Sunday, December 20, 2009

2009 in a glance

2009 was a wonderful and exhausting year for our family. As a little summery....

January: After having the most wonderful Christmas in Spokane with my entire family, we arrived back in Tennessee, excited to prepare for our baby girl, due in May. We were shocked to learn it was actually a boy! We were definitely not expecting that. I think having such an extreme girly girl made it hard to imagine having a son come into our lives. Need an example of just how girly? Check out Lydia's princess birthday party with her little girl friends.

February: Lydia went to her first "Daddy Daughter Dance" and since then has been counting down to the next one. It may have possibly been the most fun she has every had. At least it seemed that way to me. My Valentines Day might not have been the most fun I've ever had, but it included a babysitter, so you know it was fantastic.

The rest of the month included coming to terms with my cooking failings, celebrating Shane's birthday and giving unsolicited advice in regards to my sister Molly's wedding. (Even more advice after she was married.)

March: We decided to go on a spending freeze for a couple months, which I thought would be a fun challenge, but really it just sucked. I spent a lot of time fantasying about blowing huge wads of cash. To be thrifty we refinished some furniture, shopped consignment sales and I took a little trip to Vegas. :) Okay it was actually just a stop on the way to my sister's wedding.

Now 7 months pregnant, the reality of a new baby started to sink it. Maybe being pregnant with a boy caused my obsession with the color yellow. Who knows.

April: I spent April on the couch - sentenced to partial bed rest due to low amnionic fluid. Lydia driving me nuts didn't help matters. As hard as this was, we still were able to have a lovely Easter week and Easter Sunday. Luckily by 8 months along, I was able to get my fluids back up to safe levels. I even felt up to going to Dollywood! a wheelchair.

May: I had a baby! Little Collin Grey. I still can't believe I ever worried about having a boy. My heart can hardly take it, he is so precious. His baby sounds so entrancing.

Before Collin arrived, I had the most incredible baby shower, had several minor nervous breakdowns, remolded Lydia's room, celebrated our 8 year anniversary, threw together Collin's nursery, and spent one last week of "freedom" before giving birth.

June: With the new baby, Shane and I returned to Survival Mode, realizing all over again how hard it is to have a newborn. I lived in terror of my mom leaving me alone with two kids. Her trip to help was so comforting. It made the late nights, much easier.

Eventually I started getting back on my feet. I started cooking again, I started a family blog mainly to capture how adorable my kids are. I grappled with my life's meaning, and I fell in love with my baby more each day. Lydia is a wonderful big sister and I love to see her learning concern for others. We had our family photos taken, and I loved how they turned out.

July: I brought my yellow obsession into my home and changed up my living room a tad. Relatives came to visit for Collin's blessing day and impromptu birthday parties resulted. We celebrated the 4th of July in the backyard. Shane and I had a real date...also in the backyard. I openly admitted I am far from perfect.

August: I started getting my home in some semblance of order, starting with my jewelry collection. We went on a mini vacation with the whole family. I noticed a freakish resemblance between Collin and Lydia. And not always in good ways.

Shane ran a triathlon. Lydia started pre-school. I made my birthday wish list. Collin was introduced to his best friend (cousin Thomas).

September: MY BIRTHDAY! (I love my birthday.) Fell even more in love with my baby. He started laughing, and talking this month more than ever. Lydia continues her quest for an Oscar.

October: Collin suddenly got really really fat. We picked out pumpkins, Lydia had her first slumber party, and dreamed of her wedding day. Uncle Garrett stopped by during his hitchhiking trip across the US. Even more yellow. Tried to make Collin laugh while videotaping. Lydia tried to make the perfect "Happy Birthday video". Motherhood becoming more and more overwhelming. I started thinking about the legacy I am leaving my children. Collin was the cutest vampire for Halloween. Lydia was a darling southern belle.

November: As always, spending fall with my little family in Tennessee was lovely. Lydia continued her culinary efforts and her quest to be the perfect proper lady. Collin's laugh got even cuter. Shane wowed with his pancake making skills. Somehow I made it into Real Simple yet again :) We spent Thanksgiving with family and friends and the very next day we were decorating for Christmas to our hearts content.

December: We love Christmas in our family. It snowed one morning and I thought I would explode with joy. We are busy at work wrapping gifts and making cookies. Lydia is testing outfits and continuing to be generally adorable. Collin still isn't sleeping well and often I am on the verge of losing it! Still, I am so grateful for my little darlings. They make life wonderful.

We are very excited for my parents to arrive today to spend Christmas with us. What a perfect way to end the year.

Merry Christmas everyone!

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Sunday, December 13, 2009

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Decorating Cookies

My friend Jenn came to visit for a couple days when she heard I was having a hard time. She came with everything she needed to make an incredible dinner and dessert, breakfast the next morning and cookie dough ready to roll out and decorate with Lydia and her daughters. With the smell of the baking cookies and the giggles of little girls, it finally felt like Christmas.

Jenn - you saved me :)

oops! I just noticed there is a duplicate photo in there. Oh well.

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