January 14, 2011

The long lost wedding ring...

Have I ever told yall the story of my dad throwing away my wedding ring???? And no, this is not a joke or a made up story...he really did! To this day he won't admit it (b/c I don't think he believes he did) but he did. I won't get into the details but lets just say my dad has some "cleaning up" issues (my mom's pet peeve). His cleaning efforts are lets see...ummm...very rash (to say the least) which includes but not limited to lots of quick cleaning, sweeping things in the trash without knowledge of what's actually going into the trash (like my ring), banging around, etc. Of course, my dad would say..."He's getting the job done".

Anywho, I've been using my wedding band for years. Replacing my engagement ring which was "allegedly" thrown out in a "rash" clean up effort on a fam vacation in Colorado in 2003 (I think??) has not really been a priority. Just haven't been willing to dedicate the money that would go into it. And now that we have two kids, replacement of the ring has dropped even further down on the priority list...it will likely be years. However, when I get to that point, I want to have a ring made. My mom ever so graciously handed down a ring to me that's been in the family for years. One day I hope to use those diamonds to design and make my "dream ring"! Again, won't be happening anytime soon so in the meantime I've been looking around for a temp ring (been doing this for years) and trying to find that perfect fit (for now) and I think I finally found a winner! Look at this fab ring by Low Luv...


What do you think??? Is this a keeper???

On another note, sorry no updated pics this week. It's been a whirlwind of a week with work (can't even BEGIN to tell you what it has entailed) and no time to upload photos. I've just been posting what's quick and this just so happened to "drop" in my inbox this morning (thanks to the blog world, 1:00 a.m./4:00 a.m. Gaines feedings and smart phones). I found this through an old post from Pretty Mommy - http://www.myprettymommy.blogspot.com/ - at 1:00 a.m. (to be exact 12:46 a.m.) this morning. Yes...this is what I do to pass the time in the middle of the night when feeding and pumping. But, I promise next week there will be updated pics of the lovely children. And, there may even be a dramatic blog coming about the current "bane of my existence"...breastfeeding! NIGHTMARE!!! More later....

Happy Weekend!

January 13, 2011

Getting crafty much...

As you know, I'm (we're) so excited about Lola's birthday this year...every year but really this year! Probably b/c Lo is so aware of everything now. Everyday she'll ask..."Is it my birthday yet?"...same as she's done with Halloween and Christmas this year. So, with that, comes out my craftiness (I use this term loosely of course) to help gear up for the big PAR-TEY. It seems like so much attention has been on little Gainesy over the past few months with his recent arrival so this year I want Lola's birthday to be a very special day that's full of whimsy...it will only be about her (and maybe some adult beverages and good food)...Woohoo!

I've been conjuring up ideas for a while. First up...invitations...I wanted something simple and modern but yet still fun and I think I nailed it. Thanks to Paper Culture - http://www.paperculture.com/ - they create invitations that are modern, fun and are 100% recycled paper. Their motto is "Stationary without sacrifices" which I love. Great find! The invitations got here yesterday and they turned out just as I had wanted. LOVE them! Hopefully I'll get in the mail this weekend.

Next up...party decorations....the fun part! The first idea that popped in my head was some sort of fabulous table cloth for our 13 ft long patio table which has led me on a search for groovy fabrics over the past couple weeks. I found about six fabrics I love. So, my mom is coming in town on Monday and we're going to begin making a table cloth for the big day. I imagine something with pieced together fabrics that are bold, bright, fun and festive...with this comes lots of bold prints, stripes and polka-dots! Not sure what or how it will all work out but I hope we can make it as I imagine in my head.

I've also been trying to come up with other fun ideas...maybe paper lanterns or confetti...and what about the cake (thinking it's going to be a Meet Me in St. Louis themed cake...LOVE...more on this later)..also considering table decorations (Lo loves gum balls and suckers...maybe I can incorporate something with this???)...also I want some sort of banner and lots of balloons of course (one of Lo's faves). Anyway, as you know from last week's post, my fave blog is Simple Lovely.... I love it b/c when she posts a blog it comes right into my email and I don't even have to open the website. It just so happens that today's post had a fabulous find and I immediately knew there would be no Happy Birthday banner at this party and this is what I want...what I'll do! So, here it is...the thing that I believe will help pull everything together perfectly...



