Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Comment Challenge: Day 3

Today we're linking up to share our favorite Pinterest pin/project.  I actually blogged about my Instagram Photo Display after I finished it in February!  I loved that it combined my two favorite phone apps - Instagram and Pinterest!  

Has anyone else noticed that Pinterest changed it's embedding format?  It seems likes all those pins that I've shared on my blog are broken now and I can't share new ones!  Is anyone else having that problem, or do you have a "fix?"

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Jenna's 4th Annual Comment Challenge - What I Watch

Linking up with Jenna's comment challenge again today!

Today's topic is what we're watching on TV!  Oh goodness, I love a good book (when I start a good book, I usually don't put it down.  I read entire books in about 5 hours - my speed reading drives Brian crazy).   But my parents have called me "TV Guide" since I was little.  Seriously.  And bedtime is a no negotiation thing in our house - children are in bed by 7PM!  The big ones read and play Leap Pad before they fall asleep (usually by 7:45 at the latest), so we have a few hours to watch TV before we go to bed!

So, as far as reality shows go, my two favorites are Survivor and Flipping Out.

I have been a Survivor addict since I watched the Australian Outback when I was in college at JMU.  I think there's only been one season that I haven't watched, but Survivor is a staple for Brian and I.  It's always been our "at home date night."  I think Jeff Probst is the best reality host on TV, and the game is always fresh and new.  I love the way people play the game, and watching alliances build (and crumble).

And Flipping Out?  Oh my goodness, I adore Jeff Lewis.  I get him.  I think his sense of humor is hysterical, and I guess I understand his business drive, and I find his team to be hysterical.  I also feel like he's constantly waiting for someone to actually just do what he asks them to.  Which, you know, also applies to motherhood! It's always good TV. 

And I like most of the Housewives, but I now I really only watch Orange County and Jersey.  The rest I'll tune into if there's nothing else on!

When it comes to drama, these are my 5 MUST SEE shows.  I usually try to watch them live, but it's going to be tough this year when Parenthood and Scandal are on at the same time!

I became a Scandal addict last October when Brian and Wyatt went to the ALDS game in Baltimore.  I was up all night with a newborn, and I started watching the first episode on Netflix.  And I was addicted.  Liv and Fitz, "gladiators in suits" - I watched the first season in one day.  Only two episodes of the second season had aired, so I caught up On Demand.  I watched every episode live, and I could not get enough of the story line.  It is one of the best shows on TV right now!  And adding Scott Foley to the cast?  Genius!

Grey's has been one of my favorites since it started.  I started watching it when it was on after Desperate Housewives (I gave up on that after season 2).  Brian watched it with me for awhile, but he gave up a few years ago.  I think it gets a little far-fetched sometimes, but I can't give up on the show now.  I think oddly enough, I just love the original cast too much.  But don't get me started on Kepner.  That is one character I just do. not. get.

The Walking Dead is a show I started watching with Brian (usually with my eyes covered).  At first I was grossed out by the zombies, but it's such a great story about humanity, too.  I'm kind of hooked.

Maybe it's the fact that I'm one of four kids, or that I have four kids, but I love Parenthood.  I love the stories about the individual Braverman kids, and I love the way the family comes together.  I was a HUGE Gilmore Girls fan, and I thought that Sarah Braverman (aka Lauren Graham, aka Lorelei Gilmore) would be my favorite character, but she's not even close!  I thought the storyline with Kristina last year was amazing.  Scandal and Parenthood were two shows I had to watch when we were on vacation last year!

And finally, Mad Men.  I came to the show late in the game.  I heard amazing things about it, so I watched seasons 1-4 on Netflix and watched seasons 5 and 6 live.  I think this show just tells a really interesting story with really great characters.  (But I think the sixth season was average).

We also still watch Law & Order: SVU every week, and we're big fans of Shark Tank. We also really like Duck Dynasty, but sometimes the stories just seem so "set up."  We aren't huge into any comedies on TV - we watch Modern Family, but I still think the first season was the best.  If none of "our shows" are on, we're probably watching baseball, hockey, or football,  watching HGTV, or catching up on The West Wing!  I watched the entire show when it aired, but Brian is slowly getting through the entire series!  I love the Bartlet administration!  Ha!

