Sunday, December 30, 2007

Bennett's 6 month photos

For those interested in seeing a great slideshow of Bennett's 6 month photos....check out this link. Our photographer, Heather Swanner, here in Birmingham does a fantastic job. We were so pleased with the finished product and all of the great faces of Bennett that she was able to capture.

Bennett's 1st Christmas

The past week has been very hectic with the move and then finding everything in the mountain of boxes. So it was nice taking a break and just enjoying our family for two days. Christmas Eve day we headed to Brian and Shannon's to celebrate Christmas with them. Christian was fun and very interested in a couple of his new toys - a Caterpillar truck that my parents gave him, and a motorized car that Brian and Shannon gave him. Bennett was really too young this year, but she certainly enjoyed the bright colors of the wrapping paper and putting each gift in her mouth. After opening all of the presents over mimosas and appetizers, we sat down for lunch. Since we were set to spend the evening with Steve's family, we headed home afterward to unpack our goodies, while they all went to church to thank God for all of the blessings in our lives.

Later that night, we headed over to a table full of Lebanese food and more family time with all of the Mizerany clan. The tradition has always been that the youngest child gets to open a gift first, so John Michael had to pass the torch to his newest cousin on this side of the family....little Miss Bennett. She once again tried to eat her gift, so John Michael helped her open the gift that he picked out for her. It was a darling pink camouflage onesie and jean skirt (so sweet if I must say so myself). Then Bennett opened gifts from Maria and Sara before we all moved into the living room and started tearing through all of the wrapping paper. For the past couple of years, Myra and Louis have given us gifts that are hidden in trick boxes. So in order for us to get our gifts, we need to figure out how to open the box. It can become so frustrating, but they love seeing that. After all of the gift exchanges, and chowing on food....everyone started to get a little sleepy. Uncle Dan actually fell asleep while holding Bennett who was fast asleep. It was a terrific day!

Christmas morning my parents and us just relaxed at our home. We unpacked a few boxes, and then had breakfast with mimosas. Then we started getting ready for the annual Christmas lunch at the Mizerany's again. Myra knows how much my father loves her chicken and dumplings, so she slaved in the kitchen preparing that, her wonderful dressing, kibbee, ham and several other sides. There was more than enough food for all of us!

Wednesday, Steve and I went to work for a few hours in the morning, but then returned home to finish the last of our packing and move. Since the purchase and closing happened so quickly, we did not have enough time to pack up the entire house and be prepared for the movers. So, we were forced to leave much of the basement there which required us to return for several round trips on our own. Thankfully my parents drove down to assist us (with their loving dog, Winston).

Spencer and Winston are great pals, and I must admit that I haven't seen Spence so happy to see another dog. They played with each other, took naps together, and had daily walks by my father (until Spencer ran away from my dad). You see my father was taking the two for a short walk and then to a nearby park. There he would take them off their leashes so they could run around and chase each other a little. The first couple of times went smoothly, but Christmas day went differently. After Spencer was released from his leash, he ran around a little and then decided to head home before my father and Winston were ready. My father called for him to return, and he stopped and looked at him for a moment, but then took off running for home. My father was so nervous that he would run away or get lost (recall Thanksgiving 2005), so he and Winston tried to catch up and began jogging after him. Of course they couldn't catch him, but we were all happy to find Spence sitting on the front stoop of our new home, waiting to be let inside. We were shocked that he could find his way after only living here a few days!

Thursday, my father and Winston headed home (and then Spencer went back to sleeping almost all day). My mother, Steve and I got really focused on unpacking and getting the home more organized. She was kind enough to stay through the weekend to help us, and I must admit that we made a ton of progress. We only have a few boxes left, and then all of our pictures to hang. Since we are still getting used to the new layout we elected to wait to hang anything until we know for sure which rooms we want things. I promise photos of our new home on a future blog.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Hmmm, hmmm good??

To ring in Bennett's 7 month birthday, we introduced her to green beans. Since she has been doing a better job with the rice cereal, we decided to spice up her menu of foods and start with some veggies. I wanted to start with veggies and postpone fruits for a little while longer since they are sweeter. Anything that we can do to prevent her from being a picky eater is our goal!

She started off pretty good, accepting the new taste, but after she swallowed a couple bites, she started making some funny faces, as you will see in the following photos.

not sure she likes it....
definitely didn't like it....

gagging now...

still not mad at mommy & daddy...

