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Archive for July, 2010

On July 17, Travis and I celebrated our 6 year anniversary!  It’s been a GREAT six years.  I wouldn’t change a thing about it.  Being married to your best friend truly is the best thing in the world.

Anyway, you’ve read about the anniversary date that Travis planned in this post.  It was wonderful, romantic, and relaxing.  He plans great dates.  When I plan dates, they’re not romantic or relaxing.  I’m a big fan of the “let’s do something together” kind of dates.  Last night I told him to meet me at my parents’ house after work where we’d be leaving our children.  Then I took him over to our favorite neighborhood Mexican restaurant, Mi Lupita.  We both thoroughly enjoyed our combo platters of enchiladas, burritos, and tacos…yummy.

After completely stuffing ourselves, we headed out for part 2 of the date…mini-golf!  I absolutely LOVE mini-golf.  I don’t know what it is about mini-golf, but I can’t get enough.  Some of our funnest dates have been 0n a mini-golf course, but I don’t think we’ve been since the kids were born.  We had a blast!  I told him that the winner got to choose the location for part 3 of our date…ice cream.  The competiton was pretty fierce.  I worked on perfecting my swing…

…while Travis thought seriously about each and every shot.

All this strategizing didn’t keep us from posing for a picture in front of the lovely waterfall that decorates hole #14.  Can you tell it was hot by the way our faces are glistening?  Gross.

At the end of 18 intense holes of mini-golf, the winner was…

ME!!!  By 8 strokes, I might add.  Not to brag.  Well, maybe a little bit of bragging.  I mean, 8 strokes isn’t just squeaking by…that’s a pretty decent win.  Better luck next time, Trav.

At the end of the date, we headed over to Silky’s for concretes.  Great end to a great night.

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she finally walks!

Today was a big day…Molly is finally walking!  She’s been taking a few steps here and there for the past few weeks.  We kept expecting her to take off, but she still wasn’t quite ready.  Yesterday she was getting really adventurous, but today she would choose to walk even when I wasn’t looking.  I caught her on video as she explored the house…just ignore the conversation I’m having with Owen regarding his “need” for an ice pack.  And if  you look closely at the video you can see that Molly has two pacis…one in her mouth and one in her hand.  She’s completely obsessed.  Enjoy!

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best friends

Today Owen told me, “Mama, Molly’s my best friend.”

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Molly is 15 months old today.  Here are some things she’s been doing lately…

* Cuddling.  She’s our little cuddle-bug.  She loves to be held and will lay her head on my shoulder and snuggle when she’s tired.  I love this.

* Starting to be a picky eater!  Molly has always loved food.  She used to eat anything I put in front of her.  All of a sudden she’s not interested in the vegetables she used to love.  Hopefully this is just a phase that she’ll pass through fast.

* She calls everything “ga ga”.  She’s big into pointing and demanding what she wants, all the while yelling “GA GA!”. 

* Still not walking…hence the late bloomer title.  I know that most children walk before 15 months (a lot of them well before 15 months), but (according to the pediatrician) it’s not a concern unless she’s not walking at 18 months.  I am continuing to learn that every child develops at his or her own pace.  We can do many things to encourage our kids to reach their milestones, but at the end of the day, each child’s an individual.  It’s been humbling for me to answer those people who say, “How old is she?  She’s still not walking?” with a cheerful, “Nope, not yet!  She’s just Molly.  She’ll do it when she’s ready!”.

* On the positive side…she’s taking more and more independent steps every day! 

* One more happy thing this month…Molly FINALLY calls me “Mama”. 

Some things Owen’s been up to lately…

* So far, I think the 3’s are worse than the 2’s.  We dealt with LOTS of tantrums with Owen during his 2nd year, but I think the sass that accompanies the 3’s is SOOOOO much worse.  I feel like it’s been behavior bootcamp around here lately…we’ve been trying to catch every one of his sassy retorts and enforce consequences.  Owen’s big into responding with sass whenever we ask him to do something.  (Example:  In a Pizza Hut on our recent roadtrip, Travis said to Owen, “Owen you need to obey me right now.”  Owen responded with a sassy, “You obey YOURSELF!”)  The backtalk drives me UP THE WALL.  I am seeing more and more of my child’s sinful nature and his need for Christ.  We continue to pray for Owen to understand his need for Jesus and want a personal relationship with him.  This parenting stuff is TOUGH!

* Possessiveness!  Oh my GOODNESS…he cannot deal with it if Molly even looks at one of his toys.  If she’s playing with her baby doll, he needs to play with that same baby doll.  As if the sassiness wasn’t enough…

* Okay, he’s not all bad this month.  He does love his sister and calls her “sister pants”.  I love it.  She’s the first one he wants to see in the morning.

