Monday, April 30, 2012

{Memory Monday - Take Two}

This week I'll be recounting some Iron Thistle Scottish Festival memories, since it was Kellen's first Scottish fest!

Shaun and I took Kellen out to the festival all three days, and he did great...apart from the biggest diaper blowout he's ever had. I figure I can forgive him that!

I was afraid I wouldn't really wouldn't be able to do much dancing, but I ended up doing seven dances (I think. I kind of lost count). Then Lauren and I took some time on Sunday to work on our Hornpipe and Bluebonnets! It's so much fun to have another dancer to work with again. It's also fun to come offstage and give my sweet baby kisses!

We got to watch some great bands this weekend, including Scotland Rising, Flowers of Edinburgh, and Beyond the 9. During all this we discovered that Kellen is really good at sleeping through bagpipe music. I hope he outgrows that by the time he goes to OSAS (Ohio Scottish Arts School)! The morning wake-up call is given by a piper every morning at camp. By the way...he WILL go to OSAS, whether as a dancer, piper, or drummer. Any of those would be acceptable!

On a more serious note, I learned a valuable lesson this weekend. A creepy guy in his 50s or 60s who shows up at EVERY Scottish festival in Oklahoma and practically stalks us dancers was there, as usual, and I happened to mention him to an off-duty police officer who was volunteering at the gate. He told me that if someone gives me the creeps, I'm probably right to be creeped out. I pointed out Mr. Creepy Guy, and as it turns out the cop, who tracks down child predators, knew him. He's a registered sex offender who wasn't even supposed to be allowed at such events. I've definitely learned to trust my instincts! If someone seems off, there's probably a reason.

This weekend was loads of fun and I'm sure I've left out most of the good stuff, but I'm exhausted! I'm sure I'll have more to add later. :)

Photo compliments of Dustin Cooper. Shaun was being Sasquatch :D

One of my fave OK pipers, John Imes, decided he could play sitting down. You don't see that every day!

I forgot to bring swords, so an audience member loaned Lauren a pair lol

This is what Kellen did most of the weekend!

All About Irish dance troupe! Little Keyara (bottom left) performed for the first time. I remember when she was just a baby being held by her mom as her siblings performed!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

{Thankful Tuesday - Take 3}

 It's Thankful Tuesday again! I gotta say, taking a day to list things I'm thankful for each week really puts everything into perspective for me. I've been rather grumpy today, so it's a good day to make my thankful list. :)

This week I'm thankful for...

1. Time with friends. Having Tyler and his 4L crew over was a great break this weekend. Seeing old friends and making new ones always lifts the spirits! Especially when those friends tell silly jokes and do all sorts of hilarious things.

2. Peppy music. I've been listening to a lot of it lately! Since the surest way of calming a fussy Kellen is to dance around the house while holding him, I need happy tunes to keep me going. :) My favorites right now are Tyler Carter (of course!), Jackson 5, and The Almost.

3. The upcoming Scottish Festival. I haven't been to a festival since September, so I'm itching for Saturday to get here. If you're in Oklahoma you should come! It's the Iron Thistle Scottish Festival in Yukon at Kirpatrick Farm. Rumor has it I'll bust out a Hornpipe! (I say rumor because I had a baby 6 weeks ago, you know. I might decide I'm too tired lol)

4. Beautiful weather. Shaun, Kellen, and I have been to the park a couple times, sat out on the back porch enjoying the cool breeze, and had a couple cookouts. Loving this spring!

5. Having so many gorgeous photos to document the life of my precious baby boy. I especially love the photos Whitney took! Check out a few of the previews:

What are you thankful for this week?

Monday, April 23, 2012

Memory Monday

This week I'm starting a new tradition: Memory Monday! Each week I'll share a few things I'm filing away in the memory bank as great moments with family and friends. :)

Over the weekend Shaun and I got to hang out with our honorary brother Tyler, who happens to be one of our very favorite people! He is a sweetheart and we don't get to see him nearly enough.

For those of you who don't know Tyler Carter, he happens to be one of the greatest singers I've ever heard live. Don't believe me? Then click here (just a heads up to all my readers...kinda risque lyrics). He started out as the clean vocalist in Woe, Is Me and is currently on tour as a solo act.

Anyhoo, Tyler got to meet his [honorary] nephew and we got to meet his band/crew - Matt, Case, Joe, Ty, and Shelby. They're all pretty sweet! It's always great to meet musicians and people in the music industry who are nice. And hilarious too. While we were all standing around behind the venue, Ty found a shirt in a puddle that he wanted to keep. Everyone else said it was a stupid shirt, so next thing you know Tyler's pitching it in a tree while yelling "O'Doyle rules!" Case did a little tree climbing to retrieve the shirt, and while he did band members threw gravel at him while chanting "stone the emo kid!"

That's probably one of those "you had to be there" stories, but I thought it was hysterical. It reminded me of all the ridiculous moments I had with friends in college. Sometimes I miss doing completely random things like, say, blowing stuff up with fireworks or leaving a city kid (I'm looking at you, Jeremy!) in the woods while snipe hunting. But I digress.

All in all, it was a great weekend for the Ladymons! We've kind of been recluses for the past 6 weeks, so it's good to have some interaction with fellow humans. :) I also had some plans to go to the zoo, but we didn't know til we got there that they were having a special event and there would be more people there that you could possibly imagine. Since we are, as I mentioned, recluses, we left. Maybe next time!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Thankful Tuesday: Take Two!

Here goes another Thankful Tuesday!

I'm really liking this whole Thankful Tuesday business. In fact, you could say I'm thankful for it!

Okay...that was a bad joke. I apologize. Pretend I never said it.

