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When I moved to the south as a ten-year-old, one of the things that stood out to me the most was the use of the words "sir" and "ma'am".  This was a huge culture shock for me and took a very long time for me to get used to because NOBODY talked like that in California, where I grew up.  Nobody talked like that in Montana or Connecticut (where my parents grew up) either, so this was very foreign to my whole family.  Fast forward twenty-something years, and I actually love the mannerly way here.  Or so I thought I did.  That was until I transitioned from someone who said, "yes, ma'am" to someone who hears it.  I get...

First Year Essentials

When I was pregnant, and after I had waited an appropriate amount of time to start buying baby things, I found myself pretty overwhelmed about what baby gear to buy or register for. There are so many choices these days, and on top of that, there’s no sure way to know what your baby will like. Every baby is different, but I thought I would share the baby items that we found the most helpful and that William enjoyed the most during his first year: 1. Aiden and Anais blankets: Probably any swaddle blankets will do, but we loved these. They are large yet light, with plenty of fabric for swaddling your babe. They hold up great in the wash...
We have a queen sized bed. Both my husband and I toss and turn a lot at night. These two things have always kept us from trying "co-sleeping." Our bed isn't that big, and I am afraid of squishing our child. Sam and I occasionally took a nap together when he was very small and not mobile yet. But he always did fine in his bassinet and transitioned easily to his crib. So, I never thought much about co-sleeping. Sam just made a year and is walking practially running everywhere all the time. I had a week or so off of work during the holidays, and Sam waited until then to start teething again and get a double ear infection. It...
I am currently 9 months pregnant with bouncing boy No. 2, and I could not be more excited. Overall, this pregnancy has been a breeze compared to my first. Only one day of morning sickness, so much less worry, and I have confidence that I know what I'm doing and am getting myself into. I'll admit I was a little nervous of the idea of being pregnant with a toddler running around, but instead of it being this terrible thing I was expecting, its been pretty great and even hilarious at times as I've even noticed a few things we have in common now.  And just think, my lucky husband gets to deal with us both! 1.  We can't focus...
Dear William, You are turning one this week and I can scarcely believe it. This year has not exactly flown by – in fact, I have trouble remembering my life before you sometimes. But it is hard to believe I'm now the mom of a toddler. But it has been the best year of my life, and of your daddy’s life, and we are so proud of you. It has been a joy raising you so far. I hope you are as happy as you have made us. You are such a stubborn, scrappy little boy. You want what you want when you want it, but at the same time you are so generous, getting pleasure out of sharing things...

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