Friday, January 30, 2009

Saying Good Bye to JWT

Tomorrow is my last day at JWT. Don't ask me how I am feeling because honestly I am feeling all kinds of things. I am sad about leaving the great people that I work with, a fun and exciting job and feel weird with the idea that on Monday I don't have a job to drive to. At the sametime I am excited about staying home and starting this new career. Lots of mixed emotions and I really don't think it has all hit me and won't until next week.

Tonight I had a happy hour going away with my work and as always it was great to get together and hang out with everyone. I even was gifted a very fashionable bar tee by Greg to remember my last time out with the gang! I appreciate this so much more than the self portrait that Maureen got on her departure. I will miss everyone and all of the crazy things that go on and most of all John will miss all of my work stories that make him laugh and wonder what kind of place I work at or how we actually get things done.

It has been a great two years and 28 days with JWT filled with lots of late nights (I think the latest was around 4 AM), crazy adventures at truck stops and hanging out with truckers, learning more than I ever needed to know about Heavy Duty Engine Oil, hearing every possible joke about Lubricants (many times all at the same time during a creative briefing), lots of laughs, boring status meetings and so many more memories that I can't even touch on (for many reasons).
I will miss you guys so much!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Tutu Cute

I finished making Peyton's tutu today and then we had a mini photo shoot. I also found a cute flower headband at Hobby Lobby which was way too cute to pass up. She of course was way too cute and full of smiles.

Here are some of the pictures and you can see more here, also click here for more four month pictures that I just added.

Friday, January 23, 2009

My New Boss

Turns out that my new job comes with a pretty strict boss who is adamant about having on time and productive meetings.

This was taken at Grandma Hill's house during dinner. She was sitting in my mom's lap with her arms on the table watching everyone eating so we thought we should take a picture (Grandma is behind the blanket).

While she was sitting there she was very very interested in what we were eating and even starting tasting with her lips. This is the second time she has done this so we might start experimenting with some rice cereal in the near future.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Career Change

As promised here is the Acord’s big announcement…

If you know us well, you would know that we tend to change things up a little too often. Since we were married about 27 months ago, I started my current job, and then we built a house, moved into the house, became pregnant and had our little girl. So, this year one of our resolutions was no more life changing events for 2009. Well, God always laughs when we try to plan our life and we have once again with His guidance made a life changing decision. Our current big decision is that I have decided to change careers. I have decided to take on a position as the new CFO, COO, cook, cleaning service, nanny, personal shopper and so much more at the Acord house. Yes, I have decided after much prayer, lists and conversations with many friends and family, to leave my current job and begin a new career as a stay-at-home mom.

When John and I first started dating, I told him early on that my dream job would be to stay at home with mour kids. Maybe it was that I had an amazing mom who stayed home or maybe it was that I never felt that I found that true passion at college. Well, after graduating and working in my current job in advertising for the past two years the decision to stay home was a whole lot harder than I ever imagined. I will spare you all the details but it took tons of prayer, trusting in the Lord to continue to provide (which He very much showed us twice last week when we received random checks in the mail) and eventually staying true to my heart which led us to our decision.

My last day at work is January 30 and I am going to miss everyone I work with and the craziness that my job can bring. I WILL NOT miss my 2.5 to 3 hour daily commute! I won’t lie, I am a little nervous about my new job. I only know two other stay at home moms and I am hoping to expand my little network and building new relationships with other women. I am excited about being able to save money by using coupons more, going to Sam’s club, CVS etc and getting the best deals. I am also excited about being able to keep up with cleaning my house, taking on little home improvement or craft projects, taking the burden of managing our finances from John, being able to cook and work on my cooking, have time to run consistently, see my mom as often as I want and most importantly spending time with Peyton! Seeing her throughout the day is the best part!

Please pray for us especially these next couple of months during the adjustment. Pray for the adjustment for me and also that we are good stewards with our money as it will be a slight adjustment with only John’s salary but as God showed us last week, be faithful and He will provide!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Happy Inauguration Day

I in no way want to start a political debate but I truly hope that no matter what side of the political spectrum you are on, you can appreciate today for what it is.

As many of you know, I am not American, I am a Canadian who is blessed to have the opportunity to live in the United States and enjoy the freedoms this country has to offer. I might be not be a voting citizen but as a permanent resident of the United States I have always been fascinated with the American political system and government. Today was a true celebration of the freedom and promises that this country has been founded on. I am so excited that I can raise my daughter in a country that she has the freedom to vote, freedom to be who she wants to be, freedom to pray and practice religion and most importantly a country that elects someone based on the credentials and ability to lead as opposed to their ethnicity. I am so excited! I know politics can create tension as everyone has such varying views but we can all join in and pray for the new President, Vice President and their families. Pray that God gives them guidance, strength and wisdom.

