Letter to Emmy

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My darling Emerson Mae,

We celebrated your first birthday as a family this weekend and it was so much fun! I know your favorite part was having all your little cousins and friends to run and play with on your “new and improved” jungle gym set that your Granddaddy made for you. You laughed and walked as fast as your newly walking legs could take you.

I can’t believe you were born one year ago today. It was so vivid, and a little bit of a blur all at the same time. I will never forget the morning you were born. You were born by an elective cesarean section, as recommended by our obstetrician. We arrived at the hospital the morning of my surgery and I could tell your daddy was scared as we parked the car. I was ready to meet you, but he was so worried about what could happen if something went wrong. We cried as your daddy covered us all with prayer, right there in the parking lot of the hospital. But I wasn’t scared, little one. God gave me such a beautiful peace that morning. So I prayed that He would give that to your daddy, too.

As we went through registration and made our way to the pre-op holding area, I changed into my hospital gown and had IV fluids started. I think my prayers were answered, as your daddy started getting very goofy and giddy with excitement while we were in holding. He started taking pictures of EVERYTHING! He didn’t want to miss a thing. I just wanted it all to hurry up so I could meet you… :)

Eventually, I said goodbye to your daddy and he was taken to the room next to the OR where he waited for you to be delivered. As soon as your daddy had to leave me, I started to panic. I was terrified. I started shaking and crying on the table. I knew what to expect as our doctors and nurses had explained everything, multiple times. But the fear was overwhelming. We had an angel of a CRNA that helped to keep me as calm as possible and explained everything that was happening as it occurred. Soon your daddy came back into the OR and my tears would not stop, even with him by my side. When the surgeon asked me if I was ready to see you, I excitedly said “yes!!” and he lifted you out of my tummy. Every bit of my fear was washed away the moment I saw you.

You came into this world screaming!  Your cries were so loud, but so, so beautiful to us. I remember one of the nurses commented that you had a “powerful” set of lungs! You screamed the entire time the nurses washed you, weighed you, and checked your vitals. You screamed so much, until finally they placed you near my face while the surgeon closed my incision, and I finally got to say “hello.” When you heard me speaking to you for the first time, you stopped crying completely! It was the most amazing moment for me. I knew you knew exactly who I was. You knew I was your mommy, and I knew you were going to change my life completely.

You were born on the first day of the NC state fair last year, and so each night we were in the hospital, we excitedly watched the amazing fireworks show from our hospital room window. Your daddy and I have watched the NC state fair fireworks show together every year since 2009. It was like the Lord was giving us our own mini celebration each night! You had so many visitors in the hospital – so many family members that drove over an hour to meet you in all your precious, new baby glory.  You had us all wrapped around your sweet finger from day one!

Once we finally brought you home, I was kind of a mess the first few weeks you were in our life. I was terrified I couldn’t take care of you as well as you needed me too. I felt overwhelmed, nervous, anxious, emotional, and exhausted 24/7. Your daddy stayed home with us for the first week. When he went back to work, your GiGi came over our first day alone together and she helped me so much. I cried when your daddy left, cried when GiGi got there, cried when GiGi left, and cried with your daddy got home. There were lots of tears from you AND me in the beginning. Eventually, though, we got into a beautiful routine. You knew I would always be there for you no matter what you needed, and I learned to take care of you as best I could. You started wanting only me around, and I felt needed and loved by you. That made me happier and more confident that I could take care of you! We had a wonderful 11 weeks together on maternity leave before I went back to school and I will never forget that special time with you.

This past year has been an absolute whirlwind! It has been so wonderful to watch you grow and develop your own little personality. I felt like we both met milestone after milestone because you were growing with me through clinical rotations. Every one of my preceptors have been impressed by you being in my life during school, and they all grew to know and love you through all the hundreds of pictures I share of you each day. You were also a huge hit when you were still in my belly when I was on rotation, and you were given so many gifts from patients! The Lord knew just what He was doing by sending you to your daddy and me when He did. You have given me so much determination, focus, and drive to get through PA school. Not to mention that because of you, I could truly empathize with my OB patients, and in being a patient in general. You are my very best motivator and have pushed mommy to get through some very difficult times! I couldn’t have made it through school without you, your daddy, and the favor of the Lord, and I thank you for that sweet girl.

My little Emmy, I love you so much and look forward to all of the “next steps” with you. Yes, your first birthday has made me miss all of our time together when you were a tiny baby. But this life is so fleeting, that we should dare not spend more time in the past than the precious gift we have been given to live life in the present. You are such a light in our world and a joy in our home. You are the most amazing little girl, and a most precious child of GOD!  Your daddy and I are so blessed to have you in our lives. We cannot wait to watch you learn and grow, and pray you will grow through this life being friends with Jesus and teaching others about that friendship, too. We have so many things we want to teach you, yet you teach us something new every single day.  I pray you always keep your “powerful set of lungs” by speaking up for those who can’t speak for themselves, and showing the love of Christ to all those around you. Above all, I hope you always feel how much you are LOVED. Happy FIRST birthday, beautiful girl. We can’t wait to celebrate every day with you!

I love you little Goosey.

Mommy

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Oh hello there, beautiful shoes.