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Ho! Ho! Ho!

Since we have been so preoccupied with our move, we have missed the opportunity to get Bennett's photo taken with Santa for the first time. You don't have to tell me how bad of a parent I am because the guilt is already sinking in by itself. Tonight we went to a dinner at our church for young adults and they brought Santa in for the little ones. I was excited about this opportunity to have her meet this jolly ole man for the first time without the anxiety of long lines and screaming kids; however when I saw their "Santa" tonight...I began to reconsider.

Since we had Bennett all dressed up and there, we had to take advantage of the opportunity. But as you will see in the photos, this Santa was young and not very jolly. I must admit though that Bennett didn't mind. She was so fascinated with his long white beard and bright red outfit that she just stared at him. We kept calling out her name and making familiar sounds that usually put a smile on her face, but she couldn't take her eyes off of him. Though we have been practicing the sound that Santa makes (Ho Ho Ho), she hasn't quite mastered it yet.
After ten unsuccessful shots, we gave up and decided to suck it up and commit to taking her to the mall like the rest of the caring parents do with their babies. Hopefully she will be just as cooperative, and enthralled with the ole guy.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Call Me Crazy!

I have been called crazy several times in the past week as I tell my story to folks. You see we closed on the purchase of our new home today, and began moving boxes over tonight (even though the house isn't quite finished yet). The builder is trying to finish off our punchlist this week, since the movers are set to come on Friday and move all of our furniture over. Since we have run into multiple snags along the road with both home sales, we didn't want to go crazy with the packing in advance since we weren't sure the whole thing would even come to fruition (aren't we the optimists). Thankfully though we made it through one of the closings, and have the closing of our current home on December 28th.

Since my parents are coming into town for Christmas and planning to stay with us, we have to get our stuff in the new house. They are both committed to helping us get unpacked and settled, and we are thankful for the extra set of hands to either watch Bennett or unpack boxes. We still have so much to pack, and move ahead of time (anything breakable or difficult to pack), so we have our work cut out for us this week. In addition to this, we still have our Christmas shopping to finish up. I think I have finally given up on that though and decided to just give gift cards for anyone I have left because I just don't have the time to think about what to get them and then go buy it.

Steve and I feel guilty about not having a Christmas tree for Bennett's 1st Christmas, but we promise to take lots of photos of her in front of everyone else's trees! For now you will have to settle for some cute photos of her petting her favorite doggie, Spencer and sporting her new slippers and hat!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Movin', movin', movin'...

Well it is official....we are moving! ...and you all thought it would never happen (actually I was beginning to wonder myself). For some who have been keeping up with the whole saga, we elected not to buy the house that we have been interested in the past two months. Since they rejected our contingent offer twice, and wouldn't budge on their price (even though it had been on the market 17 months), we completely shifted gears to a new construction home around the corner from ours. We first looked at it a week ago, and after falling in love with the layout, space, flat backyard and wonderful details to the interior...we made an offer that was agreed upon and signed this past Thursday! Steve and I couldn't be happier about our future new digs, but it is all coming at us quickly. You see we are closing on the new home Monday the 17th (yes one short week from today)! Since we didn't sign a contingent deal, we were anxious to see what would happen with our current abode. We have had a ton of traffic while it has been on the market the past 6-7 weeks (especially considering the time of year), so we were hopeful an offer would come sooner rather than later. It surprisingly came sooner, in fact we signed a contract with the buyers of our home today! They are anxious to close since they are currently homeless and staying in a hotel, but we pushed them off until after Christmas, December 28th. So, if all goes well at the inspection tomorrow...this could be a done deal. Who knows though, they have been a penny-pinching, greedy couple asking for everything (and I mean everything). Since we both agree that we have conceded enough, and we are not desperate to close immediately, we're not afraid to tell them to beat it if they ask for another nickel. So, stay tuned as our drama unfolds over this upcoming week.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

6 Months Old Already!

Though Bennett actually turned 6 months last Friday (while we were in Peoria) - we are celebrating today with another routine doctor appointment. She weighed in at 16 lbs 12 ounces this morning and was 25.5 inches long....which is in the 75th percentile in weight, and 50th in length! She is really growing like a weed and exploding with personality!

