I will write more I swear – we have been crazy crazy busy! My sister is home for break and took some fantastic pictures for us and I wanted to share one really quick. Love to all seven of my devoted readers *wink* and I will do my best to catch up on my backlog of events and happenings and Matt’s recovery!
Moments in time…
It’s been a busy fall for our little family. It usually is. And we are only getting started! I wanted to gab about a few recent events and share a few pictures and tidbits with you, all five of my loyal readers *wink wink* I will try to fill in the story lines a bit with each event as I can, but here are a smattering of pictures for you with a little description above just to tide you over!
Engagement Party, Fall Festival, Evan’s 4th Birthday, Picking Pumpkins, Fall Carnival, Christmas Tree Outing, Charleston, Halloween….
A major “happening” that has been on my agenda since May has been my little sister’s engagement and upcoming wedding! The date is set for May of next year and plans are in full swing. I am unofficially the wedding planner, but I’m really just trying to help my mom and sister with anything I can. My sister is in school out of state and I am honored beyond mortal comprehension that she has entrusted so many of her special details to us. I was astounded especially because she is so artsy and creative and from my experience, most girls have every detail of their wedding day planed out before they even meet their Prince Charming! However, by releasing control I think she has released major sources of (what could potentially be) distraction and stress. Both things come with planning weddings, and I cannot fathom doing so while in school and out of state! I planned every aspect of mine, handled every detail and was super organized. And now – I get to do it again! Wheee!
Her and her fiance were honored at an Engagement Soiree the first weekend of October and I must say it was the most fun I have had at big ‘ol shindig of that caliber in a long time. We had the pleasure of hosting a couple of her bridesmaids at our home as well. One whom I have known since she and my sister were little girls and one whom I just met about three years ago, both whom I adore! They were helpful with the little ones and
The menu was perfect, the ballroom decor and floral arrangements were unique and perfect, the band was amazing. During one of my few moments alone with the bride-to-be, we were dancing together, palm to palm (we have a hand thing…it’s like we pass our secret sister juju back and forth). And in that specific moment I saw her as a woman. Not as a little girl or a teenager or a young lady. A woman. We have always played many roles in one another’s lives. Everything from manicurists, stylists, confidants, road trip amigos, tweezing specialists, therapists and every odd occupation in between. We have been those things for each other. But with her pale moonbeam hair, intricately twisted and pinned up and shining in the lighting, and her perfectly applied bridal makeup and the fairy-tale ballerina-esque, pearl encrusted and tulle party frock she was wearing ~ she was not just my little sister, she was not just the girl I grew up with, she was a woman. A bride. And I am so so elated to be part of her life and her and Calen’s celebrations.
Below: My sister and her fiance, getting jiggy
Below: My handsome little guys on our annual pumpkin search
Below: My two boys (on the right) and my twin nephews on the evening of my big man’s 4th birthday
Below: My littlest little man and I at the fall festival
Below: Little man helping daddy carry the big pumpkin to the car
Below: Evan approaching the great USS Yorktown at Patriot’s Point in Charleston, SC
Below: On the USS Yorktown
Below: On the top deck of the USS Yorktown
Direct quote from Evan: “Mama, we need one of these at home”
Below: My two rugrats in the lemur exhibit at the Charleston aquarium
Below: Our collection of hoodlums pre-trick-or-treating on Halloween
It’s a Disney crew: Captain Hook, Tinkerbell, Jake, Woody & Buzz!
Below: My littlest little checking out a few jack-o-lanters
Below: They looooove riding the train at the mall. It’s a special treat!
Below: Fall is so beautiful in our town
Below: On our way to the NC mountains to pre-select our Christmas tree
Below: Me on our tree expidition
Below: Daddy & big little man looking for a tree
Below: Mama and little little man taking in the scenery
Below: Another of my favorite streets in our town
Below: My big man & I amusing ourselves at the doctor’s office before his 4-year check up
Below: My handsome nephews, my boys and I on an outing to see the horses near their house
Below: For your amusement, this is be in the morning before I am fully caffeinated.
Hey y’all, remember me??
I deserve to be flogged for staying away for so long! I was keeping a running post about all of our September/October activities that I intended to post after all the Halloween shenanigans were wrapped up. However, I was delayed from that task by a sudden and scary event and continue to be behind in most areas of my life at the moment. My husband had emergency open heart surgery on November 3rd (he was transported from our local hospital to a specialist at a teaching hospital not too terribly far from home late night on November first). He made it through and we were sent home last Wednesday. He has several more weeks at home with mama Dot playing wife, mother and nurse for a bit. We are finding a temporary new rhythm as a family and I have lots of help with the kids and the meals – all things I am enormously thankful for.
