Monday, November 30, 2009

God bless the Pilgrims and Indians

Let's really be thankful that the Pilgrims gave up their ewwwy English food, ala Beans on Toast, Curry Suppa, and Yorkshire Pudding. Good job Indians. Cause I know you got done smoking your peace pipe and courting Pocahontus and taught us city folks some Green Bean Casserole and Sweet Potato with marshmellows (pretty sure they had lots of marshmellows).

I have to say, this past Thanksgiving was in my top three favorites (right under the one where Rob and I had a newborn baby that was precious and wonderful, took said infant to a Chinese restaurant, napped all afternoon and ate Pumkin roll for dinner). We went to our favorite town of Fayetteville, home of all 3 of our siblings. We ate lunch at Angie's house and dinner at Staci's. It had actually crossed my mind to "borrow back" some of my maternity pants I loaned to a girl that is currently preggors, because Rob and I have never done the two Thanksgiving meals in one day. But, we received some good advice from our friend Justin that has partaken in the two gigantic Thanksgivings ever since he started dating my girl Debbie. "Its a marathon, not a sprint."

I contributed Hashbrown Casserole and Apple Pie to Angie's house, Broccoli Cheese Rice casserole and a second Apple Pie for Staci's. I thought I was stepping it up because all of my people are full time gals and I wanted to help out more because I am a tiny bit less than full time. Let me tell you about my full time working friends and fam.....they cooked a ton. How do they do it???? Wonder Women. I'm pretty sure.
What Thanksgiving isn't complete
without a game of Pin the Tail on the Turkey
I lost
Rob and Jr. trying out Angie's "shoe shine chair." And no,
we are not Texas Longhorn fans, that is simply a super-cute jersey
outfit Gram found for Ry. Don't worry.
Trying to join in on some Jenga fun
Staci's house, cousin Marley helping open some belated b-day presents
A run-by hugging from Marley
First trampoline jump, loved it

Hairdo by Anthony

Pretty neice, Zoe. You can tell she's saying "let me see"
Rob and Mini-Me in their Jimi Hendrix shirts

More to come on our fabulous four day weekend. Must hang Christmas gear while BTB (Best Thanksgiving Baby) sleeps!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Puddy-Pop Turns One

My name is Rylan and I am the big 1 year old. I currently weigh 28 pounds and am 32 inches tall. I crawl really good and can pull myself up and walk around holding onto things. I'm not quite ready to let go, it gives me the heebie-jeebies. I really love spaghetti and meatballs, chili, and any kind of sugary yummy. I like jelly-toast, sliced cheese and all fruits. I will pick veggies over any other food (yay for mom and dad). I like to say "dada" all day. I call for him often. I look at mommy in the rear view mirror, wave and say "dada." I LOVE my two doggies, even though they don't love me. They do love the massive amounts of food I drop on the floor. I have a smile that can light up a room, a good hearty laugh to tell you when you are being REALLY funny, and I like to cozy up for long hugs. I give a soft and slow high five. I like to stick my fingers up mom's nose and pull dad's beard. Mom and Dad get told all the time that I'm a good baby and they agree. They got super lucky. I can sit in a restaurant without getting antsy for a good hour. I sit in my stroller and flirt with the ladies while mama gets a haircut. I WAS being a super good baby and going on long, long walks (up to 8 miles) with my mom till she went and broke her foot. I still like to jump in the jumparoo and I rarely go to sleep in it anymore. Rarely. My newest obsession is the dishwasher. I'm in love with it. I crawly at about 50mph when the lid goes down. I love my Tot Rider 2 and if I'm in it, you better put shoes on. I love getting read stories and getting piggy back rides. I have been a little ill my first year of life, but I took it like a champ and I'm still a big strong healthy boy. Thanks for reading my blog this last year. It may not always be the most interesting blog in all the land, but its helping my Ma document my growth till she gets the umph to scrapbook the 1.2 million pictures of me.

