Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Our everyday world

Lately I have been thinking/realizing what a great life we have made for ourselves out here and just how fortunate we really are. We may not have a big house with a winding staircase, or drive a fancy car, or even wear clothes that were NOT off the clearance rack…but we are happy. We have so much love in our little family and our simple life out here is so peaceful and perfect and I wouldn't change a thing. When we first got pregnant I worried that we wouldn't be able to provide enough for him and how hard it would be since we weren't financially stable yet…looking back, that was dumb. Jackson doesn't care that he wears clothes from Target and he doesn't care that his mommy's sunglasses are hand me downs from his Auntie.. he is the happiest boy I know and he has every reason to be. These have been the last few days for us, out here in the country enjoying life and loving each other…
On Saturday we started our day on a wild goose chase to find Sephora…which was NOT in the place Google maps told me it was, surprising no? Once again, failed me. So, I had to get some more makeup and I decided to ask the lady what kind of mascara she was wearing, "Actually, I'm wearing 3 different kinds." Lord, I don't even have time to put on 2 coats and this lady is wearing 3 different kinds…pshhh. Anyway, that had nothing to do with our day, it was just funny to me. So, after our excursion we went to Buffalo Wild Wings for lunch and Jackson had macaroni and cheese….meaning, he sucked the cheese off the noodles and threw them on the ground. He also drank his water from a straw, which is his latest thing and pretty awesome not having to bring the sippy cup everywhere! BUT, he likes the straw so much he sucks up a bunch of water and then spits it right out. Anyway, BWW is so fun and they gave him a balloon to play with which he loooved! After that we went home and played outside! Lately we have been playing outside almost everyday because he loves it and about 3 times a day he goes to the door and asks to go out, how can we say no? Yes, it is 103 degrees out so we get out the hose, the sprinkler, his baby pool, and splash table and we just have a ball! Nobody stays dry! All 3 of us run through the sprinkler and spray each other with the hose! Jackson gets to run around naked and loves every second!
On Sunday we woke up early and went to Church and Jackson got to play with the other kids and had a great time playing with all of their toys! It was a great message on how to REALLY pray and how to do it with faith and I felt like I really learned something. It definitely hit home! After church we went home and Jackson fell asleep in the car so I ran in and made some sandwiches and Thomas and I had a little picnic while we let J finish his nap. So, since we had two big parties in July we have A TON of food leftover STILL and one of the things we had was a million bags of chips. For like a month Thomas had been eyeballing the cheetos and I wouldn't let him open them because we already had 3 bags of other chips open! But, today was the day!!! So we gorged ourselves on cheeto puffs and Jackson even had a couple! After lunch we played outside again and Jackson was soooo excited he literally jumped in the pool with his clothes on! We had so much fun just playing outside and Thomas got out the teeball bat and some wiffle balls and we practiced playing baseball! Jackson would get sooo excited when he would hit a ball (Thomas held it with him and swung with him). He loved the noise it made and watching it fly far away and mommy go run after it! Man, that was quite a workout for me!

                                                                                Too excited to wait to get in!

Playing fetch with Easton

This is the same face that Thomas makes in every candid photo


So handsome!

Monday was equally as fun, we went to The Little Gym in the morning and had fun…as always! Here are some photos

Playing on the parachute, my brave boy not only rides on it without crying but WALKS on it during the ride! Silly!!

Jumping with Daddy!

Playing on the bars!

After the Little Gym, we went to Panera and got some yummy lunch with a couple friends from our class and then went to the Doctor. A couple weeks ago she said she saw some fluid in his ears and wanted to check them again in a month but since we are flying this weekend I decided to get them checked early. Still fluid, but no infection so we are good to go!!! After the doctor we came home and ….played outside! That afternoon my mother-in-law (Neh Neh) came over to spend the night. We went to Perry's for dinner to see Daddy and Jackson was such a good boy and everyone adored him!!! He also got to feed the ducks out on the patio and had so much fun! That night we came home and Neh Neh did story time which was so fun for Jackson! Here are the pics!

Neh Neh took down the baby gate and quickly learned WHY it is up in the first place! Playing in the dog water… YAY!!!

Reading his favorite book, I Love You Goodnight.

Today was Tuesday and we decided to take a trip up to Brenham and see the Blue Bell Factory!!! Let me just tell you, for those of you who don't know Blue Bell….it is the BEST ice cream in the entire world, no joke. It is innnnnncreeedddibbble. Like, amazing. So, we made the drive up, which was a little less than an hour and went on the tour! It was only 5 bucks for the tour and Jackson was free of course. The factory was pretty cool and we got to see where the ice cream was made which was neat! Jackson didn't really care, he just sat in his stroller and yelled, "Mama!" everytime I came near him and wanted to get out! But, he stayed in almost the whole tour. THEN….was the BESSST part!!! The ice cream!!! At the end of the tour we each got a scoop of ice cream. Thomas got Krazy kookie dough and it was soooo yummy I was jealous! I got mint chip and Jackson got vanilla! YUM! After our tour we went outside and played for a bit and looked at all of the statues!! It was such a fun day!! Andddd here are the pictures!

