Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Wonderful Wednesday and

I can't believe I missed Terrific Tuesday yesterday!  It goes without saying that I was insanely busy.  On the other hand, it isn't like I have any readers left out there!  I must've lost some.  Sad. :-(

Anyhow, if there is anyone out there, this is what I am loving this week.

Tuesday night picnics on the pier! This is one of the reasons I didn't have time to post yesterday.  Robert and I are saving up for our trip to North Carolina and Sully's 1st birthday extravaganza so we have been doing fun, free family things.  Last night we packed a picnic and ate it in the park by the pier.  There was a ship that came in, lost of birds and kids and lots of things for Mr. Curious Sully to look at.  The weather was perfect.  Dinner was delish.  We had such a great time.
Here is another shot of Mr. Sully sitting in the Life Bridge art:

Look at those chubby knees!  I love it!

Love love love Pandora!  I love making my little Quick Mixes on Pandora and then rocking out to the most schizophrenic garble of music ever. I am currently jamming out to a little BSB and N*Sync.  Yep, I am a teen again.  Sadly, I still know all the lyrics.

I know I have loved them in a previous Terrific Tuesday post, but I can't help it.  Sons of Anarchy Season 5 starts in less than two weeks.  On September 11, I will be doing three things:

                               1.  Remembering the Tragedy of 9/11
                               2.  Sending birthday wishes to Heather's son on his 1st Birthday!
                               3.  Watching the Sons premiere and loving every second.

We will be spending another fun filled weekend in Hinckley this weekend!  There is a carnival, pony rides and a pancake breakfast.  I can't wait to relax and have fun with my family and my boys!

The Nuby No Spill sippy cup.  This is the best sippy cup on the market.  It is so easy for Sully to use.  Most sippy cups say they are no spill, but this one lives up to the hype.  IT is super easy for Sully to hold and he really enjoys himself.
The sippy in use:

Now, one thing I am not loving.....

boys,celebrations,children,kids,males,parties,persons,pillows,popcorn,slumber parties,special occasions,talking
Sully is going on his first overnight away from me.  I am freaking out a little.  Even in the hospital, I never left.  He has never spent a night away from me.  Like I said before, we are going to stay at my mom's in Hinckley this weekend, which is, as you can see, a little away from Duluth:

My mom called me yesterday to tell me she is coming into town on Thursday night and asked if she could take Sully back with her on Thursday since we were coming down there on Friday anyhow.  My mom did watch Sully while we were at work after my leave for his second surgery, but overnight AND like 70 miles away.  It was a hard pill to swallow.  My initial answer thought was a firm, "No."  I wasn't ready.  I could tell my mom was a little hurt about it so I told her I would think on it.  I talked to Robert and to a couple of my other friends that are moms.  Surprisingly, most moms let their babies stay overnight when the babies were really young!  I was kind of shocked.  Although, none of these babies have their chests sawed open twice in on year either. :-) 
Before Sully's valve went in, I had a valid excuse on why I didn't want him to be away from me. He only had a shunt and was being checked with an oximeter.  Now that he is fixed and there is nothing wrong with him, I am kind of out of excuses.
After a big cry and another talk with Robert, we decided to let him go stay overnight with grandma and grandpa.  I am sooooooo nervous.  I know he will have a great time and be spoiled rotten, but I have never spent a night away from him.   Oh Lord, help me get through this. Our friends are taking us out for dinner and martinis to take my mind off of it.  How did you all handle your first night away?

Well, I suppose I better get some work done! Have a great Wednesday!


Monday, August 27, 2012

Spectacular weekend and 9 month picture blowout!

How the hell is it Monday already?  I was really enjoying the weekend and it was a fight to get out of my bed this morning.  The shower barely woke me up.

