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Alexis Peters: Work-from-HOME Mom :)

10 Jan

It’s officially official. I’ve taken the plunge. Gone all in. Called it quits…from office-bound work, that is. If you can’t tell from my title and (drawn out) intro, I decided to quit my eCommerce copywriting job at Dillard’s and set off on a freelancing adventure. This, my friend, is your official invitation to come along. Hold on to your butts.

Christmas Morning Smile:)

Christmas Morning Smile:)

Even before baby boy, freelancing was always something I’ve always wanted to try. Why?

A) I have a freakish devotion to checking things off lists, thus I rarely (if ever) miss a deadline (even with a Netflix full of tempting reality TV)

B) I’ve always wondered what people who can go to Target at 2pm on a Tuesday do for a living…this may be it!

C) I will miss my wonderful co-workers, but I also don’t mind the solitary life of the freelancer. No one to judge when I crunch my apples or play my music out loud. True freedom, y’all!

My work station!

My work station!

Quick sidenote: I’m very thankful for my time at Dillard’s. Before my job there I had no hard and fast writing experience. Just good faith assurances to offer potential employers — “Hey! I KNOW I can do a good job, you just have to take a chance on me…PLEASE!”  And thankfully they did. Two and a half years later I leave with bonafide copywriting and blogging experience under my belt — and the confidence that comes with it. Confidence that I can finally channel into pitching for new clients.

Or sometimes this is my work station...

Or sometimes this is my work station…

And now the other half of my dream: I’ve always wanted to be a mom, and I’ve always wanted to spend at least the first years of my kiddos’ lives at home with them. It’s hard to really express how thankful I am that my mom was always (and continues to be) there for me when I need her. With her wonderful example, I’ve always hoped to be able to do the same for my family.

My other (attention-deprived) co-worker.

My other (attention-deprived) co-worker.

When I was pregnant, I decided to test the freelancing waters to see if this dream was feasible. I started working on my portfolio and Elance profile to see what business I could drum up. The response was literally overwhelming. Want to be crazy tired? Just try working full-time, coming home and then working on freelance projects until midnight (when you’re a million weeks pregnant). Yes, I dug myself into a scary too-much-work hole, but there was a silver lining: there was work to be had!

Staying Stylish and Warm.

Staying Stylish and Warm.

One of my first gigs I scored was Social Media manager for Express Writers, an online copywriting agency. They were easy to work with, encouraging, great with communication and they even let me take a maternity break. When I decided to take my Social responsibilities back after the New Year, I asked if I could take on any more roles.

Next thing I knew, I was signing a contract as their newest part time web content and press release writer. Woo hoo! As promised, they are keeping me busy. I’ve already written 3 press releases, a web page and a blog. I’m well on my way to building our savings that we can put toward retirement, college, cars and other grown-up stuff.

Can't get enough of these two.

Can’t get enough of these two.

And the final shout out of the day: I’m very thankful for Ike. Not only did he work to find a new job that would cover all of our day-to-day expenses, but he has always been very supportive of my dream to stay home.

Even when I doubted if we could afford it or when I worried feminists would judge me, he gently reminded me that this is really what I’ve always wanted. He’s the best and I literally could not have made this major transition without him.

That’s quite enough for the announcement post, right? I’ll be back with more tantalizing day-in-the-life details for the work-from-home mom. Stay tuned!

New Baby FAQ: Your all-access pass to life after a newborn.

20 Dec

Hey there! If you haven’t been lucky enough to meet Elliott since his grand entrance 6 weeks ago (you’re totally missing out, btw), here’s the 4-1-1, the low-down, the nitty gritty about living with a tiny person, specifically, our little person. Side note: Do people still say 4-1-1? Or am I already an outdated mom?


Thanks again to Restless Photography for a wonderful newborn session!!

Ok, here are the most frequently-asked questions I’ve fielded since joining the (super-cool) parents club:

1. How are you feeling?


This is a 2-parter, really:

A) Physically: I’m doing surprisingly well! I, of course, read every description of the recovery process and ended up pretty freaked out. Without saying too much (sorry for a brief stint into possible TMI land), childbirth causes some scary wounds to some scary places.

But it wasn’t nearly as bad as I feared (which is pretty much the theme for my reaction to childbearing), and after my 6-week postpartum appointment on Tuesday, I actually started working out again. Woo hoo!

For all my GG fans out there, this doesn’t mean I want 4 in 4, but I am willing to entertain the idea of more…eventually.

B) Emotionally: One of my mom friends warned me that “you will cry as hard as you ever have after you have a baby.”


And, yes, I will admit I’ve had my moments, esp in the first few weeks. But the bouts of “I’m totally overwhelmed” desperation are getting more and more rare. Thankfully the “baby blues,” (the inevitable hormone-fueled slump most moms face when they are already tired, kinda fat and dealing with a whole bunch of new responsibilities) was a short-lived, quite mild visitor. I think I have the plethora of fam and friend support to thank for that one!

