Friday, December 30, 2016

2016 Year End Review

2016 was the year I met my baby girl and took my big boy to Disney World, with a lot of fun mixed in.
January was mainly focused on preparing for AveryAnn's arrival. We welcomed a our sweet new niece Madelyn on the 8th.  I didn't blog much but I did write about the sweet baby shower my friends hosted for me.  It was so much fun and I'm so thankful for these friends. We painted the nursery!
In February I shared AveryAnn's finished nursery.  I love how it turned it out.  It was exactly what I imagined!  We welcomed our new baby girl at the end of the month!  As we settled in as a family of four I started writing AveryAnn's birthday story here.  I didn't blog a whole lot mainly because I was exhausted because I didn't think the baby would ever sleep more than 2.5 hours.  Those first 5 weeks were rough.  Also Patrick left his job and started a new one in the middle of all this.  It was a crazy few weeks that I wish I'd had more energy to document.

March was a blur.  AveryAnn turned one month old.  I went back to work.  I registered Barrett for K3.  Patrick enjoyed starting his new job.  I tried to go back and catch up the first few weeks at home here, here and here. We ended the month celebrating Easter and our 8th anniversary. I finally finished writing AveryAnn's birth story!  This and Barrett's birth story are two things that I'm so glad I wrote down.
I only blogged two times in April.  We celebrated Madelyn's baptism and Ruby's.  I was honored to be both girls Godmother. It was so special!  AveryAnn turned two months old!
We celebrated Mother's day in early May and it was a bittersweet weekend for sure.  AveryAnn was baptized.  I loved sharing with so many friends and family.  We had a fun little celebration at our house after and it was so sweet.  We ended the month with some summer fun!
I finally posted AveryAnn's  newborn pictures  in June.  Barrett wore the bunny mask he got at his MDO end of the year party for nearly a week straight.  We finally got to go stay with Tony and Carla in June and we had the best time!  We can't wait to go back!  AveryAnn turned 4 months old and I finally took Barrett to his 3 year old checkup.  We celebrated Father's Day but it apparently didn't get a post and we finally started potty training! A busy, fun month indeed!

July kicked off with Independence day celebrations.  We went to swim at the Moore's house, to the lake and watched fireworks (which Barrett still hates).  I posted a little life lately as a catch-up post and AveryAnn turned 5 months old.

August was filled with emotion as Barrett had his final Mother's Day Out at the only place he'd known.  I love these women so much and was so sad to leave them.  It was a bittersweet day for sure.  The very next week you started 3K at your new school.  You cried for the first few weeks.  It was a bit of an adjustment from going half days to full days.  AveryAnn turned 6 months old!

There was only one thing on our minds (and blog) for September.  And that was DISNEY WORLD!!!  We'd been thinking about and planning this trip for nearly 18 months and we were so excited!!  We started the week in Magic Kingdom.  The next day we traveled around the World (showcase) in Epcot.  Wednesday we headed to Animal Kingdom.  Thursday was my favorite day, we headed back to Magic Kingdom and Be Our Guest for dinner.  Friday was our last day and we were in Hollywood Studios.  It was the most fun, exhausting vacation ever.  We had the best time.  Even Patrick, who I was sure was going to hate it, had a blast.  It'll be a few years but we can't wait to go back.  AveryAnn turned 7 months old.  I'm pretty sure I already had Barrett's first birthday planned when he was 7 months old

October was a crapshoot.  I got to go to Tuscaloosa twice. Once with Barrett for Homecoming and once with Lorie for the Texas A&M game.  Neither trip made it on the blog.  AveryAnn turned 8 months old.  We also had a fun Halloween with our friends again.  Barrett was Chase from Paw Patrol, Patrick was Ryder and AveryAnn was Snow White.

November snuck up on us.  We decorated for Christmas.  AveryAnn turned 9 months old.  We celebrated Thanksgiving.  We played kickball at my brothers on black Friday.  Patrick and I got to go to the Iron Bowl and it was a lot of fun! 
To be honest I was in a pretty rotten mood all month long.  We kicked off the month with the annual Gardendale Christmas parade.  We also went to see Santa that weekend too.  Barrett talked a big talk but chickened out when it was his turn.  We celebrated Jackson and Barrett's birthday with a gingerbread house decorating playdate!  We went to a couple of Christmas get togethers.  AveryAnn turned 10 months old and Barrett turned 4!  Finally we celebrated Christmas and Barrett's birthday!
We've had the best year watching our little family grow!  We're looking forward to 2017!

Thursday, December 29, 2016

AveryAnn's First Christmas

We had the best time celebrating AveryAnn's first Christmas this year. 
I think she had more fun than this picture portrays.
We went to Christmas Eve Mass as a family.  Although I spent most of the night in the back because AveryAnn wanted to talk.  After Mass Patrick went back home to finish working in Santa's workshop, the kids and I went to my parents house.  We left there and rode around looking at Christmas lights until Barrett fell asleep in the car. 

Santa came and we were so excited!
Santa worked overtime to make this happen.  He had a lot of help from friends and family.  Barrett was so excited, so it made it all worth it.
This sweet girl woke up first and she was so sweet! 

