Monday, August 31, 2009

Beautiful Day!

It has been the most beautiful day here in Nashville. Sunny, warm and with a slight breeze. Evie and I took advantage of it and played outside a lot. She loves to pick grass and play with her blocks outside. It sure beats our condo so I am all for being outside. We went to Crockett park to walk and play. I had fun watching Evie figure everything out. She loves to explore her enviroment now and it's so fun to see her reaction to new things.

Evie and I met some friends for lunch. It worked out great because both of our husbands had late meetings so it was nice to have some adult conversation. Carl ended up coming home before his dinner meeting to see us. Evie was excited to see her Daddy because he was singing B-I-N-G-O to her. I bought this great book at the consignment sale published by Gymboree with ideas for play with babies. It was a super deal at $2 and it's full of cool things that I would have never thought to do with her at home.

Evie went to Walmart today for the first time in her life! She loved it and had a great time looking around at everything. Of course, she made some friends along the way. About every six months or so, I get on kick that Walmart is cheaper than Target. I found some great deals today. Amy, our cashier, told me that it was a good choice for me not to bring Evie to Walmart until now. She said it's a very germy place. I thought this Walmart was super nice and seemed clean to me. It was certainly better than the first Walmart that I went to in TN.

Evie got a new purple sippy cup. That seems to be the color she gravitates towards so maybe it will encourage some drinking. She is having fun playing with all of her cups but I would love for her to swallow some milk or water. Each day she gets better so one day she will surprise me.

Doesn't Evie look precious in her new fall clothes? She looks like such a BIG girl. Evie is really moving now. She is starting to like her Sassy seat more and really enjoys her Exersaucer. Evie still sticks pretty close to me but is doing better while we are at home when I leave the room. She's doing much better with her sleeping and I feel a hundred times better. I can handle once a night but more than that is too much. Let's hope tonight will be another night of sleeping for Evie!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Little Pumpkin and Okra Soup

We had a LAZY day and it was wonderful! We just played with Evie and enjoyed being together. Doesn't our little pumpkin look cute in her suit? I bought it last year at a consignment sale. It fits her perfectly now so by Halloween it will be way too small. Evie is going to give it to her new friend.

We drove around Franklin for a little bit and then went to Whole Foods. Earth's Best babyfood is .13 cheaper there than at Publix. It used to be.26 but they had a price increase this week. We got a few snacks too including some hummus, cheese and spinach dip. I love Whole Foods and it's so nice for it to be close by. There is some political uproar with Whole Foods right now due to the new health care program being discussed in Washington. I do not know enough to boycott the store and I sure would miss the pimento cheese and shortbread cookies.

I have been making okra soup this afternoon. It's a delicious summer soup. Carl's cousin, Courtney, gave me the recipe. She was so sweet to copy her favorite recipes and put them in a little cookbook for me for Christmas four years ago. What a great present! Here's the recipe for your family.

Okra Soup:

Boil some water with a ham bone. Add a little salt if desired. Cook for 30 minutes. Add 28 oz. of tomatoes and a package of butter beans. Simmer for 30 minutes. Saute' about a pound of okra with some onion. Add to pot along with some shoepeg corn. Simmer for another 30 minutes and serve over rice. You can freeze the leftovers. This is a delicious and healthy meal!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Tradition is Important!

We enjoyed our Saturday! Evie took a SUPER long nap so we watched Senator Kennedy's funeral. It was a powerful service regardless of your political views. That is one BIG family!
We went to The Factory to walk around and to eat lunch. They were having a Living Green Expo there today so it was interesting to look at the exhibits. We ate lunch at Constant Craving. It was delicious. I had a tarrgon chicken salad sandwich and Carl had turkey with cheese. We had these homemade cheese wafers that were so yummy. Of course, we had dessert! I picked out some molasses cookies and they were amazing! Soft, sugary with a kick of spice. Maybe they sell those by the dozen because they would be a perfect Christmas gift. After lunch, we walked to the Farmer's Market. It was fairly large and there were a lot of vendors with a variety of goods. We bought some fresh okra and some cinnamon rolls from an Amish family. Can't wait to try them out in the morning. Oh wait, I already tried one and it was very good. However, Lindsay makes WAY better cinnamon rolls and she's not Amish.

We came home for Evie's nap and I napped too. Evie's not sleeping is starting to catch up with me. I hope she continues to do better. All babies eventually sleep through the night but I thought she'd be okay by now.

Carl took Evie on a walk while I straightened the place up and then we went to church. We decided to try the 5:30 service at the Church of the Good Shepherd. It was a wonderful service but very few people were there. We met everyone and were given a personal tour of the church. The priest told us that the most popular service is at 9 in the morning. We might try that next week. Evie did GREAT! She loved the space and the music. Evie was entertained by her spoon. She did spit up in the middle of church - carrots all over herself! I was trying to get Carl's attention and keep the carrots from flying. It was funny! Evie received a compliment as the best behaved 7 month old that the greeter had seen in church. It was probably a fluke but we were proud of her. She will be in the nursey at the 9:00 service. The sermon was about tradition and it was excellent. Especially since I did not consider the service traditional at all. The basic point was that traditions are important but we should not let our traditions get in the way of positive, productive change. He gave the example of how people who have been in churches for many years often think candles must be lit in a certain order or a special song must be sung on Easter. Those things are nice and tradition is good but we cannot let it define everything! He attended Seminary at Sewanee. A place that I want to visit while we live here. He was in a tiny church while in school and everyone was sitting on one side of the church. He said he was much meeker back then so he did not ask why. Finally, after several weeks, he decided to ask. One of the parishoners said, "Oh, that's because the old coal heater used to be on that side of the church and it got so hot we all sat on the left side. This made sense to Randy so he asked how long ago the coal heater was there. It had been gone for 38 years! Perfect story to make his point.

Evie just went to sleep and Carl went to get us a pizza. We are breaking tradition tonight and having pizza. Friday night has always been pizza night but it did not work out last night. Traditions are important!

Friday, August 28, 2009

You can lead a horse to water but you can't make her drink!

