Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Brighton meets his teachers

Right after meeting Chandler's teachers we headed over for Brighton to meet his teachers, Ms. Jennifer and Ms. Jean. Technically Brighton has already met them several times since these were Chandler's 2-year-old teachers and they were Brighton's teachers for one of the camps over the summer. Anyways, Brighton was so excited to go. He can't wait to go to preschool this fall and I'm so happy that he has this opportunity. I'll always remember that when ever he would wake up last year he'd ask what we were doing that day. On MWF I'd say, well, Chandler has preschool today. Brighton would look at me and say, "No, what am I doing?" I'm happy to say I can now answer that Brighton will get to go too!
Brighton will definitely be a leader in this class. He says that he's going to be in the 4's with Chandler. Brighton is so smart and has a great vocabulary for his age. Most people are surprised that he's not older than he really is. Chandler's teachers thought he would be in the 3's class! He is such a little ham too and I'm anxious to see how his teachers say he does once this becomes our routine. What an exciting day. We can't wait for our first day on September 7th!

Chandler meets his teachers

Today Chandler got to meet the teachers that he will have for his 4-year-old preschool class. Their names are Ms. Stephanie (straight hair) and Ms. Diane (curly hair). Chandler is so excited to be heading back to preschool in one week. He was disappointed that he didn't get to stay there today. Here he points out the letter "A"
Chandler will be going MWF, but most students in his class go 5 days. He had fun exploring the new classroom and loved this fun castle.

Ms. Diane asked Chandler if he could find his candle on the birthday cupcake display they had made. Unfortunately there were no candles on the "April" cupcake. Ms. Diane said, "oh no!" and quickly went to get a candle to put Chandler's birthday up. She wanted to know what color he would like and he said, "I like all the colors". When I pressed him to tell her what his favorite color was he said purple. There was a purple candle left for her to write his name on and she asked if that was okay with me? Of course, it's fine. I have no problem with Chandler liking the color purple. Even if I did, I couldn't convince him otherwise :) After all the cupcake drama, we discovered that they had not forgotten Chandler's candle, it was just accidentally on "March". His original candle was blue, but now he has a purple candle on "April" He also spied this purple snake up high on a shelf and wanted to play with it.

It may be hard to tell, but in this picture, Chandler is attempting to jump rope with the snake. He had Brighton and Ms. Stephanie turn it for him.
I know Chandler is going to have a blast this year at preschool. It is bitter-sweet for me since I know this (most likely) will be his last year at preschool. My little boy is growing up!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

A day in the life.....of Maverick

So, today I'll give you a mainly play-by-play of Maverick's day. Although, no day is alike, here's a general day for this little guy. Here he is a 6 a.m.
Notice, this is not in his crib, where he should be (and normally is). The little stinker has not been sleeping well the past two nights, and so he started out the day by lying next to mommy and daddy so they could lay in bed just a few more minutes. It may have had something to do with the fact that Monday nights, I tutor which means he goes to bed with a bottle. Daddy only could get him to drink 1/2 an ounce. Oh well. When the big boys got up at 8 for breakfast, Maverick decided to join them at the table.

Maverick is not eating any food yet, but he likes to feel like he is part of the action! Chandler wanted to hold him after breakfast and he fell asleep! He woke up just before I snapped this picture.

Well, since he's been up and obviously not going to make it until 9 a.m. (normal nap time) I went ahead and let him sleep. I had to wake him up early from his nap so we could head to Mommy & Me Yoga class. We've been taking this class for several weeks now and Maverick just loves the one-on-one attention and looking at all the other babies. There were 9 in our class today! After lunch we all played outside before heading back in for naps round 2.

Maverick loves being in the swing. He really likes his special cushion that helps him support his head too. After Maverick's afternoon nap 1-3 p.m. he watched some TV with the big boys who were also up.
Mommy had been working on folding laundry which you see was all around Maverick! Since he had a good nap in the afternoon, he didn't take a third nap before dinner. We most always play outside or take a walk after dinner to pass the time until PJs at 7 p.m. Depending on how sweaty everybody gets will determine if we head in a little early to get baths. Nursing starts about 7:20-30 and Maverick is in his crib before 8. What a fun (and exhausting!) day!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Oh No!

