Monday, January 31, 2011

Storm Watch with the Strongs

Bring it on Super Bowl Storm of 2011!  We're ready! 

Robot comforter to snuggle in - CHECK! 

Warm mittens to wear if it snows - CHECK (got them in the mail today)!

Our fav spot to watch cartoons - in the crook of the sectional sofa.

Sorry fuzzy but he was laughing so hard patting Sully with his new mittens

So, Mom said she ordered them in my size, but they seem a little big to me!

They have owls on them!

13 Months Old

If I had written this post on Wyatt's actual 13 month birthday, it would be VERY different.  In the last couple days, my sweet easy-going fella has become a whiney, tantrum throwing nerd.  Whoever stole my kid and replaced him with this alien, please return him IMMEDIATELY.  I will pay the ransom!

We are hoping this is just teething and not a sudden switch into nasty toddlerism.

For Wyatt's 13 month birthday, on Friday, we celebrated by having lunch with Daddy downtown.  We strolled around a bit, enjoying the beautiful weather and got to see some of the ESPN stages being setup for the Super Bowl.

After that, we met up with the other 13 month olds, Luke and Brody, and their Mommy, Courtney and big brother, Cole, at the zoo.  It was a BEAUTIFUL day!  Thought we should enjoy the weather while it lasts (hello big winter storm headed our way).

Wyatt holding hands with Brody, and Luke, with a mouthful of PB&J.


- Wy points at EVERYTHING, wanting you to name it and then let him touch it. The past few days, if there is not enough touching allowed, an all out crying fit ensues.  He really loves pressing the beeping buttons in the microwave and turning on and off lights.

- Wy's fav foods are grilled cheese, PB&J, waffles, bananas, mandarin oranges.  Usually a good eater, he has hit an anti-veggie and not interested in eating much phase - again hoping this is just the teething.

- He has started really paying attention to music on the radio and TV.  He dances (read: bounces and bobs) when he hears it. We go to music class at TCU once a week and he enjoys it and gets more 'involved' everytime we go.

- I can't really list words he can say b/c one day he'll walk around pointing at duck's in his book and say "duck" and then we won't hear the word for a week or more. He readily uses Mama, Dada, NightNight (only for naps), MumMum (for food or drink), and his lastest addition Grandad. Although he will say it when he points to a picture of my Dad, he also just wanders around the house saying it. They came to visit this weekend so it is fresh on his mind. He'll also make certain noises for his trucks, says "moo, baa-baa, and neigh" when reading animal books. Most of the time though, all animals, when asked, make the monkey noise. 

- We still have no stranger anxiety and are not afraid of the dark (he'll wander into any room of the house and play, even with no lights on).  He has no fear and is ready to run everywhere.  I see a monkey backpack with a leash tail in our future.

- Still only have 4 teeth, but are working on some more.

- Wyatt always wants to be outside.  He spends half of the day at the backdoor begging for me to take him out.  He hollers "Mama!" and then points at the knob when I come over.  I have done it as much as possible lately (even with the cedar fever, I just dope myself up on allergy meds), but I know he is going to get some bad cabin fever when the weather turns cold this week.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


This is by no means a great photo, but it makes me smile.  We hosted playgroup yesterday and had a great time with old and new friends.  I forgot to take pictures throughout the event, but snapped one after everyone had left but some of our besties, the Plumbley twins (Luke & Brody).  Sully had been forced to stay in the laundry room for the morning (he would want to lick all the babies), so when it was just the triple trouble crew left, I let him out to clean up the floors.  I let him outside and all the boys were wanting him to come back in.

I love Wyatt's smile in this picture...he was a bit sad during playgroup that his most favorite playmate was locked up.  When I let him out he was laughing and SO excited to see Sully.  His little smile looks like "thanks mom"!

It is so hard to believe it has only been 11 months since they looked like the below pic (it was taken on their 2 month birthday).  My how fast the time flies!

Fun Mom, Crazy Mom

I know it is only a few years away that I will hear "ahh, mom! you're no fun!".  So I wanted to document a time when I was a fun Mom.

