Friday, December 31, 2010

Favorite's from 2010

This is my last post of 2010.  I wanted to share with you a few of my favorites from the last year.  There are so many I really wanted to share but I didn't want to overload you.  So, there are exactly 12.  One for each month this year...I'm sure you can already guess what January's is! 

It's not much fun without her.

Today was supposed to be a "Mommy Day".  A relax, take it easy, have fun and enjoy some shopping with no interruptions day.  Well, it was for a while and then it wasn't. 
I got up, got Teagan dressed and her stuff all packed so she could go to her Grandparents with her daddy.  I lounged around the house after they left because I didn't really want to crawl back in the bed.  I did a few loads of laundry, changed outfits 3 times and then headed out for my "Mommy Day" shopping adventure.
It. Was. No. Fun.
On the way I kept looking into the backseat for my little companion but alas even her car seat wasn't back there.  She wasn't in the car to sing to me or even to whine at me because she dropped the book she was "reading".  As frustrated as I get at her sometimes while driving, I would rather have the frustration then the silence.  I could handle that today though, I made a mix especially for today and so I cranked it up and jammed on the way to Target.   Target wasn't so bad.  I found a few cute things that I had to allow myself to spend my gift card on.  I have a love-hate relationship with spending Christmas money/gift cards.  I know once they're gone that's it and I have to choose carefully what I will spend them on.
Then , I headed to the mall.  I had gift cards to a few stores in there but when I got inside I found myself aimlessly walking around.  I wasn't used to not having a stroller in front of me with a curious baby inside.  I found myself feeling overwhelmed and ready to leave as soon as I got there. 
Basically, my shopping day was a bust because shopping alone is no longer fun unless I need to do a quick run in and out.  I hate going to the mall when it's crowded and I should have known better than to go today.  Also, there was a Borders, which I knew and forgot, and not a Barnes and Noble which just put the icing on the cake.  I love to go into Barnes and Noble, grab a cup of coffee and relax as I go on a treasure hunt among the aisles of books.
I do have a lot to look forward to the rest of the day.  After I finish up the laundry and clean up a bit I am meeting Josh and Little Bear at the Heavner house for a New Years Eve sleepover!

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Thursday, December 30, 2010

11 months

Dearest Teagan,
So much has gone on this last month Little Bear.  So much that I am almost at a loss for words to type.  I grow anxious and excited for this next month because you will soon turn 1.  As I type those words a lump rises in my throat and my eyes are glassy with tears.  These last 11 months have been beautiful and hard all at the same time.  You've made life a healthy challenge and your daddy and I love you so much for that.  You've been a fairly easy baby to be quite honest.  This last month your independence is starting to really develop and flourish.  More often then not I welcome your new found independence and other times I ache with a longing for the days where you needed me more.  Where your daddy and I were your whole world.  The growing up process is something I am going to have to get used to for the rest of your life and I promise to allow you room to do so.  I might hover a little more then you'd like but I promise not to smother you.
You're crawling at Olympic speed and you've tackled the stairs on more then on occasion.  You cruise at ease and stand for minutes at a time. You got a tricycle from your Grandma and Grandpa for Christmas and you like to push it around the house walking behind it.  Bascially once you take those first independent steps you will be a force to be reckoned with.  I can only imagine how fun you are going to be (as if it's possible to be more fun then you are now)! We introduced sign language a few months ago and you can sign "more" and "all done" but only when you want to.  You have a different wave for "hi" and "bye" and you've started pointing to what you want while trying to say it at the same time.  You say "Dada" and "Mama" sometimes on purpose and sometimes I think you just like to say them.  Either way those words will forever be music to our ears.  We are starting the official "weaning" process after the new year starts and I'm curious as to how it's going to go.  We've introduced the whole milk because you've proven to have no allergies so far (thank the Lord) but you're still kind of hesitant about the taste just yet so I'm glad we've started the introduction now.  You have been off of the whole one bottle you took at daycare for a little over 2mths and drink from your sippy cup like a champ, no matter what kind.  You've been moved up, luckily along with your daycare bffs Matilda and Cooper, at "school" and are having kind of a hard time adjusting.  I guess when your first set of teachers set the bar so high it's hard for others to get to their level.  I hope that once the holidays are over and you're back to a normal schedule it will be easier for you Little Bear.  I hate to leave you crying...
You've started actually wanting to feed yourself off of my plate as opposed to just being able to feed yourself off of my plate.  You can also feed yourself with a spoon with a little guidance in getting enough food on the spoon to actually eat.  You just continue to amaze me with the things you can do. 
The next "month" post I write will be for your first birthday, Little Bear.  Even though I know it's coming.  Even though I tear up at the thought of my baby girl not being a baby anymore.  I cannot wait to see what this next year is going to bring up. 
Your daddy and I love you very much Little Bear.  Don't you ever forget that.

Love Forever & Always,

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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Restless Baby Syndrome

You know when you wake up in the middle of the night and stare at the ceiling for hours because you cannot go back to sleep? You count sheep.  You count them backwards. Then you make a list of everything you have to do the rest of the month and then start to freak out because you don't think you can get it all done? You know those nights when you figure out the answer to a question like how to stop world hunger but are too lazy to get out of bed to write it down even though you know you'll forget it in the morning? Well, Teagan had one of those moments around 2:30 - 3:45 this morning. Only thing is, I got to experience it with her.
It was the oddest thing.  She woke up around 2:20 and after letting her whine a little bit I went in there to check on her after I heard the mattress bouncing. *sidenote- standing in the crib was cute the first few times, not so much at 2:30 in the morning*  I picked her up and cuddled her for a minute then put her back down in her crib with my hand on her belly because she was wide awake.  There were a few cycles of up and down and cuddle and put back down and pick up but eventually she realized she needed to lay down because it was still "night night" so she just laid there.  I sat in the middle of her room in front of her crib so she could see me.  I would turn and check on her every few minutes to see if she was sleeping and to make sure she was breathing because she was so very quiet.  She just laid there for around an hour.  Eyes wide open with a look of intense contemplation.  It was as if she had every burden in the world on her shoulders and she was trying to figure out how to solve them.  About 3:45am she just drifted off to sleep and then didn't wake up until around 7am. 
It's moments like this when I wonder the most what must have been running through her head?