I know that every mother thinks her child is the best and brightest, but I know that my little girl is! She can say one word (da da), can rollover, and sit up for a minute or two by herself. In addition, she is reaching for her bottle, and is really trying to communicate with us by imitating our sounds and concentrating on the silly faces we make. She is such a happy baby, and when she gets excited or laughs, she does so with her whole body. She kicks her legs, waves her arms, her eyes sparkle, and she smiles with her mouth wide open.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Turkey Day in Peoria!

This year we headed up to Peoria for turkey day! We try to rotate the two big holidays, Thanksgiving and Christmas, between our two families. Thankfully Brian and Shannon are on the same schedule, so we all headed back to Illinois with the kids and all 8 bags!! Yes, you read correctly...8 pieces of luggage for our group of six for a long weekend. Now I may be exaggerating slightly since two of the pieces were Steve and Brian's hunting gear, but the remaining 6 bags (plus carry-ons) were all for us. We were supposed to arrive Wednesday night, but when the weather shifted and freezing rain or snow was in the forecast for that night, we all shifted our flights to the first flight out that morning. That worked out quite well for us, travel-wise since all of our flights were running on schedule at that hour. In fact, we even managed to arrive a little early...shocker! Needless to say, there wasn't any freezing rain or snow (in fact, it snowed after we left on Sunday). However, we did have cold weather, so we had to dress Bennett properly....and that would be in her new white faux fur coat and hat!

After arriving at 11am on Wednesday...we had a full weekend ahead of us. My mother had the whole weekend planned, down to our meals with specific appetizers (my cousin Debbie would have been so proud). The alcoholic drinks and teasing started immediately, but I think overall...a good time was had by all. It was a wonderful opportunity for us all to be together, and for my parents to spend quality time with their grandchildren. I too thoroughly enjoyed spending time with my nephew, Christian. He is walking well now, but not really talking yet (except for saying "mama" whenever he is mad, sad, tired or actually wants his mama). He was recovering from the croup, so he was a little of all of these most of the weekend, but when he was happy....he was happy. He enjoyed dancing for us, clapping when he was proud of himself, and exploring the new house. This photo is when he is in the guest bath looking out of the window at us...which he enjoyed!

Bennett was her typical happy self most of the weekend, except for the short plane rides between Birmingham and Atlanta. She cried both times for about half of the flights. I know that I couldn't have done anything about it, but it was still embarrassing and very stressful. I was just sweating with the anxiety of it all. Brian got a big kick out of it though, looking over at me and just laughing. She otherwise traveled pretty well and adapted to her new surroundings well. She slept through the nights in her playpen, napped on anyone that would hold her, and otherwise just hung out. She especially loved Winston, my parent's dog. He couldn't have been any sweeter and patient. He let Christian sit on him and Bennett pull his hair, and still gave them both love (see the video). His only fault was the extreme jealousy that he had whenever my father showed anyone else any attention. During these times he barked incessantly (which my mother claimed that he doesn't do normally).

The two kids together were pretty entertaining. Christian has this little fake cough that he does, and one day he was doing it, and Bennett starting imitating him. They were fake coughing in response to one another and in unison (if only we had the video camera then). Though we were a little crowded, and had more toys spread across the floor than my mother could handle...
I don't think I would have changed anything. Now we are at home, and trying to finish our Christmas shopping.

Since we only have four short weeks until Christmas when my folks come to Birmingham, we will get to relive this experience all over again soon! I can definitely say that I am VERY thankful for my family, and for their unconditional love. This has been an emotional year for Steve and me, from the ups and downs of my pregnancy, to the joyous delivery of our daughter, Bennett, to the devastating loss of our beloved dog, Shelby, to these last few months of success at work and home...having our families has made it all much easier and better. We love all of them, and are blessed to have them in our lives!

Friday, November 16, 2007

A Day of Firsts

Yesterday was a big day of firsts at the Mizerany household. Since we are flying up to Peoria for Thanksgiving, sadly Spencer is forced to stay behind. We secured a new dogsitter for him months ago, but after his freak out two months ago with a family member and friend watching him (a neighbor called animal control on us because of his incessant barking)...we decided that he is not comfortable with strangers. In fact, he is ONLY comfortable with our friend, Sara staying here. Unfortunately, Sara won't be able to watch him for Thanksgiving. So, we started researching kennels in town (his other alternative). That is when Brian told us about a kennel-free environment...Camp Bow Meow!

