Monday, August 1, 2016

Beach Trip 2016

We went on our first vacation as a family of four last week!  B and I were both a little apprehensive about this year's trip to the beach, but it went SO well.  The girls did great traveling.  It was a different kind of trip as far as it required a bit more daily planning than normal (adjusting and planning for Harper's naps and feeding schedule, etc.) and I didn't get to spend quite as much time on the beach as I would have liked, but that's just the stage of life we're in right now.  We had such a great time! 

Aniston had lots of fun playing on the beach and in the lazy river and pool...and Harper enjoyed people watching and eating graham crackers. :)

We went to Drunken Jack's one night for dinner.  It's one of our favorite places (thanks to Kesha, who introduced use to it years ago...and when I think about how many years ago, I feel really old. ha!).  Our waiter was the sweetest man.  He talked and played with the girls, and brought them the cutest pirate hats.

We took the girls to Build a Bear while we were there.  I've written about Aniston's love of stuffed animals and Build a Bear before.  This was Harper's first trip, and Aniston was all too happy to show Harper the ropes.  She decided they should have Elsa and Anna bears (because, hello, Frozen) instead of Paw Patrol dogs.  I was completely fine with that, since buying the pups would require not only outfits, but four shoes instead of two (which would really have ended up being eight shoes instead of four since we were clothing two pups) and there has to be a limit to the Build a Bear madness.  Aniston also suggested that Harper's bear (Anna) shouldn't get a dress because Harper licks things and would just lick the dress instead of appreciating it appropriately.  True enough.  Aniston did ask for the bears to have a song put inside, but B quickly nixed that idea because we hear "Let It Go" enough anyway coming from a five year old, a Frozen dress, and a couple of Elsa dolls.  He decided that hearing it from a bear would just be too much.  After thinking about what that would mean for the five hour drive home later in the week, I agreed with him, and Aniston compromised on having a marshmallow scent put inside the bear instead.  Everybody wins at Build a Bear.


When we booked our trip, I bought tickets for Pirates Voyage, a dinner show.  We weren't sure how it would go with Harper, but went ahead and tried it and I'm so glad we did!  Both girls loved it.  Aniston cheered and waved her pirate flag, and Harper squealed and clapped.  We had front row seats (I didn't know that when I bought the tickets, so it was a nice surprise) and the actors stopped by to talk with the girls often.  It was a really fun night.

Harper looks a bit of a mess here!  We had just walked in, her hair was crazy from the wind outside, and we didn't realize she had her paci.  But I LOVE this picture of Aniston, and it captures our family perfectly right now...wild hair, paci, and all.  I'm so thankful for our family, and for a great trip full of fun memories!

Friday, July 15, 2016

Five on Friday

Happy Friday!  I'm trying my best to get back into the swing of blogging, but, mercy, is it hard!  Busy times, friends, busy times.  Anyway, I love Five on Friday posts because they're fun, don't take much thought or time, and can be a stream of consciousness kind of thing.  And let's be honest: in a world that is so scary lately, and so full of senseless tragedies, it's nice to write and think about things that aren't serious at all--hence this post.

1| I need a new blog name.  This one doesn't fit anymore.  Problem is, I'm not creative and coming up with a new name takes a kind of mental energy I'm just not sure I have right now.  Also, I didn't even come up with this blog name--my person Kesha did, after I said, "Hey, I need a blog name and you know I'm not good at stuff like that." 

2| The "my person" refers to Grey's Anatomy, and if you don't know what I'm talking about, you should immediately go to Netflix and right that wrong because you are missing out.  I suggest you go slowly on your binge watching and really enjoy the first several seasons, because then Shonda Rimes gets crazy and likes to kill off characters that you've grown to know and love and you're left in an emotional and angry state because, Can't she let anyone be happy?!  But I digress.  Kesha is my person, and she knows that but if she ever forgets, I gave her a hand stamped metal keychain years ago that says it.  (Thank you, Etsy.)

3| While we're talking about Netflix, please watch Grey's using your own password, not your friend's.  And don't give your password to another friend so they, too, can be sucked into the emotional drama.  These are federal crimes now, people, because there is not enough trouble in the world to worry about.

