Thursday, November 29, 2012

5 Monthday and Dad's Birthday


I've typed this post three times today and its been deleted.

I just can't...

So I'm going to make this short(ER).

Ben is 5 months today and shares his monthday with Dad's birthday.

Here's what Ben has been up to the past month:


Eating-breast milk. Lots of it. About to start solids soon.

Squealing and shrieking and blowing raspberries (watch out if you're nearby-you'll get a shower).

Playing on his mat, bouncing in his jumper, sitting in his Bumbo.

Smiling and laughing.

Avery is still an awesome sister. She loves to show Ben off to her classmates. She stands by his car seat saying "isn't he cute?" And it's not a rhetorical question either. She's not satisfied until someone acknowledges his cuteness.




Apple head


We love him dearly.

And happy birthday to daddy.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Thanksgiving Weekend

We had a nice long (but not long enough) weekend.  Ben's first Thanksgiving didn't involve any turkey (for him) but he seemed to enjoy it nonetheless.  He is getting so big.  We got Avery's old jumperoo out of the attic and put it together for him.  His feet are a little shy of reaching the ground, but with a couple books under him he's good.  I also picked up a new play mat for him on Black Friday.  He really didn't care for the one that we had from Avery.  It was narrow and skinny and just...not that fun.  We're always looking for new things to entertain Ben because he really just prefers to be carried around at all times.  I know, I know-we could just put him on the floor or in the swing or whatever and let him cry.  And we do put him down and sometimes he just has to fuss and cry for a bit.  But, really, I can't just leave him on the floor screaming for 20 minutes.  Usually we end up passing him back and forth throughout the day or evening.  So anything that entertains him for a while is great.  And he does seem to like this play mat better.  If he's in a good mood, he'll lay there for 15 or 20 minutes.  And Avery likes to help bounce him in the jumperoo since he can't really bounce himself yet, and show him how all the toys and activities work.


Thanksgiving day was wonderful (emphasis on FULL). We enjoyed the day with family and A & B soaked up all the love and attention.

Friday I did just a bit of shopping while Rob put up lights on the house (and my mom watched the kids). We put up the tree and started dragging out some decorations. Avery had so much fun putting up the ornaments (only a few were lost in the process). Every ornament was "one of her FAVORITE ones." And everything was so "lovely."

Saturday Lynn and Lauren came over to watch the Bedlam game, which just barely ended in the Sooner's favor in overtime! At the end Avery graciously told Lauren "sorry about your Cowboys."

Sunday was just beautiful so we got out of the house to enjoy it. Tired of leftovers we got some BBQ and went to the park afterwards. Benny swung for the first time and seemed to like it-at least it produced a big gummy smile.

Today we're back at it, although I definitely can't say we're well rested.  Between Rob being on call and receiving calls in the middle of the night and Ben's sleep regression we're pretty exhausted.  I guess we'll sleep when we're dead, right?

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Playa del Carmen 2012

Rob and I got back from Mexico on Sunday.  We took a little trip for our 5 year anniversary.  I was pretty anxious about leaving the kids but I knew they were in great hands with Mimi with help from Gigi and Pepaw.  We had a great time and of course were ready to get home and see them but we both agreed we could go for just one more day (it's always that way on vacation, no?).

This was our third time to go to Playa but our first to stay at the Grand Riviera Princess.  It.was.huge.  Seriously, probably a 15 minute walk from our room to the beach.  We didn't mind, but we both agreed we wouldn't want to take the kids there just because of the inconvenience due to the size (that being said, there were tons of families and they all seemed to be faring just fine).

To sum up the resort?  The grounds were beautiful. The rooms were ok-pretty basic but nice and clean.  The food was meh.  There were a couple of buffets, several specialty restaurants, a snack bar, and a beach grill.  You had to make reservations for the specialty restaurants, so we did that they day we arrived.  Based on reviews we had read, we chose the Asian restaurant and the steak restaurant (both were good).  The food at the buffets was just ok.  You have to keep in mind they are catering to an international crowd, so you won't find a lot of typical American fare (or much Mexican fare, either).  There are a lot of Europeans that travel to this area.  It was actually somewhat unusual to run into other Americans.  The night we went to the hibachi grill there were two groups of Russians (not together), an Australian couple, and a Canadian guy.

The beach was gorgeous and there were tons of nice pools (although I much prefer to spend my time at the beach and Rob obliged, even though he typically prefers the pool).  We got massages on the beach one afternoon that were incredible.

All of these pictures are from my phone.  We took some pictures with the actual camera, but we really didn't care to haul it around with us.
Flying into Mexico

Not a bad place to wait for our room

Hotel lobby


Beautiful evening

The beach around sunset

More sunset

Hibachi grill the first night-it was good!!

Courtyard outside our room

Lots of palms

Bridge over the mangroves
You had to get to the beach EARLY to get a good spot

Coaties.  They live in the mangroves and come out for food.
You're not supposed to feed them but people do.

View from the back patio.

Fun bar on 5th Avenue-we went there on our honeymoon.

Saturday morning I got out early to get a good spot

Yummy tacos from the beach grill

Kids playing on the beach at sunset

Main walkway to the pools and beach

Taking some pictures on the last morning

The weather was amazing-sunny mornings.

Soaking up a last bit of sun.