Overall, I’m so thankful that expanding our family has been such a pleasant experience. My only “anxiety”? Incorporating him into my “social” sphere. Basically I get nervous if he’s with me (will he be fussy? will he have a “blowout” at the worst possible moment?) and worried about him if I’m away (will anyone else be able to comfort him?). Basically, I’m getting used to having a whole other person with his own little schedule to take into account, aka parenthood.

2. How is he sleeping?

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Without humblebragging, he’s doing great! Through no real actions by us (I’d love to take credit!), he’s suddenly jumped from 4 hour sleeping stints to about 7 every night. Of course the first night he did that I was up googling “Should I wake up my 4 week old baby if…” and so on. I didn’t, and here we are, much less sleep deprived than expected.

3. How is he eating?

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I think we’re going to be in trouble during his teenage years, because from day one to now he’s gained almost 4 pounds, weighing in at 10 pounds 9 ounces at his most recent appointment. I’m also thankful that the whole providing a human with sustenance thing has gone without a hitch. He’s just so great, I don’t deserve him.

4. Are you bored yet?


Of the 6 weeks I’ve been home, I’ve gotten a little stir crazy on 2 days. Not so bad, I’d say. How do I fill my new 9 to 5? Other than, you know, KEEPING A HUMAN ALIVE, fed and happy? I’ve enjoyed maintaining the house (weird, I know), hanging out with other moms, reading, blogging, running errands and catching up on What Not to Wear (guilty pleasure, deal with it).

Overall, I feel so happy and content spending time with this little guy. Like I’m on vacation, with a little laundry sprinkled in.

5. How’s Buster doing?

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Buster and Elliott are basically oblivious of each other, although I’ve noticed Buster will come sniff Elliott during rage, I mean, tummy time. (Thanks, Amber for so aptly naming that exercise). Maybe Buster likes E?

With their mutual ambivalence, Buster is really adjusting to me being home all the time (yay!) and getting less exercise (boo!). The result: he’s a little needy, hyper and grumpy. He’s growled at 3 people since the baby!

I promise I tried to walk Buster and the baby simultaneously! But after an unfortunate incident, I decided I can’t wrangle both boys at once (e.g., while trying to rein in Buster as he went crazy at the trash truck, I may have let go of the stroller and it may have rolled toward a huge drainage ditch…).  Not my proudest mom or dog-owner moment!

I don’t know what I’m going to do with that furry little mess.

Odds & Ends

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Milestones: Other than being awesome, the boy has mastered cooing, smiling and making intense eye contact.

A few of his favorite things: his mobile (thanks KK!), the passed-down Happy Apple & his rattle snake from IKEA. He’s also fond of the basket in his changing area. A man of refined tastes and pleasures.

Is it becoming obvious that I just wrote this post so I could (over)share pictures of this little doll? Oops, sorry for being so transparent! Hope you enjoyed it despite the cute pictures.

Have a very Merry Christmas! I will be back next year!

Elliott’s B-Day

13 Dec

I’m back! Will you excuse my month-long absence? I was busy birthing (gross verb, yes) a human. If you’re not into “birth stories” I welcome you to read some of your favorite posts from times past (hard to choose your fave, right??) or just come back next time when I do the actual 1 month report on Elliott Edward (spoiler alert: he’s pretty cute).


Exhibit A: Adorable from hour #1. See? Not lying about the cuteness.

For those of you marching onward, I promise to keep words like placenta, tearing and after birth to a minimum. Sorry, that was just cruel. Zero gruesome details, I promise. And, no, there is NOT a video.

So rewind to the rainy morning of Monday, November 4th. If you recall, I was pretty bummed/nervous about Elliott’s lack of dropping and the dr’s concern about his size. After celebrating Ike’s b-day the day before (by making Pioneer Woman chicken fried steak and mashed potatoes, no less), I honestly expected a business-as-usual pregnant day.

Meeting cousin Jack and Pete!

Meeting cousin Moriah and Pete!

That was not Elliott’s plan.

I was greeted with (TMI alert) “bloody show” first thing in the morning. If you don’t know what that is, look it up or maintain your ignorance and move on. Just take the word of this pregnancy (Google) expert, it means baby is coming…at least within the next few days.

Even with that sign, Ike and I still took Buster on our ritual pre-appointment walk around the neighborhood, and I proceeded to get ready for work. That’s about when I started to feel contractions, or at least what I thought were contractions.

Uncle Jay!

Uncle Jay!

When you’ve never had a baby, things are really confusing. You don’t want to be the person who goes to Labor & Delivery with indigestion issues or an active imagination. So even though my contractions were about 4-7 minutes apart on the way to work, I was still in a “this isn’t going down today” mode.

We made it all the way to the Dillard’s parking lot before deciding that maybe we should stick around home until our appointment later that morning. This is the best decision I’ve ever made, because about 10 minutes after we got home, my water broke.

