Monday, December 31, 2012

OUR YEAR 2012 - PART 1

How is tomorrow 2013?  Like every day/year/moment, it's flown by. And it's just going to continue. Thankfully I've used this blog to capture everything. I read through the blog starting from the very first post of January and put together a post of links and pictures of my favorites. 

Sometimes it's hard to keep up with posting about our days and weeks because it can be time consuming but looking back and reading the posts .. all the memories and pictures .. made me so thankful for all the time I've put into this. It brought back so many memories and I remembered each one like it was yesterday. I ended this post smiling and I'm excited to post the rest of the year {I only got to May}. 

I do know that I'm going to try and put more time into my blog and post more often. The more I post the more memories we have documented incase I ever forget. And where else am I going to share all the pictures I have of Sophia?

So if you have some free time or just want to take a look at our year, click on the links -- you'll get the full post with more pictures. There are a lot but this makes it easier for me to just quickly find a post I'm looking for.

I'll be posting June-December hopefully tomorrow so check back for that. Hope everyone has a great day today, the last day of the year! And have fun tonight & be careful! I don't have any plans but to spend the evening with my lil girl. The most perfect way to end the year!



I brought in the New Year with kisses from Sophia. We went to VA Beach to visit Gary's family & I captured my favorite pictures of Sophia eating spaghetti. Sophia and I took some funny pictures before work one morning. Sophia took her first steps and Gary and I went to my work's holiday party.


We bought our first car together -- 2011 Chevy Cruz! Sophia took a cute picture with Rico our dog. I took some Valentine themed pictures of Sophia and I put some glasses on Sophia and turned her into a baby nerd.


Sophia started standing and looking more like a toddler this month. I captured someone having fun in the bathtub. I shared a video of Sophia playing at daycare. We spent a weekend going to birthday parties & taking drives {I even left my purse at Applesbee's this month .. oops}. There was some warm weather that we played outside in. I filled out my first bracket. We took pictures for St. Patrick's Day & enjoyed some more warm weather. I took some pictures of my friend's little boy & LOVED how they turned out and I posted another video of Sophia rocking on her play horse.


Sophia took walks with her baby doll. I blogged about tantrums. I started sponsor swaps and had my very first guest post on the blog. We celebrated Easter. Sophia and I both got to sit with the Easter Bunny. I almost stepped on a snake this month and shared the traumatic event. I spent time with friends & had my first giveaway. Sophia turned 18 months. Sophia gave some kisses to her friend at daycare and Sophia officially started walking on her own this month!


I shared about Sophia sleeping with me at night. Sophia drew on the sidewalk with chalk. My sister turned twenty one years old! We made funny faces and face timed with Elmo. Me and Sophia took walks holding hands. I turned 23 & celebrated Mother's Day in VA Beach. We spent one whole week there. This month also marked one year since I graduated from college.


❤ ❤ 

Saturday, December 29, 2012


"The first fall of snow is not only an event, it is a magical event. You go to bed in one kind of world and you wake up in another quite different, and if this is not enchantment then where is to be found?" - J. B. Priestly.

Yesterday after work I went bowling with a few of my friends that I've been friends with forever. It was a good time! While we were bowling I just kept hoping it'd snow ... a lot. It's already snowed here but not enough to actually stick. It started snowing while we were at the bowling ally & it kept snowing until this morning!

I was so happy to see all the snow this morning. As soon as Sophia woke up I took her to the front door to see. She kept yelling "Mommy, Look! Snow!" I had to work for a few hrs today so I promised her that we'd play in it when I got home.

Sophia has never really seen a lot of snow. It snowed some her first year but she was a baby and obviously didn't remember/or know. I don't even remember it snowing last year. If it did then it was just a few flurries, nothing that actually stuck to the ground. 

So I am marking today as Sophia's first time in the snow. She didn't really play too much in it. She kind of just stood there. But she looked so cute in her snow outfit. It was her first time wearing gloves so she kept putting her finger in her mouth and trying to take them off that way. 

See the pictures of me on the ground sitting int he snow? As soon as I got one picture with Sophia I took one step and fell. Gary kept snapping away. I wasn't the only one falling though. I think we all did. We ended up watching the guys find random things to go down the hill with and beam each other with snow balls. After about 20 minutes outside we decided to head in. We were all wet from falling and freezing.

Sophia snuggled up under the blankets and she ended up falling asleep for her nap and she's STILL sleeping! I will be waking her up because we've got some of my friends coming over to see her. 

Did it snow where you are? If it did, I hope you enjoyed it as much as we did! I'm just hoping next time Sophia will actually playing in it. 

❤ ❤ 

Thursday, December 27, 2012


Hi everyone! 
Welcome to another week of The Friday Chaos!
WOW week 19 already!?
Hope you all had a very Merry Christmas!

Looking for advertising in 2013? Check out my ad page for info!

This is a link up for bloggers who want to increase traffic to their blogs and meet new friends! 

