Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Thanksgiving Feast and Summit Lights Up

Well, to recap where I ended the last blog post, the stomach bug DID make it's way through our little family, hitting Joel and I at the SAME time last Monday evening. Neither one of us could take the boys to school on Tuesday (not that they needed to go anyway and spread the germs!), but caring for them with both parents down for the count was definitely something we hope to never have to go through ever again. Seriously...it was awful. Thankfully, the kids were complete angels and knew they needed to just chill that day and even took 3 hour naps that afternoon. The Mom Squad (our mothers!) came to the rescue that night. My mom dropped off dinner for the boys at the front door and then Joel's mom braved the germs and came and bathed the kids and read them books. We are thankful for our village this Thanksgiving! We have all recovered now and are several pounds lighter, just in time for Thursday!
Meet Chief Brave Loud Thunder!
 And his "less than thrilled" partner in crime...
The boys had their Thanksgiving feasts at school last Friday. They did not make a huge deal out of it this year and even encouraged the parents not to come. Since I was out sick with the kids and myself for most of the week, I had to do some catch up at work on Friday and did not go. I HATE missing things at the boys' school, but I just had to this time. The boys had a great time though from what I hear! Hudson says he is most thankful for his brother and Mommy and Daddy this Thanksgiving! Harrison...well if he could tell us what he is most thankful for, it is probably food. :) And his Dah-do and Papa Dog (paci and dog!) of course.

By Friday night, we were all in need of an outing! The Summit was having their annual Lights Up event, where they have a parade and fireworks to kick off the Christmas season. We went last year and had a great time.

We met the Bridges at Urban Cookhouse before the parade. Hudson was posing here...I can't help but laugh at this picture!

 Then it was parade time. It was kind of raining/misting the entire time. There were TONS of people there. I thought the rain might deter some of the crowd, but it was packed.

 I have to say that the parade was not nearly as good as last year. It was a lot shorter than last year and just overall did not have a lot. However, the boys loved it and that's all that matters!

Batman and Robin were there and Hudson and Haines wouldn't go anywhere near them...however, they weren't afraid of the gingerbread man at all! Ha!

 Real snow (bubbles)!

On Sunday afternoon, we headed to Charlie's dinosaur birthday party. The day was beautiful, but it was freezing outside!

I can't believe Thanksgiving is finally here! We are looking forward to a fun Thanksgiving day with Joel's family, however, our thoughts are going to be with Joel's beloved grandfather Papa John, who is in the hospital and is not doing well at all. It is not looking good, but we are so thankful to have been able to celebrate his 96th birthday with him earlier this month when he was feeling good! We love you PJ!

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Iphone Pics

Well the stomach bug has paid us a visit this weekend. So far, Hudson has been the only victim, but it has been brutal for him. I hate to see him feel that bad and there's just nothing I can do. And, it's equally hard to keep Harrison away from his best buddy. He just doesn't understand! We had planned to go down to Auburn for the game yesterday (how about that catch!?!?!?), but Friday we decided we would just stay home (I think it was divine intervention because we really had no reason not to go!) and it's a good thing we did! Would not have wanted to deal with this being out of town! We are on day 2 of vomiting and a fever! Yuck!
Since we did a whole lot of staying in our pajamas yesterday and today, there's not much to report. We did start on a pretty big landscaping project this afternoon, but the rain sort of put a damper on getting too much of it done. Also, we did go to a rare dinner out on Friday night and the kids behaved the best they have ever behaved...ever. Like, we might try it again sometime soon! :) Maybe we are almost over the hump. They sat in their OWN chairs the whole time and ate their food and didn't whine, didn't spill a drink, one of us didn't have to take a child outside...it was a miracle! I had to document the occasion!
I found some other recent Iphone pics that never made it on the blog so I thought I would get those on here before I forget. I love watching this boy write. He is getting better and better each week. He is really interested in how things are spelled and is starting to sound out words in books. It's just one of those neat developmental things to watch!

Of course we've been to Irondale to see the trains...it's their happy place.

 Too much Auburn football excitement! We hear a lot of "Woo Woo, Hey!" from Harrison around here! (short for War Eagle, Hey!). It is so cute!

Hudson made this entire train track by himself. I was truly amazed. This is way better than I could have ever done. He's definitely got Joel's engineer brain.

Mohawk time in the bath!

