Thursday, January 1, 2015

Fresh Start

Well hello, little blog of mine!

I'm sorry you probably feel neglected, but one of my resolutions is to write more. I'm not sure why I said "resolutions" because really I wasn't even planning on one. The fact that I should start journaling just fell into my lap yesterday, so why not also start the blog over?

I'm not sure where it's going to go, probably just how it usually does. Maybe I'll even have some drafts going of things we do so I can post in a more timely manner and not always try to "catch up" when it comes to posting stories. And maybe if I hold myself to not feel the need to post a ton of pictures on posts. Because that, my friends, becomes a pain. At least for me!

I hope everyone had a terrific first day of 2015! I was excited to see 2014 go. I mean, I had some good times, but the valleys were deeper, especially at the end of the year. Not that a calendar change will magically make things better, but everyone in general seems a lot more optimistic, so I will be too!

We spent the night with my in-laws and two of our close friends and their significant others! We played games, ate a ton of food, and watched the ball fall at midnight. We lost some members shortly after that, but I had fun staying up until 2am talking with my mom-in-law, "Uncle" Tyler, and his girlfriend Kristi! Plus I found my Pandora bracelet (I knew it was in the chair!) so 2015 is already off to a good start!

And today we took it low-key. Owen got to see the last bit of the Rose Parade. He loved the hippo float and marching with the bands! We played kitchen, attempted to play with Tilly, and ate our black-eyed peas for good luck. He took a pretty solid nap and still seemed tired at 6:30pm! You know when they start playing "night night" with stuffed animals that they actually are tired...

And now, I'm just going to sit back, write what comes to me, document my (sadly now fleeting) days and adventures with Owen and Andrew, and enjoy the ride!

Monday, August 11, 2014

Travels with Owen

Well, it seems like my main catalyst for an update is Owen's birthday party. And I promise I'll get to that because they're always so fun to talk about, but first, I neeeeed to write about our travel adventures. Not like the vacation part, but the actual travelling to get there. Because maybe something that I've learned will come in handy for the .3 people who read this!

The packing struggles are real...

Plus I've been meaning to do this for over a year now... good thing I have some drafts saved and took some pictures so I can remember how it was at the various ages!

The only people who look at these... first time fliers and babies.
We've taken five cross-country plane trips with Owen, who just turned 2 exactly a week ago! I think I'll go into detail about the different phases of plane travel with a newborn/baby/mobile baby/toddler because they are all VERY different. Our trips so far have been:
  • October 2012 - 2 months old to Ohio
  • July 2013 - 11 months old to Mississippi/The South
  • August 2013 - a year old to Ohio
  • November 2013 - 14 months old to Ohio
  • April 2014 - 20 months old to Washington DC
  • July 2014 - 23 months old to Ohio
At the "airplane house" looking at the airplanes and waiting for food.
And we've done an actual road trip along the California coast when he was 9 months old in May 2013. That in itself deserves its own because travelling in a car is a ton different than packing for a plane, as I learned.

Catching some ZZZs
I plan on posting about the newborn travel stage tomorrow, so hold me to it! And if you have any questions about anything, let me know so I can include them in with my entry! :)

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Well Hello There!

Oh, my poor, neglected blog.

I can't say that I didn't see it coming. We all know I'm not the best with "routines" or anything like that. Prenatal vitamins? Lasted through the first two bottles. Whoops. T25? Lasted 4 days. At least I had the sick excuse... And then the people are in town excuse... And then the out of town excuse... (I'm super good at excuses, couldn't you tell?) But, I have every intention of starting it next week!

Eating gourmet, hipster ketchup and fries (and grilled cheese) at Seersucker

Like this blog. I scroll through the blogs I read (you know, the whole 3 of them), refresh facebook and instagram, check my mail, and repeat about a billion times. The thought pops in "hey, you should update your own blog!" but nahhh... It's late, I'm tired, I don't really like writing all that much anyways.

But here I am! Updating!

We recently (less than two days ago) got back from Washington D.C. I was in looove the first day we got there. D.C. has never really been that high on my places to see. I can trace it directly to the fact that it's the most political place in the country, if not the world. I don't like politics. At all. But I love history! And that's what the east coast is all about. Plus my brother now lives there, so it was the first time we saw him (in person) in two months!

