Jay's 1st Christmas & Fun with our Phones!


The craziness of the holiday season is over and I survived! Which means I should be around on here and Twitter a bit more!

Anyways, onto Christmas!!!!

Christmas Eve started off with me going into work at 830am to finish processing our shipment (which I finished by 1130am - it was a Christmas miracle considering we've been trying to get through it for weeks now!). I took my lunch break and then returned around noon to finish out til 230pm when it was my time to go home.

Merry Christmas!!!
I did a few last minute errands, such as stopping at Barnes & Noble and getting Jay a board book of The Night Before Christmas since I realized we didn't have it and stopping at Sam's to get some beverages for the weekend since we were pretty much out.

I got home around 330pm, Josh had fed Jay and I quickly gave him a bath and got him dressed up for the Candles and Carols service at church at 5pm. I was aiming to leave around 430pm and we met that goal and arrived at church with about 15 minutes to spare, sitting with my family.

Jay did pretty good during the hour long service (since there was no child care that night) - he sang along with the congregation as we sang Christmas carols (which had us cracking up) and didn't want to stop "singing" during the scripture reading so we had to take him out for a few minutes, lol... he did fine the rest of the service though.

Afterwards we went to my aunts for Christmas dinner - she had a trio of singing Wise Men mice that sang "We Three Kings" which Jay really enjoyed! Jay ate a little bit of Christmas dinner with us, which included my mom's Shepherd's Pie dish which he seemed to like. We exchanged presents with my aunt, uncle and cousins - Jay got super excited over his playmats my aunt got him, as well as the Curious George movie on DVD. He also got a Wiggles DVD and a Playskol Giggle Cow bouncing toy.

Posing with Grandpap
Picture time with mommy!
OMG!!! Playmats!!!
It's George, mommy!!!!
Then we went over to my parents house and exchanged gifts with them. Jay got some Thomas and Friends bath toys, a fishing pole and plastic magnetic fish for it for the bath tub, a Thomas hoodie for this spring, a wooden puzzle, a Lego CD player for his room (so he can fall asleep to something other than Twinkle Twinkle Little Star or Rockabye Baby, lol...), a new crib toy to play with, a musical, light-up snail toy, some VeggieTales DVDs, and oh geez, I can't remember what else... he got so much! My parents got hubby some Cowboys floormats for his car and a Starbucks gift card, among other little stuff. We also got the Fast Five DVD, Super Mario Bros All-Stars for the Wii (yay!), these really neat Wizard of Oz nutcracker ornaments among other things that aren't coming to mind right now (oops!).
Watching Grandpap and Grammie's train under the tree
Playing with a toy, with a bow that stayed on his head for awhile, lol...

Thomas bath toy
More toys!
Our tree & presents waiting for Jay
We went home, got Jay to bed, and then I finished cleaning up the house and we put together Jay's walker/ride-along toy. Hubby had a drink, I had a glass of wine and we hung out on the couch in the family room watching 24 Hours of A Christmas Story - we got through 2 viewings before we both fell asleep on the couch, waking up at 7am and moving to the bed, lol...

Jay woke us up around 1030am. Hubby got his camera ready while I changed Jay into his Christmas outfit for the day and we brought him out. He seemed a little unphased at first by the presents and walker under the tree... I started opening presents for him - 1st one was the Chica plush from Sprout's Sunny Side Up Show. He seemed to like her, despite acting confused as to why she was there and not on TV, lol... he got excited about the Super Why DVD, ripping it out of my hand when I showed it to him, lol... and he LOVES his talking Super Why doll! He also got really excited when we were opening stocking presents and got to the box of Aquafresh training toothpaste with the Nerdle Gurdle characters he sees on the commercial that Sprouts plays everynight around bedtime, lol... like he carried the toothpaste box all over the house, lol... he has yet to play much with his walker, but he has discovered it and checked out the stuff on it that moves and makes noise! He likes his Leapfrog My Own Leaptop laptop too, despite him only really banging on the keyboard and opening and closing the lid, lol...

