Monday, June 30, 2008

Girls Gone Shopping!

Today, while the boys went golfing, the girls went shopping! Katie Anne, Gigi, and I went to Barefoot Landing and did some looking around. We bought some kite string for Granddad, a souvenir for my former student Adam, who's babysitting Cosmo, a necklace for me, and some fudge for everyone. We had a yummy lunch of sandwiches, too... tuna with wasabi for me, grouper for Gigi, and grilled cheese for KA!

Katie Anne rode around the whole time in her backpack on my back. She loved being so high and being able to see everything!
















Bad pirate!
















Ladies who lunch...















Sunday, June 29, 2008

Baby on the Beach!

We made it safely to Myrtle Beach! The condo is awesome, we're all settled in, and we're having a blast already. This morning, we took Katie Anne to the beach for her first real experience. (She went to the beach last year at 3 months old, but fell asleep as soon as we got close to the waves... she slept in the sling every time!)

She loved the ocean! She tried to jump and high step over the waves. Katie Anne has no fear... she walked right down to the water. She thought the sand was a little yuck, but she had no qualms about wiping it all over everyone else's hands! We were very impressed with how well she did.








Pointing at the ocean as we get close to the water:















Hanging out with Momma at the beach:
















I love your shirt, Gigi!















Katie Anne and Granddad splash in the water:




















Laughing!






















High stepper:





















Flying high with Daddy:
















Getting on Daddy's shoulders:
















Going for a ride:

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Katie Anne's First Surgery

This morning, Katie Anne had minor surgery on her eye at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta/Scottish Rite. She had a blockage between her tear ducts and sinuses that's been giving us problems since she was born. Her doctor advised to give it a year to clear up and open up on its own, but it never really improved. So, her pediatric ophthalmologist suggested we go ahead and open it this summer.





So, Katie Anne, Granddad, and I headed out towards Atlanta bright and early. She did a great job at the hospital and was in high spirits, even though she had to get up at 4:30 this morning! She loved playing with all the toys in the pre-op room, and she was very friendly to all the nurses, doctors, and anesthesiologists. She got a little scared when she and I went into the operating room... they let me go back there and be with her while they put her under the anesthesia. She cried when they put the mask on her, and it was sad for a Momma to watch! I just rubbed her face and held her hand, and in a few seconds, she was out!





The surgery only took a few minutes, and she came back to the post-op room where Granddad and I were waiting. We waited about 10-15 minutes for her to wake up, and she was a little disoriented at first. She recovered quickly and immediately wanted to show Granddad and I how to use the mask! She kept holding it up to her face and breathing hard into it... I guess she really remembers how it works! When she got the all-clear to head home, we got her pancakes for breakfast, and she was very happy.





She's taking a l-o-n-g nap right now, and hopefully her recovery will be a smooth one!

Lil' Busta Rhymes



Poor little Katie Anne busted her head yesterday! She had to go to daycare today while Saunders and I had our teeth cleaned. She fell while she was walking around a table and crashed her little forehead into it. It's pretty bruised and swollen, so she looks a little like a Star Trek character. It isn't seeming to bother her at all, though... still playing as normal and having a good time!






Also, I forgot to mention earlier that Katie Anne has started saying Momma! She started saying it on Sunday. What a great birthday present for me! Here's a little video of her saying Momma as well as the dogs' names.




video

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Water Baby!

Since Katie Anne and I aren't doing anything too exciting today, I thought I'd post some pictures that I meant to post a while ago. Katie Anne and I have been enjoying swimming this summer, and she's really turned into a total water baby. Two weeks ago, we went swimming four times in six days!!! At first, she was nervous in the water, but now she's really comfortable and enjoys playing and kicking around. Here are some pictures of her swimming with friends and having a blast!

One day, we got together with my friends Holly and Debbie, who have daughters almost the exact same age as Katie Anne. The girls had a big time kicking around.
















Then, we swam with Aunt Jillian at her neighborhood pool. We had the pool all to ourselves, so it was relaxing. Katie Anne modeled her pink sunglasses for us. She was a swimming diva with the matching headband!


















































That weekend, we got together with the McWhorter and Adams families at Doc and VJ's pool. Katie Anne had a big time playing with Emma, Lily, and Bear. She played in the pool for 3 and a half hours that morning!
