* Imagination!  I love to listen to him play.  The stories he comes up with when he’s playing with his action figures or his dinosaurs are hilarious.  Each character has a personality and they have some very lively conversations.  And each character has a different voice.  It’s hilarious.

* Music.  Owen has always loved music, but right now he wants to know who sings every song on the radio.  He is always asking me, “Mommy, what music is this?”  Right now he really likes Lady Gaga, much to his father’s dismay.  That makes me sound like a really awesome parent of a 3 year old, doesn’t it?  It’s just that she’s on the radio so darn much!  Many nights Owen will stay up singing in his bed at the top of his lungs instead of sleeping.  Sometimes the singing lasts 5 minutes, sometimes it lasts up to an hour and a half.  Just depends on the night.  On one particular night, Travis went in to quiet down the singing and he asked Owen what he was doing.  Owen responded with, “Oh, I’m just singing Lady Gaga, Daddy.”

That’s all for this month!

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the end of staycation 2010

Tomorrow life goes back to normal.  I’ve gotten very spoiled by the extra set of hands to help out with the kids.  It’s been great, but he’s got to go back.  But I won’t dwell on that…here’s what we’ve been up to the last few days of the staycation.

Day Seven…A day of productivity

So I had this list of things that I wanted to get done while Travis was home.  Some were little (like dusting all the ceiling fans) and others were big (like cleaning out the storage area in the basement).  Friday arrived and not even one of my chores had been crossed off my list.  And I was okay with that.  During the kids’ nap time, we’d been taking advantage of the kid-free hour or two and watching a movie or taking a nap.  It was great.  But after seven days of this we reluctantly decided to get at least one thing productive done during Trav’s week off.  So we tackled the storage area of the basement.  I’m happy to report that it’s SO clean.  We filled two huge trashbags with things we needed to toss, made a huge pile of garage sale stuff, and reorganized the remaining things into a nice, neat, usable basement storage space.  I am so glad we did this.  I think it’s cleaner down there than it was when we bought the house.  One BIG chore crossed off the list.

After the big basement clean-up, we decided to take the kids to do something fun.  It was free night at the Magic House.  We got Owen all pumped up for it and headed out.  We got there right at 5:30, and the line was wrapped all the way around the Magic House…so long that we couldn’t even see the end.  It was HOT and waiting in an endless line did not sound fun.  We convinced Owen that going to the park was going to be WAY better than the Magic House, which he didn’t really buy.  But…out of sight out of mind!  I think by the time we got to the park, he was so ready to get out of the car that he didn’t care where we were. 

Owen has been funny at the park lately.  He gets fixated on one thing that he wants to learn to climb and he climbs it over and over and over until he’s mastered it.  This time he wanted to become great at climbing this:

Molly wants to try to climb everything that her brother climbs.  Of course, she can’t really do this.  But she’s really determined to try.

Day Eight…More water park

We’d been wanting to take the kids to the North Pointe water park all week, but we’d been waiting for the right day.  The weather was great on Saturday so we headed over after nap time.  Owen loved it.  Molly, as with her other water experiences from this week, liked it for 2 minutes and then was done.  Travis and Owen hung out in the areas aimed for bigger kids while Molly and I spent a lot of time in the little sprayground geared toward babies her age.  Here she is playing with a truck and yelling, as usual…

Owen got brave once and went down one of the big water slides…and then he ended up underwater and disoriented when he reached the end of the slide.  That pretty much kept him from trying again.  One of his very favorite parts was the lazy river.  But who doesn’t love a good lazy river?? 

Day Nine…The Last Day

Today was pretty much a normal day.  After church Travis had to head in to work for a little while.  Lunch, naps for the kids, and laundry pretty much made up the rest of the day. 

It was a GREAT staycation.  I would love it if we could do this every year.  Normally we come home totally exhausted after a vacation with the kids, but after this past week we both feel refreshed.  It’s been great.  I’m a BIG fan of the staycation!

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The staycation has continued to be great.  While I could definitely get used to adult to child ratio we’ve got going on in the house right now, I know it can’t last so we are enjoying every minute of it.  Here’s what we’ve been up to the last few days…

Day Four…Breakfast at IHOP and morning at the park

Tuesday morning we headed over to IHOP for a good old pancake breakfast.  It was fun to have someone else serve us food, but the pancakes definitely left something to be desired.  I’ll cut them some slack…evidently the cook was in-training.  The rubbery eggs and the 45 minute wait will be forgiven.

After breakfast we headed over to one of our favorite parks.  They have a really fun playground that both kids enjoy.

