Rockin’ and Rollin’ 2016

When you live near the Rock and Roll Marathon route, you can either try to get around the marathon, run it, or find away to enjoy it! We chose the last option and joined our friends, the B Family, for their annual water station. They are literally on the route so they are blocked in – which is a great excuse to hand out water and turn it into a party.

We rode our bikes over to their house and realized that this was a well oiled machine. Tables with cups and a system for filling and then refilling the water jugs was in place. Not to mention a great spread of breakfast and bloody marys for the volunteers. It wasn’t long until the first few runners came by, then the big waves came. It was so neat seeing the various kinds of runners – everyone was working hard. The sweetest thing was that so many runners not only slowed down, but some stopped to take the water from the kids and thank them for being there to cheer and hydrate. It was so cute to see the excitement on the kids faces.

Cutest helpers ever

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The waiting

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Someone has to drink the champs and bloodies

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Working hard!

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Towards the end, the kids handed out little candies too. It was a very sought after position

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Congratulations to everyone that ran! And thank you to all the runners who took time to say thank you, you made a lot of little kids very happy!

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Stretching Christmas

I need more Christmas. Christmas time, really. I need more festive parties, quiet nights watching movies, cinnamon candles, cookies, good excuses to leave work early, letting the kids eat too many Hershey Kisses, more of all of it! I’m not ready to say goodbye yet. I need to be eased out of Christmas. I mean, we start sneaking Christmas into our lives in late October, why does it just have to go – bam- done-! I need some time to say goodbye. I’ve still got cookie dough in my fridge for Pete’s sake. Therefore I am protesting. Christmas does not end in our house until New Year’s Day. And really, that’s only because the tree will be like really dead.

Family pics!

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Lovely cousin Madi

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All the cousin’s except Ms.Z – sad. And if we could figure out how to make Mason sit still…I’ve got like 6 pictures where all I can see is his posterior…Thank you Mason.

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Those curls

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Checking out Noni’s Nativity scene

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Christmas Eve ended with an all out cousin wrestling match

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 Christmas morning brought presents from home, Aunt Nancy’s and Grandma and Grandpa’s house. Santa broke his back getting all the goodies to some very happy kiddos.

“I got my wish!! I got my wish!!”

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The new tool table was a hit with everyone!

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Mackie loves Christmas too

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 “Auggie, that’s not your gift. Auggie!! That’s not yours!!”

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Auggie crawled away with his truck for some alone time…

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Presents were followed by my mom’s world famous brunch. She makes enough food to feed an army and we all attempt to eat like an army. The day wound down with a warm fire (backdoor open of course because otherwise it was too hot), Christmas tree lights, stretchy pants and playing with all the new goodies! Which is exactly why I need at least one more week.

Birthday Week: Family Style

We don’t have just birthdays in our house. We have birthday weeks. Why? Because it takes a whole week to squeeze in all the celebrating!

When I was a kid, my entire family on my mom’s side would come to visit always right around my birthday. And because a birthday is a great reason to throw a party (or multiple parties) I was sure that they really came to visit for my birthday. Thus, birthday week.

We started off Baylor’s birthday week on a Sunday with a big family birthday party. Her cousins, aunts, uncle, grandparents (including Noni who flew in from MT just for the occasion!), godfather and lots of other adopted family members joined us for dinner, cake and presents. We always ask her friends not to bring gifts to her friend party, but stopping the family from bringing gifts would be about as successful as me flying to the moon – it’s just not going to happen.

The Fam

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Learning about Flarp from Missa – it’s like less messy play dough that makes fart noises. What’s not to love?!IMG_5013

Cousin Madi

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Mason being naughty…

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Time for cake! Chocolate with chocolate icing, of course

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Her face while opening presents was priceless

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Her order is “apple juice in a big girl cup with ice and it’s Baylor with a B”

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A dollar for each year from her godfather

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IMG_5046Shuttling around Mason
IMG_5048 IMG_5052Trouble. Serious trouble.

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Hand Over the Camera


When we were kids, my dad snapped pictures of everything and anything we did. He had a great camera and always had it handy. So I guess it’s safe to say I come by my need to document life via photos, naturally.

I invested in a Cannon Rebel T3 last summer after exensive research. I needed something that was fast, easy to use, small and didn’t cost us Baylor’s college fund. I realized that in order not to break the bank, I’d have to ditch the small requirement. I settled on the T3 because it wasn’t enormous and it got great reviews for newbies like me.

I snap pictures all the time with it – which means I’m never in the pictures. PW will take over periodically, but then there’s never a picture of the three of us. So this past weekend for Baylor’s party, I grabbed a friend that I knew took great pictures and asked them to snap a few shots of the important moments so that I could actually be present and enjoy. And the result? Awesome. The pictures are beautiful because they’re done with someone else’s eye so the light is a little different, the zoom is a little closer, everything is just different enough that it’s fantastic. And the best part is that I get to help blow out the candles on the cake, eat it and have the picture to remember it for a lifetime.

