Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Getting Ready!!! (Nursery Progress Continued...)

Well...I am 8 months pregnant

It is exciting how quickly the weeks are beginning to pass by! Our little princess will be here before we know it! Today you are going to get a little "baby nursery update" 

I am still working on baby Josselyn's NURSERY & it is slowly coming together ;) I am excited to announce that the crib is put together! I LOVE LOVE LOVE Josse's CRIB however I am a little indecisive on whether or not I just want the 4 high posts on the crib or if I want to add the canopy poles to the crib as well...Hmmm You can let me know what you think! :) If I add the canopy poles I am thinking of swagging some material around them.... I am still not sure :(
The 4 high posts without the canopy poles
The 4 high posts with the canopy poles

 I am also extremely excited because Josselyn's CRIB BEDDING is all set up in her princess crib. I am really happy with the bedding we chose. I may doctor it up a little...but we will see ;) The colors in the bedding are beautiful and I love how soft and sweet it looks in her room. It is the absolute PERFECT bedding. 

I luv the bedding...I may add bigger bows to the bumper

The ACCENT PILLOWS I ordered also came in! They are adorable and go perfect with the bedding. I really want to order 1 or 2 more pillows but we will see....John does not particularly like to spend money on throw pillows :( So I am not going to hold my breath...Boo!

Love the pillow...but a few more wouldn't hurt :)

Last week Josselyn's GLIDER CHAIR & OTTOMAN finally came in! These were the final pieces of furniture that I had been waiting on!!! I had picked the style of chair and then I picked the fabric from the swatches but I had never seen this chair with the fabric together. John opened the box and assembled the chair and I am in total LOVE with it! The fabric looks perfect on the chair :) Woohoo

Now I am still NOT FINISHED with the nursery...My next step is deciding what pictures/decorations to put on the walls. I am trying to decide if one of my girlfriends should paint a tree with flowers over the crib, or if I should get letters to put "Josselyn" on one of the walls. One of my girl friends painted me two gorgeous canvases so I am definitely going to put those up and then there is my all time favorite ballerina picture I posted in a previous blog that has to go some where! I have sooo many ideas yet so little wall space lol So I will have to test a few things out.

I will be sure to post the FINAL PICTURES when the nursery is COMPLETELY DONE!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Midland, TX Baby Shower

What an incredible, memorable weekend I had!

On Friday my mom, my sister (MaryBeth), my sister in law (Stacey) and I flew to Midland, Texas for the weekend! 3 of my dearest friends Estee Martinez, Shelley Arrington & Traci Edwards threw me (& baby Josselyn) an amazing BABY SHOWER!

My sister & mom

My sister in law & mother in law

I was so blessed and honored by the whole occasion! My friends put so much time, energy & thought into every detail of the shower. When I walked up to Shelley's house there was the sweetest wreath on the door that said "JOSSE" on it ;) Sweet Elley made it just for Josselyn! Looking at that wreath brought back memories of all the times little Elley came over to our very first house in Midland and we would make Holiday wreaths together in my tiny kitchen :) Elley was probably only 14 yrs old at the time but we were wreath making buddies!

The sweet Arrington family! Can you see the adorable "Josse wreath"

Then, as I walked into Shelley's house I was blown away by how gorgeous they decorated for the shower! There were beautiful pink flower arrangements every where. Some of the arrangements had adorable birds nests on was so gorgeous & very shabby chic! At the end of the shower the guests were all given the most precious little bids nests with egg shaped soap in them to take home as a party favor. Everything was so cute and all of the decor matched Josselyn's nursery colors perfectly!

 The dessert table was so beautiful and there was the sweetest cake with the scripture James 1:7 on it, "Every good and perfect gift is from above" Then there were delicious petit fours which I absolutely love!!! And I can not forget about the adorable cupcakes Elley and Kelsey made, which had baby faces with pacifiers on them ;) The food for the brunch was delicious as well everyone ate until they were stuffed!