After getting hot and sweaty on the playground, we headed over to our favorite park of the playground…the sprayground!  Owen could spend all day there and never want to go home.  We were excited that our friends, Ella and Drew, showed up unexpectedly to splash around for a while.  Friends make everything more fun!  Here’s Owen striking a pose with Ella and Drew in the background…

 

Later that afternoon, we went over to my parents’ house to celebrate my dad’s 60th birthday!  Big stuff!  Happy Birthday, Dad!

Day Five…The Mystery Day!

Our 6th anniversary is this Saturday, and Travis had told me that he was going to do something special for me this week while he was off.  He’d arranged for the kids to spend the night at my parents’ house Wednesday night so we could go out for a night away.  I was so excited!  I had no idea what he had cooked up, and I couldn’t wait to find out! 

After dropping the kids off, he explained to me that we were going on a mini-vacation in the city of Clayton!  This is an area of the city that we’ve been wanting to explore a bit more.  We spent our wedding night in Clayton at the Ritz Carlton…a little out of our price range for this anniversary, but it was special to be in the vicinity of that hotel.  Travis booked us a room through Priceline and got us an AWESOME deal at the Sheraton Clayton Plaza Hotel.  So proud of him…he’s such a great bargain hunter.  Here’s me on the sundeck of the hotel with the Clayton skyline in the background.  (By the way, I really hate posing for pictures by myself.  REALLY hate it.)

For dinner that night Travis gave me several choices of fun restaurants in the Clayton area.  We chose to go to Almonds and it was SO good.  It’s been a while since we’ve gone to a nice restaurant together and enjoyed just sitting and talking.  After dinner we decided to head back to the hotel and get an in-room movie (Date Night) and order room service dessert.  It was so relaxing.  A perfect evening.

Day Six…Back to reality

But not before getting to sleep in until 9!  When’s the last time that happened?!?  After lounging around in the hotel and getting ready at a very leisurely pace, we headed over to The Creperie for breakfast.  Best breakfast ever!  Love this place and can’t wait to go back.  Highly recommend it.  I got the most delicious Belgian waffle ever…

 But you should never get a Belgian waffle at the Creperie because, seriously, the place is called THE CREPERIE for a reason!  Travis got a crepe and it was the most heavenly piece of food I’ve ever tasted.  I wanted to eat it all day.  It was some combination of cheese, turkey, bacon, marinated tomatoes, fresh spinach, and a t0-die-for dressing.  Bliss. 

After breakfast, it was back to reality.  We picked up the kids around lunchtime…just in time to take them home and put them to bed again.  Later that afternoon we spent some time in the backyard enjoying the baby pools and the slip ‘n slide. 

The night ended with family movie night.  We enjoyed dinner in front of the TV while we watched The Land Before Time.  Remember that one?  My mom bought it for Owen to watch while we were away, and Trav and I couldn’t wait to relive our childhood memories.

We’ve got three more days of staycation left.  More updates to come! 

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Travis is taking a week of vacation this week and so far it’s been GREAT!  We decided to do a staycation this year for a few reasons.  First, it’s much more budget friendly…the accomodations are already paid for (or being paid for on a monthly basis!).  Second, we’ve done the whole hotel scene with our kids and we know how that goes.  Third, we wanted to be able to take advantage of some of the fun things our city has to offer.  So far, we’ve had a blast!  Here’s what we’ve done so far…

Day One:  The Zoo

We love our Zoo.  If you get to the Zoo during the first hour that it’s open (that would be from 8-9 during the summer months), you can take advantage of some of the fun things to do that you typically have to pay for.  We got there at about 8:15 on Saturday morning and got in the already long line to see (and pet!) the stingrays.  Owen thought this was awesome…although he didn’t really want to pet them.  I don’t blame him…I’m not a big fan of touching fish myself.

This was the first time we’ve been to the Zoo when Molly really cared what was going on.  She loved seeing all the animals and particularly enjoyed when we’d get her out of the stroller and let her explore.  She seemed to especially love seeing the fish in the hippo tank.  She was fascinated by how close they were to her!

Day Two:  Church and a relaxing day at home

In typical Sunday fashion, we went to church.  After lunch, all four of us took naps.  It was wonderful.  Nothing else exciting to report.

Day Three:  Water Fun!

We took advantage of the toddler hour at one of our local water parks.  For an hour in the morning the park was open to kids under 5 for a reduced price.  This was great and the kids loved it.  Well, Owen loved it.  Molly was pretty much done after 10 minutes, but she had to tough it out for the next hour.  I guess that’s the down side to being the second child. 

Later that afternoon, Travis took Owen across the street to the lake in our neighborhood park to work on his fishing skills.  I love this shot of my two fishermen…

Owen was starting to get the hang of this fishing thing.  Still no fish have been caught, but that’s okay. 

Love this shot of my big boy…

More to come about our staycation!  Stay tuned…

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