And now after reading my list of TV shows, I really feel like I need to give my brain a work out and pick up a book!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Jenna's 4th Annual Comment Challenge - About Me

Today (actually all this week!) I'm linking up with Jenna's fourth annual commenting challenge.  I participated in 2010 and 2011, but I seem to have taken last year off!  I'm excited to join back in!
 Today's topic is "About me."  Well, I sum up myself pretty well in my sidebar, but here goes! 

Brian and I have been married for almost 7 years, but we've been together for almost 13.  He's a fantastic husband, a great daddy, and a hard worker.  He is also a great baseball coach and he's very rarely spotted without a Yankees hat on! 
 In typical mommy fashion, I don't seem to have many pictures of me.  Oops.

I am mommy to Wyatt (6), Reese (almost 5), Hudson (2), and Finley (10 months).  I continued to work part time at a job I loved after Wyatt and Reese were born, but once Hudson came along, I retired my high heels and my Limited wardrobe. 

I love spending my time with my no-so-little family.  With four kids under six, some days are hard, yo.  But there are so many other moments that make it worth it!  Some of my favorites - 
  • Listening to my boy read.  Seriously.  I can't describe the feeling I get just listening to Wyatt read by himself.  It's a whole new world for him.  I grew up reading non-stop, and I'm just so excited for him to discover the adventures that are ahead in the pages of Huckleberry Finn, and Harry Potter, and even comic books!  But I also love watching this boy of mine play baseball.  So. much. fun.
  • Watching Reesie dance and play.  She brings so much joy to everything she does.  And her coloring?  The time she spends picking out the perfect color and staying carefully in the lines just amazes me!
  • Hudson's little voice just melts me right now.  Even when he says, "No Mama!"  But my favorite thing he says? "You the best Momma in the whole world."  
  • Finley is just my little baby girl.  She's it, and I am soaking in every second of this little baby while I still can - even though she's becoming such a mover that she only needs me when she eats! 
Other non-mommy related loves?
Target, baseball, the New York Yankees, too many TV shows and books to list, country music, wine, the beach (a place I live 8 miles away from, but rarely seem to make it to), buying things to help keep me organized but not actually putting them to use, chips and the white salsa stuff, and Derek Jeter.

And Disney World.  We're all big fans of Disney!  You can check out our trips in 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, and 2012 here.  We're kind of obsessed!

You can mostly find me on Instagram (a lot) and I'm a Pinterest addict.  I'm on Twitter too, but I'm not that into it.  I mainly use it to get my news (okay, and spoilers for my favorite TV shows).

Can someone tell me what I'm missing on Twitter?  I just don't get it all!  Maybe I'm missing something!  Thanks for visiting! 

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Project 365: Week 27 & Week 28

I catch up, and then I fall behind.  So it goes.  Here are two weeks of pictures!