Evie and I were supposed to go to a Snugglebug storytime at the library. It's just for babies but Evie was too tired to go. I guess the rain made her sleepy because she was not up from her nap in time to go. Guess who does not want her Sippy cup: Evie. I found another baby, Tess, who does not like bottles either. That 2-4% is getting bigger every day. I give her a Sippy everyday so eventually she will get it. We did not try our Dixie cup method today. The thought of it exhausted me. We went to a consignment sale this morning at a local church! It was packed! Evie loves to be out and about. She looked at some other people her size and played with some toys.

Advice for consignment sales:

1) DO NOT take your baby with you. Although, Evie was great, it was a lot harder to pick through the items. Also, strollers take up a lot of space and you are constantly apologizing to people for running into them. We ran into our friends Carol and Cassidy there. Cassidy has a Raffi just like Evie. Cassidy's grandmother was at the sale and she was pushing Cassidy around so Carol could shop!

2) Have an idea what you are looking for before you get there so you do not have to rummage through everything there. Think about what type of prices you are willing to pay because some things are not deals! I was looking for sleep books (imagine that), pj's and a smocked dress for the holidays. I found all of these items but decided not to get the dress. So the costume was a bonus.

3) Inspect everything carefully before you purchase. I found some damage on the dress that I liked so it was not a good purchase.

4) Take something with you to hold your treasures in such as a cloth shopping bag or a laundry basket. Cash is best but some sales take checks. Today's sale did not take credit because everyone here is a Dave Ramsey fan and he does not promote using credit. I will post about him another day but trust me people treat him like a celebrity.

Evie picked out a bead toy and did not want to let go. She was very upset when the lady took it from her to get the price. Luckily, she got over it quickly. She LOVES her new toy and it has already entertained her much of the day. A great purchase for $3! I also got Evie a precious Halloween costume. She's going to be something orange, round and with a green leaf on her head. Yes, Evie is going to be a fluffy pumpkin. We tried it on her tonight and she looks adorable.

Evie and I had a great afternoon playing outside and enjoying the sunshine. Evie is starting to like her Sassy seat a little more and she sat there while I snapped green beans. She thought that was very interesting! We are looking forward to a weekend in Nashville - no traveling!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Library Day!

Evie and I went to the library this morning to see if they had any sleep books that I have not read. Guess what, they did not have a single one. Maybe all the babies in Brentwood sleep through the night! Evie loves the library so we looked around for awhile and read some books. Then we took a walk at the park in front of the library. We are enjoying this cooler weather although it probably will not last. Carl and I love this tree. Isn't it beautiful? They have wires all over the top of the tree and it looks like it has sustained some damage over the years. Evie had fun playing under the tree and picking the grass. I guess it's the teacher in me but I always think of the book, The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein when we visit the park.

We went to the grocery store. A lady stopped us in there to talk to us about Evie's blonde hair. She had dark hair like mine and her daughter is 11 years old with blonde hair. Finally, I had to act really interested in which Ziploc bags to get because she would NOT stop talking. Sweet but we needed to get home for Operation Bottle.

Operation Bottle is not going very well. I have been working on my Dixie cup method with her. This is my adaptation of the cup feeding that many lactation consultants suggest for young babies. It's hysterical because it involves so many supplies. I line up 5 cups and fill each one with about an ounce of milk. Then, I put a bib on Evie and make sure that I am not wearing anything too nice. We sit on the kitchen floor and I try to get her to drink. It's very messy! The logic behind the 5 cups is that if Evie would get into a feeding pattern then I would break it by refilling the cup. I am sure you know that Evie is not in a feeding pattern of any type. Did I mention this was messy? I just learned this week that Carl did not take a bottle as a child either. So the 2-4% of babies that do not take bottles is either getting bigger or like my mom says maybe I just know them all.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


Evie and I had a playdate this morning! We had so much fun. Carol and Amanda were the mommies. Logan and Cassidy were the babies. Evie LOVES to be around other babies except when I hold them. She has started this new thing where she tries to leap into my lap when I am on the floor. It's hard to hold a little baby and catch a leaping one at the same time. I loved Amanda's house and neighborhood. It may be a little far for Carl but we have learned there are no guarantees about jobs anymore. Amanda's husband worked in Cool Springs and then his office moved to Smyrna. Makes his commute a lot longer than they planned. Carl said he has a 6 hour commute right now since we still have our house in Charlotte.

Evie has been very sleepy today because she was up ALL night long! I tried all my tricks tonight so hopefully it will be a better night for us all. We went to Granny White park this evening. Then we picked up some dinner at Chile Burito -yummy! Evie played with shoes and our goggles during dinner. She LOVES shoes.

I received the best surprise in the mail today. It was a book called Rattled written by Trish Berg. My friend Amber who will always hold a special place in my heart sent it to me. Amber and I both had our babies on January 16 and met through a Lake Norman Mommy. Amber and I really bonded in the early days of motherhood! Anyway, the book is about surviving the first year of motherhood without losing your cool. I read three chapters during Evie's nap and now I am hooked. It's written from a Christian perspective and is really a great read!

Here's an excerpt,"Welcome to motherhood, a lifelong adventure that many enter into but few are truly prepared for: an exhausting, overwhelming escapade in diaper changing and snotty-nose-wiping. A breast-feeding, bottle-feeding, twenty-four hours-a-day on-demand job that will drain every ounce of energy you have - and then some."

