Tuesday, April 26, 2011

We're Back!!!

WOW. What a crazy and AMAZING 2 weeks :) I've literally been counting down to the past 2 weeks for months. I can't believe its all over. Uhhh, I hate that part! Our trip to Arkansas was just perfect! Thanks to everyone that sent Good Traveling Vibes our way. Both the flights were easy. The kids slept the majority of the almost 3 hour flights. We also had to drive 5 hours to Fayetteville from Dallas and the drives were surprisingly great too. They actually went pretty fast. I did spend most of the drive in the back seat with Kallen (Raya was back there too) He really doesn't like the carseat. Luckily, the only time it was terrible was the last 2 hours of our drive there. So all in all I'd consider it a huge success! It was sooooo great to see my good friends. Fayetteville was just like I remembered it. It was really great to be back. And I knew when I went back I'd either miss it terribly and want to move back, or be ok that I didn't live there...and I decided that it was great to visit and I didn't need to move back. It was the PERFECT place for College. And I love the town dearly, but I don't miss getting starred out everywhere we go. Lol. I forget how Not Mixed the South is. It's getting better, slowly but surely, but its got work to do. I will say about 80percent of the time we were treated great and strangers were very warm to us...but there were still those people that couldn't handle our family. I'm sure they hate the fact that my kids are so dang cute :) Hehe. And I will say that its not just like that in Fayetteville, that's just where I was this weekend and compared to where we live now I was reminded of what its like living in a more conservative town. And to be honest, it was like that when we lived there and despite that I still Loved living there. Send good thoughts that way because they are experiencing severe weather! Horrible flooding and tornado warnings and craziness. I hope everyone stays as dry and safe as possible!!!

But anyways, back to the trip. It was a much needed vacation and I wish we could've stayed longer. I really don't think I've gone out like that since I had babies. So needless to say I am still recovering. I really miss my best friend Jen, and it was so freakin good to spend the weekend with her. Me, her and Jodie had FUN. Lol. I was so sad to leave. I hate that its so expensive to fly to Fayetteville because we'd do that a couple times a year for sure. But either way, we pinky swore we'd go to the Black Alumni Reunion/Weekend every time it was being held (which is every other year) I can't wait until April 2013!

After you graduate from The University of Arkansas your name is etched into "Senior Walk." I was SO EXCITED to see my name :) That's one of the coolest things ever. Ever! 

I have a bunch more pictures...these were just some of my favorite. The rest are in my facebook album: Arkansas Weekend

I have so much to blog about! Raya's 2nd BIRTHDAY!!! Easter. Kallen's newest accomplishments. Life. I gotta get on it! It's been a hectic 2 weeks. So sad they're over. I'm slowly getting back into the swing of things...can't wait to get all blogged up! (That's code for caught up on my blog ;)

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Big Girl Moments

So we're getting ready to fly to Dallas tomorrow morning and then drive to Fayetteville for Black Alumni Weekend. (Obviously I can't miss that ;) and packing and getting ready for a trip now that we're a Party of 4 is ALOT of work. So I really shouldn't be blogging but Raya learned to ride her bike today!!! We were going to give her the tricycle for her bday but she saw it in the garage last month so we gave it to her early :) For the most part she just sat on it to watch TV (I really need to get her a chair) or would use her feet to push herself backwards. We tried explaining "pedaling" and Gentry would walk behind her with his hands on her feet pushing down on the pedals, but nothing really. Then today she went out, sat down and pedaled! It was so cool!!!! Definitely a big girl moment. I got a couple of videos and Gentry got some when he got home. I need to upload them to YouTube asap. The last 2 weeks have clearly been growth spurts. She's been eating like a horse and sleeping a good amount and doing all kinds of new things. Its a really fun time. She's so much fun!!!! And then tonight I rocked her to sleep tonight in the rocking chair and realized I wasn't really holding her and rocking her. It was more like she was laying on me and holding onto me. She's so big now! Tear. I know I saw it all the time, but it's so fun to watch her grow and breaks my heart at the same time.  

I love the one because it looks like she has lip gloss on :)

Laying in the sun, waiting for her toes to dry
 She's also never really been into dressing up and today she soooo was. She's been pulling her hats out lately and wearing them around, but today was a proud moment for me: She brought a dress and tutu in!!! And then got a bunch of her mardi gras beads and sunglasses. Oh I am so proud ;)
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Lady Gaga would be so proud
 I'm SUPER excited about our trip. I'm a little (or alot) anxious about us flying with 2 lap children. This should be interesting. It's Raya's last trip as a free kid! Next time we fly with her we're gonna have to buy her her very own seat. But as of tomorrow there will be 4 of us in 2 seats. Hehe. Pray for us ;)

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Wedding Bells for a Bestie!