It's Chica! From the Sunny Side Up Show on Sprout!
Playing with Super Why while mommy opens up the Leapfrog Leaptop
Hubby and I exchanged presents too - I got him a "Geek Dad" t-shirt from Think Geek (we said it was from Jay though), $20 in Starbucks giftcards, a $20 giftcard to the Dallas Cowboys official store, Firefly the complete series on Blu-Ray, Willy Wonka DVD, Cowboys plug and play speakers, Clue card game, some pens for writing, and a candy cane with Hersey Kisses in it. He got me the Harry Potter 8-disc DVD box set, a WoW hearthstone keychain I saw on Pinterest and wanted, and a wi-fi blu-ray player for the family room! Sweet!

At 1130am Jay got hungry and was yelling for his "ba ba ba ba ba!" in the kitchen so we got him fed and his Uncle Ethan came over around noon, after church, despite the rest of the family not showing up til 2. We watched A Christmas Story and I went to go get cleaned up and ready around 1pm.

Snuggling on mommy
My in-laws all were here by 2, as planned, and we got the food warming up (as my mother-in-law cooked it the night before). Just before 3 we decided we'd open up presents, however Jay took a light nap in my arms (it was naptime after all!). He got the whole Rock and Roll Elmo set, although his favorite still is the Cookie Monster keyboard (he loved playing with that one at his cousin's 1st birthday last fall). We also got Cowboys and Aliens on Blu-Ray, Donkey Kong Country Returns for Wii, I got a $50 Visa giftcard, hubby got a $50 Starbucks giftcard (lol... he now has $80 in Starbucks giftcards!), and he got a really neat 3 volume collection of Civil War books. One of hubby's brothers got me a fleece throw, hubby a White Sox ornament, lanyard and beer coozy, and Jay a White Sox teddy bear (ewwww - I'm a Cubs fan, hubby and I agreed we weren't going to promote baseball in our house due to the Cubs/Sox rivalry, lol...).

Dinner was eventful - Jay vomited up his cereal and milk after eating a piece of turkey (he's puked several times after eating dinner this week - we thought it was a stomach bug, but it seemed he was over it by now... guess not!). Then, after dinner, Jay had a massive blow-out in his pants, going up his back and down his legs... it was really gross and he went onto outfit #3 for the day!

He went down for a longer nap though and hubby and I ended up passing out on the couch while my sister-
in-law started playing her Skyrim game downstairs (she got it for PS3 for Christmas but since their TVs aren't working she's planning on leaving it here and playing during their weekly Monday night visits - hubby has since started playing as well, lol...) and some of his brothers sat around chatting with my his parents. My in-laws left around 1030pm, I gave Jay another bath since he pooped and puked all over himself and got him to bed around midnight before cleaning up the house again and relaxing myself.

Completely out of it, leg dangling out of the crib, lol...
Passed out, snuggling with Super Why
Jay seemed a bit snuggly today and they didn't need me for my on-call, so we napped and snuggled and hung out today, taking it easy. I think Jay was glad to be back on his normal schedule - too much excitement for him the past few days we think! Hubby had the night off though so we relaxed, his parents stopped over for a bit since they were in town (they're usually over on Mondays anyway), bringing Chinese food with and we ended up watching Jay's new Winnie the Pooh DVD before it was time for him to go to bed.


Fun with Our Phones #17

I know, it's technically Thursday, so I missed the link-up, but whateva! I've been super busy with work and Jay this week and when I'm not occupied with one or the other I'm trying to squeeze in sleep - I'll be glad when this week is over!

I pulled the bottle nipple out of the dishwasher and yeah... the nipple part broke right off! How weird?!
I baked gingerbread cookies last week!
Hubby got his latest Android phone (because working for Verizon he apparently has to have the best). It's the Samsung Galaxy Nexus and it's a lot thinner than his Thunderbolt with the extended battery (sitting next to it).
He decided he was going to push/pull his high chair across the kitchen one night
He gave up when he got it stuck on the edge of the fridge and the cupboard door, lol...
WHY did NO ONE tell me 13 went direct-to-DVD?!?! I've been waiting a few years now for this movie to be released in theaters (as it should have been). It's got Jason Statham, Alexander Skarsgard, Mickey Rourke and others. Sooooo annoyed - had I know this was out I would have asked for it for it for Christmas! Grrrr
Checking out the snow!
Trying to open the patio door, lol...
"Oh hai, mommy!"
I was getting tired of not having a watch (my previous one broke) so I stopped in at Charming Charlie's on my break and found one that fit and I liked (I have small wrists so most watches I have to remove a link or 2 from)
A girl I work with, her son's 1st birthday was this past weekend so she invited us to his party. There was lots of little kids there. Jay seemed to have fun - he climbed in the Cozy Coup and toted that screwdriver around for a bit too, lol... we were joking on Facebook that he was pretending to be a mechanic here, lol...
Hey there!
One of the party favors was bubbles, but these were like plastic ones that didn't pop right away... Jay had several land on his head... he didn't want to take a picture though, lol...
Bubbles in his hair - he LOVED me blowing bubbles! Can't wait for summer!

