Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Bedroom Re-Do

bedroom1.jpg
We redid our bedroom not all that long ago and I thought I'd share some befores and afters. Click HERE to see photos of our bedroom before the redo and the afters.
If you want to see it all via a slideshow, click HERE.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Watercolor Class

Watercolor ClassHi there!
I'd mentioned in an earlier post about finding balance in life. Well, in a step to find time to enjoy something that is just for me AND just for fun, I enrolled in a watercolor class at my local community center. It meets every Monday night for the next several weeks; last night was the first gathering. I LOVED it! The teacher is going over techniques and "how-tos" with lots of individual instruction thrown in. I took a course in college and the professor literally gave us assignments and then sat there as we worked. I had no clue what I was doing the entire time and just sort of figured things out as I went along. But, I struggled. In just last night's course I learned several things I'd been doing wrong that had been making watercoloring really hard and giving me crappy results. So, it's been worth it so far! As you can see in the photo, we've begun a one-color painting of a lighthouse (here it's about half-finished) to learn about shading, tone and controlling the water. All that aside, it was nice to get away and do something for myself for pure enjoyment. It's nice to have no purpose...there's no grade, no critique, no trying to sell the paintings, etc. I get to just sit, get lost in the project at hand, and play around with it. There was a mix of people in the room; old and young...experienced and un-experienced. There were no judgements (a long way from the scary and sometimes mean critiques I suffered through college...I have a great story of a professor who ripped up one of my projects into little shreds...sigh) It was so relaxing and the 2 hours went by like nothing. I can get used to this! I came home feeling so excited and energized simply from this one thing! What do you do that is for yourself and just for fun? It's something to think about if you haven't been doing it already. Have a great day!

Monday, September 28, 2009

5 Months!

Mini smile

singing

Dear Little P.,

I cannot believe the time has flown so quickly and you are already 5 months old! It still feels like you were born yesterday; still, I know I will probably always feel that way. This month wasn't vastly different from your fourth month. The difference is, you are bigger, stronger, and longer. You've gotten so much better at using your hands to play with the toys on your Jumperoo and you have found your feet. You love to try and eat your toes and you are constantly rolling around gripping your heels. Your new favorite activity!

And your voice...OH your voice! You've been experimenting with shrieking both loudly and softly and in very shrill high pitches and lower ones. You're our little opera singer! You haven't broken a wine glass yet, but you are on your way!

I had to take a break in writing this letter to you just now; our cable guy has come to install HD TV! We are very excited (your Daddy especially). But don’t think I’m going to just let you watch anything anymore! While waiting for him to run out to the truck, I gave you a big kiss on the cheek (as usual) only this time, you turned around and gave me a return “kiss” back on MY cheek! We went back and forth like this for several kisses in a row as you laughed and smiled. Of course, your version of a kiss is a wet, open mouthed press into my skin. But it was perfect, wonderful, and amazing! My first kiss from you! See? You discover new things every day and I get to come along for the ride. And for that, I’m so eternally grateful and ever so lucky. I’ll never understand what I did to deserve you, but I’ll spend my life trying to live up to it. I’m so proud of you.

Love you always and forever,

Mama
staring
Love you this much

Friday, September 25, 2009

Birthday Boy

Kiss
Dear Chris,

I'm so lucky to have such an amazing husband as you. You are incredibly sweet, supportive, hard-working, loving, caring, strong, smart, funny, helpful, generous, gentle, clever, and special. I have no idea what gift could possibly compare to our Little P, but I want this day to be special for you as it is for us because you are here. I wish I could put into words what an unbelievable husband and father you are...nothing could do justice. So, on this day (and every day, at that) we want to remind you how much you are loved. How much you are appreciated. How precious you are to us. You've shown me true happiness and bring blindingly beautiful light into our lives every day. We are so lucky. So very blessed.
Happy Birthday, my love and we can't wait to see you when you get home!
Love you always,
Megan and Paige


Daddy and Daughter

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Houston: We've Made a Discovery

FEET!
Caught Foot-Handed
Caught Foot-Handed!
Yummy
NOM NOM NOM!!
Foot Play
Fancy Footwork

