Wednesday, December 16, 2009

I miss blogging.

The boys are laying next to each other watching Dora the Explorer, so I thought, now would be a good time to blog. I don't think I can handle one more minute of Dora! I guess I'll give you an update on the boys. They are doing great and really starting to love being brothers. Noah watches Joe's every move and laughs at him all the time. Joe loves to rub Noah's head, help me change his diapers, bring him toys, and take his pacie in and out of his mouth. We have a video monitor in Noah's room, so when Joe notices that he is up from a nap, he runs to his door, opens it, and tries to hop in his crib with him. Noah is always glad to see him! Joe has also started doing this thing when Noah is laying on the floor... he thinks it's a great game, i guess, to step over Noah, over and over, and it scares me to death.
Noah is sitting up well and getting ready to crawl. I can't believe I'm about to have two mobile little boys. Noah is also "talking" non stop. John is excited because he has started the "dadadadadadaaaa". ( But just so you all know, he has been saying "mamamama" for a while now (: ...but usually when he's upset.) Every thing he touches goes straight to his mouth. He also rolls across the floor like a madman. He loves his jumperoo and exersaucer, and he is so very happy almost all the time. He flirts with strangers and smiles all day long. I LOVE his smile. It's as big as his face. He loves to laugh and be tickled. He gives "head bumps", which is a sign of affection in our family. If you ask him to give you a head bump, he gently leans his forehead forward until it touches yours. So sweet. And most importantly, he is very healthy. We had his 6 month check up not long ago, and i don't remember the numbers, but he was in the 97th percentile for height and 60th percentile for weight. He has the same percentages that Joe did, which shocks me, because Noah is such a chunky monkey compared to Joe at that age.
Joe is loving life. He plays plays plays all day long. (which results in a 3 hour nap every day. never fails. i love it!) As i type this he is playing with legos. He spends a lot of time at the bathroom sink on his stool playing with toys in the water and brushing his teeth. He loves hide and seek and running around the house. He likes drawing and especially erasing on his chalk board. He would decorate his entire body with stickers if you let him. He loves loves loves helping me cook. (we may have a chef on our hands??) He would live off of pepperonis if he could. He jumps like a pro and he loves dancing with Yo Gabba Gabba. He is still so affectionate, curious, full of energy, and oh so sweet.
Oh, and he almost broke his thumb. Our first emergency. After church 2 Sundays ago (which happened to be Noah's dedication) we went out to lunch with family. While we were waiting on our table, my dad was holding Joe by the door. Dad went to open the door for someone coming in, and while dad was opening the door, Joe snuck his thumb right in where the hinges are. And it was a big door! I have never seen a thumb look like Joe's did. It looked completely smushed. (is that a word?) So, John and I quickly left, leaving Noah with my parents, and took him to Children's South. We also picked up a happy meal for Joe since he hadn't eaten. By the time we got there, he wasn't crying anymore, his thumb was filling out, he was enjoying his happy meal, and miraculously, he started using his thumb. So, instead of waiting for hours, we decided to go home, and keep an eye on. He is back to normal, thank you Lord. It was swollen for a day, but he used it well, moved it well. So we figured God healed his little thumb. When it first happened, there was no doubt in my mind that it was broken. My poor Dad, though. It wasn't his fault at all...just our curious little boy's, but I know he felt awful.
Well, we are gearing up for Christmas! We have had a couple of parties and will have a couple of more. Christmas shopping is just about complete, so we are just going to enjoy each other, enjoy family and friends, and make sure we remember the importance of this holiday. Thank you Lord for sending your son, to be born on this earth, knowing that he would be a sacrifice for me, for all of us, so that we can spend eternity with you.
Merry Christmas!

P.S. I promise I'm going to work on some pictures!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Win A Free Shampoo, Cut, & Style!

Hello everyone! Thought you guys might like a chance to win a free shampoo, cut, and style from 'N Vogue! All you have to do is post a comment on THIS blog post and your name will be entered for a chance to win! Say anything- just a "hi" will do. Easy as pie. I don't know about you, but free is great right now! You have until this afternoon to submit a comment. So, head on over there!
It will be the best hair cut of your life...i'm just sayin'. :) Have a great weekend!

For some odd reason my links are not working. Go to and scroll down to the third post titled "Holiday Hair + Give Away!!!" Comment on that post and you can win! If you are curious, 'N Vogue's website is

Friday, December 4, 2009

Win a Super Great Prize!!

M.I.A, I know! I still haven't uploaded pictures to the computer, so I have been putting off blogging. I am posting because I would LOVE for you to head over to N Vogue's Blog, read the most current post, post any kind of comment, and you will have a chance to win an awesome $40 prize! Keep checking the site, because there will be MANY give- away posts. Next week we will be giving away a free hair service with our super fabulous hair artists.
P.S. You don't have to live in Birmingham to win today's prize.

Hope you all are having a great week! John and I are going to Chris Tomlin's Glory In the Highest Christmas concert tonight. YAY for Tomlin and YAY for a date! I'm so excited that Christmas is just around the favorite time of year!

Also, I would love to pray for you. If you have anything I can pray for you about, please comment, or email me @ .