Jay update

Despite all the long hours at work that I mentioned in my previous post, it's been a fun week with Jay!

We had some snow last week that had left a nice little layer over everything when we woke up in the morning. I showed Jay and his eyes got all wide as we looked out the glass patio door. He then proceeded to try and open the door to get outside and play in it, lol... It started snowing the other day while my mom was watching him and they were out running errands - she said he was looking up and big snowflakes were landing on his face... he thought it was the funniest thing ever! Kinda sad I missed it though, as we haven't really had much snow yet!

He cut his finger up pretty bad, playing with a pot! We think there was a rough edge on it and he got his finger caught on it when he went to pull it out of the handle slot... he was playing with it like normal when I heard him shriek and when I looked over he was face down on the ground freaking out. I picked him up to see what was wrong and his finger was all bloody... it looked bad, but my mom came over and took a look and it looks like it'll fine once it scabs over. He sliced it in 3 spots though - I wince and feel horrible every time I look at it.

He's also eating real bananas now too, cut up of course. He was watching my mom eat one while she was babysitting him so she let him have a bite and he LOVED it and ate a good chunk of her banana so I went out and bought some and have been giving him half a banana a day. I also started making using of my Magic Bullet I've had since college (back then we used it for mixed drinks, lol...) by pureeing whatever we're eating and giving it to Jay for dinner - he had some chicken and dumpling soup with veggies last week (and a banana half) and tonight I tried giving him some of this cheesy skillet chicken and rice with veggies I made, but he didn't like it and puked it all up - oops! He did make a meal out of bean dip with cheese and sour cream at a birthday party I took him to over the weekend for his lunch there!

He snores sooooo loud too! The other night I had to go in and nudge him to get him to switch to a different position as he was snoring louder than hubby and I couldn't sleep, hearing him so loud over the baby monitor!

And in BIG news - he took his first steps!

He's been balancing by himself pretty well lately so hubby and I decided to see if we could get him to go from one of us to the other - I had him stand by me on the loveseat while hubby sat on the edge of the couch not too far away and called for him to come. He took 2-3 steps! I think he surprised himself too! He can walk if you hold 1 of his hands, but this was the first he did it all by himself not holding on to anything (he cruises along the furniture really fast!). We tried to have him do it again and he took 1 step before deciding crawling to daddy was faster, lol... oh well! He did it though, we just need to keep practicing with him - we knew he'd walking on his own by the end of the year!

I'm alive

Hell week.

Or so those in retail often refer to the week before Christmas.

Granted, I worked retail the last 2 Christmas seasons, but never as hard as I am this year! Sears Essentials had too many people on staff so I was lucky to get at least 2 shifts a week there and they were only like 4 hours long at the most. And last year... I was just seasonal and pregnant so they went easy on me, giving me maybe a shift a week and scheduling me as an on-call for back-up in case someone called in for their shift.

This year is completely different though.

Since our store manager quit last month to make a career change (and after 14 years at the same place, you can't really blame her!) most of the seasoned employees followed suit and either joined her at her new retail job or just quite and went elsewhere. I'm basically the only regular seasoned associate who's been there for more than a few months so of course they're scheduling me lots. And I like the money, but not the hours so much.

Last week I worked at least 30 hours and this week I'll hit at least 26 hours if not more.

Mall hours are nuts this year. Last Friday I opened at 9am (had to be there at 8am though) and Monday we opened at 8am (I had to be there at 7am). As of yesterday the mall opens at 7am and closes at 11pm! We've been getting out at 1130/midnight with the recent 10pm closings... I'm not expecting to get home til 1am tonight.

