Thank you JJ….and Cara

First time momma here.

About a year ago a friend of mine, Cara, introduced me to what quickly became my favorite artist and songs of all time.

JJ Heller.

She has the most beautiful voice and just absolutely raw talent.

Then, to top it all off, her songs speak to me.  Every single one of them.

They make me cry.  They make me laugh.  I feel like she’s met me.  She gets me.  She’s taken the time to write my thoughts and feelings into words so that the world can get me too.

My favorite album is “I Dream of You” but I’ll be honest and tell you I haven’t given much time to any of her other music because I’m so obsessed with her songs on this album.

One particular song has really struck me lately.

I’ll probably have to write about more of her music and what it means to me….but I felt like starting here

The song “I Know You Will” has me torn and tearful each time I hear it.

I don’t want to get into what my opinions are on world matters, but I know this for certain, I’m a little scared and nervous for the hate I see spewed all across the social media outlets I use to enjoy being a part of.

There’s so much hate.  Hate for him.  Hate for her.  Hate for everyone.

My most important job now that I’m a mother….is being a mother.  I believe my husband fully understands that I feel that being Easton’s mother is equally as important as being his wife, if not more on some occasions.  He’s okay with this.  He also knows it makes me the bad ass mom that I am.

This song….

These lyrics…

You don’t need to let the rain clouds underneath your skin 

Love sings louder than the darkness

Let the light shine in

I know you will”



Each and every day I hope I teach my sweet boy that his love will also sing louder than any darkness and any hate and I pray that he lets his light shine for the hope he feels in his heart.

I know he will.

Shout Out

Everyone’s journey through motherhood is different.

For me, personally, I knew the moment I was pregnant I wanted to breastfeed and the moment he was born I was like “damn, this is going to be harder than I thought.”
I read every book. 
I researched. 
This baby was suppose to latch on and we were suppose to be best of friends. 
For me, it didn’t work that way.
My goal quickly went from “no less than a year” to “let’s attempt to make it 6 weeks.”
Without the help of my very supportive husband, family, and friends we most certainly wouldn’t be here today. Over 7 months going strong….definitely a champ now. He loves it. I love it. I’m not sure I’ll even be ready to stop when he’s one. So we may not.  I’ll take his lead… It has seriously been one of the greatest blessings of motherhood. 
Easton should probably be the one to thank them but considering his vocab consists of “dada” and violent screaming with clenched hands and endless babble…I’ll take care of it. 
A few people to thank:
1. First and foremost, My husband. You kept me going in the endless hours of night. You used that little syringe of sugar water in our first few days home for every nursing session and helped him get latched on when he was lazy and didn’t want to open up. You drove me to endless weight check appointments and let me sit in the back with E. You let me cry….a lot. You stopped at Starbucks and Jack’s Donuts because you knew it would make me smile. You rubbed my back in the wee hours of the morning while I nursed sitting up in bed barely staying awake. You wiped my tears away when all I wanted was my mom and you knew my heart was broken but that I was strong enough to be a mom without her. You told me it was okay when it got dark out.  You actually told me, “This is going to happen every night babe.”  I cried and you sat right next to me and watched our boy nurse.  You even sat with me on Thanksgiving day in a back bedroom at my dad’s and helped him latch on.  You were there every single step of the way and I’m fairly certain that if you could have jumped in and nursed him to help me out, you would have.  You did eveyrthing, but that.  I could never thank you enough for being one of my biggest cheerleaders.  I know you’re thankful because we’ve saved lots of money, and I also know it’s been hard on you to not have the same bond, but your support means the world.  You know it is what is best so if that’s meant several sacrifices on your part….you’ve done that.

2. My friend, Melissa.  Joy.  Lissa.  Bad Ass Breastfeeding Mom.  She’s a nursing champ and I was fortunate enough that not only did she live right around the corner, but she also was nursing kid #3 who so happens to be Easton’s future wife, Gracie.  We have babies practically the same age and are constantly battling the same issues, minus breastfeeding.  Gracie was a pro from day one, and that didn’t get me down, it was actually an inspiration.  I knew that Easton just needed a bit more practice and DUH….all babies are different.  Melissa went to Target to buy me nipple shields.  She went with me night #2 of being home to breastfeeding group and she continued to go with me almost every Monday and Wednesday.  She knew I needed a friend to go with me and Gracie and Easton quickly became best buds hanging out on boobs.  Melissa has been my constant go to gal for everything breastfeeding….and more (teething, diaper rash, penis issues, etc.).  She’s a momma genius.  She always knows the right thing to say and gets how I’m feeling.  One thing I love about Joy the most is that she understands my sadness over the loss of my mom and although she can’t relate she recognizes that void I have.  She gives credit to it and sometimes that is all I need.  I’ve known her since grade school and back then I had no idea she’d mean this much to me.  I’m so glad our paths crossed again and we are great friend…..boob buddies…..and some day co-mother-in-laws.

