Wednesday, December 31
This Christmas was really special for us. Somehow, having a son of my own really has sensitized my spirit to the true overwhelming significance of this day. I will say-in the midst of decorating, shopping, throwing parties, and wrapping gifts; it has been easy to let myself be distracted by the world and completely miss this meaningful life changing celebration. I routinely had to actively meditate on Christ and fix my eyes on Him in order to tune out all the hoopla that is how we celebrate here in America. I look forward to creating meaningful traditions for our children that allows their little hearts to be softened to Christ during this time rather than consumed with receiving gifts. I have wanted to write something of real significance regarding the birth of Christ, but this season words fail me and I just almost feel intimidated to tell His story. We will see....
Christmas Eve was spent at our church's candlelight service with my siblings and parents. It was really special even though I spent the second half following David all over the place. (He had a cough and couldn't go to the nursery.) We then met up with my extended family and had such a fun time enjoying their company and eating good food. This is a tradition that has been going on since I can remember and I look forward to it every year.
Christmas morning was so sweet for our family. David is old enough to really enjoy the few gifts he received and he spent most of the morning playing with this new cars/trucks, hugging on his Mama and Daddy, and reading his books. We later met up with Grant's family for a late breakfast and then spent lunch with the Estess extended family. David was showered with gifts to say the least and is currently learning to dunk his new basketball goal despite the obvious leanings of his genetic make-up. (I won't dash his hopes just yet.) He basically spent most of the day camped out in his Cozy Coupe he got from Gran and Papaw and is just now learning how to make it work....we are moving backwards so far. Also, I would like to give a shout out to my SIL who we call Maynee---she knitted that precious hat for David and I am obsessed with it. How cute is it!!!???!!?
Anyways----I hope you all had a wonderful time this year celebrating the birth of Christ with those you love most!!!
(new post below)
Posted by elizabeth at 9:10 AM
Tuesday, December 23
Thursday, December 18
Yes, that is right...my child hates Santa Claus. This was clearly against his will and I honestly was afraid he would hold a grudge and be upset with me for subjecting him to such terror. Thankfully, I got to rescue him from this dreadful moment in time. I am hoping that memory replaces the one where I force him into the strange old man's lap and walk away. Man, what we do to capture a childhood moment that the child doesn't even want to experience in the first place.
Bottom line: David.hates.Santa.Claus.
Posted by elizabeth at 9:05 PM
Monday, December 15
I absolutely LOVE decorating for Christmas. I am obsessed. I actually broke my long standing rule that Christmas decor cannot go up before Thanksgiving. Mainly, because I feel sorry for Thanksgiving. It seems to always get the shaft in our society. Thanksgiving is a big deal in our family and I always enjoy it despite the cheesy pilgrim decor I often around town. Pilgrimation is not something you will find in our home, but you all probably know that if you have been following my blog since last year's Santamation debacle. Anyways, I must confess I broke my own rule this year. Grant left me to shoot ducks the weekend before Thanksgiving and I spent most of David's sleeping hours covering the house in glorious Christmas accessories. Next year, we will definitely decorate the tree as a family...but for now Grant is largely uninterested. Anyways, we went out of town for the entire week and weekend of Thanksgiving and I really wanted to come home to a well-lit and festive home. I even had Grant go in to plug in the tree before I came inside from being away for T-giving. It was well-worth it.
So here are a few pictures of the various projects I worked on this year. Like I said before, burlap was my accessory of choice and I tried to keep it simple and natural this year. David has done GREAT with the tree. He stand as close as possible without touching it and he stares. He is in love with it. Every morning we go straight to the tree and stand there together. He tempts fate from time to time by lightly brushing his chubby hand over a low-hanging ornament, but overall he has been fairly obedient. No broken ornaments so far!!
New post coming soon. It involves the big man in red and our son who is currently suffering from PTSD. He may need therapy.
