October 24, 2018

1,000 Books Before Kindergarten | Library fun

Adilynn and I went to our local library last week and her reaction to being there really gets better each time we visit. She ran ( the library) and squealed with each row she went down. We got to talking with the Children's room coordinator, Ms. Savage, and she told us about the 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program. Adilynn could read 10 books every night if I would let her and if I could only read that fast. I truly believe that this is because we have been reading to her since the very first days of her life. 
As an educator, specifically a past first grade teacher, I know how important reading is for all areas of development in all children. In building vocabulary, reading skills like following along and reading from left to right, and even the handle and care of a book starts at such a young age. I am a reader and I can only hope to instill that in Adi through the years so of course we decided to participate. I love that the library in our little town promotes programs like this in our town to support and encourage the parents of all students. 

1, 000 Books Before Kindergarten Program

The concept is simple. You start reading to your newborn/infant/toddler/student. The goal is to have read 1,000 books before your sweet child starts Kindergarten. Our local library has clear backpacks packed with 10 books for you to check out with various books on various levels. In the folder they give you when your first get ready to start, there is program information, tips for reading with your baby and toddler, and pages with numbers for you to record your books on. 

How to Participate

  • Read with your child. It's a simple as that. Spend some time each night reading to them. 
  • Keep track of the titles of the books you read with your child on the log provided by the library. 
  • Record any and all books read to your student. It can be books that you read, books read to them by a family member, or, as they get older, books they choose to read to you. 

Local Incentives

  • Turn in your log every 100 books for a prize and have your child's picture posted
  • 100-900 Books Read = Prize Bucket
  • 1,000 Books read- Prize book and your name in a library book to celebrate your achievement. 
Adilynn has already chosen her favorite book from her backpack we chose for this week. I read it to her as if I was a dinosaur and she just kept asking for more and more. I am excited to see what books we discover and to watch her grow and develop through the exposure to different kinds of literature. I challenge any mommas out there to head to their local library to see if they have more information on the program. If not, you can find more information at Happy reading friends! 
February 2, 2018

One. Whole. Year

How do you summarize a year that has forever changed you and the life that you were living. It's like on that day, February 2nd, the path that I was walking along abruptly ended and I was redirected to take a whole new unfamiliar, precious, overwhelming, exciting, amazing road that I never expected.
There is nothing more precious than the way that your very own baby reaches for you at the end of a long day, or the hugs and kisses she wakes up ready to give to you and accept in return. The amazement in her eye from day to day as she learns and grows every hour of every day makes my heart so happy.

Watching our sweet girl grow has been one of the most precious times of my life. I love looking at her knowing that I have the hardest, yet most rewarding job in the world; being her momma. She has taught me what love is truly about and reminded me to enjoy and cherish the little things. She sees amazement every where she looks and is the bright spot of my days. I can only pray that she continues to want to explore, learn, and create and always has a love for people and things like she does right now. 

At age ONE, Adilynn:

  • loves to say DAAAA, momma (when she needs something), dog, yum, yea, wow, and yummm
  • has 7 of the most precious teeth I have ever seen
  • likes to joke around with her daddy only. Not mommy. 
  • has her daddy's eyes and loves to use them to people watch
  • eats like a champ. We have yet to find much she doesn't like. She is very picky about her meats
  • has taken several steps in a row but prefers to crawl and pretend she doesn't know how to walk
  • loves to cuddle with mommy and daddy, especially in our bed
  • gives any kind of stuffed animal or baby hugs and kisses and says "awww" as she does it
  • loves to slide on her slide from the Wendel family
  • is not a fan of naps
  • blows kisses 
  • waves bye bye
  • loves her ladies at daycare
  • hates putting on clothes
  • would stay in the bath forever
  • is the sweetest, most loving little love bug ever. She is truly a blessing and the light of our lives. 

