Monday, February 28, 2011

Showered with Love!

This past weekend I had a shower that my wonderful sisters gave me (Frannie, Joy & Tricia)! It was so much fun, and I was blown away by how generous and thoughtful all of my friends and family were. Here are just a few of pictures from the day's event:

The beautiful spread (pre-attacked by a bunch of hungry women!):

Posing with the hostesses with the mostest!:

Some of the Wed. Night Crew:

Gettin' to business with Fannie:

Cheryl with two of her three best buds (we missed ya Karen!):

Opening all the wonderful surprises:

Sandra & Robin:

 Everyone is mesmerized by my gift opening ability :) JK:

Some of the fam in the background:

All of the presents in the bassinet that Baby Boy will sleep in. This bassinet was made my grandmother and all four of us Howard chilin' slept in it, the Greer kids and all the grandbabies (on both the Greer and Howard side) have slept in - what a tradition!:


My mom, my big ol' pregnant belly and me (this picture was taken exactly at 32 weeks):

Mac & Igig... Just missing Narf!:

The day was so much fun, and I appreciated everyone who came out in support of not only me, but Baby Boy and Jimmy. We are so thankful for everyone in our lives right now!

Here are some pictures of the "loot" in Baby Boy's room that is slowly (but surely) coming along:

The crib filled with love:

The changing table, piled high:

I don't think Sadie's too sure of what's going on...? 

In addition to this fabulous shower - Jimmy's office threw us a shower a couple weeks ago. Unfortunately I didn't get any pics of the event, but here is a picture of all the wonderful gifts we received - again, everyone was far too generous!

The next day I decided to be handy and to put together the swing all by myself:

The finished product, taaa daaaaa:

Can't wait to put all of these wonderful, fun little doo-dads to work with our little man in LESS than two months (7 weeks and 4 days to be exact)! Hard to believe that tomorrow I can say, "He'll be here next month!" :)

Oh, and I forgot to post this belly picture of me at 30 weeks:

The above picture wasn't "belly enough" for my photographer (aka Jimbo) so below is the official - side profile of me at 30 weeks:

Friday, February 25, 2011

Happy Birthday Gracie Grace!

Although her birthday was 2-18, and we celebrated on 2-29, better to post later than ever... right?! Right!

Last Saturday we celebrated my oldest niece's birthday, Gracie. She turned the big whopping 3 years old (where does time fly?!). Joykens decided to go with a Mad Hatter Tea Party theme, which was sooo amazing!

Here are some of my favorite photos from the day (warning: photo overload!):

The decorations were perfecto! When I came over the day before to help out where I could, Gracie was SO EXCITED about showing me these signs. As soon as I walked in the house she looked at me and said, "Come! See!" She grabbed my hand and took me to these signs and said, "You can go there, or that way, or that way, or that way...." :) So cute:

It really looked like a tea party straight out of Alice and Wonderland:

Adeline was loving the dress up pearls :)

What an amazing cake! It looked like an actual tea pot made my Pammy the Cake Lady in Simpsonville, SC!

Joy and her birthday girl, Gracie:

The cupcakes (also made by Pammy, which were sooo yummy!):

The girls having a grand ol' tea party fun time:

The dress up table (she had fake 'staches, pearls, big ol' bow ties, etc - so fun!):

Of course Gigi and Ma would be the most fashionable at the Mad Hatter Tea Party!:

She even had crafts! Everyone made their own top hat! Fancy:

This picture just cracks me up :)

"Happy birthday to you... Happy birthday to you... Happy birthday dear Gracieeeee... Happy birthday to YOU!:

Making her wish....

Everyone digging in!

Zan trying to wake up from his nap... a cupcake should do the trick!

So sweet :)


An attempt at a group photo - disaster, but priceless... all in one! (PS-Look how sweet Hamilton and Zan are. We told Hamilton to grab Zan's hand and this is how they stood, for like 2 solid minutes, so cute!):

Still holding hands, what sweet brothers :)

Craig-ee-poo living the life as a kid :)

Craig and his really old buddy with a cool 'stache... oh wait! That's Hamilton! :) 

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Footloose & Bandage Free!

Our little rascal got the thumbs up yesterday to go bandage free - yipee! Which also means she can FINALLY start getting a little exercise. Lately she has been looking so depressed just staring out the window, looking at us like, "Why? Why can't I go out and play. Y'all are mean."

She has been restricted to just the exercise it took to go potty (which is nothing compared to what our crazy pup is used to). Now she can have two 10-minute walks a day. It's not much, but we'll take it!

