Mollie arrived to us on July 6, 2010 at 10:42 AM. She weighed in at 6 lbs, 6 oz and 19 inches long!
We could not be more in love and can already see the start of our little family blooming!
Thanks for your continued love and support ~Leigh Ann, Matt & Mollie

Monday, January 31, 2011

Hello beautiful weekend!

It hardly gets much better than a weekend in January with temps in the 70's, living in this beautiful city and getting to spend it with your favorite people.

With the weather this amazing, you forget it's January. Spring is still many weeks away, and 70+ degrees is a totally tease for those nice upcoming seasons and all that follows. Is it getting cold again?! Please tell me NO.

We tried to spend as much time outdoors as possible; cooking out, going for walks & even designating extra toys as being 'outside' ones from now on!

Mollie has a few 'firsts' this weekend too-- going to the park & swinging and also ordering off the Mexican restaurant menu!

I want to go to there!

Her order was fresh sliced Avocado (her fave), NOT the Dos Equis beer..
 This type of weekend makes me fall in love with Charleston, Matt & Mollie all over again (& again).

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Call me a blog slacker..

Eeks, it's been a while since I posted! January has quickly gotten away from me--y'all too???!! I have been so busy at work and we're kicking off a stellar year so far--selling out a number of programs this month already:) Yay Center for Women!! Let's hope January is an insight to the rest of 2011 for this great organization..

There seems to be a hamster wheel of ideas & thoughts going through my head--not sure why this wheel ceases to rest. I love being motivated and busy, but sheesh, at times it's been hard to wind down.
I was talking with different ladies over the course of this week & the same theme came up at least in 3 of my conversation: Work/Life Balance. I could go on & on about this, but we all seemed to agree that it constantly changes--it's an ever-evolving goal. What might work one week/month, might not work the next because of 'x.' That's why we women learn to become much more flexible with children!!

         Wherever you are – be all there.             Jim Elliot

We also make every effort to not bring work home or do other things when it's playtime. When we're at work, we work. When we're home with Mollie, we're with her. End of story. I've found myself ignoring this a few times, whether it was to clean the house, return a phone call, etc. Alas, I am only with her for a short period between work and her bedtime & Matt and I need to make the most of it. I can always do those things mentioned after she goes to bed...or during nap-time on the weekend!           

I remember weeks ago when Mollie was waking up pretty early my AM routine before work was totally different than what it is now. You learn to adjust. Adapt. Things change. As much as I like a schedule and prefer to know what's to come at all times, there has to be some wiggle room as I've quickly learned from a little munchkin:) Mollie is just a delight & getting more fun by the day. I'm still in shock is going on 7 months next Sunday. o.m.g. how is that possible?!

Still loving our walks, cold weather & all!

Matt says this hat makes her look like a Russian baby!

Monday, January 10, 2011

A little R&R at a B&B

Matt & I were given the wonderful opportunity to have a night away, just the two of us, since Mollie has entered our lives. We figured her 6 month mark and my 30th birthday would be the perfect excuse:) Mimi and Pops babysat her for the day/night and the rest was history...
We stayed on Folly Beach, about 10 miles from our house, at a lovely Bed &Breakfast called Water's Edge Inn. To be so close to home, yet feel so far away was just what the Doctor ordered.

As much as we've traveled, we've never stayed at a B&B and really didn't know what to expect--we had a fabulous time! Everything was top notch; service, rooms, amenities and beyond. Our room had an awesome marsh view, beautiful Key West decor and was appropriately named 'The Hemingway.'

Matt and I arrived to a lovely room, set our bags down, opened the porch door and just the dead quiet! We honestly didn't know what to do next- what was once our normal, now felt foreign. Ha! It didn't take us long to relax and enjoy our time alone, although even after just a couple hours of being away from Mollie we both missed her company--funny how that happens.

We went downstairs to enjoy the Inn's happy hour, taking place daily from 4-7. We indulged in some wine and their specialty cocktail 'Folly Punch' made with the yummy local Firefly Lemonade Vodka and cranberry juice-delish! Note: that vodka flavor can only be bought locally as it's made with fresh lemons & has a 6 month shelf life

After happy hour, we went to dinner at Rita's down the street. Wonderful burgers and my guilty pleasure, a FRESH marg!

Post our early dinner, Matt & I couldn't wait for our most anticipated B&B amenity--the hot tub!! Not only was it a perfectly cold night for an outdoor hot tub, the marsh view at sunset could not be beat. Just perfect!!

