Wednesday, October 30, 2013

BOO in the ZOO

I had big plans for our family to visit a pumpkin patch at some point before Halloween, but that didn't happen.  Last weekend, we actually planned to go on Saturday, but we decided instead to do Boo in the Zoo on Friday and then have our whole Saturday free to do things around our home.  It turned out to be a good change of plans.

Since the zoo is really just right around the corner from my work, I went ahead and pre-purchased tickets on my lunch break on Friday.  Best idea ever.  Boo in the Zoo opened at 5 and we got there around 5:45.  The line was ridiculously long, but we got to go straight to the front and go right on in.

It was the coldest that it has been this fall, so we bundled Kate up- long sleeved shirt, sweatshirt, leggings, sweatpants, plus her zebra costume.  Luckily, part of her costume is a hat and she kept it on the entire time.  There is no way that she wasn't warm in all those clothes.  I was freezing.

She was content to ride in her stroller and trick or treat at the stations that were set up, until she saw the "lions".  Then she HAD to get out.


The giraffes held her attention for a long time, especially the baby giraffe, Kiko.  She watched them carefully until she saw the REAL lions.  Then she was obsessed with "Simba, Nahla and 'Fasa" (Mufasa). 



The only way we got her away from the lions, was to promise to go see the alligators.  We finally got to the part of the zoo where the alligators were, and couldn't go down there.  It wasn't in a well-lit area so they had closed it off for Boo in the Zoo.  Kate wasn't too disappointed because she found something MUCH better...



My little zebra-bat...


And of course we had to get a couple of pictures with Mommy and Daddy...

   

All-in-all, it was a much less time-intensive thing than the pumpkin patch and Kate had a blast.  Every time I ask her what she's going to dress up as for Halloween, she says "Zebra. Zoo! Let's go!!"  I'm guessing that means she had fun. :)

Tomorrow night - her first time Trick-or-Treating!!


Friday, October 25, 2013

FIVE

Joining up again for Five on Friday!  Here we go...


ONE
We're gearing up for Halloween around here.  About a week and a half ago, a co-worker asked me what Kate was going to be for Halloween and I had absolutely no idea.  I figured i better get on top of it, so I got online that evening and luckily, the PB Kids costumes were 50% off and had free shipping.  There's nothing better than finding something cute, and on sale, and NOT having to go to the store to get it.  I showed Kate a couple of pictures and let her pick out the one she wanted.  This is what we're going with for Halloween 2013...




TWO
Originally, these pictures were gonna be in a separate post, but the past 2 weeks haven't gone well for either of "our teams" so I just haven't shared. :)  BUT, we did go to Athens for the Georgia/Missouri game.  Like I said, it didn't turn out so well for Georgia, but we were there none-the-less and here are the pictures to prove it.




Meanwhile, Kate spent her day with Gigi and Pick.  I think they both had fun.





THREE
I have done something SO not typical of me. I've started Christmas shopping! I'm not one of those people that ever starts Christmas shopping early, and usually wait to get almost all of my Christmas gifts when we take our youth to an outlet mall a few weeks before Christmas.  Granted, all of the shopping I've done so far has been for Kate, but her big gift has been purchased and I have plans to get some others done before Thanksgiving.  We'll see how this goes.  I am excited for her to see her big gift.  I think she's gonna love it...

FOUR
If you're friends with me on Facebook or Instagram, you've already seen this.  A couple of weeks ago, Kate got her very first note sent home from school.  With Kate's personality (independent, stubborn and VERY strong willed), I knew it was only a matter of time!


On the plus side, she was doing well with her potty training!  As far as my suggestion for getting her to stay seated at the table... I went with bribing.  I sent a cookie with her lunch and told them to tell her she could have it at the end of the meal if she stayed at the table.  And if she didn't, they were supposed to throw it away.  Apparently it has worked about 50% of the time.  Other than that, I've got nothing. :) She's two.  She'll learn eventually.