Confession time: I wish I could have  been cool as my friend Amber who finished her Cracker Barrel French toast after her water broke,  but I, instead, started bawling (hysterically). Case in point: Ike thought I was laughing until he saw my face.

Boy cousins!

Boy cousins!

I think it was my last bit of “labor totally freaks me out” fear oozing out. Plus, everything seemed to be happening so fast, becoming so real. Worrier that I am, I had prepared myself to wait until November 16th and a possible C-section. So a week-early baby was throwing me for a loop.

After stuffing some extra gear in my and Elliott’s bags, we went straight to the hospital. Of course we forgot the little guy’s bag, but (Santa) Pete came to the rescue and brought it later that day.

Fresh baby.

Fresh baby.

Other than that, we really lucked out on our timing:

A) I saw my dr. in the hall, she was on call all day!

B) We nabbed the last available room.

Then we entered the part usually not in movies…the waiting.

Aunt Katie!

Aunt Katie!

After I got the DRUGS (yes, I immediately decided I was over contractions), Ike and I settled in for a day-long TLC marathon: What Not to Wear, Say Yes to the Dress and The Duggers kept us company as Elliott made his slow descent into the world.

With my spinal fusion, I was able to get an epidural, but it took longer to work and I had a “hot spot” on my right side where I could still feel the worst part of each contraction. I’m not complaining, though, it was nice to take the edge off.

Ike was very supportive, even when I made him skip bathroom breaks and lunch to hold my hand during the worst parts. He even tried to only text concerned friends and family when I wasn’t looking so he’d always seem engaged and supportive (or maybe he was scared I’d rip the phone out of his hands?). Either way, he was great.

Aunt Tyler:)

Aunt Tyler:)

We kept it just Ike, me, the lovely anesthesiologist and super sweet nurse in the room. But I really appreciate Ike’s family waiting patiently in the waiting room and my mom and sister for dutifully jumping in the car and heading to LR from Houston.

By a little after lunch-ish time, the nurse told me I was “complete,” and congratulated me on “fast labors.” Yay, my body! She told me to let her know when I felt the urge to push, and then we entered a period of more waiting.

I guess I never knew what I was looking for, as far as the pushing urge, so when the dr. came to check on me around 4:00 we decided to try a few practice pushes.

Meeting cousin Molly.

Meeting cousin Molly.

As weird as it sounds, this was my favorite part. It relieved all contraction pain, and everyone was really encouraging. I was even more surprised when I heard myself saying “yes” to a mirror: labor is a strange time. All modesty and inhibitions are off. And it was so interesting, exciting, MIND-BLOWING to see that little bald head. Somehow that (cute) black and white skeleton I kept seeing in ultrasound form was a real, pink little person. Ike even got in on the action by holding one of my super numb legs.

After we really got started, little Elliott was introduced to the world in about 15 minutes (4:32 is his birth moment). And all the sudden, a 6 pound 13 ounce, 20 inch-long baby (with a perfectly-shaped head and adorable face), was here. The nurse said he was a good baby, only crying a little bit right after he was born and when she washed his feet.

Day old baby.

Day old baby.

All I could say for the next few minutes was “Don’t you just love him?” because I did. Of course, by the time Ike’s family wanted to come in to meet him and take pictures, I found the strength to say “How does my hair look”?

First Fam picture. How does my hair look?

First Fam picture. How does my hair look?

After we got a chance to get to know Elliott a little bit, we were moved into the recovery room where we’d spend the next two nights (and where we were greeted by my ultimate pregnancy food, Chick fil a, from my mom and sis).

The next 2 days are a blur of recovery, sweet visitors and NEW BABY (so, overwhelming, but worth it).

And that is where my narrative stops for now. Satisfied? If not, come back (hopefully) next week for a Baby Elliott rundown. And sorry for the details, I wanted to record as many of them as I could!

Tired hospital times.

Tired hospital times.


Nursery Collaging (Halloween & More AWESOME Stuff you don’t wanna miss)

1 Nov

So here we are. (Nearly) 39 weeks and still pregnant. In fact, at our appointment it seemed like Elliott may have some Buster Bluth tendencies (who spent 11 months in the womb) with absolutely no dropping at all! Let’s hope he comes out on his own will (without any claw marks on my poor stretched out uterus). And yes, I’m sorry for saying the word uterus (and for saying it again, just then.)

Also, if you have a moment, think of us on Monday morning. The doc ordered a dating/sizing ultrasound. Seems like baby E is on the small side and she wants to make sure everything is a-ok. As a pre-parent, I’m a little nervous, but mostly thankful to have a doctor who is on top of our care and willing to put extra time into our (officially) little guy.

Ike and I used last weekend to put a fun finishing touch on the nursery…making the collage! Here are pictures of our process in case you, too, want to hang up frames in an artfully eclectic way (or at least I hope that’s how it came off).