We had a freakin' great weekend!  My dad was in town from Raleigh and it was a blast.  He stayed with us too, so we got a lot of time to just hang out and talk.  He was able to enjoy Sully's uber cuteness in the morning and even be there at bedtime.  My brother Nick was around all weekend too and that was great.  We spent Friday night having cocktails and eating yummy takeout.  We didn't go to bed until after 1am, and for me, that is LATE!  On Saturday we lounged around in our jammies until almost noon and did a little shopping.  We had my grandma's 80th birthday dinner on Saturday night and it was a little chaotic.  WE have six kids there and ten adults.  Luckily, we had a great server and she got a nice tip. 
Saturday night, Sully was tired and went to bed as soon as we got home and me, Robert, Nick and my dad whooped it up a little. :-)  I have not really had a ton to drink since becoming pregnant with Sully, but on Saturday, I definitely over imbibed... I am still paying for it today.  It was a ton of fun though.  We talked about everything my politics, my brother's time in Iraq, MySpace, and the price of groceries.  I miss being able to do that with my dad on a regular basis.

On Sunday, we had my grandma and my aunt over for a BBQ.  I made some tasty burgers.   Then of course, the fun always has to end and my dad packed up to catch him flight.  I always tell myself that I am going to be super tough, but the minute he walked out the door, I started crying.  He is the best, coolest, most awesome dad in the world and I hate that he is so far away. 
After everyone left, Robert, Sully and I just hung out, played toys and snuggled.  Sully has been eating a ton lately.  I think he is going to go through another growth spurt.  Oh!  And I forgot to tell you, he did two little crawls on Sunday morning!  I swear, he is the laziest kid.  He was playing in his room and we kept putting his monkey toy just slightly out of his reach. He whined and grunted and then finally pulled himself to the toy.
After that, he was looking at me like he was so tuckered out from making him get his own toy... it was a little pathetic.  Hahah!

Now, time for the 9 month photo blowout! 

We picked up Sully's picture CD on Thursday.  I use Shutterfly to do all my printing, but I needed some for my grandma's birthday so ::barf:: we had to go to Walmart... (don't even get me started...)
I hope you all can handle the cuteness:

Mama, I hate this beach....

Baby Feet. :-)

Dad, I am sooooooo over this whole picture taking thing.

Ahh... Manny... we meet again...

Sully and Manny.. best buds!

My boy is just too cute! :-) :-)

Say what!?

Happy boy!

He is lost in thought....

I hope you liked 'em!  Have a great Monday ladies! :-)

Friday, August 24, 2012

Start your weekend off with this nugget....

Hello and happy Friday!  I am getting ready to pack up work for the day and go get my daddio from the airport.  I uploaded Sully's 9 month session to our computer last night and I am hoping to get them on Facebook this weekend and then uploaded here. :-)  But, I snapped the cutest picture of my stinky bear last night and I had to share.
The background on this is that Sully has been copying everything lately and I was sniffling the other day and he started doing it; but he was doing it more exaggerated.  It turned in to this scrunched up nose, puppy sniffing thing.  Anyhow, it is the effing most adorable thing on the planet and I have been trying to capture it on the camera for days and could never get it in time.  Well, last night, during dinner... I finally got it!
Please excuse the carrots:

How friggin' cute is he??!

I hope you all have a fantastic weekend!!! :-)

Thursday, August 23, 2012

What's on good old Pandora today?

It seems like every time I turn on Pandora at work, I also think, "I should blog."  Pandora apparently brings out the writer in me... or maybe it is just the oversharer.  Today it is a lot of John Mellencamp.

Anyhow, I am glad I am able to squeeze out another post.  I feel badly for not posting as often as I did.  I am sure you were all hoping for some philosophical and heady post, but sadly, this may be more of a rambling-can't-form-a-smart-sentence kind of post.  Bear with me.