Posted by elizabeth at 9:50 PM
Tuesday, December 9
David is nearing 15 months and he is just more fun than I could have imagined. Funnily enough, he loves costumes. He is not of the age to go and initiate wearing one, but when he finds himself decked out he parades around the house and wears it as long as I will let him. We love this Batman costume. When we found out David was a boy, my mom dropped a gift bag on our front porch filled with cute boy things: red goloshes, goggles, batman cape, etc. Such a good idea!!
He has also mastered the art of moving about on his riding toy. It was a hit for Thanksgiving and he rode it all around the lake house. You will notice his 'War Eagle' t-shirt...though it did not pull us through the humiliation that was the Iron Bowl, we love it still. I found it for 3 dollars and I think it must have been meant for our family--or it could reflect the current crummy state of Auburn athletics. Either way, it is our new favorite t-shirt!
And yes, we are wearing jeans now. I had mixed feelings about approaching this milestone and was quite resistant until the Auburn-Georgia game. He was decked in jeans and a white turtleneck with the CUTEST vintage blue cardigan that has Auburn stitched in orange where the lapel would be. It was his dad's when he was little and we couldn't pass up the opportunity to wear it in Jordan Hare. Well, he was so precious in those denim things I have begun allowing it more and more. It is sad and cute all at the same time.
Lastly, you will notice a picture of David parked on a blanket with a look that says, "Are you serious Mom?" Well, around 13 months David grew a voice. No, I do not mean a voice that speaks words, BUT rather a voice that says 'You can't tell me what to do.' I knew this was coming, but had no idea he would sprout such independence so early. Though I realize he is a toddler and will continue to exhibit toddler behavior for years to come, I wanted to instill a sense of authority and obedience in him as soon as developmentally possibly. I have a friend who has taught her children to sit on a blanket for 15 minutes as a time and she claims to start them as early as one year old. The idea is to instill self-control into your children while at home and practice behavioral skills that are much needed outside of the house...such as sitting still when told to. So, I have stolen this great technique and have implemented in our home about three times a week. We only ask he sit for 5 minutes for now, but he is slowly learning that this is a time where he must do something simply because Mom says so. I am not saying he likes it, but we are getting there. Overall, I have seen a small decline in his compulsion to consciously defy what I may ask of him. He is still young and deserves a lot of grace for now. Even so, I am excited that he is starting to learn who is in charge around here and follow accordingly most of the time. And the parenting journey begins....
Posted by elizabeth at 10:14 AM
Sunday, November 23
14 Months. Fourteen Months? FOURTEEN MONTHS!!???
You have got to be kidding me. This child is growing up before our eyes. There is very little baby left in him. He is definitely his own little person with his own little personal agenda. The past month has been interesting to say the least. He has graced us with tantrums, fits, defiance, and stubbornness. Though it has been challenging, it has been hilarious all at the same time. I cannot believe my sweet mellow tempered little man has become so adamant about his needs and wants. He does not stand for a "no" and is not deterred easily by discipline. Despite these new found challenges, he has become continually more affectionate than ever and it has made this time so sweet. He even cuddles immediately after he has been disciplined--post temper tantrum, that is. It is almost as if he is sorry or embarrassed. We will see how long that lasts, ha! Basically, restaurants are much less enjoyable these days and running errands is nearly impossible without a huge tub of goldfish ready and waiting. The only outing he seriously enjoys is when we go to Publix and this is only because he gets to ride in the green car facing forward. If that particular cart is unavailable, he twists his body around the entire time in order to see out the front the entire ride. He definitely knows what he wants and he cares if he does not get it.
