Surprises in Parenting + A Giveaway

Going into this whole parenting thing I felt like I was pretty well prepared. I definitely did my research, and I thought I had a pretty good idea of what to expect. I knew there would be sleepless nights and countless dirty diapers and more love than I could ever imagine. I knew I would feel overwhelmed and tired and a million other emotions. Logically, I knew a large portion of the things that one should know about parenthood going into it.

But let me tell you, there were some surprises.

I would have to say that the thing that really surprised me the most about this whole baby thing is how exhausted a human being can be and still function. Now that Grayson is three months old and we are on the other side of the whole scream and cry for hours every night until he passes out from exhaustion and then wake up every two hours to eat thing, I generally feel pretty well-rested and just a little tired for the most part. But oh good Lord those first six to eight weeks...I honestly had no idea that was possible.

Looking back at things, I was definitely a bit of a zombie during that time. I have never known an exhaustion to that extreme. I'm quite sure no one other than the mother of a newborn baby has. There were moments when I honestly thought I would just pass smooth out walking across the room I was so sleepy. I can remember laying on the couch with him, rocking him and trying to get him to sleep, practically crying because I needed him to fall asleep so badly. I thought I might never wear anything other than sweatpants and baggy t-shirts because I was always covered in spit up or something worse, and I just didn't have the energy to put in the effort. I can also remember thinking it would be a loooong time until I would be ready to do this whole baby thing again.

Early on, during the zombie phase...I'm smiling because I'm delirious

But like I said, we're on the other side of things now. I generally get about eight hours of sleep a night, with two short little feedings around three and six. I have the time and energy to shower and even fix my hair and put on makeup most days! And this Saturday night when Arsen and I were at a new friends home visiting with them and their one month old teensy tiny baby....I held that sweet girl in my arms and thought, oh, I could do it all again.

And that's the beauty of parenthood. No matter how shocking it can be that you can function on three hours of sleep, covered in baby bodily fluids, exhausted to the point of would do it again in a heartbeat. That is by far the most surprising deep that love goes. That you would sacrifice it all, your sleep, your body...your sanity, really. Just to have another sweet little soul to love. Motherhood really is a beautiful thing.

So for all of you sweet mamas out there, I hope you know that I have much love and respect for you and all that you do. Now that I'm a mama myself, I feel such a kinship with anyone else who has gone on this journey before me, or anyone who is coming alongside me. I love sharing my newfound knowledge with my pregnant girlfriends, and really anyone else who will listen. You find out that you just instinctively prefer certain things for your baby, and your baby will have their preferences as well. It's all a big learning process, and I think we should all help each other out, cause let's face it, it's not easy!

This is why I want to give all of you lovely readers the chance to win some of my favorite baby products that I've used thus far. We've been super lucky that Grayson hasn't dealt with serious diaper rash, but he's definitely had his fair share of redness. Dr. Smith's has been an amazing product, and honestly I think it's a big reason why he hasn't had anything serious going on. The minute his booty even gets a hint of redness I put some of this cream on, and I kid you not, within a couple of diaper changes he is good as new. Any mama out there knows how awful you feel if your little one isn't comfy in any way, so I always feel relieved when I can get rid of that redness.

Luckily for all us, Dr. Smith's is now available nationwide at Walgreens...and even luckier for one of you out there, they are giving away a $50 gift card to Walgreens as well as some Dr. Smith's products! Simply enter below via Rafflecopter for your shot at the prize...and Good Luck!

If you can't wait to see if you're the big winner, visit to find a retailer nearest you. 

This is a sponsored post, but all thoughts and opinions are mine.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

3 Months...

You guys...I can't even deal with this. I feel like the months are flyyyying by and it seems like I just wrote my 2 months post! The transformation in Grayson over the last few weeks has been insane. He is becoming his own little person with this cute little personality and every day I feel like I see a little bit more of who he will be. I'm love love loving every minute of watching him grow and change, but goodness, can it slow down just a little? I know I do this every month but it seriously is going so super fast...break my heart!

