Mar 31, 2009


Here are a few videos I've had on the computer for awhile- maybe not in this order.
Hannah's destruction of our only little random flower patch. I filmed instead of stopping her- it seemed so representative of having a 2 year old. Hannah's animated storytelling. For those of you who believe she is a pretty quiet child, this is the chatterbox she usually is around the house. Hannah singing her solfege notes. Chloe and her newfound love... crinkly chip bags. Chloe enjoying her exersaucer.

Mar 27, 2009

What's New?

On Sunday, Lone Star Wind Orchestra had its last concert of the season called "All That Jazz." We played a fun opener called Metroplex. Next came an arrangement of The Beatles' Blackbird with the (amazing) 1 o'clock trio from UNT. Last on the first half was Bernstein's Symphonic Dances from West Side Story. It sounds corny at first but this is the piece Bernstein himself wrote for concert performance and recorded with the NY Phil. It was quite tough. The second half was Strange Humors, a kind of snaky, bongo- like piece. Then came Gershwin's Second Prelude, another piece soloed by the 1 o'clock, and finally Ticheli's Blue Shades- a fun, fast, blues inspired piece. The concert went pretty well and now I have to wait until September to see all those people again! In the meantime Dax and I will play "Crazy for You" next month.

New with the girls: Chloe is big enough for the exersaucer now. She loves it and it's so funny that she is attracted to the exact opposite toys on this thing than Hannah was.

Look at those legs!!

You knew this was coming. : )

We have officially given up our tv. It now resides in the garage. On our drive back from Memphis Dax and I realized we rarely use it, but when we do, it's easy to get addicted. Whatever shows we want to see, we usually watch on the laptop at our own leisure anyway. I've been wanting this forever! I really love it so far. What a pleasant household. Now there is more space in the den and classical music playing in the background rather than commercials. Hannah hasn't asked about it once.

This is exactly what I saw staring me in the face Tuesday night! We've had a small hole covered by a tarp in our roof for awhile. Dax was away at church until late and I was home with the sleeping babies when I heard all this racket in the attic- like someone moving large furniture around. I thought maybe the hole had grown and the wind was blowing shingles and who knows what else around. But when I went outside with the flashlight a raccoon sitting right above that hole looked me straight in the face. I shuddered and ran inside to hear more attic noises. He was going in and out. So I did what anyone would do. I called my mom and dad who researched the topic for me : ) I would normally have not been scared but there is only a simple tile panel between our hallway and the attic, easily moveable with a couple of fingers. If this raccoon wanted to, he could have jumped into the house! I heard they can get aggressive too so there was no way I was sleeping there that night. I packed up the girls. Hannah stayed at Nana's and the rest of us went to a hotel room courtesy of my mom. Father Justin patched up the hole the next day in hopes the animal had left in the morning and did not have little raccoons in our attic. We haven't heard a noise since- whew! It would have been big bucks to hire wild life removal and I also didn't want to be the cause of any harm to the animal(s).

No, I didn't already have another one- this is little Finley Benton, Megan's 1 month old presented to the camera Lion King style.

These two always have guilty looks on their faces. : ) Finley is being quite a fussy baby so we brought her Chloe's swing.

Haha! Does this count as sitting unsupported? I don't know! This is the last time you'll see her with a pacifier. I don't mind her having it to go to sleep with but she wakes up constantly when she drops it or it falls under her cheek. We're not getting any sleep! After some research online I decided to have her quit cold turkey. It's worked well so far. I could tell she was missing it today but she'll be alright.

As a mom I love pictures like these. It also looks like we're going to have two little blondies.

Chloe attacks Hannah...
Hannah escapes....
Chloe is defeated. : )

Something else new: Chloe had her first food today! This is her very first bite. I gave her the typical rice cereal all souped up. She didn't mind it but I don't think she swallowed any. Most of it she spit back onto her chin.

