Father’s Day

After a leisure morning at home to celebrate Father’s Day, we decided to head north and go up to Dahlonega for the day.  We selfishly opted not to attend church, because we knew with the kiddos it would be an either or thing for them and that they wouldn’t do so well if we tried to squeeze in both church and the day trip.

We ate lunch at one of Dan’s favorites, the family style restaurant Smith House.  It’s great because we don’t have to wait long for the food, which makes life with the kiddos a lot easier.  We devoured some fried chicken, green beans, sweet potatoes, fried okra, mashed potatoes, creamed corn, rolls, roast beef, and of course strawberry shortcake as a delicious dessert.  It was a very yummy lunch indeed.

About thirty minutes outside of Dahlonega, there is Amicalola State Park, which has some amazing waterfalls.  We thought we’d burn off some lunch and take a trip to see the falls.  I opted to do a little amateur photography session, with it being Father’s day.  It was nice to capture some pretty moments with the boys and enjoy God’s gift of the beautiful scenery.

Brain Dump

It’s been a while since I’ve done a good brain dump, to clear out all the thoughts that have been on my heart and mind to write about.  So, here it goes in no particular order.

  • We’ve begun  to get the ball rolling for Sienna’s nursery.  We haven’t done a lot since Mason is still occupying the room.  We’re not ready to make the transition for Mason to move in with Parker just yet, but we’ve begun ordering some things anyway.  We found a great deal on a rug on Overstock.com that we went ahead and snatched up.  I think it’s pretty cute. 
  • We also decided on “COLLECTION B” for baby Sienna’s quilt (from the choices in previous post.  I just thought “COLLECTION” A lacked the pizazz that I really wanted for her room, and was just playing it too safe.
  • We paid off our Lexus SUV this week! Sounds like something silly to be excited about, but I am really proud of us that we no longer have a car payments at all (we bought our honda accord outright).  We got the car when Parker was around 10 months old.  Look how cute he was then.  We bought the Lexus with a six year warranty, so now we have a little more security while we ride out the remainder of the car’s life.  I still really love this SUV, and it’s comfortable, and practical, with a little style and best of all… it’s PAID OFF! Woohoo!
  • It’s officially “summer break” and Parker is out of school. We’ve been staying busy with the two play groups that we frequent.  It’s been fun meeting new faces in a playgroup that Sarah started, and getting to know them and their cute little kiddos.  The boys have been having a blast too,  and have enjoyed the social time. Here’s us at the Spray ground at Riverside park this week.  I’m on the left in the white sun dress, looking like a giant per usual, sporting my chonky babe Mason on the hip and baby bump in the middle.  My boys are also on the far left in the bottom photos. I love all the cute babies!

