Unpacking in Tampa

Hello from Tampa! We finally have internet and my laptop is up and running. I may be surrounded by boxes, but I have a Christmas candle burning, music playing, and my tree is up. However, it has been quite the experience to get to this point. Let me backtrack.

Me, Bobby and Emma Kate left my parent’s house in Louisiana on Sunday and drove to Tallahassee. Then Monday we drove to Tampa and it was warm enough to swim at the hotel pool!

ZVguhtujn88fh67QiWPHMy8QhvOe4hgdHTLcBooPFO0pX92IB

We battled several issues back and forth with our lender and the title company all day Monday, and weren’t sure we were going to be able to close on Tuesday. Tuesday morning came and after more back and forth, we FINALLY got the final numbers literally fifteen minutes before closing. We were able to do the walk through and get to closing, but we had to hurry because the movers were set to come at 1:00 (closing was 11:30).hO8QiqcuZBC3zm3EWY5562phR9lOZRrSEcbQ2hOpEr0pX92IBO6s2USUwoHpCAxxuZIAzaQBtnhdUkEcHBkrSoXvbrkUpX92IB

We get to the closing and the lenders had sent over the wrong packet for signing!!! So they had to send over the right one and reprint everything. If you have ever bought a home you know how much paperwork this is. Finally after 12:30 we started signing. As we are signing, the electricity goes out. Yall, I can’t make this stuff up! We finally got into the house and the poor movers were here until after 7:00.

0lBZFnyE8fL-UHyo9taRWq87O7uQz7ZS1OYnufLR_5spX92IB

I have never seen so much packing paper in all my life. They pack stuff up super tight and well, but I felt it was a bit excessive and did feel guilty/wasteful.P_3IkSM_TnE4rMP1RDMeup3ptk2pLy2GQ62WowzoJWEpX92IB

Things are slowly coming together, but there are still boxes everywhere. We haven’t even touched the stacks in the garage and I have been wearing the same three outfits and and over for days. TWWIEejvrU4y-v1T2U_joQUqrEiFR2-PfPW09X6zN1opX92IB4pJ80TMBUvsZ-jG1w5L-gps5id0npgBY91p6D76k4CMpX92IB

However, Emma Kate LOVES the packing paper. I’m thinking I should just save some to give to her for Christmas instead of spending money on toys!IHb7dKfaWDG2vYYpew1j5Aclz-H0AsILu89f2njxzuMpX92IB

This girl is already loving her new daycare, too! She goes three days a week and did awesome on her first day.VHj93u5FE3m2UO80SFPYP25_fgKKHWVjWGy8V3s_sWgpX92IB

I was sure to get our patio set up first thing, and we love our view!xP3NS9by3RTQ7rMmXs_wH9wU61-9_wNse5NBxxldjckpX92IB

More to come, I still have to do a gift guide and recap the rest of our Disney trip. It’s all coming up I promise!

QOTD: When you have moved, did you pack yourself or have movers pack you? What was your best strategy for unpacking?

Thanksgiving 2016

Hola friends! I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving holiday with friends and family. Mine was a little odd compared to previous years, but I am glad I got to spend it with my family. Bobby and I were at my parents from Wednesday until Sunday. My sister even flew into town for a couple of days. Here is a quick recap of what we did.

Wednesday, we closed on our house in Mississippi. It was bittersweet, and the first rain we have had in weeks, so it was fitting for my mood.

71G1A4vwoGzcrxnlRKPn8aVCSDM3CViS9IIF0oRwNJQpX92IB

oJdzjT-dSTjmZkSjUmwbUQRCZt7T9oaobWcQw7OeYM0pX92IB

5W1cuzW4CoGHcHRk1I9xYZkSPJno1o-u62RAs61OdscpX92IB

We drove to my parents house in Louisiana, and settled in for a few days of hanging out with family. Thursday included a lot of cooking, parade and football watching, and eating.

fkpu8sxgkQlAQ0NCbUAC0HbqXylXkhLZwiQMVAG49PYpX92IB

Emma Kate watching the parade

oh8H4eDHAK4R8TapnVFaVF7L95eTVRAgSYfUtPS3RkspX92IB

Emma Kate checking out the black Friday sales in the paper.

zaK3mlQevg58Q2xlxcBiyf81qEamcUX_Xko8B22DCAopX92IB

After a delicious meal, we all took naps (as you should on Thanksgiving!) and then I went for a quick 3 mile run.

k-C36ZaNcbWx0aGKGvj514wHhhoKBd2ofoRlpllwSWopX92IB

After some photos, we went to visit some sweet friends that we are going to miss so much!

