Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Extreme Baby Prep!

Since we shared the gender of our baby girl back in early November, we have been busy getting ready for her arrival! I have read every blog and pinned every pin on pintrest, so now it is time to get busy with her arrival only a few months away. But first...time to take it all in. The day after we found out her gender, we were also celebrating the 3 year anniversary of our first date. On November 1st, 2013 I went on a first date to Napa Flats with a guy my mom handpicked for me. Every day since then Kevin has loved me unconditionally and becoming parents is more exciting for me, because it is with him. He listens to me complain, he supports me and wakes up every time I go to the bathroom, and he spoils me. That day I came home to flowers and his smile...which was enough for me. 3 years ago I wasn't sure if he was the one and that night at dinner we discussed baby names and what our first child will be like over a non interrupted dinner. Definitely a full circle moment for this emotional momma! After dinner we headed to the new Carter's in town and we both picked out our first outfits for our daughter. Here are the two outfits we picked out. It was a fun evening complete with our first shopping trip (which was a quick one, just like Kevin likes it)!
Next on our list after finding out the gender was starting a baby registry. It wasn't too long ago that Kevin had the scan gun in hand shooting pots and pans for our wedding. Hard to believe less than 2 years later, we are now registering for our first daughter. After visiting a few baby stores, we narrowed it down to Target and Babies R Us for our two baby shopping headquarters. Since most people have access to a Target, this was a no brainer. We tossed around the idea of other places and after visiting Babies R Us, we liked a lot of the products they offered. Since we don't have one in College Station we figured our family and friends who live in bigger cities would have access to this other option. Since I was SUPER excited for the registry and had read up on all the products, we decided to do our Babies R Us registry the weekend of my 30th Birthday. We had already planned to be Austin so I figured we could knock out this task while we were close to one there. Kevin let me do most of the pointing and picking and he did all the scanning! We had fun imagining our little girl using all these goodies. Crazy to see how many different options there are for needed products. From sheet protectors to breast feeding supplies we were a bit overwhelmed! But, after many texts to my sister and other friends about what they used, we now have a registry at both stores. Here are a few pictures from our registry fun!
Finally, on to the big stuff. Time to put the baby furniture together. While looking for cribs and dressers, I wanted white. Kevin wanted wood. So, we compromised and picked this furniture from Babies R Us! Our parents were kind enough to each buy a piece for her which we thought will be pretty special. Kevin got busy (along with my direction giving) and we now have a dresser and a crib ready for our girl. Putting together items is typically a challenge for Kevin and I. Since I didn't have any brothers, I was usually the one putting things together in my household. Therefore, I clearly know how to do it. Miraculously, we survived both the crib and dresser without one argument. It was a true miracle...parenting must be good for us. Haha! Here are the finished products. Daddy did a great job! She is going to love it.
Now...we are just missing a few more decorations in her room....and her! More to come soon as we continue preparing for our little girl's arrival!

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

The Big Reveal.

After keeping the secret for a week, on Sunday we finally got to share the gender with our family. Many people asked us if we were having a big gender reveal party, as many do these days. After much consideration, Kevin and I decided to just have a small lunch with our parents, siblings, and grandparents so that they could all find out together. We were already going to be in Cameron for a family reunion the day before, so Grandpa & Gigi were kind enough to host. Granddad & Granny (Kevin's Parents) along with Kevin's Mawmaw and my Nana also joined us for the big day. We had a wonderful BBQ lunch and everyone had to cast their votes before sharing the news.
Team Girl:
Team Boy:
Kevin and I had been brainstorming a fun and unique way to share the gender for weeks. We considered using cupcakes, cutting into a cake, having balloons, having an exploding golf ball, etc. One day as I was brainstorming, I immediately thought about our engagement as it has taken place in my parent's living room...where we planned to share the gender. I thought back to Kevin using his guitar as a prop and "that song" he was supposed to play before proposing to me. It immediately hit me...we had to use a song! I told Kevin my idea and then became nervous that he wouldn't have enough time to put together a song in just a week's time once we knew the gender. Luckily, as he always does, he came through with the perfect song! It didn't take him long to come up with the tune and I helped with determining the perfect words. When he played it for me for the first time and sang the chorus (I think that's what it is called): "All we want is happy, all we need is love" tears again filled my eyes. Then in true Kevin fashion, he comes back with "I hope it don't look like daddy" to crack us all up. He is so talented and definitely has a way of putting the perfect words into a song while still making people laugh. The song ended with the news of us having a girl. Everyone broke into cheers and was perfect, just as I expected.
Here's a few more pictures from our BIG REVEAL. Thanks to our family for making it such a perfect day.

