Friday, February 28, 2014

5 on Friday---Another Round of Catchup

So here it is, another Friday, and another chance to dump some pictures/videos in from my phone from throughout the week. It's been a pretty uneventful week around here...thankfully, my household is basically all healthy & so we've just been enjoying the fact that we all feel better. 
1.  This week marked the end of the regular season for our Missouri State Bears. We have season tickets with my parents & my in-laws also attended several of the games as well.  We had a game last Saturday practically right during naptime...but that didn't keep Elyse was catching some Zzzzz's!  The hilarious thing is that we moved her from my mom's arms, to Hubby's arms, to the car, and then to the bed and she still slept for another hour at home!  Sleepy girl!   

We normally take Elyse's jammies to the games with us so we can change her before leaving for home. So...she always ends up cheering for the last little bit in her adorable fleece, footed jammies! 
 2.  Hubby & I came to the realization last Sunday that Elyse was spending WAY TOO MUCH time in front of the television.  Elyse loves Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, Doc McStuffins, and has a new found love for Sheriff Callie.  All of these programs are fine in moderation but it had gotten a little bit out of control.  And she completely disengages when one of her shows is on.  So...we made the decision to drastically cut television this week and you know what, it wasn't bad at all!  Sure, there were a few fits but we were typically able to distract her with other activities.  She still gets about 20-30 minutes in the morning while we get ready, and she also gets to watch a little on the iPad...but nothing like what it had been! So...a nice big pat on the back for us!  Parental Success!
 3.  This will definitely receive it's own post when I can edit all the pictures, but we started swimming lessons with Elyse last week.  She has been exposed to the water plenty of times in Florida & at my parents' pool, but we want her to completely comfortable around it.  She is doing really well, and will probably soon move out of the Babies & Me class (where they have all children under 3 begin). 

4.  Her ability to learn & memorize never ceases to amaze me!  She is now able to "read" aka recite from memory 4-5 different books that we have.  Hubby & I were treated to storytime the other day as we drove home from work. 
5.  And for my only non-picture, non-Elyse related item...I had a first on Tuesday night before the last Bears' game.  We made plans with my parents & in-laws to meet up for dinner at a local sports bar beforehand & we placed our order a full hour before the game was to begin.  After 45 minutes of waiting, all 7 of us got up and left as we explained to the waitress we just couldn't wait anymore.  I've never actually walked out of a restaurant due to lack of service...but they definitely deserved what they got! 

Friday, February 21, 2014

Five on Friday~Sick Momma Week

And...once again it's time for 5 on weekly brain dump, iPhone dump, and all around catch up on this good ole blog.  

1.  It's been a little bit of a rough last couple of weeks.  Elyse started out with a cold that she ever so lovingly decided to pass on to me, which she has now passed on to her Daddy.  I'm on the mend, but still can't breathe well, and the coughing attacks hit me right as I'm going to bed.  You should have heard Hubby & I last night, we were like a coughing symphony.  
I'm sick. Looks like I'll be sleeping and laying in bed all day. Oh wait, I'm a mom.
2.  This week in our area, a indescrible, horrendous tragedy occurred as a 10 year old girl was kidnapped and within only a few hours we also learned of her death.  From everything the authorities are saying, it was a completely random act, and that certainly doesn't help things in this momma's brain.  There is lots and lots of judgmental discussion taking place on social media, but all I can keep thinking is that her momma won't ever get to hold her again.  And so yesterday as Elyse & I headed out for a momma/daughter day, I couldn't help but be overcome with the fact that God chose me to be Elyse's momma.  Hug your kids a little tighter tonight...and if you think about it, flip your porch light on this weekend in honor of Hailey Owens.  Facebook page here...

3.  One of our tasks yesterday was to visit a local boutique.  They were hosting The Silhouette Man.  My SIL had these done of my niece and I just loved them, so when he was coming back to the area I jumped at the chance to have an appointment with him.  Aren't they just beautiful?

And they are the perfect update to my gallery wall in our entryway.  

4.  Yesterday when Elyse woke up from her nap she had the messiest ponytail ever, with her little hairs flying everywhere! Looking at her in all of her innocence with a messy ponytail, a lunch-covered shirt, and a sweet smile while watching Doc McStuffins just made me fall in love with her even more, and makes me want to soak up every single moment.

5.  Yesterday I also bought a few things to spring-up my burlap wreath...this has seriously been the best Pinterest idea ever.  I simply change out the flowers and ribbbons with the seasons and have a cheap front door update!  Come on Spring, you know you want to come on and visit us!

Head over to hang out with all the other fabulous ladies who are participating this week!  

