Saturday, March 31, 2012

Kick Off Party!!!

Normally a new consultant would have a Kick Off Party for all friends and family.
Unfortunately, the majority of my friends and family are a FAR way away from me.
Sooo... I am having a virtual Kick Off Party!

Yep, that's right.  And YOU are invited!

Since I can't be in a cozy living room, snacking on brownies and passing around these awesome bags for you to see, I am going to highlight a few for you.

Here are a few cute ones.
The top one is the new style of the lunch bags.  They still have the old totes, but I think these cinch it ups are cute!  They still have the same thermal lining as the regular thermal totes.
The demi purse (bottom left) is the bag I got to use as a small diaper bag.  It works great for the church nursery.  I just wish I would have got it monogrammed.
The big bag is the Tote-ally Awesome Tote.  It would be great for a pool bag.

This is the Large Utility Tote that everyone loves.
 I bought it for the back of of my Santa Fe.  It holds all of the junk that was rolling around back there.  I also got it to put groceries in.  It saved on trips up the stairs of our condo.  I also use it for those consignment sales.
I know others use it for laundry or even a toy bag.  The options are endless!

I have a couple of these zipper pouches.  One I use for a make up bag.  One I use to put Olivia's food in to take back and forth from work.  I am currently using the other to hold catalogs and business cards.  This bag fits into the large utility tote and others easily for more organization.

The Organizational Utility Tote is one of the most popular bags we have.  I have two!
Currently I am using one as a diaper bag.  I was just going to use it for life group.  All of those pockets serve as a great way to stash all of her toys.  Michael hasn't liked using a diaper bag from the beginning and he is a big fan of this open and organized method.

We also took this bag on our 20 hour trip to Indiana.  The pockets were stuffed with snacks.  The inside held C.D's, books on C.D. and a kit of vitamins and medicine.
There are so many great uses for this bag!
If YOU book a (catalog) party from this Kick Off Party, I will give you one of these bags for free!

I first heard about Thirty-One when I saw a number of people carrying these purse skirt purses.  I must say, as someone who always matches my purses with my outfits/shoes/coats, I find this to be genius.  It's one of the first items I purchased.  You buy a purse in either brown or black.  Then it has a purse skirt to go over it.  You can change them out and have a "different" purse each day of the week!  LOVE!

Agh!  There are so many things I could share!
(I currently used all of my photo space and have to wait 24 hours for more room.)

Some items on my want list:
The timeless wallet (pg 17) with my monogram laser etched in it!
I have wanted the Cindy tote (pg 18) since I went to my first party.  I will be getting it!
I have 3 of the small rosettes (pg 9).  I want to add the yellow one to my collection.  I also want to add the medium rosette clips (pg 7).

I waited until now to have my Kick Off Party because April's customer special is one of the BEST in my opinion!  For every $31 you spend, you can get a purse for half off.

That's right--you can buy all of your accessories (rosettes, scarfs, wallets, etc) or any of the organizational bags and get one of our purses for half off!  You can get the Purse Skirt, Mini Retro Metro Bag, Retro Metro Bag, 5th Avenue, Demi Purse, Casual Cargo Purse, and the Pop Crossbody for HALF OFF!

You can go to my website at  If you go under events, you will find "Bethany's Kick Off Party".  Click shop and get at it!  I will be closing the party out on Wednesday, April 4th.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Guess What?!

I am going to start selling Thirty-One!

I know what you are thinking... "What?" and "Like you really need to add another thing to your plate!"  I know you are thinking that because that is what I have heard about 4 or 5 times now. :)

Let me explain.
The headquarters for 31 is literally minutes from where I lived in Ohio.  I had lots of friends who sold it.  I went to the parties, loved and bought the stuff, but had no intention of ever selling it.  I distinctly remember sitting at a party thinking, "I love this stuff, but I finally have a job where I only have to work ONE job.  I don't need or want to add another one to it."  I continued buying the products.  I bought products for myself, for gifts, and even a little bag to use as a small on the go diaper bag.  It's all great quality and super cute.

Then I moved to Texas...

I was getting compliments on my bags all the time and I realized that 31 wasn't that big down here.  I remember driving down the road one day thinking, "This would be a great market to get in...IF I was even interested."  I dismissed the thought and went on my way.

Then I went to my (addicting) big consignment sales with my Large Utility Tote and I kept getting asked over and over about it.  Again, the thought popped in my head, "Instead of just saying 'Oh it's from Thirty-One' I should be saying I'll sell you one!" That was last fall.

I'll be honest, I have had a ROUGH couple of months year.
I have been asking God a lot of "why" and "how" and "when" questions.

