support. As I mentioned before there is a financial burden involved with an adoption and an even greater one attached with a contested one. If you are at all able to assist with that there is a donation button on Lori's blog that you can provide support financially to their cause.

I am optimistic that everything will work out as it should. And that is all we can hope for. Please enjoy these pictures of their family (I stole them from her page.)


Wednesday, March 18, 2009

A Lifetime of Love and Laughter

A little over a month ago I wrote a tribute to my grandmother and every word still rings true - even the part about still hearing her laughter. On Monday my Grum went to be with our Lord and Savior. It is certainly a shock to everyone. She had been sick recently, but was on the mend. My mom came over on Monday morning after not being able to reach her to find her beyond this world. We are all very sad, but at the same time at peace. She is where she has always strived to be: in heaven.

A poem my aunt found today says it nicely.

To Those I Love and Those Who Love Me

When I am gone, release me let me go.
I have so many things to see and do.
You mustn’t tie yourself to me with tears.
Be happy that we had so many years.
I gave you my love, you can only guess how much you gave me in happiness.
I thank you for the love you each have shown.

But now it’s time I traveled alone.
Grieve a while for me if you must.
So bless the memories within your heart.
I won’t be far away for life goes on.

So if you need me, call and I will come.
Though you can’t see or touch me, I’ll be near.
And if you listen with your heart you will hear all my love around you soft and clear.
And then when you must come this way alone,
I’ll greet you with a smile and a “Welcome Home”

~ Author Unknown

Grum, you will be dearly missed and will leave a large void in our lives here on earth. I am so glad to have had you for 28 years. I am so blessed you were able to know your great grandson. I am so glad you did not suffer. I so welcome the day I can see you again. All my love....

And the winner is...

Thank you all for the great participation in my giveaway!

After 124 entries, the lucky winner of the Mommy Relax! Giveaway is...

TuTu's Bliss said...
Very fun give away. I can't believe I don't already own that movie!! Happy Spring Fling. I'm giving away photoediting because I'm too cheap to ship today ;)
March 10, 2009 3:08 AM

The winner has been contacted and has 48 hours to get back to me! Stop by and congratulate her!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Please Pray

Please pray! A while back I posted about my dear friend Lori and her adoption of their son, Matthew. Matthew has been with them for two weeks now, Lori was there for the birth, she cut the cord. Matthew is very much her son. The birth mother signed off on the adoption, but fear loomed with a potential birth father making noise as they left the hospital. That noise has turned into an official act to contest the adoption. My heart is breaking for Lori, Troy, Garrett and Matthew. All along we have been asked to pray for what is best for Matthew and I would ask that your prayers be exactly that. But additionally pray for this family. Please read this blog by Lori and if you want a happy tear too - read her letter to her son Matthew.

Finally, this entire situation costs money. Money that Lori and her husband had to borrow and now with the heartbreak this burden still looms. If you have any means by which to help, please donate to their cause. At the top of Lori's blog is a donate button, please click there - sacrifice your weekend Starbucks and help lighten the burden to this family.

Delight or Dislike

Slings

Ok before I had Ace I had no idea that I would be so into wearing him. What? Huh? Wearing your baby? Yep - and who knew it could be fashionable too! I think the sling is my new purse. I have several! Not quite as many slings as I have purses... but that would be absurd.


Dislike
Eddie Bauer Infant Sling
Eddie Bauer strikes again! Yep I said it, and I do not like it. They should stick to adult clothing and get out of the baby product business. At least the products that I've tried from them. First, it was the baby rear-view mirror. That thing was a fun-house mirror, tiny and completely useless. Now the sling, not nearly as bad - but still not my favorite. We bought it as a "back up" sling that would live in the car - it is made with sturdy materials and it is well made, but to me a sling should envelope the baby.... this thing requires a strap in system for the baby to not spill out of and the Velcro used is extremely harsh if rubbed against the baby's skin. And that strap in system is required! And that's my problem - I feel like he's going to fall right out. If he's the least squirmy I have to hold him in... and um that defeats the point a sling entirely! It also can be used on the hip, and to be honest I haven't tried because well I just don't trust it. So while it might work for a newborn that isn't wiggly or an already passed out child.... I find it to be sub-par at best.

