Monday, November 30, 2015


Today my sweet little boy turns 12...I am not even sure how that is possible.  It seems like just yesterday AJ was born and now he is turning 12....12 years more year and I will have another teenager in the house!  Yikes!
I cannot even put into words how much I love this little boy...and he is my youngest son, so even when he is 21, I will still call him my little boy! 
I remember when I was waiting to have my ultrasound while I was pregnant with him, I was secretly hoping they would tell me I was having a girl.  I thought AJ was going to be our last, we had two boys, and I thought another little girl would be just perfect for our family.  My mom was in the waiting room and she said she was able to tell, just from the look on my face that I was having a boy.  I admit it, I am not proud of it, but I was devastated.  It was two days later that I received a phone call from my doctor saying there were some things they were concerned about from the heart sank.  I was so mad at myself for being upset about having another boy, I mean how selfish, and I felt like I was being punished.  My doctor told me they had found cysts on AJ's brain, and we needed to do a Level 2 ultrasound to look further into this....I swear it felt like an eternity waiting for that appointment.  I spent those days praying like I have never prayed before..I mean how stupid of me to be upset about the gender of my child, a healthy baby is the only thing that matters.  I don't ever remember being so nervous in my entire life as I laid there during that ultrasound.  The doctor did see the cysts on his brain, and had said it isn't unusual to see this, but normally at this stage of the pregnancy they would be gone.  He told us the only way to make sure everything was OK with the baby was to have an amnio...the thought of the amnio flipped me out!  We talked with dr. after the appointment about the odds and such and he felt that everything else looked good, and he felt confident telling us that the risk of miscarriage from the amnio was probably greater than the risk of AJ being born with any type of defect...but again the only way to know for sure was to have the amnio.  Kenny and I decided to not have the amnio.  My ultrasound was in July, AJ was due in December, I remember praying every single night for the rest of my pregnancy that my sweet boy would be born perfectly healthy! 
On a cold, snowy Sunday morning, 2 1/2 weeks before my due date, I went into excited as I was to have this baby, I was scared, scared he would be born and something would be wrong.  At 6:36 pm November 30 I gave birth to a healthy baby boy!  I cannot tell you how happy I was...and what a major lesson I learned! 
We brought home our sweet little boy and all was right in the world...until he was 3 days old and was very jaundice, and after a pediatrician visit earlier that day, we got a call at 9:30 at night that he needed to be admitted into the hospital immediately.  So we loaded up the 3 older kids, dropped them to my moms and checked into the hospital an hour from home!  It was awful, my sweet little brand new baby, we had to leave him there for 4 days, we couldn't stay there with him, I couldn't nurse him, it was awful...but I remember sitting in that NICU feeling so awful about my little guy and I looked around at all the babies, hooked up to a million machines, mothers crying at the bassinettes, and I once again realized how truly lucky I was, I was getting to bring my baby home, many of the parents in there with us wouldn't be so lucky. 
When AJ was just a few months old, during one of his routine well checks, the doctor told us that AJ had a condition call hypospadias, this is a condition where the opening of the urethra is not located where it is supposed to be.  He needed surgery to correct it, so at 7 months old my sweet baby had surgery...thank God the surgery was a success and AJ is perfectly fine!
So right from the start, it was always something with AJ...shortly after he turned a year we noticed he was very bow-legged..after a gazillion dr visits it was decided that it was severe enough that he would need to have both his little legs casted, we casted one leg at a time, and that crazy boy still managed to get around...once the casts came off we couldn't believe how straight his legs were! 
As soon as AJ was mobile, he was just into everything, this child has kept me on my toes since day 1.  He manages to push buttons I never knew existed...out of all the kids he has definitely made me the craziest, but good God this boy is sweet, the core of AJ is just amazing!
We noticed when AJ was about 3, he really was struggling with his speech, we had him evaluated and he did LOTS of speech therapy, he started kindergarten and could barely speak and be a mother it broke my heart.  I was so nervous to send him off to school, worried he would be made fun of, nervous he wouldn't talk at all, scared he wouldn't make any friends...boy was I wrong on everything.  Even with his severe speech disability, it never stopped AJ, everyone just likes AJ, this kid has NEVER met a stranger!  And people truly like AJ..he is funny, so darn funny, he makes everyone laugh.  After years of hard work and lots of speech therapy, he has overcome it all, I am so proud of him and how hard he has worked. 
I have heard people say that when a child has some type of disability they will really shine in some other area...and well that has been the case for AJ.  AJ is an amazing athlete, I am not just saying that because he is my son, I have two other sons, who I can assure you are not athletes!  There has never been a sport that AJ has not exceled at.  It has truly been amazing watching him grow and mature over the years, in all areas of his life.  My once little boy who could barely speak or be understood, is now a very confident (almost too confident) 12 year old.  He has tons of friends, he is popular and kids of all ages, older and younger, like hanging out with AJ.  He works his butt off in school to bring home all B's, but seeing how hard he works, it is as if he is bringing me home straight A's..I seriously couldn't be prouder of this kid!
AJ has brought so much love and even more laughter into our family.  I could be having the absolute worst day and he will just say something so flippin' funny that I immediately smile.  Now don't get me wrong, sometimes he just doesn't know when to stop and he gets himself into trouble because of it, but I don't want him to change a thing..he is so perfect just the way he is.  He is outspoken and has no problem telling you how he feels or what is on his mind, probably his best and worst quality (he gets it from his mama)! 
AJ is focused and determined, and because of all the challenges he has had to face, he isn't afraid to work hard to achieve his goals.  He tells us all the time what he is going to do when he grows up, many people laugh it off, but it wouldn't surprise me one bit if this kid is playing in the big leagues one day.  He isn't afraid to work hard, to push himself, to get what he wants.  He is his own biggest critic, and he is hard on himself, but I don't discourage it, at 12 he gets it, he totally gets that hard work, tenacity, practice and dedication can get you far! 
AJ has a true heart of gold, and is such a loving boy.  He truly doesn't give a sh*t what anyone thinks, he marches to the beat of his own drum!  He is ALL boy, but has the sweetest soft side, and he loves his mommy...he makes it a point every single day to tell me I am beautiful, and tell me how much he loves me, and how he is going to take care of me when he is rich.  This child puts a smile on my face all the time!
I think back to that ultrasound appointment in July 2003, and I cannot even believe I had wished for a little girl.  I couldn't imagine not having AJ...though there is rarely a dull moment with him around, he is such an amazing little man..and to say that I am lucky, blessed and proud to be his mom is a HUGE understatement. 
Here are just a few of my favorite pics of my sweet little man...and sorry in advance for the picture overload...
The kid could pass out anywhere...anytime...