Love, Rylan Alexander (aka- Rylee-roo, Ry-bear, Ry-lex, Rob Jr, Puddy Pop, Bubba, Bubbaganush, Ry Ry, Pee Pants, Creature, and Rymeweiner)

Rob and I seem glutton for punishment, as we decided to forgo the pre-planned Whole Hog catered birthday food and make everything ourselves, being one paycheck shy of a 2 paycheck household nowadays. We cooked a BBQ pork, baked beans, pasta salad, and chips (okay we bought those)!

Rylan hadn't the slightest idea as mom and dad were running around in BBQ Pork Butt chaos that when he woke from his nap, people, balloons and cake would be a plenty and it was all for him. We were blessed to have grandparents from each side, friends and coworkers. Probably 20 something people in all and lots and lots and lots of presents. The weather was perfect and the cake was DIVINE!

Here's Rylan, thinking it was just a normal day, "helping with the dishes."
Rylan enjoying the cake to its fullest
Could care less about the presents
Jungle cake for our Jungle boy

May I just add that texts about a BBQ pork butt between a husband and wife that think they are the two funniest people on the planet go like this:
"couldn't find Butt at Kroger"
"I'll go to the other and look for butt"
"do we smoke or crock-pot the butt?"
"I don't know, the butt is our oyster."

We crock-potted the butt to answer any questions. If you ever have a shindig, I highly recommend it. Stick a pork butt in your crock pot with some water and let it go all night. The next morning, shred it or chop it up and add BBQ sauce. Delish. Ry added to his Yummers List. And green icing. We shant talk about what copious amounts of green icing ingested by a one year old look like a day later.

Here's some vid of Rylan once Rob helped him figure out the cake was more than a mound of icing.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Missing in Action, back for a Recap

I haven't the slightest idea what I've been doing instead of updating my blog so that all the many, many blog readers (all 4 of you!) can see pics of the major goings on at the Qualls house. I guess we've had a busy few weeks.

First of all, Rylan and I quit our jobs a few weeks back. Mine was a part-time gig at the Children's Hospital GI Lab as a nurse. I will still go back, maybe twice a month, starting in December. Rylan's job was to be super cute and get tons of love and kisses at the Tiny Town in East End. He LOVED his job. The only problem was that if said love and kisses contained even a smidgen of wayward bacteria, a nasty illness would ensue.

Also, Rylan had his very first Halloween. Rob and I didn't know what to do when you only have one kid and he can't eat any of the candy and you have a neighborhood that isn't PERFECT for trick-or-treating. We got lucky. Rylan's Aunt Tammy came for a visit and we hung out with her. We went to a chili-cookoff (no pictures, sorry), went over to our friend Elizabeth's for dinner, and went to a few houses on our block to show off the always adorable, but even more so because of a special Sock Monkey outfit, Rylan. Then we hung out on the porch and watched all the kids come and go. Rylan could watch other kids all day and all night, everyday of the week. It was a very cute, very good day.

Someone had an issue wearing a hat

Catching a ride from dear ole' dada

Waiting for the treaters with Aunt Tam

Hanging with our pumpkins, Angry and Goofy

More to come on one certain little boys 1 year birthday. Lots 'o' friends, family, green icing, and fun. I promise to be more prompt. We are knee deep in ear infection number 1,338 and I feel that rocking little love bumps the blog out of the way for now.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Good-bye Britney, Hello Taylor Swift

When Rylan was a newborn, super-crazy Britney had just come out with Womanizer. I sang it all the time. It was on my "get off your booty and clean" soundtrack. It's catchy. Then Rylan started smiling and giggling. I noticed he smiled and giggled when I sang Womanizer. So I sang it more often and with gusto. This was a nice situation for both of us until I decided I needed to learn all the lyrics if I was going to whole-heartedly endorce Super-Crazy's song. So I went on a four mile walk and played Womanizer on repeat. I learned lots of the lyrics, but found that maybe it wasn't K-Fed, her mom, or back to back pregnancies that sent Britney over the edge. It was her own music. I now cannot play Womanizer without feelings of anxiety.

I'm now hooked on Tween Taylor Swift's song You Belong To Me. In typical Sara fashion, I only know a smidge of the song and choose to sing that repeatedly. I give it some umpfh when I sing it to Ry-bear just so he can realize its the new "Womanizer." Its just a tiny bit more age appropriate.

