Our week

Here are some pictures that I took this week-
I don't even remember what that big wet spot was, but she was so proud to try on my shoes!

Our nightly ritual is dancing in the TV room after dinner.

I hope everyone has a great weekend!!

Sam at 10 months

All I can say is my Sam is showing signs that have me SCARED!! He is such a little wild man. And I know that is what I get for having such an easy mild-mannered first baby, but geez! All I can say is that he doesn't do anything halfway. He doesn't crawl, he speedcrawls. He doesn't talk, he screams. He is literally into everything and it is new territory for me.

Sam eats a lot. He really doesn't care for baby food so much now that he has had a taste of the real thing. I still feed it to him though. For a typical breakfast he will eat a container of baby food and rice cereal. He is still screaming for more at that point. Most of the time he will eat a whole banana on top of that!

He is starting to do some new things. He can wave bye-bye. I HAVE to get it on video because it is so cute, but I haven't been able to. He is shaking his head no (imagine that)! He stands up and looks like he wants to walk and then falls down to go after something. It really won't be long! He wants whatever Ava has (and vice versa), but he will chase her down to get it. His new favorite thing is to climb on something and dive head first to the ground. Luckily, he can't climb anything yet that could cause serious damage.
Ava and Sam have a funny little relationship right now. Ava wants to cuddle and hug Sam while he is pushing her away to hit or pull her hair. The other day I left the room for a second and came back to Ava's screams. Sam had a big smile on his face and seriously a fist full of her hair. (Sigh)

One other thing that Sam does is dance. But it looks like nothing I have ever seen - like a little baby headbanger or something. I got a video of it the other day when my family was here. He usually gets a little more into it than this. WILD MAN!!! (Also, excuse the messiness of the play room - remember it was my birthday week and I was on vacation :)

Birthday Week

That's right - I get a whole week for my birthday!! And I pretty much took the week off except for taking care of two little monkeys. I am already paying for it today with my mountain of laundry and stack of bills! UGGGGG!

On Tuesday, my actual birthday, the kids and I met Andrea (Mimi) in Little Rock for lunch at PF Changs (yummy) and then went to the mall for a little bit. James was supposed to be out of town, but he finished early and came home and surprised us with cake and balloons. I say us because the kids really LOVED it.

Sam was so mad when his little piece of cake was gone (and it was gone in like a second). He will have no problem at his first birthday party!!
It was time to go to bed and they (James included) were still playing with balloons!

On Wednesday, we had a little pool party here. We always have a joint celebration for Andrea, Nick and myself because our birthdays are so close. The highlight of the day (besides the cake) is Ava got to hold a baby frog. She talked about it all night.
I think I was on vacation last week from taking pictures, but Andrea took this one of Haven holding the frog. You can see that Ava loved it. Then James and I took the kids down to the lake for the weekend and even though we had kids it was very relaxing and so nice to get away!!!
I took VERY few pictures this weekend, but I did take this one of James taking Ava fishing. I took this from the balcony and I was just laughing trying to imagine the conversations they were having!!

And this is all I really needed for my birthday!!

Swimming Success

I am so proud of my Ava in the pool this year. Considering that we were asked to leave our last swim lesson because she was upsetting the kids, I think she is doing great in the pool. We are no longer using the life jacket and she is only using floaties. She keeps saying, "I love it." We are in the pool at least 3 or 4 days a week right now, and she would just stay out there all day. Sam, on the other hand, gets really frustrated because he is not on the ground moving so after about 30 minutes he is done! I took this video the other day when Carla and Lucas came to visit.

Happy Birthday Nick!

Well, I am one day late, but that's OK! My second nephew turned 11 yesterday - hard to believe!! We are planning to spend one day with him in Dardanelle next week so I didn't get to see him on his actual birthday. He had some friends over and went out to dinner last night, but the thing that he really wants for his birthday is a puppy!! He told me had already saved almost $300 - so I found some puppies that I would want if I were him!
maybe a little Elle??
Aren't they cute - it almost makes me want a puppy - HA!! Happy Birthday Nick!

Bathtime Buddies

I hope everyone is having a great week!!

Here Comes Trouble

I took this picture one year ago today and it may be my favorite picture of all time. Ava used to make this face when she didn't get her way - already showing a little attitude!

Busy Week

Last week is still such a blur to me! I am so amazed at how busy we all are this summer. First of all, two of our favorite people came to visit last week, James' Uncle Alan and Susan. I have to say, Uncle Alan is the first person I met from James' family because he comes to Arkansas for business and I just loved him so much and thought if everyone else was as nice as he was, I would be just fine! They were also with us on our engagement trip to Belize - we just think the world of them! This was the first time that they really had a chance to spend time with Ava and Sam and my kids loved them too! Ava woke up in the morning looking for Susan and is still asking about her.

