Can I just tell you how fast time is flying right now?  FAST!  And from what I hear, it just gets keeps on going....which is great!  I feel like each stage of Jack's development, I've loved, and I have no doubt I'll love what is to come.  But I'll MISS this cuddly toddler. 

I'll miss how he's literally jumping from excitement when I walk in his room when he wakes up.  I'll miss him sitting on my lap, drinking his milk, watching Blue's Clues every morning.  I'll miss watching him run around the backyard, doing nothing but just plain running.  I'll miss him walking through the house yelling "MAMA! MAMA! MAMA!" only to find me and say, "Hi!" before he runs back to play.  I'll miss him crawling up into my lap to read Goodnight Moon just one more time before a nap or bedtime.  I'll miss him walking around and pausing to dance for a few seconds before he continues on his merry way.  I'll miss our intimate times on the changing table...sounds strange, but any parent knows how valuable those changing table times are!  It's just you and your baby, face to face, such a precious time...and I'll miss that.

One day it will take me 30 minutes to roll him out of bed.  One day we won't be singing "Mail Time!" together at 7:30am.  One day it will take more to entertain him than a beach ball in the backyard.  One day he won't be as concerned as to my whereabouts.  One day he won't want me to read to him.  One day I won't change his diaper 5 times a day....hey, wait a maybe I won't miss ALL of those things.  :)

My little boy is growing up.  And it's wonderful!  But sad.  I'm so happy for him!  But I'm scared. 

The Lord has reminded me over and over again that my world is not about me.  I have no control.  He's got it all taken care of.  How he's done that is not up to me!  Jack growing up means me having less control, and that's hard!  It's not as if I've ever had that control, but sometimes I'm lulled into the feeling that I've got it all taken care of....and then reality hits.  And I start over, learning how to let go and trust.  The cycle of my life, exhibited in the raising of my son.  Thank you, Lord.

Anrhtopologie on a Walmart Budget

That title sums me up.  That could be the name of my blog.  Etched on my headstone, or written across my back. 

I love Anthropologie.  But truth be told, I've bought one thing from there.  It was this

dress for my rehearsal dinner and I decided that was part of the "wedding budget".  Other than that, I think I have a few mugs from there.  And I probably used a gift card to buy them.  BUT, I love it.  Love the magazines, covet the clothes, and would die of happiness if my bed linens came off their shelves.

My stay at home mom budget doesn't include splurges from there, so I'm relegated to Walmart...Target on a good week.  (Although we did take a family outing to a farmer's market down the street this's my new favorite place, and will hopefully keep me from Wallyworld.) 

So, in lieu of being an Anthropologie junkie, I just fake it.  I always fake it, and, some days, fake it well.  I think I faked it well today.

Jeff snagged a solid turned leg coffee table about a year ago off craigslist for about $100.  Similar coffee table shown here for a bit more.  :)  I've been meaning to refinish it from day 1, but things get in the way, if you know what I mean. 

Last weekend I was looking at Better Homes and Gardens and realized I needed a better home.  Or at least a better living room.  Meaning, it was time. 

I drug the table out back (which was a feat in itself) and got busy.  We had some black paint from when we redid the den, so I was set!

First coat, not to pretty.

Second coat, we're getting somewhere!

Fast forward (because I forgot to take more pictures) and DONE!  And LOVE.
I had some blue paint left over from the den redo and used that as a top coat, then distressed it. 

I moved a picture from the den to hang over the couch...
And I think I'm in love.

So, no money spent, and I've got a brand new coffee table!!

I also recovered some pillows in a fabric that I used in the den....bringing it aaaaaaall together.

My next goal is to get a plain neutral carpet to replace this one.  While I love the carpet, (and love it even more because my mom handed it down to me = free)and it's actually a really nice one, I kinda feel like it's crampin' my style.  I need a neutral so I can switch things up in the blink of an eye! 

Next year, I'm sure you'll be reading a post about how I need a carpet with pizazz.  I know myself well. 

But for now, I'm loving the living room! 

Now, what about those curtians....

My kid is smart.

Yes, that's what every mother says, and if they're not saying it, they're thinking it.  So there.  I said it.

First of all, Jack is talking up a storm these days!!!  Conversations flowing, mostly gibber jabber, but the inflection in his voice tells me he absolutely knows what he's talking about!  Sometimes he'll poke his head in the kitchen when I'm cooking and literally, what comes out of his mouth, it's a question.  He tilts his head to the side, and out pops this string of sounds ending with a rise in his tone, just like a question!  If he can't see me, he yells, "MAMMA?  MAMMA?  MAMMA?  MAMMA?" until he can find me.  In the back seat of the car, it's "MAMMA?  MAMMA?  MAMMA?  MAMMA?"  And each time, I'll answer, it's not like I leave him hanging, wondering where I am, but he wants to SEE me! 

He started calling Vincent "Vava" a month or so ago, but now he's grouping things together, and all dogs, big or small are Vava.  I think that's impressive!  

He's super into his books, and if you remember, one of his favorites is this one. 