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas goodies from Eva!

Let me just tell you Teagan has the best pen pal ever, Little Eva & her mom Nessa are two super sweet girlies!
Teagan received a special package in the mail from Eva a few days before Christmas and after I told her who it was from she couldn't wait to open it!
After opening it she found all sorts of sweet goodies!

Thanks girls! 

Violet Peapod

I found these sleep-sacks a few months ago and fell in love with the sweet simplicity of the designs.  Teagan has been in a sleep-sack since we stopped swaddling around 4mths and I have a feeling she will be in a sleep-sack as long as she fits (insert Twitter hash tag #paranoidmom here).  I sent an inquiry and within a few weeks we received one in the mail. 
Oh. My. Goodness.  The softness of this sleep-sack is like nothing I've ever felt before (when it comes to sleep-sacks that is).  The fabric is actually milled in the US and Lonnore hand makes the applique herself.  If you are interested in purchasing this product then go to the website! You won't be sorry! Also, when you head over to the site make sure to read her story.  It's precious and shows you how down to earth and motherly she is....just like the rest of us!
We received the organic knit and Teagan just loved to "pet" the adorable bird on the front. 

Here are a few pictures of Teagan trying on the sleep-sack...

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Half Marathon.

Well, 13.105 miles later, the race was complete in 2 hours 41 minutes and 20 seconds.  I had a flood of different emotions before the race, during the race and after the race.  Even right now I feel a sense of pride in myself.  This is something I haven’t felt in a long time and I can’t wait to try it again. 

I do want to take a minute to thank those of you who donated to the cause I was running for.  The research for the cure of SMA is crucial and I take it very seriously, especially after corresponding with Getty and Sophia’s mom.  I feel the need to fight for it; to fight for them and to fight for future babies.  Especially when researchers say the cure for this disease is so close.

I also want to write a special thanks to my husband and my sweet baby girl.  They selflessly gave me time to train and were right there at the finish line cheering me on in the cold rain.  My parents also came to the race and were a constant support during my training and my run.  G.P.S., Inc was also a financial sponsor for this race. 

The half marathon was something I don’t think you can mentally prepare for until you’ve ran your first one.  I went in as prepared as I could have been in spite of the circumstances.  I trained mileage, hills and speed but I was unable to prepare for the weather.  Nothing prepares you for the mind game of the actual race. 
Next race I will be sure to study the actual elevation of the course because to be quite honest, I don’t know that many people were prepared for the intensity of the hills we conquered.  They were all very steep and there were a lot of them.  The runners didn’t have a lot of flat ground to run in between the hills.  During the start of the race I was dead set on not walking until at least mile 9 because I’d trained to 8 miles in under 1 hr and 15 minutes and knew I could do that without walking.  That was without the hills…so, needless to say I did a little walking in the first 9 miles.  Overall I think I only walk a mile or so out of 13 so I see that as a triumph.  Around mile 11 my calves started to cramp.  I have never felt cramping like I did that day.  It felt better to run then it did to walk but my body was starting to get tired.  At that point the race became a mind game and I feel proud that I was able to overcome it.  The finish line was the best part of the race.  Not because it was the end but because when I came around the curve of the track (the last leg was on a track) I saw Josh and Teagan standing in the infield waving and yelling to me.  Then I came around the curve and saw my mom and knew she was crying and then I saw my dad with the camera.  I started to cry a little at that point but sped up because I was running to them.  I was running to be in the arms of four people who provide me with constant support, no questions asked.  As I crossed the finish line they called my name, gave me a bottle of water and slipped a medal over my head.  My first running medal.  I was swollen with a sense of pride.
After the race was a mix of adrenaline and exhaustion and paid and happiness.  I was cold and wet but I had my family around me and that kept my mind off things.  Teagan was very excited about the medal and played with it while I tried to stretch my hot/cold extremities.  After I tried to stretch and we took some pictures we made our way to get me a little food and more water.  I had to prepare for the 2 hour ride home.  We made it just fine!
Overall, I am pretty proud of myself.  Sure, there are a few things I will do differently next time like:

Make sure my Ipod is put on correctly (it was on upside down) so I can adjust it when I need to. 
Make sure to study the elevation of the course.
Make sure to eat enough the night before and the morning of.
Be prepared for the weather (I didn’t have “rain” apparel).   

Overall, I feel like the race was a success.  I honestly can’t wait to get my running shoes back on and train for my next one! 

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Monday, December 20, 2010

Not a creature was stirring...

It's 9:45 and I'm the only one up.  The house is quiet minus the pitter patter of my fingers striking the keys on my laptop.  I've wrapped presents.  I've made presents. I've packed packages. I've written Christmas cards.  I need to take a shower and try to go to bed.  I keep questioning whether I'm going to get it all done in time. 
Teagan has been sick. Josh has been sick. I've tried my best not to get sick.  We had a snow day. Teagan's "school" didn't have heat one day. This last week a day has been a whirlwind that unfortunately is going to continue into tomorrow and I'm afraid the rest of the week.  I've got about 5-6 blog drafts almost done but I've not really had the time to give them my full focus so they sit and wait labeled "draft".  I at least figured I could give you the up and coming blog line up and a picture of Teagan in all her cuteness.

Blogs to look forward to:
1) Review of Violet Peapod's sleepsack (SUPER cute!!)
2) Half Marathon overview
3) Teagan's pen-pal Christmas package!
4) DIY Christmas present for Teagan
5) DIY kind of Christmas presents for Teagan's teachers
6) Dearest Teagan, 11mths. 
7) From sweet Getty

I'm sure I'll throw in there what happens at the doctor tomorrow when I take Teagan.  We've had a kind of sick baby the last few days and she doesn't seem to be getting any better.  She had a fever one day but she's not really "sick" she's just a little stuffy and congested but she's not eating well and she's very tired and she's very clingy.  Also, it seems like sometimes she just doesn't know what she wants (Nessa, this reminds me of Eva).  I've got a knot in the middle of my stomach about going to the doctor tomorrow and I pray I'm just overreacting.  She's also having a pretty hard time adjusting to her new class at "school".  She definitely misses Ms. Haley and Ms. Alice. 