On Sunday, I asked JB to get our mini bounce house down from the attic.  My parents found it a while back at a garage sale.  We were hosting playgroup on Tuesday and I was hoping the weather might cooperate for the kids to be able to play outside for a bit (it didn't). Anyway, JB went to work on Sunday afternoon and I stared at the deflated bounce house on the back patio.  It was cold and I didn't want to mess with sitting out there with the compressor blowing it up.  So, after doing some eyeballing-it measurements, I drug it into the house and into our entryway - perfect fit!

Needless to say, JB was a little surprised when he came home to find a fun house filling up our entrway!  No, I will not always allow outside toys in the house, but an exception every once in a while is okay, right? 

Sunday, January 23, 2011

The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls

I polled my Facebook friends and got quite the list of books to read this year. So, armed with list in hand, Wyatt and I headed to the library last week.  Many of the books were new popular ones, so they weren't available and I hadn't had the chance to go online and reserve them. 

I checked out The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls.  She is a journalist and I think is featured a lot on  This is her memoirs of her childhood being raised by two very eccentric parents.  Although eccentric is just really the PC term for crazy and irresponsible.

As I read the first few chapters, I didn't know if I could continue reading this book. It is disturbing sometimes, the neglect she and her 3 siblings received.  But she manages to write the book in a way that she shows the "good" that was experienced, how it built her as a person and how incredibly she and her siblings managed to accomplish what they did after such an upbringing.  She also manages to write it in a way that she does not show a lot of anger towards her parents, which was amazing.  It is a quick read - I finished it in about a week (just reading in the evenings before bed).

She is a very admirable woman and it was a true uplifting story in the end about acceptance of people and situations and rising above those things that could easily prevent you from achieving your dreams.  I look forward to reading some more of her books and writings.

NOTE: If you do not use your public library, you are DUMB and letting a fantastic free resource go to waste. I used to be dumb as well and bought the books I wanted to read. Even though I went to Half Price Books most times, I still should not have spent the money when I could get a book for FREE.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Product Review: Dritz Res Q Tape

Want to be able to wear flats with a pair of pants one time and heels the next?  NO PROBLEM!

For more than a few years now, I have always kept a supply of Res Q Tape in my utility room.  When I wore suits everyday, I especially used to to be able to wear different shoes with my pants.  now I use it or all sorts of things. 

It is even strong enough to use to "hem" up jeans to be worn with flats during the summer.  It stays well and I just have to remember to remove it before I throw them in the wash.

I have found other uses for it as well.  Have a stubborn belt where the end always sticks out?  Use a little tape to keep it down. Getting dressed and suddenly notice a hem on a shirt that is coming undone? Stick some tape on it now and worry about fixing it later!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Stock Show 2011

I LOVE the rodeo.  The smell of hay and farm animals.  Watching the events and cute cowboys - what could be better?!?

Being in the Junior League, I get to volunteer for the fun of selling programs.  I really enjoy it.  I get to scream and sell and enjoy the atmosphere and energy.  This year, they were kind enough to give all of us JL girls working at the rodeo season passes to the stock show and expo.  So, with two warmer days this week, Wyatt and I went for both. The first day we were lucky enough to have Nana, Aunt Amanda, Cousin Tessa and Cousin Grace join us. The next day we met up with some friends for a bit and then Wy and I explored just the two of us.  We'll be using our pass again many times over the next couple weeks!

I am always horrible about taking pictures, but got a couple with my phone and my mom took some that she passed on.  Wyatt loved it all!  I was nervous as this was the first time for him to be around big animals and I didn't know if it would scare him, but he was a bold curious boy like always!  I can't wait for Wyatt to get old enough to enjoy the actual rodeo!

Getting to see a baby goat up close with Grace.  He was pouting a bit at first, but then we let him pet his own goat he and he perked up.

Giving Elsie the Borden Cow some love at the expo

Trying on hats at the expo.  How does this one look, Mom?

Checking out the petting zoo....asking him if he wanted to go in. He gave me the nod, so we went in!

He was bold as ever at the petting zoo.  Mommy was just worried about the goats that were bigger than him.

