Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Happy Birthday, Beloved

Today is Steve's official birthday, so in honor of my amazing husband, I just have to say how thankful I am to have married such a great man! 

I could write pages that describe the kind of man Steve is, but instead, I'm just going to say, I love you. You have made all my dreams come true and you make me laugh everyday. 

Still falling and TB and all of those other, mushy, inside jokes that couples have. You're the man.

Just Waaaaaaaaaaiiiiiittttiiinnnngggg......

This girl is officially done with being pregnant.
I know every pregnant woman reaches this point, and I've reached mine. I'm big, uncomfortable, and restless. Plus, I pee so much now that I've gone through 5 rolls of toilet paper in a week! If this baby doesn't come out soon, I'm going to pose a biohazard risk to the environment.
Steve and I are pretty convinced that Little Man's just staying in there forever. It's hard to be rational and level-headed when you just want the full-grown baby that's "stuck" inside of you to come out. We know, of course, that it could happen at any minute, but that actually makes it even harder to be patient.
I don't remember being this anxious with the girls, but I think it's because of how long these fake contractions have been going on. I didn't have them with either of the girls until right before I went into labor, so it's been crazy to have strong contractions for weeks now that just don't get any more regular.
So, for the record, he is welcome to come now. Like...now. Right now.
We'll keep you posted!

Steve's Birthday Halloween Bash

We celebrated Steve's birthday last weekend with our 2nd Annual Steve-O-Ween bash!
The "crow" cake...it wasn't quite as grand as I originally planned, but it was still delicious!

Dressed and ready to get things started! The girls are always fascinated by creepy make-up! Evelyn watched me get ready, and as I was smearing black eyeliner around my eyes, she kept saying, "Ooo! Pretty, mama!" They love watching us dress up in fun costumes!

All the ladies...don't they look great! It's so fun to see how creative everyone gets!
And the gentlemen...so many fantastic costumes!

Mel and I...she looked great as Axl Rose.

Had to have proof of my belly. We were hoping that the party excitement would bring Little Man, but no dice. Although, I was very thankful to not have to worry about giving birth while dressed like a mummy!

Steve, Mel, and our friends, Zach and Mary-Beth. Since they were all dressed up in rockstar gear, we had to get a group shot!
I wasn't sure if the "nest" on top of the cake would survive flames from the candles, so Steve blew out one of the decorative candles instead.
Mel and I with our friend, Andi.

At the end of the night, I sent this picture to Mel as proof that Nuetrogena face wipes really DID take off all of my eye make-up! (And it only took about 7 of them!)
This Halloween party is one of my favorite things all year, because we get to just sit and spend time with some awesome friends!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Our First Tooth Fairy Visit

 Bella lost her first tooth! She's been wiggling it for weeks, but wouldn't let Steve or I anywhere near it. (We wanted to pull it sooooo badly!) While we were in Florida, she came running up to me, and yelled, "It came out!" Woo hoo! This was a very big deal for me; for some reason, it just felt like a big "big kid" moment.
And then, in true "Katie" fashion, we lost the tooth. I put it on my parents' desk in the guest room to protect it (or so I thought), and Evelyn found it. I searched everywhere around their guest rom and living room, with no success. I was so thankful when my mom did a thorough cleaning after we left and found it again! By that time, we were already headed back to Florida, so we postponed the full, Tooth Fairy experience until we returned to Georgia.
Bella doesn't really care about money yet, so she was pushing pretty hard for me to convince the Tooth Fairy to bring a present instead. (On the flip side, Evelyn loves carrying change around in her little purse. It's so crazy how different these two are.) We have no intention of buying a gift every time one of them loses a tooth, but we told her the Tooth Fairy brought a special gift for the first tooth.
Bella didn't want to keep the tooth under her pillow, so we put it in one of her little, pink teacups and I tied a bright pink bow around the handle. We told her that she would know the Tooth Fairy came, because she would take the tooth and tie the ribbon around her special present. She woke up the next morning to find the pink ribbon tied around a new, plastic pony! She was pretty excited! I had grand plans of writing a little note to her from the Tooth Fairy, but it didn't happen. Pinterest had some awesome ideas, too, but it was a little overwhelming and definitely would have taken some planning.
Evelyn also put out a little teacup with a purple ribbon, and the Tooth Fairy left her a quarter. (Clearly, Steve and I haven't figured out the younger sibling-thing out yet.)
Bella has another tooth loose already, so we're planning to do this all again soon!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Fall Break In Florida

Last week was Bella's Fall Break, which happened to coincide with an bank exam that Steve had scheduled in Tampa, so we decided to pack the whole family up and spend the week in Florida. It was wonderful! We kind of felt like it was a delayed Summer vacation, and we loved the extra family time, hanging out with Papa and Mimi, and enjoying lots of pool time! (Oh! And we didn't deliver a baby in Valdosta, so extra win.)

On the road and ready to go. We managed to pack all of us in Steve's car, which will be the last time our whole family will fit in the car!
The girls are getting a little obsessed with cereal, so every morning was Cheerios and strawberries.

They also got very used to having Mimi and Papa in the same house! They'll really be "suffering" when they have to return to real life and only have me to serve them.

Pool time! Monday was a bank holiday, so Steve got an extra day to play with us!

Bella was rocking it in the pool! Getting very brave and jumping in the deep end by herself! Still not swimming like a master, but I'm just thankful to see her braver!