Here's the cute picture I promised!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Teagan meets Santa.

So, we don't have a horror story.  We don't have a screaming child on a very calm Santa's lap.  We have a smiling baby girl who is happy on Santa's knee.  We have a smiling baby girl looking up at Santa in awe.  We have a baby girl sporting her neon green Chucks and pants that until a few days ago met her shoes when she was sitting down.
Here are Teagan's Santa pictures.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Mommy Guilt? Get over it.

*Caution, jealous, bitter, Mommy vent ahead.  Proceed at your own risk.*

Mommy guilt. Jealousy.  I'm at least trying to not let it surface too much but occasionally the little booger boils over.  Yesterday and today have been awful but I'm trying to keep it under control.  Teagan loves school. Absolutely adores her teachers and 90% of the time this is a good thing...until it isn't. She squirms out of my arms to get to her teacher as soon as we get through the door to school.  I barely even get a chance to give her a kiss and tell her bye before she is reaching out for her sweet teacher.  Here lately she hasn't even wanted to come home.  I go in to get her and she doesn't wiggle her legs in excitement like she used to.  She doesn't squirm to come get me if she is in somebody's arms.  Instead of crawling to me she either ignores me or gives me a "hi, whatever Mom" smile and continues to play.  As much as I don't like seeing her cry I selfishly could use a "don't go, Mommy" cry or whimper or SOMETHING every now and then.  And I really miss the "Oooo! Ooooo! Mommy's here" excitement and squeals because honestly, it made my day.  I literally rush toward the "school" door in almost a sprint in order to get to her and then when I get there she could care less that I'm there.  Some days I really think she would rather go home with her teacher.  I know it's normal, I know she's growing up, I know I should be glad that she likes school this much and I know I should be glad she is this comfortable with her teachers, etc. BLAH BLAH BLAH. I know all that.  My head and my heart are two different organs for a reason.  One is reasonable the other is emotional.  Sometimes one trumps the other and these last two days my heart has been champion.  My feelings have been so hurt and they have been putting yucky thoughts into my head like:
It's no wonder she wants to stay at school.  They are practically raising her since you work 8 hrs. a day and don't feed her at lunch anymore.  Ms. Haley, Ms. Alice and Ms. Judy don't get frustrated at her like you sometimes do.  Her teachers don't have to tell her no as often so she likes them better.  Her friends are at school and there is nobody at home to really play with because sometimes you're too busy doing "grown-up things" to give her all of your attention.  She sees her teachers more then she sees you.  You could be a stranger compared to them.  She is going to learn how to do all sorts of things without you because you work full time.  You're not a good mommy because you can't stay home or is it because you won't stay home? Could you really handle staying at home with her all the time? Would you give her all the attention she needs or would you ignore her and do the grown-up things? Maybe you're not cut out for this but it's a little late now.  She's really better off at "school" then she is all day with you. 
Now, as you can see these things will eat and eat at a person's soul.  Some days I'm okay but other days those thoughts just eat at me.  Little comments like "she was ready to go back to her teacher instead of you, wasn't she? I've never seen her do that" basically twist the knife that has already gone half way through my heart.  (that was a reference to her "school play" last night) I know people don't mean to come off mean but stuff like that just cuts deep into my soul and stays there.
Anyway, I know it's something that will come more and more frequently as she gains her independence but I have a feeling it is always going to hurt because it means I'm not the most important thing in her life anymore when I have been for so long.  I guess I am going to have to figure out a way to get over it before it starts to bubble over more.  I have to learn not to take it personally.  She's 10mths for Pete's sake.  I just love her more then I ever thought I could and I really got used to her needing me for that she's stopped needed me so much I almost feel useless.  I guess I just have to adjust to knowing she needs me in different ways now. 

Thursday, December 9, 2010

How lovely are your branches! For now.

We've had our Christmas tree up for about a week now and it has made our house smell incredible.  Let me just tell you, evergreen warmed by Christmas lights combined with the smell of a hazelnut candle that just keeps smelling long after the flame has gone, is the best smell ever! Mix in a little chocolate chip cookies baking in the oven smell and you have a scent that makes for a sweet smelling home. 
Anyway, enough of making myself hungry...
Like I said, the tree has been up for a little while now and we've just been enjoying it.  The night we decorated Teagan was a little fussy, a little sleepy and a little curious all at the same time.  This does not make for the best decorating scenario.  She was curious enough that she wanted to hold ornaments but tired enough that she refused to be put down so Josh and I kept handing her back and forth to each other when our arms got tired. 
Here are a few pictures of our Christmas tree decorating party. 

First Book Review

When I was still nursing Teagan during my lunch break I would take her into the library and feed her (it was a church library so nobody was there during that time).  After she nursed I would read her a book and cuddle with her for a few minutes before heading back to work.  Shaoey and Dot was one of our favorites.  Every single time I would read this to her I would cry a little and she would snuggle up even closer. 

Shaoey and Dot is about a little girl and her friend the ladybug going through the process of adoption.  The story is seen through the ladybug's eyes.  The ladybug hears Dot's cries and her laughs and tries to comfort her tears and cheer her up as much as she can.  The ladybug doesn't understand it all but does understand that Dot needs a somebody and the ladybug decides to stick around.   Dot (the little girl) is raised in an orphanage and the ladybug stays with her from the time she is a baby girl until the time she becomes adopted by a wonderful set of people.  The story will bring you to tears and shows you just how many kids out there really do need a good home to be raised in. 

By Mary Beth and Stephen Curtis Chapman

Illustrated by Jim Chapman

Monday, December 6, 2010

Spare a vote for a cute baby?

 *photo by J. O'Brien*

Think you could spare a vote for a cute baby & her blog?  All it takes is 2 clicks!

Rici & Teagan

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Bilingual Learning FULL article.

Just in case you all wanted to read the article that Emily and Kathleen wrote for yourselves.  I've posted a copy of the article! Enjoy!

"Early Childhood Education – The Best Time For Bilingual Learning

It goes without saying that a good education is one of the best ways to prepare that child for the future and that begins on day one, or at least some experts believe so. From the ages 2 to 5, many believe the brain is most flexible at this stage. Particularly for those who are teaching their child a second language, they should keep this in mind.