Chandler had a dental checkup today and well, let's just say we'll be heading back for a few fillings. I'm not sure how I feel about fillings in baby teeth, but if they are truly needed, so be it. We've known for a while that his back teeth are already crowded since the floss is even hard to get back there. Our dentist says that he is just prone to get them. We are going to try to be more vigilant about flossing daily (it's been a little slack since Maverick arrived on the scene) and we've also been given a fluoride rinse to help.

Hopefully our next check up will be cavity free and we'll be back on track!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

My Man of 7 Years!

Can you believe it's been 7 years since Derek and I tied the knot? I certainly can't. It really only seems like about 3, maybe 4. Not sure how the 3 little boys fit in there, but there they are. I am so blessed and lucky to have such a devoted husband and father in my life. I haven't had time to let my readers know that Derek has started a photography business and it's off to a great start.

I'm so proud of him and everything he does for me and our family.

Oh, and showering me with gifts on our special day was a nice treat too. I love you Sweetie!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Update on the Blog

So by blogger's count this is post # 122. Back in January, it was my goal to post 175 entries for the year. With four months left I need to post about 14/month to meet that goal. I think I'm on track. Once the big boys start school after Labor Day it should leave me more time to post. I should at least have Maverick's morning nap MWF for some "me" time. Whatever will I do with myself??

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

I know I'm way late on this one....

So here's Chandler's Five-Month picture, incase anybody wants to compare. Funny....I really didn't plan on C & M wearing the same outfit, but when I took the picture of M, I was thinking that C wore the same outfit and I was right!

Anyways, back to the reason I'm posting. I often DVR Disney movies for the boys to watch when I need some peace and quiet. Well today was one of those days. The boys had been on each other's and my last nerve and I just needed to survive the afternoon before a b-day party later that day. I put on "The Princess and the Frog" and was somewhat paying attention to it while folding laundry, etc....

The movie had some elements of voodoo, but it didn't seem too bad at first. Well about 40 or so minutes into it and I saw more of the voodoo and I had enough. Off that movie went and I deleted it (after showing Derek the one scene that went too far for me). I can't believe that a Disney movie and one rated "G" would need to be pre-screened by me first. Lesson learned.

The "shadowman" in the movie uses black magic and speaks to friends "on the other side". It was definitely portraying Satan to me and was promising souls to them. Hopefully/Luckily I don't think the boys understood this part, but this is definitely not something that I think is appropriate for them. It was very clear to me that the "shadowman" was trafficking in evil and I don't want my boys exposed to this.

Does this make me a prude? I never thought I would be that mom that not allow certain movies (much less ones rated "G"), but I guess I am now!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

5 Months!

Wow! Has it been 5 months already? Maverick is really developing quite the personality. I know he has a few traits that are all his own. For one, he screams/shrieks. It is quite ear piercing. He does it when he's happy or mad. It is very high pitched and can be quite grating on one's patience. He still LOVES to be outside. We almost always take a walk or play outside after dinner to keep this guy happy until bedtime. He is no longer swaddled to sleep at nighttime, but is for naps. He is slowly dropping his third late afternoon nap and will usually sleep about 1-1.5 hours in the morning and 2-2.5 hours in the afternoon. He goes to bed about 7:30 and nurses once in the night and is up about 7-7:30 in the morning. He still hasn't mastered putting himself back to sleep and will wake up about 11:30 p.m. and need his binky before (usually) falling right back asleep.

I weighed him at 15 lbs 14 oz and 27" long. He is long and lean.

He loves when C & B play with him and show him books and toys. I've started a mommy and me Yoga class with him on Tuesdays and he is loving the one-on-one attention. His hair is really starting to come in and it is really blonde. We think he may be getting some teeth soon since he is always wanting to chew on something. He hasn't completely rolled from his back to his belly yet, but has come very close this week. He still only poops about once every 10-14 days. We will probably be starting solids sometime in the next month or so, so we'll see how that changes.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Yogi Bear Camping

Today was our first morning waking up at the campgrounds and we had so much we wanted to do! The boys began their morning by playing on the playground before heading up to Ranger Smith's Back Porch to watch cartoons with Yogi.
We had fun at the pool and waterslide in the morning. The waterslide was a lot faster than it looked and I rode with Brighton. We got bumped around some and Brighton scraped/bumped his head so he was done with that. After Dad and Maverick joined us, Chandler rode the waterslide again while we hung out at the pool. That afternoon, Chandler and I made a tie-dye T-Shirt while B & M napped.
We promised the boys we'd have a campfire for smores, so we did at about 6 p.m. The boys had played some games with the other campers before dinner and there was a scavenger hunt at 7 p.m. that they wanted to do too, so we had to squeeze it in. The fire wasn't that great, but the boys didn't notice/care and then it was on to more fun and then bedtime.