Even with all of that I would not trade it for anything! Each day, I love my sweet baby more and more. I love her gummy smile, the way she pats my back and rests her hands on mine while I read to her. I love her constant chatter and her infectious giggle. I love her curiosity about the world and the way everything is so exciting to her. I love how she curls up into a ball and snuggles with me late at night when we are both exhausted but she cannot sleep. I love the way she exhales her breath and her intoxicating smell as she drapes herself across me. I love how she comes to me when she needs to be comforted. Motherhood is a wonderful gift and I am so excited to have started this lifelong adventure with Evie!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Sitting in the Sassy Seat

Evie and I ran a few errands this morning. Carl has been dying for Evie to get a little bouncy seat that you hang in the doorway. Hudson had one when Carl was at Pawleys and seemed to really like it. I got one called the Sassy Seat - perfect for Evie! She likes it but does not love it which surprises me since she kicks so much. We get comments constantly about how much she kicks from strangers. Comments like she's really going to take off one day, or she's not going to walk she will run etc. So, we thought she'd love the thing. We will keep trying but I kept the receipt just in case.
Evie took a really long nap this afternoon. It was in two parts because she had another crying spell in the middle of her nap. She got caught in the crib slats and could not get her hands out. Mommy to the rescue and she went back to sleep for another 1.5 hours. She is doing better with her sleeping now that she has ocean waves playing all night and I am really loading her up with babyfood. She can put it away so maybe she is a big eater like her Mama!
Lindsay gave me a new recipe to try and let me tell you it is delicious! Not to mention easy. I was able to prepare it with Evie perched on my hip.
Crockpot Roast:
3 pound chuck roast
1 envelope of Italian dressing mix
1 envelope of Ranch dressing mix
1 envelope of Au Jous
Mix seasonings in a bowl. Rub all over meat. Put in crockpot. Put in 1 cup of water. Cook on low for 8 hours. About 1 hour before serving, add 1 or 2 cups of water. You can add vegetables and serve over rice.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Storytime and Naptime

Evie and I went to Barnes and Noble for storytime. It was right around the corner so we decided to go try it out. Evie was the youngest participant but she was the best behaved. She sat on the bench next to me for a little bit and then she sat on my lap. I was very proud of her! She did not throw a Curious George at the teacher, take a picture from another kid or scream out. I am sure she will do those things one day but today she was excellent. Evie loves to be out and about as long as she is rested.

We came home and played a little then Evie took a nap. She woke up after an hour crying so I knew she was not finished. She uses naptime as a good oportunity to do her business and then she wants to be changed. I rocked her and sang to her until she fell asleep. She slept for an hour so she was tired. Usually, I do not rock her to sleep but today she needed some extra cuddles. That's okay with me because soon it will be harder to get her to sit still long enough to cuddle. She is at such a sweet age right now. Although, I have enjoyed every age with Evie.

After her nap, we worked on using a sippy cup again. She thinks it's fun to play with the cup but I am not sure she is drinking anything. She did drink some out of a cup without a lid. My new idea is to get some little Dixie cups for her. It would be a good size for her little hands. I tried a bottle at her morning feeding but she was not interested. She has made some progress though because she used to scream when the bottle went into her mouth. Now, she just holds it and looks at me. Kinda like she is saying to me, "What am I supposed to do with this?"

Evie was excited to see her Daddy come home. We all ate dinner as a family. Evie had watermelon and we had spaghetti. Carl gave Evie a bath. She was so dirty because she gets more milk on her than in her. Then they read some stories and I put her to bed. It's time for some Monday Night Football. One of the advantages to living in Central Time!

Happy First Day of School

I hope everyone has a fantastic first day of school tomorrow! It's always so exciting to start the new year. I love the beginning full of of so much to look forward to, getting to know your new students and lots of energy. It's also the best time to get to know your fellow teachers before the real craziness sets in about October.
Evie and I went to storytime this morning and the story was If you take a Mouse to School. That was always one of my favorites to read on the first day to my sweet little first graders. Evie seemed to really enjoy it!
Teachers you are doing important work and making a difference in the life of a child! What an awesome responsibility. I think it will be a little bittersweet for me in the morning. It's my first time not having a first day of school in my life but at the same time I feel so blessed to be able to stay home with my little Evie. I'll be teaching when I am 80 to make up for this time at home but it is worth it. Wish I was still in the area so I could drop in and read a book or grade some papers - that might just do the trick. Make this a great school year!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Puckett's and the Park

We are still trying to catch up on our sleep so we enjoyed a mostly lazy day at home. It was another beautiful day with a high of 72. I even thought about getting out a pullover but they are in the wrong closet. Zipcode 28078 instead of 30727.

After Evie's nap, we went to Puckett's Grocery for lunch. It has quite the reputation around here. Puckett's is in downtown Franklin. They have a lot of variety on their menu and some specials. We had the $9.99 special. I had prime rib with mushroom gravy, squash casserole and green beans. Carl had fried chicken, creamed corn and green beans. It was all delicious! Super cute atmosphere and very family friendly. Evie had fun looking around but her high chair was lower than our table. She was not so sure about that so she requested to be held during lunch.

We came home for Evie's nap and we took a nap too. After naptime, we went for a walk at Knox park. It was nice to get out and enjoy the beautiful day!

Evie decided she would try a bottle this afternoon. It took four different sippy cups in one feeding but she drank 5 oz. using a sippy cup! Maybe she is turning over a new leaf! The funny part is that I have spent so much time wishing she'd take a bottle and now that she did it seems like a lot of work. We took the bottle with us and had to keep it cold then she likes it slightly warm since she's used to nursing. Then, you have to wash the bottle or in our case 4 of them! Not to mention the time spent pumping the milk! I would love for her to take a bottle occasionally but I am going to have to practice with her a lot. Lindsay went to a breastfeeding class and they told her that only 2-4% of all babies do not take bottles! Guess, I am one of the lucky ones -maybe Evie will be in the 2-4% of something really great. Like the 2-4% of children who always make their bed and pick up their dirty clothes without being told. HA!

Carl decided to put Evie in the Baby Bjorn so they practiced crawling together while she was in it! So cute as you can see from the picture. Evie had 4 jars of baby food today so maybe she will sleep tonight. I also just got her a CD player that goes on repeat with an ocean CD. All the sleep books, say that if you keep the same cues that you use to get them to sleep throughout the night then they should work to get the baby back to sleep. Keep your fingers crossed for us!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Evie goes to the fair

What a beautiful day it has been in Nashville! We took Evie to the fair today with our friends the Onello's. It was so much fun and the girls enjoyed being outside. We went to the Wilson County Fair. It is the best fair in the state of TN. Also, it is the 49th best fair in the United States. We did not know what to expect. It was not quite the scale of the North Carolina State Fair but it was WAY better than the South Carolina State Fair. We had corndogs, Italian sausages, funnel cakes, popcorn, and lemonade. YUMMY - fair food is always good. Carl and I missed the ham biscuits that we used to get in Raleigh. Ham biscuits don't seem to be very popular here in TN. We were pooped after the fair and needed some rest. Evie and I rested in the car so we caught our second wind.