Step 1: Get Framed

We ended up buying our frames at Hobby Lobby, where they are always 40% the marked price. We bought 6 for just under $40, not too shabby. Or if it is shabby, just don’t tell me, K??

Step 2: Plot Your Placement

We knew we wanted the collage over the dresser. So we arranged (and rearranged) the frames on the floor in front of the dresser. This was the final selection.

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Step 3: Cut it Out

It was my (brilliant) idea to cut out a piece of paper to represent each frame. That way we could tape (and rearrange if need be) the paper frames on the wall before getting out the hammer and nails.

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Step 4: Arrange, Step Back and Repeat

We translated our plotted placement from the floor to the space above the dresser. Once we put the lamp and changing table back on, we realized that we needed to move a few of our frames.

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Step 5: Stay Level Headed*

*Or in my case, make someone who is visually neat like Ike do the work! We just tackled hanging the frames one by one until…

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Step 6:  Be Happy! You’re Awesome Collage is Done!

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Step 7: Pick & Print

We are actually not done with this step. But we have plans to print out an engagement, wedding, maternity, newborn and new fam pic for the wall. Currently we also have my shower invite, ultrasound pic, custom Elliott art and EEP monogram already up. I’m really happy with how it turned out and I’m excited to finish the project!

Things to think about:

  • When hanging frames, you may need some cardboard to replace the back it came with.

  • Remember to have your level handy! We didn’t really measure, but having a level will keep things looking neat!


We celebrated our first Halloween as homeowners! The weather was perfect (and we may have forgotten to replace our porch light) so we sat out on the driveway and handed out candy. So fun!

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And finally, here I am 1 day shy of 39 weeks!

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Stay tuned for whatever Baby E has in store! You’ll either get pictures of a tiny baby next week OR a disgruntled pregnant lady:) Either way, see ya soon!

Possible project for this weekend: using our extra fabric to cover some canvases...We'll see!

Possible project for this weekend: using our extra fabric to cover some canvases…We’ll see!

Shameless Plug: The Coasts on Grimm (and other cool stuff of late, like our nearly-finished nursery)

25 Oct

I’ve never so related to Father of the Bride Part II as I do now. The scene where the daughter finds the word “Ouch!” in Scrabble (and George gets concerned before he understands) keeps repeating in my head whenever I need to catch my breath, turn over in bed or generally move. Ike’s go-to response — “Do we need to go to the hospital?” — is actually adorable, but my answer has always been no…so far.

So as I close in on week 38, I feel kind of like a ticking time bomb. Unfortunately, no one knows how long I have to go, other than a baby who doesn’t even know the world exists yet. Elliott, the ball is in your court!

Here’s another what’s-gone-down-lately update. Enjoy!

The Coasts on GrimmGrimm

What are you doing tonight? I’m sorry, but the ONLY correct answer is watching the season 3 premiere of Grimm. The Coasts (Ike’s band with the talented Eric Mount) scored another placement. If you haven’t heard of them, do you live under a rock?… I mean check out their bandcamp here (lowers glasses, arches eyebrows and waits).

I don’t know if I’m allowed to give details, so I’ll sum it up in as few words as possible: The Coasts song “Tonight” (buy it, so you’ll be cool and know all the words). Roadhouse. Zombies. One minute of TV magic.


Enjoy your Grimm watching parties! I’m going to make a pumpkin cake for ours.

The Nearly-Finished Nursery

So, I can give you a bit more than teaser pictures this week.

Here’s some in-progress pics. We tried our best to keep Buster out, but to no avail! We finally caved when he had an accident on the blanket I put right outside the door for him to lay on. He’s our special little fur-brained fur ball. Yay!

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I finally got over my mental block and decided to wash some baby clothes. Maybe, somewhere deep down in my change-wary psyche, I thought “If I don’t wash these clothes, the tiny body that’s supposed to fit in said onesie may never appear.” Crazy, I know. For some reason, taking off those tags was another step in the acceptance process.

Yet, with the piles gone, and all baby clothes, gear, blankets and diapers stowed, I actually feel SO much better, and even ready.

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We are just waiting to put on some finishing touches. We still need to:

  • Make final decisions on where to hang stuff.
  • Buy some frames to create the newborn/maternity/wedding picture collage that currently only exists in my head.
  • Throw the pillows my mom made on the couch when she gets here.

Not too bad! I’d say overall, we achieved the “Happy Baby” theme I was going for. Right now, the room is very inviting and fun to hang out in.

Thanks to:

  • Erica and Amber for helping me better sort the piles.
  • Ike’s mom for the beautiful quilt.
  • Ike’s sister for the custom art.
  • My rents for the dresser, rug, wall art, throw, changing pad and forth-coming pillows & rocker.
  • I’m also very excited to use the book shelves, my Papa made them:)
  • To everyone for all the bath stuff, clothes, toys and more. We’ve really not had to spend very much of our own money (really, almost $0) to prepare for this boy. We are blessed!