Tuesday, July 2
She's stylish, right?  I think the Sofia tiara really completes the ensemble.
 Wednesday, July 3
"You'll never know the power, of the dark side."  We'll add this to the list of things Hudson does that we never would have allowed Wyatt to do at the age of two.
 Thursday, July 4
We made these hand print flags, but we didn't have quite enough space to make a complete one.  They got the gist of it, though.  I think this was the last time Reese wore a bow in her hair!
 Friday, July 5
"I play Star Wars guys, like Wy Wy."  Yeah, but Wy Wy thought Chewbacca was holding a guitar until he was 3 and a half.  Ask Hudson what that is, and he'll tell you it's a gun.
 Saturday, July 6
My parents were going on vacation for two weeks, so we went to swim, have dinner, and hang out before bed.  They were shouting "Swimming!"
 Sunday, July 7
Little sister rule #17: Any time your big brother wants to borrow your crayons, supervision is required.  He could break them, and ruin them ON PURPOSE!"
(every single thing that Wyatt does in life is to ruin Reese's day ON PURPOSE.  every thing.)
 Monday, July 8
Brian took Wyatt to register for First Grade!  So exciting!  Wyatt is going to the same school that Brian went to when he was little, so I know it was fun for Brian to get inside and "explore."  Wyatt walked in and saw the stage in the cafeteria and said, "So, are there going to be shows during lunch?"  I know his little head was thinking that it's going to be like a show at Festhaus at Busch Gardens!  This kid is in for a rude awakening!
 Tuesday, July 9
Who doesn't love Doc?  She neeeeeeeded this blanket (or boo as we call them) as soon as she saw it!
 Wednesday, July 10
This is probably one of my favorite pictures.  I love seeing my little Captain America concentrating on his workbook!
Thursday, July 11
Hudson requested an "all fruit plus carrot dinner."  I couldn't really turn that request down!
Friday, July 12
We went to the YMCA that morning so I could work out (and get a break!).  When I got to the room to pick up Wyatt and Reese, they told me that another kid had punched Wyatt in the eye!  Apparently Wyatt was playing with two other boys, and the little three year old was upset that he couldn't play with them.  I was beyond happy to hear that Wyatt just went and told on the kid.  If we had been at home or it had been his sister, the story would probably have had a different ending!  Fortunately he didn't really bruise. The Y staff even called to check on Wyatt a few days later.
 Saturday, July 13
It was a rainy morning (but it turned into a beautiful day).  All three of them cuddled up to watch Sofia.  Wyatt looks mad, but I promise he was just upset that I turned on the big light!  Ha!
Sunday, July 14
Reese ran to tell me that "Jake and Sofia are coming LIVE to a stage near us!"  I had already checked the dates for their tour, and I didn't think it was coming close, but I decided to check again.  Good thing I did!  This show was almost sold out!  We haven't told them yet, and they are going to be so excited to go!
Monday, July 15
The first day of our third week of swimming lessons!  That look on Hudson's face is pure excitement.  This little boy LOVES swimming now - I can't believe it!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Brain Dump

We've been having a low key few weeks - lots of reading, work books, and play time - all inside!  I feel like summer has finally arrived (I may be the only one who feels that way), and it is HOT!  So while I don't have much to update about, I do have lots of things floating through my brain:)  I will be updating my Project 365 pictures and sharing how this week's swimming lessons went soon!  Here are the groundbreaking thoughts going through my mind right now.
  • I've started planning Reese's birthday party.  I can't believe that she is going to be 5 years old in a month!  She has given me specific instructions about a Sofia the First party, and she also wants to include art.  Well, Brian and I went to check out the closest pottery place, and I'm not sure it's going to work (too messy, too cluttered, not welcoming)!  I think I'll start trying to veer her towards The Little Gym again tomorrow.
  • Finley has really started making her way towards the playroom when she's on her "scoot-abouts." Over the last few days she's been discovering new toys, and her big brother isn't taking that so well. The big kids' toys are stored in their rooms and in the room over the garage, so the playroom is mostly made up of Hudson's toys and baby toys.  But he's not interested in actually sharing the baby toys. I've lost track of the number of times I've heard "No Finney!  That's MINE!," over the last week.  But they do have their moments.

  • Am I the only person who misses their weekly shows during the summer?  I am currently going through Grey's/Scandal/Parenthood withdrawal.  Fortunately for me, I just found the fourth season of Parenthood On Demand.  And I will be ugly crying through every episode.  So good!
  • Hudson is currently obsessed with our Team Baby Yankees DVD.  Obsessed.  It cracks me up because I took it out one day just so he could watch, and now he watches it over and over again. Wyatt basically watched it on repeat when he was little, and Hudson is the same way.  And just like his big brother, he is acting out everything he sees on the screen.  Sliding into the front door, running around in circles, saying things like, "Goooooo Scott Brosius."  Ha!
  • We took the big kids to see Epic yesterday.  I thought it was super cute, but Reese spent most of the movie sprawled across my lap.  She was a little afraid at different parts of the movie, which surprised me.  She wasn't at all frightened when we saw Brave, and I thought that was scarier! 
  • I debated about what to do for Wyatt's lunch this school year.  I can't believe he's going to be gone all day, every day, but I also didn't know how to pack his lunch (I mean, I know how to pack a lunch, but not what to use).  I don't really want to go through boxes of sandwich bags all the time, and I debated between Bento boxes and Planetboxes.  I finally settled on this Planetbox from Pottery Barn Kids.  
I think it easily accommodates the "lunch style" that Wyatt is used to (we do lots of fruit, veggies, small snacks, and usually a sandwich or crackers with cheese).  Plus I won't be wasting stuff everyday!  I am currently absurdly excited about the arrival of his lunch box, even though I know that I will eventually dread packing lunches every day.