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Breaking the cabin fever...

Praise the Lord, the frigid temperatures have gone away for at least a brief time, and they've been replaced with some warmth & sunshine!  It's definitely not HOT outside, but it's definitely an acceptable temperature to at least be outside with a light jacket.  

With Elyse & I both fighting off this lovely cold, we armed ourselves with lots of Kleenex and headed outside to join the rest of our neighborhood for just a little while.  After being couped up in a sicky house, it was so nice to just get outside and breathe in some fresh air.  

Elyse quickly wanted to break out the sidewalk chalk (which is honestly on it's last legs--I need to stock up before Spring really does arrive), and the other kids joined in.  They apparently were all about drawing portraits of Elyse...I mean, can't you see the resemblance?  Ponytail and all!

This was apparently the life-size/monster Elyse...please don't ask, when 7-9 year olds break out the sidewalk chalk, you never know what kind of artistic masterpieces are going to show up!  

Elyse also grabbed onto one of our neighbors scooters...not sure she quite understood the concept, but she was having  blast riding with her Daddy!

Yesterday it was nice and warm again so after Elyse's afternoon nap we headed back outside.  Elyse was loving the slide and I am already so excited for Spring to officially arrive so we can be outside more!

Playing ball with Bogey 

Momma...I need toys!  She was really wanting her water table, and I'm not sure she quite understood that it was still too cold outside to break out the water!
When we came in last night, I knelt down and kissed the top of her head...and then had to pause for an extra moment to take in the outdoor smell.  Even with a winter cold, I just loved the smell of outside mixed with all the "little girl" smells...come on Spring, I'm more than ready for you to arrive!  

And this morning, Elyse took her first official selfie..."Momma, I take picture of Elyse?"  I showed her the button to push and there we go...definitely not the most flattering, but pretty stinkin' cute that she wanted to take pictures of herself!!

Monday, February 17, 2014

Valentine's Day Deja Vu

So...this year our Valentine's Day was eerily similar to this one from last year...

Elyse developed a low-grade fever and some congestion on Tuesday evening and was down for the count all day Wednesday & Thursday.  Down as in basically the only movement she had was from my bed, to the couch, to the bed, to the changing table.  We watched LOTS of movies, and LOTS of television.  She never seemed to get much worse, so we voted against taking her to the doctor for the dreaded "it's a virus, you just need to wait it out," diagnosis.
Even with a low grade fever and a stuffy nose, a hooded towel can make any little girl look darling!

#TBT...the top picture is from February 13, 2014, and the bottom one is from February 13, 2013...both taken of a sick little girl who just wants to cuddle with her momma!  

While Elyse spent lots of time napping and watching Disney movies, I was able to whip up some yummy chocolate cupcakes and also put together some quick Valentine's gifts for Hubby & Elyse.
A boxed mix, with homemade chocolate buttercream icing

A Daddy/Daughter Date night bag from Elyse to her Daddy...Double Stuffed Oreos, a Wendy's gift card for nuggets & fries, a McDonald's giftcard for hot fudge sundaes, and a copy of The Jungle Book (which was just released and was one of Hubby's favorite childhood memories!)

My gift to Hubby, a bag of fun treats with cheesy, corny, romantic sayings..."I'm bananas for you" "You're the apple of my eye" "You are one hot tamale", etc., etc., etc.  (Free printables found here)

*Not picture are Elyse's gift, which consisted of a new box of Duplo blocks to add to her collection, and Little Golden Book versions of Monsters, Inc. & Monsters University for those times when she MUST HAVE Monsters!  Hubby also got me some beautiful roses, which I failed to take a picture of, and a new dress which will most likely be worn in July because that's as soon as it will be warm enough to wear it!  ha!  It'll be a great addition to my Charleston trip wardrobe!

However, with all the cuddle time, someone else was inevitably going to come down with her lovely cold...that someone was me.  So similar to last year, Valentine's Day consisted of 1 1/2 of our family being sick (Elyse is on the mend so I figure, she gets to share in my misery)!  To look on the bright side, at least it's just drainage and some congestion, but it still doesn't make for a very pleasant experience!
The best I could do with our matching sweatshirts...another one of those perfect photo-ops that doesn't always go as planned!

Thankfully we truly didn't have anything spectacular planned and I had already whipped up some yummy Valentine's Day cupcakes before the sickness attacked me.  So...last night we grabbed carry-out from McAlister's because soup & a baked potato will make anyone feel better. Elyse was feeling quite a bit better so I got to be entertained by she & Hubby as they built huge Duplo towers with her new blocks.
A night when I don't feel well and also don't have to cook is a pretty great present for me! 
Check out those eyes...still not feeling 100% for sure!

