Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Nene and Pappy Come to Celebrate Christmas!

 To say that I was sad that Ryan was working Christmas is an understatement- we were both really down in the dumps about it. Not so much the fact that he had to work as much as the fact that we were spending yet another holiday alone.  I can tell myself all sorts of things (lots of people have it worse, at least you get to spend the holiday with your husband and kids, etc. etc.) but at the end of the day it is lonely to spend special days here.  Actually it is lonely to spend any day here but that's a whole different blog post! Well literally a week before Christmas I got a phone call from my dad that they decided to come.  I cannot even begin to describe how much this meant to me and Ryan. I immediately teared up.  Ryan agreed that out of all the things my parents have done for us over the years, this one was near the top.  It changed our outlook on the holiday and just breathed some excitement into the house.  Now I'm sure my parents were not exactly thrilled about coming to Shreveport for Christmas- they have celebrated the holiday in NC their whole lives and have many special traditions there, but that just made their sacrifice even more special.  

James, H and I picked them up from the airport that Monday morning. James was pretty thrilled to see that Nene and Pappy were wearing blinking Christmas necklaces (and I thought it was funny what things Grandparents will do to make their grandchildren smile!)

James, my mom, and I went out to run a few errands and Dad stayed behind watching football with H. 

That night I got a babysitter and the adults went to dinner at Bella Fresca. You can tell you have grown up when you want to go on a double date with your parents! :)

The next morning was Christmas Eve.  One of the boys' presents from Nana and Pop this year was a "jump house".  James convinced Nene to take a turn in it. 

Pappy got the special experience of feeding H breakfast. :) 

Then we all made a trip to Strawn's for breakfast. 

Per James's request I got to wear the blinking Christmas necklace. I was
surprised how many compliments I got on it, lol. 
Mom, H, and I did a little grocery shopping. H decided he needed a little nap in the new Moby-Go. (I never thought I would be a baby wearing Momma but those things have SAVED me with this kid!) 

Then it was home for naps and then church. After church we spent a little time on the playground and then headed home to make cookies and reindeer food!

When did he get so big? 

Crazy family selfie 
Left a cookie and some milk for Santa. And some carrots out on the grass with the reindeer food. 
 Finally we all sat on the couch together (minus sweet H who was fast asleep) to read the Christmas story. It was a great Christmas Eve! 

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Funny and Sweet Sayings Church Addition- Plus a Few More

One of the most challenging, exciting, and hilarious aspects of parenting is seeing James start to understand and try to process more of the bible.  I love seeing how he is learning about Jesus but it makes for some interesting conversations such as the following.

Some of James's latest prayers:

"Dear Jesus, thank you for this food. And please help Harrison to take a really good nap." (wonder who he has heard pray that before???)

"Dear God please let Harrison not cry and Daddy to have a good surgery."

"Dear God, please don't let Harrison knock over my tower."

"Dear God, please get Nene home safely and please bless her mango."  (My mom had forgotten to eat the mango in the kitchen while she was here and somehow the mango made it into the prayer that day)

A lot of our discussions come from reading the bible at night and doing his Awana stories.  For awhile we just went straight through the bible book but now he is very particular about which story he chooses each night. We have gone through lots of different children's bibles and have several favorites. Currently he is using Jesus Calling for children. I love it! Here are some of his comments regarding bible story time.

"Why do they only have one cup? Why do they have to share?" (story of the last supper)

"I want to read the one with the broken walls. The one about Jericho."

"Where are the windshield wipers?" (Noah and the Ark)

"I want to read about the hurt man." (Good Samaritan)

"Why they not get in the hallway? There should have been a hallway on that boat!"(Jesus calming the storm)  This comment made me laugh because in late May we had a terrible storm/tornado warning.  I was massively pregnant and they came on the TV and said if you live near the street our neighborhood is off of then to take cover. James was asleep, the power went out, and it sounded like a train heading for our house.  9 months pregnant and I jerked him out of that bed, pulled his entire mattress off, and got in the hallway with him under it. I was TERRIFIED.  I just kept praying the whole time. (I have a serious fear of tornadoes)  While that situation wasn't funny at all it was pretty humorous to see how he linked that experience to the storm that Jesus and the disciples were in!

"I want to read the story about David and Greer" (a.k.a David and Goliath)

And a few other memorable biblical conversations:

James: "Hold me Mommy." Emily: "I only have two hands." James: "Why?" Emily: "That's all God gave us."  James: "He should have given you three hands so you could hold James too!"

"I'm not going to listen, just like Jonah!" (this statement came in the middle of a full out tantrum where he ran out the door and down the street)

"What's a bible study?"

"I don't want to go to church. I want to go to a lunch place."

James: "Mommy you hurt my eye." Emily: "I'm sorry." James: "You sinned!"

James: "Mom, why is Jesus holy?" Emily: "Well, he is set apart from all of us." James: "Like a hole in the road?" Emily: "No, not like a hole in the road or in your shirt, that is a different kind of hole." James: "Who has a hole in their shirt?" Emily: "No one, I was just giving an example." James: "Why is there a hole in your shirt?" Emily: "What I was trying to say is that Jesus is holy because he is really special." James: "No, I'm special!" Emily: "Okay, you are special too."  Pause for 30 seconds.  James: "Mom, why is Jesus holy?" And so it begins again...