So we decided to head to Tootsies on Broadway. That area is a happening place - lots of people, lots of music and lots of fun! Evie had a great time at Tootise's. Guess what she played with - a straw! Tootsie's is known for being a place where singers get their start. The bands were signing autographs for all the tourists just in case they hit the big time. We did not stick around long but it seemed like a great place to hang out. Everyone has told us about Tootise's even our pediatrician from Charlotte. Well, it's going to be another early night for us.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Peaches and PJ's

Evie tried peaches today for the first time. She had peach baby food and peach baby yogurt. She did not love it but did not spit it out either. We will try again soon. Evie and I went to search for some footed PJ's in her size. It's hard to find pajamas that look like a little girl. I do not like the ones that say things on them or have sparkles or worse cartoon characters. One day, she will get to choose those but right now she's wearing sweet little girl pajamas.

Land of Nod came through for Lindsay! They will deliver her dresser by next Thursday and refunded her $100 shipping and handling fee. She lives in a remote area according to the delivery company. I would feel okay ordering from Land of Nod but maybe they could give her some incentive to purchase from there again. A gift certificate would be the perfect way to secure future business from the Horton household. Let's just hope the furniture arrives in good condition. If not then it will the 4th time, something has arrived damaged.

Evie has been on a great schedule most of this week eating every 4 hours and napping around 8:30 and again around 12:30. She went down around 12:30 today and woke up because the grass was being mowed by the lawn service for our neighborhood right outside her window! Let me tell you she was MAD! Evie was screaming and crying and not ready to wake up. So, we tried playing but she was still sad. So, we tried a walk and she slept for a few minutes but she was still sleepy. Then, we went for a car ride and she woke up happy! I have learned that if Evie does not wake up happy then she will not be happy again until she has had some more sleep. She's like me cranky when hungry and tired!

We went on a search for a sound machine this afternoon. Her Sleep Sheep is fabulous and has worked really well but we are in a small condo right now and all the sounds are keeping her from sleeping soundly. Another mommy suggested Bed, Bath and Beyond - they had a lot of choices but the one that plays continously was $60 - not ready to spend that. I need to look around a little. Walmart and Target might be good places to look!

We are looking forward to a weekend at home. Too much travel is hard on babies and parents. It was so nice not to pack for a weekend trip or worse - unpack from a weekend trip. It's supposed to be a beautiful weekend so we plan to get out and explore our new city.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

How to Make a Fabric Covered Binder

The pictures do not do this justice but trust me this is a really cute idea! Wish I had come up with it but it was a MOPS project.

Materials Needed:

1 binder
fabric of your choice
scrapbook paper
spray adhesive
craft glue stick

Steps to Make Your Binder:

1. Choose your cloth, wrap around binder. Secure edges like you are wrapping a gift. After you are sure it fits, go outside and spray the adhesive all over the binder and the cloth. Wrap around the binder - smoothing the fabric as you go.
2. Cut a piece of ribbon and secure inside the front and back cover. It does not need to go all the way around because the paper will cover the ends.
3. Choose two pieces of scrapbook paper and spray with adhesive. Put in front and back of notebook.
4. Keep notebook open to dry.

Easy and cute! HINT: Get a coupon from the Sunday paper for Michael's because the adhesive is $10 a can.

Rainy Day

We did not have any plans today and it has been so wonderful! Evie and I just cleaned the house, played and worked on a few projects. It was such a great day.

I did not take my camera with me over the weekend so we had a little photo shoot right before it started raining. Evie was very cooperative once I took her sign away. Guess, I will just have to remember that it was her 7 month picture.

Evie HATES the vacuum cleaner. She puts her hands up and cries unless I hold her. Now, that's a workout holding her and trying to clean the house.

Lindsay found that her dresser for Baby James was damaged in transit. This makes 3 different pieces of furniture that have arrived damaged! She used The Land of Nod - a reputable company known for quality items. Carl and I had a great experienced with the company but I am not so sure I'd order from them again.

Evie slept much better last night. She went to sleep around 7 and woke up at 12 and 5 but then went back to sleep until 7:30. I feel great today. Five hours of sleep in a row feels like a full night of sleep after the last few weeks with Evie but it's all worth it when I see this face in the morning. Notice her Glow-worm and her Raffi. She falls asleep with Raffi and then plays with the Glow-worm once she wakes up. What a cutie!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Catch Up

We have been super busy these last two days! Carl had to go to Greensboro yesterday for a luncheon for work. My mom came to hang out with me and Evie for the day. Alicia came over to visit for awhile. I know my mom enjoyed seeing Alicia - Evie did too!

We went to Davidson to look around in the little shops and to go to lunch. Evie had a great time playing with her straw while we ate lunch. We were looking for a smocked Christmas dress for Evie's photo shoot in October. It will be here before we know it so I decided to start looking. I kept Evie up in the afternoon so she'd sleep in the car. We took her for a little walk so she could make it through the afternoon. Evie showed her Nana how she drinks water from a sippy cup. My mom told Evie she does not have that much fun drinking her ice-water. Evie was kicking and smiling the whole time. Thank you Nana for coming to see us!

Carl got home and we left around 3:30 Central much later than we had anticipated but it went really well! Evie slept for the first part of the trip and woke up right before we stopped for dinner at Cracker Barrel in Newport, TN. She played and entertained us during dinner. It was beautiful watching the sunset while we drove towards Nashville. Evie got fussy for a few minutes but then went straight to sleep. She slept all the way home! We got back about 10:30 and Evie went right back to sleep. I do not like traveling in the dark but it seemed to work for Evie.