You know I mentioned Simple Lovely will either have an idea or take me to a website that does....well, this blog post led me to the Aesthetic Outburst blog (will now be a follower of this one) - http://aestheticoutburst.blogspot.com/ - which gives so many fab, fun, crafty ideas and also great projects that Lo and I can work on together (like this banner...so good to really get her geared up for the big day by getting her involved in all the makings). As I quickly surfed (due to limited time) I found and loved these hats she made for New Years which I think I'll "attempt" to make for the party hats...their simple, chic but still fun...

I know I say this often but I do L-O-V-E these!

So, to go even further on this crazy blogosphere adventure...Simple Lovely led me to Aesthetic Outburst (which gave me more ideas) which then led me to Poppy Talk- http://www.poppytalk.blogspot.com/ - where I found even more fab banners. YEA! So, I hope I'll end up with something like this...

Once again...LOVE! Specifically the one on the left. Oh, did I mention these banners are made out of tape and beading thread...YES....tape...how fabulous is that?!?!?! And simple...right?!?!?!? And, the best part is I think I can do this! There are colored and patterned tapes out there you can purchase but I don't have time to find what I want and order then it not be what I want so I'll have to get even more crafty and make my own colorful tapes...who would have thought?!?!?!

If time doesn't allow for us to make the fab banners...no fear...b/c Poppy Talk led me to Paperklip Design - http://www.etsy.com/shop/paperklipdesign?ref=top_trail- where you can purchase fab banners (like the ones above) and more. Of course, my hope is that time will allow and I think I may even throw in some pom pom banners like this (the one in the center)...

LOVE! So excited...we'll see how it all turns out...just thrilled to get my crafty on...

To top all of this off, I would love to get a bouncy house (another one of Lo's faves) but don't think Papa bear is going to allow...he doesn't like to make a big Whoo-Rah out of birthdays...likes to keep things to a minimal so I'm trying....although I completely get it...oh it's so hard.

Really...gotta love the blogosphere world! I discovered all of this, came up with new ideas and typed this blog in less than 30 minutes. This is great for a girl who worked until 11:00 p.m. last night and has been up working since 4:30 a.m. this morning (job is a bit demanding these days...YIKES!)...I don't want to take time away from the kiddos for work so I fit it in where I can. Make it work! Really...just love that I can take a quick 6:00 a.m. break and come up with so many ideas...just like that!

January 7, 2011

"Meet me in St. Louis" overload!

You would not BELIEVE how many times I've had to watch this movie since Lo got it for Christmas. And, you wouldn't believe how many fits we've received for those times when we said "No Lo. You can't watch Meet Me in St. Louis right now". Oh my goodness...it's beyond... Not only do we constantly either have to watch or get requests to watch this movie but Lola is CONSTANTLY in character. Not even kidding. I'll say "Lola, It's time to eat...come on" and she'll look at me like I'm crazy, squint her eyes and in a little high-pitched tone will say "I'm not Lola, I'm Miss Esther"... I say "Oh, ok. Well, Miss Esther...it's time to come eat". And, I'm typically "Miss Rose" (Esther's older sister). Unless I'm cooking of course, then I'm "Miss Katie". Oh, and the acts we have to put on in character. Just about every night, Clay has to play the guitar and we (Miss Esther & Miss Rose) have to dance and sing. I love the times when she requests Miss Rose (that would be me) to go upstairs and play the piano, like Rose does in one of the scenes (please note I'm forced to play Lo's little toddler piano so as you can imagine it's quite a site to see me crouched down playing this piano), and Lola will bend over my shoulders and sing and dances around to act out the scene verbatim....it's really crazy the things she remembers...every single detail!

I've always balked at those people out there who said "...their kids were born to be a performer" but now I take all that balking back b/c I truly believe this child is absolutely born to be a performer. Seriously, most of our evenings consist of us acting out scenes of something. It was Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, then Annie and now Meet Me in St. Louis. I'm tempted to reintroduce Sound of Music to give us a little Meet Me In St. Louis break. Anyway, it's pretty much hilarious and very entertaining to say the least....especially her choices of movies...right?!?!?!? Most kids ask to watch Toy Story over and over or Shrek....nope not Lo...in fact she wants nothing to do with them....only Meet Me in St. Louis!

