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We met over 8 years ago at church as Shaun was walking in and I was walking out. The few words exchanged sparked an interst that kept Shaun coming back. When we FINALLY began dating 4 years later we soon knew there was something special here. Our first year quickly flew by and we both decided we never wanted to spend another year with anyone else or without each other. We married in the place where it all began on January 1, 2011 (1/1/11) and gave birth to our beautiful daughter Ava Marie on September 22, 2011 our next little one, Clara Rose came 16 months later on February 11, 2013. This blog began with our preparation with our wedding and has entered into recording the days and events of our newlywed life and new motherhood.

The Happy Couple...

Daisypath - Personal pictureDaisypath Anniversary tickers

Ava Marie

Lilypie - Personal pictureLilypie Third Birthday tickers

Clara Rose

Lilypie - Personal pictureLilypie Second Birthday tickers

Gabriel's ticker

Lilypie - Personal pictureLilypie Angel and Memorial tickers

Twins ticker

Lilypie - Personal pictureLilypie Pregnancy tickers

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

When a Priest comes to dinner! ...or TWO!

Yesterday, a priest friend of ours was back in town and called in the late afternoon/early evening to surprise us and ask if he could stop by that evening for dinner.  I was out running an errand and although I was so happy to hear from him, my mind was distracted by the picture of an empty refridgerator (what will I feed him?) and the image of a livingroom floor and dining room table FULL of paperwork (I've been looking for an important paper for my taxes and had an "ADD" moment when I decided to sort through ALL the papers I've been meaning to for some time.  I was in "mid-sort" when I headed out to run a few errands.  The house was "A MESS!"  Though happy to hear from him, I'm at first tempted to think up some excuse.

"SUUuuuuure you can come for dinner!  We'd love that!  In fact, I'll invite my Mom!" 

I'm tempted to forgo daily Mass (which I was trying to attend during Lent) as this would leave me exactly 15 minutes to prepare before everyone shows up, but go to Mass anyway (and while there invite my Pastor to dinner as well.  Might as well!)  *note:  BOY am I glad I chose to go to Mass.  Totally worth any embarrassment of a messy house*

When a priest comes it's sort of like Jesus is coming to dinner for me.  This moment of reflecting on my house not being ready was a great meditation on how Jesus could come at ANY time... would we be ready?  I couldn't help but think of this as I was cleaning up and running through the grocery store to pick up something for dinner.  I didn't want to feel as if I wasn't ready to welcome him at any time to come and enter in and join me and my family (expected or not).

What a good meditation this spur of the moment visit was.  "You do not know the day or the hour that the Son of Man will come"  It really got me in the Lenten "mood".

In the end, we had a great evening with lots of smiles, warm conversation and a great dinner of fresh wild haddock (whenever you're in a rush, fish is quick!) with stuffed topping, broccoli crowns, summer squash (prepared the day before), and Jasmine rice!  My mom brought crepe suzettes with strawberry topping that she just "happened" to have made (she's always cooking something awesome), YUM! and all ended well!

 Ava was SO over-tired that she did NOT stop talking (but she wouldn't go to sleep because she didn't want to miss anything)!  Here she is with Nana telling her a story.  She eventually went down an hour early.  The night proved too exciting for her.

 Ava meets Fr. Jeff!

 Ava's a bit more interested in her feet than anything right now.
 She LOVES Fr. Conrad!
 Some great conversation (and a messy table that didn't quite make it before guests arrived... oh well).

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Don't you hate it when...

You go shopping with intetions to organize something in your home and it just doesn't work out?

I went shopping with Shaun.  Our ideal shopping stores are a little "different". 

Mine: Marshalls, TJ Maxx in the "home accessories" area... he's done before he's even walked in the door.


His:  Job Lot or Benny's in the rake or fertilizer department... at this point I try to be supportive and forgive him for feeling the same way when shopping at previous store with me.

I've been feeling the need to get organized lately.  So, I went shopping with Shaun at Marshall's and while there I'm looking at baskets for our entry way bench...

(ours looks sort of like this with some books and clutter on the top and minus the neat baskets below.  Add some dust bunnies under the legs and you've got it!)

to hide some of the million pairs of shoes that clutter our entry way floor as soon as someone walks in.  I feel like people come into our home and it looks like this...
Now doesn't that just scream "Welcome to our home!"  (no... it screams "I'm becoming a hoarder")

There I am with an infinite amount of beautiful baskets in front of me and wouldn'tcha know it that I simply cannot find the right size basket.  (Don't you hate it when that happens?)  There are two that look perfect but are simply too big for our bench and so I leave them there (since Shaun is SO done with the basket/Marshall's shopping experience) and move on.

Because he's begging to go to Benny's we need a rake, we head to Benny's where I look for some plastic bins to organize our "opportunity to practice patience drawer"  otherwise known as our "assorted plastic food container collection". 