I will work on wrapping up my Fall Hijinks post and try to do a more detailed account of our (ok, my hubby’s) crazy surgery scare.
For now I say Happy November, friends! I will be back on track as soon as I can, please forgive me!
A quick mountain getaway…
This past weekend we packed up the boys &headed for the hills to meet our dear dear friends at the perfect midway point for us both ~ beautiful Asheville, NC! It was a whirlwind quickie, but we made good use of our time, with our itinerary looking a bit like this:
Friday evening ~arrive, unload, late dinner on the patio at a cantina
Saturday morning ~ breakfast together, then menfolk watched the three little boys while the mamas went window shopping
Saturday afternoon ~ lunch together, then mamas took over with the kiddos while the daddies went to golf!
Saturday evening ~ another precious couple met us all at the hotel with their stunning daughter who was to be in charge of the kiddos that evening while we got fancy and went out
Sunday ~ packing, breakfast, quick stroll downtown and departure….
We must definitely do it again sometime! Here are a few moments from our adventure:
The boys riding the piggie statues
Aunt Amy, Adison & Evan
All five guys checking out the “firetruck house”
Adison & Evan and “the cool old fashioned truck”
(L to R) Amy & Grey, me & Matt, Julie & Paul
My honey bunny and me
Well, folks. I hit it. 150, I mean. This past Wednesday morning. Again, Mrs. Chatterbox is at a loss for words to properly express my elation/joy/hysteria/pride. I will revisit my starting stats from June 1, 2012 and provide my measurements from today, September 7, 2012:
June 1, 2011 starting weight: 246.8
September 5, 2012 goal weight: 150.2
96.8 pounds lost!
Bust: 50 / 37 13 inch difference
Waist: 45 / 31 14 inch difference
Abdomen: 54 / 39.5 14.5 inch difference
Hips: 54 / 40 15 inch difference
Upper Arm: 17 / 12 5 inch difference
I will post a picture from the beach last week (not perfect, but I’ll try to get a new one taken ASAP!) and one of my first “before” shots. I asked my consultant about attacking three more pounds to make it a nice even ~one hundred~. So I might do that. It’s on like Donkey Kong! Those three would be just for me.
It’s late – I will most likely fluff up this post a couple days down the road. Just HAD to share! Whooooopie!
August Adventures: Part II
Just in the last couple weeks we have celebrated my littlest man’s second birthday and had an extended beach extravaganza with Auntie & Daddy! What fun it has all been. I am oddly still surprised at how rapidly time slips away from me, from us all. When I was (a wee bit) younger and in school myself, I thought time went pretty fast and was sure it would slow down once I graduated and settled into a post-student life. I guess that happened for a while, but then my kids came along and zoooooooooooom – it is going even faster! How is that even possible? I look at my first son’s birth date pictures and swear it was just the other week ~ he’ll be four in October! It is truly wild!
We have had a lovely lovely summer with lots of fun activities, play dates with friends, and some wonderful family time. I love summer and always have. The lull in school work and busy busy schedules is a welcome shift in our house. My parents loved having us home, which I think affected our emotions towards the weeks upon weeks of what could have been utter and total boredom or being sent off to camp for the duration like so many of my friends were. Sure, we went to summer camp when we were old enough and expressed the desire to, but it was just a couple weeks. Our parents loved to travel with us, they wanted our input on possible destinations, we spent the days at home with my mother playing, crafting, toodling around the house or around town. We would end the majority of our summer days at the pool, arriving in the late afternoon after the hoard of teenagers departed and would swim to our hearts content until daddy joined us after he got off work and we would dine poolside together.
The way I experienced summer as a child has led me to adore the lull myself, as a mother. I might eat my words in a few summers, or declare myself mentally unstable for thinking this, but man I have loved it. We did not change our wake/nap/sleep schedule at all – that kind of deviation is not worth the hassle for our little family. But we found a new routine. A softer one with more special outings, more pajama mornings, more afternoon treats…and it was a little slice of heaven.
Preschool starts next week for us and we have a lazy Labor Day weekend and a full extra day with daddy home to enjoy it and prepare for the week’s full schedule leading up to the first day of class. We meet teachers, I have haircuts lined up for both boys, and I have to finalize the addressing of my little sister’s engagement party invites (that’s a whole different blog post right there!!)
Here are a few snippets of our final days of summer in the Carolinas. Happy Labor Day, y’all!
Full on lapse!
I knowingly and consciously chose to step off my wagon Wednesday night for an impromptu girls’ night, but then I let the wagon back up and run over me a few more times for good measure…
Well, after a series of delicious but terrible food choices between last Wednesday and Sunday, I am up three pounds to see 157 on the scale this morning (dammit!). I have to share my failures and well as my successes, right?
