Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

"Am I really 5 now?"

People, I have a five year old. It's almost hard for me to write. It really feels like just yesterday I was bringing home the cutest lil' six pound boy you've ever seen. He came out of the womb with an opinion and a plan and to this day maintains that personality. 

He is truly a joy. Parker has quite a few traits that make this momma proud. He hates to see people in pain and is extremely affectionate. He is super creative and loves the outdoors. He is so very smart and is always wanting to learn something new. He loves to make people smile and he gets joy out of being a helper. 

On the flip side, there are a few traits that Parker has exhibited lately that throw up red flags for me. I have my work cut out for me in a few areas.  Parker is bossy. He also has a bit of an attitude when things don't go his way. I feel like if I do my job as a parent and condition him correctly, these two traits can turn into passionate leadership. I read and ask a lot of questions on how to handle children with Parker's personality. I don't worry too much, though, considering that myself and my husband are both a little on the bossy side and have led successful lives. Another aspect of Parker's personality that can get hard to handle at times is that he has the emotional drama of a sixteen year old girl. You wouldn't believe some of the comments he's made to me when being disciplined. Unbelievable. Luckily, those comments have brought a lot of laughter for me over the past five years. Overall, I am so proud of my little man. Sometimes I catch myself just staring at his sweet little face. I am so blessed to have him.

We were in Florida when Parker turned five. I woke him up in the morning with a kiss and a whispered "Happy Birthday." The kid who normally takes ten minutes to roll around and make his way out of the bedroom, shot up and said with so much excitement in his eyes, "Am I really five now!?!" He continued to ask me that throughout the day. So cute.

I planned a last minute trip to Florida so that I could be with my friend, Heidi, as her husband got a much needed kidney transplant. To read about how that family is doing, you can read her blog. Such an incredible story. It worked out because my parents really wanted time with the boys. While there, we managed to make it to Legoland one day and spent a lot of time in the pool.

They are such good boys on the plane now.
 He loves table hockey.
 They were in heaven at Legoland.
 My big five year old!
 I love his crazy eyes :)

 Graham got to ride his first roller coaster and LOVED it. He kept his hands up the entire time!

 Someone was worn out and just crashed.

 I love these boys.

 My family can't get together without going to The Barrel at least once.

We had a combined birthday party for the boys this past weekend when we got home. I'll blog about that soon, but it will be from a new blog page. I decided to switch to and hope that you will continue to follow me over there.

This blog has all been transfered and I have moved to:

See you over there!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Something Simple

When you commit to buying a house, you dive in head first knowing many things about it. The age of the home, the appraisal price, square footage, problem areas, expected updates, etc. are all major factors in the decision. However, one aspect of your home purchase that you don't really get too familiar with until the papers are signed is the people living next door to you. You don't get to interview them before moving in and you can't cancel the deal if you end up with "the crazies" a little too close for comfort. Well, we have been soooooo blessed. We have really enjoyed getting to know our neighbors and are so happy that we can actually be friends with the people who share our property line.

That being said, my neighbor Emily and I have discovered we have a lot in common. We both are mommas who enjoy sitting and sipping on the front porch, sarcasm is our second language, and we both luuuuve sweets :) Soon after moving in our home, Emily had a birthday and I decided I wanted to make her something yummy. Dark Chocolate cake with white chocolate buttercream seemed appropriate. I wanted to try a new frosting technique and I wanted to keep the cake simple and elegant. Emily is a bit of a southern Belle ;) 

After watching this tutorial, I filled my decorating bag and went to town. It only took about 5-10 minutes. Easy peasy and so pretty. Give it a try on your next cake!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

It's so hot hot hot in here!

Got to love some Rascal Flatts ;) Today is the first day in what seems like weeks that we've had a decent temperature outside. I am sitting out on my deck writing this post as the boys play. They aren't allowed in the creek today, because the past few storms have been dooseys and the water is rather high.   We were blessed to have only lost power for a few days compared to some of our friends who have been out of commission for over 9 days. Our yard is a mess from all the crazy wind! I see it as something that needs to be picked up while the boys see the downed tree limbs as endless sword fighting opportunities. There's boys for ya.

I can't catch up with all that we've been doing, so I won't try. We've made some progress on our home inside and out. Currently, I'm trying to decide the color for the entry, dining, and formal living room. They are all connected in a way so I'm doing a simple beige/tan color in all of them. It's so hard deciding on a beigey-tan color! I need to pick it out and get it on the walls. Not sure how long that will take. Remember people, I'm doing this all myself while watching two little people. It's takes a bit longer than desired.

While we like to DIY things ourselves most of the time, we try to realize when something just isn't going to happen unless we hire a professional. Doing bamboo floors landed in that category. We wanted to try and learn how to put them down, but lets face it, David is busy and I don't want him spending multiple weekends on his knees putting down floors. We hired someone while we were in Myrtle Beach to have the dining room, formal living room, and upstairs landing all laid by the time we got home. It was rather awesome to walk into a completed project. Too bad we can't just hire all our work to be done while going on multiple vacations. A girl can dream, can't she?