Pony Rides

Pony Rides

1 Year Stats

Wyatt had his 1 month checkup this week and his stats are as follows:

Weight: 21 lbs 8.5 ounces (55th Percentile)
Height: 29 inches (50th Percentile)
Head: 47 cm (75th Percentile)

He got 4 shots OUCH and he cried like crazy. Poor baby!  But by the time we got home, he was back to his happy self and didn't have any problems with them yet (these shots they say can cause fever 5-10 days after the shots).

We LOVE our pediatrician. Dr. W sits on the floor and plays with Wyatt and was impressed with how bold he was.  He smiled sheepishly and hid partially behind a chair with the doctor first came in, but within a minute was stealing Dr. W's pen and trying to flip through his chart and take his stethoscope.  Dr. W said why was a "healthy brave boy". 

When he asked if I had any concerns or questions, I asked about Wy's eczema and if there was anything I should be doing differently to treat it (right now we just run a humidifier in his room, make sure not to bathe him too much, use mild soaps and put topical treatment on it).  Doctor said it looked fine and as soon as the weather warmed up, it would probably go away.  We are so blessed that something that small is all I have concerns about.  I also asked a bit about his lack of "words" and Dr. W said he was right on track with all his babbling and since he was a kid who did a lot of physical stuff early, words coming after age 1 was normal.

Here is my big boy before we headed out to the doctor!  I can't believe how big he is getting!

check out the baby-proofing bungy cords behind him! only thing that would work on those cabinets haha.

Cotton Bowl

A couple weekends ago, JB and I got to go to the Cotton Bowl with our friends Aly and Blake.  Blake got a hook-up through work with some great free tickets.  We were so glad they invited us!  Neither of them are Aggies, so we were excited they doned maroon and cheered with us.

Although the Aggies couldn't pull out a win, we had a great time.  Thanks to JuJu and Doc who spent the evening with Wyatt while Mommy and Daddy went to the game!

Beautiful sunset at Jerryworld

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Product Review: Bare Minerals Eye Cream

As part of the 2011 "Me Maintenance" item, I have started using eye cream.  The bags under my eyes were dark and apparent.  Also, I would get these tiny little white bumps (only seen if I looked really close) but a lady at a cosmetics counter told me that was actually dry skin.

SO, the next time I was at the Bare Minerals store getting makeup (which I also highly recommend), I picked up some eye cream. Normally it is $28 but b/c they are redoing their packaging it is on sale currently for $19.  I stocked up on the stuff.  You can buy it HERE.

I have been using it twice a day (morning and night) for about 4 weeks now and have noticed CRAZY results.  The dark circles under my eyes have lightened dramatically, the little white bumps are gone and in general my eyes just look much more rested.

Me Maintenance

I originally had an item on my 2011 list of "Get healthy" but it didn't correctly describe what my goal is, so I have changed it to "Me maintenance."  As it is not about getting into shape or something, but just overall keeping myself (mind and body) fit.  HAHA, who's blog did you think you were reading?  Did you really think I meant I was going to workout!?!?  HAHAHAHA

I am going to start being better about going to a spa treatment every once in a while (good for the mind and body), telling myself it is okay to sit on the couch and watch TV while Wyatt naps (instead of spending the hour frantically doing house chores), just maintaining balance in my life in general.  I have been pretty good about it, but as the title says "maintenance" it is about keeping/maintaining that balance.  And if anything gets put on the back burner, 9 times out of 10 it is me or dusting :)

