Thursday, May 29, 2008

Window Mistreatments

We (really I) decided to turn our formal dining room into a playroom/office. I took down the champagne panels and the room looked completely naked and devoid of color.

I'm working on my first set of mistreatments a la Nester! I've taken her directions and modified them a bit for my Type A personality. I keep repeating her mantra as I'm tacking these into the wall... It doesn't have to be perfect to be beautiful! I love the idea of mistreatments... no sew, easy, hot glue gun, and looks great. I couldn't just throw fabric on the window and make it work.... well I could, but it would drive me nuts. Nester just folds and clips and poof, it looks great. Yesterday, I got out the iron and some fusible webbing and "hemmed" the sides so I would know the edges were straight. I think it gives the fabric some stability too. I have to hot glue the trim and then I'll post pics of the finished product.

Seeing how easy this really is, I'm ready to mistreat all the windows in my house! If only I had less expensive taste... all the fabric I love is $30-$40 a yard. I'm thinking a trip to Harry Hines might be in order to get great fabric at great prices.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Memorial Day Pool Fun

Yesterday, we went over to Momma and Daddy's for a late lunch and swimming. Payton had a ball in the pool... no surprise there since she's such a water baby!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Amazing Songs

I wish I would've found this in time for Mother's Day. It's a great reminder of the impact we have on our children, even in the mundane, day to day "stuff".

I love this song! It reminds me of my daddy whenever I hear it and it makes me think about Payton. (After the video, Steven Curtis Chapman explains how he came to write it)

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Summer Swap

I was totally envious of everyone's goodies from the Spring Swap, so I was super excited to participate in the Summer Swap. The rules were: $20 budget, preppy, and each letter of summer must be represented.

My partner, Cat's PJs, sent me an awesome package!

S is for famous recipe! Watch out, it's dangerous!
U is for UK! A cute pink cup to represent my alma mater.
M is for madras. You can't go wrong with a preppy headband.
M is for madras (again)! A great way to have a preppy cookout.
E is for elephantastic pink by OPI - my favorite!
R is for ribbons - on a polka dot memo cube... you can't get much preppier than that!

I had so much fun shopping for her package. It just went out yesterday, so I'll wait to tell you about all the goodies once she gets it.

I hope there's a fall swap... yall should sign up for the next one!!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

8 months old

Yes, she's standing up, holding on to her toy basket.

Monday, May 19, 2008


I said this no less than 2 billion times yesterday.

In just a short time, Payton has gone from crawling around in the living room to crawling EVERYWHERE! Pre-P, I loved how open our house is... not so much anymore. She's pulling on the curtains in the breakfast nook, playing in Scout's water bowl, playing in Scout's food (while he's trying to eat, poor dog), pulling up on the stairs, trying to climb up the stairs, looking at her reflection in the oven door (I'm telling her it's hot even though it's not on), and trying to go anywhere she shouldn't be.

I would tell her no, move her back into the living room, and she'd move on to the next thing. The above was repeated so many times I lost count.

The best part... She thought it was HILARIOUS! She'd stop what she was doing and just give me the biggest smile, bat her eyelashes, and sometimes, chuckle. It's hard to be stern when you've got the cutest little girl looking at you with her big hazel eyes.
This is her new flirty look... she squinches up her eyes and smiles!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

The Eagle Has Landed!

Yesterday, my brother in law, Michael, came home from Iraq for an 18 day R&R.

It was incredibly emotional to watch the soldiers reunite with their wives and then to see them with their kiddos. One guy left when his son was 3 weeks old. He had tears streaming down his face once he saw his family. It was so heartwarming.

Payton was such a trooper! She took her morning nap in the car on the way to the airport, so it was about 1/3 of what she normally sleeps. Michael's plane was over an hour and a half late, so she was a little antsy by the time they started coming up the ramp.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Golf Widow

Lane left today for a golf trip to Phoenix. I'm so jealous I can't see straight! Not that I care anything about golf... I'd love to just lay by the pool (isn't it amazing?) and have a few spa treatments. In his defense, it is a "work" trip. Meaning, we're not paying for it and he gets some one on one time with the top guys who are one of his biggest customers. But really, did they have to stay at the Four Seasons?