They thankfully had availability, so we headed out to visit and check out the digs. It is owned and operated by a couple who bought a house and renovated it with the intention of only dogs living there. They removed all of the doors and put up 5 foot gates in the door frames instead. They also have a deck, screened-in porch and a huge fenced in yard. They sparsely furnished it with old sofas, futons and doggie beds...a palace for most dogs! Anyway, Spence was anxious to check out the new place, but he never went further than a few feet from his mama. Steve has always teased me about having such a whimpy dog, and he proved that on Monday. He wouldn't go to either of the owners and then whined when I left him.

They told me that I had to bring him back for doggie daycare before we could leave him so they could build rapport with him. We kept our fingers crossed, and dropped him off Friday morning for this new adventure. You see, I have NEVER kenneled Spencer before! He has always been fortunate enough to stay at home with someone he felt comfortable with when we left. So, this was a little scary for him, and me.

He started off poorly. In fact, as I was walking out the door, Russell (one of the owners) grabbed Spence by the collar to hold onto him. All four of his legs were going so he could follow me, but Russell had a good hold, so he just stayed in place and "treaded." It was pretty pathetic. However, after some time went by, he adjusted and even played with a new friend. Jake, the owner's pitbull, hangs out there during the day so they played together in the yard. I called to check on him and got the thumb's up, so I returned to get him. He was tuckered out from the excitement, but he got the go ahead for Thanksgiving weekend, so we are relieved!

The other big first today was Bennett eating rice cereal. Her pediatrician tried to get her started two months ago, but I insisted that she was happy and satisfied with her bottle. Since then, Steve has been asking if I was ready to introduce the cereal. I finally caved in today (since her 6th month birthday is right around the corner). See the video below to see how she did.

As you can see, she grew very impatient with me. Since she couldn't figure out how to eat from a spoon yet, she didn't like the concept of waiting in between bites. She expected it to be as quick and satisying as her bottle, so when I took a couple of seconds between bites, she got very upset. We'll try again tomorrow, and I am hopeful that she'll adapt.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Who's Your Doggie?

Bennett is already 5.5 months old, and has quite the personality. We have already seen signs of a temper (and I don't understand where she gets that from). Although most of the time, she is a happy baby...laughing at her doggie, Spencer.

It is amazing how she is just perks up when he enters the room. Since he likes to show his affection by licking, we try to control that some towards Bennett. We don't mind it when he licks her feet though, and neither does she!

Spencer has always been a little timid, and he wasn't quite sure of Bennett when she first arrived. However, over the past few months, he has really started to warm up to her. In fact, he even let her sit on his back, as seen in this photo. It really is quite sweet the way she giggles at him, and he comes up and sniffs her whenever she makes a noise.

Her noises are getting more defined too...she recently started saying (gulp) "dada." I know she doesn't know what she is saying, but it is still cute nonetheless! However, this small milestone has made me even more determined to teach her "mama" and Myra is practicing "mimi" with her. Though Steve won the contest of her saying his name first, let's see who wins the contest of her really understanding what she says when she sees us! The game is on!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Sweet 16

Can you believe that our little 5 lb 13 oz daughter is already tipping the scales at 16 lbs 2 oz? Well if you could see the rolls on her little thighs and on her wrists, you would believe us! Yesterday Bennett went to the doctor to get two of her six vaccinations that she was supposed to get at her four month check-up. Since she has had a cold for the past two weeks, we delayed the process some. While at the office we took some other measurements: at 5 1/2 months, she is on track with her weight and length. She is in the 65th percentile for weight and 73rd percentile for height.

In fact, she just recently reached another milestone, and started rolling over on a regular basis from her back to her belly. There have been many times over the past several weeks where she accidentally rolled over, but now she has mastered it. She can even get her arm out from underneath herself...most of the time. She is so proud of her new accomplishment, as we are.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!

Well, we had a great 1st Halloween with Bennett. She was a fish, and a mighty cute one if I must say so myself. After passing out a little candy at our home, we packed up the car and headed over to visit with Mimi and Papa and Uncle Dan, and then onto Auntie Michelle and Uncle Louie's. We concluded the evening at our friend Max's house for an adult beverage.