20 Week Ultrasound...It's a GIRL!

Since we announced to the world on November 6th the gender of our baby, it has been a whirlwind of a month! I didn't want to miss the chance (even though I am late) to share about our gender reveal ultrasound. As you probably remember, Kevin and I actually found out the baby's gender on Halloween 2016- Monday, October 31st. We were excited to find out if our little pumpkin was a He or a She!
It is a day I will never forget. I was nervous and excited to find out, and as usual, Kevin was a cool as a cucumber. It was an extremely foggy morning and we could barely see as we drove from Navasota to College Station to the hospital. Our appointment was at 8:30 so we were the first ones in the perfectly quiet ultrasound area. I laid down and the lady confirmed that we did want to know the sex as not to spoil any news for us. She took lots of pictures and pointed out all the different parts we were seeing including the head, abdomen, the legs, and arms...even a perfect picture of a foot.
It was hard to determine what we were seeing at first but when she pointed out the two little legs, it finally hit wasn't just an "it" was our daughter or son! About 15 minutes into the appointment, she shared the news of what I had been feeling all along. It is a GIRL. Kevin sat next to me and was holding my hand the whole time. As soon as she said "It's a Girl", I was overwhelmed with joy. The tears started flowing and I couldn't get them to stop! From the beginning of the pregnancy, I had not had a good cry so I guess it was due at 20 weeks, right? The ultrasound tech was super sweet and let me enjoy the moment of finding out we were going to parents to a little GIRL. Having two nephews, I feel like I would know what to do with a boy. However, we are overjoyed to welcome the first granddaughter to both of our families! We know she will be spoiled and we pray that we can guide her to be a woman of God. So... let the journey begin of bows (and boots of course) along with tons of firsts with a little lady to love! Here is our first picture with our little girl right after we found out at the hospital!

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Week 19...Finally Looking Pregnant

It has been a few weeks since my last update on "The Growing Gleasons", so I figured it was about time for another. We are currently at 19 weeks, and quickly approaching the half way mark this coming Saturday! It is crazy to think this little one has been growing for 20 weeks. Hitting the half way mark has already made me realize how fast this whole thing happens. Some days it feels like I just found out we were pregnant...and some days I feel like it has been forever! With hitting Week 20, we FINALLY get to find out the sex of the baby! Many of my friends who are expecting around the same time as us found out a couple weeks ago and I was getting pretty impatient. Luckily, the time is now here and on Monday, Kevin and I will know if we have a little lady or a little mister to love on come March! For those of you who are following our journey, know that you will have a little extra time before we share the sex. Kevin and I will find out on Monday at our appointment, but we won't get to share it with our families until Sunday when we can all be together for the big reveal. I promise, as soon as they know, everyone else will to! Keep an eye out on Sunday, November 6th as we share our big news! Here's a few weekly pictures of the growth from Week 12 to 17! I am finally starting to look a little pregnant. I have been joking that I finally look like I didn't just have a big lunch. I am ready to be "obviously pregnant" soon!
And here I am at 18 weeks...see what I mean...finally, a little bump is starting to appear!
Since we have been waiting to find out the sex, we haven't been doing much. We talk about a lot such as nursery themes, names, etc...but most of that doesn't involve any doing. We did start looking at registry items and made our first trip to Babies R Us and Buy Buy Baby while in Katy for Owen's birthday. Holy moly, talk about baby overload!! We immediately found a crib and dresser set that we loved and before we knew it, Grandpa and Gigi were helping us order one piece and Granddad and Granny were helping us order the other (as early Christmas gifts)! We think it will be pretty special that the baby's first furniture was given to them by their grandparents! We already received the dresser and Daddy Kevin can't wait to put it together once we decide on a paint color for the room! We also collected some paint samples but now just need to know if it is a boy or girl! Here is Daddy with the baby's dresser!
This past weekend, I also had the joy of doing a little shopping with my momma AKA Gigi! I had such a fun day trying on maternity clothes and looking at baby clothes. We had a perfect day together and I got to spend my gift card that Kerri AKA Kerri gave me on new clothes! It was a perfect day and a great reminder of how blessed I am to have my mom (and Kevin's mom) to experience all of life's fun moments with. Baby Gleason will definitely be spoiled, and I'll admit, I haven't hated being spoiled either! :)
As with most other pregnant women, I love reading the daily updates from my pregnancy app, Ovia. Today's message was this: "Baby G!'s tiny little lips are developed, just in time for lots of kisses from you." Most days I read the little facts about the baby's development and move on with my day. Today, however, I was so excited to know that their little lips are formed! Crazy to think of all the words that will come out of those lips and the kisses that are to come. This is all getting pretty real. Be ready for another blog next week as we announce the sex! Until then, we will keep "wondering what you are"!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Week 15...Growing Baby Gleason!

