Friday, November 19, 2010

Emily's Baby Dedication Weekend

Here are the pictures from our busy weekend that I posted about earlier. Brad and I got to go on a date-ish....we went to dinner with a new Peds-Surg fellow and his wife that will be moving to LR in June. They were very sweet and we look forward to their arrival. (Notice the hair!)
The next pics are from the fun filled days the girls had with Nana Deb and Nik. It was nice and warm one day, then really cold the next. Either way, they always have fun!

Finally, the baby dedication ceremony! It was really nice- our church has a very intimate, meaningful celebration with friends and family. It was held in the theater of our church which is where we have "Wee Worship" and other children's programs. There were only 5 babies being dedicated, but the room was full! I was so thankful that we had Deb and Nik there with us, and our sweet friends, The Munsons. It meant so much to us to have you there despite your busy, demanding schedules. It is hard being away from family and friends, but you cushioned it for us by supporting us that day. Thank you! So, the celebration was about an hour long...a bit long to hold a toddler and sick baby in my opinion. You will notice that the pictures show a dwindling of sorts....every one's happy and put together at first, then shoes come off, tights soon to follow, tears start to got a little ugly towards the end, but we made it! We had refreshments first, then listened to our children's minister and wife share some goals for us as parents, then we shared what we had learned/prepared after listening to 3 messages on our own time. Brad and I both wrote Emily a letter, we decided upon habits/practices that our family will incorporate into our daily routines, and we discussed the character traits and attributes that we hope to leave our children with when they leave our nest one day. At the end, they had our family/friends pray over us. So it was very sweet, just a little hard to juggle. Thankfully we had help:)

Caroline's "CHEESE!!!" smile

Caroline with her posse of Munson Men :) She absolutely adores them....and I think they like her a little bit too.

Our crew! This picture makes me smile...for many reasons...but it captures our life perfectly!

Enjoying refreshments...

Being announced to the crowd with picture up on the big screen

AND GET THIS...Anyone who was with us at Caroline's dedication witnessed her shoe eating. Well, the SAME pair of shoes was slobbered on this day as well. So sweet...priceless. Maybe I should taste those shoes?!?

This was post Caroline-break down, get us out of here before Emily loses it, run as fast as you can to the van pose.
It really was a special day. I am thankful our church takes so much time and effort into helping parents down the right path with their babies. I am happy to be the first and foremost witness for Christ in their lives, but also am happy we have such a fabulous church that is focused on sharing the truth with them at early ages.

And now a video....of Nana and the leaves! :)

Caroline is 2!

Today we celebrated Caroline birthday all day long! She may be the luckiest 2 year old ever because she is going to have a "birthday week" after all the festivities are finally over! Today we met some friends at the Wonder Place, went to Chick fil a, then celebrated at home the rest of the afternoon evening. She has had a full day of BIRTHDAY...and if you got to speak with her, she probably demanded you sing Happy Birthday to her. :) She had candle blowing practice more times than I can count and she is a pro at it. She has loved this birthday...and I can't wait to see how much she enjoys her "Sunny Days" aka Sesame Street party next Saturday. We can't wait to see all of our family and friends. Even at this moment....she is laying in bed and I can over hear her talking about "Birthday!! Caroline's birthday!!" Hopefully she'll drift off to sleep soon and dream about her fabulous day!

Little Emily was sweet as pie as Caroline enjoyed the spot light....she didn't really know WHAT the big deal was.:)

Daddy made it home for a few minutes to love on his girl before bedtime. He is on call tonight so he was in and out, but got to share in our fun!

Some things I love about my 2 year old...

her extreme excitement and wide eyed wonder

her love for people

how she loves her little sister

how she is starting to imagine and play pretend

how she adores her mommy...hopefully this won't ever change! ;)

how she laughs hard when I tickle her belly

how she loves to sing...or rather listen to me sing

how she loves her friends, and every song we sing somehow has to turn into the never-ending song that we add all our friends names into.

how she has a new obsession with lambs...she calls them baa baa's and sleeps with 3 of them

how she can buckle herself into her booster seat, car seat, and any other seat you can find

how she loves to play with money- mostly enjoys taking money out of daddy's "piggy bank" and transferring it to hers. She is a smart little cookie.

how she will open the refrigerator and climb into it...literally. I am pretty sure my mom told me a story about ANOTHER little girl who used to do that. :)

how she is so stinking amazes me the conversations we have, the dialogue she follows and how intuitive she is.

how she loves band aides...Dora the Explorer ones

how she is finally getting long enough hair to pull back into a pony tail...notice the pictures!

how she is the most perfect 1st born I could ever ask for!

