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Wednesday, December 30, 2009


This one might be a doozy. I will begin with the decorating for Christmas. I know it deserves a post all it’s own, but for the sake of time and because it's already New Year’s Eve, let’s just do 1 post for the Christmas festivities.

Decorating for Christmas. It is one of the highlights of my year. It always has been. Growing up it was always a big family affair. We didn’t do dinner on that night, but instead had chips, queso, mini quiche, little smokies, and other appetizer-type foods and of course Christmas cookies. Appetizers are way better than a real meal, so I have carried on this tradition with our family. Even when it was just Jeremy and I. Sadly, I would make a huge spread that 2 people would never be able to eat. So we pulled out all of the Christmas boxes, among the many other boxes and began putting up the tree and decorating. We hung our 4 stockings. I've looked up at our mantel several times to see those 4 stockings. God has grown our family so quickly. Here's a quick rundown that has gone through my head when I see the stockings.
Christmas of 2006 - a bit disappointed that we weren't pregnant after trying for 6 months.

Christmas of 2007 - we announce to family and friends that we have decided to adopt

Christmas of 2008 - Holden is almost 7 months and we feel so completely blessed. Finally 3 stockings on our mantel.

Christmas 2009 - We have 2 little boys! 4 stockings on our mantel.

Christmas of 2010 - I plan to still only have 4 stockings on our mantel! :) We'll see what 2010 holds.

Back to our night of decorating fun! We hung our special ornaments.

Thank you Bradts for our new Texas ornament. Indeed, it is a special year to be back home.

An airplane for Holden.

And a sweet, brown Pea-in-a-pod for Pax.

Everyone wore they’re Christmas PJ’s.

Holden helped me ice and decorate some Christmas cookies. Obviously, sneaking in a bite here and there.

And notice Holden's little shout-out to the Hardin-Simmons Fightin' Cowboys! Yeehaw!

And then when more ornaments were coming off than going on, we decided to put the big boy to bed and finish the work ourselves. Maybe next year Holden will be more helpful? But then of course, Paxton will probably be into everything. Oh well! It was a fun night. And even though it was just 1 week shy of Christmas Day, I am so glad we went ahead and threw it all together. Unfortunately, no pictures of the finished product. The tree and all Christmas decor is still up at this house. I could go and snag some pictures, but honestly, I don't have time for that.

Skipping forward to our Christmas Eve, which was actually Christmas Eve Eve. We decided to celebrate our family of 4 Christmas on Christmas Eve morning so we could spend Christmas Day with our extended family. So Christmas Eve the boys cuddled into Jeremy’s lap for the reading of The Night Before Christmas.

Holden always wants to make sure little bubba has his paci. He knows how important those are.

And I just love this picture. Those big brown eyes staring up at daddy!

Now onto our Christmas morning. We began with the reading of the real Christmas story. During the reading of the Holy Scripture, Holden was running all over the place and I was trying to feed Paxton a bottle. It was a little bit chaotic. But such is our life right now. I think God understood. Santa isn’t a huge giver at our house. So he brought the boys each a book and some little goodies in their stockings. We got them each a toy, an outfit and then of course the Jesus gift that they opened a few weeks prior.

Here is Holden trying out his new golf clubs. This was Jeremy’s gift idea. He is a lover of golf. Jeremy. Not so much Holden, yet.

Here Holden shows Paxton his new shape sorter. So he's not ready for it yet. But maybe soon.

And here Paxton wishes you a big Merry Christmas.

Well, then you will never believe what happened! It began snowing. Oh so pretty! Our Christmas Eve snow. We hung out at the house for the day and mid-afternoon Jeremy began loading the car with presents and luggage for 1 stay overnight. At about 5pm we set out on the road to go to Jeremy’s aunt's house. They always celebrate Christmas on Christmas Eve night. It’s only a 45 minute drive from our house. But we got word that traffic was terrible because of ice on the roads. There were many accidents. We had just gotten out of our neighborhood when Jeremy made the call that it wasn’t safe to make the trip. And by the time we got to her house, due to the traffic and ice, everyone would be done with the festivities. Here is Holden ready to hit the icey roads. See, we really did try to make it!