Monday, May 12, 2008

Before I Was A Mom

Jen posted this on Thursday and I meant to post this yesterday, but got busy being a mom!

Before I was a Mom -
I never tripped over toys or forgot words to a lullaby.
I didn't worry whether or not my plants were poisonous.
I never thought about immunizations.

Before I was a Mom -
I had never been puked on.
Pooped on.
Chewed on.
Peed on.
I had complete control of my mind and my thoughts.
I slept all night.

Before I was a Mom -
I never held down a screaming child so doctors could do tests.
Or give shots.
I never looked into teary eyes and cried.
I never got gloriously happy over a simple grin.
I never sat up late hours at night watching a baby sleep.
Before I was a Mom -
I never held a sleeping baby just because I didn't want to put her down.
I never felt my heart break into a million pieces when I couldn't stop the hurt.
I never knew that something so small could affect my life so much.
I never knew that I could love someone so much.
I never knew I would love being a Mom.
Before I was a Mom -
I didn't know the feeling of having my heart outside my body.
I didn't know how special it could feel to feed a hungry baby.
I didn't know that bond between a mother and her child.
I didn't know that something so small could make me feel so important and happy.
Before I was a Mom -
I had never gotten up in the middle of the night every 10 minutes to make sure all was okay.
I had never known the warmth, the joy, the love, the heartache, the wonderment or the satisfaction of being a Mom.

I didn't know I was capable of feeling so much, before I was a Mom.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Building Cathedrals

I'm sure most of you have read this, but I love it. Hope all my favorite Mommas have a fabulous Mother's Day.
I'm invisible.

It all began to make sense, the blank stares, the lack of response, the way one of the kids will walk into the room while I'm on the phone and ask to be taken to the store. Inside I'm thinking, 'Can't you see I'm on the phone?' Obviously not. No one can see if I'm on the phone, or cooking, or sweeping the floor, or even standing on my head in the corner, because no one can see me at all. I'm invisible.

Some days I am only a pair of hands, nothing more: Can you fix this? Can you tie this? Can you open this? Some days I'm not a pair of hands; I'm not even a human being. I'm a clock to ask, 'What time is it?' I'm a satellite guide to answer, 'What number is the Disney Channel?' I'm a car to order, 'Right around 5:30, please.'

I was certain that these were the hands that once held books and the eyes that studied history and the mind that graduated, but now they had disappeared into the peanut butter, never to be seen again. She's going, she's going, she's gone!

One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the return of a friend from England. Janice had just gotten back from a fabulous trip, and she was going on and on about the hotel she stayed in. I was sitting there, looking around at the others all put together so well. It was hard not to compare and feel sorry for myself as I looked down at my out-of- style dress; it was the only thing I could find that was clean. My unwashed hair was pulled up in a banana clip and I was afraid I could actually smell peanut butter in it.

I was feeling pretty pathetic, when Janice turned to me with a beautifully wrapped package, and said, 'I brought you this.' It was a book on the great cathedrals of Europe. I wasn't exactly sure why she'd given it to me until I read her inscription: 'To Charlotte, with admiration for the greatness of what you are building when no one sees.'

In the days ahead I would read - no, devour - the book. And I would discover what would become for me, four life-changing truths, after which I could pattern my work: No one can say who built the great cathedrals - we have no record of their names. These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished. They made great sacrifices and expected no credit. The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything.

A legendary story in the book told of a rich man who came to visit the cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a workman carving a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the man, 'Why are you spending so much time carving that bird into a beam that will be covered by the roof? No one will ever see it. And the workman replied, 'Because God sees.'

I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into place. It was almost as if I heard God whispering to me, 'I see you, Charlotte. I see the sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you does. No act of kindness you've done, no sequin you've sewn on, no cupcake you've baked, is too small for me to notice and smile over. You are building a great cathedral, but you can't see right now what it will become.'

