Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Two Years

Two years ago today I put on a big white dress. He put on a black suit.
I met him outside of the church where I grew up. Where my parents were married, and my grandparents.
There in front of the people who mean the world to us, I said I do to the boy who I met seven years before who stole my heart and my breath all at the same time. To the man I would create a family and a life with.  To the absolute love of my life who makes me laugh until I cry and love until I burst. To the person who knows me better than anyone else and loves me anyway. To the one who has seen me un-showered, covered in baby vomit and snot and still tells me I'm the most beautiful thing hes ever seen. To the one person on the planet who drives me crazier than anyone ever could, and I love to the ends of the world anyway.
The life we have created together is incredible. From getting our first two fur babies who are my snuggle buddies when you're out working late into the night to give us the kid of life you think we deserve, to our big house full of memories. The house where you proposed (FINALLY!), where we came home as husband and wife, then brought our precious little boy home to and have filled with countless memories and projects.
Speaking of that little boy- thank you for him. We found out he was coming only three months into our journey as husband and wife and we celebrated one year with our newborn in our arms. He has made my love for you deepen and grow, and as I watch you with him I fall in love all over again. Thank you for being the best Daddy I've ever seen, the love you show for our son is only one
 I still cant believe you picked me, and over the past nine years of being with you that feeling still hasn't left me. I still get flutterbies when you walk in the door, and weak in the knees when you kiss me. We've had our ups, and our downs. But no matter what we've faced, we have faced it together. Together we are an amazing team, and we can make it through anything.  I cant wait to spend the next 100 years by your side.
...I'll tell you one thing, it's always better when we're together.
I love you hubs, with all my heart. Happy Anniversay, Love of My Life, you'll always be my favorite.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Show and Tell Monday- How I Met Your Father

Linking up with Becky over at From Mrs. to Mama today to tell the story of how I met the father of my baby boy and my fur babies. Love the fact that this falls the day before our anniversary- thanks Becky!

1. Tell us about how and when you met your love and what attracted you most to him.
Patrick and I met nine years ago this fall on our first day as freshmen at Duquesne University.  While driving into the parking garage this crazy person with an absurdly large backpack stepped off the curb into traffic and I nearly hit him. I yelled out the window and brushed it off as a moron who didn't know how to think and moved on. Then once we were all checked in and crammed into the commuter lounge waiting for the festivities to start I realized that I was in a room of thousands of people and didn't know a soul. I have never felt so alone, and I seriously thought I was going to vomit.  I looked around and saw a boy with huge blue eyes leaning against the wall, and he looked exactly like I felt. 
So with all my nerve, I walked up and said hello. I figured we could at least talk our way through orientation, so we were not so alone.  When I said hello his eyes lit up and I noticed they were the most gorgeous shade of blue I'd ever seen.  We started talking and found out we had all kinds of crazy things in common. Then they started to group us together, and low and behold we were in the same orientation group so we would be spending the week together.
Now I have to confess, at this point I didn't find Patrick "attractive and the one" -I had a boyfriend and wasn't looking for love. I noticed he was gorgeous, and had an awesome sense of humor and smile; but I wasn't really attracted to him.  I loved him as a best friend, I just didn't love him like 'that'. 
Now, if you ask him, he'll tell you he always knew he would marry me. But he knew I had a boyfriend, so I was just the girl who told him to go on dates and answered his phone calls at 2 am when said girls were driving him crazy.  Fast forward a year, and my high school sweetheart and I were over. I was in Tennessee visiting my family, and he happened to live nearby.  I called him and said "Guess where I am?" and it took him 2 seconds to tell me he was trekking the hour to see me...and he was bringing his girlfriend with him.  He told her she had to meet his best friend, and that was me.
I was excited to meet her, like I always was when he had a new girl..because I really didn't like him like that. He was the goofy brother I never had, and nothing more.  When they pulled into the parking lot and he greeted me with his typical "Hey, Loser!" and took the hand of his new girlfriend that I instantly knew- I wanted this girl dead. It was shocking to me, and I tried to ignore it. But when he came back to Pittsburgh in the fall (single, they broke up before he got back to school) and we spent more time together I knew, this was the man of my dreams.
Oh and the crazy guy who I almost hit because he stepped off the curb- that was Patrick. It was fate, I tell ya.
(yep, that was the longest answer ever.)
2. Show us the very first, or one of the first, pictures you ever took together.