That's all for now! Here's to hoping we all don't go down with the dreaded bug this week!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Master Bathroom Renovation

We have FINALLY finished our master bathroom renovation. I can't seem to locate the "before" pictures, but just picture a bathroom with white tile (and dirty grout!), white/off-white laminate cabinets which didn't match because some were faded and some were not, ugly off-white marble countertops with built in sinks, and all brass fixtures (except the lights above the vanities which were silver!). It was obviously live-able because we stuck with it for 7 years, but it was never our taste and always something that was on the list for renovation one day! The time finally came back in May when Joel ripped out the entire bathroom. Yes, May. It's now November. It's been a long 6 months! :) This is the only full bathroom on the main floor in our house (we do have a powder room), so showers have had to take place upstairs. I've been living out of a cosmetic bag for the past 6 months which has been a pain! This is what happens when you are married to Mr. Handy (which is great...sometimes, especially when Mr. Handy has a dad who is ever more handy!) and he claims he can save all this money by doing a lot of this by himself! Can you sense my sarcasm?!?! I'm pretty sure not a whole lot of money was saved, but we sure do love the finished product!
The tile is actually a gray/beige color. We loved the rectangular tile look, and the tiles were laid in a brick pattern.
The vanities...oh the vanities. How we LOVE them. When we started looking at cabinets/vanities, we had a hard time finding something we wanted that would fit the space we had and have the furniture style look that we wanted. The one that we both loved was from Pottery Barn, and it just would not fit the space we had, or the budget I had in mind since we had to purchase two vanities.

Joel re-created the Pottery Barn look with these vanities using auto cad or something like that, and his dad used Joel's plans and built them for us! This was by far the most time consuming part as everyone has to work, so these had to be done on the side. They were worth the wait though! We had them stained and then we chose Alaskan White granite for our countertop. Charlie also made the frame for the mirrors to match! Can we say talented?!?! He should really do this for a living.

 Close up of the big vanity...

This was the other one. It was a little bit smaller, so the vanities match, but are not identical.
And here is our new swimming pool! I mean, tub! The boys think it is the greatest thing ever! I have to agree! It is humongous. We decided to not do a Jacuzzi tub like we had before. No offense to Jacuzzi lovers, but I think they are the most disgusting things in the world! It is next to impossible to clean in those jets! I twinge just thinking about it. So, we did save some money by going with just a garden tub! Oh and I wanted everything to be in a square/rectangular shape instead of round (square sinks, tub, etc.). I guess it is a bit more modern? I think it just gives a more clean look.

We went with a tumbled marble stone around the tub surround (again, it's rectangular and in a brick pattern). It's also around the shower and on the shower floor and ceiling.

Lastly, the shower. We decided to go with some decorative glass in the shower. I think it may be a bit much, but I do think it ties the tile with the granite and gives the bathroom a bit of pop!

I would like to say that this is the last renovation that we ever do, but I know it's not! We survived though and are enjoying it very much! Thank you to Charlie for helping us out tremendously on it!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Happy Birthday PJ and Last Soccer Game

We headed up to the lake Friday afternoon. The boys were super excited about going. I was actually sort of hoping for a weekend at home, but Joel needed to go help his dad and most importantly, we were having a birthday celebration for Papa John on Saturday. He turns 96 this week! We couldn't miss that!
We woke up Saturday to a beautiful morning! I took the boys and the dogs in the gator out to the field and we just ran and ran. Here was a rare still moment...
The boys were anxious to go see what Daddy, Jordan, and Pops were doing, so we headed down to the area right next to the lake and watched the big boys pick up load after load of wood from the old boathouse (they are in the process of building a new boat house--we sure are going to miss the old red one!) and take it to the burning pile. The highlight for the little boys was getting to ride in Pops truck to and from the burning pile without car seats! (Don't worry, it was all still on the farm!) The boys love to just play in Pops' truck and they literally did this for an hour!

Harrison loved throwing rocks in the lake, well, at least until his shoes got all muddy and that was the end of that! He does not like to be dirty!

 Gator riding with Shug!

 And lots of playing with the old tractor toys...

 The boys even snuck in a big green tractor ride before we left to celebrate Papa John.

Sweet Papa John needed Hudson's help to blow out the candles (although I'm pretty darn sure he could have done it himself!).