Another big family milestone - Gracie's 3rd birthday! Her birthday was on Friday (2-11), but we celebrated on Saturday with a Mad Hatter Tea Party that was so much fun! Pictures and details to come...

Thursday, February 17, 2011

The Top 60 Ways To Show Kids You Care

My sweet hubby sent this list to me today via email. Someone had sent it to him, and I just thought they were too perfect not to share.

The Top 60 Ways To Show Kids You Care

1. Notice them and acknowledge them frequently.
2. Smile a lot when around them.
3. Kneel down, squat, or sit at their eye level when talking to young children.
4. Acknowledge their efforts more then their results.
5. Seek them out but also allow them space.
6. Always remember and make a big deal about their birthdays and special days (don't need to spend a lot, just make a big deal about it to let them know they are important).
7. Ask them about and talk to them about themselves and what they like.
8. Look in their eyes when you talk to them but allow them to look away if the subject is difficult.
9. Listen to them and repeat back to them what you heard them say.
10. Play with them and let them lead the play frequently, choose the toys, choose the games a lot.
11. Read aloud together.
12. Laugh, giggle, dance, sing act goofy together as much as possible.
13. Be nice and model good kind behaviors.
14. Say "yes" a lot. In fact, for each "no" find two or three things that are "yes".
15. Word things in positive terms ("Billy, use walking feet" instead of "don't run Billy")
16. Tell them their feelings are okay.
17. Set boundaries that keep them safe.
18. Allow the feelings but redirect any dangerous, destructive, or abusive actions.
19. Be honest, but keep adult information with adults.
20. Listen to their stories they are usually telling you a little something about themselves.
21. Hug them frequently but don't force a hug if they don't want one.
22. Forget your worries sometimes and concentrate only on them.
23. Notice when they're acting differently or seem to be having a lot of problems.
24. Seek professional help when they need it.
25. Present options when they seek your counsel (limit options for younger children).
26. Play outside together as much as possible.
27. Surprise them with good things or fun ideas every once in a while.
28. Stay with them when they're afraid.
29. When giving choices try to give two choices that will both accomplish what needs to be done. (Billy, we can do your homework and then watch your show or do your homework and then go outside, which would you like better)
30. When they act out make sure you have supplied plenty of other ideas of ways to behave that still allow them to feel their feelings.
31. Delight in their discoveries, share their excitement.
32. Send them a letter or postcard whenever you get a chance.
33. When you have to be away on a trip, call them a lot and bring them something small when you return.
34. Let them over hear you bragging about them or saying something good about them when they think you don't know they are there.
35. Find good things about them that are actually true and let them know often.
36. Hide surprises for them to find.
37. Give them space when they need it.
38. Contribute to their collections.
39. Discuss their dreams and nightmares.
40. Laugh at their jokes.
41. Be relaxed, calm, loving, and nurturing as much as possible.
42. Answer their questions, or even better, help them answer them.
43. Help them do things for themselves when ever possible.
44. Create a tradition with them and keep it.
45. Learn what they have to teach.
46. Use your ears more than your mouth.
47. Make yourself available.
48. Show up at their concerts, games, and events.
49. Find a common interest.
50. Hold hands during a walk.
51. Apologize when you've done something wrong.
52. Listen to their favorite music with them.
53. Keep the promises you make.
54. Take lots of pictures of them.
55. Display their artwork in your home.
56. Thank them when they do nice things for you.
57. Point out what you like about them or their work.
58. Clip magazine pictures or articles that interest them.
59. Ask them to help you do things, ask for their input.
60. Adapted from the Healthy Communities Healthy Youth

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Holy Hormones

Man have my hormones really kicked into gear in this wonderful, painless, fun last trimester (I'm hoping you can sense my extreme sarcasm).

I was pretty "hormone steady" the first two trimesters. Jimmy and I joked about how we both thought I was going to be "way crazier" than I have been, but I've been pretty mellow. In fact, more mellow than non-preggers... I wasn't all that emotional.... I wasn't the evil wife I've heard a lot of my friends became while preggers... I wasn't high one minute and low the next.

But the third trimester? Ha. That's a different story.

A couple weeks ago at church I cried three times. All for random reasons... First was early int he service -- an announcement about a church member who had passed (did I mention I had never met the man?). The next time was when two little boys came running out of nursery to their father saying, "Daddy" while we were signing the last hymn. The third? Ugh, I don't even remember...

