March 31, 2011

Bananas!!

I decided to be a bit crazy adventurous today and see how Kate would do with finger foods. 

We had a few bananas at the house so I cut one into pieces and let her go to town.  She took the pieces, mashed the up, threw a ton on the ground, got some in her mouth, and had a great time!!

I think she thought it was a toy and not food as this was the face she gave me when she finally got some banana in her mouth.  I guess she doesn't like the texture as she loves banana puree.


I don't think she liked using her hands to eat because she grabbed her spoon and tried to get the banana on the spoon and feed herself!


(Disclaimer: Our highchair isn't always this dirty - she had sweet potatoes before getting the banana and made a huge mess.)

March 29, 2011

Sneak Peak and Randomness!

*I'm not going to give away too many details as I want our guests to be surprised but here is a peak!  I am about 70% done with the planning - everything that needs to be ordered has been ordered (most items coming from etsy)!  Our paper products (banners, door sign, high chair sign, cupcake toppers, etc) will be finished next month and hopefully ship out then as well and invitations should be here by June!


 
*I've ordered the black and while picture from my last post.  The place I ordered the print from also does custom framing so it will arrive framed and ready to go on the wall!  I am so, so excited!
 
*Kate is now having major issues getting to sleep.  She used to go down early but wake up frequently.  Now, she fights sleep so much and still wakes up multiple times at night.  I dream about the time when she actually sleeps through the night.
 
*We have a photo shoot with a new photographer in 2 weeks!  I am very, very excited to take pictures with Melissa!
 
*In the past week we have had two dove nestlings fall out of their nest.  Alex has taken both of them to a rescue society in town.  We also have another momma dove sitting on two itty bitty babies in our other palm tree.  We have a bad band of weather coming through tonight and I hope they are ok!
 
*This is my first crazy week at work and I am hoping I make it through.  It is month end close time meaning I have to nag kindly remind everyone to reconcile their accounts.  Because you know, it is my fault if accounts are not reconciled due to others not doing their job.  I basically run the same SAP report 90498563 times a day to see who is doing work and who is not.  Fun times!
 
*We are taking Kate down to Galveston next weekend and I am so excited to see how she likes the sand and water!

March 28, 2011

It's Great to have Professional Photog Friends!!

My friend Maxine, owner of Grace Photography, is amazing!  But, she lives super far away.  Even though she can't take beautiful pictures of Kate, she is helping me make sure I have great pictures!

She took time out of her day today to talk me through using my 50mm lens.  I have this one:



It is a great lens but it doesn't "talk" to my camera body (a Nikon D60) at all.  So, I am usually left frustrated, with blurry pictures as shooting in manual mode AND manual focus is hard for a mom like me.  Maxine gave me a few tips today and Kate was in a great mood so I ended up with about 6 decent pictures (ignore the fact that I took 176 - no joke).
 
I also branched out and shot in RAW so Maxine could have fun editing a few of my images!
 
Here's one I took SOOC (straight out of the camera - no editing at all):
 

And after a few touch ups!

My favorite SOOC

Black & White (this will be framed ASAP)

I have to say, I'm pretty impressed with my SOOC images!  My persistence paid off and I ma actually stunned that I took these pictures!  And thank you Maxine for the touch ups!

March 27, 2011

Hangin With Daddy!

Alex has been busy outside today working on how he is going to haul his kayak in his new truck - the new truck that is still sitting in Detroit.

I could go on and on about the mess that has been getting this truck.  Alex ordered a 2011 Ford Raptor in November.  His truck was built the week of Valentine's Day.  However, in true Alex-trying-to-get-a-new-car fashion (his GTO came from Australia - and the first one came with a wonky paint job.  So we waited on car #2 to makes its way on a container ship, clear customs, and make it to MS) the truck was placed on quality control hold for a reason that Ford isn't giving out.  In fact, I think all of the Raptors currently in Detroit are on the same hold.

