Monday, November 22, 2010

I'm planning my first Thanksgiving!!

I wanted to give everyone a heads up to stay tuned to see how successful first attempt at hosting a Thanksgiving will be!

Jordan and I can't go home to Lodi because we don't want Ashton to travel during flu season without all his shots (and with the CA whooping cough epidemic going on) and we aren't going to Alabama because we are going in early December. We contemplated going to Atlanta with our besties Todd and Amber to Todd's aunts house but since it was a last minute idea, there was no room at the boarding place for Tater. Soooooooo, we're having Thanksgiving with the besties at our house!

Here's the menu:

Apple cider
Turkey (which is making me nervous but whatever...the nervousness comes from year after year of my mom panicking over the turkey. Therefore, panicking is the only thing I've learned how to do in that department).
Mashed potatoes
Stuffing (out of the box cuz really, I can't make a turkey out of the box so let's make one thing easy at least!)
Homemade Macaroni & Cheese (a Fritz family tradition..weird, I know)
Coleslaw (from Chick-Fil-A which apparently is a Codling (todd and amber) tradition so I'm excited for yet another random thing that I don't have to cook :) We're all about the randomness as you can see with the mac&cheese. Always a fan.)

Dessert: I'm going all out
Pumpkin pie
Apple pie
Chocolate chip & peanut butter cookies (by request of Todd and Amber. I'm making at least 2 batches of these because we usually end up fighting over them)

If you find yourself wondering what happened to us if you don't hear from us for several days after this, we'll still sitting on the couch dying of fatness and trying to keep our arteries unclogged. :)

I'm also making zucchini bread (one loaf of traditional, and one loaf of chocolate chip zucchini bread with orange zest) so we'll have that as one of the little things to snack on before dinner...and hopefully as a partial breakfast when Amber and I get up at the butt-crack of 3am to drive to Charlotte, NC for shopping on Black Friday.

Yes, we are nuts. Don't ask me why we're doing this...except that I've never done BF shopping before and Charlotte is the closest place that has decent shopping (ya, can you believe there's nothing in the entire state of South Carolina? Awful.) and I'm tempted by amazing deals I am repeatedly promised.

Anywho, that's the plan over the next couple of days. I'll keep everyone updated on how it's all going. Today is the grocery shopping day. I'm trying to do it a few days early to avoid the crowd but I know it's still going to be awful so pray for me. Did I not tell you I'm striving to be Martha Stewart?? Without burning my house down preferably. I'll need to sleep for about 5 days straight when this is over. LoL! And somehow, with all the cooking and shopping and madness, I promise I'll still by up to my eyelashes in diapers! Duh.

If anyone wants any of the recipes of what I'm making, let me know! :)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Ashton's first roadtrip!

About two weeks ago, Jordan and I decided to take a trip to Alabama to visit Jordan's family! I was sooo nervous about taking a 7 hour drive (turned into 8 hrs with stops) with a 2 month old infant. Well, Ashton has decided over the last month or so that he LOVES the car! He passed out instantly, woke up once to eat, and went right back to sleep until we got there :)

I was SO glad we made the trip. Jordan's mom and step dad had not gotten to see Ash since he was born! Seeing them looking through the window in anticipation when we finally got there made it all worth it. They ran out to the car and you could see the itch all over them...they were DYING to get to that baby and it was so freaking cute! They then fought over who got to hold him for the next few hours :) Ash definitely wasn't missing out on any attention!

Ash and his Papaw

"Neela" imitating Ashton's famous fists :)

One of the greatest things was that Ashton got to meet his great-grandparents. My mom's parents passed away years ago and it hurts me every day that Ashton will never know them. They were two of the most incredible people I've ever known and I just know how much they would have enjoyed Ashton. My dad's dad passed away about a month before Ashton was born and that, too, has hurt me because I know how badly he wanted to meet him. I prayed every day that my grandpa would last long enough to see his baby great-grandson. My dad's mom is absolutely dying to meet him but lives in California so she won't get to see him until he's almost 6 months old! This all being said, it was absolutely incredible to introduce Ashton to a 4th generation for the first time :) Jordan's grandpa especially was so into my pregnancy and would always light up when he asked how his little "peanut" was doing so we were absolutely thrilled for Ashton to meet them!
We got to look at some amazing pictures Jordan's grandparents have of THEIR grandparents, parents, etc. It was incredible to see such old pictures of family history! They are so blessed to have pictures like that!

It was such a fantastic trip because Ashton got to meet Jordan's sister and her family (Ashton's auntie, uncle, and two little cousins!) It was the sweetest thing ~ when I was pregnant, our little nephew Zeke (who is 3) was trying to wrap his mind around the fact that there was a baby in my tummy. He would ask me if he could play with him yet and I would tell him that he was in there cooking and that he wasn't done yet! Well when he met Ash and I told him that Ashton was the baby who used to be in my tummy, he looked up at me and said in his adorable southern drawl, "The baby done did cooked??" :) It was so sweet!
Zeke :)

Jordan and Chloe playing with J's car :) 

Auntie Karlie lovin' on Ash with Zeke and Kelsie 

We had such an amazing time, we ended up staying an extra day and didn't want to leave! Ash got to meet so many people and spent so much time with his Neela and Papaw (Jordan's mom and step-dad) as they just doted on him all weekend! It was absolutely perfect! 