 Now this was a "display" baby shower which some of you may not be familiar with (I had no clue what one was until I lived in Midland! lol) but it is very cute idea for a baby shower! Instead of the guests bringing the presents wrapped the day of the shower they bring the presents unwrapped the day before the shower. Then the hostesses have time to label every gift (who it is from) and have it displayed as decoration for the shower! Let me just tell you that Shelley & Estee had the living room looking like a BABY BOUTIQUE!!! I was speechless when I walked in. The most precious baby outfits were hung with pink sparkly clothes pins along ribbon that was swagged across a sage green room divider. Then there were sweet baby dresses hung on little coat racks as well!  There was a big table set up in front of the fire place with more adorable presents displayed on it and the coffee table had even more goodies on it! The girls displayed everything so perfectly...I was absolutely amazed :) The whole morning was absolutely perfect. We all had a wonderful time eating, chatting & playing games! I never in my wildest dreams would have imagined anything as grand as this baby shower was.
Admiring the sweet gifts!

Now let me be honest about something...I was a little worried not many people would come to my Midland baby shower. You see...yes I am very social and bubbly and I do have lots of friends from West Texas but I have not lived in Midland for over 2 years now. Sure, I lived there for 5 years but it is not always easy staying in touch with old friends especially when you are now 350 miles from each other. Well I basically prepared myself to not be disappointed if only 9 or 10 friends came. I knew that no matter how many people came it would still be a blast and it would be so much fun to see those friends. Well...I was completely surprised & blown away when I first walked in the door and saw TONS & TONS of old and new friends from Midland/Odessa. There were probably 40-50 ladies who came to show love and support to me and baby Josselyn! I saw some of the first ladies who welcomed me when I moved to Midland over 7 years ago. Amber Hall & Traci Edwards were two of my very first friends I met in Midland back in 2004. Amber & I clicked instantly and now her family is apart of mine. I am her sons god mother and no matter how long we go without seeing each other we always pick right back up where we left off! I met Traci when I was only 20 years old. John and I were just dating when we became friends. I will never forget how Traci & her husband Bruce would drop major hints to John about proposing to me every time we hung out! We were all starting to worry that John was NEVER going to ask me to marry him after 2 whole years of dating and still no ring lol. Luckily John finally got the hint and proposed to me in 2005 :) Sweet Julie Villeriel & Peggy Williams were also at the shower; they were two of the precious ladies who helped me plan my wedding after John FINALLY proposed in 2005 :) They helped me think of colors, center pieces and all of the other wedding details. It was so great to see both Julie & Peggy! Then there were the amazing Invictus girls! Some of these girls have been in my life for years like sweet Annette Martinez who I met back in 2004 when I first moved to Midland and Arla Chavez who came along a few years later but quickly became one of our core, key leaders at Invictus. Without these girls Invictus College Ministries would have never became what it is today. It was also incredible to see some of the ladies of Harvest Time Church...Pastor Rhonda Trout, Gean Haysslip, Patty Dozier etc. These incredible ladies have know John since he was a little boy and have literally watched him grow up! Basically, there were friends from so many different seasons of my life and it meant so much to have them all share this special day with me! I was literally over whelmed by all the love and support I felt at this baby shower.

Some of the amazing Invictus Permian Basin girls!
The sweet Harvest Time Church ladies

I do not even know how to thank my sweet hostesses...

The 3 Beautiful Hosetesses

Traci Edwards became an older sister to me when I first moved to Midland. It was so hard being away from my family and her family took me in! We spent countless nights playing spades with her and her husband around their kitchen table :) Traci & Bruce walked with John and I through our ups and downs and they always gave us the best counsel & Godly advice. Traci helped me plan my wedding, stood by my side as a brides maid and then walked and prayed with me as I grieved the loss of my dad. Her prayers and support have helped shape who I am today. I can not think of Midland and not think of Traci, Bruce & Kelsey :)

Kelsey, me & Traci

Shelley Arrington and her sweet girls (Elley, Amy & Katie Grace) are like a 2nd family to me. I love those girls with all of my heart! Shelley is one of the women who I look up to and completely admire. She is honestly one of the BEST MOTHERS I have ever seen and I hope I can be half of the mom that she is to her kids! Shelley loves the Lord with all of her heart and her family is her life. I have never seen kids who love and adore their mom like her kids do and I hope that one day Josselyn looks at me the way her precious kids look at her. Some of my favorite pregnancy moments have been just sitting on the Arringtons couch or sitting at their dining room table and talking to Shelley about pregnancy and life with kids. She has poured wisdom into my life and I know that she is someone I can always call on for advice!

