Wednesday, November 9, 2011

I'm proud to be an American...

This post is dedicated to the United States. The past few days my attention has been drawn to Made in the U.S.A products. I am not really sure why but for some reason I have been thinking about them. Then today I started thinking how many products does our family actually have in our house right now that are actually Made in the U.S.A.. I knew there would not be many since most things we buy from stores are not even made here in our wonderful homeland. After I thought about that fact I became very sad. Why do we not have more products that are available to us to buy that are actually made here. We all know the answer to that question. Because it is more expensive. But, how are we ever going to make more jobs for people here in the US if we do not even buy things that are made in the US? Everything has it's consequences and because we all have become obsessed with getting things as cheap as possible we have now created a big mess of our own country. I know my family is definitely guilty of this. I love european products!

So I decided to put together a list of products that are all made in the US. Yes, they are a little bit more expensive but just buying one of these products will help out one company in the US. And what if everyone started doing this? Then we might just help out our own economy! Plus I will provide a list of local farmers! So look for there brands in Whole Foods and Organic Harvest. And some of these farms in Alabama you can actually buy directly from them! WHO KNEW!

This is a website dedicated to only USA made products. Check it out!

These are some products we use around our house that are all made in the USA.
California Baby, a whole variety of baby products that are great for babies, kids, and parents too! We love California Baby products at our house!

Kiwi Pie Diapers, fitted diapers in the cloth diapering world. The softest diaper you will ever touch. They are our favorite nighttime diaper. A family out of Montana make these!

Thirsties Diaper Covers, another cloth diapering option.

CJ's Butter Stick, a product to protect your baby's bum. Love this product!

Babyganics, they make all sorts of baby products & we use them all at our house!

Dapple, baby products that compete with Babyganics.

Cahaba Valley Honey, made right here in Birmingham

Here is a great website I found that gives you farms in Alabama where you can go and pick your own fruits and veggies.This would be a fun family activity plus you would be supporting your local farmers!

If you live in Birmingham then you must check out Pepper Place Market, they are open April-December on Saturday mornings.

Organic Harvest here in Birmingham sells dairy products from Wright Dairy in Alexandria, AL. New news to me! Check out why there milk is better. Very interesting!

A website that provides a list of places in Alabama to buy local beef.

So here are resources to help my family and yours support our local and our countries foods and products. Now go buy something that's made in the USA!

Until next time....

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Lot's & Lot's

So I had not realized just how long it has been since I blogged. My days go by so quickly and before I know it almost two months have gone by. AHH! Time has to slow down!

Our days are crammed full of Justin working and the baby and me running all around Birmingham all the time. We are so lucky to have such an easy going adventurous baby because she really makes it easy for us to go here and there. She loves people watching so much and is so observant of her surroundings that she is so amazed with everyone and everything.

Our angel turned 4 months old yesterday! We just can not believe how big she is getting! We go back to the Doctor next week for her 4 month check-up and we can not wait, besides little one having to get yucky shots!

Here is a list of things she is doing right now:

Holds her head up 100% on her own
Sits up by herself for 1-2 minutes, almost there
Holds on to toys & can take her pacifier in and out of her mouth by herself
Tracks everything
Responds when you say her name (by trying to find who said it)
Talks very loud, sometimes sounds like yelling, haha
Blow raspberries
Teething but no signs of a tooth yet

Getting interested in toys
Activity gym and jumperoo
Laughing and smiling
Bath time
Cuddling with Mommy
Music and when people sing to her
Being thrown in the air or bouncing on your knees
Playing Peek-a-Boo
Loves her pink lovie aka "Miss Piggy"
Her birdie blankie

Eating & Sleeping Habits:
Drinks 8 ounces 4 times a day
Sleeps 11 hours at night
Naps whenever she feels like it during the day
Starting solids this month

Overall we have a healthy happy baby and she is so silly and makes us laugh all the time. We love her more than anything!