At times, my invisibility feels like an affliction. But it is not a disease that is erasing my life. It is the cure for the disease of my own self-centeredness. It is the antidote to my strong, stubborn pride. I keep the right perspective when I see myself as a great builder. As one of the people who show up at a job that they will never see finished, to work on something that their name will never be on. The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals could ever be built in our lifetime because there are so few people willing to sacrifice to that degree.

When I really think about it, I don't want my son to tell the friend he's bringing home from college for Thanksgiving, 'My mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade pies, and then she hand bastes a turkey for three hours and presses all the linens for the table.' That would mean I'd built a shrine or a monument to myself. I just want him to want to come home. And then, if there is anything more to say to his friend, to add, 'You're gonna love it there.'"

Friday, May 9, 2008

Ready, Set, Decorate!

*Edited to add: Blogger's formatting is outsmarting me on this post*

Since finding the Nester's blog, I've been inspired to change the color scheme of our house. I am greened out! This is what I do. In college, I went through about 5 bedding ensembles and 8 shower curtains. I would love to do it now since I'm all about instant gratification, but I will hold off until we buy the new house. Plus, I would be sad to leave new window treatments.

I'm envisioning a warm, camel color on the walls with white/cream moldings. Accessories and window treatments will be in shades of robin's egg blue and cream. I've started picking up things as I see them. It always seems that once I need something, it can't be found. An added bonus is that it doesn't all hit the pocket book at once.
The first purchase was this tassel from the Nester's etsy shop.
I found placemats like these (in blue) at Ross for $4/4 (Got to love that!). I'm wondering if it's getting to be too much blue and if I should exchange them for cream or taupe.

I'm telling you, it's dangerous to look at Nester's shop! I saw this and had to have it! I love how it incorporates so many different elements.
I always need to have a large "project". First it was buying this house and decorating, then planning the wedding, then getting pregnant, then preparing for baby, getting ready to put the house on the market and now redecorating a house we don't even have! I love looking for ideas and filing them away for future use. If I could go back to school, I think I'd major in interior design instead of fashion merchandising.
We have a formal dining room with a full set of furniture that we've used once in the 3 and a half years we've lived here. I despise having to pull up chairs to our kitchen table when we have people over for dinner. For starters, the table only seats 4 and the legs are not easy to maneuver another chair around. I'm thinking about selling both sets when we move and buying one BIG table.
Maybe a long farmhouse table or something that seats 6 and has a leaf to accommodate 8 or more. I like the square tables that seat 8, but I'm worried about how quickly it will go out of style.
(not this exact one... not so much my style)
I also love the intimacy a round table creates, but it'd have to be huge and I'm not sure if it would fit.
Decisions, decisions... If yall have any advice, I'm open to it (places to shop, opinions on the table, etc)! Luckily, I've got time on my side to figure out what I want to do before we move.


While Lane was in Talladega, P came down with an ear infection. This last week she's been fussy, running a low grade temp, her nose is running, and she's pooping like there's no tomorrow (her little bottom is just scalded)! All of these symptoms add up to teething... which I'm sure she's doing, but my mommy gut told me to at least call the nurse and see if we should come in. Since she was just there, they wanted us to come in so they could recheck her ear. Our wonderful pediatrician says its a cold and teething, but to watch it and if my mommy gut sends off an alarm, to come in. That is could easily develop back into an ear infection.

On Tuesday, I started feeling achy and had a really bad cough. It got worse on Wednesday and Lane was adamant that I go to the doctor. Turns out that I have an ear infection in both ears and a sinus infection. My teeth even hurt! Lane has been great when he gets home... making dinner, getting P ready for bed, getting up with her at night, but since moms don't get sick, the days have been a little trying. Hopefully the antibiotic will kick in and I'll be back to normal ASAP!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Girls Weekend Recap

Last Thursday, Jenni, Melissa and I left town about 1:00 and headed to Canton. We chatted the entire way down and didn't stop until we dropped Melissa off on Saturday evening.