The Bilingual Future

One of the future trends that has become certain is the existence of a diverse, global society. Nowhere is this more true than in the United States. It is a necessity almost now a days to be multilingual. Not only for them to succeed in a hard economic time, but it's important for children in this diverse society to have intercultural appreciation and sensitivity.

Getting Ready

Traditionally a second language is taught in middle school, or even high school. However research has shown that this teaching can begin at their child care facilities. Studies clearly demonstrate that the optimal period in a child's life for multilingual education is during the preschool years – at exactly the same time they are learning their first language. Yes, it is possible to learn a second and third language later in life, but it is more difficult, because that neurological "window of opportunity" – when the brain is most malleable – has passed.

Parents, don't worry either, it will not interfere with them learning or perfecting English. It's as easy for young children to learn two or three languages as it is for them to learn one.

Where To Start

The best way for a child to learn a second language is by actually speaking it in a total immersion environment. While it's not that easy to simply take your child to another country, it is easy for you to get involved with this learning process at home. Have a theme night with the food, music and traditions of the country from which the language they're learning is from.

Co-written by Emily Patterson and Kathleen Thomas

Emily and Kathleen are Communications Coordinators for the network of Austin child care facilities belonging to the AdvancED® accredited family of Primrose child care schools. Primrose Schools are located in 16 states throughout the U.S. and are dedicated to delivering progressive, early childhood, Balanced Learning® curriculum throughout their preschools."

Friday, December 3, 2010

Teagan's Christmas

Well, in about 23 days Teagan will be celebrating her first Christmas.  This time last year she was celebrating inside my belly.  This time last year I had my hospital bag almost packed and anxiously got through Christmas wondering with each weird feeling if we were going to have a Christmas or New Years baby. 
As Christmas approaches this year Josh and I have had numerous conversations on what we will get Teagan for Christmas.  Josh has jokingly (well, probably not really) said he is just going to wrap a box up for her because she will get more joy out of a box then most anything else we could get her.  Honestly, he is probably right.  We've decided that Teagan isn't going to get a lot for Christmas because we don't want her thinking presents is what Christmas is about and to be frank she will be 11 mths and is not going to remember that we didn't get her a million things for her first Christmas or that we did.  Each set of grandparents has gotten her one big thing and I'm sure a few little things.  Josh and I have bought her an adorable stuffed owl from Dwell Studios that when I opened the box I actually squealed a little bit.  It was also all I had not to give it to her right then.  Josh will be making Teagan shelves for her room that go along with the new theme we have started in there.  I've bought her a few stocking stuffers and she will get some books.  That is pretty much all she will be getting from us.  She has enough clothes and toys and has never gone with out.  I "rotate" her toys she she never gets bored with them. 
Are there things I've found that I just wanted to jump on and buy her that very second? Yes.  There are so many things I would love to give to her but honestly it's pointless right now.  We don't have a lot of storage space and we aren't rolling in the Benjamin's so "stuff" is something we are trying to do without.  I have to admit it has been an adjustment for me because I am quite the shopaholic.  I have a hard time passing up any kind of sale and feel like Teagan or I "need" everything I see and like. 
I don't want this post to sound all "holier then thou" because it's not.  It's a decision Josh and I made as parents.  I just remember growing up having and entire playroom of toys and to this day I can only remember 10 out of probably hundreds.  I don't want that to be Teagan.  I want her to appreciate everything she has.  Sure she will still have her favorites but I don't want her to have a bunch of unused or unwanted toys laying around the house.  We will also probably do the "clean out" process after Thanksgiving every year to make room for the new stuff.  If there is stuff she doesn't love anymore then why not give it to somebody who might want to love it for a while? 
Anyway, this post went a little longer then I'd hoped.  Here is that adorable owl she is getting for Christmas this year:

Stuffed Owl from Dwell Studios

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Bilingual Learning

I have been a terrible blogger here lately.  Things have been crazy in my head and in my life and I am hoping that even with Christmas literally right around the corner things will calm down at least a little bit. 

Emily Patterson a Communications Coordinator for Austin Child Care facilities e-mailed me around 2 weeks ago ( I am SO sorry Emily) and asked me if I would read an article she and a co-worker, Kathleen Thomas, wrote and talk about it on my blog.  I said I would look over it and if it seemed like something I felt my readers would benefit from then I would for sure talk about it on the blog.  Well, I read it and I thought it was a topic you all would enjoy so I told her I would.  That was 2 WEEKS AGO and I am just now having the time or mental capacity to actually write about it. 

The basis of the article is when is the best time to start teaching your child a second language.  Is it even something you should do? 
Emily goes on to say that the idea of being bilingual or even mulitlingual is becoming a crucial part of our lives these days.  Most of the time children start out learning a second lanuage in elementary school and on up.  Her argument is why not teach them when they are most capable of learning a second language and having it "stick"?  Emily & Kathleen have researched and studies have shown that the "optimal period in a child's life for multilingual education is during the preschool years".  The article stresses that teaching children a second language the same time they are learning their primary language will not interfere with the learning of the primary language. 
Emily & Kathleen have some suggestions about how to introduce different languages to your children.  They suggest having a theme night with different foods and music from the country of the language you want to teach them.  Sharing the different traditions from that particular country is also a way to get them excited about learning.  Children always seem to like learning about how other kids do things. 

Honestly, before I had Teagan I was that awful person who said if people are going to move into the United States they should learn English.  While I still believe that to be so I also recognize the idea of having the option of open communication.  What if Teagan meets a friend at school who speaks a different language say at home and Teagan gets curious and wants to learn more about that language?  Who am I to stop her from learning? 
Also, with today's economy the people who can speak more then one language efficiently are those who are getting put at the top of the interview list. 
I can speak personally that with my job it would be much easier on me if I could speak another language or two.  I'm anxious to learn another one but being an adult and trying to learn another language is SO VERY HARD.  Which just shows you that there really is a window of oppurtunity so why not utilize it? 

What do you guys think? Do you want your kids to learn another language?  Are you going to be open to showing them how different cultures do things differently?  I think Christmas time is a good time to do this.  Showing our kids how different children have or see Christmas is a perfect time to introduce them to other cultures. 

