Monday, September 15, 2014

Adios, summer! (plus a $200 giveaway)

This is a sponsored post by Dr. Smith's, but as always all opinions in this post are my own. 

This weekend our Houston weather was in the 70s and low 80s. We spent much of the weekend outside, watching my kiddos and the neighbor kiddos play in the culdesac.  When any of the kids asked to go inside, I could hear my husband and one of the other husbands quickly reply, "Nope, we're enjoying the nice weather for a change."

So with that, my fall candles are lit as I type this post.  Oh, who am I kidding? I'm been lighting fall candles for a few weeks now just willing fall to be here anyway I could.  Now that we've actually had a little taste of more fall-like weather, I feel like I can officially say goodbye to summer. 

The sweetest thing about this summer was who I got to spend this summer with --- my family! It was our first summer as a family of four.  It was so much fun to have Hadley be a part of our travels this summer.  To be honest, I was a little nervous about her, but turns out there was nothing to worry about.  Love her chill, little, go-with-the-flow attitude.  She is such a happy baby girl.

Preston blew us away this summer --- I mean he just grew up so much over the past few months.  Riding his bike all over the culdesac and to the nearby creek for our daily turtle watching.  Swimming without floaties.  Sliding down pool slides.  Jumping off the diving board and swimming to the side all alone! 

Hadley started taking steps on her own, learned to love the water, started eating us out of the house, and learned to wave!

We went to Watersound, Florida with sweet friends, and, even though we didn't think it was possible, we loved it even more than last year!  We traveled to Hunt, Texas with some super special families from our Sunday School class! I saw my fair share of scorpions while in Hunt.  If you really know me, then you know how absolutely terrified I am of scorpions!   All in all, I still hate those suckers, but I will must admit that this trip may have been a tad therapeutic for my phobia.  I think they call it flooding in psychology.  :)

photo credit :: Darris Hartman

Both trips, I traveled with my Dr. Smith's diaper rash treatments.  The first trip, I took my trusty ol' ointment like I do on every trip we take --- especially during the summer when it's hot and we spend a lot of time in the pool.  That is always a recipe for diaper rash in my kiddos. Dr. Smith's sent me a nice little surprise just before our last trip, though, and I got to try out their new spray while traveling.  I'm a huge fan of anything Dr. Smith's related, but I personally love how easy the spray is to use, especially on a squirmy 11 month old!  Seriously, it's a breeze to use. Thank you, Dr. Smith's for your amazing products, and for all the years you've helped me change diapers.

Dr. Smith's is giving away some prize packs for a few lucky winners.  First place will receive a $200 Visa gift card AND a Dr. Smith's Prize Pack.  And three runners up will receive Dr. Smith's Prize Packs.  Enter below to win. The giveaway will end on Sunday, September 21st at midnight.  Good luck!

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

PRV's Heart Heroes Cape

Preston has just recently became interested in all things superhero related. It's fun to watch his interests change as he grows. 

Earlier this year I sent in a request for a heart heroes cape to be made for him, and it came in the mail just about a month ago ---  and just about the time he really started paying attention to all the super hero stuff!

Thank you to the folks over at Heart Heroes for making this little super-hero dude smile.

I love his excitment when he gets something new.  He always says "for me?"  Then he says the mail man bought it for him.  That might be a sign that I shop online way too much.  ;)

I'm so thankful for his health and his good prognosis.  I know there are others out there who have and are dealing with difficult situations and who hear bad prognosis after bad prognosis.  I know that our sitation could have been far worse.  I try never to take our blessings for granted --- I'm thankful every day for this guys, his health, and the miracle that we were granted with him.

For the Home.

I feel like our home has been neglected for the past few years.  We've had a couple cute little distractions that kept us busy.  We've kicked into full gear recently, though.  We took down the shed that was taking up space in the back yard, we planted grass, and we've updated a few things on the inside, hung a new light fixture, and such.  We desperately need to repaint the baseboards and the kitchen, but with Hadley learning to walk and running into the walls with her toys and walkers we will hold off for another few more months to a year on that.

So our house is definitely feeling the wear and tear of two small kid, and I wouldn't have that any other way. I've recently started looking for ways to change things up and spruce up the place a bit.  Serena & Lily is one of my favorite places to start. 

Oh my goodness, this pop of green?!  Obsessed. Straight from the Serena & Lily fall collection.

Love this sweet little baby blanket.  This might just happen to be the color combo for Hadley's one year old birthday party!  Yes, I know --- I'm not quite sure how she's already almost a year old.  

I still don't have a good rug for Hadley's room, but I do love the colors in this one.

We're looking for a new coffee table as the other table we had was too big for the room (anyone else feel like living space just becomes smaller and smaller once you have kids) and I came across this one about a month ago.  I told my husband that I had found the perfect coffee table ... then he saw the price!  It is not in his budget.

I'm clearly drawn to color these days.  :)

Serena & Lily did provide me with a gift card in exchange for this post. As always, all opinions represented are my own. 

Friday, August 22, 2014

Preschool and DayCare 2014

So after saying goodbye to Ya-Ya on Monday, I packed lunches and backpacks in preparation for Hadley's first day (ever) of daycare and Preston's first day of preschool-3.  This is the first time that both will be in school/day care full time.  I was so nervous about Tuesday, but there were no tears from any of us at drop off.  Hadley seriously didn't even seem to care. 

