Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Stairs - before and after

I finally found some pictures of the stairs before we added the wood steps and iron balusters. It is funny how I can barely remember how it looked before, but I definitely remember the nasty smell. We are really starting to settle in, and the house feels like home. Only two more large interior projects!

Before - above

After - below

Before - above

After - below

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Look what I made

Ryland made a crown at Sunday school, and he was so proud. He was happy to wear it until the camera came out. I eventually talked him into showing off his beautiful creation. One of my favorite pictures. I just love him to pieces.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Play dough

I totally caved at the store today. I took the boys to purchase school supplies, and one of the items we needed was play dough. Ryland said he wanted to play with it as soon as he got home. I explained it was for school, and we couldn't open it. He was disappointed.

I quickly thought about the huge potential mess the play dough would make. It made me shutter just to think of all the crevices and cracks I would have to clean. I just stopped. I remembered how much I loved playing with play dough when I was younger, so I bought two packs. One for school and one for home.

As soon as we got home, we laid down some play dough rules. Only with mommy or daddy and only in the kitchen. The island was a great place to spread it all out to play.

We mashed shapes, rolled snakes, and made all kinds of other unrecognizable creatures. It was awesome! Ryland lost interest after about 45 minutes, but I was all about the play dough. He eventually pulled me away to play cars. Lesson learned. Have fun!

Reed was more interested in his teething ring, but I am sure he would have taste tested the play dough.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

2 monkeys in the crib

Ryland was climbing all over the side of Reed's crib. He told me he wanted to get in Reed's bed. Of course he wanted to bring his toys. I put Ryland in the crib, and Reed started kicking and was so excited. Ryland beamed with glee.

Ryland started the mobile, and the monkey party began.

Ryland started taking "party pics".

Monday, August 22, 2011

Aquarium play date

Our play group met at the new Sea Life aquarium in Grapevine. I was a little hesitant at first, but Ryland's amazement was worth the wait in line. He ran right to the first exhibit and was in total awe.
Reed was a trooper as always. I think he was a little amazed as well.

"Look mommy. A shark!"

This was the sting ray exhibit. There was a large tank with bubble viewing areas for the kiddos to peek in to the sting rays.

One of the coolest areas of the aquarium. The tunnel was completely glass including the floor. Ryland was not overly excited to walk on it at first, and I attempted to snap a picture before he started fussing.

Here is a mirror view of us three. It is the only way I could get us in a photo together. Too bad the huge jelly fish were right in the way.

Reed just doesn't know what to think. He is checking out the views.

I tried to get Ryland to sit by Reed for a picture by the glass wall, but he thought the floor would be better.

The boys. I did a little talking, and I was able to convince Ryland to pose for a picture with Reed.

As we continued through the aquarium, we came to the Texas swamp land exhibit. There was a large U shaped tank that you could walk "in".

Ryland noticed that I snapped a picture of him on the other side, and he took a picture of me being silly.

The shark tank was awesome! The room has a glass panel floor and side panels. Ryland just plopped down on the floor to get up close and personal. He was mesmerized.

After visiting the exhibits, we checked out the learning center. They had a few tanks that the kids could touch and learn more about the creatures.

Overall, the aquarium was awesome! It was a pain to wait with a 2 year old and 5 month old for 30 minutes before getting in, but it was worth it. Ryland and Reed both enjoyed it, and so did I.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Couch potatoes

The heat has been a real bummer this summer. It has been constantly over 100F with no rain for well over a month. We spend a ton of afternoons playing inside, because it is just too darn hot to play outside. I know Ryland loves playing out in the yard, and I don't worry about him too much because he drinks a lot of water when he is outside. I worry more about Reed.

We decided to watch a movie and snack on popcorn this afternoon. I found Hanny Manny on Fios on demand, and we all hung out on the sofa for an hour. We talked and giggled throughout the movie, but Ryland can tell you what every single tool on the show is called. Hammer, screwdriver, tape measure, etc. I think the remodeling of our home has made a little impact.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

It's "Saturday"!

We have a Saturday tradition that has caught on over the past several months. It started when Ryland would wake up and come downstairs. "Where did daddy go?" I would tell him what day of the week it was and explain that daddy was at work. I started telling him that daddy would stay home on Saturday. On Fridays, John Chris and I would ask what day is tomorrow? We taught him to say "Saturday". He says it in a really cute emphasized way that caught on.

As the weeks progressed, we started making cinnamon rolls on Saturday mornings. Ryland would spread the icing on the top when they came out of the oven. He really likes cinnamon rolls and started asking for them by name. I started picking them up every time we bought groceries. They have become a staple item on the list.

