Wednesday, July 31, 2013

The 4th of July at the End of July

Better late than never, right?!  :)

For the past 4th of July, Rio's FIRST 4th of July, we headed down to the river to watch Tulsa put on their annual show.  Before I started teaching ESL and working for my folks, I was a secretary at an architecture firm for five years.  Their offices back riiiiiiiiight up to Veteran's Park which is where the big shebang, pun intended, happens for this particular holiday.  They throw a big shindig and invite hoards of people and have a good time together.  We go from year to year and this year decided to give it a whirl with a baby in tow!  As I mentioned before, this was our first go at a late night with Rio which set the tone for a month full of successful late weekends!
Long story short, we had a blast and, even though she won't remember it, I'm sure she enjoyed herself as well.  We were handed a spinny, light-up, vibrating toy thing that was a savior for us once we got past bedtime.  We were also fortunate enough to have some friends lend us these awesome ear muff, sound diffuser things (I'm full of great vocabulary today!) that didn't seem to bother her in the slightest.  In fact, once the fireworks started, she watched about half of the show in awe and then crashed in my lap, not once pulling the headphones off.
 
A few years back, we had a succession of REALLY hellish 4th of July celebrations.  As in we spent much time in the ER and burn units.  After all of that, I didn't leave the house for the holiday for several years.  I felt like we were 4th cursed!  Well finally, two years ago I got brave and we started doing things again.  And guess what?  We didn't die and nobody ended up in the hospital!  We weren't cursed!  I tend to be an anxious person on the inside when it comes to certain things and I want to do everything and anything I can to NOT pass that along to Rio.  Having a successful and positive first 4th with her really put me at ease for Independence Days of the future. 
What I love about the fuzzy photo above is that part of my 4th memories are in it as well.  See the circular building behind us?  My Mimi lived in that building for a large part of my childhood and we spent many Fourths on her balcony watching the fireworks as a family.  Now, we're helping Rio build her own memories with the holiday on the ground where mine began.  There's that crazy full circle business again!  ;)
I'll end this rambling with a photo taken by the awesome gal who coordinated the night of fun and will say thank you to July for being SUCH a great month to our little family of three.  August, you've got a lot to live up to.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Tiny Refashions

This past weekend I was able to knock out a few random projects that I'd been working on in my head for weeks now!  Two of the projects involved formerly loved articles of clothing that were ripped beyond repair.  I figured that somehow I could rework them to make some clothes for Rio and I was thrilled to make that dream come to life!

The first project involved some of my favorite pajama pants that were a Christmas gift years ago.  I wore the crap out of them and repaired many seam rips but then rips started happening that I couldn't fix so I knew they had to come out of my closet.  I LOVED the pattern on them so I just started cutting and holding my tongue out just right (that's my secret weapon when it comes to sewing clothes ;) and busted out this little dress!  It's SO cute on her!  I still have a good amount more left of the pants so last night, I started a little pair of matching bloomers that I hope to finish this week, as time allows.  I'm toying with making something out of the waistband for her too but I'm not sure what just yet.

The second dress came from a shirt that was my mom's that she absolutely loved.  It also fell victim to one of those irreparable rips so she passed it along to me because she thought I may be able to do something with it.  Well, a dress for Rio it became!  You can see in the before photo how I cut out the bodice out of the top of the sleeves.  I used that V as my neck centerpiece, gathered the bottom of the shirt as the skirt of the dress and finished the sleeves with some turquoise bias tape.  It's a hair big but that means it will last for a while!  And that doesn't stop us from putting it on her - she's wearing it today!  :)

Yes, they're just clothes but they came from previously loved clothes from people who love her dearly so that makes them super special clothes, right?  :)

Friday, July 26, 2013

Negatives and Positives

Typically, I have a class I'm teaching or preparing for but this summer, my obligations have been few and far between so I've taken on a monster of a project during downtime at the office:  I'm scanning every single photo and negative in my family's possession.  It's insane. 
I've been working on this project for about a month now and have scanned probably around 5,000 images.  The trips down memory lane have been frequent and amazing.  There are so many images that I had never seen before and some that I had completely forgotten about.  Animals that we once shared our beds with, passed family members in their prime, little me looking exactly like little Rio, outfits that I would kill to have again (and in adult sizes).  Such gifts in these images.

I'm nearing the end of this scanning process which means I've begun the process of editing and digitally organizing it all.  My plan is to burn disks for everyone in our family, immediate and extended, with folders pertaining to them and their side of the family.  I figure I have another month or two left of work and then school will be back in session and Alliday planning will be in full swing so my organization compulsions will be focused elsewhere. 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Jumpin' July

July has been a busy month for our little family!  I was just reflecting the other day about how much we've been hustling and bustling and how good the kid has been doing with varying her routines.  For the first weekend of the month, we all stayed up late for the 4th of July (post coming soon :) which was actually the kid's first go around at living off schedule.  The following weekend was WoodyFest which involved three days of successfully living WAY off schedule.  Well, we continued on this trend and last weekend, we decided to take an impromptu trip to Oklahoma City to see the mister's former band, Western Residents, and to celebrate their cd release!
 
