Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day 2011

This Memorial Day weekend we decided to head to Smith Lake with Steve's family. Since we hadn't been up there in two years, we were way overdue and in need to hang with all the family. We drove up Friday morning so we could pack in 3.5 full days! We got settled in and put the kids down for a short nap before everyone else started trickling in that day. Then we all went down to the pier and swam some before dinner. The kids started off a little scared, but quickly got more brave and within 30 minutes Preston was jumping off the pier to me! Bennett still needed some coaxing, but did pretty good.

That night we ate, drank and caught frogs! The kids were out playing and realized that the playground area was inundated with little frogs. I was shocked, but Bennett reached down and tried to catch them herself (she usually is more timid with things like this).

Saturday was a gorgeous sunny day and we literally baked in the sun all day long. Steve and I reapplied sunscreen over 5 times each, but still walked away red and burned in some areas. That night we had Michelle's birthday celebration (Happy Birthday Aunt Shell)! Sunday, we were smarter and put out the large tent so we could have some shade. That tent was Spencer and my saving grace....we hid underneath it all day (unless we were on the waverunner or in the water)! We all had a blast, and it was like pulling teeth to get the kids to come inside. Bennett flat out refused Sunday afternoon to come in and bath, claiming that she was washing off in the lake. Steve ultimately just bathed her in the lake!

Overall, it was a great weekend with our family! Thanks Mimi and Papa!!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Just a Funny Story

Now for the story told by Steve....

Last week, we went out for dinner last minute and decided to hit Chili's for something different. Following dinner I went to the restroom to wash my hands. When I returned to the table Bennett said she needed to go potty. So Daddy was selected to take her. As we entered the restroom a rather large man who looked like he just polished off a slab of baby back ribs was exiting. We walked into the first stall and I proceeded to tell Ms.B not to touch anything. As I am in the process of placing toilet paper on the seat, the questions start coming...

BCM: "Daddy, is this where you went potty?"

SCM: "No Bennett"

BCM: "Daddy, did you go poo-poo?"

SCM: "No Bennett"

BCM: "It's really stinky in here"

I have to admit that I was trying my best to hold it together at this point!

SCM: "It's ok Bennett, just don't touch anything. Hurry up and go potty and we can leave."

BCM: "I don't think I need to go potty anymore. I can wait until we get home. Daddy, let's get out of here now."

SCM: "Are you sure Honey?"

BCM: "Daddy, let's leave. It's too stinky."

Now from Julie's perspective...when they quickly returned to the table I asked how it was (since it was Bennett's first time going in a public restroom with her Daddy). Steve then proceeded to tell me the story, which made me laugh so hard I cried. We all know this has happened to us at one time or another, so that is why we decided to post.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Queen B's Big 4th Birthday!!

I can NOT believe my baby girl turned 4 years old!! This happy little baby has grown into a beautiful and precocious little girl. She lives her life fully each and every day, and takes everything in around her. She is loving, funny and as emotional as the Walker women in my family are (sometimes that is a good thing, and sometimes that is a bad thing).

Steve had decided that he wanted to buy Bennett something special for her birthday....her first piece of jewelry. Since she always comments on my necklace, Steve knew what he wanted to get her, and thankfully James Avery had it. When she got home from school on Friday, Steve was sitting in the living room with a small bag next him. Being typical Bennett, she asked what was in the bag, so he invited her over to open and see. She excitedly opened it and found a small sterling silver cross. Bennett was very happy and immediately asked to put it on.

We decided to have our first off-site birthday party. Since my little girl has such a sweet tooth, what better than SoHo Sweets, a local candy shop. The party was organized perfectly with the children starting off making their own pizza slices. While those cooked, they made candy necklaces. Some of the kids followed the instructions, but most just ate the candy (like Preston). Thankfully the pizza arrived in time to help the sugar balance out. Bennett ate both of her slices (that little girl LOVES cheese pizza)!

Following lunch, the kids each made their own ice cream sundae, decorating them with various toppings. If that wasn't enough, we then sang "Happy Birthday" and devoured some cake. Needless to say, all of the kids were sent home on a sugar high that probably only lasted an hour before they came crashing down.

Though Bennett greeted each friend with a genuine hug when they arrived, I know she was most interested in the loot they brought her. We tried to remind her to use manners and thank each of them for coming, but I think it is difficult for a 4 year old to not be interested in the gift. So as the party was ending, she was anxious to begin opening them up. We told her that all of the family would be coming over to our house to watch her open gifts (and eat pizza since we didn't eat at the party), and she had to wait. She wasn't very happy with that answer, but reluctantly agreed. However, as soon as we walked in our doors, she was ready!