Sidenote: If you are scratching your head wondering why he needs a baja racing truck (ok not quite a baja truck but close) in the city of Houston, join the club.  However, Alex is the first to point out that I entered into this marriage knowing he likes to have different vehicles.  So, I shut my mouth and accept that he will have a truck that is excessive super fun and different.


We've sold his Yukon.  And his GTO is back in Mississippi.  So, Alex is driving a loaner truck from the dealership that is trying to accommodate a frustrated customer. 

Thankfully the truck he is driving (a nice, brand new F-150) has the same bed as his truck.  So he is figuring out exactly how he will transport the kayak to the Gulf.  He has a pretty neat rig going on and I think it will to be much easier than it was to load the boat up on top of the Yukon.

So back to the real point of this post...

While he was outside today, Kate joined him for some quality daddy/ daughter time.  She loved sitting in the kayak!!


And she intently watched everything that Alex did!



She also sat in the bed of the truck for a little bit!


I think Alex is excited that Kate loves being outside so much! 

March 26, 2011

Saturday Happenings!

We've had a busy day - even though I've only left the house once.  This whole baby that crawls thing is exhausting.  Add in waking up at 4:45am for the day plus teething we're left with a moving, drooling, fussy, overly tired baby!

Despite the challenges of the day, Kate has had some good moments!  Here's a recap on what she's been up to!

Kate put on her new shades and went for a stroll around the neighborhood this morning.


Did a lot of crawling, had fun sticking out her tongue, and some light reading.


Was not very interested in a photo shoot we had.  I got a few pictures (no smiles though) before she turned around, crawled away, and showed me who is boss!


Peace out Momma!  I'm done!



No matter how hard our days are, I am still loving every second of being a momma to such a sweet and active little girl!!

We are taking Kate to a bluebonnet patch tomorrow for some pictures!  I'm excited to see if we can get any good ones!

March 24, 2011

Someone is Pretty Excited

That her first tooth has started to cut!  We've officially got one point of a bottom tooth poking through!

March 23, 2011

Books!

I am so thankful for Danielle because she remembers to bring out new toys/ things for Kate.  Kate has a great library but I totally forgot about it!  Danielle brought out a bunch of her books (specifically her board books and touch and feel books) this week and Kate loves them!

When I got home today, Kate was enjoying some light reading.   She read the back cover of the best seller Touch and Feel Puppy to make sure she wanted to read the full story.


Then, she gave the book the standard taste test


Next she let me know I was disturbing her book selection process.


Apparently it passed because she wanted Daddy to read it to her!


She appears to really be into the "touch and feel" books so I ordered her two more tonight!  We have these two headed our way!  Thanks to Amazon Prime, they will be here Friday!





I can't wait to read these!  If you aren't familiar with the "That's not my" line of books order a few - they are so funny!!

And because I know Kate's grandparents and Great MaMaw would love to see these, here are a few pictures from yesterday!  Kate loves to stand - and she is officially crawling everywhere!


Love this sweet girl!

March 21, 2011

A Playdate with Ella!!!

Kate's morning started off not so fun.  She had an abdominal ultrasound of her liver.  Hopefully we will have good results/ news at her GI appointment next week!



But, thankfully, our day turned around because Kate and I had a playdate with Felicia and Ella this afternoon!  Felicia started reading my blog a few weeks before I had Kate - and I promptly linked over to hers and started reading too!!

We finally got the girls together today at the zoo and I had a great time!!  Neither Felicia nor I realized just how hot it was so we both were burning up in jeans!  My shoulders are so burnt - the heat and sun are out in full force! 

Kate and Ella getting to know each other!  And, a great picture of Felicia and her sweet girl!  I love all of Ella's hair!


Felicia took this wonderful picture of Kate and I!!!  And don't have many of the two of us so I especially love that she did this for us!


I caught Kate's new favorite pastime with the camera today - she is into spitting.  So lady like, right?  She isn't blowing raspberries - she is straight up spitting - at the dogs, at her toys, in Alex's face.  It's very unbecoming but makes me laugh so hard.  And when she sees me laugh, she spits more.  I've got to get a hold on myself and not encourage undesirable behavior!