1. Follow both hosts (The first two links below on each link up) 
2. Follow all of the co-hosts (the next 5 link ups)
3. Grab the button and put it on your blog somewhere to be seen.
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4. Don't just add your blog hoping to get followers, join in the fun and visit a few blogs.
4. Tweet about this hop Tweet
If you would like to co-host one of the weeks let us know.

Okay, Lets get this chaos started!
Your Hosts:
Kerry @ Ohsoamelia

Lotte @ Bericebaby

Pictures With A Toddler

I love taking & having pictures. I always have a camera with me whether it's my actual DSLR or just my iPhone camera. I love snapping random pictures of Sophia during the day and adding them to Instagram. Usually, I am able to just get a decent random pictures of her doing something to post on Instagram but during the holidays I want nice pictures taken with my DSLR. The nice pictures that we can look back at years from now. The nice pictures of us all of us smiling and looking at the camera.

Well .. I didn't get too many of those this holiday. Actually, I hardly get any of those. It's so hard to get Sophia to actually sit still for a picture. I can't even get Gary in any pictures because he hates them. So when I want a family pictures it's usually just me & Sophia and it ends up being more than just "Hey, will you please take quick picture of me and Sophia." 

It ends up being me promising Sophia a piece of candy after the picture or Sophia sliding out of my arms. It ends up being fake smiles and the person taking the camera just snapping away at the whole process ...

I had to go through being hit with a princess wand & Sophia trying to bite my shoulder JUST to get the third picture. The third one isn't even the greatest. I'm smiling but Sophia has a wand in her mouth and I'm holding onto her so tight so she doesn't jump off my lap. 

We did get two nice ones with my family but luckily she looked for the first one and that's all we had to do.

So if you're ever wondering why I never have too many pictures of all of us smiling & looking at the camera, now you know. Maybe one day I'll get all these pictures that I always vision us having. Hopefully Sophia will enjoy taking and smiling for pictures soon so my vision will happen. 

Until then please enjoy my random attempts of photos with my girl & family.

❤ ❤ 

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Our Christmas 2012

I hope everyone had a great Christmas! We sure did! Sophia enjoyed and understood it so much more. I love everything about it even if I'm still exhausted from Christmas & the days leading up to it. 

I am a HUGE procrastinator & waited until last minute for everything. I spent all of Christmas Eve running around picking up last minute presents and groceries. But I did it. Next year I WILL start everything earlier.. I have to. I don't think I'd be so exhausted if I wasn't running around like a crazy woman the day before. Luckily I had Christmas Eve {Monday} off work so I was able to use that day to get stuff done. I loved having a four day weekend.

We visited with family on Christmas Eve so Sophia skipped her nap that day. Christmas Eve night was miserable! She was so out of it and fighting sleep. I put her Christmas pajama's on and had plans to make cookies and leave them and milk out for Santa but she decided to throw a huge fit on the floor and eventually passed out.

Luckily she was in a better mood Christmas morning. She LOVED everything! I have a video that I'll have to post of us walking down the stairs with her Christmas morning. My parents came over to watch her open presents so they were able to capture it all. Sophia got A LOT of toys. Most of it were girly things. She got a hair/nail salon, dress up clothes, lots of Dora toys, an easel, a Mickey Mouse play house, tricycle, a huge Barbie dolls & lots more. I wanted to name the basics so that I can look back and remember

We spent the rest of the day/evening watching Sophia play with her toys.  

We ended the evening with dinner and The Grinch. Sophia is obsessed with this movie. I'm sad that the holidays are over and it's back to work and normal life but I'm thankful for the past few days. Watching Sophia's excitement all day was everything that I wanted for Christmas.

Leaving you all with a picture of Sophia with a mouth full of pumpkin roll. 
Have a great day!

❤ ❤ 

Friday, December 21, 2012

The Stars In My Life -- Macy's Heart of Haiti

Thank you to Macy’s Heart of Haiti for providing product to inspire this post about the stars in my life.

I am so happy to share with everyone today about The Macy's Heart of Haiti Campaign. To date the program has employed 780 artisans, which has improved the lives of over 6,200 individuals. The Heart of Haiti initiative provides artists with an opportunity to make a living, feed their families and pay their children's school fees.

The collection features more than 40 home decor items including quilts, metalwork, jewelry and paintings all made almost entirely from recycled and sustainable items such as old cement bags, cardboard, oil drums and local gommier wood.

When I received my beautiful star from The Macy's Heart of Haiti Campaign I was so excited to hang it up in my home. 

Every time I see the star I think of Sophia and how she truly is the star in my life. I know she's only two and can barely finish a sentence but she is the one who keeps a smile on my face. She can take away a bad day with just a small little hug or giggle. I have learned so much from Sophia and continue to each day.  Becoming her mommy gave my life a whole new meaning. I honestly don't know where I'd be without her today. What I do know is I love being a mommy and I am so thankful to have the most beautiful star light up my life. 