Don't mind the disheveled and/or empty look in these rooms. Just focus on the pretty new floor.

Like I said before, I wouldn't have necessarily picked Bamboo as our hardwood of choice, but since they had already laid so much of it in the house, we felt it was the best decision to just stick with it and we are really happy with how it turned out. 

In other improvement news, the outside landscaping got a cheap makeover. We didn't want to pour tons of money into it, but the drabness of the wanna-be flower beds wasn't working for us. Here's the view of the house when we moved in.
Yeah, the bush kind of blocked half of the house. Here's the new view.
We replanted the hydrangeas from the last house around the mailbox and brought up some rocks from the creek as an edging. It will fill in and look more established with time, but I love how much more open it is. 

The front beds were in sad sad shape.

We ripped up all the existing bushes and edging out. We transplanted the hostas from the pots to the ground and bought a few evergreens for up next to the house. We just added some annuals in the middle this year to save money. We'd like to add a few perennials every year til our landscaping is pretty, full, and established, but this year was just baby steps.

Better, huh? I know they are a little barren and lacking height/depth, but it's a start! 

Monday, June 18, 2012

Sun and Sand

Last year was my first time to Myrtle Beach.  I was a little nervous about going the first time because you get mixed reviews about what it's like there. I've heard everything from it being a wonderful place for children to others calling it a nasty, touristy, crowded beach. Being from Florida, I pictured Daytona. I'm not into Daytona. However, I actually liked Myrtle Beach. In fact, I liked it enough to go back this year. Yes, it is crowded and touristy. But, there really is a lot to do and with toddlers a nice relaxing vacation just isn't going to happen. So, why not go some place where we can play all day at the beach/water park and then see shows after putt-putting at night? I think I may change it up next year and do the whole relaxing natural beach thing, but we had a great "touristy" vacation this year! Warning: Insane amounts of pictures up ahead.
 The boys were obsessed with the ocean this year. They weren't the least bit scared and spent hours "fighting" the waves.
 I dug up a sand crab for Graham and Parker the first day we were there and the love affair began. I am not exaggerating to say we collected these things for at least an hour every morning.
 Not all of Graham's crabs made it back to the sand. He loved on them a little too hard sometimes.
Graham called them bugs.
We went to Alligator Adventure again this year. This time, we met up with our friends, the McCollams, on their way leaving the beach. So good getting to spend a few hours with them!

 I remember when it was just the four of us and Brooke. Wow...what a few years can hold!

 Our cousin Michael from Charleston, SC drove up a few hours to spend one day at the beach with us. He brought his beautiful, sweet girlfriend Diane with him. We always have fun when we get together with them. As you can see, my boys kind of love them.
 What a gang.
 Aunt Sarah flew in for a few days too. We were very excited about my 28th birthday. That's how we roll.
 There were days of sunshine and days of clouds. I really enjoyed both and no one got sunburned. Success.

 We planned to be at the beach the same time as the Hargraves again too. The boys enjoyed lots of beach time together.

 It would probably help him to open his eyes.
 Great pals.



 Building castles with poppy.
 Even Nana got in on the action.
 I know it's crazy, but the Martins were also at the beach at the same time and only a few hotels down. We spent one morning on the beach with them. Parker and Collin ran themselves silly.
Sheen and I just sat and chatted. We're good at it :)
 It was amazing how much easier this year was at the beach. We actually spend lots of time just sitting in the sand building castles.
 We took the boys to a Pirate show one evening and it didn't disappoint. They loooooooved it.

 I'm a big fan of Crocs on kids. I'm not afraid to admit it despite all the fashion hate they receive. My boys are always covered in dirt or mud and Crocs just wash right off. Also, a two year old can put them on himself. Total bonus. Hate all you want, but my kids will wear them as long as I can possibly tolerate the way they look. However, they don't belong with every outfit and that didn't matter this week. None of Graham's shoes fit right now and I hadn't made it to a store to buy him new ones yet. So, Crocs were worn every day. All day. On a positive note, we found a cute pair of Sperry's for him the last day while shopping the outlets.
 I'm sorry, and completely partial, but these two boys are too freakin cute.
 Being pirates. Arrrrr! Such a boy mom.
David took me to the Divine Fish House at Murrell's Inlet for my birthday. Good times!
I'm not sure what it is about boys, but David could spend hours building sand castles. I'm really not that into it. I like to lay in the sand and dig with my fingers. Sometimes I'll make a pile of sand with the wet drippy sand i dig out, but that the extent of my building desires. 
Apparently, half the fun of building castles is knocking them down.
 Chula joined us at the beach this year. She like the sand and sun, but wasn't much for the loud waves.
 I'm so blessed.

We got this picture last year.

They are growing up on me!

 Graham is saying, "Hello Mr. Chula dog" in a very high pitched voice. He's a strange one, that kid.

 Oh, this child and his expressions.

 Loves writing in the sand.


We had a blast and made some great memories last week. It's always a shock to come home after vacation, but we are now back to reality. Hey, it's all good because it's still summer!!! What to get into next? I'll update you on our latest house project soon. I'm super excited. Let's just say...the cat pee smell is gone for good!