Thursday, November 27, 2014

I am Thankful for

… my sweet husband; he is the very best husband and dad that I could have asked for.  I love that he gets to stay at home with our girls every day and be there for every little (and big) moment; their first steps, first word, first hug, the list goes on and on.  These girls and I are so very blessed to have him.
… Emma and Everly and the impact that they had on my life; before having them, I didn’t know it was possible to love two little munchkins so much
… raising our kids in the Catholic faith.  Of course, they don’t understand much yet, but my heart swells with joy when we see them saying their prayers (Emma) or clasping their hands together and saying ‘men (Everly).
… little moments in life (sleeping babies on my chest, being called mama for the first time, open mouthed baby kisses, having a potty trained toddler are some of my favorites for sure)
… having the opportunity to travel with Wes; we had so much fun traveling to Seattle this year and we can’t wait to knock a few more places off our list next year!
… having family that lives close by; I love love love that my girls get to see both sets of their grandparents on a weekly basis
… international business trips that strengthen not only my work/life experiences, but the bond I have with my family (also, it was pretty amazing to be able to visit Asia- not something that I had ever dreamed of being able to say!)
… sisters that work close by (or with me!); it is such a special time in our life to have coffee/lunch dates just to catch up on all things life
… intentional moments (zoo trips, Starbucks dates with my dad, taking the girls to the park to feed the ducks, date nights with Wes)
… twinkling Christmas lights; how can you have a bad day when those bright twinkling lights are staring back at you when you get home
… birthday parties; I know that some people might say my love of birthdays is a little over the top, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.  Birthdays are a special event and only happen once a year and they should be celebrated as such J.
… coffee; as trite as this may sound, I look forward to my morning cup of coffee every single morning (I am not particular as to whether it comes out of our coffee pot at home, the Keurig at work or an occasional Starbucks run; I just love me some coffee!).
… Bailey; our first born has endured a lot throughout the last four years with the addition of Starbucks, Emma and Everly to the family.  Even though he is a little lower on the totem pole, he will always be our beloved “dog dog”
… healthy kids; my heart aches for them when they get the slightest tummy bug, I am so very thankful they have never been really sick (or had to take any type of antibiotics!)
… a Catholic preschool that we just love; Emma has really thrived in the school environment and we owe everything to her sweet, sweet teachers
… Taylor Swift; I just adore listening (and jamming out) to her music. I can’t wait until Wes and I get to go see her in May!
... sister relationships; the bond I have with my own sisters and seeing the bond develop between Emma and Everly
... mornings that I get to sleep in (I am talking 7am ;)); on the weekends, Wes and I normally trade off- one of us wakes up early with Everly on Saturday and the other one on Sunday- grabbing that extra hour of sleep really makes all the difference
... long family walks around the neighborhood
... family traditions; visiting Port Aransas at Thanksgiving, Sara Lee coffee cake on Christmas morning, cinnamon rolls with my girls on Saturday mornings, Christmas Eve with my in-law's, balloons on birthday mornings
... the chaotic and exhausting days of raising little ones because even in the roughest moments, I know how truly blessed I am that I get to call them mine :)

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Sister Kisses

Wes always teases me- I try and try and try some more to set up pictures of the girls.  I dress them in coordinating outfits, take them to a pretty outdoor setting (read: typically my parents house), and try to get them to hug and kiss and hold hands for the camera.  And almost every single time, I leave feeling frustrated and defeated that my girls will never take a picture where they are holding hands and looking at the camera.  And then, when I least expect it (always in the ugliest setting- in this case Home Depot), I look up and I capture this sweet moment where they are walking through the aisle holding hands.

And I quickly scoot ahead of them, dying over their sweetness towards each other, so I can capture these tender moments scolding myself for always trying to set these moments up.

And then, they surprise me even further, by stopping, looking at each other and giving the sweetest kisses you have ever seen.

I just love that they close their eyes when they kiss!

And I quickly forget about the ugly background and see the bond that only sisters have.

I hope they always kiss each other on the lips (as you have read in the past, I am a big proponent of kissing your baby on the lips :)).

Love these sweet sisters- they are lucky to have each other (and in moments like this, I think they, too, even realize that :)).

Monday, November 24, 2014

So Much to Say: Volume 12

Conversation Number One
Nonni: “How much did you miss me, Emma?”
Emma: “A bittl-tiny bit”
Nonni: “How much did you miss Nonni’s ice cream?”
Emma: “A whole bunch”

Conversation Number Two (we will be working on having a thankful heart)
Me: “Emma, what are you thankful for?”
Emma: “Candies”
Me: “Anything else?”
Emma: “Just candies”

Conversation Number Three (looking at a picture of Bailey on Santa’s lap)
Emma: “Santa Claus took Bailey from my house.”
Emma: “I have to go get him”
** Bailey walks in the room **
Emma: “Bailey, you come back from Santa Claus house.”