From Jeremy’s aunts, we were supposed to go on to my parents house and celebrate with them on Christmas morning. Also, canceled. Boo! So we stayed home for the first time ever on Christmas. And it wasn’t all it’s cracked up to be. I wanted to be with our families. Holden did get to play in our snow-filled backyard that morning.

All bundled up!

First thing he did was took a bite and began saying "yum,yum!" That gave Jeremy a little laugh.

But we just kind of had a lazy day in our PJ’s and did a little unpacking and preparing for company to join us. It definitely didn't "feel" like Christmas Day.

Okay, is anyone still hanging in with me? I know it’s getting boring. Sorry. So the day after Christmas, Jeremy’s sister, Brandy, her daughter Hannah and Jeremy’s mom all came for a night. That was a fun little celebration. Hannah got to play big cousin to the boys. And grandma got to have all 3 of her grandchildren together, which somehow has been rare. We played the new Wii and stayed out of the cold. It was a fun couple of days with family.

And that, my friends, was our Christmas festivities this year. The end!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

4 months + some

Wow! Things got super-crazy super-quick. We moved into our house and then everything became (and still is) so busy. I fear that January might possibly be worse than December as far as busyness goes. There is still much to be done. Right now, I sit in the office surrounded by boxes. Our cars still don’t fit in the garage. More boxes. BUT, this post is not about that. It’s about our little 4 month angel. Oh and yes, that is what I have been calling him. My angel baby. The name fits him well, I think. I feel like Paxton is now comfortable in his own skin. In the early months, he had a lot of trouble with reflux and other tummy issues. Lately we haven’t been giving him the reflux medicine and he has been doing great. He is no longer in pain, but is still occasionally (more like regularly) spitting up. I typically do a load of laundry per day between Paxton and Holden. And most of it is Paxton’s bibs, burp cloths and clothes. I need to try the medicine again and see if it controls the spitting at all. But he definitely seems to be a happy spitter now, which is good to see. Rather than arching his back and screeching in pain. Just seeing him in pain made us all miserable. He is also completely off his tummy medicine and doing so well without it. So now, he is such a happy boy. Giving us smiles all day long! He has brought our family so much JOY and continues to dish out more daily!

Once we moved into the house, we unpacked the bumbo. We figured he would love sitting up on his own. Well . . . for short periods of time he likes it. Here he is in his first bumbo experience.

Holden checking out the bumbo (with toothbrush in mouth). There is no bumbo time after eating. That causes spitting up, which we try to avoid.

Paxton has found his little voice and is learning how to use it. He mimics our laughter which is fun to watch. And he goes in to what we like to call “hyper-mode” and he buries his little face into our necks and squeals with a huge grin on his face. His little personality is beginning to shine and I love to see it develop more each day. Holden still makes Paxton’s face light up, which in turn, puts a huge grin on Holden’s face. He loves to see his little brother smiling at him. Holden has decided that we will keep his little brother. I don’t think he was too sure about it in the beginning. But he has officially decided he loves him. When I get Holden out of bed in the morning, normally his first word now is “bubba?”. It used to be “daddy”. Sorry Jeremy. But to make you feel a bit better, it was never “momma”. I know that one day soon these boys are going to be the best of friends and are going to really enjoy life together. I am already seeing the bonding beginning which brings me complete joy!

See how they love!

At less than 3 months, Paxton visited our new pediatrician for a minor cold that was causing serious spitting up. More than normal. She suggested I start him on cereal to help control the reflux. And she wanted me to spoon feed it to him rather than putting it in the bottle. I thought she was a bit crazy since I tend to follow the rules. And so naturally, I ignored the suggestion. Part of me wanted to give it a try, but things got busy. And as awful as it sounds, I just didn’t have time to experiment with it. So then we moved. Got sort of settled. Made a shopping trip to Kroger and bought some rice cereal. So last week Paxton had his first taste of rice cereal. He didn’t love it. Nor did he seem to hate it. And I think most of it ended up on the bib rather than in his tummy. But here are a few pictures from the big event.

And after the meal.

And after we stripped him down for a bath. Look at that chubby guy! As you can see, he hasn’t missed many meals.

