Thursday, October 31, 2013

Dewberry Farms

We recently took a trip to Katy to check out this Dewberry Farm I've been hearing/reading so much about. We got stuck in stand-still traffic for about 30 minutes due to highway construction and I would still say it was one of the best outings we have had in a long time.

We met Kate, Sofie and Aminah out there.  All 3 girls LOVE each other so much -- it makes my heart soar, especially considering how much I love all of them!

Duck pond and petting zoo

Carousel riding...

Pillow jumping

I would say the big hit of the day was the roller slide.

Poor little Minah went down first...very slowly...not that fun....
After seeing that, I decided to put Olivia on my lap, hoping the extra weight would make the ride more fun.  I think I was right! ;)

So all the adults took turns riding with kids until our poor backsides couldn't take it anymore!

And then my brave girl did it by herself a few more times until we dragged her home, literally kicking and screaming...

I think a follow-up trip is definitely in our future...

Wednesday, October 30, 2013


We are loving our little two year old and how fun she is these days! I wanted to write down a few stories for the memory book:

1. Now that she is forward facing, she is very observant in the car. She is obsessed with numbers and road signs. She knows that she lives off 10, Pop-O and Tutu live off 45, and Mimi/Grandpa live off 59. She loves to listen to the navigation in the car and then repeat what it said to me, as if she came up with the idea on her own ("Mommy. Take the second left!").

This is all cute except for the fact that she has opinions about what road she wants to be on and will scream her face off if I don’t comply. She literally cried for like 10 minutes the other day because she wanted to get on 288. We have been on 288 once – when going to the zoo - but for some reason that stuck in her head. I finally had to just lie and tell her we were on 288. 

She also has a pretty good sense of direction. She will tell me which way to go to get to places we visit often and she can also tell what landmarks we are close to. (Although, having a Target every 15 miles makes things difficult. Whenever she sees a Target she assumes we are almost home. It's taken some convincing to make her believe there is more than 1 Target in Houston!)

2. She is really into songs and singing. She must learn most of these songs at school but I just love hearing them come out in that cute little baby voice.  (Note: The last song is the "Great Big Spider" -- just enjoy the cute "deep" baby voice and ignore the terrible parenting that made her carseat strap too loose such that she was able to get her hand out!)

3. She’s also becoming more aware of time and days of the week. She is constantly wanting to know if it is late or early; if the sun is out or the moon is out. She also has been more vocal in what she wants to do and when she wants to do it. Our conversations on the way to school usually consist of her telling me all the places she wants me to take her. She will either say “one day” (e.g. “Mommy, one day I want you to take me to Mimi’s house and to Zoe’s and to the park. Okay?”) or be specific (“Mommy, on Saturday, you take me to Three Brothers Bakery. Okay?”)

4. Her speech is so clear and accurate now! Here is a video of her telling me what she wants at Zoe's.

5. As cute and fun as she is, we definitely have moment of terrible. My mother thinks this story is hilarious so I decided to include it….She was having a bad morning the other day – wouldn't listen to anything Matt or I said. Soon, my patience wore thin and I put her in time-out. Our “timeout” spot is the corner right by the front door. Now, you should know that the house across the street puts out a GIANT inflatable cat every year at Halloween. Olivia loves the giant cat and always talks about it. So….she stayed in timeout and cried for 2 minutes. When I went to get her out, she immediately stopped crying and this is how the conversation went:
Me: Olivia, can you tell me why you had to go to the corner?
Olivia: Mommy, where is the giant cat?
Me: Olivia, you had to go to the corner because you didn’t listen to mommy and daddy. Please tell me you’re sorry.
Olivia: Mommy, hold me. I want to see the giant cat.
Me: Olivia, I need you to apologize and say that you will listen to me.
Olivia (not even looking at me): Sorry. I listen. Hold me mommy. I want to see the giant cat.
Yep. That’s how you parent folks!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Pumpkin Patch Festival

We took Olivia to the Pumpkin Patch Festival at the Nature Center last weekend.  I'd never even heard of the Nature Center before this, but it was a really cool place.  Unfortunately we got there right before it closed, so things were shutting down.  There weren't even any pumpkins left!  But we still had fun.