So one of my best and longest friends got married 2 weeks ago. It was such an amazing wedding. It was easy and fun and simple yet magical. It had such a great vibe and was filled with really great people. It was soooo great to be a part of such a special day for one of my very special friends. Cathleen and I have been friends since the 4th grade. So she really had no choice when it came to having me in her wedding ;) I mean if she's gonna have her sisters, well I guess I'm a shoe in. LOL! I'm kidding (kinda.) And Raya was a flower girl. Cathleen and I kept talking about how surreal this sentence was (Said by Cathleen): "Your DAUGHTER is in my WEDDING!" We just couldn't get over that we were really at this place in our lives. How did this all happen?!?! I really can't get over what a special weekend it was.

Fam time before the Rehearsal 
Her wedding was at The Horizon Hotel in Palm Springs. We packed up and drove down, or over, or whatever, to Palm Springs Friday afternoon so we could be there for the evening rehearsal and rehearsal dinner. Wellll. The hotel had a beautiful pool. With balls. Raya's 2 favorite things. And she couldn't touch either. So that was the beginning of one of the most stressful nights ever. Haha. I held Kallen through the whole rehearsal, which was totally fine. Babies are so easy at 2 months cause they just sleep :) Raya was off running wild. Like WIIIIIIIIIIILD. By about 7 she was exhausted and super fussy because she was beyond tired and beyond frustrated. Poor kid. Gentry took her for a drive and she was passed out within 5 minutes. And lucky for us it was perfect "leave your kid in the car" weather. Calm down. The car was parked literally right next to us. AND Gentry left his phone on in the car in her lap and called mine and I left mine on speaker so it was basically a baby monitor. Man we're smart parents. As soon as Gentry got back Cathleen and I called my Mom and BEGGED her to come to Palm Springs and baby sit. Really, it was the first time being a Mom that I truly and seriously needed extra help and I couldn't take No for an answer. So my mom came :) And after Raya's flower girl part was all done she whisked her off and they went back to the hotel to do Nana-Raya things like climbing tables in the hotel room and, Nana's newest teaching: "Surprise!" Yah, my Mom taught Raya how to Surprise me. That's a really awesome game when theres a 3 month old sleeping on the couch and your 23month old keeps popping up in the kitchen. And bathroom. And living room. Yelling "SURPRISE" every time. Thanks Mom.

On a side note Raya was a perfect flower girl. I was so stressed about whether she'd really walk down the aisle. I was sure she wouldn't, but when the time came, she held the other flower girl's hand and they walked down sooooo sweetly. Only annoying thing: the wedding coordinator forgot to send the flower girls down!!!! Uh. So she sent them down after they announced Mr and Mrs. Simmons. Either way the flower girls were so stinkin cute!

And Raya's dress! My Dad made that :) It was soooo perfect. I had an idea what I wanted in my head and this seriously was exactly what I pictured, fabric and all. Too good!!! I didn't get any of just Raya in the dress at the wedding. Here are some before I did her hair.

It's so stinkin cute!!!! AND I couldn't leave it at that, so my Dad has his hat maker friend make Gentry a matching bowtie and then I made myself a headband and Gentry a pocket square. I wanted Kallen to wear grey pants and a white shirt so I could make him a matching Tie, but no joke we spent like 4 HOURS trying to find pants and a shirt for him. In those 4 hours I found 75,000 cute girl things. Uhhhhh. Shopping for girls is so fun :) The night before we left Gentry found the green Polo at TJ Maxx and it matched our stuff perfectly.

We had a really great time at the wedding. I didn't get to dance :( It got pretty chilly and we had Kallen. BUT I didn't get to sit and chat with my good friend Steph and her husband Danny. Stephanie is another one of my long time girlfriends that I love dearly, so it was soooo great to catch up and Danny and Gentry finally got to meet.