A picture of the three of us and Mr. Lincoln

I think I'll do a separate update later in the week to recap all of our experiences of D.C. There was a lot to see and do and we definitely have a to-do list for the next time we visit! Plus I've been meaning to do a "traveling with baby" post... Which is now "traveling with toddler" and a whole different animal. Crazy how much he's grown. Which reminds me to do a post on just him... So much to do! Better get crackin' ;)

Monday, January 6, 2014

Holidays in Review: Christmas & New Year’s

And in the blink of an eye, it was Christmas Eve. We always go to Christmas Eve service, look at Christmas lights, and get our Winter Dream Tea Lattes from Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf. Unfortunately we someone mixed up the times of CB&TL's hours, so we ended up getting hot chocolates from Panera. For those of you who are wondering, yes, my dad did rent a van again for us! We no longer have an SUV/van in the family, so in order for us to look at lights we'd need a bigger car! Mike Badger got to ride with us again and spend these traditions with us, and I was so thrilled! He's been with us on Christmas Eve all of Owen's life now, so clearly it needs to continue for the coming years. (Hint, hint, Mike!)
Our Santa picture this year...
Christmas Day we spent the morning, just the three of us, opening presents. I was excited for Owen to play with his new toys that Andrew and I picked out for him. Although he's at a such fun age now, I just can't wait for him to understand Christmas and Elf on a Shelf (yep, we're going to do it) and presents and all the meaning behind everything. I can't wait for him to tell us what he wants to do and what he likes to do!
Our tree!

Christmas Morning!
Looking at the photo album with Daddy
The necessary mess picture

We went over to my parents’ house in the afternoon to celebrate with them, my brother, and Grammy. Cinnamon rolls were eaten, presents open, naps had, and puzzles started and finished. It was such a good time. Although I said that Owen’s favorite holiday was Thanksgiving, I’m pretty sure Christmas is now. The awesome meal of thanksgiving combined with presents? He’s in.

Eating cookies and cinnamon rolls for breakfast is what Christmas is all about

There was a bag with Mickey on it that he saw from the other side of the tree...

One of my Christmas presents! Started and finished the same day!

Looking at the crazy street's Christmas lights

 I hit up Target clearance for the Christmas things and got more things to decorate with for next year! I already can't wait to get everything ready for next Christmas... And it's not even packed and put away yet! I actually really need to stop going to that area of the store because I keep finding awesome things and deals! 
Annual stuffed animal and chair picture
 Owen and I went to the aquarium on the 27th with my mom, Grammy, and Uncle Drew. Owen's absolute favorite animals are fish and anything that's in the water. He loves his fish stuffed animals and books and points to anything that has a fish on it or anywhere a fish might be. He's shown me fish in the background of movies, on the towels of book illustrations... Everywhere! So, the aquarium is one of his favorite spots! (Thanks, Granddaddy for letting us have your half of the membership!)
Being silly.
Petting the sea stars
Grandkids and Great Grandbaby
High ride with Uncle Drew

Andrew and I even managed to sneak away for a date night! Grammy loves sleep overs with Owen, so Saturday worked out perfectly to drop him off and then see him when we go over for church. They had a bunch of fun with him that night! And we had a lot of fun too! We couldn't really decide what to do, so I check the Disneyland park hours and we found out it was open until midnight! Score! (Especially since it was already 6pm). We grabbed a quick meal and made our way to Orange County. It was weird not having to wait for the elevator or push the stroller. The park was really crowded, but we managed to ride a few of the big kid rides that we don't get the opportunity to ride when Owen's with us.
My love and I in front of the castle
So pretty for the winter!
Matterhorn and fireworks!

 New Year's Eve was really never that big of a "holiday" for me. I know it has a lot more significance for others though. Last year we had people over, so we decided (extremely last minute) that we would do the same this year! The Kuglers and Tyler came down from Orange County and my brother and Melanie joined us later in the evening. It was a lot of fun eating a ton of food and playing Trivia Pursuit, especially since Michelle and I won! I kept checking the clock and before I knew it we only had 4 minutes left to pour champagne!
Ready for New Year's!
Happy New Year's!
2014 was kicked off in a great way with some of my favorite people and an awesome breakfast! We went to my parents' house for the traditional New Year's dinner of ham, black eyed peas (for luck), cabbage (for good fortune), and rice (for fun). We've already been to Disneyland this year, and I'm trying to think of something fun for us to do today.
With our authentic Times Square glasses!
 The past few months have been so busy with fun activities, but also with work, and errands, and the busy day-to-day life. I'm going to do a post about my non-resolutions later, but I definitely want to focus on family and experiences for Owen.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Holidays in Review: Pre Christmas