And here are a couple of pictures from December 26th - his actual 4 month birthday.

Paxton has been such a sweet addition to our family. We can't imagine our days without him. Life has been hectic and crazy lately with the changes we have made, but I lay down each night counting my blessings. And this little boy is at the top of my list. Oh how I love him!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Checking off my list

I know I've mentioned that things are busy these days, but we can't let our little family traditions just fall to the wayside this year. So we are finding moments to relax and do the fun things that we love to do with our little boys.

Christmas lights tour - check
Holden said, "Oh wow!" many times during out little look-y of the Christmas lights. Here he is, in his jammies and hoodie, seeing all the neighborhood lights.
Picture with Santa - check
I wondered if Holden would be scared. Not at all. He wasn't high-fiving Santa or anything (though he did the friendly elves), but there were no tears. As you might notice, not much of a smile either. But I was grateful that he sat for the picture. Paxton, on the other hand, hammed it up in that sleigh. He was giving all sorts of smiles. Not sure why they didn't catch one on film. :( And here is a picture of our picture. Tour de house - check
We introduced the boys to their new home. And we are so ready to be there. 2 more days! We showed them their new rooms. Holden especially likes his ceiling fan, as is the case of any room he's ever been in. Unfortunately, Paxton slept through his tour. Apparently, Santa Clause wore our baby out!Christmas card picture taken - check
It's about time, I know! And we realized a few days ago that our tripod was in storage. Sooooooo, we had to get creative. This one didn't make the cut for the actual card!Nor did this one . . .But I feel both pictures represent my life well right now, as a stay-at-home mom. Go ahead and laugh. :) It's getting a bit easier every day.

New Christmas ornament purchase - check
It's a little tradition Jeremy and I have had through our marriage, purchasing a new ornament for one another. Now we purchase an ornament for each of our kids. This year, Holden's is an airplane, since it's been his new obsession lately. And we found this cute little guy for Paxton. You may have read on my blog last year that I was trying to diversify some of our Christmas decor so that it looked more like my family. This is a great one at Hallmark for those of you that might be interested. Jesus gift purcashed - check
Last year, Jeremy and I started a tradition of a Jesus gift. Everyone in our family receives a Jesus gift. Something to point us back to our purpose for this holiday. Jeremy and I got one another devotionals last year for this gift. And we bought Holden 2 books about the meaning of Christmas. This year, the boys are receiving the Veggie Tales nativity set! Oh how exciting. It is super cute! On that same post I referred to earlier, I complained about not finding the right nativity set. And ashamedly, I admit, I am still without. Even with the suggestions I was given last year, I still can't find what I've been looking for. I'm not wanting a nativity that looks like me OR my boys. I'm just wanting one that looks more realistic. And so, I continue my search. But if they are all going to be blonde haired, blued-eyed baby Jesus', then he might as well be a baby carrot! I am so excited about this gift. I think we might break it out when we decorate for Christmas. (Which just happens to be this Friday night!!! This is one of my most favorite days of the year!)

First egg nog consumption of the season - checkDon't be disgusted with me, but I love me some Egg Nog! Now, I can only drink about 6oz. in 1 sitting, but I love that thick-sweet-dairy-whatever it is-beverage. And it has officially found it's way into my fridge for the first time this season. Anyone want to join me in a toast? Jeremy can't stand the stuff. (though he's never tasted it.)

Still on the To Do list:
Move into our house
Decorate for Christmas
Figure out our Christmas schedule - ugh!!
And many other things that I'm sure that I'm forgetting . . .

Thursday, December 10, 2009

A few new things . . .

Well, things are busier than ever. Just in case I haven't made that clear it past posts. And I might sound like a broken record for the next few months. But, we close on our house tomorrow morning. I wish I could say that we immediately get to start moving in. But, not the case. Over the weekend, we will move in the few things we have at this apartment. Honestly, just clothes and toiletry type items. Literally, the place had everything for us. Then, the packers (or should we call them UNpackers) come and unpack us at the new house next Wednesday. I am supposed to be completely out of the apartment that morning by 11am. Not much of a grace period, but that's the way it works. Not to mention that Jeremy will be at work as usual. But I'm sure he will do all he can to make it easy on me. Or as easy as possible. It's just the way he is. Also, saving the day, my mom will be with me. I couldn't do this alone. Greet the unpackers and give instructions, chase Holden, tend to Paxton, change diapers, feed babies, etc etc etc. So she will be helping me to exit the apartment with the boys, making sure we leave nothing behind. And then helping me as we boss around unpackers and tell them what to do. I'm not good at being bossy and shouting demands. Lucky for me, she is. :) So, I am so excited to be moving into the house. It just seems like things will feel much more settled once we're there. And then the tree can go up! Hooray for that.