I never figured myself the girly type but you've never seen someone smile more than I did during Hannah's first ballet class. I have never seen anything cuter! Her teacher is a very pretty lady named Miss Rachel. You could tell the other toddlers had taken the class before because they anticipated all the directions and answered questions right away. Hannah participated pretty well where she could as a new kid. : ) She's got 3 more classes and I'm sure we'll sign her up again because she seemed to love it.

Last but not least, I'm doing a new thing myself. I've always wanted to walk a 5k, 10k, etc so tomorrow my friend Heather, the expert race walker, will go with me to the Make A Wish race in Fort Worth. I didn't do any money raising so I'm not contributing much. I just wanted to try something new. Also, Dax has his first softball game (or doubleheader) this Sunday. Pictures will be coming!

Mar 21, 2009

Trip to Collierville- long post ahead!!

Spring Break for everyone. We took the family to visit my home town of Collierville. My parents were moving into this house so it was nice to be able to help and to say goodbye to our last home of 15 years. (It was about a 9 hour drive and Hannah proved to us that no matter what plans you make they can be broken. : ) Our plan was to leave super early in the morning and have the girls sleep the first half of the trip. Hannah was determined to stay awake from 4:30am to 7:00pm!
They did well on such a long car ride).

Goodbye Crestover! I remember when we had this house built and my sisters and I climbing on the dirt piles while our parents stared at where the foundation would be. Now someone else's memories will be there too.

That's my dollhouse on the street. My mom and dad put it together for me when I was younger and I have many memories of playing with it. There's just no opportunity to take it back to Texas, no room in our house, and years in the attic meant it needed a lot of repairs. Thankfully a family saw it on the side of the road and their 3 year old, Madeline, took it home!! I kept all the furniture we had collected for it so one day the girls and I could maybe build our own.

Haha!! This is one of the things that really made it our house. We've all had our turns having the gameroom be our bedroom and when it was my turn I drew some lovely (odd) portraits on the closet wall such as this one.

Grandma and Hannah enjoying the last walk down our street.

Papaw rocks his granddaughters on the front porch.

In one of Hannah's books the characters get ice cream from the ice cream truck but she didn't really know what that was. Now she does!

After she finished her chocolate pop I looked in the back seat. She was completely covered in goo and sweetly said, "Again?"

We were so happy Papa Hats and Granny B were able to drive from Knoxville to see us. They haven't seen Hannah since she was 9 months old if I remember correctly.

We relaxed in the hotel room for awhile while Hannah ate a crazy amount of chicken...

Then we walked around the outdoor mall and later had dinner at Cheeburger Cheeburger- very good! In this picture: So many times people have suggested to me that since Hannah is having some issues with running off and not staying with us in crowded places, we should get her one of these "leashes." I've seen them before and actually think they are cute. I saw many people look at her like we were trying to train a dog but who cares about that when it worked so well! She loved the monkey on her back and was able to freely roam without having to hold someone's hand every second.

Chloe meets Granny at last!!!

Off to Mamaw's house! I've been showing Hannah pictures of my grandmothers and talking all about them so both girls took to them right away. They've been waiting for so long for us to come to town I wanted it to be a happy visit for everyone. We also brought some of Chloe's portraits for everyone and I make DVDs of the girls every few months to give them too. Even though they're far away they see Hannah and Chloe grow up.

Mary Beth brought Kayla and Preston up the next day. I miss my sisters : ( After much moving, shuffling, escorting many service people around turning on water, heat, internet, etc. it was nice to sit down and enjoy the new house. I enjoyed what little help we could give and can't wait to see it all fixed up.

Hannah opened some belated birthday presents and Grandma read to them all.

All the grandchildren.

Their new neighborhood has a lovely lake so we all took a walk.

What sweet cousins!!

Saying goodbye is so hard!!!!!

We returned home about midnight on Friday (or Saturday) and went to the library the next morning. They are doing some renovating and wanted kids to come paint on the construction walls until they are torn down in a few months to liven up the place.

Hannah and I painted in pink and yellow and got to see our friends the Long family.

