Thursday, December 31, 2009

Skiing and Snow in Steamboat

Seth, Benjamin and I spent the week before Christmas in snowy Steamboat, Colorado on a family vacation! We had a wonderful time - Benjamin amazes me each day with his ability to "go with the flow" of things...he was his happy, bubbly, bouncing self throughout the trip (including traveling - with a three hour layover in Denver). We arrived in Steamboat late Tuesday afternoon and after settling in at our hotel (The Inn at Steamboat - the staff was amazingly accomodating and the suite we had was very nice), we went downtown to get dinner. I loved the shops, restaurants, snow, chill in the air - everything...and that is saying alot, because I am not a cold-weather vacation girl (put me on a beach with a book any day). We went skiing the next two days (Benjamin in our heavy duty backpack - thanks Grandpa Stan)...and....Ben LOVED it!! He was laughing, kicking his legs, babbling, etc... the whole way down the mountain. All of the locals thought he was the cutest ("right on!" they would tell us when they learned we had brought him skiing) baby in his new puppy dog hat. We went into town each night for dinner and a little shopping; we had no schedule, which I really enjoyed, and Ben was ok with that. Just a random thought here -> Ben's hair was straight as a board the whole time there (no humidity), but it curled up as soon as we got back in LC.


The last two days we played in the snow, did some more shopping and just hung out until we had to catch our plane.


On the way home, we had a little rumble (small disagreement) with some Penn State fans at an airport restaurant in Denver (Geaux Tigers!), and Ben woke up scared twice on our late night flight back into Houston...but all in all, we had a great time! Things could not have been better, except for a Saints win. We spent Saturday night in Houston at the Reiser's house and drove home on Sunday. It feels good to be back home, but I sure do miss seeing white on the ground and in the trees....I am dreaming of a white Christmas!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Rub A Dub, Dub...3 Kids in a Tub

Three cousins in the bath...the water was green (Virginia's pick) b/c of the fizzy bath tablets
Virginia the duck
Ben the bear
Owen the frog
Virginia and Owen
group Christmas shot

We celebrated Christmas with Emily, Jason, my mom and the kids on Saturday...The kids always have such a good time playing together! They danced, sang, rolled balls around the room, "traded" toys, and pushed Owen around in Benjamin's new Radio Flyer coupe. After some yummy gumbo and presents (Seth and Jason got each other the exact same thing - it was very funny), we got a group shot in their matching t-shirts...then it was off to the bathtub for a bath (read more playing). Then all the kids played with Benjamin's trains and jumped on his bed before it was time for the Turner family to leave. Today we watched the Saints game (Who Dat?!) with them at Jason's house. We love spending time with Em, Jason and the kids - we are very blessed to have them close enough to visit on a regular basis.

Monday, December 21, 2009

To Benjamin on Your First Birthday...

2 days old
1 month
2 months
3 months
4 months
5 months
6 months
7 months
8 months
9 months
10 months
11 months
1 YEAR OLD!!!

Dear Benjamin,

It is hard to imagine that it has been a full year since the night you were born. What a joyful, wonderful year!!! We can remember holding you in the hospital and thinking to ourselves, "we get to bring him home!" Once we got home, it took us almost ten minutes to change your diaper - we were so careful because you were so little, little and so were the buttons on your outfit! We loved to read "On the Night You Were Born" and imagine you watching the polar bears sleeping at the zoo and thinking that they had been dancing all night for YOU!!!
We loved you more than anything else since the moment we laid eyes on you (and before that even, when you were in mommy's stomach). You have grown up so quickly, amazing us with all of your accomplishments and "firsts" - smile, coo, sitting up, rolling over, crawling, clapping, touchdown sign, standing, first steps, eating, and the list goes on and on...we are so proud! Mommy remembers sitting in the rocking chair with you one night, smelling your baby scent and feeling your hair on my lips and thinking, "there is absolutely nothing better than this feeling right now...God is so great!"
You are such a happy, easy-going baby; you are flexible and adapt to new places, people, schedules, food, anything pretty easily. You LOVE balls, balloons, puppy dogs, trains, trucks, your pacifier, and music...you always are bouncing to an imaginary song, and most mornings you sing to mommy in a wonderful high-pitch voice when you are happy. You love to play with daddy, crawling all over him and letting him throw you high into the air. You love to swim - both in the pool and in the bathtub; you love going outside, whether it be for a walk or to run errands with mommy. You are crazy about Gracie the puppy dog...and don't worry, she will warm up to you (treats are the trick, Ben). You have many little friends you play with regularly, as well as two great cousins. You are loved by family and friends - you have lots and lots of people who adore you!
As this year turns into next, we cannot wait to see what you will do, what you will say, what you will look like...You are a precious gift from God, and we are still so grateful that He let us keep you! We love you, sweet baby boy - Happy Birthday!!

