Sunday, March 31, 2013

Madilyn, 3/12

A picture of Madi, once a month, for a year.
She is so full of opinions and thoughts lately. She narrates everything she does and lets you know how she feels, about everything. She has a goofy sense of humor and loves to make people laugh. She constantly wants to dance and play. This girl has so much energy!
{to see previous posts, go HERE}
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Weekend Fun

We had a pretty busy weekend full of family and fun. However, the fun didn't start on Saturday. Thursday we had a play date with Izzy at the Woodlands Waterway and the kids had a good time. Clayton came with us, so Holly, Clayton and I had a good time hanging out too while the kids played. I swear they have more fun every time we see each other. Then on Friday, we attempted to go see the Easter Bunny. Madi wasn't having it. Kylie and "Nanny" (Aunt Shannon) were there too but that wasn't convincing her. She watched Kylie get her picture taken and we were outta there!
Saturday, Madi stayed with Mimi while my parents and I went to the Shell Houston Open. The weather couldn't have been more perfect. It was a nice day full of sunshine, and golf!
Sunday, we spent Easter with family, of course. We saw my brother, my sister-in-law, and my neice here at home. We ate and hid eggs for a little while. Then Madi and I headed over to Mimi's and Pawpaw's to see them. Since Madi is the only little one, she got all the attention and candy. We played hard, and she loved hunting Easter Eggs.
We (well, at least I) am tired from the weekend. She seems to still be going full blast, lol. Hopefully everyone had a fun and family-filled Easter like we did. <3 Our hearts are with Pawpaw in the hospital. He fell Saturday morning and is having tests done. We love you!
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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Shopping With A Toddler

I've had the shopping itch the past few days. So today we went and did a little shopping in The Woodlands for some Spring stuff. There were a whole lot of sales going on, so we ventured out.
By the time we get out of the door and get started, it's usually nearing up on Madi's nap time. When she's tired (like every other 2 year old... and human) she gets cranky. So I was happy when she dozed off in the car on the way there. She slept for about 20 minutes before we had to get out of the car. I think that helped a little to keep her happy while I was browsing. She snacked on Goldfish and talked as we made our way through 2 different stores. Then, she started getting restless.

We went into the third store and she kept asking to get "DOWN AND WALK!" I knew that she spotted these two little boys kicking this ball all around the store so I denied her request. That didn't make her happy. By the time we were checking out, she was standing up in her stroller and yelling random things while throwing other random things out of her stroller. She had had enough of this shopping-and-being-good thing.
Just as I was getting a little frazzled, the lady behind the checkout counter asked, "How old is she?" I told her she was "2 1/2 and acting every bit of it." I grinned at her and she responded by laughing and saying "It passes far too quickly. Enjoy it."
Here I am, trying to keep my toddler from destroying everything and this kind lady is telling me to appreciate it all. She looked about 40 and had probably been through this exact situation before. She was absolutely right. One day, she won't go with me to shop, she'll be out with her friends doing her own thing. She won't want to hold my hand and walk through the store, or tell me which shirts she likes. That's probably the most depressing thing I can think of at the moment. My little (sometimes rambunctious) baby girl all grown up and not giving me those little chaotic moments. I'll shop quietly and peacefully soon enough. For now, I'm going to smile and try to enjoy those little 2 year old moments.
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Friday, March 22, 2013

Library Book Love

One of Madi's absolute favorite things right now is the Library. We've been going for a few months now to get books for her and she gets so excited about it. Every time we go, we find at least two books that she adores and wants to read constantly. Our local library has the entire first floor dedicated to kids (of all ages) and has this huge colorful mural on the wall in the kids reading area. I love it, and she does too.
So every two weeks, we take our books back and spend about 30 minutes exploring and finding new books that interest her. She will grab a few and sit at the table and look through the pages. Then she'll tell me, "I want this one, Mommy. I don't like this one, let's look some more." We usually check out about 4 at a time.
Through the last few months, she's found some books that she didn't care for, and some that she had a hard time parting with. Since this is such a big interest of hers right now, I figured I would share some that she absolutely loved.
Right now, her two favorites from the ones we've checked out this week are Wiley and Jasper, and Ferryboat Ride. {pictured above} Wiley and Jasper is a book about a little boy and a dog who are afraid of each other at first but slowly get over their fear and become best friends. Ferryboat ride is about a family who rides a ferry to an island that they vacation on every summer. It talks about all the sounds and smells that you experience on a ferry, but also the weather, and some animals you can see too. Madi always wants to read this one first, and talks about the time we rode the Paddlewheel Boat at Moody Gardens.
The last round of books had a couple favorites too. She loved a book called I Want My Light On! which was about a little girl who was afraid that there were ghosts in the dark. It was a really cute book, and definitely not scary. Then another one she loved was called Mother, Mother, I Want Another which was my personal favorite. Its all about a little mouse who cries at bedtime because he wants another bedtime kiss from his Mommy, but she misinterprets what he's asking for.
I'm going to start sharing her favorites here, just as a way to keep up with them. Maybe you have a little one who loves to read too. All of the book titles I listed have links behind them, so just click on the title to see more about that book. :)
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Monday, March 18, 2013