The other Saturday night, we were eating dinner at my aunt's, Gigi's, celebrating her best friend's birthday, Caroline. Everything was delish, but the most exciting part was a sweet potato cake from Brick Street Cafe. Now, I don't like sweet potatoes but this is the most amazing cake I've ever had in my entire life. When it was dessert time mom passed out the slices. When I got my plate I was pissed.... I was literally MAD. Not upset, not annoyed, but MAD. I was mad that I got the smallest piece of cake out of everyone at the table. I kept thinking to myself, "Man. The ONE thing I can splurge on. All these fools are sipping their wine, having a good ol' time. All I want is a big piece of cake.... but no. I can't even have that." At the time I knew I was acting crazy, but my knowledge of the crazy didn't help, I was still mad about it all night. But I did succeed in keeping it to myself. The next morning I called up Joy and told her about it. She died laughing and told me I needed to 'fess up. Which I did, and I probably will never live down. :)

So little boo-boo head... Your mama is getting more and more ready for you to make your debut. I know I want to keep you in there as long as possible, but I hope these next 66 days go by as quick as possible! ... for my sake, your daddy's sake... let's just be honest - EVERYONE'S sake! :)

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Yay for Mail Surprises!

Our little Bambino is getting pretty popular! Today he received his first "letter in the mail" from Auntie Martha (see pic)! :)

I'm so thankful for all the support of my family and friends right now... I'm really blown away and touched. Last week my "Wednesday Wine Ladies" surprised me with a prenatal massage gift certificate (which I can't wait to use!).

I'm feeling so blessed these days! :)

Show me the money!

So this isn't a story I experienced first-hand, but it again gets me so excited about having my own little boy... My brother, Craig, shared the following email from his mother-in-law about my oldest nephew, Hamilton (who is a hoot). Craig's response was, "I can so see him saying this..."

"Mont may tell you the funny thing Hamilton said to Mont on the way to school. Mont was commenting about all of the traffic. He said everyone was going to work or school and asked H whether he would rather go to work or school. Hamilton said he would rather go to school. Mont asked why and Hamilton said 'cause when you go to work you have to find money and he does not know how to find money. Mont thought that was so funny he called me right when he said that."

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Baby Best Friends

So Sunday night we were at Hunter and Joy's watching the Super Bowl... Well I was more or less watching/playing with my cute nieces vs the game, but certainly paid attention to the commercials - ha! But while we were playing Gracie was very interested in my belly.. She does NOT like for me to keep it covered up. She always pulls up my shirt and then asks Baby Boy "come out?!"

So I let Mama Joykens handle that one and she said, "No Gracie, Baby Boy needs to stay inside Cammie for just a little while longer and then the doctor will get him out..." She responded by saying, "Ohhhh..." (Like that made complete sense to her almost three self. :-)

Then she exclaimed, "Baby and Bebe.. BEST FRIENDS!" (She calls Adeline, her little sis, Bebe.) So we started laughing and said, "Awww.. yes they will!"

Then the dialogue went as followed:

JOY: "Gracie, who is Mommy's best friend?"
GRACIE: "Daddy."
JOY: "Who is Cammie's best friend?"
GRACIE: "Jimmy."
JOY: "Who is Gracie's best friend?"
GRACIE: (after much thought....) ".....Nana." (very matter-of-factly)

Needless to say that made my mom's week/month/year! :) Kids say the cutest things... can't wait to see what Baby Boy has to say in a couple years :)

Monday, February 7, 2011

So Long Pillow-Talk... Hello TAG-YOU'RE IT!

Tag! You're it.... Is the new game we've been playing at night in the Larson household... and it is so sweet!

Earlier in my (..our?..) pregnancy Jimmy was a little frustrated that he couldn't really feeeeeeeeel the kicks on my belly - but that is all changing. I think he was expecting the hardcore, KICK!, POW!, PUNCH!, etc... but poor little boo-boo-head wasn't big enough... Now that he (and my belly) are growing by the minute - the kicks (and punches :) are getting stronger and future daddy-o can finally really feel them.

The past couple nights Baby Boy has been going crazy when we got into bed. So I had Jimmy put his hand on my belly and he was amazed at what he felt. Then Baby Boy kicked a few times and stopped, so Jimmy did a little poke, poke, poke and then we waited for 2 seconds and then Baby Boy kicked right back three times... We both started dying laughing and then Jimmy poked again a few times, and Baby Boy responded by kicking a few times. That night (Saturday, February 5) was our first time "playing" as a family, and it was one of my favorite pregnancy moments. :)

I have a feeling we have a new family ritual... until he is finally here and we can play OUTSIDE the womb! :)