The Adamses: Natalie, Emma, & Brandon















The McWhorters: Vanessa, Bear, Lily, & Josh















VJ















Saunders




















Katie & Katie Anne















Emma & Katie Anne lounge















Bear is just chillin on the big float















Vanessa and Lily dry off

Workout Worries

Katie Anne and I have run into a little fitness problem, and that's on my mind right now. I joined Diva Fitness the week after school got out, and I've really been committed to going at least 4 days a week for classes. I tried to go to my kickboxing class this morning at 9:30, but Katie Anne would not go to the daycare at the gym. Period. She screams from the moment she sees the daycare door until I come back to get her. This is the third time they've had to get me out of class because she's inconsolable (out of only 4 times that she's gone with me). So, today I worked out for four minutes. The ladies at the gym have tried hard to be understanding, but today they were giving me suggestions like, "Can you come in the evenings after your husband gets home?" Yikes. I know she's hard to be with (as is any baby) when she's screaming and crying nonstop, and it breaks my heart that she's so stressed in there. So, I'm going to have to get creative with scheduling my workouts.

I'm already going at 5:30 in the AM so Saunders can be here with her (she's still asleep... actually, they're both still asleep at that time). That works great, other than the fact that I have to wake up at 4:40, but that's really okay with me. I like having the workout done, being home and showered, and having a few minutes to check my email before she wakes up at 8:00. The only problem is that early morning workouts aren't offered every day- they're only 3 days a week, and I need more than 3 days a week to get this body in shape! Also, I don't really like the Step class on Wednesdays at 5:30 AM... I prefer BodyPump, kickboxing, Zumba... anything but Step, actually. Nothing to do with the teacher or class itself- they're great, but I just don't like stepping and I get kind of bored with it.

So, I guess my options are to:
A) just go to the 5:30 classes- even Step- and let that 3X be it for the week.
B) Go to the 5:30 classes I like, and then go some in the evenings after Saunders gets home- I'll just have to miss bedtime since the last class is at 7:30. I can only do this on nights I'm not tutoring kids. (Oh, yeah... I'm tutoring 2 nights a week.)
C) Try to arrange someone to watch her one to two days a week in the mornings while I hit the gym for an hour. Any takers? :) or
D) Workout less and remain lard-ballish.

This problem would've presented itself in a few weeks anyway, when daytime workouts would be out due to me being back at work. Hmmm... I've got to think about this a little bit... my guess is that some combination of B and C will work best.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Lunch with the Lancasters

Yesterday, Katie Anne and I traveled down to Madison for lunch with the Lancaster family! We had a great time, and luckily we didn't run into any traffic coming or going. We got to see their new house, enjoy lunch at a local Madison hang-out, and let the kids play together. Here are some pictures of the kids in the "insane room" aka Tripp and Makinley's play room. (I'm quoting Stacey here!)




Katie Anne reads aloud from a novel. She loved "helping" Stacey go through her books.



















Makinley crawls over the train track... note the "battle scar" under her right eye from her first brawl (of many, probably) with Katie Anne, aka The Bruiser! I was so embarrassed!














Tripp builds a tower of blocks. He called KA "Katie Nan"- so cute! Tripp left a battle scar under my right eye... he wields a strong swing with that tiny bat!















"Here Makinley, let me style your hair!"














The kids had such a good time playing together. Katie Anne loved playing with all the cool toys Tripp and Makinley have, but of course her favorite things were a medicine dropper and a bottle of lotion. Simple joys! Makinley is such an easygoing baby, and I think she and Katie Anne played really well together (except for the initial face slapping incident). They did a great job of sharing trains, looking at books together, and playing "hair salon" with the hairbrush they found!

Tripp and Katie Anne are so much alike... two first-borns with big attitudes! Tripp was a trip, literally... he has learned so many new words since the last time I saw him, and he has no problem telling you what he's thinking! He showed us all his favorite things, like his trains, and his new skills, like hitting the baseball off the tee. It was so funny when he tried to get "Katie Nan" to run with him in the new house, and Katie Anne told him to "Stop!" (or in her words, "Dop!"). Tripp understood her perfectly and answered, "Katie Nan not tell me to stop!" I think it will be WrestleMania between those two crazy people next summer at our annual get-together! Tripp was very sweet to share his pacifiers with Katie Anne, who shared them with Makinley, who put them in her mouth upside down!

Stacey and I also swapped a bunch of stuff for the upcoming school year. It is such a stroke of luck that she's moving from first to fourth grade and I'm moving from fourth to first grade. It is so nice to discuss what to expect, strategies, and get a ton of her old stuff. I think what she gave me might be more valuable than I gave to her... she gave me tons of books and file folders. I hope the materials that I took her will help her get started! I've got tons of stuff to go through and think about. I'm really excited about teaching first grade, but seeing all these sight word folders, holiday activities, reading primers, and things you just don't do in fourth grade makes me a bit nervous. I'm feeling like a first year teacher again!