A masterpiece!!!

Mar 15, 2009

At Laaaaast!

BEFORE and AFTER : It pays to have a blog. Anna saw my stated desire for different curtains and some came her way for FREE! Only 2 panels matched out of several different style so she suggested trying all different colors. Usually I am much more boring than that but I gave it a whirl and I actually really like it! I used the old curtains I really loved but thought were too dark to make a valance. I didn't really make anything- just folded it in half and hung it up to look like a valance. I think it works well and the whole thing is kind of fun but not too wacky. The biggest thing is the height. When I first enlisted Dax to put up the rod 2 years ago I neglected to give him measurements so when I got home the curtains did not hide the top of the windows, which make the whole higher than the actual window trick kind of moot. After 2 YEARS I finally moved the brackets! What took me so long- too lazy to get out the ladder and charge the drill? Who knows, but it's kind of pitiful. I'm writing this whole blog post about it because I had no idea how much the weird height of those curtains bothered me. I would be annoyed with them every time I walked in the room and now I breathe a sigh of relief. (sigh) You can roll your eyes now. : )

Mar 14, 2009

Silly Hannah

1. I think Chloe beats Hannah on the kite flying skills.
2. Hannah and I drew a hopscotch game since in her new favorite book Corduroy does this with his friends. I showed her the game piece (rock) and how to hop and then let her take a go. I don't think she's got it yet but we're working on it : ) She also exhibits her klutziness for you.

Mar 7, 2009

Hannah's Birthday/ Outdoor Fun

I realize I just posted a couple of days ago, but hey, there aren't any posting rules. Besides there won't be much going on for the next few days so why not? This is a long one! : ) Happy Birthday, Hannah!!! I made her this little shirt to wear on her birthday this past Thursday.

Rather than have a party we made it a day full of Hannah's favorites. She woke up to a den full of balloons!

Next she got to eat her favorite breakfast in front of her favorite show- Elmo on Sesame Street. Believe it or not, the entire show was about birthdays and the letter of the day was "H." I thought that was pretty cool- tailor made for Hannah!

Next we went to our regular Story time at the library. Her friend Lillian (in the blue) made her a lovely card. I turned around and Hannah was wearing someone's sunglasses. When we got home she watched Zoo Barney in her room with a plate of strawberries and blueberries- mmm.

I heard about this place a couple of times so we tried it out. What kid wouldn't love this place? It was called Boomerangs and is an entire playland of bounce houses- and only $5 for unlimited fun I might add. She was in heaven...until she climbed one of the big kid bounces and I had to go rescue her at the top.

Yay! The best part was that during school hours pretty much no one else was there. Dax took the day off so were all able to enjoy it together.

Even Chloe liked it, although with all the loud motor humming I would have been a little frightened myself.

Nana came over for dinner and cake. This must be the Happy Cake face.

As for presents for a two year old- what is cuter than ballet? Grandma is paying for toddler ballet class and Nana got all the gear.

She loves her stuffed Barney. She also got books, a little laptop with learning games, clothes, and sidewalk chalk.

The challenge is to avoid eating the chalk.

And finally, she insisted on a balloon bath. Future Hannah won't like all the bath pictures I post but she shouldn't be so funny!

On Saturday we got to do a couple of things I've always wanted to do. The first one was the Great American Clean-Up in Denton. I've always wanted the family to help pick up litter so we participated in the effort and were assigned a nice little spot. Hannah was a little confused but stuck it out for awhile. I loved it!

All clean! It was fun seeing all the teams of people around picking up the town. I love group efforts. Also, it really opened my eyes to how much litter is out there. On the way home I was appalled by the amount of trash- EVERYWHERE!

Later Nana joined us at the park for some kite flying (another one of Hannah's gifts). Word to the wise: $5 kites fly and $1 kites do not.

They are both so cute. : )

Chloe has been hiding her kite flying skills. I'm impressed.

And finally...the hazards of kiting.