Monday, May 31, 2010

Enchanted Fredericksburg

On Memorial Day we decided check a couple things off our "Must Do in South Texas" list---maybe I should actually make one of these. :)

Hike {Enchanted Rock} & Explore {Fredericksburg}
At 745, we were off! The kids did great; Jared ate his breakfast and read books with MeMa while Belle napped and chewed on baby toys. Gweg was really excited to go to ER; he kept pumping us up for the hike by saying ''it's only 3/4 of a mile; it'll be fun"--- what we didn't realize what in that 3/4s there is a 425ft elevation increase! Whoops!

We arrived at the park around 930 and began our journey. I felt I could do this with two bum knees until we saw this---the end of the hike is at the top of the 'really really big rock'---as quoted from Jared:
We all spent the rest of the hike reciting mantas of 'I think I can' within our heads.

Jared alternated walking...with riding on DeDa's shoulders (I love his expression in this picture)...

and holding Mama's hand (he even said he wanted to hold my hand).I'm really glad I didn't see what was behind me because I have a serious fear of heights. I had a hard time on the way down until a crying baby shook me out of my funk. Mama-mode kicked in and all I cared about was helping her.

Here we are taking a much needed break...about half way... and enjoying the view.
We made it---- but where are the kids--- and grandparents?

Just kidding, here they are!

Jared and I enjoying a much needed drink at the summit.

Jared loved saying 'really really really big rock' and once we were at the top, he made it is mission to find little rocks. He also liked looking at the tadpoles in the puddles. We really did make it!
Belle took a ride up on Daddy and then down half-way on DeDa until she got way overheated and needed Mama and a drink. Silly Mama didn't think to bring a wet bandana to put on the baby... still kicking myself for that... So I held her half-way down (when she became super mutinous) while teaching her how to suck water out of Gweg's water backpack.

Battered and bruised, we made it back to the car by 1130. Second family hike done---then it was back to Fredericksburg to concur some lunch and ice cream!

After, we walked around a little---guess we didn't get enough on the rock---to see what main street had to offer. What did it offer---you ask---our dinner's dessert--- Peach Pie made from Fredericksburg peaches.

Yep, we totally showed that rock who's boss... :)

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Zoo: The MeMa & DeDa Version



Since MeMa & DeDa are in town we just HAD to take them to Jared's most favorite place in the world: the Zoo!

It was fun to show them just how animated he is and how much he loves the animals. Since we had a car-ful of people, we couldn't fit our awesome stroller :( so we did the next best thing: a monkey leash! Jared loved being able to walk around and I didn't worry about losing him in the crowd.

We brought the umbrella stroller for Belle, by the end of the day, they both used it. It would have been nice to have the big stroller when Jared was being mutinous (didn't want to walk anymore), but oh well.

A highlight from this time around was the Butterfly Hut. It's an extra exhibit that we had free tickets for, so we used them with MeMa & DeDa. Jared loved seeing the 'futter-fies,' but when DeDa tried to give him one, he wasn't so sure. We also taught Jared how to drink out of Daddy's neat backpack and he LOVED to say bye and see you later to all the animals---hilarious!

Soon after lunch time, we called it a day and had passed out babies on the way home. All in all, it was another successful trip to the zoo--- and I'm pretty sure our passes have paid for themselves now. :)

Friday, May 28, 2010

Friday Video: Stuffed Jammies

While going through the nightly routine of car-corralling, we noticed a couple of Jared's cars were missing. This is where we found them:



What a silly boy!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Meggie Highlights

Having Aunt Meggie here was a lot of fun. Jared's already excited to see her in a month (hopefully). Here are some cute leftovers:

Meg and Jared playing Cars after his birthday party.
One Sunday after church, Annabelle fell asleep on her auntie. It was really cute---even though she should have been put to bed sooner. :)
Jared really loved to color with his Auntie-- (I think Auntie did too).

Annabelle was a big fan of Aunt Meggie feeding her. By the time Meg left, Belle was a pro-eater.

Meg and I spent most of our free time, talking and making crafts for Jared and his toddler friends; we have tutorials forthcoming on our {craft blog}. One of the things, we made was a {car carrier} for Jared. Here it is in use.
At a friend's birthday party, Jared discovered a sandbox and it was love at first sight. Jared barely left it for food, and wouldn't even try the trampoline. I guess we know what Daddy's making the kiddos for Christmas.
Belle became super interested in Jared's toys--- here she is getting into mischief.

