Monday, December 30, 2013

Second Day of Christmas

On the second day of Christmas my grandpa gave to me: a ticket to the see The Nutcracker Ballet! And it was ahhhmazing. Nothing like nauseously in shape women and middle aged men in tights to really make you get that iron pumping. It was beautiful and I could hardly keep my legs still- how much trouble do you reckon I'd be in had I hopped on stage with them, busted a move or two? We did have pretty wonderful seats, despite the quality of these pictures. I'm sure I broke every no flash photography rule in the book.
On the third day of Christmas, we ate. And ate, and ate some more. At least this babe did. And he still looks just as good in his baby boy leggings as those male ballerinas. Round thighs and all. Yum. At eleven months old, Austin still favors fruit. He also finished off our Christmas HoneyBaked Ham, this babe knows where it's at! 
On the fourth day of Christmas my girlfriends and I enjoyed a night in, exchanging gifts and catching up. Austin even took part in a bit of late night fun- he got an extra special gift from his aunties that has been on his wish list for a while! The next day we met downtown to snap a few festive photos of the four of us. Any one else on board to start a Fort Pierce petition to keep this tree up year round??

These past few days have been spent with our Georgia family, and there are more of them coming for the New Year! We cannot wait! Little cousin Tyler will be paying this anxious babe a visit as well!
First official play date?! Little boys!

And, for the record, I am totally aware that my kid went around town without pants. Yes, it's a onesie. And yeah, he had shoes on. Live and let live, baby boy! We love those legs!
Didn't finish everything on your Christmas fun list? Welcome to the club. Too much to do, too little time. Join in on the Twelve Days of Christmas fun! In our book, we still have six more days to get Christmas out of our system. If it's possible. I wish you the happiest of New Years and the merriest of the rest of your Christmas days! 

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Twelve Days of Christmas

I hope everyone had an exciting and joyful Christmas day, filled with everything that you had hoped this Christmas would bring! Our Christmas was a relaxed one this year, and my day was complete as soon as I saw the joy in this babe's face with all of his new toys. Playing Santa is too much fun! Austin had to wait until today to open the last few of his presents, he was a bit overwhelmed yesterday with all of his new things! A very good boy, indeed!
As I was sitting in church during Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve, I began thinking how "tomorrow" was finally the day that I had been waiting for for months- and how it had snuck up so quickly! We did not get to nearly all of the fun I had planned, and I feel like we have been skimping on the Christmas festivities this last week. It was after our priest's homily about the Twelve Days of Christmas when I realized that Christmas had really only just begun. I can drag out these festivities, Christmas clothes, and pictures until Valentine's Day if I want to! Or at least the next ten days. That's not to say that Valentine's Day won't see some lingering Christmas decor  ;)  This babe and I will be ending 2013- and starting 2014- with a few more festive activities and a lot more holiday memories. We're ending this year with a big ol' bang.
It was 20... or 50... degrees short of a white Christmas here in Fort Pierce, but we sure did enjoy our tropical green Christmas! Hanging stockings from coconut trees and such. One day we will live our my white Christmas dream. Our skiing plans are a bust, but hey- we are amist the Twelve Days of Christmas and nothing can ruin these precious moments.

So don't pack away your garland and mistletoe quite yet. Build another gingerbread house. Watch more Christmas movies. And keep playing that cheerful music. This Christmas is here to stay for a few more days. Enjoy every minute of it!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Walking Around the Christmas Tree

The holiday season brought Austin a pair of walking legs! All I wanted for Christmas was some walking feet? Wish granted! (The two front teeth [plus a few extras] took up residence a few months back.) Austin began taking up to four or five steps on his own during our visit to Texas, which you can read about here and here. It wasn't until a solid week after we had been home that he really began to get the hang of it. We were Facetiming Great Grandma Peach when he all of a sudden went completely ballistic and walked clear across the room. A good 10 steps. He was wild, walking-almost running- around the room squealing with delight and smiling from ear to ear. A complete show off.  I have been taking videos like crazy! It's the silliest thing to watch this short little human follow you around the house on two legs. I can't get enough.  
He's pretty skilled in short to medium distances, and can sometimes pull off an entire condo walk through, one end to the other. Okay, it's a small place- but, nevertheless, my kid is walking across our home! Does this mean I can take him to Disney now?