4| Let's discuss Ghostbusters.  Now, I loved Ghostbusters as a kid.  LOVED IT.  I had all the toys.  The year Santa brought the proton pack with the trap is easily one of the best Christmases I remember.  This new movie though?  I'm not sure. 

5| It's July, and school supplies are filling the aisles at Target and Walmart.  I can't even.  In August, these same supplies will make my heart flutter with happiness and excitement.  In July though?  No.  Just no.

Friday, July 1, 2016

Five on Friday

1| Summer Fridays
Even though it's summer and I'm not working, I still look forward to Fridays just as much.  Two days of family time?  Yes, please! 

2| Harper's Well Check
Harper had her nine month well check yesterday.  After a thorough exam, her pediatrician announced that all signs of torticollis are completely gone!  I knew her neck strength and flexibility had improved a lot, but it was great to hear it from Dr. P.  She's in the 75th percentile for weight, and 50th for height.  Her head circumference is still in the 95th percentile.  Dr. P had originally said he wanted to run some tests if her head was still measuring large this time, but decided against that yesterday.  He said it felt perfect and symmetrical, and he believes her head shape is just "blocky" (bless!) but completely normal.  She was the biggest ham during her appointment, and kept everyone entertained.

3| Indecisive
We've been in our house for seven years.  It's time to do some home maintenance, beginning with paint.  I dread this because I'm terrible at making decisions.  

4| Date Night...Kind of 
Aniston spent the night with her grandparents on Thursday night, so B, Harper, and I were on our own.  B picked up dinner and we spent the evening watching episode after episode of Turn on Netflix.  It was the best night!

5| Lowering Standards
Recently, I read an article about motherhood and the stress of keeping up with everything.  The author suggested that, to be happy, the answer is to lower your standards for how neat and organized your home should be...and then lower them again.  Isn't that the truth?!  Our house is definitely not the same as before we had the girls!  I spend a lot of time being frustrated about how many things I have to constantly pick up or clean, especially during the summer when the girls and I are home all the time.  This week, I've made more of an effort to let things go--within reason, of course. I'm basically referring to the toys in the living room.  Toys are a part of life right now, and a lot of Harper's toys are big and bulky.  Instead of worrying with the toys constantly throughout the day, I've just spent time keeping up with other areas and we pick up the toys before bed.  It has made such a difference in my attitude!

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Harper: Nine Months

Sweet Harper, you are nine months old!

I can't believe how quickly time is passing!  I'm so thankful for summer break and the weeks I'll be able to spend at home with you and your sister.  I intend to soak up every minute!

Look at those thighs!! Sweet, squishy baby!
Nine Month Highlights
-You weigh 21 pounds and you're around 28 inches long. (I think.  You're a very wiggly little thing!)
-You wear mostly 6-9 month clothing, but you'll be moving to 12 months very soon.
-You wear size 3 diapers.
-You still love blowing raspberries...both when you're happy and when you're angry.  (Angry raspberries are hilarious.)
-You drink around 30 ounces of formula a day, and you have baby food for two meals.  We haven't found any baby food you don't like.
-You sleep around 12 hours a night and take several naps during the day...usually a longer one in the morning and then a few catnaps in the afternoon.  You still don't like to be held or rocked when you're just want to be put down and left alone.  This just kills me sometimes because there's nothing better than holding a sleepy/sleeping baby, but it makes bedtime so easy with you!
-We took you swimming for the first time on June 13 and you loved it!  You also love the splash pad.
-Your first tooth finally popped through on June 3.  It's a bottom tooth, and you'll only show it to us by accident.  If you know we're looking for it, you cover it with your tongue. 
-You're not crawling yet.  Last month I wrote that you were rolling to get to whatever you want, and that's still true.  You're a very fast roller!  Since this is so effective, I'm not sure you'll ever decide to crawl.  Ha!
-Jelly Cat (pictured below) is your best friend.  He goes everywhere, and is loved on and wrestled constantly.

Harper Shea, you continue to be an absolute joy.  You are the happiest, sweetest little thing.  You're so easygoing and fun!  We love you so much, sweet girl!

Friday, June 3, 2016


Aniston finished preschool!  It has been a year of big changes for her, and we're so proud of the growth she has made. 