It advertises as an "infant" sling for $35 at Target, but it also says that it goes up to 30lbs. I'm sorry for the same price I can have a sling that last longer than the first month of their life. So I give a big thumbs down! It's just not my cup of tea. It's like the backpack purse, some like it. I do not.

Delight
Boppy Carry in Comfort Dual Support Sling
Our favorite and top pick by far is the Boppy Sling. It is a light weight material and has mesh siding so that the baby can breath through it when they are tiny and nicely wrapped up inside. It does have a strap in feature similar to the EB, if you feel it to be necessary, but it isn't harsh Velcro if you choose to for go the strapping. It also has a counter weight strap to put over your other shoulder. The only draw back to this sling was that it wasn't able to be used for about 2 months (Months 2-3.) Once Ace was old enough to be aware of his surroundings but not old enough to hold himself up. He got fussy because he couldn't see out of it and therefore was not a fan being in it. Although once he hit about 4 months old he was happy and cozy in it all over again and we still use it on an almost daily basis. In fact in California it was the only way he would nap.

It is affordable, under $40 and found at Babies R Us. I think the price is the original reason I purchased this. Also that counter weight strap is a life saver and I really can tell the difference when I use my other slings. I was so discouraged after Ace quit using it after the first few weeks of having it, but we have definitely gotten our money's worth out of it since it's revival. Here are a few photos one stock photo to show you the strapping courtesy of BRU and of course some of my cutie in it!


The Over the Shoulder Baby Holder
In between the time of the Boppy Sling usage we used The Over the Shoulder Baby Holder. I am not sure if there is an official location to purchase this, but this is the first link that comes up when you google it. It was a life saver during the anti-boppy stage. Our friends loaned us theirs and it was an XL and so it was bigger than what I should have used to carry him around in. So it wasn't the most "hands free" sling for me - but it was great in the sense that I was able to sling him and he could fall asleep and he was easy enough to move around rather than simply being stuck some where. The other great thing is that Loving Husband is able to use this sling and wear Ace and for him it's the perfect size. It's so comfy he even falls asleep with teething rings in his mouth, Ace not Loving Husband.

Price wise it runs about $45-$50 but then there is shipping costs in addition to that - although who knows maybe you can find them sold in certain shops. The fabric choices seem to vary on different websites, but at least there are choices - that is a draw back to the Boppy sling. It is one piece of material with a loop system to tighten or loosen the sling to fit your body. A draw back is the excess material has a plastic ring on the end that if you have it pulled really tight then hangs precariously behind you... so if you swing yourself side to side the ring tends to fling around. And you don't want to tuck it in against your back either, hard plastic isn't ideal when the weight of a baby is baring down... That's a less than fun feature. Both sides of the fabric are padded creating nice bumpers for the baby to rest against and there is plenty of fabric for the baby to rest and grow into. Overall, it is a good sling.




Munchkin Jelly Bean Reversible Sling
Our most recent purchase is a very compact sling that can live in the diaper bag. After the disappointment in the Eddie Bauer one I was on the hunt for a new "car" sling - and then I established that I really wanted something that could live in the diaper bag. I know ONE more thing to shove into the diaper bag, but it worked out well. I like that there are no straps, buckles or rings to hassle with. However, I will admit it isn't the best to put my 26.5" and 16lb boy into to fully reclined position for sleeping. The Boppy sling is still really the most ideal for that. However, it works great if he wants to sit in and look out and it is PERFECT for the hip hold.

It holds up to 35lbs and is the cheapest by far of the slings that I have reviewed. $30! It has extreme reviews on Target's website. People either LOVE it or HATE it. I have to say if it were my only sling I wouldn't be a fan. The complaints of it being tight and hard to get the baby in and out of are legitimate. I never tried it when Ace was an infant so I can't speak to those complaints, but I can see how it could be frustrating if it was your only sling. However, I think it is GREAT to live in the diaper bag when you are out and just carrying the baby isn't cutting it and they want to be a little more snug and close to you. My son HATED to be swaddled, but he loves to be slung.