We woke up bright and early this morning to go to MOPS for our first meeting. I was nervous because this was my first time leaving Evie with anyone. She did not cry when I left her which is amazing because she cries when I leave to do anything! Ms. Carol said she cried off and on then went to sleep for 20 minutes in her stroller. They rolled her around to get her to sleep. Evie loves kids so that helped a lot. She was crying when I picked her up which was sad. Evie was so happy to see me! She had her Raffi in her hand and the teacher said she held it the whole time I was gone. Eventually, this will get easier for me and for Evie. It's good for both of us! I enjoyed the group and met some nice new people. We made fabric covered binders which turned out really cute. I will take some pictures to post. Evie made a new friend named Evelyn. She is only 10 weeks old but Evie thought she was really cute. There were 4 other babies that are 7 months old so that was fun to see how different they all are. Thank you Krystal for encouraging me to join MOPS. Can't wait to see you when you are here for the conference in a few weeks.

Evie was ready for her nap when we got home. We played a little and put away all of the stuff that we brought back yesterday. Nothing too exciting but I am hoping for a relaxed day tomorrow! Carl and I are totally exhausted and ready for bed. It's only 8:20 but it's lights out at the Niemeyer Nest.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Busy Day!

Evie woke up bright and early ready for another day! Even when I am exhausted, seeing her little smile in the morning makes all the hours up at night worth it! Evie took a super short nap this morning. I think she knew Daddy was working from home.

Evie and I went to our old playgroup this morning! It was so much fun to see the moms and babies. The babies have grown so much. Rhett is crawling! It was good to see the moms and talk about mom stuff! Every new mom needs a group of friends to talk about baby stuff and to get advice! I am so fortunate to have so many wonderful friends who keep me going on the tough days and laugh with me on the fabulous days.

Lauren made a chocolate birthday cake - yummy! Aubrey made some really great brownies. Here's the scoop: Make a pan of brownies, use a biscuit cutter to cut circles, spread Nutella on top and sprinkle with nuts! Delicious! They looked fancy too. Evie even stayed awake until we got home. I put her down for her nap and she kept sleeping and sleeping That always happens when you need them to wake up. I had a hair appointment but did not want to wake her. She woke up half a minute after I left according to her Daddy. They had a great time! I had a great time without her for a little bit.

Then we went on a walk and then to the Hart's for a drink. It was so good to see them. We miss seeing them. Paisley has grown a lot! She was eating Cheerios - what a big girl!
I have not stopped all day! It's been so busy because we are trying to squeeze so much into a short trip. I am about to go to bed just in case Miss Evie decides to wake up multiple times tonight! Heading back to Nashville tomorrow afternoon.

Wonderful Weekend!

Carl went to Pawleys Island for the wedding and had a great time. Evie and I went to my parents and had a wonderful time. Evie loves her Ipop, Nana and Uncle Ben. She also loves her dogs - Murphy and Gracie. It's so cute to watch them together. Evie did not love sleeping this weekend. She has been up a lot! I am going to try a few more things and then she might have to CIO some. I am exhausted from being up with her and Carl sleeps right through it :-) - wish that I could.

My mom and I took Evie to Belmont on Saturday to look around at the little shops. We had a lunch at Old Stone. It was delicious! I had a salad with salmon and poached pears with blue cheese. My mom had a crab cake sandwich. Evie had a straw and was perfectly content. She loves to be outside. We went into a really cute children's shop. I saw some overalls at Initial Impressions but did not get them. They were 35% off maybe I will need to get them but I will wait to see if they go down even more. They had pink and green - not sure which ones to get!

On Sunday, we took Evie to see her great-grandmother and great aunt. Evie had fun with a spoon. I love how such simple things entertain my little girl. My parents brought me back to Huntersville and Carl came back here. I tried to nap but could not get settled down - neither could Evie.

We went to see Mike and Alicia last night to celebrate their exciting news. Evie loves Alicia! Her parents are visiting from Florida so it was a nice visit. I am so sad they are moving but at least we are moving too. We plan to have a roadtrip to visit them soon!
It was a great weekend. I am off to try to nap while Evie naps!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

7 Months Old

How did Evie get to be 7 months old? We cannot believe it! She's so big. Evie weighs 16 pounds and is 29.5 inches long. She is the perfect size and so fun to hold. Evie is starting to move around a lot. She gets into crawling position and tries to get things.

Evie Facts:

Evie wears a size 2 diaper and her clothes are 6-9 months old. Her footed pj's do not fit unless they are 12 month size. She can't stretch her legs out.

Evie LOVES to eat. She eats pears, apples, bananas, squash, carrots, green beans, peas and carrots. Her favorite way to eat is with her mesh feeder and she loves grapes and watermelon. She still eats every 3 hours or so. Mommy wishes we could stretch that out but it's not happening. 3.5 hours is the longest she can go.

Evie likes tags especially paper ones. She eats them. Paper is one of her favorite things to play with. She enjoyed playing with a Junior Mint box on our recent road trip.

Evie loves dogs especially Hattie, Murphy, Gracie and Carney. She likes to pet them and will even let them kiss her. Their toes are especially interesting to Evie and she likes to reach for them.

Evie likes to go out and about. Shopping is fun for her in short increments. Evie still sleeps best in her crib. She naps in the morning for 1-2 hours and again in the afternoon for 1-2 hours. She usually sleeps in the car on road trips. Evie loves her new carseat because she can see out the back of the car and experience the world around her. Evie likes to go out to eat but does best at lunch especially if we can sit outside. Straws, plastic lids and napkins entertain her while we eat.

Evie likes people but needs to warm up to you before you can hold her. She also really likes her Mommy these days and does not let me leave her sight. It's sweet but I want her to be comfortable with other people too.

Evie is so happy when she wakes up from her naps. I love to hear her squeal and see her kick her feet. Once she can use those feet to move - she is going to be really fast!

Evie is still not sleeping great at night! We have had her in 4 different beds in the last week so I am sure that does not help. Hopefully, she can settle back down and sleep through the night again. Mommy is so tired and needs to sleep!