A few new things at our place:

Holden is suddenly ABOVE finger foods. Too fancy for that I guess? He wants a fork to eat his food now. And I'm realizing the plastic baby ones don't really serve any true purpose. So here he is eating his barbeque sandwich and sweet potatoe bites with a fork. I guess it's time to use the plates. (They're currently in storage.)
Well done, my son! Whatever it takes to get it in your little belly!
And here's a clean, little guy, straight from the bath. He loves his bathtime.
And just because I love this little face.
Have you ever noticed a baby trying to suck his thumb AND paci at the same time? Well, occasionally we catch mister Pax doing just that. It's crazy! He normally knocks his paci out and makes himself so mad. This is an attempt for the best of both worlds.And I leave you with a great big smile from Pax. We are seeing these constantly now. And I will have to say, he gives them most freely to his momma. And I'm just gonna take all the love now that I can get. Because I know that if he follows in his big brothers footsteps, I could quite possibly be chopped liver in just 1 short year. Apparently, their daddy hung the moon and I just wasn't made aware of it.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Christmas' Past

Because I thought this might be fun . . .

Christmas 2002: Because we still didn't have a digital camera at this point, I have no picture to show you. But imagine with me: Jeremy looking exactly the same as he does today. Wearing a Hawaiian shirt, jeans and flip flops. Me in some cute shorts, looking 20 pounds slimmer than today. :) We're Standing in front of some palm trees in Maui. And that was our card. A picture from our honeymoon.

Christmas 2003-2004: Not the height of my creativity. Picture with me store bought cards. Sorry this isn't so fun yet.

Christmas 2005:Ahh. Finally a digital camera. What took us so long? Just the 2 of us in front of our tree. Oh how I can't wait to get my hands on that tree!

Christmas 2006:
Oh! I loved this one. It snowed so hard that Jeremy and I's workplace closed down. So we took advantage of those couple of days and took our Christmas card picture. This little snowing picture went inside a hot pink and white handmade snowflake card. Oh card-making-days, how I miss you!

Christmas 2007: No picture here. But I was still into stamping and cardmaking. So picture again, a handmade card from yours truly. I think it said "be merry".

Christmas 2008: Also a handmade card. But inside was this cute little fella. How did he get so big in the last year?

Christmas 2009:
I have a feeling 2 cute little boys will be in the picture. Maybe the parents. But maybe not. Other than that, I just don't know what it will look like or when it will even be taken. I am normally, a right-after-Thanksgiving-Christmas-card-sender. But this year I have been waiting so I could include a hey-here's-our-new-address-info. 2 birds with one stone is my thought.

Merry merry Christmas! Only 19 days to go!!


