Thursday, April 30, 2009


I sent out an email asking if anyone was interested in making some of these bibs for Mallory, but didn't get any response. So, I was pleasantly surprised to get these from my aunts - aren't they adorable?
I found a new shop on etsy that makes bows out of material from different Gymboree clothing lines. This outfit is one I bought before Mallory was born, but she had several different bows to match, so I was quite excited!

While I was gone...

Bryan talked about taking the kids to the Galveston County Fair while I was in Vegas, so I told him that the needed to at least take a few pics if they ended up going...

Apparently Drew had no interest in sitting up front or steering his own wheel - look at him trying to hide that smile, though!

Drew refused to try the funnel cake - not surprising, but hard to understand since he likes any form of candy! I'm sure if there had been chocolate drizzled over the top, he might have made a different decision...
At the bowling alley with Grandma and Grandpa Dinkel...

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

A few Vegas pics

The botanical gardens inside the Bellagio - it's amazing to think how much money and how many people it must take to keep everything alive and beautiful... not to mention that they change the theme several times per year.
The view from our room - we were obviously across the strip from Paris and had a pretty good view of the fountains to the left, although I think the best view is at night from the top of the Eiffel Tower.
Enjoying our dinner at Bobby Flay's Mesa Grill in Caesar's Palace
Taking in Montelago Village - it was close to 20 miles off the strip, but worth the excursion (minus the hour wait to get a taxi back to the strip!!). Of course, I enjoyed the fact that the casino was almost deserted, felt brand new, and had a $5 blackjack table.
Dinner at Canaletto's in the Venetian - we ate here and then went to Wayne Brady's show later that evening.
Kelly and Brandie also took some pics. Brandie had a timer on hers, so we did take one shot of all four of us while we were at Montelago Village. As I said, I didn't take that many and mostly took pics of us instead of the sights because I figured I'd appreciate those more in the future.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Back to life, back to reality

When I got home this evening, I got the reactions I expected from two of my three children. Brady and Drew were thrilled to see me! Mallory, however, stared at me for a full minute before she burst into tears. Apparently she got up really early this morning and wouldn't go down for a nap this afternoon, so she wasn't in the best mood. Just yesterday I was talking to her on the phone and she was so excited, so I certainly wasn't expecting that greeting! But, after two minutes or so, she calmed down and then I got lots of smiles for the rest of the evening. I took it in stride, though. Of course, I was disppointed I didn't get the big smile I expected but I tried not to take it personally...

Not surprisingly, we had a great time in Vegas. I took a handful of pics - not too many since most of what we saw wasn't new to me. Bryan also took a few pics of his adventures with the kids, so maybe tomorrow I will get around to posting some of those. It sounded like he did pretty well while I was gone, and Brady said it seemed like I wasn't gone very long - I'm sure the fact that he went to school, to the Galveston County Fair, went bowling, played minature golf, went to the park, had swimming lessons, and visited with both sets of grandparents helped keep his mind off Mommy being gone!

FYI - if you go to Vegas, I have two recommendations. Go to Napolean's in Paris and see the dueling pianos. The guys are awesome - I have seen them several times and they do not disappoint. We also saw Wayne Brady at the Venetian, and I would go back again and again. I literally cannot remember the last time I laughed SO hard. Of course, we ate a lot of good food, too - way too much to start any kind of list... For those of you wondering, I gambled a bit (not as much as I would have liked) and came home with some money - partly because I didn't gamble as much as I normally would and partly because I only lost all of my money one of the three times I sat down at a blackjack table. As expected, I lost money playing video poker, but I know going in what the outcome will be when I choose to sit down at one of those!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Say a prayer for Bryan...

I am leaving for Vegas in the morning! It won't be too bad, though, because I enlisted the help of both of sets of grandparents. I'm sure he will still be really ready for me to come home, though! I will get back Monday late afternoon/early evening. I'm taking a camera this time around, so we'll see if I actually use it... So, you probably won't hear from me until then, unless Bryan gets ambitious and blogs about his adventures with the kiddos.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Another day, another outfit

Grandma Farris put this outfit in Mallory's easter basket - who doesn't love gymboree?? I've decided to do away with the "outfit of the day" on my sidebar for a while... it's too small to really see right now, but I may try again once I decide on a new layout (who knows when that will be!). I think this is the first headband I ever bought for Mallory - here she is wearing it when she was still tiny and it didn't fit on her head yet! She's right at a month old in this pic.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Guess I'm not going to the store as planned...