The end of the year program was so cute!  The teachers did an amazing job teaching the students all the songs, and the kids were just precious.

They had fun days for the kids during the last week of school.  Monday was crazy sock day and field day.  I was able to go for a bit.  The events were cute to watch, and preschool tug-of-war may be one of the funniest things I've ever seen!

Tuesday was pajama and movie day.

Wednesday was water day and Thursday was their end of school celebration at Chuck E. Cheese.  B took off work to go to both of those things since I was administering the End of Grade tests.  I hated missing all the fun, but Aniston loved having her daddy with her!  

She has grown and changed so much over the last year!  I can't believe she'll be going to kindergarten next year!

B was in charge of taking the last day of school picture.  It isn't a great picture (Aniston isn't the most cooperative child when it comes to pictures!) and her teeth are blue from some sort of candy, but here it is for comparisons sake!

Monday, May 16, 2016

Harper: Seven and Eight Months

Harp!  You're eight months old!  You are growing, growing, growing, little one.  Your little personality is beginning to develop and shine.  You are giggly and happy and just the sweetest little thing.

 Seven Months

Seven Months

Over the past two months, you've changed so much.  You started sitting up on your own at seven months.  (You weren't in any hurry to do that...and your 95th percentile head certainly didn't help matters.  Any time your head would start to go one way, your little body would follow!) You're not crawling yet, but I believe you'll start soon.  Until then, you've realized that you're able to get what you want by rolling.  I have to admit, it's pretty effective.  You're constantly grabbing things you're not supposed to have, and you are not happy when we take them from you.

You love your sister SO much!  You watch her constantly, and often cry when she walks away or leaves the room.  You love having her attention, and you think it's hilarious when she hula hoops or dances.

Jelly Cat is your favorite stuffed animal.  You love bathtime.  You love going places, and you don't mind the car seat at all.  You're very content to be pushed in your stroller, and you love to people watch.  You are the most easygoing baby!

Honestly, the only thing you don't like lately is to have your diaper changed.     

You wear 6-9 month clothing, and size 3 diapers.  You weigh a little over 19 pounds.

Eight months

We celebrated Mother's Day this month.  For the longest time, I wondered if I would ever be able to celebrate that day myself.  After Aniston was born, Mother's Day was the sweetest holiday for me. And this year, I have two precious girls.  I thank God for you and your sister every day.  I am so incredibly blessed to be your mama!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Catching Up: April in Review

I constantly promise myself that I'll blog more often, but it just isn't happening right now.  We're much too busy living life to sit and write about it, and, while I miss blogging, that's not necessarily a bad thing. :)  So I'm writing when I can and cutting myself some slack when it comes to such things.  Harper's monthly posts are usually behind, and I still haven't finished and published Aniston's birthday post (she turned five in March), but it's all okay. 

It's the first week of May, and I'm not sure how that happened exactly, other than we're too caught up in the day-to-day living to realize how quickly time is passing.  April was busy, fun, and full of good things.

Aniston's preschool class visited the elementary school she'll be attending in August.  It was a bit overwhelming for me to realize that she's thisclose to starting kindergarten, but I'm trying to be okay with it.  At least we'll be in the same school for the next six years--that's definitely one of the perks of being a teacher.  They toured the kindergarten classrooms, ate lunch in the cafeteria, and played on the playground.

Aniston also had her kindergarten screening this month.  Be still my heart.  How can it be time for kindergarten already?

Aniston had a couple of sleepovers with grandparents last month, and B and I enjoyed some time with just Harper.  That doesn't happen for Harper often (second child problems), and she loved having our undivided attention.

We also had a date night with just Aniston.  We took her to Kobe's, a Japanese hibachi restaurant.  It was her first experience there, and she was fascinated with the whole thing--except the fire.  When the chef started a large fire on the hibachi grill, Aniston dove under the table.  It was hilarious!  I've never seen her move that fast before, and we, with the chef's help, had to coax her back into her seat by promising that there would be no more fire.  Bless her.

And, of course, there has been lots of playing.  The older Harper gets, the more opportunities the girls have to play together.  It's the sweetest thing to watch them!