2RqTLMFcH13PayQN4teivh2UZqQ8G_lilCsRN9_jQzkpX92IB

JU_pAF4bZewTYExLupVD5B1KrptxPYbTBILU-y5Tt40pX92IB

On Friday, my mom sister and I went shopping and to lunch. Then Friday afternoon was spent watching all the Friends and Everybody Loves Raymond Thanksgiving episodes. Best shoes ever! We ate pizza and watched more football that night, after my dad brought my sister to the airport.

On Saturday, my dad and I took Emma Kate to the playground.

-WFe1N9vAhrr8kesjbZVvJ0dVfUHlMovTUumQLze8qUpX92IB

My dad and I also ran a few errands, and then we just kind of chilled the rest of Saturday…and watched more football…and ate more food. On Sunday, my parents went to church while we loaded up the car and said our goodbyes after lunch. It was sad, but my family is coming to Tampa for Christmas so that will be fun!

It was nice to have a few days to rest and recharge before the moving in madness begins this week!

Emma Kate Does Disney: Part 2

I left off with us going to bed after a bit of stressful arrival day. The next day, we woke up ready to go to the Magic Kingdom. I couldn’t wait to show Emma Kate the castle and my favorite park. We decided to take things slow and let Emma Kate lead the way. I had a couple of fastpasses scheduled, but other than that there was nothing we just “had” to do.

We got to the park right after it opened, and after showing her the castle, headed to Fantasyland.

ehCuulR9W8hD9_os1qFIhAzNSn3jmPOKQ3V76GxMDDIpX92IB

We walked right on to Winnie the Pooh (she was so fascinated and slightly overwhelmed!) Then we did the little Mermaid, Dumbo, and Peter Pan.

rJYVwP6J4Pd2IagIYNs1_vH1vR0qtlEQ6hzr8FxM3n8pX92IB

Then we had a fastpass for Enchanted Tales with Belle. My mom and I had done it before, but my dad (and of course EK) had not so I was excited for them to see.

uJrR6yUGkxbB82poNVAPvF4WN200yw5YQTmOPpHoKpUpX92IB

We sat on the front row and watched the little play, and Emma Kate got to get up and meet Belle and get a bookmark. She was really hesitant and didn’t smile, but she also didn’t cry. I call it a win!

PhotoPass_Visiting_MK_392154413181 (2)

I was so happy Emma Kate’s first princess meeting was with my personal favorite!

PhotoPass_Visiting_MK_392154465170 (2)

After seeing Belle, we decided to take a little break and get a snack. Emma Kate and I sat down and hung out in the grassy area in front of the castle while my mom and dad went to Starbucks to get us coffee and and a snack. Emma Kate enjoyed running around this little area that was away from the hustle and bustle.

2H4CfAdEs8_N8lXs8YCRZGEFnCI3WllLeAfIJkbvMkIpX92IB

DSC_0061

DSC_0060

DSC_0063

We sat in the grass and all took a little breather and ate (Emma Kate was again wanting to walk and not hold my hand or sit in the stroller so we had a few meltdowns all before 11:00.)

Fz0RbFDD3uDTkYTK5IUGwvn86GPkItJprkjrq9lfw7spX92IB

cuz8DuLM3TXlWdI0qdvUo_43mfJZqrKlJpfaf-cUP_UpX92IB

After our little break, we decided to ride the train and see if Emma Kate would take a nap. She loves Thomas the train and enjoyed being on it, but it stops so much and for such long periods of time we quickly realized this was not going to work. We got off after a couple of stops, and decided to ride the people mover. After this, she was getting super cranky so I told mom and dad to go take a break and I would walk her around in the stroller and see if she would take a nap (she was so tired but fighting it at this point). I headed off from tomorrowland towards fantasyland by way of the walkway near space mountain, and Emma Kate pretty much fell asleep instantly, so I just kept walking. I made it all the way around the park, then stopped at a quiet corner in Liberty square behind the Christmas shop. I sat down on the ground while she slept. aaahhh.

amb_5q1DStjyEzjI9S4IzUQz43DwRhKI2X-fGF4gXkwpX92IB

After awhile, my mom texted and said she would come meet me and we could switch spots, that dad was getting a snack in Tomorrowland and I could meet up with him there. So I walked back across the park after she arrived and had some fries with my dad. Soon after I got there, EK was awake so we met with my mom and did Buzz Lightyear. We got stuck on the ride for about ten minutes though! After that we decided to take another break in the grass until the 3:00 parade. This time we sat on the other side of the castle.

