Sunday, December 25, 2011


I'm feeling overly blessed this year.  Especially since our annual PJ picture now has a new addition.

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas!  xo

Monday, December 19, 2011

Baby's First Christmas

This is Brady's first Christmas (obvisouly) and I had some trouble figuring out what to get him.  He's three months tomorrow and quite honestly, the kid doesn't do too much.  Not that I have higher expectations of him, it's just, what do you get a three month old?  Aiden was 10 mos old for his first Christmas and it was super fun.  When we took him to the city to see the light show, he spotted this monkey while we were waiting and totally fell in love.  Of course we bought it for him and I will always remember that and associate that with his first Christmas.

So, I wanted to try and find some ways to make Brady's first Christmas memorable with some gifts that hopefully he will come to love and that will be remembered as part of his first Christmas.

Here's his loot before I wrapped it all up.

The two main things that I imagine will be memorable gifts are, Sophie the Giraffe and booties that I ordered from Etsy.  I see Sophie everywhere and if you read any reviews about her, people rave about how she is the best thing for a teething baby. I didn't know Sophie's story before- she's been around a long time, and is French!  I'm hoping that Brady will love chewing on Sophie some day soon.

I knew I wanted to get Brady a pair of homemade booties from Etsy, but was a bit overwhelmed by all the choices.  And the prices ranged from affordable to outrageous.  I was happy when I found these because I wanted something neutral and I got them a little big so that he can wear them through the winter.

A baby can never have too many cute clothes in my opinion.  The soft tractor toys are from Ikea and I also got him this colorful wooden toy. 

I am totally stumped on what to put his stocking...

I remember this time last year I so badly wanted to be pregnant, so to see how much has changed since last year - we are so amazingly blessed!!  

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

My favorite time of the day

My favorite time of the day right now is at night, when the kids are in bed, and the house is lit up by Christmas lights. 

Rob and I hang out on the sofa, addressing cards, putting Christmas gifts together, watching tv.

It's very quiet.  And it makes me happy.

This week is crazy busy.  This morning we are heading over to Aiden's preschool for his Christmas concert and then tomorrow morning we are heading into the city for our annual Christmas in the city trip that we started the first year that Aiden was a baby.  I love that we have this tradition and make it a priority every year. 

I'm hoping to be back this weekend or next week to share a few things before Christmas weekend.  

Hope you're all suriving the holiday rush!  

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Goodwill Love

This past weekend I got to putz around Goodwill by myself, which was a treat.  We have one right down the street but I don't go very often.

I always beeline it to the housewares section to see if I can find anything good.

I got super excited when I spotted these crates:

Our Goodwill actually gets a lot of things from Target, brand new.  I believe these were from Tarrget by the looks of the tags, but I am not totally sure.  Goodwill had them marked at $12 each and the original price tag was $25.  

I've been looking for something to replace the other crate-like containers we've had in these shelves for toy storage.  We've had them for about 3 years and they were starting to fall apart, being made of fabric and cardboard.  So I've been looking for something sturdier. 

So, you can imagine my excitement when I spotted these. 

And you can imagine my even greater excitement when I was only charged $6 for them...FOR BOTH!!

I love a good deal, it makes me giddy.  So, I couldn't shut up about these on Saturday.  I think Rob was getting sick of me saying,  "can you believe these were only $3 each?!!!".  

Anyway, I love them.  They fit perfectly, they're solid since they're made of wood and I love the rustic, vintage look of them.  

I also scored some clothes for the boys.  

I need to stop in to Goodwill more often.

Monday, November 28, 2011

The small things

Sometimes it's the small things in life that bring joy.  Here are a few little things in my life that are making me super happy...

I'm addicted to these caramels.  They're from Trader Joe's and they only have them around the holidays, which is probably a good thing because I can't stop eating them

I love Florence and the Machine.  I think her music is amazing.  If I'm ever in the car alone, I BLARE this song so loud.  Because c'mon, "it's hard to dance with the devil on your back, so shake it out".  (side note....the video is a bit strange, but aren't they all?). 

We got a new car over the summer and it came with heated seats, which weren't necessary to use until recently.  They make me very happy.  

Now that Thanksgiving is over, I officially can start using this candle.  I. Love. This. Candle.  It literally smells like winter, hence the name.  I like it because you can use it not just at Christmas time, but all through the winter.  I'm obsessed with it.  I bought like 5 on clearance at the end of the season last year.  

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Still here...