Okay, I'm going to be honest here.  I turned 30 and everything just started to go to hell.  I have been diagnosed with vertigo (rare for someone of my age), am struggling harder than ever to try to maintain my weight (I just wish I could hit 100lbs), my skin is looking tired and my hair has been falling out ever since I gave birth to Wyatt (OVER A YEAR AGO!!).  So, I am going to work on what I can. 
I am vowing to GAIN WEIGHT - yes, yes, I know many of you just spit at your computer screens at that statement, but I have enacted PROJECT EAT around my house where I am counting calories and trying to put some junk in my trunk.  All of those that know me well, know I have constantly struggled to put on weight but what used to just be a high metabolism (although still there) is also a bad habit of not eating enough during the day while I chase after an active toddler. 
I once read "Extra weight when you are younger, makes you look old.  Extra weight when you are older, makes you look young."  So now as I age, I need that extra fat to help fill out the approaching lines and wrinkles that are forming on my body! 
In addition to gaining weight, I am also vowing to start using PRODUCTS.  I know there are no miracle creams and vitamins out there, and it is a little late now to prevent the age spots that are already covering my body BUT, I can prevent more from coming!  So I am going to be better about washing and moisturizing my face before bedtime, applying eye cream (stay tuned for a future post) and never leaving the house without my sunscreen.
Let the maintenance begin!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Book Review: Repairman Jack Series by F. Paul Wilson

I just finished my first book of the year - Infernal by F. Paul Wilson.   

Repairman Jack is a guy you go to get things "fixed".  He is basically a mercenary living off the grid that can handle "iffy" situations for those who need him.  While on his jobs and just in his general life, he encounters some weird stuff.

They are great books....perfect for traveling, waiting at the doctor's office and just mindless entertainment.  Definitely not thought riveting or make you smarter kind of books.  They are definitely full of science fiction, but not like he is Hans Solo - Jack lives in NY in present times.

I have read three of them so far (The Tomb, Conspiracies and Infernal).....not in order and I skipped around.  I kind of wish I would have read them in order, because there are elements of his personal life that are put in the books.  But each can stand on its own.  I am sure I will read more of them to continue filling my quota for the year.

Here is Wilson's webpage if you want to check it out.  He also just started a young reader's line!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

2011 To Do List

I have never made New Year's Resolutions that I can remember, but I thought, why not make a "to do list" for the year?  And why not post it so I am not only held accountable for getting them done, but I can see throughout the year the things I have accomplished.

I am a HUGE list maker.  Most people know that about me.  On my kitchen countertop sits a notebook that lists all the items I am going to try to get done during my week. I make the list every Sunday evening, along with my grocery list and cross it off and add to it throughout the week. 

Lists do two big things for me:

1. Keeps me focused on what is important and what is priority. 

I am easily distracted by little things around the house and on my way to simply get a soda from the garage fridge, if Wyatt is napping, I'll get sidetracked and start sweeping out and organizing the garage, head back in the house and completely forget what I even went out there for! 

2. Gives me a sense of accomplishment.

There are weeks that I wake up and go "CRUD, It is already Friday!" and I feel like I have gotten nothing done in the past 4 days.  But then I look at the list and see that I have gotten things done.

So, to the right you'll see the list. They are in no particular order and some are kind of subjective but I will mark them off when I feel they have been completed.  Note, I might add items in the future as well and will be blogging about each one individual as the year goes on.

Wish me luck!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

John Wyatt is 1 Year Old!!

- Wyatt no longer walks, he RUNS everywhere.  He is super fast too! Also adding to his new physical capabilities - dancing.  Although it is more like a bounce with a serious face, but it is super cute.

- His favorite toy is a stuffed bear that he picked out at Brookstone, for 7 dollars.  Santa brought it to him.  He totes it EVERYWHERE and I think it is definitely earning the title of "THE TOY".

- Wyatt is a super focused kid....he will sit for long periods of time playing with his kitchen set, reading books (he LOVES books) and putting his sorting blocks in and out of their bucket.  Although he isn't able to know which holes the blocks go in yet, if you point to the one to put it in, he can maneuver it in with impressive dexterity.  He was doing this over and over last night and actually started crying when JB stopped helping him.  He loves doing detailed things, like turning on and off the light switches.

- Height and weight will have to come a little late, as our 1 year checkup is not until January 17th.  He wears 12 month clothes, generally, although many of our pants are 9 month size - dang those Strong stubby legs!  He thinned out for a bit when he started running so much, but has plumped back up again. He still wins the award for the softest most kissable chubby cheeks.