Congrats to Tyler and Cathleen Simmons! Thanks for letting me be part of your Big Day. It was absolutely perfect. Love you guys!
Ps- As soon as the photographers put their pictures up I'll share the link. The pictures are going to be AHHHmazing!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

The Simple Things

Found Simple as that through one of my blog friends: Sweet 'n' Sassy. On Sunday she has a weekly photo challenge: capture an image each week of the simple things in life that make you smile...the little things and little moments that make you happy... Thought it was a very sweet idea, especially because I just so happen to get one of the sweetest pictures yet of the kids-holding hand!  It was gloomy all morning but in the afternoon the sun came out and we took a walk along the beach. Right after we got them all strapped in Raya reached over for Kallen's hand. I didn't think my camera was on, but clearly it was :) And I gotta good one! 
Perfect weather, perfect walk, perfect company :) Such a simple afternoon that made me so happy!
Raya's such a sweet big sister :)

Keeping Up With Kallen---3 Months Old!!!

I can't believe you've been here for 3 months already! I use to joke about wanting my baby to come out at 3 months because that's when they're super cute. Well that was before I had a kid and of course that changed when I actually had my own baby. The newborn phase is the absolute sweetest. However, 3 months is the start of the Super Cute Phase :) I seriously can't put my camera down. I just stare at your face and want to eat you up. You are sooooo cuuuuuttteee!!!! I kiss your checks All Day Long. Oh man kiddo, you have me wrapped around your cute, chubby, tan little finger.

Well you're really good at holding your head up. I can sit you in your bumbo for a little bit. It's not your favorite thing to do quite yet. I think its because you're a little chunky and your back isn't quite strong enough to sit you up AND hold your head. Lol. You prefer to be in the rocker or bouncer. You let me sit you in either of those for a good 20minutes, sometimes more. This has been great!!! I think you've worked out the uncomfortableness you were going through your first few weeks of life. You're not at all gassy like you were and really don't cry that much anymore. Which means you don't freak out when I put you down or lay you down to nap. Thanks!

You still have all of your hair. I'm pretty sure none of it is going to fall out. It's still pretty straight. It has the slightest wave to it. It's brown, but in the sun it has an auburnish/golden tint to it. It's a very pretty color. Your eyes are still very dark. I'm guessing they're going to be a chocolate brown. Your skin is absolutely perfect. Baby acne is all gone. You still have your stork bites on your eyelids, but the one on your forehead has almost completely faded.

You sleep great. For that past couple weeks you were sleeping long nights, only waking up once in the night to eat. The last 48 hours you've been eating like a beast. I'm guessing its the 3 month growth spurt. You still nap most of the day. I'd say you're up for an hour, sleep for an hour then eat for about 15minutes and start the process over.

I'm loving getting to know your personality. You definitely know how to communicate :) Its pretty easy to guess what you want by the way you act. When you're hungry you use your mouth and "kiss" me or your Dad in a way that's clear you're looking for food. We were just talking about that at dinner tonight. We were joking about how, even though you can't remotely talk, we CLEARLY know you're ready to eat. You are dealing with some thrush. Its only painful for me. Awesome ;) Some babies don't eat because the thrush bothers them, but it doesn't bother you at all. It's almost completely cleared up, so I'm hoping by the end of this week we'll both be good! You also seem to get over stimulated and need a good amount of down time. You like quite time and you like it to be dark when you're sleeping. You could sit and rock with me and look around for hours. And that's fine with me! I just wish I could do it more.

I'm not sure what your Stats are, but I know you are at least 15lbs and I measured you with a tape measure and got 24.5inches. We'll see how accurate I am next month at your check up. You are wearing mostly 6month clothes and some 9month clothes and a size 2 diaper.

You are very alert and enjoy your surroundings. I can tell you can see all kinds of things now and you pay attention to whats around you and study it and take it all in. I'd say your all time favorite thing to do is eat, followed by sleeping and then watching the world around you.

You smile a lot, but no giggles yet. I've tried everything!!! Raya first laughed at 10weeks, so I know you're ready. You giggle in your sleep. I spend tons of time during the day doing any and everything I can think of that might be funny to you, but you're not amused. Lol. That's not true. I get lots of smiles and half chuckles, or the very first octave of a laugh, but not the real thing. I can't wait until you finally do!

I am so obsessed with you kid. I worried a lot that we wouldn't be like Raya and I were, and we're not, but it's just as amazing. It's a different kind of love. You're my sweet boy. My Little Big Guy. The way you smile at me when you first wake up or see me for the first time MELTS my heart. You're my baby and I'm never going to stop smothering you with kisses. Hehe. Even when you're 15 and have your friends over I'm going to be ridiculously embarrassing. That's how much I love you :) And I'm such a good Mom that I'm giving you a 14 year and 9 month warning!