Monday, May 30, 2011

Keepsakes: Parking tickets, Mullets, and all


Some of this past week's big and little moments I want to remember and keep tucked in my heart forever. No matter how silly.

Well, sort of.
Isaac arrived home safely from Las Vegas on Wednesday afternoon after being gone on a 'work' trip for four nights. I thought it would be fun to take the kids to the airport to pick him up. You know, watch the kids run into their daddy's arms, steal a peck asap after he exits the plane........ I think the airport scene from my favorite movie, Love Actually, is to blame for my high expectations.
Anyways.... we get there, I put several quarters in the parking meter, get both kids out of their carseats and into the airport, and quickly realize how tricky it is to keep two toddlers from getting into trouble at the airport. Charlie runs to the Starbucks counter and starts throwing the snacks on the floor, while Annette is trying to go up the escalator twenty feet from my reach. So, I bought a 6 dollar bag of dried fruit to try to keep them occupied, sit at one of the itty bitty tables that we had to share with a (thankfully) nice and pitying young lady, and waited about 30 minutes until Daddy arrived. Fortunately, his plane was on time. A true blessing, since I hadn't even considered if it had been late... or even thought to bring a stroller....crazy, spontaneous, silly me. The reunion of our little family foursome was great. We were all so happy to see each other. We just do better when we are all together. We hugged, held hands, got Isaac's bags, and got to the car just in time to see a police officer walking away from our car. Sticking a ticket under my wiper blade. Police. I guess I should have dragged both kids all the way back to the car so I could put in a few more quarters, risking our chance to see Daddy walk off the airplane.... Really?!?!? No. No. No. I'm thinking it was way worth the 15 dollar ticket.

- DateNights
We went on a date night on Thursday night. I was ready for some fun/quality/adult time after seeing all Isaac's iphone pics of fancy dinners/brunches and poolside entertainment and roof top parties in Vegas. My mom was free to babysit, so off to Sushi Cafe we went. We went to SO afterwards for dessert.....almost as good as going to Vegas with my hubs:)

- First Haircuts
Charlie got his first haircut on Friday before we left for the lake. I have attempted to do a little trimming myself, but he bucks his head and wails. My wonderful hairstylist, Kate, trimmed his hair for me. I was all prepared for him to scream and twist, forcing me to become a human straight jacket. To my total shock, he was more than decently still and didn't cry even once! I held him facing me and distracted him with a sucker. I'm still in shock, four days later, that she was able to do such a great job cutting my little squirmer's hair. It looks nicely trimmed, yet still a tiny bit shaggy, which I love and had most explicitly requested. and most importantly, he does not have a mullet anymore.

Pre-trim at the wonder place and at O'Mcdonalds as Annette calls it. We went on lots of outings to keep mommy sane while dad was out of town...

wow. see the hair growing loooong in the back?

love that he can do a straw now.

Wish I could have gotten a picture during the cut, but I only have two hands. So I took this when we got back in the car.

I can kind of sweep it to one side and make him look all clean cut, too:) Posing here with my very goofy father, grandad.

While I took Charlie, Annette got to have a special lunch with her Daddy at Franke's Cafeteria at the bottom of the Regions building.

- The Why Stage
Constance Annette is 'constancely' constantly asking WHY questions these days. Not just 5-10 times a day, but 5-10 times in five minutes. And because I'm a sucker for teachable moments, I usually try to give her a real answer every time. Which can get exhausting... while the answers can turn surprisingly deep. While at the lake with family all weekend, it was nice to see other people get a turn trying....umm, stumbling... avoiding.... or embracing... all of her why's. Funny to observe how everyone handles the limitless question-and-answer sessions differently.

-Family Dog Owners
Love that other people, including Isaac's parents, own dogs. Because Charlie is in love with the things, yet I do not need/want to add an animal to my already messy/needy household. Bonus--- my husband agrees--- for now at least. See Dolly Sue below.

- Sleep
Charlie and Annette both slept through the whole night on Saturday after a full day of lake playing. I realize this shouldn't be an unusual thing, but unfortunately it has been just that for the last year at the smith house. But for at least one night, neither one even made a whimper in their pack n plays. Which is especially nice when we all share a bedroom at the lake. Charlie was up by 6:30am each lake morning (like every morning) and Annette not far behind him, so I took them outside to play and for an early walk (still in pj's) while Isaac slept in a bit. Before some of you start thinking I'm such a nice wife, know that it was a trade off for getting to lay out and read in the sun for about an hour a day...kid free:) Thanks, Ike.