Thanks Emily & Kathleen for the great article and sorry for the delay in posting!

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Wednesday, December 1, 2010

This is why I run.

Will you help find a cure? Will you donate to my half marathon fundraiser?  The whole point of my training and running the race on December 11th is to raise money to help find a cure for SMA.  So, I am asking you to do what Josh and I have done.  We took $10 that would have gone to Teagan's Christmas and put it towards this.  We want to teach her that Christmas isn't about the presents.  We want to teach her that Christmas is a time to help those who need us.  What better way to explain giving to those in need then at Christmas time? What better way to show it then to help children who could die without a cure?  A cure that could come SOON with money to research the cure.  What will you do? Will you help and donate? Even if you don't donate to my run (which the money goes to Sophia's Cure, Inc) please donate to something this year.

Here is the website to donate. ( Crowdrise )  All it takes is $10.  My goal is to raise $1000 by December 10th.  My goal is to raise $1000 towards the research of a cure for SMA.  Will you help me?

Monday, November 29, 2010

Dearest Teagan

Dearest Teagan,
Well, kiddo, you turned 10 months 2 days before Thanksgiving. I've been waiting on "that month" where everything changes, where you grow more, learn more and do more. You've been pretty steady in your progression and development.  You've not really had any "BAM, all of a sudden" moments since you've been born.  Sure you've hit a growth spurt or two (not many more then two) but you've just been a steady above average developer.  Well, Little Bear, month 9 was a doozy! You hit the ground running and haven't really stopped!  About a week into your 9th month you decided that creeping, or "lazy crawling" as your daddy and I call it, wasn't enough and you realized you could go faster if you actually used your legs to crawl.  You decided that just standing up wasn't fun enough so you started to cruise on basically everything.  In the recent days you stood up from squat position to standing and stood frozen for a few seconds, you've also stood for lots of seconds by yourself after mommy lets you go while you're standing.  You have attempted the stairs a few times but your legs are still a little short and you can't quite get over the first one.  I have a feeling once you figure that out the baby gate will immediately have to go up.  There will be no stopping you at that point.  A few of your favorite things are cabinet doors, the oven drawer and the drawers to your dresser.  Your love of the oven drawer made it difficult on Thanksgiving when I was trying to cook the turkey and you wanted in your drawer.  Your daddy did a pretty good job keeping you out of the kitchen but sometimes you were so insistent and determined that you would slip by and then  yell at me and give me mean looks when I took you out of the kitchen.  Thanksgiving went pretty good.  You visited with everybody but refused to take a nap.  Well, refused until it was time to sit down and actually eat.  Silly Bear.  You went and had your first sleepover with Miles David the Friday after Thanksgiving.  You did great! You two were adorable playing together and your Aunt Jeana and I vowed to have more sleepovers and playdates for you two.  We all went together to get our Christmas trees and you two were troopers in the cold and when your parents needed pictures of you in your Santa hats... 
You have started to sprout your first two teeth. I've been anxious in waiting on these boogers.  Wondering when they would come, how much pain you would be in and what I would do when they started to come in.  They haven't quite broken through yet and you've taken it like a trooper.  You haven't been especially fussy or out of the ordinary.  A few runnier then usual diapers ( I know you'll think TMI, mom, when you read this) but no other real signs other then pearly whites showing through and drool. A lot of drool.
Little Bear, I anxiously wait for Christmas with a new excitement this year.  I've been pretty apathetic for the last few year in regards to any holiday.  I really could have cared less about my birthday to be honest.  This year I am excited for everything.  I even started decorating and listening to Christmas music in November.  Something I have NEVER done. My entire life.  You've brought the twinkle back to my eyes and the warmth back into my heart.  I am excited to see these holidays through your eyes.  I anticipate I will be more excited about your holidays then you will be for at least a year or two but I am okay with that.  I will willingly be the bringer of excitement with your daddy right beside me.  Even he has an extra sparkle this year Little Bear.  He even put icicle lights up on the house just for you this year! You've brought us more joy in 10 months then you will ever know.  You never cease to make us happier then we've ever been.  You were what we were thankful for at Thanksgiving and I can't wait to share Christmas with you. 

I love you with all my heart.  I love you to the moon and back.  I love you as deep as the sea and as high as the sky. 

Love Forever and Always,

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Sunday, November 28, 2010

Apple, my Ipod and Itunes. Disappointed.

I didn't run today.  I needed to run but I didn't.  As you all know I am training for a half marathon in December.  I have faithfully trained and am working my butt off to complete this race.  Today, for the third or fourth time my Ipod or Itunes decided to throw a road block in my way.  My Ipod decided it wanted to not cooperate.  Itunes would not recognize it and it also wouldn't allow me to restore it to factory settings.  It was if my Ipod didn't exist in Itunes land.  I use my Ipod and the Nike-Run to figure out my mileage and my time when running.  This is a necessary part of my training.  Plus I run much better to music.  Yes, I could have ran today without my Ipod.  Yes, I could have "mapped my run" online but I have a short memory and would have forgotten all the little side road I have to take to get a high number of miles.  So, I wrote a letter to Apple.  After typing my letter and hitting submit I got the standard " nobody will personally answer your letter but we care" response and so I decided to type up my frustrations on here.  I don't have a large viewing but I have cherished and faithful blog followers that read.  I just wanted to share my frustrations with you all.  Here is my open  letter to Apple.  You have probably lost a customer. 

Dear Apple,

I am very disappointed right now.  I have had my (2nd) Ipod nano for going on 2 years now.  I run with it and I utilize the Nike software for it when running.  I am usually happy with it.  The last two weeks my Ipod has gone crazy.  The last two weeks have been very important to me and my training.  Every time I go to run & plug it in just to make sure everything is up to date it decides to not recognize my Ipod.  Itunes basically says the Ipod is not found.  I am training for a half marathon and need to train.  I also find the distance calculator on my Nike Run a necessity.  It is very inconvenient when I cannot run with my Ipod.  I have restored it and it didn't want to restore. This is my second Ipod and the last one stopped charging fully after around 2 years.  Have you decided to put a 2 year life span on your products so people will constantly have to purchase new? Well, this is probably my last Ipod.  I refuse to have to buy a new product every two years.  The economy is rough and money is tight and therefore I can't afford to spend money on a product I assumed would be lasting me more then two years from a company I thought I could trust. 

