Monday, May 30, 2011

Happy Birthday Liliana!

Liliana dearest,

This month marks the last of Daddy's and my monthly letters to you because believe it or not, you turned a year old a few days ago ... I can't believe it.  I must admit that I cried about 10 times the week before because I knew you were no longer a tiny baby ... you're growing in to my gorgeous sweet girl. On May 20th, before we put you to bed, I took you in my arms and tears were streaming down my face.  I knew that when you woke up the next morning, you wouldn't be "11 months" when people asked.  You would now be an entire year old!

 You were such a pretty and happy girl on your birthday!

You're not quite walking yet, although you cruise and walk behind ANYTHING in sight.  You don't only walk behind your actual walker ... you think your high chair makes an excellent one and believe the same about the bubble wrap we bought to help secure our things when we move!  I think you'll probably be walking pretty darn soon here.

 I don't know why, but seeing you all naked is adorable.

At your yearly check-up we received some wonderful news!  Dr. Scott said your verbal skills were in the NINETEEN month range!  You really do say QUITE A FEW words...about 20 last time I counted.  My favorite ones are:

(1) Bye Bye
(2) Hello
(3) Hi
(4) Peek a Boo
(5) Doggie
(6) Ball
(7) Shhh
(8) Uh oh
(9) Zapatos (the only words you say in Spanish ... shoes ... you really are my daughter!)

 Look at you walking in for your big birthday debut!  You were the star of the party!

He seemed really impressed by this, and we are too!  Whenever we're in stores with people, they always act amazed that you look them in the eye, wave, say "bye bye" and then proceed to blow them a kiss.  They're shocked when I say you're only 11 or 12 months old.  Just before you turned one, you started with the "hello" or "hi" with your wave too.  To say you get attention when we're out is a complete understatement.  In fact, Mommy counted the other day ... we were in Home Depot for EXACTLY 30 minutes and THIRTY people came to say how beautiful or how charismatic you were.  This is what we've been going through for AN ENTIRE YEAR.  We have never been able to go out without at least ten people saying ooh and ahh to you.  I honestly don't blame them though.  You just have something about you ... that thing that attracts others to you.  You're perfect.

 Your eyes are HUMONGOUS.  They never really changed colors after you were born, so we never have been able to ascertain what color they are ... our best guess is green, gray?  DEADLY combination with your dark hair and olive complexion! 
Daddy's going to have to be beating the boys off with a stick!

At your 1 year old visit, you weighed 21.5 pounds and were 30 inches.  You were in the 75th percentile for both.  Pretty impressive for a preemie!  You were wearing size 3 diapers, although we quickly transitioned you to size 4's in the evening right after your birthday to help you not wake up with pee pee everywhere.  You had five teeth on your birthday!  In ONE WEEK you had three teeth come out the day before your birthday.  It was quite eventful but as usual, you handled it like a pro.

 You went through THREE birthday outfits.  Mommy only bought one of them ... but I am SO glad others had bought you some because you got kinda dirty when you got a hold of your cake .......

 Oh yes ... this happened.

Some of my favorite things that you do are:

(1) give people high fives whenever they put their hand up
(2) look at Linda (the dog) and say "the doggie!" and then bark (it's the cutest thing...you bark like a beagle and tilt your little head up while saying "ooooo")
(3) you take my cell phone and put it up to your ear and make babbling noises as though you're having a conversation with someone
(4) you brush my hair and your hair (even though you still don't have much of it)
(5) You point at your feet, say zapato, point at the shoe, and then lie on your back with your feet straight up in the air.  I guess you like having your shoes on! ; )

Thank you for being our daughter.  I simply adore you.  I think you are THE BEST baby any set of parents could have asked for ... we are so thrilled we had a baby girl first ... you fit us perfectly.  I LOVE YOU.

I think you like frosting ...


Love with ALL her heart,

Mommy

Sunday, May 29, 2011

My Husband, the DOCTA!

I haven't posted in quite a long time.  And OH SO VERY MUCH has happened since.  There is just no way I could get it all in one post without it taking 2 hours to write.  In the last 2 weeks, my husband became a doctor, I had 30 people in town for two parties I threw, my daughter turned one, we SOLD OUR HOUSE (yep you read right, it sold THE DAY we left!), AND we packed everything in to a moving truck and are trying our very best to settle in to our new house.  Needless to say ... a tad busy huh?

I wanted to take this post to talk all about Evan's big day. 