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

N Vogue Blog

Oh yeah... so I get the awesome opportunity to blog for 'N Vogue. It is my mom's salon/spa/boutique...and a place of ministry. It's a place I believe in, because Jesus's love is shown there, and women (and men) feel good about themselves, and they feel at home. It's different than any salon or spa I have ever been to. Real people. Honest people. Good...even Great people. My mom is on a mission... to change the world of beauty. It's so exciting. It's so exciting to see how many lives have been touch by that place. I'm glad...ecstatic, really to support it. You should too!
Anyways, I would love for you to follow the blog. Click HERE to visit! You can also follow 'N Vogue on facebook and twitter. There will be lots of updates posted. Don't miss out on some great opportunities!

I know I know...

I promised a new post- an update on life. And it hasn't happened. There is so much to catch you up on that it is overwhelming. Joe turned 2 (can you believe it?!?) on Saturday. It was a blast. Bouncy House and all. There are pictures to prove it... as soon as I find the energy to find the camera and all the necessary parts to plug it in to the computer and upload a gazillian photos.
The boys are doing great. They are healthy, growing, and changing daily. They have a hysterical relationship right now. I will elaborate later. For now I am tired, exhausted really. I just wanted to say...DONT GIVE UP ON ME!!! I am totally aware that I have been a terrible Blogger the last month. I don't mean to be. I hope you all are doing well. Crazy that the holidays are just around the corner, huh?!? I'm hoping to post a lot of pictures this check back!
Take care!

Friday, October 30, 2009's been a while!

I apologize for my blogging hiatus! I have no excuses. I'm excited to share some pictures soon though, so check back at the beginning of the week! I hope you are gearing up for a fantastic Halloween. I'm unfortunately sick, but hoping this bad cold won't keep me from having a great time with the boys. Joe's second Halloween and Noah's first. Joe is going to be Handy Manny and Noah is going to be a Zebra -very random i know! Joe loves him some Handy Manny!
We'll be spending Halloween at church at the "Trunk or Treat". Should be a great time and a great place for the boys to do their trick or treat-ing. We will take lots of pictures!
I'm going to leave the computer and spend some time with my family (so glad it's Friday by the way!). I have quite a few things to catch you up on, so like i said, check back soon!
Thanks for keeping up with us even though I haven't done a great job lately keeping you up to date!
Have a great weekend!!!!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

My 4 Month Old!

Noah was 4 months old on the 28th (which was also my momma's bday!). He had his 4 month check up yesterday. He weighed 15lbs 9 oz (75th percentile) and was in the 90th percentile for height. I can't remember off of the top of my head what his exact length was... but I do remember that he was longer than 2 feet. I had a great conversation with our pediatrician about the swine flu. The media makes such a big deal about it so I had some questions for him. He basically said that it is nothing compared to the normal seasonal flu. He said the severity of the swine flu is much less than the normal seasonal flu that we see and that it is ridiculous what the media is making it out to be. Apparently people, like drug companies, are making a lot of money off of it. He said that the only medical personnel who are able to go on the news to make statements about this flu are infectious disease doctors, who only see the very small percent of patients with the swine flu who are severely ill and are, most of the time, also dealing with other illnesses. He said that a very large majority of patients he has seen with the swine flu get better without any medication and the symptoms have not been nearly as severe as the seasonal flu. He said that the worst thing he has seen from the swine flu was that in two children it led to an ear infection. Needless to say, he took away most of the worries that I had for sure.
Anyways, back to Noah! He looked great and is very healthy. He had 4 shots and his feelings were so hurt, but he got over it pretty quickly. 5 minutes later he was talking to and laughing at his toy giraffe (aka Raffy). Noah is such a sweet baby and has the biggest personality already. A 4 month old has never made me laugh the way he does. He is very personable and he never meets a stranger. ( I think this is a good thing and a bad thing! ) He is "talking" a lot, laughing a lot, putting everything in his mouth, holding his head up well, has rolled over a handful of times, and makes the "ma ma" sound when he cries. It kills me. I know he isn't really saying my name, but to hear "ma ma" when he is so upset breaks my heart. He is a strong boy... he loves tummy time and can easily lift his chest off of the ground now by pushing up with his arms. I have started carrying him on my hip because his neck and core are now strong enough.
He is sweet, sweet, sweet. He loves to cuddle and grab my face. I'm sad that this stage won't last forever. But, I can't wait to see the boy and man he will become. He is really taking an interest in Joe. He loves to watch his every move and they both get so tickled at each other. It's so sweet to see them make each other laugh. He also gets upset when he sees big brother upset. I have a feeling that Noah is going to be very sensitive.
Noah is so very special and it is so awesome to know that the Lord has GREAT plans for him.
I promise promise promise to upload some recent pictures of him. Hold me to it!! Both boys are to go!

Friday, September 25, 2009

love is in the air...