Even though we were tired, I talked Derek into making another go at the campfire just for us. It was a great fire and I enjoyed relaxing around it with my sweetie and roasting some marshmallows for myself! Trips like this are definitely not easy with three little ones, but it's moments like this that make it all worth it. Also, here's a picture of our Cabin. It was a nice setup and we hope to make it back someday. Maybe we'll go tent camping one day, but not until we're past the diapers and napping stage!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Linville Caverns

Today we said Goodbye to Auntie Liz, Beau, and Laci. We headed south towards Linville Caverns and the campground where we planned to stay a couple nights before ending our trip.

We stopped at Linville caverns and did the tour before heading to Yogi Bear's campgrounds. The boys really enjoyed seeing all the neat formations inside the caverns and didn't get scared when they turned out all the lights. I hadn't been there in ten years, so it was neat to go back. Grandma stayed with us until we got to the camp grounds and then headed back to Raleigh.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Tweetsie Time

We made it to Tweetsie! The weather was crazy this morning and was so COLD! Since it had been really hot the day before I was not prepared for the cold, windy, drizzly weather. Our first stop was the gift shop where we got matching sweatshirts for the boys. With that taken care of, we were off to have fun. Chandler and Brighton both wanted tattoos. Chandler got a ladybug and Brighton got a cat.

Maverick spent almost the entire time at Tweetsie bundled up in the Ergo. He was actually quite good considering. Yes, he's in there somewhere.....Here we are riding the small train into the "mouse mine". This reminds me of "It's a Small World"

The boys wanted to ride all the rides and we actually stayed till almost 2 p.m. which was much later than I thought we'd last.
Both C & B panned for gemstones and mom snuck an arrowhead that she bought at the gift shop into each bucket, so they were really thrilled with their findings. We got this cute shot of all three boys right before we were getting ready to go.

When we got back home since the weather was nice we tried for one more trip in the raft down the river. This time we thought the whole family could go. Even though Derek almost abandoned ship within the first 5 minutes of the trip, we all had fun. Oh the crying.....
Maverick was hungry, so after a quick nursing session we were back on track.
I'm not sure what the big boys were upset about, but there was a lot of yelling until we all got situated and then we were on our way. The river level was down from yesterday. That combined with the extra weight in the raft made for a much longer trip (about 50 minutes). I really enjoyed being on the river. It was really peaceful once everybody was happy. I can't wait to do it again!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Enjoying the Mountain Air

We had an easy day on Sunday and mainly explored the area around Aunt Elizabeth's house. We took a stroll before lunch and found a fun hill to play on and pick wildflowers. Here's grandma with her three boys!
Dad had fun playing with his camera and even found a butterfly that was willing to stay still for a few minutes.

That afternoon we blew up a raft for a trip down the river. We were worried that the raft might not hold up since it is thought to have a leak in it. It seemed okay, so Dad took Chandler and Brighton down the river for a fun ride. For dinner, Erin & Joel came over and we got to visit with them for a little while.
We had a busy day and need our sleep since we plan on going to Tweetsie Railroad first thing tomorrow. The mountain air is doing us good. Maverick is sleeping till almost 4 a.m.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Say Cheese!

After getting to the Mountains and having the boys get an afternoon nap we headed to the Ashe County Cheese store. Here we are on the outside of the cheese making/viewing area.

Since it was Saturday, we couldn't see them making any cheese so maybe we'll get to see it next time. After that we headed across the street to the store front where Maverick checked out the sample tray.
Aunt Elizabeth bought the boys some cheese and I bought some wine to bring to Erin & Joel's for dinner that night.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Too Much to do!

