IMG_9512Happy 2015!!

…or also known as the year that I turn thirty. I know I’m not alone; I have several close friends who are also hitting the big 3-0 with me this year. I also have friends, who shall remain nameless, who have already passed into the unknown realm of thirties…For you people who are already thirty, or way past thirty, I’m sure you are already rolling your eyes muttering that it’s not that big of a deal. And my younger friends, you are just now realizing how old I am. But my fellow twenty-niners…this is it. We turn thirty and then we die. Hah. Just kidding, what do I know?

What I do know is that my almost thirty-two year old husband needs hip surgery. Yes, I said that right. I’m turning thirty and he needs hip surgery. Our next move is into a retirement community where we can age gracefully. Hopefully they’ll let us out for Ajax’s kindergarten graduation.

All joking (at my husband’s expense) aside, I’ve been thinking a lot about my upcoming birthday. Which really isn’t upcoming because it’s on the very end of 2015 (thank you November birthday!). But knowing that this my year of turning THIRTY… aaahhhh! If what I’ve already asked for as a birthday present is any indication… heaven help. A trip to India. A second, week-long sail-boating excursion around the Greek Isles, a farm table dinner in Napa with all of my favorites (I’m actually still hoping for this one…), diamonds, lots of diamonds. Thirty to be specific.

Aren’t you glad you aren’t married to me. My poor husband with his broken hip.

Knowing that I’m about to hit this milestone this year had made me think and reflect. Not because I really think my life is over, but because it is moving forward and this train isn’t stopping. Whether I like it or not, thirty is barreling at me and I want to be ready to move into the next stage of my life wholeheartedly. That really means I get to be twenty-nine for eleven more months! I have a whole (almost) year before I turn thirty. I have a year to be twenty-nine, and I am and want to stay so excited for that year. I may still have a slight meltdown come the beginning of November, might. But until then, I plan on relishing these last months as a twenties-something in this 2015 year, loving the moments I have, the memories I get to make, and still getting to decide who I want to be when I grow up. Because let’s face it…I’m not quite UP yet. Not until I’m thirty…

There’s nothing like have a wee little one around to amped up the magic of Christmas. Little finger points and “ooooohh” at every.single.Christmas.light. It’s magical. Ajax’s head about exploded when we were are Denver Botanical Garden Lights–lights and lights and lights everywhere!

One of the Christmas traditions we have gets mailed out each year…it’s our Christmas card. You can see our years past (minus our first year) here, here, and here. The only rule is that we all (including Roxann) have to be in the picture. Roxann was remarkably uncooperative this year; so much so that I almost booted her from the shoot. But she was so funny in her sweater, that we made her bad attitude work. This year’s card might just be my favorite so far! And I have LOVED hearing back from friends and family about the card. I might of loved that even more than making the Christmas card. I’d send you all one if I could!

Our Christmas cards this year came in an envelope, stamped all over with a Santa checking his list “Naughty or Nice”. The card in the envelope revealed whether you were on the NAUGHTY or NICE list.
Yes…. we made two cards.

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From our family to yours, whether you’ve been naughty or nice this year, Merry, Merry Christmas!

Abby

I’ve been “Abby” for most of my life. There was no reason not to be. My official name is Abigail; Abby is the normal nickname, and I grew up being called by my nickname. Abigail was reserved only for those times when I was in trouble or graduating from kindergarten or signing up for Facebook. There was that one time a high school friend tried to nickname me “Gail” but it didn’t stick–Thank goodness! (If your name is Gail, I’m sure it fits you just perfectly.) So besides the day-long Gail thing, I’ve been Abby.

It’s funny, as I write “Abby” now, it doesn’t even look like me, even though the me in my junior year of college was still going by “Abby”. It was also my first year at a new university, and I don’t remember how I got the job, but I worked at a Baskin’ Robbins during my junior and senior years. My last night there, my co-workers made a sign saying that I was graduating and leaving so tip the poor ice cream girl. Everyone thought it was from high school…

There was only a handful of employees at Baskin’ Robbins, mostly girls. One girl became the best friend anyone could ever ask for; even if she did think this was just a “ma and pa” ice cream shop. Oh, Nicole… Since I was in college, despite my apparent looks of being a high-schooler, myself and the two other college girls there quickly gained responsibility at the store. The owners were an Indian couple who were kind and generous employers. I don’t remember the first time she cooked for me, but she fed me many dinners, and it was good. She made a killer Mexican Pizza for me multiple times; I can still remember how good it was. And after returning from India, she gave me costume jewelery worn at their weddings, and I stared at the beautiful henna all over her hands and arms. The more I got to know them, the more fascinated I became with Indian culture.