FIVE
On a note totally unrelated to my family, Kim Kardashian got engaged this week to Kanye West.  I know.  This is earth-shattering news.  So earth-shattering, in fact, that this just HAD to be included on the blog. :)  In all honesty, I don't follow the Kardashian family at all, except for what is posted on People.com or what I hear from other people.  I'm not a fan, and I don't watch their show (or shows?) so I really don't keep up with them.  BUT, I do go to People.com pretty regularly.  One of my guilty pleasures, I guess.  Anyway, so according to People.com, this will be the third marriage for good ole Kim.  I remember the basketball player, and that their marriage lasted about 2 days.  Am I the only one that had no idea she was married to a Damon-somebody?


Thursday, October 17, 2013

Adoption #2

If you're joining from Kelly's Korner, welcome!  I have followed her blog from the beginning of my blog-reading days and this is one of the few link-ups that I regularly participate in. So much fun.

Anyway, onto today's topic- adoption.  Adoption is very close to both mine and Kevin's hearts, for obvious reasons.  We adopted Kate just two years ago, and had the best possible experience through-out her adoption.  We loved our adoption agency and the adoption workers that we met.  We love Kate's birth parents, and continue to have a relationship with them and their families to this day. However, we do realize that not every story is as picture-perfect as this one.  We were very lucky, and are very blessed.  For Kate's entire story, click here. Warning- it is long!

And now, we're doing it again.  We have started Adoption #2, and already this journey is very different from the last one.  Not in a bad way, but just different.  With Kate's adoption, we breezed through the paperwork, the training, the homestudy, and were "officially waiting" just 3 months after we started the whole process.  Now with Adoption #2, we are about 3 months into the process, and have yet to schedule our first homestudy visit.  Some of the delay was our own doing (just dragging our feet over here) and some was out of our control (weeks-long vacations of adoption workers, and just lots of families starting the process at the same time as us).

We got word yesterday that all of our paperwork is in order, and we're just waiting on our adoption worker to give us a call and let us know that she is ready to start on our homestudy, which will consist of 4-5 visits (and more paperwork).  So that's where we are right now.  Just waiting.  Guess we better get used to that part again, huh?

If you've followed along from the very beginning as we waited for Kate, I hope you'll stick around for a second time around.  And if you're new to my little piece of the blog-world, I hope you'll join us.  We would LOVE, LOVE, LOVE for you to pray for us during this time.  It's stressful.  It's not necessarily a FUN time, but it is definitely a faith-building time.  We know that God is in control and are looking forward to seeing how He works.

We would also love it if you would pray for the birth parents that are faced with difficult decisions.  Some of them will choose to parent their children, and some will choose to give a priceless gift to an adoptive family.  Pray that God will give them wisdom, strength and direction for their decision, whether it is to parent or to place for adoption.


PS- Can you tell Kate is a Daddy's girl?  Mommy can't even tuck her in at night anymore because she's yelling "Daddy, rock! Daddy, rock!!"


Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Playground Date

A few weekends ago, we went back to my hometown for my ten year reunion.  For the reunion itself, we had plans Friday night (at the football game) and Saturday night (for a dinner).  That left all day Saturday to do whatever we wanted.  So, my mom and I decided to make a quick trip to the mall, and then take Kate to the park for lunch.  She LOVED it. 


I still feel like she's too little for me to totally let her go up on the big playground equipment by herself, but she's definitely big enough to go down the slide by herself. Such a big girl!




Kate ate a "picnic" lunch of Chick-fil-a.  It was still early so mom and I didn't eat.  Here is a picture of Kate me praying before her meal.  


After a little more time at the park, walking around and playing in the weeping willow trees, we headed back to my parents house for Kate to get in a nap. I'm sure this was just the first of many park trips with Gigi.  