Happy Birthday to Me, Part II

On Sunday, we had a birthday lunch for me at my parents' house. My mom made a delicious lunch of my favorite kinds of food- Mexican dishes (Enchiladas, Mexican lasagna- very yummy- and Chicken Ole'), Caesar salad, and dump cake with ice cream! As Katie Anne would say, "Mmmm!" Even though Greg had a horrendous headache and Dad and Saunders had a morning appointment to check out a new boat we were thinking of buying (not happening- seller was weird), we all came together for a delicious lunch for me! We had a great time together!

I also got some great birthday presents... my yearly subscription to People from my parents as well as tons of bug spray stuff (lotion, spray, wipes, bracelet repellents) to go with my hammock. If you've spent any time with me outdoors, you know how desperately I need bug stuff if I'm going to enjoy my new hammock! Greg and Jillian gave me the new Croc flipflops in black that I was hoping for... here's a picture of me modeling them.

On Sunday afternoon, while KA was napping and Saunders was chipping golf balls in the backyard, I got to relax again with my hammock and wear my new bug repellent bracelets... no mess and no bites! I had a great birthday weekend!




The watermelon girl:





















Saunders:

















Mom, Me, & Dad:

















Jillian, Me, & Greg:
















Yummy! Ice cream!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Happy Birthday to Me, Part I

On Saturday, we got the birthday festivities started to celebrate my 27th b'day! On Saturday morning, Saunders and Katie Anne gave me my big gift from them... a hammock and stand for the back yard. I love it! It was something I was really hoping to get for my birthday. I'm so excited to have a place to relax outside that is not- ewww- touching any nature. ;) I spent two hours outside yesterday afternoon, reading my magazines and relaxing on the hammock!


Katie Anne and me- opening my hammock!
























































Katie Anne and her daddy.
















Saunders putting it all together.






















Ahhh... this is what I call summer relaxation!


































Katie Anne relaxes in the yard... thanks to the Lancasters for the cute dress!





















Then, on Saturday night, Saunders surprised me with a trip to home in Buckhead, which is the restaurant just opened by Richard Blais, one of the finalists from Top Chef. Since I ADORE Top Chef and I'm a huge fan of Richard's, this was an amazing surprise! We had an INCREDIBLE dinner...

Amuse bouche: Raw oysters with Tabasco Sauce pearls - created with liquid nitrogen. Very tasty, bright, and fresh. Since we'd seen Richard make the pearls (aka Dippin Dots) on Top Chef, it was so exciting to eat them ourselves!

Starter: Saunders had the Roasted Foie Gras with pickled strawberries and buttermilk pancakes, while I had Chicken Fried Sweetbreads with sausage gravy, granny smith apple, and rocket salad. (Don't Google sweetbreads... you don't want to know.)
The foie gras was AMAZING. Literally melt in your mouth. With the pickled strawberries and pancakes... let's just say Tom Colicchio would describe it as a well-composed bite. The sweetbreads were also very good- again, neat to eat something I'd watched Richard make on tv.

Main Plates: Saunders had The Big Veal Chop with greens and porcini mushrooms. The chop was great- sous vide and so tender. The greens were very sour and the porcini not quite cooked enough for Saunders. I had the Shrimp and Grits with andouille sausage, Florida citrus, and she-crab butter. If I had that for dinner every night for the rest of my life, I would die a happy girl. So incredibly good. If I didn't think it would've been incredibly rude, I would've slurped up the remaining butter when I was finished.
We also had family-style veggies to go with our dinner... carrots, potatoes, bread and butter pickles, and turnips. The potatoes were just okay, but the turnips and pickles were very good, and the carrots were delish. The server said the secret ingredient is local clover honey. Yum!

Dessert: Saunders had red velvet cake with cream cheese ice cream, and I had sour cream pecan cake with sweet tea ice cream. Both were heavenly... especially the ice creams. I know sweet tea ice cream sounds nuts, but it was actually smooth and delicious. I wish I had some right now!

We got to see Richard several times! Although he didn't come to our table, we did see him out and about in the restaurant several times, and we got to hear him talking to a table of folks he seemed to know really well who were sitting right next to us. Also, there are portholes where you can see in the kitchen, and we got to see him cooking- and he was really cooking! So, I was so thrilled to actually eat something created by one of my favorite celebrity chefs.

What a great birthday surprise!