It wasn’t right away… for a while when she wrote the schedule she used my full name. But one day I noticed Abi written on the schedule. To her it was simple; she heard people called me Abi and it was the name I introduced myself as. So to her, spelling Abby, Abi, only seemed natural.  I had never seen Abby spelled with an “i” before, and I loved it!

Since Abby was a nickname, it wasn’t like I was actually changing my name (my reasoning when convincing my mother that it’s not that big of a deal to now go by “Abi”). For my graduation party (from college, people!) a friend helped me make an invitation which I wrote “Abi” on it for the first time. Hindsight, maybe I should of include my alternate spelling as to not confuse anyone… My mom said my soccer coach’s wife asked if she had been spelling my name wrong all along.

What started out as a just a shorten version of Abigail on a work schedule, became my new name. I still get “Abby” now and then, and I don’t really mind. I usually don’t correct them, unless they ask. But I’ll be honest, it just doesn’t look like my chestnut praline latte from Starbucks with “Abby” written on the cup. That’s just not my name anymore.

 

 

 

Who would of thought that a little one year old would have favorites?! And I’m sure there are probably a few more opinionated children out there, as I seem to have a pretty chill kid. Unless you take his “squeezy”, then he will let you know.

I’m always looking for suggestions for things for Ajax; and I love lists. I know that not everything works for everyone, but man I really wish someone would of told me what a waste diaper bags were…like before I had the kid. We have been using this mini backpack for the last couple months, and I.AM.IN.LOVE. It fits all of his gear, even a few toys, I’m not trying to pass it off as purse, and pretty soon, he’ll carry it himself! Not to mention mini backpacks are just the cutest.

So I thought I’d share a few of Ajax’s favorite things, in case you wanted to hear it from a one year old*.

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1- Wubbanub These have been amazing for Jax! When he was little, the animal kept the soothie near his face instead of falling. He pretty much has one in his mouth all the time (Yes, transitioning away is probably going to be rough. That’s how much he loves them!) We’ve had the giraffe (the only one that broke), lion (we lost), elephant and the bull. And this one is on Ajax’s wishlist because it’s sooo cute!

2- Tommee Tippee Sippy Cup It was a little struggle to find a sippy cup that really worked for Jax. We used the Tommee Tippee bottles (and loved them!) but when it came to a sippy cup, we need it to be spill proof AND the flow to be fast enough that Ajax felt like he was getting milk. Not only do I think these cups are super adorbs, but they check both boxes! Honestly, we use Tommee Tippee bibs too… I have nothing but good things to say about the company!

3- Gerber Fruit & Veggies Melts Sooo for the longest time, we did only HappyYogi Yogurt Snacks, and they’re great! I randomly bought the Gerber ones at a grocery story that didn’t sell the Happy products, and Jax devoured the whole bag! I love that they have fruit and veggies, they’re cheaper (although not organic–they do make some organic ones) and anytime Jax sees a yellow bag, he’s asking for some.

4- Melissa & Doug Shopping Cart This cart is legit. It swivels like the IKEA carts, has great safety features and it sooo cute. I have a pic of one naked Jax with fake veggies in his cart just strolling around the house.

5- Jellycats Both of these were gifts, and both of these are currently napping with Jax. When it’s time to go “night-night” these friends are right there. They are both super cuddly, and bunny is fur-like so Jax always giggle when I rub “bunny” on his face.

6- HappyTots “Squeezies” always get a smile and happy belly when I offer one. I love the combo of fruit and veggies, and it’s a super easy snack or addition to a meal. AND, our Costco sells them. Score!

7- Noisy Trucks We don’t have this exact book, I couldn’t the one we have, but they’re very similar. Ajax LOVES pushing the buttons–it’s the “new stage.” I love that it gets him reading, even if it is the buttons that keep his attention.

8- Radio Flyer Tricycle This thing is amazing! Jax LOVES going to rides in it. I love pushing it. Roxann loves kissing him while walking beside it. We all win!

 

*Ajax did not write this, I did. His favorites are based off of what he plays with, eats with and sleeps with.