3. Lastly, my cousin Sam.  Sammy Jo.  I could text her at any time and she had the answer.  We’ve never lived close enough but we could still tackle the world’s problems together if we needed to.  I remember texting her some issues and she instantly knew I had mastitis coming on.  She told me exactly what to do and thank GOODNESS I listened to her and she knew what she was talking about because within hours I was feeling so much better.  That was the worst “boob flu” I had ever experienced and I did whatever I could to avoid having that again.  She was an inspiration to me and I knew she’d help me meet my goal if I needed her to.

To my sister, Meg, Michelle, and everyone else who told me I could do it.  Thank you.  To those who told me I didn’t have to do it if it was too difficult.  Thank you.  I needed to hear it all.  You were there and our little chunky monkey thanks you.

Tomorrow we are 8 months strong little buddy.  I’m so glad God chose me to be your momma!

7 months

Another month has passed before us. 
It doesn’t even seem real that this little man has been in our lives for 7 months. 
7 whole months. 
Lots has happened in his life in the last month…
2 teeth (thank God they are finally in)
June 6th he got his first tooth on the right and June 13th the second popped through. 
started waving hi on June 10th…not a pro yet but getting there. 
almost 2 more pounds
Trying lots of new food – baby food, alfredo sauce, ranch dip, an oreo, a lemon
He loves everything he can get in his mouth but not so much on pureed peaches. 
He loves puffs and num-num’s
Loves the sippy cup and occasionally gets a little apple juice in with some water. 
Sleeping in his own room in his big boy crib. 
Not sleeping perfectly, but this too shall pass.  Right? 
Loving all his cousin time.  The days are long when it’s just the two of us and we don’t get to see them!

He would prefer to sleep in our bed and nap there too but I try not to allow that too much.
It’s so hard when all I want to do is snuggle!

His first visit to Mamaw Debbie’s grave. 

The big move from bassinet to crib.  

His 6 month doctor checkup!

His first attempt at baby food.
He wasn’t so sure about the oatmeal cereal but didn’t mind it as much with applesauce mixed in.  

Loving Shiloh even more and her loving him even less. 

His first Indy 500 Parade…a family tradition!

It’s finally swimsuit season and thank goodness for his amazing body and cool sunglasses from Mamaw to show off.

Sometimes first bites of new foods were a little scary…

Swinging outside is always a favorite and makes him very sleepy after a while. 

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Sitting up like a big boy on shopping trips is his favorite now!

Always loving his big cousin Brody. 

Celebrating Father’s Day with Papaw and family.
Papaw even fed him prunes!

and then he passed out…

A playdate with Jack

….and lots of playdates with Gracie now that Momma’s on summer break!

Mmmm….carrots. 

Naps with Aunt Cathy

He wasn’t so sure about the pool about first but quickly became a fan. 

He loved teaching Colton all about the ways of being a great big brother and helping with diaper duty. 

Slowly attempting this whole crawling thing but has only mastered scooting backwards and turning in circles. 

More visits with Great Grandma. 

Starting to look like a big boy and breaking his mother’s heart. 

Playtime in the evening with daddy. 

This boy has stolen my heart.
I never thought I could love someone as much as I love his daddy, but apparently I was wrong!
Now I head back to his room for his 3rd attempt at rocking this afternoon nap. 
He continues to be a nap fighter for his momma. 
I think he’s afraid he’s going to miss something. 
Don’t know where he gets that from?!

It’s a…..BOY!

Wow, baby boy, you sure are loved so much already.  Look at all these people who showed up last night just to see if you were a girl or boy.

You literally had a whole “team” on your side and even those, like your momma, who wore pink wishing for bows and tutus will love you just as much.  They were just trying to support your momma who truly wanted to over rule your poppa and flood him with estrogen.   Maybe next time! 😉

It was so fun having so many of our loved ones around to find out what you would be.  We were hoping to have this little party in our back yard where you will spend time running like a wild man eventually.  However, this summer in Indiana has been nothing but rain and we had another crappy weather day.  I don’t feel nearly as bad for myself and not having our party there as I do all those farmers we love so dearly.

Of course we had a few of our favorite little people who really wanted to help us open the box….Brody and Willow.  You see, they were married the same day we were and thought it was only right.  
At this point I was so nervous about opening this box I truly thought I was going to puke everywhere.  

