Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Past Two Weeks

March 14th - Emma and Hannah both love puzzles. It amazes me that most of my second graders do not know how to put together a puzzle. Bo snapped this picture of Emma with all of her puzzles lined up after she had completed them.

March 19th-20th -Bo's parents were here for a great weekend. Bo and his dad ran in the Shamrock 8K at the oceanfront. The rest of us did not make it due to traffic and having to get up way too early. Instead, we slept in. Cindy enjoyed some time outside with the girls while I did some cleaning. We had yummy Five Guys for lunch. Later we went out to MacArthur and had Max and Erma's for dinner. The girls loved getting their ice cream again. Bo and his dad took the girls to the play area again while Cindy and I did a little shopping. On Sunday we all went to church. I kept the nursery for the first time since joining and had four little ones Hannah's age. Hannah did not like me hold a few other babies! But, she did enjoy me being in her class. Emma went to big church as usual and they all said she was great. We went to the Broken Egg for lunch and that about completed our weekend. It was so nice to have Bo's parents here for an extended stay. Later on Sunday went to my cousin's house for a cookout to celebrate his birthday. The kids had fun playing with some other children too.

March 23rd - Can we say beautiful day??? 78 degrees?? Yes! Bo cooked us some steaks for dinner. We actually had a night to sit down altogether and enjoy a meal. Hannah ate all of her dinner and Emma was not eating as much. We began to bribe her to eat by saying we would go to the park across the street. She still refused to eat her steak. Hannah was ready to go so Bo got ready and he and Hannah started to leave. I told Emma she could not go unless she ate some more dinner. She got out of her chair and watched Hannah and Bo walking to the park from our door. Boy, did I feel bad because she did not eat. I was cleaning the kitchen and all of a sudden heard her say, "mommy, my steak please. I eat my steak now." I gave her plate back to her and sure enough, she ate it!! I was so proud of myself for sticking my ground! I told her I would go change and then she could go the park. I was upstairs and heard, "mommy, what are you doing??" So, we met Bo and Hannah at the park too. They both had a blast swinging and sliding. Emma will slide with her hands up too. Then we went to get some ice cream. We had such a fun evening. I kept waiting for the perfect thunderstorm to complete my day, but we just got some rain. Here are some pictures of them eating ice cream.

March 24 - Hannah used the potty!!!!!!!!! She sits on the potty every night before bathtime. But, tonight she actually went - 15th months old! Go Hannah!!! Bo was out of town so it was just me and Emma who witnessed it. I was so proud of her!

March 26-27- We had a weekend in Raleigh with all of Bo's family. We had not seen his sister, brother in law, niece, nephew and grandmother since Christmas. The weather was not perfect, but it was wonderful seeing the kids play so well together. They had a great time and we did bundle them up to hunt for eggs since they won't be together on Easter. They were just too cute together. Emma and Gibby would just go in the back room and read books. Owen loved Hannah. Emma would keep saying, "Owen's so funny." They all showed off their new skills and knowledge. It is somewhat sad seeing how big Emma and Owen are now. They have lost all of the "baby" look. Hannah keeps up right along with them. She would not let me hold her hand or help her hunt for eggs. On Saturday we did a Kohls trip. We also celebrated Mary's, Bo's and Bo's dad's birthdays with my favorite strawberry dessert. After the kids took a bath (all together) we watched "Life As We Know It." I thought it was a good movie, with some very tender moments. We all went to church today. Emma went to Sunday School with Gibby and Owen to "Nana's" class that she teaches. When we got there she was excited to show us her water painting. Hannah did great in the nursery. We had lunch and packed up. I wish the weekends were just a little longer. It always seems as soon as the kids start having so much fun that we have to leave. But, it was a very nice weekend together. We are looking foward to our beach week!

getting ready to hunt for eggs!
miss independent
emma started to eat her candy
the four cutest kids
owen and hannah
emma and that silly face!
Gibby and Emma playing IPad

We got home around 4:30. After dinner me and Emma made cupcakes. They were both ready for bed pretty early so we went upstairs to do bathtime and guess what???? Hannah used the potty AGAIN!!! Y-E-S! Bo was actually with her this time and he was like, "she's doing it!!!!! she's going!!!" We all did the potty dance for Hannah. Emma said, "yeaaa Hannah Boo."

