Tuesday, June 28, 2011

gee, it's great to be back home again

We had a fabulous trip.

Some things were too awesome for words.

Some things were amusing.

And some memories will forever bring joy to my heart.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

flowers in our hair

We're getting excited about our vacation coming up. Super excited.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

life is a celebration

I can't tell exactly the story I want to tell tonight because of confidentiality. However, I think I can skip the details and jump directly to the moral of the story:
  1. Life is short.
  2. Love your kids.
  3. Take lots of pictures.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

photographer love

Are you looking for a fantastic photographer in the OKC area? Well, look no further.

Ely Fair Photography is my personal favorite lifestyle photographer, family photographer, newborn photographer, engagement photographer, wedding photographer, and all-around creative genius behind the lens. Seriously. I like to think that I'm creative, but this gal blows me out of the water. Theirs is one of the regular creative blogs that I like to read and check out the pictures.

One of the recurring themes of the posts are along the lines of things-she-wished-she-knew-when-she-got-hitched. She always finds links to lots of different unconventional, yet classy things that she would consider if she were getting married again. Although I really liked my wedding and the dress I rented for it, it makes me wish I could go back in time and do things differently, too. I'd still marry The Hater, of course, but the bouquets and boutonnieres would definitely be different - more outside the box. The music would stay the same because I think it rocked. Anyway, it's fun to think about because I don't have to stress about planning it again.

One thing I'd definitely do if I had it to do over again would be to get Elyse and Ryan from Ely Fair Photography to do our pictures. Seriously. Go to their blog and check it out if you're in that market. They're hip and cool and genuinely sweet people who also happen to be very competitive at Wii games. I was very fortunate and thankful that my uncle was willing and able to do pictures for us - but what I really wanted in my heart was to have wedding pictures like you see in the magazines. If that's an important investment you want to make on your special day - or for your newborn pictures - or for family pictures - check them out. They're on their A game.

They're giving away a free mini-session and 16x20 canvas print for every 50 additional "likes" they get on FB. (Don't live in the city? That's okay -- just do it and if you win you can give it to us! HA! Or, better yet -- what a great excuse to come visit us!! Hint, hint - wink, wink - nudge, nudge.)

Two Easy Steps:
  1. "Like" Ely Fair Photography on FB.
  2. Go to this web page on their site and tell them you liked them.
Easy Peasy like bacon is greasy.

For the record, if I were to go back in time and replan my wedding I'd still do cupcakes from Sunrise Bakery. In my world all theirs is the standard to which all other cupcakes must aspire. And using cupcakes instead of a traditional wedding cake made me a trend-setter for once in my life.

Honestly, I wasn't crazy about the dress I rented for the wedding. But that's another post for another day.

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

counting grapes

Grapes are such a good, healthy food. Everybody should eat them. Dark, red and black grapes have more nutrients than the green grapes. Much to The Hater's chagrin, that's what we buy when they're in season.

Up until now we've waited until Baby was asleep and then washed and pulled grapes, measuring serving size, and sealed them into snack size zippy bags. It's not a fun chore, but it's certainly better than a lot of other things we have to do around the house.

Yesterday I had a brilliant idea. Why not let Baby do it?

So while The Hater worked on supper (more on that later), Baby took the pulled and washed grapes and moved them one-by-one into the measuring cup. She worked diligently for more than a half hour, stopping occasionally to drink some chocolate milk or point out the baby grapes. "Awwwwwh, wook, Mommy, baby gwape! Awwwhhh." (and cradle them in her hand)

She needed some reminding not to squish or squeeze them, but most of them came out unscathed.

She helped measure them, pour them into the zippys, then helped me put the zippys into the fridge. And, surprisingly enough, she didn't sneak but just a couple of the baby ones into her mouth. (She also had some sliced grapes with her supper.)

We've found a new chore-game for her. I'm glad to share this one for a while.

Meanwhile, in sadder news, The Hater's thai supper was a total bust. We have a bad history making thai food... for whatever reason our thai stuff never comes out the way we want. So now we're banned for trying to make it for five years. We ended up eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on sandwich rounds instead.

Saturday, June 04, 2011

splish, splash

We had so much fun today!

A friend of mine told us about a secret public water park. We met them there for a picnic and play date. Their girls and Baby had SO MUCH FUN! Their girls had played there before and jumped right in. Baby had to warm up to it, but it wasn't long before she was running through everything, too. The wind didn't bother us too much until it was time to sit down and eat lunch.

There were two shaded picnic tables, and I was glad that we had gotten there early enough to get one of them and have that place to get out of the sun (and eat). The girls ate well, played some more (briefly), and then it was a huge tear-fest when it was time to go. Three little girls in tears, bemoaning the injustice in leaving the magical place.