Elyse has learned to LOVE her blocks...which is a huge joy for her Daddy who LOVES Legos even to this day!  
To wrap up the evening, Hubby popped some popcorn and we treated Elyse to her first viewing of the Lion King.  After we got past the initial frustration from her of us NOT watching Monsters University or Planes, I think she's a big fan!

I guess I should also add that no one should feel TOO sorry for us.  Monday night Elyse spent the night with my in-laws so Hubby & I spontaneously planned a date night that served as our Valentine's celebration.  We had dinner at a great place in town and then we found a theater that was still showing Catching Fire.  We were the ONLY ONES in the theater...a pretty great way to celebrate this wonderful man that I get to do life with.  Whether that includes a date night out at a fancy restaurant or carry-out with a movie on the couch, life is pretty amazing since I get to be by his side through it all!

Monday, February 10, 2014

A Quick Family Roadtrip to STL

So on Friday morning, we loaded up my mom's car (which we borrowed because it has an in-car DVD player) and headed off on a quick 36 hour family road trip.  Let's be honest...this trip was like 5% for Elyse & I and about 95% for Hubby because he was ordering new golf clubs at this great golf shop that's about 3 1/2 hours from our house.  We didn't really have a great option for an overnight sitter so we just decided to make the best of it and take Elyse along for the ride. 
And let me just say...packing for a quick roadtrip was A LOT easier when I didn't have a two year old who had three additional bags just for herself...diaper bag; car bag full of toys, snacks, & movies; and of course her suitcase full of clothes, diapers, & sippy cups!
We headed out and let Elyse watch Finding Nemo until we stopped for lunch.  We probably stopped a little too late, and lunch took a little too long...and the rest of the driving portion was a chore.  We wrongly assumed that Elyse would nap well in her carseat...I think I got about 30 minutes out of her and that was after I wiggled my way into the backseat while driving down the highway (don't judge) and she finally dozed off with my arm draped across her lap & my head resting against her carseat.  Silly girl! 
We dropped Hubby off at his club-fitting appointment and made our way to Target to stretch our legs and waste a little bit of time.  The only movie Elyse has been talking about recently (that we don't already own) is Planes.  I have no idea why she loves it so much...but she does.  So...after a quick trip to Target for a movie, milk, and M&M's and momma not really being in the mood to chase her through other stores...I plopped us both in the backseat of my mom's car & we proceeded to simply watch Planes in the nice warm car while we waited on Hubby.  I might have treated myself to a visit to Sonic just for surviving the last 2 hours of our trip!   

After Hubby was finished, we had planned to have a nice family dinner at Maggiano's...kind of our Valentine's Day dinner as a family.  However...after such a long afternoon and Elyse spending WAY too much time in the car, we decided to cancel our reservation and go to the nearest mall that also had a Cheesecake Factory.  This gave Elyse some time to run around & burn off some energy after being couped up in the car. 
Our one parenting fail...showing her the cheesecake case.  There was a slight wait for our table so we showed her all the yummy goodies, only to have her lock her eyes on the Strawberry topping.  NOTHING would do but for her to have strawberries...and NOW!!!  Thankfully we were seated quickly, had a gem of a waitress who has a 2 yo & a 4 yo, and Elyse proceeded to have a meal that consisted of 3 kiddie plates of strawberries & some bread.  You gotta do, what you gotta do!  We had NO idea how much those strawberries were going to cost us, but at the time we didn't care at all!  Thankfully we just ended up with 3 $2.50 charges for the berries...SCORE! 
We headed back to the hotel and after playing for awhile, we put Elyse down in the sleeper sofa and Hubby & I cuddled up to watch the Olympics Opening Ceremonies...on MUTE for fear of waking up Elyse after such a long day!  ha! 
Saturday morning we woke up, had a quick breakfast at the hotel and then headed out for a few shopping stops before heading back home. 
This is our current "cheese" face...cute huh!?
Our first stop was Trader Joe's where Elyse had an absolute ball with the mini-shopping carts, and only managed to take out one gentleman in the checkout line. 
We made a fairly quick stop at a mall and then stopped at a local pizza joint for lunch.  Dewey's Pizza was a great recommendation by my bloggy friend Sara & we'll definitely be stopping there again on our trips to STL. 

We loaded back up and hit the road again...PRAYING that God would grant us the gift of a little girl napping.  And nap she did...for almost two hours! 