A disappointed customer,
Rici Reid

Saturday, November 20, 2010

My morning off.

Well, as I type this I am sitting in bed listening to the sounds of Iron & Wine and a basically quiet house.  This morning I got up with Josh at the usual time of 6:30am but this time the reason was different.  We weren't going to work and we weren't going anywhere together.  I got up for the sole purpose of getting Teagan ready to go visit with her Grandma while Josh and Grandpa worked on the farm.  It was an odd feeling.  I basically did everything I normally do in the mornings.  I went downstairs and fixed her food but this time I labeled and placed lids on it.  I fixed her a sippy cup/bottle (what she doesn't finish in the cup she gets in the bottle, almost bottle free!).  I put the correct amount of puffs for her snack in the container and then put all of the above in her "lunch box".  Josh got her from her crib (she was standing and bouncing and laughing) and brought her down for morning mommy kisses and played with her until it was time for me to get her dressed.  *sidenote-you might be asking why Josh wasn't getting her ready while I was fixing her food, etc. basically he knows I love to get her ready in the mornings so when we don't have to tag team I get to do what i love* I swooped her from her daddy's arms and we "raced" upstairs so I could get her dressed.  This morning she played with her shoes while I dressed her and explained to her what was going to happen.  I told her Grandma had pulled out some of her Aunt Livy and Aunt Kristina and Daddy's toys from when they were her age so she could play with them.  I told her how excited Grandma and Grandpa were to see her.  I told her Mommy wouldn't be coming but I would see her very soon just like at "school".  As soon as she was dressed and all packed it was time to go.  I gave her kisses and hugs and her daddy put her in the car seat.  I gave her a few more kisses and hugs and told her I loved her and would see her soon.  Then they were gone.  It was definitely an odd mixture of feeling excited and relieved and sad and empty all at the same time. 
The plan for me this morning is not to clean.  It's not to cook or iron.  I have been given the "morning off" and I am selfishly going to take it.  I am going to take a long shower.  I am going to take the time to actually fix my hair (even though you'll see why this is pointless in a minute).  I am going to dress in my running clothes and then I am going to see Harry Potter by myself.  I have never been to the movies by myself but I will be buying a popcorn and a large drink and maybe something chocolate and I will sit there and be completely focused on the movie.  After the movie I will get something to eat and maybe run to Target to pick up a few things.  Then I get to go home and run. Run until my legs decide to stop me.  I've downloaded some new tunes this morning and it's a beautiful day and I can't wait to run! This would be why taking a shower and actually fixing my hair is a silly thing because I will sweat and have to take another shower because we have somewhere to be this evening. 
Anyway, I hope you all have a great day because I'm excited to go start mine!  Happy Saturday!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Sponsor highlight: Tiny Prints

I was contacted a few weeks ago by Tiny Prints.  They asked if I would be interested in having them as a sponsor for Teagan Tales.  They also put an offer of Christmas cards on the table so how could I say no?  It took me a few weeks of going through their incredible selection of Christmas cards a few times before I was able to narrow it down and finally pick our Christmas card.  I had to make sure to pick the perfect one for us.  Afterall, this was going to be Teagan's first Christmas card! It had to rock!!  The amount of choices might seem overwhelming at first but they have a cool tool on the side where you can narrow the search parameters by color, size, number of pictures, etc so it isn't as overwhelming as it might seem to be at first glance.
I finally picked the Hidden flowers card for us and decided to put Teagan all over it because Josh and I are not fans of having our pictures taken.
Shipping was quick even with standard shipping.  I checked the door everyday until it came and then when I saw the little box on our porch that said Tiny Prints I let out a little squeal and told Teagan excitedly that our Christmas cards were here!  She was very excited to play with the proof and the box while I looked over the cards excitedly.
I cannot wait to address them and write a little note on the back.  I also can't wait until Christmas so I can "send" the Christmas card to all of you! It is beyond adorable! 

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Can I just tell you the craziness of my dreams since Teagan has been born?  My dreams have been vivid and more real then I could ever tell you.  I've even sleep walked once and kind of weirded out my husband.  Last night was no different.  The only bad part (well, maybe this isn't really bad) is that I can only ever remember bits and pieces of them.  Like last night.  I had a dream where I freaked out because I thought Teagan was suffocating in my pillow case so in my sleep I took my top pillow, took off the pillow case, searched it to make sure she wasn't there and then placed the pillow on the floor.  When Teagan was younger my dreams were awful.  I would dream about rolling over on her or losing her in the covers and she didn't even sleep with us.  The overwhelming sense of panic during and after the dreams was one that kept me up more during the night then she did. 

I've always had a vivid sense of imagination.  It has definitely gotten worse with age.  I hear one creek on the stairs and I immediately think somebody has broken into our house and is creeping up our stairs.  I've had many nights where I lay there, phone clutched (and sometimes already dialed), just waiting to see the shadow so I can hit send and run at them "gunner" (yes, I know what this football position you?) style and keep them away from Teagan.  Josh thinks I'm silly and asks why I don't feel safe in our neighborhood.  It's not like I don't feel safe I have just become extra cautious and sensitive since another human is counting on me for safety.

Whew, that post was a little all over the place.  Basically, I have been having weird vivid dreams I don't really remember since Teagan has been born.  The end.

