Thursday, May 22, 2014

celebrating four years.

the hubs and i tied the knot FOUR years ago on an exceptionally hot "spring" day. 

we improvised with sugar and pink lemonade after forgetting the sand for the sand ceremony, a bee landed on my dress during our vows {probably thanks to the sugar}, and it rained RIGHT after our ceremony causing everyone's hair to frizz ;) 

... but it was the BEST day. 
we had a sweet dinner alone while overlooking our reception, danced as the sun went down and had the time of our lives with everyone that means the most to us.
there was sooo much love that day.

... but you know what?
it's nothing compared to the love that i feel now. life just keeps getting better and better with this guy by my side. he works so hard to give me everything i need {and most of what i want}, and loves me so good.

this year, seeing him as a daddy has made me love him EVEN more.
carter and i hit the jackpot.
love you, babe.

Monday, May 12, 2014

how to make the most of your vacation.

now that the weather is warming up, i've got my mind on planning a vacation!! 
if you hung around my blog for any amount of time pre-carter days, you probably already knew that the hubs and i love to travel. in our dating days we bonded during early trips to chattanooga for a friends wedding, savannah {where i first realized that i was in love} and myrtle beach {greg's favorite} and have been on some pretty awesome trips since we tied the knot.

since traveling is one of my favorite things, i decided it would be fun to do a post outlining my tips and suggestions to make the most of your vacations.
{on our first anniversary trip in st. thomas / may 2011}
 first, always do research on your destination. i highly recommend asking blog friends who live where you are going or have visited for their suggestions! this helped me SO much while planning our new york trip.
{at the empire state building in new york / january 2013}
find out where the locals eat- often the touristy places are simply popular because they're large restaurants with a big marketing budget, and not actually because they serve the best food.

make reservations at any restaurants you definitely want to try, especially if you have a large group.
this was one challenge in new york {because doing anything with 15 people is difficult}- we missed out on some of the restaurants that i would have liked to try.
{eating with the old roomies at magnolias in charleston / april 2012}
 carry cash... but mostly small bills. i also like to separate my money into different locations, and not carry all of it at a time {heaven forbid something happen and you lose it!}

plan your outfits- stick to one color scheme.... i like to go with neutrals and accessorize with a colorful scarf or bag. i also like to pack crossbody bags because they are so convenient for walking around sightseeing or shopping- so you can just carry the essentials and not have to carry a heavy bag on your shoulder.
{at the biltmore while visiting asheville / november 2012}
i believe that a vacation should be the perfect balance of relaxation, local flare and tourist attractions- since you ARE a visitor after all. look into the tours to see the famous highlights- but read reviews and check with the concierge desk at your hotel for their opinions and coupons!
{snorkeling on our honeymoon in st. lucia}
and lastly, take LOTS of pictures to document the good times everywhere you go :)
{our anniversary/babymoon in turks and caicos / may 2013}
 i can't believe it has been a YEAR since our babymoon... i definitely think that we are overdue for a VACATION! we're working on planning some trips with the little one this summer- and though i am sure they will be slightly different, i am equally excited to hit the beach with a baby in tow!

but i hope my tips help you with planning something fun!
where are you headed this spring/summer?

Friday, May 9, 2014

to my momma.

now that i am a mom myself, i have a greater respect and understanding of all you have poured into derek and i over the past 20-something {or thirty in someone else's case} years. 
{us at my baby shower in august}
i'd like to say i'm sorry for...

all the nights i made you worry when i was home passed curfew.
years 11{ish} through 16{ish} and the attitude that came with them.
my strong will defiance at times ;)

and i'd like to say thank you for...

forgiving me {even when i didn't apologize} for the things listed above...
and teaching me how to do the most important job of raising my babies with love, patience and grace.

but most of all i'd like to say i love you, i love you,  
i love you :)

happy mother's day.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

to the one who made me a momma.

my sweet boy, 

being a mom is harder {AND more rewarding} than i ever could have imagined. it is truly the most exhausting, yet enjoyable and fulfilling job i could ever have and i am so thankful that God chose me to be your momma. every day since you were born, i have fallen more and more in love with your adorable smile, belly laugh, and sweet spirit.

thanks for making me a momma, carter baby... you are the best thing.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

may goals.

can you believe we're already a week into may?! really, where is this year going? i've been meaning to sit down and write out some monthly goals {and hold myself accountable for them} for a while now... so here goes...