Looks a bit like this persons...
(If one of those containers falls out of that drawer ONE more time, I'm gonna go nutty!) 

So picture me.  I'm in Benny's (Shaun's looking at Rakes or Fishing poles) and realize I found the exact size bins I need to organize the cabinet!  So excited!  I pick them up.  I'm so busily on my way home, happily organizing in my mind that I realize I'll actually have to find something else to help me practice patience, as that drawer is no longer going to give me any problems.  Can't wait to get started.  *sigh*  Too bad I couldn't find some baskets for the entry way bench, I think.

As soon as I get home I open the drawer to start organizing and realize...

Those plastic bins?  They're actually the WRONG size.  And the baskets I didn't pick up for the entry way bench?  Thought they were too big?  Actually they were the perfect size and there were actually TWO that matched at  reasonable price and at this moment they're still sitting on the shelf at the store.  Oh man!  Someone who thinks they're the perfect size (before they get home to realize they don't fit)will probably pick them up before I can get back there with the baby!!!  Grrrr...  Don't you HATE it when that happens?

I visualize shopping with the hubby and the 5 month old again and the thought of returning said bins for the RIGHT size does not look as appealing (though it would mean another trip to Benny's for Shaun) my creative brain starts figuring out other things in the house I can use those bins for.  My sock/underwear drawer, the washclothes in the towel closet that always get messed up on the shelf, Recycleables, etc...  *sigh* Forget the plastic container drawer,  I'll just make it work.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Muffin Tin Mom: Muffin Tin Monday: Dr. Seuss Food

Just in case you're looking for ideas for your littles for Dr. Seuss's birthday celebration! I thought I'd post a few days early in case you needed time to grocery shop. Check it out:

Muffin Tin Mom: Muffin Tin Monday: Dr. Seuss Food: Welcome to Muffin Tin Monday! Dr. Seuss’ birthday is March 2. To celebrate this day, we filled our muffin tin meal with a bunch of fun...

Friday, February 24, 2012

7 Quick takes Friday

1. Lent has begun & I've finally had a great reason to get back to going to daily Mass with Miss Ava... that being that our parish, (Our Lady of Perpetual Help in New Bedford) switched it's Mass time during Lent to 5:30pm!!!  This is SO much easier for me to make as:

#1. I'm not a morning person
#2. The usual Mass time falls anywhere between Ava's feeding and/or naptime (and she's now become too nosey to nap well in public)
#3. ...repeat #1

The other great thing is that there are confessions before every daily Mass (except Fridays when there are Stations of the Cross beforehand and confessions offered afterwards).  I'm LOVING it! 

2. I'm having this great desire lately to learn how to SEW!!!

I tend to be crafty and creative in other ways, but SO want to learn how to SEW!  I keep getting all these ideas and thinking, "Darn!  (no pun intended) I wish I had a sewing machine... but I don't"

3.  Spring is in the air.  When springtime nears, I get this great desire to start GROWING things!  So today I went into CVS to get Ibuprofen and came out with these:
...and a movie.  I hope it's good!

Anyway, I have all these beautiful Amarylis bulbs downstairs in the basement which I bought and planted for our Wedding (If you recall they came up to early). 

I thought they I'd plant a few in each container and bring them back to life.  I know this is typically done around Christmas, but this year has been so confusing season/weather wise... they probably won't know the difference.

4.  I put some finishing touches on Ava's nursery.  I have had these cute little green frames and hadn't had a use for them, so I put a bunch of pictures to tell her birth story and placed them up in the nursery with Command hooks (the little clear ones.  ...I told you I'm SO into these things!) and they look great hanging from the trees over her crib.

5. I FINALLY found a teether that works for Ava.  She has HATED every single one I've offered to her during this whole teething process.  Until NOW!  I found these at Marshalls of all places:  Nuby Softees teethers... you can tell.  She approves.

6.  THIS is one of my favorite things in my house.  It's a beautiful Holy water font that's hung right outside our bedroom door.  Our friends Pam & John Martin gave it to us for our Wedding.  I love that it's right there and so easy to dip into for a quick blessing and reminder.  I love watching Shaun bless little Ava.

7.  ...I've started working out again.  Ok... so I worked out ONCE technically.  I hope this holds me accountable.  I SOooo need to.  I have this big fear that I'll get pregnant again (that's actually NOT the fear part) before I lose the weight from this past pregnancy (THAT's the fear part).  So, I've turned my living room into a workout area.  Before I actually started, I watched the workout videos I had purchased over a period of 3 days to see which one most motivated me.... that's right, I said video(s)... plural.  "You just watched them you say?  Don't you mean to say, you worked out to them?"  Nope.  Just watched them... I think one of them I watched while I was snacking on Jax. 
That must have been Fat Tuesday. 

