Friday, June 27, 2014

11 months old!

Paige is 11 months old!


Paige has really changed this month. To me, she is starting to act more like a 1-year-old and less like a baby.

She refuses jarred baby food now and will only eat table food or the squeeze food pouches. Table-food-wise, she likes almost everything we put in front of her!

She is still pulling up everywhere, cruising a little, and taking a few steps while holding someone’s hands. She is babbling more and pointing more.

Also, she has mostly traded in that cute and funny army crawl for a regular crawl – after becoming a stair-climbing expert, she decided a regular crawl is faster after all!


She is wearing size 12-18 months clothes. Her feet are wide, like her brother (and me and her Mimi), and now that I’m trying shoes on her, she doesn’t fit into all of Meredith’s old ones, because Meredith’s feet are skinnier, more like Jason. But I do think some of them will fit!

I think I can say this without jinxing myself: Paige is finally sleeping through the night, at least 75% of the time! (The other 25%, there is still 1 nighttime feeding.) Gosh, she took a while! Russell slept through the night by 9 months; Meredith by 6 months; Paige – about 10.5 months. Sleep is so easy to take for granted until you don’t get it!


Paige, sleeping or not, we love you! You are smiley and fun and easy-going. As Russell tells you, “You are a blessing!”

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Weekend at “home” pt 3: Ella is 1!

It was wonderful that our trip coincided with our niece Ella’s first birthday party!

Jason drove a van full (us, Grandmother, Pops and Mimi) an hour and a half away for the lunchtime party. (We left Paige at Nanny’s with Paw Paw, Kacki, and Nanny – didn’t want her to miss her naptime. Also, the party was at a park, which does not mesh well with crawling and chewing on everything that’s on the ground.)



I love this picture of the birthday girl!



Big cousin, little cousin!


Ella had such a sweet smile on her face for the “happy birthday” song!


Grandparent shot – Ella figured out the cake thing pretty quickly!


Pink frosting girl with her Mimi!


Jon and Meghan took most of the gifts home to open, but Russell and Meredith really wanted to see Ella open the gift from Paw Paw and Kacki. Meredith was at the store when Kacki picked it out.


It was hot, hot, hot! So what do you do? Play in the ice water that holds the drinks! Meredith was being her little-mama self, trying to teach Ella how to play.


Grandmother, Russell, Mer:


Happy first birthday to Ella Grace! We loved spending time with you!

Week at “home” pt 2: family, friends and…ER

Our family trips are always some kind of eventful. The big “event” during this trip happened to be an ER visit.

But first, we went and saw lots of family and friends!

I wish we had taken photos of everyone we saw and everywhere we went. But as those with small kids know, it’s not always easy to get out that camera! Here are some pictures I did get:

We ate dinner with Grandmother at Chick-Fil-A. One of the hardest things about moving was leaving Grandmother. She is so good to us and the kids miss playing at her house.


Our playgroup hosted a cook-out for us – the first half of which was totally wonderful!

Paige and Callie played in the Pack-n-Play:


Zack and Kathy recently had their backyard redone, and it is awesome. A swingset, a bike path, a giant chalkboard – a kid’s dream!



What would I do without my support system? These girls are gifts from God!


Jason picked up the tongs for the picture :)


All the kids before their picnic dinner:


And that’s the end of the happy pictures for that night. After dinner, I went inside with Meredith to take her to the bathroom. We had been in there a few minutes when I heard screaming – not unusual with young kids. But it was getting pretty loud, and my mommy ears were picking up that it was Russell’s scream. I went outside to find Jason holding him and all the adults looking ashen and nervous. Russell had blood down his back coming from the back of his head.

Jason and I drove him to the ER while the girls stayed with our friends.


He ended up having about a 2 inch long gash and getting 3 staples. He tells us that he was coming to ask me if there was a bike he could ride when he crashed with another kid who was on a bike – they didn’t see each other. Russell’s foot got caught under the bike and the back of his head hit the corner of the fence.

We are thankful he’s okay! Never a dull moment!

Week at “home” pt 1 – Nanny’s House

We spent the best week and a half at home last week. NC will always be home, no matter where our address is.

Nanny (Jason’s grandmother) was so gracious to let us stay with her. It’s hard to find somewhere to stay for that long with kids as young as ours! Nanny has 2 spare bedrooms and an extra living room. We did make her a few dinners and breakfasts, and we tried to keep things picked up – hopefully that makes up for the extra noise and chaos for her!


Meredith got the king bed to herself for nap times – the good life!


Many a Lego mash-up was made. (That’s a Jason-and-Russell term for new types of vehicles.)



We miss Aunt Kim! So nice to see her for a little bit!



Pops, Mimi, and Bogie were here for a day too! We were so happy to spend that time with them. Hadn’t seen them since January.

Paige loves “the family dog” as much as the other kids!



It all went by so quickly. We were so happy to see everyone go to all of our old spots – it felt like we had never left!

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Weekend at Paw Paw and Kacki’s

We made the crazy, 13-hour drive to Paw Paw and Kacki’s house last week. The trip went pretty well, actually – we left at 1 pm (CST) and arrived at 3:30 am (EST).

We were all excited to be back!


We did a lot of hanging around the house, which was perfect.

Building a parking deck with Kacki:


Looking at pictures:




We were so glad to see Uncle Jon, Aunt Meghan, and Ella! Paige was surprised to see a baby her age walking – we were hoping she’d pick it up just from watching, but not yet Winking smile She’ll get there soon!


We enjoyed a pizza dinner together.



We gave Ella her birthday present from us while they were visiting: an Elmo puppet book and an Elmo DVD. This is about the Elmo age, so we figured she’ll enjoy it!



What an awesome weekend! We LOVE our family and absence really does make the heart grow fonder – but our hearts were very, very fond already!

Tiny Dancer

This is the face of a little girl who loves to dance!


Meredith is taking a summer-long pre-tap and –ballet class for 3 and 4 year olds at the city parks department.


Her teacher, Ms. Michelle, is super sweet and patient. Before the first class, as each dancer was introduced, she asked every girl, “are you…Cinderella?” or “Your name must be Ariel!” She knew how to disarm them!




Meredith is one of the youngest – you can tell because she’s one of the shortest! But she was a great listener and did a good job.


Our little neighbor Annalina (far right) is in the class too – it was a fun surprise to see her the first day, and I know it helped Meredith feel more comfortable.


Looking forward to a summer of dancing!

Friday, June 6, 2014

The Zoo

The free, small zoo, that is!

There is a little zoo 20 minutes from our house. It’s free for kids, $5 for adults. We went for the first time yesterday. It was nicely kept, and small enough that within 2 hours, we had time to walk through it twice and eat lunch at a picnic table! Really perfect for our kids’ ages.

There were several species of ducks:


The crawling stage is not my favorite baby-development stage. A crawling baby can’t get on the grass and concrete (will eat the grass and get skinned knees) but doesn’t want to be confined, either. Paige ate 3/4 of a container of Puffs on this trip just to keep her entertained in the stroller!


Three blessings!


Most of the animals at this zoo were not so exotic – for example, owls, horses, llamas, pigs. And deer.


At the end of the walking path, there is a stationary caboose for kids to play in. All 3 loved it.


I actually let Paige out of the stroller – she was thrilled (even if you can’t tell)!



We found a shaded picnic table where we ate the lunch I packed. It was really perfect! Couldn’t have had a better time. We’ll be back again!