On May 20th, Evan became Dr. Lacefield.  I was SO freaking proud of him.  He was sweet enough to ask ME to hood him!  In order to hood someone, you have to have your doctorate too and fortunately, the D in JD stands for just that!  Wanna see what he did right after I hooded him?

video

Everyone at the graduation LOVED that he gave me a big smooch on stage!  There were 6 other couples that had a spouse hood them too, but Evan said they were lame since they only hugged.  I guess he decided we needed to be unique, haha.

 Graduation was at 3:30.  We made it at 3:10 ... we were supposed to get there at 3, but I had been baking cupcakes for 4 hours and Evan had been loading the truck with all our family members.  It wasn't a relaxing morning AT ALL.

BUT, we managed to totally relax and enjoy the event!
This is in line waiting for his name to be called.

 Last time I was wearing my law robe, I was having contractions!  I MUCH preferred the way I looked now! Haha.
This was AFTER he was already Dr. Lacefield!
 LOVED this picture.  He might be a Doctor, but his Momma can still dish out the orders!

Four Doctors!
My Dad, Evan, me, and my Mommy!

During the graduation, Liliana's Madrina and Padrino REALLY helped us out.  Liliana was an AMAZING baby (as usual) all weekend, but she needs sleep some times right?  SO, right after they called out Evan's name, they took her home for an hour long nap.  Right after the graduation, the company all went to a Mexican restaurant in town called Ruby Tequila's for a big PARTY!

 I got this poster made for him for like $5 on Vista Print.  It was great!

 We had about 25 people come for Evan's big day.  What amazing family and friends we have!

 As usual, Evan was THRILLED to be eating! ; )

Evan's cake was flat out AWESOME.  The lady that made our wedding cake made this for us and my Mom drove it from San Antonio.  
Not to mention that it was DELICIOUS: Reese's Peanut Butter Cup flavor ... yummmy!

 After we ate, a bunch of people gave speeches all about Evan.  

The best one of all?  My husband's.  He started crying when he thanked me for being so supportive during medical school.  Most people don't realize how big of a deal this is ... Evan NEVER cries.  He didn't even cry when Liliana was born.  He was, of course, ecstatic, but he just never cries!  When we left the restaurant,  he apologized to me because he wasn't able to finish his speech since he teared up so much ... I told him NO apology necessary.  A man that will cry in front of 25 people declaring his love to his wife?  No apology necessary EVER.

 My brother, Evan and I during the party!

 Evan and his best friend (Liliana's Padrino (godfather)).  He is SUCH a great guy, love him.

My sweety pie Liliana was in Texas Tech colors for Evan's big day!  
This is Liliana's godmother, my cousin.  I know she has ridiculously gorgeous bright red hair.  I also know we look nothing alike!  She is THE BEST Madrina EVER.  

There ya have it!  Evan had a WONDERFUL day.  He went home exhausted, but little did he know we would be staying up making cupcakes with Liliana's godparents until 1 am to prepare for a little girls first birthday party!  That's the next post though ...

Monday, May 16, 2011

State of Things

I've been a wee bit emotional the last couple days.  While I'm so truly thrilled for our upcoming future and change of pace, leaving THIS life reeks havoc on me as well. 

The packing is going REALLY quickly.  Yesterday we finished everything but decorations.  Today we tackled decor around the house.  Liliana's room was the first to have all pictures and frames taken down.  That had me crying.  Seeing that bare wall made me realize that I will NEVER get to see her nursery like this ever again.  I still remember setting up her nursery with so much anticipation and knowing that this stage in Liliana's life is over goes straight to this Mommy's heart.

Our garage looks nuts.  I would go there and take pictures, but going over there would stress me out and make me tear up all at the same time!  It's JAMMED with boxes.  They're labeled "Master bedroom, Master bathroom, Liliana's nursery, etc."  They're ready to be packed into our moving truck.

Evan's GRADUATING FROM MEDICAL SCHOOL in four days!  Could I be more proud?  I don't think so.  I can't believe my hubby will be a DOCTOR soon!  I find smart men SO very sexy ... and my husband is BRILLIANT.  He deserves all of this success.  And I can't believe I get the HONOR of hooding him since I have my doctorate too!  Both of us in our robes will make for an AWESOME picture!

The other thing that has me tearing up?  My baby girl is going to be ONE YEAR OLD in 5 days.  Just thinking about it tears me up.  I can't put my finger around WHY I'm so darn emotional about it.  I've known this day has been coming since last May 21st, but somehow, since we've been so crazy busy planning Evan's Graduation party (27 people coming in for the weekend, so yeah, I'm rather busy), AND packing up an entire house and moving soon, I just haven't prepared myself for it.