Just Us Two

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Trying out Mugs Cafe. Yum.

The last couple weekends, Ike and I have been going on dates! I’m notoriously cheap, but as the end of the “Just us Two” era approaches I think we both feel the need to hang out and celebrate our relationship. I know we’ll always have each other, and we are both excited to meet our new addition, but after 5 years of just us (and the Bust) little E will bring a lot change to our world.

So as we wait for our new (much-anticipated and loved) family member to arrive, we’ve decided to keep going on dates and enjoying each other. Where should we go to breakfast on Saturday, LR people?

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We’ll soon be joined by a handsome little man wearing this.

It’s the Final Countdown! Baby Elliott Watch is ON!

11 Oct

With all* the requests for a new post, I couldn’t resist making my public happy. So here’s the short and sweet update: I’m nearly 36 weeks pregnant, and I have no idea how I got here. Yes, I know where babies come from, but I mean, who gave August and September permission to fly by? The past two weeks have especially been a whirlwind of family visits, showers and lots of trips to Babies R Us.


I won’t try to figure out time and it’s tricky ways (today, at least), so all you get is a plain, old-fashioned recap as we enter THE FINAL COUNTDOWN to Baby Elliott (throws pennies in the air).

Maternity Pictures


Seems like I’ve become a trend follower in the “these are the steps you must take when you’re pregnant” department. I’m weak! So yes, I had a gender reveal party. And yes, I broke down and scheduled maternity and newborn pictures (with the amazing Restless Photography, check them out!).


When I asked Ike if he wanted to do park setting or an urban setting for the shoot, he was like “Neither, that’s not us.” Sigh. He wanted a non-cheesy, day-in-the-life type session sans floating baby heads or excessive belly touching (and I, of course, outlawed belly exposure/painting/whatever else people do that makes me feel uncomfortable).


We landed on meeting at Community Bakery (I am nothing, if not a coffee and cookie lover), and I think that our photographer, Adam, really gave us that “hey, we’re a happy couple who also happens to be pregnant and excited about it” vibe that we were looking for. We’ll see how he deals with our “no naked baby, umbilical cord stubs or silly hats” rule for the newborn shots. Yes, we may be a little high maintenance…



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As we were smiling for the camera at the maternity shoot,  my mom, sister, Nana and brother drove into Little Rock to hang out, help with the nursery and attend my shower at Chenal Valley Church. At church on Sunday we had a full pew with 10 family members there to celebrate Elliott with us. I was so touched and thankful they made the effort to come. And that doesn’t count my aunt, cousin, mother-in-law, sister-in-law and nieces who also attended the shower. It’s so wonderful and comforting to see how much love Elliott already has in his scrunched up little life.

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Beyond family, I loved how many people from Little Rock Church (where Ike grew up) also attended. They are wonderful ladies! And of course, I really appreciate my sweet hostesses and ladies from Chenal who braved a rainy Sunday afternoon to watch me open presents. (Hey, there was amazing cake, at least!).


Between the 2 showers and other kind gifts, I’ve written over 80 thank you notes! Wowza, I guess a large stamp bill in my future is a good problem to have. We are blessed. (And now have a ton of baby swag).

Nursery Updates

So I may or may not have had a breakdown on the way to buy a mattress in the days following the shower. It was something about the boxes that literally filled our living room, the mound of tiny (monkey-themed) clothes and the hodge-podge of baby everything that put me over the edge as we drove to pick up yet another baby essential (that I hadn’t fully researched).

I was happy, thankful, excited, OVERWHELMED (welcome to pregnancy, right?), and I just didn’t know if we’d get our life back in order before the big D-day.

I have since recovered, but I still don’t have any “completed” nursery pictures yet…maybe next week? Right now, here’s the breakdown.

The good news:

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Sorry, these are teaser pictures…I will update as soon as things look less like a baby blanket barfed in the room and more like I actually tried to prepare a space for my baby…Stay tuned!

  • The Ikea dresser is put together!
  • We have curtains, a rug and wall art for the room!
  • We were able to buy a fancy video monitor (which Ike uses to spy on Buster) and mattress with our shower gift cards!
  • We have a car seat, already installed in the Rav, to bring him home in and a pack and play for him to sleep in!
  • AND the crib is finally painted. I love it white, by the way.

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The still-gotta-do this list:

  • Wash some newborn clothes, maybe a few 3 month selections and his sheets. I’m buying Dreft this weekend and getting to it.
  • Organize the rest of the clothes mound for later.
  • Hang up said wall art.
  • Put together said crib.
  • WARNING possible TMI: Decide what to do about a breast pump.
  • And, last but not least, stop losing my iPhone at every turn. (not nursery related, but it is getting OLD).

Update on the bump! Currently stretching the fibers of knit and decency! You can wear a short dress with tights, right?