Bennett was quite the sport with her Halloween costume, but after riding in the car and stroller in it and posing for several pictures....she decided that she had had enough. So we put her in "normal" clothes, and then she passed out from exhaustion.

With cousin, John Michael

Our sleeping angel

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Welcome Nene!

Since Steve went hunting for a long weekend with my father, brother, his brother, and several friends of all of them in South Dakota...I convinced my mother to come down to visit her grandchildren. She flew in Wednesday night, and the guys flew out Thursday morning. She stayed with Shannon and Christian the first couple nights, and then came to our house Friday for the weekend.

It was beautiful weather all and sunny. And what made it even better...Bennett slept until 9am both days of the weekend! Yes, you heard me correctly...9am!! It was just perfect because I slept in until then too!! I can't even remember the last time I slept that late, it has certainly been before Bennett came into my life.

Anyway, we got some Christmas shopping done, and she got plenty of time to love on her all in all, it was a successful weekend.

Though this was the longest period of time that Steve spent away from his little girl, he talked to her on the phone everyday. In addition, he had a great time on his first big hunting trip. He went to a private place outside of Mitchell, South Dakota, and had luck killing lots of innocent little pheasants.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Happy Birthday Papa!

Today, Papa turned 78 years young! Happy Birthday!! The whole family, including cousins Cathy & Lisa and both of their families, got together on Sunday to celebrate his big day. We all enjoyed a big Lebanese feast that Mimi prepared, and boy was it delicious.

Abby, all of 6 years, was anxious to help watch Bennett. In fact, she and Uncle Dan took Bennett for a walk when she got a little fussy (the trick to mellowing her since she loves to be outside). Bennett got so relaxed, she fell asleep. I think we have a babysitter in the making!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Fall is Here!

Yippee!! Today was a gorgeous crisp Fall morning! So much so, that we put a new stocking cap on Bennett for our walk this morning to keep her toasty. A client of mine knitted her this cute little cap that fits her just perfectly.
As always she was cheerful and excited for this little adventure (as was her doggie, Spencer).

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Date Day!

Today, Steve and I got up early and prepared for our road trip to Tuscaloosa. We were excited since it was a cool 65 degrees, and we had secured Ms. Shirley for the day to watch Bennett. We hit the road at 8:30 and had smooth sailing for most of the ride. However, when we were about 15 minutes outside T-town we started the bumper-to-bumper traffic. Today was a BIG game for Alabama, they were playing arch rival Tennessee. Alabama was picked to win by 1 point, but there were plenty of people (including us) who thought TN was going to walk away with the win. So, we had to prepare ourselves for the early kick by having a couple of mimosas before the game. We then walked over to the stadium and got settled. Myra & Big Lou have phenomenal seats (on the 45 yd line, about 20 rows up), but the day games don't offer any relief with the sun. So, though it was still on the cooler side, when you pack 92,000 people into a stadium and have the sun beating down on gets warm. Needless to say, we all walked out of there with a sunburn. Who would have thought this late in the season we could still get a tan!

The game started off great, and ended even better...with AL beating the tar out of TN! It was a lot of fun, yes, even I can admit it. About midway into the 4th quarter, Tennessee fans started walking out of the stadium, upset that they were obviously going to lose. Alabama (who last year lost all of their energy by the 4th quarter) just kept getting better today. The crowd was going bananas, and I think they fed off of the excitement. At the end of the game, the entire stadium (except the TN fans and me, since I didn't know the words) sang "Rammer Jammer."
I haven't seen Steve so happy after a game since I've known him!

Since the TN and Birmingham folks all need to take the same route home, we went back to the tailgate to let traffic die down. After an hour and half, we thought it was safe, but it was still pretty bad. Oh well...Steve drove and I took a short nap. See I had to get some zzz's in somewhere since I didn't doze off once during the game. Yes, you heard me correctly....I managed to stay awake for the WHOLE game for my first time! Steve was very proud of me, because not only was I awake, but I cheered and paid attention. Maybe I'll begin to like football after all........nahhhhh.

When we pulled into the driveway, we were greeted by a very excited dog, and a sleeping baby, that I had to wake up and kiss. Overall, it was a great day!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Houston Sniffles

This weekend we headed west to Houston! We flew out Thursday night, and went straight to Katy to see the Reardons: Trey, Ann, Allen & Jack. They were terrific hosts and welcomed us with our favorite beers and a pack-n-play all set up and ready to go for Bennett. Our first morning was just perfect... gourmet coffee outside on their patio, followed up with delicious omelets prepared by Allen and then mimosas!