We tried to hold her off for a little while, but she grew more and more inpatient, so we gave in to her incessant nagging. She got several movies, lots of art supplies (which she is really into right now), two new barbie dolls and a barbie car and some cash! Steve and I and my parents decided to hold off on giving her our presents that day so she wasn't too overwhelmed.

After spending all day with Bennett on Sunday painting, taking her to a movie, and then going out for dinner, my parents decided to let her open her gifts from them. So you can imagine her excitement when she received an American Girls Bitty Baby, diaper bag, blanket and coordinating clothes. She played with it until we made her go to bed and then she snuggled with it all night long. She LOVES her baby dolls and sleeps with at least one every day. Several months ago when we received the newest American Dolls magazine, she began telling me everything she wanted. I told her to tell her Nene, and maybe she would get some of it for her birthday. I think she had forgotten about it, but I know it will be something she'll enjoy for awhile.

This morning, Steve waited to go to work until she woke up. She came down the stairs (with her new baby in hand), and the first thing she saw were her presents. We all gave her a kiss, wished her happy birthday and then she opened her presents. She got a new princess nightgown, princess plates, snorkel and mask and an album of photos taken throughout this past school year, so she can remember her teacher and friends.

We love you Bennett, and hope that your 4th birthday was memorable and fun! You are a very special little girl who is loved by so many. Your smile is so warm and genuine, and your beautiful blue eyes light up your face. Your daddy and I can't wait to see how you continue to thrive and development.

We wish you the happiest 4th birthday and hope you always know how much we love you! Big, big, big much!!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Old School Summer Fun

I know many have purchased some of the new and improved fun toys for playing in the water, but we believe in old school fun. We had a small blow-up pool, but realized it had a large hole in it when Steve tried to inflate it this morning. Since it was 90 degrees by mid morning, we pulled out the sprinkler, sprayed the kids with sunscreen and let them go crazy in the backyard. They had a ball running around the yard through the sprinkler, playing in the sand and the grass got some much needed water (so it was a win-win)!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Last Day of School

Years ago when I attended school, I would start to get sad as the final days approached. Sad because I wouldn't see my friends regularly, or when I was in college, sad because my friends or I would be leaving Dallas for the summer. Now as a parent of a young child, I am sad because I am losing my 12 hours of free time each week.

I know I shouldn't be sad. I know they grow up quickly and I should be excited to spend more time with them, but it is requires a lot of planning to keep an almost 4 year old and 2.5 year old busy for 3 whole months. You can only go to the pool so much before you grow tired of the sun and chlorine.

So, I have been busy trying to find activities to keep my precious ones busy for the next 103 days (I told you it is a long summer). Fortunately things are coming together nicely, and I feel pretty good about the next three months. We plan to keep busy playing at the gym nursery, taking swim lessons, doing summer school for 3 weeks, swimming at the pool, visiting the zoo and McWane Science Center, going on two beach trips (one with friends and one with my extended family), going to the lake, participating in a church camp and doing 2 weeks of zoo camp!! Sounds pretty good, huh? I hope all of the activities keep the kids happy and me sane....cause the Lord knows how I like my routines.

This past year has been a great one for the kids. They have really enjoyed "school." Preston has grown up so much over the past year: speaking more clearly, becoming more of a dare devil, and actually making friends. It is always fun to see how 2 year olds begin to play with other kids, rather than just by themselves. He really likes his teachers too, Ms Lisa and Ms Morgan, and they couldn't have been more loving towards my sweet boy.

Bennett also had a lot of fun. She made some new friends, got closer with older ones and did a lot of artwork! Her teacher, Ms Ginny, gave the kids the best year-end gift...a laminated collection of artwork they have done throughout the year. It was so nice to flip through the booklet of art and see her progression of skills. It was also a bit relieving to me. You see Bennett would come home each day with paint on her hands or clothing, but only rarely would I get to see this artwork she was creating. She would always tell me it was drying at school, but then it would never be sent in her bag later. I asked Ms Ginny about it once, and she assured me that she was doing creative stuff with the kids and I would eventually see it. I guess today was that day! Since I love saving things I think the kids will enjoy looking back at through the years, this was a wonderful addition to Bennett's box of memories.