We had a great time getting to see missed, old friends and thoroughly enjoyed the music outside.  


Even though we have tons of friends and family in the city, we decided to just get a room for a few reasons.  First, we needed somewhere that had a bed big enough in case the kid woke up and came to bed with us since we're a 50% of the time co-sleeping family.  We also didn't want to burden anyone with a crying baby in case we had one of 'those' nights.  It wasn't.  Finally, we thought it would be fun and the kid had never stayed in a hotel before so why not!?

 We checked out hotels in the downtown area and ended up going with the historic Skirvin Hotel.  I didn't realize though until we were almost to our destination that it's supposedly a haunted hotel!  No ghosts were seen by us but, to be honest, I was a little freaked out by the possibility of it! 
 During my short time as a parent, I've learned that many hotels have cribs that they will supply if you request one in your room.  We didn't have to worry about bringing a pack n play but just a few comforts from home.  She was in bed four hours after normal bedtime but being the rock star that she is, it was no problem for her.  She spent most of her night in her fancy crib and just a short while with me in bed :)
 The following morning, Brent got up earlier than I and met up with his brother to play golf.  Rio and I took our time checking out of the hotel and then explored some of downtown OKC on foot.  I went to undergraduate school in Oklahoma City but haven't really been back to check things out since downtown went through its boom.  When I moved away (2002), they had just finished the canal and the buzz was that it was a waste since there was nothing to see from the canal!  Now from what I understand, you can take the water all the way from the airport to downtown!  Amazing!  I was in awe of how much things had changed down there during our walk. 
 
We made our way to the Myriad Gardens and since we were there so early with very few people out with us, I decided to just let Rio explore on her own (with me right behind her snapping photos).  It was probably my favorite part of the weekend :)
 
My new favorite of her :)
 After our morning of being explorers, we went along and hung out with several of our dear friends that we don't get to see near often enough.  A few hours later, the mister and his brother were done golfing so Rio, myself, and two of our OKC friends met up with the golfers for a late lunch on Lake Hefner.  We hit the road shortly after that but took the long way home to stop through Okemah to wish my father-in-law a Happy Birthday.  It was an absolutely perfect 24 hours.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

WoodyFest Recap!

Big surprise!  WoodyFest kicked ass, yet again! :)  Every year the show is special in so many different ways.   It's a break from the regular, it's time outdoors, it's time spent with family, it's time with good tunes but this year, there were a few added bonuses.  I'll start with the obvious biggie... 
...THIS kid.  Bringing the rug rat to the festival where her dad and I met was just some bizarrely awesome full circle thing.  I should have known she would ace her first festival with flying colors but I was, of course, a little nervous.  Not only did she endure three nights of staying up past midnight listening to folk music while teething and periodically getting rained on (the rain was SO welcome) but she also was a doll to everyone she encountered (except her uncle which was pret-ty funny :)
In the evenings when we vended, she was either on my back, in a family member's arms or in the pack n play we brought along playing with water bottles or making eyes at shoppers.  Did I mention how awesome she was during the festival?  I know next year she'll be alllll over the place but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it!
Added bonus number two this year was sharing a booth with two righteously awesome ladies - Kim of Blue Marble Market and Holly of Hollyrocks.  It was SO good to get to know these gals better and to share one of my favorite Okie events with them!  Kim brought along her two kiddos who kept Rio quite entertained the first night and Holly brought along her hubby who kept the mister quite entertained the last night :)
I was stoked to see so many of my sewn creations find new homes!  I've found a new love with sewing but it's been new territory for me to have that side of me at shows after doing jewelry only for so many years.  It's so reaffirming to see people embrace those creations at shows.  Makes me mega happy :)
And for me, no WoodyFest is complete without mention of the sunsets.  I've seen 33+ years worth of sunsets and none ever seem to measure up to the ones I have witnessed out there.  Just spectacular.
 
The mister says this was his favorite Woody yet.  I may have to agree...

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Woody Already!?

A bit of radio silence on my end, my apologies!  Last week after I posted my latest Rio update, I realized that Woody Fest was coming up THIS WEEKEND!  I don't know why but it came out of nowhere for me this year so for the holiday weekend when we weren't corralling a kid and spending time together, I was knee deep in preparing for the show!  If you've been reading here for any length of time then you'll know that Woody Fest is a special event for me for so many reasons.  

I am THRILLED this year to be sharing a booth with Hollyrocks and Blue Marble Market.  Not only do these ladies make fantastic stuff, I just enjoy them both immensely :)  As always, I encourage every single one of you to come out and spend an evening with us!  No complaints about the heat though...as you may recall, I was pret-ty preggo for last year's festival so no one is allowed to say a word about the temperatures!  ;) 

And yes, the little Rio will be there with me the first time.  What a crazy circle.  To have met my mister there and to now be bringing OUR child there seven years later.  Total awesomeness.
To close, I give you my latest project - reversible summer tops made from those vintage bed sheets I so love.  Perfect for embracing your inner hippie!  See more details of them here.