 Me and my little Zekester :)

Ash's uncle Zac was making him crack up! It was the funniest thing ever! Ash just LOVED him!!

J doin what he does best ~ being one of the kids :)

Life in a Nutshell

While I typically talk about Ashton, I want to talk about life. And basically ramble my thoughts off. Life is so confusing and screwed up and beautiful and just a roller coaster. Etc., etc., etc.

Growing up in a small town and having super conservative parents, I was always so sheltered, naive, and protected and was always such a good kid. I was so afraid to do anything wrong and wouldn't dream of going against my parents. Once I got to college in LA, life was scary and overwhelming and took me in so many twists and turns that I'm so grateful I recovered from it all. Some of the people I met struggled so deeply in their lives and all they wanted to do was take someone down with them. And that was something I wasn't used to and truly, it was terrifying. While I was dealing with growing up and things in life that people go through, I remember telling myself, "Everything happens for a reason. There is a purpose to this." While I lost some of my faith in God due to people and situations I came across, deep down, I always told myself that He was putting me through things for a reason.

And now, nearly 7 years later, I get it. I get why. I would not have a single thing in my life to this day if it weren't for those trials and tests. The awful men and boyfriends God put in front of me are the reason I appreciate Jordan and the wonderful man and husband he is. The little things he does for me every day would not mean nearly as much if I had not had guy after guy treat me like total and utter shit. It made my struggle to find the right person so rewarding. It made me fall for Jordan in the first three days I knew him. It made me get engaged to him after four months of dating. I knew, instantly, that there was no one out there like him because I saw exactly what was out there. Sometimes I think about where my life would close I came to never meeting him. I think about the bad relationships I was in before him and how hard it was for me to get out of them and how grateful I am that God gave me the strength. No one I have ever come across with has ever given me a fraction of the love and dedication and care that Jordan gives me every single day.
When Jordan and I said our wedding vows, I cried through them all because my love for him is so overwhelming. While I originally never understood why God would bring a man to me who is in the military, someone who would have to be away from me to take care of other people, I now understand that He is teaching me to be independent and to appreciate my husband more than I could imagine. When Jordan is away from me, even overnight, I feel as if half of me is gone. Without that separation, I don't know that I would ever learn to appreciate him as much as I do. And so, in our vows, as I bawled through them, I promised to Jordan that I would always miss him when he was away from me. 

With God's gift of my husband comes the birth of my amazing little boy. He is the absolute joy and light of my life and I honestly cannot believe that I had 24 years without him. From the day he was born, I couldn't remember a single moment before he existed. I remember always thinking when I was pregnant what a miracle conception was...that my little boy came from a cell. One tiny microscopic cell. That he was half of me and half of Jordan. That two people...put together...can create human life. I still cannot wrap my mind around the fact that he is part of us; our bodies, our personalities, etc. And he's perfect. When he was born, Jordan and I would sit in my hospital room and just talk for hours about how perfect he was and how neither one of us could understand how our hearts were absolutely exploding with love. I knew I would love my children but I honestly did not know that it would be to this degree. We would talk about how just looking at him made us cry because he was so special and he was OURS.

I bought a book for Ashton when I was pregnant called "On the Night You Were Born" and it's about just that - how the whole world stopped when he was born. I have yet to be able to read the entire thing to him because I cry the whole way through. I'm actually crying now just talking about it! :)
As I sobbed as I held my baby for the first time, all I did was thank God for him over and over and over. I thanked God that he was healthy and that He gave me a gift so precious. All I kept thinking was that I was trying to process that he was mine. He was all mine. And nothing anyone could ever do would ever change that. Three thousand years from now, history exists that I am his mom and he is my baby.

If I had never met Jordan, I would have never moved out of California and experienced people outside of my comfort zone. And I would never have met one of the best friends I have ever known. I swear she is like my long lost Siamese twin. I never would have become this independent. I would never have had any of the things in my life that I do now if God had not put me through confusion and pain and heartache and joy and getting into harmless trouble and laughter and memories of stupid things that at the time seemed awful and now I cry from laughter about and all the things that wrap life up into a spiraling, confusing, beautiful package.
Me and my "twin" hours before Ashton was born :)

Over the last year, it seems like so many tragedies have happened close to my heart and once again, life takes you through turns. And things I thought wouldn't affect me as deeply have ripped me to the core. I think it's because I've learned to appreciate life so much deeper over the last few years and I've learned how delicate and precious it is. When things happen to friends, I feel like it's happening to me and I try to make sense of it all. But I keep reminding myself that everything always happens for a reason. And while my life is so fantastic and I truly have everything I've ever wanted (amazing, supportive, and loving parents, a great relationship with my brother, a loving and caring husband, amazing friends and a little boy to dote on and call my own) God reminds me constantly to NEVER take a single second of His gift of life for granted. And while at the time, those reminders seem like a punch in the face, it's important for me to never forget because He gave us one life.

I would be nowhere without these three, amazing people in my life :) I am sooo fortunate to have such a loving, supportive, and FUN family!! <3