Thank you Lord for my sweet Caroline. I am so blessed to be her mommy, her friend, her teacher, and her life long prayer warrior. I cannot wait to spend so many more HAPPY birthdays with her in the future.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Sick Sweeties

I promise that I am not quitting the's just been a crazy few weeks. Both girls have been sick- and by sick, I mean break my heart sick. Fever, stuffy noses, coughs, up all night, need their mama's to hold them 24/7, pitiful sick. I am not sure if I would have rather them both been sick at the same time to get it all over and done with quicker...or have it this way where it has stretched past the 2 week mark. Thankfully, I think we're on the upward climb towards healthy again. I can honestly say, this has been the hardest few weeks I have ever had...being tired to begin with, but then truly being up back and forth between both girls on the hour, every hour, totally diminished whatever supply of patience and kindness I had stored up. Oh how thankful I am for good health now...I may start spraying us all down with Lysol before we enter and exit our house from now on. :) Needless to say- no pictures where taken during this fun time....thank goodness.

In the meantime, I hosted a baby shower for our sweet friend Rachel. She is about to welcome their 2nd little girl into the family very soon....the 29th of this month if she doesn't come sooner. I loved spending time with her and her sweet family and reflecting on the fun and exciting moments I had before we met Miss Emily. Oh what fun 2nd children add to the mix. Such little blessings! We can't wait to meet Charlotte Anne Richey.

We also had sweet Emily's baby dedication at church on Saturday. It was a very special celebration of her new life and our commitment to her to raise her in Godly home environment. More on that to come...when I get pictures.

And when I do get pictures you will see my new hair color! Yes, call me a wild child, but I decided to go dark...very dark...for the winter, in hopes of getting back to my natural color. That will leave you hanging until the pictures come. :)

One of the biggest blessings this past weekend was Nana Deb and Nik made a quick, surprise visit to Little Rock to help us out with our busy, busy weekend of baby dedication, baby shower hosting, and sick babies. We were SO thankful they came and helped us- Brad continued to ask me that weekend, "How were you going to do all of this by yourself??" I didn't really have an answer for him, and was happy I didn't have to because they were here to assist. :) Thank you thank you thank you for coming and saving the day! The girls loved seeing you and we look forward to seeing you again soon for Thanksgiving!

AND....CAROLINE TURNS 2 TOMORROW!!! Aghh!!!! I can't believe it and plan on spending some time tonight reflecting, and recording special thoughts about her and her vivacious 2 years of life. We will celebrate small tomorrow, then BIG the next weekend when we have her birthday party. SHE. IS. SO. EXCITED. :)

Monday, November 1, 2010

My Girls and Video

Emily has officially pulled up, and started scooting/crawling. First crawl was on her 8 month bday- October 26th. She started pulling up a few days later and is getting better at it each day. I lowered her crib so that we wouldn't have to worry about her...good thing because she's been up each night since sitting and pulling up. :) She has tried some finger foods- banana pieces, scrambled eggs, puffs, baby mum mum chewy things, and I think I'm about to start cheerios. She wants to eat SO badly...I just am paranoid. She has the teeth for it, and finger I guess that's enough to start the process. She is thinning out just as we imagined since she's become "mobile" and her little legs are not as juicy anymore- don't get me wrong, they are still cute little turkey legs, but I don't think we are going to have near as much trouble finding pants for her this winter as I had first imagined! Maybe, just maybe you might even see Miss Emily in some leggings. :) Since the passy has become her friend she stayed in the nursery for the full hour last week! I was so excited...and a little worried when I didn't get paged. Hopefully she will start to love it as much as big sister. She loves her "Babies Love Music" DVD. She giggles at the silly puppets on it. She adores Caroline and enjoys each second of attention Caroline will give her. They play peekaboo together and it is precious to hear them giggle and cackle at one another. Caroline has started to "experiment" with pinching and pushing a little more these days and I have caught her in the act a few times. Poor Emily...I promise that I try my very hardest to help you out! Caroline knows she shouldn't hurt her- she is just testing new territory. Emily has turned into such a little snugglebug the past few weeks- and I have LOVED every second of holding that little sweetie as she rests her head on my shoulder. I don't ever want to let her go...and tears are often shed as I dread the day that I will not be able to snuggle her like this anymore. She amazes me and I am so blessed. I am still trying to catch her moves on video to share with you. Every time I pull my camera out or act as if I'm paying her any attention- she stops moving and just cries a helpless little cry. But if you take your eyes off of her...she goes for it and will crawl and get to where she wants to go.