I went to one of the spring consignment sales carrying my Large Utility Tote.
There was a Thirty-One table set up and the lady waved me over.  She asked if I was a consultant and I said no, that I had friends who sold it though.  I explained that I was from New Albany, which is the town right the Thirty-One headquarters, so I know all about Thirty-One and have many of their products.  Turns out she is from Ohio too!  And... she moved her a year ago too!  I asked why she moved here and she said it was because of Thirty-One.  She was the first ever consultant in Ohio and had pretty much saturated the market.  For personal reasons she wanted to start fresh and her family just picked up and moved to Texas.  Her husband even sold his business.  THAT is how well she does.  She was super friendly.  Since I had friends who sold she didn't try to talk me into signing up or anything.  She said, "Well, we should be friends just because you are from Ohio".  She told me that if I ever did sign up that I was welcome to come to her meetings and that she would help me however she could.

I went home and told Michael about the conversation.
The next day at lunch he said, "I think you should do it!"
We discussed it and I decided to give it a go.
If it's just a side job here and there, then great.  Extra money is always good.
However, I hope to be able to build it just like my director.
To not have to work out of my home ever again.
To set my own hours and be able to work around Olivia's schedule instead of her working around mine.

I really feel like this is God answering some of my "why", "how" and "when" questions.

So there you have it... I am one of the newest Thirty-One consultant!

{{This post has gotten really long.  Come back tomorrow to hear about how you can help!}}

Thursday, March 29, 2012

I confess

I confess...
I don't think some people get the "I confess" posts.  If you are confessing something, then it is usually either not a popular opinion or it is something that may be controversial.  Or maybe you are "embarrassed" about it.  It's sort of tongue in cheek.  I got all sorts of texts, emails, phone calls, and messages last time.  I was so confused.  I had to ask Michael if I was missing something.  I wasn't angry...just confessing. :)

I confess...
I am happy that I cut Olivia's hair.  Michael (and company) was right.  It looks much better now and is easier to manage.  It's already grown back a good bit in the back.  Now if we could just get the front to grow?!?

I confess...
Sometimes I go back and read and re-read my blog.  At this point it is more of a documentation of Olivia's life.  I like to look back and see what I wrote.  I love looking at the pictures.  I probably read my own blog more than others read it.  ha ha!

I confess...
After becoming a mom and experiencing all sorts of things outside of my control with my high maintenance child, I really do try not to judge other moms. (I'm pretty sure that is why God gave me said high maintenance child).  However, there are some things that I will just always give the side eye to.  If you are (repeatedly) giving your 8/9 month old french fries and chocolate and then announcing it (repeatedly) on the internet like it is something to be proud of... I judge.  I am under no illusion that my daughter will not have those things.  I just don't find it appropriate to give to a baby who is just learning about food.  I don't care how much he "really wanted them".  You are a parent!

I confess...
I still sleep with the baby monitor on.  Yes, we sleep with our doors open.  Yes, we live in a small apartment and if she did cry in the middle of the night I would surely hear her.  I just like to know I can look over and see her.  Sure, I could hit the button and look if I wanted, but it's a comfort to me.  We turned it off one night (not the sound, the picture) and I didn't like it.  It felt lonely.  Like something was missing.  She'll probably be two and I'll still have it on at night.  (Ok, let's hope not, but you know what I mean.)

I confess...
We haven't had cable, which in turn means absolutely no TV, for a few months now.   Truth be told, I don't miss it.  I'm sure one day we'll get it again, but for now I don't mind one bit.  

I confess...
We have paci problems!  Olivia really only uses it for sleep, and even then she usually spits it out within the first half hour.  Sometimes she wants it for a minute or two following her bottle, but even that is coming to an end.  The only other time she gets it is if we are in public and there is nothing else to do to avoid her making a scene (rare).  She is an addict though.  She would have it all day long if she could.  We went 6 months with the same paci.  As soon as it died I ran out and bought 6 of the new paci.  6!  We are now down to 2.  On a good day we know where those 2 are.  Most days we are still hunting.  How does that happen.  One lone paci never got lost for 6 whole months.  Now that we have had 6 we can't ever find one.  Guess who is getting new pacis in her Easter eggs?!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Nine Month Check Up

We had Olivia's 9 month check up yesterday.
Everything is going well.  Praise the Lord, she has yet to be sick!