Oh goodness. With the constant performing comes a huge imagination of course! A while ago (actually prior to Gaines arrival) Lola created this imaginary sister named "Ally". Have NO CLUE where she gets this name or how she comes up with the things she says about Ally. Ally is 3 and she lives in Austin and her house is on South Lamar (she points it out every day on the way home from school), etc, etc, etc. But, everyday we hear some story about Ally. Most recently, yesterday when I asked Lo if she wanted spaghetti for dinner her response was "Oh. Ally loves spaghetti. She just went to a restaurant on South Congress to get some the other day". And, this statement is said with muchos enthusiasm....HUH? How does a almost 3 yr old come up with such a sophisticated statement like this about her imaginary sister????? You really wouldn't believe all the things she says about Ally. From what I can tell, she's a pretty neat gal. That Lo...she's something else!!!

Lo also loves to act out "scenes", if you will, from her days at school. So, for example, her music/sign language teacher's name is Ms Wendy. Well, over the holiday, she had my whole family (Clay, me, mom, dad, Adam & Brana) all sitting on the ground in a circle and she was acting the part of Ms Wendy. We all had names of kids from school....I was "Madison", Dad was "James", Adam was "Charlie", etc. She'll teach us a little something and you can tell some of the comments she makes are probably exact comments that came from Ms. Wendy's mouth (again verbetim). She told "Charlie" (Adam) that he was acting up and didn't get a stamp. Of course, everyone else would get an imaginary stamp from Lola...I mean Ms Wendy. This went on for a long time...like at least an hour if not more. We were rolling laughing. My dad made a comment that "...just 30 years ago we were having to do the same thing". Apparently, I too was filled with drama as a child...and still am I guess (not always intentional). My favorite is when Lo plays the role of Ms. Tori (dance teacher)...her requests can be interesting. I'm telling ya...this child is a riot!

On top of all this, Lo loves to sing. Her love for music drove us (Santa) to get Lo a guitar for Christmas. She loves it so far and it plays a key role in many of our "Meet Me in St. Louis" reenactments. That Gainesy...oh Gaines...poor thing....sometimes when we're acting and/or singing I look at him and I'm sure he's thinking "...these crazy people...get me back in the belly asap!" Everything Lo does is big and dramatic...of course with all the acting, singing, imaginating (new word) also comes with dramatic fits...fun fun fun! Anyway, thought I would attach this video of Lo singing the Star Spangled Banner so you can get a little feel of what our mornings, days, evenings and nights consist of.... This was from back in October so I must get new video of some of the new acts asap. Enjoy my friends!

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Man I love this little girl and all the drama that comes along with her (even the fits)! Don't you just love the "Nome of the free" line!?!?!? BTW...I'm pret-ty pumped about Lo's new fringed boots (Thanks to one of my fave shopping stops for the kiddos - Mini Boden - www.bodenusa.com) that I got her for Christmas. LOVE!!! You can only imagine how she prances around in these things and the extra drama they bring!

January 6, 2011

Simply love Simple Lovely

Unfortunately, with two kids, a demanding full time job, attempts at being a good wife, attempts at socializing and all other that comes along with my life, it's very rare that I'm able to find time to read blogs. I would LOVE to as I love blogs but this is something I'm having a hard time fitting in these days. Kind of ironic considering I have a blog and am sitting her writing on my blog now (my blog is my psychologist). The fact that I'm not able to really invest time in the blogosphere world and explore everything out there makes me a little sad as there are so many good blogs to found.

With that said, I do always make time for one blog and that's Simple Lovely - http://simplelovely.blogspot.com/. I simply love Simple Lovely! I don't know....something about this blog just draws me in and I eagerly await for the next post. So many great ideas...so many great resources. It's kind of my quick stop shop.