Today was a remarkable day and I can't wait to get home and watch all of the footage as I was only able to see the swearing in and speeches at work!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Monday Funday

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Pretty good for Peyton's first time on the computer, she even got a space in there!

Today has been a great day so far! Peyton didn't have daycare because of the MLK holiday and I was off from work! I love having the day off and spending my morning singing silly songs with Peyton and having fun! Of course part of that fun was mommy taking an insane amount of pictures of Peyton. I haven't been playing around with my camera much and the different settings so this morning was the perfect time and I have the perfect subject.

Right now, Peyton is having a nap and once she is up we are going to head out and do some errands. Part of what I wanted to do this weekend was hit up CVS and venture into the world of Extra Care Bucks (I am a little nervous to be honest). I planned my grocery shopping at HEB around the deals at CVS. Also during my trip to HEB, I saved around $26 in coupons which didn't include the approximately $10 I saved by buying wine as a set of six! I was happy! So, I will be heading to CVS and starting to use that resource as a way to save money.

Following our trip to CVS today, we might make it out to Hobby Lobby because I want to make Peyton a princess tutu like the one I found here . I have seen other people take pictures of their little ones in ones like it so thought it would be such a cute picture and would be fun to make! I will post pictures of the final product and my little princess when I am done!

So, a great day planned even though when I told Peyton our plans she gave me this look of exhausation!

Finally, the Acord's have an announcement that will be made in the next couple of days. So stay tuned! No, we are not having another baby and if you are one of the few that know...don't ruin the surprise!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Watching..not running...the Houston Marathon

Today was the Houston Marathon and Half Marathon! Last year at this time, about three days after we found out we were expecting, John ran the full marathon and I ran the half marathon. So, Peyton kind of already ran a half marathon (not too many kids in daycare can say that). This year we have not run at all and went to be spectators. I have never been a spectator at a race (John has watched me at two different half marathons) and it was so much fun!

We headed out of the house around 6:00 AM, made a Starbucks run and then camped out around mile 7 on the course. Peyton was all bundled up and ready to cheer on the runners. She only lasted a little bit in her stroller before she wanted to be held and see what all the commotion was all about. Her eyes were huge! She just kept watching and watching all of the runners come by! She eventually had a nice long nap and as always was a trooper on our crazy adventures. She must wonder where she goes half the time.

We mainly went out to the race because we had so many friends running. Here are some pictures of the front runners who were amazing! The men and women both set course marathon course records. I am always amazed at elite runners and their strength. It is pretty cool to see how God has designed the human body to be able to take on such a tough venture.

We were able to see all of our friends besides Jared and Carissa (I don't know how we missed you guys) and it was so much fun to cheer and support everyone. I am so incredibly proud of them as many were running their first half marathon! You guys did amazing! I only got pictures of Bryce and Laura! It was Laura's first half marathon and she rocked!

Congrats Bryce, Laura, Jared, Carissa, Sarah on finishing the half marathon and congrats Clint on finishing your second full marathon! And congrats to all the other 25,000 runners!

It was a great day and it gave me the running bug (of course)! So, when we got home I went for a two mile run and have decided that I will be training for the Rodeo 10k the end of February and my ultimate goal is the Angie's Half Crazy Half Marathon the end of March! Kind of ambitous goals but I will be going for completion instead of a personal record.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Mommy it is bed time...

Peyton has started to wrap her fingers around the edge of her blanket and has realized that she can pull up and pull the blanket over her. It is pretty adorable and she doesn't seem to mind be completly covered with the blanket. Here are some pictures of her playing with her blanket before bedtime. How cute is she!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Week Update

So, I pretty much left everyone hanging on Tuesday about our first week back to work. Well, the rest of the week didn't go too much better with daycare which was frustrating and we are praying that next week is easier for everyone.

Wednesday we dropped Peyton off with hopes for a good day. My mom called around noon wanting to know if she could get Peyton and have her for the afternoon so she went over to pick her up. Well, when she walked in Peyton was in the rocker and the teacher was trying to give her a bottle and she was screaming and crying. The teacher was just continuing to try and give her a bottle with no success and so my mom took her to try to calm her down. She wouldn't calm down and when she asked where her pacifier was the teacher said she didn't have one (she has three there) which my mom responded with, "I am sure my daughter wouldn't have left her without a pacifier." Eventually my mom got Peyton calm, put her in her car seat and was heading out when the teacher found the pacifier in Peyton's supply drawer. My mom got her home and got her fed and she went immediately to sleep. After my mom told me everything that had happened along with the fact that she was once again a hour off schedule I decided to give the school a call. I spoke with the director and she was very helpful and understanding. Pretty much I asked that the infant care sheet that I filled out be read by everyone and that she is kept on schedule. 

