Thursday, December 26, 2013

Christmas 2013

We've somewhat started a new Christmas tradition with staying home on Christmas Eve & waking up in our own beds on Christmas morning.  As fun as it is to see everyone in Missouri, it has been nice to begin to make our own traditions in our new house- especially since the boys (Kaden) are so amped up about Christmas and opening presents.  

Christmas morning was wonderful.  I woke up before everyone else (internal alarm) and made cinnamon rolls.  Owen still hasn't gotten the whole concept of Christmas, so this was probably his highlight of the morning.  

We really didn't do "BIG" gifts this year. 
Kaden got a "rainbow in my room" light, which is actually really neat.  It projects a rainbow across the entire room that is fun to fall asleep to.  He also got quite a few art supplies (jars of paint & easel paper, paint brushes) and other art projects to work on while it's cold & windy outside. 

We're afraid that Owen is going to be a hard one for Christmas with his birthday being only two weeks prior AND with him having all of Kaden's toys to play with.  Regardless, we are trying.  Lucky for us, he does not care about opening presents.  
Seriously... it's been a week and he STILL has 1 present left under the tree.  Kaden has been dying for him to open it and asks him about it several times a day, but Owen simply says, "NO!" 

Daddy was probably the big winner this year.  He got a new Mizzou hoodie (for the Cotton Bowl) to go along with the tickets dad bought for us.  He also got more clothes & new shoes... AND a new Orvis fly fishing reel from his papa Dow.  Not to mention the iTunes & peanuts, peppermint bark and other smaller items.

Ben got me a Kindle paperwhite (was on the fence about an e-reader, but I absolutely LOVE being able to read in bed, in the dark!!)  I also got a warm North Face jacket to use for running outside on these brutally cold mornings.  A milk frother (for making lattes at home), a very generous gift card to Get Fit (running store)... AND a Texas State Parks pass, which enables me/us to get into Palo Duro Canyon (and every other state park) for FREE for the next 3 years.  Wait... maybe I was the big winner this year!

Sunday, December 22, 2013

December in Pictures

A compilation of pictures from this month so far...
 Kaden loving putting the ornaments on the Christmas tree.
 Burning energy at Cheer Texas!
 Kaden & Danni making tents.
 Owen earning his keep.  I finally got the bright idea to turn the vacuum ON while he plays.
 100,000 lights at the Amarillo Botanical Garden.
 My absolute favorite street for Christmas lights this year; this picture doesn't even come close to doing this neighborhood justice.
 A morning with daddy at Chuck-E-Cheese.
 Watching the presents pile up.
 This year Kaden is in TOT (Teams of Tomorrow) basketball at Sonlight Preschool.  Once a week, Ms. Buffie comes and works with the kids on basketball skills and following directions. 
 We really enjoyed watching this kids at their 1/2 time performance.  Kaden may not have enjoyed being in his Christmas (singing) program, but he sure got into this.  

 Dan, Heather & Danni
with Kaaren at the movie theatre watching "Frozen".

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Owen is TWO!

The days are long, but the years fly by.  We can't believer you're two.

Dr. Fletcher's report this time: you are 35" long (80th percentile), you weigh 25 pounds (20th percentile), and your head is 19.75", putting it in the 85th percentile. Your dad made sure I asked because he always talks about how BIG your head is.  :)

You are my more adventurous eater, usually trying things that Kaden & your dad won't come near.

We can tell when you are really enjoying your food as you still rub your hair while you're chewing/sucking on it.  Sometimes you involve both hands. 
Your daddy is slightly jealous of your hair, remarking how "cool" it is.  There's usually a spike to the front, filled with whatever you've eaten that day. 

Although you sleep many hours, you still aren't a heavy sleeper.  You toss and turn a lot through the night and sometimes wake up and find your way to our room. 

You are a clown!  You have an array of funny facial expressions and you do things to make people laugh (on purpose).  If I say, "Go to sleep, Owen," you close your eyes and pretend to snore.  
"de-de-de... DOooooough!" is a common thing said around the dinner table between you and Kaden.  We don't know what it means but someone always starts it and the other chimes in... and it gets progressively louder.  

You are developing a fairly extensive vocabulary and add several new words every day.  You are good at articulating and enunciating your words. 

We've started potty training you and you clap for yourself when you pee in the potty. 
I usually set you on the potty 1st thing in the morning when you're eating a banana and not fully awake. 
And you still love your soft blanket- specifically, the animal (tiger) wrap around towel.
You bring it to me in the mornings and say, "wrap" because you want it draped around your shoulders. 

You've gotten a lot more aggressive in the past year and don't let people push you around-- literally and figuratively.  If you want something of Kaden's, you go after it.  You also make him cry on a regular basis now, either by hitting, biting, pinching or yelling.  You are not a meek 2nd child. 

You enjoy bath time; I'm not sure you've ever turned down a bath.  You like to sit by the spout and catch water in your Shakespeare's cup.  

Several women around town have told me that you are quite the "ladies man" and I might have to agree. You like to cuddle, give shy smiles and you seem intuitive as to what ladies like.  For example, when you get in trouble and I take you to the corner, you throw your arms out and say, "HUG!"

"Funny" is a common phrase from your mouth.  
You also think bodily functions are hilarious and always have (and I am NOT the one who taught you this).  Every time you burp or toot, you announce it to everyone.  You sometimes even try to toot so you can announce it and laugh.  

"CupCAKES!" are a favorite dessert; you love them.  

Any time we are riding on the west side of town or any place where there is construction, you like to point out the "tractors!" and excavating equipment.  

You like animals and Schatzi, but you seem to have a certain fondness for "cats!" or "kitty-cats!"

Owen David, I cannot imagine a life without you enriching our lives every day. 
We love you!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Dallas... No AMARILLO Marathon

Back on JULY, Laura, Abby and I registered for the Dallas Marathon (see October's post)
We put in the time, built up to the big miles together, and mentally prepared... and then December arrived.  And suddenly the week before the race, Dallas was forecasted to have a big ice storm.  
"No big deal.  It's just going to be cold this year.  We'll figure out our layers."
So we kept watching the weather...

"There's NO WAY that they are going to cancel an event this big," I assured Abby.  "What are they going to do with all of the medals and the money already spent to put this on?  What about the entire year of planning and effort it took to get sponsors, volunteers, and support?  No way.... It's gonna suck, but we're GOING!"

And then came the rain... and ice.  Lots of ice... 
And then they shut down the Dallas-Fort Worth airport...
And then came the email.

Which brought on the slew of emotions: shock/disbelief, (tears), frustration, anger and acceptance (I went through this in a span of about 5 minutes).  When I called Abby, she was still in the tears phase.  This was going to be her first marathon and had invested more time, energy, planning, training than Laura and I.  She was devastated. 
I'm not great at consoling but asked, "What do you wanna do?... We can get drunk... Or we can still DO IT... We can't do both though.  Ha."  
I told her to think about it and she called me back after 30 minutes.
"Let's do it."
We threw the kids in my living room, turned on a movie, made a plan, we made a sign, (Julie went home and made bibs) and we got on Facebook to rally troops.
 Facebook really is an amazing tool when you're trying to reach out and find people.  
We knew there were people from the Amarillo area who had registered for this race (the 13.1 or the 26.2) and were bummed that they had worked so hard for months.  

Julie rallying everyone to get out of their warm cars.

On Paramount, around mile 7. 

 And then there were 3 (and a spectator).  Somewhere around mile 22... when I would have gladly hopped into someone's car, had they pulled close enough.
Kaaren, Ben & the boys, along with a few other awesome people who didn't mind standing in the freezing wind to cheer us across the finish line.
I have NEVER been so happy to be finished with something. 

 Abby, Lori and I at the finish.

 Kaden & mommy

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Thanksgiving in Missouri

We didn't actually plan on going to Missouri for Thanksgiving this year, but Ben also didn't realize that Texas A&M was playing Missouri in football on that weekend... and that my dad had a spare ticket for the game...
 Cuddling with Owen before leaving town.
 photos from the passenger seat
Kaden and Owen did AMAZING in the back seat of this trip.  We had minimal stops and arguments.  They both took a long nap and did a great job of entertaining themselves for the 12-hour trip to Warrenton.
 This may not look like much, but I was able to get Shanny's dressing recipe for Thanksgiving since I wasn't going to be able to eat her's in Amarillo.  Overall, I thought it turned out pretty good-- especially considering the fact I've never made dressing before.
 I always forget how many oak trees are in mom's yard.  Mom & Drew raked an enormous leaf pile in their front yard.  Seriously, it was the biggest leaf pile I've ever seen.  It was awesome! 

 Happy Thanksgiving!

 Owee parking himself in daddy's lap for the meal...
 ... while Kaden warmed himself by the fire afterward.

 Classic Owen.  He just couldn't get over the pies... and when Kyle walked away...

We made our way to Columbia and to Kyle's record shop, Hitt Records.

matching t-shirts from Aunt Kathy.

Owen got to stay at the hotel with grandma for the night.  They probably had a lot of fun playing and watching TV in their WARM room.  :)

 Lucky for Kaden, he was able to go to the game with us.

 Enjoying some cocoa.

 This game was the most crowded game I've ever seen!  Our tickets were split up so I thought Kaden and I might go sit on the hill.  As it turned out, there wasn't ANY room on the hill-- standing room only, so Kaden and I found a good spot near the railing for a while.

 panoramic view from dad's seats
 SEC East Champions!

(the best part of the long drive home... with someone else at the wheel)