Ava's Birthday Week

I felt a little bad because we did not have a party for Ava this year. Instead we did a little something just about every day of the week to celebrate her birthday!! It worked out great; in fact, I think I want a birthday week this year:)
On Tuesday night we went to Russellville and had dinner with my mom and Matt. We had Italian Gardens lasagna (yummy!) and cupcakes. Ava had fun sitting in my mom's lap and listening to stories. Sam even found a new friend in Matthew.

On Wednesday, Ava's actual birthday, we went to have a birthday lunch with James. And we surprised her with her big present - a princess bicycle! Also, Grandma and Grandpa drove in from Texas to celebrate the day.

James put the bicycle together at his office and took us on a little treasure hunt to find it.

Ava would absolutely not look at me. She was so excited to get a little bicycle.

On Thursday, I took cupcakes and Ava had a little party at her Mother's Day Out class. She was so cute wearing her special little hat and watching her friends sing Happy Birthday. Can you believe I forgot my camera for this?? I am still kicking myself.

And then finally on Friday, we had a birthday dinner with the family.
Tyler and AJ

My mom was very excited about bringing this cake (she said she always wanted one.) Of course she didn't come, but I had this made because it meant so much to her.

What a cute picture - totally jealous!!

A special thank you to Grandma and Granpda for all of their help this past week. I could not have done it by myself!

Whew!!! Lots of work but totally worth it. I hope it was a special birthday for a very special girl!

Ava Margaret Piraino

February 17, 2007

I remember everything about this day three years ago. I couldn't believe how much you could love someone. She was so tiny, and I was absolutely terrified of taking her home and being responsible to keep her alive. I loved watching James with her (and still do). It is hard to imagine that it has been three years.

Ava at 3 months

Ava at 6 months

Ava - 1 year old

Ava - 2 years old


You are such a special girl. I knew from the very beginning of your life that you were beautiful from the inside out. Your dad and I are so thankful that we get to be your parents.

You are always singing (usually at the top of your lungs). And you make up songs. The other night you said "Let's sing the shu shu song." I have no idea what that is so we made one up. You thought that was pretty funny.

You won't drink anything unless it is chocolate milk.

You love your brother. When you go to Mother's Day Out and I pick you up, you are both more excited to see each other than me.

You love to dance. After dinner Daddy turns on music and you and Sam dance in the living room.

You are my little snuggle buddy. You STILL wake up in the middle of the night and come to our bed. You usually bring your pillow, blankie and at least two of your dolls with you. I don't get any sleep when this happens, because you have to hold onto my neck.

You really want to be Fancy Nancy. The other day you looked at her mommy (in the book) and said, "Maybe I can have that mommy". I was horrified by this statement, and you said, "OK Mom, I will stay with you." Geez- thanks!

You and your daddy play this game that I think is horrible! You look out the window for scary things - snow monsters, witches, etc. I am afraid that you are going to have nightmares for a long time. Your daddy thinks it is really funny. He teaches you dances to keep the snow monster away - terrible!!

You are such a picky eater. You like chicken, french fries, oranges, noodles, bread, and anything sweet.

You say your best friend is Haven. You are just glued to her every time we see her.

When you make a mess you say, "Don't worry mom, you can just clean it up." You say, "Don't worry mom" a lot!

You like to cause trouble with Sam. You say, "Come on Sam, let's go where Mommy can't see us." I can hear you say that :)

You are sweet. If someone is hurting or sad, you want to help them. When we are reading books, and a character is sad, you insist on going to help them. The other night you actually cried because I told you I didn't know where Fancy Nancy lived to go help her. You said we could just get in the car and find it. Precious!

Happy 3rd Birthday Ava! We love you so much!

Prayers Needed

My mom's husband, Steve Barham, passed away suddenly on Monday night. If you know my mom - you know she has been through a lot in her life, and she had finally found the person that made her happy. She really needs all of your prayers right now.


We had a surprise 60th birthday party for my dad on Friday night. It has been planned for what seems like forever, and he had absolutely no idea. It was such a fun time. He should feel very loved - there were tons of people there, and a lot of people came from out of town. Then the lucky ones went to the races yesterday (my dad's favorite). Those of us with toddlers stayed home :(

Picture of the grand kids
Of course, these two were joined at the hip.

Everyone was waiting at the front door, and they surprised us by coming in the back door. Ava and Haven were back there to greet them though. The first thing my dad said - "Ya'll are awful." He was laughing!

The air hockey table was a hit with the boys.

Ava and Jordan

There was even a live magic show.
And I would have watched the show except that Sam was pretty entertaining himself. James tied a balloon to his pants and he chased it for a good 20 minutes.
Cute little Olivia was wanting to play with Sam - he wasn't that interested!

I had to include this picture, and I honestly have no idea what this is about. I was trying to leave around 9:00 and my dad was busy opening gifts, so I couldn't say good-by. However, when I looked he had something on his head which looked pretty funny. What the heck is that?

On a side note the best part of the night for me - James! He got up early that morning to work out of town. I knew he was not going to be able to come, and it was okay. After working all day he drove from outside Hot Springs just to be there for about 30 minutes before he had to drive back. He didn't have to do it (and he knows that), but it meant a lot to me that he did!!

Happy 60th Daddy!!!

Ava at Her Best

Ava wanted me to take her picture after she put on some pink lip gloss (of course, without my knowledge)! She had to stand this close! She was so proud of herself.

We are having a pajama kind of weekend (cleaning, laundry, homework, etc.) No Super Bowl parties for us this year :(

I Am Exhausted...

and here is just one of the reasons why.