We sure loved having Aunt Meggie here! Come and see us soon--- or we'll come see you!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Bye Bye Aunt Meggie

We had so much fun with Aunt Meggie. Jared's already asked for her and I assume he will for a while. I still have a couple activities to post-date about (scroll down to look at older posts I did today) so keep reading!
Thanks again for coming, we love you and can't wait to see you in five weeks!

Now...T minus 48 hours until MeMa and DeDa arrive...

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Swimming with Aunt Meggie

After a couple weeks of overcast weather and slightly too cool temps to go to the pool with Aunt Meggie we were finally able to go on Friday. The water was a little warmer than last time, so we hope the next time we go that trend will continue.

Greg and Meg tried to teach Jared how to jump in the pool. He was really nervous about it and would only go up to the edge. I guess that's a good thing because then he won't feel the need to step in it by himself.
Annabelle looking cute before entering the water.
Family in the Pool.
After we got home, it was straight upstairs for a bath. Since we were all wet from the pool, I didn't take my normal defensive position (i.e. using a towel as a shield while staying as far away as possible from the water while bathing Jared).

Eventually, I ended up in the bathtub with Jared. It was really fun and Jared thought I was the silliest Mom (he even said so). He would spray me with water and start cracking up. Meg got a great video, but teeny-tiny Jared makes a very brief appearance, so I'll wait until I can use editing magic again.Something I can check off on my "Mommy To-Do" list because I don't think I'll do it again; especially since Jared got so excited he peed on me (at least I was able to tell him what he was doing---first step to potty training---yikes)!

He likes the pool enough that he asks to go there at least once a day. I think I'm brave with going on errands with two kids, and possibly traveling alone with them, but a day at the pool--- I think I'll leave that alone right now. :)

Saturday, May 22, 2010

The Salt Lick

Since Meg is visiting, we figured we were required to take her to the best barbeque in the state: {Salt Lick}.
Yes, {Rudy's} is a close second, the drive is TONS better (10 min vs. 90 min) and it usually fits our bbq fix, but you have not tasted genuine Texas bbq until you've been to Salt Lick. It's got a slight oriental kick, which we like. AND, it's known around the country as one of the best places in Texas.

So, that was our activity on Thursday. Greg came home a little early and we were off... the kids did fine; except for Belle needing a Sweet Potato fix.

Meg and I are enjoying their AMAZING ribs; this says A LOT. I used to dislike ribs---until Rudy's and Salt Lick. I now know what I was missing.
Jared and his dinner plate; don't worry he didn't eat it all. Even if he had tried, I wouldn't have let him. His worried look is because we're taking a picture of him eating dinner...

Our after-dinner mints--- aren't they cute?
I think Megan like it...
If you're ever within a three hour range of Austin, and you like this sort of food, go.... you'll thank us for it. ;)

Friday, May 21, 2010

Friday Video: Sitting Giggles

Meg took this video of more Annabelle giggles. Apparently she thought I was funny. She shows off her latest trick at the end. Enjoy!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Downtown

Yesterday, the weather broke long enough for us to finally go downtown with Aunt Meggie.

It wasn't as adventurous as {last time we went downtown}, but we still had fun. Funniest part about our trip was our boat driver being a BYU graduate and LDS---and besides aforementioned boat driver, we were the only ones on our boat under 50.

I'm finally starting to get my downtown bearings, but I realized I still don't know and haven't seen all that our beautiful city has to offer. Like the other missions on mission trail or the oldest church in the United States...

On our way back home, we stopped by the temple so Meg could take a look. And, just like on {his birthday}, nap time was royally messed up when we got home.

Oh well... having Aunt Meggie visit is worth it... so worth it that we're about to make the Salt Lick journey... you should be jealous...

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Together

Annabelle is rather good at sitting up now. Since she has hit this milestone, the time has come for the best blackmail pictures of all...

Sibling Bath Time!

Aren't they cute?

Stay tuned for Jared's party, {his actual birthday}, {2 year} and {6 month} highlights, and some Aunt Meggie fun (some of these will be post-dated).