Lately, work has been bananas.  You're probably thinking, "Wow... not the first time we have heard that," and you are totally right.  It seems like being a nuthouse is now the norm.  Obviously, as a legal aid program, we are always busy, but the past six months have been a completely different story.  I will be so busy that I will look up a the clock, notice it is 3pm and realize I haven't even peed yet.   On top of my day to day items, the United Way fundraising season starts in a few weeks and then Women Rock is already on the horizon for November 3 and then BAM.. Sully will be 1 on November 14th!  WTH!?  Where has this year gone?!  Looking at my outlook calendar makes me wanna yak.  I literally am busy every single weekend until the middle of October, and then I only have one weekend with no plans and then it is insanity again until the end of the year.  This is insane.  I do feel better because we nailed down a date for Sully's 1st birthday party.  We are having it on Sunday November 11.  I am already in full planning mode.  I am going HUGE with it.  We are doing a giant Bubble Guppies cake, with a personal smash cake for Sully in the shape of Spongebob Squarepants' pineapple house, centerpieces, games, goody bags, candy sushi, and lots of other neat things.  Most of it is thanks to Pinterest. :-)  We have a guest list of almost 50 and the menu planned to a tee.  Leave it to an IF mom to plan a crazy birthday party. :-)

I am like a kid on Christmas waiting for my dad to get here.  He will be here tomorrow and I can barely contain myself.  I scrubbed my house from top to bottom yesterday.  I am already a neat freak so it was no fun for Robert, who had to bear the brunt of my craziness.  He never understands my need to clean everything when the house is already clean. I wish he would just understand that I love the house to be perfect when we have guests and yes, I am a person that would judge other people's houses, so if someone is going to judge mine, I want it clean.  I realize that there are some people out there like, "Oh, when you're a mother, you waste time cleaning and blah blah blah," and there are even kitchy signs that say, "Quiet down cobwebs, dust go to sleep.  I am rocking my babies and babies don't keep."  Things like this imply that a tidy house means that I am a crappy mom... um.. negative, ghost rider.  Does that mean the messier the house, the better the mom?  I don't believe that for a second.  My son goes to bed at 7pm.  That gives plenty of time for cleaning.  And how about during nap time?  Pick up a mop, folks.  A clean house is a happy house. :-)  I love knowing that my dad is coming to visit and nice, clean, comfortable house.  I can't wait.

I love that Sully is getting better at feeding himself.  He is so good at using him thumb and pointer to pick up little snacks and food.  He loves feeding himself.  My baby boy is growing so fast. We are also working on pulling up.  He isn't doing that yet and I am convinced it is because he is lazy.  He can stand just fine when I hold on to him and when HE wants to and when HE feels like it.  He needs to start doing it though, so we are taking any tips or tricks if you gals have any?

Well, this post is really going nowhere and work has overwhelmed me yet again and I have completely lost my train of thought.  I couldn't post without a picture of Sully James so here is one from last night.  Robert was mowing and Sully was having a snack and watching him out the dining room window:

He loves puffs. :-)

Happy Thursday!

Courtney and Sully

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Terrific Tuesday

Once again, I am amazed at how quickly Tuesday has arrived this week.  I can't believe that summer is nearly over and we are gearing up for fall.  As much as I hate Northern Minnesota winters, I love fall time.  My city is stunning when the colors change.  I can't wait to take lots of fun, family pics.

I am pressed for time today since work has been a complete nut house lately.  I am pretty sure that everyone in the tri-county area has needed our legal services lately and my head is starting to spin.  Is it Friday yet?  Lord, help me! :-)

I am in love with my chiropractor.  I have been beyond scared of going to one forever, but I finally got up the courage to go.  I went to see Dr. A and she is a miracle worker.  She is an actual MD and she worked magic.  From the first adjustment, I felt better.  It is still a little intimidating, but I did learn that I have a tightening in my right hip and a slightly herniated disk. I am excited to be able to get some relief from this back pain.

Speaking of my stellar chiropractor, she turned me on to this stuff called Biofreeze. It is literally a tube of joy.  I was a slave to Icy Hot for years. I can't even tell you how much of this I went through.  Then I learned from Dr. A that when you have soreness, the Hot part of Icy Hot can actually just make it worse by causing the inflammation to flare up even more.  Biofreeze is just the Icy part and it is a godsend.

