Peyton informed me today that he had sent the blog link to some of our friends. I had no idea he even knew what the blog link was let alone would send it out. It made me realize that I have not posted in FOREVER and probably needed to update since it has been over a month. To my 3 or 4 followers, I apologize for the slacking. I have a good excuse though- the emergency clinic I am managing opened November 10 and we have been so busy. My work days have been long and time with the family is precious. I have no new pictures but will try to come up with something to add to this post. We did manage to take the Christmas card picture this weekend but I can't post that or it will ruin the surprise for those getting cards. They are cute though and our little model is quite the subject. The girl knows what a camera is and just lights up when we take her picture. I'm sure it has something to do with her wondering why on earth mom and dad are talking crazy and acting like idiots behind that little silver thing. The things you do to get your child to smile for the camera!

In other baby news, Kate is really sitting up great. It is so nice to be able to plop her down on the floor and have her entertain herself with all her little toys. She's rolling over too. She now goes from her back to her stomach at night and sleeps so good. She doesn't always remember how to get from her stomach to her back which alarms her a bit but she's getting there. I truly believe babies are just meant to sleep on their tummies. Don't call child protective services on me just yet, I can assure Kate has spent every night of her short life on her back and has only started sleeping on her belly now that she can get there herself. She just seems to sleep so much sounder and it must be more comfortable for her. I'm just glad we have reached that point.

We are headed to Natchitoches, LA (where Steel Magnolias was filmed)this weekend to see A LOT of Peyton's family that we adore. Kate will get to meet her amazing cousins from Dallas and I can't wait for that. We are especially close to them from our time in Houston and it is hard to believe Kate hasn't met them yet. This will be a really special trip for all of this. December is shaping up to be busy as always but I have this new excitement for Christmas that I haven't had in a really long time. I have always loved Christmas but this year it will be so much fun with Kate and Liza. I don't expect Kate to get it but just having little ones around for Christmas again makes it something to really look forward to. Hopefully, I will have some time to post over the next few weeks but I hope everyone enjoys this Holiday season and holds their friends and families especially close. We are so blessed and have so much to be thankful for and this is such a great time to stop and remind ourselves of that. Happy Holidays!


The Big Day

and then


I am fairly certain that God is not interested or involved in politics but we can pray that no matter what the outcome of today, our national and local leaders will always use Him to guide them. I have been nervous about this election and feel like it is the most important one of my lifetime. I feel very calm today though knowing that God is in control and He will always keep us safe.

Let's all pray that people will exercise their right to vote and be thankful that we have these freedoms. Let's pray that these candidates will use Him to guide their decision making. Let's pray that they will always turn to Him as they enter into this long journey getting our country back on track. Let's pray for their families and their children as they are so involved in this as well. Let's turn it all over to God and know that he is in control and will ALWAYS do what is in our best interest because he loves us so much!


Happy Halloween!!

From our little chick!

October has been busy, busy, busy! It has been beautiful though and full of fun. Since we were in Texas for the last several Falls I forgot how wonderful this time of year is. We didn't usually cool off in Houston until January so getting to see the leaves change and feel the crisp Fall air has been invigorating. This time of year ALWAYS makes me think of Auburn and brings back such fun memories of my years there. It was such a beautiful place in the Fall and I miss it.

October was a great month. I turned 29, started a job, Bebe came to visit, Jenson (Peyton's childhood friend)came safely home from Iraq for a few days, we went to the pumpkin patch, watched good (and bad) football, had wonderful fellowship at church supper club, heard some great sermons, went to a carnival, wore our winter coats for a few days, ate homemade lasagna- twice,painted our den and dining room, saw Kate's first tooth, got her first pair of shoes,and had some always good family time! Of course, that is in no particular order!

Hard to believe we are now headed for Thanksgiving and Christmas will be right around the corner. Our chick continues to be a happy, easy baby and she is growing so much these days. She has gotten very "busy" and always wants to be bouncing or moving. She weighs in at 17lb., 11ounces and measured 27 1/2 inches long. She is still right on track and considered long and lean which I love.

This has been a fun month in so many ways and we are looking forward to enjoying the fall with our sweet girl. I'm sure crawling is right around the corner so we are cherishing this time that we can snuggle and cuddle with her without her wanting to be on the go. I'm sure life will be very different once she's on the move. I hear it's a great work out program for moms though so I'm looking forward to that.

Hope everyone has a HAPPY HALLOWEEN and a day of fun and family!