Baby boy,

Man oh man, get ready for some mushiness. I feel like my heart is just about to burst with love for you these days. Every day when I wake up and see your sweet little face I fall in love all over again. You are just absolutely the cutest little baby I have ever seen and I honestly believe you get cuter every single day.

This month has been my favorite so far, hands down. I loved you as a brand new baby, but now that you are starting to become a real little human that interacts with us you are so fun! Mornings are still by far my favorite time of day with you. When you wake up, whether it's on your own or from me unwrapping you from your swaddle and giving you a kiss, you are just the happiest little guy around. You wake up slowly and blink real slow for awhile, and then when you realize it's time to get up you always give me the sweetest little grin and start our morning chat. You are so talkative in the mornings it cracks me up. You coo and gurgle and squeal and make the sweetest little baby sounds. We lay in bed and chat for at least ten minutes every morning before we start our day. Sometimes I turn on the Baby Einstein Pandora station and we listen to that and hang out for quite awhile if we feel like being lazy ;)

You're getting into a pretty consistent routine, and it's definitely making life easier for Mama. I am a big believer in not enforcing a schedule on you at this point since I feel like that would just add stress to both of our lives, but you have done a great job of creating your own little schedule. After we get up, usually around 8-8:30, you eat and then we go for a walk most weekdays. After our walk you nap for a bit, and then are ready to eat again around 10:30 or 11. You're pretty consistent in eating and then wanting to play and have some alert time, but you don't last long. Usually about 15-30 minutes of fun and then you're ready for another nap. You start getting pretty fussy and I will just lay you in my arms and you're usually out in about two minutes.

Your naps are definitely shorter now than they used to be...Mama is not getting near as much done these days! Your meal times are getting shorter, and you're spacing them out more. Now we go about three to four hours between feedings for the most part, although some days it's still every two hours. I figure you're a growing boy and you know when your tummy needs something in it, so no rigid schedules for you. I usually get one good, long nap out of you each day. If you get in your swing and chill out for awhile, I will look over and after about 15 minutes or so you are passed out. Sometimes you nap in your swing for two hours or more. Mama has learned to take full advantage of that time :)

Your looks are changing all the time. You are starting to look more and more like you actually belong to me every day. In the beginning you were a mini clone of your dad. Even though I didn't think you looked as much like him as everyone else said you did, you definitely were way more Arsen than Celeste. Now, your hair is lightening way up and you are getting more of my my ears. I'm so sorry about that one, but that came from your Great, Great Grandpa so I can't take the blame. But your eyes are getting darker, like your Daddy, and you have his mouth and eyebrows for sure. I think you're probably the perfect combo of the two of us.

A few of the fun new things you're doing this month are:
* Giving us open mouth kisses...if we aren't careful we get a tongue in the month too!
* Interacting A LOT. You are one chatty little baby these days! Mama, Daddy and Nana get to hear lots of stories from you every day. One of your chattiest times, other than mornings, is during diaper changes. You are SO mad in the beginning, and then by the end of them you are chatting up a storm.
* Noticing your toys. Your Aunt Rachel came to visit this past weekend and brought you a little stuffed penguin with great big eyes, and you think that thing is your new best friend. You stare into his eyes and talk your little head off. It's hilarious.
* Smiling at us all the time. For the most part I can almost always get a smile out of you. Every once in awhile you just refuse and give me that serious stare, but I can usually at least get your little sideways Elvis grin. My favorite is when you get super excited and smile so big all your cute little gums show.
* You rolled over from your back to your tummy on 7/19, but I'm thinking it may have been a fluke. Once you got on your tummy you were NOT pleased. You still hate tummy time so much it's crazy.
* Crying so much less...oh, life is so much better these days! Even when you do cry we can usually get you calmed down in just a couple minutes. I can't even express how much better this has made things.
* Pulling yourself up to sitting. Now that you've figured out you can sit up by grabbing our fingers and pulling up, you want to be sitting up All The Time. No matter where you are, if you are laying down you stick your neck out and lean up like you're trying to do crunches. You get so mad that you can't just do it yourself. Impatient little baby...just like your Mama and Daddy.
*Standing up...obviously with our help. But we just have to be there to keep you steady. You have the strongest little legs, and you love to stand.
*Chewing on everything. People's hands and fingers are your favorite, but you also enjoy chewing on your blankets, stuffed animals, my hair, etc. And man, there is baby slobber everywhere, all the time.

