Sunday, March 31, 2013

Easter 2013

Easter weekend has been fun filled and exactly what I needed after an overwhelming and stressful week trying to get ready for our very busy Spring Break. It has been so nice to enjoy time with family, see my boys get extra play time and attention, and laugh hard with my crazy relatives. It was a much needed distraction that I am very thankful for.

We arrived in the hometown yesterday and enjoyed playing outside, helping Granna cook, and dyeing Easter eggs. Garrison had a ball. And today was just as fun. We had a wonderful service at church, then the Easter bunny had goodies waiting for the boys when we got home, and then we had a huge family gathering with tons delicious food for lunch. The boys loved it all, especially playing with their cousins, sampling yummy desserts, and hunting for Easter eggs. It was such a fun day for all of us.

Easter is so special because of what it means and the celebration of Jesus being alive, and I think each year it means something more to me. It has been especially precious to read the Easter story to my firstborn and then to hear him tell about the Easter story. He still doesn't know every detail but he does know the important ones. There is so much hope found in Easter and I am so grateful. What a blessing it was to worship in our home church this morning and to spend the day celebrating with family. God is good.

Happy Easter from the Selph Family!
*Please pray for us as we get ready to start the 2nd "leg" of our break tomorrow. =)

Friday, March 29, 2013

Egg Hunts & Easter Buckets

In an effort to make sure at least part of my boys' Easter gets documented, I'm blogging on a Friday night in the midst of packing, laundry, and Easter oreo balls. But it's a welcome break for me so I'm sitting down and enjoying it!

The boys had Easter egg hunts at school yesterday and today. They both loved every second. Austin loved his so much he was devestated when his daddy took his bucket away from him after the hunt was over. Heartbroken I tell you. Garrison loved his so much he's been asking for candy every hour on the hour. (I kid. But it does feel that way sometimes.)

Garrison's was yesterday and Austin's was today. Austin and I went to Garrison's together yesterday, and today my director covered my class for me for a little bit so I could go to Austin's. And daddy came too! They both had so much fun and got lots of candy. It was much easier to photograph Austin at his hunt because he took his time and stopped to pose and was quite leisurely. We were very impressed at how quickly he learned to find an egg and put it in his bucket. Garrison on the other hand was on a mission that could not be interrupted. He was even a tad disappointed that his bucket wasn't as full as he had hoped it would be. Thankfully a class picture interrupted his almost pity party. Whew.

On a mission
Austin found a couple for brother!
Class picture time!
Loving his bucket and ready to hunt
Class picture! (Half of his little friends were crying. The one beside him is obvious, then there's the sweet little girl in the process of jumping ship, and then there's missing Luke who took off for mama before his picture was ever taken... hence the missing spot in the group.) Precious nonetheless.

And here's a sneak peek at the contents of the boys' Easter buckets. We make sure to keep it extra simple at Easter and just get them each a few small, inexpensive goodies. Plus they get some fun things from Granna and Nana so there is never any need to go overboard.

This year Garrison is getting a new Leap Frog DVD (Talking Words), fruit snacks/gummies, underwear, a pack of card games (he is really into card games right now), a water/paint notepad thingy (we found it at the dollar section at Michaels), 2 new hotwheels (Austin is really into hotwheels right now so Garrison has gotten back into them too), and a gardening rake and shovel (to be used outside or at the beach). Plus he's getting a few eggs with jellybeans or money. =)

Austin is getting some fruit/veggie melts, a new sippy cup, a watering can for the bathtub, Destin, a bouncy ball, a new toothbrush, 2 new hotwheels, and a new plate/container for his lunch box (which was accidentally left out of the picture). He will also get a couple of eggs with "candy" and money.

Austin is a little tougher to shop for because of his age and the fact that it's hard to buy him really small toys. And this may be the first year ever we didn't do a book for either one of them. We have tons and we usually get lots as gifts so we just decided not to this year. Easter bucket gifts are simple and practical but hopefully still fun and exciting for our little guys.
So thankful for Good Friday and His sacrifice, and that I serve a Risen Savior! 

Monday, March 25, 2013

Preparing for Spring Break

But first, a little weekend recap....We had ourselves a really fun weekend. We stayed home most of the day on Saturday due to rain and super messy weather, but Terrell did take the boys to the grocery store solo so I could get some work done in the peace and quiet....and we got out for an afternoon trip to Target and dinner out at one of our favorite restaurants. It was the perfect mix of home and outing.