  • Last Friday night I joined a few friends and had an awesome girls night.  No it wasn’t the typical “Let’s out and have dinner” kind of girl’s night (although I love those!).  It was a “Let’s drink a little too much and dance” kind of girls night.  Of course, with me being preggers, I couldn’t get my drink on (and who doesn’t love a volunteer DD?), but I definitely love to dance, and dancing is what I did.  Even with a little belly bump and it being the first year out of my twenties, I decided to give it a whirl.  I wanted to support my friend who recently decided to call off her wedding, and this happened to be the night that she was supposed to get married.  She had never been to a club before, so it was a fun experience for her.  The six of us had a blast, and none of us held back.  There was a stage at Opera night club in the center, and every one of us got up there in our high heels and wedges, and tore up the stage.  It was a great time with some great gals, no drama, nothing crazy, just some hot Mamas having fun and dancing the night away. 
  • I took Mason in for his 15 month Dr’s appointment today.  He is a beast! He’s 29lbs (only two pounds less than his older brother who is two and a half) which puts him in the 95th percentile.  I asked if I should be concerned with his growing stature, and she said absolutely not.  He’s also 95th for height too, so he’s proportional.  I feed him 3x a day with 2 snacks, he just LOVES to eat!  He’s not very picky, but can be weird about things you wouldn’t think, like hot dogs, and needs food before his milk (otherwise the sippy cup is thrown) and doesn’t love the consistency of rice.  Otherwise, he loves green beans and most veggies.  He also loves exercise and playtime and he’s not a fan of just being an observer in the stroller.  So, I think he’s in great health and gets plenty of nutritious foods and activity.  I’m thinking over the next six months he’ll start to lean out, but will also be big in stature like my side of the family.
  • I’ve started to hit the gym again.  Wohoo!  Since Mason is officially down to one nap, it’s easier to take both boys to the gym and have them enjoy play time without feeling overly tired.  Mason still isn’t in love with being left, but he’s been warming up to it! There are only a few tears when I drop him off, and he’s fine by the time I take Parker to the potty and leave for my work out.  Baby steps of progress!    It’s been somewhat of a challenge just getting used to Mason’s personality since he is so different from Parker.  He’s so sensitive to being left that it breaks my heart.  I’ve enjoyed doing 30 mins of cardio and some weight training.  Taking advantage of my energy in the second trimester before I get too big!
  • There was something else that really broke my heart this week.  I found out some horrible news Monday night.  There was a friend of mine that I worked with when I used to wait tables at Perkins named Arvin. He brought so much happiness to the workplace.  He was a cook behind the lines, but not only that, he was a source of happiness and laughter throughout our shift always bringing smiles to our face, and just a kind good-hearted person.  He was full of so much positivity and being around him just put you in a good mood.  I ran into him again on facebook a few years ago and we started following each other’s posts and status updates. I found out that he had a young son, and within the last year or so, had a daughter.  Recently, he was preparing for his upcoming nuptials to his fiance Paula and even had a Pinterest board that showed off some of his ideas for the wedding.  He was so excited about getting the napkins in that had their names on it.  One of his lasts FB posts was of him joking around about how broke he would be after the wedding, but that they would be having a blast enjoying their big day.  Their wedding with their kids and family alongside, was set for early August.  Sadly, that won’t be happening, because tragically, Arvin died June 4th from a car wreck.  As the news article states in the local paper, his body was recovered the next morning after his family had reported him missing (when he never came home from work).  He was in his vehicle which had veered into a nearby creek after over correcting (possibly to miss an animal in the road).  He was not the type to drink heavily, so they aren’t suspecting alcohol to be a factor in his death.  He landed in the creek, and wasn’t able to get out.   I’m someone who hasn’t encountered a lot of death in my life.  My dear Nanny (my Mom’s Mother) died of breast cancer in her 50s, but other than that, I’ve never had anyone close to me die.  This is somewhat of a new feeling.  It is just so tragic and my heart breaks for his family.  He was such a sweet person, and gave the best “bear hugs”.  He will be sorely missed!  It just reminds me to hug my boys and husband every day and tell them I love them, because you just never know what life will bring!
  • I’m so excited to be visiting my friend Catie who lives in Chicago in July.  I’ve been to many cities, but I’ve never been to Chicago, so I’m really looking forward to exploring the city with her.  I went to Interior Design school with Catie, and she was my partner in crime the whole way through until we graduated.  She was also in our wedding, and she’s a sweet and dear friend of mine that I don’t get to see enough of.  We’ll be staying at the Palmer House, which I’ve heard great things about, and we plan to visit all the local attractions including doing the architectural tour.  I’m so excited!
  • I’m looking forward to spending the weekend with the hubby celebrating Father’s Day.  He’s had a rough last week or so since his Crohn’s has been flaring up and giving him trouble again, but he’s always strong and pulls through.  He’s been traveling a lot and sacrificing a lot for the family, and I’m excited to celebrate him, and all the wonderful things he does for us each and every day.  I made him this mixbook for Father’s day (I gave it to him early) and he loved it! Father’s Day Mixbook

Which Fabric?

I’m so excited that my SIL Lisa will be making baby Sienna a crib quilt for her bedding. The curtains in the room are sage, and we plan to paint the back wall that the crib will go up against a light lavender.  I was going for a French look with a chandelier wall decal the edge crib. Shabby Chic and elegant without being too frou-frou!

So, with that being said, I have the task of picking out crib quilt fabric that would work well with those colors and style. It was really hard to find something in lavender! I have whittled them down to these two collections, and I need your thoughts!

Okay, so this first fabric, let’s call it “COLLECTION A” is calming and sweet for a little girl.  I love the colors because they’re not the typical pinks, but more soft purples and light greens.  I think it’s super cute for a baby girl, but worried that it’s too muted and won’t be something that she’ll love many years down the line. The first fabric you can’t see, but it’s clouds on a lavender background with a little girl and a clothes line of girly clothes.


This second collection, let’s call it “COLLECTION B” is super cute, and vibrant, but is it TOO vibrant?  It has some very pretty fabrics in it, but worried since I’m using a bit of a more muted sage for the curtains, that it is just too bold of a collection.  I like the fact that it has more “mature” fabrics, that may last a little past the baby years, but are they too mature for a baby?  I only need six different fabrics, so I think I will eliminate the second one in (too blue) and the sixth one in that is a small turquoise pattern since it may compete with my sage curtains.


Which one should I choose for baby Sienna’s crib blanket quilt?  The pattern I will be using will be this one:

I consider myself a pretty decisive person, but I can’t seem to decide on which grouping. I need your help, so please place your vote on this poll!

Parker’s Last Day of School

This post is way overdue.  We left for Destin shortly after Parker’s last day of school (the second week of May), so I didn’t have time to post this.  We were very happy with Parker’s teachers this year.  Even with two teacher transitions, it all went very smooth, and I grew to really enjoy chatting with the teachers each week.

For their last day, there was a picnic party of sorts with fun activities for the kiddos, coupled with a hotdog lunch.  Parker and Mason both enjoyed the activities.  They wore me out since Mason was adamant about walking and being involved, and Parker had a mind of his own wandering around to all the activities.  They had some water activities, pony rides, a bounce house, and some other little games.  The boys had a great time.  Parker enjoyed seeing his little friends for the last time before Summer, too.