Susan and I ventured to Little Rock with the kids one day last week and just looked around downtown. We happened to walk into the Peabody when they were bringing in the ducks and Ava was just amazed.
Sam was just happy to sit in his stroller and take it all in - very unusual for him these days!
On Saturday, our neighborhood hosted a family movie night outside on the golf course with a big movie screen and games for the kids. SO much fun!! I am still so mad at myself for not bringing my camera thought because Ava was so stinking cute. When we pulled up, I noticed several little kids around her age playing so I was excited for her. Well, she spotted two little girls (about 10 or 11 years old) sitting on a blanket and said, "I am going to go play with my friends." She had NEVER seen these girls, but she went to their blanket and sat down with them. Grace and Sophie were so sweet to her. They held her little hand and walked her around to get candy and a drink. Ava was in heaven and was kicking and screaming when we had to leave before the movie was over!!

Yesterday we had Jerry, Dana and little Landon over for swimming and dinner. We had a really good time and Landon did such a good job for his first time in the pool!

Ava had a good time after dinner hosting a tea party for the two boys!!

Mommy-Daughter Day

Ava and I had a special day today! We went to Dora Live and then out for lunch in Little Rock. First, we dropped Sam off with Mimi, Papa and Conner (thank you guys!) Ava was soooo excited to go see Dora and we had such a fun time there. She was just so happy and stood pretty much the entire time watching the play. Her favorite part - a tossup between Swiper and Diego!! After the play we headed over to West Little Rock for lunch at The Purple Cow - very cute and kid friendly little restaurant.

Ava was so sweet all day asking about Sam. On the ride to Dora she probably asked about him 10 times (along with singing Dora songs). "Where is Sam?", "Is Sam OK?", "Is Sam hungry?" She was more worried than I was!! During intermission she said, "Mommy I a princess and Sam a prince." Yes!! And when we were buying her a little shirt - she said, "Sam too?" So sweet - I could not make another one like her if I tried!

A trip to the Purple Cow would not be complete without a purple vanilla milkshake- YUM!!! Ava obviously enjoyed that part of the day!

She has worn her Dora shirt all afternoon and will tell anyone that will listen to her all about it - she was not too happy to have her picture taken though.

I know that Ava had fun today, but I think I had more fun. I loved watching every little reaction and seeing things through her eyes. Hopefully a lot more Mommy-Daughter days to come!

Our 4th of July Weekend

We had such a fun (and stressful) weekend at the lake with Joey, Jennifer and Ashtyn (and her friend Cole). The kids and I went down on Thursday to get everything ready and it still amazes me how much STUFF I have to pack for these two little people. I miss the days of get in the car and go! We had a pretty relaxing day and I had a special treat for Ava - Lady and the Tramp (which we both loved!)
Sam loved to stand at this window and yell at random things outside. I tried to get a video - it was so funny!

Elle was also very entertained watching all the boats and people (and maybe barking at a few of them!)

James surprised everyone with a boat on Friday- yes I said a boat, which is a story for another time. We didn't actually get out on the lake until about 5:30. Both of my kids had skipped their naps and usually eat at 6, so we had a couple meltdowns and had to call it an early night. We spent the day outside on Saturday - so much fun. Ava kept saying, "Where is MY boat?" She just loved it and Sam was so funny - I still think about him on the boat and laugh out loud. I am so glad that both of my kids really like the water. We didn't get to see a professional firework show, but there were so many people shooting them at the lake that it was almost as good. I let Ava stay up and watch - she was not as scared as I thought she would be and some of them were pretty close. She just held on to me a little tighter. James and I spent a lazy Sunday just playing with the kids at the park and the pool.

Both kids took a turn driving with Daddy - Ava was just beside herself!
Sam was so funny! First of all, this is the smallest life jacket I could find and it was probably a little too big so I made it as tight as I could. He would not move his head, but he would smile. He was just the cutest thing!

Does it look like Sam is choking in this picture - he is not!! That is how he kept his head the entire time. I seriously laugh out loud EVERY time I think about it!

Ava had so much fun swimming with James -
maybe a little too much fun!
Joey and Jennifer
Ashtyn and Cole - they were so sweet playing with Ava all weekend!
I tried to get a cute picture in their 4th of July pajamas - this is the best I could do. Seriously, how do people get their kids to look at the camera and smile at the same time??

Watching fireworks outside the condo - we were all just running from the front to the back to get the best view. Ava thought she was so cool getting to stay up with the big kids!

Happy 4th of July everyone!!!

Birthday Boys!!!

Two of our little friends, Lucas and Luke turned one this past month and we had fun at both parties!! Lucas had a party at his house a couple weeks ago and we got to go play there for a little while. He is such a cutie and it was so funny to watch him eat his cake - he was really laid back. My kids attack when you put something sweet in front of them!

I stole this picture from Carla' facebook page ( I hope she doesn't care!!). I had not quite figured out my new camera yet, and took about 40 pictures without turning on the flash!

This past weekend we went to Luke's party at the lake. We swam by their boat dock and Ava loved playing in the dirt, of course! I wish I would have taken a picture of the cute gift bags that Margaret made - they were beach bags with all kinds of fun stuff inside!

Ava loved this sprinkler beach ball - she thought it was funny!

Happy Birthday Lucas and Luke (and Beth's Luke too!)