Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Walkin' in Memphis (Part 1)


We've had a busy week! All sorts of appointments and getting ready last week for a weekend in Memphis!

Nick's brother Josh and his wife Jana had a baby boy named Colt on March 30th of last year. I don't know if you remember, but he had heart surgery when he was 5 days old. It was very scary, but he is doing wonderful now and progressing just like he's supposed to. We got to see him in August for Nick's sister's wedding, but that's the only time we've seen him! Nick's dad and step-mom decided it's been too long, so they arranged for us all to meet up in Memphis for the weekend. Josh, Jana and Colt live in Tuscaloosa, AL.

We had such a great time! It was short trip and a long drive, but so worth it:) They picked me up at school on Friday and we headed that way. While we should've been there around 10:00p, traffic in Northwest Arkansas and going 6 miles in an hour and a half east of Little Rock didn't put us there til midnight! Lucas did an amazing job in the car:) He stayed awake when we wanted him to and slept when we wanted him to! He woke up a little when we got to the hotel, but went right back to sleep. We slept in and ate a wonderful breakfast at the hotel Saturday morning. Then the boys took naps and we headed for some barbecue. We ate at Corky's!

It was so yummy:) The boys were starting to notice each other by this time. All morning when they played, Colt was much more outgoing and forward. He did most of the crawling at first. Lucas just kind of sat back and observed. They are both just like their daddies!). But they were getting more used to each other by lunch:)

They have both changed so much since August! Here they are picking out what they wanted for lunch:)

We then headed for the zoo! Memphis has a wonderful zoo! We got there in the afternoon and stayed til it closed and still didn't see everything! The boys absolutely loved it:) They are at the perfect age and this was both of their first times to go to the zoo! So glad they got to experience it together:)

They loved riding on their daddies' shoulders!

Lucas went crazy over all the animals. He would find them in their habitats and follow them wherever they went:) He went especially crazy for the giraffes:) He has a giraffe (Geoffrey) that he sleeps with and the real ones were definitely his favorite too!

He really wanted to get in there with them!

Such sweet boys giving each other kisses:)

Mommy found a tree and when she popped out of it and yelled boo, she had both boys laughing so hard:) It was hilarious! I probably did it for about 5 minutes. When you find something that makes your babies laugh, you do it over and over:)

Here are the two young families:)

And here's my little family!

We ended the day by letting the boys crawl around and play in the hotel room. We ordered pizza, gave the boys a bath, put them to bed, and the adults hung out til midnight! It was a great day:)

I'll share Sunday morning with you tomorrow:)

Monday, February 20, 2012

13 Months (A Week Late)

My dear little man,

You are now 13 months old! I can remember last year at this time when you were just one month old and how different things were that first month. We were definitely starting to figure you out. But now that we've figured even more out, there is still so much we don't know! You definitely keep us surprised and keep us learning and growing as parents. You make it such an adventure:)

You were supposed to have your one-year check-up on January 16 (three days after your birthday), but your doctor had to have surgery so they moved it to February 7. Then, your doctor got the flu, so it is scheduled for March 1. You will be almost 14months old by then! I can't wait to see how much you've grown and how much you weigh! We can definitely tell you are getting much taller! You can reach things and peek around things that you couldn't before!

You are still not walking, but we're hoping it's soon. We know you can do it, but you still don't know that:) You barely hold onto our fingers when you're walking and sometimes you'll take a few steps on your own, but then you "look down" and get nervous:) Mommy's getting very anxious, but you're just so calm and chill that I know you're not in any big hurry! You want Mommy to wait a little bit longer. Who knows?! You might not even take steps, you might just take off one day and never look back. I'm okay with that:)

Everyone says that I'll miss these crawling days because you'll get into everything when you walk, but you are already into everything! You can pull up and reach anything you want! You crawl very fast. You love to open drawers and cabinets and pull out utensils and pots and pans. You love to wedge yourself between the end table and the couch and you absolutely are obsessed with remotes and phones now! It will sometimes make you upset when we take it away, but it doesn't last very long and you get over it. You're pretty easy-going!

You are also loving your blocks right now and your puzzles. You always find the circles first and put them in the right places, then the stars! The triangles are definitely the hardest! When you put it in right place, you will look at us and clap because you know we're gonna cheer for you! I hope you always know this:) We are your biggest fans!