Monday, May 17, 2010

182ish Days of Annabelle

Now, it's Annabelle's turn.
This little girl is wise beyond her years because of all the surprises she's given us--- including her! She's such a sweet girl and we are all so smitten with her--- and she knows it!
I told you, she knows it (I LOVE how her tongue sticks out)! Her breakdown:

Weight: 15 lbs 14 oz--50%--- she probably passed 16 this last week
Height: 26 1/2 inches--90%--- I guess we have tall kids
Head Circ.: 16.5 inches--50%
Hair: light brownish red
Eyes: dark brown gray--- they haven't really decided yet
Teeth:
none, yet, but she's pre-teething---which makes everything more fun 'round these parts
Likes: Jared, Daddy, Jared, Mommy, Jared, Mickey Mouse, Jared, smiles, Jared, Aunt Meggie... did I mention she likes Jared?
Dislikes: being walked away from, running out of food, being in her car seat for too long
Favorite Food: Milk. Along those lines, she now gets a daily dose of fruits and veggies. She's got sweet potatoes (as seen in the side picture), oatmeal, bananas, apples, and pears in her playbook. Coming up next is squash!
Favorite Toys: Jared, Minnie Mouse rattle, Baby Jungle Gym, and Jared's cars
Favorite Books: none---yet---she loves when I read to Jared and look down at her
Favorite Things to Watch: Jared---- I sense a theme...
Signs: none, yet, but we're signing 'milk and hungry' to her, so we'll see...
Words: none--yet---but she's recently found her voice. She likes to test her volume and babbles. She now has conversations with us, ooo's and ah's, I'll get video soon.
Other New Tricks: I would venture to say, she's pro-sitter now. If she does get overly excited, then down she'll go, but she's usually good for a few minutes.
What's next: Crawling, more new foods, teeth, moving up into her brother's car seat, her first plane ride at the end of June... hopefully, her laid-back personality continues when we attempt the new adventure of traveling with TWO kids!
How she drives us crazy:
She's really laid-back. I know, not usually a complaint, BUT if she's in pain or getting too loved by her brother, I'm always the last to know because she doesn't vocalize; although that has changed a little with the finding of her voice... so I guess we'll see.
Why she's so awesome: She's such a happy girl. She's the perfect little cure to bad day blues; even if she's having a bad day. She loves to smile and giggle. She's inquisitive and too smart for her own good. We absolutely adore her and wouldn't have it any other way!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

730+ Days of Jared

I know, it's overdue, so before I forget... Jared is two. I have to remind myself, almost daily, that this little baby...
is now this little boy. NOTE: This picture is one of my new favorites. He was doing one of his new things: pretend play. So I had the camera and caught this gem.
Such is life, and we wouldn't have it any other way. Here's his breakdown:

Weight: 29 1/2 lbs--50-70%
Height: 36 inches---still
Head Circ.: 19.6 inches---60%
Hair: light brownish red
Eyes: dark amber brown
Teeth:
Last time I checked, all--he might not have one molar--- I have to get the courage up to put my fingers in there :)
Likes: Elmo, Annabelle, his blue blankie, Little People, Daddy, Mama, going on walks, bathtime, spinning, dancing, nursery---- ADDED: going to the Zoo, playing with his Cars and Trains, coloring and hanging out with K-Dub (caleb)
Dislikes: being told no, floating in the pool
Favorite Food: SAME---anything except peas, mushrooms, and olives. He loves Japanese food night and loves dipping anything into anything (this morning it was waffles into yogurt).
Favorite Toys: His Disney Cars and his new farm; his favorite naptime cuddle toy is his stuffed Rex from Toy Story and McQueen.
Favorite Books: Anything that has to do with cars, planes or trucks; Sesame Street songs (thanks for that Mema and Deda--- :z); Good Night Gorilla; Oh My Oh My Oh Dinosaurs
Favorite Things to Watch: He watches Mickey Mouse Clubhouse (he yells the magic words and for Toodles) and Sesame Street daily. He sits through most of Cars or any other Pixar or Thomas the Train movie (which we have a once a week rule---so Mommy doesn't go too crazy)
Signs: The only one he really does now is 'all done' everything else has fallen by the wayside as his language skills have picked up
Words: He says SOOOO much now. He responds to questions now, say five word sentences and FINALLY understands the difference between no and yes *insert hallelujah chorus*. This has been the biggest growth for him. He'll repeat almost anything you ask him too---or don't ask him to. Every car ride is now littered with screams of "mama, mama, mama *insert cool truck/car/thing he sees here.*
Other New Tricks: Jumping; a little bit of sharing; his own little tantrum dance; counting to 5 and between 8 and 15; naming the first presidency and apostles (no joke); attempting to pray
What's next: learning more words, traveling to Seattle at the end of June, potty training--by the end of the year
How he drives us crazy: He's two. And he's stubborn. Enough said.
Why he's so awesome: He still loves to help, give hugs and cuddle. He's a sweet little boy and genuinely cares. He cracks up at the silliest thing and has the funniest laugh---which then makes the whole room laugh as well. He's just the right amount of crazy, fun and sweet for our family--- and we can't get enough of him!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Friday Video: Bouncing Uncles

Last March, Jared and I went to Seattle to {visit my parents}. We went on a {ferry ride} one of the days; Z and Park showed just how much they'll do to make their nephew laugh.