LsKo6YL4EQ0pYXB4iVLEyWzGBraXCkd7auP_HWGNBtopX92IB

Check out Emma Kate putting sunscreen on my dads knees Smile Bless it.

nQ0KImrfUO_AnfbzeZeSn374MdILLoZUqBF3XPooh-kpX92IB

We made it across the street for the parade and my parents ran into friends from high school! How crazy is that! They ended up chatting during the whole parade and I held Emma Kate up to see. Thankfully I lift weights because holding up a 31 pound child for the whole parade was pretty difficult! But she loved the parade and loved waving to the characters, especially when they waved back!

KmFLpudSxqiwJjGlTv4aWoTvlaxCYz260N92lCLm_9MpX92IB

ThpJnfwsvlOdWDfh9vwWLQ73VjYzflGdpCxnHw9Z5xEpX92IB

FrBsRoow2e-XSPJCiFD-blTzxAHd5gNmCduSHNnhk0EpX92IB

We had a 3:30 reservation at Crystal Palace, so as soon as the parade was over we checked in. I was so curious to see how EK would do with the characters. To sum it up, it took her a little while to warm up to them but then she did really well. Tigger was her favorite.

tJGEk8wKQ6stlLm9IbB7n5SR4N1eG7p9WpVrF2sKKj8pX92IB

vsIp2wxHkrYQUer9tNu-sXXYJkBnFy4U81WLxXdztbUpX92IB

Mwh81rA3pshipPMaPbyECgKjpzFC8zwO-G5uuSXSGs4pX92IB

hZcO2ZePkpOGowm6Bv8_C2tnHwb8S_dL6k7ont9Pb0gpX92IB

OeK4UqUIspXxObP82gu0_PBke2J1LrXHN2hmuIqcwHopX92IB

PBiXKVR-U3JPGzXTaJo3b7cZYlfBGbC4liQHmO7FHbYpX92IB

The issue here was that my super active child was over sitting still in her high chair after about seven minutes and wanted to run around the restaurant, which I wouldn’t allow. She ended up on the floor of Crystal Palace throwing a complete fit and I immediately picked her up and took her outside. I was really frustrated but tried to remind myself she is two, and is really overwhelmed and probably still wasn’t feeling great. I was just tired from chasing her around all day and dealing with the terrible twos. My mom finished eating and came outside to swap with me so I could go eat, but I still didn’t get as much as I wanted because I knew she was being difficult outside for my mom and I wanted to hurry up.

After we finished eating, we decided to leave, which Emma Kate did not want to do, so I apologize to anyone who was on Main street when I strapped my child in the stroller and power walked to the front of the park as she screamed. It was super fun for everyone I’m sure.

When we got back, we took EK to the playground right outside out building. We were on the first floor so it was nice to just walk right outside.

OcFP-M5TChG9H9REsbZBlsMkn5u2XNftRs3NmdUNfT8pX92IB

vrEzlcfK_zKw4v7FvbKyJOdVDcA9KPewCNyBMIG5SsUpX92IB

The playground is near the water and has a great view of Disney Springs.

cOaKtX9cAz_BgH3vrs527Stkg1UFl4GEjiZAl2eWK9IpX92IB

I can’t remember exactly what we did that evening but I’m guessing just hung out in the room. Our original plan was to go to Hollywood Studios the next day, but since we got a contract on our house the day we left for Disney, we decided it would be best of my dad and I drove to Tampa to meet with my realtor and look at homes because we needed to make on offer on one quickly for all the closing dates to line up. My poor mom would be left with EK by herself, but I am thankful she volunteered so that I could get this handled since we were so close to Tampa!

More on that adventure in the next installment. Smile

QOTD: Did your/do your kids like the characters at Disney?

Emma Kate Does Disney: Part 1

I finally have some time to sit down and write out a recap out Emma Kate’s first Disney trip. Fair warning, it was a doozy. Poor EK was sick most of the trip and this made her cranky and miserable and everyone else cranky and miserable. I’m still so glad we got to go and experience it for the first time with her grandparents, but it’s not all rainbows and butterflies. Read on anyway!