So next time you are busy snapping away, hand over the camera and see what happens. At the very least, you’ll be able to prove you were actually there!

Case in point? I love the flowers in the front of this pic.

I love catching me mid song and B’s sweet smile!

Happy Birthday Baylor!

Phew, what a weekend! We spent the entire weekend celebrating Baylor and the amazing fact that she is now three years old!

The festivities kicked off with some presents from mom and dad – Dr. Barbie, Hello Kitty everything and pancakes for breakfast. The morning quickly ran into her party for her buddies. PW and I are suckers for backyard shin digs – when we remodeled our house, the phrase “oh, that would be so awesome for a party” came up many, many times. Therefore we spent the last few weeks planning the best splash party any kid without a pool could ever ask for. I started a Pinterest board and had a blast collecting ideas. The best one though was the Kid Car Wash. Peter was pumped for a new hands on project and his creation was amazing. There was also our (ghetto) water slide that consisted of a small pool at the bottom of the swing set slide. Add in some big buckets of water (which turned out to be a hit all on their own), some water balloons and giant squirt guns and we had a hit on our hands!

Sunday afternoon was the family get together which consisted of actual family and also our close friends who we consider family. It was so nice to catch up with all of them, eat Baylor’s favorite food – quesadillas and open presents. All in all, it was amazing and totally exhausting – everything a birthday should be!

Pancakes and Dr.Barbie

Either craftyness is contagious, or PW’s been holding out on me. I showed him this free printable website and he nixed it as being too much work – then surprised us with this Saturday morning!

The Amazing Kid Car Wash – complete with bubble machine. Even the parents were considering a run.

Splash down!

Serious squirt guns.

When buckets become fun…

It’s official when the candles are blown out.

Momma and her girl.

Ready to blow out the candles, again.

Finally a picture of the three of us!

Eating her cake in her new “doll” high chair. Thankfully Grandma thought ahead and bought a sturdy one!

Bear was so tired, his butt didn’t make it all the way into bed.

Crafternoon

Whew, we had a whirlwind weekend! Dad’s Pancake Breakfast at school, Zoe’s second birthday party and a lovely crafty get together with the ladies – or crafternoon. And that was just Saturday! More to come on the other events, but first, the crafting.

A friend from college and fellow Alpha Phi, Stephanie, hosted what she called Crafternoon. It was a small gathering with cocktails, snacks and 3 hours of uninterupted crafting time. It was, in a word, heaven. And something I would like to repeat often.

Once the supplies were out, I’m not sure we made eye contact until Teri got out the camera:

Because B  is always loosing hair clips, I’ve now stocked up on them until at least April…

Our lovely host Stephanie and Teri

Andrea and Kristin

Kristin and Moi

Thank you Teri for all the great pics!

Baby What??

In anticipation of my sister Ali’s baby shower this past weekend, I tried to find some baby shower game ideas that were a little outside of the box. And by that I mean something that was not annoying like that damn game where you put the clothes pin on your shirt and ever time you say “baby” someone gets to take your clothes pin. The last shower I was at where we played that game, a fellow guest literally started pinching me after she took all my pins. It almost got ugly.

I found the usually stuff like “Guess Mommy’s Tummy Size”…boring, and potentially a loaded game if Mommy is a little larger than she thinks she is. “Baby Item Word Scramble”…yawn. “Finish the Baby Rhyme”…blah blah blah.

As I dug deeper, I found some really messed up baby games. Such as:

“Pin the Sperm on the Egg”. I’m not kidding.

“Dirty Diaper” – I thought this was only in the movies – you melt candy bars into a diaper and make people guess what the candy bar is by smelling it. There are no words for describing the level of nastiness of that one.

“My Water Broke!” – guests are given drinks with ice cubes containing plastic babies. When your ice-cube melts setting the baby free, the guests shouts that their water broke and they win a prize. I actually kind of like this idea because I don’t really have to participate, but it needs a new name.

“Bobbing for Nipples” – again, not a joke. Just like bobbing for apples but you use bottle nipples. Lovely.

We ended up using a variation of a game we played at Ali’s wedding shower – she gets asked a series of questions and then has to eat something when she answers wrong. Pregnancy themed food was pickles and ice cream – ice cream if she was right and pickles if she was wrong.  I only tortured her a little with questions like “how many feet does the average toddler crawl in a day?” and “who is the celebrity whose daughter is named Sadie Grace?”.

All in all, it was a lovely shower and Ali got lots of great gifts – I was running around like a crazy woman so I didn’t get any pictures, but Ali’s sister-in-law did so more to come!