Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Winter One-derland!

Walker's 1st birthday party was a success!  I can't even believe how quickly this past year has gone...like a blink of an eye!  Walker is a much loved little boy (can't really say "baby" anymore), and he thrives on all of attention that he receives...from me, Steve, his siblings, our family members, neighbors, and all of our friends.  Shockingly, he still loves to be held, and will go to just about anyone, except when he is playing the "shoo away game."

Since Walker's birthday falls so closely to Christmas, we decided to have his party on the 27th to capture all of our family members.  Steve and I did all of the prep work, and everyone made it.  We had lunch, sang "happy birthday" to Walker, and opened presents.  Of course, his favorite things was the bunch of balloons, which he carried around all day!
love those legwarmers and stocking cap!

running away from Goo

We used the colors of his invitation and outfit, and used the "winter wonderland" theme.  Though Walker wasn't feeling 100%, he enjoyed all of the love from everyone and managed to stay awake for the whole party.  Here are some more photos from the party.
pulled chicken & pork carnitas

Walker's smash cake
The cake for everyone else
Having fun with Uncle Dan

Singing "Happy Birthday"
trying to figure out how to eat the cake
enjoying feeding B more than himself

not bad.....
finally getting into it...
...until he got cake in his eye....pitiful

Happy 1st Birthday Walker!!!

Saturday, December 27, 2014

All of Our Christmas Festivities

After we returned from the beach, we started decorating the house for Christmas....decorated the outside of the house, the mantel and put up the tree.  It didn't take long (maybe 30 minutes) for Walker to start fiddling with the ornaments on the tree.  Unfortunately, his curiosity with the tree never ceased and lasted through Christmas!  Every time I turned around he had a handful of ornaments (with the hooks lost somewhere in the tree).  By the time we took the tree down (by 9am on Christmas morning), I had a pile of ornaments without hooks.  This little cutie wore out the tree, and was fascinated with the lights.

So, onto more happy memories....because that is what Christmas is all about.  Usually we have several blog posts written about Christmas, but sadly, this year was different due to the dreaded flu!  Prior to school letting out, there was a huge flu epidemic and since so many children go to school sick or with fevers that they are unaware of...it became scary for many parents.  I tried to pull our kids out of school early the last week of school as often as we could, but it didn't work.....Preston eventually went down.  Three days before Christmas he became symptomatic, and had a fever for a couple of days.  Since none of the grandparents wanted to risk getting sick, we postponed the celebration with my family until Dec 26th, and we just missed Christmas Eve with the Mizeranys altogether. 

Fortunately we were able to sneak in baking Christmas cookies with Mimi and dinner with all of my family before he got sick:

Girls at dinner

gingerbread house with Daddy

bringing Mimi's to us!

Fortunately, Preston felt better within 24 hours (even though he still had a fever), and no one else got sick!  On Christmas Eve, Steve and Bennett made a quick visit to his parent's house and dropped off our gifts for everyone, and picked up our presents.  That night we did Christmas Eve with just our family....lonely, but nice.

Christmas Eve babies
mean cowboy with new cap guns

B with her new AG Doll, Isabelle
throwing reindeer food
W on new scooter with a balloon
The next morning, Santa visited and left the kids with several of the items on their wishlist.  Preston got the hot Max Tow Truck, a rocket launcher and a "real live BB gun."  Bennett got her password journal, a fur real go-go dog and a lap desk.  Walker....who was unsure of everything going on around him, received a 3 in 1 scooter, some drums and a nesting set (though he was still more excited about the balloon he got at the grocery store the day before).  After the excitement from their Santa gifts weaned, they opened the gifts that we gave them....clothes, a few board games, and accessories for their Santa gifts.  I think everything was opened in under 30 minutes, and then I was left with a pile of wrapping paper, dry dead garland on the mantle and a Christmas tree missing half of its ornaments.  So, when Steve suggested that he get the kids bathed...I used the break to quickly clean up and dismantle the tree.  The whole room was put back to normal and vacuumed before my parents even arrived at lunch.  You might say "bah humbug," but it was a huge relief to get the tree put up and out of Walker's reach.  Not to mention, we were expecting over 20 people for his birthday party a few days later.

Pres beat Nene!
By lunch, my parents arrived to spend the day with us.  We played games, ate our Christmas dinner and the day ended with all of us watching National Lampoons Christmas Vacation.  We drank too much wine, but had a great day!

Poppy with his youngest grandchild
3 generations of Walker women
The following day we headed over to Brian and Shannon's for our delayed Christmas celebration.  We munched on heavy appetizers, enjoyed a couple of cocktails, talked and opened gifts.  The kids had a blast, and received even more toys, clothes and games.  They love hanging with their cousins, and since we had been couped up in the house for the 5 days prior....they were wound up!  Of course neither of the big kids wanted to leave, so Bennett spent the night with Henley.

golf cart ride with Poppy!

Though the Christmas break didn't go exactly like we planned, we are still so blessed with our health and family. 
Merry Christmas 2014

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Thankgiving Getaway

This year we decided to try something new, and travel to the beach for the week of Thanksgiving.  The kids were out of school for the week, so they didn't have to miss anything.  We rented a house in Seacrest that was dog friendly, so we even took Beckham with us for his first beach trip.  We tried to convince my parents to join us, but it didn't work out so the Frys joined us instead.  We had other friends there too, so the kids had plenty of friends to play with all week long. 

It rained a couple of days, but that didn't stop us from having fun.  We enjoyed many good meals at some of our favorite restaurants and cooked some delicious food at our house.  We took lots of bike rides, played on the beach, hunted seashells, played texas hold'em with the kids, worked on a 1000 piece puzzle and practiced relaxing....it was perfect!

Beck was in heaven at the beach....running in the sand, scaring seagulls off the beach, playing in the surf and with other dogs, running alongside of us on our bike rides and hanging out on furniture (which he isn't allowed to do at home).  He has never had so much exercise, and literally LOVED his first trip with us.  Though he didn't have free reign in a yard like here, I think he would trade in his life here for beach life any day of the week.  Can't you just see the happiness in his face?

Our other baby enjoyed the beach too!  Though this is his 4th trip to the beach, this is the first one where he was mobile.  In fact, he learned to walk about a week before we left for our trip.  He was still shaky on his feet, especially in the sand, but he loved his new independence!  He played well in the sand with various toys, walked/crawled toward the water every opportunity he got, and just loved all of the attention he received from friends.

Fun at Dusty's
The other kids are pros at the beach!  They know what they like to do, and do the same things.  The one change this trip was the making of new friends in our neighborhood.  There was such a large group of kids, they had fun playing kickball and hide and seek.  As always, we hated to leave.
Walker and his bevy of girls
our pretty girl holding the sun
Pres and Lily
Caroline and Bennett
tuckered out and snuggling

Look who visited the beach!

Best of many, just happy no tears from Walker
decorating cookies
Wine Tasting at Wild Olives in Rosemary
Always fun at the beach, but more so with friends and family!  Hopefully we will make it down again real soon!