On yesterday we went to our hometown church for the Palm Sunday service. SO good. I loved it. And my big boy decided to go to big church too because there was lots of singing and he wanted to see his Sunday School teacher, my dad, and Terrell's mom in the choir. He did really good considering the service was a tad longer than normal and included the Lord's Supper. We were really proud of him.

After lunch my parents took Austin home and got him down for a nap while Terrell, Garrison, and I went over to his parents' house to visit for a while. We made it home just in time for supper and the "school night" routine to begin.

And so begins the week before Spring Break and craziness all around.

This is the first Spring Break I can recall that will be non-stop busy start to finish. I get tired just thinking about it. We have a lot packed in. We will be away from our home for approximately 7.5 days of the 9 total days of the break. This is brand new to me. Growing up we didn't travel or vacation on breaks unless it was summer break. Since getting married, Terrell and I have never really planned much for breaks (unless it was in the summertime). And for the past few years breaks from school have meant something waaaaay different to me because I was a 100% stay at home mom. Now that I'm back to teaching, they are a really big deal... because I have to go back to work the following Monday like a normal person. Haha. 

So this week we have what feels like tons and tons to do to not only make sure we're ready to be away, but to make sure we're ready to get back. The week we go back is "my week" at school. (My turn to be "lead teacher") So I have been working lots on getting all of my school stuff taken care of so I have absolutely nothing hanging over me while I'm away. I've been cutting, tracing, working on our April newsletter, and cutting some more. I think I'm almost there. Plus we have a really big, really important fundraiser/auction for our school coming up shortly after we get back. It's especially important to teachers like me who are also parents of students at the school. This fundraiser is a big part of the reason "staff kids" are able to go for free. Which is one of the reasons we chose this preschool. So it's a big deal. In other words, things have been a tad stressful when it comes to school.

(Although a tad stressful with preschool stuff doesn't even touch or come close to touching a tad stressful with "big school" stuff. Please read this loud and clear: I am grateful. Me getting a little overwhelmed does not equal me being ungrateful.)

We've also got the house and laundry to take care of. (We must do some cleaning this week so we don't come home to a big ole mess.) Last minute shopping for items to insure our refrigerator and pantry won't be bare upon our return. Stuffing of eggs for upcoming Easter parties and egg hunts. And packing... for Easter weekend, 3 nights in Gatlinburg, and my mom's 60th birthday weekend. Lots of packing for lots of fun.

We will be busy. I will possibly lose my mind getting ready for everything. I may even get dramatic a time or two. (Okay, that's highly likely) But we're also excited and looking forward to all the fun to come. And in the midst of all the busyness this week we especially don't want to forget about Easter. We want to celebrate our Risen King. We want our boys to know what Easter is all about. That Jesus lives! We want to have fun with Terrell's family in Gatlinburg. We want to enjoy extra time with his sister and her family. We want to celebrate my mom's birthday and have a great time partying with her and the rest of the fam.

Yes, things will be crazy leading up to the break... and yes things will probably remain crazy throughout the break, BUT, I don't want to miss out on the fun because of being consumed with school (which is what I'm ultimately on a break from!) or because I'm worked up and stressed out with what will be waiting on us at the end of the week. I want to embrace our crazy break and enjoy it. I'm praying I can relax and have fun instead of obsessing over little stuff and wondering how in the world we're all going to be ready for the following Monday morning. I know I'll regret it if I don't let myself just be and enjoy our Spring Break. Because the fact is, we'll be fine. We'll enjoy Easter with family. We'll celebrate Jesus and his resurrection. We'll make memories in the mountains. We'll enjoy birthday celebrations. It might be busy and crazy but it'll be worth it.

Now to get everything taken care of before the end of this week...

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Easter Pictures!

We had Easter pictures done of the boys again this year and are in love! Danielle really captured some good ones. They aren't all perfectly posed (although Garrison did a great job with the whole posing part) but they are precious and funny and really special. We're thinking from this point forward we finally have a good routine for "professional" pictures... family pics in the Fall and Easter pics of the boys in the Spring. At least while they're little. This will sort of hold us accountable for having professional pictures done.

Things sure have changed since last year, but Ollie the bunny was super patient and tolerant of my boys... especially Austin who was totally fascinated with him. =)

Below are our favorites (not counting the ones I already posted from our preview)...