Mmrr26q1BjrimFvdPGSqIVjyldhxtL6DMvve4akiwwQpX92IB

Like I said EK had been sick with some sort of virus but her doctor put her on some medication just in case it was bacterial since we were going out of town. I picked her up after lunch from school, and we drove to my parents. Poor girl slept most of the way down. We hung out at my parents house that afternoon, and went to bed early. Emma Kate ended up having a rough night and neither of us got much sleep.

The next day, my dad and I had fun trying to pack all of our stuff and Emma Kate’s stroller in their car. We were able to get it all in, and we left for Florida around 10:00. We stopped in Biloxi and ate lunch, and soon realized it was going to be a long drive. Emma Kate slept about an hour but then fussed the whole rest of the way to Tallahassee where we were stopping for the night. After having trouble finding our hotel, we were all ready for a break so my mom and dad went to grab us some dinner and I stayed at the hotel with the sick one. It was yet again a night of little sleep for everyone (she did not want to sleep in the pack n play so ended up in bed with me, and the child does not lay still). We were optimistic though, and the next morning we hopped back in the car and headed for Orlando. EK slept about two of the four and a half hours, and cried the rest of the time which made for an interesting ride. Finally, we made it to my happy place, and pulled in to Saratoga Springs.

BBVJUkGDhSXoSF86yJW9uiN4tUNwYAihCoyob03lHv4pX92IB

Our room wasn’t ready yet, but that was ok so we decided to grab lunch in the food court and then take Emma Kate to the pool. Unfortunately, EK was tired of sitting so she lasted in the high chair all of 27 seconds before I had to take her outside. I ate about three bites of lunch (which would come to be a theme of the trip!) We walked around and played in the splash pad while my mom and dad ate lunch, then we all drove over to the super nice pool at the Paddock and changed there.

8RnfVZwygYOPKC3Xw45Y_XftOzc4ZbX2QRBn0kG-BWcpX92IB

I was really impressed with the play area. It was totally fenced in and had tables and chairs for the parents. There were two slides and it was zero entry all the way around. Emma Kate LOVED it and went down the slide about 50 times.

KLn61pLwU5X7_3cbM6mxSmbV2_bho-DED5jARl9aEtYpX92IB

0eGl5O9ef_Lbl7gb1GgVPBDB60V-NSblwhmLLETG2OEpX92IB

znGSBfWt7pasfHQymhq1zWalzIk-pg-HlZz9sy8xp1MpX92IB

After our rough start, I was so glad to see her having fun.

GL1NsluGjS7rsJvA0O9Pbw1nYAYHL-lOZHQDxPjxrQwpX92IB

4DCoS1ajCBvr-YKaX_AlUqAcCKYY6zfYhN2bAeqAPx0pX92IB

2Ey1ZXR2PRFSwl4EXB8MSk372cNMmxzi1WkvOoeKnyIpX92IB

Since we had a two bedroom villa, our original plan was to let my mom stay with Emma Kate while my dad and I went to the grocery store to get food for the trip. However, because our room wasn’t ready, we had to call an audible and just stay at the pool. We were all getting a little tired of waiting and finally at 4:00 our room was ready. We hurried over and unloaded, and then put Emma Kate in the stroller and walked to Disney Springs to activate our Annual Passes before heading to dinner at Whispering Canyon Café.

BT-H7k5fWFcf1j-izD0nDgXsuCBeXuzRRqrAy0XrOz0pX92IB

JrgM6Ns01IWxH0bWYqptSFTpC8A_wsv8wirXQTIMR9QpX92IB

Apparently all the running around at the pool wasn’t enough to tired her out, so EK wanted OUT of the stroller. This was a problem because there were people everywhere and she wanted to walk all on her own (another foreshadowing of the trip). We finally made it over to guest services, and ended up there for over an hour. They couldn’t get my parents Annual Passes to work for some reason, and so we just had to keep waiting. Meanwhile, Emma Kate had meltdown after meltdown because she wanted to go. We took turns going outside with her but she wanted me and only me so it made things difficult. We ended up missing our dinner reservations because we were there so long. EK was acting up so much that I was kind of glad. We ended up going to Earl of Sandwich and eating outside so EK could play in the splash pad and we could watch her.

uTGC9C6mkZyVCchU8vy5JJCA66qTUpk7L1NvBW04WqYpX92IB

She had a LOT of fun with that (the kid loves water!) and made friends while she played. But, she had another meltdown when it was time to go. We walked back to Saratoga Springs ready for a good nights sleep before heading to the Magic Kingdom the next day.

voqquYQiF49z1lgsz7MTWWd6NJU8mlPnZMU1iShTWmspX92IB

My dad and I ended up going to the grocery store after Emma Kate went to bed, and I was so tired I just wanted to hurry and get back and go to sleep, which is exactly what I did. We had gotten off to a bumpy start, but we were hopeful that in the light of the next day things would be magical!