Conversation Number Four
Emma: “Boca is having a birthday today.”
Me: “How old is he turning?”
Emma: “Two and a half.”
Me: “Oh, just like you.”
Emma: “Like Eberleah.”
Me: “How old are you turning?”
Emma: “Five.”
Me: “I think you are turning three.”
Emma: “Just only five.”

Conversation Number Five
Wes: “Do you want me to cut you a piece of cheese? Mommy is busy.”
Emma: “Just go ahead”

Conversation Number Six (with her spoonful of yogurt in tow)
Emma: “Zoom zoom zoom. I’m feeding him bite.”
Emma: “Zoom zoom open your mouth Eberleah”

Conversation Number Seven
Emma: “All the animals are at my house.”
Emma: “Welcome to my petting zoo everybody.”
** p.s. there are no animals at our house other than Bailey **

Conversation Number Eight (I always text Wes when I get to work so he knows that I made it)
Emma: “Mommy is texting me. I better go look at it.”

Conversation Number Nine
Emma: "Hello Ms. Eberleah Grace. It's nice to meet you."
Everly: grunts
Emma: "I guess you want me to leave you alone."

Conversation Number Ten
Emma: "If daddy eat all the french fries, he would be a bery bad guy."

Friday, November 21, 2014

Walk to End Alzheimer's 2014

On October 25th, our family gathered with heavy hearts to participate in the Walk to End Alzheimer's as my beloved grandma had just passed away the night before.  I am so happy that both of my girls got to meet their great-grandma.  They won't remember her, but they will get to look back at these pictures and know they were loved by her :).  I believe that Emma has inherited her love of ice cream and that we will be telling stories about those two and their love of Blue Bell for years to come :).

We love you grandma :).

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Boo at the Zoo!!

After we drove back from College Station (round 2) - we headed straight to Boo at the Zoo!  We had an incredibly busy weekend planned, this was going to be the only time we could squeeze it in, so we went ahead braved the crowds with our sweet little elephant and moo-cow!  I was surprised at how easily the girls just slipped into their costumes- last year, it was a constant battle to get Emma to be an elephant!

Ev's is always watching her big sister :).

I mean, really? Could her elephant tail walking alongside her daddy be any cuter??

At first, Everly was a little skeptical of this whole Halloween/dressing up like a moo-cow thing :).  After she got a sucker in her little, chubby hands; suddenly she was ok with the Halloween concept ;).

I was determined to get a picture of them together in their costumes before we went "trick-or-treating" and this was the best I got (#reallife).  Also, here you can see that Emma's elephant costume is about three inches too short; instead of fighting it, I just embraced it as extra adorable!

Picking out her first candy!

This guy really got a kick out of Emma's costume and sweet demeanor- he loaded her right up!

Just taking it all in while getting her sucker everywhere!

After we had gathered "lots of candies", we moved on to the game section :). I really love that Emma is starting to understand these types of games!

The moo-cow got in on the ring toss action :).

Emma was a little hesitant to let her in on the bean bag toss, she kept hip-checking her over to the left so she could have all of those bean bags (on the right) to herself!

Digging in her candy bag- I don't know why, but I think of my childhood when I think of this picture.  Our parents would take us trick-or-treating, we would come home, dump out all of our candy and start sorting and organizing (and trading!).  Ahhhhh, such fond memories :).

That belly! That tail!  So glad Wes found this costume last minute!

It was quite hot that day- think temps in the low 90's so as soon as we were done with the Halloween part of the zoo, we stripped the girls hot/furry costumes off and let them run around in their regular clothes.  I was sad to see the costumes go, but I think they were much more comfortable.  The gorillas were quite active this visit!

She wanted me to take her picture on the elephant- how could I ever say no to her wanting to take a picture!

So glad we continued our Boo at the Zoo tradition- had so much fun with my little zoo animals :).

Monday, November 17, 2014

College Station Round 2

In late October, we had the opportunity to travel to College Station again- as a bonus, this time we were going to get to see Austin!! This started off a whirlwind weekend that I will hopefully recap in the next several posts :).  Everly was road trip ready with her sunnies and bright-eyed smile :).

On our way out of town, we picked up Emma from school and she was beyond excited to stay in a hotel again!  She was still talking about riding in the choo-choo train on our way back (from our time at the state fair!).  An hour and half later, she had monopolized the sunnies ;).

We stopped for a pick-me-up in Waco and Emma "requested" her whip cream.  This girl's memory is just getting too good!

A little dark, but she thoroughly enjoyed "sharing" some whipped cream with Everly :).