Parker with his first teacher Ms. Ceci (above)

You’re having a GIRL!

We anxiously awaited the news to find out how baby pumpkin was doing… and hoping that we could find out the gender.  I know some people keep it as a surprise, but we just couldn’t take the anticipation much longer.  It’s still a “surprise”, it’s just 20 weeks earlier.  Plus, I love that I know what the gender is because it allows me to know just a little bit more about the little miracle happening inside me.  It helps me bond while the little one is still inside me.

The morning came that we were going to the doctor to get the 20 week gender scan.  I was so anxious that I didn’t get any breakfast before I left the house, not even a sip of water or coffee.  Granted, the appointment was early, but I just didn’t want to take the time since I was already feeling queezy.  Well, it didn’t take long for me to figure out, that wasn’t such a great idea.  Once we got into the ultrasound room, the tech was using the wand to press all over my stomach, and I began to feel sick.  I stuck it out with some breaks and sips of water, and we got to see our beautiful daughter.  Kicking away, moving around for us to see.  We found out why I haven’t been feeling her as much as I did my boys at this stage.  Apparently, I have anterior placenta.  Which means that the placenta is positioned right below my belly and as the Dr. explained, it’s like having a pillow between me and the baby.

The ultrasound tech was doing her thing, but baby was making it difficult because she was crossing her legs.   It took some time to but then suddenly, the tech uttered these words: “You’re having a girl!”  I turned wide eyed, because while she was wiggling my belly to try to get the baby to uncross the legs, I thought for sure I saw a little boy part down there.  But I was wrong!  I immediately replied with “Really??!!” “are you sure?” (like she didn’t know how to do her job or something) and then the tears just flowed and I just looked up at Dan and said “Sienna Marie” followed by the biggest grin I could make on my face.  We were both SO happy!

It took some time for it to sink in, and we are still a bit in disbelief.  A GIRL?  I’m going to have a girl after having two boys?  What in the world do I know about girls?  I’m used to playing with messy, loud, obnoxious (but oh so loving) boys! Now I get to have a sweet little princess to spoil! I can’t wait to teach her all the girly things I know.  I can’t wait to dress her up like my personal doll baby and show her off like I did my dolls when I was a little girl.  I look forward to helping her pick out a dress for her school dance or prom, or wipe my tears when I see her walk down the aisle and get married.  I can’t wait to help her paint her nails, and show her how to put on make-up.  I look forward to getting our nails done and having spa days together one day… Mother and daughter.

YES! I’m having a GIRL!

I’ve been going crazy (and those who follow me already know) on Pinterest!  I have found some wonderful ideas for baby Sienna’s room.  It’s so overwhelming to decide what we’ll do in her room, but I know it’ll turn out prett and very special in the end.

A little background on her name.  We’ve always wanted Sienna, ever since we found out we were pregnant with Parker.  Dan actually came up with the name one day with the thought that it embodied our love of travel, was unique without being weird, and had a beautiful sound.  I loved it.  Siena Italy is a beautiful city in Tuscany region of Italy, and I love the thought of naming our daughter after that beautiful unique town in Tuscany.  I don’t even care if others like it, because it’s something that we love, and that’s all that matters.  Marie we thought went really well with Sienna.  Marie is my Aunt’s first name.  The one who took me in after high school when I had no where to live, and helped me get on my feet.  She has always been such a close influential and selfless person in my life.  She has helped me a lot along the way, and this is one way I’d like to honor her.  Marie is also the middle name of my best friend Jess who I basically grew up with, and has been close friends with since sixth grade.  Our friendship has lasted through the years, and she is someone that I would like to honor by using her middle name, Marie.

We are excited to meet her, hold her, love on her, and welcome her to the family!

Choo Choo! To the Train Museum we go!

Last week for one of our weekly playgroup, my Mom “Nannie” joined us at the South Eastern Railway Museum.  It was a lot of fun. We had fun meeting with the group and having a special little train session with our guide including a story time, interactive discussion with a toy train, and craft time.  Then after looking around the train station and getting to go into a few old trains, we went for a train ride.  Parker had a great time.  I’m so glad Nannie was able to join us since Parker was so anxious to run ahead and behind the roped off areas.  He’s so sneaky.  I was able to get some decent pictures, but I’m kicking myself because when we went outside on the train ride, I forgot to turn down my ISO, and all of my outdoor pictures were too bright and overexposed! Ah! What a waste.  It’s so easy to do with the 50mm lens, too because it lets in so much light that it can be overpowering on sunny days. Oh well, hopefully I’ll remember for next time!

After a tour through the train station we enjoyed  a nice short train ride.  Mason fell asleep shortly before the train ride, but fortunately, they allowed me to take him for the ride anyway.  After the train ride, we enjoyed our packed lunch in a nearby gazebo.  It turned out to be a very fun outing for us all!