You are so active and curious and because of this, you've had two booboos. You were walking around the ocffee table at Nicole's (your babysitter's) and took a step toward the couch. When you did, you tripped and busted your lip. She said you only cried for a minute and then you were over it:) It never seemed to bother you, but it looked pretty pitiful:(

That very night, Mommy got home from the grocery store and you were looking at all the food I had bought. All of the sudden I noticed red stuff all over some of the groceries. I thought it was juice or something that spilled, but I didn't buy any! So, then I looked at you and you had red on your shirt, so I thought you hit your lip and caused it to open back up. That wasn't the case either! Mommy and Daddy were stumped and then we saw your hand and realized it was covered in blood. It made us really nervous for a few moments, but once we got it cleaned up, we realized you had a little cut on your thumb. You were just playing away and didn't even seem to notice! We still don't know what exactly you cut your thumb on, but you had to wear a bandaid for a few days. You did really well with it. You never tried to pull it off! You didn't use that hand for about 10 minutes after your band-aid was on, but then you figured out that it worked just fine! It was sad for Daddy and me, but you were so tough! It never bothered you:) You must have got that from your Grandpa Doug:)

You did go to his wrestling tournament this month and you had so much fun! You walked around on the mat and got to meet a lot of Grandpa Doug's friends. You also had a few dates with Mommy this month. You are such a fun travel partner:) You love to be in your stroller and observe all the people you see. Mommy gets so many compliments on you:)

You have also really started imitating sounds this month! You say Mama all the time now and when Daddy asks you where I am you find me and say "pretty, pretty". It's so sweet that Daddy taught you that:) You also will say "ball", "baa baa", "woof woof", and "toot toot". We're working on "bye bye" and "night night" now. You are really good at waving and blowing kisses and have easily picked up the signs for "more" and "all done". Oh, and you love fruit right now! You like kiwi, cuties and bananas a lot! If Mama holds the banana, you will eat it like a big person! It's hilarious:) You want to hold pieces of food and bite it off now instead of having everything torn up. This makes it so much easier on us:)

All in all, you are just developing so well! You are right on track (or passed the track in some areas) for your age and we couldn't be happier about that. I hope you'll learn to walk soon...I know you will! I'm sure I'll be writing about it in a few short weeks! You never cease to amaze us:)

We love you so much and always will!

All our love,
Mommy and Daddy

Friday, February 17, 2012

Valentine's Fun

Every year (give or take a few) since I was in college, the Rial family has been going to Sho Gun for my cousin Megan's birthday. She has a Valentine's birthday, so we always go Valentine weekend. Our family has shrunk in a few ways and grown in a few ways since we started going, but it's always fun.

We went on Saturday and we always take a cousin picture:) Here are a few of them from years past...we've changed quite a bit!




2012 (this year Heidi decided to join us!)

Now, three of us can take one with our hubbies:)

Last year Lucas was so tiny, it was hard to enjoy it, but this time we enjoyed it and so did he! Here he is with Mimi watching the fire:) He thought it was so cool!

He got his own little plate full of chicken, rice and mushrooms and he did so well!

He had fun with Uncle Callen and Aunt Cassie, too:)

Mommy's Little Valentine

Afterward, Nick, Lucas, Cassie, Callen, Mom, Tim, and I headed to Cassie and Callen's for a Valentine Party:) She had it decorated so cute with lots of red and heart-shaped goodies, but I forgot to take pics:( She did have us decorate Valentine's to wear so that was fun:) I decorated for Nick, and vice versa.

Here's the Balmos'!

And here's Lucas' Valentine loot from Uncle Callen and Aunt Cassie!

A Bass Pro hat and a dog from Build-a-Bear! So sweet and he loved it:)

It was a great weekend and perfect to spend with my family whom I love very much:)

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Wednesday Love

And...it's been one crazy week! With the holidays and us being out of town and the snow, I have totally fallen behind on my posting and I need to write Lucas' 13-month letter, but today I'll just do this:)

Since I had the day off Friday because of Parent/Teacher conferences and since I love Pinterest and it gives me so many ideas, Lucas and I did a little craft project for Nick's Valentine card:)

I painted his hands red and made a heart, then his foot red!