Shelley & David

Estee Martinez is one of my best friends ever! The crazy thing is that we have only been friends for about 4 years but it seems like 14 years. She was a God sent friend and an answer to prayer. We have a friendship and bond that is unbreakable and I am so blessed to have her in my life. Estee is loyal beyond words and she truly treats her friends like family. I know that if there is one couple John and I can always count on it is Cookie & Estee. There is no doubt in my mind that we will be life long best friends and I am praying that one day we will live in the same city again!

Me & Estee (8 months prego)

The Lord has blessed me with some of the most incredible women in my life! I am so thankful to know each and everyone of them and call them friends.

Friday, June 17, 2011

One of a kind ANNIVERSARY!

Today is our 5 Year Anniversary!!!

As I began to think about today I realized that it is our very LAST anniversary as a childless couple! On our next anniversary Baby Josselyn will be almost 1 year old! WOW... that is mind blowing to me. Once again I am re-reminded that our lives are about to change FOREVER. The funny thing is I am actually getting ready and excited for the change. John and I dated for 2 years, we were engaged for 1 year and we have been married for 5 years. So basically we have had 8 YEARS TOGETHER as a couple. We have had the incredible pleasure of traveling together and really enjoying life with just each other. I would not trade these past years for anything but I am now ready for the next chapter...But before I look ahead to the future I am going to reminisce about the last 5 years :)

Our WEDDING (June 17th 2006) I can honestly say that our wedding was thus far the BEST DAY OF MY LIFE. I married my soul mate and best friend. I truly believe that the Lord created John and I for each other! We balance each other yet compliment each other and I love that about our relationship. John is more than I ever dreamed of or imagined in an husband and I am beyond blessed to have him in my life. John and I got married at Edgewood in South Lake Tahoe on June 17th 2006. We had a small wedding with about 80 of our closest family & freinds in attendance. We had friends from California, Texas & Arizona all come celebrate with us on our special day. What was so special about our wedding was that everyone came for the whole weekend not just 1 day. We had festivities for the entire weekend (brunches, luncheons, dinners, boat rides, etc)! Pretty much everyone made the trip their vacation and I loved that. The whole weekend was absolutely perfect and there is not one thing I would have changed! When I look back at wedding pictures I smile & cry at the same time. I am beyond blessed and thankful that my daddy was there to walk me down the aisle and give me away. My dad loved John so much and he always told me that he knew John was the only person in the world who could take care of me like he did...and my dad truly meant that. My wedding was the last time I saw my daddy because 1 month later he unexpectedly passed away. It is still hard for me today but I am so thankful that our whole family had that incredible week to spend together for one last time. I think our wedding day will always bring me smiles & tears. It was the best day of my life & a dream come true.
Best day of my life

Cherished memories...Daddy & Me
On our honeymoon in St. Thomas

On our 1 year Anniversary (2007) things were a little different....We decided to take our college group INVICTUS on a missions trip to Port-au Price Haiti to work with the amazing organization Mission of Hope ( Now before we could take the team in August, John and I had to go on a 3 day pastors trip to check things out. So on June 17th 2007 John and I were on a plane flying to Haiti :) Yes it was a very unconventional anniversary but you know what...I would not have changed that LIFE CHANGING trip for the world! It was there in Haiti on that trip that the Lord really put it on our hearts to one day adopt a little boy from Haiti & I truly believe that one day we will have a little Haitian son! So in actuality that was one of our best anniversaries ever!

 Now we couldn't NOT celebrate our 1 year Anniversary so once we got back from the pastors trip to Haiti we took a quick trip to Las Vegas! John had never been so I had to take him. We stayed at the Wynn & the Bellagio (long story why we stayed at both) but it was INCREDIBLE :) We got to see the Blue Man Group & Cirque du Soleil's "O".  We had such a blast hanging out together, shopping, laying out at the pool, seeing shows & eating (NO we did not gamble we are way to cheap) lol It was a fun fun fun trip and I definitely want to go back again!