When Steve and Allen headed off to play golf for the afternoon, Bennett and I headed into town to visit with Elizabeth and Alex. We just hung out at their place, but again, it was just perfect. Nothing is better than relaxing with old friends, where you can be yourself and pick up where you left off (even if it has been a little while). Kris, Paul and Lisette joined us later that afternoon, and then finally William. We caught up, and made our plans for Saturday, and then I made the trip back to Katy with Bennett.

There we found Allen slaving in the kitchen over another wonderful meal. We waited while enjoying some wine. Then Steve and I repeated last weekend's behavior and opened up a few more bottles. It was a beautiful cool, clear evening, and we were having so much fun with Allen and Ann. I guess we just got a little carried away with all of the fun. We finally hit the hay a little after midnight. Thankfully, we were able to sleep in some since our little angel slept until 9 am!!

We were moving slow Saturday morning, but we finally were in route to Houston around 11am. We met the gang, including Kay and her two girls at a great little cafe for lunch. We then walked around the area some, and headed back to the Elizabeth & William's for a little downtime. Alex, (Elizabeth's little girl here above) entertained us with her limber body. She is quite talented: eating, and then sucking on her toes between bites. The guys enjoyed swapping stories about various hunting trips, while us girls tended to our kiddies and continued to talk about nothing, even though it was actually something.

That night we headed to Kay and Brandon's home for a fabulous tex-mex meal, for old time's sake. There was a big group for dinner: their three gorgeous kids, Kay's sister, Kim and her little boy, Elizabeth, William, Alex, Paul, Kris, Lisette, and then Steve, Bennett and me! It was a little chaotic at times, as there were tears shed by every child there that night, but I think everyone had fun. I know we did!

Kay's oldest little girl, Caroline

Kris, Kay, me (& Bennett) and Elizabeth

Bennett before we headed home, a little tuckered out!

This morning, most of the gang met for a quick breakfast before we all went our separate ways. Though, the three of us came home with runny noses and sore throats from the high ragweed count in Houston...we had a fabulous time visiting friends. It makes us sad that they all live so far away, yet it is comforting to know that we have wonderful friendships that can survive any distance.

We love you all and can't wait for our next reunion!

Monday, October 8, 2007

Happy Birthday Daddy!

Well today Steve turned 36 years young, which is coincidentally his oldest brother's birthday too! Since this big day fell on a workday, we celebrated with his family yesterday. We all went over to the Mizerany house for a little love, Myra style: lunch, lounging and a little lip service. It is always relaxing, and we come home stuffed.

Yesterday was no different...but recall our previous blog to see how Steve and I were feeling. We were to be there at 1pm, but after rushing all morning, we had no energy left to arrive on time. So though Louis was enjoying a nice bottle of wine, we couldn't even think of joining him.

Instead, Steve rehashed the Alabama-Houston game, and I played video games with John Michael, after he decorated his Uncle Stevie's birthday cake that I baked. Now if you are looking at this pitiful cake, I want to let you all know that this was my first attempt at baking a real cake. As you can see, I had some problems icing it, especially since I don't own a proper cake plate. However, it tasted much better than it looked, and overall I think Steve thought it was okay.

It had been a few weeks since the whole family was together, Uncle Dan included, so we talked and hung out for a couple of hours. Bennett wasn't so easily entertained though, so we had to play and rock her to keep her happy. Since Papa is the primary person who feeds her bottles Tuesday-Thursday, he took over the responsibility yesterday. Once her belly was full, Daddy made faces and played peek-a-boo with her. She thoroughly enjoyed the entertainment and laughed in her funny forced laugh. We were all smiling and laughing ourselves, because nothing is cuter than Bennett laughing.

Tonight, the whole family (Steve, Bennett, me AND Spence) walked to Dave's Pizza in Homewood for dinner. They have a great patio where even doggies are invited! So Steve and I enjoyed some pizza and beer, while Bennett slept and Spence begged for any scraps. Even Uncle Louis stopped by for a couple of beers (since it is his birthday too). It was a laid back night, and now Steve is horizontal on the sofa sawing logs. I guess he is tired from all of the fun. Happy Birthday honey!