QOTD: Have you ever had a Disney trip start off as not so magical?

Back from Disney World

Hey friends! I am back from Florida. It has been a whirlwind week and a half, and it is so good to be home! If you will recall when we left for Disney Emma Kate was sick, and let’s just say we have had better Disney trips. She was super cranky and fussy (rightfully so) and keeping it real, it really stressed us all out. Her fever broke the day we got to Disney but that didn’t stop her craziness. I’m not sure if she was just super tired, or overwhelmed or what, but I have never seen her act the way she did in Disney…she was a hot mess! I think not knowing what to expect was difficult on us, and let’s just say I need a vacation from my vacation. We for sure still had fun and happy moments, and I can’t wait to share them with you over the next couple of weeks. You will get the good, the bad and the ugly of taking a very strong willed two year old to Disney. Smile I loved seeing her meet the princesses, ride the rides, and experience my happy place. Of course there is still so much more I want to show her, but we got a good start on getting her obsessed with Disney just like the rest of the family. She said cute things like “BIG CASTLE!” and “Pluto has a big tongue” and “Emma Kate and Minnie Mouse!”

y_8k4aRY6tjZGGpLVijUIW_FDDn_nLwnLnlGBZULVWkpX92IB

My parents recently bought into the Disney vacation club and generously used their points for our trip, and getting a two bedroom villa was for sure the way to go. We could put Emma Kate to bed at night and still hang out in the living room without having to be quiet. We were on the first floor of Saratoga Springs and it was great to let her just walk out of the patio and out to the grass or playground. Having a full kitchen and washer and dryer was a plus, too!

mkpWk5wvfQ4xiAPfP4xWiSOYQ5D7ZYkKAaxDzJs4vhQpX92IB

Our room was on the bottom right behind the bench in the back of the photo.

Also having our car was the way to go because we didn’t have to wait in long bus lines with a toddler having a meltdown. We still were able to ride the ferry and the monorail which Emma Kate liked.

My dad and I went to the grocery store the first day to get groceries so we cold eat snacks and breakfast in the room each day to save money. We also grilled outside by the playground the last night which was a lot of fun. Emma Kate loved the pool/kids water play area and we went there three or four times in the afternoon after nap.

Ri34vnMDJ3Ak-oQdgxptGx5OIbUVSgbji6V_lkG97wopX92IB

I feel like my thoughts are so scattered right now and I will get more specific when I give you my daily recaps, but I did want to check in and let yall know I am still alive and that you will hear more about the trip. I hope everyone had a great week!

QOTD: Were your expectations too high the first time you brought your child on vacation?

Finally Fall

Fall finally decided to show up in Mississippi this weekend. It was gorgeous and sunny Saturday and Sunday with lows in the low 50’s and highs in the 70’s. For our third year and a row, my dad took Emma Kate to the classic car show in our city and out to lunch at McAlisters. This year was the most challenging because last year she was just learning to walk and the year before she was only a month old!

0CkARaXTEt5JcpzUiEEmyjchO_n4jE-60TeJjZ-KrZ0pX92IB

CqbrYQkB5i0VtbYmXIEVqsRwsmrCVVyoYM1JFuMMhtApX92IB

H0Jovb3gEw8DIEdYRyLOU7DkIgUJ2UjUOQHTN-OVNQgpX92IB

How cute is this display?

MylEaFtYsNeM0ddQg_O4DYALqmlpMmH0PW2pgIehDjApX92IB

qBvzLcQF_FAGN2TmRTuxPFPs2SrX05IkVQJCPOAj8YMpX92IB

It’s fun to walk around a free event checking out all the cars. It helps when the weather is beautiful! We are all about free things to do.

H1Rp5ROKfPKFHR7hhuM3VlzapOt95UxBeWWP54RQj6spX92IB

There were rows and rows of classic cars of all different colors.

fall

We walked over to McAlisters and sat outside for lunch before walking over to our yogurt shop for dessert.