Trying to get ready for another vacation is quite the chore. There is so much to be done. We are actually having the carpets cleaned while we are away, so getting all the stuff off the floor will be a major job tonight after the boys are in bed.

Maverick's sleeping is not good this week after it had been pretty good for a while. He's stirring often and we're not sure if it's due to the cold/cough that we've all had or what. He was up earlier than normal today and was a little cranky. I had so much to do including bringing a meal to a new mom and baking muffin/bread to take to the mountains. On top of all that Chandler wanted me to fix his pop gun to take to Tweetsie Railroad. It's been broken for a few weeks now and despite Derek's one attempt (I think he tried) to fix it, it still needs fixing.

So while I was heating up the hot glue gun and trying to rethread the cork I asked Chandler to PLEASE play with Maverick so he wouldn't be crying and fussing.
While I was busy trying to do more things than anybody should have to do.....I returned to find this:

I had to scoop him up and swaddle him and get him in his crib for a nap. Well, we tried....

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Bragging Rights

Granddaddy Bob likes to tell the story of how at three years old he already had a paying job. Well, his namesake, Maverick Robert, has already beaten him at 4 months old! Technically all of the boys have gotten paid for research studies at infants. We've done several of them at Duke University and have gotten $5-10 each time. This hardly buys lunch for us, so I've never really counted it as much.

Today, Maverick was a life-jacket tester and earned $50!
Now we are talking. He did such a great job, that they will hopefully be calling us again in a few weeks to do some more. Maverick really enjoyed being in the pool (as did I) since it was a toasty 92 degrees. This is not a picture from the facility as I couldn't manage all three boys and the camera too. I just wanted to document this with a cute photo.

Even though I've been around water and life jackets my whole life, I'll have to admit I failed miserably when it came time for the first test. I was in the pool, waist deep and Maverick was lying on the pool deck near me. I was instructed to pretend this was an emergency situation, and to get the life jacket on Maverick as quickly but as safely as I could. The life jacket was laid next to Maverick and I was told "Go". So I started by laying Maverick on top of it and then bringing the bottom part of it around his waist and securing the straps. All the time while Brighton (who had been told to be QUIET) was saying, "Mommy.....mommy.....mommy....?" and some other things I'm sure that I was trying to tune out and concentrate on what I should be doing.

Anyways, I said, "stop" and then immediately knew I had the life jacket on wrong! I was so embarrassed! This is the coast guard approved infant kind that is orange and looks like a simple upside-down U. I had fastened the strap that normally goes under the chin across his chest. If you can imagine his whole upper body (arms and head) was through the hole where only his head should be. To my own defense, I've never put this style on an infant that is lying down. Surely if they were standing up I would have fastened it correctly?!? Also, I did have a two year old talking to me and annoying me non-stop while I did it. I really don't think they wanted this to be as high stress as it was.

Luckily, I was given a do-over. We did fine after that and Maverick earned his first real money.

Monday, August 8, 2011


I took the boys to JJ's today to get professional haircuts. Here they are with their new shorter styles. It was hard to get all 3 to smile at once so Maverick is pouting in this one. Oh, and no, Maverick didn't get his hair cut yet!

Those short styles make for easy sweat Mo-hawks. No styling gel needed.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

The Good News...

Derek and I are trying to raise our boys to know Christ and we take advantage of many opportunities that are given us to teach our boys about God and Jesus. When we have the chance to have some fun at the same time that's even better. This fall, both boys will participate in AWANA, and they have already been to VBS this summer. Coming on Saturday, August 27th there will be another fun thing for the boys to do where they can also hear and see positive Christian messages. We have been to this event since 2008 and it's a lot of fun.

The organization that runs this event hands out information and even has a mailbox club that will send the children Bible lessons in the mail. Chandler has been doing these lessons for a little more than a year now and he really enjoys them. His last lesson really spoke to me and the timing of it is definitely from God. I think this lesson actually came in the mail close to the time of my grandmother's death. It has sat in my to-do pile ever since, unopened. Well, I finally opened it and here's (part) of what it said:

God's Beautiful Home
"Hurry, children, " said Mother. "We are going to visit Grandmother. She has been sick." Ken and Amy were excited, and soon they were on their way. "I hope Grandmother gets well soon," Amy said. "She always tells up wonderful stories about Jesus." When they arrived at Grandmother's house, she looked very pale, but she smiled when she saw Ken and Amy.