When you ask Ryland what day is it tomorrow. He will tell you "Saturday", and then say cinnamon rolls. I have to admit my heart smiles every time I buy those cinnamon rolls, and I can't wait for "Saturday".

Friday, August 19, 2011

Reed's 5 month photos

Time is really flying by. Reed is getting bigger and more alert everyday. He is now sitting on his own, although I am still cautious and surround him with pillows. He once again loved getting his picture taken and smiled the entire time.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Chuck E Cheese's

John Chris and I decided to take the boys to Chuck E Cheese for a little fun tonight. It had been several months since we had taken Ryland and this was Reed's first encounter. The sketch booth went a ton better on this visit. If you remember from last time, Ryland was screaming and throwing a fit in the last sketch. He actually thought it was cool this time.

Ryland is on the edge of being too big to play in the little kid section, but he is still a little small for the big kid area. He would ride or play a baby game and then run to play a bigger game. He went back and forth most of the night.

Serious concentration. Notice the tongue has come out.

Ryland showed Reed how fun it was to ride with Chuck E Cheese. We had a great time and before we knew it, it was time to go home. We all had full pizza bellies, several plastic bugs we bought with tickets, and Reed was down to his diaper. Nothing like a blow out in a public place.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Happy to be home

What a grin! I try to catch him smiling and take a picture, but the minute the camera comes out he hides his face or stops smiling. Today, he was happy as a lark. He told me a thousand times how he was happy to be home. I am sure I told him a thousand and one times how happy I was that he was home. He had a blast playing with all his toys and being silly.
I think Reed was happy to be home as well. I missed him so much. We all had a great day of playing and laughing.
I am so happy they are home.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Missing the boys

OK, I am about to go crazy. I can't wait to see the boys. The house is too quiet and too clean, and I am ready for the boys to come home. I just have a short 2 hour drive to Tyler to pick them up. I didn't sleep last night, because I was so excited. It was like Christmas Eve when I was a kid. I miss them very much!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Stair project begins

We have discussed and discussed these darn stairs for just about a year now. When we first moved in this house, the stairs were covered in stained, nasty, and worn out beige carpet. The first day in the house, John Chris and I pulled out all the carpet.

We had wood stairs at the last house, and we loved them. The wood is easy to clean and doesn't show wear and tear. The only negative thing I found was when I fell down them. Ouch!

After removing the carpet, we put down wood. We had plans to remove the old wood spindles and replace them with iron. Great plans, but the stairs just didn't look like we wanted them to.

The right side of the stairs where the wood ends was going to be white with a piece of white curved white trim on the left side against the wall. I pulled out a few of the wood spindles and painted the trim white. Hmmm. Not exactly what I had in mind.
So, the stairs just remained an unfinished project until John Chris came across a picture. I know this sounds cheesy, but he found a picture of the Kardashian Christmas card. The staircase they were standing on was what we had in mind. The basic difference was that the stair tread and riser came all the way out to the end of the step with the iron spindle anchored directly to the step. The risers were also painted white instead of being stained wood. We knew this would be a ton more work and more expense, but it would be worth it.

Since the boys were visiting their grandparents, we ripped out all the spindles and wood.

We sanded the handrail and newel posts and painted them white. We also added the curve white trim on the left wall.

The wood steps are in and the iron spindles are in place. We just have some caulking and paint touch ups, and the stairs will be complete. I will post the final picture along with the original picture as soon as we finish up the touch ups.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Fun at Nana's house

Ryland and Reed spent a few days at Nana's house, and from the pictures I can tell they had a great time.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Different views of bedtime

As we wrapped the first day at Nana's house, we started getting ready for bed. Reed is still smiling and giggling.
On the other hand, Ryland has completely unraveled. He has thrown a temper tantrum and informed us that he "hates us all". I swear that is what it sounded like. I have no idea where he heard the word hate, but through his screaming and crying he needed to release the anger. He needs to go to bed to get some rest.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Time to hit the road

The boys are going to spend some time with the grandparents over the next week. We have been talking about going to visit for the past few days, and Ryland is excited! Our bags are packed, and we have crammed it all in the truck. I ran back inside for my phone charger, and I came back out to see Ryland dancing on the console.
Reed is ready to make the few hour trip. He will play with the dangling toys for a couple minutes, and he will fall fast asleep.

Cooper is ready to go. He was thrilled just to get in the truck.

We didn't make it very far after a bite to eat, before Ryland was out. Don't you love the cool sunglasses?