Mommy and Daddy











Monday, December 14, 2009

Happy Birthday Benjamin!!!


Benjamin with his new hat rocking on his puppy dog

Baby Owen and Giannna in the ball pit

First birthday cake

Benjamin's smash cake

Cupcakes...


I wrote this post about a week ago, right after Ben's birthday party...due to (once again) technical difficulties, I didn't get a chance to post before we left for vacation. So I will be posting vacation pictures soon too.



My sweet, adorable baby boy had his first birthday party this weekend (we actually turn one on December 23rd). WE had lots of little friends and family show up - and I feel like we had a pretty smooth time (thanks to the balloons and the balls)...everyone ate, sang Happy Birthday, had cake, and then opened presents and played with the wonderful toys (my sister thinks I was brave to open presents, but I am just naive). Benjamin was too funny with his cake - he started out like most kids I have seen (the one finger in the icing method) and stuck with it for a while...then he decided he needed bigger quantities of cake and icing, so he lifted the little cake platter (thanks Aunt Malinda!) and put it up to his face so that he could bite off chunks of cake!!! Then he decided that lifting the plate was too hard, so he just stuck his head down in the cake (his cousin Virginia gave him that tip!). I loved every second of it! I also think we might have diverted a tiny disaster, because I put M&M's on his cake (keeping up with my polka dot theme, of course)...and my sister started telling me that her friend's baby choked on a gumball on her first cake and they had to give her the Heimlich...I rushed to the cake and started mining for M&M's...got them all! Thanks Em!

What a great day!! Thanks everyone for making Benjamin's first birthday party a success!!! We are headed to Colorado tomorrow morning to bring Benjamin skiing - we will be back before Christmas with lots of pictures and hopefully fun stories of Benjamin in the snow. And no stories of me and a tree (those who know my first ski story will understand). I have been trying to download the video of Ben eating his cake, but it must be too long or something...if you want it, let me know and I will email it to you.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

SURPRISE!!!

Paw-Paw blindfolded as his guests await...
First look...shock, disbelief...
touched...
Waiting for Paw-Paw Tony...

OK - To answer Kales and Maria's question...finally! This past weekend we celebrated my Paw-Paw's 80th birthday with a surprise party in Alexandria at my Aunt Duby's house. There were over 50 people there, from all stages of my grandfather's life - his hunting buddy when he was young, his teacher from grammar school, cousins, grand kids, daughters, sons, great-grand kids, etc...all with great stories and fond memories.
My family has been planning this for months now, and my Paw-Paw had no clue. It was disguised as our annual family Christmas party...to begin at 2:30 pm on Saturday. My aunt has been busy working on decorations, invitations, RSVP cards, etc... the past few weeks, and each day my Paw-Paw would call to come over and visit - she would have to tell him that she was busy, not home, etc...so that he would not see the surprises.
Finally on Saturday he got antsy...he called and said he was coming over early and would just wait for everyone to get there for the Christmas party...My aunt freaked out, so she told him that Jason (Emily's husband) got called to the hospital and was working late so the party would be pushed back to 4:30 or 5 pm. She told my Paw-Paw to come around 2:15 pm (the actual surprise party started at 2) ---pretty clever. He was not having it, though, and still wanted to come early. Our Grandma Betty (Paw-Paw's wife) was trying very hard to make excuses, errands, etc.. to keep him from going to my aunt's house. He was getting irritated and upset - we finally had to tell him that we had a surprise for him and if he came early, he would spoil it. He seemed satisfied...but I know he couldn't imagine such a surprise gathering.
When Paw-Paw showed up at the house (blindfolded), the guests were all gathered outside..we shouted, "Surprise!" and we sang"For He's a Jolly Good Fellow". He was shocked, touched, surprised, and about to cry all wrapped up into one moment. As he worked his way through the crowd greeting old friends and family, I could tell he was overwhelmed by it all. Aunt Duby and the rest of the family did a terrific job of showing Paw-Paw just how special he is.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY PAW-PAW!!! We love you so much and are so blessed to have you in our lives to add humor, wisdom, and faith.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

SNOW...and Surprise!!!

SNOW!!! Benjamin in his new snowsuit with marinara sauce on his face left over from dinner.

I had a paragraph or two typed up about this magical, snowy evening, but my computer has been acting up and has lost/erased it (twice)...so this is all you get.
video

Sunday, November 29, 2009

All I Want for Christmas is My Two Front Teeth...