The first thing we did was a Lollipop Pull. I've never heard of this and I'm not even sure its a real thing but basically you pull a lollipop and if it has a black mark on it, you get TWO more lollipops.  If not, then you only get one.  Seems like a win either way.  Olivia tried it but did not get one with a black mark.  (Which was just fine with me!).  I think this was her first lollipop (although between babysitters, school, and grandparents, I can't be certain) but regardless, she LOVED it!

The next thing we did was cookie decorating
 She wouldn't let me pry that lollipop out of her hand for anything!
 So I did most of the decorating while she "instructed" me (mostly I heard "more sprinkles!")
 Our finished product! (not too "Halloween-ey" but whatever she wants, right?!)

Then she wanted to get her face painted.  The line was LONG but she made friends.
When it was finally her turn, she got a little shy and whispered that she wanted a pink and purple butterfly.

I'm not really sure she fully enjoyed the face painting experience.  I mean, she looked more happy at her first trip to the dentist?!!  I don't really know why....maybe the paint was cold?

The finessed product didn't really seem to impress her either.
By the time we were done with that, the Festival was over.  So we grabbed a sno cone on the way out, which I think was her favorite part!

All in all, I think fun afternoon which got us in the Fall spirit!

Monday, October 21, 2013

11 and Counting

Olivia's obsession with baby dolls has reached Duggar proportions.  The first step is admitting you have a problem....we are seeking a sponsor for Baby Dolls Anonymous.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Matt's Birthday

I fear that poor Matt, who celebrates his birthday only 6 days after Olivia, will forever be overshadowed by her.  I don't think he minds too much, but we did what we could to make the day special for him!

Starting with a birthday breakfast of all his favorites - eggs, sausage, cinnamon rolls, and chocolate milk!  

On his birthday, his sweet parents took him out for a sushi lunch, complete with cupcakes and presents.  Of course, however, I have no pictures because I wasn't there and apparently he doesn't think about those kinds of things....but I know he had a great time!

After work/school, we came home for some presents and cookie cake (PS - don't judge the pink cookie cake.  I ordered a TEXANS cake.  How that got translated into a pink cake is beyond me, but luckily it still tasted good!  Poor Matt!).  
Everything was going great until Olivia realized that her birthday was over and these presents were just for Matt.

Luckily, daddy was able to act silly and throw her around enough to coax a smile out!

A few hours later, the little munchkin was asleep and we hired a babysitter and snuck out for a birthday dinner with just the 2 of us!  

We went to Katch, an "upscale sports bar" that just opened in Houston.  If that restaurant description isn't right up Matt's alley, I don't know what is!  We had an awesome time and enjoyed some absolutely delicious food, including funnel cake donuts for dessert!

Like Olivia, Matt was lucky enough to enjoy several birthday celebrations this year.  My sweet mom hosted a ‘poker/gambling themed’ birthday party for Matt at her house.  

The poker decorations were awesome!  

We got there a little early and Olivia “helped” Mimi set everything up.

Then Grandpa fed Olivia dinner, followed by dinner for Baby Mell.

With every good birthday, there is always a little rocking
a little dancing
And you have to wear silly accessories1
But the BEST part is cake (with edible dice!)...  

After Miss O went to sleep, the adults enjoyed a delicious dinner.  (PS - how cute is my mom with her poker-themed food menu?!)

After dinner, my mom had all the kids build “houses of cards.”  Apparently mine looked like a "mud hut," and Yasmin cheated, so Matt won.  I asked for a re-count, but was denied. ;)

I hope my sweet husband had a great birthday this year and I hope he knows how adored he is by Olivia & I.