A few notes to go along with each one:

1. I think this is my absolute favorite. Both boys are happy and smiling beautiful, natural, we love Ollie smiles.
2. This is another favorite because everyone's looking at the camera... except Ollie.
3. This is my favorite "traditional" picture of them because they are both sitting where they're supposed to, looking at the camera, and smiling. We noticed after the first few pictures were made that poor Austin's pants were pulled up a little too high. Haha.
4. Austin's expression cracks me up in this one.
5. Garrison is perfectly posed in this one. Smiling big, head tilted and all. Presh. Austin was more worried about Ollie and sort of over the whole sitting where we told him to business.
6. This one was just sweet to me.
7. Giving brother some love. Melt my heart.

Thank you SO much Danielle for your patience and great work!!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Austin at 18 Months...Continued!

This morning we had Austin's 18 month check-up with our pediatrician, and so I'll always remember, I wanted to include his "stats" and what the doctor had to say about my littlest man. Plus, I forgot to include lots of things in his original 18 months post. I guess I was trying too hard when I sat down to write it because since then I've been amazed at all the things I left out. I guess I was just over thinking it. Since then I've been jotting down everything that comes to mind that I left out.... so hopefully I'm making up for it now!

Austin did great at his appointment. He was so calm and did everything without a fuss. He only had to get 1 shot and he cried hard and then got over it. I was so proud! He currently weighs 23 pounds, 1 ounce and is 30.5 inches long/tall. He is in the 15-20th percentile for weight and the 10th percentile for height. (Although when I went back and read about Garrison's 18 month check-up it seems like I might have the percentiles switched since the boys are closer in height at this age than weight.) Austin is still our little guy but perfectly healthy and proportionate. We actually weren't supposed to see much of a growth spurt at this check-up anyway. More than anything we are thankful he's healthy! And that he loves to eat! And that he sleeps all night! And takes good naps! And talks a bunch! We just have lots to be thankful for when it comes to our littlest love. =)

Now for some important things that must be documented...

*Austin loves to slide. Every time Terrell and Garrison are playing baseball in the backyard Austin wants mama to do nothing but put him on the slide, catch him, then put him back on the slide. Over and over and over again. It's one of his favorite things ever. He will slide 50 times in a row if you let him.
*Austin also loves pickles. He is his mother's child. =) One day Garrison and I were having one with our lunch and Austin demanded to have one as well. (For some strange reason I thought he'd spit it right out. I don't know why I thought that since I LOVE pickles and Garrison has loved them from a really young age too.) Anyway, since he got his first taste of a pickle he loves them now too.

*Speaking of meal times, Austin reminds us to say the blessing at every single meal. He folds his little hands together and grunts at us and makes noises until we acknowledge him and bow our heads to pray. Sometimes he even demands we say the blessing during the middle of our meal or possibly before snack time.

*Wagon rides are one of his favorite things.  

*He takes his socks and shoes off almost every. single. time. we get in the car. It drives me crazy. Sometimes we're literally in the car less than 5 minutes but getting those socks and shoes off are the first thing he does after he's strapped in. Ahhhh. Now we give him a couple of books in the car on the way to school or the grocery store or short little trips in hopes of a distraction so he'll leave them on. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. You just never know.

*Getting rides from big brother is a fun hobby. Austin loves it. And can't wait for the day he'll be able to drive.

*His favorite inside hobby is playing with puzzles. He loves doing puzzles even though he can't really make the pieces fit all by himself yet. He always wants me or Garrison to do them with him multiple times a day. And, he loves sitting in a lap to play. Whether it's building or playing ball or putting puzzles together, his favorite spot to sit and play is in a lap. LOVE.

*Austin also loves peek-a-boo. He's really into doing it himself now. He covers his face with those sweet, chubby hands and then says peeaboo after he gives you the big reveal. Precious. I love watching and hearing him play this little game. It's too sweet.
*A few very important words I left out that he says lots and lots are uh oh, choo choo, stop! (he likes saying this to Bailey when she barks), rock rock (when he wants to rock before bedtime or naptime, or when he just wants to be read to in the rocking chair), yaaaay!, beep beep, moo (for the sound a cow makes), and baaaa (for the sound a sheep makes).

*We're working on learning where his eyes, nose, ears, etc are. So far he knows hair, ears, and toes/feet the best.