Matching pj picture with Ally Bama.

Barrett's smile might be my favorite thing about all these pictures. 
9th family picture in front of the tree.  These pictures make me so happy!  I love seeing how our family has grown and changed.

We put AveryAnn down for a nap and headed back outside to play some more.  Barrett played for about 30 minutes until he decided it was too hot and he needed some shade.  It was unseasonably warm.

When AveryAnn woke up we headed to my parents house to celebrate with them. 
For my parents we all went in together and gave them the gift of a family picture.  Back in October we hired a photographer and then had a big canvas made for them.  I think they really liked it. 
After we finished with Christmas we had cake for Barrett's birthday.

He wanted a Transformers cake and since I never ordered one, my dad ran and grabbed a white cake and I put a couple of the new Transformers on it.  He thought it was great.

Mom and dad wanted a picture with all the grandkids.  This was as good as it gets.
We left there and headed home to regroup before we went to the Horton's for dinner.
I love this picture of Patrick's parents and the kids.  I usually forget to take my camera to their house but I'm so glad I remembered this year.  We had a delicious dinner and wonderful night celebrating with them also.
It was a fun day celebrating with our families.  This is this the first year that Barrett really realized it was his birthday.  With two kids its a little more difficult to make the day all about him.  I know we'll figure it all out.  On the 26th I had to take my phone to the apple store so I decided to take Barrett to see a movie.  It was a fun day just the two of us and I think we might have to make that our new tradition. 

It's Christmas Time

We had a busy week leading up to Christmas.
Wednesday night we had a girls night at Crystal's house.  They just moved in this Fall and I was so excited to finally get to see the place.  It's beautiful!  Fun night laughing with these girls!

Barrett went to school Tuesday and Wednesday but Thursday he went to work with me.  He wanted to wear his Santa hat.

We had the Slovensky family party Thursday night and the women usually exchange a little something.  I did these tea towels with a hand written recipe from my MiMi's cookbook.  I loved getting to make this!

We planned for the girls to wear their matching Santa dresses and they looked so cute, even if AveryAnn cried when we tried to take their picture.

This one is better.  They make everything more fun!

Friday my mom and sister were making pagachi.  I went for moral support.  They did let me cover the rising dough balls with saran wrap so I'm practically an expert.

Sister wasn't a fan at first, she kept dropping it on the floor.

Every year I say I'm not going to be shopping and wrapping on Christmas Eve but this year was no different.  I spent a lot of time complaining about everything I had to get done.  I felt very overwhelmed most of the season and now I'm sad that I wasted so much time.  I should be thankful that we have so many people to buy for.  We are so blessed with family and friends that we love.  Patrick and I sat down this week and made a plan for saving and shopping next year so hopefully I really will be done early and can enjoy the season.

Barrett & Jackson's Gingerbread House 4th Birthday

For the boys birthday this year we thought they were finally old enough to be trusted decorating gingerbread houses.  Jessica and I built houses out of graham crackers so all the boys had to do was decorate. 
I made each boy a cute apron and each boy had their own little spot. 

These three were so excited to see the garbage man. 
I didn't take any pictures of the food but we had a nice brunch (my favorite).  Breakfast casserole, hash brown casserole, muffins, sausage balls, pigs in a blanket and fruit.

Barrett was not all that interested in anything other than eating the candy.

Cruz and Cooper

The finished product.

I love this little tradition of celebrating the boys birthdays with a fun Christmas playdate.  It won't be long until they're all in school and want nothing to so with us. 

Monday, December 26, 2016

Forty Eight Months

I've been a mom now for 4 years!  It's been the fastest 4 years of my life.  I feel like Barrett has changed so much this year but it's really been the last three months that he has changed the most.  He is speaking in full sentences whether they're needed or not and it's so cute.
You are finally potty trained.  Finally!  We've been to the movies twice, the beach and Disney world this year. 
You became the best big brother this year.  Your sister adores you and you think she's pretty great too.  It's been really special to watch your relationship grow.  I hope you are always best friends.
You started 3K at a new school and you go all day for 3 days a week.  It's been an adjustment for sure for both of us but I think it's really been good. 
You still very much like to be held and snuggle.  I love this.  It's so sweet when you crawl in my lap and just want to be held!  You still want your bear to sleep but it goes with us less and less.  Makes me happy and sad.

Disney World was an absolute blast with you.  You really took everything in and loved it all so much.  You still mention something about it every day. 

This picture sums up the whole trip.  Truly magical.  It was worth every penny.  It'll be a few years but we can't wait to go back!

You are very into Transformers these days.  I love watching you play. Your vocabulary is incredible.  I can't believe we were ever worried about you not talking.  You pretty much only eat chicken nuggets, French fries and sweets. 

When I was taking AveryAnn's 10 month pictures you cried because you wanted a sticker too.  So I made you one.  You are so sweet!  Today I was upset about something and started crying in the car and then I heard your sweet little voice from the backseat saying, "don't cry Mommy, it's okay".  You're just so sweet.  I hope you always keep that sweet spirit!  We love you so much! Thank you for making me a mommy!