Sunday, April 29, 2012

Portraits of a Sunday at the Playground

Russell’s favorite thing: swinging.  Still prefers the “baby swing.”
A close second favorite: digging in the sandbox.
Meredith loves to play with the mulch.  Today she thought it was hilarious to try to eat a piece and have me tell her “no” and dig it out of her mouth.  But at least in these pictures it looks like she’s just standing nicely!
We are lucky to live near some great parks!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Speech Therapy Graduate!

I could not be more thrilled to be able to say that Russell has been exited from speech therapy! 

I had discussed with our speech therapist my belief that Russell just no longer needed the services, considering how many people we meet – strangers – are impressed with his speech.  So on Friday morning, for his weekly speech appointment, Miss Jill (our AMAZING speech therapist) brought her formal evaluation with her and tested him.  Bless his heart, he sat there for 45 minutes, completely still and mostly compliant – although at the end I had to bribe him to finish.  He had to sit there for so long because they have to get 5 in a row wrong before the test is considered over.  In fact, he was doing so well that she gave him 4.5-5 year old questions before he finally got 5 wrong in a row!

In order to qualify for speech therapy, his score would have had to be a 78 or lower.  During the evaluation that qualified him for speech in Feb 2011, his expressive language score was a 69 (although I don’t remember is receptive score).  On Friday, his expressive score was 110 and his receptive score was 114!  Amazing!  Thank You, Lord!

In Feb 2011, we were ecstatic when Russell started saying “hi” and “hop” – we were so relieved he was saying something.  Now, he is one of the more talkative kids we know.

Good job, Russell!  You worked so hard and it paid off! 


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

12 months old!

Meredith, you are 12 months old! And you so did not want to take any pictures to document that fact!


  • Weight: TBD (doctor’s appointment is next week)
  • Height: TBD
  • Head Circ: TBD
  • Clothing: 9-12 mo, 12 mo, 12-18 mo
  • Shoes: size 3
  • Diapers: size 3 or 4


  • The biggest news, of course, is that Meredith is walking! she took her first steps on March 17, and I’d say she walks about 50% of the time now. And she is so proud of herself – she giggles and smiles as she walks. Super cute.
  • She has 6 teeth - 4 on top and the 2 bottom middle.
  • Just for documentation sake, I will say now that she’s been clapping and pointing probably since she was 10 months old.
  • In the past week, Meredith turned from baby to toddler. By that I mean, she is toddling over to what she wants and she wants it right now, and yes, she will stiffen and slide to the floor and throw a tantrum if she doesn’t get it. Oh boy. She may not be really verbal, but she is great at pointing and showing what she wants or what she’s thinking about.
  • She has her own little babble language – lots of “doodoodoodada", but many other sounds can be heard too. She will try to imitate words, but I wouldn’t say she’s consistent with much right now (except perhaps the aforementioned Kitty and Dog).
  • Is now eating 100% table food, and has eaten all of the 1-year-old foods – strawberries, peanut butter, honey, eggs – with no problems. She is also drinking whole milk.
  • Still taking 2 naps per day, at 9:30 and 1, and sleeping 7:30 pm – 7 am.


Russell at 12 months and Meredith at 12 months – I think they really look different.


Happy one year, Meredith – but no matter how old you are, you and your brother will always be my babies Smile

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Meredith’s Tea Party

Meredith turned one today, and yesterday was her big birthday party!  We/I decided on a tea party theme, and Kacki and I ran with it from there.  She was a HUGE help in set-up, food prep, décor – basically everything!

The tea party theme started with the invitations:


The main food area was the dining room.  The menu included pimento cheese and PB&J “tea” sandwiches, fruit salad, pasta salad, chips, cheese and crackers, marshmallow pops, and cupcakes.


Jason’s cousin Lauren, who is a big thrifter/crafter, made the cupcake stand for us!  (It did fall apart a little later, but it looked cute for a while!)




I had a little pretend tea party set up in the living room for the kids to play with, so Russell and Eliza served “tea” to the party guests.




There’s the birthday girl at her tea party!  Of course she had a little smocked tea pot dress!


As everyone arrived, the kids played inside a little bit.




All the big kids sat at the table together for lunch.


Birthday girl sat in her highchair with the special banner Kacki made.


After lunch, we all went outside.  The kids played on the swingset, played soccer with our soccer ball and cones, played with the toy lawnmower, and just plain played!  Paw Paw and Kacki brought their tailgating tent, so we set that up outside along with a present table.





Time for presents!  Russell felt like it was his job to help.




They both got bored of opening after a while.  Russell retreated with one of Meredith’s new books, and Meredith sat and played, while Jason and I opened the rest!


Meredith was very ready for cake time.  She has become quite a little snacker – she only wants to eat a certain amount, makes it known when she’s DONE, and then a couple hours later she comes walking or crawling up to her highchair, whining for something to eat!  All that to say, she came walking up to her highchair ready for something right then, and lo and behold, the lucky girl got cake Smile

Not sure about the birthday song…


Warming up to the cake…


Good thing we took your dress off, baby!


Meredith had a wonderful birthday party.  It was at the perfect time, with the perfect weather, the perfect amount of guests (although we did miss those who couldn’t attend), and the birthday girl and everyone else had lots of fun! 

Mommy and her sweet birthday girl:


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Cake Smash!

Our little Meredith is turning one on Sunday! 

I think my favorite photo shoot I have ever done with Russell was his cake smash session for his first birthday, so of course I had to have one for Meredith too.  We decided that Sunday would be the day!  It was nice to have Kacki and Paw Paw here for back-up!

Meredith was very quiet and contemplative during the whole session.  We only coaxed a few smiles out of her.  But trust me, we could still tell she quite enjoyed her first cake!






Sunday, April 8, 2012


We had a pretty low-key Easter, but I still managed to take a few photos, of course Smile

The kids each got just a couple toys in their Easter basket, plus candy and fruit snacks for Russell, Puffs and yogurt melts for Meredith.


Russell checking out his new doctor’s kit!  He plays pretend all the time, so I wanted to get him some sort of pretend kit and doctor seemed to be a good place to start.


I got Meredith a hide ‘n squeak egg set.  She loves throwing the eggs all over the place.  Side note: this is Meredith’s second Easter, and she’s not even one!


After church we took a couple pictures.  You can barely tell, but both kids are wearing seersucker.  I love seersucker, and I love matching children!



Paw Paw and Kacki came over later and we had our own version of Easter dinner, which was take-out from Mimi’s Café this year Smile  We usually do a big meal, but there’s something to be said for easy! 

It’s a good thing that Easter isn’t truly about a nice meal or lots of company or stuffed Easter baskets, because if it was, we would have failed this year.  As it is, though, we celebrated the resurrection of our Lord Jesus, and therefore successfully celebrated Easter to the fullest!  Russell could tell us exactly what Easter was about, and that’s the most important thing.