Monday, March 6, 2017

A Weekend Away

Spring is always a little crazy around here.  Work gets busy and when work gets busy I feel like our whole life is chaos.  Add in Barrett playing ragball for the first time and I know it's going to be wild.  So before everything gets wound up Patrick and I decided to sneak away for a long weekend at our friends Tony and Carla's house.  My parents graciously agreed to keep the kids so we could enjoy the weekend just adults.  (I'm forever grateful to both sets of our parents who are always willing to keep our kids.  I know not everyone is so fortunate to have family around so I try not to take it for granted.)
We got there around 8:00 Friday night and headed straight to dinner.  I couldn't wait to eat some seafood!  After dinner we went to the Florabama to have a famous "Bushwacker".  While we were there this girl walked up and I knew I knew her from somewhere but could not put my finger on it.  She was five feet away from us most of the night.  I finally realized she was on Big Brother but I couldn't remember her name to save my life.  I couldn't remember which season she was on either.  I tried to google it and I couldn't come up with anything useful.  We decided to go to a different part of the bar and I finally remembered her name (Meg).  I was going to go back and talk to her but I never did.  I'm almost positive it was her.  Patrick went to close out his tab and he said when he walked by some guys were talking to her saying they recognized her.  I wish I would have said something to her but I didn't.
After that excitement we headed back to the house to hit the hay.

Saturday was supposed to be a beautiful day so we loaded up the boat and headed out.  Our first stop was the FloraBama (again) for (another) bushwacker.  Then we cruised all day.  We stopped for lunch at Pirates Cove.  It was a little cool out but it was a beautiful day!

Boys and their toys.



After lunch we headed to an island, parked the boat and hung out for the rest of the day!  The island is home to the abandoned Fort McRee.  It was abandoned before the civil war.  It was a neat place to explore.


I was so glad I took my real camera because I was able to grab some really beautiful images. 




After we spent some time exploring we had a campfire and watched the sunset.  It was so much fun and so cool.  Once the sun set, we made our way back to get the boat out of the water and find some dinner.
Sunday we got up and it was cool and cloudy and windy so we decided to hang out at the house.  We went out for lunch and then laid around and relaxed.  It was so nice.  We decided to do a shrimp boil for dinner and it was delicious.  We spent the rest of the evening watching movies and hanging out.  We were already dreading going home. 
We woke up this morning and got packed and headed home.  We were sad to leave but so excited to see the kids.  I'm so thankful that Patrick values time away just the two of us. We try to do this at least once a year.  I also try to let one of our parents keep the kids over night once a month or every other month.  Its good for the kids to spend the time with their grandparents and its good for us too.  We had the best time.  We'll never be able to thank Tony and Carla for the hospitality they show us each time we come visit.  I basically just invite myself down and they welcome us with open arms.  We can't wait to go see them again. 

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Live with the Characters & Weekend Review

Saturday was the fourth annual Just Keep Smiling LIVE with the Characters Show. We've been every year and it never disappoints.  We knew several people in the show which makes it more fun!  In the past Barrett hasn't been too into meeting the characters but this year he was all about it. 
Captain America

Batman

Transformer Bumble Bee

My sister was Rey.

Chewbacca

My favorites Beauty and the Beast.  I should have gotten in a picture with them. 
AveryAnn went to the show too but she didn't make any of the pictures.
We've spent a ton of time outside this week.  The weather has been beautiful and we're loving it. 

AveryAnn rode in the jeep with Barrett.  I'm not sure who had more fun.

Barrett is playing ragball this year and we're so excited.  He got some pants and a glove this weekend.  He wore his glove all weekend.

We seriously can't get enough of the back yard.

Barrett and Patrick raced on the power wheels.

Last Monday, Barrett and I got to go see Wild Kratts Live at the Alabama Theater.

Barrett watches the cartoon but we weren't sure what to expect for the live show.  It was so cute and so much fun.  Grampy got Barrett the vest and gloves the guys wear and Barrett wore it all week.  He couldn't open his door each morning because he refused to take off the gloves. 

Last Sunday night we went to Ruby and Keegan's birthday party at the Cullman Aquatic Center and Barrett had a blast.  AveryAnn looks cute is her suit but she wasn't a fan of the water. 



This post is all over the place but I think I'm caught up. 


Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Twelve Months

We're so excited to celebrate our girl today!  It's been 12 months, 52 weeks and 366 days since you joined our family.  To be honest, it feels like yesterday that I first laid eyes on you and heard your sweet cry.
You have brought us all so much joy!  You wake up smiling and are a joy until your head hits the pillow at the end of the day.  We're all just smitten with you.   
Your first year has been so exciting, fun and exhausting.
  • You weigh 20lbs 3oz.
  • You're 27.5" tall.
  • Size 4 diapers.  You're still going through 5-6 a day.
  • Mostly 12 month clothes.  You got some cute 18m things for your birthday that are a little big but you can still wear them.
  • You're still a fantastic sleeper!  You go down around 6:30 and sleep until 7:00 the next morning.  You put yourself to sleep so easily.  I don't take this for granted at all.  You really are a dream baby.
  • You still take 2 naps most days.  Usually around 10:00 in the morning for about and hour and then again around 2:00.  It's probably time to transition to one nap but I'm not good at it.
(I love this picture of Barrett trying to get you to smile.)
  • You're done nursing.  We lasted longer than I thought we would.  You take 4-5 bottles everyday.  We're trying to transition to whole milk and it's going pretty good as long as its in a bottle.
  • You eat whatever we're eating 3 meals a day.  You love to eat.
  • You started pulling up to stand this week.  You're so proud when you do it.  I think you'll walk earlier than your brother but probably not anytime soon.
  • You got 3 new teeth this month.
  • We got to go see Dr Farr again this month for another sick visit.  Your ears didn't clear up like they were supposed to.  We'll get them rechecked Friday and your checkup.
  • You love to laugh and laugh all the time.  Barrett gets you laughing the hardest. 
  • Your hair is still wild and lightening up.  You're getting better about keeping a bow in it. 
  • You love being outside!  You got a new swing for your birthday and you love it.
  • You also love Ally and try to grab her anytime she's within reach.  She puts up with it because you also share your snacks with her.
  • You love "Donut Friday" at work too! 
I know I've said it a dozen times but you really are such a joy.  I never thought I could love another kid as much as I love your brother but somehow I do.  I love that I get to have a daughter, a friend for life.  I know the day will come when you think I'm not very smart or just trying to ruin your life but I also look forward to the day that you'll call me and say "I really want these pretty cupcakes but I don't want to pay for them" and I'll be able to say "I think I can make them".  I'll probably have to go buy them because chances are I won't be able to actually make them but I know you won't care. 

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

AveryAnn's Garden Party

I'm not sure how many is "too many" pictures for one post, but I'm pretty sure this post exceeds it.
For a long time I wasn't sure what theme I wanted to do for AveryAnn's first birthday.  Barrett's was pretty easy because of the time of year but hers was another story.  I was pretty sure I wanted to have it at our house and I wanted it to be super girly.  I started looking on pinterest and settled on the "Garden Party" theme. 
The first order of business was the invitation.  I usually buy a design off etsy but this year I've started designing my own.  I loved how pretty and girly this one turned out.  It's a fun little outlet. 
As I was browsing pinterest I found lots of pictures of topiaries that I loved.  I showed some pictures to my mom and she brought them to life.  Fun fact she made all the wreaths for the church doors for my wedding and she still had them so she used the flowers for the topiaries. So the wreath on the front door was from our wedding too.  I'm a sucker for anything sentimental.

Another thing I knew I wanted was a big "stats" board.  I made one for Barrett's party and it is still hanging in our playroom so I wanted her to have one to match.  I made his out of vinyl but I really wanted to use the graphics from her invitation so I made this one and had it printed at our local UPS store.  It's big, like 24"x36" and I love it.

I just did finger foods since the party was in the middle on the afternoon.  We had fruit salad, dip, pasta salad, pimento cheese, chicken salad, chips, dip and sausage balls.  I also had goldfish and cheese curls for the kids.  My original plan was to set up a little table outside by the swingset for the kids food but it drizzled rain on and off all morning so I didn't know how much time we'd really get to be outside.
I had sweet tea, lemonade punch and water to drink. (Side note I am over our red kitchen.  I loved it when we moved in 9 years ago but I'm ready for a change.  We're trying to hold off and do a whole kitchen remodel and paint at the same time, but I don't know how much longer I can wait.)

I made a banner with her monthly pictures.  The banner is the same shape as Barrett's monthly banner (which I still have too) but I added some flowers and it turned out so cute.

I bought some fresh flowers from Publix to make a few centerpieces.  They turned out so cute.  I love having fresh flowers around the house.

We moved our deck furniture out into the yard for seating close to where the kids were playing. We also borrowed a few tables for extra seating outside. Those two topiaries were borrowed from my parents (along with a bunch of other stuff).

The rain finally cleared up and we were able to be outside.  I was so excited because this was the only set up I could imagine for her to have her cake.  My mom made that topiary too and my dad got the paper flower banner to hang in the bush.  It was perfect.
OK.  These cupcakes were a total labor of love by my mom and sister in law.  I'd shown my mom a picture of some cupcakes I loved from a bakery but I'm cheap and I couldn't pull the trigger on ordering them.  My mom looked at them and she thought she could make them.  My sister in law is super crafty so she agreed to help.  My mom ordered some special tips and they didn't arrive until Friday, the day before the party. Talk about pressure.  I ordered the cupcakes from Publix and dropped them off to be decorated.  At that point I didn't even care what they looked like.
I was blown away!!!  I think they even impressed themselves!  They were beautiful and they made the party.

I should have let them decorate the smash cake too because it was not what I ordered.  I didn't complain but I probably should have.  I wanted a white cake with dark pink and light pink roses.
She didn't go crazy like I thought she would.

She was too busy watching all the other kids playing!

Love this one of her smiling.


"Are you not going to take this away from me?"

Barrett had the best day.  He woke up Saturday morning ready to party.  He was so excited when his friends got there.  He played and played and played all day and was sad when everyone left. 




"Here Madelyn, you want a bite?"

After cake, before bath.

I think Barrett ate the icing off of about 6 cupcakes.  He took this one to his little bar on the playhouse part of his swing set.

I love this picture of Hudson.  They all had the best time!

AveryAnn got a swing for her birthday and she loves it.  (It doesn't really look like it in this picture but I promise she does)

My sister took this playing with my camera while we were cleaning up.
I never could have pulled off this party without everyone's help.  It was perfect.  I loved having everyone at our house and a yard full of kids.  I wish every Saturday could be that perfect.  We were so sad because nearly all of Patrick's family was sick and couldn't make it.  We missed them so much!   I can't believe our girl is a whole year old.  This year has flown by.