Picky eating has arrived in full force. He lives off of cheese, yogurt, turkey, eggs, raisins, pretzels, oatmeal, apple sauce, fruit, carrots, butternut squash, and sweet potatoes. His most recent favorite food is taco meat. He is obsessed with spicy food just like his Dad. However, he is not easily tricked. He spits out every tomato and green onion I try to sneak into his taco salad. Just this past week, David mastered the art of self-feeding with a spoon. He is obsessed with spoon feeding himself. He likes to spoon water out of cups into his mouth and even wants you to put goldfish on his spoon for him to eat. We are cutting at least 3 molars and I used the word 'we' intentionally. It takes the support of a family to get through this teething. We have little trouble with much else in comparison to the impact teething has on this little man's sleep patterns. Thank you Motrin!! His fine motor skills have really increased and he builds with legos and blocks. He has a slight obsession with Mega Blocks and works with them most of the day. He also likes to line up sugar packets and gently line up his goldfish on top of them. The child has a slight obsession with the theme song for Sesame Street. Thankfully we Tivo the show and he is able to hear it whenever possible. This is a staple when it is time to prepare dinner. No words yet. An occasional 'hey' and 'hush'. He makes various animal noises and grunts while pointing A LOT. He is very persistent about communicating his point without using English. Hopefully we gain some vocab soon and ease the frustrations of our days together. It is amazing how much children this age can comprehend without being able to utter a word themselves. Weirdly enough, I feel like we talk all day long in some way or another.
He is still such a joy and I could spend most of my days cuddling and playing around with the little man. God's design continues to amaze me and I am ever thankful for the glorious blessing that is parenthood. I just pray the Lord equips me with the wisdom necessary to raise David in truth and righteousness, filled with great character, humility, and meekness (strength under control). I long to teach, train, love, and discipline according to the Lord's leading and currently feel incredibly inadequate to fulfill such a challenging role. I am thankful to be in this place because when we come to the end of ourselves, all that is left is the Lord. I hope to step into my role as a mere vessel in which the Lord can access this little guy consistently until he accepts Christ for himself. I long for that day where my child's eternity is secured by the blood of the lamb. Praise God that he hears the prayers of His people.
(two new posts below)
Posted by elizabeth at 9:52 PM
I absolutely love this picture. How hilarious are all these little people smooshed together on one couch?! I have been super blessed to have a weekly play group with fellow moms in our Community Group at church. Haley has graciously invited us into her home week after week. It is my weekly highlight for sure! Eating breakfast with a so many wonderful moms has been so encouraging. The kids play well together and we get rejuvenated by having real conversations and bouncing ideas off one another. I am so thankful for this kind of fellowship!!
We have babies that range from almost 4 months to 18 months. In fact, we have 2 little girls who will join the group this winter. Hannah Grace just arrived and Emily Kathryn will be here in January!! The kids L to R: Nathan, Sarah Kathryn, Wells, Vale, Savannah, Sidney, Charlie, David, and Carson. We are only missing sweet Carter.
Such a fun group!!
Posted by elizabeth at 2:37 PM
Thursday, November 6
David is OBSESSED with clapping his hands together. In fact, he likes to be the leader of the group clap and does not approve when all people in sight do not participate and follow. Usually he claps and claps looking right at you waiting with great anticipation for you to join in on the phenomenon. If his audience is not responsive he shakes his head with great disapproval, sighs, and walks over to manually put your hands together in a clapping form. You can just sense the disappointment he feels when he actually has to come and make you clap. He is a funny kid.
p.s. we are cutting 2 molars and a bottom tooth!! oddly enough, he is sleeping through the night. however, all is not well during the day. i am just glad to know that my sweet baby hasn't become defiant and high maintenance over night. i hate that he feels so crummy though!
Posted by elizabeth at 10:02 AM
Sunday, November 2
Husband and I have never been ones to excitingly participate in anything Halloween. It's just not our thing and I really do not know why. Even so, this year's festivities turned out to be well worth our participation. We had such a fun and crazy Friday--poor David is still recovering from it. Of course, it doesn't help that he is cutting his 8th tooth and day light's savings time just occurred.
Basically the little man spent every waking hour in his absolutely precious beyond cute turtle costume. I am obsessed.