ESatQvLJaQH3Pg78Cgsn29LdWaedLzGsqOzc2zuuzgQpX92IB

Saturday night we had a fall get together with our life group from church. It was at my friends house who lives down the street, so we just walked over. We had chips and dip, chili, soup, and caramel apples. Emma Kate had a blast playing with all the other kids. I didn’t take any photos, but if you saw my Instagram story then you saw Emma Kate wipe out on some playground equipment (she was fine).

Then some friends came over and watched part of the LSU/Ole Miss game. I went to bed at 11:00 because the game didn’t start until 8:15, so it was way past my bedtime.

Sunday we went to church and then had the annual fun fest at our church. It’s a free community wide event with games, candy, and lots of fun!

CigTLOTAFskBazLZ5L1UfX2osBm1m2hnhRI6Q5DUdXUpX92IB

IMG_0238 (2)

How adorable is she?!?

31j7G8OBtMFerUm-erIzzXo9Y6rdsxxZRZTOy0YAjugpX92IB

We went in the bouncy house about five times, watched the puppet show, and helped with the photo booth. She slept like a rock that night!

RKK98pD2tFAUkO1ky3UOxl1wkYlF_BQx5O8KcqM8eRkpX92IB

It was our third year at fun fest and it is something I will definitely miss when we move.

bASes6Pd2097YhnsciLJukBSNv7u6Z3l03WS2gKw0WYpX92IB

QOTD: Do you go to any community or church fall events?

Swim Readiness: Then and Now

This post was sponsored by Speedo. Thanks for the products you sent to me and Emma Kate!

Before I had a baby, getting dressed and ready to swim was a fairly simple task. I only had to think about what I needed to do for myself, and myself alone. Oh how I took for granted those simpler times, because getting a child ready to swim is a whole different ball game! I wanted to take you through my step by step process of what it’s like now to get ready to go to the pool/water with a toddler.

The dance of the swimsuit:

First I have to actually convince my toddler to get into her swimsuit. This may or may not involve chasing, begging, wrestling, and crying (me, not her). Ok, so maybe I’m kidding a little, but once Emma Kate saw her adorable new sun shirt from Speedo, she asked me to immediately help her get it on. This sun shirt is quick drying. It also is UV50+ and provides protection from harmful sun rays. To learn more about this product, go to this page. Emma Kate was obsessed with the butterflies on it!

clip_image002

The “slather”:

Putting sunscreen on a child is very, very important, but also extremely difficult. As a teenager, I worked at a local summer camp, and distinctly remember how hard it was to get squirmy four year olds to stay still long enough to coat them in the protective stuff. Inevitably, one would turn their head and sunscreen would get in their eyes, hair, etc. Thankfully, Emma Kate understands the importance of sun protection, and knows she will not get to go near the water without it, so she generally complies without too much fuss when I slather it on her.

clip_image004

Swim Shoe shuffle:

We have a water table and kiddie splash pad we like to set up in the backyard. However, we quickly realized that when the concrete gets wet, it’s quite slippery. I immediately got Emma Kate some swim shoes from Speedo, and now she is much safer. They are also great for the pool or pool deck so their little feet don’t get blisters! We love the awesome colors too, and how easy it is to get them on and off with their four way stretch.

clip_image006

Rules were made to be broken—er… followed:

I know Emma Kate is only two, but she had a pretty firm grasp on what is expected of her when we are near water. No running, no getting in the water without me, and always wear your swim vest/life jacket. We obey other adults and life guards and stay in the shallow water. Even at her age I feel it’s important to be consistently repetitive so she knows what is expected of her ahead of time.

clip_image008

The rinse:

I always think it is wise to rinse off in the shower (most pools have an outdoor one nearby) before getting in the water. I mean, we are dealing with toddlers here, and at any given time there are five different kinds of food stuck to her face and in her hair, and we don’t want to get that in the pool.

clip_image010

So on top of getting mommy in her cute Speedo swimsuit and cover up, (My new swimsuit has great adjustable straps on the top, and is stretchy and flexible. My cover up is super comfy and has a lightweight, cute racerback design) and getting sunscreen applied, there are a lot of other things to consider these days. I have to plan ahead, and make sure I have allowed enough time to get together everything we need for a fun and successful day in the water.

My blog may contain links to other websites. I am not responsible for the privacy policies of those other websites. When you click on a link, your information may be collected by those websites, so I encourage you to read their privacy policies.