At the Wynn in Las Vegas

On our 2 year Anniversary (2008) we went on a CRUISE to the BAHAMAS!!! I am pretty confident that as long as we live this anniversary will still be one of my favorites. John and I had the pleasure of going on a cruise with some of our closest freinds (Jeremy & Lisette Summers) & (Jason & Amy Alexander). It was all of our anniversaries that summer so we figured why not fly to Miami, Florida, stay a couple nights and then hop an a 5 day cruise :) We had the best time ever. The trip was full of excitement: snorkeling in the Grand Turks, swimming with dolphins in Nassau, me getting sun poisoned in Half Moon Cay & Lisette singing Madonnas "Like a Virgin" on the big stage in a blonde wig in front of the entire cruise ship! lol So many laughs & great memories from this trip.

On the cruise ship to the Bahamas

On our 3 year Anniversary (2009) we decided it was finally time to go to NEW YORK! John had dreamed of going to NYC his entire life so I knew I had to make it happen. John had not been working at his new job for very long so he did not have much vacation time yet so we postponed our anniversary trip until the first week of September but it was so worth the wait! I will definitely say NYC the beginning of September is BEAUTIFUL and we had the time of our lives!!! We stayed at the W right in Time Square and over a 4 day period we went to the Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, Top of the Rock, Ground Zero, Central Park, Wall Street, we saw Wicked on Broadway, we ate at Tavern on the Green in Central Park & of course Serendipity (I love frozen hot chocolate) ;) It was so much fun experiencing New York City together for the 1st time.

On our way to see the Statue of Liberty

On our 4 Year Anniversary (2010) John decided to make one of my dreams come true....EUROPE! I told him he had to take me to Europe before we could have kids lol. Ever since I was a little girl I had always dreamed of going to Europe. There is something so romantic & magical about Italy, France & Spain! Some of my favorite movies take place in Europe (Letter to Juliet, French Kiss, Forget Paris, When in Rome, etc) so I knew I had to see it for myself! We spent the summer planning the trip so it was a bit of a delayed ANNIVERSARY PRESENT but once again it was worth the wait! The whether was perfect in the fall & it wasn't to terribly crowded. We decided the best way to see Europe was to fly into Barcelona, Spain and take a 7 day cruise out of Barcelona. I am so glad we did exactly that. We got to spend 4 days in Spain and really sight-see plus we saw all of the amazing cities our cruise ship ported at each day! We spent a day in Rome and saw the Coliseum, The Vatican museum & the gorgeous Sistine Chapel. We then went to Capri, Italy which was my absolute favorite stop (Capri salad YUMYYY). Florence, Italy was also gorgeous....the architect & statues were so breath taking. We also saw gorgeous France! I loved walking around beautiful Villefranche...the shopping there was awesome! The French Riviera was amazing also, it was so perfect & picturesque.  I loved spending a day in fabulous Monaco. We got to take pictures in front of the church that Grace Kelly got married in! John loved seeing the grand Monte Carlo and taking a tour of Prince Alberts palace. We saw sooo many beautiful sites on this trip and I know it will remain one of the highlights of both John and mines life :) It was during this anniversary trip that we decided that we were finally ready to EXPAND OUR FAMILY! ;) This was the last Anniversary before Josse came to be!

 Barcelona, Spain

Well...Today is our 5 year Anniversary (2011) And actually this past December we started planing a cruise to Jamaica with our friends Jeremy & Lisette for our 5 year anniversary! Well a few weeks after we started planning the trip we found out about our little bun in the oven...Josselyn :) I asked my doctor about the cruise and he informed me that it was an absolute NO GO lol So needless to say this is the 1st year that we are not going anywhere exciting for our anniversary. I will admit that I was a little bummed that we are not going any where fun and exciting this summer or fall but on the other hand this summer we are going to get the BEST PRESENT EVER (baby Josselyn) I know having her will absolutely make up for the lack of traveling this summer! In a way this is one of the best anniversarys becasue in 2 months we are going to be parents!!!! What greater gift is there than that?!?
5 Year Anniversary "Home Sweet Home"

However I do still LOVE LOVE LOVE to travel & I have informed my hubby that just because we will have a new addition to the "Alcala Family" does not mean that I no longer want to have our yearly anniversary trip! So we are still going to try to travel every summer (LORD WILLING) lol In fact due to my lack of adventures this summer I have already started planning something for next summer haha We will see what happens....