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As my days of being pregnant are limited, I’ll try to post more often (but no promises!). This weekend Ike and I plan to go on a date! I’m so excited. And, as mentioned above, we will also tackle the nursery along with other “nesting? maybe?” chores like perfecting the yard and generally organizing the house.

See you soon!

*ok, just 1, thanks Brittney for making me feel loved!

Lessons Learned: 30 Weeks Pregnant + The Beach

13 Sep

Elliott and I spent Labor Day weekend at the beautiful Siesta Key beach in Sarasota, FL. What brought us there? My perpetual college BF/roomie (the lovely Kristin Kelley or KK)  is tying the knot on 11.9.13. And for those of you up on Alexis trivia, that momentous date is also when Elliott is set to make his arrival. So I sadly had to turn down a bridesmaid gig and even the chance to see this girl get hitched.

To make it up to her, I decided to plan a girls’ getaway! Three other girls from Harding (my alma mater) plus KK’s cousin were able to come, and the 6 of us had a fab-u-lous time. Here are the hard-earned lessons I learned. Ladies in the 3rd trimester who are also planning a beach vacation/bachelorette party, take notes! (you know you’re out there, I’m here to help).

1. Chivalry is (not quite) dead

The gift (plus some much-needed aloe) waiting for me at the end of my journey. At least I MARRIED a gentleman. I'm a lucky girl.

The gift (plus some much-needed aloe) waiting for me at the end of my journey. At least I MARRIED a gentleman. I’m a lucky girl.

I decided to do a social experiment in the airport. I did not check my bag because I’m cheap, but I secretly hoped that some kind person would offer to safely stow my suitcase in the overhead compartment. I’m just not big on lifting stuff over my head right now (or ever).

Here are the results, so read and weep, humanity:

  • Out of 4 flights, 1 lady (probably in her late 50s) offered to help. She looked just as weak as me, so I said “No thanks” and continued huffing and puffing and hoisting.

  • The silver lining: at baggage claim (I finally just checked my bag on the final leg), a college-age girl stayed even after she grabbed her bag to grab mine. I was really impressed! Kindness is not dead (!), but classic Southern gentleman chivalry just may be…at least in an airport setting.

2. Where’d You Go Bernadette is really funny

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I was between downloading Where’d You Go Bernadette and Gone Girl for a little light beach reading. I went with the former because it was a few bucks cheaper (sensing a theme here?). After 2 trusted recommendations for it (thanks Sarah and Brooklynne!), I knew I wouldn’t be disappointed — and I wasn’t! I have less than 100 pages to go, and I’ll be sad when it’s over. Sign of a great read!

If you like humor about artistic genius, fear of human interaction and the city of Seattle, get your copy today!

3. I like the beach not the sun

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I don’t know what’s wrong with me, but after one day in the sun I was done (like medium well). Don’t get me wrong, I love the feel of sand between my toes and the amazing aimlessness of sitting under an umbrella while listening to the rhythmic roar of the ocean. But the ocean made me dizzy and my chest is currently peeling. Am I a fuddy duddy? Yes. But at least that doesn’t come as a surprise.

4. When in doubt, raise the roof!

Everyone had silly buttons for the night. This was mine, place right above Elliott's head:)

Everyone had silly buttons for the night. This was mine, placed right above Elliott’s head:)

We hit the nightlife scene on Saturday, and I was determined to be a good sport. So while the other girls hit the dance floor, I just sat at a table people watching and doing random “raise the roof” motions for good measure. Although I was exhausted, I still cherish the memory! I’m so glad I was able to “participate” with the girls!

5. I have wonderful friends


I’m so happy that we were able to make this happen! Even though I’ve been out of school for 5 years (wowza), I still instantly reconnect with the girls I lived with, “studied” with and helped through boy problems. There’s something magical about a college connection, and I hope to stay in touch with these girls for many more years!


In other news, we’re down to appointments every 2 weeks for Elliott. Where did the time go?

Real Talk: Things You Shouldn’t Say to a Pregnant Lady

12 Jul

Disclaimer. If you are reading this, and feel like you may have said one of these things to me, PLEASE don’t worry. I love you and am not currently harboring any grudges (anymore). But no really, I’ve never had any pregnancy grudges…yet. This is more a word to the wise. Why not help make pregnant ladies’ lives a little easier?

For those of you who don’t know, pregnant women are sensitive. It’s not some sort of myth or old wives’ tale. And it’s not just all hormones (although, that’s probably a ton of it). No, especially from a first time mom perspective, we are facing some big life changes.

  • How will the baby change my relationship with my husband?
  • How will the baby change my budget?
  • What should I do about work? About childcare?
  • How do I mold a young mind into a responsible adult? I could go on all day.

And this doesn’t even include the more selfish ones like,

  • Will I lose this weight?
  • Will I get varicose veins or stretch marks or some other unalterable scar from this experience?
  • When will I wadddddle?? (AHHH!)