Long time no blog.
I had a busy few days and then I think I purposely put off blogging because I felt guilty for waiting so long to blog which made my blogging hiatus last even longer. whew.
Anywhoo, Wednesday was mine and John's third anniversary. I feel like we have been married longer, having two children and all. Our life has been a whirlwind to date. But boy do I love my husband. I love him more and more every day. He is my best friend and I feel so blessed that I get to share my life with him everyday. He is an amazing man after God's heart and that makes him the best husband and daddy. Joe, Noah, and I are blessed blessed blessed. Thank you, Jesus for John.
We get to celebrate at Ross Bridge tomorrow/tomorrow night. My parents are so sweetly keeping the boys at our house so we can have a night away.
Anyways, I love you, John! Haven't we come a long way?!? (Pre-marriage photos for your enjoyment)

Thursday, September 3, 2009

i should probably post :)

It has been a while. Honestly, not much has been going on. Actually, a lot has been going on, just nothing all that interesting. I feel like I have been busy busy busy, but it's just the day to day things that have been keeping me that way. My camera is still could I forget to charge it day after day after day?!? Babies. That is my answer. Both of them have been sick...AGAIN. Sickness makes for really needy children, both needy at the same time...I am tired :(
(P.S. Forgive me if I haven't called you in a while...I feel like I havent done a great job of keeping in touch the last couple of weeks. I have taken every small break I have had to rest.) Praise the Lord we are heading to the beach on Tuesday! This will be a MUCH needed vacay. I'm so excited about it!!!! Hopefully the boys will be well by the time we go. I'm so thankful for the extra family hands that will be there.
I must give a shout out to my niece Coco :) (John's brother, Rusty and sister-in-law Lisa's, little girl) It is her second Bday today! Joe is only 2.5 months behind. I can't believe how fast they have grown. The last two years have flooooown by! Coco is the cutest little girl you will ever see and I so wish we could see her more often. (She is in Chicago) We sent her a play doh play set and a book. We got to see a picture of her playing with the play doh this morning. So fun!
Joe hasn't experienced Play Doh yet... I think he would probably still try to eat it, especially since he is teething again. Yes, sickness and teething...YUCK! Poor guy still has quite a few teeth to go. (He didn't get his first one until he was 13 months old) He has most of his top teeth, and just two on the bottom (not counting molars) I think he is cutting 3 or 4 right now. :( He is a tough boy though, and is hanging in there the best he can.
I don't remember if I told you guys about his huge card board house that we got from Costco, but he is really having fun with it. I will have to post some pictures.
Noah is BIG. He is wearing a lot of size 6 month and 6-9 month clothing, and even some 9 month onesies. He just turned 3 months. He is such a fun baby already. I can tell that he is going to have a really big personality. (which scares me, because I thought Joe was going to be super laid back and calm...haha boy was I wrong! Does this mean that Noah is going to be twice as crazy as his big brother?!?) He smiles all the time and when I say smile, I mean his whole entire face turns into one big smile. You can't help but smile back. He jibber jabbers all day long and is loving sitting in his Bumbo seat now. He also loves tummy time. I can tell he is going to love him some blankies. He loves to play with blankets and snuggle with them when he is sleepy. He is so sweet and so fun.
Well, I am going to tend to dinner... I made up a broccoli chicken and cheesy rice casserole topped with crushed jalapeno cheddar chips. Yummmy. Asparagus and salad to go with. (I know I said I'm not a casserole girl... I'm still not...I just thought I would try to be creative with what little I have in the house...and I used healthy, natural, low fat ingredients to do it!..ok, besides the handful of crushed chips ;) )
Can't wait for some Alabama football Saturday! Roll Tide!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

weekend fun

It's been a great weekend for us so far.  Last night we had a chick flick night at the church with the ladies.  I brought a few movies to choose from and we ended up picking Diary of A Mad Black Woman.  Love it.  Some of us brought delicious salads and others brought delicious desserts.  It was a great time fellowshipping with other women from church.  Afterwards, some of us went to Buffalo Wild Wings to hang out a little more, so I didn't get home until 11:30 or so.  It's been a while since I have been out that late! We had a great time watching karaoke.  I didn't partake... non of us did.  I sing often at church, in front of people, by myself...  but i, for some odd reason, have a fear of karaoke.  Give me a million bucks and i'll do it!  I love the women at elevation!  This morning we all slept in.  Noah woke up around 8, so that's when John and I got up (8 is sleeping in for us these days.) and Joe woke up a little after 9!  I think this first week of school wore him out!  It's funny to think that two days for four hours each day, can wear him out like that.  Or maybe, just maybe, he has decided he likes to sleep that long.  I can't complain though.  He usually wakes up around 7:45 or 8 which is great.  Especially when he goes down at 7:30.  We took it easy for about an hour this morning, and then we headed to the Helena outdoor Market.  They have one every saturday from 8-12.  We had a great time there.  I made one delicious purchase from Nana's Herbs.  I bought a beautiful glass jar of redwine vinaigrette infused with Nana's italian herbs and garlic.  I had to taste it as soon as i got home.  YUMMO! You should visit her website!!  Click HERE.  There is a park right behind the market so we played there for a while and when we got hungry we went to The Depot in Helena for lunch.  I got a Philly Cheesesteak Sandwhich.  Oh so good.  I've decided that on the weekends I will allow myself to eat whatever i want...@ meal times....i don't eat all day long :).  We got home and gave Joe a bath and fed Noah, and now both of the boys are asleep.  John just went to see a movie with a couple of friends.  He will be back in a couple of hours and we will probably just hang out and relax as a family.  I think John and I are going to get Chinese take out after Joe Joe goes down tonight.  It's usually our Friday night ritual, but I was out last night, so we will do it tonight!  I hope you all are having just as great of a weekend!!!  Just think...this time, two Saturdays from now, it will be college football galore!  RRRROOOOOOOOOOLLLLL TIDE ROLL!!!!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