Kate also thought it would be fun to eat leaves...and pollen. 


We have also mastered standing while holding on to something!  Kate can also pull herself up onto her knees!  She is not quite pulling up to a standing position but I know it will happen soon! 

And, she is officially crawling everywhere.

She got a nice bath in the dog bowl this morning.

Feel free to give me the "Mom of the Year" award at anytime.

We can't wait to hang out with Felicia and Ella again - I foresee lots of Children's Museum playdates this summer to avoid the crazy Houston heat!!

March 20, 2011

More Fun at the Park!

I am really loving the fact that we have a fun park just a few blocks away from our house!  It's never busy and the baby swings are always open - a perk of living in an urban area that is populated mostly by singles and DINKs.

We headed to the park yesterday with Alex's parents and explored the play set.  Kate had such a good time but we weren't there long because it was so hot (it was well over 80).

I took 112 pictures - no joke.  I think I have issues.

Anyways, I ventured into the world of collages so I could share our park fun without uploading 398454 pictures to blogger. 

I also love that Danielle, our nanny, takes Kate to the park almost every day!  Danielle loves exploring and letting Kate explore!  She is such a blessing to our family!

March 19, 2011

Happy 7 Months!!

I know I say this every month but I cannot believe Kate is 7 months old today! 

I attempted to take her 7 month picture in her chair but failed miserably.  This was the best I could do - it's a bit blurry because she is such a busy body and is on the go all.day.long.


7 month stats:
*Kate weights a little under 16 pounds (15 pounds 10ish ounces to be more exact).
*She is still about 25.5 inches long.
*Wearing all kinds of different sizes depending on the brand.  She can still fit into some 3-6 month clothes and even some 3 month dresses.  She is up to 6-9 month jammies for length.  And, we've pulled out a few 9 and 12 month items due to the brand running small (I feel like Lilly runs very small).
*Wearing a size 2 diaper during the day, and a size 3 at night.  We will move up to only size 3 when we run out of size 2.  The size threes are pretty big on her but, we need the extra absorbency.
*Kate is crawling/ scooting/ rolling all over the house.  She hasn't quite gotten the hands and knees crawl down but she gets where she wants to go anyways!
*We have a blanket/ play area for her but, more often than not, she ends up on the wood floor heading in the direction of the dog bowls or a dog toy.

*She is currently doing this thing with her mouth where she sucks her bottom lip in/ sucks on it.  She also has been smacking her lips a lot and blowing tons of spit bubbles.


*Her favorite toy is hands down her Fisher Price Tea Set.

*Kate is obsessed with standing.  She can stand by herself if she has something to hold on to but she often forgets that she needs to hold on and reaches for a toy or the dogs.  This causes her to lose her balance and fall.
*She loves any type of music - Praise Baby DVDs, singing, the radio, music class, etc.
*She  has finally gotten into a bit of a nap routine.  I think I have Danielle to thank for this!

I love how interactive she is right now!  This is such a fun, fun stage (but again, that is something I say every month)!

March 18, 2011

Kate & Willie

My in-laws flew in this morning for a visit.  We headed to the zoo after we picked them up and got there a few minutes before it opened.  It was crazy busy since it is the last Friday of spring break but, we managed to have a good time!

We headed straight back to the African Safari area in hopes of beating the crowds and kids who where mesmerized by all of the animals in the front of the zoo.

Our plan worked!!  And Willie, the youngest chimp at the zoo, greeted us!

He was totally smitten with Kate and flashed her a big smile!


Then he tried to play with her and made some funny faces!


He flashed Kate another smile


And then something caught their attention


I think Willie & Kate are BFF.  It was too funny to watch them interact! 

We continued on to a few other exhibits.  Kate fed some giraffes.


Watched the rhinos with Bebe and Pawpaw



And of course looked cute while doing all of the above!


We had such a great time!! 

I wonder if Willie will remember Kate when we head back to the zoo Monday?!?!  Kate and Ella have a play date with the animals!  I am looking forward to it!