*His other favorite hobby is sitting on daddy or Garrison's back and bouncing on top of them. It's the most fun ever!

That's all I can think of and all I had jotted down so hopefully I'm not forgetting anything too big this time. We are so thankful for our sweet baby boy and this fun age!!

Monday, March 18, 2013

My Favorite Kind of Weekend

While I love having weekend plans and going to the hometown, spending time with family, catching up, and being back at our home church, one of my favorite kind of weekends is when we don't have tons to do, the weather is nice, and we're just home hanging out and playing together. And that's the kind of weekend we just enjoyed. It was bliss.

Saturday started with cinnamon rolls for breakfast, morning baths, and getting ready for Easter pictures. Capturing "posed" pictures was a tad more challenging this year with Austin, but I still think we got some good ones. Danielle gave us a preview on facebook and here are two of my favorites. I can't wait to see them all!

After pictures we came home for lunch... delicious homemade barbeque my mom shared with us, then naps and then lots of time outside. We all had such a good time. We went for a walk together (Garrison rode his bike with Terrell close by while I pulled Austin in the wagon and walked Bailey), played baseball, let the boys ride around in their cars, and went through Spring/Summer clothes for Austin that used to be Garrison's. We stayed in for supper and everything. The only time we went out to eat the entire weekend was Friday night. We didn't go back to a restaurant or get take-out the rest of the weekend. It could've been a record for us. We like getting out on the weekends and not cooking, but this weekend it just worked out for us to stay in and it was so nice.
Yesterday was really laid back too. We even went to Scoops for ice cream after naps. So yummy! Then we played outside all afternoon and I even got to come inside early to tackle my workout solo... without an audience! (If you don't count Bailey... but she didn't bark as much this time so I think we're making progress.) 
Terrell and I ended the weekend with the 2 of us sitting at the table last night cutting out eggs, tissue paper, and little "chick feet" for an upcoming craft I have at school. I love him. He is such a good husband and daddy.
I am so thankful for weekends like the one we just had and my family to share them with!
Now we're gearing up for seeing lots of family over the next few weeks and are excited to be back "home" with our favorite people. =)

Thursday, March 14, 2013

The Good and The Not So Good

I'll start with the not so good...We found out at Garrison's appointment with the pediatrician on Tuesday that he did in fact have strep. Again. If he comes down with it one more time before the Fall (I think?) then we'll have to look at having his tonsils removed. Apparently if you have strep 5 times or more in a year then you're forced to consider removing tonsils. It's some kind of insurance thing. And it's kind of scary. I don't want him to have to go through it, but I know it could be a good thing and make a huge difference for the better. Thankfully he's back to 100% now and we know it's all in God's hands so we don't have to stress over it.

Moving onto the good...We also found out Tuesday at Austin's appointment with the ENT that he has perfect hearing and that both tubes are clear and open. Yay! We are so thankful things are looking great with our littlest man's ears!

More good...My sister's super smart boyfriend (who I hope is my future brother-in-law =)) determined all my Jeep needed was freon to start blowing cold air from every vent! Yay!!Apparently our Jeep is designed to stop blowing cold air from everywhere except the driver's side when it's low on freon. Praise the Lord! That was such an example to me of why you shouldn't worry. God knew we only needed freon... not some complicated crazy expensive something else. We were thrilled with this money saving good news. =)

A little bit of both... I've decided it's time to start working out and attempting to get into better shape. Before anybody rolls their eyes or gets insulted, I'm not doing this to lose weight. I'm a small girl and weight isn't the issue. Being out of shape is. I guarantee you my resting heart rate is higher than it should be. Plus, everything I eat shows up in my waist line as soon as I'm done. Probably because I am small so it just shows up. Like food baby every time. Like are you 3 months pregnant or 4? Like my 4 year old gives me a hug and starts rubbing my belly and says, Mama you feel like you have a baby in your tummy. Oh my. At first it was funny but then it was just sad. He still has a thing or two to learn about things you never say to a girl. Ever. On the bright side at least he said feel and not look. Gracious.