Interesting enough, she's helped me. I also don't have time to search the internet or shop for all the new fab things/trends out there. However, I love love love fashion and styling for myself and Lola & Gaines of course (I would try to style Clay but he wants nothing to do with it so I've given up). I also love styling for my home (which is not a priority at this point but I still like to see fabulous decorating tips) and parties (I have so many ideas for Lo's upcoming birthday party...YEA!). I feel I have somewhat of an eye for both but I always welcome and want to see new ideas. Simple Lovely helps keep me in contact with the new hip things out there and gives me those new ideas I'm searching for. If she doesn't then a website she refers to will. I've found so many great things for Lo just by checking in with her blog. Most recently she posted the new Stella McCartney line...LOVE...I DIE (as Rachael Zoe would say). I actually do die as I'm DYING to get some of this stuff for Lo but just waiting for the money to start growing on the trees in my yard...soon (wishful thinking)! Oh...lets face it...that's not happening anytime soon so basically I'll just have to buy bits and pieces here and there. And, I always try to find the same look somewhere else for a lesser price. This doesn't always work but I love it when it does. So here are some of the new looks:

Seriously...LOVE! Lola WILL have that little top on the right and I want her to have the boots SO bad but they are a little too pricey (maybe I can find look-a-likes at Target??? Hmmmm). You have GOT to check out these looks http://www.stellamccartneykids.com/page/shopbylook-girls.htm ...once again...LOVE! Ummm...Lo will also have the little orange cords and the little coral blouse...Uhhhh...gotta walk away.

Anyway, this is just the beginning of what this blog has to offer. Hopefully yall can find time to check it out because it's absolutely fab!

January 4, 2011

This is coming in my near future....

It's time to bite the bullet....it's time to invest in a king bed. Yep! I can't do it anymore. My back is constantly in excruciating pain. I'm walking as if I'm 90 years old. It takes me a couple seconds to get up and then another couple seconds to straighten my back and this never happens without a "UUUHHHHH" type sound. The problem: 1) Our now queen bed is extra extra uncomfortable and 2) By the time we get to the morning, we have at least five beings in our bed - Me, Clay, Gaines, Lola and Lady Bird. Ever so often Bella tries to sneak up too. It's been a long long while since I've (we've) gotten good sleep. Gaines just now over the past couple days started sleeping at least three hrs straight. YEA! And, yes, I'm (we're) happy to get three hrs straight vs only an hour to two hours. Of course, we usually only get one three hour stretch per night and then it's back to every hour or two. This is our life right now!

Many nights we play musical beds. Gaines won't go back down in his crib so we lay him down with us. I realize this is a no no but I don't care anymore. To be perfectly honest, up until last week he was sleeping in our bed full time. Oh yeah! Then, we finally moved him to his crib but he typically doesn't last all night. I always said I would "never" do this! Well, never say never and this is a perfect example as to why you should never say never. As he sleeps soundly in our bed, I hope we aren't creating a monster. I hold on to those people (even doctors) out there who believe the "right" way raise a child is full on compassion meaning constantly holding, coddling, sleeping with parents, etc. Yes, there are people (even doctors) out there who support babies sleeping in the bed with the parents. Some even say it helps breast milk supply. Whatever! That's not why we do it. Lets be honest here...we do to get sleep. However, I have to say both Clay and I actually like Gaines in our bed...it's very comforting. We get no alone time but it's comforting feeling his warm sweet snugly body next to us. We kind of had withdrawals the first night we put him in his cradle but got over real quick when we realized we could actually move in our sleep.

Anyway, I digress (nothing unusual I guess)...back to musical beds. So, Gaines ends up in our bed usually around 2:00. Then, Lo comes in at one point and at that point I typically take Gaines to Lola's room. Then Lola will come back to her room and get in bed with me and Gaines. Then, I take Gaines back to our room with Clay. It goes on and on. Needless to say, good sleep is pretty much nonexistent in our house. Now, lets get back to the king mattress....another thing I said I would never invest in as they're just too big/bulky and they take up too much space. Plus, sheets and bedding are too expensive and most importantly the thought of purchasing a king bed makes me feel like I'm officially old for some reason. No longer young and dapper. I feel the same way about a king mattress as I do a mini-van. I've always thought there are ways around it. Just because you are a parent that doesn't mean you immediately have to go out and invest in a king bed and mini-van. Well, here I am, confessing to you that we're investing in a king bed asap....like this weekend. I can't handle it anymore. Our bed is so uncomfortable that I probably get better sleep when I'm awake than when I'm asleep...is that possible??? Well, it's just that uncomfortable. And, our little queen bed just isn't big enough for the five or six of us that our family has grown into. So, now you know what our Saturday will consist of this weekend...king bed shopping. Woohoo! I wonder if we'll be mini-van shopping next weekend?!?!?!!?