A funny thing she does all the time is she looks at this light in our little den off of our kitchen which has become her area. For the longest time we were convinced that she had a ghost friend and still might by the way. She looks in the direction of the light all day everyday and gets so excited. She will smile, talk, and laugh out loud while looking up in the direction of the light and then will hide her face, like she is being shy, and then the routine starts all over again. It is the funniest thing. After months of her doing this we decided to do a test to see if it really was the light since we have the same light covers throughout our whole house.  So the other night Justin walked around holding Mary-Ross in the air up close to all of the lights that look just like the one she laughs at all the time. After doing this she did smile but never got the full response she does to the one in the den. So we still are not positive if it is the light or a friendly ghost. We are hoping to catch her doing this on video sometime soon so we can share this with everyone because it is hilarious. If only we knew what was going through that little baby mind. 

Other updates and fun things we are doing:

We have a family photo shoot coming up in a few weeks and so I will have some great pictures of little to share soon. 

I bought a sewing machine and I am going to teach myself to sew along with going to some sewing classes. I am also going to a photography workshop to learn more about my camera Justin bought me for Mother's Day.

Mary-Ross and I go to Kindermusik every Monday and we have having a great time meeting new friends and doing this fun mommy and me activity.

Justin is all excited because football is in full swing and he has season tickets to Alabama games so he is enjoying that. We are getting to go to 2 Auburn games this year as well. :) 

That is all we have to share at the moment but more updates coming soon!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Happy Birthday To The Twiney Twins!

This post is dedicated to my precious twin nieces Palmer and Blakely Moran. They often are referred to as Palmsy, Palmsicle, Bakey, or Boo Boo. Today marks a great day for my nieces. They are one year old today! Yes people ONE! I can not believe it. This past year has gone by super sonic fast. (I had to use "super sonic fast" because "flew by" was an understatement.)

Today one year ago was by far the worst day in my life so far but it ended up being one of the best days of my life as well. I was in Birmingham working and my sister was in Cincinnati trying not to have the twins. As I think about this day a year ago I remember just going about my normal day to day schedule until I got a terrifying phone call. Luckily, when I got the call I was not alone. I usually would have been alone but my friend Blair who also worked for the Sawyer's just happened to be at the Sawyer's house sitting right there with me on the couch when I got the phone call from my sister. She called me to inform me they were about to take her in to perform a c-section because things were spinning out of control and the babies were no longer safe. I was terrified when I heard my sister's voice on the other end of the line. I could hear how scared she was of the unknown. She was sad, scared, and needed her baby sister. Unfortunately, I had to go back to Birmingham the weekend before because we did not know when she was going to have the babies so I had to go back and work. Her husband Jeff was with her but the rest of our family was not. I remember her crying saying she was scared and I was trying really hard to hold back the tears to be strong for her. I told her everything was going to be OK and that she needed to be strong and calm down and stop crying. When I said that she said "Then why are you crying?". Ha ha. I did not have an answer for her. I was just as scared as she was but I was trying to be comforting and say all the things you are supposed to say to someone who is scared. Even though I needed comforting myself. When I got off the phone I went into complete panic mode. All I knew was my sister was about to have the babies with me in Alabama and she was in Ohio. I had to get there and FAST! Blair being the wonderful person she is tried to help me think correctly and immediately started searching for flights. She told me not to worry about work and said she would watch the boys until the Sawyer's got home and told me to go home and pack my bags! I found a flight and called Justin to tell him what was going on. He told me to go home and pack and he would book my flight for me. Due to stupid computers not working when we need to them he could not book the flight for me so by the time I got home he had called and said I needed to book the flight myself. I was trying to do 500 things at once. After booking my flight and packing my bags I threw them into the car and headed to Justin's work to get my boarding pass he printed off for me. On the way to his office he called to tell me my flight had been moved back an hour. Then he called to tell me my flight had all together been cancelled. I was devastated. Did these people not know I had a family emergency and that I had to be on that plane going to Cincy about 2 hours ago??!?! In the midst of trying to find Justin's office downtown Birmingham, getting phone calls about my flight being cancelled, talking to every other family member or close friend, and crying uncontrollably it was safe to say I was a complete train wreck and that it was probably not safe for me to be operating a motor vehicle at that moment. While still in my car Justin started looking at flights out of Atlanta for me since the next flight to Ohio was not leaving until the NEXT DAY, which was completely out of the question for me! Justin and I decided that I should start driving to ATL and that he would book me on the next flight to Ohio which my parents were going to be on as well. The only thing was that it was leaving in 3 hours and was going to have to drive to ATL, park at the airport, and then get out of the car and make the long haul to my gate which we all know takes a long time at the Atlanta airport because it is huge! I had faith I could make it and so did my family. My Dad just told me to drive and keep them posted on my where abouts. Oh, and did I mention that I had NEVER EVER driven to Atlanta before? Just one more thing to add to the pile! When I was about 30 minutes away from the airport and making exceptional time I all of a sudden decided to look in my purse for my wallet for some reason. I went into shear panic mode because I knew that I had left my wallet in Birmingham sitting next to our computer in our house!!! This was the final straw. I could not hold it together anymore. I just started crying and crying. I called to break the news to my parents and my Dad told me to calm down and keep driving and he would try to figure something out. I made it to the airport and met my Dad inside. Because of the wonderful world of technology we live in Justin had sent the e-mail with my boarding pass on it to my iPhone and had checked me in online. Because I had an iPhone and they have apps where you can pull up your boarding pass on your phone and scan it on the machines and it then prints out your boarding pass for you they let me through security without any identification! The only thing I had in my purse with my name on it was my check book and some papers from a Doctor's office with my name on it. They then told me I would have to go through the pat down check and that I needed to tell them if I had anything that could be used as a weapon in my purse or carry on. I then realized my melon baller ( if your not familiar with this device you use it on watermelon, cantaloupe, etc. to make cute little balls to eat instead of cutting it up into pieces) was in my purse. I informed them of this and they were confused at what a melon baller was and so I explained to them what a melon baller does and they then ruled out that it was not life threatening but did rule my bottle of lotion that was over 3 ounces life threatening. HUMMM? Oh well I got to keep my melon baller! I was completely exhausted after crying on and off for over 5 hours and going through all of the stupid mistakes I had made throughout this day. I officially had no brain left. I had made it in enough time to get a little snack before taking off for Cincy so I ate my snack and threw away my trash. After throwing away my trash I realized that I had thrown away my boarding pass along with my snack trash! AHHHHHH! What a dummy! Right when I realized this I heard the trash can compacting the trash! Great! Just Great! Why do we have to have compactable trash cans when we have idiots like me around! My wonderful father dug out my boarding pass which was now extremely smelly and had Coca-Cola Classic dripping off of it. Yes, it did get handed to the flight attendant exactly like that! Insert happy face! We eventually arrived to Cincy and made it to the hospital at about 11:30 at night. I was in a daze but so happy to be by my sister's side. We did get to see our Palmsicle that night but not our Bakey Boo!