Since we don't have the time or money for the gym and I can't do outdoor workouts in Spring or Summer due to allergies and blazing hot temperatures... unless you count a family walk around the neighborhood once the pollen passes but before it's 100 degrees out... I'm going back to my trusty Fitness at Home that I did a few times last year. (Wow. Writing that I worked out a "few times last year" sounds pitiful.) I did it Tuesday afternoon for the first time with the boys watching and participating and getting in the way. My second time was today. And Bailey decided to join in the fun and bark at me until she finally lost interest. Of course I have to modify. I do girl push-ups, I don't do a minute wall sit (more like 20 seconds but I strive for 30), and I only do the routine twice because duh, I can't pass out with my children watching. So I am bad out of shape but I'm determined to change that. Slowly but surely. I'm not expecting crazy results I just want to be and feel healthier and my waist line to not automatically expand like a pregnant lady the second I finish I meal. It probably wouldn't hurt to go a little lighter on the portions either...

Not so good... Our anniversary weekend still isn't planned. We talked about it and it just didn't go so well. And it was all my fault. I finally realized what the problem was. I couldn't finalize or commit to any plans because I was having anxiety about the kiddos. Ahhhh. I don't know why letting them spend the night away is such a big deal. I've analyzed it to death. Is it because we live an hour away so it's always a big to-do? Is it because they're so young? Is it because I'm so Type A? Is it because I'm afraid bedtime will be crazy and difficult for everyone involved? Is it because I'm afraid they'll be homesick or confused or not on their best behavior? Is it because Garrison's been known to not like mama and daddy going on dates without him? Yes, yes, yes... all of the above. Whatever the
reason(s), it's just hard for me. It definitely isn't natural and it's never easy. But I think once a year to celebrate our anniversary is important and necessary. It's good for us to get away and focus on each other. So I'm praying about it and trying to relax. And I'm repeating a quote to myself quite often... When we loosen our grip, He tightens His. It really is going to be okay. I even feel like the plans for the kids are coming together so I can finally move forward with planning our trip.

Good!... Terrell lost his wedding ring about a week and a half ago. At the time we thought Austin grabbed it off his nightstand and possibly threw it or carried it around and then lost it. We've looked and looked and have just been waiting for it to turn up. And tonight it did! We were outside playing while Terrell grilled and out of the blue Garrison said, Here's your ring daddy. It was in the grass right in the middle of the backyard. We couldn't believe it had been outside the whole time! Garrison was so proud of himself. Probably because we cheered and hugged him and had a big celebration in his honor. =) He was still saying Are you so glad I found your ring daddy? before bed.

Even though we had a few not so good moments this week, God has blessed us tons and we are thankful!!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Lots of Little Things

There's not a whole lot to blog about this week. We had a super low key weekend and have a pretty low key week planned. Things aren't totally uneventful, but they are sort of boring. And boring is good sometimes.

While we don't have any big or exciting things happening right now we do have lots of little things going on. Things that I'd like to record just so they can always be remembered. Every month I like to go back and read the same month's posts from last year and the year before. (Starting in April I'll be able to read all the way back to 2010. Thank you Megan Lenhart for introducing me to blogging!!) And I love it. It makes me appreciate blogging and having my memories in writing that much more. So, this post is strictly for my own journaling of our life at this point in time purpose, so it probably won't mean much to anybody else. Just thought I should warn you.

Here's what's going on this week in the Selph household...

*Garrison is sick again. Boo! It seems like once he catches something his immune system is down and he's sick off and on for a while. We have an appointment this morning to determine whether it's strep or a virus or something else.

*We also have a follow-up appointment for Austin with the ENT. They're going to check to make sure his ears and tubes look fine and then do a hearing test. Both appointments should be interesting with both boys in tow. Pray for me.

*Since the time change the boys have been sleeping extra late. Which is nice except that it's going to break my heart when I have to wake them up so early tomorrow morning for school. (We stayed home yesterday since Garrison was sick.)

*The air conditioning in our Jeep needs fixin. And it may cost a bundle. But I am not stressing. I can't say the same for my husband, haha. But, God always provides and it'll be fine. We're heading down to B'ville tomorrow afternoon for haircuts and an early dinner with family so we'll be leaving our family car there to be repaired... and hopefully we'll get it back in time for the weekend. In the meantime, the boys and I will be driving around in the cop car (that's what we've nicknamed my mom's car) for a couple of days until our Jeep is blowing nice cold air for us from all vents... not just the driver's side.

*Lately we've been praying about and talking about what our future is with Premier. Where it fits and what it's place is. I've been a Premier jeweler almost 4 years and God has used Premier in a big way for us. It has been wonderful and an answer to prayer from the beginning. I started when Garrison was 6 months old and Premier provided security and hope for me staying home long term.

