Sunday, August 26, 2012

Father/Son Football Night.

Ben and Harris headed to Chick-fil-a's first annual Father/Son Football Night last night.  To say Harry was excited would be an understatement.  The kid was beside himself, literally bouncing off the walls.  He could not wait to get dressed up in his UGA gear and even had an opinion about what Ben was going to wear.

And by opinion, I mean Ben put on a shirt and Harris walked in and said, "Really?  You're going to wear that?" 


So Ben changed, only to be told again, "Really, Dad?  A red shirt with Uga smoking a cigarette?  Really?"  Harry was cool with it, though, once he realized that Uga did not, in fact, have a cigarette in his mouth but rather a pennant.  All was right with the world.

The girls and I met up with our boys at Menchie's after the dinner date.  Harris leapt out of the truck, yelling, "It was AWESOME!" and doing some kind of pelvic thrust at the same time.  Not too sure about that one.

Evidently, the boys were greeted by "teenagers" (shout out to the local high school football team), treated to a tour of the kitchen area, and saw a few people wearing "disgusting Georgia Tech clothes" on their night out.

Babe immediately asked Ben when she could have a "Daddy/Daughter football date night."

I don't think I've ever been more excited for a football season.


My birthday was last Thursday; I am now thirty-two years old.

Thirty-two.  I have now been a fully licensed driver for half my life.  I don't really know why that's significant, but it is.

Even though I had to work all day and spend the evening at Harris' PTA meeting, I really can't imagine a better way to celebrate than simply living my every day life.  I seriously LOVE my life and fall into bed most nights thinking, "I can't believe I get to share my life with this group of people."  Seriously.  I love the people I do life with.

Of course, no birthday in our household would be complete without the morning birthday balloons and gift opening ceremony.  I had such fun opening my "soft pink blanket to snuggle up with on the couch" from the kids (including my Hershey bar and the latest Teen Mom drama magazine) and cannot wait to head out for an evening on the town with my favorite man on the planet.  How quickly he's learned that my love language is, without a doubt, quality time.  And not to be outdone, I am well aware of how important gifts are to that man. :)  We strike a pretty good balance around here.

It was a fun start to the morning.  It's such fun to get excited with the kiddos and to look forward to traditions (no matter how simple) as a family.  Even if it does mean waking up a little earlier than usual just to celebrate...

The kids and I continued the celebration with dinner at Johnny's on the way home from school, and then Ben and me got a little "alone time" while Mom kept the kids so we could head to PTA. 

I'm pretty sure our evening was merely a preview of the busy-ness in store for us over this next year.  I seriously can't wait. :)

Bring it on, 32.


She's so ready to be grown. 

I love her just the way she is. :)

I know, though, that this is only the beginning of the many "big girl" milestones that will take place over the next few months. 

I'll prepare myself to both laugh and cry at the same time.  That seems to be the best way to handle this whole parenting thing.

At least, it seems to work best for me.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

It's a...

On Thursday, Ben and I headed to the doctor's office for our sixteen-week ultrasound and gender check!  Both Harris and Hadley were begging for a baby brother (and Babe was convinced she already knew the baby was a boy), so they were super stoked for Thursday evening to roll around.

Unfortunately, Ben had to work a little later than anticipated.  You'd have thought those kids were waiting for Christmas morning with the excitement (and impatience) surrounding them!  In fact, when Harris ran into my office after getting off the bus on Thursday afternoon, the first thing he asked me was, "Is the baby a boy or a girl?!?!?!"  Once I told him he'd have to wait until Daddy was home, I'm pretty sure he asked me about Ben's arrival every five minutes.

Finally, after dinner, we brought out a nice pink bag with pink tissue paper, which the kids ripped open to find...

a new outfit for a BABY BOY!

To be honest, I don't really think they ever believed that the baby was anything other than a boy...and so I'm thankful to be evening up the gender count in our house.

We're now counting down the days until we meet our brand new baby boy, Benjamin "Thatcher."

I don't think January can get here quick enough. :)

Big Bath!

Emmy Doe LOVES water!  She'll kick, splash, lick, you name it...she's pretty much a water baby.

Unfortunately, we typically clean her by either a) making her share the tub with her siblings or b) sticking her in the shower with one of us.  It's a time management thing. :)  She lucked on Wednesday night, though, and managed to score some bath time all by herself.