Her stats:
Height: 29 inches, 91%
Weight: 23 lbs 9 oz, 98%
Head circum: 18 1/2, 99%

I was a little surprised on the height.  I was expecting it to be a little longer.  She did gain a half inch in 3 months, which is still impressive.  She just seems so long to me.  That's all I hear, "She's so tall/long". Plus, she always grows out of everything in length first. But she's still in the 90's, so I guess that is probably why.

We discussed the MSPI.  She said we won't be introducing any diary until after Olivia is 2.  There is a much higher rate of her having grown out of it by then.  I'm not 100% sold on waiting that long, but I do agree that it will be awhile.  If we push the issue now, there is a higher chance of her having allergies and being "sick" a lot when she gets a little older.

At age one we will probably move her to coconut or almond milk.  They are 50% higher in calcium than cows milk, so that won't be an issue.  They are many other ways to get protein.  They also have the same healthy fats as cows milk.  (I don't think any of the pediatricians at our office eat/drink dairy in their personal lives.  If you think about it...cow's milk is meant for a calf, which is very large in terms of size compared to a kid.  Plus, they feel the "bad" of dairy outweighs the benefits.)

We will be going down to 3 bottles (20 oz) a day.  We just started a third meal.  We need to keep up with that and add a snack.  She doesn't recommend eggs (even though it's becoming the new trend to do them before one).  She also said no beef because it's hard for their bodies to digest at this age.

Olivia is slightly behind in some of her developmental milestones (no waving, clapping, crawling, cruising).  She's pretty much been that way from the beginning.  I haven't been worried.  She always gets it.  I attribute it to coming 2 1/2 weeks early (and really, being forced to come before she was ready), being severely jaundiced--she didn't even hardly open her eyes the first two weeks of her life, and her size.  I did want to make sure the doctor was alright with it.  I asked her and she said "Honestly, I don't really worry about it too much in bigger babies".  She said to just keep working on it.

I asked how long the stranger danger was suppose to last.  It seems to have gotten better recently.  She said it usually starts anywhere between 6 and 9 months and lasts about 3 months.  Perfect!  Olivia started the week before she turned 6 months, so hopefully we are truly outgrowing it!

That about sums it up.  She said Olivia looked great and was healthy.  
She got one shot and didn't even flinch or cry.
We won't be going back now until she turns 1.  
Holy cow!  She'll be one before we know it!!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Project 366: Weeks 10, 11 and 12

Yes, I know...I'm a little behind.  My reason isn't even all that good.  I had a really busy week a few weeks back.  I hardly took any pictures, so most of the pictures had to come from Michael's cell phone.  To make a long story short, it took a bit to get them on my computer and then once they were on my computer I lost them and I was just sick of messing with it.  So there you have it! :)
64. We were out on the back patio enjoying the weather.  Olivia wanted down, but we didn't want her crawling on the cement.  Michael put her in a box with some toys.  She was happy as can be.  This picture makes me laugh.  She posed herself that way all by herself...knee up, hand on knee.  She's a teenager already.

65. Just crawling around

66. Playing with the teething tablet bottle. It's really tiny and for whatever reason she likes to bite on it.

67. "Auntie" Laurie sent her this lion taggie pillow.

68. Taking pictures with mommy

69. We made a trip to Walmart for a few things.  We couldn't resist trying the bunny ears on her.

70. Just hanging around 

71. Broccoli as a finger food is MESSY!

72. "Helping" mommy with the laundry.

73. Just playing with her eggs

74. Making sure there were more puffs.

75. Eating a cucumber.  She put it in her mouth like this and left it hanging.  After I laughed and took the picture she kept doing it over and over to try to get a reaction. Silly girl.

76.  One of her favorite things to do...

77. Happy St. Patrick's Day!

78.  I was trying to get pictures of her top teeth with no such luck.

79.  Playing at the dentist office while waiting for Little Man

80. Playing with Little Man's signing and dancing Mickey Mouse. She loves Mickey Mouse...just not when he's dancing all up in her face. :)

81. Just playing

82. More finger food practice

83. "What mom?"

84.  So big!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Nine Months!

OLIVIA GRACE, you are NINE months old!

What have you been up to?

*We will go to the doctor on Tuesday for your nine month check up.  I can't wait to see how long you are.  Last time we weighed you (which has been a while), you were 21 1/2 pounds!

*You still wear some of your 9 month outfits, but have mostly transitioned into 12 month clothes.  We've had some pretty nice days here this last month so we are getting our use out of all the summer outfits.

*You are still in size 4 diapers with plenty of room!

*You have TWO new teeth!  You started cutting both of your top front teeth around the same time.  One cut all the way through on March 15th and the other was just a few days later.