It's been a few weeks since we announced the news of our growing family so I wanted to update everyone on the progress of Baby Gleason! Keeping our pregnancy quiet was THE hardest secret I have ever had to keep and now I can breathe a sign of relief that everyone knows! We are now at Week 15 and Baby Gleason is around 4 inches long and the size of an avocado. The baby is starting to move their arms and legs which is really fun to think about. Although I can't physically feel it just yet, today at our doctor's appointment we were able to see he/she moving around all over the screen of the ultrasound. I have read that he/she will start doubling in size as the weeks pass so I am really excited to see the baby get bigger and for tummy to grow as a result. Those of you who are mommies know that seeing your body change means the baby is growing, and that is really all I care about at this point! Every time we see the baby on the ultrasound screen, I am a bit overwhelmed. I always wondered what it would be like to lie there and know that is YOUR baby on the screen. It is still a bit surreal that it is ours. Usually a few hours later I think back and realize what a miracle it truly is. Often times the waterworks come as well. So surprise there, right? Haha! Along with Week 15 the heartburn/indigestion has continued. This pretty much sums it up perfectly.
This past week I finally broke out the maternity wear! I was fortunate enough to get a HUGE TUB of maternity clothes from fellow mommy, Kayla, and MAN DO I FEEL LUCKY! Not only will this save me lots of money but everything was a perfect fit! I was starting to feel pretty uncomfortable in some of my normal clothes and the top button on my jeans has been a challenge for sure. Now that I have been exposed to maternity pants, I may never go back! They are so comfortable and I have a great selection to choose from with all the stuff Kayla gave me! Today was one of the first days I felt comfortable in the past couple weeks so that was a plus! If you have maternity clothes you aren't using, pass them around. It is fun to share and a nice way to know others are on this journey with you. Here's a picture of me taken today as I wore my first "maternity outfit" at Week 15!
Now...onto the challenges. First up was the tricky search for a daycare. Yes, I realize that the baby isn't here yet. However, even at 8 months before their arrival, we were behind on the daycare search! After our first call to one of our preferred options, we were told we were #24 on their 12-18 month waitlist! Holy moly, I had no idea daycare was such a top priority for those thinking about having kids. So, word of the wise to those of you considering parenthood, go ahead and get on a list. I know, it's crazy. Getting on a waitlist for something that doesn't even exist yet is awkward, but that was what we learned through our searching process in College Station. Now, if you live in a smaller town or have grandmas or family that live close by, then you are probably in the clear. After doing the tour and adding our name to the waitlist (and praying that 15-20 people randomly want to move away from College Station), we started searching for daycares in the Navasota area. After a couple suggestions, today we finally had a chance to visit 2 more daycares. Since I have never had to do this before, I am finding myself going into "First Time Mommy Mode" trying to figure out what the heck I am supposed to be looking for. Is everything clean? Are they washing their hands ever 5 seconds? Is everything baby proofed? And then I realized...for us, it is more about the people and what feeling I get from them. Are the employees happy? Are the kids smiling? Will these people love our baby as much as we do? After worrying (yes, I already have that part of motherhood down), I realized that it takes a village to raise a kid. Through life, I won't be able to be with my kids every minute of every day so I will just have to trust the people around me and pray for them. Pray that they will love my child, pray that they will protect them, and above all else, pray that they will be a good example for my little one. As we continue searching for the right place for Baby Gleason, please keep us in your prayers. As a first time parent, we need lots of them to navigate these new waters!
In the next few weeks the waiting game is on as we wait to find out the sex of our baby. Our scheduled dates for the appointment where we will find out is on October 31st...yes, Halloween! So, hopefully it won't be a ghost or a goblin, but a boy or a girl! We are anxiously awaiting that appointment as that will help us start checking off items on our to do list...the nursery, the name, the wardrobe. I have a new found respect for those parents out there who wait until the baby's arrival to find out. After much thought, Kevin and I decided we wanted to know the sex. Truly, it doesn't matter but this planning momma is ready to buy something gender specific! So, about another month of waiting and we will know! In the meantime, we bought Baby Gleason it's first toy! I realize it isn't a cow OR a chicken. We met in the middle and got the lamb. I am pretty proud of myself for not buying many items in the past 15 weeks, but I am sure that will change once we know the sex of the baby! Here's a picture of his or her little lamb!
As always, thank you for your continued prayers for us. We are so thankful to have such a supportive "village" to share this fun time in our lives with. Stay tuned for more updates as we continue preparing for this little one.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Baby Gleason...Coming March 2017!