J is excited! Looking at the plaque, ready to go in!

We said Blue Bell on 3…not the best word for smile..lol

Look at what a big boy he is!! Looks like a kindergartener!

Mommy and Jackson

Cute boys!!

Ummm, he is seriously the cutest kid ever!!!!

I don't know who these men are, but it's pretty fun to stand up here with them!

Toots Boots!

Ready for work!

Daddy, what are you doing to me?!

I'm gonna get ice cream!!

My cool hat!

In closing, I love my life…..every little piece of it. The good, the bad, allll of it, because every piece of it makes up this grand picture..and it is a masterpiece. A beautiful, wonderful life :)

Saturday, August 6, 2011


This week is world breastfeeding week and today there was an event called "The Big Latch On" to which I fully intended on going. However, this morning my hubby offered to wake up with Jackson and I'll be darned if I am going to pass up THAT opportunity, so….we missed it. But, I have been thinking about all day and wishing I had gone! Oh well… it got me thinking anyway and I decided I would post MY thoughts on breastfeeding. I am almost positive this will spark conflict and a lot of people won't like it but… this is my blog and I can post whatever I want. First of all, to all of the moms who are breastfeeding, let me just give you props and tell you how truly wonderful you are. To all of the moms who are pumping, way to go, baby is getting awesome nutrition and will be a healthier one for you! I know there are a million stories and every mom has her own way of parenting, and that is fine. I honestly think that you do what you feel is best and you do what works for you and that is fine. But….here is my opinion….well, fact, breast is best, we all know that.
I always knew I wanted to, and I had heard a few stories of the pain and the babies that won't latch on and so on and so forth, but seriously, I had NO idea! NOBODY warns you just how extremely difficult it will be and how hard you will have to fight to do it. Sure there are the lucky few that it comes perfectly natural to and that have no pain and well…good for those moms, but don't tell me about it because I might punch you. To be quite honest, breastfeeding SUCKS. It is horribly painful to be engorged, even more painful for the first few weeks of blisters and bleeding and scabs, and when something goes wrong it is excruciating…and then come the teeth. OUCH. It is tiring and frustrating and you can't eat whatever you want and you still can't take any medicine. And probably the worst part of it, is what it does to your body, I could paint you a picture, but trust me it would not be pretty! It sucks….and it also was the best decision I have EVER made, and the most wonderful thing I have ever fought for. I regret nothing and every problem we have had because of it…is absolutely worth it. There is nothing in this world that can make everything better like boobies can!

Friday, August 5, 2011

The Beginning

I realized that I started this blog with the "Where Are We Now" and completely skipped the important part…how we got here! This is the story of the beginning, well, the longer version than the one I gave you earlier.

In 2006 I had a stupid boyfriend…haha, let's just put it out there! Anyway, after that ended I cried to a friend and told her how scared I was that I would never find "the one." I went to a small school and there were definitely no prospects there. I was graduating in two years and would be a teacher and where would I ever find anyone in that profession?! My.life.was.over. She told me about how she was going to the Marine Corps Ball with a friend from high school and didn't want to go alone. We decided I would go with her and she would ask her friend if he knew anyone who needed a date. I cried even harder saying, "This is awful, I would NEVER marry a Marine!!! I do NOT like military men!" Hmmmm…haha. The next day she called her friend and he turned around while on the phone, and said to his roommate, "Hey do you still need a date to the Ball?" And so it began…. My procrastinator of a husband surprise surprise did not have a date to the ball yet. So, a couple days later I got a message and a friend request on myspace, yes myspace! Here is the funny part, he CREATED the myspace just so he could see my picture! Silly guy! His pictures were all of him with his brand new nephew (who is starting Kindergarten this year AH!) and I thought…great, he has a kid…lovely. Anyway, after a few letters back and forth I knew he was weird, but he was also cute. One night I was in my dorm studying and in my sweat pants when I decided I would do some "extractions" aka zit popping extravaganza when I got a phone call.. "You wanna get together tonight? Because I'm on my way, passing the Spectrum right now… Ummmmm OKAY?! So, pile on the makeup and pull together all the roommates to find an outfit and knock knock knock… "Hi, can I use your bathroom" Well, this is off to a good start, what a way to make an impression Thomas. We went line dancing and Thomas rode the bull…haha. It was the night before his birthday, so I got to be the first person to wish him a Very Happy 25th Birthday! Side story that is kinda lame but cute, Thomas tells me that weeks before this he had been praying and praying for a big change in his life and to just meet his wife, and he swears that this was his birthday present from God! Awwww…vomit, haha. Anyway, at the end of the night I went home and thought, "well, he is REALLY cute, but…just so…weird." Not much has changed. We went on a couple dates in the next week and then it was time for the Ball! What a great night, getting dressed up and eating a fancy dinner! Pretty fun! Here we are!