Overall, I recommend the Boppy Sling! My son is nearly 7 months old and is loving it - it isn't that bulky (although won't fit in the diaper bag) and with the exception of a few weeks so far Ace has loved it. He sleeps well in it, I can nurse him by simply lowering the shoulder strap by his head, but it easily slides back up and I can move around again without waking him after his snack. And NO Boppy has not paid nor even asked me to review this product, just wanted to pass on my findings to you. I can guarantee Eddie Bauer won't be knocking on my Blog anytime soon for a review.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

The Betrayal

Yes, it is true. I have been betrayed. It always starts out so rosy and then it happens! You sacrifice your figure, your perky breasts, and your super-human metabolism and bam the thanks is forgotten! You're their food, their comfort 90% of the day, and the parent they are most attached to. Their first sound they make is "mmmmmmmm" (you see where I'm going with this) you're hopeful that YOUR child will be among the few, the proud, the brilliant! And then one day your still very smart, intelligent, and advanced son, my son, opens his mouth and says "Dada!"

What?! Nooooooooooooooooo!!!!!!!! 30 hours of labor and Dada gets to be called first? I tried to deny it. I tried to chalk it up to "it's just the sounds he's working out" he had been working with babababa for a while. I even attempted to negotiate a compromise with Ace and have BALL be his first word. No dice. Communication broke down somewhere between bababa and the raspberries. So that's it, it has been established. The betrayal has been executed. My son has uttered his first word: "Dada" (YAY!!!)

My only solace to this tragic thrilling event is that while I am convinced he does recognise Loving Husband as "dada" (because he looks up at LH and will start saying dadadadadada and reaching for him) he also says it just to hear himself talk to his toys, in the car, on the changing table..... :) But you can't deny their love for each other, I mean look at 'em! And I really am thrilled (and betrayed)! My son uttered his first word a little over 6.5 months old! He's a smartie that one!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

To My Followers

I feel like I should be standing on a hill and talking to the masses... ahem. Just kidding! But I wanted to address you specifically - I HOPE that all of you that are following me is because you like what you see here and that you enjoy my adorable son and my funny stories, rants, and ramblings of our daily lives in the Northwest! But if you are here JUST to win a prize... I guess I should keep them coming, right? ;-)

I am not above bribery to keep people reading. After trolling through literally HUNDREDS of blogs over the last 24 hours and entering contests and reading such great posts. I came across a handful of bloggers that treated their followers to an exclusive giveaway! What a GREAT idea! So I'm snagging it! I'm not sure how often I will provide giveaways to my followers nor what exactly I will give away - but I'm going to do it. Because if you are a true follower - you deserve some love because I certainly feel loved by you following! And commenting on my blog, that you follow, is even better (hint! hint!) And if you aren't a true follower well a little guilt never hurt anyone!

So stay tuned! I will be hosting another giveaway very soon, just for YOU! I just need to get my thinking cap on!

Mommy Relax! - Giveaway

Giveaway time is here again! This time in celebration of the SITS Spring Fling! The SITSas have put together an exciting Spring Fling giveaway extravaganza and I thought it would be nice and only fair since I'm going to be entering like crazy that I should give something away too. So without further ado: My giveaway!!!

During the madness of March, Mommies need to relax! And so I've created the Mommy Relax Package. Granted they can't all be used at the same time - as an eye pillow makes it hard to read a book or watch a movie, but all of them will help you relax at one point or another! And let's be honest you do NOT have to be a mommy to win! I swear! All women and heck even some men might enjoy all of these things - so don't feel required to procreate to participate in this giveaway!

The 'Mommy Relax' Package!
Which includes:
1. Ghost the DVD
2. A book: The Next Thing on my List
2. A collection of Starbuck's Tazo teas
3. A Lavender eye pillow from Ace Quilting

To participate leave a comment! It's THAT easy.

Additional Entries: (Up to 11 chances to win!)
1. Blog about the giveaway with a link to The A-Priori Mommy and leave the URL to your post in the comment. (3 entries)
2. Follow me on blogger. (1 entry)
3. Add my button to your sidebar. (1 entry)
4. Purchase anything from my Etsy site Ace Quilting between now and the end of the giveaway and post 5 comments with the transaction number. (5 entries)

Please leave a separate comment for each entry (i.e., if you blog about this giveaway, leave three separate comments stating that you did. Your comments are your actual entries.)