She's doing SO many crazy things.  She's freaking brilliant by the way (not just saying that!).  She looks at our dog, says "the doggie!" and barks imitating our beagle.  What the heck?  Two words TOGETHER?  That my friend is supposed to be a TWO year old milestone!  OR, she'll tell me "the bottle, uh oh!" and throw it across the room.  HAHA!

She's SUCH a big girl and I just can't believe how quickly time has gone by.  Gone are the days of my baby BEING a baby.  She'll always be my baby in my heart, but I know that she's no longer in newborn clothes.  She's growing up and she'll be a little girl/ lady SO very soon.  It's a WONDERFUL day, yet one I can't help but think "can't I just have ONE more day with her being my tiny baby girl?"

SO yeah, that's the state of things.  LOTS of transition.  LOTS of changes.  LOTS of emotion.  But MOST OF ALL ... LOTS of excitement.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cupcakes

SO much is going to happen in the next week.  In EXACTLY one week, my husband will be a Doctor.  We have about 26 people coming for the event and we have been REALLY REALLY busy packing and preparing for two parties.  The second party you ask?  In a short 8 days, my tiny sweet little baby girl will already be AN ENTIRE YEAR OLD!

I think I've mentioned this already, but Liliana's birthday party will be cupcake themed!  I couldn't decide what to give as a favor for all of these people that are traveling from so far away.  I thought about giving each person a cupcake to take home, but then I realized that they'd be cupcaked out!  FINALLY, I realized that people would probably be asking me for all the yummy cupcakes I'm making.  Therefore, I got a sweet lady on Etsy to make me a cupcake recipe card for $1 on a PDF and I wrote out all the recipes.  Each guest will be getting a copy of recipes for: I(1) Macaroni and Cheese Cupcakes, (2) Choclate Chip Cookie Dough Cupcakes, (3) Strawberry Cupcakes, and (4) Strawberry Frosting.

 The little recipe cards I'm giving as favors.  They're SUPER cutie!

Another view.  I like the way she put Liliana's name on the cards!

Today, I wanted to share with you guys the recipe for ... Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cupcakes (quite a few of you requested I post this recipe when I did THIS post so here it is my friends!).

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cupcakes
Ingredients:

1 1/2 c. all purpose flour                                                                       1 (18.25 oz) box yellow cake mix
1/4 teaspoon baking soda                                                                      1 1/3 c. water
1/4 teaspoon sea salt                                                                            1/3 c. canola oil
1/2 c. butter, softened                                                                           3 eggs
1/4 c. white sugar
1/2 c. brown sugar
1 egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 c. miniature semisweet chocolate chips

Directions:

(1) Whisk together the flour, baking soda, and sea salt; set aside.  Beat the butter, white sugar, and brown sugar with an electric mixer in a large bowl until smooth.  Add 1 egg and the vanilla extract and beat until smooth. Mix in the flour mixture until just incorporated.  Fold in the chocolate chips mixing just enough to evenly combine.  Form the dough into tablespoon sized balls.  Place on to a baking sheet, and freeze until solid (about 2 hours).
(2) Preheat an oven to 350 degrees.  Line 24 muffin cups with paper liners.

(3) Beat 3 eggs in a large bowl with an electric mixer to break up.  Add the cake mix, water, and canola oil.  Continue beating for 2 minutes on medium speed.  Spoon into the prepared cake liners, filling each about 2/3 full.  Place a frozen cookie dough ball on the top center of each cupcake.

 Like so.

(4) Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the cake portion of the cupcake (not cookie dough portion) comes clean, about 20 minutes.  Cool in the pans for 10 minutes before removing to cool completely on a wire rack. 

(5) Enjoy these AMAZINGLY AWESOME treats!!

YUMMY YUMMY!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

My First Mother's Day!

Sunday marked my first Mother's Day.  It was SUCH a special day.  It was fun to go back and realize how much has changed in just one year!  Last Mother's Day, I was incredibly pregnant and studying for my last set of law school finals ever.  I was pretty miserable working and studying.  I was definetely overwhelmed.  While most to-be Mom's were thinking about maternity leave, I knew that I would soon graduate and start studying for the bar exam.  I had no idea where our lives were headed.

