small successes


1. I filed our taxes! I think that is a pretty big success, but it actually didn’t take all that long, only about 45 minutes. I did it with taxact. Did you know that if you live in a no-income tax state, that you can deduct sales tax? This is the first year that we took more than the standard deduction, thanks to our house!

2. I vacuumed and mopped under the stove! It was kind of yucky. Now it is nice and clean.

3. I finally took the Christmas wreath off the front door.

stock show

On Saturday we went to the stock show. We did not attend the actual rodeo, since it is in the evening and kind of loud for little Greta. But we went and explored the grounds and looked at some animals. We saw goats, sheep, cows, horses, pigs, and chickens. Greta was a bit sleepy by the time we got there, so she wasn’t as excited as we expected, especially considering how much she loves dogs and cats, but oh well. We enjoyed it anyways. Here are some pictures.









We got this free foam cowboy hat and put it on Greta once we got home. She wasn’t so sure about it.


7 Quick Takes #4

1. The battery on the computer stinks and is going to die in 5 minutes, so I don’t have much time.

2. TxTag stinks. Remember how Matt drives back and forth to Houston, umm…all the time (or once a week), well once upon a time we signed up for the TxTag so that paying tolls would be easier. We got a bill a few weeks ago that he did not pay three tolls. The thing is he had the tag in the car and it registered the toll before and after the missed toll. So hmm…not really our problem, but the tags problem. Well it turns out if your license tag doesn’t match, then you get sent a bill, with a hefty admin fee tacked on. One of the three tolls violated was actually paid by the tag, so really we shouldn’t have even gotten a letter in the first place. But after trying to get it taken care of for the past two weeks, I gave in and paid the dumb thing. I’m pretty sure that is what they wanted all along. Those stinkers won.

3. No spending month was going along just fine until we decided to make an unplanned visit to Orlando later this month. I plan on not spending anymore than we have to. Our tickets were relatively cheap, considering we bought them a little more than a week ahead of time. We will have to get a rental car and eat some meals. We are going to a Mardi Gras party with our ‘other’ family. We will get to see a bunch of people, especially my dear friend, Katie.

4. In April, my parents are going on a Titanic-esque cruise. They leave from New York and cruise straight to South England. Should be a good time for them. Hopefully there won’t be any icebergs in the way.

5. This weekend we are going to the rodeo. We aren’t going to the nightime show stuff, just going to wander around and see all the animals. Greta loves animals, so we think she will enjoy it.

6. The weather has been absolutely glorious lately, highs in the mid-70s and sunny. This did result in a pretty nasty hail storm the other night that woke me up. Luckily we didn’t have any damage.

7. I have been doing really well with my make new recipes resolution. I have made a bunch of new things, that have mostly been delicious. Some of my favorites have been corn chowder, white chicken chili, baked french toast, and enchilada casserole (which I just made last night). Yum, yum. Have anything great I should try?

More quick takes.

7 Quick Takes #3

7 Quick Takes Friday – motherhood edition

1. All my life I have wanted to be a mother. Ask anyone who knew me as a child and they will tell you that I was always trying to mother my sisters and friends.

2. My biggest fear in life used to be that I would not be able to have a baby. This was completely unfounded as I have no known medical problems. Thankfully, I was able to easily have a baby.

3. So many people say that the first few months of motherhood are so hard. I have to disagree. I think motherhood is easier than I expected so far. Sure, things are sometimes frustrating and I probably don’t get enough sleep, but it is far easier than working with some of the people I have worked with.

4. People also say that being a mother is the hardest job in the world. While I am only 8 months in and haven’t reached tantrums or the teenage years yet, I’m not sure I agree. I think being a soldier or president would be much more difficult, at least for me.

5. People are right when they say your body changes after pregnancy. While I have been back at my pre-pregnancy weight since about 5 weeks after Greta was born, it is not exactly the same shape. I used to have a nice shaped bum, but somehow it has totally vanished, and now I have a flat bottom. This wouldn’t be a big deal except that my pants do not stay up with no butt to hold them up. This means I am constantly pulling up my pants to prevent plumber’s crack. Apparently the bottom weight decided to move to my belly to create a lovely muffin-top.

6. Overall I would have to say that being a mother is all that I ever dreamed it could and so much more. I absolutely love it and wouldn’t trade it for anything. I’m not very good with words, so I can’t really think of what I want to say, but I’m happy and I smile a lot more (at least in my head).

7. I don’t really get tired of being with Greta or feel I need a break very often. Many people complain about being lonely or needing an adult to talk to, I don’t really feel either of those things. Greta entertains me and keeps me company just as well as most adults, only the adults aren’t so adorable!


month 8

Greta is now 8 months old! This past month has been pretty darn eventful. At the beginning of the month Greta was rolling all over the floor. She was pushing up and somehow moving forward and backward. By Jan. 8, that became army crawling and within a week she was pretty much doing full crawling all the time. She then learned to go from crawling back to sitting. This means that Greta is into everything!




Towards the end of the month she started to pull herself up on things that were at the right height.