And in unrelated news, Paige is styling a fancy 'do with her bald patch in back. She claims it's the next big hairdo since "The Rachel" from Friends. Who am I to argue?
Baldy

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Workin' for a livin'


I've been asked by lots of folks whether or not I'll be going back to work or if I'm already back to work. It's interesting timing for these questions because I have no freakin' idea what's going on with that. At least officially. I know that the issue Work vs. Stay at Home can be a touchy and sensitive one for any new mom. As a graphic designer, I already ran my own business from home. I figured I could resume as usual once Paige fell into a regular nap and daily routine. Well, that all sounds great on paper, but in REAL LIFE! it is not quite so simple. Each day is different and naps can be great or scant at best. My energy levels rise and plummet like the daily tides; who knows when I'll be in the "mood" or find the "energy" to design 5 custom wedding concepts for the most discerning of brides who wants a scripty font...no wait--a sort of scripty font that is still legible...no wait...maybe something more like calligraphy?....or no...maybe I could see several versions and decide? I just don't have the time to properly serve clients like I used to. And frankly, I want to focus on raising Paige. It was a long and rocky journey to get her here and I want to selfishly soak up every second in her blue eyes for as long as possible. So, for now, I've decided to be a Stay At Home Mom. I don't know when I'll dip my toe back into my career as a custom designer. Perhaps soon? Perhaps in 7 years? I just don't know. I'm taking each day as it comes and I'm happy with where I am at. It's not to say it hasn't been an adjustment. The focus is off my OWN interests and goals and more onto guiding the hands of a little one. And that's the change. It's just plain different and a hell of a lot more selfless than I'm used to being.
I've had many discussions with others about the Working vs. Stay at Home Mom debate. And here's my two cents: There shouldn't be a face-off. I believe in Mothering and in choice. I believe in the ideal of what works for YOU and makes you happy is what is best. If you like to work in a separate career and want to work, then I applaud you for doing so. If this works for you AND your family then that is all you can ask. I don't think anyone should be ashamed to say "I love my job, I like to work and I'm going to continue to do so." The same goes for a Stay at Home mother. If that is what you WANT and enjoy and are lucky enough to be able to do, then I'm glad for you. In my mind, if Mom is happy, then things have a way of falling into place as they should be. Many women are able to do both by having a part-time career AND stay at home mother the rest of the time. I also, though, believe in balance. I believe that children need to be well cared for no matter WHO is caring for them. I believe ALL mothers need special time for themselves, special time with their children, and special time as a family. I think about all the wonderful mothers out there who want to stay home with their children and desire to...but cannot due to financial restrictions. These are cases where choice holds no place over necessity. It is a difficult place to be when you are caught between 2 completely different worlds. Where there is constant pull in one direction and then the other when you just want to be in ONE place. Here, the challenge is to find the good in situation at hand and to make it great. At the end of the day, we all work to find a balance for what works best for OURSELVES and for our families. No 2 families are alike and no one solution is the cookie cutter answer for all. I believe in doing what is best for YOU in YOUR situation and making it great. What could be more right than that? In my case, I'm choosing to stay home. With careful budgeting, I'm fortunate enough to be able to do so. For this, I am sure to give my thanks and appreciation every day. I enjoy the challenges of motherhood...so far. I'm sure I'll have my frustrated moments. As far as my career goes, for now I think I will design a cohesive line of letterpressed cards that I will sell in my online shop; I can print at my discretion during my free moments. This way, I can keep a toe in doing what I love without the pressure of needing to please a particular client. I can always get back into it later on when we are ready, right? But for now, the precious moments with Little P are fast and furious and I just don't want to miss any. This decision works well for me, and for wee (my family). I hope that whatever decision you have made is working for you and yours. And if it's not, I hope you can find some sort of way to make the best of your scenario to make it great, or change it if at all possible. Let's not judge each other's choices. Let's encourage each other to strive for what we most want out of life, whatever that may be, and support it. As I've said, I don't believe what works for me should work for everyone. In my upcoming posts, I'll expand more on what I'm trying to do to make the best of my decision and how I'm trying to keep a balance. Hugs to you!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Notes

