Saturday, December 31, 2011

good bye 2011!

I can't believe 2011 is coming to an end.  It has been a year full of ups and downs, but we've survived.  Looking at these pictures from the beginning of the year is bittersweet.  I can't believe my baby has grown into a toddler already.  Here are some of my favorite pictures of Avery from each month of the year.

January 2011
February 2011
March 2011
April 2011
May 2011
June 2011
July 2011
August 2011
September 2011
October 2011
November 2011
This picture was taken today December 31, 2011.
I'm looking forward to starting the new year and making some positive changes for myself and my family.  I want to focus on my health.  I want to focus on preparing healthier meals for myself and family.  I want to be more active and lose weight that I have been wanting to lose for a year.  I want to strengthen my marriage.  Between working, school, and raising a child, you sometimes forget to focus on your relationship.  I want to engage more with Avery and plan more activities in and out of the house.  I want to spend less time on the computer.  I'd like to read more books.

If you are out and about tonight, please be safe.  Hope you enjoy your last day in 2011!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

we're sick and 15 months

Poor Avery caught a yucky cold.  Eric and I have a touch of something as well.  So far I just have a really bad sore throat and I hope that is all it is.  Avery is super congested and just looks miserable.  We had a rough night last night.  Avery couldn't sleep at all.  She was screaming and crying so hard and I was at a loss as to what to do.  I resorted back to a warm bottle of milk, changed her diaper, tried suctioning her nose, tried rocking her, set up the humidifier in her bedroom, took her outside for some cold fresh air, gave her Advil, rubbed some Vick's on her chest, and ended up bringing her into the playroom so she could calm down.  I was FINALLY able to get her down to sleep around 12:30am.  She slept until 6am.  I gave her some more Advil and another warm bottle and she went back down for me until 8:45am.  I really hate when Avery is sick.  I feel so bad because with a cold there is only so much you can do.  It just has to run its course.

She was in a pretty good mood this morning playing with her toys.  I think big brown can sense Avery doesn't feel well because he has been close to her all morning.
Just look at this poor miserable face.  :-(
Today is Avery's 15 month birthday!  I have a toddler ya'll!  I know she is still a baby, but she is looking more and more like a little girl.  She is thinning out and running around all over the place.  She loves playing hide and seek and chase.  She loves on her baby dolls.  She enjoys carrying around purses and pushing her shopping cart.  She loves cell phones and laptops!  She likes to play with her puzzles, books, and kitchen.  She is always babbling and giggling.  She is a great eater (just like her mama!).  She eats three good meals a day, has one to two snacks a day, tons of water, and is getting better at drinking her milk out of a real big girl cup (with help of course!).  She is still wearing 18 month clothes and is wearing a size 5 in toddler shoes and a size 4 Pampers diaper.  We are big fans of the squeaker shoes in this house.  They are so fun!  She easily transitioned to going to sleep without bottles (we broke that last night and today since she is sick and she wanted it) and only has her pacifier when napping and going to bed at night.

We love our sweet little bear to pieces!  Happy 15 months ABL!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

secret santa a little late

The beginning of December Avery and I participated in a secret Santa gift exchange between some of my mommy friends.  Everyone that was involved picked out kids board books and something from where they are from to send as small gifts.  We sent our secret Santa gift to Nebraska which was pretty cool since that is where Eric is originally from.  Our secret Santa gift came from friends in Ohio!  Avery got some new little books and some locally made Ohio chocolate (which I ate, it was delicious).  Here are some picture we took when we received our package.

Thank you to our secret Santa friends in Ohio for sending such a fun and yummy presents!

the last few days around here

I just realized today that I haven't written a post since the 24th!  We have just been busy and having fun around here.

On the real Christmas day we spent the day at home with the exception of taking Brian to the airport.  We snacked on goodies and ate home made chicken and noodle soup for dinner.  Charlene made these amazing home made noodles and biscuits!  We also decided to take down our Christmas decorations on Christmas.  I put everything up on my own, but wanted the help taking it all down and getting it back up in the attic.

Yesterday, Charlene and I headed out early in the morning to the stores.  We had some returns and exchanges we wanted to do.  We also did some shopping and stopped for lunch.  We left the house around 8:30am and got home around 3pm.  Eric and I had a dinner date last night.  We went to Jack Allen's Kitchen and it was great!  We'll be going back for sure.  It was so nice to enjoy a dinner without having to deal with a one year old at the table.  Charlene stayed home and got Avery fed, bathed, and in bed before we got home. NICE!

This morning we didn't do much.  We had breakfast and coffee.  We got Charlene all packed up and ready to go.  Charlene did a little sewing for us (turned some king size pillow cases into standard size since we don't have king pillows, and she also took in two pair of pants for Avery so she could get use out of 24 month clothes that she won't be wearing in the spring/summer months).
It is always a bummer to have family leave.  I am looking forward to getting back to normal around the house.  I have tons of cleaning and laundry to start working on this week, and the usual errands to run.  I'm glad that we do have visitors already lined up for next year!  My parents already have plane tickets to come the end of February and Charlene is coming the middle of March.  It is always nice to have visits to look forward to!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Today was our Christmas!