Thank goodness Austin is not getting into any more mischief than usual with his newfound height. For the most part, he is a great listener and understands "no". If I told you that he has never completely ignored my command, smirked, and went about his merry way, I'd be lying. Last week he bit me. He bit me with his brand spanking new razor blade baby chompers. On purpose. There was no food involved, unless you count my arm. He walked over to me, looked me straight in the eyes with the sassiest look I have ever seen, and bit me.  Do not underestimate the attitude or bite of a baby. Just don't.
Well folks, I hope I don't need to remind you what tonight is. The stockings have been hung by the chimney china cabinet with care, Austin's nestled all snug in his bed, and he's having sweet visions of sugar-plums... or, you know, biting my arm. Probably the latter.

Goodnight, friends! And Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013


Who has two thumbs, is dressed up like a hipster and having breakfast at midnight?? THIS GIRL. No, not really. But I WILL BE twenty two at midnight, folks! I'll leave the hipstering to T Swift- but breakfast at midnight does sound pretty tasty. If we weren't already tucked away for the night. And stuffed to the max from my delicious Melting Pot birthday dinner. Dear God, cheese and chocolate coma. Better than any midnight breakfast I will ever have. So there, Miss Swift. 
Just the fact that I am not newly legal with a complimentary giant belly makes my birthday a bit more joyous this year. I'm sure you can appreciate that. I have put together a bit of a 23rd Year bucket list, each "to do" and event I hope to accomplish before my next birthday. 

1. Celebrate Austin's First Birthday
2. Graduate college
3. Watch my husband graduate
4. Get caught up with my scrapbook (almost a year behind... yikes)
5. Open an Etsy Shop
6. Go to Colombia
7. Learn more Spanish
8. Run in a race
9. Baptize Austin
10. Learn to drive my husband's Jeep
11. Finish renovating both condos
12. Lose the rest of my baby weight
13. Fight the temptation of a mom hair cut- keep the long hair
14. Go camping
15. Buy a fake, pre-lit Christmas Tree
16. Start reading again, for pleasure
17. Pay off half of the credit card
18. Start cooking

And chatterbox next to me wants his input noted...

19. Keep my side of the closet organized (dream big, babe)
20. Go to either Maine, Alaska, Hawaii, or California
21. Successfully learn how to drive stick shift
22. Get another dog (no, no, and no)
23. Have another baby (not this year, babe)
A toast to another wonderful year!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Holly Jolly PJ Party

Today we are linking up with the beautiful Darci over at The Good Life Blog for her virtual Christmas pajama party! Hellooo baby festiveness wrapped around these sweet little baby thighs and belly. Christmas jams are a huge staple in this house, we've been wearing them since Halloween! And by we, I mean Austin- though I'm not opposed to buying Juan and I matching onesies.

I will admit that I went a bit overboard on Christmas jammies this year. Austin has over 10 pairs... closer to 20. What is a mommy to do with all of this holiday cheer packed into such a tiny little sleep set and great sales?! Buy 16 pairs, obviously. Like a good portion of Austin's clothes, most of these sets are unisex. I'm going to "Hand Me Down" the holiday cheer as much as I can! Here are a few of our favorites ;)
Oh, and did I mention we have a walker!? At 11 months old! More on that later :) 

I found this adorable set of jammies at Cracker Barrell! Should I even be surprised?? I could probably knock all of my Christmas shopping off the list in that gift shop. Austin's Great Grandma Peaches also got him the same exact set! Great minds think alike! These will be in his Night Before Christmas basket- which, by the way, is approaching way too quickly!
I hope everyone is having a wonderful weekend! 

