Sunday, February 22, 2015

You're home!

One of my best friends (forever) came to visit me last month! She brought her two adorable kids and we had a great few days together.

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The kids reading to her on the first night. They were so excited to have a willing audience!

The day she got here, we had some rain, and it seemed like it took forever to get home from the airport! We weren't home very long before we loaded back in the car and went to Cousin's. The kids' uncle & his family drove up from Houston to see them, so we had dinner (chaos! But fun chaos, the kind that is perfect for Cousin's) and then they went to the hotel with their family to swim & catch up. Jennie & I sat around and talked and it was so good to see her!

The next morning we went to church and then just came home and hung out. It was a nice, quiet day.

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Tommy loved Brandt! It was so cute to watch them together.

On Monday, we got Maddy out of school early & went to Dallas to the American Girl Doll store so Izzy could get her doll's ears pierced. We ate lunch in the food court down there & perused the mall a little bit - the only other time I've been there is when I was down here visiting Spence & Heather the first time.  The kids had a blast hanging out wiht their new besties and of course I love any chance to walk around a mall. :)

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And so it begins! I've really dreaded this but she was just in AWE!

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Best friend necklaces!! ♥

On Tuesday, we took my kids to school and then went shopping around a little bit. When the kids were done with school, we drove out to Arlington to go ice skating at The Parks Mall. It was so fun!! I haven't been ice skating in YONKS, since Mike & I were dating, but it was a good time.

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When we got home, we got the kids settled and then I HAD to take Jennie to Fresco's so she could see what it was all about. I think she finally realized what true love is.

Wednesday morning, Brandt woke up with a fever and was all wimpy, it was sad. :( I took Jennie & the kids to the airport and cried all the way home. I love my friend! I miss her. 

There was a lot of Wii playing - and with that a lot of laughs & some tears since Maddy is learning how to lose at things and not think death is imminent - - -

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and a lot of quality time together. I am so grateful to Jennie for coming down here! We've been friends for TWENTY YEARS... I can't wait to see what happens in the next twenty! Love you, Jen!

Thursday, February 19, 2015

o n e y e a r

My baby is a year! I can't believe it.

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This is seriously his face a lot of the time.

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This is after a lemon. HA!

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My personal photographer moved to Houston so I didn't have anyone to take his pictures. It is going to be a really hard adjustment without her for so many reasons, the photography just being one of them!! I miss you, Stacie!

We went to the park one Sunday and played around and I tried to capture a little bit of Brandt. He wasn't really feeling the camera, he was way too interested in the grass, but it's fine.

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Brandt loves to eat! There were a few days around his birthday where he tried to refuse everything, but that was fleeting. (Thank goodness.) I still feed him a few times a day, he doesn't seem to love whole milk as much as the other kids but he'll occasionally take it. He's so crazy with a sippy cup, he takes A LOT in and then pulls it out of his mouth before swallowing so milk / water goes flying everywhere. And then he throws the sippy cup across the room. AAAGGGHHH.

He sleeps through the night, uh, mostly. Ish. Sometimes. He take a couple naps a day, maybe. Sometimes they're long enough, sometimes they're not. No consistency from this child, ever. I wonder if it'll ever happen?

He loves Maddy & Hudson so much! But then anytime they want to hold him, he won't have it. He really loves his mama right now! I love / hate it. Mostly love. But at dinnertime or shower time... it's trying.

He still crawls around everywhere, pulls up on everything, is getting a lot more steady at cruising. The army crawl of his gets a lot of attention, it's pretty funny. 

He says mama & dada and always seems so surprised when we clap or cheer after he does certain things. It's just funny, it seems like both the other kids were always doing stuff for attention and LOVED IT. But he just does what he wants and if we happen to like it, fine. He's a hilarious kid. He's the most stubborn little monster I've ever met. He makes me absolutely crazy but it's exactly what we were missing! 

This baby has really thrown me for a loop in a lot of ways but I am so glad he's in our family! He just makes us smile so much! (When he's not making us cry.)

WE LOVE YOU, BRANDT! Happy 1st birthday! ♥

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

More from December

Just a few little things I wanted to remember... And then maybe I can feel good about my lack of blogging for 2014.

We went to the zoo one of the warmer days we had. It's so nice to do things like that with my kids, even though it kind of seems like a hassle sometimes. We had a lot of fun roaming around the zoo, the kids loved it (as always), and even Brandt had a good time.

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Hud led the way around the park, looking every bit the tiny tourist. Bah! I love this kid so much!

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The two baby elephants that the zoo had were being so hilarious! It's the most interaction I've seen when we've been there. Makes me so happy to see but sad for them. (Aren't zoos so sad?)

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Even the hippo was going nuts.