Thursday came and we had slight change to our morning since I had to be at work early so my mom dropped Peyton off around 9:30 AM. John called at 12:15 PM and 3:15 PM to ensure she was having her bottles on time and the director called to let me know she was doing better. When I picked her up they said she did a whole lot better and when I looked at her sheet I knew why...she was fed on time! No matter how busy our days are she is always feed at three hour intervals so it is no wonder she was having a hard time when it was four hours one time, three hours another. Anyways, we got home and she ate again at 6:00 PM and then she fell asleep (naps are still not going well at daycare) and I put her in her bed. John and I had the intention of watching the national championship game but were both so exhausted from the week ended up going to bed in the third quarter. I am a little upset that this week I missed pretty much all of the bowl games because I was too tired to stay up. When we went to sleep, we thought Peyton would wake up and let us know she needed to eat around her normal time so I didn't set an alarm. Well, she let us know she needed some food at 6:00 AM the next morning....a total of 12 hours between meals! I felt horrible that she went that long and that she was that tired. The poor thing.

So, recap on the week. We were very prepared in regards to schedules, lists of chores etc but we were not prepared for how hard daycare would be for Peyton (and for us) and how tired we would be with getting everything done. It has been a long week and very overwhelming. I am only hoping it will get easier and trying to be optimistic about next week.

4 Month Appointment

Peyton had her four month appointment yesterday and as expected she is growing leaps and bounds. She weighs 14 lbs 4.5 oz (53%) and is 25 1/4 inches long (74%) and still has a small head at 16 inches (29%). I am so happy to see that she is gaining weight well. As you might remember from her 2 month check up she was at the 33% and the doctor thought she would be finally at the 50% or higher by four months and she is! 

Everything else checked out well and she is doing great. She had four vaccinations (three in her legs and one she had to drink) and she was a champ like last time. She has had a little harder time this time though and is pretty cranky and had a fever last night and this afternoon. We of course are spoiling her by letting her do what she wants and sleep wherever she wants (the swing is a popular spot). 

As for her development Peyton is discovering new things all the time. She is getting so close to rolling over (she gets her legs going and her arms but not at the same time) and is starting to enjoy tummy time more and more and is really lifting her head up. She is grabbing everything and will even pull on it (mommy's hair is one of her favorite things to yank on) and the cutest thing is when she wraps her hands on her blanket when she is sleeping. We haven't heard anymore laughs since Canada so I am guessing that means that we are really not that funny but we do hear many sounds that are getting louder and louder. 

She will not be starting solids until a couple more months however the doctor said that once she can sit up, if she shows some interest and we are adventurous we can offer her some rice cereal and see what she does. We will wait and see on that but we will need to go out and get some feeding supplies (a high chair etc) next month so we be ready and it will be nice for her to sit at the table with us when she is able to sit up better. I am also thinking about the possibility of making my own baby food so I will be starting to research that in the next couple of months and decide if that is an adventure I want to take on. My initial research looks good and I am pretty excited about that possibility.

Finally, Peyton is losing some serious amounts of hair. She has a pretty evident bald spot on the back of her head and she is losing other patches here and there. The only significant amount of hair is at the nape of her neck which looks pretty funny. But she is starting to get some new hair growth up top and it is blonde! I know this is disappointing to Grandma Hill but we all expected that to happen.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Day Care - Day 2

I don't have much time to update as I want to get to bed so I can run in the morning but daycare went better today. Peyton took all her bottles without getting upset. She was off of her schedule (still not sure how this is happening) however which has made for a late night. Also, according to the infant daily sheet that comes home with her she isn't napping at her normal times or for the normal length which would explain why when I came home she was happy to see me for about 30 minutes, wanted to eat and has been sleeping (dead, floppy arms asleep) for the past 2 hours! She is exhausted :( I am really praying that she will adjust better and be able to get rest at daycare. I also found out that Peyton is one of the last to be picked up (there was only one other baby there) which is hard for me to hear because she is also one of the first ones there. It is such a long day for her but I really don't know how we can shorten the time since I have such a commute in the morning and John is already leaving right at 5:00 PM. This has been such a hard adjustment for her and I feel horrible.

Well, I am off to chop veggies for tomorrows dinner (meatless chili so lots of veggies) so I am not stuck doing that after driving in traffic for an hour, make my lunch, make bottles, pick out everyone's clothes and hopefully go to bed without thinking about the endless other things that need to get done such as putting away laundry, cutting coupons from Sunday's paper, vacuuming, cleaning bathrooms, washing floors, doing Peyton's laundry....