Wednesday, December 11, 2013


Like any normal overzealous, holiday happy, hashtag festive freak mom would tell you, the holidays are one hundred times better with a little one (or two or three) to share them with! We are indulging in as many fun activities and photo shoots that we possibly can for Austin's first Christmas season, oh what fun! Because he is so young, we aren't doing every tradition that we plan on doing with him in the future. Can you call it a tradition if it has yet to start? Well I am. I have so many ideas to make this holiday season a favorite of his- and oh by golly he will LOVE Christmas as much as the rest of this family!

Juan grew up celebrating Christmas at midnight on Christmas morning in Colombia. The kids opened all of their gifts at midnight, played a bit before bed, and then played some more after waking up. We hope to incorporate a bit of that into our Christmas traditions. Keeping an 11 month old up past midnight is like asking the grinch to put the star on top of your tree- so this year we will have a little "Night Before Christmas" basket for Austin that he can have right before bed. Eight O'Clock, no later! We don't want to catch Santa ;) His basket will have a new set of Christmas jammies, a Christmas movie or book, and a late night festive snack. I'm so excited! Can't we all wear giant Christmas onesies?! Juan? Please?
Our Midnight Mass tradition began last year, and it will definitely be a favorite for years to come. Oh, the beauty of the Midnight Mass, it's incredible! It's such a remarkable feeling, celebrating the season and meaning of Christmas at the stroke of midnight. Though he tagged along in my belly last year, the babe will have to stay at home this time. Like I said, the Midnight hour is a no go for this one.

A few more traditions that we would like to start/keep alive include
1. Go "Christmas Lighting" at night with hot chocolate and Christmas music
2. Decorate a Gingerbread House. Or a Gingerbread Princess Castle.
3. See a Christmas movie, play, or musical
4. Toys for Tots
5. Bake cookies for Santa and reindeer food for Rudolph
What are some of your traditions? 

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Oh Christmas Tree

If you're ever considering dragging the family out to a Christmas tree farm in 80 degree Florida weather, take my advice- don't. Or do, and then really draw out the process of choosing the perfect tree in the scorching heat and never ending rows of possible candidates. Then post a blog about it. In any event, your husband will either be disappointed you don't have a tree or grouchy that he had to go in to work all sweaty. But hey, we have a real Christmas tree! Now let me preach why I was immediately reminded of my love for fake, pre lit trees.

1. Making your husband trudge through rows upon rows of trees in 80 degrees carrying a 23 pound squatter is just asking for trouble. Don't believe me? Try it. I dare ya.
2. Going to a tree farm with no prior knowledge of the different kinds of Christmas trees is also just plain dumb. Guess what? The most "Christmasy" looking trees cannot support most ornaments. Crack under pressure in a second. Snap.
3. Rethink your decision to politely deny the tree farm family's offer to buy one of their tree stands. Walmart seems to think tree stands are a one size fits all kind of thing. We are now owners of a tree stand that cannot get a grip of our tiny little tree stump. Don't worry, you can always stuff a dish towel around it to fill the extra space and pray to God that your kid doesn't go ape shit on it.

4. Pine needles hurt worse than bearing a child. They also leave pricks far worse than any sort of post-baby stitches. Kidding. Kind of.
5. String lights should come with instructions on how to correctly decorate a tree. If you're not twirling them around your balcony, or wrapping them around your babe for a photo shoot (which, by the way, needs to happen), these things can be a chaotic cluster fuck of a mess. I can't even. And I won't even- never again.