Blurry, but I think it captures the excitement that the girls had jumping on the beds as soon as we arrived!

Our first order of business was to meet Austin at Blue Baker for a light dinner :).  Emma couldn't believe her good fortune that she got to see her Austin in College Station!

Overall, the girls were being extra adorable :).

And Everly shined with her two-teeth cheese face on full display!

Oh, the personality differences in these two kids :).

We did some impromptu bug hunting :).

After our dinner and bug hunting at Blue Baker, Austin and I had to head to a networking event.  Wes took the girlies back to the hotel room and put them both to sleep (no easy feat after our experience from the week before).

The next morning, Aust came over for a chaotic breakfast (too many choices for our Emma), we packed up, took a few additional spins in the office chair and headed out for our next adventure- Boo at the Zoo :).  We didn't get a chance to walk around campus, but we still managed to have some fun family time :).

Thursday, November 13, 2014

October Little Things

October was such a good month. So many little things. So many big things.  I just love when the weather cooperates, we are able to get outside and start celebrating the fall season! There is just nothing better than that :).  Grab a cup of coffee, settle in and get ready to scroll- there are over 60 pictures :).

We started out the month celebrating National Taco Day at Taco C :).

These two were seriously being so sweet once we got home (if I am being honest and remembering correctly, I am pretty sure there was some Popsicle promising involved :)).

However, there was no bribing involved in this picture- sometimes at night Emma likes to crawl up next to Everly and hold her hand while she sleeps.

The next day, Wes and Ev's met my mom (Nonni) at Fuzzy's for a taco for lunch to once again celebrate National Taco Day!

I still wanted to go to Fuzzy's for their taco day for dinner.  On the way home that day, I had the WORST drive of my life.  I don't think it has ever taken me this long to get home from work.  No lie, I was clocking in about 2.5 hours. INSANE, right? I have still not fully recovered :).

I am not really sure what we were doing, but we found ourselves at my parents house on a Friday night- sweet pic of my dad and Ev's!

The next morning, Emma woke up not feeling so good.  Almost as soon as she woke up, she snuggled back up in my lap and went back to sleep.  She almost never falls asleep in my lap- so I was really loving every minute of it!

We did my very most favorite fall activity (three times!) this month!!!  After Emma started feeling better, we walked from our house to Starbucks, grabbed some coffee to share and then walked back. I just love taking advantage of great weather like this!!

The Starbucks run wore this girl out. She was tired when we got home and I am not one to complain about being forced to sit down and snuggle my baby.  For the count, that is two sleeping babies so far this day!

Later that afternoon, and a different outfit for Everly, we went to the park for some swinging, sliding, kissing and duck-feeding!

Might be one of my favorite pictures of the girls :).

Then, that night I got to put Everly to bed in jammies that Emma would never wear.  I was in sleeping baby heaven this day!

The next day, Emma was still feeling marginally better so we went ahead and went forward with our plans after Mass to meet Austin at the zoo!  Look at that belly peeking out :).

It was hard to convince Emma that she wanted to smile, but eventually we got a few smiles out of her :).

Austin pointing out the alligators to the girls :). 

We pushed our luck trying to get a group shot at the end!

Later that afternoon, dad and I had a Starbucks date- this time we got a caramel apple frap with a little bit of pumpkin off the secret drink menu :). 

Everly climbed up the recliner, wrapped herself in a blanket and grew up to be a toddler in just under five minutes.  But seriously, where did my baby go???

While I am at work, I love opening up my photo stream on my iPhone and finding these kinds of pictures :).  Everly just adores her daddy!

Another Saturday morning, another walk to our local Starbucks- this time though Ev's passed out on the way there :). 

Emma with her whipped cream :) and cheese face :). 

The best family selfie we could get- haha, I think we need some more practice ;).

On our walk home, we stopped by the library to let the girls play and read for a little bit.  This girl could not be more chill in her stroller (most of the time!).

Later that day we went to a baby shower; on our way home we stopped by Chick-fil-a for some dinner. I couldn't believe my "baby" is big enough to play on the slides!

And climb up in the car all by herself!

We wrapped up the evening watching a little bit of the Aggie game at Bobbob's house.  Emma loves to sit in this chair next to her Bobbob :). 

This is how Ev's likes to start out most mornings- a waffle and a book!

The girls and I spent one Sunday morning hanging out with Kelli while our husbands were golfing and Everly was obsessed with trying out some of the baby gear :).  It held up to her destructive ways so I think Kelli is good to go ;).

One night, Emma wasn't feeling so good so her Nonni came by to check on her- Emma ran out to Nonni's car and said "I missed you so much Nonni" even though she had just seen her the day before :). 