- He is still not a "talker".  He babbles and makes all sorts of noises, including the new one of clicking his tongue and then laughing, but other than "dada" "mama" and "mum mum" (food) we don't get much else.
 that is consistently recognizable.  Sometimes he will tell you "neh neh" (sounds almost like no-no) if you are doing something he doesn't want you to....think he is told no-no sometimes? HAHA

-Wyatt is constantly giving the finger...the pointer finger that is.  He points and grunts at EVERYTHING, wanting you to name it. He won't repeat it, just kind of gives a satisfied look that says "noted, maybe I will say that later."

-Although a man of few words, he can identify a lot of things....night night, shoes, toes, family members (mama, dada, sully), fan, light, ball, puppy (stuffed animal), fire truck and other toys. He also definitely understands phrases like "come on back" which is what I holler when he has been too long in another room.  He also definitely understands "let's go" and will head to the garage door or "dada's home" and he and Sully both head to the garage door. 

- Wyatt has 4 teeth (two on top and two on bottom) and with the amount of drool and lack of sleep that is going on these past couple weeks, we are pretty sure there are some more teeth coming in.

- His most impressive party trick - he is working on dribbling the kickball with his feet. We us his Yookidoo tent like a coal and he will kick it in there and then clap and holler "YAH!" for himself (we sound like a Swede when we celebrate).  If concentrating and not distracted, he will dribble the ball around the bar in our kitchen. It is quite impressive - ESPECIALLY SINCE I TAUGHT HIM :)  Daddy was very happy with me that I have started him early on soccer :)

The next Landon Donovan?  He is destined to have the same hairline - sorry, had to get a jab at JB in there ;)
 -The most fun thing....I could write TWICE as much on this blog about all the new things he is doing, but I don't want to inundate y'all too much with "my kid is so cool" facts.  I won't make a promise..but I will TRY to keep his updates a little shorter from now on.

Best thing about being 1 year old ?  You get to eat PB&J sandwiches - YUM!!!

Double the sugar, Double the fun

Wyatt was a very lucky boy this year to have 2 birthday parties.  We decided to celebrate with my family while we were down in Georgetown with everyone and then hosted JB's family (less Aunt Christal who was skiing) at our house on Wyatt's birthday evening.

He did great with both cakes (the boy loves desserts)!  As with Christmas presents, he wasn't super interested in unwrapping gifts, but loved all his new toys when they were out of the boxes and ready to be played with.

Going at his super big smash cake (we didn't realize it would be so big) at his 1st, 1st birthday party.  He even wore his hat the whole time!

SO, maybe the blue icing was not such a smart idea! Haha.  Wyatt dove into his 2nd 1st birthday cake!

Christmas 2010

We had a good Christmas this year.  As with every year it is a little hectic trying to make sure we get to see everyone and get everywhere and this year it was especially new with having Wyatt with us.  He did fabulous though.

Christmas Eve we went to the kid's service at First Presbyterian downtown and Wy did great.  The only time he didn't sit quietly in my lap and listen was when we, the congregation clapped and cheered during the Christmas story and it startled him, so I had to slip out with him for a bit to calm him down.  After that, we drove to Dallas for the Annual Woolley Family Christmas Party (my father-in-law's family).  Wyatt was the hit of the party. He is the only great-grandchild and they haven't had a baby in the family in 12 years, so he was having fun with all the attention.  He spent the whole night just running through the house. 

Christmas morning we had Santa gifts at our house and went to JuJu and Doc's for breakfast so we could see Grandma Margaret (who had not felt well enough to come to the Christmas Eve party).  We then got on the road to Georgetown. We spent Saturday thru Monday with my family.

I was HORRIBLE about taking pics and didn't get any of our Christmas with the Strong side of the family - but as many of you know, Wyatt's Doc has a camera permenantly attached around his neck, so I am sure I can get them from him and add to this post later.

Here are a couple from "Santa" at our house and opening one of his favorite gifts this year - his car from Nana and Grandad.  It was also nice weather at Nana and Grandad's so we got to play outside some.  Wyatt would rather be outisde running around than anywhere else.

Santa brought Wyatt a super cute chair, new car blanket with puppies on it and a puppy to love.