what's cookin

I love cooking, so I thought I would post about it more often.  We had a great super easy meal last night.  Sometimes John and I like to eat together after Joe goes down for the night because it can be a little more relaxing and almost date like :)  (and Joe is down by 7:30 so its really not very late.)  Last night i used ingredients that I had sitting around the kitchen.  It wasn't a planned ahead meal, because, well, I don't have time to plan most of the time.  So, we had baked chicken served on a mound of roasted garlic and parmesan cous cous with a side of John's slaw ( John's being the restaurant not my husband!)
For the chicken marinade...
I mixed about 2 table spoons of pesto sauce with 2 table spoons of roasted garlic and parmesan dressing (Publix brand)... but any olive oil based dressing with somewhat simple flavors would work... then I added a dash of salt and some red pepper flakes.  
I thawed out my chicken breasts with my zip lock bags and bowl of warm water method.  So fast and easy!  
I seasoned the chicken breasts with salt and pepper and then added the marinade and let it sit in the fridge for about 45 minutes.  You don't have to let it marinade for nearly that long especially if you are baking your chicken.  I just did it ahead of time so I could just pop it in the oven closer to eating time!
I preheated the oven to 350 and when it was ready I popped in my chicken, uncovered, for about 28 - 30 minutes.  
Meanwhile, i made my quick cooking cous cous.  It took 5 minutes to cook! super!  I had a box of roasted garlic cous cous, so i cooked it according to package directions but adding a little salt.  (Im a salt lover.) When it was finished cooking, I fluffed it up and added some grated parmesan cheese.  It was yummmmmy!
For the slaw, i just took a packaged of cole slaw mix and dressed it with John's dressing (of John's city diner in Bham)  All the grocery stores in Bham have it...not sure about other states?
It was delicious....and a great date in our living room!

Tonight..can you believe it.. dinner is already made (pretty much!)  That's right.. dinner was put together by 2:45 pm today.  All I have to do is pop it in the oven closer to dinner time.  When Joe went down for his nap this afternoon, I fed Noah and put him on the floor on his over head gym thing and went to work in the kitchen.  It was great inspiration having Top Chef on as I cooked! LOVE that show! 
 What's for dinner tonight??  I'll just call it Misty's Mexican Casserole.  (I'm not a huge casserole girl, but I'm expanding my horizons in an attempt to make cooking quicker and easier!)  I also had most of these ingredients in my kitchen... I just picked up a couple things at the grocery store this morning while Joe was at school :)  I had to make a quick shopping trip for a cous cous salad that I'm making for a ladies get together at church tomorrow night! (We're watching a chick flick and everyone is bringing a salad or dessert to share...I thought it would be a good idea to mix the healthy with the deliciously unhealthy :) )
Ok, so for the casserole...
Brown some ground turkey (or beef, or sautee some cut up chicken) in a pan.  Add taco seasoning and chopped green chiles.  
In a casserole dish or baking pan, place a whole tortilla on bottom (or flour or corn).  
Layer black beans, meat mixture, salsa, guacamole, and shredded cheese (or any number of other toppings you like!...olives, sour cream, rice etc) continue layering as high as you would like, and top with shredded cheese.  
Bake at 375 or so until cheese is bubbly and casserole (or mexican lasagna or whatever you want to call it!) is heated through.  
Serve with a mexican salad or chips and dip, or whatever side you'd like!  
Easy enough, right?!?

school is cool

YAAAAY!!!! Joe made it through his first week of school! (week = Tues and Thurs from 8-12) He did so well and absolutely loved it.  John and I were a little nervous how he would do.. He has only been in the church nursery for just over an hour on Sundays and his babysitters are always people he knows very well, so we werent quite sure how he would do with new teachers for four whole hours!  He didn't cry at all when John dropped him off Tuesday.  He was eager to enter his class room and play.  When we picked him up that day he was having a great time!  Today when John dropped him off, Joe ran off waving at John as if to say "Bye Dad! Get out of here! I'm good to go!"  He was having a great time again today when we picked him up.  His teachers said he is doing great, having a great time, and is well behaved.  Yay Joe!!!  I am so very proud of him.  Words can not express my emotions when I see him playing and enjoying himself at a big boy.  I was telling John today, I didnt really notice what a big boy he was until I saw him playing with other kids his age.  When i look at him, I see my little baby...but when I saw him with those other kiddos they looked like little people running around.  He really isn't a baby anymore :(   
Joe, your daddy and I are so very proud of you.  You are so sweet, fun, smart, and well behaved. We are blessed to be your parents.  You are going to do great in school for many years to come.  We pray for you every day...that you would love your teachers and the kids around you, that you would learn a lot, that you would experience Christ's love and that you would learn about Him, and that you would know how much your daddy and I love you and miss you while you are away.   You are the best, buddy!