After 12 weeks of keeping a secret (well, keeping it for the most part)....we can finally share our exciting news! Kevin and I are HAVING A BABY! Since the day we tied the knot, the questions starting coming. "When are you going to have a baby?" Well, to those of you who have been asking for the past year and a half...MARCH. We are having one in March.
My whole life I have wondered what it would be like to be pregnant. Would it be fun? Would it be miserable? How often would they have to take my blood? Can I handle it? We have been extremely blessed to have a very smooth pregnancy so far. I haven't experienced the dreaded morning sickness and overall have felt pretty good. Some days I wonder if the baby is still in there and growing since I feel fairly normal. On other days, I wonder what happen to energetic, motivated, nice Lesley. The one who came home and got stuff done around the house and was ready to pack a bag and go somewhere at a day's notice. That girl has been missing the past 6 weeks or so. I have turned into a hermit crab who just wants to stay home and sleep! Avoiding people was also the only strategy I could come up with in order to not spill the beans to every person I came in contact with! Haha. Other than the tiredness and trips to the restroom every 30 seconds during the day and 3 times during the night, I feel great. And we couldn't be more happy about that!
I also need to make it known that Kevin Gleason is wonderful. He has reassured me on a daily basis that I am doing great. He keeps my water cup full and the gummies coming to help my constant indigestion. He puts up with me when I am feeling moody or nervous or worried. He has let us eat pizza 2-3 times a week because I craved it. He lets me go to sleep on the couch every night at 7:00 and then move to bed at 8:30 because I that is my new bed time. I have been joking with him for months that it would probably be easier if he could just have the baby for us. After all, he is much nicer and way more positive than I am. He agreed, but luckily, he is letting me do the hard part just to prove I can. I have no doubts that he will be an amazing daddy to our little one and I am so humbled that I am the woman who gets to carry his baby. Please pray for Kevin as he continues to be my #1 supporter over the next 7 months. Lord knows he will need it to put up with me as I grow...and complain.
Kevin and I began praying for a baby pretty early on in our marriage. We weren't ready at the time to be parents, but we knew one day we would be ready. Over the summer we began seriously discussing parenthood and were blessed to see two pink lines not long after. Now days, you just never know. Pregnancy has become more difficult for many out there and we realize that some try for YEARS to become parents. Every story we read motivated us to pray harder and trust in His plan. We realize how fortunate we are for allowing us to become parents and thank God daily for trusting us with this little one. Being trusted in that way by Him is one of the most beautiful gifts I have ever received. We are so unworthy. We will do our best to raise this little boy or girl to the best of our abilities. We know it won't be easy and we know it won't all be glamorous, but we know that each day will be a gift.
So, what is the game plan moving forward? We are planning to find out the sex of the baby and that should happen in late October! After that, the waiting will continue until his or her arrival in the spring! Please keep the prayers coming for Baby Gleason and for Kevin and I as we embark on this new journey. We CANNOT wait to be parents and to share this little one with our family and friends.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Reflection of 2015.