Your least favorite things are:
* Having your clothes changed...every day this is a sob-fest.
* Tummy time. Oh, the agony. You literally can't tolerate it for more than 10 seconds.
* The beginning of a diaper change. By the time you get wiped off you are happy as can be.
* Laying down, unless you are asleep. You want to be up and looking around all the time these days.

I am having the BEST time with you these days. Being your Mama is absolutely the most fun, most rewarding, best thing I have ever done. I hate how fast time is going, but I love watching you change and grow. I love you oh-so-much little guy.


Slightly Obsessed: Teal

When it comes to decorating my home, I'm always faced with a dilemma. I absolutely love all things bright and colorful, and Arsen would live in a house of solid black and white if I would allow it. He literally could have a home with nothing else, so anytime I try to sneak in some color he isn't too excited about it. I've slowly worn him down a little, and now it's to the point where for the most part he says "Whatever you want, just don't ask me" or something to that effect.

However, I know what he really prefers and want him to be happy with our home, too. So my challenge is trying to make things all bright and cheery like I want them to be without overwhelming him and making it too "girly", which is usually his main complaint for things I pick out.

Lately, I've become obsessed with shades of blue. Mainly teal. In our living room we have a white couch, chair and ottoman, a red loveseat, black curtains, and black/brown tables and entertainment center. I've brought in some colorful pillows and artwork, but it's mostly white, black and red. Also, our kitchen is mainly black, brown and red (aside from the not so pretty golden-yellow paint that the previous homeowner chose). I feel like both of those rooms could use a little sprucing up, and I feel like teal could be the way to go.

Since Pinterest is my go-to for almost everything in life these days (sad but true), I've been getting a lot of inspiration there. Here are a few of the things that make me think I need to add some teal to my life ASAP.

G's First 4th

Our 4th of July this year was really not all that exciting. I feel like a holiday filled with fireworks and drinking isn't really geared toward a two month old. Still, since I want to chronicle every one of Grayson's firsts, I thought I'd recap it, just for fun.

I started the day out by realizing that I never invested in one of those cute "This is my first 4th of July" outfits for the poor little guy. So Nana and I went out to Target in search of something. And wouldn't you know, it was all clearanced out and all that remained were frilly little onesies that were clearly for girls. So for his first 4th he got a plain red onesie...I feel like that's a little more his style anyway ;)

Then we came home and we all got ready and decided to head out to the 4th of July celebration that they have downtown in the Square in our town. We hadn't been before and thought it was probably the most family friendly thing going on. So we packed Grayson up and headed down there. And it was crowded. We had to park out in a little field and strolling him outta there was not easy. We finally got to the square, and we were right. It was very family friendly. Pretty much everything was geared for little kids. They had rides and food and a stage with people performing...granted, a two month old doesn't have much appreciation for any of that, but I can see him really having fun there in a couple of years.

The downside is that it was HOT. So freaking hot. Grayson is one hot natured little baby, and after he woke up he was not pleased with us. His face was priceless. He has never glared at us like that in his life. Needless to say we didn't last long. We made a little loop through, got me some Dip'n Dots, and headed out. Then we went out for a yummy little Mexican dinner, came home and watched TV. Not the most exciting 4th, but it was a good one.