Thursday, October 10, 2013

Baby Leftovers

I'm blogging in the waiting room while Kate is in dance. Multi-tasking at it's finest. So as I watch her do all the "big girl" stuff with the other kids her age, it makes me miss a lot of the baby stuff.  The part where she wasn't so independent.  And she's just two.  I can't even imagine how I'll feel when she's 7, or 15, or all grown up!  But even though I consider her a "big girl" now, we do still have a little bit of the baby leftovers, and I try to make the most of those.

We were outside working in the yard yesterday when Kate held up her arms to me and said "Hold you!"  And even though I was in the middle of something, and Kate now weighs more than I can handle for any extended period of time, there's no way I was gonna say "no", right?  Of course she wanted me to carry her ALL OVER the yard, and I knew I'd be sore because of it, but oh well.  Time goes by so fast, there's no way I was going to turn down the chance for one of those moments.  Especially knowing they would only get less and less as the years go by.

Some of the other baby leftovers that we're enjoying have to do with Kate's language.  She has started stringing so many words together and making longer and longer sentences.  It seems like a few short months ago, she was only saying one word at a time.  Of course her sentences don't always entirely make sense.  Kevin and I are constantly looking at each other and saying "I have no idea."

I know technically I should correct her when she says things wrong (times when I actually understand what she's trying to say), but it's just too cute and funny right now.  Here are a couple of the things she's said lately:

"MY help you!" or "MY do it!"
(I'll help you or I'll do it)

Pointing to my face- "Mommy, pickles!"
(Mommy's freckles.)

"Hep me do it."
(Help me do it.)

Ef-a-lent.
(Elephant.)



(Sorry if this was a boring post. It's all in the name of documenting stuff for Kate's baby book, since that's basically what this blog is.)

Monday, October 7, 2013

Cupcakes and Sweeping

I'm not even apologizing for my lack of blogging lately.  I kept thinking that life was going to slow down and get back to normal.  And... that never happened.  I think I've come to the realization that this busy-ness is the new normal for at least this season of our life. So with that being said, here are some pictures that I took about two weeks ago, and never got to share. :)

I bought a box of cake mix, with the intentions of making cupcakes with Kate.  This was a first for us, and I think she loved it.  I'm training her to take over the kitchen duties in about 3 years. Chef Kate.



Of course this part was to be expected- the mess.  Oh yeah.  I let her "pour" the mix into the bowl and then told her to wait a second while I filled up the measuring cup with the correct amount of water.  Silly me. I really thought she would wait.  Instead, she took the spoon and excitedly started stirring.  White mess everywhere. No big deal.  Easily cleaned up.





We headed outside to wait on the timer to go off.  In the meantime, I made Kate sweep up the porch.  We work for our sweets in this house.  Just kidding. :)




And, that's pretty much it.  Maybe it won't be next week before I post again.  We'll see.


Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Reunited- Ten Years

This past weekend was my 10 year high school reunion, and the Class of 2003 was reunited!  Well, a lot of us were.  My friends Jillian and Crystal (the two on the left in the first picture below) took charge and planned a great weekend.  (Thanks you two!)  All that the rest of us had to do was send in some money and show up. We had a great time, starting with the football game on Friday night.  



On Saturday, we took a tour of the new combo middle/high school. It is N-I-C-E, but just felt like walking through a random school since it wasn't MY school.  Gone are the crowded hallways, and the square where everyone congregated between classes and where the upperclassmen got top lockers. Gone is the outdoor canteen where 90% of the students ate a nutritious lunch of honey-buns and Mountain Dew.  Gone are the carpeted gym floors.  Gone is the senior parking (we got the better end of that deal).  And although a lot of the teachers names on the doors were the same, it was definitely a totally different high school.  Fun to see, but definitely different. 


Saturday night we all went to the country club at a local golf course for dinner. It was fun to see people I hadn't seen in years, and catch up with old friends.  I'm from a very small town.  I graduated with around 90 people.  Most of us went to school together from kindergarten all the way through high school.  So although it had been 10 years since I'd seen some people, it didn't feel like it at all. 





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