Spa for Baby... Sully is so cultured.  My mom bought Sully all these couture baby hygiene products this weekend.  I scoffed at them... until I smelled him after a bath.  Ohmygoodness... he smells like a stud.  It is the best baby smell ever.  And I am tickled pink that it has little baby cologne.  I love putting a few splashes on him in the morning.  I am sure it drives his daycare lady, Miss Molly, just wild. :-)

My dad.  I had to put two pictures on here because I couldn't decide which one I wanted.  The top one is from my wedding in July 2009 and the bottom one is from my visit to North Carolina in the fall of 2010.  That is me and Dad at Bentonville.  My dad is my BFF and he is coming to Minnesota to celebrate my grandma's 80th birthday this weekend.  He and Sandymom moved to Raleigh in June 2010 and I miss them terribly.  I haven't seen my dad since April and I am so excited.  I am taking a half day on Friday because his plane gets in at 1:30. :-)

If you aren't watching this show, you are missing out.  I know MTV has gotten completely inane, but this show is genius.  I am totally the person that laughs when people fall, so this is the perfect entertainment.  And it is on on Mondays so after a completely stressful day, I can laugh at the drunk idiot that jumped off his roof, attempting to land in his swimming pool, instead, he busted his balls on the side after a miscalculation... CLASSIC.

This picture is so dark, but I love it. Sully woke up on Sunday morning at 5am and just started yelling, "Mama!  Mama!"  He was wide awake and wanting to play.  We sat down, snuggled and watched Bubble Guppies. It was amazing. 

I hope everyone has an awesome day!  I haven't heard from a few of you recently so we hope all is well!

Courtney and Sully

Thursday, August 16, 2012

We were shinin' like lighters in the dark in the middle of a rock show

I am listening to Jake Owen on Pandora, thus the title of today's post. :-) 

Today is a great day. No particular reason; it just is.  I have air in my lungs and brains in my head. I have a healthy son, a wonderful and wonderfully sexy husband.  Sons of Anarchy Season 5 starts in a few weeks.  Today is my Friday.  The sun is shining. I get to spend the weekend relaxing and being spoiled. Pandora is playing fantastic jams this morning.  I am down 3lbs.

What you grateful for?

I think sometimes in this world of baby loss, IF and pure chaos that is our world lately, we tend to focus on the negative. We forget that there are so many things to thank God for.  I am sure everyone can think of at least three things that make them feel blessed.  Have you tried lately?  Like I said, it is so easy to let all of your mole hills turn into mountains.  I have even found my anxiety coming back because I have been turning everything into Mount Everest and even making peaks where there was no reason for one to be there. 

I let my anxiety and "OMG.. what if X happens?" make me feel nuts lately.   I need to stop that.  I need to stop worrying that the bottom is going to fall out.  I need to stop thinking about the worst.  I have already lived through the worst.  I need to trust that He will keep his eye out for us, just like He has been. 

I had a long discussion with Robert about it the other day, and it was really helpful.  I don't wake up a billion times in the middle of the night just to make sure Sully is breathing.  I check on him before I go to bed, and then I allow myself to get much needed sleep as well.  I am by no means becoming a worry free mom, but I am allowing myself to relax a little.  I am taking the time to appreciate everything instead of worrying about the what ifs.  Sometimes I get so envious of people who will never know this worry.  People who will just go on, oblivious to the "coulda beens."  On the other hand, I am glad that they can go on naive and never have to feel those twangs and guilt and fear.  I am slowly learning to let go and enjoy my blessings.

"Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me."  John 14:1

Enjoy your Thursday ladies.  Be grateful.  Take a minute to appreciate everything.  Look around.  You're so lucky.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Terrific Tuesday and NINE MONTHS!

Good morning ladies!  How are we all doing on this sunshine infested Tuesday morning?  Everything is coming up roses over here.  Today, my little stinky bear is 9 months old!  I can't believe it.  Where did these months go.  I carried Sully to 37 weeks so he is now he has officially been out longer than he was in.  Crazy!

We are taking a long weekend at having a mini vacation at my mom's house in Hinckley this weekend and I am really looking forward to that.  We're going to swim, ride the golf cart, hike, and roast marshmallows.  I am so thrilled.  My mom always spoils us so that is fun too. I just keep telling myself, "You only work 3 more days.  You can do it!"  I feel like this week is going to creep by just because I am so looking forward to Friday.  The one downside to Friday is that Mr. Sully James has his 9 month doctor appointment on Friday morning and he is getting shots and a blood draw AND a pre-op for his circ.  Poor honey!  I am in a pretty lovey mood this morning, so let's get right to it!