OK, it's official - we have two teeth!!! They are on the bottom in the front, and if you look very closely you can see the little tips coming up.
On a different note, we went to the Christmas Tree Farm in Grant, LA today to pick out and cut down our tree. Gracie and Benjamin both had a lovely time...Ben is pointing at everything now; the trees, the dogs roaming the farm, goats, donkeys, people, etc...and Gracie was sniffing everything for him to make sure it was ok to get closer - they were a great team! Together we picked out a beautiful Leland Cypress, and I cannot wait to get it decorated!!
Can you see the two teeth??
Benjamin and Daddy examining trees
Mommy and Benjamin - we think we've found it!
Family shot minus Seth (the photographer)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Remember Nguyen Sale

Just thought I would pass along this information...Remember Nguyen (www.remembernguyen.com) is having an excellent sale this week and weekend...30% off tomorrow, 40% Thursday, and 50% Friday and the weekend of ALL items, including clearance. You could get a jon jon or a bishop dress for less than $10 in some cases. I have ordered from them before, and have been very pleased. If anyone wants to combine their order with mine to keep shipping down (free shipping for all orders over $150), let me know. I will probably order first thing Friday.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Santa!!




This weekend we brought Benjamin to Mistletoe and Moss to have Cookies with Santa. We had a very nice time - Seth and I brought our video recorder to capture Ben's first look at Santa, but as we pushed the power button and waited...nothing happened. Oh no!! You have to charge it every now and then - I think it is written somewhere on the box or instructions that we promptly discarded as soon as we opened it. Rats...we are going to miss this big event. Have no fear, Blair is here!!! We sat by Blair Moses Tadlock and her beautiful baby boy who happened to have a very nice (charged) camera. Here are the pictures of Benjamin with Santa, courtesy of Mrs. Tadlock (thanks Blair!). Benjamin was very fascinated by Santa's beard and glasses...but no smile, not even a smirk.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Playground Fun...Weeeee!!!

This weekend Emily, my mom and the kids came into town to visit. We are soo blessed - I was thinking about it in church this morning as Benjamin was struggling to get out of my grasp, Owen was smiling at his mommy, and Virginia and my mom were coloring and eating yogurt melts (hey, whatever works!) - we have three beautiful, healthy babies who are happy. Can't beat that! God is GREAT!!!
video video video

Thursday, November 12, 2009

29 and Holding....

Ben crawling through the tunnel at the park
Gianna and Ben playing in the tunnel

Yesterday I turned 29....I never really thought about age until I started to creep towards 30. I decided that the next few years, I will turn "29" again and try to hold off on thirty as long as possible. Don't tell anyone, ok?!


Anyway, I had a fabulous birthday day - I awoke to my sweet baby boy clapping his hands and hitting me on the arm trying to wake me up...at 5:30 AM!!! Seth was great -- he took Benjamin, and they brought me breakfast, coffee, flowers and a very cool card in bed (I got to sleep until 8 AM!!!). I spent the morning playing with Benjamin, then met Seth for lunch...After that, we had a play date at the park with Gianna and John Paul - so fun!! Benjamin loved the bark/mulch and watching the "bigger" kids slide and run around...it won't be long until he will be doing those same things! I worked for a few hours in the afternoon (they had a birthday party for me at work complete with cake, brownies and presents - FUN!!), then had dinner with friends last night. I also had tons of calls and emails and facebook messages of Happy Birthday! What a great, fun-filled day to turn 29!! Thanks everyone for making my day so special!!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

My Monkey!!!



Here are a few pics of Ben in his Halloween costume...

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

First Football Game, Tunica Hills and Pictures

Me, Emily and Baby Owen at Tunica Hills
Ben and his daddy on the hike
Aunt Emily tickling Benjamin
Benjamin, sleepy at the LSU game (we left at halftime)
Me and Benjamin in Death Valley
Nana, Benjamin and me, pregame
Sneak peek of Ben's pictures...so cute!

Seth, Ben and I went to Baton Rouge for the Tulane game this weekend...my mom was planning on babysitting Benjamin, but we had a few extra tickets. I objected at first to bringing Ben to the game...it is noisy, crowded, loud, late, cold, etc...but Seth was pretty firm - he wanted Ben to experience Tiger Stadium (and my mom really wanted to go to a game too!). So we bundled up and headed to the stadium. Ben LOVED it! He was clapping, making the "touchdown" with his arms and laughing. Our first big game was a success (and a win!)...Geaux Tigers!
The next day (Sunday) we went hiking in Tunica Hills at Clark Creek with Emily, Jason, the kids, my cousin T-Mark and his friend Jessica. We had two big riding backpacks (for Ben and Virginia) and a Baby Bjorn for Owen, not to mention two regular backpacks for lunch, water, etc...We were prepared for anything! The hike was lovely (if you have not been to Tunica Hills, check it out -- it is a little piece of heaven right outside of Louisiana, in Mississippi), and Virginia and Benjamin loved playing in the waterfalls (there are six on the trial we took).
Finally, I drove to Mandeville to spend a few days with mom and for Benjamin to take his 1 year old pictures (a little early, I know). We met my sister's friend, Sherie, at Fountainview Park for pictures - Ben did great, and I cannot wait to see the results! Here is a sneak peek Sherie sent me today.