He has always loved his little sister....

Doesn't everyone leave cookies and beer for Santa>???

that face.....

These two....TROUBLE

I love this boy!


My favorite stage...this boy was SERIOUS about being a construction worker.

Typical AJ...smashing his face in someone's birthday cake

Dora underwear on your head....why not???
More cake in the face.

That sweet face!

Doing what he loves...

He LOVES his little sister

I mean...what a little stud!

Happy 12th birthday to my little boy...thank you for 12 years of pure joy.  You make life interesting every single day.  I hope that you never change, I hope you always have the confidence you do right now.  And I am confident that if you continue to work as hard as you always have, anything you dream you will achieve.  You are so loved AJ! 

Favorite Things Party

Happy Monday Ladies! 
Today my little man turns 12, so I have two posts up today!  You can read all about my boy turning 12 here .
Today I am linking up with Andrea and Erika for "Favorite Things Party", be sure to grab the graphic and link up too!

Today we are talking about our favorite stocking stuffers!  I am so excited to read everyone's...I always love all the great ideas I can find from you fabulous ladies!
I don't know about you, but anything cozy, I just LOVE!  And I love giving "cozy"type gifts.  I ordered these socks, and a few people on my list will be getting these also!  They are only $6 and are the perfect stocking stuffer!
Bath and Body Works...need I say more???  Shower gels and lotions are AWESOME stocking stuffers.  And they are always have such great promotions and sales, I can go in there and get a TON of stuff and divide it up into a few different gifts!  WIN WIN!
I love my Kate Spade Stud earrings, but these earrings are pretty darn fabulous and look almost identical to the KS ones...and these are only $8!  Perfect stocking stuffer for any lady on your list!
The Beauty Blender would make a great little stocking stuffer!  This little pink thing is the BOMB!
Fun and colorful pens are always great for a little stocking stuffer!  These are my absolute favorite!  I definitely wouldn't mind finding these in my stocking Christmas morning!
So there are a few of my favorite little stocking stuffers!  Can't wait to see what everyone else is sharing today!
See you back here tomorrow!

Friday, November 27, 2015

Friday Favorites

Happy Friday Ladies!
Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday! 
this just had me laughing!
Today I am linking up with Andrea , Erika , and Narci and sharing my "Friday Favorites"!  Be sure to grab the graphic and link up too!

My #1 favorite this week has most definitely been the cooler temps we have been having! 
I found these adorable little burlap trees in the Target dollar section and I am seriously loving them...I mean for $3 they are just adorable!
I was going through some old pictures and came across this one of Harrison and Olivia from a few years ago...I just love them both so much!

I love a fun coffee just kinda makes the morning better!  I just got both of these in the mail this week, and seriously they are just adorable!  I will definitely be ordering a few more for holiday gifts.  If you are looking for a fun new coffee cup check go and check out Fox and Clover
I walked into the boy's room the other night, and AJ decided his closet needed some decorating, his closet is pretty big inside and he has it all set up like a little man cave in there.  This kid and his crazy imagination is definitely a favorite of mine!
Starbucks and a fresh mani is always a favorite for me!
I just got these in the mail on Tuesday, and if you are looking for some super cute, super comfortable sweat pants, you need to get these!  Cute and comfy...a definite favorite for me!
So there you have favorites for the week!  Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!
See you back here Monday where I will be talking about my little guy turning 12 (insert me sobbing) and I'll be linking up with Andrea and Erika for their Favorite Things Party!