The Not-So-Glamorous Side of Motherhood

There are some things about being a mom that are SO much better than I could have ever imagined in a million years. The first time (and every time since) that Grayson smiled at me. The fact that sometimes the only thing that will calm him down is being in mama's arms. Seeing his eyes light up when he sees me. Makes me practically swoon just thinking about it.

So sweet. So innocent. 

BUT there are also things about being a mom that are much more disturbing than I was prepared to deal with. I read all the books and listened to all of my friends who had babies before me, but until I experienced these things first hand I didn't realize how incredibly not-at-all glamorous motherhood could be. Here are just a few of the things I deal with on the daily.

  • Baby Vomit- 
Now, I knew there was a good chance I would be dealing with some spitting up here and there. My mom swears that I never spit up as a baby, only once in all of my baby-hood did I do so, and it was on my dad. So after hearing that, I thought maybe I would be so lucky. 

Ha. Not so much. Grayson started spitting up almost immediately, and for about 4 or 5 days very early on, it wasn't spitting up. It was a projectile-vomit-across-the-room kinda thing. It was terrifying. And horrifying. I had no idea a baby was capable of such a thing. Fortunately we did a little research and figured out that it was most likely dairy causing it. I immediately cut out milk, ice cream, and most other dairy-related things out of my diet, and he hasn't done it since. Now we just get to deal with regular baby vomit issues. Yay.

  • Baby Poop- 
Guys. I don't know where I heard this, but for as long as I can remember, I've thought that baby poop did not smell. I never changed a diaper (on my own) until I had Grayson, so I seriously had no prior experience for comparison. But oh good God, I had no idea baby poop could be so awful. The first couple of days are just a joke. You think that's all you'll be dealing with, and then you get home and they have their first blow out diaper and you have no idea what the eff is going on. I just wasn't mentally prepared to deal with this. 

And then, if you're as lucky as I am, you get something like this little treat of a story that you can tell to all of your childless friends to scare the bejesus out of them:

A couple weeks after Grayson was born he had been sitting on my lap after eating, working on a great little present for me. I waited what I thought was a safe amount of time after I stopped hearing him do his business, and I took him over to the changing table. I started stripping him down, wiping him off, and was almost done, when an explosion of poop starts coming out right into my hands. He literally filled both of my hands with poop.  I didn't know what to do, so I just started laughing hysterically (I think I was having a small mental breakdown).  Arsen was working from home and he heard me laughing, although at the moment he thought I was crying loudly, so he comes running out into the living room. I'm just standing there, hovering over Grayson, hands full of poop, laughing like it's the most hilarious thing that has ever happened. 

That's the kind of thing no one tells you about. Pretty sure I'm scarred for life. 

  • Breast Feeding...Issues
I'll try not to be as graphic as I was about the poop situation here (you're welcome) but let's just say if you choose to breast feed, your body will do some things that you might not be prepared for. I have been determined since I found out I was pregnant to breast feed, and I still plan on sticking it out until he's around a year old. It's an amazing bonding experience, and I feel such a sense of accomplishment that I can provide the very best nutrition possible for him all by myself. But let me tell you, it isn't always easy. And it's certainly not glamorous. 

When I first started pumping it was definitely strange to feel as though I was milking myself. And having breast milk all over your clothes doesn't exactly make you feel fabulous and put together. Coordinating your entire wardrobe around whether or not something is easy to nurse in can be a challenge. And if you have to deal with engorgement...holy crap, it's painful. But it's one of those things that I wouldn't give up for anything, that I'll do as long as I feel it's needed, and I'll absolutely do with every baby I have. But I do long for a time when my entire life doesn't revolve around my boobs. 

  • Exhaustion
Things are so much better now that I almost hesitated to put this on here. Obviously I'm still really freaking tired because I take care of an infant 24 hours a day. But now that he is sleeping so well at night I feel like I have no room to complain at all. I'll take a little tired over I-can-barely-see-straight-or-function exhaustion any day. 