NOW, we're already packing to move to Little Rock.  Evan got his first choice for a Urology residency, and I got pretty much my dream job without much effort ... it has truly been a fabulous year.  The most fabulous of it all being, of course:


Mother's Day was so special.  Evan really went crazy making sure it was a wonderful day, and he is always so wonderful at being romantic and kind about things like this.  I wasn't allowed to touch a dish OR change a poopy diaper...nice!  ; )

All week, he said that he had the entire day planned and not to make any plans.  He, of course, was a jerk and refused to tell me what our plans were! Ha. 

I woke up to breakfast in bed, homemade DELICIOUS banana pancakes.  They were SO awesome.  Then, I got a little bouquet of bright flowers that Liliana chose for Mommy.  Then we played a TON with Liliana until she took her nap.  Normally, she naps in her crib.  From the very beginning we have been big on Liliana not sleeping on us or in the bed with us because we want her to know her crib is where she sleeps.  BUT, I made an exception and she took her nap on Mommy for 1.5 hours.  It was so special. 


For lunch, Evan made sandwiches with all my favorite ingredients with strawberries.  We had a little picnic and played with Liliana and our doggie.  The weather was perfect for sitting under the trees and enjoying time together.

Then, after our trip to the park, Evan gave me my Mother's Day gift...he ordered it MONTHS ago and I've been DYING to know what the heck it is.  Behold the sweetest little drawing I've ever seen:


Evan got someone to draw this and it's title is "music lesson."  I've already sat at the piano with Liliana quite a few times.  Now, we have this drawing AND the drawing of Liliana getting a swimming lesson from Daddy.  They are so special and are on the same shelf in our home.

Of course, this sweet drawing came with nearly an essay length card from my husband ... I won't type out ALL of it, because that might be boring to you guys, but it was so kind and genuine.  Here's a little sample though: "I could have guessed from the time we started dating that you would be a great Mom, but I couldnt' have known just how true it was until our daughter came along.  I must say that being a mother looks good on you.  It has made you even more beautiful.  I love you and I love being a family with you and Liliana."  Goodness, melts your heart huh?

Finally in the evening, Evan made me this and good lord it was DELICIOUS.

 Here's the link to this pasta with Tomato Cream Sauce.  
I think I've posted this recipe before, but I highly recommend making this.  It's simple yet amazing.

After putting Liliana to sleep, we made Bread Pudding together and watched "Morning Glory."  We took time together in the evening and I was so glad we did.  I think part of being a Mom includes being a happy family and keeping Mommy and Daddy in love.  (side note:  SUPER cute movie. Watch it.)

I could not have asked for a more perfect Mother's Day.  We were together as a family, at the park, eating yummy food, getting sweet little gifts, and giving each other, all 3 of us, millions of kisses.  A complete and perfect success.  So lucky that my husband and daughter made it unforgettable.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Painted Out

It's been a while since my last post.  There are a few reasons for this: (1) I was in Dallas last weekend and computer down time was hard to come by, (2) we have been painting our house CONSTANTLY since Monday evening, and most importantly (3) our darn computer wouldn't turn on!  Turns out our charger cord wasn't working so Evan used his new phone to order it off Amazon.  Thankfully, it works now! Woo hoo.

As I said though, we've been painting our house.  As you guys know, our house has been on the market since the middle of February.  Last weekend we had 2 showings and we thought our house was going to sell.  We were elated ... no double mortgage payments sounded AWESOME.  But turns out the buyers family convinced her to go with another home. We were SO very close to selling, but our house was the second pick in the end.  Since we leave Lubbock relatively soon, we realized that it was finally time to paint the home.  Our house has, well, a TON of color in it.  I like bright colors and I went a super tad bit overboard with the colors when we moved in.  So, it was time to tone it down.

We've painted our ENTIRE living room, bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, dining room, and foyer.  We bought 7 cans of paint and painted until at least 11 pm every night.  We are so sick of painting, but the final product is really nice and calming.

Here are the BEFORE pictures.  I realize that I probably had too much color for most people's tastes.  Hopefully it will suit more people now!

 Our livingroom.

 The master bedroom.

 The diningroom.

 Our kitchen.

The master bathroom.

Now here is how the house looks TODAY!  Wouldn't you buy this house? ; )
The new livingroom.  Muted and understated.

Our calm bedroom.  We miss the old colors, have to admit.

The diningroom.  I think this room looks WAY better!
Our kitchen.  This entire room took a VERY long time.

The master bathroom.  This looks MUCH better in person.  It's actually quite gorgeous.

Most importantly, someone still looks AWFULLY adorable walking around in the house!
 
All we have to do now is have people come see the house!  Let's hope all this work paid off!