Affiliate links are not associated with Speedo.

Emma Kate: Two Years Old

I can’t believe I am typing these words out. My little baby turned two years old on Saturday. It’s a bittersweet time for me, knowing that she is no longer a baby, but also very glad she is more independent (ha is she ever) and can do some things on her own. There is so much to say that I don’t even know where to begin, so let’s start with the stats.

IMG_9249

EK had her two year old check up yesterday, and weighs 31 pounds and nine ounces (96%) and is 36.5 inches tall (97%). Head circumference is 87%. She is in size 5 diapers, and clothing is a really wide range. She is mostly in 3T, but in some things can wear a 2T or a 4T. Footed PJ’s are a 3T. She is about to bust out of her size 6 shoes, I’m hoping we can get another couple weeks out of her sandals while we still have warm weather.

IMG_8249

Emma Kate loves to try to put on clothes and shoes, and always reminds me to put a bow in her hair. Poor child has been brainwashed by her southern mama to think she has to have one every day. Bless it.

We hit the terrible twos a long time ago, and girlfriend has quite the sassy attitude and loves to push the limits. We have been using time out, and she (usually) responds well to that. She likes to do things herself, and won’t let me help with her food, utensils, or when she can’t get a toy just right. She gets easily frustrated and likes to throw things down she she gets mad.

IMG_8381

Emma Kate has had an obsession with Finding Nemo for a couple months now, and we legit watch it every single day. She can say a lot of the lines, and is mesmerized by the fish. Never did I think my super hyperactive child would sit still and watch a movie, but she will sit and watch Nemo for 20-30 minutes. She still likes Mickey/Minnie mouse and Elsa, but as far as TV prefers to watch Nemo. She also has an obsession with YouTube Kids on my iPad and will ask to watch it all. the. time. (Gasp. I know, go ahead. Judge all you want, but sometimes mama needs 30 minutes and the iPad does the trick). She still loves dogs, and really all animals and making animal sounds. Lately, she has been singing a lot. Her favorites are the ABC song, and the happy birthday song. She still loves puzzles, and also likes to do anything I am doing around the house like sweeping, helping with the laundry, etc.  It’s funny how quickly things change, because I know in a couple months she may have totally different things she loves!

IMG_8624

As far as speech, Emma Kate is always talking, but I don’t always know what she’s saying, although I have gotten better at using contextual clues to decipher. She’s speaking in a lot more over two word sentences lately, and says the funniest things. If she bangs her head on the door, she will wag her finger at it and say “no no, bad door!” and she is always saying “hush Bella, get down!” to the dog. She loves going outside “outside mama outside!” and eating.

IMG_8633

Speaking of eating, she went straight from her highchair to a “big girl” chair several months ago, without a booster seat. Oh well. Saves me some money I guess! She loves to eat cheese, apples, strawberries, yogurt, lasagna, beans, and chicken. I kept sweets from her as long as I could, but now she asks for cookies. Whoops!

IMG_8768

Sleep is still going great at night. She is still in her crib, and goes to bed at 7:15, and waked up between 6:00-6:15 usually. Naptime still isn’t going great. I had hoped after she turned one and dropped that second nap that her one nap would get longer, but it unfortunately didn’t. An “average” nap is 45 minutes to an hour, and anything over that is considered “long” for her. I so envy my friends who have kids that nap 2.5-3 hours a day, but i’m also grateful to have a great nighttime sleeper.

The best is when she gives us kisses at night and says “I love you too” when we say prayers and put her to bed. I know I will blink and she will be 12, then again and she will be 22, so as much as I want her to get a little bit older so we can do more fun things together, I don’t want it to happen TOO quickly. We love you bug! Happy birthday!

IMG_9190

QOTD: What is something funny you did as a kid or something your kids do that your parents/you still talk about?

 

**The WINNER of the Keep it Chill gaitor is Lisa Schneider! I will shoot you an email.

Montgomerys on the Move

Well, the time has finally come to share some BIG news with you. I shared it first with my email subscribers yesterday, because I always tell them news first (sign up here), and I already felt so much better last night after getting it off my chest.

I explained to my subscribers that lately I have felt like I was doing something wrong by keeping a secret from you all. It has become difficult to share personal stories of things going on in our lives simply because if I did, it would give my secret away. I know my blogging lately has been sporadic, and unfortunately it will continue to be that way for a little while longer, because my friends…the Montgomery family is packing up and moving to FLORIDA!