We are enjoying her more and more each day. Happy Birthday, Evelyn Claire!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Happy Birthday, Kurt

Happy Birthday, Kurt! We hope you had a great day. Evie sends you a hug and a kiss for your birthday!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

One year ago today . . .

We found that we were going to have a baby girl! I was so excited because I love all things pink. Carl and I were pretty sure it was a girl because there are lots of girls in his family and the Chinese Gender predictor said we were having a girl. CGP has been right in 23 out 26 cases with my friends. There might be something to it!

I spent the day making cookies for a new neighbor - I ate about half of them. Sugar is supposed to make the baby move so the ultrasound will show the gender. Our appointment was not until 4:00 so we had to wait all day. Carl knew it was a girl as soon as the technician started moving across my belly. We could see her hair on the screen but we were not expecting it to be blonde.

We called the grandparents when we left the doctors office. Then we started calling all of our friends. I was so excited because my nieces have fabulous clothes and I was expecting some really great hand me downs. Evie wears her clothes from Mary and Lucy a lot and she has tons more in her closet. Carl and I went to the Japanese steak house for dinner and then I had to go get something pink! We went to Target but I could not find anything that I really loved but settled on some pajamas.

It was so much fun to think of our baby as a little girl. I am a planner so it was great to be able to prepare for our little girl. We started getting lots of pink things because naturally pink will be her favorite color too! Little girls are so much fun! Carl and I both could not love her more.

Every little thing she does is magic!

Evie gets more fun every day! I am having such a wonderful time being her mom. Last night was her best night of sleep in over a month - only woke up once. YAY for Evie. We slept much better too with our egg crate on the matress. It made a HUGE difference.

Evie has been sleeping a lot today. I had to wake her up after 2.5 hours this morning and she took a nap for 1.5 hours this afternoon. Evie and I went to the pool this afternoon! She loves the pool and was making all kinds of noises. One of the ladies at the pool told me she loved Evie's joyful noises and that she was such a happy baby. Evie and I kicked all over the pool so I got a good workout too. Evie and I went to Pet Smart this afternoon. She thought it was so much fun looking at the fish, birds and hamsters. There were not any dogs there but lots of cats. Evie was kicking at the birds so much that I thought she was going to fly away too.

On Tuesday, I found out that our Little Gym was closing due to low enrollment. I was so disapointed because it was going well. The funny thing is that same day I just been saying that Evie and I were too busy and needed a break. Today, I contacted Gymboree - my favorite - and asked them if they would consider doing a class with just kids her age instead of mixing the age groups. I was so excited to hear that one is beginning September 1. We may do a Kindermusik class too since Evie loves music.

We went to Knox park when Carl got home. He ran and I pushed Evie. It was so peaceful there and the temperature was perfect. Evie took a little nap on the way home. Sleepy girl!

Tomorrow will be a busy day. We have a coffee at 9:30 for mommies and babies then we have some errands to run in preparation for our trip to NC. Carl is heading to Pawleys Island for a wedding and I am going to my parents for the weekend. Carl will meet us back at our house on Sunday. We were all going to go to the wedding but it got too complicated and way too much driving for Evie.

Happy Birthday, Poppy

Poppy, we hope you have a fantastic birthday! We are so glad that we could come celebrate with you last weekend. Evie sends a kiss to her Poppy!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Evie reads and coffee with friends

Evie took a really long nap this morning. I had to wake her up so we could go meet some friends for coffee. We went to The Factory to meet for coffee at the Frisky Berry. I had a caramel latte and it was wonderful! Evie and I met Amanda and Logan (8 months) from Little Gym. Amanda also invited her friend Carol and Cassidy (4 months) to join us. They know each other from the Williamson County Housewife group that I recently joined. We had a great time chatting and the babies enjoyed playing. Evie even shared her keys with Logan. It's so fun to see how much the babies interact with each other. They really enjoy each other as much as the moms enjoy each other. After coffee, I went to Constant Craving to get a sandwich to go. It's located in the factory as well. I can't wait to go back with Carl. What a fun spot!

Evie was exhausted from playing with her new friends so we she went right to sleep.

Alicia called me with great news this morning. Her house is under contract! I am so happy for them and this is a good sign for us too. It seems the market may be slowly turning.

Isn't Evie so cute reading Goodnight Moon? She loves books just like her Mama! I used to read a book per day in the summers. Not so much anymore. Now, I read Sleep Solutions, Healthy Habits for Sleep, Baby Wise, The No-Cry Sleep Solution. Are you seeing a pattern here? Evie is doing much better with her sleep. She's a trooper for as many places as she has slept in her life. I think she is doing great with the transition.

We went to the park for a walk when Carl got home. There was even a breeze - it was very nice. Dinner was Chile Burrito and Evie did great. Give her a straw, a cup lid or some napkins and she's entertained. I think we wore her out because she crashed tonight!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Carrots are so yummy!

Evie did great last night! She took a two hour nap this morning and then we went to Little Gym. Evie did a forward roll and practiced standing holding on to a bar. She LOVES the bells and cries when the teacher takes them away from her. We met a little girl named Claire and her aunt's name is Evelyn. Evie's aunt was named Evelyn too thats where her name came from. We had so much fun at Little Gym.

Evie tried two new foods today: carrots and grapes. YUMMY! She really liked the carrots and ate the whole jar. Maybe an extra full tummy will help her sleep. At Lindsay's shower, one of the girls told me to put frozen grapes in Evie's mesh feeder to help her mouth feel better. Evie thought the grapes were really cold but she wanted more after she mushed up the first set. Evie was wiped out and fell right asleep tonight.

I LOVE the picture! My SIL, Lollie, had this Christmas ornament made from Evie's birth announcement . Carl and I both thought this was such a special gift and we can't wait to have ornaments made from our Christmas cards in the years to come. Think how wonderful it would be to have all the cards from your family made into ornaments. You could see your family grow and change over the years. Carl wants me to figure out a way to make these. Such a creative and special gift! Thanks Lollie for thinking of me.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Giggle, Giggle all day long!