- Green Bean Snack Bowls
My kids will eat green beans like they are munching on chips. Hope that won't change anytime soon. I get these cool snack-cup ones at walmart (on the same aisle as canned veggies). I can't find them at my kroger, unfortunately. More packaging isn't good for the environment, I know, I know.... but it seems to make my kids more interested in eating veggies as a snack:) They are great for packed lunches or picnics...... or snacking on in the nude.

- Playground Milestones
Charlie mastered the Hot Springs Chic-fil-A playground this weekend. He can go all the way up to the top all on his own. If he doesn't get lost and end up in the car he will will even do the slide too. So big and brave. And he's just 14 months old. Excited he is learning new ways to burn off his abundant energy without wearing his momma out:)

- Boatrides
Granted, they were a little more relaxing pre-kids, but they are still a fun way to enjoy the summer season. Very thankful Isaac's parents have a place for us to stay and boat for us to enjoy. Watching Annette smile her biggest smile while riding on the boat wearing that big ole life jacket... I don't ever want to forget it. Witnessing childish joy and wonder. Wish I could bottle it up and save it for the future, to enjoy again later, or use it as a remedy in more stressful times, or learn from it.

Might be cool to see this immaterial keepsake become a material one. A little bottle of Childish Joy Numer 9 :)

On this 'field trip', I got to show her new words like island and water skiing as we saw them in real life. Fun stuff. We both loved it.

my happy happy girl.
full of joy and wonder.... with her happy disposition and all of her why's.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


so, these aren't actual physical keepsakes, but they are some of the current treasures of my heart. blessings that i appreciate so much and don't want to forget about in a year, month, week, or even within the hour with my toddlerized brain.

i'm going to try to add more 'keepsakes' each week. mostly for my own records.

(if only a day of the week started with a K, i could use that to create a catchier title for these posts, which would also double as a reminder to jot the fun new blessings down once a week. example: kuesday keepsakes. too bad.)

(from the past 2 weeks)

-isaac likes to take my kids on a 30- 50 min walk most days when he gets home (that is when he's not in Vegas for work:)

-annette has added the word 'probably' and 'actually' to her vocabulary, as in "yes, mommy, I can probably try to draw a heart'. and "that is actually not charlie's passie, mommy".

-she has also just learned how to draw a face...the circle- eyes- mouth- hair- and all! i love teaching her and watching her learn. my lil' sponge.


-charlie has started shaking his head for 'no'. "let's go change your
diaper". he shakes, shakes, shakes that uncut hair and smiles at me. even though he is trying to be defiant, i can't help but smile back at him. i LOVE that he is starting to say more and communicate with us. even if it is the dreaded "no". i am such a sucker for learning.

-he is also saying 'moo' for cows, and loves to point out 'dahs' (dogs) when we are on walks.

-the athletic club baby pool!!! i took them for the first time on sunday afternoon. watching a one and two    year old around a pool is tricky of course, so i was nervous. but annette wore her floaties the whole time (a blessing in itself) and charlie fell all-the-way-in ONLY two times (i grabbed him within a second and the toughie barely even coughed). he is fearless. i am going to have to figure out someway to make him float.

-isaac will be home tomorrow! that means we will have yummier suppers. and mommy will get more breaks.

-lauren is back at school... this one is sad for us, but happy because she is healthy and able.

-mommas and MDO for helping me through the single parent role this week.

-my girl's bible study. doing this David study has been real, real good for my soul. a timely blessing.


-and a biggie for me this week has been the blessing that i get to stay home with my kids. sometimes i think it is the hardest job ever. b/c it is a neverending job. especially when daddy is out of town. and sometimes i think about how nice it would be to get to work with adults and have a lunch break and be able to go to the bathroom by myself. BUT, this week i have focused on the things that are so wonderful about staying at home with my kiddos. i love being able to sit right next to my kids as they explore and learn with blocks and crayons and books and sand. i get to witness developmental milestones right as they happen. i get to know them so well because we spend almost every hour together. little things......that annette sneezes twice, and charlie sneezes 3 times. that annette prefers to paint over just about anything, and that charlie prefers to be right next to his sister more than anyone else. to see them get excited when the other one wakes up from a nap. Watching them learn to share books, toys, yogurt:) oh, it's a blessing. one that comes with high expectations. the responsibility of making the most of our time, disciplining them, modeling service, showing them God and His love for them and others. full time job for sure!  i know i'll look back at this time and realize how fast it went by.

so this is a reminder to self: SOAK THIS TIME UP.