This picture is when Mom didn't realize her phone was set on a permanent filter and kept taking "antique-y" pictures all weekend. :)

The weather was gorgeous and definitely "cooler" by Florida standards. (Which basically means it was still in the 80's, but there was a breeze.) The girls outgrew their bathing suits from the Summer, so we just went in undies all week. Luckily, they're still young enough to pull that off.
Bella didn't stop running all week! At the beach, she bolted back and forth between rolling in the sand and rushing to the surf!

I'm pretty convinced that this flotation-thing that we got for Evelyn is the greatest invention of this century! You could basically throw her into any large body of water, and she just bobs there. She's our little daredevil, so it's really nice to know she's always got her head above water. In the pool, she floated and kicked all over the deep end without the slightest problem, and at the beach, the surf knocked her over a couple of times, but this little thing kept her upright each time. I'm a little in awe.
We loved the time to relax, knowing that Little Man is coming sometime soon.

I've never worn a bikini while pregnant, and I'll be honest - I loved it. It was awesome to not have anything tight against my stomach and for the only time in my "bathing suit life", feel like it didn't mater how big my belly was.

Once Steve left to go to Tampa for the week, it was just me and the girls, and Papa planned a special surprise for us - Jungle Gardens! It's basically a mini zoo, and very interactive! They were very laidback and the girls got a lot of opportunities to be up close with the animals. Bella wanted to see everything; Evelyn wanted to touch everything!

Silly faces just 'cause.

Mimi and Bella, waiting for the reptile show to start...
After the reptile show, the animal handlers let anyone who wanted to come back and hold the animals. Dad was a trooper in his wheelchair and held the baby alligator while Evelyn pet his back.

She specifically requested to have the snake draped over her shoulders. Evelyn is definitely our brave one.

Bella loved this pretend alligator almost as much as the real ones!
The flamingos roamed freely around the entire park, and there were little vending machines where you could buy food for them. I was pleasantly surprised at how gentle they ate the food out of our hands.

I think this may have been Bella's favorite part...she didn't want to leave!

Okay, yes, I'm putting in another picture of me, half-naked in a bikini, but this was our last day in Florida and my last time EVER being pregnant in a bathing suit!
(You're more than welcome to still roll your eyes, though; I completely understand.)
Swimming in a friend's infinity pool that overlooked the Gulf. Not too shabby.

Bella showing off some of her new moves and "spinning" as she jumped.
Our last dinner was at Sharky's On The Pier. This is kind of a family favorite, because the restaurant is right on the beach and you can walk out on a long pier, too.

Daddy and the girls, walking on the beach after dinner.

Dad and I were wimps and sat on the pier while Steve and Mimi played in the water with the girls.

Mom and I working on our selfie pose.
Family picture!

The original plan was to roll up their pants and keep their clothes dry, and they were very pleased with themselves that they got completely soaked.
Mimi and the girls

The sunset was so beautiful and just about to go below the horizon, that I couldn't resist a kissing picture!

One last, special picture...Evelyn loves her some Rachel! She wanted to talk to her and kiss her all week long. Rachel doesn't always like having people in her face, but she's really patient with Evelyn and by the end of the week, I think Rachel had just accepted the inevitable. I love this picture, because Evelyn is grabbing the front of Rachel's shirt to pull her in for a kiss!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Fall Fun And Florida Bound

Bella's school hosted their annual Fall Family Fun Night on Thursday. We had a really good time and the night was a huge fundraising success for the school, but unfortunately, we only had about 30 minutes or so to enjoy it.

The Missions Committee at church was meeting at our house at 7:00, so we packed as much as could into about 30 or 40 minutes, and promised the girls a slice of pumpkin pie when they got home!

We started out with the Merry-Go-Round...Bella was hoping to ride with me, but they had restrictions for pregnant women, so Evelyn tagged along instead. Bella wasn't so thrilled once the ride got started, but Evelyn's face was priceless! She had the best smile going on the entire time and was ecstatic to be allowed on the "big kid" ride! 

Bella and I - before the nice young man told me that pregnant women weren't allowed after all.

I love how Evelyn's cowgirl boots are spread wide and she's grinning like crazy!

Bella was in a much better mood once the ride stopped moving, and we headed to the photo booth next! 

Excuse the blurry photo...it was a blast!

The girls loved the letting zoo, too! (I mean, come on, it's pretty much Bella's Mecca!)

Meeting the llama...and I kind of loved that the llama was grazing on our church's landscaping. 

Bella, Evelyn (her arm, at least), and Bella's classmate, Faith, petting the miniature pony. I think the pony was Bella's favorite!

We had a great night as a family, and the next day (last Friday), we jumped into the car to head to Florida!

Steve has an exam down in Tampa this week, so we headed down to my parents' house for one last visit before Little Man makes his arrival. 

P.S. How do you feel about "Cash" as a middle name? Steve loves Johnny Cash's music (Who doesn't? He's awesome.), and I love Cash's story...the whole "his life was a complete and utter disaster, and he was still redeemed by Christ". I think my preference would still be Wilder, but it's kind of our tradition to let Steve pick the middle name. I think, for now, Wilder is off the table, and we're going back and forth between Cash and Caleb. Seeing my parents' faces when we first brought up "Cash" was a bit of a chuckle, but I think they're warming up to it. Now, if I can get my dad to stop referring to Little Man as "Hank", we'll be good. ('Cause just...no.)

Florida pictures to follow soon!