20 April 2014

amazing days

It's been quite a whirlwind of a couple weeks! After Thayer's party, Ryan & Lara and Garret stayed the night with us and then the next day (Sunday) after a breakfast of eggs, sausage and bacon (and Krispy Kremes thanks to Ryan's morning jaunt! ;) , we all went to Maymont to enjoy the gorgeous weather!
sweet girls walking together

Arden went over the stepping stones by herself-I was more nervous about that than she was...no fear.

watching the Koi in the Japanese Garden at Maymont

The Italian Garden at Maymont

Arden trying to keep ahold of her baby brother, who is not interested in being leashed. :D
It was a beautiful day and we had so much fun. After we were finished walking the whole estate (during which Uncle Garret took a shortcut down a hill with the stroller and one of the front wheels ran away *snort*), we walked back to the parking lot and witnessed a hit-and-run. A white truck, leaving its parking space, turned sharply and scraped the heck out of the bumper on a new little VW bug. We reported it, with the license number. Hoping everything turns out ok for the owner. People!

After we hung out there for a while waiting for and talking with an officer, we left and had lunch at Panera. After we came back home, the kids watched a little Daniel Tiger together and Lara and I went to get pedis together! It was delightful after a long morning of light hiking and carrying little ones. Then we enjoyed a Starbucks together before grabbing a few things at the grocery store for dinner. When we returned home the guys were sitting in the living room, only PRETENDING they hadn't moved a muscle. In reality, they had washed piles and piles of dishes for us! I was so thankful because I was dreading the job...having no dishwasher, dishes pile up SO quickly, especially with company and going a lot! So Lara and I got right to work on some yummy waffles made with spelt flour...so delish, topped with strawberries and whipped cream.

The next day, Ryan and Lara left a little earlier in the morning to go have some family time at Cartwheels & Coffee on their way back up to Stafford.

We just hung out and relaxed ourselves.
Thayer isn't yet a fan of putting his feet in the sand 

She is a phenomenal big sister. I love this picture. She loves taking care of him.

The following weekend we drove up to Stafford to spend the weekend at Papa & Nana's with Ryan & Lara, and Keith, who flew in Saturday morning at 1 am.

I went to bed quite a bit earlier than the other adults in the house since I had gotten up at 4:30 on Friday morning. The others stayed up to welcome Keith...guess I was the lazy one. :/ I did hear the happy sounds of family many times when Thayer or Arden woke up confused by the new sleeping quarters. It's good to hear family enjoying time together.

Saturday morning we all sort of got up lazy and slow, made our own breakfasts and helped a bit with the lunch prep before others started showing up to say hi to the visitors! That Caesar salad was absolutely amazing. It was good to see Clare and Molly again; so happy they came, and that we were able to get a family picture! I was so grateful and happy for Michael & Theresa.

little cousins



There were many friends and relatives (some Amyett, some Dunavant) who showed up for dinner; we had some incredible brisket and lots of laughs. So much fun.

Sunday was another slow-starting day...Drew took the initiative to make some yummy biscuits & gravy, and we scrambled some eggs. After a really late breakfast we all wanted to go out and enjoy the lovely day, so after some of the kids took naps, we went to Smith Lake Park and all the little people ran about and spent some energy out in the sunshine! It was lovely.

It was such a delightful weekend and I had so much fun getting to know Keith better! Also, happy for Clare and Molly's new baby on the way too!

12 April 2014

birthday party!

I never made it to the computer to tell about Thayer's party we had on Saturday (the 12th)! Been too busy catching up with visiting family members to have a seat and write about it all.

We invited some great friends and wonderful family to celebrate with us...Jimmy & Steph, Stephen & April (couldn't make it-we missed you!), Clare & Molly (didn't make it-missed you!), Ryan & Lara, Michael & Theresa, Mom & Dad, Garret & Trevor. We were so thankful for those who took the time from their weekend to help us congratulate our baby boy on surviving his first year! ;D

I made some fun nautical decorations and we had some cupcakes, strawberries, blueberries, lemonade, tea and water.
terribly bleached picture but it's the only one I took of the table :/

the "frosting" isn't supposed to look like that-I definitely made a mistake somewhere along the line. Oh well, it was edible and the birthday boy didn't care.

The littles each had a place to sit with their own lemon sailboat place card, and mini mason jar cups :)

Thayer's seat of honor :D

Gramma getting some snuggles in right after his nap-he's such a cuddle bug when he first wakes up. :*

All the presents piled atop the grand finale-Daddy's gift to Thayer-a super cool sandbox...you'll see!

Tasting a few crumbs of cake...he is never very interested in eating when he wakes up.

The girls and their party treats at the picnic table

Finally giving the cake a bit of a taste...

"Not so bad, I suppose"


Joslyn working on her lemon.

Ronan! Such a tiny sweet man.

taking a break from cupcake eating to swing 

Arden was more than happy to assist Thayer with his presents


ALL the little people in the sandbox!

After the party I had lots of help making a super yummy dinner-chicken burrito bowls

Uncle Garret had the honor of having the sweet birthday boy fall asleep in his arms while sitting by the fire :) So precious

It was the perfect birthday party for my beautiful little boy and I'm so thankful for all our loved ones that made the day so much fun!

08 April 2014

Thayer is ONE!!!