I have learned some actual kid-friendly songs at the little Storytime we go to, and Rylan does enjoy them. But Taylor Swift says "you've got a smile that could light up this whole town." I'm pretty sure she was talking about Rylan, not a Jonas Brother.

Sunday, November 8, 2009


It was bound to happen.
He is almost 1 (sigh....)
He has been a precious angel baby 99% of his life and any actions on his part to the contrary have been blamed on either illness or teething. Not many almost 1 year olds (sigh....) have had illnesses in the double digits and grown 10 teeth. Its hard, so any crazy behavior on Ry's part has been well overlooked.

Rylan was a Bad Church Baby (BCB) this morn. He did that thing that used to drive me crazy where he wanted to come to me, then back to Rob, then back to me. The minute you would take him, he would lunge (his 27lb body!) over to the other. He then pulled the lady in front of us's hair, he threw his cup, he shouted Dada so it would echo, and he pulled my shirt down in the front so that Jesus saw all of Sara's glory.

Back to the cry room we go. We had a good run. Once we found this church, Christ the King, we were hooked on their child friendliness, wide pews, and loud singing to cover babe's cries. There is usually enough going on and other kids to look at that Rylan is enamored and doesn't make a peep.

The BCB is turning the big 1 next weekend. So sad, yet excited. Its been positively the best year of my whole life. If all the crapola illnesses still got us where we are today, I'll take them, because the payoff for our troubles is priceless. He is a great big ball of total preciousness! He is so loving and snuggly. I haven't posted pics of him crawling, but he is all over it now! We are working on walking, he is still a little iffy about wanting to go it alone. I think the fact that he is 7-10lbs and 3-5 inches over other kids his age gives him a lot to have to learn to balance.

The BCB is sleeping, and I am learning that when he sleeps, I need to get moving. I tried to teach him to dust, but he only wanted to eat the rag, dust and all. I assume this would mean that I will still be doing the cleaning for awhile.

His Indian Name is One Sock. Here is One Sock sad about the rain.

Crawling through his fish tunnel.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

SAHM continued......

I've mentioned before that I've discovered websites where Stay At Home Moms teach you how to live on very very very little. I'm hooked. The world wide web is my oyster, and that oyster is more confusing than a Human Anatomy class after a Physiological Chemistry class with a Medical Terminology mixer. These ladies have so mastered the coupon and on-sale world, that their weekly grocery budget is $60 for families of 5-8! I don't lie. And they have pictures of all the groceries that they got for like $19. One girl (my fam has heard this story) even puts pics of her "feminine products" and brags about how cheap they were. I have been researching these sites and trying to learn their lingo and such, but I got all discombobulated. I haven't even quit my job and I've sent my stress level in overdrive just trying to calculate a store coupon, mixed with a manufacturer coupon, subtracted from a sale price, and will this particular product give me Registar Rewards, or Kroger-Bucks, or 10 cents a gallon off gas, or a gift card for something I don't need?

Here's the deal. We looked at finances and put together a budget that is very flexible. We won't end up sleeping in a tent made of expired coupons if I don't learn the Stay at Home Mommy on a budget plan that these ladies have. Simply cutting back on eating out, continuing my coupon clipping and cooking at home progress that I've already made will do just fine. But, once I realized that was out there, I feel challenged to conquer it. I did have a week were I kept the groceries down to $70. So proud. Had to talk about it. Then I followed it by this week, with much much much more than that already spent, and Rylan down to a small stash of only 6 diapers. But, I'll get there.

One lady gets $5 per online survey that she takes. I tried it, it took 10 years to finish one survey, I thought of all the things I could have done during that time and all I got was a lousy $5. But, seriously, why didn't somebody tell me about those surveys while I was on bedrest? I could have made Rob and I millions! I will probably just stick to hanging out with Stink Bottoms for awhile and learn the ropes of being a stay at home mama. I do like to give my opinion though.........

So don't look on the blog tomorrow expecting a pic of the tampons I picked up for 45cents. But if I get a butt-load of groceries for $19, I probably would feel compelled to post a pic. Just keeping it real.

I know our real reason for me quitting was for Rylan's health this winter, but I'll give you my back up reason in a photo.

I just simply love this boy.