I'm not sure she knew what to do at first, in that big tub all on her own, but she quickly figured out. 

That girl cracks me up.

It's Just About Time... babyproof this house.

Homegirl has been rolling like crazy for quite some time and has come fairly close to perfecting the skill.  These days, she locks her eyes on something and takes off...there's no stopping her!

Furniture is not even an obstacle for my little mover!

It is so time to replace the necessary outlet covers, find some protection for the edges of the fireplace, put the stair gates back up, and (the part I'm dreading most!) move all big kid toys to a safer location.

My baby girl's growing up...

Saturday, August 11, 2012

The First Day of School.

What an exciting day for our entire family! 

Snacks were packed the evening before.  Outfits were selected as well.  We were ready to rock and roll on Monday morning!

These two.  Seriously.

And here's a pic of all three right before we headed out the door...I'm pretty sure Babe was over pictures by this point. :)

We rode together (the kids and I in Big Red, with Daddy following) to drop Emmy off at Ms. Ginnell's and then headed to Primrose for Babe's big day.  I don't even think it dawned on her to be nervous.

 Ben said when he picked her up, all anybody could comment on was the amount of words that came out of her mouth.  My sweet girl is right at home in Pre-K.

After leaving Babe in good hands at Primrose, we headed to Twin Rivers to get ready for Harris to catch the bus.  He got a little nervous (clingy) when he saw the good-sized group of kids at the bus stop, but once that bus pulled up to school, there was no looking back.

They love it.  Both of them.  To say I'm thankful would be an understatement.

What I wouldn't give to watch their every move...

Pinata Party.

This year, instead of our typical "out-to-eat to celebrate the start of school" outing, we opted to stay close to home.

Granti, Auntie, and DB were able to join us for dinner (McDonald's chicken' choice!) and then stick around for the highlight of the evening...the back-to-school pinata!!!!

We filled that bad boy with the kids' favorite candies (jolly ranchers, tootsie rolls, and dum dums) and let them go town in the front yard.

They had a blast!  It was so funny to watch them scamper for candy once the pinata broke...I think they forgot it was just the two of them...

And the best part is that McDonald's and a Wal-Mart pinata ended up being way cheaper and much more fun than any restaurant could have been!

We finished the evening by heading to the backyard to give Harry a haircut and play in the water hose for a little while before heading to bed.  I managed to take some really great pictures of Ben and the kids playing in the water, but unfortunately can't post them.  After haircuts, we always let the kids strip off their clothes and run around the backyard butt naked.  It's pretty redneck.  And pretty awesome, too.  Especially when Ben wets the slide and lets the kids fly down it...always makes us laugh!

After baths, Bible stories, and bedtime prayers, these guys were wiped out and ready for bed!  I still can't believe they're old enough for school...

Oh, my heart.

Eight Months.

I was so busy loving on you, I forgot to post a seven month update.  Consider this post full of highlights from the last two months. :)

You. Are. Awesome.

Your personality is emerging and you fit right in with our family.  You laugh and smile and giggle constantly.  My very favorite thing right now, though, is the way you scrunch up your nose and smile with your entire face whenever you find something really funny.  It's adorable and makes me want to scoop you up and cover you with kisses.  So, I do.

Let's're a good eater.  Still not a fan of meat, although the meat "dinners" are growing on you.  You love ALL baby food fruits and veggies and we've even started throwing in "real" food whenever we think about it or have something on hand you can eat.  You're a master at eating bananas, devoured the broccoli we gave you, enjoyed watermelon, and even did pretty well with shredded chicken.  Puffs are also a favorite.  Your pincer grasp is superb and you're pretty much an expert at getting food from your tray into your mouth (although Norman does enjoy cleaning out your high chair every now and then).  You know how to get water out of your sippy cup, too.  We're planning to let you have a try with a straw cup very soon; I have no doubt you'll be even better with that.  You still take four bottles a day, but your liquid intake has dropped.  Because of your new sibling forming in my womb, I've had to wean you from breastmilk (which made me a little sad, but also made me feel human again).  I nursed you for the last time in mid-July...since then, you take a 6 oz. bottle when you wake up, a 4-6 oz bottle around 11:00 or so, another 4-6 oz bottle around 3:30 or 4:000, and a 6 oz. bottle at bedtime.  You typically eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner with our family.