March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!

From my little Irish baby that doesn't look Irish at all!  No one would guess she comes from many, many lines of redheaded Irishmen (and women)!


March 15, 2011

Getting Ready for St. Paddy's Day!

Kate has a few St Paddy's Day outfits so we started celebrating early!


And a picture with Daddy after he got home from work today!  Kate hasn't been feeling well for the past few days.  We are thinking she may have some wheat/ gluten sensitivities and are eliminating several things from her diet in hopes of getting out happy girl back!
 

March 14, 2011

Kate's New Favorite Pastime!

Standing at the coffee table and beating on it.  Drives momma crazy!  But, she looks so cute doing it!!


Here's a funny story about the table beating. 

Last night she was beating on the coffee table driving Alex and I crazy.  Kate was grinning, and beating the table - almost like she knew how annoying it was so Alex jokingly said, "You need to stop beating on my coffee table."

I proceeded to remind him that the coffee table was from his bachelor days and that his parents bought it for him years ago. 

So that meant the table was technically Bebe's coffee table . 

And, I am willing to bet that Bebe would let Kate beat on anything - especially a coffee table at our house - so the beating continued!

March 13, 2011

Purple Glove Dance: Mississippi State

I urge all of you to watch this:


For those of you not aware, I am an alumni of Mississippi State University. 

Many of my fondest memories happenned in Starkville, MS.

I met my husband there my freshman year of college.  I made some of the best friends a girl could ask for during my days as a student at State. 

State has the ability to be a big SEC scool that somehow maintains a small feel.  I serisouly think I know the majority of the people I walked across the stage with at graduation.  Not sure how, but I do.  Something about the junction and the drill field bring people together (and let's be honest, the lack of bars in Starville has you rubbing elbows with your fellow students Thursday - Saturday nights).  We have a bond.  We are State. 

This past football season was especially hard for us.  Nick Bell, a young and promising starter on our football team tragically died of aggresive cancer. 

Nick went from a starting defensive end on a nationally ranked football team, to losing his life to aggressive cancer in five short weeks.  Five weeks.  He was 20 years old.

Heartbreaking doesn't even begin to describe the emotions of loss the State family coped with. 

The Purple Glove Dance was made in an effort to raise both awareness and donations for Relay for Life.  This year, Mississippi State students, faculty, and staff put on their purple gloves to dance in memory of Nick Bell and all other members of the Bulldog Nation that have lost their fight to the horrendeous desease known as cancer.

The video I have posted is in a contest to win $5,000 to donate to Relay for Life.  To win, the State video must have the most hits of any PGD videos by July 31, 2011.  By clicking the video, you are helping fight for a cure.

I know winning this contest would mean to world to our devestated Bulldog family.  And, knowing that a donation was made to fight the desease that took one of our own would be a great start to the 2011 football season.

Thanks y'all!

March 11, 2011

Friday Fun!

Kate and I had a busy day today but I am realizing that Fridays are kind of hectic right now.  A few reasons why:

* Kate and I are enrolled in a music class Friday mornings at 9:15.  I'm learning that it is a really odd time for us - and had I known this, I probably wouldn't have signed up.  Kate either wants to eat right when we need to leave the house or wants to go down for a nap about 30 minutes before we need to leave.  It just makes for lots of scurrying when trying to leave the house which stresses me out.

* I enjoy the class and the music for this session.  But, I miss the connections I had with the moms in our Tuesday Gymboree class.  We are only in week two of the new class so maybe the friendships will form but for now, I am missing my mom friends that I don't see nearly enough now that I am back at work.  Thank goodness Lori is in this class with us or I would probably quit!

* Since I can't get myself in gear before music class, Kate and I usually make a Starbucks run after we are done. 

* Kate has lab appointments every Monday and Friday around 11:30 again making for weird, what can we do since we don't really have time to go home space.

