Thursday, August 30, 2007

Roooooll Tide!

Who would have guessed that one of the first questions I was continually asked when I moved to Birmingham was "Alabama or Auburn?" I didn't even know what they were talking about at first. However, once I learned it was about football, I just admitted that I didn't care (can you believe that I had no opinion?). Then I met my Steve and his family, and for those that don't know, they are the biggest Alabama fans. They have had season tickets for years, and even I who does not appreciate football, recognizes how wonderful their seats are (pretty close to 50 yd line seats in the lower bowl). All three boys went to school there, and then Steve had the opportunity to have his dream job of being the project manager of the football stadium expansion. He worked his tail off for the past two years, commuting daily to T-town to work on it. They finished in time for kick-off last season, and what a wonderful thing to be proud of and put your stamp on...Alabama's football stadium. Needless to say, their enthusiasm for the team and sport has only strengthened since the arrival of Coach Nick Saban!

Usually the first games of the season are givens for the good teams, so who cares to watch them, right? Well, let me tell you....the Mizeranys do! They have all been clamouring over their seats, anxious to see the first game that Saban coaches. Steve was even able to score an extra pair of tickets from work that they are using. He wanted Bennett and me to join him, and after much conversation on all of the reasons why it is a bad idea (she is only 3 mos old, she'll be asleep during most of the game, I will also be asleep during some of the game, etc.), he finally agreed to let us stay home.

However, he wants us to be there in spirit, so I promised to dress Bennett up in Alabama gear. I thought it would be her little onesie that he first bought when we found out we were pregnant. But Myra and Big Lou surprised us with a little cheerleader outfit...the cutest darn thing I have seen. I thought it was going to be big on Bennett since it was a 6 month size, but it fits her well. And if I must say so myself, she looks pretty cute in crimson!

As much as her daddy would love for her to attend Alabama and be a cheerleader there, I am not quite sure that this is her thing. Now she may just be a little young still, but she seems much more interested in her hands than any shaker (or pom pom, as I like to call it). But that is alright, as long as she prefers the Tide to the Tigers, she will be loved by the Mizeranys.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Happy 1st Birthday Christian!

Today we celebrated Christian's first birthday (a few days early). Shannon and Brian threw him a big party that all of his little friends attended. It was quite entertaining (and a little overwhelming) to be around so many little ones all at once. They went all out with a monkey theme, since that is what they call him. As you see here, this is the darling cake that the guests got to share. Christian had his very own little monkey cake, though he barely touched it with 30 people looking on and anticipating his next move. In fact, the poor guy was so tuckered out with all of the guests and activity, he went down for a nap halfway into the party.

However, he did get to play with a few of his new gifts, including this little red wagon. Though he isn't walking on his own, he is quite good at pushing something, or someone. This is his friend TJ, whose mommy babysits Christian twice a week, and brings TJ with her.

We had to leave before Christian woke up from his nap, but I'm sure he thought he died and went to Toys R Us heaven when he woke with all of the toys that were there. Thank goodness they plan to dedicate a room for him to play with his toys, because there were A LOT!!

Once we got home, Bennett had a bath and then went down for a nap. Recently she has discovered her hands, but several times this weekend we have caught her with a thumb in her mouth. For those that don't know, I sucked my thumb, so I am anxious to see if this is just a phase, or the beginning of a new habit. Either way, we think it is darling right now.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Another hot weekend in Birmingham!

Last night we returned for another Baron's game (who would have guessed that we would become such fans). It was a social event for my Rotary club, so we went as a family. Unfortunately it was another hot and humid night, but since one of our members works for the Baron's, he arranged for us to have a private (air conditioned) room behind home plate. It worked out well for our group, and the room was large enough to accommodate all 35 of us.

Bennett had fun checking out all of the new faces, and she certainly enjoyed the attention. She didn't sleep a wink while we were fear that she would miss something important I guess. And though she caught a few zzz's on the drive home, she was ready to play when we got home. So I hooked up her new toy and tried to wear her out.

It is a little pad that is hooked to the side of her crib that plays music and talks when she kicks certain farm animals. Since she likes to be entertained, and is more active now, it is the perfect toy for her.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

3 Months Old Already!!

Tomorrow, Bennett is 3 months old! Though I can't believe how quickly the past three months have gone, I can barely recall what it was like before she entered our lives. From what I hear, we have been spoiled by her behavior and desire to sleep at nights. She obviously has more of her Daddy in her to be so laid back, and I am very thankful for that.

Today she went to the doctor for her 3 month check-up. She weighed 12 lbs and measured 23 inches long! She has certainly grown from the little peanut she was back in May. In fact, she is now in the 50th percentile for weight and the 25th percentile for length.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

One Last Hoorah!

This weekend, my close friends Betsy and Chelsea made a visit to Birmingham. It was an opportunity for them to meet Miss Bennett, and for us three to be together before Chels and her family move to Edmonton, Canada next month. Betsy drove in from Memphis Friday night, and Chelsea from Nashville Saturday morning. We hung out that morning with Steve and Bennett, and then we really caught up over a big mexican lunch.