Anyway, It's a lot of fun sitting down and thinking about what you have to be thankful for. It's amazing how many things you can think of, even on a bad day. Making a list will turn your day around, I promise!

Here's a sample of things I'm thankful for this week:

1. Kellen rolled over last night. Now, I am NOT thankful that I missed it (my Mom was watching him for a few hours), but I am thankful that my little man is so strong! He was on his tummy and pushed himself up then wiggled til he was on his back. Who knows when he'll do that again...

2. Speaking of my Mom watching Kellen, she did that so I could swing by the Conservatory for a show. I'm so happy that I can go to shows and enjoy them again! When I was pregnant I was usually too nauseous/overheated/grumpy/uncomfortable to enjoy watching bands play, even if they were some of my favorites. It was miserable! This time around, I got to watch Jerry Roush's new band, Glass Cloud, and they were awesome! I stood front row to take some photos, and Jerry kinda missed the speaker when he was trying to stand on it and stood on my back instead. Good thing I'm tougher than I look! ;)

3. We finally got Kellen's photos done! They no longer qualify as newborn photos, but better late than never! lol Whitney and Ray came over a couple weeks ago to do them originally, and Kellen was just NOT going to cooperate. He was wide awake, cranky, and wiggly the entire time. They came back yesterday and he did so well! He was out like a light for just long enough to get some cute photos of him laying on his tummy, then he woke up and let them take some cute photos of him holding his head up. I'm so excited to see them all!

4. I cannot stress how thankful Shaun and I are for all the gifts we've received for Kellen. I feel horrible that I've only gotten about half of my thank you notes done, but just know that you'll get your note soon and we're thankful from the bottom of our hearts!! There are so many things people have given us that we just can't live without, many of which I had no idea I'd need. Then there's also the beautiful handmade gifts I've received. I'm so grateful that so many women took the time to make Kellen something special.

5. One of the things I'm most thankful for this week is Kellen's smile. He grins ALL the time now! Sometimes you can see his dimples and it just melts my heart. He's even giggled a couple times! Each time he smiles I feel like everything in the world is just perfect.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Mommyhood Goals - Round 1

I've got a plan! It's a good plan!

...this means it may not last long. But it's a good plan!

What's the plan? Here's the plan!

Stage 1: Find synonyms for the word "plan." Reduce usage of word "plan" to avoid sounding silly.
Stage 2: Realize I always sound silly. No shame.
Stage 3: Come up with a list of goals every month of Kellen's first year, and at the end of the month revisit my goal list to see how things went. :)

Okay, we've got a plan! Now I just need some super-worthy goals. Here's what I have for this month so far:

1. Get crafty, but start slowly. My craft list so far includes burp cloths, fancy washcloths (you'll see what I mean when I finish some and post photos. I found a cool tutorial but I lost no examples for now!), cuddly blankies, and Boppy covers (check out some cool ideas and a pattern here). I'll have to work my way up to the Boppy covers, methinks!
2. Be more diligent about couponing. Thankfully I'm already doing fairly well with this! For instance, I have a fairly pricey (and necessary) purchase I'm planning to make at Babies R Us now that we have our tax refund, and thanks to a 20% off coupon I'll be spending $215 instead of $270! Go me!
3. Keep Kellen's room organized. Sounds simple...but I'm not a neat freak by any means. I'm just lucky if my clothes make it out of the laundry basket and into the closet before I wear them and put them back in the dirty laundry! Yet again, doing well so far. I'll let you know how that goes!
4. Document everything. I want to be sure every moment of Kellen's first year is recorded in some manner! Between my baby calendar, which is a good alternative to a baby book for someone disorganized like me, photo albums, and the ever-handy Instagram, this goal is well underway. :) Along with this goal, I'm going to try to post a photo blog each week so you can keep up too!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

It's Thankful Tuesday!

 Since I have a lot to be thankful for, I'm stealing my friend Amber's Thankful Tuesday blog theme. :) Speaking of which, you should check out her blog here and her photo blog here. Lots of cute photos of her adorable kiddo!

This week I'm thankful for...

1. Our first month with Kellen. It's been one crazy and fun adventure for sure. He is such a sweet, precious baby and I can't imagine life without him. He's growing entirely too fast for my liking. I want time to slow down so I can enjoy having my tiny baby longer!

2. Time with friends. Last week Kellen and I got to spend some time with the lovely former support staff ladies (and he decided to misbehave...*sigh*), then we headed down to Droverstock with Mom and saw some USAO peeps. It was fun catching up with everyone! I haven't gotten to see many friends lately, so that was some much-needed friend time.

3. Maternity leave. Today is the last day, and it seems like it lasted 5 days instead of 30. I get to work from home for a month, which is great because honestly, a mental breakdown would probably be in the forecast if I had to go back to my office without him tomorrow. Even though I'll be home with him I still have ambivalent feelings about it. I'm blessed to be able to do that and thankful to have an income, but I also want nothing more than to dedicate every waking minute to my baby boy. It's a tough situation for me, knowing that eventually I'll have to spend over 8 hours a day away from him.

4. All the wonderful deals I've found lately. Finances are always tighter than skinny jeans on a chunky emo kid around our house, so having a baby in the mix makes them even tighter. Thankfully, I've found loads of great coupons to help with some of the more expensive things I need for him (Babies R Us in particular has some good'uns), and I've also started religiously checking out blogs like Money Saving Mom. How did I not know about such websites before now??

5. A great Easter weekend. Shaun, Kellen, and I went to church then headed down to Cement to celebrate with the Ladymons. I was really thankful for such a fun first Easter for Kellen, and especially that my in-laws' foster children were able to take part in a Christ-centered family's Easter. Who knows if they'll have that chance ever again.