Little Conversations

Madi's getting the age now where she's communicating SO much. She's not a baby anymore speaking in two-word phrases with a seemingly simplistic outlook and list of wants and needs. She has opinions, desires, and motivations. She knows what she wants and she voices that, openly. But with all of that comes some conflicting moments.
I guess it comes with being two and a half, but she will do anything just to see what my reaction will be. When she was eating lunch earlier, she looked up at me for a moment, then looked away and dipped her entire fist into her glass of milk and then pulled her hand out and let it drip beside her onto the floor. That look was, "I wonder what she'll do if I do THIS!" I can pretty much identify the look and catch it before she has a chance to act out. Sometimes it's nothing "bad" that she's doing. At the Museum the other day, she shot me that same look before standing on top of something and jumping off. It was about a foot off of the ground and made for kids to play on. She laughed and celebrated jumping off without falling down. Sometimes the look is her wondering how I will react, and sometimes it is just to make sure she's got my attention.
Either way, with her new personality blossoming, communication has been vital. Madi absolutely hates getting ready for bed. She hates to pick up her toys, she doesn't like to get her pajamas on, and she definitely doesn't like brushing her teeth. Every night, she stalls her little heart out and completely avoids those tasks. In an effort to make things more smoother, I started to set boundaries. I tell her that if she doesn't do these three things, she doesn't get to read a book before I turn the light out. Usually, this is enough for her to get those things done. She has a goal in mind and will do the things I ask of her.
But not tonight. She ran away from me, told me NO!, and even hid in the other room when she saw I had her pajamas in my hand ready for her to put them on. I told her again that she wouldn't get to read her books if she didn't listen to me, yet she still wouldn't cooperate. So, she didn't get to read. I hate when she goes to bed upset, but that's part of being a parent. You can't always be a pushover and be their friend.
Once I tucked her into bed and she settled down, we talked. I told her that she has to listen to me and do what she is told so that we can read. If she doesn't get the necessary things done in a timely manner, we won't have time to read and sing songs. I worded it of course a little differently but I could tell that she understood what I was saying. Physically, she relaxed. She said, "I'll listen to you, Mommy. I promise." Then she grabbed my hand, laid her head down on her pillow, and closed her eyes. Having that calm conversation about why she didn't get to read calmed her down and allowed her to comprehend what happened, and hopefully let her know how to change what happens in the future.
Those little conversations we have about the "why?" are so important now. She understands that in order to do the things we WANT to do, we have to do the things that are necessary first. Her growing curiousity for how things work, and also consequences of her actions, are slowly forming in her head. She's a strong-hearted little girl, and she's learning new things constantly, but boy am I learning from her too.
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Friday, March 15, 2013

Our Spring Break

We had so much fun during this week off from school. The latter part of the week was a tad more hectic than the beginning. But now that the week is coming to a close, I'm hoping for a nice and relaxing weekend ahead. In case you were wondering what we were up to...
The beginning of the week, we rested most of the time. I did a few projects for Madi's room. I hung some art/prints on her wall and hung a bulletin and dry erase board. Just part of my effort to make it "hers." I started Silver Linings Playbook on Saturday night, and finished it Monday. I hate when you get so into a book that you don't really know how to continue on when you finish it. (lol) We spent some time at parks around here. There has been such nice weather all week, we had to get out some. Tuesday, we went to a park in the Woodlands and I ran pushing her in the jogging stroller. It is 2x as hard as running by yourself. But she's good encouragement ;) Then Wednesday, Daddy came with us and we took turns running. He took her walking around while I ran, and then we traded. I beat my 5K time and chopped off 2 1/2 minutes. I was SO excited. On Wednesday night, Clayton and I went with some friends of mine from high school to the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo to see Jake Owen. We had such a good time. The performance was amazing, and the company was even better.
Then the chaos began! We went to the Houston Children's Museum with our playdate buddies Holly and Izzy. Izzy's big sister Ellz came along for the ride too. So that's three adults, two toddlers, and an 8 year old, at the museum during Spring Break. It was crazy there. So many people, and lines, and kids, etc. You couldn't walk in a straight line for 4 feet without bumping into someone. However- the kids had a blast. We hung out in the main area for awhile and let them run around, and then found some quiet refuge in the Tot Spot. Madi led Clayton and I into a little area for toddlers that had no kids, and said, "Come on. There's too many people over there." I think the crowds got to her too. Despite the crowds, Madi left super excited about her day. Which was the main goal in the first place. Plus, we slept good that night for sure!
she's a kisser :*
the ever so popular squinty-eyed smile
On Friday, My mom, neice, Madi and I headed towards Galveston to go to Moody Gardens. We anticipated crowds there too but it was not near as bad as the Museum. We definitely hit some traffic going there and back but Moody Gardens was a breeze in comparison. We went into the Aquarium and literally 10 minutes after going in, my camera died. (After I was bragging about how long the battery pack lasted!) So, there aren't many pictures to show. The ones I do have were taken quickly by my phone. It was nice walking around without a bulky camera though!
Like I said... she's a kisser