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Hannah's Words

I did this for Emma, so I wanted to note the words that Hannah says on her own now:

yeee (lilly)
ziz it (fix it - she says this all the time, when she wants something opened or when she needs help with something - so cute)
pop pop
uh huh (high pitched)
alllll done
riiiiggghhhtt there
Zeeee (lindsay)
cook cook
yap (for sit in lap)
bye bye
teef (teeth)
lamby (her stuffed lamb)
pappy (pacifier)
ump (jump)
Donald Duck
Neeee (minnie)
rock rock
choo choo

She is repeating a lot of what we say, but these words and I am sure there are more, are what she says independently. She knows songs like Itsy Bitsy Spider, If your happy and you know it, Mr. Sun, Wheels on the Bus, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, etc. She does all of the hand motions herself. She also knows her body parts such as hair, nose, toes, fingers, knees, teeth, ears, etc. I have even noticed her saying letter names already like M, E and H. I know the E and H are because we have to label so many toys that are the same! Hannah also knows all of her animal sounds. When I ask her if she is mommy's baby and she says, "uh huh!" in the highest little pitch - it is so sweet. She is very determined to keep up with Emma and she knows what she wants such as what snack is on her mind. She will also let me know when Emma is doing something wrong such as taking something that is hers. It is funny how she knows she is the baby, but is not afraid to let Emma know when she is wrong!

Emma's New Face

Last night I was trying to get pictures of the girls in their matching outfits but Emma kept making this face - it cracked us up!

I tried to get some more, but they were pretty uncooperative for me to get the whole outfits- at least they love each other!

This morning Hannah kept sitting in Emma's lap - so sweet!

We didn't do too much today. I did a lot of laundry catching up from our trip. I sold something on Craigslist this morning so I had to work out meeting the person. We watched some basketball and I managed to get Jimmy Buffett tickets for May!!! The girls played a lot and decided they didn't want to take naps today. We made hamburgers for dinner and they were in bed by 8, which is very rare. Bo and I also managed to do some organizing. I hated being inside so much on the beautiful day, but we needed the time at home today.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Vegas Trip

I really cannot begin to describe how much fun we had in Vegas. Although Bo was very busy with business, my mom and I had a blast and checked everything off of our list. I was able to hang out with Bo and some of his team late at night though.

Vegas is a completely different from any other place I have been to and I have been fortunate to travel to many places: London, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, NYC, California, Boston, Hawaii, St. Lucia, and many other places along the east coat. It is mostly like NYC, but the people there are so much more friendly and it is more clean and compact than NY. First, when you land in the Vegas airport you immediagely see slot machines! The other difference is the size of these hotels. They are massive. I still do not know how to get around MGM. We discovered a whole section we had not seen until the last night and that is where we stayed. All of the buildings are just huge and beautiful.

layover in Charlotte
Bo's flight was delayed serveral hours and he was just leaving the east coast as my mom and I literally landed in Vegas. It was a 10 minute cab ride to the hotel. We checked in and then hit the strip. We took a cab down the strip to get an idea of where we were in relation to the other hotels/casinos. We stopped at the Bellagio and watched the fountains. I could watch those fountains for hours. They play every 15 minutes to different songs and they are just beautiful. It really makes you feel like you are in Vegas to see them. Then we just happened to be across the street from the mile shops at Planet Hollywood so we strolled through them. We ate a late dinner on the fourth floor of Outback overlooking the strip and then went to the 4 story M&M store where I got some cute things for the girls. That was about it for night 1.

Me and the Bellagio Fountains - could watch them for hours

M&M Store

Bo ended up arriving around 3 in the morning Vegas time. Mom and I had a packed day planned. We left around 8 and went to Excalibur for breakfast. That hotel connected to the Luxor which is where we saw the Bodies Exhibit and the Titantic Exhibit. Both were awesome. The Bodies is real human bodies and each room displays a type of system - circulatory, muscular, digestive, reproductive, etc. It was awesome but very complex to understand. You also saw signs of disease such as cancer, arthritis and you could compare a healthy organ to an unhealthy organ. The Titanic exhibit was cool because it contained the "big piece" of the ship brought to the surface in 1987. It also had the staircase like the movie Titanic where mom and I got our picture on. Of course it contained personal belongings, lots of dishes, models of the cabins, and facts with pictures of crew, deveopers and passengers.

beautiful, sunny Vegas!

New York, New York across from MGM

me inside the Luxor for Bodies and Titanic - also thought I would show the pic to my students for our Egypt unit!

