Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Charleston, South Carolina

Jason and I spent the weekend before Christmas in Charleston, South Carolina. Jason performed the wedding of a friend of ours from Kingsport. We truly had the best time away together. The kids stayed in Nashville with their Aunt Tara and my parents. We are so grateful that our families are always willing and able to keep our kids for us.

We rented a car and drove nine hours to the Atlantic Coast. We didn't really mind the drive. We were actually really looking forward to it. We arrived in Charleston around dinner time and went out for dinner at Longhorn. On Saturday we drove around Charleston and walked around downtown. We parked down at The Battery and walked around for about 3 hours. We were fascinated with the historical and antebellum homes on Meeting Street, The Battery and the busyness of King Street. Later that afternoon, we went to the movies and window shopped before the wedding rehearsal. After the rehearsal, we headed over to Barnes and Noble and Starbucks for a quiet and relaxing evening. The wedding ceremony on Sunday was so lovely. They had the wedding outside and it was absolutely beautiful. We headed back home on Monday and got to our house around 10:00 that night.

Here are some of my favorite pictures from Charleston.

The Battery

If the kids had been with me, I would have snapped a million pictures in front of this brick wall. Seeing as how it was just the two of us, Jason stepped in for me!

I was imagining the countless pictures that I would take of our children in front of this wrought iron fence. Jason really hammed it up for me!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

A Day in the Life

A Scary Moment with Jackson
As soon as I looked down at his purple covered face and the marker in his hand, I immediately called Poison Control. Yes, my son ate the tip part of a marker! Fortunately he is fine and there was no real threat of anything. I can't turn my back on him for two seconds. He is the sweetest little guy, but he is definitely ALL BOY!!! He keeps me busy!

An Embarrassing Day with Joshua
Yesterday, the kids and I headed out to run several errands. We went to Kroger, CVS, the dry cleaners, Wal-Mart, and several stores in the mall. I am surprised that we all made it, but we did. Needless to say, in EVERY store, Joshua saw fit to embarrass me!

Jason has done his job teaching the kids about what football teams we like, and which ones we don't really pull for. (Sorry), but Alabama is among the list of teams that we don't pull for. Every time Joshua sees anything "Alabama", he says, "Boo, Alabama. We don't like Alabama". Well, yesterday while out and about, we saw plenty of fans showing support for their favorite teams. EVERY TIME Joshua saw an Alabama shirt, he looked directly at the person and said in a VERY LOUD voice, "Alabama - BOO!!!"

A Sweet Moment with Abby Kate
Last night after dinner, Abby Kate told Jason that she wanted "to get her blanket, sit on the couch and snuggle while they watched a movie". The two of them watched Sleeping Beauty all snuggled up together on the couch under my old Winnie the Pooh blanket. It was such a sweet moment shared between a daughter and her daddy.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas 2008

Our family had such a wonderful Christmas this year. We celebrated with four year old twins and an eighteen month old little boy. The excitement of our three little ones could hardly be contained. We all had so much fun making lasting memories and sharing new traditions.

On Christmas Eve, the kids received a very special phone call from Santa, himself. Abby Kate wouldn't let him off of the phone. When Jason and I tucked Abby Kate and Joshua into bed later that night, they both had an absolute meltdown. The thought of Santa squeezing down our chimney was just a bit too much. We finally eased their fears by telling them that we would leave the front door unlocked for Santa.

Christmas morning we awoke to the excited squeals of Abby Kate and Joshua. (We ended up putting their baby gates on the door to keep them confined so that we could video tape them seeing what Santa brought. I don't think that the gates will work next year. I guess that we will need to set the alarm.) Abby Kate, Joshua and Jackson loved their presents from Santa. We spent the better part of the morning opening up all of the presents under the tree. Jason and I agreed to open our presents next year on Christmas Eve after the kids are tucked into bed. We finally got around to opening our gifts after all of the kids' presents were unwrapped, opened and "free". (Those little twist ties are just a bear!)

Jason got me the most wonderful Christmas gift. He gave me a published copy of my blog! The whole reason for me starting this blog was to document and journal my life with the kids. This is a treasured gift that I am so thankful for!

I will close with some pictures of our Christmas...

Christmas 2008

Joshua on his Diego trike with his new microphone!


Abby Kate and her new princess bicycle!

"I don't need mistletoe to get kisses"

Abby Kate
(My brother-in-law snapped this picture of Abby Kate when she visited them.)

Time to clean up this mess!

Merry Christmas

Monday, December 22, 2008

Santa and the Lights at Opryland

This weekend, Jason and I were able to get away to Charleston, South Carolina for a wedding that he performed. Before we left town, we took the kids to Opryland to see Santa and the lights. They were so excited and loved every minute of it. We stopped off to visit with Santa first. Abby Kate wanted absolutely nothing to do with Santa and would only "stand" next to him. Jackson didn't care for being placed on Santa's lap, but at least we got him there. I was able to grab a quick picture from the side. The photographer snapped a really cute one that we love!

After visiting with Santa, all three kids rode the train. Jackson rode with Jason and giggled all through the ride. Afterwards, we walked all around the hotel admiring all of the lights and fountains. We walked out to the front of the hotel and looked at all of the lights around the magnolia trees and the nativity scene that they had set up. It was absolutely beautiful!