Today was Christmas at our house.  We had to celebrate today because Brian is flying home tomorrow.  I'm also sneaking in a few pictures from the past couple of days.

Here are my awesome peanut butter blossom cookies that I baked.  They turned out perfect.  These are my absolute favorite cookie to have at Christmas.  We also baked lemon bars, stuffed snicker doodles, and chocolate coconut bars.  We have SO much junk food in this house right now!
Here is little miss thing before heading out to lunch and shopping on Friday.  This is one of my favorite outfits she has.  Check out her new cute squeaker shoes!
Just so excited for lunch and shopping!
Friday night was our Christmas Eve.  We had an early dinner and had my good friend Emily and her daughter Sophia over.  We enjoyed some good food and treats while the girls played.  After our friends left, we had lots to do.  We needed to pick up around the house, wrap some presents, and put together some of Avery's new toys.  We decided to let Avery open a couple presents for Christmas Eve after her bath.
Her great grandma Verna sent her the Fisher Price purse with accessories and a really cute seahorse book!

Avery loves carrying bags around.  She has fun putting things in it and taking things back out.
Rolo wanted to get into some of his gifts early too.  He kept sitting by his stocking because he could smell all the treats inside!
His grandma helped him check things out.

And he got to eat a few sausage treats.
Our Christmas morning!  Here is our tree with all the presents piled under, behind, and around it.
We decided to not wrap most of Avery's toys and to put together her larger toys so everything was ready to play with when she woke up.  She had some presents already wrapped under the tree that family sent her, so that was plenty of paper for her to rip through.
Avery walking out to her toys on Christmas morning!  She was really excited to see her presents.
She LOVED her new cupcake kitchen!
And her new learning and music table.
Checking out her new flip phone.  You can record messages on it which is pretty cool.
Her pretty step stool that her grandpa Rick made her!  That is going to go perfectly in her bathroom that I am planning on redoing after the new year.  Avery got so many great toys, books, movies, and cute clothes for Christmas!
Us adults got some great gifts too!  Once the madness of gift wrapping was over, Avery took a 3 hour nap.  We cleaned up the mess in the living room, had coffee and cinnamon rolls for a late breakfast, then lounged around playing with all our new goodies.  We eventually started working in the kitchen on our Christmas dinner.
We had a huge Christmas dinner!  We had turkey, mashed potatoes with gravy, stuffing, green bean casserole, and scalloped corn.  It was delicious.  We are having french silk pie for dessert.  YUM!
We all had a wonderful Christmas.  I always get a little sad once presents and dinner are complete on Christmas.  I feel like the entire month of December works up to the big day, and then once it happens all the fun is over.  I'm glad we still have a few more days with family before getting back to normal.  :-)

Hope you have a very Merry Christmas!!!

Thursday, December 22, 2011


Wow, the past couple of days have been really busy!

Tuesday afternoon we went to the airport to pick up grandma Charlene and uncle Brian.  When we got home we all had a snack, and then Charlene and I left for Super Target and Sam's Club to get some groceries we needed for all our baking.  We had some delicious spaghetti and crock pot meat sauce for dinner that night and just hung out before bed.

Yesterday was a fun day.  Eric made a big pancake and sausage breakfast for everyone.  While Avery took her morning nap, we all got showered and ready for the day.  The boys and Avery headed out to Rudy's BBQ and the mall for the afternoon to do some Christmas shopping.  Charlene and I went over to Chipolte for lunch, then came back home to start all our holiday baking.  We made peanut butter blossoms, stuffed snicker doodles, Samoa cookie bars, and we are going to work on lemon bars today (we ran out of steam!). After we baked those three treats and the guys got home with Avery, Charlene and I headed over to the nail salon for manicures and pedicures.  Man, it sure felt nice!  I never get that done so it was truly a treat!  I would love to get that done once a month plus an eye brow wax.  :-)  I got my favorite color on my fingers and toes: I'm not really a waitress.  For dinner we made a chicken and veggie stir fry with basmati rice.  And of course chowed down on goodies for dessert.

This morning, Eric and Charlene took both cars to have oil changes, tires rotated, and inspections done.  They are also stopping at Costco to look at a chest freezer for Eric.  We need it for when he brews beer and it has to ferment at a certain temperature.  That is going to be one of his big Christmas presents this year and it is something that he has wanted for awhile.  It is really hard to regulate temps here in Texas, especially during our long hot springs and summers.  We are planning on going out to eat for a late lunch early dinner.  Charlene and I still need to go shopping at some point today for more stocking stuffers.

I'm proud to report that Avery went down for a nap this morning WITHOUT her bottle of milk!  We have GOT to break the habit because it isn't good for her teeth and mouth.  She will get milk at meals and water the rest of the day in her cups.  Once we break this bottle habit, I'm sure the pacifier will be next!

Hope you enjoyed the pictures from yesterday!  No pictures to add in this post.  Have a great Thursday!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

quick post with pictures!

This is a post and run! Just wanted to share some Christmas pictures we took this morning. I took pictures so Charlene could have some to do her Christmas cards. More of an update later! Enjoy :)