Sunday, June 19, 2011

Father's Day

Happy Father's Day to the man my kiddos are blessed enough to call their daddy and I, my husband.

Seriously, if you have been around Chris for very long, you know what a phenomenal father he is. I cannot wait to see his relationship with our kiddos grow. We are so blessed to have a man that would give up anything for us. He makes many sacrifices for the betterment of our family and I am so grateful I chose him to marry.
Happy Father's Day, honey. I am so proud of the father you are to our children.

Friday, June 17, 2011

I hesitate...

I have been putting off writing this post for over a week now. I am terrified that we are going to regress back to the land of diapers. But, I don't think there is any turning back now...
Eli is potty trained!

I cannot believe how big he is. What in the world happened to my baby boy?!? Where did he go? How did it happen this fast and without my consent?

Here are a couple of pictures Chris snapped of him while we were on a photoshoot last weekend. Who better to test the light for us? :) He LOVED Jaxon's football, so for his big reward for no accidents last week, we went to the store and bought him one. Heaven help us if he is a football player. His daddy and I will totally be out of our element. Not that I am limiting him at all though- he is pretty amazing.

He has done great. We started going out of the house on diaper-free outings last Sunday. No accidents! He still is a little fearful when we aren't at home, but I expected much worse. Now, we will just have to work on someone besides me taking him- like the grandparents! Today we made a two hour trek and still no accidents. Wow, if someone would have told me that everything we went through in the first three days would work I would have laughed in their face.
We still use diapers at night...will someone please explain pull-ups to me? We bought a box and they are super expensive! Ah! (Okay, most of you know I am cheap) What is the point of them? Isn't it pretty much like a diaper at night anyway? Except that they can pull them down like underwear? Honestly, I really don't care about that...Eli seems to adjust just fine with out the pull-ups, so we will keep wearing diapers at night for a while.

Funny conversation with Eli yesterday:
(Referring to the Cars on his big boy underwear, as we are putting them back on from a successful potty break)
Eli: They are mad!
Me: They are mad? Why are they mad?
Eli: They need a cookie. Cookies make them happy!
Me: Cookies make them happy? Do cookies make Eli happy too?
Eli: Yeah!
(The Car charaters did look a little angry...more along the line of competitive though, but I didn't feel like explaining that...I will save that conversation for another day)

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

San Antonio

A month ago we went to San Antonio. Yep. I am that far behind.

It was a work trip for Chris and he asked Ileigh and I to tag along. Eli went on "acation" to White Deer to ride John Deere tractors and look at big trucks all day.

I didn't want to go. I didn't want to leave Eli and I didn't think that Ileigh would do very well on the plane. Eli had a few rough moments when he wanted his mommy and daddy, and Ileigh did great except for about 20 minutes of one flight. Take it from me, those of you with small babies: It doesn't get easier for you to leave your child. Honestly, I think that I worry more about Eli now than when he was really little. Start early. You need time away...and so do they.

Anyway, here was Ileigh's bed for the trip:

Comfy, cozy, huh? Parenting has helped our improvising skills...

Here is Ileigh and her daddy...:) 

And her mommy, who comes in at a close second to her daddy. I'm okay with that. 

We love San Antonio...Chris proposed on the River Walk. It will always have a special place in our hearts. 
See how Ileigh is taking in all the sights?

She was very good for the most part and tons of people stopped us to comment on what a good baby she was, let alone how adorable she is...:)

She did get a little tired of her car seat though... 

We were staying right across the street from the Alamo. I enjoyed watching all the school kids touring it from our room window while editing pictures and waiting on Chris to get out of his meetings... 

We took the opportunity to "culture" Ileigh... 

Daddy explained the significance of the Alamo...

Aren't they sweet? :) 

Oh, yes little one, the eyes of Texas are upon could they not be? You are amazing, little one. 

Chris got a new program for HDR images that he is loving and loved testing it out... 

Pretty cool... 

We were gone over Chris' birthday, so we celebrated the week before. Of course we had to find a birthday cake on the actual day-of though!

Love my hubby. To many, many more happy birthdays!

Monday, June 06, 2011

Potty Time=Party Time!

Ha! That is a lie.

This weekend we decided to cut diapers, cold-turkey.

Over our Memorial Day trip, Chris and Eli went swimming. When they came back to the room, we showered Eli and I didn't put a diaper back on him. He started using the bathroom on the floor of the hotel. I quickly used the opportunity to tell Eli what was happening and rushed him to the potty! He was very proud of himself and we had many successful potty moments on the trip in the hotel.

Things were looking very optimistic. I had ordered a potty chair; it was delivered on Thursday. I thought we better put it together to make sure it fit. Eli was super excited about it. He couldn't stop talking about the man in the big truck that brought his potty...he was going to use it like on "acation" (vacation) 
He even got to help me put it together...we were both wearing our construction hats- safety first!

Oh, he LOVED it. He kept asking to use it and would just sit on it for long periods of time...sweet bliss.
This was going to be a snap...

Saturday we had morning plans, but we took off Eli's diaper as soon as he woke up from his afternoon nap...
It. Was. Horrible.

