Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Six

Dear Harper,

You are six today! It is hard to believe it's been this many years since you made your surprise and dramatic entrance into the world. I will never forget the joy that filled my heart in that first glimpse I got of you in that operating room. And you have brought us joy every single day since.

When I think about you at this age there are many things I want to hold on to forever. I wish I could press the pause button and soak it all in so I don't forget you at this stage in your childhood. You are one of the kindest people I know. You are soft spoken and quiet but also have a wild side around those that you know well and you have the best belly laugh. You are tender hearted and compassionate. You are a little mother hen and take the best care of your baby sister. You have a green thumb and love planting flowers and plants and always remember to water them. You are such a girly girl and would wear a frilly dress every day if you could, but you also love to run around barefoot and get dirty outside. You appreciate the beauty in everything around you. You love anything and everything "fancy." You spend hours having tea parties in your room and spreading out doilies everywhere for your guests. You love to design gowns in your sketchbook and are a talented little artist. You are very observant for a six year old and always notice people's jewelry and clothes and shoes. Yet while you love and appreciate all things fancy, you are also content with what you have and are satisfied by the simple things in life. I hope this never changes.

Harpie Harp, we sure do love you to a million little pieces. Our family would not be the same without you, there is no doubt about that. I am so thankful for every day that God gives me with you and that I have the privilege of being your mama.

Love you BIG, baby girl!

Mommy





Friday, March 10, 2017

12 Months

I just realized I never posted Hadley's final monthly post. It was already finished, but still sitting in my drafts. So I'm posting it now and you can just pretend we are back in time 4 months ago. So much has already changed since I wrote this. 😭


Well, we made it. Our final monthly post! It has been a lot more challenging this time around to keep up but I'm so glad I did. I've already forgotten so much of the first few months and I love that I can look back on here and have a snapshot of our firecracker at each milestone.

***

Hadley turned 12 months on November 3.



She weighed 23 lbs., 2 oz. and was 29 inches tall.

She wears size 18 and 24 month clothes, size 4 shoes, and size 4 diapers.

So, Hadley, what have you been up to this month?

You took your first steps 3 days after you turned 11 months and by the end of the month you were getting braver and walking 5 or 6 steps by yourself. At 12 months you still mostly crawl but will stand up and take a few steps in between. You also love to walk back and forth between people and give them huge hugs and smiles.




You are weaned down to just 2 nursing sessions a day. One in the morning and one in the evening. You were NOT happy about giving up the extras (especially in the middle of the night) and you still refuse to drink cow's milk in any shape or form. I've tried it cold, hot, chocolate, blended with banana, 1%, 2%, whole, you name it. You spit it out and refuse to take any more drinks. Sigh. But you love water and the occasional sippy cup of juice and you are a pretty big eater (including yogurt and cheese), so I am working on getting you all the way weaned. Momma has loved the bonding time with you but I am ready to have my body back (and hopefully better sleep for both of us!!).




You can definitely throw down on some food. I have no idea where you get that from - ha. You love spaghetti, cheese, carrots, taco soup, peaches, bananas, and a ton more. But you are also finicky at times and if you are overly tired, you get mad and chunk all your food on the floor.



Sleep? Ha. Haha. Ha. Ha. You had us fooled, little lady. You were the easiest infant until around 4 or 5 months when you got mobile. You used to sleep GREAT and I would even have to wake you up to feed you so my boobs wouldn't explode. And then, just like that, you decided you were over sleep. Your big sibs weren't (aren't) great sleepers either but you take the cake. You fall asleep pretty easily at night but you just don't stay asleep. You nap for 20 or 30 minutes tops and you have been cutting your naps down to just once a day the last couple of weeks. I'm terrible at the cry-it-out method but we tried it last week. It was a train wreck. You screamed and cried until you were gagging and finally after TWO HOURS I gave in. You just want to snuggle and stop crying immediately when I pick you up. But I am so so so tired. And so are you. I need you to figure this whole thing out soon, baby girl.

Which also brings us to your first ER visit. Yikes. You climbed over me in the middle of the night and fell on your face on our hardwood floors. It was awful. I still feel sick to my stomach just thinking about the sound of it. I finally got you calmed down and everything seemed like it was ok and then you threw up everywhere. So I packed you up and took you in to make sure you didn't have a concussion. Thankfully you were fine, but it left a huge shiner for a couple of weeks. Nothing like ringing in your 1st birthday with a black eye...







And speaking of eyes, you also had your first case of pink eye. All 3 of you passed that around along with double ear infections for everybody, too. That's how we roll in this family, apparently.

is there something in my eye?

What else? At 12 months, you have 6 teeth. Anytime my phone rings your face lights up and you say "dadadadada!!" You like to wipe everything down and you also like to pretend to blow your nose. You love to unfold laundry and laugh about it. You like to get into things you know you're not supposed to and laugh about it. You have already figured out how to open doors and also how to get past the child locks on the kitchen and bathroom cabinets. You are full of expression and smile with your whole entire face -- I love the way you crinkle your nose. You are our sunshine girl and we have had such an amazing 12 months with you so far.















We love you BIG, baby girl. Happy 1st birthday!





Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Life (because I'm original)

Somehow it's a week into March...what the what???

It's been a busy couple of weeks for us. We closed on our house on Friday and are now renters until April 15. We took our final picture in front of our home on the last day it was officially ours.


I'm so glad we've done this over the years! I've posted them on here every year so I won't upload them all again, but here is the condensed version. A lot has changed over the last decade.