We all had a wonderful and memorable time together. Here are just a few pictures from the night.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Jackson at Eighteen Months

Jackson Cash
21.6 pounds, 31 inches

I am saying a lot. Momma's counted around 30 words. My new words are bag, water (wawa), socks (ocks), shoes (goos), elmo (ooo), night night, Joshua (jaja), oh, no, uh oh, head, ears, key, belly (bebee), poop (poo), all done, bread, Ollie (ah-yah), and many more. I repeat everything that I hear.

I know that Santa says, "Ho Ho Ho".

When I hear a horn honk, I say, "Uh, oh".

I was completely terrified of the doctor this past visit.

I love taking off my shoes and socks while riding in the van.

I know where my head, ears, mouth, eyes and belly are.

I can follow and obey simple commands.

I love feeding myself. I especially love using my spoon and fork.

I am finally eating solids!

I love any and all things chocolate.

I love to sing. Really loudly!

I'm not too interested in my toys. I would much rather run, climb and explore.

I love playing phone.

When I get upset, I tighten my fists and shake. I also like to stomp and run away. It always makes Momma and Daddy laugh.

I love playing with the light switches, chairs, doors, cabinets, and the bath faucets. I sure do keep Momma on her toes!

When my diaper is dirty, I say, "poo".

I finally named my burp cloth. It is my "night night" and I absolutely love it!

I love scribbling with crayons. I color with my left hand.

My mom and dad can't keep me off of the table and out of the chairs or stools.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Christmas Cards Past

I've been working on a Christmas Card Scrapbook these past few days. I'm hoping to add to this each year. I've really enjoyed looking back over some of our Christmas cards and remembering the stories that made each year so special and meaningful.

"Merry Christmas from The You Know Whos"
This is the year that Jim Carrey's version of the Dr. Seuss', "How The Grinch Stole Christmas" hit the theaters. I don't really remember what possessed us to paint Jason's face green, but it was quite hysterical! A dear friend of ours in Kingsport took this picture for us in her home.

"Fleece Navidad"
Jason and I found Andy a fleece jacket while shopping in Gatlinburg earlier that year. I think that we decided in the store that we would make this Christmas card. Our friends Corey and Alisha took this picture for us on their property after we had moved from Kingsport.

This is my favorite picture of Jason and me. The reason - we were pregnant with TWINS, and we had no idea! Corey and Alisha took this picture for us. It was so cold outside and we tried just about every kind of pose to get that perfect picture with our Andy.

Our First Christmas with Joshua and Abby Kate
A close friend of ours from church gave the kids these Santa hats. We put the two of them in just about every kind of pose imaginable to get that "one" picture for the card.

This was the year that Jason and I WORKED to capture the perfect Christmas picture. We shot some at the house, some at Opryland, we shot on more than one day... We never got a picture of the two of them together that would work. Joshua's picture is at our house and Abby Kate's picture is at Opryland. A couple of days before we headed up to Opryland, Abby Kate fell and scabbed up her face. It seems like that kind of stuff always happens before a picture.

While at Opryland, we had the kids sitting together on a bench. I was just about to snap "the" picture, when this older lady came up and began doting all over the kids. She was the one that got "the" picture that night with her camera!

Early that September, we had vacationed in Gulf Shores with my parents. We had gone to the beach the previous year, only to be evacuated because of Katrina. This was the best beach trip. We all have so many wonderful memories of our time together at the beach. We announced to our families at Thanksgiving that we were expecting another baby!

We joyously welcomed Jackson into our family in 2007. This year, I took the year off and headed over to Portrait Innovation. They did all of the work and we got a great picture!

This year is filled with so much wonder, awe, and excitement. The children are so excited about Christmas and all of the traditions that we are making as a family. God has truly blessed our lives with three beautiful children.

Friday, December 12, 2008

A Flower Girl and Two Ring Bearers

Here are a few pictures of the kids from the wedding the other night. I was so proud of my children. Abby Kate looked so beautiful and my boys were so handsome in their tuxes.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Decisions Decisions

I've been going through my photo library during nap time today. It seems like I am always working on creating my photo libraries and downloading pictures to print. I got really tickled when I started looking at the pictures that I took on Thanksgiving at my parent's house. I always take a lot of pictures, hoping that I will get ONE that will work. I don't know which one to use of the kids with their great-grandparents, Mimi and DayDon!

I love how Joshua stays completely the same. You can really tell that Abby Kate has had ENOUGH! And Jackson, well, he was just being Jackson!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Hair Today, Gone Yesterday

I'm sure that this post is going to seem very strange, but I feel the need to share...

A few months after the birth of Jack, I began to lose my hair. This is completely normal and I even remembered that frustrating time of losing my hair shortly after having Joshua and Abby Kate. With my first post-pregnancy hair loss, I didn't realize that my hair would actually grow back after a little while. My hair came back in at the top/middle of my hair line and on the sides near my ears. I was completely clueless about my new hair growth, until a friend told me all about it.

Here I am, 17 months after having Jack, and my hair has started growing back. (Not that I need any! I have a head full of thick hair!) Only this time, it is a bit more wild! I don't know if you can see it that well in this picture, but my new hair stands about 4-5 inches right on the top of my head. It is really noticeable when I pull my hair back into a low ponytail. I also have the same little short hairs all around my hairline that I did with the twins.

And so are the tales of my losses and gains...