Rarely would I ever call a trip to the grocery store a success. Well, until today. I started scheming last night. Could I actually make it to the grocery store and buy a full week of groceries with both babies? Would they have a cart to fit them both+groceries? Would I be able to get them from the parking lot to the store since the workers always so efficiently return the carts inside? Should I bring snacks to keep Holden "busy"? Would I be able to coordinate feedings so that everyone was happy and not hungry? Man, never in my life, have I put so much thought into a grocery shopping trip. But I was ready to be brave. So this morning, I fed Paxton at 5:30am and we went back to sleep. I completely expected Holden to be up at 7:30am. At 8:30 I got up and got myself ready. I was determined to get groceries this morning and I had no options but to take the boys with me. I fed Paxton a bottle and we waited for Holden to wake. I blogged a bit about our weekend. See previous post. I even called Kroger's during this time to make sure they had a cart to accommodate 2 little ones + groceries. I know that's crazy, but I had to know, to make it worth the outing. And would you know Holden slept until 10:15!! (Which, I noticed later this morning that he is cutting his 2-year molars. New teeth have always made him sleep ALOT.) So after, what we'll call Holden's brunch, we headed off to Kroger. Just the 3 of us. All bundled up on this cold day. I carried the carrier and Holden proudly walked beside me holding my hand. (I had a tight grip, as I don't completely trust this little boy.) Once we found our car-cart, Holden learned that he was going to "drive" today. He loved it. As I shopped, Holden "drove" and occasionally breaked for his goldfish crackers. And Paxton just smiled at me constantly. He LOVES face to face time. And he loves for me to be in his sight at all times. So it was a perfect morning for this boy. He smiled at the strangers that oohed over him. And he eventually fell asleep. There were no tears. No fits from either of them. It was such a pleasant experience. And so I finished my shopping and pushed my little guys out of there feeling like a heroine. Well, until I tried to tear Holden away from that steering wheel. He wailed the whole way home. Luckily that drive is only about 2 minutes long. :) But I think I have crossed a bridge. I'm not sure that these little boys will always accompany me to the grocery store, but I learned today that I can do it. And that it really wasn't that scary after all. And yes, I took my new, itty-bitty camera to the grocery store. I knew if we succeeded on this trip, then it must be documented. Holden driving the cart. Or as I look close, maybe that was during a goldfish break.
Little Pax snoozing in the checkout line.

celebrating number 7.

Well, this past weekend Jeremy and I were finally able to celebrate our 7th anniversary. We spent the weekend in downtown Fort Worth. We love it there. This was the same location as our 5th anniversary weekend. It such a fun, clean, unique downtown with many options for entertainment, eating and shopping. Geez, I sound like a commercial. Not to mention the way it looks at Christmas.

We enjoyed 4 Day Weekend. We laughed til our cheeks hurt. No cliche. It really did make my cheeks hurt. We had fun dinners out, without having to stop to do a bottle or pick up food someone had dropped/thrown. And we almost finished our Christmas shopping. At one point, we discussed how we had always done these weekends away for our anniversary. And they had always been a fun way to celebrate our marriage. But this year, it felt more needed. Not needed in the way that our marriage has been struggling or anything. But we just needed the rest and one on one time together. Life has been so busy lately. Alot of changes have hit us at once. And we have been so . . . just plain tired. But honestly, have not had time to rest. It seems like life keeps moving at full pace ahead and so we just have to keep moving right along with it. So this weekend, in a way, we pushed pause on everything else. And it feels like we were able to catch our breaths somehow. We slept in 2 mornings in a row. 3 morning for me! Poppa J and Nana kept our baby boys. And now I'm sure they are needing the rest. :) Actually it's 10am and Holden, my normal 7:30am riser, is still sleeping. Maybe Poppa J and Nana wore him out as much as he did them.

Anyways, here are a few pictures from our restful weekend.the happy couple. This was our faces after sleeping in until 10:30ish. Hmmm, we still look super tired?The view from our balcony. That's right balcony. Jeremy informed them in his reservations that it was our anniversary and they surprised us with a suite. And we literally paid pennies for this hotel room, since Jeremy had Marriot points from his traveling days. They also surprised us on Friday night with this . . .chocolate covered strawberried (not pictured because they were quickly eaten) and Champagne.Saturday we spent a little time at the Gaylord Texas. It was decaored so beautifully for Christmas.

All of the above pictures were taken with my new camera from Jeremy. That was my anniversary gift. All we have is the mumbo jumbo SLR. I love it, but it's huge! We needed an everyday camera. And it's the tiniest little thing. No bigger than my cell phone. It's tiny! I love it. Jeremy's gift was (drumroll) . . . a Wii! The reason this was a big deal is because I detest video games and useless things that occupy our time. Not to mentiont that we had set a $50 spending limit. And we both crashed over it. No Christmas gifts for us. No biggie. Anyways, the Wii for Jeremy. He has made alot of sacrifices for our family over the last 2 years. And he has talked about that Wii for at least that long. So I wanted to surprise him. And surprise him, I did!! So that was our weekend. It was just what we needed.