The next morning we awoke to a delightful breakfast, which we opted to have in bed--naturally:)

We had the most wonderful time spending some good quality time together, but we sure did miss our little munchkin. So thankful we were able to take this much needed little break--thanks to Mimi, Pops and Dawn at Water's Edge!! We truly had an awesome experience and highly recommend friends visit this spot:)

Friday, January 7, 2011

Thinking of Having Kids?

A friend of Matt's just emailed this to me via Breastfeeding Basics website & I just HAD to share--Happy Friday everyone:)

Thinking of Having Kids?

Lesson 1
  1. Go to the grocery store.
  2. Arrange to have your salary paid directly to their head office.
  3. Go home.
  4. Pick up the paper.
  5. Read it for the last time.
Lesson 2
Before you finally go ahead and have children, find a couple who already are parents and berate them about their:
  1. Methods of discipline.
  2. Lack of patience.
  3. Appallingly low tolerance levels.
  4. Allowing their children to run wild.
Suggest ways in which they might improve their child's breastfeeding, sleep habits, toilet training, table manners, and overall behavior. Enjoy it, because it will be the last time in your life you will have all the answers.

Lesson 3
To discover how the nights will feel:
  1. Walk around the living room from 5PM to 10PM carrying a wet bag weighing approximately 8-12 pounds, with a radio turned to static (or some other obnoxious sound) playing loudly.
  2. At 10PM, put the bag down, set the alarm for midnight, and go to sleep.
  3. Get up at 12 and walk around the living room again, with the bag, until 1AM.
  4. Set the alarm for 3AM.
  5. As you can't get back to sleep, get up at 2AM and make a drink.
  6. Go to bed at 2:45AM.
  7. Get up at 3AM when the alarm goes off.
  8. Sing songs in the dark until 4AM.
  9. Get up. Make breakfast. Keep this up for 5 years.
Look cheerful.

Lesson 4
Can you stand the mess children make? To find out:
  1. Smear peanut butter onto the sofa and jam onto the curtains.
  2. Hide a piece of raw chicken behind the stereo and leave it there all summer.
  3. Stick your fingers in the flower bed.
  4. Then rub them on the clean walls.
Cover the stains with crayons. How does that look? 

Lesson 5
Dressing small children is not as easy as it seems.
  1. Buy an octopus and a small bag made out of loose mesh.
  2. Attempt to put the octopus into the bag so that none of the arms hang out.
Time allowed for this - all morning.

Lesson 6

  1. Take an egg carton. Using a pair of scissors and a jar of paint, turn it into an alligator.
  2. Now take the tube from a roll of toilet paper. Using only Scotch tape and a piece of aluminum foil, turn it into an attractive Christmas candle.
  3. Last, take a milk carton, a ping-pong ball, and an empty packet of Cocoa Puffs.
  4. Make an exact replica of the Eiffel Tower.

Lesson 7

Forget the BMW and buy a mini-van. And don't think that you can leave it out in the driveway spotless and shining. Family cars don't look like that.
  1. Buy a chocolate ice cream cone and put it in the glove compartment. Leave it there.
  2. Get a dime. Stick it in the cassette player.
  3. Take a family size package of chocolate cookies. Mash them into the back seat.
  4. Run a garden rake along both sides of the car.
There. Perfect.

Lesson 8

  1. Get ready to go out.
  2. Wait outside the bathroom for half an hour.
  3. Go out the front door.
  4. Come in again.Go out.
  5. Come back in.
  6. Go out again.
  7. Walk down the front path.
  8. Walk back up it.
  9. Walk down it again.
  10. Walk very slowly down the road for five minutes.
  11. Stop, inspect minutely, and ask at least 6 questions about every cigarette butt, piece of used chewing gum, dirty tissue, and dead insect along the way.
  12. Retrace your steps.
  13. Scream that you have had as much as you can stand until the neighbors come out and stare at you.
  14. Give up and go back into the house.
You are now just about ready to try taking a small child for a walk.

Lesson 9

Repeat everything at least, if not more than, five times. 

Lesson 10
Go to the local grocery store. Take with you the closest thing you can find to a pre-
school child. (A full- grown goat is excellent). If you intend to have more than one child, take more than one goat.
Buy your week's groceries without letting the goats out of your sight. Pay for everything the goat eats or destroys.
Until you can easily accomplish this, do not even contemplate having children.

