Several of you asked the same questions, so instead of copy/pasting each individual question related to that topic, I am going to answer in categories.
Alrighty, so many of you want me to do a home tour of my home and my mom's. There are several pictures of my house (and hers) floating around on this blog, but there isn't one post devoted to it solely. I may do a video blog (VLOG, BABY), of my house and hers if that is something y'all would be interested in. Just let me know and you can see our homes and hear my little hick voice.
Wowza!! SO MANY of you asked about this, which kind of made me laugh. But then I realized that a lot of you are facing the same situation as we are (with schooling) and you are truly interested in how we do it and how I am able to stay home with Levi. Totally understandable! :)
First of all, Husby and I are planners. We planned for this a six years ago. When we first got married, we knew that when Husby went to Medical School, we would likely start a family during the middle of it and knowing my desires, I would want to be home with that baby. Husby was a Forensic Scientist - Drug Chemist for two years straight out of undergrad, and I worked at an insurance company. For those two years, we lived completely on his salary and we saved mine. We tucked it away so that we could not touch it until we absolutely needed it.
He started Medical School and I got a new job at that time AT the school. I worked for his first two years (we lived on that, of course) and then had Levi right before his last two. I quit my job and we whipped out that savings and lived on that for these last two years. When it ran out, we took the "living expenses" loan from the school, typically taken out from Day 1 for most students. In a nutshell, we are glad we did what we did six years ago! :)
Concerning Mom's Holiday Budget:
This is something I do not know at all. I do know that she gets lots of steals and deals at Hobby Lobby and that saves a lot of cash. Some of you wanted to know what she does with the things from each previous year and concerning the decor, she reuses it. Concerning the table decorations, she gives them away. My mom is one of the most generous people in all the land.
I remember you mentioning FOREVER ago how you bottle-fed Levi as opposed to breastfeeding him. As a fellow bottle-feeder, I would love to know why you chose that for your family. I feel like all I ever hear is "why you should breastfeed", but never hear anybody talk about "why it's perfectly acceptable to bottle-feed". (Which is my opinion) I'd love your opinions as well! :)
I nursed/supplemented/pumped for four days with Levi. We had our fair share of problems with the whole shebang. I cried and cried and felt like it was something I HAD to do. After a doctor's appointment one day when I was made to feel like The Worst Mom On Planet Earth from Levi's pediatrician because of my nursing problems, I burst into tears right in front of her and could NOT stop sobbing. I looked over at Husby and his jaw was clenched and my Mom had steam coming out of her ears. We left the appointment and my Mom took me by the shoulders in the parking lot and had a heart to heart with me. She encouraged me, and point blank told me that how I feed my child has nothing to do with being a good mother or not. Then and there, I decided to solely bottle feed Levi and I can honestly say it was the best decision for our family for so many reasons. Levi thrived and did not have one problem with formula. All this to say, IT IS PERFECTLY ACCEPTABLE TO BOTTLE FEED and you should not feel bad about it in the least. You have to do what is best for you and for your child. And no one else can tell you what that is.
Oh, and Levi was quickly switched over to a new, awesome pediatrician. :)
What are your favourite books and what genres do you like to read?
I love to read, and I really like all genres. I'm not too picky as long as it's clean. I recently finished The Help and that was captivating for me. I absolutely loved it. That's probably my most recent favorite. I'm also taking recommendations on new books to read.
I did want to know how many guest bedrooms/bathrooms your moms house has. I know we live in totally different worlds but my guests sleep on a fold out couch in the living room and use our 1 bathroom. (although along with clean towels I've started buying little gifts like your mom does)
When my brother and I were living there, they had one guest room. Now, there are three since our rooms are free. There are two guest bathrooms. One is a half bath.
I'll second the book reading question as well, but also do you do any gardening at all? I know if you did you'd probably post pictures but your house LOOKS like it has a garden somewhere.
I am NOT a gardener, though I wish I was. My grandma is the most incredible gardener I know! Husby does the flower bed and he recently overhauled it and it looks awesome. I wish more than anything I had a vegetable garden, though. That would be so amazing!
Expanding the Family
Several of you want to know when we want more kiddos! We decided long ago that we would not begin thinking of child #2 until Levi was two and until Husby was in and established in residency (paychecks should never be underestimated). No, we are not currently trying for a baby. :) We are waiting for a few things before we give Levi a sibling, considering the wildly crazy intern year Husby (and I) will go through next year.
Husby is going into a Family Practice residency that begins July 1 (our anniversary). !!!!
When you realized your husband was "Mr. Right" how exactly did you know? I am so scared I will make the wrong choice one day....
Whew, that's a toughie! It sounds cliche to say, "I just knew", but really, after a year of being friends and several years of dating, it DID just happen that way. It was a slow realization though. The real kicker was when I would think "could I live happily and contently without him?" -- the answer was always a BIG FAT NO!!! So, then I knew. And, I poured a LOT of prayer into that question. A lot.
Okay, there's the first installment. I will answer the rest later this week (hopefully!) :)