Meagan Musing: October 2011

Meagan Musing


At the Pumpkin Patch

We had a super fun, pumpkin-filled weekend. It was just what I needed after my crazy day on Friday.

We headed to Owens Spring Creek Farm in Richardson. We wanted a place where we could pick out pumpkins and take a hayride and it more than delivered.

We got to ride a little train and Andrew said this was his favorite part.


And here was the hayride. Andrew was mostly excited about the tractor.



And sweet Caroline got to take a Moby Wrap ride.


My favorite part was feeding the goats...but that's because I just watched and took pictures. Those goats are kind of dirty. :)


And then it was time to pick out our pumpkins.




He even got to stand next to the little tractor that was dropping off new pumpkins.


I'm pretty sure that made his whole day. :)

We had so much fun together! The weather was perfect and Andrew was so good! Even Caroline had a good time, staying awake most of the afternoon.

Tonight we're off to do a little trick or treating with my sister and her family and I'm sure we'll eat way too much candy.

Happy Halloween!

Sweet Shot Day

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Today was one of those days where I wanted to go back to bed almost as soon as it started.

Andrew woke us up at 6AM with a wet bed (because he'd taken off his pj's and his diaper!?!) and he never went back to sleep. He'd gone to bed late last night and really needed to sleep longer than he did. He started whining pretty much from the moment he opened his eyes.

And then it was NO NO NO all day long.

I keep wondering if I'm doing this parenting thing's so hard. But it's supposed to be, right? Am I being too hard on him? He's only 2 and a 1/2. Do I expect too much?

But the open defiance and laughing when he does what he knows he's not supposed to do? I know that's wrong.

But he's so sweet about so many things. He's really a great kid most of the time so do I let some of it slide?


We finally made it to our make-up swimming lesson this afternoon and Caroline had a massive blowout diaper all the way up her back. It was the worst yet.

And guess who didn't have a clean diaper in the bag? Much less a change of clothes. Poor baby. I've said it many, many times over the last two months: I'm so thankful she's a happy, easy going little girl.

Andrew takes up so much of my mom I giving her enough?

And the Rangers lost the World Series tonight so I'm sports sad on top of everything else.

But the good news today?

- The weather was beautiful! I couldn't have asked for anything better.

- Tomorrow night Brian and I are going out without children for the first time since Caroline was born. Our 7 year anniversary is on Sunday. I'm so excited!

Well, I thought I'd come up with a third, but, hmmm....


- My new iPhone arrived this week! I upgraded from the 3S to the 4S and it's awesome. I really wanted it for the camera and I'm loving it already.

Here are some photos from the last two weeks. Some are the 3S and some are the 4S. I can tell the difference for sure. The 4S is so less grainy and much sharper.


Caroline in pink - I'm in red. :)

WEB_AndrewQuad copy 2

See? He keeps us entertained!


Finally cool enough for coffee...

I know I'll look back at this day soon and think it really wasn't that bad, but for now...ooof.

life rearranged

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So Fast...

We're all healthy in our house again!

Since Caroline got sick last Thursday we've been crazy busy: my nephew turned one and had an awesome birthday party, I've watched the Rangers play three World Series games, Andrew has been to a costumed candy hunt, we've been to Tulsa and back, spending a day with my best friend from home and her new baby, and I've taken Caroline in for a kidney ultrasound.

Last week feels like ages ago.

But look how happy she is now!


I have so many photos to edit and post from this month, but it's just gotten away from me. Y'all, November is NEXT WEEK and then before you know it it'll be Thanksgiving and then Christmas...but it can't be because we've just left summer.

I looked at this picture of Caroline tonight and teared up.


How does she look that old already? What happened to my squishy newborn? She looks like a real baby now.



I mean...she's sitting in a Bumbo chair looking so serious!


Slow down, time!

Linking up:


P.S. Caroline's darling shirt is from my favorite new shop on Etsy, Pocketbaby.

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Sad Baby

Sick babies are so, so sad. Caroline has a urinary tract infection, and she's just miserable.


We discovered that her kidneys were enlarged while she was still in-utero. We followed up and found that she has Level 4 kidney reflux, meaning that her urine goes back up out of her bladder and re-enters her kidneys.

The majority of kids with reflux never get sick, but poor Caroline seems to be one who does.


The good news is we've started her on an antibiotic and she should be feeling better by this time tomorrow.

I feel like I've spent all week snuggling with a sad baby. She had her 2-month vaccinations on Tuesday (she weighs 12 lbs, 5 oz!) and was pretty sore and fussy after that. She was okay on Wednesday, but was sick all day Thursday and today too.


I'm so ready for her to be back to her normal happy, smiley self. It's just heartbreaking to hear her little whimpers and cries.


This brief bout with a sick baby has made me even more thankful for my normally healthy, happy kids. Once again, I realize how truly blessed we are.

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Fall Style

Ah fall. My favorite time of year to add to my wardrobe.

And this year I just happen to have a very good excuse to go shopping. I need new post-baby clothes! I'm still about 8 pounds away from my pre-baby weight, but I'm happy that most of my clothes are fitting already. Some are a little snug, but they're certainly wearable. (Maybe I shouldn't though??).

I'm a big believer in getting dressed (with makeup on and everything) every day. It just works for me to at least put on jeans and a cute top. I feel more productive, and if someone asks me out to dinner at the last minute I'm ready to go - bonus!

I am home most of the week though so I do have my yoga pants days every once in a while, but I try to keep them to a minimum.

