Thursday, July 30, 2009

Birthday Wish

My older sister's Birthday is Friday, I won't say how old she is but she has a few years on me. I wanted to take an opportunity to say Happy Birthday and list just a few of the reasons why I love and admire my big sis.

My sister Amanda is:

-a great listener

-avid reader

-wonderful gardener ( I am jealous of her flowers)

-a wonderful mother

-dedicated and hard worker

-amazing scrapbooker (again I am jealous but also inspired)

- a lover of nature

-a fun person to hang out with

-always available when I need a friend

-a creative mind

These are just a few of her attributes. I am so glad to have her as a sister and if she wasn't my sister I would want her as a friend! Happy Birthday sis, I love you.

Castaway Cafe

Baby slide

Grammie and Syd, one of the few times she went down on her lap.

Grammie and Sydney climbing to the top!

The main structure

While in Michigan visiting my family we visited the Castaway Cafe on two occasions. I had heard all abut the cafe from my mom who takes a little boy named GT who she does respite care for on the weekends. Anyway I had heard lots about the place but had never been there. Wow what a place. You will be able to understand when you see the pictures but it is an indoor play area, complete with slides, bridges and all sorts of things to climb through. The first day we went I stayed for just a few minutes to get Sydney settled and take a few pics and then left her with Grammie La la while I went over to the outlet mall with my sister. We were gone about an hour and when we got back my poor mother was exhausted, her hair was damp from sweat. My child is fearless, my mom would try to have her sit on her lap to go down the slide but Sydney would just go by herself. The heights did not bother her a bit she kept climbing to the very top level. The next day we went back and met my friend Megan, her husband Don, her mom Jan and her two boys Henry and Patrick. Again Sydney had a blast. I would have enjoyed climbing up with her but being 7 months pregnant I did not think it was a great idea. Sydney just loved the cafe and she was so tired afterward! So was Grammie. I do not know of a similar place anywhere in North Carolina but I wish there was, it is cheap (3 dollars for Syd) and great exercise.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Two pregnant bellies

While I was home I was able to see 2 of my three sisters and 1 of them is pregnant. I have always thought it would be fun to be pregnant at the same time as one of my sisters but it takes some of the fun out of it when we live so far apart. Ashley lives in Mexico! I was so glad I was able to see her while she was in Michigan visiting. I enjoyed being part of her baby shower and we did do a little shopping. Ashley is not sure whether or not she is having a girl or a boy but on the last ultrasound they said it looked like a girl but it was a little early to say for sure. In Mexico they have an ultrasound every time they go to the doctor. I must say I am a little jealous! We tried to get some belly shots and here are a few. She is due about 6 weeks after I am, hence my larger belly!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Big Surprise

So this is what it looked like when we bought the house, we did not choose this color.

This is the finished product. He even hung up the picture that we bought on our honeymoon in Bar Harbor Maine. So sweet. Did I mention I have the hardest working husband around?

Many of you know that Sydney and I went to Michigan this past weekend to visit my family and to attend a baby shower for my sister Ashley. We were gone 5 days and my husband worked 4 of those 5 days. As you can imagine I was very surprised when I walked into my bedroom very early this am to discover that he repainted and had our new carpet put down. All the furniture was in the hallway or nursery but wow! I do not know when he found the time. We painted our bedroom over a year ago and never liked the top color but had not gotten around to repainting. When we ordered new carpet for the nursery we got the same color for our room but did not want it installed until we had time to paint. So now it is done! This morning Bill was off so he had the neighbor come over and help move the heavy stuff and put the bedroom back together. We both love the new color and it is so good to be rid of the old nasty carpet. Take a look!!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Take Time...

to stop and smell the flowers! Life is too short to always be on the go and not take time to relax and enjoy life around you. I am always on the go but I do try daily to relax and enjoy a moment or two. While Grammie La la and Grandpa were in town they took several walks around the neighborhood. We have beautiful flowers blooming all over and Sydney is always sure to take time to admire the flowers. She is in a smelling stage right now, she wants to smell everything. When Bill makes coffee in the am she likes to smell the coffee beans. Today when her and I were in a bathroom at a restaurant she had to smell the soap. Anyway I just love these pics of her stopping to smell the flowers.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Vacation Highlights

We were on vacation last week at Myrtle Beach, SC. This is the first of our two trips to the beach this summer. We had already decided to go to the beach in August for a continuing medical education conference when my husband won a sales contest which meant a free condo at the beach for 1 we will have two separate weeks at the beach this summer. Anyway here are some highlights:

-before we even left town it was so fun just talking about going on vacation, Sydney was so excited and we were all looking forward to a vacation

-our condo was on a golf course and the intercostal waterway so we had lots of fun just sitting on the patio watching boats and jet skis go by

-Brookgreen gardens, an absolutely amazing place. The first part of our trip our friends Missy, Wade and Nate joined us. Sunday the guys played golf so Missy and I took the kids to Brookgreen gardens. We went to the zoo area and then the Lowcountry Center where they had a kids discovery room. The kids we able to play with clay, color, uses brushes to uncover things in an archaeological dig and look at fun things under magnifying glasses. We had a great time. Then we saw a little bit of the sculpture and flower gardens but by that time we were all hot and tired so we headed back to the condo. Bill and I went back to the gardens with Sydney the following day and we saw more of the actual gardens and went on a pontoon ride out around what used to be the rice plantations in the 1800's. While we were at the gardens three people kept coming to mind, my mom, sister Amanda and Bill's sister Rita- because they love flowers and they would have known the names of many of the flowers we saw. The garden has over 1200 sculptures and over 50 acres of actual garden. One great deal is that your ticket is good for 7 consecutive days. Several evenings a week they have special activities such as story time for the kids and concerts in the park. They also have a wonderful restaurant next to the gift shop. If you are ever in the area of Myrtle Beach Brookgreen gardens is a must see!

-beach fun, we are not what I would call beach people, we typically do not hang out for hours and hours on the beach day after day but we did enjoy a few hours playing in the water and sand and looking for shells. Our next beach trip we are staying directly on the ocean so I am sure we will have more beach time

-treats, treats and more treats. Sydney had her share of treats on vacation- rice crispies, capri sun drinks, ice cream (a few times). We generally try to keep things fairly healthy at our house but vacation is a time for splurging so that is just what we did.

-quiet family time and having no where in particular to be at a certain time was so enjoyable. Sydney is an alarm clock that usually goes off at 630, so there was no sleeping in on vacation but we did have lazy mornings, breakfast at the condo and hanging out playing without having to rush out the door.

-my husband booked a massage for me which was a surprise but he told me early. It was amazing!!!! Even though I am 1 week shy of being 7 months pregnant I still go at my usual fast pace and so I thoroughly enjoyed a relaxing massage. I will say it took the first 15 minutes for me to just relax and I kept telling myself not to think just enjoy the moment. I was laying there and a though would creep into my mind "what should I make for lunch today" or "I hope Bill is okay with Syd" or what will I need to do when we get home to get organized for the week" I just kept thinking no thoughts just relax, breathe!

-Great food that I did not have to cook. Eating out is fun but I must say too expensive and now that we are home I am craving good wholesome food. I made a huge lasagna for tomorrow night and a big salad, salads for our lunches this week, a refreshing tomato, cucumber and green pepper salad for tonight, banana bread and brownies. Okay so the brownies are not all that wholesome but I am craving some major chocolate!!

Well it is good to be home and to get ready for a short week before Syd and I go to visit my parents and 2 of my three sisters!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Books, books and more books

In my daughter's baby book there is a place for you to write characteristics and personality traits that you want your child to develop. One of the things I wrote was for Sydney to have a love for books and yearning to read and learn. Well I would say she definitely loves books. When Grammie La la was here she would sit and read through a huge stack. At the moment I probably have 35 books, maybe more on my sofa that Sydney brought down from her book shelf to look at tonight. I really have to enforce a limit some nights or she would have me read way past bed time. I am thankful that she loves to read.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


While Grammie La la was here I had a few projects that I thought might be fun to do with Sydney. I saw this idea on another blog and thought it was so cute. See what you think. If you want to print the image to decorate it is here:

Monday, July 6, 2009

Why, Why, Why

Why?? Sydney is at the "why" stage. It seems that no matter what you say she asks why? Here are a few conversations from today:

Bill and Sydney looking at newspaper together:
Syd: "why is that boy wearing that?"
Bill: "It is a special suit because he was burned."
Syd: "why?"
Bill: "Because there was an accident."
Syd: "why was there an accident?
Bill: "because accidents happen."
Syd: "why?"
Bill: "they just do."
Syd: "why is he wearing that?"
Bill: "so he can heal, its like a big band aid"

Mommy and Syd on the way home from school:
Syd: "are you sad?"
Mommy: "no, I am happy."
Syd: "why?"
Mommy: "because I had a good day at work. Did you have a good day at school?"
Syd: why did you have a good day at work?

Mommy: "Because I like my job."
Syd: "why?"
Mommy: "Because I love making kids feel better."

I am not sure what age kids usually go through the why stage, but boy it can be exhausting and at times I run out of answers. I wonder if God ever feels that way. I wonder if He ever tires of our questions and wants to just say "because I am." Sometimes there is no good answer for the why questions but it turns out okay in the end.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Projects around the house

Now that I have a camera again I can share pictures of our recent projects. We decided it was time to remodel Sydney's bathroom which she will share with her brother when he arrives. I wanted something that would work for both a boy and a girl and yet be suitable and fun for the kids. I love to look at Pottery barn catalogs for ideas and I saw the cutest but definitely not cheap decal for the walls. I decided to stencil the walls and it turned out so cute. Sydney enjoys looking at all the creatures on the walls. Our friend Wade helped us with the remodel and we are both thrilled with the way things turned out. I still need to get the towels personalized but otherwise the bathroom is finished!

We also painted the nursery and got new carpet. While my parents were in town we drove to Charlotte and spent the better part of a day in a new IKEA store, we think we have decided on a crib and furniture! Less than 4 months and our little guy will be here! Since we will need the crib mattress for the baby we converted Sydney's bed to a big bed and bought her new bedding. She was gracious and gave up her bed for grammie and grandpa and she slept in her little tent in the nursery. She loves her big girl bed and we both enjoy reading books to her in her bed. It is much easier for me to lay or sit beside her and read than for her to sit on my lap these days.