Happy birthday to my precious, sweet baby boy! I am so thankful for you, Thayer! You are so much fun and you have such an entertaining personality! You have a temper, and you know exactly what you want. Some of your favorite things are: snuggling with Mama, playing outside (we call outside the "promised land" for you...when you manage to get out you get this dreamy look on your face and you can't stop smiling! That, and you throw a significant fit if you thought you were going out and are not),  splashing in the toilet (still), eating used, wet toilet paper out of it when you are lucky enough that your sister leaves the lid open and the toilet unflushed, you love holding your big sister's cups...something about the fact that they're glass makes you run straight to the kitchen, stand on the tile, and giggle while pretending you're going to throw it on the floor to be shattered. Yep, you're a booger! You like to play on Mama & Daddy's bed for the sole purpose of crawling/running full tilt toward the edge so I will run over and keep you from falling on your head. Of course, you stop in time, but you get a good laugh out of scaring Mama. You do the same thing in the doorway of the kitchen/mudroom. You will stand there with your toes hanging over the edge and literally DANCE with glee while Mama hollers to you "Dude, be careful! You're going to fall and break your head!" You just laugh. When I sing "God Loves a Cheerful Giver", you say "ha ha ha ha ha!". And when I say "Thayer, you're ONE!!!" you point that chubby little finger up! Your teeth are adorably crooked...the top and the bottom two in front are interlocking...one of each upper and lower are in front. I think it looks so cute. Your smile is infectious. You love a good game of peek-a-boo, tickles with your sister (you also like to say "tickle" while tickling the air with your fingers!), hugs for Mama, and although you seem to refrain from sleeping well at night, I think you do enjoy your sleep. I know I enjoy it when you get some. You're such a pleasant, sweet fellow. I love you always. You like food, especially meat and fruit. You've only got a little hair still...there's a long tuft on the crown of your head that has started to grow and I laugh because it likes to stick up no matter what I do! You're very ANTI-camera...if you see me pointing it at you, you run as fast and as far in the other direction as you can. I have a lot of pictures of your back. I am looking forward to your birthday party this weekend...can't wait to share it with some friends and family. And Daddy has made you one VERY awesome birthday present! I can't wait to show it to you and let you enjoy it like we know you will!

Thayer August, I am so happy and thankful I get to be your Mama, and that you truly are a "Mama's boy". I love your giggles, snuggles, your wonderful chubby cheeks, arms, legs, and that perfect round belly! You are the most perfect little boy any mother could've dreamed up. You are mischievous, which frustrates me at times, but if you weren't, you wouldn't be "that perfect little boy" with all the tricks up his sleeve! I'm happy you have some spunk even though it makes my job a little (or a lot!) harder. I'm so happy to have spent the past year with you in our lives. We can't imagine it without you! You are LOVED. So loved.

Thayer's 1 year stats:
32 inches - 99.4th percentile
25 lbs 11 oz - 95th percentile

06 April 2014

MAC-ISA Championship 2014-Washington, DC

We always look forward to April...spring is one of my favorite seasons, its our anniversary, and the climbing competition is always during April! So much to look forward to!

Drew took Friday off for our anniversary; we had planned to go straight up to DC and enjoy the day together but on Thursday night, True Timber did a pre-competition gear inspection. One of the guys he works with is actually one of the competition gear inspectors, so they were able to prepare ahead of time for failed gear. I'm really thankful they did this because Drew's harness would have failed. Not only am I thankful he has been safe while using it, he was able to replace it on Friday on our way up to DC. We drove to Manassas and he dropped me off to get my hair cut and he took the kids with him to Vermeer and bought the harness (he had called early that morning and had them hold it for him). If he hadn't been able to replace his harness he would not have been able to compete.

We drove through DC, saw some blossoms, and ended up at our hotel in Largo, MD. It was a sketchy part of town, and although the hotel seemed fine, it was very overpriced. The bed was horrible, the tub had a flaky film all over it that floated into the water when I ran a bath, and housekeeping didn't replace our towels although she did take the "dirty" ones out. :/ I'm just thankful we were able to stay close by.

The competition day, the guys rode together to the National Arboretum early so they could sign in and get their gear checked. Stephanie and I rode together a little later (8:30) and got there for their first events. It was a long walk from the car, uphill, with three littles (Abigail was with her grandma) and a stroller loaded with stuff! We finally made it to the top of the hill and WOW...the wind was gusty. It was chilly and so very windy all day long. I had not been prepared since the week before had been so beautiful and warm! Poor Thayer didn't even have long sleeves or a jacket. I don't know how he survived.

Bundled up and eating bacon!

Aerial Rescue was Drew's first event. He did amazing.

Belayed Speed Climb was his second event

Work Climb was his third event

Thayer, a cape and a stick

Footlock was Drew's 4th event
 ...and apparently I have no photos of Throwline. That's a hard one to photograph since they just stay on the ground and throw a weighted bag up, then set their line in a crotch.
Steve Castrogiovanni and Drew--wearing his medal for 3rd place Aerial Rescue

Chris, Drew, Flint & James-going to the Master's!

Score board-the blue numbers on the far right are for the top four, who go to the master's challenge the next day. Although Aerial Rescue was the only event Drew placed in, his scores from ALL the events were so good that he made third place, overall! So proud of him!

Stephanie brought bubbles for the girls
 Thanks to Rebecca D for these--I was trying to video Drew's climb so I was having a hard time juggling the iPad and the camera.
Drew's Master's climb-Sunday

Congratulating my awesome husband! He did so amazing! The judges have hardly (if ever) seen a first timer to the Master's do so well. The scores were not a very large spread at all!

Flint, James & Drew-before Chris climbed

All the guys that climbed on Sunday at the Masters-Chris Coates, James Earhart, Drew, Flint Anderson

I always enjoy competition...I'm thankful this year not to be pregnant! Although it would've been handy not to have to worry about how cold Thayer was!!! I felt like a terrible mother for forgetting all of his warm clothes, and even his socks I had brought, were soaked with water from his cup by the time we got there on Saturday! Mothering Fail.

Although we didn't really get a chance to celebrate our 5th anniversary, and we were very cold for a major part of the time, I had a great weekend! Drew was so excited, and I was so happy for him! He has come so far so fast. So proud of him!