That was a long-winded way of saying: we’ve got a lot on our minds PLUS hormones making us a little cray cray. So, world, can you pitch in and not ask us stomach-churning questions? I sure hope so.

I’ll start with the positive.

Acceptable Pregnancy Questions/Phrases

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Meet Bob, my rents’ new BT puppy! He’s a lot of fun, and, as you can see, too cute for his own good.

How are you feeling? This is a perfect question, shows concern but is not too personal.

How far along are you? Warning: do not follow this by extreme surprise at the belly size after. How do you know what a pregnant belly should look like? Are you an OBGYN or midwife? Didn’t think so.

What are your nursery plans? This is usually a fun question to answer. But don’t press her if she still doesn’t have plans.

What are you craving? Just don’t be disappointed when it is as innocuous as “Green Salsa.” We all don’t have extreme cravings like Aunt Becky in Full House.

What are your names? Some people don’t want to share their name choices, so this also could be weird. However if she does, the appropriate answer is always a variation of “That’s so cute!”

Here’s what NOT to say in response:

  • I knew a HORRIBLE person named that!

  • Like the Twilight character? (let them tell you their inspiration, don’t just say the first reference that pops into your head. Maybe they like a name and are hoping an unfortunate reference will be irrelevant when their kid grows up)

  • That rhymes with…

  • What about this name?

What are you having? A generic “[Insert gender here] are so fun!” response is most welcome.

And, anytime people say stuff like, “You look great!” you give her at least a short reprieve from insecurities.

And here’s a crazy idea: just talk to her about normal stuff. Sometimes pregnancy can be all consuming, so a chat about the best TV shows and summer movies could be just the thing.

Now on to the DON’Ts.

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Here’s The Coasts playing White Water Tavern. They were great! (As always) Don’t miss their next show, K?

Here’s a pre-pregnancy one for you: When are you guys having kids? I’ve learned to insert foot in mouth with that one. You just don’t know when someone’s dealing with infertility or other health-related issues. Best not bring it up in a small-talk convo.

Are you pregnant? This seems like a how-to-interact-with-people no-brainer, but I thought I’d include this one just in case. You don’t want to give some lady a complex by asking if she’s pregnant.

You’re not really showing yet, it just looks like you are bloated. Ok, would you tell a non-pregnant person they look bloated? Is being bloated an attractive state? NO and NO.

This is a variation of the above: You look like you just ate a [insert fatty food here e.g. pizza, burrito, cheese burger] Nope, gluttony is also not something you usually accuse non-preggos of, so just don’t, K?

Any phrase that includes the word “waddle.”

Any observation of weight gain, fat or bigger [fill in body part].

Unless she volunteers the info, don’t go delving into the “Were you trying?” question. Personal! Not a normally acceptable topic of conversation, why is it suddenly so?

I’m not really big enough to invite belly touchers yet, but don’t do it. I don’t know why pregnancy seems like a magical time when you can touch strangers, but news flash: it isn’t.

I’m not trying to be overly dramatic here. And I hope you don’t feel like you have to walk on broken egg shells around pregnant ladies. BUT keeping the focus off the negatives (bloating, weight gain, waddling) and onto the positives (glowing, great name, fun nursery) would help when pregnant ladies are ALREADY ON THE EDGE. Oops, I did just yell at you, didn’t I?

Any experienced moms have something to add to my list?? Comment away.

Everyone else, have a good one! I’ll see ya soon.

Nursery Dreamin’

28 Jun

After the ultrasound tech said, “Yup, that’s a boy.” — and confirmed that little Elliott’s brain, spine and even lips were all on the path to healthy baby (yay!!) — my mind turned toward more pressing matters: nursery plans!

I’m not much into themes, but if I had to pick one, I’d go for Happy Baby! I want the colors to be bright, cheerful and hopefully not too difficult to transition to a “bigger boy” look.

We don’t have a lot yet, but here are the bare bones pieces.

Here’s the guest room as a guest room.


Here’s the crib. Ike actually slept in there when he was a baby, isn’t that sweet?

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Current plans:

  • First step, turn the bed for a “day bed” look. I’ll find a coordinating blanket and bright pillows so it will go with the “Happy Baby” flow. I’m not ready to lose my guest room space. Elliott’s small so I doubt he’ll mind.

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    • May have to remove the big book shelf after we get the crib, dresser and a rocker in there. But don’t get the wrong idea, I want him to have tons of books!

    • I’ll be on the lookout for a dresser/changing table. Love the idea of a multi-tasking piece he can grow into. (Thanks to Amber for guidance on that one)

    • I want to paint the crib white. I think that will update the look and brighten the space in general. And by I, I mean, that’ll be a fun weekend project for Ike. 😉

    • I’d love for Kathy, Ike’s mom, to make a quilt for his bedding.

    • And with all my recent curtain success, I’m sure my mom and I will have good luck finding more curtain fabric out there.