John and I have had some wonderful anniversaries and I can not wait to see what the future holds for us!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

The stresses of ReGiStErInG....

Week 30 of this pregnancy journey ;)

In 7 weeks I am considered FULL TERM!!! It is crazy how fast time has gone by and how fast my stomach is growing lol jk (don't worry I am not going to complain about gaining weight or my growing belly in this weeks blog). However I am going to share with you the joys stresses of registering for baby items.

 This past weekend John and I decided to go register for baby stuff since my baby shower is coming up. Well, I expected it to be exactly like it was when we did our wedding registry 5 years ago (It was nothing like that!) Before John and I got married we went to Dillards and Bed, Bath & Beyond in Midland, TX and registered for wonderful household items we had always wanted! Kitchen Aid Mixers, fancy coffee makers, fine china, bedding, decorative pillows & other fun stuff! It was easy to decided which china pattern I wanted I just picked the prettiest one I saw that seemed timeless. Registering for our wedding was an absolute BLAST there was nothing stressful about the situation. John and I knew how to work a mixer, blender & waffle maker so it is easy to pick one out.

Now registering for baby stuff is a whole other story! John and I went to "buybuy Baby" Friday evening to create our baby registry. We were both excited because we had sooo much FUN when we registered four our wedding stuff...lets just say we had no idea what was in store for us at good ol buybuy Baby. We got there and filled out the new parent registry forms and then we were given a CHECK LIST. I know the check list is supposed to be helpful and I guess it did sorta give us a guide line but lets just say it was not very specific. For example it started off recommending baby monitors. So John and I walked over to the baby monitors and there were at least 20 to chose from! There was the bottom of the line $30 monitor and then there was the $300 touch screen video baby monitor. How on earth are we supposed to know which monitor to select?!?! The checklist did not giude us on how to select the best baby monitor. As we read more about the monitors we realized that some come with one speaker others come with two speakers and they all vary on how many feet away they can reach...but we still had NO CLUE what brand or which monitor to pick! So we decided to move on and check out the baby bottles (surely they would be easier). That was the worst mistake of the evening! John and I literally spent 45 minutes staring at shelves of bottles lol. We had no clue where to start! Sure, we have had numerous friends give us their opinions but no one seems to agree on anything. You see some friends love Dr. Browns bottles and they swear that those are the best bottles ever. They reassure us that by using a Dr. Browns bottle our child will not be gassy and spit up all the time. Well, we have other friends say that Dr. Brown bottles have way to many parts, they are expensive and it is near impossible to keep them sanitary. Instead they recommend Playtex drop in bottles. So who do we listen to?!?! After bout 30 minutes of comparing bottles we decided to ask one of the sales associates for her help...but that got us no where either! She basically gave us the pros and cons of each bottle. However, we did learn that not only do we need bottles but we also need special bottle brushes to clean them with, microwave bottle bags for proper sterilization, full on electric bottle sterilizers, dishwasher bottle baskets becasue you can't just put the bottle parts in the dish washer, bottle drying racks and all these other accessories just to clean the bottles with (what happened to dish soap & a sponge)!!! Not to mention all the different types of bottle nipples to chose from (slow flow, medium flow and fast flow) Ummmm...if that's not stressful then I don't know what is! I wont even get into the 30 minutes we spent staring at breast pumps and all the accessories that go with those suckers!!!! Then I almost passed out when I saw Medela nipple shields, nipple soft shells, tender care lotion and disposable bra pads....Ahhhhh OUCH, GROSS & NO WAY! So we quickly left that aisle and moved on over to the baby bath care products. Once again we had no clue which "baby bath" to pick so we randomly chose one and then we had to decide on what baby bath products to use (how in the world are we supposed to know what to chose from between Johnson & Johnson, Aveno or all the organic brands?) Pretty much this whole process felt like a guessing game and I still have no idea if we chose the right stuff :( It was a lot easier to select kitchen pots then it is to chose a the right baby car seat! But we tried our best and I guess that's all any first time parents can do.