Sunday was Hudson's last soccer game of the season. It has gone by too fast! Hudson loved playing soccer and while I was a little frustrated watching it at the beginning of the season, Hudson improved so much throughout the season and he almost scored a goal yesterday! He learned so much this year and I was just so proud of him at the end! I have to keep reminding myself that several players on our team were already 6! That age gap makes a big difference and I will say that all of our 4 year olds on the team hung in there like champs! I can't wait to see how they all do next year!

Highlight of the day was getting another trophy! He LOVES his trophies. A lot of nights, I will find his trophies underneath his pillow in bed! How he sleeps with them under his pillow I will never know! His sweet coach said a little something about each player on the team when he handed out the trophies and really made each child feel special. We have lucked out in the coach department in the past year!
Now we have our Sunday afternoons back. Whatever will we do?!?!? Joel will be tackling my "honey-do" list that I have written up! He's thrilled! :)

Friday, November 1, 2013

Happy Halloween!

I'm just going to wrap up the Halloween festivities in one post. Lots of pictures here.
Wednesday night, we headed to a church in our neighborhood for their fall festival. We had always heard it was fun, and it did not disappoint! It was extra crowded though because I think everyone was afraid that Halloween night would be rained out.
Hudson loves to have his face painted, so this was one of the first things we did. He wanted a pirate face and I thought this was so cute!  
One of the things they had was this tower below that you had to climb up to the top and then there was a big inflatable slide once you got to the top. We never thought Hudson would be able to do it, but he was determined. It had about 5 different levels that he had to lift himself up through (each level was woven to where you had to squeeze through each square and pull yourself up to the next level). I'm not even sure I could have done it! It takes a good bit of arm strength. Hudson did it though! We were super proud of him. He beat a lot of the older kids up there!

 And here he is at the bottom! All of these pictures are a little blurry.

Harrison spent the majority of the night crying. When we got there, they handed out candy bags and Harrison just wanted to load up on candy. We had to draw the line somewhere and he was not happy about it. He's also getting some teeth and was tired, so overall it was just a rotten night for him. He did finally perk up and decided that he might just like the small child inflatable about 30 minutes from when it was time to leave. It was not a pretty sight when we told him it was time to go home! Good thing we only live 5 minutes away because it was a loud ride home!

 Thursday morning, the kids had their Halloween parade and parties at school. Hudson decided he wanted to be a Transformer, and Harrison wanted to be Spiderman. I love this picture below!

 Harrison's class got to sit and watch the parade this year. Next year, they will participate! They were all so good sitting here waiting patiently!

Harrison's sweet friends!
The parade finally started and the 4's were the last to come through. Hard to believe this is the last year in preschool for Hudson.

He would not wear his mask (which so happened to be the second mask we had gotten him to wear because the first one just didn't work). Ugh!

 Then, it was party time! Can you tell Hudson was a bit excited!?!?!
Hudson has a crazy teacher that allows the boys to sit together and the girls to sit together. She swears it is the only way they behave...I don't believe that for a second! Ha!

 Then, it was on to Harrison's party! What a difference a year makes. Last year, if the parents came, the kids were crying the entire time because they knew their parents would leave them. This year, they just enjoyed it! I was actually planning to take Harrison home with me when I left, but his teachers had told them they were going outside after they ate, and Harrison gave me a big ole "NO" when I told him it was time to leave! So, I left him there for a little while! Makes me happy to know he enjoys being there now! Hudson wanted to stay too!

Finally, night time came and with the threat of rain, the neighborhood decided to start early, which was fine with us anyway! The kids picked what they wanted to wear, and this time, it was Batman and a cow!
 Harrison is hugging the cat! I'm going to be sad not to hear him say "back cat bow up" every single day (black cat blow up!). He loved to plug that thing in and watch it move!

 Harrison caught on fast! He and Hudson ran from house to house and did not want to stop! Harrison said "Twick Tweat" and "Appy Ween" at each house. It was so cute!

 The kids were a little afraid of the big spiders at this front door...
 Terrified...(and of course I had to get it on camera!).
 We have loved this house's decorations this year!

 Look who we found! Pops and Migi joined us!

 We probably hit 20 houses and then called it quits. The kids were sweaty and Hudson was begging to go to our house and hand out candy, which he loves equally as much as getting it himself! He took care of filling all of our trick or treaters buckets! It was so fun!

What a fun end to Halloween! The rain did finally come around 7, but we were pretty much done anyway! Halloween has been fun, but now we are ready for Thanksgiving and Christmas!!!