 Yesterday I wrote a really long post, with lots of pictures.  It took a lot of time.  And then just as I was about to publish it, I moved a picture and deleted the entire thing.  I cried.  I don't have the time or patience to do the same post over.  I'm upset at Blogger- it's kind of like we're dating and we're in a fight.  But, I decided this morning I would just get over it and move on.  So, I'm going to post some of the pictures and give a quick update.

Life with Brady seems to get easier every week.  We still have some seriously rough days, but overall things are better.  He's learning to nap during the day and go to bed around 7 every night.  This is making a huge difference with time we spend with Aiden.  Especially on days when I am with the 2 of them by myself.  Now that Brady takes naps for longer stretches upstairs, I can use that time with Aiden.  

It was unseasonably warm a few days this past week, so while Brady was napping I took Aiden outside to play in the leaves.  I sat under a canopy of yellow leaves and took pictures.  He got really dirty and had a blast.  It made me really happy.

One of the main reasons I love my new iPhone is that it is so much easier to snap pictures.  And it takes decent pictures.  The other day I was snapping away while the boys were playing on the floor.  

Brady is starting to get those chubby rolls, which I love!

Aiden loves laying on the floor with Brady.  

Aiden told me to take a picture of them making the letter "i".  

I don't want to just keep writing updates on here- I am hoping now that things feel more manageable that I can blog more.  I always think about things I want to blog about, but sometimes other, more important things require my attention.  

So, I am hoping to be back this week, but I'm not making any promises.  

Hope you're all having a great weekend!!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Day by Day

Things have been much better this week.  I feel like life is more "normal".  Even though it's been a busy week, things have felt more manageable, and I am thankful for that.  Brady still isn't doing as long of a stretch at night as I would hope, but its ok.  I also discovered that his favorite thing to do is lay in the middle of the living room floor, kick his feet, and talk to the ceiling fan.  It makes him so happy.   Seriosuly, moments before this was taken he was very unhappy.

Today is going to be a good day.  When we pick Aiden up from school, we are going to get family pictures taken which I'm hoping to use for Christmas.  I'm excited because now we're a family of 4, and these pictures will really be the first ones taken of our new family.

Then, tonight Rob and I are having a date night- with no kids!  Rob turns 30 on Monday.  It's kind of a big deal, and if life wasn't so crazy I would throw him a huge party.  But, I guess it's for the better since Rob isn't really the "big party type".  So we're going out to dinner at a nice, quiet restaurant.  Where we can talk and drink wine- 2 things that we haven't had much time for recently.  It will be great.

Also, we got iPhones yesterday.  Wow, I had no idea what I've been missing!!

So, today is a going to be a good day, to end a good week.  And I'm thankful for that.

Happy weekend.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Rainy day

Today is an extremely rainy, dreary, fall day.  Which is kind of fitting since I'm sick.  But, I have a doctor's appointment this afternoon and hopefully I'll get some meds and will be on the road to recovery!  It's a good thing because we have a busy weekend with Aiden's Halloween parade tomorrow at school, a birthday party this weekend, and Halloween on Monday!!

Things around here have been a bit crazy.  Last week was really hard.  It just felt like one thing after the other- an unexpected bilirubin test for Brady (he's fine!), a broken oven, phone calls with the insurance company due to annoying issues, and here's the icing on the cake...Aiden knocked his front tooth out at church on Sunday (our first week back).  Sometimes, you just have to laugh instead of cry.  But, I'm not gonna lie, I've been shedding lots of tears recently.

This is a difficult time.  Adjusting to life with a newborn is hard, but when I look at this face, my heart just melts.  This is a hard time, but he's totally worth it.

Every time I want to complain about getting up in the middle of the night to nurse, or am frustrated that I can't finish a load of laundry because Brady is cranky...I remind myself of being 10 weeks pregnant and having a scare that we thought we had miscarried.

Babies are miracles and it's easy to forget just how much of a gift children are, when they're screaming or you're getting no sleep, or your toddler is driving you crazy.

I know this is a season right now, and I'm learning that I just need to take it day by day.  That's hard for me- I like to plan, I like things to be in order.

I keep joking with Rob that I will get sleep and do things for myself when the kids are in college.  Of course I know that it will happen before then, but my point is that even though this time is hard right now, its ok.  I'm doing my best not to feel overwhelmed by all the things I can't get done but want to.

So today I am sitting on the sofa, snuggling my baby and ignoring by to-do list.


Thursday, October 13, 2011


I'm still here, alive and well- not totally well, but surviving.  The c-section recovery was not bad at all- and life would be back to normal if I didn't have unbearable back pain.  But, the good news is there is light at the end of the tunnel.  It seems that I have something called Sacroilliac Joint Dysfunction, which is very common in pregnancy.  I started PT this week and am already starting to feel beeter.  Tomorrow at PT they're supposed to put my hip back in place and hopefully then I will have significant relief.