Florida

I cheated. This picture is from last summer.

Whew. Ok, now I really feel better for letting the cat out of the bag to everyone. Funny how when you withhold information, even if you have a good reason, it can feel like a lie/wrong doing. There was still a lot up in the air until recently (and frankly, there still is,) but I decided now felt like the right time to share, just…because.

Ok, so here are some of the details. I am not ready to share everything 100% yet for various reasons, but here is what I can tell you:

WHO: Me, Bobby, and Emma Kate, of course. We have been within 3 hours of our families for years, so this will be WAY out of my comfort zone.

WHAT: Moving. We already established this right? Smile with tongue out

WHEN: Sometime in mid to late November. So, soon. This is scary because our house is still on the market. We had an offer a couple weeks ago that unfortunately fell through. We can’t buy another house until this one sells…so you get the picture.

WHERE: All I am willing to say right now is “central Florida”. More to come. Stay tuned.

WHY: Bobby has gotten an awesome new job, something he has worked really hard for, for a long time now. Thankfully both of my jobs are work from home, so I will still be doing what I love!

HOW: That’s a really good question. There is a lot to get settled, so we would so appreciate prayers right now for a few key things to fall into place. I know God’s timing is perfect, but I would be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous about all of the things working out in time for us to move. It gives me a headache just to think about it. I would also be lying if I said I wasn’t sad about leaving our current town. This is where Bobby grew up, and we truly do love it here. In particular, our church and gym, and the friends that come along with both are going to be very very hard to replace, and I’m frankly not sure it’s possible. I have gotten to know so many great people who have helped me a ton, especially in the past year, and if I think about leaving them it really upsets me.

Change has always been hard for me, and I’m incredibly sentimental so this whole process has been overwhelming. Please know if I take a little longer to answer emails or seem out of sorts for the next couple of months, that I’m just super busy doing all of the things for all of the people, and I will hopefully get back into a new routine once we get settled. I have had a couple of people ask me why I haven’t been marketing my new book much anymore, and now you know why. I have been packing boxes, doing research, and so many other things as we prepare to move. I can’t wait to share a new area, new adventures, and a new life with all of you here in my little corner of the world! Thanks for hanging in there with me.

QOTD: How do you handle change? Are you sentimental? Thoughts on Florida?

Football, Running, and Miss America

Morning! We had a wild but good weekend visiting my family down in Louisiana. The drive down was fine, and Emma Kate did great. My dad grilled steaks for dinner, and we just hung out at the house. Saturday morning, I went for an eight mile run in my parents neighborhood. I got started around 7:45, and the run felt more like a swim. Someone needs to tell the weather that it’s post labor day and we are supposed to have cooler temps now, mmk?

IMG_8857 (2)

After the run, I went with my dad to run a few errands and I took a quick nap when Emma Kate napped. That run just zapped all my energy! How adorable is my little LSU fan?!?

unnamed (1)

unnamed (2)

That afternoon, my buddy Jen and her family came over to eat dinner and hang out. The guys watched football and us girls hung at the kiddie pool.

unnamed (3)

My sweet friend also brought me a daiquiri. One thing Louisiana does right is drive thru daiquiri stores. She got me pineapple and amaretto and it was amazing.

unnamed (4)

We also watched the LSU game that night (they won!)

Sunday morning we took Emma Kate for a walk, and just hung out at the house. We left right after lunch so Emma Kate would hopefully nap on the way home (she did, praise the Lord!) I was super excited about Sunday night, because it was the Miss America pageant! My sweet friend Laura Lee is Miss Mississippi. She took boot camp with me this summer, but I have known her almost ten years. her big sister was my sorority little sis, we were in each others weddings, and our girls are just a couple weeks apart in age. Our boot camp class decided to have a watch party and it was a blast! We had food, wine, and lots of fun.

unnamed (5)

They started the show by announcing the top 15, and we were all SO nervous. Laura Lee was announced LAST and we all lost it when her name was called.

unnamed (6)

She did amazing and ended up getting 5th place! I think she deserved higher, but we are so, so proud of our sweet friend. She represented our state so well and I know she will go on to do amazing things.

Emma Kate spent the night at Bobby’s sisters house, so it was nice not having to be “on alert” for the night listening for a crying toddler (moms I know you know what I mean!) Overall a great weekend with family and friends. Is it Friday yet?

QOTD: Do you watch pageants? Who did you want to win Miss America? Did your football team win?