So, it's too bad that you weren't here to witness our family portrait session in person. Let me just say that you missed out on some quality entertainment. It involved a tripod with a timer and me trying to get everybody to look in the same direction at the unmanned camera all at the same time. Just go ahead and imagine how many pictures we had to take with 3 kids and a puppy. I couldn't resist saving a few of the outtakes.

Griffin and Hadley making out

Griffin, with all four feet off the ground, attacking her leash
Griffin, channeling Cujo...Hadley looking at me concerned...and Rick yelling at the dog to stop being psycho. If that doesn't say "sweet family portrait", I don't know what does. 😭

I'm sure going to miss this house but I also know that it's the people that make a home and not walls and a roof.  I'm thankful that we were able to sell our house so easily and to someone who I know will love it as much as we have. And now I will be quietly holding my breath until we move into our new house because it's my personality to worry about something going wrong and falling through and us living homeless on the streets. lol. I am definitely ready to have nothing up in the air.


We went to Jimmy Changas after signing everything at the title company and ordered a drink to celebrate. A giant margarita with a bottle of champagne in it? I mean, if you're going to twist my arm then I will force one down. ;) We talked about ditching the kids and our new house plans and running away to Vegas with our new funds.....but then we got back in the minivan and sat in car rider line instead because we are wild and crazy like that.

Not only did we sell our house on Friday, Harrison also lost his second tooth.



And Friday was also Go Texan Day.



AND, most important of all according to Harper, our backsplash, toilets, and sinks got installed. She declared it the best day ever. She is very invested in the progress and design of our new house. :)

****

What else?

Hadley Claire. She's kind of gotten the shaft here on my blog in terms of having her babyhood documented consistently. This girl is a mess! She is a feisty little one. She's into everything and loves to climb. She's very animated and smiles with her whole face and I just love it. But she is also very strong-headed and has recently become a little mean. The bigs have never been aggressive so this is new territory for me as a mama. She is going through a hitting phase. It's definitely not a playful hit either. When she gets frustrated at someone she glares, growls and then WHAM. The other day I grabbed her hand and firmly told her no...and she looked straight at me, scowled, and then headbutted me. 😲 I'm hoping this phase passes quickly!!


who, me?
she loves to make fishy lips
trying not to laugh at herself
like father, like daughter 
cheesing it up

park fun

checking out the turtles

****

And now here are a few other random pictures of our recent days:



Rick scored us free tickets to a Rockets game. We went with Ben and Stacie and thoroughly enjoyed a few kid-free hours with them. I couldn't really tell you who won the game because our tickets were on some special food-level seating area and we had all-you-can-eat access to tons of delicious free food. I'm usually a pretty good multi-tasker, but stuffing my face with food demands a higher level of focus and commitment...and if you're going to make me choose between basketball and gluttony, the food's gonna win every time. What can I say...

****

Rick's parents came by for a quick visit on their way home from Arkansas and look who Papaw finally won over:


At Christmas she was not going anywhere near that scary man with the booming voice. She crawled behind the ottoman and hid from him when he tried to talk to her. But we all knew it would only be a matter of time before she became Papaw's girl and this day was the day :)

****

I had a meeting with Harper's GT teacher last week and got to surprise her for lunch. It was Dr. Seuss's birthday and even though her school wasn't specifically celebrating, she wanted to dress for the occasion. She's a girl after my own heart.



****

Harrison was honored at the character assembly last week for.....

wait for it....

RESPONSIBILITY.

We all got a good laugh out of that one. That boy has about a million fabulous character traits, but responsibility is definitely not one of them. He himself was shocked when he found out and actually asked me if I thought maybe they got him mixed up with a different Harrison. HA!

#photobomber
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And an update wouldn't be complete without talking about our Griffin Girl. She is a ball of energy but is fiercely loyal to her babies. Harrison had the stomach flu a couple of weeks ago (all 5 of us did - YAY) and she didn't want to leave his side. 



And last but not least, this next picture doesn't even need a caption. Worth a thousand words, right here:




Thursday, February 2, 2017

Sold

It's been a whirlwind of a week. We had a showing on Thursday, an offer on Friday, we negotiated and accepted on Monday, and signed the papers on Tuesday! It is such a relief to have our house sold. Especially before it was even officially listed on the market. No more keeping it immaculately clean all the time (HAHAHAHAHA) or having to pack up everyone and the dog for showings. And the best part? The buyer is going to lease it back to us until our new house is done!!!! I am so, so thankful that things seem to be falling into place.

The cherry on top is that we sold it to a friend of a friend. When Harper's teacher learned that we were moving, she asked me to send her pictures because another teacher at their school has been looking to move in our area. She had been looking for a long time but hadn't found the perfect house for them until they came to see ours. She is a first grade teacher at our kids' school and has two of her own kids, a boy and a girl. It makes my heart happy knowing that they will love our home like we have. That probably sounds silly but it really does give me peace.

I'm going to miss this house. We've lived here for a decade. It was our first home and the place we welcomed each of our kiddos home to. We've watched the trees grow as we've watched our kids grow. They all took their first steps on its floors. We've enjoyed countless evenings playing in the backyard, listening to laughter and watching the sun set. I am looking forward to more space and new memories in our next home, but this little house will always be special to our family and hold a fond place in my heart.

I'm posting the pictures that our realtor had taken because when I look back I want to know that it was perfectly clean for at least part of one day of the 10 years we lived here :)





















Harrison told me he went up to the teacher yesterday and gave her a big hug and asked her if he can come over and visit from time to time. :) He is so excited about our new house but has also shed a few tears about the idea of change and having to leave our old house behind. The bigs are young but I hope they do end up with some memories in this home.



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