"Why we have to go to heaven? Is there going to be lunch there? How long does the drive take?"

James: "I'm sorry for breaking the Christmas ornament Mommy." Emily: "It's okay. I forgive you." James: "I forgive you too." 

And here are just a few random funny/sweet things he has said lately. 

"Mommy you can have your next birthday at the jump house and it can be a Percy party. I'll open a present and then you can."

"I'm sorry I was bad Mommy. I still love you."

"I'm almost 30. Then I can sleep in the bed with you and Daddy"

Emily: "James, what are you thankful for?" James: "My brother and sister." Emily: "Who is your sister?" James: "Mommy."

"Santa needs to have a white beak." (beard)

"Speak Harry Speak!" (for the record Harrison is NOT called Harry so I'm not sure where he got that from!)

"You're just so pretty mommy"

"Why did Daddy almost break the law?"

"I've been dreaming about animals and I really want to dream about toys."

"Let's go live in the woods." 

Friday, December 6, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

The week before Thanksgiving we tried to take time every night at dinner and bedtime to name some of the things we were specifically thankful for over the past year.  We have so much to be grateful for but here were some of the things we listed:

- Trains, books, Daddy being home from work early, our family, Harrison joining our family this summer, a new job for Ryan next year, the prospect of getting to be closer to home, our health and lots of new babies throughout the year (I think we have had something like 7 friends that have had baby boys over the past year)

I couldn't write this post without a few pictures of my two little turkeys. :)

Not so sure about this food stuff.

So thankful for both of our Grandmas!

Near the top of my thankful list are definitely my two boys! 

So glad to have him with us

Thankful for brothers
I'm not going to lie, Thanksgiving was pretty lonely this year.  Of course we were thankful to get to spend it with each other but there is no denying that we felt really alone and isolated here without any family or friends.  As much as I love Facebook it definitely makes you aware of all the fun things people are doing while you are home alone.  But.... how can you not be anything but happy and thankful when you wake up to this on Thanksgiving morning???  

James loves doing this with Harrison
And as a side note one of the blessings of our time here in Shreveport has definitely been that we are more aware of people who are lonely on holidays and hopefully we will be able to extend some kindness and hospitality to them in the future.

Ryan went to work early that morning and I hung out with the boys while we watched the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade.  The funniest thing about watching it was seeing James watch the commercials- he had never seen commercials before! His reaction to them was really humorous.

Ryan got home and we headed out to lunch. I just didn't see the point in cooking for just us, especially since we didn't know if Ryan would even be there.  We had a little fiasco with Thanksgiving lunch.  When we got to the restaurant it was crazy busy and the wait was going to be forever. We drove around the town trying to find anywhere to eat and everything was closed (keep in mind H hates his car seat so driving around town is not a fun experience).  Finally we went home and ate a turkey sandwich and chicken nuggets for James.  Later that afternoon we went back to the restaurant and managed to get in but a lot of the food was gone and they didn't really have any of the normal Thanksgiving foods. Oh well.

James ate one bit of turkey, a brownie, and a cookie. 

This is H these days- can't stay still!
The next day after Ryan went in to work we decided to brave the black Friday traffic and go to lunch and to the park.  Harrison had a big milestone: first time sitting in a high chair at a restaurant!

Yum this napkin is tasty 

I hope they always love each other this much!

Big boy in the high chair 
On the way out we heard the Salvation Army bell ringer and James got to put $ in the red can for the first time.  The lady also let him ring the bell. This was special for me because one of my oldest memories is ringing the bell every year with my dad. I hope he will do it with James when we move back!

Next we headed to the park for some fresh air.

Why do I look like a marshmallow in this picture???
And we got the house decorated for Christmas.  Doesn't everyone decorate the tree in their undies? Lol

After Thanksgiving my friend Shannon encouraged me to cook a "do-over" so I ended up making a Thanksgiving dinner one week later.  I just made our favorites and included a little touch of home from both our families: Ryan's mom's stuffing recipe and my mom's homemade bread. It was all delicious and it definitely made us feel like we got to eat Thanksgiving goodies after all!

And finally one last picture of Harrison from MDO. I just love this little guy!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Harrison 6 Months

Weight: 19 pounds 7.5 ounces
Length: 26 1/4 inches
Head: 17 1/2 inches 

Harrison this past month we have been working on starting solids. You have had a harder time with it then James so we are taking it slowly.  So far you have had bananas, avacado, oatmeal, green beans, and sweet potatoes. Most of the time whatever you eat is spit right back out.  When I feed you James insists on always giving you the first spoonful. Another milestone is that you can now sit in the high chair when we go out to eat which is great.  You can also sit by yourself for a little while before toppling over.  Earlier this month you had croup and you were pitiful. Thankfully you were better in a few days.  We are still stuck on 30 minute naps which makes it hard for your Mama to get anything done! 

Loves the exersaucer 

Hooray for another visit from Nene
Story time!
First time to the park
Harrison hated the swing!

Early morning cuddles with Daddy
I think it's time to pack this up

The boys just hanging out
Helping Mommy cook 

Our attempt with the self timer to take a Christmas card picture

Life can be tough