Oh hey, I have a blog. Or at least I pay for one, as the surprise domain renewal charge I got today says. So I guess I’ll use it!

Today was Big E’s first day of preschool, and although I’ve been talking to him about it for months… dropping him off did not go well. He was NOT happy to be at school, he was NOT okay with the idea that I was leaving him there, and he most certainly DID want to go home.

He cried. I cried. Little E cried.

We all cried.

But thank god I know the school employees so well and that they are all so kind and caring. I still have a little less than an hour before I need to pick him up, and I have received three separate updates on him, all from different employees. The principal called me shortly after I left, the teacher sent me a picture of him soon after that of him settled and playing, and then my friend (a custodian at the school) sent me a video of him playing.

He’s fine. I’m fine. Little E is happy to have free reign of the toys in the house while big brother is gone. We’re all fine.

Except I could really use a hug.

Etc.

Once upon a time, I swore up and down that I would never be a stay-at-home mom. Not because I saw shame in it, but because I didn’t think I’d be able to handle it. But now, staying at home with my son is all I want to do.

The difference between Then Kaci and Now Kaci is that Now Kaci has a better understanding about what being a SAHM is really about. It’s not about the continuous laundry or cleaning up the never-ending messes or constantly fighting your toddler’s urges to act like, well, a toddler. Those are things a SAHM does on a daily basis, but that’s not what it’s about.

It’s about providing for and taking care of your family in a completely different way, especially if you are used to bringing home a paycheck and providing medical insurance through your employer. It’s about being the support system, the backbone. This isn’t to say working moms don’t do these things. I’m a working mom – I do these things. But to stay at home with E would allow me to nurture his heart and soul like I believe only a mother can do.

Truth be told, I’m tired of wanting this so badly. So, recently, my husband and I decided to make some serious changes in our lives that will allow me to stay home and raise our children. We will be selling our house. I’ve notified my employer that I will not be returning to work after our baby is born in May. Our plan is to move back to my hometown (because, let’s be honest, I may not be a country girl but I am most definitely not a sagebrush girl) and buy a considerably cheaper house.

I couldn’t be more excited, especially because P is being so supportive of (and excited about!) these changes as well. He’s wanted to move to my hometown since I graduated from college (in 2008!) and I can’t even count the number of times he’s suggested it between then and now.

Onward and southward!

Etc.

The new year isn’t usually a big deal for me, not like it seems to be for so many people. Sure, I’ll watch the ball drop on TV or go hang out with some family, but big New Year’s parties have never really been my thing. Nor do I usually spend a lot of time reflecting on the year that has past. A large part of that is because my memory is awful and I can’t remember what happened before last Tuesday.

But that’s why I Facebook. I’m not even kidding – it’s the easiest at I’ve found to document my life and gives me a resource to remember what the heck I did last month.

Which is how I know my 2013 was rad.

I got my first (and only, as of right now) tattoo… appropriately, on Mother’s Day weekend.

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I went to Las Vegas for the final installment of Bloggers in Sin City, and it was even more amazing than I expected. (And believe me, I had high expectations!)

I celebrated my two-year wedding anniversary and my 27th birthday.

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My husband got a really great buck during muzzleloader season. I have never been so proud of my hunting husband!

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We announced to the world that we are expecting our second child in May. Later we announced that E will have a baby brother!

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E turned 2 and I planned a (rather cute, if I do say so myself) John Deere party for him.

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I got a Keurig and learned who my real friends are. I learned to let things go, to stop holding grudges and how to fishtail braid.

And of course there were the holidays, the lovely holidays during which we were blessed with so much love and generosity.

2013 started off pretty rough, I’m not going to lie about that. But when you start at the bottom, the only direction you can go is up. Today, on the last day of 2013, I can wholeheartedly say this was a very, very good year. Let’s do this, 2014.

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Etc.

This is a first for me but at this point I’m basically done Christmas shopping for this year. So of course that’s when I would learn about a retailer I’ve never heard of and go to their website and instantly fall in love. Urbanara has such pretty things, y’all!

If I could go Christmas shopping again, here are some things I would definitely consider buying (either as gifts for other people or, you know, for myself *ahem*)

Christmas Decor

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I love, love, love Christmas. And I love, love, love wreaths. Always have, always will. I bought one once, and my dogs destroyed it… so now I don’t have one. I think I need this one! Isn’t  it pretty?

These two sets of Christmas ornaments. I mean, look at them! Those reindeer are adorable, and I would love to customize them further by getting kids’ names embroidered on the back, maybe with a year. Oh! They would make such neat gifts for someone if you did that.

And those wooden ornaments. I love the rustic look they have. I’m tempted to say these would be neat if you painted them white or red or something, but I think they’re kind of perfect the way they are.

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Home

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Here’s a few more things with that rustic feel that’s oh-so-popular right now. (Have I ever discussed here how I think it’s hilarious that this “rustic” stuff is so popular? What most people call “rustic,” I call “free hand-me-downs from someone’s grandma who’s lived in the country her whole life.” But hey, if that means my freebie furniture is all of a sudden trendy or in style and not “old fashioned,” then I’m cool with that I guess.)

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The thing about grating cheese – because sometimes, yes, I do actually grate my own cheese when I’ve either (a) run out of the pre-shredded cheese or (b) decided to not be lazy and use my pre-shredded cheese – is that I’m never sure what I wanted to grate it into. A bowl? A plate? A paper plate to throw away? Too many decisions. And, so, I like this cheese grater because it makes that decision for me. AND it’s cute. Two-in-one!

If these coasters aren’t “rustic,” then I have no idea what rustic really is. Also, if they aren’t SO COOL, then I don’t know what cool is either. Coasters always go unused in my house, but I don’t care. I want these. They’re cool.

 

Yeah, I Want That

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LOOK AT THIS JOURNAL. LOOK AT ALL THE JOURNALS ON THIS WEBSITE.

Guys , I have this thing about stationary… and that’s that I adore it. I could spend hours (and lots of money) on this kind of stuff. Unfortunately, like the coasters, they tend to go unused at my house. It’s like I can never find the right use for them, so I don’t use them because, um, I don’t want to waste itAnd then it kind of goes to waste because it just sits there. Sad.

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These scarves – helloooo cashmere, come to mama – and this quilt look(s) warm and it’s cold outside and I want it/them right now thankyouverymuch. Is it cold as shit where you are, too? Because it’s been cold as shit here. Like, my drive this morning was above 15 degrees F and IT FELT WARM. Like, hey, maybe I don’t need 14 layers of clothes on today. Maybe I’ll be okay with just 8 layers.

Cold. as. shit.

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Rugs

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The flooring throughout almost the entirety of the main floor is hardwood. Beautiful hardwood. Cold hardwood. I want area rugs. However, I don’t want to vacuum said area rugs (nor do I want to pay for them because excuse me but have you seen the price of a good rug lately? Yeah. Also I tend to like light-colored rugs and that just doesn’t work so well when you live in the country surrounded by sandy dirt, sage brush, and you live with dogs. (IT’S DIRTY HERE.)

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But, let’s pretend I don’t live in the country surrounded by sandy dirty and sage brush and with dogs. Let’s pretend I lived somewhere clean without dirty dogs. I would seriously get some pretty area rugs. Like these.

And then I’d get a cute little doormat like this and I’d live happily ever after.

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Etc.