So as you can see from my story above you now know why it was the worst day of my life but also one of the best. I can not express just how blessed our family is and that we have both of these beautiful, smart, wild, and precious baby girls here with us today. They are truly miracle babies and I thank God for them each and every day! I can not imagine this life without them both! I love them like my own and could not be more thankful and happy to be able to celebrate the one year mark of there birth today!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MISS P and QUEEN B! YA YA, Uncle Jussy, and Mary-Ross love you to the moon and back! MUUUAHHHHHHH!!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Big Girls Don't Cry...or Do They?

This morning Justin and I took Mary-Ross to her two month check-up and it was a great check-up. I made Justin go with me for moral support because our little angel had to get her first round of shots. I was not looking forward to it because when we took her to her first check-up and they did her PKU Mary-Ross and me were a little scarred. Ha Ha.

The Doctor gave little one a great report. He said she was very healthy and developing well. She is exactly where she should be for her age and doing things that older babies are doing according to her Doctor. We have been very anxious to see how much she weighs since she eats so much and the report was that she weighs a whopping 12 pounds 13 ounces. We have a chunky girl on our hands! She is in the 80th percentile for her weight! She is in the 80th percentile in her height as well. Since she eats so much already the Doctor said we will not be able to hold her off of baby food for much longer. He said he typically does not like to start babies on baby food until they are 6 months but since she weighs what most 3 to 4 months old weigh and eats 7 ounces every four hours during the day that she is requiring more than just a bottle. So we go back October 4th and we will start little girl on baby food that night. Let's just hope that a bottle can hold her for 2 more months. She sucks the bottle dry just about every feeding so he suggested for us to go up a 1/2 ounce but once we reach 8 ounces he said that will have to be enough because he does not like for babies to take more than 8 ounces in one feeding. Mary-Ross did very good with her shots. She only did her silent scream right when they stuck her and then her Daddy picked her up and she was fine. We could not believe it but we were so glad that she did not cry a lot because we would have not been able to handle that. She has been very sleepy today but has not really wanted to nap by herself in her room so her mother has spoiled her a bit today and held her while she sleeps. ;)

We are so blessed to have such a healthy happy baby and we can not be more thankful. God is good! :)

Until next time....

