Monday, November 24, 2008

Our story of the stocking...

So, here's the real reason why we decorated early--we got Addison's Christmas stocking in the mail, and we couldn't wait. Strange, maybe, but stockings are our thing...

When we got married in October of '05, we registered at Pottery Barn and were blessed with a surplus of gift cards and store credit. One of the first things that we did upon returning from our Seaside honeymoon cottage was order our personalized stockings from the PB holiday catalog. We were so silly with excitement for those things... We took such pride in decorating our mantle that first Christmas--hanging our new stockings representing our newly formed family.

We added a family member in June of '06 when we got our precious puppy Maggie Moo--our first "child." So, of course, as soon as the PB Christmas catalog came out, we ordered her stocking--a smaller version that matched ours.

On our way home from the hospital when bringing Addison home for the first time, we looked at each other and laughingly affirmed that we needed to check to see when Christmas stockings would be available from PB. Hers was ordered within the first week she was alive.

Our mantle feels more complete now. It represents our family, our blessings, our union. I love drinking my morning coffee in the living room with our lit mantle. It makes me happy.

Here are some of my recent favorites of Addy-girl...

Friday, November 14, 2008

Beautiful Stationer

I love paper. When I was a little girl, my friend Susan brought me a birthday present to my house one afternoon. I unwrapped a stack of colored notebook paper and giggled with glee. I used it to write my PeanutLand Stories starring Popsy Peanut for the "Christina, Kristy, Katie, Inc." writing company that I co-founded. {We wrote and sold our stories at our lemonade stands and at church... Thanks, Mr. Charles, for buying so many!}

My love for paper has only grown over the years. From unique stationery to giftwrap to journals and planners to books to invitations, it has remained one of my greatest passions. :) When getting married, the decision I spent the most time on and had the strongest opinions about was my invitations. When hosting a party, I always volunteer to do the invitations. After giving birth to Addison, I searched and searched for the perfect announcement to send to our family.

My friend from college Katie has a business called Micah and Me and uses her graphic design education to create beautiful stationery. She custom made my announcements, and I LOVE them. If you are in the market for some fine paper, you need to definitely check her out!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Move over Thanksgiving...

Sad, I know, but this year I'm just over it... Don't tell the turkey--or the pilgrims. We're ready for Christmas! This weekend, I decided that I wanted to be able to enjoy my last few weeks of maternity leave with a decorated home. Last night, Patrick and I ventured into our attic closet solely filled with our Christmas garb. As we pulled out each tub filled to the brim with decorations, we became giddy with excitement. {Patrick too. Seriously. He LOVES our house decorated for Christmas... and I LOVE that about him! :)}

To be fair, I gave my fall decor their due. I decorated in mid-September because with Addison's arrival, I knew that would be last on my priority list, and I wanted to come home from the hospital to a warmly festive home. Here are a couple of my favorite fall items.

#1 I LOVE white pumpkins, and this was my dining room centerpiece. I found the acorn branches at an antique store here in Franklin, and it provides a nice contrast to the white.

#2 This iron pumpkin is something I found at Holiday Market a couple of years ago in Montgomery. Sometimes it's my kitchen table centerpiece; sometimes it sits on the corner of my peninsula; in this pic, it is residing on my end table in my living room.

Now, for Christmas, I am obsessed with some of Anthropologie's new ornaments. We are thinking of getting the "P," "K," and "A," letter for our tree. I love and am totally into the cupcake fad that is currently "all the rage." {Note my cupcake tree in the former post as well as my "hot spot" post! Of course, they are on the "no-no" list right now with my dairy-free living...} I also am always drawn to owls, and I've been collecting them since the Chi-O days.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

my favorite time of year

Fall is my favorite season of all--college football, cool weather, beautiful scenery, our anniversary, Addison's birth, family birthdays, and the beginning of the holiday season. It just cannot be topped in my opinion. Throughout this season, I've had so many ideas to blog about, but I kept putting them off, so this will be an attempt at catching up in our family's life through words and pictures.

One of our biggest challenges with Addison so far is understanding her poops. I never thought I would be such an examiner of diapers, but I have become that way. During the last 2 weeks, we have been investigating a milk allergy with her. Some babies are allergic to the protein in cow's milk, an allergy which most outgrow by age 1, and Addison's poops have made us and the doctor suspicious. For me, that means that in order to continue nursing, I will have to cut out all dairy products--milk, cheese, yogurt, butter, ice cream, chocolate, and anything any of those items might show up as ingredients in. That's pretty much everything I love--and everything that is found in my pantry and fridge. CHEESE and CHOCOLATE are my 2 staple items... This is brutal. So, with the help of my cool friend Kelly and trips to Whole Foods, I am now attempting a {temporary} life of dairy-free living. Hopefully this will lower my cholesterol and help me lose my last baby weight poundage, therefore benefiting both Addison and me! {At least I'm trying to tell myself that...} It's amazing what all is out there, and if any of you has any recipes/ideas/tips, PLEASE share!

In our pictures, we have celebrated many fun bath times. I love her bear hooded towel--it has paws and a tail too! :) For Halloween, Addison wore a bear costume for about 10 minutes--long enough for some photo ops with her cousin Savannah. She is a hot box, and she wanted that Bear costume off! We celebrated our 3rd anniversary and had an opportunity to get dressed up and be social! We've introduced Addison to her dual heritage during football season {and at least one of us is having a good year in that way... sigh...}. I helped throw a "baby-warming" shower for my good friend April and enjoyed making a diaper cake and using my cupcake tree. Then last night, we celebrated my niece's 1st birthday. Savannah was so precious and did all of the things a 1-year-old should do. She LOVED her birthday balloons and entertained us all.

We have more birthdays and celebrations ahead, and we cannot wait for Christmas!!!

Mostly during this season, we've been learning how to be a family and raise a daughter. We've been adjusting to job changes, sleep changes, diet changes, dynamic changes, and priority changes. I can't believe Addison is 6 weeks old. We are amazed by her and our Lord who made life possible!