Anyways, I'm surviving. 2 more shifts (today and Christmas Eve) and then things go back to somewhat normal, I've been told.

Hubby's hanging in there too, despite peak at UPS being crazy this week (he didn't get home til almost 5am the other night!).


A Very Bloggy Christmas swap

The link-up for this one was technically the other day, however my gift didn't arrive until this afternoon, plus I've been swamped with working this week (yay for working retail, at a mall, during this time of year - not!).

Anyways, I signed up for this swap, among several others and completely forgot about it until I got the email about who I was paired up with (doh!).

But it was fun and I'm glad I did this one (note to self though - next year, set a limit on how many swaps to do, as I sorta signed up for some and completely forgot and then signed up for others and then I started getting all these emails about who my various swap partners were and yeah... oops! LOL... swaps ARE fun though!).

Anyways, for this one I was paired up with the lovely Etosia from Raising Rylin. We didn't communicate a whole lot at the beginning aside from exchanging blog urls, but towards the end we were emailing back and forth and following each other on The Twit (and yes, I just called Twitter "The Twit." It's been a long week, next week will only be worse and I'm in a strange mood, lol...). We blog/Twitter stalked each other to get some idea of what to get the other.

Tonight when I got home from work I was greeted with a lovely package from UPS sitting on the floor of my living/family room. I almost forgot I was expecting a package and was a bit confused trying to figure out what I ordered from Bath and Body Works (as the label said) since I work just across the way from one and usually pick up whatever I need before or after work depending on what shift I'm working, not to mention I thought I had all our Christmas presents wrapped.

I opened up the UPS box though and much to my delight I saw this:
Excuse my messy kitchen table
Card reads:
To: Rachel
Merry Bloggy Christmas!
From: Etoisa
Curious and excited, I opened it up and here were my swap gifts:

At first I was like "Whoa!!! How'd she get ahold of my Amazon wishlist?!" Since several of the items were on there, but then I remembered for the Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge last week that I showed off my Christmas wishlist with them on it, lol... I can definitely say I love it! I tried out the lip gloss right away and yep - tasted like vanilla frosting just like the scent smells! I also just tried out the mini anti-bacterial soap and it's pretty good too! And I now have a back-up bottle of my lotion/cream for when I run out of my current bottle (I use it often daily, that's for sure!)

Feel free to hop on over to Etosia's blog and see what I got her =)

Home for the Holidays

A friend on Facebook just posted this tonight.

Granted, we're Verizon users (although my only complaint re: my time with T-Mobile was their lack of coverage outside major cities), but this is a really neat flash mob that was recently done at the big mall in the Chicago suburbs that we visit several times a year (Woodfield, in Schaumburg, which is like an hour away), so it was neat seeing this done there!



Fun with Our Phones Monday #16

It's Monday! So time with Fun with Our Phones Monday! I should mention though, this week I'm pretty busy with work so don't be surprised if there's a lack of posts for this week - this time of year, working retail... it gets a bit hectic! I also apologize for my lack of Twitter presence the past few days too - I've just been too busy with work and squeezing in time with family to stay on top of my feed.

Anyways, here's this past week's photos!

I had a few phone calls to make and when I got done this is what I saw, lol...
 Having fun with his Aunt Katie (hubby's little sis)

Watching the (fake) fire with daddy
I thought I looked nice
He somehow took his shirt halfway off!

Zombie baby!!
These faces he was making on the mesh netting were cracking me up, lol...
Even in Sam's Club I can't get away from Tebow!!!
Last week I got to be my sis's guinea pig for hair cutting as she's going to beauty school and had a test where she had to cut long layers on an actual person with long hair. She passed and didn't butcher my hair, lol... mom said she was a nervous wreck the night before though as this was the 1st time she was cutting on an actual person!
Just chillin' in his highchair at Grammie's (mommy's old highchair)
1st hot cocoa in my Mary Kay dishes =)
These were the bags where I had Jay's Christmas presents in, but I took them out while wrapping and Tiger decided to make a nest in them
He passed out in his pack n play, on top of Clifford
Drinking from his Elmo sippy cup
Playing with the Christmas Winnie the Pooh plushies
Throwing Eeyore around