I expected Baby to be asleep before we got home, but she stayed awake. We read several stories and then she took a great nap.

We did some errand-running after her nap. She was very tolerant, considering it was hot as blue blazes outside. We had seen signs for a store that was having a sale on outside furniture, so we went. Even with the sale everything was obnoxiously overpriced. It didn't take long for us to realize that we weren't going to buy anything there. So we started to try to leave, but we had to stop at every balloon along the way for Baby to pretend to hold it. And then she had to sit at a table. And it was the end of the world when I wouldn't let her eat the plastic food sitting at the table. She didn't understand why she couldn't have the grapes...

The gaggy moment of the day actually has to do with a Christmas present from last year. I told my parents that I wanted a remote for my camera. They told me to order it and they would pay me back and put it under the tree for me. (This gags lots of people, but I love it! Shopping is so easy when you know what people want!!) I ordered it and gave it to them when they were in OKC for a visit - and explained that they would need to get a battery for it. At Christmas I opened it and, alas, no battery. They said that since I didn't get it they didn't know they needed to get it. (When you're old you miss out on details.) So the little box with the remote in it has sat on my kitchen counter for a little over five months. We've had very good intentions to go get it at a specialty store, but it's never actually played out. So today we decided that we would open it up, figure out what size it needed, and get it when we also got the battery for the remote that goes to our bedside lamp. It was a fabulous idea. Except when we opened the remote there was a battery in it already. Gag - we could've been using it since Christmas. We'll remedy that tomorrow and try some family shots with the new fancy remote.

We toodled around some more and ended up eating supper at a local place, Chica's Mexican Cafe. I had some fried tacos and they were excellent with guacamole -- like perfect little fried meat pies of goodness. While there we purchased a "Keep it Local" card where we can get discounts for local businesses. We've been talking about getting one of these but never had done it. So, tada, now our cool factor has doubled.

Came home and threw Baby in the bath to get the chocolate milk and yogurt out of her hair and to get sticky orange off of her belly, arms and legs. She has adopted one of the cat toys, a little pink ball, and loves to play with it in the bathtub. (This is only fair because the cat has claimed several of her little stuffed babies as her own.)

Tomorrow will be full of housework and laundry since we didn't get any of that done today. It's supposed to be another hot day, so I imagine we'll be spending lots of time in the little pool in the back yard, too.

Some day we'll look back on these days with fond memories. I'm thankful for the forethought to recognize that now.

Friday, June 03, 2011

dare I say it...

I've wanted to post about this all week, but I've been afraid that this act would somehow hex the good mojo that we have going on right now. But the time has come and this Mama is bragging...

Baby has slept in her BIG GIRL BED for five consecutive nights! She basically has been sleeping in her Pack-and-Play since mid-January, after she shimmied out of her crib. If you remember, that day The Hater put up the big girl bed. Shortly after that we put up the PNP in her room, too, because she wanted nothing to do with it. (That was a suggestion from a brilliant friend and busy Mom of three boys.)

Sometimes on the weekends she would nap in the big girl bed, but usually she'd be against it and avoid it. I let her. Sleeping in the PNP can't be comfortable - she's longer than it is, but she was sleeping through the night and I wasn't going to mess with that. We figured that eventually she'd be okay with the big girl bed.

This past weekend she napped in it for me on Saturday. Then Saturday night when we were getting ready for bed I asked her if she wanted to sleep in her big girl bed and she said no. I said, hey, what if you could sleep with two babies instead of one? She ignored me. I let her. But when the time came I took her over to her case (a toy case that Dad made for me when I was a baby) and asked her to pick out a baby to sleep with her in her big girl bed. She did. I put her down and closed the door, expecting to be summoned back into her room.

But she didn't cry. She made it through the night.

And she's done that every night. Really? All it took was offering a second baby to sleep with her?? (and several months...) Bribery is a Mom's best friend.

Every morning we've bragged on her. She gets a sticker that she promptly affixes onto her tummy next to her "beeboo" (belly button). She puts it on and takes it off and sticks it to everything she can reach and within three minutes it's lost all sticky to it, but it's still a precious thing to carry around.

So that's where we are. In an exciting, thankful place. (but there's also a tee-tiny secret pang of, gasp, where did my baby go?) The next big decision will be when we take the PNP out of her room. Do we do this now? Or do we wait until after our vacation, where we'll be taking the PNP with us in hopes that she doesn't end up sleeping with us?

Right now I'm leaning towards the latter... but maybe we should ask her?