Thanks to the three fabulous ladies who hugged and cared for our children and helped teach them three days a week over the past year! Our children have flourished and LOVED going to school! What more could you ask for as a parent, right?!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Princess Pres

This morning Bennett and Preston went upstairs to play. When they came back down, Bennett walked into my room and said "Ladies and gentlemen, I would like you to meet Princess Pres." I said to her, "you mean Prince Pres." She said "No mommy, Princess Pres." Then he walked around the corner wearing this!!

Poor kid......

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Explain This!

Explain how a kid who survives (on a typical day) eating 6 cans of stage 2 baby food, 1 yogurt, water, assorted crackers, veggie chips and 20 oz of milk can be in the 60th percentile in weight for his age! I was shocked when I plotted his weight and height on a chart after being measured today. He is in the 50th percentile for height....average, which is what I would expect.

Lately, I have been ridiculed by a couple of friends for still feeding him baby food. What they don't understand is the kid is stubborn with a capital "S" and refuses to eat anything but soft foods, with the exception of what I call "filler foods" like: chips, crackers, rice cakes, etc. Every blue moon I can get him to eat bacon, and he'll eat McDonald's french fries and chicken nuggets, but no real chicken (only the frozen pressed kind).

He had reflux as an infant, throwing up so much throughout the day that he could not be without a bib, and he went through about 5 a day. In addition, I was known for having yellow stains on my left shoulder of every t-shirt I wore, and when I was wearing something nicer, I ALWAYS had a burp cloth on my shoulder. He was never an unhappy colicky baby, but more of a happy barfer. As a toddler this has turned into a huge texture aversion.

I have asked our pediatrician about this numerous times, but since he continues to grow and is happy and otherwise healthy...he isn't concerned. Since I am typically not an overly worried parent, I have not been either. However, the past few weeks he has complained that his neck hurts when he is eating....which immediately leads to him throwing up. It starts with him gagging a little when he is eating, then he rubs his throat, then says it hurts, then throws up! I encourage him to drink water in between bites, which has helped cut down on the times he throws up a week (yes, he throws up multiple times a week), but it hasn't stopped it altogether.

After talking to a friend about my concerns, I do believe he needs to be consulted by a specialist for a second opinion....just to make sure. I would never forgive myself if he has something really wrong with him and I ignored it. Deep down, I am hoping that it is all a mental thing. Steve didn't eat but a handful of foods until he was 8 or 10, so he does come by it honestly. It is just so difficult to understand, considering what a great eater Bennett is and always has been (and I really didn't think I did anything differently).

Anyway, I would love any feedback from you readers, but I am consulting another pediatrician in our practice in 2 weeks and getting her opinion on a specialist in the area.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Roll It!

Pres has the ability to roll his belly, and I think it is just hilarious. Every single time he does it, it makes me laugh. What is so cute about it is recalling photos and video of Steve doing it as a child too! I have tried to do it, as has Bennett....and neither of us have the talent.

I hope this short clip makes you laugh too!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mother's Day.....just another day

This morning I got to sleep in (thank you Steve), but when I looked at the clock and realized I had 1.5 hours until church, I knew I better get going. I immediately went up to strip Preston's bed to wash his sheets, and the kids ran up to meet me with mother's day cards, homemade gifts and boxes of candy (the last thing I need). Unfortunately, they got a little confused and thought the candy was theirs and then started crying when I wouldn't let them open it and start eating it at 7:15am. Really??

I convinced them to come downstairs to eat their breakfast, then I got the laundry started and emptied the dishwasher while Steve fed them breakfast. Neither wanted what we initially offered, so more tears were shed. Then Pres spit out his bacon and started complaining about his throat, and before I knew it, he had thrown up all over the kitchen floor. This is how my mother's day got started.....Happy Mother's Day to me!

After church we fought the crowds and went to lunch. Then we came home and Steve helped me get the kids to bed for naps. Steve had to fly out for work this afternoon, so I watched a little TV and took a short nap. I felt my day turning around when I awoke feeling much better. Then I went to wake up the kids, and they were both in good moods (thank you God). I got them dressed so we could head back to church for Bennett's spring choir concert. Steve's parents met me up there and helped with Pres while I took this very poor quality video of Bennett singing.

Now the children are outside playing...they are happy and getting along! I feel like my mother's day is going to end on a high note! Happy Mother's Day to my mom, and all of my friends and family reading this! I hope all of your days went more smoothly than mine!