Here's what you see at the moment - from the dining room...
from the playroom...


OK, so I finished Twilight and New Moon. If you've read both (and remember!), which was your favorite?

Thursday, April 16, 2009

8 months old

In the blink of an eye, I will be reading Karen's post about Kate turning eight months old, and she and Mallory will almost be the same size... crazy!! I had a very brief teary-eyed moment today thinking about my baby days and how they are numbered...

At eight months old, Mallory finally has enough hair for it to stick up in the morning. She sits up well and is getting up on her hands and knees more and more. Of course, Brady did that for a couple months before he actually started crawling! She has tried a lot of new foods this month, including the banana puffs that have always been a favorite in this household. The only table food she really gets right now is banana - I also gave her strawberry and orange, but she wasn't crazy about the texture of those, I think. I don't love this stage - I'm always a little anxious when it's time to start feeding table foods... I've been in no hurry with her, though. It's easiest for me to give her baby food and I haven't been great about introducing the sippy cup, either. We'll get there - she won't be a toddler running around with a bottle if I can help it! A couple of interesting things about Mallory at this age - she loves to watch me brush my teeth, and she has a weird little habit with her feet, which is twisting them around and around at the ankle. It's what she does instead of kicking her feet, I guess. She has also started "dancing" to the music on her toy radio and sing-along stage. She is fascinated with her brothers and the puppies, and Brady can make her giggle like no one else!

The boys at 8 months - Drew, then Brady

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

I'm free!!

So, I'm now within two pounds of my goal weight at weight watchers, which means I can attend the meetings free. That's a good thing, considering I'm still planning on continuing to go. I need to lose another 5 pounds or so to fit back into most of my old clothes, but I'm going to try for closer to 10 - we'll see what happens... It's been pretty slow going so far, which will probably get worse the lower I get so I reserve the right to change my mind about the end result! I'm going to try to be really good this week, in preparation for my trip to Vegas - we leave a week from tomorrow. I told Bryan today, one of the things I'm most looking forward to is seeing Mallory when I return. I went to Vegas with Julie when Drew was a baby, and I think that was the best part of the trip - seeing his reaction to me when I returned!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Easter Day

After a first pass through my pictures, these are my favorites...

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Candy, candy, and more candy...

is what my kids got today!! As much as I love living near both sets of grandparents, it makes for some indulgent holidays for my kids. I know both grandmas tried to not go overboard, but by the time you do two easter egg hunts and get baskets from both grandmas AND the Easter bunny, it's inevitably a lot of stuff (there was more involved than just candy). Needless to say, the boys had a great holiday and were dog-tired tonight. Mallory also enjoyed her Easter - she got many new toys that went straight into her mouth... just the way she likes it! I took many pictures, even more than usual because I actually drug out the camera manual and figured out how to put it on continuous shooting. We attempted a family pic of all five of us - Mallory didn't smile for any of them, I don't think, but I think we still got something cute. Maybe I'll be able to work a little photoshop magic and make her smile... All I know for sure is that I don't have the time or energy to work on photos tonight. Mom lent me Twilight and New Moon, so I'm going to start reading after I work on the house a little. I'm really bad about staying up too late reading when I'm into a good book, so we'll see what happens! I don't think I can read in bed, though, like I normally do because the book is so friggin' thick...

Saturday, April 11, 2009

My last post...

doesn't look like it should - the pics are lined up all nicely on the preview, but apparently don't fit on the format I have. I guess I'm going to have to go back to my original layout or pick another new one... I want to be able to put my pics side-by-side, and I liked when the pics on my sidebar were bigger. It's frustrating to change it, though!!

Let the Easter festivities begin!

We went to the Easter festival at the church this morning - Brady saw many of his friends from school, and we also invited the Coppolas to go along. We saw a cute puppet show in the sanctuary, had an Easter egg hunt, ate cotton candy and popcorn, rode the train, played a few games, and the boys had their faces painted. They were bunny rabbits with red noses - not sure where the red came in, but they didn't care... Brady rode a pony, and Drew was captivated by the bunny rabbit they had. He wasn't interested in petting the goat, but he liked the rabbit and went back later to pet it again.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Our second swimming lesson...