This month, after several days of non-stop whining, Greta’s first tooth finally broke through the gums (Jan. 10). It is the bottom right center tooth. It continues to come in more and more, and now even three weeks later it doesn’t look like it is all the way in.

first tooth

When she is teething, she likes to be held quite often and likes to chew on everything. We have also given her a little ice in her mesh feeder. She mostly sucks on it. We also give her little sips of cold water. Usually she puts it in her mouth and spits it out, but sometimes she swallows a little of it.




This month Greta started to be ticklish on her sides. She laughs and laughs. In fact this month she seemed to laugh easier than before. She thinks many things are funny: mommy, daddy, albert, plants, dancing, flying, etc.

Greta learned to pat. She often pats my chest or the floor. It is quite sweet. Greta discovered that books are not just for chewing. She now will let us read to her. Before she would take the book and shove it in her mouth. Now she listens and turns the pages. She even reads them on her own!


Greta started to splash on purpose in the bath. She used to splash, but then didn’t for a while and now she discovered that when she splashes water goes everywhere and that is funny. We have been bathing her in her tub on the bathroom counter, but with all the splashing, we decided to try putting the little tub in the big tub. Greta was quite scared when we did that. For several days she did not like the bath, and for now we bath her quickly on the counter.


Greta started to make some funny faces this month. She scrunches her nose up and blows out.


She also sticks her tongue out to the side.


This month we decided to let Greta try and feed herself to see if she would be more interested in eating. She doesn’t really like to try and put the food in her mouth with her hands, but if we put some on the spoon she will often lick it off. She also likes to put the spoon behind her ear, which makes a nice mess.


Greta likes to play with the laundry while I am folding it. She also enjoys taking her diapers out of the basket.



Greta likes to sit in this chair like a big girl. Most of the time she doesn’t even try to get down.


Greta loves Albert. Before the crawling got so fast Albert got caught several times by Greta. He has since learned that he better stay out of the way or else he will be attacked. He also wanted to be near her often and ‘play’ with her.



My aunt came to visit for a few days while Matt was in California and after being shy at first Greta warmed up to her.


And lastly, just a cute picture that I liked.


month 7

I’m writing this more than a month late. Oops. I take notes throughout the month so I have something to go back to when it comes time to write about a certain month. Greta turned 6 months old shortly after Thanksgiving. At her 6 month doctor appointment the doctor mentioned that she should be saying a few sounds, rather than only babbling. She started to say ba and da sounds about 2 days later. For a while she also said la, but has since stopped saying that for the most part.


We also tried to introduce solid foods at 6 months. That didn’t go over so well with our little stubborn monkey. The first time I think she ate the most she has eaten and that was only a few bites. She mostly turns head away and closes her mouth. We tried a variety of foods, spoons, textures, etc. We tried when she was wide awake, awake, sleepy, hungry, not hungry, maybe hungry. After a while we gave up and decided to try again after Christmas.

first food

first food

This month Greta got her first cold. The worst part lasted only about 2 or 3 days. After that it was just a little bit of runny nose for a while.


In the movement department this month, Greta learned to go from a sitting position to a lying down and crawling position. At first, she fell over and then eventually she learned to get to the tummy more gracefully. Towards the end of the month she started rolling to get to toys. She could roll both directions before this but didn’t really see a whole lot of use for the rolling. She also really started to push herself up on all fours (although more like her feet and hands, than her hands and knees).


One of her favorite toys this month was the phones and remote controls. Why do all babies seem to love the things they cannot have? Before we even started taking them away, she was lunging for them every time she saw them. I thought maybe it was the black and gray colors, but then realized that I have a pink phone…so probably not.


This month Greta’s hair started really filling in all over. She lost her little bald spot on the back of her head. Her hair continues to grow in very blond!


This month could also be called national sleep fighting month. After our two trips in November, Greta decided that she would not sleep anymore. She fought sleep like she has never fought before. The first few days after Thanksgiving she slept pretty good and went down easy, then she decided she was missing out on too much fun stuff, so she refused to go to bed. Many nights it took her nearly 2 hours to fall asleep. She also fought sleep during the day. She clearly didn’t realize that her parents are boring folks who sit around and watch tv or do the dishes or fold laundry when she sleeps.


Greta started to pinch/massage my boob while nursing. Depending on how long her nails were it would definitely hurt. She apparently decided she could no longer just keep her hands to herself and must investigate. This probably also helped her to keep herself awake rather than falling asleep like usual.

We went on one big trip this month, to Tallahassee, for Christmas. Greta had a little trouble when there were lots of people around, but if it was just a few then she was fine. Again, Greta was an angel on the plane. She definitely does much better in the plane than the car. The only time she is really happy in the car is if she just woke up from her nap and just ate and has something to entertain her.


Looking over this post, it seems this month was kind of depressing, but it wasn’t in the least. Greta continues to be a very happy and cuddly baby. She loves her daddy, her kitty, and her mommy. She loves going outside and loves playing with her toys and watching me do things around the house.


no spending month begins

Yesterday was the start of no spending month. So far, so good. I am making one little addendum to help us. Since I am trying to get rid of clutter and stuff we don’t use, I decided that money we make getting rid of stuff will be money we can spend during the month. Maybe it will help motivate us to get rid of all this junk!