Now, almost 4 years later, life has changed. I have a "regular" job and paycheck now. It's not a lot money-wise but it is consistent and important for us to have, at least for now. What it is a lot of is extra work at home. There is no planning period when you teach preschool. Everything you do to prepare is done at home. It's not super overwhelming, but it is time consuming... which leaves less time for Premier.

Also, we've added a baby. Having baby #2, my sweet Austin, has changed things. We are busier. We have more errands and appointments and things to do. And I try to make sure my babies always come first. Which means Premier gets pushed to the back-burner.

Also, we have a son who has started recreational sports. We did soccer in the Fall and now have baseball this Spring. Sports are a big commitment. They are time consuming and change the look of your week nights. And once again, putting my children first means I'm putting their schedules first. And since we don't have family here to help with baby-sitting or chaufeuring in the evenings, it falls on me... until Terrell gets off.

Sooo, we're struggling a little with what to do. We love Premier. Love what it stands for. Love the extra income. =) But we're facing a bit of a dilemma. My renewal isn't until August so for now I'm going to try to get back into it a little while we figure out what God wants us to do next.

*This weekend we have Eater pictures! We rescheduled a couple of weeks ago when it was cold and dreary and we're so excited about a nice weekend (perfect for pictures) coming up! We're going to be doing them at the same place with the same bunny as last year. I hope the boys cooperate!

*This week we're also in the process of finalizing the contents of the boys' Easter buckets. We like to keep things practical and simple for Easter. We definitely don't need too many little bitty toys and we hate to get things "just because" because they always end up being a waste. But we both grew up getting Easter baskets and goodies so we want to do the same for our kiddos. It's fun and light and the boys love it.

*Terrell and I finally started watching The Bible. It's really good. And since I've been reading through the Old Testament it's making it that much more interesting and fascinating for me. We're both enjoying it so far.

*Last but not least, this week we're going to try to finalize/narrow down/make a decision about our anniversary trip. It's exciting but kind of stressful too. We want to have fun and make the most of our time away but we must keep our budget and kiddos in mind too. I'll keep you posted! (For anyone who's still reading....) Happy Tuesday!!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

VIP Date Night!

Terrell and I had an amazing, rare, will probably never happen again, opportunity last night. And it was SO fun!! Which means it must be written about!

We were invited to go on a double date with our friends/neighbors Ryan and Katie to a Hawks game. When Garrison was a baby and toddler we hung out with them a lot and considered them really good friends. We went to their church and even went to a couples Bible study at their house every other Thursday night. But since the Bible study stopped before Austin was born and we moved on from their church, and the kids grew (in size and number) we haven't gotten together in a loooong time or had a chance to catch up in forever. Sooo, when we were invited on this little date we were super excited. One, because we love the Hawks and two because we'd be able to catch up and go out on a double date!

(We never go on double dates. We're just not super close to any other couples...unless they're related to us. So we typically only go out on dates together...just the two of us.)

The HUGE bonus to the date was that our tickets were compliments of the company Ryan works for (who does business with Terrell's bank) AND they were for 2nd row floor seats. Squeal!!!! It was AMAZING. We loved every second!!

Terrell's mom came over to baby-sit and she made our picture before we left.
Then Garrison insisted he be in a picture with us too. I almost couldn't leave this little man after yesterday morning when we told him about our date and he grabbed onto my leg and said But I want you to stay with me mama. Break my heart. It made me feel loved but I also felt a little guilty. He even requested I come into his room to kiss him goodnight when we got home. Bless his heart. Thankfully he was perfectly fine when we left him and only had one Imissmymamaanddaddy moment at bedtime. =) 
As soon as we parked in our super close parking spot and entered Phillips Arena we made our way to the "VIP" area. It wasn't really called that but you could tell you were somebody if you got to go in that way. It was swank. There were upscale restaurants and bars in a concession/food court style set-up. We chose a steak place that offered steak sandwiches. Our meal was delicious. So was talking and catching up!

Afterwards we made our way all the way down to the floor. And our 2nd row seats. It was surreal. I know I sound dramatic but I was so star struck. I couldn't stop smiling and staring at my favorite Hawks who were WAY taller and bigger than they look on TV. As a sports fan it was cool. As a basketball fan it was big. As a Hawks fan it was all of those plus AWESOME. =)
The game went great. We even had ushers checking on us! Then, it was especially cool when my mom sent us a text and asked us to turn around and look up. The backs of our heads were on TV all night long. So we asked her to record the game. Ha! She also saw me taking a picture with my phone and my mother-in-law saw Terrell put his arm around me. Crazy!