Wow, we were such babies!
3. Tell us some of the favorite memories you two had together.
Wow- so so many.
Our first official date was hilarious. He met me at work, and opened my car door (in a year of knowing each other, he would let the door hit me in the head- so this was seriously weird). He took me to dinner and a movie, and the only thing playing was Princess Diaries Two, so he sat through the whole move and stared at me the entire time holding my hand and just soaking it all in. I don't remember much of the movie, but I remember staring at him the whole time.
I took him to a Steelers Game for his birthday, and he made me ride the bus there. I got so sick I spend the whole first quarter with my head between my knees trying not to throw up.
Our first kiss was one of my favorite memories of my life. We were laying on my bed doing Physics homework (okay, so he was doing my physics homework and I was painting my nails) and he looked like something was bugging him. I asked him what was wrong like 100 times and he wouldn't tell me he kept telling me that I didn't want to know. Until time 101 when I asked he said, I just want to kiss you.  So I leaned over and kissed him, because I wanted that too.  Annnd I'm pretty sure we were locked at the lips for months after that.
I remember our first Christmas when he went home for a whole month and we spent HOURS on the phone each night just talking and telling each other how much we missed each other. He never went back home without me after that trip.
I remember the first time he held me in his arms and told me he loved me, and I was never so certian of anything someone was saying in my life. I remember taking him to my favorite place on Earth, the Outer Banks and turning my ski bum boyfriend into a beach bum for life.
There are so many good memories and I love them all.
4. Tell us your favorite qualities about this man, what makes him "the one".
Hes strong, both physically and mentally. Hes sensitive. Hes creative. Hes giving, loyal, kind, generous, thoughtful, honest, a hard worker, a truly amazing father. Hes calm when I'm crazy and crazy when I'm calm. Hes a problem solver and a dreamer and the best friend I could ask for.
5. Tell us what your date nights usually look like.
Well B.G. (before Grayson) we would do all kinds of things. Steelers games, Pirate Games, hiking, biking, getting all dressed up and heading out to a wonderful restaurant, concerts, the movies. We loved to try new things and do them together.
Now A.G. we usually sneak off to dinner, then come home once the little bean is in bed. We snuggle up on the couch and watch movies or tv shows and talk through the whole thing.
Really anything that we can just spend time together we're pretty happy.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Zoo Boo- Trick or Treating at the Zoo!

Before I had a kiddo I did not know things of this awesome-ness existed. Sunday the weather was insanely perfect, and we (along with what seemed was every other family in the Greater Pittsburgh Area with children under 10) headed off to the Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium all decked out in our Halloween finest.
I may be biased- but that is the cutest damn dragon Ive ever seen. The costume was a gift from my grandpap and his wife, and he was so thrilled when I said that we would wear it on him for Halloween this year.

We met our friend Marley- who made a really cute monkey.
I die.

The last time we were at the Zoo Grayson wasn't really into the animals, this time he was all about them.

Fishies in the Elephant pond.

Watching the monkeys (excuse my double chin-eek!).
All in all it was a really fun day, and we came home with tons of treats. When we tried to take off the Halloween costume we had an absolute meltdown, so Id say it was a success.  We definitely have a little boy who is developing a love for the Halloween holiday- its a good thing we'll wear that costume three more times!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Pumpkin Patch Fun!

Hello, my lovelies! Sorry Ive been slacking- we've had a rough couple weeks with the sickies, then our washer exploding, and a small power outage. But Im back in business and out of sheer frustration my house is clean from top to bottom- woo! (Except for laundry mountain, that's a whole 'nother issue!)
This weekend was the first chance we had to indulge in some fall family fun, so off we went on Saturday to the Pumpkin Patch with Grayson Boy's friends from play group.
The weather was about 55 and misting rain- but it kept the crowds away, which was nice.

My choices were cow or pig- neither of which were flattering. Only for this kid would I be the pig though.

He wandered all through the pumpkins saying nothing when we asked him "Is that your pumpkin?". Until he found one that once asked he yelled "YES!" Meet Bubba, the 38 pound pumpkin Grayson picked. Sheesh.
Now, look at these two pictures. Same patch- just a much bigger bean!
After we got and paid for our pumpkin, the sky started to really let loose and so we called it a day...but it was still fun going back to the same place again this year. Im all about creating traditions for Grayson- which is exactly why Ill be shoving him inside Bubba once he is all carved up.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Link up and Love The Total Home Makeover- With a Giveaway!