I spy... two little girls
It's safe to say that we are POOPED. Madi fell asleep talking about all of the animals we saw today. She said, "We saw birds chirping, fishies swimming, butterfly's flying... what else did we see, Mommy?" and then fell asleep as I was about to reply. I am so happy that she had a good week, and that we got to "relax" and get away from school and our normal routine for a bit. This weekend, we're spending time with family and going to take as many naps as we can before the week begins again. I hope that everyone had an awesome break! We sure did :)
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Monday, March 11, 2013


It's been awhile since I did a "Currently" post about me, and with so much going on (always), I figured it would be a good time to let you all in on what I'm up to.
Loving: I've discovered this new found love for running. I sort of got in a running rut lately. I've always loved it, but lately it's been more of a chore than anything. I started speed training and seeing a longer distance associated with a shorter time is exhilarating. I've never ran for time, it's always been to just run farther. But Saturday I ran 5k in 35 minutes and walked out of the gym feeling like I had just conquered the world. I've certainly ran farther than 5k, but running it that quickly was an awesome feeling. It definitely renewed my appreciation for the sport.
Reading: Silver Linings Playbook. I'm so excited to read something that I want to read. I have three textbooks that I pretty much read all the time for school and that definitely gets old. Over the summer I read constantly, so it's nice to crack open a book that I've picked out myself. I've heard lots of good things about this book so I'm hoping that I like it as much as everyone else did. Also, I'm starting a book after this one that is in preparation for the Whole 30 challenge I'm doing. Fingers crossed that I can read both in one week ;)
Thinking about: So so many things. I've been wanting to spice up Madi's room for awhile, and those projects are on my Spring Break To-Do List. I've been wanting a desk for my room, and to hang some things on the wall. Just little things here and there to add some homey-ness. Every once in awhile I get sort of ancy and have to redecorate or rearrange everything. That's how I've been feeling lately.
Anticipating: Hmm... Taking Madi somewhere fun on Wednesday with Clayton, and also going to the Houston Children's Museum on Thursday. Izzy and Holly are coming with us. The last time we went was last summer and they were only really old enough for the toddler play area. Hopefully they will enjoy the actual museum more this time around. If not, we know exactly where to take them :) I'm still thinking about where to take her Wednesday...
Making me happy: Looking at my calendar and seeing "first day of spring" coming up soon, planning fun things for Madi and I to do, project time while Madi naps, starting a new book, having a week off of school, loaded Starbucks gift cards, ice cream with my brother-in-law, celebrating Mimma's birthday, hearing Madi say things like "It's not MY fault!" (so cute!), days where the wind never stops blowing, spending hours with my neice and Madi, planning special surprises, hanging up pictures on the wall, watching Madi fall asleep each night.
Once again, thanks to Dani Hampton over at Sometimes Sweet for the inspiration for this post.
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Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Mommy Daughter Dates