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Can I Brag A Bit?

This is a post dedicated to my wonderful husband. I have a few things to update everyone on that has been going on with my hubby!

The number one thing I need to update everyone on is the status of his CPA Exam. A couple of weeks ago he finally got a letter regarding both parts of the CPA Exam he had not heard back from. It was good and bad news. The good news is that he did pass the part he took back in May. The bad news is that he did not pass the part he took back in April. Yes, people he did not hear anything until JULY! So ridiculous because he could have already been studying again to re-take the one he did not pass! And the sad thing is they have off months in the fall so he only has a small window to prepare to re-take this part of the exam. Please be thinking about him these next few months in your prayers to help him prepare to re-take the exam and pass this time so he can get this huge accomplishment under his belt.

Moving on to the second update. My husband works very hard at his job. He has so many responsibilities at work and I do not know how he can keep up with it all and be home every night by 6:00 for us to eat dinner together as a family and then take care of Mary-Ross to give me a "break". But, he manages to get all of it done and still be a great husband and father.

Side note: Lemak Sports Medicine is affiliated with Trinity Hospital so therefore Justin works very closely with all of the people at Trinity. Dr. Lemak's practice and all the smaller practices that are associated with Lemak Sports Medicine the most successful, largest, and highest grossing medical practice CHS (CHS is the company that owns Trinity Hospital) is affiliated with. Justin is the CFO of The Lemak Group and Companies, LLC. which manages Dr. Lemak's practice and all of the smaller practices affiliated with Lemak Sports Medicine.

That all being said above leads to the update! :) Since Justin does work so hard and is the CFO of The Lemak Group and Companies, LLC. the CEO and CFO of Trinity Hospital and Matthew Lemak (CEO of The Lemak Group and Companies, LLC.) took notice. So they decided to nominate him for CFO of the year in the $25-50 million dollar category in the Birmingham Business Journal, which is a magazine here in Birmingham. Justin was notified he had been nominated and then was notified he made the cut to the final five. Since he made it to the final five he will be interviewed by the BBJ and featured in the magazine. The ceremony to announce the winner of each category will be held on August 23rd. If Justin wins this honor it will not only be another accomplishment he can add to his list but it will also make his company look great and give them free advertisement which will benefit everyone including our family. I am so proud of Justin for even being nominated much less making the final five in his category. I can not wait for the ceremony in August to see if he wins. Either way I will still be proud of him. I will definitely update the blog once his interview in published in the BBJ and once we find out the results. Stay tuned folks!

Here is the link showing the results of all the finalists:

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Happy 2 months Mary-Ross

Happy 2 months Mary-Ross

Our baby is just a growing and growing. She is officially 2 months old today. It is very true when people tell you it flies by. We are going to her 2 month check-up next week and I can not wait to see how much she has grown since her last visit. It has not been an easy breezy past 2 months but things have gotten better and better. We starting her sleeping in her crib Sunday night and she did good the first night but last night was not a good night at all. So we are hoping 3 times the charm! Fingers crossed! She is getting more and more of a personality everyday. She has started cooing and "talking" to you a lot lately. She definitely has her father's temper it is safe to say. Ha ha. She has the best smile and it lights up the room when she flashes it. She even has started this little laugh when she thinks something is funny. We have decided that she is going to be very ticklish because we will tickle her sides and she already tense up like it is a tickle spot. It is so funny.

Bath time is her favorite thing in the world
Her car seat and car rides
Looking at herself in a mirror (She gets this from Justin no doubt, I'm being dead serious)
Eating time
Daddy sticking his tongue out at me
Mommy holding me

Getting out of the tub

More updates to come after we go to her Doctor's appointment next week. She will be getting her first series of shots! :( I'm sure she will pitch a fit!

Until next time....

Monday, July 25, 2011

Our First Rolling Beach Trip as 3!!