My favorite Hawk, Al Horford. He's having such a great season.

Can I just say the game is waaaay faster watching in person from 2 feet away. I was SO impressed. They are professional athletes I guess... but whoa. You have to be in shape to play basketball. And people are sitting so close to you. I found myself wondering how they aren't distracted by the people sitting in the floor seats. It was so out of my league.

Josh Smith had a terrible game. But we still love him. And were thankful he walked over so close to us. =)
We enjoyed ourselves so much. It was great double date and super cool experience. We even got to buy the boys a couple of souvenirs after the game because each ticket had some kind of "Hawks store credit". I'm telling you it was a VIP experience.

HUGE thanks to Nana for keeping the boys and staying up so late for us and to Ryan and Katie for inviting us. We had the best time! And seeing the boys and getting lots of love this morning was priceless. We were VIP's all over again. =)

Tuesday, March 5, 2013


Technically it's wee-ball, but we just call all things baseball, baseball around here. Afterall, ChippaJones plays baseball... not wee-ball.

Garrison officially began his baseball career yesterday with his first ever practice. It was cold. It was a little unorganized. But it was fun! Yaaaay!!! He was SO excited in fact about his first practice that he was a little wild before we left the house. And he got in trouble multiple times for forgetting his self-control and using his mouth to talk back. Taking away the privilege to play baseball may or may not have been threatened before his first ever practice. Gracious.

Because our practice was at 5:30 I made one of our favorite, go-to, simple meals on Sunday night for us to have yesterday so I wouldn't have to cook. The boys and I ate around 4:30. Talk about a record early supper time. BUT, we made it to practice on time and met Terrell there.  
Garrison did so good following directions and participating in all aspects of practice. We have a big team with 4-5 girls and 8-9 boys. And we're the Braves. Woohoo! Of course Garrison would have insisted our team was the Braves no matter what because he informed me on the ride over that he was a ChippaJones baseball player... and everybody knows Chipper plays for the Braves. (Poor baby hasn't accepted his retirement yet.)

Terrell made all the pictures for me on my phone because I just couldn't lug our fancy camera around while trying to keep up with Austin. So they aren't the best but they'll have to do for documentation purposes.
They stretched as a team. So cute.
They stood in the field waiting for their teammates to hit the ball to them.
They fielded balls as they trickled out to them. =)
They practiced playing catch with one of the dads. The main goal was to try to catch the ball of course but they were also working on throwing it back as soon as they got it. Garrison made 5 catches and was soooo proud.
Then there was batting practice. My baby was the only left-handed batter. (Even though he's right-handed he has always batted left-handed. His daddy has dreams of him being a switch-hitter one day.) He did great!

I spent my time between trying to watch Garrison and trying to keep up with this little man. After a while he was bored with being held and watching Garrison and the Braves. He was ready for his own adventure.
We had a really great experience our first go-round. I did have a temporary moment of anxiety once I saw our practice schedule and that we practice multiple times a week at different fields, AND, that we even have 2 practices at 7:30. Shouldn't 4 year olds be getting ready for bed at 7:30??

Anyway, after a closer look at my personal calendar I came to realize that we won't be able to make every single practice every single week because of prior commitments/plans anyway. And that's OKAY. It actually made me feel better. No more practice anxiety for me!

The only other glitch was the fact that we were all hungry again by the time we got home. So we pretty much ate again. The boys shared fruit, cereal, bread, and a few animal crackers. It was almost as if they had never ate supper. Oh dear. I guess next time I'll try to have something ready to go the second we walk back in the door. OR, since we're meeting Terrell there and will have 2 cars, Austin and I may leave early to come home and get supper ready. I'm sure it's going to be trial and error for a while, I just like having a plan. And that plan does not include "lunch food" for supper or fast food take-out after every practice. (We have our share of "lunch food" everyday for lunch and we have our share of take-out on the weekends.) It may include however a frozen pizza or Stouffer's lasagna every now and then.

We are all (especially Garrison... okay, and daddy) looking forward to this baseball season and brand new experience. And we were all thankful for a great first practice. Go Braves!! =)