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Dearest Teagan

Dearest Teagan,
Well, my dear girl, you will be 10 months next week.  I can honestly barely wrap my head around it.  I feel like I've almost run out of words to write to you because I've expressed my love for you over and over again.  I kiss your sweet face and hands and feet and head more times then I can count on a daily basis.  I tell you how much I love you with every kiss and cuddle.  You make me so proud with every new thing you learn and do.  You make me smile with a smile.  My heart flutters everytime you reach for me.  My soul smiles when you give me "lovin" and hug my neck.  My heart breaks to hear you cry and all I want to do is scoop you up and hold you and make the cries stop.  I want to protect you from the world but I want you to experience it all.  I want to show you the world and all it can offer.  I want you to know there are so many opportunities out there that your daddy and I will try our best to let you take advantage of.  You have such a sweet soul that seems to shine through already.  You honestly bring a smile to every person's face that you come into contact with.  People say you're beautiful and baby girl you are incredibly beautiful but I feel like you are beautiful inside and out, already.  You have such a sweet disposition and you have already begun to share with others.
You've really taken off the last few weeks.  You were kind of lazy and content all at the same time when it came to moving around and exploring.  All of a sudden, BAM, you are everywhere! You are into everything.  You even tried to stick your finger in a light socket. Talk about giving Mommy a heart attack.  You and your two best friends at "school" have started really playing with each other and realizing there is somebody there to play with.  You three crawl all over the place and get into all sorts of mischief.  You will be moving up soon to the "big baby" room.  Luckily you will all three move together.  I have a feeling the three of you will be a force to be reckoned with in the coming years.   Also, you and your bf/bff Miles David have really started to "find" each other.  You love to touch each others faces and clothes.  You love taking his hat and he really enjoys trying to take your binky.  Your Aunt Jeana and I try to get you guys together as often as we can.  One of these days we are going to schedule a real live play date.  Or maybe a sleep over.  We're still working on it.
Today was the first time I didn't visit you at lunch to feed you.  We have started the weaning process as of today.  Honestly, Little Bear, I thought I wouldn't have a really hard time with it.  I thought I would be fine and not emotional and I would keep in mind that you need "real" food more then you need me now and it's what is best for you.  I also thought the idea of  "freedom" for both of us would feel kind of good.  I was so wrong.  I know all of those things are true.  I know you are growing up and becoming a big girl and that "mommy milk" is now really just a supplement to your nutrition but let me tell you Little Bear, it is HARD. Not seeing you in the middle of my day threw things off kilter completely.  I cried around 10:50ish when I normally go to feed you.  I felt like I didn't know what to do with myself on my drive to lunch.  I wondered if you were okay and how you were handling the change in routine.  I'm sure you handled it like a champ.  I knew this was going to be harder on me then you.  I just knew it.
Right now I am counting the minutes until I get to see you. There are exactly 27.  I didn't take an entire lunch break ( I couldn't stand it) and so now that the office is dead and papers have been organized and clients have been seen I am writing to you.
I want to you know that I love you very much.  I want you to know that I am going to mess up but we are both going to learn from my mistakes.  I want you to know that anything I ever do, right or wrong in your eyes, will always be out of love and what I think is best for you.
I am cherishing every minute I have with you.  I cannot begin to imagine what the months leading up to your first birthday will hold.  Just know Little Bear that you are loved and cherished. Unconditionally.

Love Always and Forever,

Thursday, November 18, 2010


The Bitter.
Today was the last day I will feed Teagan at lunch.  Today I was told Teagan will move up at daycare to the older baby class.  Today I cried a little as Teagan nursed.  Today I snuggled her extra tight as she gave me sleepy "lovin'" after she nursed. Today I walked slower to take her back to her room.  Today I took extra care and tucked her in more carefully when I put her in her crib at daycare.  Today I cried when I got into the car.  Today I missed my baby girl so bad it hurt. 

The Sweet.
Today we started the process of weaning Teagan because she is becoming a big girl.  Today I was told Teagan will move up to the older baby class with her two best school friends, Matilda and Cooper.  Today I smiled as Teagan nursed because I am amazed at how she is growing and how incredible she is.  Today I snuggled Teagan extra tight because I love her more then she'll ever know and she shows me how much she loves me by giving me "lovin" back and snuggling up tight.  Today I put a finally sleepy Teagan in her crib because she would really rather play then nap.  Today I smiled as I walked down the hall and got into my car.  Today I realized I don't have a baby girl anymore.  Today I am thankful that Teagan is healthy and happy and growing up to be a sweet Little Bear. 

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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Note to self.

During next run:
Bring something you can spray or hit mean dogs who want to chase/try to bite you with.
Try to avoid wet grass at all cost.
Bring something to hold your cell phone other then your hand. 
Remember to wear your IT band brace.
When you hit your first "wall" at 3.25 miles remember it is okay to stop and walk a minute or two because that will only allow you to run farther.  Because remember, you have 13.1 miles to run on race day and you are sure to walk a little.

Need a laugh? Read on...

If you have been following the drama of the insoles this last week then you will find this especially humorous.

I will give you a little background on the insole drama just in case you have no idea what I am about to talk about.  I went to the doctor last week because my left foot was killing me after running.  The doctor told me to get insoles for my shoes and I would be good to go.  After the appointment I rushed to the drug store to get the insoles and assumed (shame, shame) I would be alright after that (mistake number 1).  I attempted to run at home that very night and broke down in tears and almost had to have Josh come get me because my foot hurt so bad.  I just assumed it was the wrong insole, not that my foot was still hurting from earlier (mistake number 2).  After an incredible serving of ice cream I decided I would just order the correct insoles, have them overnighted and take back the wrong ones.  The insoles were delivered yesterday.  They were the same ones I had already.  Things brings us to today and the most embarrassing thing that has happened to me in a while....

I decided I was just going to the place the doctor told me to get the insoles originally.  So, after I dropped Teagan off and checked in a the office I took my lunch break early and headed out to downtown Hickory.  This is about a 25 minute drive each way but almost all interstate so it's not too bad.  I get to the drug store and I feel the excitement and anxiety creeping in.  Are they going to have them? They HAVE to have them.  If they don't have them what am I going to do?  I bravely walk in and hand the lady at the counter the paper the doctor gave me with the specific name brand, type of insole and the item number written at the top.  I asked if they had this particular item number in stock.  She looked at the paper, up at me and then down at the paper again.  My cheeks started flushing because I just knew they didn't have any in stock. 

Are you ready for this??

She looked back up at me and kindly said, "Ma'am, this is our phone number.  It's not an item number."  Yeah, just let that sink in for a minute. 

As you can imagine, my face turns bright red but I try my best to hide it.  I just looked dumbfounded at her and managed an "Oh".  She said she could show me where they were in the store so she led me to the roundabout they were on. She shows me the SAME INSOLES I've bought twice.  I look at the back and tell her I need the insoles specifically for flat feet.  This is for mild to high arches.  She looked at me and told me this was what I needed because this provided that amount of support for people who had flat feet.  Needless to say my face turned bright red again.  I told her thank you and left.  With my head down in shame. 