Preston's best friend is in his class again this year --- those two are thick as theives.  And they'll be playing soccer together this year.  

Small world --- turns out that Preston's sweet little teacher used to teach with Aunt Lauren.

I'm also now room mom for Preston's class.  Now, I know that's not terribly exciting but the way I came to this decision is quite exciting.  Here goes ...  P's head teacher e-mailed on Tuesday asking if I would consider being room mom.  On Wednesday night, I was about to write and decline the position because with working full time and some other obligations especially this exciting one, I though my plate might be a little too full already.  Then I remembered that earlier that day Preston's teacher sent out an e-mail saying to check our child's belonging because his assistant teacher's ring broke and her diamond fell out.  So I went to check Preston's backpack and guess what was in the bottom of his backpack?  Said diamond was in the bottom of his backpack! I took that as a sign and accepted the position.

 Hadley is one of 8 girls in her sweet little class --- one being her BFF below!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

An ode to our Ya-Ya.

With tears streamed down my face and so many sweet memories in our hearts, we waved good-bye to our nanny yesterday afternoon.  Other than the occasional baby-sitting visits here and there, yesterday was her last day as our nanny. 

She started working with us when Preston was 3 months old --- you can see above just how much he grew to love her over the past three years. Because of Preston's heart condition and his open heart surgery as an infant, the doctors recommended a nanny as opposed to day care.  We hired Rosa with the intentions of keeping her for about a year, BUT we fell in love with her and so did my kids.  Our neighbors constantly told us how impressed they were when they saw Rosa with my kids --- "she really loves them," they would say.  They were right. 

Preston called her "mama" and me "mama" for the first two years of his life.  The husband got a big kick out of that, and really liked to pour salt on an open wound with that one.  Deep down, though, I was just so glad Preston was loved and cared for so well.  It was much easier leaving the home for our day jobs knowing that he was with her. I'm fairly certain that she held Preston all day, every day for the first two years of his life.  She was so protective of my kids --- I almost thought she was going to throw down with another nanny at the park one day because said nanny called Preston a "mean boy."  It took Rosa awhile (months, maybe even a year) to calm down after that. :)

After two years of calling her "mama," he then started calling her Ya-Ya.  Not sure where or how he came up with that, but it stuck and we loved it.  Then came Hadley!  She certainly had her hands full with both, and she was always sure to have her alone time with Preston each and every day.  She was sure to fatten my little 5 pound baby right on up.  We can think Ya-Ya for all those rolls you see!

God's hand has been in this relationship the whole time.  From the way we heard about Rosa, then to our meeting her for the first time, the way we joke that our "dogs hired Rosa" the moment she walked in, to the timing of her leaving our family and the kids starting full time preschool and daycare, God was in it all.  

Ya-Ya has a grandbaby of her own now, born on August 14th, who she will be helping take care of. Plus the following day they received two offers on their house so very soon she and her family will be relocating further away with an unrealistic commute to our house daily.  Then her last day was the 18th.  Talk about perfect timing, huh?!  That gives me complete peace that we are right where God wants us all to be.

So as we walked Ya-Ya out yesterday, she and I both with tears spilling, we gave her hugs and told her once again just how much she meant to us. We will never forget her.  We hope that she comes back to visit and babysit occasionally.  Preston's already said he wants to go spend the night with her soon.  I'm praying that my plants don't die --- Ya-Ya definitely has a green thumb and she is the orchid-whisperer.  She can get an orchid to bloom over and over again. 

We know that any life Ya-Ya touches will be blessed.  So we said good-bye so she can go bless other children's lives the way she's blessed ours. We love you, Ya-Ya, and we miss you already.

Friday, July 11, 2014

HEV :: 9 months

I know it sounds so cliché, but it feels like I just brought her home from the hospital.  How has it been 9 months already!? 

Here she is at nine months ( plus five days), 18 pounds, still with her blue eyes, and finally getting some hair.

She is crawling and pulling up on everything.  She walks with a push toy/walker thing-a-ma-jig --- falls about every fifth or sixth step, but walking.  She is having some major separation anxiety issues.  I think that will soon just have to resolve itself because she starts day care for the first time ever on August 19th.  Let's pray that it resolves itself before then.  Just in case it doesn't, I have taken the day off to cry.

I'm putting more bows in her hair and she's tolerating them.  That makes me smile.

She slept great for the first 7ish months of her life.  Now don't get me wrong, she's still a fairly good sleeper today (especially when you compare her to her brother at this age), but she likes to wake up at either 11:45 pm or 4:45 am.  We all go right back to sleep though with her nestled in between us in bed

I can't believe it's going by this quickly.  I've already been all over pinterest and have already started brainstorming, oh who am I kidding, planning her first birthday party.  And that definitely makes me want to cry.

One of my most favorite things about Hadley is just how observant she is.  I don't know if it's just a girl thing or her personality, but when I'm holding her sometimes she will intentionally turn to look at me.  Then she will look at me for a minute or two like she's studying my face, then she will reach out and touch softly touch my cheek, my hair, or my nose.   She also gets a kick out of when I put my sunglasses on.  She looks at me and starts laughing. 
Love her so much!