29 Years and 6 months

Those were the big milestones we celebrated around here last week. Obviously, I am the one celebrating the big 2-9 while Kate reached her half year mark. Hard to believe it's been 6 months since she was born. Since the first 3 are a total blur it really doesn't seem like it's been that long. She's pretty funny these days and has quite a personality. Dinner time has become fairly unpleasant for all involved. She has started doing that raspberry noise with her mouth every time the spoon hits her lips and I swear the tiniest drop of banana touched her tongue the other day and the child started gagging. Such a drama queen! I'm about to just hand her a chicken nugget or something and let her go to town. I think she'd like it a whole lot better than baby food. I end up wearing more of the food than she eats so I think we would all be happier.

I discovered Kate's first tooth Sunday morning. I knew it was coming!! I put my finger on her gum like I have been doing every morning for the past 2 months and there it was- just barely breaking through. I'm hoping to have a fully exposed pearly white by the end of the week. I'll try to get pictures but that pesky little tongue is always getting in the way. The tooth doesn't seem to be bothering her and she is still sleeping great at night.

In adult related news, I have officially gone back to work. I'm just training right now but in a few short weeks I will be the office manager for a minor emergency clinic here in Mobile. I'm sure those of you who know me are wondering how in the world I am qualified for this position. I'm not sure I know the answer to that but they took a leap of faith and we are all starting this new venture together. Everyone involved has been wonderful. I'm starting to get the distinct feeling that they actually want me to be in charge which is a bit scary but exciting at the same time. Getting out of the door in the morning with everything ready for the day is half the battle so the rest of my day should be a piece of cake!

I can't believe people have found the blog and are reading it. I just read my comments from the last post and I promise my face turned red. I'm sitting here all alone at my computer and my face turned red as a beet thinking that people are actually interested in what I have to say. It is so fun to reconnect with people out there in blog world and I have loved having a glimpse into people's lives and getting to "meet" all of their precious children. If I can give a little bit of fun in return for all the fun I've had blogging than I am thrilled!

Bebe is coming on Friday!!!! We can't wait to see her and have her to ourselves for 4whole days. Hope everyone has a great week!

This by the way, is what I discovered Sunday morning. Peyton said she was awake and playing on the floor and as he played the guitar she got really still and just fell asleep. You gotta love these precious Daddy/Daughter moments. I know I do!


Identity Crisis

I've had a slight identity crisis this week. No reason to be alarmed, it just occurred to me after hearing about my husband's day at work that all I had to contribute to the conversation was "That's nice, you won't believe the color of Kate's poop". (A strange shade of green in case you are wondering). It was with that statement that I realized being a mom has taken over my life. Don't get me wrong, I'm okay with it for the most part and it isn't like I have bought my first pair of mom jeans or anything, I just needed a little adult activity. It came as a trip to Dillards... Whohoooo!!! Don't worry hubby, I only bought a lipstick (but I did get the free bonus!!). I also had a kids free lunch with one of my dearest college friends and we tried really hard not to talk too much about our little ones. I certainly don't want to give the impression that being a mom isn't the most important thing in the world to me because it is but I used to talk to doctors all day about neurotransmitters and neuropathy among other things so every now and then I just need to have a little time to myself that doesn't involve slobber, spit up or poop. I need to feel intelligent again.

In mommy related news, we are headed back to the beach this week to meet cousin Thomas for the first time. Peyton's cousins live in Dallas and we don't get to see them too often so we are looking forward to it. Hopefully, this fall like weather hasn't turned the pool to ice and Kate will get to swim. Hope everyone has a great weekend and I'll report back next week.

The above photo, by the way, was taken on my honeymoon. Can't you just tell how calm and relaxed (and sunburned) I was. Life was good. Life is still good... just different!!


Birthdays, Hurricanes, and Baby Teeth (well, almost)

We spent another beautiful weekend at the beach. Aunt Lulu turned 29 so we all went to celebrate. I was a little nervous about having Kate there with all the young folks but she did great. She continues to be a happy, easy baby. I am more convinced than ever that the teeth are coming. I'm not sure why I feel that way (maybe it is my first experience with mother's intuition). The drool is absolutely constant and she must be gnawing on something at all times. She even seems just the tiniest bit irritated but only so much that I would notice. Who knows?? The storm surge caused the waves to be huge. Peyton took some pictures because he had never seen them quite so large. Too bad we don't surf! We spent most of the time at the pool and although the water was cooler than it had been before, Kate still enjoyed being in her seahorse. She just likes to be in the center of the action. I guess she comes by that naturally! We talked to our friends in Houston several times over the weekend. They were still without power as of yesterday. We should all continue to pray for everyone in Galveston and Houston who are dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Ike. We felt relieved to not be in Houston for the storm but we love it there and called it home for many years. It hit very close to home to see the news coverage and know the areas that they were talking about. The people of Houston are very resilient though and should bounce back quickly. Hopefully, they are getting as much support as they gave victims of Hurricane Katrina. Well, we're off to another week around here and still searching for a job. Hope everyone has a great week!