Evie is all grins and giggles today. She slept much better last night. Only woke up twice - I can handle that! We even feel rested. Evie slept late this morning and then napped late. I woke her up so we could head to the Pancake Pantry with Maura and Abby. Pancake Pantry is near Vanderbilt and it is delicious! There was a line at 11:00 on a Monday if that tells you anything. Breakfast is always yummy. Evie and Abby enjoyed being with each other. Evie kept grabbing Abby's foot. Then they both played with their toys. Abby looks just like Tim but has Maura's calm, sweet personality. I do a double-take every time that I see her because she reminds me so much of Tim. We walked around to some cool shops after breakfast. It was a fun outing.

Evie fell asleep on the way home and then we played before her nap. Diapers seem to be scarce around here. Publix did not have her size last night and today Target did not have the correct size. I bought her some size 3 diapers but they do not quite fit so after dinner I have to try again. Maybe Walgreen's!

I could not choose just one picture today so enjoy these! She looked so cute sleeping during her nap. We think she's getting really close to crawling but we are in no hurry. It will be twice as much work for us to keep up with her. Evie loves her Glow Worm and cuddles with it now that she can hold it. She brings us so much happiness and we feel so fortunate to be her parents!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Back to Nashville

We had a great night in our house. All three of us slept so well! It was short trip and we did not see anyone but we will be back next week. We left around 9:45 central time and got here about 5. We stopped three times for gas, lunch and to feed Evie. We are so proud of Evie - she did a great job! No tears or screaming. She mostly slept and played with her doll.
Carl took Evie to the pool to wear her out so she will sleep well tonight and I went to the grocery store. Don't go to the grocery store on Sunday nights unless you have to! Here's a cute picture of Susan and Evie from the baby shower. I hope to post some pictures soon. Our condo looks like a disaster zone right now. It's time for the worst part of coming home - the laundry and unpacking.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Busy, Busy!

We have been so busy! On Thursday, we left Nashville around 12:30 to go to see Mary and Lucy at Sheshe and Poppy's house. Evie has been so excited to see them that she has not been able to sleep all week. We were so proud of Evie because she was wonderful the whole car ride. Maybe she likes her new seat! We were all so happy to get there. Everyone was so happy to see Evie especially Mary.

Evie decided it would be more fun to scream than to sleep that night. She was up 7 times. We were so tired but she was still ready to go. Evie was up and ready to go get her picture with made with her cousins on Friday morning. All of the girls did great! I cannot wait to see the pictures. It looked like he got some fantastic shots.

Mary was a BIG helper and kept Evie awake in the back of the car while we drove back to the house. Evie went right down for her morning nap. We went down to the lake to see Mary and Lucy swim. WOW, what super swimmers they are this year! Evie had her nap and then the girls played together. We went to the pool and Evie had a ball! She loves the water and squealed with delight! Kurt and Carl had races to see who could swim the fastest. Each won one race so it worked out great! Carl lost his bathing suit in one of the races - funny but nobody noticed! Evie took a bath in Sheshee's sink but did not love it as much as Lucy used to. We will try again another time.

Evie did much better sleeping last night. We only got up 3 times! Maybe tonight will be even better since she is in her crib at her own house. Thanks Sheshee and Poppy for a fun weekend.

We left Carl's parents house bright and early to go celebrate Lindsay's baby boy. Susan, Brooke and I had a shower for Lindsay at The Piedmont Club in Spartanburg. It was so much fun! I always love to see my friends and feel so lucky to have such wonderful friends. Lindsay got all kinds of great stuff. Baby Horton will surely know his name with all the monogrammed stuff that he got. Less than two months to go until Baby James arrives. Evie is so excited to meet her future husband :-) - wouldn't that be funny! Evie even made an appearance at the shower. She loved the attention and got a chance to see her Lindsay. Susan had not seen Evie since she born and this was Brooke's first time meeting Evie.

My parents, Nana and Ipop. came to the shower. My mom was able to enjoy the shower and my Dad helped Carl will Evie. They had a great time! Dads are always more fun than Moms! Evie came back with earings and a tattoo. She even got into Carl's chocolate doughnut. Don't worry they were not real!

We stopped to get Carl some lunch and then went to Gastonia. Evie had fun playing with her Uncle Ben and her furry friends, Murphy and Gracie. Evie was getting really tired so we left to come to Huntersville. It's nice to be home but does not feel the same. We needed to get some stuff for our condo. Evie was excited to be in her house! She looked all around when she came in the house. She seems to recognize her stuff. We walked to Arnie's for dinner. Evie was perfect. She played in her stroller the whole dinner and then fell asleep on the walk home. I just put her to bed so keep your fingers crossed for us! I need to get some pictures from the shower but this is a picture of Evie with her two favorite cousins.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Wise Wednesday

Evie only woke up twice last night. Two times is better than six, right? Maybe tonight will be even better. At 3:00, Evie woke us up with a blood curdling scream. We were sure something was wrong. I took her to the doctor this morning just to make sure she was okay. Evie got a clean bill of health. I did learn something to make our co-pay worthwhile: give Motrin for pain and Tylenol for fever. He said her teeth are coming and that some babies are more sensitive to the pain. No surprise there. Guess what - she's still growing! She weighs 16 pounds and 13 oz. and she is 29.5 inches long. My mom, Evie's Nana, pointed out that she is about 1/2 of my height. WOW, she is one tall baby! We had a rather eventful trip to Babies R Us to get her new car seat since she does not fit in her old one anymore. Graco car seats only go to 22 pounds and 28 inches - depends on your actual seat but those are the requirements for the seat we have. Chicco has a new carseat that will allow your baby to stay in it until 31 inches. It also fits the Snap and Go stroller which you cannot live with out during those early months. My SIL told me to get it and we LOVED it. Carl still misses the cup holders on that stroller.

