Thursday, January 13, 2011

Happy 2nd Birthday Laney!

This little girl is so full of personality and spunk. She is learning to talk and tell us what she thinks about things. She calls us "Daddy" "Mama-y" "A-E" and "Tay-tay". We call her our parrot because she will copy anything we say and Avery and Tatum have learned to use that skill to drive each other crazy. She is very independent and a little stubborn (okay, alot stubborn, but this is her birthday so I'm trying to be positive), she is a clown, especially when she looks up at you with her "mean eyes" then you see the little twinkle in her eyes as she breaks into a grin because she's just messing with you. Little mess.
She has the sweetest kisses in the world. She sometimes licks you in all her excitement about giving kisses. She is still in her crib because she screamed for two nights straight when we tried to let her sleep without rails. So she and Tatum share a room now. She sings "Twinkle twinkle little star" at the top of her lungs at night until she falls asleep. Then she wakes up early in the morning and starts waking up the house by singing it again.
She wants nothing to do with the potty... won't even go near it... but does like to watch from a distance when me and her sissies sit on it. Her hair makes me happy on a daily basis. It's not as curly as it used to be, but it's still so pretty. She wears a size 9 shoe now, which is about normal for a 3-4 year old (Tatum wears a 9.5). She wears size 3T clothes. Our pediatrician says she is going to outgrow her sisters and be the biggest of the three girls when they hit their teens.
She is crazy about her sisters. She loves to be near them and watch what they do and try to imitate them. Beans and rice is her favorite food of all time. When we go eat Mexican food, which is pretty much our staple, we get Laney a plate of rice and beans and watch her go. She usually eats about 3 plates of it. She also gets her own bowl of salsa, even if it is hot, she will dip those chips and eat it right up.
She doesn't like to get her picture taken. The smile above is only because she had just eaten her chocolate cookie cake. She loves playing with baby dolls. She always has a baby in each arm. For Christmas, she got a little high chair with bottles, bib, cups, etc. It was precious watching her feed her baby in that high chair and take care of all her little needs. That "mama instinct" God gives little girls is amazing. I hope this means she will like her baby brother.
Laney Hope is her name, but we usually call her "laney-lu", lu-lu", "hope", "lu-lee" or "lane."
I am so thankful for her. She is a blessing to our family and we all adore her. I love you Laney!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Christmas 2010

We had such a fun and busy Christmas break. Here are a few of the highlights. We went to San Antonio two different times, the first time for my families' Christmas, and the second time to welcome Martin & Dominique to Texas! Martin moved last week and Dominique will be moving here permanently when she finishes school this summer. It is going to be so fun to get to see them whenever we go to SA for a visit! The girls love their Uncle Martin & Aunt Nikki! We also had alot of fun hanging out with Brian's family, especially our new nephew, Matthew Ray! We especially enjoyed just being together as a family and spending lots of time just playing and hanging out with each other.

Playing at the park in SA

Milking the cow at the SA Children's Museum

They all loved getting a turn to be the captain of the airplane. Here's Captain Avery.

Captain Laney

Papa & Nana with the girls on the Riverwalk

My school friends had a playdate at my parents house, which was so much fun! These are the girls that I grew up with and went to school with from Kindergarten -12th grade. So they are pretty much like family. Pretty crazy all the kids we had running around, but it was fun to see all my girls and all their sweet kids. Some of the babies I hadn't met at all yet, so it was very special getting to meet all the little ones and catch up with my buddies.

Driving back home from SA, we turned around to find Laney looking like this:
Our first nephew, Matthew Ray, was born on Dec. 18. Here's Brandon (Brian's youngest brother) and his wife Adriana, with their sweet Christmas present from God. Matthew is beautiful and healthy and we are so excited to have him join the family. He and our son will be about 3 months apart, so we're hoping these cousins will be best buddies as the grow up.

Here's Laney pushing cousin Tara in the doll stroller. These two are about 4 months apart and are already forming a sweet friendship.

Uncle Brent & Aunt Jenn gave the girls dress-ups for Christmas, so here is princess Laney, Doctor Avery and ZooKeeper Tatum. They loved themselves in these fun costumes!

Avery got to be a sheep in our Christmas Eve service at church. She did a great job, and so did the rest of the nativity crew. Here's our little sheep practicing before the service started.

We were so proud of this little lamb!

After the service, there was hot chocolate in the lobby, so we all played and talked with friends while we drank (and spilled) hot chocolate.

Here's GiGi and Tatum after the service

Nana & Papa drove to Houston on Christmas Day to spend the day with us. It was so special to have them at our house, and the girls loved showing them all their new presents.
The biggest present this year was a new trampoline! Brian put it up the day before and covered all the backyard windows with blankets so the girls couldn't see outside. They didn't really question why there were blankets on the windows, which we were very suprised about. But the reactions were so cute and funny when they looked behind the blankets and saw the trampoline outside on Christmas morning. Even though it was cold, we got bundled up and tried it out. Even Nana got in on the action. She actually helped Laney learn how to jump on it, which was so cute!

Laney moved out of her room into Tatum's room. Avery decided she wanted to move into the guest room, so for now, she has her own room, and Tatum & Laney are sharing a room. Laney was not crazy about sleeping without rails, so we decided to move the crib with her. She is much happier being caged in. So Brian worked on baby boy's room over the break and here's a glimpse of his work. More pics to come...

This was at Avery's Girl Scouts meeting over the break. She is doing Daisy scouts now, which has been really fun for her the past few months. They rented a snow machine, which they loved! Since we rarely see real snow, they couldn't tell the difference. They loved throwing snow balls at their baby brother, which was not so much fun for me.

So Martin & Dominique have a Great Dane named Tex, which the girls are now in love with. He really is such a good dog. Very well-behaved and sweet.
Tatum and Tex were about the same height, when he has his head up.

Avery loving on Tex and Aunt Nikki

My two sweet big brothers and I outside Mi Tierra at the San Antonio market. Seriously some of the best Mexican food in the world. YUM!

Morgan's Wonderland is an amazing new park in San Antonio, built especially for kids with special needs, but open to the public. My brother, Matthew and his girlfriend, Tracie, helped build the park over the past couple years and it is amazing. For kids in wheelchairs or with other handicaps, who have never gotten to swing or see-saw or feel "normal", this is a place where they can do all that and more! Here's Avery in the sensory village, where she got a butterfly to land on her shoulder.

Aren't these the cutest weather reporters you ever saw?

Here we are aboard the Wonderland Express train. Tatum is sitting with Dominique's parents, who drove down from Michigan to help them move to Texas. Dee & Duane were so sweet to the girls and we really enjoyed getting to know them better. My brother, Matthew and his girlfriend Tracie and Avery, and my mom & I with Laney.

Here's Tatum getting to hold our new little Matthew in her lap!

Tatum needed to try out her new "big girl" fishing pole and they both needed to try out their new bait, so here they are fishing at Copper Lakes. No bites, but Brian said Tatum did a good job casting and they had fun wearing their new fishing shirts and hats he gave them.

We feel so blessed and grateful to have family so close and for our kids to have so many opportunities to be loved on by family and friends!