You can sit up on your own and roll with a purpose can get where you want to go.  And quickly. :)  You love playing in the exersaucer and the doorframe jumper and are good at bearing weight on your chunky legs and teeny, tiny feet. still have the smallest feet ever.  Harry and Babe are still your favorite playmates, although I'm sure you'll make some sweet friends now that you're spending your days with Ginnell.  Your brother and sister love you like crazy, though, and will do absolutely anything to make you smile.

You've just about grown out of 6 month-sized clothes.  In fact, any outfits you had with elastic bottoms are no longer an option because they leave marks on those beautiful, fat thighs of yours.  Your two bottom teeth came in and apart from a slight fever and quick cold, you didn't bat an eye.  You're still pretty good about going with the flow and following whatever schedule our family sets for you...we couldn't have asked for a better third baby.  Now that we're back into the school routine, though, you're going down around 7:30 in the evenings and waking up for the day around 7:00 am.  You still like to catch a quick morning nap whenever and wherever you can and you've started to join your siblings for "room time" by napping in your crib from 1:00-3:00.  The evening catnap is pretty much gone.

You're wearing size 3 diapers now (that started at the beginning of August).  You took your first trip to Florida and LOVED the water in the swimming pool.  Bathtime is more fun now that you can sit up, but Daddy and me also clean you with us in the shower quite often.  You like it just as much! 

We spent two nights away from you for a wedding in July.  Granti spent the night with you and loved on you like crazy.  I'm not even sure you knew Daddy and me were gone.

You babble a lot.  "Ba ba ba" is a favorite phrase.  High-pitched squeals are frequent, too.

You make our family so much fun. 

Thank you for being you.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

They're All Getting So Big...

We met Harry's Kindergarten teacher this week.  I like her. :)

We sorted his supplies, turned in the "homework" he'd received in the mail, picked up some info on PTA, and watched him make a craft in his classroom. 

He's pumped.  I am, too, and I know he's ready...but pregnancy hormones and preparing to send my sweet, innocent, precious firstborn to elementary school are a lethal combination.

We celebrated on Thursday night (because we were too tired to make dinner) by heading to Luigi's.  Emmy Doe sat for the first time in a big girl high chair.  Seriously...she's getting so big.  She's at my very favorite baby stage though-where she can sit but not move. I'm eating her up!

Our family was blessed on Thursday night when some complete strangers paid for our meal.  Ben was wearing his gun and badge (again, too tired to even change clothes) and an elderly couple in the restaurant wanted to thank our family for his service.  Kindness is such a beautiful thing!  I can't wait to pass it on...

On Friday morning, we took Hadley to meet her Pre-K teacher.  That girl doesn't have a shy bone in her body.

She hugged her teacher, initiated conversations with the new friends in her room, found three "Horties" in the animal bucket, and picked up a small cutting board in the kitchen center and said, "Look at this big ol' spanking spoon!"

I'm so excited to watch her grow and develop this year.  She's going to be a handful. :)

Both Babe and Harry picked to attend their Open Houses without their siblings in tow.  Ben and I treated each of them to McDonald's before heading to their respective schools and really enjoyed the time with them as individuals.

I can't wait to see what this school year brings!

Friday, August 3, 2012

Summer of Fun Finale.

We sent summer out with a bang. 

Thanks to the Captain and his ability to obtain the hook-up, we scored a pavilion at Stone Mountain and planned a family-friendly cookout followed by the Laser Show.

We ended up sharing our pavilion with a somewhat large family reunion.  As in, the other family was in the pavilion we had reserved, admitted they didn't have it rented, and were gracious enough to allow us to have three picnic tables and the grill.


We ate.  And that's what matters.  Especially because Catherine made some kick-butt loaded potato salad.  Someone should host another event so she can make it again soon. :)

The kids had a BLAST running and playing and dancing and sweating.

They also enjoyed the Laser Show.  Even Emmy Doe was mesmerized.  Babe's favorite song was "The Devil Went Down to Georgia."  At first she was a bit concerned about the devil actually coming down to Georgia, but we straightened that out and all was good...

It was hot.  It was late.  It was crowded.  It was worth it.

I'm already envisioning a new end-of-summer tradition.

And we all know how I feel about traditions...