Our next stop was to Ceasars Forum Shops. Let's see: Tiffanys, Louis Vuitton, Harry Winston, Prada, Cartier, Pandora, David Yurman, Burberry, Christian Dior, Fendi,, Uggs, Valentino, Gucci, and about 100 others. I was shocked at the high end shopping in Vegas. We ate lunch there and I checked on the girls during lunch. Bo's mom said they were doing great. They had slept great, ate great, and were napping at the time. I was so glad and I could relax so much more knowing they were okay. Although it would have been very easy to spend some major money at these shops, it was not in the plan! Then we headed to Flamingo to pick up our show tickets to Donny and Marie and then headed to the Venetian. If I ever go back I would definately stay there. It is gorgeous and in the middle of the strip. Outside of the Venetian is the was museum which was a whole lof of fun. Then, we went inside the shops in the Venetian and took the little gondala ride. The people we were with were actually from North Carolina so that was neat. Our gondala person was a college student majoring in theater arts. Her voice was amazing. They would sing as they turned around in the canals. By then it was time to head back to MGM to get ready for the night's show - Peep Show starring Holly Madison. This was back at Planet Hollywood. I loved all of the glitsy lighting that was in the hotel. The show was good - very out of the norm but I loved seeing Holly after I have watched her on TV for several years. There definatley some funny parts. Josh from her show can really sing and he was very entertaining. After that we met up wtih Bo back at MGM for a late dinner/drinks. Bo and I hit the casino for awhile while mom went up to our room. I turned in shortly after that while Bo played Black Jack for who knows how long. He stayed separately from mom and I since he was with the company. But, we were still on the same floor.

Venetian shops

Day 2: We were up at 5:00 am. Why???? Oh, we decided to book a helicopter tour of the Grand Canyon the previous day. Why not? When would I have this opportunity again? Not any time soon at least. I was there, so we did it. We went through Maverick Tours - top notch. They picked us up, took us to their building at the airport, did a little training video and we were sitting in a 7 passenger helicopter with leather seats and great views all around. It was amazing to see this part of our country. We flew over Lake Meade, Hoover Dam, Colorado River, West Rim of the Canyon, Bowl of Fire and then back over the strip. We actually landed in the canyon right by the river. It was absolutely breathtaking. They even served us champagne and h'orderves. My mom went when she was little when her dad was still alive. Knowing that she was there last with her dad was kind of emotional for her, but I really think he was with us. I really believe that he was proud of us for doing something so out of our element. Our pilot was awesome too. There were about six other helicopters with us and it was really cool meeting some other people. The Grand Canyon is beautiful and I still cannot believe I was there to experience it. Bo was not too happy with us because he really wanted to go too! Mom and I also were smart to think ahead. We had not brought any coats with us so we purchased some cute Vegas sweatshirts to wear - good thing because it was cooler in the canyon.

Afterwards we returned to the MGM and took a three hour nap! Then we hit New York, New York after eating at RainForest Cafe in our hotel. Mom realized she left her Coach sunglasses in the helicopter so we had to arrange for them to bring them back, which they did. We got ready for the night's show and met Bo for some drinks for awhile. Then, mom and I headed to the Donny and Marie show. is a huge Donny Osmond fan. I really had no idea what to expect. I know there names, and I know they were both recently on Dancing with the Stars. But, I was not sure how I would enjoy this show. However, this was my mom's main reason for coming to Vegas. She even purchased front row tickets - I mean her elbow rested on the stage. As soon as the show began I loved it. They were the nicest, friendliest, funniest, personable people ever. Marie was right in front of us and talked to us - I mean conversation - while Donny was singing and she was waiting her turn to sing. She said, "look at these boots! I can't dance in these! What do you think?" They shook hands, went out in the crowd, played off of the audience - it was fantastic. Donny shook my mom's hand twice, and me once. BUT....the huge thing was that my mom had taken her old Donny Osmond album cover into the show. The just held it in front of her. Donny and Marie both noticed what she had. During a number Donny came over and put the album beside his face. The large screens were showing it in front of everyone. Then, he signed the album cover for her IN FRONT OF EVERYONE. My mom and I had the spotlight on us. It was awesome. Through the whole show they talked to us and made eye contact with us so much. I loved seeing their old videos play in the background and I learned a lot about them. I can definately see why my mom was such a fan. It was really an incredible show. I will never forget that moment with my mom and how excited we were.

in the Grand Canyon - really thinking of my grandfather here and how much I knew he loved it here

our ride

Donny and Marie Show - see the stage?