Evie was worn out from our trip! It took way longer than expected - it usually does with a baby. Evie did great. She slept on the way home and was so excited to see her daddy when she woke up from her nap. We grilled some ribs for dinner. YUMMY. Carl is working on the new carseat and I am trying to think of all the things we need for our jam-packed weekend.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Tumbling Tuesday

Evie started off screaming a lot! I was up a lot with her last night. Not sure she felt great. She was so upset this morning that I almost did not take her to The Little Gym. I think it was a terrific distraction for whatever was bothering her. She tumbled on the big cheese and did a forward roll. She really likes all the baby workouts. I love how it makes her so tired. Naptime was not an issue at all. She slept for two hours so I am hoping that tonight will be a lot better!

After her nap, we went to run a few errands. She was back to her sweet little self - smiling and laughing with everyone who interacted with her. The drycleaner was happy to see Evie.

Carl and I had fun playing with Evie this afternoon. She likes her little pool a lot but tries to get out to grab the grass. It's so cute to see her play. She went right to sleep so keep your fingers crossed.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Musical Monday

Evie and I had a great day! We met Monica and her cute son Seth for lunch and walking at the mall. It was so nice to meet a blogging friend. She is super sweet and so much fun. Her son has the most beautiful brown eyes. I told Monica that I need to enjoy that Evie cannot run and walk yet. My life will surely change once she can. I was so impressed with the mall - The Mall at Green Hills. It has every store you could ever imagine but it's not an everyday mall. Don't go there for basics - go for the fun stuff in life. We went to the coolest book store - Davis Kidd. They had so many books, lots of stationery and even a cafe. I had the most delicious Arnold Palmer with a twist. It was frozen. YUMMY! Evie loved the play area. They had blocks, a train table, and some other toys. There was a dad there with his little girl. They were building towers with blocks and Evie just giggled when they'd knock the tower down. It was so cute. Her giggle is the best sound! It makes all the sleepless nights, rushed dinners and quick trips all worth it. I think Evie needs a set of blocks! We can't wait to go back. David Kidd is supposed to have the best storytime in town.

She fell asleep before we left the parking lot. I guess all that playing exhausted her! We went for a walk this afternoon and both of us got so HOT! Poor little Evie turned bright red and was so sweaty. Carl was home when we got back from our walk so we filled her baby pool and let her cool off. She had a great time even though the water was frigid. I could barely keep my feet in it and Carl was pouring it on her head. She loved it and was playing with our bubble blower. She thought it was a flute. It was so cute. Carl caught it on video.
Evie seems to really be going through a tough time with sleeping. We were up a lot again last night. She went down about 6:15 tonight and has already been up with blood-curdling screams. Not sure what's going on - we are going to keep our eye on her because we are traveling this weekend. Maybe it's teething or a growth spurt. We need our sleep so I hope she bounces back soon.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Spectacular Sight Sunday!

We were up a lot with Evie last night. She went to sleep at 6 and was up at 11, 2, 5, and 6:45. Let's hope that does not happen again tonight. We fed her a lot all day! She had apples, oatmeal,sweet potato, banana and watermelon.

Carl and I went to a really good place for lunch. It's called the City Cafe: Southern Meat and Three. Carl had fried chicken, mashed potatoes, green beans and a roll. I had okra, green beans and squash casserole with a roll. We shared some chocolate pie for dessert. Evie was fabulous at lunch. She played with her toy and sat in her highchair like such a big girl. There was a whole table of children beside us and she was checking them out. Our bill was $20 with tip - totally worth it. We will go back again soon.

After lunch, we went to Percy Warner park for a hike. It was a beautiful park and seems to be a popular Sunday spot. Percy Warner is a HUGE park. Nearby is Edwin Warner park; Percy and Edwin parks are the "central" park of Nashville. You should see the sights from this park. There is a GIGANTIC set of steps to get up or you can take the stroller friendly route. We gave the steps a shot but the stroller friendly route turned out to be a lot easier.

Then we went to Target to get Evie a baby pool and Carl a coffee mug. He is trying to be more green and needed a new mug for work. Carl is blowing it up right now so we are excited to have purchased Evie an above-ground pool for her swimming pleasure. It was a deal too- that's what happens when you wait to August to buy your baby a pool. Now, we just need a handle on our water spigot. I think there is one in the front yard but if I put Evie out there she will have an audience. Not sure anyone works in this neighborhood. They are all retired. Our neighbor, blows his driveway every day and then sweeps it. They all sit in their garages with the door open reading the paper. They are so cute!

Evie and I are meeting one of our blogger friends for lunch downtown. We are really looking forward to it. Let me go get my sweet husband a water. Blowing up a baby pool is a real workout!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Shopping Saturday

Evie woke us up bright and early! Then she took a 2.5 hour nap - way to go Evie! We decided to go to Applebee's for lunch. Carl's secretary gave him a giftcard for Christmas so we could have a date. We had a date for 3! Evie tried avocado and seemed to like it. I will try again in a few days. She sat in the highchair and behaved very nicely! She loves to look around at people. We fed her some greenbeans and she enjoyed playing with the spoon.

Believe it or not, Carl wanted to go to Opry Land to look around. Imagine a really big Concord Mills the day after Thanksgiving! WOW, it was crowded. We needed to get Evie some new PJ's. She's too long for her pj's; all 29 inches of her barely fit the pajamas that she has now. She's in 12 month pajamas because of her length! They look so LONG but I am sure they'd fit her. We just still think of her as a little baby!

The best part of our shopping trip was the cupcakes at Gigi's - they were delicious! I had the Lemon Burst Surpreme! We even have a location near us! Guess where, Evie and I are going next week!

After our trip to the mall, we decided to drive around to look at houses. We found a few we like but need our house to sell or for someone to allow a lease-purchase. Dave Ramsey votes no on the lease-purchase and he is the Financial King of Nashville.

We decided last week to try to go to church tonight at 5:30. That time works with Evie's schedule and we figured she'd fit right in with the other screaming babies. Just kidding! So we all get dressed and drive in a monsoon to church. We get there and the sign on the door says no service tonight. AHHHHH! I guess it all worked out because Evie was so tired from not sleeping much this afternoon so we came home and she went to bed after eating her greenbeans and watermelon.