We stayed at Rock High Ranch... a gorgeous bed and breakfast I found by some stroke of luck. The couple that owns it is so nice and it was such a peaceful, relaxing time. It was just what I needed!
Once we unloaded the car, we poured ourselves some wine and rocked and talked. It was heaven sitting there looking out at the trees, feeling the breeze, and connecting with two of the best girls I know!
After dinner, we came back and played checkers and drank more wine.
The ranch is over 200 acres. This is what we saw looking out our front door.
Jen and me in front of the Manor House.

The only TV on the property (in the Manor House). We had no idea a tornado was coming or had hit First Monday until we started getting texts from people in Dallas.
After we shopped in Canton for several hours, we headed to Pine Cove in Tyler for the Women's Retreat that our church put on.
The view from our door.
During our 1 hour of free time, we zip lined.
Now, L and I zip lined in St Lucia on our honeymoon and we were hundreds of feet in the air, but it's amazing what having a child will do to your nerves. I think we were *maybe* 35 feet up and it was super windy, but I was scared sitting there waiting to let go.
Once I let go, it was totally fine. In fact, it was almost lame ;)
Zip lining only took 20 minutes so Jen and Melissa took the paddle boat out and I sat on the dock in the rocking chair and just prayed and let my mind wonder.


I've been calling Payton Monkey since she was in the NICU. Why you ask? Well, when she was born, as with most babies, she was pretty hairy. But it was almost black... on the edge of her ears, down her back and on top of her bottom. Momma assured me it would fall out, but I almost took a razor to it. She also has super long toes! I have short, squatty, peanut toes... especially my pinky toe. P's pinky toe is almost as long as her ring toe... monkey toes, I tell you! She hangs on me almost like a monkey hanging in a tree. When we're sitting on the floor playing, she'll reach for me, grab my arm, neck, shirt, whatever she can get a grip of and pull herself to me and then swing around and land in my lap.

This morning Payton pulled up on the coffee table just enough to be able to suck on the edge. She decided that was not what she wanted and turned around and pulled all the way up on the couch. Her face is so cute when she figures out something new. Almost like "I'm a wonder baby and I know I just accomplished something!" I was folding laundry this morning and she was pulling up and crawling up my leg... like a monkey!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

She did it!

P crawled to me on Sunday afternoon! She's hilarious now. She does a sit up, scoot, crawl to get where she wants to go.

I don't know where the time is going!

You know you're a mom when...

You check a diaper from the back (normally I check the sides) and poop gets on your fingers and under your nails and instead of getting grossed out, you calmly walk to the bathroom and wash your hands and scrub under your nails! Then proceed to change said poopy diaper while on the phone with a customer service lady.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Baby Proofing

Oh yall! I missed my sweet baby girl so much this weekend! The retreat went about an hour and a half over and I was sure P would be asleep by the time I got home. Much to my surprise, she was getting out of the bathtub with Daddy when I walked in the door! She had taken a late nap and Lane had to wake her up at 6:30. It melted my heart to see her absolutely light up when she saw me from the top of the stairs. Tears were flowing just looking at her as I was getting her ready for bed.

She sits herself up with such ease now. I'm amazed at how much things can change in 2 and a half days. P has been pushing up on all fours for awhile now. She started rocking back and forth, then bringing both knees up and almost leap frogging across the room, then moving one leg and bringing the other to it, or just log rolling to get where she needed to go. I've been watching and waiting for her to put all the movements together to crawl. Before I left, I told her that she better not start crawling while I was gone... yall know where it's going... she started crawling yesterday for Lane. When I tried to get her to crawl to me last night, she wouldn't budge. I tried again this morning to no avail. She was sitting up and I'd tell her to come to me and she'd lean over like she was going on all fours and then sit back up and stretch both arms out as far as she could to reach for me.

Since she's mobile, her new fascination is the light sockets. I'm planning on getting the plug covers out of the drawer and filling the sockets later tonight. I was hoping we'd be in our new house before I had to start this! I'm crossing my fingers that we can wait until the move to do the locks on the cabinets and the door covers.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Sitting Up

Miss Priss has been trying to sit herself up from laying down for a few weeks. This morning she did it!!! Now we have to be sure the side of the crib is all the way up.

I am in constant amazement of her and how she is growing and developing into a sweet little lady.