I was truly surprised that that much weight can add on so quickly, when I work my tush of to have a one pound loss per week. I am less than 10 pounds from my goal and I just added three weeks to my process, but I damn well learned better and will work even harder to get where I want to be. I didn’t splurge, I had a full on lapse. My mom has a saying that I’m sure is something most women have heard before, “A moment on the lips, forever on the hips”. SO TRUE! Oy.
So ~ happy Wednesday y’all! Keep your goals in sight and make good choices to get yourself there!
Here is just a bit of what we have been up to this month so far ~
tons of playground time
a little road trip to a super charming mountain hideaway
visits to the gorgeous gardens nearby
my littlest man’s second birthday!
and gymnastics camp for my big boy
beach time is coming soon – I’ll post about that after we return
Quick & Easy Summer Breakfast
I ran across a recipe similar to this just yesterday and had to give it a try immediately. I am a big breakfast fan and this easy little something is filling, good for you and deeee-licious!
Here is my version:
1/2 cup Rolled Oats
2/3 cup Silk soy milk (light) (or almond milk, or vanilla flavored organic milk…)
1/2 cup vanilla yogurt (or greek, or non-fat…)
a few sprinkles of Cinnamon Sugar mixture (or cinnamon, or brown sugar…)
Strawberries (or raspberries, blueberries, sliced banana, or honey…)
*UPDATE from 8.1.12*
1/2 scoop Vanilla protein powder (scoop comes in container)
You can truly make this recipe your own!
I used one of my boys’ Thermos brand cold/hot food storage containers, but I think any air tight container would be fine.
Add 1/2 cup of oats, 2/3 cup of silk, 1/2 cup of vanilla yogurt, 1/2 scoop of vanilla protein powder and a few dashes of cinnamon sugar and stir thoroughly. Put your container of oatmeal soy milk mixture in the refrigerator overnight. Yes, refrigerate it! Sounds weird, but please give it a try! When breakfast rolls around, pull it out of the fridge, add a few more dashes of cinnamon sugar and stir well. Throw your fruit on top and dig in! Cool, healthy and really tasty. This is coming from a girl who has never ever been a fan of oatmeal. Ever. I had it this morning and prepped my breakfast for tomorrow just a few minutes ago!
Update from 8.1.12 ~ I bought a large tub of vanilla protein powder at Target the other day and experimented with it, finding that a whole scoop made my oatmeal a bit too thick for my liking, but half a scoop was just perfect – amping up the vanilla flavor and giving me a smidge more protein to keep me full through the morning.
My First Spin Class
I attended my very first ever spinning class this morning with my friend, Meredith. I was warned ahead of time about the impending sore-bum, and when I saw Meredith bust out her inhaler and lay it with her sweat towel I had a brief (panick-y) inner monologue, but grabbed mine as well and propped it where I had seen her put hers. She’s a regular so I had personal assistance doing all of the pre-adjustments to the seat and pedals. I stretched a little and hoisted my bum as ungracefully as was possible onto my perch (those seats are high!!). We hung out in the back of the room, so I had a view of the instructor and my fellow classmates. The music started and I readied my little ears to absorb the directions and held on tight and off we went (or did not go as the bikes are stationery….).
My goals for this exercise were A) don’t fall off the bike B) don’t turn into a crying, asthmatic puddle and C) DON’T STOP PEDDLING no matter how slow I am going. I can truly say I enjoyed the music, I can truly say I was glad to have Meredith there for the “Oy Vey, this is HARD” looks I gave her. I had a woman in a red shirt and long ponytail in front of me/slightly to the right who was … I will say extremely enthusiastic and energetic. She was the one I watched (as well as the instructor) to see how fast I could be going?? But I swear if these bikes had had actual wheels and if hers had hit the ground, she would have sped off like the silver Delorean from Back to the Future, hit 88 miles per hour and been in another decade before the next beat of the song! I did my best not to be a wuss about it, I stood, I (kind of) sprinted, I kept steady paces and proudly, I made it through the class.
Holy spandex cycling shorts, y’all – that is a workout! Praise the Lord I did not melt off the spin bike and puddle on the floor. I will say that my thighs are killing me already, and to get all specific and technical – the bones and muscles directly on either side of “ladytown” are obscenely sore, which is a weird weird feeling. But overall, I think I might just add this to my gym class repertoire! I wasn’t exactly in love while doing it, but it went by quickly and the feeling afterwords is total elation and a true “holy cow, I did it” feeling. Sorry to say, though, that I was in no condition to mow the back yard when I got home (apologies to my husband).
So, go, my little spinners! Burn those calories, work those muscles and go forth with (somehow) renewed energy.
This is what I felt like doing immediately post-spinning: