Monday, August 22, 2011

Graham Update (overdue!!!)

I seemed to have missed the time for a 15 month update on our little lets count this post as a 16 month one!

This little dude has changed tremendously over the past 3 months. He is now running more, falling less, and can climb like its nobody's business! He loves to be loose and outside; dig in the sand; climb up the slide; and run around with toys hanging out of his mouth.

Graham is our best "eater" and eats as much (literally) as Griffin. We took our time getting rid of bottles but once we settled here in Augusta they disappeared quickly! Now Graham only wants to use Griffin's "Cars" cups and pitches major fits when he sees Griffin with one.

I am mourning the loss of the morning nap, which has suddenly vanished over the past few weeks. That was my time to take a shower and get a project done. Now I just stink and can't accomplish anything!! Thankfully he does take a good 2-3 hour afternoon nap and still goes to bed by 7:00.

Here he is with a cigar. (it does still have the wrapper on it!) Graham is super busy and is always pulling things out of drawers. In fact, I think his favorite pastime is merely emptying drawers. Not playing with what he finds, just throwing it over his shoulder! When we moved in, I had Brent put cabinet locks on only a few cabinets -- but I now want them all locked! I get so tired of picking up tupperware, lunch boxes, glass pyrex, etc...

speaking of emptying cabinets...

Graham is going to "school" one morning a week now. Here he is on his first day. He goes from 9-1 and even eats lunch there. Yeah for mommy! Graham has come leaps and bounds in terms of his separation anxiety. He cries when I leave him but they say he is over it in a few minutes...and he's normally playing happily when I come to get him.

Graham is a very happy and laid back little guy. He does seem to have a temper but I'm still holding out hope that it goes away once he can communicate! But for now, if I can't figure out what he is pointing at or wanting, he runs around screaming and pitching major fits! He absolutely loves Avery and Griffin. They always make him laugh. He is drawn a little more toward Griff - I think he likes the rough house mentality of his big brother! Graham loves to cuddle when he wakes up and when he's getting tired. His all time favorite "lovey" is my hair - he holds onto a handful of it and rubs it between his fingers when he's tired or being rocked.

and when i'm unavailable, he rubs his own hair!

The kids love whipped cream and strawberries, thanks to Big Daddy. Last time I made Avery and Griffin some, Graham had a fit because he wanted some...and once he actually had a bite, he was in heaven!

Graham, you keep us hopping...laughing...frustrated...chasing...smiling...tickling... and on our toes. We love you!

Thursday, August 18, 2011


We are continuing to settle into life and establish our new routines as the school year has begun.

Avery has had a harder time than I expected adjusting to kindergarten - she doesn't like "going everyday" - I think she is afraid she is going to miss out on something that the boys and I do. She also says that she " doesn't like to just sit so much." And I think she is getting tired quicker - she's done fine Monday-Wednesday both weeks but melts down by Thursdays! Her teachers are wonderful and keep her busy and she loves it once she's there. Griffin is a little lost on the days Sissy is at school. I've tried to keep him busy and give him a little extra TLC and encourage him to learn to play by himself! Griffin is enjoying school. He goes M/W/F. He gets to go out on the playground twice a day which is great for him....but he also has 15 minutes of "quiet reading time" - sitting alone and quiet on a towel while looking at books - in his words: "its just boring. and I just can't be quiet." : ) Graham goes one morning a week. For my sake more than his! It just guarantees that I will have a few hours to make appts, get a haircut, or accomplish something!!

Avery started ballet this week at Columbia County Ballet. Its a little different than she is used to. They only do ballet at the studio and instead of a recital, they do a performance of the Lion. the Witch, and the Wardrobe. We'll see how it goes!

Avery has been dying to take gymnastics for over a year now and we promised her that once we moved, we would sign her up. They gym where she is going offers a "mighty mights" class for Griffins age that meets the same time as Avery's we are giving it a whirl. Griff wasn't too thrilled with his first class so hopefully it will get better! Avery on the other hand, loved her class!

During the last 3 weeks, I have spent more time "running errands" than I have in the last 12 months!! I am finally feeling caught up and that I have my feet under me again! I've also been busy spending Brent's hard earned money - we ordered furniture and bedding/curtains for Griffin's room; bedding for Avery; and a new kitchen table for mommy! I am excited! I'm anxious to meet some fellow moms and make some friends - all day with just me and kids gets a little old!! I am joining a Biblestudy thru Christian Medical Dental Association next week so hope to meet some women thru that. (thats the group that I met Brent through.)

Brent is enjoying work and getting into his groove there. He is a little antsy and anxious to be busy but building a practice will take some time! His spare time is spent keeping our big yard in pristine condition. Lots of mowing, spraying weeds, and picking up pine cones/sticks from the grass.

Avery and Griffin have been spending lots of time on their bikes and getting good at riding. Griffin definitely needs a big boy bike - he rides Avery's when she's not around!

This is what my Tuesday/Thursday mornings look like while Avery is in school!

We are enjoying being closer to Atlanta and family. I've made it home once with the kids and we are headed to the cabin this weekend. It is nice!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Haley's Sip and See

Dawn and Kay hosted a "Sip and See" for Haley and baby Clayton a few weeks ago. Brent was having his first call day/night here in Augusta so I took the kids to mom/mikes for the weekend. Mike and Joel kept the boys so that Avery and I could go to the party for Haley.

I enjoyed getting to see the Hereths new house and catching up with cousins I haven't spent much time with recently. Avery had a blast playing with Brooke and BrieAnna the whole time.

this is how both avery and griffin eat raspberries!

Hailes, Dawn with Clayton, and Brittany


Brooke's turn with baby!

Monday, August 8, 2011

First Day of School

Its hard to believe that summer is over and school is here! Unlike a lot of moms, I am thrilled for school to start! Not that I don't love my children dearly...but the last few weeks here in Augusta have been LONG and HOT! Plus, the kids have been super anxious to have friends to play with and are tired of running errands with mommy!

Avery started kindergarten today. That does make me a little sad - its weird to think that most of our play dates and outings will not include her. I am thankful that she is only going 1/2 day though. We'll still have afternoons together. She has been so excited to start school, meet friends, learn to read, etc. She woke me up at 3 AM this morning - she initially said she was scared but when I took her down to her room, she smiled and started asking me questions about school. I think she was just awake and excited!

My girly girl picked out her own dress, hair bow, and necklace for her big day!

Griffin wasn't as excited about school but he was still excited. Griff is going 3 mornings a week, from 9-1. When I picked him up today and asked him about his first day of school, he told me about lunch and playing in the gym - what a boy!!

he insisted on a "silly shot!"

My BIG boy!

Mommy and Graham enjoyed a morning of errand running! Much easier with just 1 child in tow! Mommy is looking forward to Wednesday morning when Graham goes to "school" - I might see a Starbucks and a pedicure in my near future!

Sunday, August 7, 2011


So now that we are getting settled and I'm finding my groove again, I've started cooking a larger variety - not just the staple (easy/fast) recipes that we lived off of the last several months we were in Durham. This past week I stumbled on 2 oldies - 1 of which I started cooking way back when we still lived in Birmingham! - and we tried one new recipe. So here you go:

Chicken Enchiladas
3 cups enchilada sauce
2 cups shredded cooked chicken (i use 1 rotisserie)
1/2 cup sliced green onions
3/4 cup grated cheddar
3/4 cup grated Monterrey jack
1/4 cup sour cream
1 4oz can diced green chiles
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
salt/pepper to taste

Heat oven to 350. Mix chicken, green onions, 1/2 cup cheddar, 1/2 cup Monterrey jack, sour cream, chiles, cilantro, and 1/2 cup enchilada sauce. Season with salt/pepper.

Spread 1/2 cup enchilada sauce in bottom of a 9 x 13 pan. Fill each tortilla with chicken mixture, roll up, and place seam side down in pan. Pour remaining enchilada sauce on top. Top with remaining cheeses. Bake until bubbling, about 15-20 minutes.

Oven Fried Chicken Cutlets
1/3 cup melted butter
1 TBSP Dijon mustard
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 "tube" of butter round cracker crumbs (AKA Ritz!)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
4 chicken cutlets

Stir first 5 ingredients together in shallow bowl. Combine cracker crumbs and cheese in a second shallow bowl. Dip chicken in butter mixture and then dredge in cracker mixture. Place on a foil lined baking sheet. Bake at 400 for 25-30 minutes.

*the Dijon adds a great "twist" on the standard oven fried chicken recipes*

Edamame and Sweet Corn Succotash
2 tsp olive oil
3 green onions, sliced; white and green parts separated
1 cup corn kernels (2 ears corn)
1 cup shelled frozen edamame
1/2 cup chopped red pepper
2 tsp marjoram or oregano
salt/pepper to taste
1/2 cup veg. broth (i used chicken because that's what I had and it was great!)
1/2 tsp cornstarch
2 tsp melted butter

Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add white part of green onion and cook until starting to brown (about 1 minute). Stir in corn, edamame, red pepper, and spices. Cook, stirring often, until veggies are tender crisp (about 4-5 minutes). Stir together broth and corn starch. Add it to corn mixture along with remaining green onions. Cook until thickened and bubbly and liquid almost evaporates. Remove from heat and mix in butter until melted.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Fancy Nancy

Brent's mom gave Avery this Fancy Nancy Tea Party book a few years ago...we read it regularly and Avery studies its pages frequently.

For several days now she has talked about wanting to have a tea party. I thought that I'd let her plan one for the 2 of us to have during the boys' naps today - but she insisted on having more people! Since we don't know a soul here in Augusta, I was able to convince her that its ok to invite boys! (AKA Daddy and Griffin!). So she planned a tea party for our dinner. She decorated the table; placed jewel stickers on plastic silverware and then wrapped it in a napkin; place doilies on our plates; and she even planned our menu!

Very proud of all her ideas and planning

All of the food ideas were things Avery read in her book and just HAD to do - "fancy" toothpicks with fruit; strawberries and creme; and cupcakes. And yes, she requested candles and that we sing " Happy Tea Party!"

fruit kabobs

Avery cut out butterflies and colored them and put them on our plates. But then insisted that we place a doilie over it!

She wanted to decorate the table with all of her lovies.

So our first Fancy Nancy tea party was a success! I'm sure there will be more in our future...