Happy Birthday Aunt Lulu!!


Water Baby

We had the best time at the beach last weekend. The swimming pool is finally complete and we are so excited. We love being on the beach but it is really hard to haul all that baby stuff down there and then turn around and come up 20 minutes later if Kate isn't feeling it. At the pool we are steps away from the condo and it helps that we can put her in the water. Peyton and I blew up (that sounds bad doesn't it) the Silly Seahorse Sunshade float and I crossed my fingers that Kate would like the water. She loved it! She was very content in the Seahorse most of the time but even happier with her Daddy holding her. I was a little nervous she would get too much sun but she did just fine. She looks a little concerned in some of these photos but I can assure you she was very happy. She would just sit back and put her arms up and chill!! I wish they made these floats in adult sizes. We can't wait to get her back in the pool next weekend! I think she's going to be a swimmer- 2024 Olympics here we come. Move over Michael Phelps!!


I did it!!

I have been trying to figure out for weeks how to make my blog look more fun and thanks to Ana Moore's blog I have figured it out. It was so much fun to play around and even though it's nothing too fancy just yet, I felt like a real web designer! There is a great website that gives you step by step instructions on how to change your page. The website is sjhblogdesign.blogspot.com. It tells you everything you need to know and it's free.

We are preparing for Gustav around here and hoping that it won't be too bad. Hope everyone has a great Labor Day weekend!


Long and Lean!!

That's what the doctor says about Kate. Maybe she'll be able to wear those "long and lean" jeans at the Gap one day. I certainly could never get myself into them. We went for Kate's 4 month checkup today ( a little behind schedule) and she weighs 16 pounds,3 ounces and is 26 inches long. Hooray! Our little bug is growing, growing, growing!! I thought I would post some pictures of the last couple of weeks before I lose track. Hard to believe that almost 5 months have passed with our little girl here. Everyone always told me you don't remember life before your kids and it is so true. I can't believe there was ever a time without her. She's just the one I wanted! As her Bebe says: "Kate, you are my eyeballs. I couldn't live without you!" We love you eyeballs!!

Happy Birthday Cousin Liza!!

Okay, this one is a bit belated but as my favorite birthday card reads: "This is the land of procrastination and I am the Queen". Cousin Liza's birthday was actually August 8 and we were there to celebrate! I couldn't miss the chance to honor this precious little baby girl who has brought so much joy to our lives over the last year. Liza started school a few weeks ago and her teachers told Jill she is "strong willed". I think that is a nice way of saying she's a mess! She just has spunk and I like a girl with a little spunk. She is tall and skinny like her mama and keeps everyone on their toes. I can't wait to watch Kate and Liza grow up together. They are going to be the best of friends. Will is worried about when they are both 16 but I think they may be trouble LONG before that! I'm pretty sure Liza is going to be able to get away with a lot with those big blue eyes and that precious smile. Happy Birthday Liza Lou!! We love you very much and can't wait to share many more birthdays with you!!

Food Glorious Food!!

Kate is eating solid food and she loves it! It took a little while for her to get used it but now she knows when I strap her in the chair in the morning good things are headed her way. She still makes this really strange face with the first bite but quickly realizes that she likes it. So far we have had cereal, apple sauce, squash, and bananas. Squash doesn't seem to be as big a hit but who can blame her. I like fruit better too! It helps fill her little belly up and she is so happy after a meal. It's so hard to believe she is big enough for solid food. It will be pizza and tacos before we know it! We'll give her some vegetables too, don't worry.

Time Flies...

Wow! We have been so busy and have had so many fun things going on around here lately that it has been forever since I posted. I have a lot of catching up to do. My apologies for the 3 or 4 people that read the blog!! I guess I should back up and talk about our fun week in Decatur. As I near the inevitable return to work, I thought we better make one more long trip to see Bebe, Poppy, Pop and Frannie and all our other fam in Decatur. We had so much fun celebrating Liza's first birthday and experiencing a lot of firsts of our own. Kate is really developing a little personality and loves to smile and laugh (especially with her Bebe). She is really easy most of the time and is happy just knowing she's a part of the action. We are headed for her 4 month checkup today even though she will be 5 months old in a week. There are shots in her near future and that makes me very sad. Hopefully, I can control the tears (mine not hers) this time. Here are some pictures from Decatur and some of the firsts: swing, doll, etc.

