Saturday, November 28, 2009

Thanksgiving 2009

We went to our family (Dad's side of the fam) in Oklahoma for Thanksgiving! We always love doing this because my cousin, Jason, lives on a beautiful piece of land. He built his house (all of it), a fun treehouse (one side for girls and one side for boys), and a lake in the back (yes, he dug that). All in all, it's a relaxing time of being outside with 4-wheelers, tubing on the 4-wheeler, lots of food, lots of family, guitars, singing, pictures, kiddos, more get the picture. Jason and Jamie have our dream house and land! There's something about raising your family in a big, open space with trees and water and lots of room to roam around in.

Here's the Hogue clan - Grandma and Grandpa Hogue, 4 children (and spouses), 7 grandchildren (and spouses), and 10 great grandchildren.

My dad was playing fetch with their dog and Bella LOVED it. She was laughing with one of those deep, belly laughs. Cutie!
Grandma and Grandpa by "their" car. It was actually a rental that was brought to the partay. Aren't they cute posing by it though! Grandpa is 88 and going as strong as ever. I hope I got some of his genes.

Bella got in on the car-picture action. But don't worry....

Mom was close by!

Allison and her man walking! Aren't they fun?!Another family picture.

Walking with sweet Bella!
Happy Thanksgiving from the Smith's!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Just an update

Bella went to her grandparents in Houston this past weekend. It was the first time she was away for two nights in a row. And, it was quiet! Mike and I enjoyed dinner and going to a movie. (We saw 'The Blind Side' which I highly recommend.) We slept in, I hung out with my sister, he worked on a paper allll saturday and sunday, we had a fire, I cooked soup and homemade cheese was a great, relaxing weekend with one another. But, we sure were happy to have our loud little gal home! Numerous times through the weekend we would comment on how quiet the house was. We didn't hear her jabber and babble and toy walker and hands crawling across the floors. Is that what it sounded like pre-baby? We met his parents at our thanksgiving service in Milano on Sunday night and enjoyed singing and eating with eachother. Thanks Grammy and PawPaw for the much needed break!

I had my first "I need a break" week. I never understood why people said they felt for me because I work full time, have a child, and my husband is in seminary (who has 3 large papers due this week and next week). Well, last week I understood. It's amazing what a little time off from the daily duties of life will do for you. I'm sure i'm not the only momma out there who feels like this and just needs a break!

Some firsts for the week include:
1. She's saying her "y", "l", and "h" syllables. It now sounds like she's saying "hi" and is rolling her tongue out when she says an "l". It really seems like she is having a conversation with us.
2. She is clapping to "if you're happy and you know it clap your hands". (I've been working on that one for a while.)
3. She is waving hi and bye.
4. She continues to be a great eater. I have not completely weaned her yet but that's ok. No hurry from this mom!

Here's some pictures from her time with the grandparents.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Hiking 101 with a certain one year old

When you go hiking with a certain one year old there are certain essentials you must have.

1. A great state park nearby. We went to Mother Neff State Park which was about an hour away. It's not very big (we hiked the majority of it in a couple of hours) but it wasn't crowded and was nice and relaxing. Plus, the leaves were beginning to change and it was an overcast day. Prescription for beautifulness! Quiet, peaceful, family time, smell of leaves, sound of water...awww!
2. A great hubby. This is essential since he carried the 20 pound one year old for the first half of the trip. And, is all around great to be with.

3. A mom. This certain mom carried the one year old the second half of the hike - which entailed lots and lots of kicking and laughing. She was w-i-g-g-l-y! And, the certain mom let the certain one year old touch the water.

4. A good baby carrier. This certain one year old wanted to lean as far over as she could to see mom's feet or the leaves. Or she just enjoyed lurching forward and then kicking her legs (sometimes that was uncomfortable and sometimes that would spring the mom forward but all the time it was cute and most of the time it was captured on camera)

5. A semi-I'm-not-going-to-smile grin. Just because it's too cute!

6. A great hat. A gal's gotta look cute even if she is in the elements.

7. A recliner (also known as daddy) for when you get tired.

8. And, just all around cute babyness.
9. A picnic table to eat on or bang on or climb on or try to suck on.

8. A parent willing to sacrifice their hat or hair or whatever else a certain one year old wants to "play" (uh,hum pull) with.
11. Something good to eat or chew on. Water, hands, fingers...
10. A family ready for a day with one another..