Mom's trip was complete so she went back to MGM and Bo and I met up at Craft at MGM with some others he works with. We enjoyed some drinks and food for awhile then Bo and I headed back to Bellagio. We also went to the Sugar Factory - adorable candy/pastry shop where we got some more stuff for the girls. Then, shocker, Bo wanted to go play more Black Jack.

The whole trip was amazing. Our flights were great. Food was fabulous. The girls were behaving and having fun. I enjoyed my time away from the norm. We got everything done that we came there to do. What a fun, fun trip. Bo got to do what he wanted to in his spare time and mom and I went there and knocked it out. I will never forget this time I had wtih my mom. It was a perfect amount of time too. I really didn't need more time - more money to shop on maybe, but not more time!! You can definately go through some mullah there.

I would tell anyone to make it a trip to take for a long weekend. We left Sunday and returned Wednesday. I would also tell you not to take your children - there were many people there with kids - they do not need to be there. Also, be ready to smell a little smokey -especially walking through the casinos. Take cab money - average cab ride was $10.00 one way. Don't be afriad to ask people for directions. Unlike New York, the people that work there are very accomodating. Do something out of the norm - like a helicopter ride!! I am definately a fan of Vegas now. I will go back, but there are some things I have on my list that will come first. I think next - yes - Disney World- and possibly at the end of the year!
Mom and I had to fly from Vegas to Philly then to Raleigh. Bo's dad picked us up and met the kids at Chick Fil A in Knightdale. They were so sweet!! Bo flew home from NY and was home way before us. I had to drive everyone back from Raleigh. We were all home by 10:00 pm. There were some extra boxes in the back of the van and I asked Emma what they were (Bo's mom had already given me a heads up!) Emma said, "SUUURRPRRIIISSEE Mama and Daddy!!!" It was sooooo cute. Emma and Hannah had made us a foam Easter wreath and the other box had some cupcakes for our homecoming!! It was so cute!
We all went to bed late. I managed to unpack and get in bed by midnight. The alarm clock was not too kind in the morning but I found no reason to complain. Not too many other teachers had three days off and a mini spring break. What a fantastic time!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Catching Up

March 3rd: The girls had a fun day at Grandma's house. They enjoyed picking some flowers and they made me a flower arrangement to bring home!

I brought the girls home from mom's and Bo was out of town that night. They both agreed on a little video to watch after bathtime that they had not seen in awhile. It is the Mickey Beach Sing Along. They were so cute watching it together on the couch. They had to have their stuffed Minnies too. Just one of those little moments when they are both sweet and innocent - and getting along!

March 5th: This week has been a little hectic trying to get things prepared for our trip. Of course I needed some new clothes for the trip, needed some travel items, had to prepare for my substitute, get all of the girls' things ready, etc. Today I have done the laundry and have my stuff packed. Now I need to finish the girls' packing. We are leaving at 8:00 in the morning for Raleigh. Mom and I are taking the girls to Raleigh to stay with Bo's parents. Nana and Dadoo are going to take them to Marbles one day and I am sure they are going to have so much fun. I just worry a little about how well they will sleep. Mom and I fly out around 2:00. Bo leaves from VA at 2:00. We should all be in Vegas around 8:00 their time. I am excited! I will blog about our trip when we return! Have a great week!

This and That

Last weekend Emma had a touch of the stomach bug. Thankfully it was one quick "throw up" and then sleepy child, but that was all. Just to keep my mom from getting sick last Monday Bo stayed home with the kids. Emma was much better so I went to work since I will be out three days next week for Vegas. So, Bo watched the girls on the 28th. Of course they were outside playing!

This week I noticed Hannah playing with her characters in a toy high chair and feeding it with a spoon. I thought it was super cute.

So, I know I have vented before about finding decent clothing for children, but now can I vent about toys???? Toys were so much better when I was a child. The Fisher Price food and kitchens were so much better. We already replaced one kitchen set. KidsKraft did not hold up very well for us, so we got a Little Tikes. But, still it is small and does not hold the amount of food that we have. doll stuff - horrible compared to what I had growing up. So, my little cousin actually had this little nursery/baby care center that was mine. Since she has outgrown it now, we got it back. E and H have loved it! Even though they got the American Girl baby doll stuff for Christmas, this is still better. Here is a picture of Hannah sitting in the top part. This part comes off the bottom and has the little bathtub and cabinet underneath. They have enjoyed playing with it the past few days.