December is filled with the traditional things that really didn't become traditions until a few years ago. I'm sure things will change over the years when Owen can vocalize what he likes to do and with what will be compatible with our schedules. But for now I absolutely love our traditions that are spent with our most favorite people!
Owen and I got to go to Disneyland with my little, Julie, that first week in December! It was a quick, afternoon trip but such are the perks when you have a pass! We got to see some of the characters, ride some tamer rides, and eat churros! It's always a blast to spend time with Julie since she's so busy with school and work! I can't wait for her to come back home. :)
Big, Little, Littlest in front of the tree!
Sorcerer Mickey!
Goofy outside of his house was new to us!
The first weekend is also reserved for Balboa Park's December Nights. For the past few years we've always gone/met up with our dear friend, Annie. We would go with Scot, but he's always busy! This year Owen was only happy when he was in Granddaddy's arms. We tried to take pictures with him in front of the Dr, Seuss tree, but he was a squirmy worm. He even gave Annie the "all done" sign when she was holding him. Still feel bad about that, but she knows he loves her. :)
 We visited the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center, since all the museums are free during those nights. It's essentially a kid's museum, so I figured that there would be things in there to entertain Owen as well as everyone else in the group! And of course there was right when we walked in. He loved the beach ball being blown around and one lady even said it was more fun watching the baby than playing with the actual contraption! We found the baby area, which was actually really cool. They had a super market with shopping carts and fake food, a musical area with a huge magnetic board with alphabet letters, wooden cars to climb on, and a super neat ball contraption that sucked up the plastic balls, shot them through clear piping, and dumped them against the wall so they would fall down Plinko style. It was really cool!
Enjoying the beach ball contraption with Granddaddy
In front of some cool toys at Reuben H. Fleet Science Center
The church we attend, Pomerado Christian Church, hosts a Christmas breakfast for the little kids called Angel Breakfast. Since at least 2011, maybe 2010, I’ve been asked to play the angel and Andrew's been asked to be the photographer. I get to interact with kids while they eat breakfast, read the Christmas story to the kids, and take pictures with them! Since I’ve been doing it for at least 3 years, I’ve gotten the chance to see the kids grow up. A few even have baby siblings now! I’m not sure how much longer I’ll get the privilege of being the angel, so I cherish it every year. This year since Owen is a bit older, my parents brought him by for the end of the program where the sing Christmas carols. It was fun to have him there and I can’t wait for when he’s old enough to visit the angel!  

After Angel Breakfast

 Andrew's work party was the same night as Angel Breakfast. Luckily for me we have some awesome babysitters that can watch him overnight if we need them to! (Thanks Mom & Dad!) So we had breakfast over at my parents', said goodbye to Owen, and headed back home to get ready for the evening. It was certainly an eventful evening, but over all it was a lot of fun and I got to meet an awesome couple from his work!
Us in front of the Christmas tree
At the beginning of the month (technically way before), I was given the awesome opportunity to work with Urban Style Wedding Network and Classically Lovely Events on their Urban Lofty Holiday networking party! There will be another post about that, so stay tuned. Since the first few weeks of the month was filled with doing things for the event, I was on a bit of a crafting hangover and really didn't do anything for presents until I realized it was Christmas Eve in two days. So, friends, I'm sorry, your gifts will be coming soon ;)

Sneak peek!
The next weekend we tried to squeeze in our Santa pictures with the Kuglers. Last year we went up to Orange County for Santa pictures, fondue, and presents! This year, since things were a bit tight with their schedule and ours, so by the time they were down it was time for dinner and bed for the little boys. We still enjoyed our fondue (I always forget how long it takes!) and James and Owen opened their presents the next morning.
Tearing into the presents!
Enjoying Owen's new book set!
The week before Christmas, my brother graduated from college! I was sad we couldn't be there, but glad that he understood and told us not to make the drive over. My parents drove over to Tempe and my Grammy flew out from Mississippi to see him walk. He graduated from ASU with 2 degrees and honors in 4.5 years... don't tell him, but that's pretty cool to me, even though it's from ASU. :P
Proud parents!
The graduate
On the Saturday before Christmas, the 21st, we were invited over to Annie's for a family Christmas morning. It was so much fun, even though it was early! Annie and Scot were going to be gone for Christmas and New Years, so they had family and friends over to celebrate, eat breakfast, and exchange presents with them. I loved it, and I'm totally okay if they want to do it again next year! The Christmas morning part... Not the cruise over the holidays part.
Owen and Scot... The only picture on my phone from that morning
That night was spent with some of my favorite ladies! We did a Secret Santa with our group of girls, so that Saturday we all got together for dinner, presents, photo booth, conversation, and Elf! It was so great to see everyone and I'm still waiting for those pictures, Michelle! :)
It turned into a footie PJ party! Michelle & Ryan
Playing with James' zoo
Bouncing on the airmattress with help from Ryan!
And somehow during this part of the month we managed to cram in books, playing, being goofy, a Purdue basketball game, shopping, decorating for Christmas, piano playing, snuggling with the kitties, and a celebratory graduation dinner at Melting Pot!
Playing piano with some help from a chocolate moose!

Climbing into his toy box was one of his favorite things.

The newest Purdue baby model

Love these guys!

Dessert fondue was the favorite for this tired baby!

Christmas and New Year's recap is next! :)