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

No Good, Very Bad Day

Today was Peyton's first day at daycare. A day that I knew would be hard on everyone and I was hoping would be harder on her parents than her. Well, unfortunately it was hard on everyone.

As always the morning went off without a hiccup (well, Peyton had some hiccups but when doesn't she) and we made it to Primrose on time and doing great. Mommy had to say a quick prayer before leaving the car so she wouldn't lose it inside but we all headed in as a family. We checked Peyton in, brought her into her classroom and unpacked her gear, introduced her to the teacher, gave her kisses goodbye and handed her over (along with half of my heart while the other half crumbled into small pieces). We then went and did some paperwork in the office where I almost started crying and then we left. Before we drove off I looked in the window and was happy to see the teacher carrying Peyton around as she was doing some things on the counter. Peyton looked content and so I got into the car, talked to John for a little bit and then we both drove off to our respective places (I made a little stop to Starbucks before my ultimate destination for a pick me up).

Work went well in the morning, I was a little sad but I was busy so I didn't have much time to dwell until I called around noon. I was told that she was fine and I didn't ask much more becuase I was starting to get upset. So, I asked John to call at 2:30 PM with specific questions and that is when we found out things were not so fine.

First, we were told that Peyton ate at 10:00 AM which was not good since she eats at 9:00 AM and I immediately wanted to know why they deviated from her schedule especially when we had to fill every little detail out for them (I later found out she was sleeping at 9:00 AM despite my request for them to wake her if she is still asleep 15 minutes after her scheduled time to eat). Well, that was not a big deal until they said that at 1:00 PM she refused to eat and was just crying and was currently asleep until about 3:00 PM which would mean that she would have gone 5 hours between feedings...TOO LONG! Well, I was upset so I called my mom and she offered to go and pick her up and figure out what was going on.

Here is what happened when my mom arrived. She walked in and Peyton was in the rocking chair with a pacifier and was crying and crying. They were warming up her bottle and so my mom offered to try to feed her. Peyton ate 1/2 of her bottle (you would think she would be starving) and then started to cry and cry and was crying so hard she wouldn't burp, wouldn't take her pacifier. According to her teachers, that was the same thing that happened earlier in the day. They mentioned that she seemed gassy which isn't the case because I watch what I eat and even when she is gassy she really isn't that grumpy. They suggested bringing in a blanket from home to help (yet there were two in her car seat under her bed) and a couple of other things. My mom said that they seemed really sweet and caring and I am sure it was just as frustrating for them as it was for Peyton. When my mom got Peyton home, she ate the rest of her bottle and took the one at 6:00 PM great. I got over there around 6:30 PM and was so happy to see her. It was a horrible feeling being at work knowing your child is not doing well and you aren't there to fix it. After a night of being served by my parents by having dinner made for us, our laundry being done, watching the game with them, we headed home, got things ready for today and went to sleep around midnight with one of Peyton's blankets so it would smell like me in hopes that it would be comforting on Tuesday among some of the other things I am going to bring up.

I pray that tomorrow (or is it already today?) goes better for everyone. 

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Off to a good start

So, the New Year has started off a little hectic with getting settled back from our trip and preparing for this week with everyone going back to work and Peyton going to daycare for the first time.

Thursday and Friday consisted of doing massive amounts of errands around the house. We have been doing laundry, picking up, taking down decorations, preparing Peyton's daycare bag (and labeling everything), picking up the dog from boarding, giving the dog a bath, grocery shopping and so much more. I am tired just thinking about it. But at the end of all of it, we were able to do nothing for Saturday and today besides relax and enjoy time with friends, family and each other.

Yesterday we went to Pearland Town Center to go shopping and scored some sweet deals! A sweater for over 50% off and even better a shirt for $6 that was regular $39.50! After shopping we headed over to my parent's to wish my dad a happy birthday before they went out for dinner with friends and then we headed over to some friends (the Hane's) to say good-bye to Danny, April and Austin as they are moving to Neederland this upcoming weekend. Danny and April were in our old small group and we have been so blessed to have gotten to know them, learn from them and go through marriage and now parenthood with them. Danny was also an accountability partner for John for a period of time. We are going to miss them and pray that they get settled and also that we can all stay in touch as our children grow up. The picture to the right is of Peyton and Austin hanging out. Peyton looked over at him a couple of times but for the most part they were both more interested in their respective parents.