Well, we had a great night and stayed up until the wee hours of the morning talking and sharing EVERYTHING. I told him things about myself that I had never told anyone and I had just met him! So, I invited him to Thanksgiving with my family since he would be spending it alone in the barracks and he accepted! He met the family!!! We spent the next few months together and had such fun together.. In February after his father passed away we both flew back to Houston and I met his family…NOT the best circumstances to meet the family by the way, I don't recommend it… but, I am still glad I did because I know it meant a lot for me to be there for him. While in Houston I still remember where and when exactly he got all awkward and fidgety and I knew something was up… He says, "When do you go from liking someone to….loving someone?" And on went the awkwardness and I finally said, "Just say it, you have to say it!" TADA… it was LOVE! haha..

Here we went on a camping trip to Monterey Bay :)

Here comes the sad part: The deployment! In April 2007 Thomas deployed and left me heartbroken and alone… waiting every day for an email, a letter, and if I was REALLY lucky, a 3AM phone call via satellite phone trying to understand what each other was saying before he had to go. I tell you I have never wanted to punch a phone so hard as I did mine when it would drop THAT call!
Packing up
My love

Don't leave meeeeee!!

So, 8 months passed and to my surprise, he didn't die, I was sure he would since I was pretttttty sure I was going to marry him and that would just figure. Okay! The fun part


This was November when he came back and then the pressure was on…when would the ring show up?! This man led me on a wild goose chase, Christmas would be it for sure! Nope.. New Years Eve he claimed he had a huge surprise… No surprise, we weren't even awake for midnight, well… I was, laying there angry and frustrated haha. Valentine's Day… okay this is it, friends! Super big surprise fancy date, we start the day with a massage and go out to Ruth's Chris for dinner and….the night ends. Hmph.. Getting angry. I am about to graduate college and I won't get to show all of my friends and this is so frustrating! Erg! But…as always, he never let me down! At the end of March he asked me on a date and said to dress up because it was a nice restaurant. Hmmm, not getting my hopes up but, I painted my nails….just in case! We went to the Chart House in Dana Point and I had a cosmopolitan and I NEVER drink so I'll be honest, I was pretty tipsy! Our waiter was sooo awkward and I remember thinking he was given a script?! Was he?! Who knows…anyway, time for dessert and I'm sooo full, no thanks. Thomas orders and I'm going..ew, babe, I am NOT hungry at all, but he kept inquiring about the strawberry cheesecake.. Okay fine, have your cheesecake. Surprise! That was the blingin'est pile of strawberries I had ever seen! I was giddy to say the least and he came over to my side of the table, got down on one knee and made a speech of which the only part I honestly remember is, "I know you'll be a great mom" We went back to his apartment and there were candles and flowers EVERYWHERE, I mean….eveerrryyywhere, like ridiculous amounts! It was gorgeous! He also had written me a song and it was sooo beautiful and I don't remember any of it and neither does he.. haha.

That night we set the date and the place! 2-7-09 in Palm Springs, the weekend after the Superbowl so no one would be distracted by sports (read:myhusband) and Palm Springs because shoooot, who doesn't want to go to Palm Springs?! 

The planning began! Such stress but so much fun!
Trying on dresses, this is the one!!!
Yeppp, this is it!

So pretty!

Bridal shower bubblegum game that my mom thought would be more fun with sour gum…NOT cool Mom, Not cool


There are a million pictures from the wedding, but I won't add them now, there are just toooo many to pick any!!

So begins our life! I finished student teaching a month before the wedding and Thomas went back to school and got a job at the country club doing absolutely freaking nothing but eating food and playing golf for free. I was subbing and working on my resume and dealing with the fact that there was NOTHING in California.. About 2 weeks after we got back from our honeymoon in St. Lucia, which was Ah-Ma-Zinggggg we had our first baby!

Miss Easton Louise West
Lovin her Mama

After a few months of searching for jobs and a few failed attempts and about a million mind changes from Thomas, we decided California was not where it was at for us. He really wanted to focus solely on school and I really wanted my own classroom. We decided to head West…wait, no, East…southwest? Hmm, to Texas! There were SO many job openings for teachers there and Thomas could finish his degree since all of his credits would be in-state there and transfer easily. So, that was our plan, I would work and he would finish school… Sounds good right?! And then life happened! We set a move date for December 27th, I had several applications in at a few different districts and he was registered for classes. Neither of us had a job lined up and of course, neither of us had insurance! We were living on the edge and we would figure it out when we got there! We were young and adventurous and we were excited for our new journey and to find our way! Then came the last week of November… We were at my niece's 1st birthday party and I mentioned that I wasn't feeling well. If you are married at all, you know the first thing out of everyone's mouth is "You're pregnant!!" NO mom and Dad… I am NOT pregnant, trust me, I am just going to start my period next week, I have PMS right now, so back off! Well, curiosity gets the best of me and I decide…what the heck I'll google it. I type in PMS symptoms and the first thing that pops up is "PMS symptoms VS Pregnancy symptoms" …… Crap. Okay, taking a test. Pregnant! 3 tests later….still pregnant. ALRIGHT! We are changing plans and we are doing this!!!! And so we left a month later and figured it out.. And then 8 months later, our beautiful baby boy was born! The most precious surprise life could have ever given us. We are so so blessed :)