It's strange what happens throughout the birthing process. When you go in to have your baby, there are most likely going to be hours of waiting. Perfectly good hours of time when you could sleep till your hearts content (this is if you have an epidural. If not, there ain't no way you're sleeping through those contractions). But you can't sleep. You're about to have your baby! You're excited and antsy and ready to meet that little human you've been growing for so long. So you just stay awake and wait. 

And then you have them. If you're lucky enough to do it vaginally, you get to spend a good amount of time pushing a baby out of your body, which I imagine is quite exhausting. If you are as unfortunate as I was and are forced to do a stupid c-section (I'm not bitter, swear), then you get to lay there and have someone cut you open and pull a baby out of you. Neither option is fun or easy. 

And THEN you get your precious little bundle of joy. And you never sleep again. The end. 

No, but seriously, you won't sleep for weeks. Not sleep that counts, at least. If your hospital is like mine, they let you keep the baby with you around the clock. He was never out of my sight the entire time. I loved it. But I was sooooo tired. Then you go home, and that sweet little baby wants to eat every couple of hours, all day and night. For WEEKS I tell you. You do not get a chance to catch up on your sleep. And if you're like me, you will not sleep well even when you do sleep, because you will wake up every 15 minutes to put your finger under his nose or your hand on his chest to make sure he's still breathing. I swear I didn't get a solid 3 or 4 hours of sleep until he was at least six weeks old. 


If you're currently expecting, I apologize for this post. But not really. Because I think you should be fully prepared for what's to come. Motherhood is hands down the best thing I have ever, ever, ever done in my entire life. I am completely and totally in love and obsessed with my baby, and I cannot fathom a life without him. There has never been one second since he was born that I have been anything but overjoyed to have him. Yes, even when I was holding his poop in my hands, I still had more love in my heart for that sweet little man than I ever imagined possible. 

But motherhood is not for the weak. Not by a long shot. But it will be the best thing you'll ever do. 


Well, it's official. Something I never truly thought would happen has happened. I popped out a baby, fell madly in love, and decided it would be the end of the world if I had to leave that precious boy for hours upon hours every day to go to work. There were tears. There was anguish. There were many, many discussions with my unbelievably supportive husband. And then a decision was made. And I'm now a stay at home mom.

My mom stayed home with me from day one, and I honestly believe that my childhood and teenage years were greatly improved by having her there with me. In the back of my mind I think I have always hoped I would have the chance to stay home with my babies, but it wasn't something I wanted to admit. Before I even got pregnant Arsen and I talked about the possibility of me staying home, and he made it pretty clear that he didn't think it was necessary. Or financially smart. In his mind, why would we give up my salary when most of that money could go into savings every month and give us a lot of cushion. So it was pretty much a given that I would continue working. Then I got pregnant and it wasn't even that much of a discussion. I just knew I would go back to work after my maternity leave.

And then we went and visited several daycare centers in the area. And they were so super nice and clean and safe and great. And the kids looked happy, and the workers were friendly for the most part. And we went home at the end of the day and I cried and cried and cried. I had a full on meltdown about how I didn't think I could mentally or emotionally handle leaving my sweet, sweet baby every single day for strangers to care for him for 10 hours while I worked. I would miss out on the majority of his waking hours. Someone else would most likely witness his first words, his first steps, his first everything. It made me feel physically sick just thinking about it.

So we had several discussions. And honestly, after visiting those perfectly lovely daycares, Arsen had a change of heart and said he wanted me to stay home. The guy who had always told me it was unrealistic to even think I could stay home, who said not everyone has the opportunity to stay home and I needed to just face those facts...he decided it was worth giving up that extra income in order for me to be home with our boy.

Even though the thought of returning to work felt like someone was ripping my heart out, it was still a very, very hard decision. My job was honestly very fulfilling, it gave me a sense of purpose, I really enjoyed my co-workers, and it was turning in a more creative direction that I was really excited about. I also couldn't imagine myself without a job. Without a place to go every single day, a to-do list to check off, and a sense of accomplishment that came along with just being a contributing member of society.