Everything was going smoothly, and they departed for home around 4:30. An hour later we received a call from Betsy that she was on her way back. I assumed that she missed us, but in reality she was having car problems, and was afraid that she would stall somewhere between here and Memphis on the back roads of Mississippi (which could be very scary). Since her children start school tomorrow, she needed to get home. Based on the problems she was having, we thought she had water in her gas tank, so we poured some Heet in it, and tried to burn some gas by driving around the subdivision. Unfortunately, this morning when we tried to start wouldn't even turn over. So, we drove her halfway, so Will and the kids didn't have to pick her up in Birmingham, and now she is having the car towed all the way back to Memphis. What an unfortunate way to end a fun weekend. Hopefully Betsy's bad experience with her car won't deter her from future visits to the steel city. Because time with good girlfriends is a must!!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Avalon 2007

Well, we made it back from another wonderful trip to the Jersey shore. We flew out last Friday afternoon, and returned Wednesday night well rested and with a great tan. Everything went perfectly, with the exception of our flight out there, which was delayed almost 2 hours. However, Bennett did wonderfully on the flight, not making a peep. For our first time flying with her, things went well. We certainly didn't forget anything, and we seemed to pack just the right amount of clothes.

As always, it was great being with our entire family! We had 20 people this year (including the babies), so it only gets more chaotic and fun. We had not all been together since our wedding, so Christian and Bennett were new additions this year. They certainly were not deprived of any attention, in fact we are working to now get Bennett back into her routine and used to not being held all day long. Since she is so young and adaptable, she was happy to be held by anyone (even Gracie as you see here). It was amazing to see how much Grace and her siblings (Jenna & Kurt) have grown up over the past 2 years. Jenna has become quite the little lady, and Kurt Jr, a sweet boy. They all were so well-behaved and enjoyed playing on the beach, and entertaining each other and Christian.

We had planned on spending about an hour a day at the beach with Bennett, but she was so good, she stayed out all day with us. This year the weather was just perfect... sunny with a nice breeze, and cooler at night. We departed Birmingham with 104 degree weather, and landed in a much cooler Philadelphia...only 64 degrees. Though it was quite the change, we welcomed the more pleasant temperatures, especially Bennett. Since she was born, she has enjoyed being outside. So once we got all set up at the beach with her towels, umbrella, and of course sunscreen...she was happy as a clam! In fact, she slept most of the afternoon in the shade. When she was awake, she was usually being held by someone, so she was content.

Our Avalon trips are always a little similar: morning walks on the beach, followed up with breakfast/lunch and then out to the beach for the day. Everyone then goes home to shower before we convene for cocktails and dinner. One change this year was an early morning wake up call from Bennett. We decided to make the most of it and go out to the beach to watch the sunrise (yes, we were up that early). As you would expect, it was beautiful!

Because of the size of our group, we never go out for dinner. Instead, we rotate cooking responsibilities and try to maintain Debbie Forrey's tradition of serving a special cocktail for the night. We started off with watermelon martinis (thanks to Debbie), then margaritas and pina coladas for Kurt Sr's 40th birthday party, then the Bantas made some Beach Toddies, and Uncle Jim and Aunt Sue contributed all of the wine we had for dinner! So all and all...a lot of alcohol was consumed!

However, it isn't all about food and alcohol, as you might think. It is about family. This trip is always one that I look so forward to (and this was my 4th one as an adult). It started off with just Brian and me making the trip to visit with the Forreys, Hovans and Blairs. But when my parents heard about all of the fun, they wanted to join us the next year. By that time, Brian and I had met Shannon and Steve, so they too joined in on the fun. After a couple of years with that group, our little ones arrived. Who knows what the future will bring, but I am certain it will hold more opportunities for us to be together with our family and create more fond memories.

Steve & Bennett relaxing before dinner

Bennett enjoying one of her books

All of the women in our family

Brian, Christian, Bennett and me before breakfast on the boardwalk one morning

Debbie carrying Bennett during a morning walk

Dad and Steve...the winners of the horseshoe competition!

Alex, John & Jimmy Forrey

The Mizeranys Aug 2007

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Look at Me!

I don't know if it is every child at this age, but Bennett just LOVES bath time. She could be crying and so upset, but as soon as she feels the water - she becomes relaxed and happy. Since we brought her home, she has loved the feel of water on her head, but now that she can get her legs wet, and actually sit in it - it's is a completely different feeling for her.

As you will see below, she loves it when we pour water on her head. We have always joked about her pretending that she is at a beauty shop, because she literally throws her head back like women have to do at a salon.

I hope that this love for water stays with her as she gets older. As we have shown in previous blogs, she likes the pool too, even though the water is colder than her baths. Steve is ready to dunk her, but we are holding off until she takes a swim class with her Daddy this fall. We want to make sure we do it right, and not hurt or frighten her.

We really enjoy her, and now that she is becoming more interactive - it is even more fun. There is nothing more special than when she turns her head when she hears our voice, or smiles when she sees us. She is a funny little girl, and she makes the cutest faces!

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Look Who's Smiling!

Bennett is such a happy baby, and has recently started smiling regularly when Steve and I talk to her. She has such a cute smile - all gums right now (as you can see here). Her mornings are her favorite time, always well rested and in a good mood.

We are guessing that Bennett now weighs about 10 lbs, and her appetite has definitely grown along with her weight. At the beginning of July, we started feeding her formula before bedtime to sustain her longer. It definitely worked, as she has been sleeping through the nights for the past 3 weeks now. However, recently she just isn't quite satisfied with the 4 ounces we were feeding her, so we increased it to 5. This little increase has helped her sleep even longer - now 10-7 am! I can't even tell you how happy I am for this extra time.

I am finally starting to get my morning routine down, and with her sleeping later, I can actually get ready before she awakes and expects to be fed. Then it is either off to her Mimi's house, or she is passed off to Ms. Shirley. She is content with either, as long as someone is paying attention to her!