This giveaway will end March 16th at 11:59 PM PST. Winner will be chosen via random.org and will be announced March 17th. Winner will have 48 hours to claim their prize before a new winner is chosen. US entries only, please.

Monday, March 9, 2009

A Mini-Rant

Can someone explain to me the proper ketchup packet ratio per individual order at a drive-thru? I seem to have perfectly sane unrealistic expectations apparently. Seriously. In the great Northwest we have this divine faux-Mexican food called Taco Time. Yummy! And Taco Time's unique niche in the fast food world is their "Mexi-Fries" ::cough:: tater tots. I order the same combo meal every time (I know I'm a creature of habit, I can't help it!) and every time my quantity of ketchup varies wildly. Sure sure - this is a common issue, it all depends on the size of the employee's hand when they reach into the bucket of packets, right? Well sure - but there is this one employee that ALWAYS gives me two packets. TWO! What am I supposed to do with two packets of ketchup. No that's not a question, I know what I'm going to do with them I'm going to use them on 7 tater tots and then be without for the remainder of the box. Two packets? Really?

Ok ok I know what's the big deal? Just ask for more... sure. But this employee walks away as soon as she tosses the bag to you. It's like she knows that she's stiffing you on ketchup. So normally I leave and just use my cold fridge ketchup which I assure you is NOT THE SAME! But this last time I took a stand and waited for her to return to the window. I think she took a break or something because I waited there for a while. She came back, assuming that I would most certainly be the next car in the drive thru awaiting their drink and meal... and she was surprised to find that no in fact it was still me. I demanded with a glare asked politely with a smile, for a bit more ketchup.

I know it is silly, but I just don't understand. Two packets is not the luck of the draw, I mean I have tiny hands and even I could grab more than that in my fist. Heck Ace could grab more than two! Perhaps this is God telling me to think of all those packets that went to waste so many moons ago. Divine retribution for stealing enough ketchup packets one summer when I was in high school with my friends to fill up one of our trunks with sauce packets. A goal we had over the summer! Yah we didn't think that one through too well - BUT we did succeed! Just as I succeeded in squeezing two more packets from Ms. Stingy. Yes, when she finally reappeared she gave me two more packets. TWO! So 14 tater tots Mexi-Fries were able to be coated.

I know there are real problems out there... like wrong orders, diet coke when you asked for regular (gag!), and NO ketchup at all... but ya' know sometimes a girl just needs to complain. :-)

Sunday, March 8, 2009

And the award goes to...

Wow I feel so honored! First I'd like to thank Ace.... really without him my blogs would be bitter rants about the legal profession - trust me, read back a few years pre-pregnancy and you'll see that a) blogging was sparse and b) often rather mundane and/or rant-filled. So not only do I have an adorable son, but he is a great subject source for my blogging. Next I'd like to thank the Academy... which is actually Kristen over at All In A Mom's Life - who chooses to look past my profession and see that some attorneys really are decent people. ;-) and Finally... ok ok I'll get on with it and just give out the award.

The rules of this award are:
1. Put the logo on your blog or post.
2. Nominate at least 10 blogs which show great Attitude and/or Gratitude! (10?! Wowie!)
3. Be sure to link to your nominees within your post.
4. Let them know that they have received this award by commenting on their blog.
5. Share the love and link to the post and to the person from whom you received your award.


First off the first two people to get this award are truly deserving for all their hard work and efforts that helped make the blogging world a little bit more active this past month. It was so much fun to chase Wenda around the blogosphere! It was so much fun and after it is all over I have two lovely ladies' blogs to read on a regular basis - even a few more that I found during the Where's Wenda adventures, so thank you both: Francesca at Three Bay B Chicks and Stesha at Hot Chocolate Caramel Mocha!

Jennifer of Rundpinne her blog is a fun spot on my daily adventures and she is a trooper! Even through MASSIVE oral surgery she is still blogging away. Heck one little fever and I was out for days! She does have a very devoted husband that blogs for her on the really rough days! Awesome! So kudos to him, but this award is for Jennifer! Feel better girl!