When I see the star I also think of two other important stars in my life. My parents. I am SO thankful for everything they have and still do for me. They have taught me everything I know in life and have made me the person I am today. They pushed and encouraged me to do what I love and helped me get there. Becoming a mom at such a young age wasn't something I had planned BUT they stood behind me the whole way and reminded me that I could do it. They paid my way through college and would keep Sophia for days just so I could graduate. They never gave up. I am so thankful for them. I hope that one day Sophia will see me as a parent that my mom and dad were to me. 

Who are the stars in your life? 

Please check out all the beautiful products that The Macy's Heart of Haiti sells. Purchasing items from the Macy's Heart of Haiti is an easy way to contribute to the Haitian community, which now in light of Hurricane Sandy, needs our help more than ever. A purchase can help provide for those wanting the best for the stars in their lives. 

❤ ❤ 

I received exclusive product from the Macy’s Heart of Haiti line that inspired this post. I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective, and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own. #CleverHaiti

Saturday, December 15, 2012

A Quick Update & Giving Credit

What a long week. Sophia ended up catching whatever was going around at daycare and she was sick most of the week. She kept having a fever that would come and go and her poor little nose just ran the whole time. At daycare and during the day she was fine (as you can see in the picture above with her silly faces and crazy hair) but she was miserable as soon as she went to sleep at night. So we had a few sleepless nights this week. I did nothing after work. I didn't clean, I didn't blog, didn't work out .. just laid on the couch with my sick baby. 

And I am thankful to have these moments with Sophia. Even if she's cranky and I've barely slept, I'm still thankful to have her here with me. I am everyday. But especially today. 
Thoughts & prayers to those affected by the elementary school shooting today.  


I did catch up on reading a lot of the blogs I follow and also entered a ton of giveaways that I'm happy to say I have won a few! I LOVE ENTERING GIVEAWAYS! 

I also came across a blog that has almost the same blog design as mine, just different colors. I know that this happens a lot and I honestly don't mind at all but I just don't want anyone to think that I'm copying from someone else, because I'm not. I spent hrs online looking at graphics for sale and found this floral one and loved it. I then changed my blog design about a month ago (I only know this because I uploaded a picture of the new blog design on Instagram.)

 I know that because this graphic is for sale there is a chance that I will see it other places. I just hope that if it's being used on other websites/blogs, that it's been purchased from the person who made it. I did not make it so I want to give credit to her (which I should've done in the first place) and share her website. She is amazing and I plan on purchasing more graphics from her. 

I bought the Dainty Frames II Set that you can fine here.
Click here to visit her shop, The Ink Nest & here for her blog.

Hope everyone has a great Saturday. 

❤ ❤ 

Sunday, December 9, 2012

The Perfect Time

Yesterday my friend Blessing invited Sophia and I over for breakfast. We sat around and talked while the kids played. We then headed out to a christmas tree display at a local hotel where the girls played their version of chess & got to see Santa and Mrs. Clause. As exhausting as it was to keep up with the girls, we had a great time.

It was also nice to spend time with another mommy and watch Sophia play with Camille. Sophia and I rarely have play dates. I have tons of mommy friends in the area but we just never get together. I was talking to Blessing about this & told her that I'd love to have people over but the house is never clean. She laughed & reminded me that all houses are like this. I also went on about how we are still fixing up the house so I'm waiting for the house to just be .. perfect. You know, the type of houses you see on Pinterest or on other blogs. 

She then reminded me that I can't keep waiting on the perfect time, to just enjoy life the way it is. 

... and she's right. I need to just enjoy my house {clean or messy} & the people in my life. Even if that means inviting them over a couple times a month with dishes in the sink and crumbs on the floor. I have a toddler, my house is going to be messy. AND if the people I invite over are mommy's or have been, then they understand, if they've never been a mommy then they're not invited, ha!

So I am going to stop worrying and stressing over silly things and just enjoy what I have and who I have in my life. I love the idea of having get togethers and enjoying some time in my house. We've been here since June 2012 & there hasn't been too many people over. This is going to change. My goals are to be more social and inviting. Maybe this will be something that will happen a lot in 2013. 

But I just wanted to share this because I know I'm not the only momma out there that feels this way. I've read it before on other blogs.

 To all of my momma readers, here's a quote I found online & it's something think about & remember :
"Stop waiting for the perfect moment, take the moment you have and make it perfect!"

Hope everyone has a perfect Sunday! Whose coming over to my place for a play date?

❤ ❤ 

Go visit my friend Blessing's blogs -- Think Feminist & Working Mom Journal

Oh & please check out these out of focus pics of what it's really like behind the camera with two toddlers. I know I post all these cute pictures of Sophia smiling or sitting still but I am VERY lucky to get those. I'll probably take like 50 pics and be able to use 5, ha! But look at these energetic girls who wanted nothing to do with taking pictures. They wanted to jump on chairs instead. The poor employers at the hotel.