Hope to see you!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Life with Rio: Nine Months

Our little rug rat turned nine months old yesterday.  WHAT?!  It seems like we were just counting down the days until she could hold her head up on her own and now she is alllllllllllll over the place.  One thing I've noticed with parenthood is how time goes SO much faster now.  
Our once perfect sleeper is a less than perfect sleeper now.  At least one night a week though, we'll all get one stellar night of sleep so for that, I am grateful.  She goes down so much easier than she used to and sometimes will sleep until we wake her up in the morning but more often than not, she wakes up in the middle of the night and we just bring her to bed.  Didn't think we'd be co-sleepers but we are and I'm ok with that.  She won't be sleeping with us when she's 18 so why not let her do it now while she still likes us ;)  

She's become a pretty good napper though!  Most of the time she'll nap for 2 hours, sometimes more!  (As I write this, she's been down for an hour and a half.)  She typically only takes one nap a day, right at noon, which allows me to get some work done fairly regularly.  
We did rearrange her room this weekend.  I loved, LOVED the set up before but her crib was sharing a wall with the only bathroom in the house so I thought perhaps moving it to another wall (it's where the changing table once was now) would allow her to sleep more soundly.  We're only a few days in with this change so I'll let you know if it helped!  I'm also a rearranging junkie so it was bound to happen at some point :)
We're still doing solids twice a day which she loves.  She's eating more finger foods in addition to the purees that I batch cook and freeze for her.  We've been letting her gnaw on whole dill pickles recently to help with the teething process.  She freaking loves her pickles!  She is not my daughter in that regard.  Yuck!  We're getting ready to add in a third solid meal around lunchtime but just have to figure out the logistics of it at work!

I am still exclusively breastfeeding and yes, I do still have that damn infection.  We've decided to begin a slow wean so I can soon get on antibiotics but first we have to get this kid to take a bottle or sippy cup first!  I'm SO proud that we've made it 9 months and who knows, maybe we'll make it a full year if she has anything to say about it!  I'm not looking forward to formula or bottles though but am looking forward to kicking this infection in the rear!
Mobility is this girl's jam.  She crawls mega-fast and as of last week LOVES to be 'chased' while she squeals her heart out and tries to crawl faster than her body will let her.  It's hilarious.  She has been pulling up and standing for at least a month now and walks along furniture with ease.  I wouldn't be surprised if walking is sooner than we think.  God help us all.  

In addition to her new found mobility, she dances.  SHE DANCES.  LOTS.  It is by far my favorite thing that she does.  She loves a good beat, just like her mom and dad!  She also claps tons and this past week has started pointing at things.  It seems every day she grows and changes in ways I never expected.  It's a joy to witness.
This summer we've spent lots of time in the little backyard pool and Big Splash.  She loves them both.  In fact, she loves water in general.  We got rid of the seat in the bathtub because she wants to explore the water so much!  With a name like Rio, it's only natural she'd be a water baby!

We also bought a bike trailer and an itty-bitty bike helmet for her.  It's the cutest thing ever.  Fact.  
She now how two tall teeth and yes, I have been bitten once.  Yes, there.  And yes, it took all of my might not to scream bloody murder.  Weaning sounded like the best idea ever at that moment.  Our dentist gave us a tiny toothbrush to start getting her used to brushing.  One of these days I'll start remembering to do that with consistency!  There is the faintest hint of a third tooth coming through too.  At this rate, she'll need dentures for her top teeth ;)
She loves, Loves, LOVES the cats.  When one walks in the room, she squeals with delight.  They are both SO good with her, Vera especially.  It's amazing what that cat has endured so far.  As much as I miss Pimmy with all of my heart, I know that if she were around at this point with Miss Grabby Hands, there would be lots of bites, scratches and crying fests.  Mondo is good with her too but when she grabs him, he politely excuses himself and keeps his distance.  If she's not grabby though, he's not far away from her.  He's a good big brother.  When I go for a walk with both of them, he walks right next to the stroller which I was certain he wouldn't do.  She doesn't pay near as much attention to him as she does the cats.  Probably because they are constantly in her business and he minds his own.  I love that she is growing up with such a fluffy household.

Every night Brent tells her 'bye bye' as he hands her off to me for bed.  She mimics his mouth over and over again which makes me think a 'b' word may not be far off.  Hopefully it's a PG 'b' word ;)  I'm excited to watch her language skills develop.
This is one happy and personable kid.  She has some major mommy attachment stuff going on right now but even with that, she's full of smiles for everyone she meets.  Her laughs are like gold which makes us mighty rich right now.  Nine months in the blink of an eye.
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