Meet Renee.  If you could go on a journey, leave chaos and transform yourself, your family and your home to arrive at order in just 20 days, Would You?  You bet!  That's the idea behind my book, Total Home Makeover.  When I first became a full-time home manager, I felt "lost" with those 24 hours of unstructured time.  I was a re-active home manager {re-act to this mess and re-act to that mess}.  Meanwhile, I watched others manage their homes with less effort and asked, "What am I missing?"  So, I began to research smarter ways to manage a home and found there really are secrets to the trade.  I realized that home management isn't a solo career.  In order to get my home into auto-pilot mode, I knew I needed to get all three actors (myself, my family and my home) in my boat and rowing toward order for a "Total" Home Makeover.  Then, in 2009, God showed up and started cleaning out my spirit from clutter and lies.  Epiphany:  God wasn't just an "idea or a belief", but a God who shows up, speaks and loves.  Total Home Makeover is a 20 Day Plan to Renew Your Space & Spirit, and my prayer is that God's love and presence will fill your home and sweep our nation clean.  Learn more about Renee>

The Book.  What is Total Home Makeover?  It's a 20 day plan to renew your space and spirit.  Home management expert, Renee Metzler, will teach you smarter ways to manage your home.  In this book, you will journey through three phases:

   1. Transform Yourself {daily & weekly routines},
   2. Transform Your Family {coaching, chores, tracking & rewards},
   3. Transform Your Home {room design, activity zones & organization}.

Plus, stay motivated with a daily renewal {prayer, Bible verse, journal}, a weekly reward, stories, joy tools, interactive worksheets, on-line support, and freebies.  Grab a friend, grab a book, and GET STARTED WITH 3 SIMPLE STEPS>

USA Book Tour:  Total Home Makeover has a goal to sweep the nation clean and that's why we are going on a USA Book Tour {October Stop is Pennsylvania}.  We want to help you kick chaos out the door.  Here's what you'll get each week {or each state stop}:
  1. Where's Renee's {Speaking Schedule}*
  2. Book Give-away {Enter to win below}.
  3. Top Ten Household Tips by Featured Bloggers
  4. Makeover Mondays Link-Up {A place for bloggers to link up the Total Home Makeover journey or home organization tips and tutorials.}
Where's Renee?  Pennsylvania.  I'll be hanging out in my home state for the month of October, partially because I'm finishing up a "Loved to Life" class in Harrisburg. I'll be at Barnes & Nobles, Mainstreet, Lewisburg, Pa on October 5, 2012 from 6:30 - 8:00 pm.  I hope you'll come out and say hello; I'd love to meet you!  My next projected stop?  New York in October*.  SCHEDULE RENEE TO SPEAK or VIEW RENEE'S COMPLETE SCHEDULE>
Enter to Win a Total Home Makeover {Book Give-away}
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Top Ten Household Tips by Featured Bloggers
Do you have a top organizational or home tip?  Submit your idea here.

Makeover Mondays Link Up
Embed the Video or Grab the Button & Link Up your Total Home Makeover Journey with before & after pictures, success stories or confessions or Link Up your best household tips.



Monday, October 1, 2012

Super Hero Cape Tutorial

I can not sew, but for the sake of Grayson's birthday I learned.  Let me tell you that if I can make these capes, then so can you.
You need:  1 yard of fabric (I used flannel and got two capes per yard)
1 piece of white or black felt
1 5x5 square of coordinating color fabric
1.5 feet of ribbon
First, fold the yard of fabric in half length wise. Cut it, then refold it in half again length wise.
Using a piece of chalk measure out from the fold 7 inches.
Then two inches down.
Then three inches in.
Once you have the neck of the cape marked off, draw outward toward the edge of the cape to create the shape. How far down you go depends on how tall the kiddo is. This one was for a pretty tall 5 year old, so I went down 30 inches.
Then, cut it all out.
To make the circle I used a 9 inch pie plate and traced a circle and then cut it out.
To create the letter, I used word to make a template of the first letter of the kiddos name. Then I cut out the template and reversed it on the fabric. I traced and cut it out, so that the lines from my tracing would be on the back.
Please forgive that I have 15 different pictures of the steps- I made all of the capes in a big batch and didnt always take the picture on the same cape. Oops.
Anywho, pin your letter to your felt circle and sew it on using a zig zag stitch set on 3.
Once thats attached, its time to attach it to the cape itself and sew it on with the same zig zag stitch.
Take the 1.5-2 feet of ribbon and fold it in half. Place that in the 2 inches of fabric at the neck. Fold it over and pin it in place. Sew it in a straight line to secure the ribbon and voila. You're done!
Each cape takes around 15 minutes to make from start to finish, but the kiddos loved them so much it was well worth it!