Monday, August 17, 2009

menu planning monday...sort of...

so, i know lots of people post a menu planning monday post.  I have a hard time right now being able to think that far ahead.  instead, i'll just share with you what's for dinner tonight.  After all, I can think that far ahead :)  I love, love, love to cook and would spend hours in the kitchen if i could.  I don't follow recipes...I like to do my own thing.  But, I do get inspiration from other recipes, and I love to read cook books.  I'm on a quest to make delicious meals without spending much time in the kitchen, because I seem to have little time to cook these days.  I want to be somewhat healthy and I don't want to do the whole boxed meals because that takes the joy out of cooking for me.  Cooking is my creative outlet.  Another obstacle...going to the grocery store.  It is nearly impossible for me to take both of mine to the grocery store at the same time.  Their ages are tough ones.  So, I usually go once a week, if that, by myself when John can watch them.  So, frozen meats and fish have become my friends.  I didn't know if they would taste as good and fresh...but so far, so good.  So, I won't leave you hanging any longer...tonights meal is.....
Pan seared, then baked Alaskan salmon and whole wheat three cheese torellini in a pesto sauce.  Normally I would have a vegetable or salad with it, but I don't have them in my house right now, so we will go without!  
To make things easy, the salmon was bought frozen in fillets and the tortellini is premade found in the refrigerated section.  Also, the pesto sauce was pre made.  
If you are interested in how i plan on cooking the salmon, i will gladly inform you!  
I find that the best way to thaw fish, shrimp, and chicken is to put them in zip lock bags and then place those bags in a big bowl of warm water.  It's quick, and doesnt toughen the meat like I find that the microwave does.  Preheat your over to 375.  After thawing, heat some olive oil in a pan.  Season the salmon, both sides, with salt and whatever seasonings you prefer.  I think I am going to use greek seasoning tonight, and maybe a little garlic powder as well.  Then sear your salmon on both sides (skin side first) for a quick minute or so.   Transfer your pan to the oven for about 15 minutes or until your salmon is as well done as you like it.  From my cooking experiments, this method allows for the best flavor and tenderness.  Cook the tortellini according to package directions, then add pesto sauce and parmesan cheese.  I like to add chopped walnuts, slivered almonds, or pine nuts as well.  Dinner should be yummy, quick, and easy!  Just like I need it to be right now :)  If you have any ideas for yummy easy dinners, let me know!

woe is me

my goodness.  Joe starts "school" tomorrow.  I am so excited for him, and I know this will be great for him, but I am kinda sad.  A month ago I was looking forward to him starting school, knowing that he would have so much fun and I would have two days to actually take care of my house and get some things done...but now that school time is here, I don't want him to go!!  That's 8 hours less a week that I get to spend with my precious Joe Joe.  I bought him a little back pack at Target yesterday, and I got him a few new clothes.  He is a size 2T now.  Big Boy!!!  So, he is ready to go.  He's going to school at the same church where John works, so John will be taking him to school when he goes to work.  They will have some great guy time together on those mornings.  It's also nice to know that John is in the same building as him.   What am I going to do when he goes to school 5 days a week all day long?!?  Time is flying by!  
Anyways, both of the boys have been sick the last few days.  Colds.  Thankfully no ear infections or fevers.  It's Noah's first time to be sick, and of course, he is only sick because Joe passed on his germs.  Poor guy.  He has been a trooper through all the snot and stuffiness.  I think he is feeling much better today, though.  I hate when they don't feel well.  
Despite the colds, our family had a great weekend!  John and I got to go on a date with another couple Saturday night.  We had a BLAST!  We love Sara Beth and Gabe.  My parents watched the boys at our house.  Everyone had a great time except for Noah.  He wasnt feeling all that well.  Poor guy.  He got lots of love from his Honey and Pops though, and I'm sure that made him feel a lot better.  John and I were supposed to work in the nursery yesterday at church, but both of the boys were sick and i didnt feel too well either, so I stayed home with the boys and John went and ended up running the computer because something came up for the guy that was supposed to run it.  I'm sad that we missed church, but no need to spread germs!  
John had a very busy week last week...working his normal job at Briarwood, but also working on a few freelance projects.  I am so proud of him and his talent and his heart for ministry.  If you haven't seen his website, you should check it out.  CLICK HERE  So I think he really appreciated the weekend.  He has another busy week again this week with more freelance work.
I'm going to take some pictures of the boys this week as soon as I remember to charge the camera! :)  I'll post them when I do.  Hope you all have a great week!!  