And then it was time to open!

and OH MY GOODNESS I was definitely shocked when those blue balloons popped out. 
I thought for sure you were a girl!

Check out momma’s face. 
Seriously shocked. 

But so happy!

and I instantly wanted to find that ultrasound pic to see what the tech was so “confident” about!

And then there was the “turtle” they claimed we would see. 
And yup, it looks like a turtle. 

Look at your daddy’s face.  He is so stinkin proud. 
And this one below is where I figure out your cousin, Shailynn, is not so happy about having another boy cousin.  I felt really bad, but there is nothing I could do!

Mommy and Daddy are happy!

 and so are your grandparents! 

Notice how all the grandparents wore blue.  They wanted you pretty badly!
I couldn’t have pulled it all off without a BUNCH of my favorite women and definitely this one, my best friend, for allowing us to backtrack from her clean party barn and make it happen.  She has a little guy too who will probably teach you all the bad things you need to know!

Kynsey’s excited!

The happily married couples!

Here’s a photo of your future wife (inside Melissa’s belly) who should arrive in this great big world about the same time as you.  We’ve already arranged your marriages.  You’re welcome!

Now all I can think about is your nursery and all the little things I want you to have and how I can get ready for your arrival.  20 weeks away!

I can’t stop thinking about watching you and your dad outside in the barn working on things.  I can’t wait to watch him teach you everything he knows….and he knows a LOT about fixing things and building things.  You are truly one lucky little boy to have a dad like him.

I can’t wait to love on you and snuggle you, my very own little boy.  I’m excited to welcome you to this world.

I know that despite the difficulties that come with this last name it’s very important for a family name to be carried on, and you will carry it on well my little man.

There are great big things in this world that are waiting for you and I can’t wait to show you them all.

Love,

Your Truly Fortunate Momma

Rehearsal

I apologize for the delay in wedding blogs, but life has dealt us a different hand of cards I was not expecting….to say the least.  Life gets busy and you forget about how enjoyable and relaxing it can be before the craziness of back to school begins or the aftermath of a major life event…like our wedding.  
I hope to continue blogging for as long as I possibly can, but I’ll just have to be honest and admit that it may not be as regularly as I had hoped.  Just like the stack of books I have to read.  I may not get to read them as often as I would like.  End of the day approaches and most of the time I just want to lay down and close my eyes.  That book sits next to me wishing to be read…and I just don’t have the energy for it.  
One thing is for certain that I have learned in our first month of marriage.  Life isn’t easy, but as long as you have your family and close friends by your side….it’s manageable.  And through it all, I know that there are a million other people out there that have it way worse than me.  Sure I through a couple of pity parties for myself…who hasn’t?  In the end…I’ve got my husband who is working really hard to make this marriage the best it can be.  I’ve got my family who kicks ass at being by my side through it all.  I’ve got great friends who know just what to say at the right time.  
So….let’s take a look at our lovely rehearsal back on July 17, 2014.  The weather was perfect.  The people were perfect.   The littles did so well, which made me highly doubt they would be able to pull it off again in two days.  The moments of rehearsal made me nervous.  It was all becoming incredibly real.  Not like I was going to vomit, real.  Just shaky, real.  

Chatting things over with Bridesmaid Amanda

This would be the scenery behind us as we got married.
I paid attention at rehearsal because I knew I wouldn’t be able to on the real day!

Sassy Pants Willow

Flower girls getting ready for practice!

My best friend.  My girl.  My MOH….Meg

Love this boy and all his antics.  One of our handsome ring bearers…

Bridesmaids Jeffer and Krista Lee

Another cutey ring bearer…Brody Law

Practicing the giving away part.  I got a little emotional here.  

What hams!

Miss Mallory

Who knows what was being said at this point!

I know it’s hard not to criticize ourselves in photos….but MAN that butt is big.  

Loving Brody’s look here.  A few of our groomsmen, Cody and Joel and ring bearers Brody and Colton

A good looking group of men!

The parents

Chunky boy Walker

Brody waving!

This was incredibly uncomfortable!

Decorating crew +1!

He just loves having his picture taken!

The holding cell.  

One more round of practice!

If only they would have done this on the real day.
Cutest thing ever!

I really don’t know what Willow is doing.
Probably the queen wave we’ve always taught her. 

The ladies

Signing my life away…

Or the marriage certificate. 

Pastor Woody!

Shai and Walker!

What a great evening.  I’m so glad we have the pictures to remember all these special moments.  