Dee at Two of a Kind, Working on a Full House who is a host of many excellent giveaways and is a dedicated blogger! Also is an avid photographer and I am totally jealous of her camera. I want one!!! I'd be happy to review one if anyone needs someone to review it. ;-)

Stephanie at Our Life in Words it is always a breath of fresh air to stop by her blog and super exciting right now! She is pregnant! I'm so happy for her and I don't even *technically* know her!


Saundra at An Italian Mama Gone Crazy - I love this woman! We share similar humor and extremely similar opinions when it comes to The Bachelor! She is very opinionated and not worried to share it and that's why I keep coming back! And why she deserves this award!

Juls at Every Day Is a Crazee Day she is a great person! She always has great blogs to read and it is such a fun place to visit. She loves Girl Scouts (so do I!) and we comment on each other's blogs at the same time! It's Crazy! No Crazee!! ;-) You won't be sorry if you make her blog a regular stop on your trips around the blogosphere. AND she gave me my first awards, so what a better way to repay her than awarding her one!
Finally, to my IRLF (in real life friend... I feel a flash of Sleepless in Seattle, by typing that) Carrie and Lady Stone Ventures she is new to blogging and actually pretty bad at it to date. Sorry Carrie it's true. You haven't blogged in 5 weeks! But in real life you rock and I am not sure what I'd do without you.... so here's an award! Now get to blogging!!! Also my blogging friends, stop by her blog and bug her!

Ok, I'm breaking the rule! This is whom I'm awarding this award to - no one more or less. THANK YOU again to Kristin and you really should participate in her Pay it Forward Giveaway. If you don't, I will!!! There's only one more spot left to win! It's easy leave a comment and you win!!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Crawling & Snoozing


Yep that's right everyone, Ace is mobile! He has been ooching along in his own means of crawling for a few weeks now, but this week he finally figured out to get his knees up and under him. This video was taken on the first day he figured it all out, since then he gotten much faster and the gates have gone up! Our basement level of the house looks like a giant zoo - with many gates creating a giant pin for him to roam around in. The mid-level of the house looks mostly the same with the exception of the coffee table being moved to the corner and the fireplace has been padded to soften any blows.
In other exciting news! Ace slept through the night last night!!! Woohoo! He also slept in his own bed - which might have contributed to his slumbering for so long, but he's slept in his own bed before. Granted it took him TWO hours from bath time to sleep.... but that was all worth it for a night of uninterrupted sleep. Tonight we started around 8:30 with bath time and Ace slept at 9:45... so yes, we have a little boy that likes to fight the process of sleep... but I'm hoping he stays asleep for the second night in what would be the start of a beautiful trend.
Next up, talking and walking!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Delight or Dislike

Teething Products!

Like all parents of a teething baby I have become an expert - or even worse an opinionated consumer - on all things teething related. No, not even close, I'm just getting started in the teething world, but I do have something to say and kudos to give to one company in particular for their teething products.

Dislike:First of all half the items out there that are for "teething" wouldn't fit comfortable into MY mouth, let alone my 6 month old son's mouth which like all babies is substantially smaller than us wide-mouthed adults. So can someone explain to me why they make teething "rings" so wide? I know. I know they aren't ALL like that. There is no need for them to be that thick, the same result can be achieved with a thinner product that can actually fit into my child's mouth. I understand that his tiny mouth will get larger and therefore as a teething tot these teething "rings" will be useful... but for now I'm stuck with frozen wash cloths and the following...

Delight:
I am delighted to share with you that I absolutely love the Sassy products for teething. Now for those of you that appreciate the giant rings or larger items, Sassy does make those products as well. However, the ones that make the grade in our household are the ones pictured here. Sassy refers to these creatures as their Coolin' Teether and are advertised to be BPA Free! A very important detail in our home.

Ace's favorite is the snail, he's able to grip it and it fits comfortably into his mouth - he even has the hard plastic option if he fancies that. He also has the turtle that is designed in the same fashion as the snail that is equally as thick and accommodating to his small mouth. The textures of the snail and turtle are great. We don't have the hippo, in fact I haven't seen the hippo in stores. At Babies R Us the turtle and snail are coupled together.

While these tend to warm up faster he seems to be just fine with the temperature - as occasionally the frozen wash cloth proves to be too much! Ace used the snail to bring in his first tooth and is still chewing away as the others near the surface.