"I am so glad you came to see me," said Grandmother. "I have missed you." "Oh, Grandma," said Amy, "We are so sorry that you have been sick." "We love you so much," said Ken. "And we want you to get well soon." "I want to get well too," said Grandmother. "But I cannot be sure that I will. You know I am getting very old."

Ken and Amy were quiet as they thought about what Grandmother had said. "But what if you die, Grandma?" asked Amy. "I am not afraid to die," said Grandmother. "I took the Lord Jesus as my Savior when I was just five years old. I have known and loved the Lord Jesus ever since. I am looking forward very much to being with Him in Heaven."


And the story continues.

This simple story intended to teach children about asking Jesus into your heart and about Heaven has provided so much comfort to me. This is almost exactly the same conversation that I had with my own grandmother. I know she is in Heaven now and very happy. I still miss her terribly though.
The good news is that I have so many memories of her and my Granddaddy and they were excellent examples of how to live your life for Christ.

Friday, August 5, 2011


The following excerpts are from a blog post that really spoke to me:

Everywhere you go, people want to talk about your children. Why you shouldn’t have had them, how you could have prevented them, and why they would never do what you have done. They want to make sure you know that you won’t be smiling anymore when they are teenagers. All this at the grocery store, in line, while your children listen.

Motherhood is not a hobby, it is a calling. You do not collect children because you find them cuter than stamps. It is not something to do if you can squeeze the time in. It is what God gave you time for.

Right now, Maverick is our baby. We're not sure if he will be our last one or not. I think we will need guidance from God on this one. We just love children and feel so blessed that God has entrusted us to care for these little boys. What a great gift.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

My little Pirates

Today was Pirate day at the boys' camp. Chandler came home on Tuesday and was so excited to dress like a pirate for today. Luckily, Derek had been a pirate last Halloween so, we had somethings to make these outfits with. The shirt for Derek was more of a one-piece outfit for Chandler, but it still worked out and he had fun. Arrgh!

Monday, August 1, 2011

baby? Brighton

Brighton is no longer my "baby" but I still like to call him "Baby Brighton". He is just so sweet. He is still very much loves to cuddle and asks to sit in my lap so many times during the day that I loose count. Today Chandler and Brighton have started a one-week camp at the preschool that will certainly have Brighton ready for preschool when it officially starts in about one month. Although Brighton is only two, he sometimes seems much older.
He is definitely a funny guy and loves to be silly. He loves to dance and will spin around in circles until he falls down laughing. He tries so much to keep up with Chandler that I think he's already surpassed his bigger brother is some areas. As our "Fall" baby, I struggle with all the things Brighton gets left out of because he's not "old enough" He's so excited to start preschool this fall. I think he would have done fine last year too. Chandler goes to a program called AWANA at another local church and Brighton will be left out again since he's not "3" by the cut-off-date. I know there has to be a cut-off at some point, but I still hurt for him that he's left out. Luckily God has heard my prayers about this and some have been answered! God is GOOD!
When I went to sign up Chandler for AWANA I was so happy and surprised to see that for this year only they are trying out a special program for kids that barely miss the cut-off. There are limited number of spots, and I got Brighton in! He will do a modified version of what Chandler does (memorizing Bible verses) but still get to participate in all the fun. When Brighton woke up this morning and I told him that he gets to go to AWANA this fall I wish you could have seen his face. He had the biggest smile and looked so happy, then he gave me the biggest hug while saying, "I love you, mommy!". It just melts a mama's heart.

Another answered prayer came in when I was able to sign both (big) boys up for T-ball this October. Brighton once again misses the cut-off date, but I truly believe he'll do great in T-ball. I pleaded my case to the director of the facility and she was so understanding (having two boys herself) that she made an exception for Brighton and now he gets to play too! He was super excited about this too, which is definitely refreshing given the reaction of son # 1 about playing T-ball (who wanted to know if it was inside, because it's too hot outside, and he doesn't know how to play T-ball, and are they going to get to read stories, and this, and that.......).

Brighton, you are such a special little guy and I love you so much. Always stay as sweet as you are right now!