*Today I thought I would get to the doctor's office early in hopes of being taken back earlier.  That didn't happen.  The office was crazy busy.  While waiting, we sat next to a sweet boy that was probably 13 or 14.  He has leukemia and was waiting to get a round of chemo.  While waiting, his mom dropped his iPod and it broke - or did something weird.  Either way, when it finally came back on, it said "iPod is locked for 24,362,482 minutes.  No joke - 24 million minutes!  Poor kid was so upset that he wouldn't have music to listen to during his treatment.  Thankfully he had movies to watch on his computer.  It absolutely breaks my heart that kids like him have to deal with cancer and all that comes with treating such a horrible disease.

*After we got home, Kate was way overstimulated and refused to nap - again making for weird, cranky time.  She finally took a bottle and went down for a nap around 2.

*Question - moms who have babies that have already cut teeth - did your kids eat less while in the thick of cutting teeth?  I can see Kate's two bottom teeth right under her gums and she has been fighting her bottles lately.  I'm starting to wonder if those teeth are finally going to cut through.

*Kate was in a great mood when she woke up so we hung out on the front balcony for a bit. 

Not looking at me and the camera - surprise, surprise!

This face makes me laugh so hard!

*Kate is now standing when holding on to things.  She stood on the porch watching the cars, people, and dogs go by for a solid 10 minutes today!


I really hope I can figure out our mornings so that we can get off to a less stressful start on Fridays! 

We have a low key weekend planned which is nice.  I am getting a mani/pedi and am hoping to go visit Susannah and sweet baby Reid!

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

March 10, 2011

Smiles & Sleep Troubles

I absolutely love coming home to this sweet smile after a day in the office!  I love how excited Kate is when she sees me!


She would be even cuter though if she slept. 

Warning: Here comes a big, long vent.  This is not an open invitation for "advice" on what I am doing wrong and how I just need to let her cry it out.  It is just a vent from a sleep deprived momma.

I am totally running on E.  While Kate is sleeping better than she has been (that means I'm only up 1-3 times a night and not 4+ times) I am totally beat.

We have no problem getting her to sleep - and I think our bedtime routine that we implemented around 3 weeks is what makes bedtime so easy.  It is staying asleep.  Kate is asleep no later than 7:15 every night.  And she will sleep pretty well until about midnight.  After that, who knows what will happen. 

I realize that a 5 hour stretch of sleep is good.  I just wish those 5 hours were when I was sleeping too!  I'm doing good if I am in bed by 10:30.  That gives me about 1.5-2 hours of sleep before Kate is up. 

I give her a paci and rock her back to sleep.  Not rocking is not an option as it leads to a major melt down, tons of vomit, and honestly way more work that I am willing to do in the middle of the night.  If I rock her I can get her back to sleep, and back in her crib, within 30 minutes. 

She is up again around 2:45 or 3 for a bottle.  She takes 4-5 ounces and acts like she has never eaten before so I know she is actually hungry.  I've tried feeding her earlier but she will not take a bottle before then.  We've also upper her ounces during the day but no matter how much she eats, she still wants/ needs that middle of the night bottle.

I refuse to deny her food - especially since she is finally growing and gaining good weight. 

But, that bottle means I am up until about 3:45 - and I have to wake up for the day at 5 on days I go into the office.

I am lucky if I get 4-5 hours of interrupted sleep a night.  I can function on that if I can lounge around the house with Kate the next day.

I can barely function on that amount of sleep if I am working 9 hours days.

I know she will sleep through the night at some point. I just hope that it is sooner rather than later! 

I just keep telling myself "this too shall pass".  I also tell myself that I can't be alone - even though it seems as if all of my friends babies close in age to Kate sleep like perfect little angels.

Until then, I am trying to recharge on my days off - and on the weekends with Alex takes over early morning baby duties!

March 8, 2011

Happy Mardi Gras!

We are wishing you a very Happy Mardi Gras!  Maybe we will all make it to NOLA next year to celebrate!!


Side note - Kate looks so much like her Daddy - but I see a little bit of my brother in these pictures.  Maybe she does have something from me after all!
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