I wondered if Hell was close to potty-training. (I still think it might be...maybe)

Chris and I were both frustrated beyond belief. It was very time consuming. Don't plan on doing anything else while using this method...even with two adults. Set a timer and use it.

We did make it through the day with the general concept down, but Eli's enthusiasm for his beloved potty chair quickly faded, as did his interest in M&Ms.

Saturday night we had Bible Study, so we slapped on a diaper and took the kids to church. Never have I been so thankful to see those nursery doors.


As soon as Eli woke up we took off his diaper. A few hours later we had church, so we slapped another diaper on and went on our way. The diaper came off as soon as we got back home...and if we thought Saturday was awful, Sunday was 20X worse.
I thought about quitting. I almost cried thinking that Chris got to go to work tomorrow and I would be stuck here potty training....(man, he owes me big time though!)
There was great crying and gnashing of teeth...from everyone involved.


As soon as Eli woke up, I took off his diaper.

We have had two accidents and eight successful potties! Woot! It has been much better...

Here are pictures from Eli's favorite reward thus far... 

Playing with the water hose! I don't know if this was the best idea, but it worked! 

If you plan to do this soon, go ahead and buy the big bag of M&Ms...oh, and don't be on a diet. M&Ms might be a good treat for you too...

Eli actually asked to hold Ileigh today, so I had to get a picture! He is just so big!

Our next reward....more of the water hose...

In conclusion:
I decided to go ahead and put underwear on him. Some say to do everything naked at first. We started out that way, but then I got paranoid that he was just going on the floor and I wasn't noticing...pretty sure that happened.

Don't watch a movie or let them sit on the couch. They will be so "into" the movie that they won't think about what they need to do.

Go ahead and buy the "Party Size" M&M is going to be a party alright.

Having something to entertain him while on the potty is helpful like a quick book or a conversation about what colors he wants his M&Ms to be. Get on his level too. Eli does much better when I am sitting on the floor in front of him talking with him than when I am standing over him.

Find great rewards for him. Eli is loving playing my guitar, spraying the water hose and watching an episode of Thomas the Train.

Push the liquids. We made lemonade for Eli to drink...whatever you can think of to help give him plenty of "opportunity" to master his new skill.

 Keep in mind, Eli is almost 2 1/2. I know he understands every single thing I am saying. He understands the concept of rewards and he can tell me what he is thinking...I can't imagine doing this earlier when I couldn't tell if he was understanding or not and he didn't have the skills to say what was going through his little head.

Set a timer...and go by it. Our two accidents today were compeletly my fault because I wasn't using my timer. We did 25 min. intervals.

It has also seemed to help when I tell him "We can't get our Cars (the type of underwear he has on) wet, so you need to tell me if you need to go use the potty."

Well, that's all I got, friends. If you are planning on doing this soon, GOOD LUCK! I will keep you updated on our progress.

Friday, June 03, 2011

Memorial Day Trip: Cowboy Hall of Fame

The day after our Zoo adventure, we headed out to the Cowboy Hall of Fame for the Chuck Wagon Cook-off. We had been a few times in years past, but this was the first time with kiddos.

Eli LOVED it. He loved the boots, the horses, the cowboy hats, the guitars...he might have stayed there all day if we would have let him. But, it was VERY hot and VERY windy. Ileigh slept a little and fussed a lot...:) but I think she enjoyed it too.

Here is Eli and I watching the bands play. As soon as he heard the music he stopped and asked us where Grandy was! I love this kid!

Here is Eli on hs first horse ride. I guess it was technically a pony. It didn't matter; I was super nervous. My stomach was in knots and I think had one hand on his shorts and the other on his leg the entire time. I just knew he would fall off. He didn't :). He did great- such a big boy. (I, on the other hand, almost threw up I was so nervous!) 

Brad and Emma (Please take note that Brad was clearly more comfortable that I was!). 

Next Eli wanted to rind the bull- He really enjoyed that! I couldn't believe that the guy didn't hold on to him! 

We colored a little, 

went on a wagon ride, 

and of course had to catch another ride on the ponies before we headed into the museum (air conditioning, thankyouJesus). 

At this point, Ileigh was asleep in her car seat, so the three of us posed for a quick little picture... 

What a great time! I hope we get to go back next year!

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Memorial Day: OKC Zoo

In a quick, last second decision, the whole family decided to head to OKC for the long weekend. I think everyone was ready to get out of town!

We decided to take all the kiddos to the Zoo! Eli went when he was really little, so it was neat for us to see everything again and remember our first little family zoo outing.

Here are Memamaw, Gramps, Eli and Emma waiting to head into the zoo...

Emma showing Eli the rhino... 

Miss Ileigh along for the ride...

Gramps was having a ton of fun! :) 

Eli was very excited about snack time as we waited for the tram. 

Alison and Emma... 

Eli LOVED riding the tram... 

Me, Alison and Emma... 

The boys... 

Ileigh did great considering it was VERY hot. We decided that the tram was the best way to see the zoo...and that one time around was plenty. :) The kiddos had a blast.

A dip in the pool was the best way to cool down after a hot morning at the zoo... 

I hung out in the hotel room with this little cutie while Daddy and Eli played in the pool!