The Look and See ABC book.  Well, I'm not kidding you that depending on which page we're on, he can identify objects that start with that letter.  If we're on the "J" page, I can ask him, "Where's the juice?" and you can see his little eyes perusing the page until they land upon the cup of juice, and then he nonchalantly points to it, and is ready to move on to the next challenge.  My cousin made us a Shutterfly calendar with a bunch of family pictures, and he flips through that calendar like a book multiple times a day, looking at the pictures. While looking at a page, he can point out who is who...Mamma, Daddy,'s impressive.

OOH!  Another impressive thing!  Jack's been a little under the weather this weekend, so we pulled out the humidifier...only to find it needed a new filter...and you could only order them online.  They weren't available in store.  Really?  So we stopped by Target last night to get a new one. 

It's this cute little could I not get him?  He's so cute!  We slipped it in his room while he was sleeping and imagine how excited he was so see this fun thing when he woke up this morning!  In fact, he's mildly obsessed with it and loves that the cloud of mist comes out of the top and tries to hit it.  Sooooo, long story even longer, there was a cap on the tank that wasn't needed so it was in the living room while the humidifier was in his room.  Well, this morning, he picked up the cap and took it to the humidifier, knowing the two things went together!!  How??  He's too smart.  It's kinda scary.

Now, I'm sure this is just what 16 month olds do, I'm not crazy to think he's a genius (maybe just a little) but it's amazing!!!!  Amazing the way his mind is maturing.  He's just a little sponge!  Such an amazing picture of how the Lord grows us!!! 

First Day of School...Ever

How.  How in the world?  My Jack can't possibly be 16 months old today.  It can't be true!  It seems like just yesterday I was crying because I couldn't imagine spending another day, just me and him, battling out breastfeeding, cheering him on to roll over, changing a million new born diapers. 

But it is.  And this morning I did something that every mother will do only once.  I dropped him off for the first time at a place I'm not super familiar with, with people I don't know.  Jack started Parent's Day Out (so PC) this morning.

And I couldn't be happier for him!!!  I know he's going to love it, I know he's going to make some friends, I know he's going to get to play on that amazing playground out back and the ball pit in the classroom.  I know he needs to be around other kids!  Learning to share, play nicely, and listen to someone else tell him no besides me!  I know all that.  But dropping him off this morning was HARD!! 

I packed his first lunchbox. I made him his first sandwich to eat somewhere else...and used my star cookie cutter to make the pieces cute.  :)   I filled his backpack with a change of clothes, diapers, and of course, Monk. 

I tried not to cry as I told the teacher that his paci was in his backpack and I'd pick him up before nap time...around noon.  And I made it to the car before I really broke down...and cried all the way to Target (where I found some AMAZING toys on sale....if you're in the birthday present business, I suggest you go check out that sale). 

Walking the isles, trying not to wonder how he was doing, I got a phone call from Hannah.  Her daughter started the same program this week and today is her second day.  She raved about their first day, even more reason for me to know he's going to love it!  Anyway, she called to tell me that when they dropped her off, Jack was standing in the middle of the room, with his paci and Monk, checking things out, looking like he was thinking about playing. 

I have to admit, I'm kinda counting the minutes until it's time to pick him up...and in the mean time, looking at this picture. 

I had to take a first day of school picture, right?  Well, this first day of school picture will always remind me how tiny he was on his first day, that his backpack was too heavy and he couldn't stand up long enough for me to get a picture of it before toppling over backwards!

And this one, reminding me how stinkin' cute he is, especially in a pea coat.

So, 30 minutes and counting! 

The Great Escape

It's so stinkin cold outside this week...what else is there to do but bake oatmeal chocolate chip cookies??  That's exactly what I was doing yesterday afternoon while Jack was taking a nap.  I was baking away when I heard some noise and figured he was up! 

When Jack wakes up from his afternoon nap, sometimes he wakes up mad because he's hungry.  Ready for a snack!!  No matter than he just had one right before he laid down, he's a growing boy!  So sometimes there's a bit of crying after the afternoon nap and that's what I heard as I walked towards his room.  Only this crying sounded different...wondering why he was so worked up, I found out as soon as I opened the door.  I think my heart skipped a beat when I saw him standing...on the floor... in front of his crib. 


If ONLY  I could have seen it.  Seriously, how did he do that?????  How did he get from in it to out of it?  Was it an accident?  Was it on purpose?  OH MY GOSH!!!!

I scooped him up and held him while he calmed down, which, honestly, didn't take more than a minute.  I think it scared him more than hurt him.  He has a little bump on his noggin, but the whole incident didn't really phase him too much!

And I spent the rest of the afternoon lowering the crib mattress as low as it can go.  Now, we'll see what kind of climber he really is!!

Let the fun begin!!!

This morning, this pulled up to my house...

(Sorry for the finger...I was trying not to look like a crazy person, taking a picture of the UPS 18 wheeler in front of my house with my iphone.)

and unloaded this into my garage.

Hopefully, one day it will look like this!

Merry Christmas, Jack! 

Love, Nana, Papaw, Grammy, Aunt Kat, Grand Spark, Barbara,
Aunt Kathy, Bill, and Great Grandpa (and Mama and Daddy)

A boy and his wagon...