Thursday, April 23, 2015

Eleven Months with Grace

Happy Eleven Months, sweet girl.  I can't believe we will celebrate a year with you in just another month!

Miss Kitty and Grace:
 Little miss had too much to do during our photo shoot and did not want to sit down.
Eleven-month stats:
Length: 28"
Weight: 18 lbs
Teeth: 2

New Skills:
Improved Communication Grace added "Mama" to her vocabulary this month and is quick to happily say hi to anybody and anything wherever she goes.  She is also working on telling us what she wants. She will yell at me when frustrated in the high chair.  If I ask Grace to sign, do you want "more" or are you "all done", she usually signs her preference (and stops yelling- sheesh).
Ignoring the word NO: I think it's time Grace learned the word NO.  I've been more forceful with her lately about things that are off limits.  Little Grace usually laughs at me or flat-out ignores the command.  I hope this isn't an indicator of her future personality...
Taking Everything Off the Shelves:  Check out our recent visit to the library.  Librarians LOVE us.
video

Likes:
*Climbing! This little girl is on a mission to a higher place.  When Grace isn't racing towards the stairs, she likes to spend her time trying to climb anything and everything else.  
*Toppling blocks As you might have seen on the video yesterday, Grace thinks knocking any block stack over is the funniest thing ever.  That's not gonna be so funny when she finds a Lego tower of Mr. Palmer's...

Eating leaves and grass: The weather is so gorgeous this time of year, but being outside has been a bit of a challenge.  Grace is dead-set on putting everything into her mouth, which makes being outside very tiresome and not so fun.  We solved this problem at the golf course the other day by putting Grace in front of a ball tower.  I apologize to the person who built the tower that morning, but eating golf balls sure beats choking on leaves.
Tunnel: We pulled out Palmer's old tunnel and Grace seems to be as fearless as her older brother.  She hurried right on thru without missing a beat and thinks it's so fun to go in the tunnel.
Her Mama: Palmer may be a daddy's boy ("It's just the dudes, mom..."), but Grace loves her mama and is always up for sweet hugs. 
Happy last month before you are one year old!!

-Bethany

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Spring Soccer

And just like that, we became soccer parents when Palmer declared that life could not go any further without soccer in his life.

At Palmer's young age, I am a firm believer of one sport at a time.  (I mean, he is only four.  Let's not get crazy.)  So, Rick and I carefully explained that if we moved to soccer, karate would have to go by the wayside.  Palmer made the decision to switch to soccer and we've adjusted to a new schedule of practices and games during the week.

Palmer's biggest sideline fan:
The first practice was hilarious.

The couch put all of the kids in a circle and told them it was time to get to know each other.  Since the team name is the Little Lions, each child was to say his/her name and show everyone a loud lion roar.  Immediately, Palmer stood up and said, "Hi.  I'm Palmer Thomas Jordan.  Roaaarrrr.  And coach, I want to be the goalie, pls!"
The rest of the practice went pretty well because the ball to kid ratio was nearly 1-1.  Palmer happily kicked his ball around during practice and Rick and I high-fived each other, certain that we had a star player.
Jump ahead to the first game and we quickly realized we had forgotten to mention one key fact: during the game, there is only ONE ball.  To make things worse, Palmer's ball was randomly chosen as the game ball.  Palmer was very confused and upset about why people "weren't sharing HIS ball".  
Next problem: Rick and I failed to explain the concept of rotating players in and out of the game. There can only be 5 kids from each team on the field at a time.  When Coach would tell Palmer to get off the field, Palmer came crying to us on the sidelines, "Coach said I am OFF THE TEAM!!"  We worked hard to convince him, "No, you're not off the team.  You just have to take turns on the field..."

Here's what we did talk about before the game: "Palmer, make sure to pass it to the other guys on your team.  They will be wearing red like you."  

You guessed it.  

The opposite side for the first game was also a team in red.

Grace best sums up my thoughts: Time to hit the bottle.
But, in all seriousness...

Palmer is very excited before each practice and game.  When he gets there his excitement lasts for a good five minutes.  Then, his attention moves towards water breaks and the post-game snack.
When focused, Palmer is fearless and has no problem getting on the field or going towards the ball. On his first game, he lucked into an assisted goal when the team ringer, Noah, kicked the ball to Palmer who was standing at the goal.
On the second game, Palmer kicked in a half-field goal.   But, these are shining moments during an hour-long game, of which he typically doesn't focus most of the time.  Distractions are easy to come by! I'm guessing this comes with the young-age...

Nevertheless, we are all having fun cheering for "Palmer Lion" and Palmer enjoys his new sport.
-Bethany

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Easter 2015

Easter is always a fun holiday in our neck of the woods.  This year, our weekend was especially packed. (What am I talking about- every weekend is especially packed.  Rick will woefully tell you about it...)

Persis and Matt came in town for the first part of the weekend and we had an impromptu backyard party filled with a combination of neighbor friends and college friends.

Miss Olivia LOVES babies and was so helpful putting Grace to bed later in the evening:
The older kids had fun in the bounce house and on the trampoline.
Grace's first Easter egg hunt at the club on Saturday:
Grace found her first few eggs nearby and happily played with them and the basket for the rest of the hunt.
Meanwhile, Palmer was on a tear for as many eggs as possible...
A successful hunt:
Easter Sunday twinkies:
Nana joined us for church and then we did the usual brunch at the club.
 Grace also thinks the boys in the family are so weird:
Aunt Amanda and her boyfriend joined us for brunch.  
And onto the highlight of our Easter weekend: the eclectic annual neighborhood parade.
Kinky Friedman made another appearance as the grand marshall.  (And Jesus, the Easter Bunny, and Santa were also in attendance.)
Despite the drizzle, the crowds were especially large thanks to an area magazine write-up about the event.  I'm sure the people also came out to see these two handsome devils.
On the parade entry form, Palmer was very proud to name the float "Bunnies Hopping in the Go-Cart."
Happy Easter (and please get all of this candy out of my house as fast as possible!!)

-Bethany

Monday, April 6, 2015

Tulip Picking Farm

When I learned that the first blooming tulip farm in Texas laid down their roots just an hour north of here, I had to go check it out.  Texas Tulips celebrated their inaugural season and the road trip was so worth it to see the gorgeous and colorful blooms.

I talked my friend Adriane into joining me and we had a morning field trip of happily snapping flower picking photos.

Warning: you are about to endure a ton of photos.
Sweet Cayman and Palmer had a lot to learn about picking the flowers... The entry was free at Texas Tulips, but each picked tulip is $2.50.  Adriane and I about had a heart attack when the big kids starting freely picking already opened tulips right below the flower bud. 

We had to sit them down and have a conversation about finding tulips that are closed (so they can bloom at home) and pick them as close to the ground as possible!
Meanwhile, I had to keep little Grace cooped up in her car or she would go to town eating giant fistfuls of dirt.

 My lil' G:
 "Yo, brother.  You got anything to share?"
Adriane and I also took the kids to a precious sandwich shop downtown called Sweet Water Coffee House.  There was a special area for the older kids to play and eat.  A perfect ending to a great day-trip.

 -Bethany