Happiest of happy birthdays to you, our sweet girl. We love you more than you will ever know. 
January 30, 2018

Nordstrom Trunk | Review #2

As a new mom, and I use the term new loosely since Adi is going to be one on Friday, I had and have trouble going shopping for myself. Adi likes to be free and not a fan of sitting still for very long. So taking her into a dressing room after spending time methodically going through racks of clothing is not her idea of fun. Which means I haven’t really had a chance to go shopping for myself in almost 2 years (maternity shopping doesn’t count).

So when I saw Ashley from Little Lovelies sharing information about Nordstrom’s styling program, I knew I had to give it a try. Basically, you fill out a little survey, a stylist picks up your information, gathers great pieces in the price point that you want, and sends them to you to try on. You pay a $25 styling fee that is applied to the total amount of whatever clothes you decided to keep. Before they send the trunk to you, they let you preview what is being sent and you can decline particular items. When you decline them, they can either pick pieces to replace them or you can just have them send the pieces you want. I like for them to send me as many pieces as they decide because it gives me more options. 

This month, I asked Alexandra to send transitional spring pieces so that I could start building that wardrobe. We all know Texas has very limited cold days so I have a feeling that my need for warmer weather clothing is getting closer and closer. The fact that she found 11 items to send me is great because sometimes we are hit and miss and having more options gives a bigger chance of me liking something. And a bigger chance to spend more money than I was originally planning. Sorry Michael. 

These were definitely my top pieces that I loved as soon as I put them on. The jeans fit like a glove. We definitely found the right size for me as I adjust to my post-pregnancy hips. The two tops, if I'm being honest, I wasn't even going to try on. I thought for sure I was going to hate them both. And boy was I wrong. The blue cold shoulder top was definitely a quality piece that I can't wait to wear all spring long. The Berry Hem top just fit well. Oversized but still flattering. My friend Emily said I need to wear it to Adi's 1st birthday on Sunday so I think that's just what I'll do. 

These pieces were my "I just can't decide" pieces. I loved them for one reason and then didn't quite see myself wearing them for another. The eyelet top was definitely a top contender. I have a feeling that it will end up in my closet in a few weeks when I regret keeping it. I wanted to love the faux suede jacket but I think the color was throwing me off. They have it in pink so I think I'll get that one and see if it was jus the color. 

These were definite no's for me. I like that the stylists sends things that I might not usually try on and pushes me outside of my comfort zone. I'm not huge on flannel but liked the oversized fit of those shirts. The mix media top was cute but just not flattering for me. 

Did you catch my try on session on Instagram? I had to do it later in the evening because a certain someone wanted to boycott bedtime but I liked seeing what you all thought about the pieces that I was unsure about. The consensus is that I needed to keep the white shirt and the blue one that I fell in love with. Which ones would you have chosen out of these 11 to keep? Have you given a styling service a try? 
January 24, 2018

Children's Discovery Fort Bend | Adi Adventures

One of the things that I love most about motherhood and babyhood is watching Adilynn explore and learn. I feel like she wakes up with new tricks every morning and I love getting to give her experiences that allow her to explore new things. I'm excited that as she gets older, I will be able to take her to places that allow her to grow and explore in ways that I can't do at home. It's definitely a goal of mine to provide her opportunities to go places and do things like I was able to thanks to my parents. 

I heard about Children's Discovery Fort Bend from a friend who works in Sugarland and wanted to see what it was all about. With Adi just about to be one, I wasn't sure if she was the right age to go somewhere like this just yet but it was a rainy day and Susu and I decided to take her to try it all out. 

Children's Discovery is located in Sugarland, Texas at an old Sugar factory. It looks like they are going to be doing some construction around where it is located to add some more attractions which is going to be great. The fact that they are using the building and silos from the Imperial Sugar factory is one of the many reasons that I liked the location. Keeping that history alive in unique ways is always a good thing. 
Like I said, going into the building I wasn't sure what to expect. Do I take my stroller or just carry Adi, will people look at us because I had a small baby at a place that was just for big kids, will it be worth the drive and money that it cost to go in? I get a little uncomforatable when I'm not exactly sure what to expect or if I'm about to do the right thing. 