I'm SO uncoordinated I thought I might injure myself if I just jumped in.  I actually did sprain my ankle once doing Tae Bo!  So, I decided to skip the Tae Bo.  Sorry Billy.  I also decided to skip the "Post-Pregnacy Boot camp".  The lady was just too sweet and I thought when she said, "If you need to take a break, just take a short break" ...I would.  So for now I'm going with Jillian Michaels' "Ripped in 30". 

I'm hoping she can guilt trip me just enough to workout 3-4 times a week.  The tough part is that I'm not really that swayed by peer pressure.  I sort of have always "done my own thing" and if someone tells me to do something, I have a hard time doing it just because someone tells me to. 

I'm not like my dear friend Colleen of Martin Family Moments who seems to really enjoy excersize and has written many posts in defense of it.  (Her whole family is actually like this, so I think it's sort of a genetic thing) Or my friend Ellie from Me and my House who really likes to run and after 10 kids looks better than me after my first.  I don't enjoy it.  I hurt afterwards.  I have stairs in my house and the shortage of estrogen due to breastfeeding really makes my joints hurt more.  You know what I DO enjoy?  I really enjoy... EATING!  My tastebuds are in better shape than my legs.  And it doesn't help that I have a husband who thinks I'm absolutely beautiful ALL the time and seems unable to notice stretch marks... or weight gain ...this is actually not a complaint at all, but doesn't exactly motivate one to excersize.  *sigh*

But I want to be able to chase my children around without thinking, "Please Lord, When will they stop running???" so I'll give it a try.  Say a prayer.  Day one done, check!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Miss Ava is 5 months old!

Yesterday Ava turned 5 months old.  I honestly don't know where the time has gone, but I've enjoyed every SECOND of it!  She has the greatest little personality.

She's such a determined little thing! 

Sometimes she has this expression like she just "gets" what's going on.

Sometimes she's serious and you could do everything including stand on your head and there's NO WAY she'll crack a smile... great poker face. 

Then there are times where she's so silly & goofy and gets such a kick out of everything that she just laughs herself silly... and if you catch her while she's at her "silly show" she totally gives you this look that says "bust-ed" and busts into a barrel of squeals and laughter. 

She loves to sing sing sing!  I love to watch her when I'm driving and I peek back in the mirror to see her humming and singing to herself with eyes closed chin in the air and head swaying back and forth until she falls asleep.

She's strong!  Boy is she strong!  She rolled over from her back to her belly around 3 1/2 months and has since mastered the art.  As soon as you put her down, she'll flip over and will pull herself anywhere she needs to, to get what she wants.  She's got places to GO!

She's NOSY!  Likes to hear everything that's going on and be into whatever is happening.  She'll fight sleep like crazy thinking she'll miss something.  Sometimes I think she's going to twist her head clean off her neck she turns it so far to see what's happening behind her! 

She's SO sweet and good.  She has the most darling disposition.

She's totally a Daddy's girl and is over the moon for Shaun.  (Of course, the feeling is mutual).
She is a total cuddlebug and just loves to be held and paid attention to.  She'd sit in my arms ALL day if she could. 

She loves to sleep! YESSA!  Usually she's down around 9:30pm and sleeps straight through till at least 5:30a... but often times till 8am.  Then she'll be more than happy to take cat naps all morning and throughout the day with whoever would like to join her. 

She knows how to entertain herself!  Boy does she.  I often catch her "throwing a party" in her crib and having an absolute ball by herself. 

She's accomodating.  She'll let me do just about anything to her with little to no fuss. 

She's ...A-M-A-Z-I-N-G... that's all... she's just amazing and I'm SO happy she's ours!

Here are some of my favorite photos from this past month (in chronological order):
 Ok, I just turned 4 months and I've got my game face on!  Bring it.

 First Snow!

 Learning how to sit up.

 My girl.  My favorite spot.

 Fingers, the next great snack.

 I'm SO excited!  THIS is MY daddy!!!

 My neighbor made me this hat!  Cute... right?

 Uh oh... don't tell Daddy about the thumb, ok Mom?

 Play time

 I love my Nana

 This little piggy...

 Grama!  You're so funny!!!

 Daddy, listen closely...

...there's a strange lady taking pictures of us!

 Oh silly me!  That's just MOMMY!

 Ha Ha Ha!

 I'm just going to Sliiiide my way outa here...

 I'm trapped... between two really big feet!

 Daaaaad!!!  Heeelp!!!

 Yum.  Better than an ice cream cone!

 I love you Mommy!

 Curls Curls Curls!

 Oh Daddy how you make me giggle.

 Take THAT!


 You think I'm Pretty?


 Ok... Lean in closer, I've got somethin to tell ya!

 Daddy, you sing the best songs.... Zzzzzzzzzzz

 Concentrate... concentrate... GOT EM'!

 This is my BiiiiiiG sister.

 Nana <3

 You know what?  I love you.

I'm with one of the actresses!  She's MY sister!

Phew!  THAT was a tiring month!