Please excuse the dirty shirt.  He had just eaten a crap ton of avocado and made a huge mess!  Filthy short or not, I am loving this 9 month old!  I can't believe how much he has changed.  He is eating all kinds of foods now.  He is scooting around the house.  He is holding on to things and standing.  He is giggly and happy all the time and I just love smooching those cheeks!

This is an old picture, but we love going down to Hinckley and hanging with Grandma and Grandpa!  Sully loves to ride the golf cart around.  I think he likes feeling the breeze in his toes.  We are going to get him some yummy fruits and veggies from the farmer's market too.

Sully LOVES  Yo-baby.  I make all of his food from scratch, but after one giant failed attempt at making yogurt, I gave up.  This is an organic whole milk yogurt and it is uber tasty.  Sully loves the vanilla and banana flavors the best.  There are also peach and blueberry flavors too.  They are a healthy and yummy "dessert" during his meal time.  YUM!

My friend Eileen owns a bakery down the street from my office.  I met her almost 4 years ago when I decided to have her do my wedding cakes and cupcakes. Her cakes are amazing and she is the sweetest person.  I have gotten probably 30 or so cakes from her since and we have become amazing friends. She is doing Sully's 1st birthday cake and it will be spectacular! :-)

This website is so cool!  They have a different deal every day and shipping is usually dirt cheap. I have found lots of stuff for Sully and I am officially hooked.

I always love the UW. I work at Legal Aid and they are one of our biggest supporters.  I am also the Legal Aid chair for the United Way fundraising campaign (Four years running) and I look forward to it every year.  Since I have taken over, our company's giving has increased by 20% and we have 100% participation.  Considering we get money from UW, that looks pretty good.  We would all benefit if we LIVE UNITED!

I hope everyone has an amazing Tuesday!  I know I will!  Also, to all of you TTC, know that Sully and I are praying for you!  We say a special prayer for you every evening.  :-)


Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Terrific Tuesday

Hello and Happy Tuesday!  Sully Monster was sick yesterday so we spent the afternoon cuddling, napping and watching Sons of Anarchy.  It was a wonderful time had by all. :-)  I am loving lots of things today so let's get this started!

The NoseFrida.  Listen ladies, if you don't own this yet, pay the $14 to Amazon and buy it.  It is the BEST suction thing for your baby's nose.  Now, it is parent powered, which means, yes, you use your mouth and suck out the gunk BUT there is a filter and the snot never actually touches your mouth. The bulb syringe sucks and I never thought it helped at all.  Then a friend told me about the Nosefrida and I have used it ever since.  It is no fun watching your baby suffer and you know you would be doing anything you could to make them feel better.  This thing rocks!

There is no picture for this one, but I am loving it nonetheless.  Recently, Kristine and I have been corresponding about Sully and his heart condition.  Kristine's daughter Cora passed away in 2009 due to an unidentified heart condition. Most heart conditions can be found by doing a simple pulse oximetry test. Not all states mandate this test. If should be mandatory in all states.  It is so easy and non-invasive.  All parents should request it be done within 24-48 hours after birth.  It saved Sully's life.  Now, I have sent Kristine a write up of Sully's story and it was posted to her website.  It was super emotional for me to write it all out, but I am glad that it is out there.  Check it out:

I cannot say enough about Children's.  I will always be grateful to them for everything they did for Sully and my family. Recently, there was a news story about a nurse from Children's that was at a pool for an outing with her family and a four year old boy almost drown.  This nurse acted quickly and saved his life.  It was amazing. 

The ScanLife app.  I really can't get enough of it.  The grocery store I shop at started using this and I don't have to cut coupons anymore!  You scan the square before you shop and it will tell you a three digit code.  You tell the cashier that code when she is ringing you up, and it takes all the coupons off for you. How awesome is that!?  And the app was free for my droid!  WINNING.