went MUCH better than the first! Today we went straight from school to the pool. We had about thirty minutes to have a snack, play a little, and get changed. I think this way is probably preferable to coming home and running around trying to get everyone ready... Anyway, Drew was insistent that he didn't want to go to swimming and started crying about 15 minutes before the lesson. He cried the whole time I was getting him dressed and kept telling me he didn't want to do it. I told him that I knew he didn't want to, but that it didn't matter, he was still going to do it. I also tried to emphasize that it would be fun if he gave it a chance, that Brady liked it and would be right there, and that there was nothing to be afraid of. I don't know that he really heard any of this, but he did start settling down when it was time to walk over to the pool. I asked Brady to hold his hand and take him over to his teacher so I could stay out of sight. Once he got in the pool, he was fine. I stayed out of his sight for a few minutes to make sure he was doing ok, and then was able to sit down with Mallory and watch both boys. I didn't get any spectacular pics - I was holding the camera with one hand with Mallory in my lap, and she was trying to grab the camera strap.

When the lesson was over, Drew came right over to me and said, "I have fun." He was very proud of himself for how much better he did today, and I'm sure also happy because he earned the treat I promised if he didn't cry! Hopefully he will remember that next Monday - it's a long time to wait for another lesson, so time will tell...

Brady on the left

Drew with Ms. Tobey

Just a shot for you to see how both boys are in the same pool, but in a different class

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Coloring eggs

Drew was very excited to color eggs, although I'm sure he didn't know what the heck that meant - he only knew that Brady was excited, so he should be, too!
One of the kits had some puffy paint, although only one tube worked because the others were dried out. Of course, I bought the kits last year, so what do you expect?? Since the one did work, however, I was in the clear.
Showing off his masterpieces...
Brady's version of Oscar the Grouch - the puffy paint is his trash...
We gave one egg to Mallory and, not surprisingly, this is what happened...

Monday, April 6, 2009

Swimming lessons

Today was our first day of swimming lessons for the spring. You may remember that Brady and Drew took lessons this same time last year. So, Brady was excited to go back, and (as usual) Drew didn't really have a clue what he was in for. When we pulled into the parking lot and got out, Drew said to me several times, "I no go swimming. I no go swimming." He had the same teacher as last year but, of course, he's too young to remember her even though she did remember him. Brady was a little leery at first, simply because we weren't sure if both of them would be in the same pool. If not, Brady knew I wouldn't be able to be near him the whole time. Once we discovered they were in the same pool, we were both happy. He enjoyed his first lesson and is looking forward to going back on Wednesday. Drew, on the other hand, cried the ENTIRE lesson. Thinking back to when school started, it probably took about six weeks before he got comfortable with me leaving him... hopefully the adjustment curve on swimming lessons will be shorter! I will try to take some pics on Wednesday - between unloading groceries and getting everyone dressed, there wasn't enough time for me to remember to grab the camera before heading out of the house.

A note to Heather

You would be happy to know I finally watched Twilight for the first time last night... I'm seriously considering watching it again tonight before I send it back :) I really wasn't sure if I would like it because anything supernatural is so NOT my thing! Anyway, I called Karen this afternoon to find out if she had the book because I now feel obligated to read them all!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Meeting Kate

I spent part of the evening today visiting at Karen's house. Kate was sleeping when I got there, but that gave me time to talk with Brooke a little. She was happy to open a few "big sister" presents and is modeling her new necklaces in the picture below. She also introduced me to Kate, who is so precious and tiny!! Of course, I'm used to carrying Mallory around, but she literally felt as light as a feather... It makes me a little sad to know there won't be any newborn babies at our house anymore, but also happy about where I am in my life.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Our day with Brooke

Brooke spent the day with us today while her Mommy was in the hospital having her baby sister! Kate Addisyn (not sure about the spelling) was born around 7:30 a.m. at 5 lb. 7 oz. Not bad considering she's five weeks early... Mommy and baby are doing well. Brooke was very excited about going to visit them in the hospital when Daddy came to get her this afternoon. Of course, she arrived here at 5:00 a.m. and took about a five minute nap in the car, so I'm not sure how long she will hold out this evening... hopefully she will wait to be cranky until after she leaves the hospital with Daddy. Not that Daddy needs the stress, but Mommy needs it less!!

Breaking out the playdough at 8:30 a.m. - that's as long as I could hold her off
Our trip to Jumpin' Jungle - too bad Mallory wasn't very cooperative for these pics!

Look at the hair - priceless!
Trying out some air hockey... not sure if Brooke's played before - if so, it must have been a while back because she wasn't sure what to do. She's sporting her new "big sister" bow here!