Let me just say that almost as soon as we walked in, I was blown away. From friendly staff, to a beautiful, clean building, I was excited to see what this place had in store for us. As we paid for our day pass, the lady helping us gave us a quick run down and showed us the important places to go. She let me know that there was a toddler area that Adi could go explore in and then told us to make sure we checked out the rest of the areas. 

To answer my own questions, we definitely didn't need the stroller as Adi wanted to play and walk (with help) or crawl every where and there was something there for children of all ages (adults included). I can't tell you how refreshing it was to see adults having fun with their children either by pretending with them in the town area, creating with the kids at the craft tables, or helping their child figure out problems in the engineering and math rooms. 

Toddler Area

If I was going to open a daycare, each room would look like the room/area that they have created for young babies to explore in. Adi could have stayed in this area for hours upon hours. She made one round and quickly went back to her favorites after she had spent some time at each area. Activities within the area were a train with steps and humps and ramp for motor skills, a slide that had a lava lamp type tube going through it to a cave below, a car to drive around with a gas pump to fill it up, doors that opened with mirrors inside, a sunken in area to crawl up and play in, a precious reading area, small ball pit, a car ramp that went round and round, a table with puzzles, and a light up box and even little windows with activities to make the window scene start. Phew. Adi seriously loved each little section. My mom and I loved just watching her move from activity to activity, exploring along the way.

Imagination Exploration

Talk about imagination opportunity overload. If it was acceptable, I would spend every weekend at Children's Discovery playing in each area by myself. There is a Math room where there are different activities for you to do with your child that allow you to practice math concepts in different ways. Next door, there is an engineering room where you can create and build things using supplies that they have given you. Along the opposite wall, there were tables upon tables of crafts with parents sitting, showing, and helping their child with the crafts.
As you walk into the main area, you notice that it is filled with different places like a normal town. There is a vet clinic, cafeteria, art center, car building center, school, grocery store, and so much more. In each job/place you are able to do certain jobs and earn a paycheck which comes in the form of a little debit card. You are able to go to the ATM and deposit your money from your job into your account, then go the bank so that you have "money" to buy things around the center. 
I will admit that there was a tiny part of me that was jealous that I never got to play in something like that as a child. But I am so excited that I will be able to take Adi somewhere that she can put her imagination to good use and explore in a way that is special to her unique interests. As an educator, places like this make me jump for joy because our children and students need places like this to be able to step outside of the box and just explore, create, and imagine. 


Open Tuesday-Saturday: 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Adults/Children 1+ are $12
Memberships start at $120. 

I can't wait to take Adilynn back as she gets older and to a point where she will enjoy the different areas or jobs that are there. Until then, we can't wait to go back to explore more in the toddler area and spend some more time in the vet clinic with all her favorite animals. Have you ever been to this particular discovery center or does your town have something like this? 

January 17, 2018

Half Way

There is so much intention that never fully gets the quality time that it deserves. I intended on stopping by this blog multiple times over the past few months, yet here I am, half way through January 2018 and I am just now stopping in. I could say the cliché first time mom things like "Oh I just didn't have time", "Adilynn keeps me so busy", "I just wanted to spend time with her".
Yet the truth of the matter is that I allowed other things to take precedence over this blog. Those other things meaning social media, TV, laying in bed playing candy get the picture. Its pretty interesting to stop and think about the time that we have and where exactly it goes from day to day. Definitely can be eye opening in some areas. I often find myself complaining that I didn't have time to do this or wasn't able to do that when in reality, I had the time, I just didn't utilize it in the right ways.

The news on facebook coming from so many businesses about how the facebook algorithm is changing made me think. The creator of facebook has said that the change is so that people spend less time on social media and more time in real life. Sounds great right? We get to see more from our families and less from all the crazy ads that pop up, but how sad that he felt he had to change the game because of the amount of time people spend on it.

So here I am. Utilizing the time that I have to sit and write...about nothing great, life changing, beautiful, or eye opening. I'm just here to write. To spend my time in a way that makes me happy and brings me some comfort at the end of a long day. Half way through January and I'm hoping to make this a regular thing. We shall see if I can prioritize my time.