I got this recipe off Pinterest and I made homemade fruit snacks yesterday!  This is not a photo of the ones I made, but you get the idea.  I made a double batch and it was awesome!  Here is the recipe:

2/3 cup of frozen juice concentrate, thawed
4 envelopes of Knox gelatin

Pour  the juice concentrate in a small sauce pan.  Sprinkle the Knox over the juice and let sit for a minute.
Put the pan over medium heat and stir until the knox is thawed. Our the mixture into silicone ice cube trays and let sit for at least 20 minutes.  You can speed this process up by putting them in the fridge.
Enjoy!  They taste better if you use a really flavorful juice.  Apple juice tastes like crap though and lemonade doesn't harden the same way.

I would be so sad without Netflix.  I am gearing up for the Season 5 premiere of Sons of Anarchy in September so I am rewatching seasons 1 and 2 on Netflix.  I own Season 3 and then I am buying Season 4 when it comes out at the end of the month.  I am so excited.  I am kind of a freak about this show and I need to quit drooling over Charlie Hunnam.

Well, I hope you all have a great Tuesday!  I know I will!


Monday, August 6, 2012

Pictures... take two

Good morning and happy Monday to you all!  I am still shocked at how quickly the weekend went by, what whattaya gonna do?
I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend. We had amazing weather here in Northern MN.  It was sunny and warm with a nice breeze to keep it from being blisteringly hot.  We went shopping, played outside, went to a friend's wedding, shopped some more and then we had Sully's 9 month session, round two yesterday. 
My mom and stepdad had come up for the day so we got some delicious gyro take out from Kosta's and then the boys went to work on the scaffolding from the cabin and mom and I decided to take Sully Bear shopping.  We bopped around the mall and of course, Grandma bought Sully new jammies and even treated Mama to some new hair care products.  I love when my mom comes an spoils us.  :-)  After our little shopping and Caribou run, we went to Enger Tower park and waited for Sully's photo shoot to start.  He was in such a good mood so I was hoping it would continue through pictures ...... and did it ever!!!  Ohmygosh was he adorable!  Sully was his super smiley self and was hamming it up for the camera.
Look at my little stud muffin:

He is pretty adorable if I do say so myself. :-) And I do... hahah.  I can't wait to see the rest of them. :-)

On a slight serious note, I ask that you send prayers to my friend T.  She was 13 weeks pregnant and had a miscarriage yesterday.  She had been trying for almost a year and she just had the first appointment on Friday and had heard the heartbeat and everything. It is pretty tough.  I hope she feels better soon.  Thanks for the support ladies.

Have a great Monday ladies!

Friday, August 3, 2012

It's his photo shoot and he'll cry if he wants to

Yesterday was Sully's 9 month photo shoot.  I have been looking forward to it for over a week.  I had all these cute outfits to put him in and I kept imagining how rad he would look on the beach with his classic Sully smile spread across his face.  Well, let's file that dream under Things That Did Not Occur Yesterday.
Sully was having none of it.  I got him dressed in his jeans and tie and he was happy as a clam.  Then I sat him down in the sand and it was all over.  He obviously hated the feeling of the cool sand and then started to cry.
It didn't help that it was blazingly hot and it made everyone super sweaty.  Our amazing photographer got a few before he had a total meltdown.  We tried putting him on a blanket, giving him a toy, changing his outfit, giving him snacks, and we even grabbed my Nook and put on an episode of the Bubble Guppies.  He was over it.  We tried for over an hour and then stopped.  She said she got some shots and she would look at see.
She is also a trooper because she is 9 months pregnant!  haha!  She texted me last night and said that she knew I was super bummed and offered to meet us again on Sunday to see if we could take a few more.  It will be cooler on Sunday and we will be at a park.  Pray that he is in a better mood!

I think he is also teething, which didn't help the situation. He has two bottom teeth now.  Does anyone know what teeth generally come in next?

I will say though, even though he was not a happy camper, he is still such a stud muffin!  Here is a sneak peek for you:

Have a good Friday peeps! :-)