As time goes on I'm sure I'll have more to say, but at the moment I wanted to give Sassy a delightful shout out - and pass on my findings to you!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Wordless Wednesday


Loving Husband and I in Roma 2007
To read our adventures go here & here...


To see more Wordless Wednesdays go here.

Monday, March 2, 2009

GAM '09 - March Goal

Ok, so February wasn't quite as successful as January for me or Vermillion Rules. I can blame the short month, or the week of sickness throughout the family, or the visit at the end from my best friend. Or it could be that I simply hate laundry and putting clothes away so the motivation was nill to get the closet organized. However, in the spirit of the goal, I did get quite a bit done around the laundry room. We had a MOUNTAIN of laundry down there, and also a mini-mountain of Ace's outgrown clothes in his room that needed to be stored away. During February I was able to get the MOUNTAIN in the laundry room down to a mere hill and forward progress is being felt and I was able to organize Ace's drawers and get all the 0-3 boxed up and 90% of the 3-6 boxed (any still not boxed he can still wear). So while I didn't even begin to touch the closet in our bedroom - I did wash a TON, including the end of maternity clothing and get that all boxed up too! Anything that I did wash during February was actually folded and put away, so naturally to some degree the floor in the closet has gotten cleaner as we've worn it :) Ah well - not all goals are met in their entirety!

Upward and onward I say! So March's goal... touch up the paint in the bathroom. When we first painted the bathroom we did the cardinal sin of painting of merely taping over the outlets/towel holders/etc.. we didn't strip them down to the bare bone hardware and tape over that - so then when the tape came off.... so did the paint near and around. Also there's always those few spots with holidays that I'd like to cover up... and then of course the dreaded spots on the tile or ceiling that I'd like to clean off where paint shouldn't be. So that's my goal to complete a little touch up paint in the bathroom. I'll post some before and after pictures at my next goal.

Reality TV

Yes, I am obsessed! I don't watch them all, but gosh darn it I do watch a ton! But before I get started I just want to say what an excellent time I had with my best friend this weekend! It was wonderful to finally spend some lazy time together. It had been over a year and a half since we were able to spend time together and it was right before she left for Kuwait - so it was a bit unnerving and not entirely relaxing. This time though we were able to do many girlie things and just relax and enjoy each other's company. This included an ANTM marathon and a few episodes of The Girls Next Door. Thus the inspiration for this blog. Shun me if you must... but I promise I won't make too much of a habit of chattering on about reality tv. So... what do I watch, what are my thoughts? Well if you do care keep reading if you don't... click here for more of what you normally find on this here blog!

But without further delay... my reality tv in alphabetical order

American Idol:
I have faithfully watched each and every season, granted I haven't actively voted in several years. I LOVE Kelly Clarkson (although her junior album left me desiring something more...) I am a Clay Aiken fan (I know, don't hate me... I just am, so deal.) I couldn't care less about Taylor. Fantasia deserved to win but wasn't my cup of tea. I hated Jennifer Hudson on the show, but she redeemed herself in SATC: The Movie. I am obsessed with Daughtry as is most of the free world. Carrie Underwood is close to my all-time favorite. David Cook was great, but I haven't bought the album... and I was not at all pleased when Jordan Sparks won.

I like the new twists this season, which is good - because the show was starting to become a bit boring and almost lost me: the reality tv queen's interest... and truly it doesn't take THAT much to hold my interest.

America's Next Top Model:
This show is in its 12th season starting sometime this month. Silly! For the most part it's the same thing over and over again - but I love the pictures that the girls take. The house drama is always nonsense, but sadly I'm hooked. I love it. Tyra in her over-dramatic elimination sessions in her ever changing hair and obscure outfits never get old. Yes they do, but that's what fast forward is for!