    • I’ve commissioned Katie, Ike’s sister, to work on some custom art for the walls.

    • For now, I’m thinking I’ll keep things simple and leave the walls the color they are. With bright pillows and bedding I don’t think I’ll need bright walls as well.

    • Oh…and we need to clean out his closet.

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    And now, here’s what you actually want to see. Color palette inspiration. BIG surprise, I’m attracted to greens again. But in addition to white, I’m feeling the urge to add some orange in there.


Nursery1 Nursery2 Nursery3 Nursery4

What’d you think?? Am I achieving happy baby here? (All courtesy of Houzz, best decor app EVER).

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Here’s me at 21 weeks. Can you see him now? Really it depends on what I wear, but as of yesterday, I have no pants I can zip all the way (TMI? idk). So with slightly over 10 pounds gained (ok, 10-12!), I definitely feel bigger.

As always, I DEMAND you have a delightful weekend! I’m walking a 5K on Saturday and going to a good old-fashioned church potluck (so a calorie wash) on Sunday, be jealous.

Until next time!


7 Jun

You’re right. If you are lucky enough to be friends with my (adorably excited) husband, you already know. Baby Peters is a ……….

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Dramatic Pause for those of you who aren’t lucky enough to be on the Ike Peters train………

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We tried to “trick” people with pink icing, not sure if it worked, but it was fun to try!

Yes, those cookies do say boy.

I realize my makeshift cookie creation may not become a pinterest sensation, but they were made with love (blah, blah) AND they tasted delicious.

I admit I didn’t really understand gender reveal parties. Why have them? What are people supposed to say? Boooo, it’s a boy? Aren’t they supposed to be excited no matter what? Then why? Why do people have them? (short sample of my stream of consciousness about a week ago).

Tried to make the table fancy!

Tried to make the table fancy!

After hosting a low-key event of my own, I’ve decided that they are roughly equivalent to engagement parties. In other words, just a time to celebrate an exciting event in your friends’ lives. Without presents and with plenty of sweet treats. (aka, my kind of gathering!).

So no, I don’t love dramatic surprises or being the center of attention, but I did love celebrating my baby boy with my friends. I’d do it again with baby #2 (no, we’re not having twins).

I let Ike make the creamer labels, isn't he cute?

I let Ike make the creamer labels, isn’t he cute?

Here’s part 2 of my (stolen thunder, thanks again, Ike:) announcement. His name. After the doctor saw baby’s “3rd leg” (lol), Ike and I immediately started brainstorming. The name we had decided on pre-ultrasound? Finn.

Why? It sounded cool. I bounced it off some co-workers and one girl said, “Oh, like from Glee.” WAIT a minute! That gave both Ike and I pause. Sure, my name was inspired by Dynasty’s antagonist, so in 27 years no one would remember our kid was named after Glee.

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But it reminded both of us that maybe we hadn’t thought this through. Thus, back to the drawing board.

Our new criteria:

1. The name had to have meaning

2. The name couldn’t be on recent top 100 names lists

3. The name needed to sound good and not spell anything weird with the middle name Edward

After narrowing it down we finally found one that fit all 3. Ok, we’ll do a quick drumroll again…

Sigh, yes. The cookies say Elliott. Do you get the clue?*


The meaning for this name is twofold for the the Peters family.

A) Growing up (and probably forever), Ike’s favorite movie was/is E.T. Like he has threatened to get an E.T./Elliott flying over the moon tattoo on his chest. That is devotion. As far as characters go, Elliott’s not so bad. Other than his love of Reese’s Pieces, he also thirsts for deeper relationships in the midst of growing up.

*Ding ding! That’s why I made these amazing double chocolate chunk Reese’s Pieces cookies.

Reeses Pieces Double Chocolate Chunk Cookies by Picky Palate

My first Picky Palate recipe, I was very impressed. If you love chocolate and peanut butter, this is a must-try!

B) This next discovery pushed this name from the maaaaaybe pile, into the it’s perfect pile instantly. Of Hebrew origin, Elliott means: Lord my God.

So, not only is Elliott inspired by my movie-loving husband’s all-time favorite movie, but it more importantly means all that we hope for the little guy. That he will grow up to know the Lord his God. Perfect? I think so.


Although Elliott (2 t’s, sorry, little one, we’ve strapped you with saying that for the rest of your life), is climbing the name popularity charts, it has never cracked the top 100 in the last 200 years. He may meet an Elliott or 2 along the way, but I don’t think he’ll have one in his class every year. I hope.

General Flow

 And lastly, we wanted to honor our fathers with baby’s middle name. For a girl, we would/will go with Stacy for Ike’s dad (sorry, yes, we are girl-ifying it). So for a boy we are going with Edward for my dad, NOT from Twilight.

Elliott Edward seems to have a nice ring to us. If you don’t think so — keep it to yourself, we’re committed.

That is quite enough for this morning. I demand you have a wonderful weekend! See ya soon!