Having to live with this constant pain the past few weeks has really made me think about people who live every day of their lives with pain.  I have friend who has Rheumatoid Arthritis, and I always think about her whenever I am dealing with pain ( like migraines).  When you aren't living with pain, you take everything for granted.  When I am feeling well, I don't ever really think about how lucky I am to be able to get myself dressed quickly, or get down on the floor and play with my son.  I've had a hard time these past few weeks, feeling like a failure as a mother, and wife.  It takes me at least twice as long, if not longer to do things, like getting dressed, or walking down the stairs.  I am so thankful that it seems like this is not somehting I will have to deal with long-term, but I know there are a lot of moms out there who are dealing with constant pain.

So, I haven't had much time to take cute pictures of my boys...I hate pictureless posts, so I will post this one, taken by the professional photographer at the hospital.  I love how Aiden is looking at Brady.

Aiden's had lots of grandparent time the past couple weeks.  We are so blessed to live close to our parents who love helping us and enjoy lots of time with Aiden.  Aiden's also thoroughly been enjoying school, and he even tells us about what he's learning and who is friend's are.

Brady is a typical newborn...likes to eat every few hours, sleeps a lot.  But, he is starting to become more aware and more awake.  I've been trying to get him to smile, and when I talk to him, Aiden likes to inform me that Brady is a baby and he can't talk.  I try to encourage Aiden that just because Brady can't talk, doesn't mean we shouldn't talk to him.

Rob is away for a few days for a guy's weekend with friends from college.  I am so glad that he is doing this, even though it is a hard time at home right now (again, thankful for family close by to help). Rob rarely takes time for himself, and he works very hard both at home and at work.  He more than deserves this time with his friends and I am thankful that it worked out for him to be able to do this.  But, I do miss him terribly.

So, that's where I'm would be easier if I didn't have this pain, but I do, so I am taking one day at a time, and doing what I can.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Buy this it

Probably my most favorite blog to read is Mabel's House.  Liz is the best kind of blogger in my opinion.  She's an amazing story-teller, she's real, she's funny, she always posts good pictures, and she blogs for all the right reasons.

Sometimes I have dreams that Liz and I are friends in joke.  Should I be embarrassed that I just said that?

Anyway, some of Liz's greatest posts are ones where she shares real- life stories.  Be it about her husband, her family, her dog, and now the newest addition of her beautiful daughter.  So, when I found out that Liz has a book coming out, I was totally stoked.   I knew that I would appreciate her stories during the difficult "adjustment-to-newborn" stage because Liz's stories always make me laugh, and most of all, I feel like I can relate.

Now, I will admit that I am doing this blog post to win one of her signed free books, as mentioned here.  But, I can guarantee that I probably would have done a post about her book after reading it anyway.  And I'm also strongly suggesting you subscribe to her blog.  It's the first thing I look for when I open my google reader every day.

So, buy the book, subscribe to the blog, I promise you won't be disappointed.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

1 week

It's been 1 week since we became a family of 4.  Time is already moving too fast.

At the end of my pregnancy when I was anticipating having 2 children, I started to feel really nervous.  Not sure that I would be able to do this, managing life with a newborn, nervous about how Aiden would react to a baby being in the house 24-7.  I came across this quote last week before having Brady...

"It always seems impossible until it's done"

I realized that I can do this, I will do it.

Also, looking at this sweet face all day makes anything seem possible.

Aiden is so in love with his brother, it is probably the sweetest thing I have ever experienced.  I know that down the road there will be hard days, and brotherly disagreements, but I'm not worrying about that now. I am focusing on the now- that Aiden wakes up in the morning saying how much he loves Brady, and how all he wants to do is hold him.

Brady is a really laid back baby so far.  He is spoiling me.

Rob worked this past weekend, but is now home the rest of the week. This makes me VERY happy.  Not only is he a huge help with the kids, he always knows what I need and there is nothing better than having him around.

So, it's been a good week, and I'm looking forward to many more.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Brady Alan Jones

Born 9/20/2011 at 10:42am, 8lbs 6oz. 20 inches

We're totally in love and couldn't be happier to all be home together.


Friday, September 16, 2011


It seemed like in a matter of hours yesterday, fall arrived.  The change in weather and seasons seems appropriate, since we are having a baby in 4 days and life as we know it, will never be the same.  But, we're excited, to say the least.

