Paper Swooning, a (Shocking!) Confession, and 3 Thanks-filled Thoughts

During my lunch today I did a freebie treck. What's that, you ask? It's that rare occasion where I gather all the free, "no purchase necessary" coupons I've received through the mail and cash them in. Usually, I lose those little suckers or they expire before I ever get the chance to pick anything up. Well not today, Les Amis! Today I LEFT the office, walked the eleventy-billion acres of burning parking lot, and made my way to that-store-that-shall-not-be-named. Yes, I got a free pair of gorgeous underthings in perfect bright aqua. I HATE their stupid catalogue, so it was a big joy to finally get something worthwhile from its company.

And then I giggled my way over to Bath and body works for a free, travel-sized bottle of body wash. Yes, there's nothing quite like the joy of getting awesome things without a single swipe of the card.

And since I was already there, and since I'm me, I swung by the Paper Source. Oh Paper Source! You Delilah! Their "fine paper" section kills me! Here're some favorites (Oh and feel lucky friends, ' cause these pictures cost me 5 confrontations with nervous Paper Source Employees):

Paper Source - Fine Indian, Japanese, hand-crafted papers

Paper Source - Fine Indian, Japanese, hand-crafted papers

Paper Source - Fine Indian, Japanese, hand-crafted papers

Paper Source - Fine Indian, Japanese, hand-crafted papers

Paper Source - Fine Indian, Japanese, hand-crafted papers

Paper Source - Fine Indian, Japanese, hand-crafted papers

Paper Source - Fine Indian, Japanese, hand-crafted papers

Paper Source - Fine Indian, Japanese, hand-crafted papers

paper source fine papers - hand-made silver metalic foil

paper source fine papers - hand-made silver metalic foil

Yes, you're swooning too, right? Now for my big confession. Noah is mere weeks away from his first birthday and I still haven't purchased a baby book. I know: Terrible mom! How could I?! Well, at first, it was an issue of design. I was pregnant with Noah and looking everywhere, without success for a nautical baby book. When this failed, Justin and I resorted to searching for a non-cutsey book. Soon I was 9.8 months pregnant and large in the scale of whales and small planets. Whale-Jenny(Noah) wasn't at all interested in looking for baby books.

Then our sweet little No arrived and all thought of baby books abandoned as Justin and I frantically scoured the Internet for a middle-name. Fast-forward a few weeks. Everything's a hazy blur of diapers, pumping, feeding, diapers, pumping, pumping. Faster now and it's been 6 weeks, I'm through with maternity leave and I'm back at the office. Now everything is flashing past so quickly---the view's just a gray-bleached blur. Yeah, it's nearly a year later and I'm utterly ashamed that I've so shamefully neglected this important part of Noah's childhood.

In an effort to make it up to him, Justin and I have decided to purchase a baby book, fill it out, and give it to him on his first birthday. That's why I was skimming the Paper Sources's prestigious baby book selection.

At last, I think I've found the PERFECT book! It's adorably designed with a brown cover and macaroni-crayon yellow & gold details. I'm in love.

welcome baby! book from the paper source

It has these lovely metallic polka dots on semi-translucent overlay sheets. Ah... :)

And finally my strange yet true thanks-filled thoughts of the week:

1) I LOVE that my son Jude has, for the first time ever, told me when he needed to pee! This is a HUGE ACCOMPLISHMENT, as any parent who has had to clean up multiple pee-puddles all over the house can verify.

2) I love that Jude's personality is exploding! He says hilarious things everyday and it makes my heart so happy. Here are a few from the past couple of months:

Ex 1: (When we were leaving Grammie's house) Me: O.k. Jude, we need to go!

Jude: No!! I want to stay with Grammie!

Me: Jude, you've already stayed here one night and you don't have any more clean clothes!

Jude: I GOT CLOTHES! No! I GOT CLOTHES!

Ex 2: Jude: WHERE'S MY MOMMY-MAN?!! (Apparently that's Jude's name for the Circus Lego girl that he thinks is me)

Ex3: Me: Is that your pretty friend Sarah?

Jude: No! That not my pretty friend Sarah; that my pretty mommy!

Ex 4: Jude: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, oneteen, twoteen, threeteen...

See? He's adorable!

3) I've grown to treasure the time when the lights are out, the boys are sleeping, and Justin and I can talk together for a short few moments before praying and falling asleep. When we were dating, we had glutenous amounts of time to talk. We had so much time, we'd run out of conversation and sometimes just sit around listening to LPs on my 1970s record player. Since parenthood, this has NOT been the case. It feels like entire weeks go by sometimes without us even seeing each other properly. That's why those few slivers of alone time have become extraordinarily precious. Usually, I ask these two questions:

-"Where is your heart at right now?" -"What is robbing your joy and unity with Christ?"

I feel like both of those little stinkers can get right down to the core of any issue and show me exactly what's going on with my husband on the deepest level. That's what "soul mates" is really about, I think. Not that there's just one perfect match out there hidden like a golden Easter egg amidst the crappy raisin-filled ones, but that the person you are most connected with spiritually/physically/emotional is literally the mate of your soul. This is getting too metaphysical for a Wednesday. I'll end with this:

"The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing. " (Zephaniah 3:17 ESV)

Jenny Smith

3705 Oceanview Drive, Denton, TX, 76208