Lesson 11

  1. Hollow out a melon.
  2. Make a small hole in the side.
  3. Suspend it from the ceiling and swing it from side to side.
  4. Now get a bowl of soggy Cheerios and attempt to spoon them into the swaying melon by pretending to be an airplane.
  5. Continue until half the Cheerios are gone.
  6. Tip half into your lap. The other half, just throw up in the air.
You are now ready to feed a nine- month old baby.

Lesson 12

Learn the names of every character from Sesame Street, Barney, Disney, the Teletubbies, and Pokemon. Watch nothing else on TV for at least five years.

Lesson 13 

Move to the tropics. Find or make a compost pile. Dig down about halfway and stick your nose in it. Do this 3-5 times a day for at least two years. 

Lesson 14
Make a recording of Fran Drescher saying "mommy" repeatedly. (Important: no more than a four second delay between each "mommy"; occasional crescendo to the level of a supersonic jet is required). Play this tape in your car everywhere you go for the next four years.
You are now ready to take a long trip with a toddler.

Lesson 15

Start talking to an adult of your choice. Have someone else continually tug on your skirt hem, shirt- sleeve, or elbow while playing the "mommy" tape made from Lesson 14 above. You are now ready to have a conversation with an adult while there is a child in the room.
(Author Unknown, but they must have had kids)
This is all very tongue in cheek, but as a mother of six, I can attest to the fact that there is a lot of truth in it. Share it with your friends, both those who do and don't have kids. I guarantee they'll get a chuckle out of it.
Remember, a sense of humor is one of the most important things you'll need when you become a parent.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Happy 1/2 Birthday!

Happy 1/2 Birthday Mollie!! You are officially 6 months old today, my precious:)

Thinking back on my childhood & some of the normal and abnormal (in a good way!) things I was a part of, most every memory brings a smile to my face. I had a GREAT childhood. One thing that has always been a part of my life are half birthdays...little did I know, this is apparently not the norm. Ha!

With my birthday being January 3, that makes my half birthday July 3- so needless to say around the time of the 4th of July, there is always a party going on! We'd most likely be at the beach (Gulf Shores, AL) and I'd have friends with me & we'd wear ourselves out swimming in the Gulf or pool. Mom would always make a special cake for my half birthday and it was just another sweet day each year to look forward to.

I guess sometimes you don't realize how those simple memories or traditions will seep into your own children, but funny how they do. And probably WILL turn into your mother at some point:) Lucky for me, I'd be honored.

So, now is the time to celebrate Mollie's first half birthday - cupcakes are on the menu I think! The fun part is that she & I can share our real birthday cakes with each other for their 1/2 birthdays since we're just 3 days different:) If she'll share...

Matt & I have been blessed these past 6 months with a sweet & healthy baby girl, who is just growing before our eyes! At times, I think I cannot wait until she grows up & she can do 'this or that' with me, and then times like last night where she is cuddled in my arms very ready for bed, not too big for me to just sit there & snuggle with her for a bit, I think- wait, I don't want to lose this!! As she rests her head on my shoulder, tousles my hair and touches my skin, I've never felt more content. I know these are the moments I'll miss so much once she grows up.

Can hardly believe we're half-way to 1 year..WOW! She's wonderful & we're blessed to call her ours!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Winter Wonderland

As we headed up to Beech Mountain, NC--about 30 minutes from Boone, we knew we'd get snow, but had no clue so much!! I haven't seen real snow (that sticks to the ground or accumulates) in ages and with it being Mollie's first Christmas, what an awesome memory we'll share:) It started to flutter Christmas Eve and then more & more...over 2ft in less than 3 days! It was awesome.

 Mollie's reach is totally there. The girl wants to reach for everything...and then put whatever it is directly in her mouth. So, unwrapping presents was fun, although she really just wanted to eat the paper. Sorry hun, no can do.

What did Santa bring me?!
Mollie of course was spoiled rotten playing with my sisters and being held all the time, but at the same time was much fussier than usual & her sleeping was horrible. Matt & I are chalking it up to altitude--Beech Mtn is the highest point on the Eastern coast! We also think the 6 month growth spurt could have started then too. She has been eating more frequently and sleeping less. Oh joy for all of us!We've officially deemed Molls a beach baby as opposed to a mountain baby. Overall, I hear ya sista!!
Totally helpless!
The Garrett's had one heck of a 2010 & hard to believe it's already 2011-WOW! Cheers to all of the wonderful people who make our lives so special and cheers to a happy & healthy new year!

Here's some more pics to see:) xoxo