Our first official beach trip with Mary-Ross was a success! My mom, Mary-Ross, & I left on Sunday to kick off the Rolling beach trip! Justin had to stay behind until Tuesday due to work reasons! The trip started off perfect! Our little one was an angel the entire car ride down to Rosemary Beach. She slept the whole time except for when she woke up to eat and then went right back to sleep again! We are so thankful she is a good car rider, at least so far she has been. After we arrived to Rosemary we did encounter a few problems but we did get our issues fixed rather quickly and even received a gift basket for our troubles! How sweet! Ha ha. I had already warned the guy working the desk at the rental company that if they did not get our issues figured out before my husband arrived on Tuesday that they would be hearing from him and that it would not be pretty. I think he thought I was joking but unfortunately Justin decided to go ahead and call them and give them a piece of his mind. So the poor guy got yelled at anyways. Maybe he will take people more seriously now when the woman warns him of her angry husband. Ha ha. But, besides that everything else was great. 

If you have never been to Rosemary Beach I recommend going! It is very family oriented! It is perfect if you have children. Families with children are everywhere. I would not recommend this place to a couple without children or a couple who does not like children since they are all over the place all the time. Also, if you hate bikes never ever step foot in Rosemary. Bikes and children are everywhere at all times!! I myself as most know love children but I am not very fond of people on bikes. It brings up angry memories of the times I have gotten stuck behind bikers here in Birmingham. The only reason I am OK with the bike riders at Rosemary is because you do not have to get into your car much so really the bikers are only aggravating when you are trying to walk/run on the sidewalk and they are riding there bikes entirely too fast on a sidewalk. Yes, I did almost get taken out a few times by a person on a bike so this is why I am bitter about it! Rosemary is a very safe and friendly place. We met lots of nice people while we were there. I do not know what it is but when you have a baby people automatically assume you want them to come over and talk to you. Luckily, I enjoy meeting new people and talking to them so that is a plus for them. So take this as a warning if you are not a people person and you decide to have a baby you may want to work on your social skills during those nine months because whether you like it or not people are coming to talk to you and want to look at your baby!!! :) Now that I addressed that I will get back to our vacation. 

Mom & I took Mary-Ross out on the beach on Monday and Tuesday. I know people think we are crazy but like I said Rosemary is covered with children of all ages so we were not the only cuckoo's on the beach! We did only take her out for an hour or two each day before it got too hot. She was really good the whole time. She slept or looked around and then ate and would sleep again until time to go back up to the house. On Wednesday we all went out to the beach together and she was good again. But when I was changing her diaper that day she decided to grab a handful of sand while I was not looking and some how got it all over her stomach and even in her diaper! It was so funny and a big mess! It was time for her to go back inside anyways so my mom took her back to the house and gave her a bath. It got really hot by Thursday so she did not go out to the beach after Wednesday. Justin and I could barely stand it on Thursday it was so miserably hot. Justin's parents came down on Friday afternoon and stayed Friday night with us. Then Saturday we packed everything up and headed back home. We were all ready to be back home. 

We ate lots of good seafood while we were there. I have been trying to broaden my horizons when it comes to food since I am trying to lose weight. It's not easy loosing weight when the only meat I ever eat is chicken and beef. I know this might come as a shock to some but I actually started getting tired of chicken since I have only been eating it because beef is so fattening. So I decided the week before we went to the beach that I needed to stop hating fish and give it a fair chance. I took the opportunity of being at the beach and having access to fresh fish to give it a go! I have to say that I actually enjoyed picking out something new every night to try. The first night mom and I went to the Old Florida Fish House and I got the grouper sauteed and it was excellent. Justin and I went to a place called Paradis in Rosemary and I ate Cobia which again was delicious. We then went back to the Old Florida Fish House with Justin's parents and I decided to get the special which was Red Snapper blackened and again I liked it. So it is official, I am a fish eater now! Yay for me! I am so glad that now when we go to seafood restaurants I can order something besides shrimp or crab cakes! 

So overall our first beach trip as 3 was wonderful and we are so happy we will continue to keep this tradition going. We will return next year and have even more fun since Mary-Ross will actually get to enjoy the beach and the water! 

Sun bathing

Knocked out cuddled up to her sleep sheep

Hanging out with Daddy in the bed

Until next time.......