I have a feeling that this registry thing is a lot like parenting for the first time. There are no specific instructions that tell you exactly what to do, everyone else has their own different opinion & when it all comes down to it there is a lot of trial and error. You have to learn what works best for you and your family and what doesn't...I definitley do not feel ready or equipped to be a parent but I guess I will learn as I go :)

All we can do is try our best & pray for wisdom!

Registering at "buybuy Baby" 30 weeks prego!

The horrid CHECK LIST that did not help!

Ready or not here it comes...."parenting that is"

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Growing, Growing, Gowing...

I am a little over due in writing a new Blog..

The main reason is because there is only ONE THING that has been on my mind lately to blog about and I did not want to bore you with it; but since nothing new has come to mind to write about I guess I will share that one dreaded topic...My growing baby bump mountain

I am now in my 3rd and FINAL TRIMESTER!!!! (WOOOHOO) Unfortunately now I will be gaining around 1 POUND a week :( & this 3rd trimester has been off to a rough start! Let me explain....It started with one of our dear friends returning from out of town (I wont mention any names but if you live here in Dallas I am sure you can fill in the blank) lol Well this friend _______ saw me for the first time since he had been gone. I was greeted with a hug and him saying, "Wow SheriLynn you look EXTREMELY PREGNANT today" Hmmmm how do I take that?!?!?! My interpretation of what he was saying is something like this, "Sheri you got really fat while I was away" lol.

Now that was most definitely not the only incident that reassured me that I am growing in the eyes of the world. Last night we had an Invictus leadership meeting at our house and one of the sweet brutally honest college girls came over to me, smiled big & said, "Oh my gosh Sheri you are getting soooo THICK (she then squeezed my upper arm) I love it! You are just glowing." Ok let me just say that the word THICK is another NO NO word to pregnant women! And what does my fat arm have to do with being pregnant?!? Come on people haven't you read any of my previous blogs!!! Geez....

Well that's not at church my adorable little niece who is 5 and says whatever she thinks came over to me and said, "Aunti I love your dress." Which is a wonderful compliment! This child only compliments you if she really means it. Well she then looked right at my belly and said, "Hi baby Josse! (while rubbing my stomach) Your gonna be a BIG 'OL BABY" In other words my niece was saying, "Aunti your stomach is getting HUGE & this is going to be one BIG KID" lol

So needless to say, I have been slightly self-conscious these last few days! It did not help that my shorts would not go up over my hips last week either! Or the fact that all of my under garments are getting tighter (sorry if that was TMI). But the good news is that I only have about 11 weeks left of this pregnancy journey and by the way, I will absolutely NOT miss my baby belly!!!! I have heard tons of women say "you will miss your baby bump when it's gone, so enjoy it now" Ummmm maybe I am heartless or insensitive but I will in no way, shape or form miss this belly at has actually been my LEAST FAVORITE part of being pregnant.

Well to wrap things up let me give you a little Josselyn update :) I had a doctors appointment last week and our little princess is growing, growing, growing! She is in the 91 percentile for size (YIKES!!!) She weighed in at 3.1 lbs (I was told the average baby weighs about 2.5 lbs at 28 weeks) But Josse has been a little on the larger side this whole pregnancy, so I was not to surprised.  At my appointment I was also told that I am most likely 1 week ahead of what they thought but that does no make up for the fact that Josselyn is measuring 2 1/2 weeks- 3 weeks ahead of schedule. So basically in the words of my niece I have a BIG 'OL GIRL inside of me lol. The doctor said that they are going to start monitoring her closely in the weeks ahead and if she keeps growing like she has been then they may have to induce me at 37 or 38 weeks. I was also told by the sonogram technician not to buy too many newborn size clothes (Ooops) :( I think she was hinting that my baby is going to be fat lol

Anyways, I am PRAYING that everything will end up evening out and that Josselyn will slow down growing and come naturally when the time is right! I do know that God is in control of this whole thing & I am trusting in Him and His perfect timing.

So basically both my stomach and Josselyn have been growing like crazy and I am quite sure that neither of them will be slowing down any time soon :) I will keep you all posted though!