Sunday, December 30, 2007
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
still not mad at mommy & daddy...
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
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.
Monday, December 17, 2007
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
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Monday, November 26, 2007
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!
I don't think I would have changed anything. Now we are at home, and trying to finish our Christmas shopping.
Friday, November 16, 2007
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
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!
Saturday, November 10, 2007
Wednesday, November 7, 2007
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
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
It was beautiful weather all weekend....cool 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 grandchildren...so 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.
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
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.
Sunday, October 21, 2007
Saturday, October 20, 2007
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
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.
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
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.