Paige's NotecardsHi friends! It's been quiet around here! I'm sorry for that; we've been filling our time with trips to the Minuteman National Park (nearby), visiting with friends, running errands, and overall life-living. I've been trying to enjoy the nice weather while we have it before winter comes crashing in a few months. I wanted to show you the thank you notes I designed and letterpressed for Paige; they are made to match the birth announcements I designed and printed. Now I have a custom card to send out whenever she gets a gift or needs to send a note. Of course, for now I write them but I'll be sure to get her into the habit of writing her own thank yous when she is able! Have a great day! I'm off to run errands and then watch Paige as she is, as of yesterday, finally grabbing her feet and inspecting them! She's a little monkey, that one.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Tally McTall

Holy crap. Paige measured at 26.5 inches long today at her checkup. Wowza! She is 4 months and 1 week old. She weighs 15 lbs. 7 oz...a little above average. He showed me where she measures on the chart and her height was way up off the curves...must be nice to be tall! It's something I've never experienced as I always had to hem my pants no matter where I got them. Now I see why she is constantly outgrowing all her clothes!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Labor Day

Happy Labor Day! I will be spending the day off doing some letterpress printing; for myself and for a family friend. We also plan to enjoy the great weather by going for a hike in a state park nearby. I hope you enjoy your day too!
I was recently reading a blog of a lovely lady who is wishing so much to have a baby. She's been working so hard charting her temps, filling in charts, and tracking her cycle as she tries to make it more likely to happen sooner. I remember doing those same things for a few years up until 13 months ago. I hated that time and I remember it vividly. The wishing, the hoping, the feelings of depression and anger and loss over our miscarriages, the desperation. It was a vicious cycle that restarted every friggin' month. It would be easy for someone who hadn't gone through it to just say "stop trying so hard, it will happen when it is supposed to" or "just relax and it will happen." I know what it is like to want something so badly you can taste it and feel it in the middle of your bones. When it is impossible to NOT try so hard. You know what helped me? When I found myself so sick and tired of thinking about it all the time? I read the book "The Secret." It didn't hold the answer or bring me a baby, but it gave me a new outlook on my approach and view of things. It made me shift my focus from what I didn't have to what I DID have. It made me shift my focus off of my sadness and onto the great things that would come. It helped me remember and find the joy in the FUTURE. To learn to say "wow, it's gonna be GREAT when it happens!" instead of "why hasn't it happened yet? Why haven't I been picked yet?" It was hard. But I was so tired of feeling desperate from having "wanting a baby" consume my entire life and my brain...reading that book helped inspire me to shift my focus and it just made me feel better overall. I did conceive Paige only a few cycles after reading that book; but I think that was a coincidence. :) For all of you fabulous ladies out there who are trying for a little one, please know I am thinking about you and hoping a little angel chooses you to be his/her mother soon. Yes, it will be a joyful and happy time whenever and however it may happen. But don't be afraid to allow yourself to feel that joy NOW. That's what got me through the hard days...picturing the future and the happiness that was to be, always put me in a good frame of mind. Dwelling on the sadness was all-consuming and turned into a very bad habit that took a while to break. But worth the effort!

Much love and hugs.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

dinner

Yesterday, Chris and I decided to go out for ice cream as our dinner. Then the plan was to have a piece of cake at home afterward. Why? Because, we are adults and we can. I was remembering back to childhood when I had great plans for when I was "grown up" and could "eat what I want." Well, after many a healthy meal we decided to throw in the towel for one night and indulge our inner children. I'm so glad we did! In case you are wondering, I had a chocolate frappe and Chris had a Sundae with hot fudge and peanut butter.
And, just because, here is a picture of Paige from yesterday.

Here's to crazy dinners and chubby cheeked babies!

4 Months

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Baptism

Paige!
Family
Paige was baptized this past Sunday; it was such a special day for her! She did great, we had yummy food and cake, spent time with family and enjoyed a beautiful day!

Clan
Baptism
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