Caroline is changing each day by leaps and bounds. She is really starting to use sentences and put words together to communicate complete thoughts. She has a few phrases that she loves to use "help please" "I cook ____ " "I feed sissy" "by my SELF!" "HOT water" (at bath time) "I like it!" "FUNNY!! FUNNY!"(when she sees something that she likes, or is actually funny) Caroline is waking up a little earlier these days and I am scared to death of this weekend when the time changes. She and I have a conversation each night before I tuck her in bed that when she wakes up she is NOT allowed to SCREAM for mommy or Tessa....that she should practice her quiet voice and sing to her toys...THEN mommy will come in and get her. There is nothing like being awoken from a deep sleep by a blood curdling SCREAM from your child...just to find out it's 5:30, still dark, and you have to go in and tell her to go back to sleep. Usually she does. She loves her friends- we sing about everyone we know every night before bed. We sing "He's Got the Whole World In His Hands" and insert every one's name in the song- family, friends, neighbors, everyone. She is such a people person. She is starting to sing bits and pieces of songs- Twinkle Twinkle, ABC's, Jesus Loves Me. She can count "1,2,3" but usually rambles "7, 8, 9, 7, 8, 9, 10! All done!"She loves reading and talking about Clifford the big red dog, Arthur and D.W. and Maisey the Mouse, and Biscuit the dog. She amazes me at how she remembers all the characters names and details after hearing a story just one time. She has decided, with a bit of comical understanding, that horses will now be called "neigh neigh's" and sheep are "baa baa's". She loves to wash her hands- which I guess is a good thing?!?! but it's driving me insane. Washing hands with a 1-almost-2 year old can be ironically a messy thing. She loves to feed Isabelle our cat all by herself. She loves to get the mail. She loves to read through magazines. She loves to use the lacing beads that Nana just mailed her. But most of all she loves to read....and always. I just love that sweet girl.

Here are some videos from the Fall Festival.

Fall Festival, Wonderplace fun

We had SO much fun this Halloween! Caroline had a blast (despite some of the frowny face pictures below). She loved wearing her costume and seeing all the other children dressed up. We went to The Munsons with another family for a fabulous dinner and then piled up and drove to Fellowship Bible Church for the HUGE fall festival they put on each year. It was a little warm (like 79 degrees) so I had a hard time making the girls wear there fuzzy, warm costumes. Caroline loved hers and didn't mind...and I only made Emily wear hers while we were at the festival. They were precious! We played games, filled our Elmo trick or treat bucket with lots of candy, saw Clifford the big red dog, pet some goats, danced with Veggie Tales, and so much more. We had a blast...I know that they will enjoy it even more in the years to come. I am so thankful for fall festivals because we don't really want to celebrate Halloween with the girls. These pics are in NO order and are quite I mentioned in a previous post- getting a good picture is like pulling teeth with these two! Hopefully you will enjoy looking at them despite the frustrating attempts I had trying to capture my cute little sunflower whenever she paused for more than a split second and when Miss Ladybug wasn't crawling, pulling, or eating anything dangerous.

Despite the look of concern on their faces, they had a blast! They were just taking in all the sights.

And the fun begins...

The award winner.... no frowns, both of their faces, and pretty scenery:)

Checking out David's Lion costume

And here are some pics before church Sunday morning. We finally got to put the girls in corduroy fall outfits! Yahoo! So what if it got up to 80...they looked cute.

The Wonderplace
The Wonderplace is WONDERful!! We had a blast on Friday morning and the girls loved it so much I ended up taking them back for the afternoon after we had our naps. There is so much for them to do and Caroline is at the perfect age where she is starting to actually pretend and make believe. We had the place almost totally to ourselves so we were free to run/crawl around as we pleased.

Caroline LOVED the sand table.