For the past few years, I have sent out one of “those Christmas letters”, the kind that recap the year and tell you what I have been up to. When I started writing it in 2012 it was a way for me to reflect and document the big things that happened in a year’s time. Since I didn’t have a family of my own to put on a trendy Christmas card, I thought it would be a neat way to count my blessings. As Christmas 2015 came along, I realized that all those years of praying for a family of my own had become a reality in 2015 with Kevin. So, I decided to make a little change and not send out a letter in a card. As the holidays have come and gone, I have realized just how much I missed writing that letter and documenting my year. SO…here it is. In blog format instead of on paper, hopefully you all will enjoy it just as much! Our new year of 2015 started off in a unique way with my dad being in the hospital with an infection in his leg. Since then it has been a year of hospital visits and frustrations, but somehow he is still farming and ranching every day. His crutches are now normal and we pray that in 2016 he will gain the relief we have prayed for. I know God answers prayers because he somehow was strong enough to make a pretty important walk down our church aisle in May of 2015 (more on that to come later).
January through May were pretty much overtaken with Wedding Planning. From our awesome “Western” Engagement Party to bridal showers hosted by our family and friends to my perfect Bachelorette Weekend in Gruene….it was a dream come true. Many brides dread the planning process but I wasn’t one of them. Those months of preparation were the most blessed of months. We were constantly surrounded by family and friends who mean the world to me. Kevin and I were showered and loved in a way I could have never imagined. With every gift and wish, we felt so supported. I know for many of you reading this (especially our immediate families) we filled ALL your free weekends with to-dos…so again, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU to everyone who celebrated with us. It truly meant the world to us.
April 4th, 2015 was another milestone of the year for us as Kevin made a huge commitment to continue his faith journey. After months of prayer and preparation, Kevin was welcomed into the Catholic church family at St. Mary’s in College Station. He has always been an amazing man of God, but this decision was one that we prayed a lot about. I will never be able to describe the fullness of my heart on that day….almost as full as it was on May 2nd.
May 2nd, I officially became a Gleason as Kevin and I stood at the altar of my home church and vowed to spend our lives together. As Kevin and I have experienced marriage, I continue to feel so blessed. I am so glad Kevin picked me and I can’t wait see what God has in store for our marriage in the years to come! Immediately following our wedding, Kevin and I took our first big trip together as we headed to Lake Tahoe for our Honeymoon. The weather was perfect and enjoyed having some much needed down time after all the planning. If you have never been, we highly recommend it for a vacation!
2015 also brought with it new jobs for both Kevin and I. In April, Kevin started as an agent with Texas Farm Bureau. His transition has been a successful one and he truly loves getting to help others and prepare for the unexpected through his job. In June, I moved from International Student Services to The Department of Poultry Science at Texas A&M. As most of you know, this was the academic department I called home during my undergrad years. I absolutely love getting to put both of my degrees to work as I work with the students in Poultry Science. I do academic advising, recruitment, and travel around Texas educating people on poultry and the importance of agriculture. I get to work with some wonderful people and students. It was a perfect career transition for me at the perfect time.
In August, I finally got to experience the fun of a new car as we bought our first car together. We got a 2015 Maroon Traverse and have already enjoyed putting many miles on it together as we travel from place to place.
September, started out on a high as I celebrated my 10 Year High School Reunion. As Class President, I got the task of planning a gathering and was happy to see so many of my classmates many of whom I hadn’t seen in 10 years! I also had a pretty handsome date to take with me. As a "Cameron Transplant" (which is what he calls himself), I enjoyed having him to show off 10 years later!
September also had some lows as we said goodbye to my sweet Pawpaw. At 90 years young, Pawpaw was a man of faith, family, and work ethic. He was one of those silent but strong people who impact people without even knowing it. I am so thankful to have learned so much about life from him and continue to see his legacy in our growing family.
We rounded out the year with a fantastic trip to New Orleans, Louisiana with Kevin’s parents! We had a great time eating our way through Cajun Country and had a lot of fun seeing and doing everything there is to do in NOLA! It was a nice weekend getaway and most importantly treasured family time with a family who has welcomed me as their own daughter. So thankful to have such great in-laws! In December we also celebrated our first married Christmas together. It was a blessed holiday spent with our families and remembering that Jesus is the real reason for the season!
You knew I couldn’t write an annual letter without updates on our nephews Reid and Owen. Reid is now 4 and will start kindergarten next year and Owen is 2. We enjoyed watching them grow this past year. Reid started soccer and Owen has gained quite the personality! I am in awe of all they learn as they grow up and adore how they have welcomed Kevin as their Uncle Kevin this past year! Here’s a few of our favorite pictures of them from this year.
We can’t imagine a more blessed 2016. Excited for all that is to come as we embark on a new year and wish all of you a fantastic 2016! May God’s Blessings shine down on you and your families.