The end result was me taking one pair back, keeping the ones I had overnighted and planning on a run tonight.  Hope you laughed as hard as I did. 

Here's to my run tonight and raising more money for SMA Research.  If you'd like to donate there are 25 days left to donate.  We've reached $280 which means we have $720 left to go before we meet our goal.  Help me raise money to find a cure for this disease.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Running progress

I was down for the count a few days ago.  After completing cross training last Tuesday my left foot hurt so bad I could barely walk from the Wal Mart parking lot to my car.  I had a doctors appointment for the following week to check on it but I called and said I needed to be seen ASAP because I needed to know what I was up against and how far back it would set my training schedule.  They said they could see me the next morning so I jumped on the appointment.
The doctor told me my pain was due to my flat feet and running had basically strained the muscle but all I needed were insole inserts and I would be good to go.  He did tell me to lay off it for a few days but I wasn't going to listen.  If all I needed were insoles then we were golden.  Unfortunately the running universe had different plans and trying to find these insoles became nearly impossible.  I purchased a pair that were similar but didn't even get up the road before I was in so much pain I really thought I was going to have to call Josh to come down the street to come get me.  Needless to say those were apparently NOT the right insoles. I threw a bit of a fit, quietly because Teagan was in bed, when I got back to the house.  A lot of crying and throwing the insoles and a few kitchen towels and then I sat on the couch and ate a LOT of ice cream because at that point I wasn't in training mode.
After my hissy fit I found the insoles online and had them overnighted but they wouldn't be here until Monday (today).  On Sunday I had had enough of not running and so I decided to run anyway.  Without the insoles.  I figured my foot had enough time to rest and recoop so I should be able to run.   Luckily, I was right.  I ran 4 miles in 40 minutes.  HELLO 10 minute MILES!!! Now if I could just keep that pace for all 13 miles we'll be golden! haha! Also, if I did that without the insoles I hope to do better with the insoles in. I also went to the gym today and ran hills/sprints (it's supposed to be a hilly course, ) for 2 miles and my foot only hurt slightly.
As planned the insoles were waiting for me when I got home...not planned was the company SENDING ME THE WRONG KIND!!!!!
 I will probably still run tonight but it won't be as long as planned. I will not be defeated and I will not back down.  

Half marathon, I'm still coming to get you.

If you are interested in donating to this cause please go to my Crowdrise site and donate.  All donations are tax deductible.  The goal is only $1000.  If everybody can give $5 then we will be well on our way to the goal.  A big thanks to those who have already given!!

*If you are interested in the course you can go here to see it*
*Also, keep Baby Getty in your thoughts and prayers.  She has surgery tomorrow.  Keep up with Baby Getty on her blog*

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Hello, Saturday.

Well, we officially have a mobile and adventurous 9 month old.  She has always been on target developmentally but she was just content doing the easy stuff.  She wasn't up for much of a challenge.  Within the past week or two she has just hit go mode and she has taken off.  I am amazed on a daily basis at how smart Teagan is.  Just watching her inspect and study and learn so much makes me want to take it all in with an innocence and curiosity and need to learn like her.  She sees everything as new and exciting and scary because for her it is all of those things.  Right now, I'm not sure how much is scary to her because it is as if she has no fear.  I honestly think she would crawl off the (our) bed if we would let her.  And we have a VERY high bed.
Here are just a few of the new things she has started doing in the past week:
*crawling at the speed of light
*pulling up on everything she can reach and even stuff she can't
*attempting to stick her finger in a light socket
*smashing her fingers in her bottom dresser drawer
*eating finger foods and attempting to eat things that aren't food
*cruising and trying to reach from one thing to another
*trying to climb up stairs.  She is still a little too short to climb the stairs but boy was she trying!
*she HATES getting her diaper changed...she literally squirmed away from me today with poop ALL OVER her bottom.  That was NOT fun...

There are new things, good and some not so exciting, happening everyday.  I can only imagine what is in store next.  Teagan just amazes me everyday with the things she is learning and how her personality is starting to develop.  I think she is going to have an engineering mind like her daddy.  Everything she plays with or sees she has to inspect first.  She inspects every angle of it to see how it works and how it's put together and how it might fit with something else.  I find myself just wanting to watch her play because it amazes me to see the learning process in such a raw and remarkable state.  I can only hope she continues to love to learn.  I never want her to reach a point in her life where learning gets boring to her.  I want her to gain knowledge in everything she loves and accept that she needs to know some of the stuff she doesn't love as well.  I hope Josh and I can instill a "yearning for learning" (yeah, cheesy, I know) in her.

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Friday, November 12, 2010

Promises, Promises.

Last night was rough (teeth or no teeth coming, that is the question).
Today was full.
I promise to blog like a good blogger tomorrow.
Goodnight everybody.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Photo Shoot with Jonathan O'Brien

Let me just tell you how incredible Jonathan O'Brien is....we did a family shoot with him on October 30th and he did a great job.   The time with him flew by much too quickly (we will probably schedule him all day next time) and he was great with Teagan which was quite important if we were going to get good shots.  Since my new sponsor, Tiny Prints, has offered Christmas cards to us we decided to use some of the shots from the shoot with Jonathan.  He was kind enough to send a few shots our way so I could use them on the Christmas cards.  Here are a few of the photos he sent my way....

*Caution...the blue eyes you are about to see will make you smile uncontrollably and feel a sense of sweet calmness* 

*the dress Teagan is wearing in the above pictures is from Miskabelly the online vintage store. AMAZING. Go there. You won't regret it.*

Monday, November 8, 2010


I was so excited when Melissa on Dear Baby announced the winner of a gift certificate for Miskabelle/Miskabelly and it was me!!!  I've loved their site for a while now and literally did a happy dance when I found out I had one....seriously, the e-mail I sent Melissa to claim my prize was pretty hilarious. 
I basically stalked their site for days figuring out all I wanted to order because there were (still are) SO MANY THINGS!!. I ordered Teagan an adorable jacket (that she can't wear quite yet), a dress that she wore for pictures with a Mr. Jonathan O'Brien and then this adorable top that she wore to see her Aunt Livy!!