January 3, 2011

Our last days in 2010...ready to go into 2011 with a BANG!

Here we are in our last days of 2010! Although it was a fabulous year which included the birth of our adorable baby boy Gaines (Oh, I can't imagine life without him now!), we have so much hope for 2011. I think there will also be lots of changes in the Odom world!

I really can't remember starting a year off so enthusiastic and excited about what's to come! This is a good thing right!?!?!? Just over the next couple months we have Lola's birthday coming up. It's the BIG 3! Lo loves, loves, loves birthdays so we are going to celebrate big this year. Do it all up! Clay and I also have our 10 year anniversary this year....can you believe?!?!!? 10 yrs! Wow...that's a long time. We've actually known each other for 16 years...crazy!!! How will we celebrate??? Do I see Napa in our future??? Who knows!!!

MUSIC!!! Oh the music to come! We're kicking off the year by going to the opening show at new Austin City Limits studio....Willie Nelson baby! This will be a historic moment. If not for Austin City Limits...for us! Then, we definitely plan to partake in all the SXSW events in March and this year I won't be sick (like 2009) or pregnant (like 2010). We're also geared up for a Tejas tour of one of our fav band, The Avett Brothers. We will hit the first show in Houston on Thursday, April 13th and then off to the Old Settler's Music Festival for a second show. The line-up is phenomenal - http://oldsettlersmusicfest.org/. We've decided to go all out...we'll be camping and listening to music for three full days. And, here's the best part...we're taking the kiddos (YIKES)! So excited for them to experience the music too! Just for the sanity sake of it, we plan to take on this challenge with friends that also have kids. That way, the kiddos can entertain themselves and the adults can enjoy the music and fun! Should be interesting!!! Will we survive????

In the big scheme for 2011, there could be new jobs in the works for both Clay and me...hmmmm. Our long-term goal (likely not to happen in 2011) is for Clay to "eventually" go back to work for himself and then I would "eventually" leave my job to work on the business side of things (finance, accounting, PR, etc). We FINALLY have a plan in place to make this work and we're hopeful things will pick up with the economy to help us move closer to this goal. I'm also taking on the volunteer world. Austin is so fabulous and has so much to offer....just thinking about it makes my head spin! With this, I decided to start volunteering. This is two-fold 1) Gets me out in the community...doing good things...meeting new people and 2) Since I predominately work for home, this will help get me out of the house more. Also, lets not forget about running. I'm optimistic that I'll be able to get back into hardcore running soon. I'm starting with the Cap10K in March and then will go from there. I would love to get into the NYC marathon and go all the way with a full marathon but it's a lottery so we'll see.

From an artistic standpoint, we want to do a documentary with our friend Adam - Walk to Marfa. Yes, the title tells it all...this would be an adventure documenting Adam literally walking to Marfa (Just in case you're wondering...that's 430 miles...OH MY!). The idea behind it is great (more to come...maybe???) and we really hope to be able to take this on...can we make it work??? Also, hopefully we'll see more furniture making from MODO in 2011! The Rough Cut show went great and there was interest out there from people to buy. Of course, now that the piece is in my entryway, I don't want to let it go. Even with that, the next step is to get out to the stores (many of which were at the show)...hopefully more will develop soon. As of now, we're in the process of developing the website...more to come! AND, big news...Clay is finally getting back into the music world himself. Yes my friends...there is a new band in the works AND there is already some talk out there about potential gigs (Emo's???). I'm very happy that Clay is finally fulfilling his passion for music and getting back out there. Playing music to him is like running to me. He needs it in his life! I also can't wait to get out there to see him play again...it's been a while.

Finally, the kids! They are growing up so fast and I can't wait to see what 2011 brings. Possibly sleep??? I would love to say we will be trying for a third child in 2011 but not likely to happen. Not that I don't want it to happen....actually, despite the fact that I hate pregnancy, I'm mentally ready to take it on again (even though I still haven't pulled off all my weight yet); however, our pocket book will not allow at this point. We have to get Lo out of daycare and into kindergarten or win the lottery before we can make this happen. So, with that, it looks like I'll have to wait until Gainesy is two before we go there. But, although we won't be adding a third to our family in 2011 (unless accidental of course), we have our hands full with Lo and Gainesy and I can't wait to see what the year brings for them!

Happy New Year to everyone!