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Family Lake Trip 2009

We went to the lake with my entire family a couple of weekends ago.  Most of my family lives around Birmingham and we get to see each other a good bit, but I have an Aunt that lives in Colorado and she has 4 kids (adults now!), so it was so awesome to get to spend time with them for a few days.  We had so much fun together.  As you can see, there are a lot of us!  We swam in the pool and the lake, played on floats, jumped off the top deck of the dock, went down the water slide, got in the hot tub, ate a lot, hung out, played in the game room (super awesome i must say!), relaxed, watched an air show (definitely thought the pilots were going to die), and enjoyed each others company.  We also celebrated my grandmother's birthday...4 times.  We had a cake with every dinner.  What an awesome way to celebrate her, with the whole family, away together.  Joe and Noah had a blast.  Most importantly, Joe didn't mind wearing his super cool life jacket. :)  He had so much fun playing with his older cousins, especially Maggie.  She's 6 and super fun (and the best frog catcher ever!) John had to come a day late because of work, and I took the boys on an hour and a half journey to a place I had never been before all by myself.  I was quite proud.  Well, here are some pictures for you to enjoy.  Not quite in order.

Joe playing in a grocery buggy.  Of course he didn't play shop with it or push it around...he did things the Joe way and climbed in it. 
He found a great cubby hole to play in.  Can you find him?!
Yep, there he is!
Joe had lots of fun with his Pops! I believe my dad was wearing my grandmothers sun hat here.  Haha
Noah was held, fed, and loved on by lots of family.  He loved it!
Maggie and her frog prince.

Where lots of eatin' took place....
Playing guitar hero on the wii...
The game room!

My grandmother (Bibby) playing a game
My Mom on the motorcycle
As you can see we had so much fun... and now for more lake pictures...

More Lake!

The House....Stunning.  It held 32 of us and 2 babies.
Joe playing with Honey in the lake.
The dock.  Complete with a water slide.
Joe playing with Aunt Wanda and my mom.

Joe and Daddy kayaking.

Family having fun in the lake!

The Schluchters :)

The Schluchters and the Teate's.
My big wonderful family.  I love them. Funny pic.
Serious and sweet.
We had a great time! The boys did awesome.  Joe slept great, Noah even slept through the night.  They were loved on by 32 people.  Can't get any better than that!  I love my family.  We are so blessed to have a huge family where everyone gets a long and has so much fun together. 

There are more pictures in an album on my facebook page.  Check them out! 

Friday, July 31, 2009


Joe can be a pretty picky eater.  There is not one vegetable that he particularly likes.  But, I have a solution.  What toddler/kid doesn't like cheesy quesadillas?  Take a whole wheat tortilla, add your choice of shredded cheese and throw in any kind of chopped vegetable that you please.  Add meat and/or beans if you choose, too!  I've added spinach, corn, carrots, tomato, avocado, green beans, chicken, beef, bell peppers, black beans etc.  Cook it on both sides in a  sauté  pan until the cheese is melted and you are good to go.  (I usually use a little bit of olive oil, but butter or cooking spray would work, too!) I've also made a fruity quesadilla (because he doesn't always like fruit, either.)  I spread some cream cheese on the whole wheat tortilla and add any chopped fruit you like.  Joe likes honey in his, too.  Quesadillas are great ways to hide healthy food!  
If you have any ideas for me in my endeavor to get healthy foods into Joe's little tummy, let me know!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

let me know!

Just curious.  Who reads my blog??  All I want is to know that I am not writing to myself :)  Do I have any friends in the blog world?? Also, do you have a blog? I would love to read it!    Leave me a comment! 

adventures in time out

Joe has been a pretty well behaved toddler thus far.  However, the terrible twos are beginning to make an appearance.  Joe is beginning to push boundaries throw tantrums, which i know is all a part of their healthy development.  Anyways, now and then he needs to be reprimanded for his naughty behavior.  I have decided not to spank, at least not at this point.  He has gotten little pops on the hand or leg a few times, and it doesn't work for him or me.  He thinks its funny or he thinks that since I have popped him, it would be a fun game to try and pop mommy right back.  So, we have begun using time out as a punishment and after a couple of days of trying this, it has really begun to work.  He is understanding the whole cause and effect thing of his actions.  I didn't think he would understand that he had to stay put in his time out spot, but after a couple of times he has gotten the hang of it.  I'm so proud of him and so glad this is working.  I know people have different views on spanking, but i would much rather not have to inflict pain on my child as a means for punishment.  If time out stops working, maybe we will re evaluate...who knows?  
I still havent gotten pictures from the lake onto the computer, but as soon as i do, you will see them!  I miss being with all of my family already.
Tonight, I am super excited about a charity event that John and I get to go to.  Leanne and Taylor are watching the boys for us...Joe loves them so much.  The event benefits Ovarian cancer research.  It's on top of the Redmont Hotel downtown and there will be a band, silent auction and tons of great food from Birmingham's best restaurants.  N Vogue is one of the partners in putting the event together.  There is even supposed to be some celebrity appearances.  It should be a fun time for a great cause.  It's always fun to spend some one on one time with john, too. :)  
Hope you all are having a great Thursday!  It's almost the weekend! Yaaaaay! 