Over the next few days I will do my best to make sure things are as ready they can be for the arrival of our son.  Although, you can never actually be completely prepared for a baby.

Rob's sister, Gwyn, came home from Uganda on Wednesday to be here for the baby's birth, she brought him this cute little monkey...

I feel extremely uncomfortable these days and I feel really huge.  Even maternity pants are horribly uncomfortable.  Thank goodness for leggings and sweatpants.  In some ways it will feel weird not to be pregnant anymore, although I think I will get used to it pretty quickly.  

Aiden started back to pre-school this week, which is another big change.  He goes 3 mornings this year, and he was super excited to be back.  I am glad that it works out that the baby is coming when he starts back to school since he loves it so much and I know it is a good outlet for him.

This morning Rob took Aiden to school and then is running some errands, so I've been doing some cleaning and enjoying a quiet morning, listening to my favorite band and smelling my favorite fall candle.  I won't get m(any) of these quiet mornings in the days to come, and that's ok, so I'm doing my best to enjoy these moments.

Monday, September 12, 2011

The Boy's Room

I can finally say the boy's room is finished.  It's a good thing, since I am literally 8 days away from my scheduled c-section and could technically go into labor at any point.

It took us all summer to get everything situated, but it all worked out and I couldn't be happier with how things turned out.  I am also happy because this forced us to do lots of sorting and much needed cleaning out.

Most of the furniture came from Aiden's room, and all we needed to buy was a dresser for the baby, which we are using as a changing table as well, and a new shelf.  Both from Ikea, obviously.

I mentioned before that I was going to do a blue/green/orange color palette and I think it turned out well.   Blue and green feels very "baby" to me, but adding the orange makes it feel more fun.

It's all the little details in the room that I really love and put a lot of time into.

I did a couple of sewing projects;

The curtains for the front small windows

I actually bought a curtain panel from Target's Dwell Studio line and cut it up to make these curtains.  I also put additional fabric on the back to make them black out curtains.  They looked cuter without the fabric on the back because the light would shine through them, but sleeping children outweighs cuteness in this case.

Aiden's "comforter"

I had really wanted to find an orange comforter for Aiden's bed, but wasn't able to find one that I liked anywhere.  I had found a set of sheets at Home Goods that were the perfect color, so I decided I would make  my own.  Aiden's bed is kind of funny too because you need something that is thinner to tuck underneath.  All I did was take the top sheet and sew it to this blanket I got from Ikea.  The blanket was a little bit longer, so I folded over the top which gave it a more finished look.

Pillow Covers

Pillow covers are the easiest thing to sew.  I wanted to make an "A" pillow for Aiden's bed, and then there are a few under his bed, which is a little reading/playing area.

I also made this little pillow for the white chair.  Adding little things like the "A" pillow, and the elephant are super easy, it's just time-consuming.  But, I'm glad I took the time to make personal touches.

The Wild Things pictures were in Aiden's old room, as were the ABC print and number print that are now hanging above the changing area and are both from Etsy.

The one Etsy purchase I did make was the alphabet garland that I hung above the crib.

It was Rob's idea to paint the two sleeping "nooks" a darker color.  It's such a large room that it really helps break it up a little bit, and I love how it turned out.

The shag rug had been in Aiden's room, and I got the 2 green circle rugs from Ikea.  Aiden calls them lily pads.

Like I said before, I really couldn't be happier with how the room turned out.  Aiden had no problem adjusting to his new room  and is looking forward to his brother joining him.  I'm looking forward to lots of time spent up there playing, it's so much larger than Aiden's old room that he can really have a play area here, which is nice.

Thursday, September 8, 2011


This week has been very up and down for me.  I've had days where I have felt awful- physically and emotionally.  And days where I have felt great.  I can't believe there are less than 2 weeks left until we meet our baby boy.

But one thing that has been on my mind is Gabby.  Gabby is a little girl from our town who has been battling a brain tumor the past few months.  My really good friend, Lindsey, has been putting together a fundraiser for Gabby which will take place on Saturday September 24th.  That is how I first heard about Gabby and her story.  This past week, Gabby has not been doing well,  but the good news is she woke up from her coma yesterday and is going home today to spend time with family.  There was a picture on facebook last night of Gabby and her 2 sisters lying in bed with her at CHOP, where she is being treated.  It was so overwhelming for me to think about what they are all going through.  I just wept.  I think having kids of your own definitely changes your perspective when you see things like this, but I think anyone would ask, "why?".  Why is this family going through this.  She was perfectly healthy as of May this last year, and then all of a sudden their world has been totally turned upside down.