6 weeks left of summer break!  How is that possible?  Pretty soon Hudson will be in preschool, Reese will be in pre-Kindergarten, and Wyatt will be starting first grade - HOW?!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Ten Months Old!

10 months old!  Double digits, baby girl!
(I'm a week late posting this.  But I swear I took them on her actual 10 month birthday.  At 5PM when I realized it was the 3rd, but that doesn't really matter.  Ask me how late I am writing anything in Wyatt's baby book.  The answer is 6 years.)
 Stickers from Watch Me Grow

At 10 months, Finley Quinn is...
  • Probably 20ish pounds?  She hasn't gone for a check up since last month, and I don't think she's gotten too much bigger since her 9 month appointment.
  • She has  no use for baby food, unless I let her "feed" herself.  She is mostly eating real food.  She's still obsessed with Yogurt Melts, but she's also a fan of grapes, blueberries, tomatoes, cheese, and basically anything else I give her.  Really.  She is an eating machine!
  • She is still breastfeeding about 6 or 7 times a day.  But she's getting much more distracted when she eats. My kids always get interested in whatever is happening around them.  I don't know how people keep their babies interested in breastfeeding past a year!
  • But she also isn't interested in a sippy cup, and I've tried about 3 of those.   
  • She wears 9 month clothes up to 18 months stuff.  The bigger sizes fit better when her bum is covered with a cloth diaper , and the smaller sizes definitely need a disposable underneath. 
  • She's not sleeping through the night, and I'd really like for her to make that happen for me.  Thank goodness Brian took the early morning shift for me this morning - I got an extra hour of sleep.
  • Not officially "crawling," but she does scoot everywhere.  She gets around the house very quickly, and I am constantly chasing her (or Wyatt and Reese are)!
  • She says, "Dada," "Mama," "Spsshhh" (for splash) and lots of other sounds!  She recognizes a lot of words though - "eat" and "more" being two of her favorites.  She knows who to look at when she hears the names "Wy Wy" and "Reesie."  
  • We're working on her baby signs (I have sadly not been as good about this as I was with the first 3).  While she doesn't actually do the little more sign, she does have her "own" sign for more.  It's banging her hand on the high chair try and smiling at me!  Ha!
  • She has three teeth and another one is cutting right now.
  • She is getting better at standing on her own for little bits of time.  She hasn't pulled herself up yet, but she tries.  Her new favorite toy is the Blu-Ray player. After Hudson's destruction of our TV last summer, the kids rush over whenever she gets close!
  • Her other favorite toy is her musical table.  She stands at it and bangs!  It's fun to watch her stretch those legs!
  • She LOVES music.  She dances and jumps when she hears it.  If she's sitting (like in her car seat) she starts kicking her little legs!
  • Her personality is getting bigger and bigger every day.  She is so good at dealing with the adjustments of our daily life, and she rarely gets too upset about anything.  Her biggest issue now is that she wants to be free to move all the time, and sometimes I can't just leave her on the floor to roam!  Baby girls + big kids with Lego = a mother's nightmare!  I thought things were bad with Wyatt when I had to worry about him and Noelle's hair (black labs shed a lot, yo), but all those little tiny Lego are the bane of my existence.

I really just can't believe how quickly her first year is flying by.  She still seems like a baby, even though I know she'll be a big girl before I know it!

Nine Months
Eight Months
Seven Months
Six Months
Five Months
Four Months
Three Months
Two Months
One Month
Brand New

A few more of my cutie this month (some aren't new).
Eating breakfast at Chick Fil A with Mommy and Daddy.  I remember these peaceful days when Wyatt and Reese were still in school.  Ha!

"Momma, wook.  I hug Finney.  I wuv her!"

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Project 365: Week 25 & Week 26

Picking up where I left off on Saturday!