Matthew 6:20-21
20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Just Peachy at the Beachy

Last week we drove to Destin with my sisters, parents, and the Cramblett friendmily. The Setzlers and the Crambletts have vacationed together since the early 90's. We've caravaned to Colorado and Disney World. Carpooled to Miami and New Orleans to board cruise ships. Driven to Mexico, Florida, and other places for missions trips. Gone to camp, softball tournaments, and church together. Carpooled to school until we could drive ourselves. Erin and I lived together in college, and so did Elizabeth and Lauren. That's why they are called friendmily. They are such good friends, and we were basically raised together, so we are a lasting mixture of friends and family. And we haven't ALL been reunited since my wedding day 4 years ago. Needless to say, it was a ton of fun hanging out with them for a week. The perfect beach weather just added to it.

The drive there and back was..... long. My one and two year olds do not love sitting still for the 10 1/2 hours it ended up taking us. And this momma doesn't have THAT many tricks up her sleeve for keeping them happy. Hopefully we will get our hands on those cheap Vision Airline tickets the next time we go. They kept selling out just before we got online to book them. But, with chocolate, Caillou, suckers, cheetos, my sisters', and stops at Play Places, WE MADE IT.

Here are some of our sweet memories that were well worth the long drive....

Isaac took the whole sand castle building thing pretty seriously,

while I took the sit and read thing seriously.
mrs. jan took this via iphone. i think she must have some awesome photoshopping app. 

We all played at the beach or pool in the mornings. Thanks to my mom and Isaac, I got to lay out at the beach during naps. Priceless.
Isaac would bring the kids back down after naps.

our 5 story beach house had an elevator in addition to a spiral staircase. thank goodness for a baby gate. who knew pushing the elevator buttons would turn out to be a good incentive to go back upstairs from a fun time at the beach and pool?!? :)

would not have been a very relaxing trip without my mom, dad, and sisters. they entertained the kids at the pool and at the house at least a few hours a day, so that I could have some time to enjoy just sitting. and reading. and be lazy. very lazy.

porch time. plus baby doll. happy annette.

charlie and granddad

Charlie's cute orange swim trunks. I love these things! Found them at a rhea lana sale:)

When Annette first saw the beach, she RAN to it. The waves made her a bit nervous at first, but not for long.

It took Charlie a couple of days to actually 'enjoy' the beach. As much as he plays with the blue sand at our house, I was sure he would love it. BUT, expect the unexpected. At first he didn't like the way it felt to walk around on it. Cried when we put him down and everything. I was hoping he would be a good beach bum. Luckily, by the end of the week, he was soaking up the sun and the sand, and eventually even started liking the waves. Licking the salt water off his chubby chin:)

Baggo by day. And baggo by night. I was more than terrible.


The Red Bar Restaurant

The 20 something's dinner night out at the Red Bar. Amazing.

erin, bf eric, mattie, michael, isaac, me, lauren, and elizabeth

Grand Boulevard Shopping Center

the day before these fountain pictures, isaac and i had eaten lunch with the kids at cantina laredo. yes, i know we have one in LR, but i wanted to go the j.crew store in this Grand Boulevard shopping center ....

and of course, we got hungry for some chips and dips and mex food after trying on shorts and headbands and such.... it was yummmo.  no matter how many times we've eaten it.

the kids wanted to get in the fountains right away once they spotted them, but i didn't have a towel or a change of clothes or anything. soooo, i promised to bring them back in swimsuits the next morning.

 i stuck to my word, and brought aunt lauren. even better:)


Date Night
on the last night, isaac took me to cafe tango for a fun date night. our friend, gain, recommended it to us before we left.
it was this little bitty house turned restaurant and the best food we've ever had in destin.

isaac is king of fun. so blessed to have him to share life with.

friendmily beach trip 2011.
sad, sad it's over.
happy happy it happened.