Monday, June 30, 2014

Wordless Wednesday

2014:
2013:
 2012:

Pool Time

If you ask me during the dark of winter, I will curse our country club membership (read: club bill) up and down.  But in the summer, we get so much enjoyment from the pool that I forget my February blues.

There's something magical about this particular pool because it sort of sits up on top of a hill and there is always a breeze and the acoustics are such that it's always pretty quiet, even on a busy afternoon.

Palmer started out the summer season a little hesitant about swimming underwater and jumping into the water or off of the diving board.  This was surprising because he was the youngest kid to jump off the diving board last summer.  (Palmer kept telling me, "Mom, when I was 2, I jumped off of the diving board, but now that I am 3, it's too high!")
My friend Katie suggested his fear is a good developmental phase for Palmer because he is smarter than last summer and more aware.  Nevertheless, after a private swimming lesson and a lot of bribery over ice cream...
...Palmer is back into his old ways and swimming really well, jumping off the board, and even sliding down the big slide:
video
Poor Rick was exhausted last night when he had to go down the slide with Palmer about 15 times.  Rick said, "my old body is just not built to do this over and over!"

I'm learning how to juggle my attention between a newborn who needs to stay in the shade and an active water-logged three-year-old.
We've loved having friends out to the pool and playmates like Charlie and Evie make it easier to take care of Palmer from the side when my hands are full:

 Happy summer.
-Bethany

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Grace's First Month

We survived the first month.  I would even maybe perhaps say we conquered the first month.  Between a lot of family and friends' help in the first two weeks and flying solo for the second two weeks, I am proud to announce that all of us have managed to stay fed, clothed, and somewhat clean.  That is my definition of "conquer" these days...
After Aunt Samantha left, we had the huge help of my mom and Jeff for the next week.  Both grandparents spent equal time loving on their two grandchildren, helping me, and making a dent in my honey-do Gram/PawPaw-do list around the house.  They were such a huge blessing for the week.
Juggling the two kids has been a fine balance of keeping Palmer's rhythm and activity level normal all the while trying to get Grace into a good sleeping/eating schedule.
Gram was a good sport to get in the water with Palmer at the splash park one afternoon:
 Grace and I sat on the sidelines...
 ...until I got talked into going on one of the playground rides.
It is also always helpful when Nana and Aunt Amanda pop in for a visit to lend a hand and fill our fridge!!

Once on our own, we've begun to settle into a rhythm.  Although all of the family in our home was a lifesaver, it seems like Palmer is adjusting better to this transition time with the sole help of his mom and dad because he is yearning for his normal routine as much as possible.

"Grace, please don't make that face.  We are going to be just fine on our own."
Grace's growth progress over the last month:

First month stats:
Length: 21.5 inches
Weight: 9 lb, 12 oz
Head: 37 cm


1 week:
 2 weeks:
 3 weeks:
1 month:
-Bethany

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Father's Day Weekend

After some pretty crazy weeks between Grace's birth and a hectic work schedule for Rick, we had a nice, long, and relaxing Father's Day weekend filled with the lake, golf, and swimming.
We had ambitious plans to go to Horseshoe Bay as soon as Rick's big project wrapped, but when all of the resort town was seemingly booked for Father's Day weekend, we opted to stay in the area and enjoy our normal area activities at bay.

First stop: the lake house for Grace's inaugural visit.
Baby Grace got a lot of bonding time with Grandma Grace (GG).
GG said it was a little strange to see someone else wearing a shirt with her name and to hear her name called out when we were talking to the baby.

Back in town, the guys headed out for a typical Saturday morning of karate and donuts followed by golf.
Apparently, shoes were optional as Palmer got a little carried away in a sand bunker and had to ditch the footwear.
We had a fun evening at the Burrus' with the Stoltz family.  It is so much fun to be with both families right now because we all have new babies and all have older children.  We are able to swap survival guides during this new phase of multiple children.
On Sunday, Palmer decided we needed to follow up a breakfast outing with a homemade cake.  Complete with candles (2 for 2 kids) and a rendition of "Happy Father's Day to You...", Palmer was very proud of the cake he made and iced on his own.
Father's Day afternoon was spent at the pool.  We are trying to learn the ropes between a pool-side, shade-limited newborn and an active swimming three-year-old...
 Dinner is much more fun with friends at the picnic table...
Overall, it was a great weekend despite our original thwarted plans to leave town.  Happy Father's Day to one of the hardest-working and loving fathers I know.  We love you, Rick.

-Bethany

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Fishing

Palmer has shown an interest in fishing as of late.  Our club had a father-child fishing tournament recently.  Palmer and Rick joined up with their friends Justin and Brooks for the tournament.
Palmer, you are too young to be flirting with the pretty girls.
Although they didn't bring home the biggest or most fish to win the prizes, the gang had a fun time.  Rick was also sure to tell me that Palmer has no interest in actually touching the fish or the bait (that's my kind of fishing too, buddy!!)
One day, I was working on our Summer Bucket List with Palmer.  Palmer wanted to make sure we included "a boat ride with Pops" and "fishing with Pops".
Well, cross those two off your list.  We hit up the lake house for Father's Day weekend and Palmer got his wish:
-Bethany

Monday, June 9, 2014

Grace's First Week

As you can see from the picture above, we are all getting used to the color pink around here...

We've managed the first two weeks at home and all I can say, is thank goodness for family and friends.  We are in survival mode with the adjustment to two kids and Rick being crazed at work on a major deal at *just the most* convenient time.  My sister came to stay for the first week, my mom and Jeff came to stay for the second week, and Rick's mom has been in and out throughout the entire period.
Thanks to family and friends, our fridge is stocked with food and groceries and we are getting used to our new rhythm.

Here's a look at the first week:

Aunt Samantha kept Mr. Palmer entertained with fun activities in the kitchen and morning outings (to keep him occupied and give me a break!)
Samantha was truly a god-send: simply tireless in her willingness to help out with every aspect of the family and housework while I tried to recover from surgery.
Tears were definitely shed when Samantha left for DC.  I really don't understand why she needs to live so far away...

Meanwhile during that first week, we knocked out Grace's first bath (with one naked little helper):
We visited the doctor for the first appointment:
First week stats:
Length: 20 1/4 inches (50-75%)
Weight: 8 lb (50-75%)
Head: 13.7 inches (25-50%)

We had family reading time:
Learned how to put two kids in a cart:
Made an important first visit to Northpark:

And stopped for pit stops along the way:
Dear friends showered us with love:
Big brother Palmer practiced holding his sister (and both kids need to practice keeping two eyes open in a photo):
Meanwhile, Miss Grace is a doll.  I'm learning about the importance of bows in a girl's outfit and relishing this special time with our newborn.
One week old:
Whew, I'm tired reading this post...

-Bethany