The Raggedy Ann doll is from cousin Lyssie who has one and thought Baby Kate needed one too! She loves it- maybe it reminds her of me with all that red hair!


Sleeping Like a Baby

We are getting a lot more sleep around here these days!! I completely forgot what 8 hours of good sleep will do for you. Kate is sleeping close to 12 hours which makes everyone very happy (including her)! She really sacks out at the end of the day so I wanted to include some pictures. There are so many good ones of her in her crib but I never want the flash from the camera to wake her up so we may have to keep those in our memories. She has become quite the diva while she sleeps. She usually has both arms folded behind her head like she is doing some serious thinking while she sleeps. By the looks of that little round tummy and chunky monkey thighs she is doing some serious growing! Sweet dreams baby girl!!

Back to the Beach

We had the most wonderful beach weekend! For the first time it was just our little family at the condo. Peyton and I felt like we were on a real family vacation. It's been a long time since we've had a getaway and Kate couldn't have been better. She loves the beach! Friday night we had so much fun cooking dinner, drinking wine and listening to music. Peyton and Kate even had their first dance! That was a special moment for me- she is officially a Daddy's girl. She slept for several hours on the beach Saturday but Sunday was just too hot. She made it for a little while but we decided to call it a day pretty early. Kate has had her first real laugh attack. She got so tickled on Saturday while I was talking to her and just couldn't quit giggling. It was priceless. She is "talking" up a storm now and keeps us quite entertained. We have really entered into such a fun time with her. I know there will be a lot more fun in our future!Thanks to GG (Great Granny) Kate has a precious new pink bathing suit. This one is a tankini and she loves to pull up the ruffle to show us her belly. Maybe she's ready for a bikini. Her daddy says she may never have one of those!!


Splish Splash

Kate is taking a bath!! Bath time has really become such a fun part of our day. When we first brought Kate home and tried to bath her on the sponge she absolutely hated it. I can imagine it was pretty cold and who wants to be naked on the kitchen counter getting water poured all over you. We started rushing through bath time just to get finished with it before she had a major melt down and usually during that time Peyton was no where to be found. Once we were able to move Kate to the bath tub things starting getting better and Kate really started to enjoy bath time. Peyton came back around and has really taken over this time with baby. I love to watch the two of them interact during bath time or just take a break for a few minutes. Since the lady at the grocery store told me I need to be pouring water over her face at bath time so she will be a good swimmer (don't you just love all the unsolicited advice you get when you have a baby) Peyton has made sure Kate gets at least one face full of water each bath. She just holds her breath and usually giggles when it's over. We are bound to have a little fish by next summer! I love seeing Kate wrapped up in her towel after her bath all squeaky clean and relaxed. Her favorite thing in the world is to have her hair brushed so she knows that is coming next! I snapped these pictures of Kate in the tub and just had to jot down some thoughts about this fun and special time in our day.


Beach Baby

We are so lucky to live very close to the beach. We get to go almost every weekend since Peyton's parents have a condo in Perdido Key. Kate was about 6 weeks old on her first beach trip and she absolutely loved it. We really enjoy the great family time we have while we are there. A few weeks ago we were fortunate enough to get to spend an entire week with my family at Rosemary Beach. Thanks to Bebe and Poppy; Kate, Peyton, me, Will, Jill, Liza, GG (Great Granny) and the Ashwander clan all had two great condos and had so much fun together.The weather was perfect all week. Of course, long gone are the days of grabbing a beach chair and cooler and heading down to the beach for the day. I got so tickled at all the baby gear Jill and I hauled down to the beach each day I had my mom take a picture. Since the men were on the golf course, it was up to us to handle all our gear. Jill and I had very different objectives for our day at the beach. I wanted to make sure Kate would take her nap on the beach (she almost always falls asleep the minute we hit the sand: I even changed her noise maker to ocean waves since she found it so relaxing) and Jill needed to make sure she had enough toys to keep Liza occupied and happy on the beach. Here we are with all our stuff:
I realized after my mom took the picture that I didn't even have the baby. Obviously, I would have to take two trips. Needless to say the trip would not have been nearly as relaxing as it was without all the help from Bebe, Poppy, Will, Jill, GG, Barbara and Brother, Charlie and Ashley, and Bill and Caroline. Peyton and I were really able to relax and enjoy ourselves. After being with Liza and realizing how much energy an 11 month has we better relax now. Our beach trip next summer is going to be VERY different. In fact, Will and Jill were so exhausted they booked a vacation from their vacation. Next time they are going to Mexico: WITHOUT THE BABY! Here are some more pictures from our fun trip. Thanks Bebe and Poppy for making it all possible!