Tuesday, June 18
They all grabbed their musical instruments and started singing "The Pretender" during lunch.  It cracks me up to listen to these three singing the Foo Fighters.
Wednesday, June 19
Hanging out in her exersaucer after her bath.
Thursday, June 20
Swim lessons are held at a local Golf Club, and Hudson is obsessed with the golf carts.  He loves to watch them drive by.
Friday, June 21
"Wy Wy, you watching Lightning McQueen?"  I love how much these two brothers love each other.
Saturday, June 22
Yeah, we don't have a "no ball in the house" rule around here.  This boy is in constant motion, and I'm pretty sure he thinks life is one big, continuous game of baseball.
Sunday, June 23
Stealing books from the big kids!
Monday, June 24
After the Children's Museum, we went to Doumar's drive in to have lunch.  We ordered the boys (and Brian's dad) matching Norfolk Tars shirts for Father's Day.  Brian's grandfather played baseball for them back in the 30's and 40's, so they were excited to get them!
Tuesday, June 25
Rainbow at Didi and Pop Pop's house!
Wednesday, June 26
This is what her eye looked like the day before we went to the doctor.  Waking up from a nap like this prompted a phone call the the pediatrician and a trip to Target for some Benadryl!
Thursday, June 27
Argh, Matey!  We devised this headband/washcloth combo to keep the cool washcloth on her eye.
Friday, June 28
At the Brad Paisley concert!  Thanks to Brian's job we were able to get into the VIP area for food and drinks before the show, and we got our seats upgraded.  Sometimes the perks make the long hours not so bad. (Kidding!  I would totally rather have him home by 5:30 every night with weekends off!)
Saturday, June 29
I can not tell you how badly this boy needed this nap after the week he had adjusting to his new bed.  And then (after almost two weeks), I decided I couldn't do it anymore!  Wyatt wasn't sleeping.  Hudson wasn't sleeping.  He was coming in my room in the middle of the night to tell me he wasn't going to go back to sleep at all.  So I wasn't sleeping.  And Brian had to go sleep in their room to make sure he stayed in bed, so he wasn't sleeping. I fixed his crib tent as fast as can be and he's been back in his crib since Friday.  And now we are ALL sleeping!  Hallelujah!

I think he's just not ready to move, and since Wyatt and Reese were both 3 and a half when they moved (with NO problems), I think that might just be the magic age for our family!
Sunday, June 30
This is Wyatt's version of the Stanley Cup.  He can keep dreaming.  He wants to play hockey, and I know that Brian wants to let him (especially after his skating lessons).  But Brian keeps telling me these horrific hockey injury stories (professional and amateur), and they DO NOT convince me that hockey is a good sport for my little boy!
Monday, July 1
This is Hudson asleep.  At 9AM.  Because he wasn't sleeping AT ALL in his big boy bed.  Insanity, I tell you.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Swim Lessons: Week 2

 We just finished another exciting week of swim lessons.  I know the question on every one's minds is, "How did Hudson do?"  Did he scream?  Cry?  Sit on the steps with a sad look on his face?

The answer is none of the above!  Hudson was a rock star at his lessons this week!

He really loved his teacher, and he even started walking up to her and grabbing her hand before his name was called.  He smiled the entire time he was in the water, and he was so good about getting dunked.
Reese started the week working on Station 3.  She was ready to pass that pesky station!
 He loved floating through the water on the kick board and the pool noodle. He had the biggest smile on his face the whole time.

It rained on us all week long.  Even on days where there was very little chance of rain - we still got poured on.  I didn't want to chance my Rebel getting destroyed, so I didn't get many pictures of them swimming.

But we had a BIG week!

The awesome news is that Huddoo passed Station 1!  I couldn't believe it.  They told me on Friday that he was also really close to passing Station 2.  That's big, y'all!  Reese didn't pass Station 2 until the end of last summer.  She just would not open those eyes under water!
Wyatt passed Station 2 of his new big kid program.  He did an awesome job this week.
And Reesie passed Station 3 on Wednesday!  Such an exciting week for my little swim team!

We're taking this week off to relax and maybe have a few play dates, and then we'll go back for another round next week!