*You have decided that you no longer like to sleep in until 7.  These days you are waking up anywhere between 5:45 and 6:30.  Usually it's closer to 6.  This was happening long before daylight savings, so we can't even blame it on that.  Mostly the reason is that you have decided that 11 hours of sleep a night is plenty.  12 hours is for babies! ;)

*You are on a solid 2 nap a day schedule.  This has especially been reinforced this past week now that you are going to work with me every day.  Your first nap is between 9 and 9:30.  This nap usually only lasts a half hour, but has stretched to an hour and fifteen minutes at times.  Of course, this all depends on when you woke up in the morning.  Your second nap is around 1.  I have to wake you at 2:30 if you are not already awake.  This is when we go to pick up Little Man from school.  Daddy picks you up a little after 5:30 and you are in bed no later than 7.

*We had to go ahead and sleep train you.  I always knew it would come to this.  I've been talking about doing it for months but secretly figured we'd be rocking you until you were closer to one.  However, there were MANY reasons why it was apparent that now was the time.  It went WAAAAY better than daddy and I expected.  You now go to sleep in your bed on your own.  Sometimes you fuss for a few minutes, but that is alright.

*You still don't crawl.  It has to come soon.  You do absolutely all of the pre-crawling moves.  You've even shuffled to the side once on your hands and knees.  You just can't go forward.  You can still make your way around the room though.

*You have started to pull yourself up on things.  You can stand if we place you somewhere, but you aren't cruising along furniture yet.

*You are still at 4 bottles a day.  You are also eating 4 ounces of solids at breakfast and 4 ounces of solids at dinner.  Just this week you have started wanting more though.  We will also be adding in lunch now.

*We gave yogurt a try and it didn't go great.  You got a pretty bad diaper rash, which is a sign that it isn't agreeing with you.  This bummed me out.  If you can't handle yogurt, then it is likely that switching to regular formula isn't going to be tolerated either.  We will wait and see what your doctor says on Tuesday.

*I've lost track of all of the new foods you've tried this month.  Some that I can think of off of the top of my head are: mango, kiwi, pastina, cous cous, asparagus, and chicken. We also re-tried carrots and they were fine this time.

*You are a pro at eating puffs.  You get so excited when you see the container!  You are also pretty good at eating finger foods.  Although we probably don't do it as much as we should.  We will do more of it this next month.

*You are no longer a fan of avocado.  I'm not sure why.  You love prunes and bananas.  You pretty much like anything we give you.  You enjoy the chicken when it's slightly pureed and mixed with other ingredients (verses when I tried to give it as a finger food).

*You love to blow raspberries and make any noises with your mouth that you can.  You like it when we make noises with our mouths too.

*Thankfully your stranger danger has seemed to have calmed a little bit this last month.  You finally got use to Miss Christy (at TLG).  You let her hold you and use you as a model of what we are doing in class.  You also let someone hold you at life group for a long time!  Plus, K held you one morning at work and you were fine.  You still don't like if you can't see us, but we're getting better.

*You are squirmy!  You are constantly wanting to be on the move.  You'll pull up to me and want to be held, but then you just try to squirm around or away.

*You love looking at yourself in the mirror.  You even try to steal glances of yourself in the car windows.

*You still don't say any words that you associate as words.  At least I don't think so.  You do talk all day long though.  Your favorite things to say over and over (and over and over) are da-da-da-da-da and na-na-na-na-na.

*You love to sing.  If I sing to you, you join in.  You also "sing" during some of the songs at TLG and library story time.

*We had to quit swim lessons.  For whatever reason you no longer liked them.  You cried hysterically through the whole thing.  This was not fun for us and not fair to the other kids.  We'll try again another time.

*You love to see other little kids.  You always try to hold their hand.  You enjoy seeing kids at TLG.  You also like to play with your friend Camdyn.  You absolutely love Little Man.

Things you love right now: your mailbox, your set of eggs, getting crazy in the exersaucer, mommy's hair tickling your face, puffs, and Mickey Mouse

Your least favorite things right now: not being able to see mommy, not being able to move forward when that is all you really want to do, and having to be patient

16 pictures and this is the best one.  She kept staring at my cupcake or trying to grab it.


Friday, March 23, 2012

9 Month Loves

Another month has past! I don't have a huge list this time.  We are still using some of our favorite items from months past.  We've just added a few new toys to our list.  That's really all I could come up with.  Most of our other day to day items have either been mentioned already, or are just a given.
Hide N Squeak Eggs
We got this as a gift from a friend when she was born.  They've been in a toy bin since.  I broke them out this past month and they are one of her favorites.