The Bachelor/The Bachelorette:
Ok... for the longest time I found this show nonsense*. I watched part of the first season many moons ago... and then I watched Trista choose Ryan and then of course watched the wedding! Then I said good-bye to the show forever... or until Season 11 of The Bachelor... when I got sucked in mid-way through the season while waiting to watch something else on tv. Brad... oh Brad. Stupid Brad - how could he do that to poor DeAnna? So of course I had to watch The Bachelorette with DeAnna! Poor Jason! So then of course I am watch The Bachelor with Jason. And yes, watched it with London Calling's Matt. There's a reason these people go on tv to find love... they sucked at choosing decent partners to begin with and thus are single - so what do they do on national tv? Choose poorly and wind up alone AGAIN! DeAnna, Matt... dumb choices in whom they gave that final rose to. Anywhoo...

The CURRENT season is leaving me on pins and needles. Ending tomorrow (or today technically) is the show that is the most watched in Bachelor history. The single dad from Seattle, with the hot bod and adorable kid.... and now the rumors that are circling the web are terrible!!! I so hope they aren't true. I hope that Jason is a great guy and falls in love and stays that way and really does find himself a wife.... but if it goes down the way it is speculated. WOW! If you care to know what I'm talking about google: Reality Steve and The Bachelor and I'm sure you'll find a few YouTube videos that will make you steam!

*I have since re-established this show is nonsense.

The Biggest Loser:
I LOVE this show. I do. Some people find it down right appalling and crude to exploit fat people on television - but I don't find it to exploitation when they themselves sign up for this venture. In fact I find it to be inspiring and acknowledge that many people have been motivated to lose weight by this show. Granted some of the things they make the contestants do is a bit dodgy, but overall it has a great message and it really does help these people in drastic ways. The finales are always amazing - and yes the drama is exciting. And yes I know that many of the people end up gaining the weight back, but at that point it's all mental and has nothing to do with their health. They know they CAN do it - they just choose not to. At least the show has knocked the excuse of "I can't" out of their heads forever. I love it. I look forward to watching it every week.

The Girls Next Door:
I rarely watch this one. Only when I stumble upon it and yes it's true I did set my DVR tonight to record the episode where Kendra tells Hef that she wants to move out. Guilty. I will watch it tomorrow while I clean the downstairs playroom and pack the remainder of Christmas away (don't judge me! at least the tree is down!)

Project Runway:
I love this show! "You're Out" "Make it Work" oh it can't get better than this. I find that out of all the shows this has the least drama and the most interesting outcomes. A close second to the ANTM pictures are the creations these designers come up with. Granted some of their challenges leave much to be desired as I am not necessarily looking for the next wrestling spandex number to add to my wardrobe, but still always interesting to see a persons interpretation of fashion. I love it. I love Christian - although many people hate him, but that's ok. Clearly if I like Clay Aiken and admit that - I don't really care what people think, now do I? ;-)

Stylista:
A new reality show that made a run earlier this year on the CW. Not sure if it will return it had a lack luster premise of being an assistant to a magazine editor with the ultimate prize of getting a job at Elle magazine. A twist of the Devil Wears Prada thrown in and it made for easy enough hour to watch television.

Super Nanny:
I love Jo! I am appalled by most of the children and parents that actually are on this program and truly they are a how-to-guide on what NOT to do in the aspects of child rearing - but I think it does provide legitimate positive methods for getting unruly children (and parents) to shape up and especially for those families that choose to air their unruly laundry on television for all the world to see it is beneficial to have a more organized and helpful family. Also during the day I find myself watch Nanny 911 on CMT. I don't know if this show is even still on during prime time - haven't found it, nor have I sought it out. It has the same premise as Super Nanny though.

True Beauty:
Um good premise, extremely hokey execution. The beauties were alright... the "challenges" were pathetic... it lasted less than 2 months so it was easy enough to watch. I'd probably watch another season as it was better than repeat episodes of Nanny 911 or Wife Swap... but I HIGHLY doubt it will be a returning program.

Wife Swap:
This is another program that I have added to my DVR line up for when I have no other television to watch. It is stupidly addicting. It amazes me that they can find families that are so bizarre. And amuses me that they would pair the two families up so brilliantly. Ah priceless. Such as the raw meat eating family with the vegans or how about the SAHDad vs. WAHM. It at least gives me something to stare at while breastfeeding or cleaning a room. And clearly takes no energy or braincells to follow.

If you actually read through all of that, kudos! I have lots more opinions, so if you're looking for it - feel free to ask, I'm more than happy to share my opinion on Molly vs Melissa.