And boy does he LOVE his puppy.  He totes it around everywhere.  I think this one might be one of those that Mommy has to repair later on b/c he might hang around for a while.

His legs are still a little short (surprise surprise) to reach the floor, but it comes with a baseboard so that he can just ride while we push him.

Giving Cousin Tessa a turn.  We had to work on "turns" a lot with the car and these two.

Hanging outside with Grandad.

Figuring out the Dora 4-wheeler!

Vertigo Award

I forgot to share my favorite part of my appointment with Dr. A.  When I was at the office, I noticed I was the only person under the age of 75 there.  I asked the doctor if it was weird to get this so young and he replied.  "It sure is!  Congrats, Emily, you are one of my youngest patients with vertigo!" 

I didn't know how to respond so I said "Thanks.  I have always been advanced for my age."

Oh, and I have significant high frequency hearing loss in my left ear....but we are hoping that is due to congestion and cedar fever season.

I thought my body had a few more years before it started giving out on me...oh well, you turn 30, I suppose, and it all goes to heck! HAHA. If you can't laugh at something in your situation, what can you do?

Tuesday, January 4, 2011


I am behind on blogging.....I have not uploaded Christmas gifts or pictures of Wyatt on his 1st birthday!

I hope to do this soon, but until then I must tell you about my New Year's Eve.

I woke up on Friday, New Year's Eve morning unable to get out of bed even unable to sit up.  The room was spinning and I was so sick and I knew something was terribly wrong.  It was about 6:30am and JB's alarm for work hadn't gone off yet.  I woke him up and told him "Call Dad.  Something is really wrong!" he asked me to hand him the phone and I started to cry and said "I can't".  I was trying not to freak out, but it was really hard.

In all my life, I cannot remember ever being so terrified.  I had a scare with my heart a few years ago.  I have given birth to a child.  But nothing has scared me like this feeling.  On top of the feeling of not knowing what is wrong with you, I was overwhelmed with the fact that I was completely incapacitated and could not even go to my child.  Strange...I knew JB was there, my in-laws down the road, my sister was immediately called and on her way to my house and my mom heading up as well, but I could not care for Wyatt.  This terrified me like nothing else.  I know being a mom is putting your child before yourself, but I never imagined it would kick in so strong in a such a panicked state.

I am very blessed to have a doctor father-in-law who has connections.  He called an Ear doctor who was headed out that morning to go hunting but hadn't left his house yet AND he lives 5 minutes from us.  Those couple hours before he came were the strangest time of my life.  I desperately needed to go the bathroom but the thought of JB carrying me and jostling me made me just want to wet the bed instead - I DIDN'T.  Instead I hugged a pillow around my head, fell to the bedroom floor where we had put a sheet and JB dragged me to the doorway of the bathroom.  I could barely sit up and once I moved around to go to the bathroom, then the barfs started.  I finally made it back to the bed and the doctor came. 

I am forever grateful to Dr. A.  He was great - he moved me to the floor and proceeded to do something called the Epley Movements to realign the crystals in my inner ear tubes (this is how I best understood it).  He was rolling my head around, laying me down and sitting me up and kept on having to stop to grab the trashcan, although I did hold it in b/c I would have felt AWFUL to barf in front of him.  He eventually got thru all the movements without me having to stop and placed me back up in bed and said I should feel better in the next couple days, stay upright (even when sleeping) and call him first of the next week. 

All weekend I was still severely dizzy but just functioning b/c I didn't know what else to do.  I went back to Dr. A today and did 2 hours of tests.  They did another Epley treatment and I will again be sleeping upright in the office recliner for the next few days.  Good news - it is nothing SUPER serious.  I have BPPV, which is a kind of vertigo and recurrence of episodes are very likely (yuck) but at least it is something that I am now aware of and will understand when/if there is another episode. 

So, our year has started off a little rough, to say the least.....but you never really appreciate your health and what you have until you have such a scare.  JB and I are so blessed to be healthy ourselves and more importantly have a healthy child.  We are so blessed to be surrounded by loving family and friends ready to help out whenever we need them. 

God is good.