Love to all,

Last fling before the ring…

A week before our wedding I was blessed by my MOH and my family and friends to have one last night out as a single lady.  It was a BLAST to say the least.  We took a party bus downtown and had the luxury of starting the lingerie shower at my best buddy Ted’s house.  Of course he wasn’t home to enjoy all the fun, but we did poke (literally) fun at him a bit and left him so beer bottles in the flower beds. 
 Following the little shower and games we headed to Bakersfield which has the best guacamole and margaritas that I’ve ever known.  Yummo.  Seriously.  At this point I had quite the buzz going and may have tormented and totally annoyed some of the other Bakersfield visitors.  Oh well….
After Bakersfield we cruised in our bus a little bit and took part in all the yummy drinks the ladies had packed for us.  After our cruise we ended up at a fantastic show at Talbot Street.  Those ladies (err…uhhh…men?) never cease to dissappoint.  
As soon as we left I bothered a cop and asked him if he was next surprise.  Unfortunately he was a real cop and was not amused at all by what I asked.  Oops!  Then I was ready to continue the party.  Problem is…no one else was.  So, I pouted and was mad.  And next thing you know they’ve got pictures of me passed out on the bus.  Can you imagine?  
Fun was seriously had by all, especially me….I most definitely will never be able to thank all these girls enough for spending the evening with me enjoying being Miss Plank one more time!

Up next….  Rehearsal and Rehearsal dinner!

Meet the Maids #6

My Jeffer.  My favorite babysitter ever.  My friend.

She likes to spell things with breadsticks.
She’s always there giving great advice, reminding me of who I really need to turn to.
She makes every party fun….HER party, that is.
She’s been there for our family literally from the beginning….to the girl down the road who babysat to the friend of my mom, myself, and my sister.

I’m so glad you will be a part of our special day….I can’t imagine doing all this without you and the rest of my crew by my side!

Probably one of our first photos together.  Me singing…and you looking….annoyed?

The night of your first ever PARTY!
Oh….we had some good laughs!  Look at sweet little Cheyanne learning so much!
My 18th birthday!
Krista’s wedding!
And my favorite.  I’ve had this in my photo album/scrapbook I made as a young child for many many years.
I always idolized you!
Still do!

XOXO jeffer!

Meet the Maids #5

My soon to be sister-in-law….Weezy.

I met this lovely lady about 3 years ago and instantly we clicked. We have so much fun together when they are home and I wish they lived right down the road instead of way out west!
She can make anyone laugh. She loves being outdoors and always teaches me something new when we’re together b

I’m so glad that in just under 2 months I will walk down the aisle and gain a sister. 
I can’t imagine getting married to her brother-in-law and not having her by my side. 
We’re all anxious to see her in a beautiful dress. At least she gets to wear boots with it!
Looking forward to officially making you my sister Miss Louise and spending holidays and family time together for the rest of our lives!
Xoxo, 

Meet the Maids #4

Meet the Maids #4

My bestie.  My work bestie who I know longer work with.  The friend that I was brought to by an old yucky relationship.  Boy am I glad I’m out of that relationship but I am incredibly thankful that he brought me to her in a twisted little way!

I remember him saying, “Hey, Pickle’s wife works at that school.”

I remember meeting you and knowing in that very instant we would be best friends for life.

We’re waaaaaaay too much alike not to be.

I love you so much Miss Amanda.
I love your smile.
I love your beautiful dark curly hair.
I love your three crazy babies.
I love that you laugh at my jokes and think I’m sassy and strong.
I love that we always get along.
I love that we can go weeks without talking but you always know just what to say.
I love the icing you make for your cakes.
I love that I can walk with you for 13.1 miles and never run out of things to say.
I love that I kind of forgot your birthday and was late to Zumba recently and you don’t hate me.
I love how incredible of a mom you are.
I love that you go the extra mile for your kids, your husband, and your friends….always.
I love our play dates in the summer.
I love your passion for teaching.

I loved our time getting our Master’s together. Want to take more classes?! HA!
I love our addiction to tattoo’s. Yours are just as cool as mine. 🙂

I hate that we don’t work in the same building anymore (I know….I know….this is partially my fault!)

Bottom line is….I’m incredibly lucky to have you as a friend.  A true, honest, caring, and loving friend.

Thank you for sharing our special day with us!  You look GREAT in your dress, necklace, and boots.  I’m so glad you’re just as excited for all this as I am!

This sweet boy always melts my heart.  He is so caring, just like his momma!

And this stinker….still as sweet as can be and awfully adorable too!
Thank you for always sharing your babies with me and sending me sweet photos like this one.  

We always have a good time together. 
Our first mini together!  Looking excited before it starts.  

Even when I’m complaining the whole way you’re still smiling.  

Kissing the bricks!

Awww….finished!
XOXO,