Fisher Price Laugh and Learn Rhyme Book
To be honest, she really doesn't need any more toys.  The girl has plenty.  But I have a small addiction to going to these huge seasonal consignment sales they have around here.  Then, when I'm at the consignment sale, I can't help but peruse the toy section.  Inevitably I end up buying something. She loves flipping the "pages" of the book on her exersaucer, so I thought she'd enjoy this as well.  Of course, I enjoy that it's educational! :)  This sells for $20 in stores and about $17 on Amazon.  I got it for $4.  She LOVES it.

Fisher Price Laugh & Learn Mailbox
Remember how I said she didn't need any more toys?  Yeah...  So at that play date we went to (where she was a hot mess), when she wasn't crying she was playing with this thing.  We have all sorts of musical toys so I wasn't going to rush out and buy it.  However, when I saw it at a consignment sale (yes, obsessed!) I figured it was worth it.  I got it for $6 and it looks brand new.  It sells for $35 on Amazon.  I'm not sure about in stores.  Anyway, she's in love with this toy too.
Soft Shapes Animal
She has tons of books too.  She has many favorites.  Unfortunately, she likes to try to eat them when you read.  This book is made of foam and the little animal pieces come out.  I don't care if she eats these.  She has sat for over a half hour straight just playing with the four animal pieces that come out of this book.  I now take the pieces with me in the diaper bag sometimes.  It's great.  I got this one at Costco for like $6 when I was pregnant.  I plan on getting her the ocean one for her Easter basket.

I am still a believer in the baltic amber teething necklace.  I love it.  Besides the necklace, if we feel like she's having teething pain (and really, how do you know for sure what is wrong with a baby?) we give her some of these tablets.  I used the orajel for the 2 days around Christmas when Olivia wasn't wearing the necklace. A) she hated it and B) it didn't work.  These work for us and she enjoys taking them. They are really tiny and dissolve in her mouth quickly.  She just got her two top teeth in, which are a bit rougher than the bottom teeth.  She did pretty good, but had about an hour of clingy-ness for 2 days.  I used these and they worked great.  I also love that they are homeopathic.  You know me. :)

Monday, March 5, 2012

The Zoo

Every year the Dallas Zoo runs a special in January and February.  Admission is $5 a person instead of the normal $15.  I found out about this on the last weekend of February.  Lucky for us, it happened to be a beautiful weekend.  We called our friends Wil and Alycia and spent the a nice sunshiny afternoon enjoying some animals! 

Ready for her first trip to the zoo (from outside the world anyway)

 The camera was zoomed in from trying to take a picture of some baboons.  I turned to take Olivia's picture and this is what I got.  Close up!

 Some trainers were throwing food to the elephants, so they were doing tricks

We tried to get a family shot with the elephants in the background.
Olivia is doing her head tilting.  One of her many new favorite things to do.

Take 2

You can feed the giraffes.  We didn't, but we enjoyed getting a close up look.

Michael had her in the K'tan for a little bit, but then it was nap time so back to the stroller she went.

Michael wanted to see the lions

Then we went on the gorilla trail

We stopped to look at the flamingos and had a photo shoot as well.
This is Olivia's other new trick--sticking her finger in my ear.  Delightful.

Next we went to the children's section.
We saw the largest rabbit I have ever seen in my life, a pig, some horses and some coy fish.
Olivia wasn't interested in taking nice pictures for any of those.
She did go in and see the goats with Michael.

Overall it was a good afternoon.  I'll be honest, it's no Columbus zoo.  But there are very few zoos that are as good as the Columbus zoo since Jack Hanna is from there.  We've heard the Ft. Worth zoo is better than the Dallas one so we want to check it out sometime.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Project 366: Week 9

We took so many good pictures this week.  It was really hard choosing.  I'm going to try to do a few random picture posts this week.  How can I not share? :)

57. We were getting ready to head to the zoo (which I need to do a post about).  Little Man's Nana and Papa got her that outfit, so I was sending them a picture of it.

58. We broke out the foam letters/numbers for the tub.  She enjoyed chewing on them. Especially the letter D?!

59. Enjoying a ride in her walker

60. We went to the park to enjoy the beautiful day.  She had fun swinging, going down the slide on Little Man's lap, and taking a walk in the stroller.

61. She had to get a shot, so since we were out and about we had a quick lunch at the grocery store and picked up some food. 

62. Little Man was off of school for parent/teacher conferences, so we visited the local (very small) science center.  This is Olivia's new thing--sticking out her tongue and curling it up.  She does it all day long...along with blowing raspberries and making other random noises with her tongue that includes us getting showered in spit.

63. Napping next to daddy