I haven't talked much about my faith on here, but my faith is part of who I am.  I know that when I see something like this, it is easy for me or anyone to question why God is allowing this to happen.  But, I trust that God is bigger.  He sees and knows things that we don't, and that's hard for a lot of people to accept (me included sometimes).  I believe with all my heart that God can heal Gabby, and I am praying every day that he does.

I don't know how people go through life without knowing God is in control.  I am thankful and blessed that I don't have to feel that way.  It doesn't make things like this any easier, but I cannot imagine not having God to turn to.  I know that He loves me and I know that He loves Gabby.  He has a plan, much bigger than mine.  And I am thankful for that.

So, I hope you will pray for Gabby and her family.  I hope that you, like me, will hug your loved ones a little closer today.  And, I hope that you too take comfort in the fact that God is in control.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Nesting and Backaches

This week has been a hard one for me physically.  I have been blessed with a very healthy pregnancy, and have felt pretty great since a rough first trimester of morning sickness and migraines.  Now that I am in my last couple weeks though, the aches and pains are coming, and I am having a hard time with it.  Mostly because I am in serious nesting mode, and I just want to be able to get things done.

You know how you always hear about "nesting" when you're pregnant? Especially towards the end, it is very true.  I have been trying to get super organized around here so that when the baby comes, it will make life just a little bit easier.

As I shared previously, we brought this dresser down to the dining room for some much needed storage. I am using the top drawer for baby stuff. Living in a 3 story home, with the bathroom on the second floor, and the kid's room on the third, I need to be able to have access to these things without having to walk up 2 flights of stairs.

{I LOVE these boxes from Ikea, I use them everywhere}

The boy's room is almost finished.  I have  few sewing projects that I am hoping to finish up this week, and then I will post pictures.  Aiden is all moved in and seems to love his new space already.  It is such a huge room, it gives him a lot more room to play.

Rob and I worked on cleaning out the closet in there yesterday and now the 3rd floor hallway and new guest room looks like this.  I actually feel like I will be able to find a place for everything, my biggest issue is all the off season clothes/coats that we had hanging in there.  But we are working on an option for the basement to be able to store those things.

I'm hoping to get a lot done within the next week, but I also know that I need to be careful, not to push myself too hard.  Tonight Rob and I are having a date night, which I couldn't be more excited about!   It is strange to think about how much our life is going to change in just a few short weeks, so I am glad that we are taking some time these last few weeks to just be together.

I hope everyone has a fantastic weekend!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

3 weeks

That's how much time is left until we become a family of 4!  I can't believe how fast these last few weeks are going, and while part of me is a bit nervous, I am mostly really excited.  I can't wait to meet our son, and at this point I am feeling like I would much rather have him on the outside than on the inside.

I feel very large these days and  am finding it more and more difficult to do simple things, like put on pants.  I'm having a lot more aches and pains and last night I hurt my back, but thankfully Rob was home to help me because I literally couldn't move.  It feels better today,  however, it made me realize I need to be more careful over the next couple weeks.

I've been feeling emotional recently that it won't just be Aiden anymore.  I know that it will be great for him to have a brother, but I know it's going to be an adjustment for him.  He's been especially sweet recently; understanding why I can't play on the floor, or always concerned when I groan getting off the sofa.  He's always asking me how I am feeling.

He's a very sensitive child, and it makes me wonder what his brother will be like.  I have a feeling they will be very different.  

But it won't be long til we find out, and we're excited!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Hurricane Irene

This past weekend much of the East Coast experienced Hurricane Irene.  The media certainly made it seem like the end of the world was coming (as usual).  I stopped at Wegmans on Friday and it was crazy.  I felt like I should buy more than the gallon of milk and coffee creamer that I needed anyway, but I managed to resist.

Rob went to work Saturday night when the rains and winds just started to pick up.  I'm used to weathering storms at home by myself because I have a husband whose job requires him to be at work no matter what the weather is doing, and storms always seem to happen on nights that he is working.  But, I suppose this time was more concerning since I am 9 months pregnant.

We were very fortunate not to have any major problems through the storm.  We never lost electricity and the only issue was a small amount of water in basement, which was very manageable.  I took the opportunity to sort through some stuff down there, so I saw it as a blessing in disguise.

I was also thankful that Rob made it home from work safely on Sunday morning, despite all the flooding and down trees.

But, I know a lot more people weren't as fortunate.  Both of our parents had major water problems in their basements.  Some people still don't have electricity, and have endured major damage to their homes.

We are so blessed, and I am so thankful that we made it through this storm safely.

{Aiden enjoying some pancakes Sunday morning, a special treat in our house}