Today we made it to 8:30 AM church!! Hopefully as Peyton gets older it will get easier and easier to make it to church. Then this afternoon we will be having a birthday lunch with my dad, getting last minute things done for tomorrow (putting out clothes, making lunches) and then John and I are out for a very much needed date.

Tomorrow we are all back to work and Peyton will be attending her first day of daycare. Please don't ask me how I am doing because I might just start crying. I have all of her bag prepared, everything labeled (what is the best gift for an organizational nerd...a label much fun!) and filled out her daily information sheet. We are prepared in every way besides emotionally. I knew this day would come but I didn't realize it would sneak up on me and be as hard as it is. Then today as I was reading some daily scripture from Matthew chapter 6, one of the verses (6:34) was so applicable to what I have been feeling these past few days

34 “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble."

That is my prayer for us for today and everyday and also ties into my New Year's resolution of being in the moment and letting things go. There is no reason for me to be anxious and worrisome about tomorrow for if I do, I will miss out on today.

Since I won't be blogging before we head out the morning though, I would appreciate prayer specifically for the following:
  • That I can be strong and drop her off without getting too emotional

  • That Peyton is comfortable and welcoming of new caregivers in her life
  • That her teachers have wisdom in how to care for her, learning her quirks and develop a bond with her

  • That God blesses the children, teachers and everyone Peyton comes in contact with there

  • Finally, that we adjust to a new normal in our lives quickly and with ease

Finally, Peyton is four months old today! She has become so much fun to be around and is growing leaps and bounds! She is trying so hard to sit up and roll over and gets so frustrated when she can't but she is close and I can't wait to see the look on her face when she accomplishes those skills. She has her four month appointment and vaccinations on Friday so I will update more about her development, weight and height on Friday.

Hope everyone has a wonderful week!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year! I have always enjoyed New Year's day. There is something about reflecting on the past year and making plans for the year to come that really excites me. I enjoy looking back on what has happened, what we accomplished, what we didn't and what we can learn from the past year. Then there is that planning and looking forward, knowing that you have a fresh start, a fresh calendar, to embark on. I love it!

As we look back on 2008 we are both amazed at how blessed we are. We started the year off by finding out we were expecting and spent the majority of the year preparing for Peyton's arrival. Then these past four months we have experienced one of the greatest things in life, being a parent. I knew that motherhood would be good but I never expected how much joy I get in the simplest things and how much I could love someone. Peyton has given us so much joy in watching her develop and explore the world around her. I feel so blessed and honored that I get to be a mother and am looking forward to this year as she begins to discover more new things. 

Many people think resolutions are silly but I love making resolutions! However, like many people, I often forget what they are or don't make positive steps towards them. So, as we look forward to 2009 here are our New Year's resolutions, in writing, and please help hold us accountable:

  • To deepen my relationship with the Lord by daily depending on Him and His guidance in being a wife and a mother
  • To lose the rest of my pregnancy weight (6 pounds) by running more regularly and run a half marathon this year
  • To date my husband better
  • To be in the moment by letting things go instead of always planning/doing/going
  • To set and meet aggressive financial goals for the year
  • To take two photography classes 
  • To continue my love of cooking and take at a minimum one class this year
  • To have the right priorities in life 
  • To be more spiritually, physically and emotionally healthy
  • To set and meet aggressive financial goals for the year

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Canada Trip

We are back from our trip to Canada to visit Peyton's Great Grandparents and we all had an amazing time! It was a great trip!

Since it would take forever to write one post and it would be way too long and boring to read, I am going to go back and post an entry for each day (I made sure to take notes while up there to not forget anything). So, scroll down to December 26 to start reading about our adventure to Canada!

You can find pictures here!

Canada Trip Day 6: Home we go

Today we packed up and headed to the airport to go home. We woke up to a crazy -15 Celsius! It was so cold! I think it was the coldest I have ever felt. I felt like my face was going to freeze off.

We left really early in order to give us enough time to navigate any road conditions and consequently we got to Toronto 5 hours before our flight. Since we didn't want to spend 5 hours at the airport we stopped off at Vaughn Mills Mall and walked around and got lunch. We then headed to the airport and went through everything fine and boarded our plane. After being de-iced we took off and Peyton went to sleep. She ended up waking up half way through and we fed her and then she pretty much just talked and played the rest of the way. Once again a great travel day! We landed, got the car loaded up and headed home making sure to watch for crazy drivers since it was around 9:30 PM. Once we got home we were able to get Peyton to sleep pretty easily and then John and I settled down on the couch with some wine to ring in the New Year. We watched the ball drop in New York, went into Peyton's room to give her a kiss and prayed together as a family over the New Year and off to bed we went. Another great day and although it was a great trip I am so happy to be home in my own bed!