He absolutely loved it and thought it was so funny to have paint on his skin:) I'm sure it was cold and I'm sure it tickled when I used the paintbrush, but he was a champ! He did wonderful:)

Daddy loved his card and I absolutely love my two Valentine's!!!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Wednesday Love

Nick and I (along with Locust Grove Free Will Baptist) are reading our Bibles through this year! We are using the "M'Cheyne" reading plan. I have tried and tried to do this every year and I get through Genesis and Exodus, but then I get to Leviticus and Numbers, I get bored then I stop.

This is why this plan really interests me. You read one chapter from four different books each day. It started with Genesis, Matthew, Ezra and Acts. The idea is that by the end of the year you'll have read the Old Testament once, the New Testament twice and the Psalms twice. It's been amazing so far:)

One thing that makes it easier for me is because I have YouVersion on my Kindle Fire. It has many different plans to choose from, but also hundreds of different versions! This makes those books like Leviticus and Numbers not so boring! One version I've really fallen in love with is "The Message". I don't just use this version, but if I'm really having trouble understanding something, I pull up "The Message" and can read it in contemporary language that I will better understand. Some of the sections I don't like how it's written, like "The Beatitudes", but overall I really like it.

Wish Nick and I luck as we do this all year:) Pray that we will be diligent in our readings each night, pray that we will grow as a couple, grow as parents, grow as God's children through all this, and pray that we learn more about Him each day. This is really the whole point anyway:)

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Is it only the beginning?

My son has been visiting Locust Grove Free Will Baptist Church since he was 2 weeks old! He's been going to the nursery there and at our home church since he was 5 weeks old! He's always been a content baby and he was always very happy and very easy in the nursery.

So, two weeks ago when we were at LGFWB, he had to go to the 1-year old class. Our home church doesn't change nurseries until 2 yrs, I don't think. Anyway, he had never seen these people before, but that usually doesn't matter. Well, it did this time! He turned around and looked at me, his bottom lip stuck out, and he immediately started crying! Which, in turn, made me cry too! It was the most pitiful thing in the world. I picked him up, gave him some juice and his soothie, found a toy in there like one he had at home, left and he was fine. They said he never cried again!

It happened again on Friday. I had to take the day off because my daycare lady's grandpa died, but I had a meeting to go to at school. So, I brought Lucas with me and was going to leave him in the office with our secretary during my meeting. He did the same thing! So, I did the same thing...well, I didn't cry this time! I gave him something to eat, gave him his soothie, found a toy and left. He was fine, never cried again, and went to several different teachers during that time and snuggled and smiled at each one:)

Then, it happened at our own church! He sees these children all the time, but the nursery workers were new and different. We went through the same routine and of course, he was fine for the rest of the time.

I said all that to say this...am I crazy that I love this? Don't get me wrong, I don't want him crying and scared that I'll never come back, but it's wonderful to feel that he needs me and loves me and wants me around him! It's an amazing feeling. He's always liked to have me close and I'm the one that can soothe and snuggle the very best, but now he really needs me! He gets sad when we're apart. It's so sweet! I'm sure this "separation anxiety" phase is just beginning and it'll get worse before it gets better and I'll regret saying that I kind of like it, but right now...right now that he can be easily soothed and forget about it, it's just the sweetest thing!

Am I the only one that feels this way? Am I terrible for thinking it's kind of sweet? How do you deal with separation anxiety? Have I not even really seen the brunt of it?

Help me:)

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Wednesday Love

Since having Lucas and spending extra money on food, diapers, wipes, daycare, cups, etc., Nick and I have cut down our spending on each other during Christmas, birthdays, Valentine's, anniversaries...

We had a budget for Christmas and man, I stuck to it. Not because I don't think my wonderful husband deserves golfing experience at Southern Hills or a brand new golf bag, but because I'm the spender and he gets worried about finances, so I wanted to be good...for him!

Well, he didn't stick to the budget! That crazy man! He went above and beyond to get me the one thing that I really wanted without me having to ask him! This year, that want was a Kindle Fire!

I shed a few tears when I opened that box because he totally nailed it and saved some of his spending money every month to spend on me! How sweet is he?!

Well, I absolutely love it! I love that I can have all my books, magazines and games in one place. I love that I can read in the car, even in the dark! I love how when we go places, I can stick it in my purse and don't have to worry about losing my bookmark or a page tearing or bending. I love that when we go on vacation, I don't have to worry about packing all those extra things! It's truly wonderful and I recommend everyone look into it:) Especially if you're a reader like I am!

This post isn't just about how I love the Kindle Fire, but how much I love my husband!!!