get back into a blogging routine. 
i know i have said this multiple times since carter was born, but really... it's happening. i've got things scheduled and i'm ready to post... and SURPRISE! they're not all about my child!! :)

plan a family vacation. 
i am dying to take off and enjoy some fun in the sun with my little family!

cook dinner more often. 
i'm not going to set a goal amount... because really, after how much we've been eating out lately- anything would be an improvement. but we are so happy that greg is working 7-3 now, and we're both excited about eating {healthier} dinners at home... and letting carter try small pieces from our plates as well. and i have a whole pinterest board just waiting to be utilized.

i really miss reading and now that we have somewhat of a schedule established, i have more time to devote to reading... and i don't just mean children's books. i'd like to read before bed every night... my current habit of scanning facebook/insta/email before bedtime is not helping me wind down and get to sleep... in fact, i think it's stimulating my mind and making it harder for me to fall asleep, so i think this will be a healthier routine. first up? THIS one.

tackle the pinterest house projects! 
ya'll... after wanting to wallpaper my stairs since we first moved in our house- i finally did it while the hubs was away for a bachelor party. it was so much easier than i expected {just measure the steps, cut the strips, soak it for 30 seconds, let it sit for 5 mins and apply/smooth} and i LOVE the results.
we painted some this past weekend... and i am finally feeling like the house is really starting to come together. i've been waiting to do a "house tour" series until i felt that rooms were complete, but i'm starting to come to terms with the fact that it will always be a work in progress- so i plan on starting those posts this month as well!

may is going to be a good month... i can feel it :)

Monday, May 5, 2014

eight months.

i feel like i say it all the time, but i am so blessed to be your momma, and so lucky that i get to spend every single day with your cute face. i can't believe you are already 8 months old!

other than a little congestion here and there {i think you have your momma's allergy problems and this pollen is doing a number on all of us}, you have been a healthy boy this month! you are now 18 pounds and doing well!
 routine and sleep:
you are sleeping good again, thank goodness! from 8:00(ish) at night until 7:30(ish) in the morning. we differ the times depending on when you act sleepy but you have typically been taking two naps a day.... a morning one around 11:00, and an afternoon nap around 4:00. sometimes you end up taking three shorter naps, we really just try to react to what you need.
clothes and diapers:
 you are wearing some 6-9 clothes, but mostly 9 months fits you the best. even though the shorts are still a little baggy since you are still a skinny thing. you are still in size 3 diapers, and i think you probably will be for a while since the
 your appetite has been back for several weeks now, and you are eating between 24 and 29 oz of formula a day {usually 4 oz bottles}, we also feed you a fruit for lunch and a veggie for dinner around 5:00. in general, you will eat any pureed foods... but i think you are starting to get a little more opinionated about which ones you prefer. squash and applesauce seem to be the ones that excite you the most lately :)
{carter and will are almost exactly a year apart}
our favorite baby items:
 you still love your car walker, and can get pretty much anywhere you want to go in it. we also got a new {mountain buggy} jogging stroller this month, because you were not liking your stroller {every time i would put you in it, you'd lean to the side and throw one foot up and push out the cup holder and fuss like you were not comfortable}. you definitely like this one better, though sitting in the stroller isn't your favorite thing in general.
we've also been using our cart cover a lot for high chairs and buggys when we are out shopping. i like that it helps with yucky germs, but it is also padded and fitted more comfortably for you.

milestones and development:
you are starting to scoot on your belly now and can wedge yourself under the furniture... which you think is really funny, until you realize that you can't get back out! you can turn yourself around in a complete circle, and get frustrated when you can't get something- so i think you may start crawling soon!
{harris and carter were born the exact same day! and this picture shows their personalities perfectly and seriously cracks me up}
you're definitely still teething, though i haven't seen any cutting through yet. they say your top middle teeth are likely to be the next ones to come through, but you are always taking our fingers to the back of your mouth, so we wonder if your molars are already hurting you!
since it has warmed up, we have spent a lot of time outside... you had so much fun  being on the lake.
and we took you to the park a couple of times this month and you LOVED it! swinging is your favorite, but i think you had fun going down the slides as well.
 you have started to {fake} cry when mommy takes something away from you that you wanted to play with {like wires- your favorite chew toy}. i hate it, but i know i have to tell you "no" sometimes.
we love you more than you will ever know, sweet boy!

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