The other day I was going through my daily blog reads when I made a truly amazing discovery. While reading this post about her beautiful bridal shower inspiration board, Nina at According to Nina had included a link to Nina Shoes and I decided to head over for a look. When I got there, my eyes were immediately drawn to the “Design your Perfect Shoe” ad. I eagerly clicked and waited for my oh-so-slow-we’re-talking-snail-pace internet at work to bring up the greatest idea to happen to shoes since the peep-toe pump: a website to pick the color, style, sole color and sparkle of your own shoes!!!

How many times have we gone shopping for “just the right shoe” only to walk away with our “settlement shoe”? Let me tell you, the geniuses (they must be women) at Nina Shoes  got it RIGHT. I am one of those girls that when the blessed day arrives that I get to walk down the aisle, I want every eye to be on my shoes! I am fully prepared to spend as little as possible on my dress so I can SPLURGE on my shoes! Now with this option from Nina Shoes, I may not have even have to do that, considering the completely personalized, designed-by-you shoes are only ~$150.

Someone tell me this isn’t just a dream.

Finally, meet my shoes:

Pretty alert: Talbots

I was considering posting about the gorgeous new pieces at Talbots, but after Grits decided to go and offer an awesome giveaway, I had all the incentive I needed to share this find with my lovely friends and readers.  Moment of truth: Before a few weeks ago I’d never even been to a Talbots store. After seeing this Post  about about their Fall collection, I decided I would stop in. I was so pleasently surprised. Their new Spring line is also divine, and has all the  “transition to spring” pieces I need. The pinks, the greens, the paisley… Oh my!
If you haven’t stopped in Talbots lately, it is sooo worth the trip!

Here are some of my favorites: (Click to view bigger)

So cute, right?  Image from here!

And while you are browsing the Talbots website and plotting your next purchases, be sure to check out this amazing blog —  Red Chair Confessions, The Talbots blog.  Naturally I love the name of this blog (I have a thing for red being a State fan and all) but there is much more to this blog than just a fun name.  In the Spotted section you can see everyone sporting their Talbots in  the general (and not so general, hello First Lady) public.  Awesome!

Lost Locks

Yesterday was a traumatic day for me.  I have been trying to grow my hair out long for nearly 2 years now.  In college I sported the “Raleigh Bob” all four years plus one year of grad school.  While I still love the Bob look, I missed the dramatic flair of long and flowing locks. And my hair grows s-l-o-w.  I’m talking hair cuts only twice a year, slow.  Yesterday was the first hair cut of this year and she chopped ~2 inches from my poor hair.  I was devastated. I know its just hair. I know it will grow back (very slowly).  I know there are people in this world that lost limbs yesterday (thanks for the reality check, Erin). But I still broke down into tears after walking out of the salon.  What is it about us girls and our hair? Fortunately, I can still pull back all of my hair into a super cute low pony AND the stylist fixed my messy side swept bangs. I guess there is always a silver lining.

The only thing that has made me truly happy was fleeing to the arms of my Tar Heel who was sweet enough to add “And give Regina confidence about her hair” into our dinner blessing last night. And he reassurred me at least 100 times that I do not, in fact, look like a boy and that they really didn’t cut that much hair. 

My mom’s advice? “Oh honey, at least you got it cut on a Growing Moon.”

WHAT? What is a “growing moon”?  Whatever it is, if it makes my hair grow faster then, yeah, I am glad I got it cut on a Growing Moon.  Jeez, I am such a girl.

The beauty products

So you know that icebreaker question “What three things would you want to have on a stranded island?” – well this post is going to answer that question, but along the lines of beauty products.  I have a few things I simply can’t live without, and if they were the only beauty products available to me, I would get along just fine. 

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First, my absolute essential, I-cannot-live-without-this-product, product: Lancome Hypnose mascara. I also use Lancome CILS Booster XL, but if I had to do without that one, I could. I am obsessed with eyelashes. Obbbb.sessed. I think its due to my natural lashes being really light and not very long, so any product that accentuates them is an essential in my book.  The Lancome mascara products have been the best to me, by far, after many years of trying every mascara out there. Yes, they are expensive, but to an eyelash-obsessed girl, its well worth it. I will make concesssions in order to budget for this necessity. For real.

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Second, For anyone that has thin, limp hair like myself, this is a miracle worker! I just bought it last week at Sephora because I am a sucker for great marketing. The product is by Living Proof and it is called full thickening cream and it does EXACTLY what it claims! I have loved it so far!

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Finally, Pureology’s Nanoworks Luxury Hair Masque.  Admittedly, This stuff was expensive.  And I am pretty sure I purchased it because my hair stylist said “It uses Nano Technology!” and I immediately thought of my iPod and couldn’t buy the stuff fast enough. (I told you I am a sucker for marketing) But it lasted me almost 2 years (yeah, I think it should probably only last 6 months, but I always failed to use it on a regular basis) and it always made my hair feel amazing and shiny like none other, so it was WORTH IT!  It’s the same stuff they use at my salon for Deep Conditioning Treatments.  I am crazy over my hair, and I cannot stand for it to look frizzy or un-shiny (is that a word?)  so this product always fixed those issues. I left it on for around 5-10 minutes after shampooing and allowing my hair to air dry (some, not all the way) so that the moisture didn’t affect the conditioning treatment.  Afterwards my hair always felt amaaaaazing.  I have been out for a few weeks now and I can tell a huge difference in my hair (in a bad way) so my supply will be replenished soon. 

Are you a beauty junkie too? What beauty musts do you have? I will try anything once and store it in my “put in future guest bathroom” if it doesn’t work out for me.  Oh, and I have one more beauty must….

A smile!

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