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Celebrations and Doctors

Yesterday was my grandmother's (Bibby) birthday!!  All the girls in the fam had a great time celebrating over dinner and the bachelorette at my Aunt Amy's house.  We had lots of laughs and even some tears (bc of the bachelorette of course).  I love my family and I love celebrating different occasions with them.  Noah went with me because John had a meeting at church and Joe spent the night with my parents last night, so my dad kept him while mom was partying with us.  Joe had a great time with his grandparents like always!  
Noah had his 2 month check up this morning.  He is one big boy apparently.  He weighed in at 12 lbs and 14 oz (90th percentile) and he measured 23 1/2 in long (95th percentile).  Dr. Hamm said he is pretty much the biggest boy in his class.  Noah had 2 shots, which made him pretty mad, but he got over it pretty quickly.  What a tough guy!  I'm so thankful and blessed to have two very healthy boys.  I praise the Lord for guarding their little bodies from illness and injuries.  
Last but not least, I just want to say how proud I am of my sister.  She graduates today and will soon be entering the dental world.  She is going to make an awesome dentist assistant.  She has worked so hard and made great grades in this program (is this really my sister i am talking about?!?!?) Just kidding, Ash.  I love you and am so very very proud of you and what you have accomplished.  WAY TO GO!!!!
P.S.  I am working on getting pictures from the lake onto the computer.  I'll be posting all about it soon.  With 32 people in the most fun lake house ever,  you can imagine that it was AWESOME!!! 

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

weekend, hair cuts, and vacation!

We had a great weekend! It was a little different than usual...  we didn't have John's undivided attention all weekend :(  He had some friends ( Coach and Tim) come down from St. Louis to visit for a day and a half.  John had a great time fellowshipping with them.  Coach was John's mentor and basketball coach in highschool.  He mentored John and two other guys, Tim and Vance during their high school years.  For those of you who don't know, John grew up in St Louis.  Vance lives in Birmingham also, so Coach and Tim came down to hang out, eat, and play golf with the Bham guys.  So, Saturday, I took the boys over to my moms and we all went to Star Lake in Hoover to walk.  Since we burned a few calories, we ended up at Johnny Rockets and I downed a plate of chili cheese fries.  We had a great time! (Besides that fact that Noah spit up all over his out fit and I had forgotten to pack an extra....ewwww!)  Joe loved seeing all the ducks and geese at the lake, and he certainly enjoyed his cheese burger and ice cream at Johnny Rockets.  We went back to Mom and Dad's to feed Noah before we needed to head home for Joe's nap.  While Mom and I fed Noah, Joe went outside and helped my dad pick up the yard. 
I sang at church Sunday, and it wasnt John's week to run the computer, so he stayed home with the boys while I went to church early and they met me for the service.  It's so great that John can get the boys up and going on his own, and on top of being able, I think he loves to do it.  I totally don't remember what we did for the rest of the day on Sunday.  How horrible is that? I think we probably just chilled out together.  Anyways, today Joe had his 4th hair cut and he did AWESOME!  I'm so thankful that my mom owns N Vogue because everyone there knows us well and they all had a great time entertaining Joe, which made the hair cut go smoothly.  He looks adorable.  I havent taken any pictures of him yet, but I will soon!
On to vacation! I am packing up the boys and meeting my mom's entire side of the family at the lake tomorrow! Thats a whole lotta people, folks!  John is going to head that way after work on Friday.  We will come home Saturday night because John and I both have things to do at church on Sunday.  We are so excited to go! It's going to be a blast.  It will be the first time I have seen my Colorado cousins this year, and may be the only time....not sure yet.  Joe is going to have so much fun...mostly at the pool, but i'm sure he will love the boat, too!  I love seeing my boys with the family.  We are so blessed to have family that love and care for them so much.  Everyone is such a huge help, and not because they are trying to help, but simply because they love them and want to be with them.  I'll post pictures of the lake when we get back!  Hope you all have a great weekend!
Star Lake
Sweet Noah chilling in the back of the double stroller
Joe helping Pops in the yard
My beautiful baby
Me and Noah

Friday, July 17, 2009

Kicks and Giggles

What a funny boy he is! 
P.S. Look a few posts down for the beach post!!!

Noah Russell, my sweet 2nd born

Let me just tell you that my 7 week old perfect baby boy slept through the night last night! From 10:45- 7:30 this morning.  Yessss!

Thursday, July 16, 2009


Well, for some reason, blogger is being soooo slow uploading my pictures.  So, i'm going to try again later.  However, i just uploaded three new photo albums to facebook, so you should head on over there and check them.  Lots of pictures of the boys and the beach!  Click HERE and it should take you straight to my profile.  Hope you all are having a fabulous week.  I am still sick...very slowly recovering.  Joe is pretty much back to normal, though. Praise the Lord! He is napping right now (hallelujah! 3 - 3.5 hrs of rest for me!) and Noah is asleep, too.  They are both doing well.  Joe is starting to love his little brother.  He gives him lots and lots of slobbery kisses.  I eventually have to pull him away because he would kiss him forever.  Noah doesn't seem to mind, but if Joe gets close to his mouth, Noah starts licking him and Joe thinks its soooo funny. 
While you go check out my photos, I am going to contemplate whether or not I should do Tae Bo.  Should I conserve all of my energy for fighting off this sickness??  

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

in progress

Beach post in progress. Thanks for your patience :)

The Beach!!!