We spent the rest of the afternoon hanging out at Hubby's parents house before heading to our church for a Valentine's Day Banquet put on by our church.  I failed to take a SINGLE picture, but they had a photo booth setup and we'll get those pictures back next week so I promise to share! 
Yesterday after church we spent our afternoon resting, recovering & recouperating from the roadtrip...we all needed it! 
And of course true Missouri winter's snowing again.  Or it snowed again.  At least a big warm-up is finally in the forecast, 50 degree temps this weekend and I'm going to think about wearing shorts!   

Friday, February 7, 2014

5 on Friday--More Snow!

Besides being my birthday week, it's just been another cold, snowy, below normal temps week which means lots of time inside and even more dreaming of warmer Spring temps.  I think most schools in our area have now missed the total number of days required by the state in order to not make any more up...ughhh...winter I think it's time for you to go back where you came from and send some Spring temps in your place!

Enough moaning about about another five on friday?!?

1.  With lots of snow still on the ground and below-freezing windchills, Elyse & I were at home all day on Wednesday with no plans. She stayed in her jammies for most of the day & we had quite the snow day tea party.  Mike, Sully, Jake, & Pink Kitten were all invited...notice Mike is sitting on Jake's lap.  She is cracking me up these days with her imagination!

  2.  For Christmas, Elyse & I got two different gift certificates for swim lessons at a local aquatics center.  We were supposed to start up on Wednesday night, but with the crummy weather they were pushed back to next week! I'm super excited for Elyse to be back in the swimming pool & hopefully she'll have some serious skills by the time that summer finally decides to show back up!  I have a feeling she's going to have come a long way from the little girl that was in the pool last year!
3. The Biggest Loser wrapped up this week, and while there was certainly some backlash surrounding the final results...I'm just super proud of Marie Pearl!  She was attending our Zumba class back in the Spring before she headed off to the ranch (and has been back a few times since returning home) & I couldn't be more excited for the life-changing experience she just had! In fact, she actually surprised us all by showing up to class last night...she looks amazing and is such an inspiration to us all!  Way to go Marie!
Photo from Marie's Facebook page!

4.  We're heading out for a little family getaway tomorrow, all 3 of us...and I'm super excited.  We're gonna be gone less than 48 hours, but I'm just excited for some alone time away from a hotel room...eating out on some yummy food...with my two favorite people in the entire world!  
An oldie for sure...but one of my favorite pics of them ever!

5.  I might have caved and bought Elyse & I semi-matching hoodies to wear for Valentine's Day....I'm not normally obsessed with matching her, but they were too cute to pass up! 
Head on over to April's blog to see all the other fabulous ladies who participate in 5 on Friday!  There's a ton of us!  

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Celebrating my 31st!

While my main family party was on better believe we were still going to have a birthday celebration!  Hubby woke up early to go the gym and brought back some requested breakfast treats!  I love a good ole' fashioned glazed twist donut and our local donut shop doesn't disappoint!  I opened a couple of presents which included some fun new Spring clothes (that I will hopefully be able to wear at some point when Winter decides to leave) & also a Polar FT4 watch.  I've been wanting one of these for awhile and I'm super excited to put it to good use!

Turning 31 isn't so bad when you have such a cutie to celebrate with!
The snow started falling just a little bit before we headed to work...and while I normally would be thrilled about having 3-5 inches of snow fall on my  birthday, this year I was really hoping for a warm day with some nice sunshine.  No such luck.  Winter continues on.
Just the beginning of the snowfall...our drive to work!
Thankfully there wasn't enough snow to cancel our evening plans so we headed to Springfield to meet up with my brother, SIL, & niece Harper for Elyse's & Harper's first visit to a Japanese Hibachi restaurant.  I knew the presentation cooking would be entertaining for Elyse.  However, I forgot to warn my mom about what happens when you ask for the birthday package...a crazy Japanese dragon and a Japanese song to the tune of "If You're Happy & You Know It." Totally random, and Elyse was NOT excited about the dragon...
As part of the birthday package, the restaurant also comes and snaps a picture of you & whoever else with the dragon...not sure why the rest of the family didn't join in!
The best birthday family photo I could manage with a tired, over-stimulated two year least Hubby & I look nice!  ha!
While the snow had stopped falling by the time we got to had started back up again and this perked Elyse right up!  She was having a blast catching snowflakes on her tongue with Papa!

My parents bought me a new Spring purse, a Lucky Brand military jacket, & maybe what I was most excited about...Hunter Boots!  I'm definitely going to be getting a lot of wear out of these babies in the next few days....and probably for a long time to come if this Winter weather continues on!

Even if I have officially entered my 30s, it was a pretty fabulous birthday & couldn't have asked for more!