To be honest, I still am struggling with things a bit. My days are completely full of baby-care, and I'm having a hard time trying not to lose myself into all of that. I'm the type of person who needs something to do every day. I need to feel like I've accomplished something. So when my entire day is wrapped up in all of the amazing things that come with being a stay at home mommy, like cuddling my sweet baby, rocking him to sleep, playing with him, watching him learn new things, singing to him and telling him stories...when that is what I do all day and I have no time to really "accomplish" anything that I can mark off a list...I have a hard time in convincing myself that I'm contributing. I'm not bringing in money, I'm not working toward it's different.

But I know that I'm incredibly, amazingly, ridiculously blessed to be able to stay home. Millions of women probably wish that they had the opportunity to stay home with their babies. I honestly don't think that I could function at work anymore...I just can't imagine not being with him. And I know so, so many people don't have this opportunity. I'm completely overjoyed that this is my life now. But I still feel the need to validate what I am doing. I'm assuming this is just part of the whole mommy thing, and I'm sure it will be an adjustment. Overall, I'm just trying to soak up every moment of delicious baby-ness and remind myself what a lucky, lucky lady I am.

Grayson's First Road Trip

We've slowly but surely started venturing out with Grayson. As first time parents with a slightly moody baby, we were admittedly a little nervous about taking him with us to do our normal everyday things. First I started taking him on quick shopping trips with me, and then we tested out a couple of meals in restaurants. And he has been amazing! We have never had an issue at all. He normally sleeps the entire time, and if he's not sleeping he's just sort of looking around, taking it all in. But even though he was doing SO good at every new thing we tried, we were still a little leery about our first out of town trip.

Last weekend we loaded up the car (ohmygoodness babies require A LOT of stuff) and headed north to Oklahoma, along with my mom. Most of my family still hadn't met Grayson, and Arsen decided to take a week of vacation to recharge and relax, so we thought this would be the perfect time. After about four hours of packing on Thursday night (which wouldn't have taken so long if G wouldn't have needed me several times) we were ready to go.

Friday morning we got up and headed out for my dad's house. It's about a two hour drive from our house to his, and Grayson slept pretty much the entire way. I knew car rides normally put him to sleep, but this was the first time we were going more than 20 minutes or so from home. He slept like a little champ! We didn't have to make any stops or anything, so we made it to dad's just in time for a feeding and avoided any major meltdowns.

After spending a bit of time there, we headed over to my Grandmother's house so Grayson could meet his second cousin Isabella, who is just about a month older than him...although you would never know it because he's so huge they are about the same size. It's so, so much fun for my cousin Amanda and I to have little ones so close together in age. AND, we recently found out that BOTH of her brothers are expecting later this year, only 12 days apart this December. On my mom's side of the family it's just the four of us and two younger cousins, so it's pretty crazy that all four of us older cousins are having babies in one year. And it's the first baby for three of the four of us. I can't wait for holidays now...all those sweet little babes in one place!

My uncles and an aunt came over later in the day, and we all just spent a lot of time staring at the babies. Isn't it crazy how a group of adults can just gather around and stare at a child? And if they do something remotely cute the reaction from the adults is quite hilarious. I would love to have it on video.

The next day we spent time back over at my dad's with his side of the family. Grayson got the chance to meet several of my cousins, their kids, my uncle and aunt, and my dad's girlfriend. We all went over to her place so the kids could swim in her pool and we sat around and chatted for a couple of hours. That side of my family doesn't get together very often, so it was so much fun to see everyone.

Later that night we went to Norman (just outside of Oklahoma City) to stay with my uncles for a couple of nights. We spent the next day lounging by their pool, going out to eat, and doing a whole lot of nothing. So nice.