The weather has been (for the most part) absolutely WONDERFUL! The mornings are a little chilly but once the day goes on, it becomes warm and breezy. You know how when the weather finally starts warming up, dogs just run in circles because it just feels so good? I wonder if it would be appropriate if I did that, because that's what I want to do. And it most certainly is what Madi does when she steps outside. The first thing we do when we go outside is water my garden. Sometimes she's interested in helping, and sometimes she couldn't care less. So she just runs and runs and runs. She runs around the garden, around the trees, around the house, etc. I totally think that she feels exactly like the dogs do when they just run in the wind.
Anyway, since the weather has been so awesome lately, we get a little stircrazy when we stay inside for too long. If the sun is shining in the window and I can hear the windchimes clinking together, I can not suppress the urge to go outside. Why stay inside and waste the sunlight? Madi definitely feels the same way. When she wakes up, she has breakfast and then heads directly to get her shoes on to go out. Since we both hate being inside, I've been taking her on little "dates" around town. It gets us out and keeps her entertained (usually for free).
Yesterday, we went to Market Street. It's a higher-end shopping center around here and I rarely take Madi there because it's usually so crowded. But it was a Tuesday around 3pm so it wasn't bad at all. I took her to get frozen yogurt at Red Mango. We sat outside and ate together and talked. It's so funny to sit and just talk to her. She's so full of questions, but equally as full of comments. She asks about the people walking by, and tells me that her ice cream is "girl ice cream" because it's pink. For some reason she's started associating colors with genders. I have no idea why. (It's probably something Kylie taught her... ;))
Then we started walking towards the middle of the shopping center where there's a big field, a splash pad, and waterfalls. That's usually where the kids gather to play. On the way there, we passed by a little salad restaurant where two ladies were sitting outside eating. As we passed by, Madi stopped in front of them and pointed at one of the lady's purse sitting on the ground next to her. It was white with pink trim and had a big gold buckle on the front. Madi said, "I like your purse! It's CUUUTE!" and giggled. The ladies thought it was the cutest thing. Then we kept walking and her comments about the things around her just kept coming. She dipped her hand in the cold water in the waterfalls, ran as fast as she could around the big open grassy field, and smelled all of the flowers lining the field.
One-on-one time with her is so much fun. It's amazing to watch her curiousity grow, as well as her personality. A lot of times, the days pass and we don't ever just stop and be in the moment. Even I find myself far too engulfed in my phone than anything else around me. I don't want to look back on the day and remember something I saw on the internet versus something I experienced. Just the other day, I was having lunch with my Mom and I heard a baby making noise at a table across from us. I looked over and see this adorable baby, about a year old, pushing a board book across the table trying to get her Mom's attention. Her Mom just kept saying, "yeah" acting like she was paying attention. When she really just couldn't take her eyes off of her phone. I don't want Madi to have to compete against my phone for attention.
So, on these little dates, I make it a point to be present. (besides snapping a few pictures, of course)
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Saturday, March 2, 2013

Date Day Adventures: Geocaching at Sunrise!

Okay, I think that my husband and I have officially found a new hobby: Geocaching. I had never even heard of it until a few days ago when he introduced it to me. He had only found a few "micro's" (tiny cache's with only a log book) in the Kingwood area and when he told me about it, we decided to go try and find more stuff. But I guess that I should kind of explain what geocaching is before I continue... A "cache" is a weather-proof container that someone hides somewhere and registers the coordinates so other people can go search for it. These container's contain log books (which you sign when you find it), trinkets that people have left there, and little GPS devices which you can take and place in another cache. It is SO much fun. Plus, it's free (other than gas to get you around), and it's exercise! I am positive that we hit out 10,000 step goal for the day.
We left at sunrise this morning, maybe a little after, and started searching. The Geocaching App for iPhone is awesome. You can see where every cache is in the area you are. We found about 15 within a 5 mile radius of my house. I explored area that I've lived in for years but it all seemed new to me. I've never been under the bridge at the end of my road, or walked through the woods a few miles away. We also found a cache near the cemetery that my Grandfather's brother's and parents are buried at so we got to visit them while we were there.
Some of the cache's were easy to find, some not so much. The app has a place for the person who hid it to give you a description, a hint, and photos. Some are fairly easy, and some are hidden pretty well. We looked for one for like half an hour and the GPS said we were within 5 feet of it but couldn't find it anywhere. Finally I picked up a black rock and it ended up being hollow with an "Official Geocache" sticker on it. I pulled the middle out and there was the log. For another one, we walked about .2 miles down a trail and then ventured into the woods to find a giant ammunition box in the woods with a bunch of cool trinkets and the log book dated back 5 years. Definitely worth the hunt.
It's strange to me that I've lived in this area literally all my life but have never really appreciated it. I always say, "Oh I want to live there! It's so pretty!" But in all reality, I've never just looked around. I noticed so many beautiful things today as we were exploring. It's not that I've never drove by these areas, it's that I've never taken the time to appreciate them. There's beauty all around if you take the time to look.
Little treasures are hidden, you just have to seek them out.
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