One Saturday we had nothing going on until later in the day, so we decided to check out the Cultivate Festival. Seriously yummy Ben and Jerry's ice cream and coconut pops- the girls were in hog heaven and in Emma's words were definitely a "hot mess".

We colored on t-shirts and ate more snacks :).

We colored on the chalk wall. I know I say this a million times, but my heart seriously swells every time I think about these cute babies growing up and doing things together.  I mean, they are getting so big, so very very fast!

Chalk hoarder.

Once we wrapped up our fun at the festival and secured our free burritos for the next day, we headed over to Austin and Craig's house to hang out for the afternoon and eat some pizza.

Could this girl have better aunts? I don't think so :).

All the sun streaking through and Emma's "fake" napping.

We ate some yummy pizza and finished up the night chatting and trying on some sunglasses :).

The next morning we headed over to Nonni and Papa George's house to visit get Emma some ice cream!  We had just headed out on their front porch when my dad picked up the leaf blower.  My dad has almost (maybe it is?) a professional grade leaf blower- he doesn't mess around. Needless to say, the girls were scared out of their mind by the sound it makes and ran right into their Nonni's arms/legs.

Let's take a closer look at that pouty lip. Oh my goodness, it was so sad she was so scared, but so so funny at the same time!

I took Ev's 15 month pictures and noticed this sweet girl had worn a hole in her mocc!  It was definitely time to size her up to the next size!  Can't wait to frame these moccs for her room :).

While I was taking Ev's picture- Emma wanted to get in on the picture taking action as well. When I was looking back at these pictures, I just couldn't help but see them all grown up 15 - 20 years from now sitting at Papa George's and Nonni's house chatting about everything going on in their lives :).

Classic Emma face :).

We went to Chipotle for lunch and the girls adored the water fountains outside more than anything.

This girl seriously has no fear. She walked/runned along the edges around and around gaining more and more confidence and going faster and faster each time.  I was petrified she was going to fall in the water and we would make the biggest scene at Chipotle, but luckily that did not happen :).

Love my sweet mini so much!

Later that afternoon, we went to Bobbob's house and brought some strawberries to share.  Emma shared her strawberry with Everly and kept saying "tell me thank you Eberleah, tell me thank you.".  This is the look that Everly gave Emma ;).

Those baby lips!

One weeknight after we ate dinner, we walked to Chick-fil-a for some ice cream! Love how much walking we did in October; and, realizing how much we have been slacking in November :).  She thinks ice cream is pretty delicious :).

Wes showed me this picture and told me that history had just happened; Emma offered to share a bite of her ice cream with him :).

One work morning, Austin had stopped at Whole Foods on her way into work, and brought me the most delicious chocolate croissant I have ever had.  It was so buttery and chocolaty and just melted in my mouth :).  Seriously the best treat :).

One night near to the middle of October, we started talking to Emma about being either an elephant or a moo-cow for Halloween.  Much to our surprise, she wanted to be the elephant (just like she was last year).  I got it down, thinking it would be a fight to put it on her, but she loved it! She even slept in her costume that night.  Since she loved it so much, I didn't even try to argue with her that it really was three inches too short and she should be the moo-cow :).

One Wednesday, Wes dropped the girls off at his parents house and came to where I work to get his flu shot.  We had a nice middle of the day lunch date at Twisted Root :).  Just in case you are wondering, my favorite is the Spicy Goat hamburger :).

There will be a whole bunch of posts that come to talk about our super fun, but crazy busy weekend (think College Station, Boo at the Zoo, Walk to End Alzheimer's, Pumpkin Patch Birthday Party, Ally's Birthday party, Safari and Trick or Treating at Weston Gardens), but we managed to squeeze in happy hour at Chuy's on that Friday night.  Happy hour is just not quite the same with two kiddos involved- even though it's chaotic, it was still fun!

We had to swing by Target to pick up a birthday party present for the next day.  This girl was all smiles practicing her (messy) cheese face!  After I posted this on Instagram, I realized that there are tons of different colored bras behind her!

All the cousins (on my dad's side of the family) together :) I can't even remember the last time this happened :).

Sisters :).  Always so happy when I get to see that sweet girl in the middle- even if it was a somber occasion.

And all four of us :).

This is what working from home looks like which is why I work from my parent's house when I am working from home.  These two are obsessed with me my computer.

After we took our pictures for Halloween, we headed to Chick-fil-a.  Love when these two hold hands crossing the parking lot- you will often here Emma saying "hold my hand Eberleah so you don't get hit by a car.".

And see that sweet little boy right there in the middle right, that is Wes.  If you open up this picture and zoom in you will see the boy version of Emma :).  Wes's sister posted this picture in October so I thought it was fitting to include.

October was such a busy, fun month- maybe my favorite month so far this year? I am equally as excited about November and December :).