Saturday, November 14, 2009

And, I would walk 500 miles...

Bella is walking all over the place with her little walker. She has now figured out how to swing it around to change directions. She no longer has to step alllll around it to go the other way. Now, she'll fling it to one side. We'll shut the doors to all the rooms and let her roam in the kitchen, living room and hallways. She still tries to get in the rooms - evidenced by a large 'thud' as she runs into the doors. Here's the little cutie in action! Don't you love that cloth-diapered bottom! And you'll notice in the video her "loud voice". Sometimes that means she's upset (at the end of the video) while other times it means she's just wanting to be loud (at the beginning of the video). Can you also tell she's a daddy's girl by the video!

Some other firsts for the week:

1) She has another tooth - that now makes 8! The drool machine is at it again.

2) She started standing up on her own. She can go from sitting on the ground to standing up completely without any assistance. But, then she'll wave her arms and get this excited look on her face (aka - mouth wide open!) and then fall down. So, no steps yet but we're getting there.

3) She is finally eating banana or strawberry puffs. She's been semi-eating them for a while but most of the time she spits them back out. Today she ate all 6 of them we put in front of her!

4) She had her first non-baby poop - I know, I know, TMI - but i'm documenting everything right! All that solid food is creating very different poops than breastmilk poops.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Halloween and Fall Pumpkins - From Bella's Perspective

My mom always writes these post so I thought I should share my thoughts - you know, the thoughts of a cute 12 month old. She said she was sorry for taking so long in putting these pictures up too...Mommy and daddy decided to put me in a new outfit for halloween. I'm not sure why. I think i'm cute in my clothes without a big purple/green/yellow thing on my head. (What was that again? A flower? Hmmm, I know my mommy really likes those and Granddad does too. But on my head? Really, parents - stop the madness.)

Auntie Alli, Brad and Jodie came by for dinner and dessert and lots of candy! Mommy wouldn't let me have any though. Oh well. I saw Brad and daddy eat the majority of them.
Ok, so I kindof liked the flower outfit. Maybe it's because daddy, mommy, Auntie Allison, Brad and Jodie were making funny noises and faces and sounds. Or maybe it's because I totally rocked this outfit.

Mommy dressed up as a gardener and I was a flower. Maybe she feels like she has to tend to me and take care of me and make sure i'm well fed. I think she does a good job from the looks of my cute-self!I was trying to figure this purple flower thing on my head when daddy started making funny sounds...I kindof thought it was cute.

Now that i've turned one i'm trying to walk more and more. But for now I like it in mommy's lap - and she tells me all the time she likes it too. I even gets and lots of kisses from my parents and have started face-planting myself into their faces when I want another kiss.
This is a pumpkin from my Great-Granddaddy's farm that my grandparents brought me. Bittersweet memories.

Lately i'm becoming more and more mischevious. Why can't I open every cabinet and crawl all over the house? Or why can't I pull myself up by the trashcan or on that big white bowl thing in the bathroom? I usually make this face when i'm trying to evalute if my parents see me - and most of the time they do...but every once in a while I get past them and pull all the clothes out of the bottom drawer...mommy calls me a 'little stinker' when I do that. I still don't understand why. I smell awesome - like baby lotion.

Hanging with my daddy - He always says i'm cute and calls me "baby girl" - This is how I smile when he says that.

Daddy was trying to get me to smile - Obviously, only mommy got that memo - It's probably because she thinks i'm cute too.

Maybe mommy will let me write more often - she's fun and all but I can give you all the inside scoop. Happy Fall!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Bella's First Birthday Party - Continued!

The morning after the big birthday Mike made his famous homemade buttermilk pancakes and we continued the birthday celebration with the family. Bella received some great toys and clothes and shoes and loud-noise-makers and balloons! Thanks everyone for making this day so special!

And, of course no birthday party is complete without the cake! Miss B wasn't sure what to do with it and we had to "coach" to eat it or play with it. She was very particular in eating it or messing it up...
Mom had to help.
Dad had to help too.
"Hmmm, maybe i'll play the balloons instead."
Finished product = Messy birthday girl about to get a bath!