So, what's on my fall wardrobe want list?

Lots of comfy, chunky sweaters.


I love the texture and the layered look here.

These are my favorite jeans and have been for a while.

Citizens of Humanity

They're great with flats or boots, or heels I guess, but my heel wearing days are few and far between.

I also really love cardigans over flowy tops. I think I may have mentioned my cardigan obsession a time or two. I love how versatile they are. Here is a very pretty one from Banana. I love those shoulders.

Banana Republic

Most days I wear flats. They get lots and lots of use so they need to be comfortable and versatile. I usually go with a gold or a beige, something I can wear with browns or blacks. But I'm also always on the lookout for a good black flat.

Tory Burch Flat, Calvin Klein Flat, MICHAEL Flat

They can be a little spendy if you're going to wear them every day for a year, right? :)

I also want a pair of brown riding boots to wear with jeans and long sweaters.


So, that's my look for fall. I also have a few more looks and ideas on my Pinterest board.

I just need it to cool down a bit so I can actually wear a chunky sweater. And then I need to go shopping - without my children. :)



Caroline's Rolls

Happy Monday morning from Caroline!

Tickled Pink Challenge!

We had such a fun weekend - my sister and dear friends threw us a beautiful sip and see on Saturday morning and then we packed up and headed out to my parents' place at the lake.

Andrew and Brian got one last swimming session in for the summer and we enjoyed some beautiful football and baseball watching weather.

I have lots of fun photos to edit, but for now I wanted to show you Caroline's leg rolls.

She's two months old now, and she seems to have caught up from her itty-bitty start. We go in tomorrow for her 2-month doctor visit and I can't wait to see how much she weighs. She's much chunkier than Andrew was at this age, that's for sure.

Apparently she's a very efficient nurser. :)

Happy Monday y'all!

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Improving Your Indoor Photos

I really love taking pictures of my kids. In fact, the only reason I became interested in photography was because I wanted to have nice photos of Andrew to document these busy, wonderful years.

With a new baby I'm taking most of my photos indoors these days which can be a little tricky, but there are some ways to make it a bit easier.

The most important thing I've learned about photography is to find the light. It doesn't matter if you're using the best dSLR camera on the market, an iPhone or a little point and shoot, finding the right light will make all the difference in your photos.

Photography is all about light, and if your camera is shining a bright, blaring light on your subject your photo is going to look flat and stark. So I would first say - turn off your flash.

Say you're inside your house and you want to take pictures of your adorable kids, but you don't want to use your camera's flash. What should you do? Find a window.


{Window is camera left, with the light falling directly on her face.}

Natural light is very flattering and can give you soft, pretty photos, IF, there is enough of it. That's the hard part.

Look around your house and find your biggest window. Open your blinds. Pull your drapes as far off the window as you can and face your kiddos toward it. This will allow for the most light on their faces and in their eyes.

BUT, you need it to be even, dispersed light. You want to avoid "hot spots" - where the light falls in uneven patches and shapes.


{Window is camera right. The left side of his face is brighter than his right.}


{She's at a 90 degree angle to the window which is camera right. See how the right side of her face is shadowed a bit?}

Watch how the light falls in multiple rooms in your house. It will be different throughout the day. My south facing window in the den is great for late-afternoon or mid-morning shots, but the light is too bright and uneven right at noon.

If the light is soft enough, having them face the window directly leads to pretty, well-lit eyes.


{Window directly behind the camera, late afternoon on an overcast day.}


{Window behind and below the camera (because of the camera angle), mid-day on an overcast day.}

(This is my new favorite Caroline picture. She's so adorable though I have a new favorite almost daily. Ha!)

and then, she {snapped}

If you still can't get enough light in your house try lamps. You can take the shade off a lamp and it'll provide quite a bit of ambient light. It won't be as dimensional as natural light, but it's better than your on-board flash. This is a good tip for nighttime photos, too.

(Though as a general rule you're going to have a hard time getting great pictures at night without a tripod. If you want cute nighttime pictures of your kids in their pajamas you're going to have to use your flash - or accept dark-ish photos, which can be nice and moody.)

(And if you're using a dSLR you can add an external flash which can be bounced and redirected so it's not shining directly on your subject. But that's a whole different ballgame.)

So, practice practice!

And come back and let me know if this helped, or if it just left you more confused with more questions.

Darcy at Life with My 3 Boybarians is in the middle of 31 Days of Photo Tips and recently posted some great pointers for indoor photos. Be sure to checks these out, too!



Details - Not to Forget

I feel like I complained all summer about the insane heat here. And I think I was pretty justified. We had the most days over 100 degrees in Dallas's history and the average daily temperature was over 90 degrees, also a record breaker.

But October is usually a pretty nice month here and we've been in the 80s most days. We can finally get back outside and play!


This kid has so much personality it's crazy. He's so much closer to little boy than baby now. The toddler stage seems to have flown by.

When Brian gets home from work Andrew says, "How was your day at work Daddy?" like he's an adult or something.



He's pretending to be sad here so that he can laugh at his sad picture on the back of my camera.

{I'm entering this shot in The Paper Mama's Photo Challenge: Little Details}

The Paper Mama

Also, we're working on potty training and it makes me want to pull my hair out. My biggest struggle? Getting him to sit still long enough to potty. I keep telling myself that we'll get there eventually. I'm 90% certain he will not leave for kindergarten wearing diapers.

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