My mom, her cousin, and I went and drove through her old neighborhood in Moore after dinner on Sunday. It is unbelievable the damage that the May 20th tornado did. Seeing it in person made it so much more real. It hit literally a few streets away from where my mom lived. The first few houses in her neighborhood were pretty severely damaged, and just across the street houses were completely gone. The shopping center right down the road was basically demolished, and across the street from her neighborhood was also one of the elementary schools that took a direct hit. It's so crazy to see all those familiar places like that. Just so awful.

We stopped back by to see my dad on the way home on Monday...he might freak out on us if we were anywhere in the vicinity of his place and didn't bring Grayson by to see him. After visiting for a couple hours and then stopping by to see my Grandmother again, it was time to head back home to Texas. And that was pretty much the entire trip. A whole lotta family time crammed into just a few days. Definitely a good time, and I loved introducing the little one to everyone.

Unfortunately, the trip didn't end so well. About an hour from home, I was asleep in the backseat with Grayson when the car jerked and I heard a loud noise that woke me up. Apparently the car in front of us hit a huge piece of semi tire that was laying on the highway, and it flipped up and flew into our car. Arsen couldn't dodge it, so we ran over it. And it ripped off the passenger side of my front bumper to where it was hanging down and hitting the we were stranded on the side of the highway. In 100 degree heat. For almost two hours. It was miserable. Thankfully my dad was able to come pick us up and drive us home to Texas, and they towed my car to a nearby Hyundai place to be repaired. Other than the $500 deductible that we have to pay (on top of allllll the medical bills we've been paying from G's birth) it wasn't too terrible. I'm just so incredibly relieved that it wasn't anything more damaging and that none of us were injured. It is CRAZY how much scarier something like that is with a baby!

Aside from that craziness, it was a great trip and Grayson was such a good baby. I can't believe how much he has changed and how much better he handles things now. Even a few weeks ago there is no way I would have even attempted to take him out of town. So proud of him! And of me and Arsen. I think we're doing a pretty decent job at this parent thing so far.

Watching Him Discover

Today has been a pretty typical day in my "new" life.  A lot of feeding, rocking, cuddling, etc. Moments that I wouldn't trade for anything. Grayson has started fighting his sleep A LOT for some reason. It's like he doesn't want to miss out on a minute of what's going on around him.

I had been rocking him in the living room for quite awhile and he just wouldn't give in. Every time I would sit him up to see if he wanted to play or look around, he would start fussing. But when I would lay him back down and start to rock him, he would jerk and spit out his pacifier and grunt and whine. I tried the swing. I tried it all. So finally I decided to just take him outside and sit in the swing. And he loved it.

The last few days here in Texas have been amazing as far as the weather is concerned. Normally this time of year you can expect temps well over 100, but it's been in the 80s/low 90s and feeling wonderful. So we sat outside for a good thirty minutes in the shade of the big tree in the backyard, just swinging. I sat him on my lap and let him look forward and he seemed to just be soaking it all in. After being quiet for awhile he started getting really chatty and cooing and squealing.

I started thinking that to him, every moment of his life pretty much is an exciting new experience. Today was the first time he has just sat outside and experienced the elements. It was his first time to feel the wind on his cheeks and the sun on his legs and to stare at the clouds and watch the leaves blow on the tree. No wonder he doesn't want to sleep, who can blame the kid? I imagine everything is so fascinating to him, and I'm sure overwhelming at the same time.

Watching him discover all of these new things is so fun for me as his mama. Seeing him turn into this curious little baby is the best experience ever. About a week ago he discovered that his hands make the best chew toys in the world, and they have been in his mouth almost non-stop since then. He's also started grabbing onto things a lot, like his blanket or little taggie things. He's also started squealing and we've even got a few giggles in the last couple of days.

I'm so enjoying every moment of watching him learn and grow, and I think it's going to be so much fun to view the world through his eyes as his gets bigger and more interested in his surroundings. Even though the days may feel a bit monotonous for me, I'm trying to remind myself that each day is an opportunity for him to learn and discover a little more.