Oh, the beach! I must say that the beach was terrific.  Even with two baby boys in tow, it was awesome.  We drove down on a Wed night ( i don't remember the date... i don't remember much of anything these days, actually).  We thought we would be smart and drive down after John got off of work, because, surely, Joe would fall asleep on the way down and we would arrive and simply be able to put him in the crib for a good nights sleep. WRONG! Joe did great (thanks to our new fantastic DVD player and Handy Manny DVD) but he never slept.  Nope.  Little man never fell asleep.  He got a little grumpy towards the end, but not too bad, and wouldn't ya know that when we arrived he would get a surge of energy and stay awake playing with our family, who all stayed awake to kindly help us unpack our stuffed to the max pathfinder. (i realize that was a run- on sentence :) )  Yes, we arrived around 11:30 with a wide- eyed Joe who was ready to explore the huge house and play with his cousins, aunts, uncles, granparents, and great grand mother.  By the way, Noah did great on the way down.  We stopped once to feed him and change him, which only took about 30 minutes.  (And for those of you wondering, John did indeed get his Steak N Shake fix on the way down...and back home! For those of you not wondering, you must know that John LOVES him some Steak N Shake and desperately wishes Birmingham had one.) By 1:30 we were all asleep...i think.  Joe slept in a nice crib in my parents room, and Noah slept with us in the loft room in his pack n play.  We didnt want Noah waking Joe up during his 3 a.m. feeding!  The next 3 days were spent at the beach, at the pool, and in the house, which was super nice by the way.  We ate great food and enjoyed the family.  Everyone helped us with the boys so much.  Especially my parents and my grandmother. And boy did Joe have a blast with his second cousin Maggie.  She is six...and the funniest six year old I have ever come across.  He loves playing with her, chasing her, and unfortunately, playfully biting her.  He does it because he gets a shrieks and laughs from her. 
Here comes the funniest story of the beach trip.  The last couple of times Maggie has been over to our house, bit her on the boob.  Of course he doesnt know what that is yet, and he didnt purposely bite her there, but it happened. She even made up a hilarious song about it.  Anyways, before John, the boys, and I got to the beach, my mom saw a padded hot pink bra at the  target down there that was just her size.  (I don't know what the world is coming to....making padded bras that fit six year olds!!) Once we got there, she wore that padded bra as a shield from Joe's teeth.  Sooo funny.  
John and I got to go out one afternoon, and we also got an evening date.  It was awesome having a few days away from the norm and craziness of life.  
The boys did great while we were there.  Noah ate well, slept well (not quite as well as at home, but not bad), and enjoyed being passed around and kissed on for a few days. Noah stayed beach or pool for tiny man.  Joe on the other hand, had a blast at both!  He loved the sand and the fact the he had wide open spaces to run and explore.  He was covered in sand from the moment we put him down in it.  The water was pretty rough, so when we took him out in it, he eventually would get splashed in the face, and that, he did not like at all.  But, he loved playing along the shore line, splashing in the water as it came in and out.  He and Pops (my dad) did that together a lot.  We spent a good amount of time at the pool too.  It was a nice break from the sand!  Joe didn't love his floaty as much as he did last year, so everyone took turns holding him in the water.  There were many pools in the community that we stayed in, and one had a kiddy pool which he really enjoyed.  He had fun playing with other kids' toys while they enjoyed his.  The Carillon community is awesome by the way.  It's like a little town.  It's a gated community between Seaside and Panama City.  It has its own general store, restaurants, coffee shops, gym, etc.  There are pools and playgrounds and events during the afternoons and evenings. Everyone rides golf carts around.  We were there on the 4th of July and that morning they had a golf cart parade around the community.  People decorated their carts in red, white, and blue and paraded around.  None of my family was up early enough to decorate our golf cart, so we didnt participate, but we line up on our big balcony with our flags and coffee and waved at everyone in the parade.  Joe was so cute running back and forth along the balcony waving his flags in the air to the patriotic music playing in the parade.  I think John was sleeping in, so he missed it.  He had Noah duty the night before.  Also, they had bands playing in the town square ( i dont remember what the area was really called...but town square sounds good!) bar-b-que cooking, and big blow up water slides.  Joe looooved them.  He was too small to go by himself of course, so John got to take him down the slide quite a few times.  They also had a huge blow up Disney bouncy house and Joe loved that too.  He was the youngest in there, but you would never know.  He did a great job jumping around.  He had lots of firsts while we were at the beach.  He loved riding in the golf cart also.  That night my uncle Jimbo cooked some DELICIOUS ribs.  Seriously, the best I have ever had...and I am picky about ribs.  There was a fireworks show on the beach, but it was after Joe's bedtime. So, the family went out on the beach and John and I took Noah on the balcony and we watched from there. Sadly, we left the next day.  We had more Steak 'N Shake on the way home.  Noah did great and Joe did okay.  He had a low grade fever that I thought was from cutting teeth (which he was doing) but the next day he woke up with a cold.  (He is still getting over it) He had one melt down, but he got over it, and we made it home quicker than we made it down there.  We can't wait to go again in September!  Maybe Noah will make it to the pool this time :)  
Now, I'll leave you with some pictures.
Playing in the sand.

running from daddy
looking out to sea
waiting for the waves to get his feet
joe LOVED roaming freely

Touching the water

Joe loves Daddy

...and Pops!
Running in the courtyard by the pool.
Waterslide Time!