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♥ My whole life ♥

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One chilly day, I was making some chicken tortilla soup and while slicing up some grilled chicken, SLICED MY FINGER.

This was a couple days after. It was horrible. I'm really sure I should have gotten stitches. Ugh.

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The night before Christmas Eve (or, Christmas Eve Eve, if you will), Mike sent me away to a hotel for a night. It was all his clever ploy to paint / makeover our bedroom. He did a great job and I'm so glad he took the bull by the horns! He put sheers up, new comforter, new paint (it was an olive / puke green before, I actually really did like it but now looking at our bathroom, which is still that color, it is pretty gross in comparison).

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Christmas Day brought a surprise at Auntie Heather's house - they were fostering puppies! Maddy was in heaven and took a liking to Pistol (the other one was Annie - HA!) and even wrote about it in her journal at school. So adorable. Spence & Heather actually decided to keep Pistol and renamed her Finley. *Which brings their dog count up to FIVE, if anyone was curious..

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Maddy & 'Pistle'

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Our New Year's Eve consisted of Pei Wei, Wii & Friends reruns. It was low-key and pretty fun. My kids were in bed well before midnight, just how I like it!

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This was after Maddy got a bulls-eye at darts. She makes me so proud! ;)

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Birfdays

It seems like Mike's birthday always comes and goes with little fanfare, so this year, I wanted to do something special.

I had all of our friends meet us at Red, Hot & Blue and surprise Mike. And he WAS surprised! I couldn't believe I actually kept it a secret for so long, including running to Nothing Bundt Cakes for some deliciousness for dessert.

We had a such a great time with all of our friends!

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For *my* birthday, I asked some of my friends to come on a road trip with me to Waco to visit Magnolia, which is the shop of Joanna Gaines from HGTV's Fixer Upper. Of course right before we left, it started to rain. Blah. I didn't mind the rain itself, but just a little traffic + construction + the rain = a slow drive to Waco. At least I had these gals with me! It was so fun.

We went to Magnolia first - LOVED it. Such a teeny, tiny little place, but filled with such perfection.

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Then we went to Clint Harp's shop (he's the carpenter on Fixer Upper), where there was no actual parking lot (I think it's a pretty new place) so we had to walk through the wet dirt MUD to get inside. It was a beautiful place with amazing things!

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After that we headed over to Spice Village, which is a combination of Canton & the mall, basically. Adorable.

Conveniently, there's a Mexican restaurant called Ninfa's close by, and we took full advantage.

My friends are so sweet to me! They comply with my birthday wishes AND bought me dinner! Plus a super cute little number from Magnolia. I LOVE THEM.

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Sunday, January 25, 2015

Eleven months!

The time is flying by so quickly, and there's absolutely nothing I can do to stop it.

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You eat great, you're sleeping better (Daddy is handling nighttime wake ups right now, which seems to help you realize you don't need to be fed any more at night!), you love playing with Maddy & Hud, you love your mama the mostest (YAY!), and you're loved by everyone.

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It doesn't look like you're having fun, but I swear you are. :)

You hate to have your diaper changed, you d-i-e when it's time to brush your teeth, when you're in your highchair, we better have that food ready, GOSHDANGIT, or else! You're pulling up on everything you can, taking tiny steps while hanging onto things but still SUPER unsteady - you seem pretty cautious in that regard. And by cautious, I mean you cry if you're nervous about it. Kinda heart-breaking. But we know you'll get through it! On the other hand, you're a thrill seeker in that you love to hang upside down or be thrown in the air. You laugh and laugh and laugh.

You're adorable, little guy! Happy eleven months!

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Christmas Day

Of course the night Brandt sleeps through the night, I couldn't sleep. I was too excited - it was Christmas Eve!!

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I took this in the wee hours. Well, around 7 AM. I kept waiting to hear little feet wandering around upstairs!

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Santa wrote each of the kids a little note, which was very thoughtful.

It was almost 8 before the kids woke up and they were very excited to come down the stairs.

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Brandt's first Christmas!!

Santa brought a Barbie gift certificate for Maddy and the monster trucks from Mater's Tall Tales for Hud. Both kids got some (fake) glasses in their stockings as well. Brandt got a little toy that has a mirror and makes noise. They all got each other a stuffed animal from the Disney store, it was so cute. 

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We got done with presents and were just about ready to start cooking for the day when Mike said, "Danielle, what about the bikes?"

HAHAHAHAHA. We forgot the bikes! Surprise, kids!

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Later that day, we went to my brother's for dinner. We had a fun gift exchange and my kids got about a zillion gifts. RIDICULOUS. But we're so grateful.

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The next day, my mom came over and brought her many many gifts for all of us.

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It was nice to be able to spend a little more time with the gift opening, rather than the flurry of the couple days before.

The entire 'season' went by way too quickly, but we made some great memories!