They must be really good uncles.

Sorry for the sideways nature of the video; I was just getting used to using the video on our camera.

Also, check out how little Jared is--- it's crazy to think that Annabelle is closer to this age than Jared. Oh, how babies grow up.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Birthday at the Zoo

I know I haven't blogged about his party yet, I will, but I'm waiting for a kind friend to send me them; she was nice enough to take pictures while her boys came to the party. So, you'll just have to wait a little longer. But, here are the pictures and recap of his actual birthday.



Jared's birthday was a lot of fun. Since it was his birthday, we wanted to do something we knew he'd enjoy: enter the ZOO!

Before the zoo---Meg and I stayed up the night before to decorate his door and downstairs. Even though I know he won't remember, I wanted to make the day as special as possible. When I got him up, I tried to show him just how cool going through the streamers was; I took him through the first time and then he ran back and forth a couple times. Success! He followed it up by giving me the greatest hug ever.

For breakfast I 'attempted' to make him some Mickey Mouse Pancakes. Even though they were a little lop-sided, Jared knew exactly what it was supposed to be and even proceeded to eat it up. Another success! It was then time to go to the ZOO (right after we packed everything for two adults and two children)...

At the Zoo---Jared had a great time. Of course, he yelled every animals' name he could think of; most of the time it was along the lines of "mama/aunt meggie look *insert animal* *insert animal noise*". The highlights this time included seeing a hippo REALLY up close, watching the elephant do tricks, telling us the leopard was sleeping, going in the reptile house and feeding the Lorikeets with Aunt Meggie.

At our zoo, you can go into the huge encounter and feed Lorikeets; you just need to buy the nectar. With our passes, we received coupons for free nectar and, since it was his birthday, Aunt Meggie and Jared went off to feed the birds--- with Belle and Mama following behind to document. He seemed to enjoy it and can't wait to use our other coupons.

As for the reptile house, he LOVED it--- which he DID NOT get from me (huge aversion on my part). We were able to let him run around; he went from exhibit to exhibit saying 'snake---sss,' which sounds more like 'fffff' because he's still working on his s's. A couple of the snakes even slithered around; making him really excited and giving me a royal case of the heebie-jeebies.

After the Zoo---The kids were seriously tuckered out; which was great. They slept the whole way home; but then we stopped. Belle passed right back out, like the baby she is. Jared, on the other hand, must have sensed that he just turned two because he would not go back to sleep. Since I still had a cake to make and presents to wrap (and it was his birthday), I went to my back-up plan--- Cars. He sat amongst his Cars and watched while I made, from scratch, a Devil' Food cake.

After Daddy came home, we went to the store and used some birthday money to get Mack--practically completely his Cars collection. Then we went home and had one of his favorite dinners: Yakisoba and gyozas (he calls them chippies).

Then it was time for presents and cake. Every present we got him, I got on sale or made, so I thought we did really well (besides most of it was the grandparents). He loved his new farm and animals (which I got for 4 dollars---crazy, I know), and doesn't quite know what to do with his CTR man cape (which I made). He also got a book Mama and her siblings read a lot, Where the Wild Things Are.

Then it was time for cake and... well... see for yourself...

that's right... he said 'eat cake' at the end. The cake ended up being really good; I'm really glad I didn't mess it up.

The whole day I just kept thinking how fast two years has gone by. He's such a little man (but more on that later). He's definitely changed since the days of complete dependency. I really hope we do our best to treasure each moment with the kids because time doesn't stop.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

First Swim

On the first of the month, we thought we had enough warm days in a row to attempt our first swim of the season; since we spent most of last summer swimming at twilight that's what we tried. It turns out the water is still a little cold to swim at that time, but it was still brief fun. Jared really didn't like the sensation of floating in his new vest; he spent most of the time clinging onto one of us. He started to enjoy it, just in time to get too cold to stay in the pool.

Annabelle seemed to enjoy the pool. Just like every other new experience in her life, so far, she just chilled. I thought the coolness of the water would send her into a fit, but nope; she had a scowl on her face for the first few minutes and then began kicking her legs and playing with floatie.

All in all--- fun was had and now we're just waiting to take Aunt Meggie there...
Jared attempted to get himself ready for the pool; he even tried to put on his new swim vest.
Daddy and Jared ready to go--- new vest put on the right way.

Belle in her new swimsuit with the world's cutest smile.
Mama and babies in the pool.

Daddy and babies in the pool.

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