So this all seemed a bit more entertaining than awful- good! I originally wrote this post out of pure bitterness and hatred for my 7 foot prickly plant taking up space in my living room. What a relief it is having it up, somewhat straight, and decorated. Well, decorated as much as the weak branches will allow. It's our first tree and I can't say that this was not worth it.
...Though it doesn't change my mind about our fake one next year.
Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Texas Part II

Since we've gotten back from Texas,  I've been in such a cleaning mood- you'd think it was Spring cleaning in the Martinez home. I was literally down on all fours scrubbing the tile during Austin's entire morning nap. Would you believe I have not actually given the floors a good cleaning since we've moved in? Yes, yes you would. We have an awesome steamer that I've been using, but this is the first time this new tile has seen heavy duty chemicals and cleaning. Phew! What a morning! Time for Part II of our Texas trip! You can read Part I, Austin's first Thanksgiving, here.

We were in Texas for six days and I don't think I was bored once. Not once.  Obviously there was down time- family time, just enjoying everyone's company. But for almost an entire week, there was not one moment that I had nothing to do or found myself bored. I considered it a treat to find time to whip out my computer! Most mornings and evenings were spent playing with cousins in the house. Austin proved himself to be a big family kind of babe. How I wish we could live closer to his cousins!


Juan was a little too concerned about the swing color. The same man that has a total conniption if I try to put a headband on Austin just for fun. Men! After church on Sunday we hung out in the church play yard for a bit and watched this babe enjoy the comfort of a manlier swing. Austin's cousin then took him for a first class Barbie car ride. Take that, daddy!

When we weren't lounging around in the house or playing outside, we were exploring San Antonio! Juan and I even got a couple of nights out- alone. We went down to River Walk one night and had planned on touring The Alamo, but it was closed for the night. Guess that means we will be coming back next year! ;)
This time with family has meant so much to us, words cannot describe the feeling of just living every day life with family nearby and enjoying the company of loved ones. If you had asked me about 3 years ago where I saw myself in 3 or 4 years, I would have said Florida. I didn't travel much growing up, so Florida was all that I knew. Juan has such big dreams to travel and move around, I can't help but to hop on board with the plan making. It's too fun! We now see ourselves in a state alive with the seasons,  surrounded by family. Who knows, maybe down the road Texas won't be a 3 hour flight away! Georgia also holds a special place in our hearts. We're not opposed to becoming year round peaches, either! The possibilities of life! Dream big, right? 

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Texas Part I: Thanksgiving

Happy December! This year has just flown by... December, already!?! With Christmas inching nearer, so too does the realization that my baby is almost ONE.  To think I will only have seventeen more of these, I can't even. These cheeks, mine forever. 
We spent the last of our November days in Texas, and we got back home to Jacksonville last night. We were sad to leave the wonderful weather and family fun behind, but we are definitely anxious to start decorating our own tree and pick up Duke later today! Thanksgiving was a success, hands down my favorite one ever! I'm so happy that Austin was able to experience such an amazing Thanksgiving. He won't remember it when he's older, but then again, daddy may not either ;) The food was awesome, the company was better, and the weather was perfect. We began our Thanksgiving day with the Macy's  Parade- and this was the first year in a long time that I was actually awake for the beginning of it! We enjoyed staying in our jammies all morning and cozying up in the cold Texas weather. The house soon became a bakery with the scent of the season circulating around the kitchen and living room. We made Pecan Pie and brought it with us to the feast at a family friend's. We joined Juan's aunt's friend and her family for Thanksgiving. We also celebrated the first day of Hanukkah with them. They had the house decorated for both celebrations and they made us feel at home as soon as we walked in the door.
Austin was cheesing all that his cheeks would let him- he enjoyed the company and extra attention most of all. He crawled from room to room and I basically spent the afternoon shuffling after him. Family pictures were in short supply, but the crazy amount of food and fun made up for it. It's funny how complete strangers can completely make your Thanksgiving- Juan and I walked into the house knowing five people, and walked out knowing about fifteen.

We ended our Thanksgiving with stuffed bellies and  full hearts. Life never ceases to amaze me. My perspective has changed so much after becoming a mommy, I have grown in so many different ways. I have so much to be thankful for, we are truly blessed. These are the best days of our lives, after all! Watching this angel grow and enjoy life- it warms my heart!