A wonderful trip

And of course I took my old frenemy-the pump.  I did a bit of research before we left regarding traveling with breast milk, tips, regulations, etc.  It was kind of a pain, but honestly I'm used to it by now.  I was able to bring about 70 ounces back with me.  

We brought a small cooler in our suitcase along with some of those gel packs you put in the freezer.  Rob took the gel packs to the concierge the day before we were supposed to leave, and they put them in the freezer.  The morning we were to leave we retrieved the gel packs and loaded the cooler with the milk and put the cooler in my suitcase.   Rob was convinced they were going to leak or spontaneously combust in transit, but alas they didn't.  It all worked out fine and I'm glad I was able to bring some back to replace what Ben drank while we were gone.

The panoramic option on the iPhone camera is pretty awesome
We missed the kids like crazy but we're so glad we went.  We thought of Avery every time we saw a little girl playing in the sand (and Benny every time we saw a drooling baby).  Many thanks to our awesome parents who watched the kiddos for us.

Both Ben and Avery have been sleeping poorly this week so I'm fairly certain they're trying to pay us back-that, or zap every ounce of energy we may have gained from our trip.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

33rd Birthday

Yeah, I'll go ahead and throw the number out there. Who cares? 40 is the new 30 anyway, right?

I had a nice birthday!

Last Saturday we went out to dinner with Lynn and Drew and had a delicious meal at Brady Tavern while Gigi and Pepaw watched the kids.

Yesterday Rob brought me flowers and breakfast to work.

Then I went to lunch with coworkers. They made me this awesome card:

We made dinner at home last night, had leftover cake from work, and I got the one child who can't run from me to take a picture with me.
Glad only one of us has drool on our chin

Heading to lunch with Mimi today-see a pattern here? No hope of getting into my old pants anytime soon!

Overall, a nice birthday!


"I'm ready for school," Avery said.

Rob asked her if she thought that might be a little distracting.

"No, not at all!"

Friday, November 9, 2012


There's a lot things floating around the interwebz lately about being thankful. And while I have so many things to be thankful for, I am especially thankful for my children's health. We are so fortunate that all that we have plaguing us is the cough and runny noses that just.won't.quit (seriously, going on a month now).

In addition to their health, they are also both smart (we know that Ben will be based on the size of his head). Yes, this post is basically an excuse to brag about my kids.

Ben has started grabbing toys. And he rolled over once last week (belly to back) but I haven't got him to do it again. His teacher said he is very close to rolling from back to belly, which I have also seen at home. He gets to his side.

Avery now knows all 12 months and can recite them (in order) in addition to the days of the week, which she's known for a while. This seems very grown to me.

She has now decided she doesn't want her picture taken, ever, which clearly interferes with my agenda. Not only that, she doesn't want me taking Ben's picture either. Too bad, girl. You may be able to run from me but he can't!

Monday, November 5, 2012


We enjoyed a weekend with no big plans!  Rob helped Lynn and Drew move into their new house on Friday.  Saturday we went over to help unpack a bit and eat pizza.
On Sunday I took Avery to see Brave at the dollar movie.  Mimi met us there as well.  Avery seemed to like the movie, but she especially liked all the treats she got while she was there.

Photo dump from the weekend.

Morning tea party

Listening to stories

Got her treat for the movie picked out.

Sorry to the two elderly ladies she almost took out.

He can only hold the big noggin up for so long.  It's pretty heavy.

Watch out Tiger

Excuse my annoying voice.  Anything for a laugh, right?

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Halloween 2012

I may start a petition for Halloween to always be on a Friday.  Halloween in the middle of the week just isn't right.

So (obviously) this was Ben's first Halloween and he (obviously) had no clue what was going on but of course we dressed him up and dragged him around nonetheless.

Avery was Dorothy and Ben was the Cowardly Lion.  I honestly don't think most people put two and two together ("Oh, Dorothy.  And look, a little lion!") but it was cute.

Avery had trick-or-treating at school.  There were lot of cute little ninjas, pirates, SWAT guy (not a policeman, I was corrected), etc.

Checking out Coen's Plex costume

I picked Avery and Ben up in the afternoon and brought them to my office.  Avery was deathly afraid of the decorations ("scary skeleton") in the first department we went to and was very gun-shy from then on.  She passed up candy in many departments, saying "I've got a lot of treats already."  Which was perfectly fine with me-I knew we'd have more candy than we knew what to do with anyway-but WEIRDO, right?

My coworkers were trying to coerce her to take pieces of candy and finally got her to take a few for "mom and dad."  One of my coworkers offered her a little plastic Halloween ring and she was all "No thanks, I've got a lot of rings at home."

Pretty sure I won't ever have to worry about my kid taking candy from a stranger!

We took a few pictures once we got home.

We planned to go trick-or-treat around the neighborhood for a bit.  Since our neighborhood is still developing there wasn't too many houses to go to.  Avery was a little disappointed.  She wanted to go to at least ten houses (that was a goal she set for herself).  I wasn't sure she was really going to do the whole ring the doorbell, say "trick or treat" stuff by herself but she did.   A couple of houses told her to go ahead and take more than one piece of candy to which she would reply "that's ok, I'll get more at other houses."

She cracks me up.

After a sugar-feuled power struggle at bedtime she finally went to sleep, but got up a few times in the night.  I think she still had sugar running through her veins.

And a little (very dark) video.