We started the day by meeting Nanny and Susu (my mom and sis) for lunch. This was followed by a trip to Daddy's office and then Papaw's law firm to show off the cuteness that was this turtle. He ran up and down the halls dazzling everyone with his turtle likeness.
We then rushed to meet up with my friend Courtney and her son Harrison to watch the Homecoming Parade. Dave got to see his Aunt Maynee march with the Dorians and our cousins ride on a various floats. It was really fun, but David was DESPERATE for a nap. So, we then rushed home to let him sleep away the afternoon.
This was followed by a trip back to see his friend Harrison and trick or treat with the Baxley and Holt families. Really, the boys did not trick or treat at all. We simply loaded them up in the wagon and strolled over to the neighborhood block party. It was crazy crowded and was overflowing with kids, food, and music. So fun!
Right when it was too dark to wonder around the roads with a toddler, we headed over to meet up with Nanny and Papa (my parents) and hang out with some other couple friends at another Halloween party. We spent most of the night there eating great food and enjoying the company. David was delirious and desperate for sleep. So, we loaded up and made one last stop to see some friends in Homewood before heading back home. To say the least, we are exhausted.
However, we had one last festivity Sunday night with our Community Group from church. This time, all 3 of us dressed up: David as the trusty turtle and Husband/Me as Juno and Bleaker from the movie Juno. We are so thankful for the relationships the Lord has given us through our church community group. Yay for community!!
Now, David and I will spend the week recovering from the high paced life we are not accustomed to. Hopefully we can get the little man a few serious naps in here and there for his own sanity. This boy requires a lot of sleep.
****NO, we are NOT pregnant. Juno herself is pregnant in the movie, so thus I was fake preggers for the night. Again, not pregnant. K, thanks.****
Posted by elizabeth at 9:24 PM
Monday, October 27
It is so crazy that my baby is becoming a miniature person with his own little agenda. David has become quite independent over the last few months. He LOVES to play play play and completely entertains himself by toddling from one toy to the other. Often times, he makes you feel like you just might be in his way simply because you are trying to play alongside him. He has things to do and is on the move. There is no containing this little guy! He scurries from one room to the next and has showed no signs of slowing down. Thank goodness for the baby gate!!! This past month has brought so much fun and lots of laughing. He has become really communicative although we don't have any words yet. He has started imitating us occasionally and as a result goes around the house saying "Hush" all day. One day he heard me yell "Hush!" at Marley and he has not let the word go since. As of now though, no real English, just lots of pointing and noisemaking/grunting/babbling. He loves to drive his little cars all over the floor while making a rumbling engine noise. I think he learned this from his Daddy. It is pretty cute. In other news, he has been boycotting vegetables and has shown quite a liking for spicy food. He is obsessed with taco meat and Santa Fe soup. He LOVES to eat and has developed an awful habit of begging for the food off your plate. We are working on this and it has resulted in quite a few melt downs. Let's just say he might have a little bit of a stubborn streak on the rise :). Also, we have been trying to sneak some healthy food into his system by making black bean cakes with corn and peas. So far, he doesn't seem to notice and loves it!! Yay! We will see how long this lasts....We welcome any creative ways of getting healthy food into kids during picky phases!!!
Happy 13 months little man!! We love your guts and are so thankful for all the joy you bring us.
Posted by elizabeth at 1:42 PM
Thursday, October 23
After our trip to the Pumpkin Patch, we headed straight to the Barber Shop. The lady who cuts Grant and my brother's hair happened to be in Saturday with some open appointments in the afternoon. I had been putting off this milestone because I was afraid he would look too old with a big boy hair cut. The mullet actually was curly and cute most of the summer, but as soon as the humidity passed out of town we realized it was not so cute anymore. Our child was sporting a straight up mullet and seeing it draped over the back of his turtleneck at the pumpkin patch was just the breaking point for me. It had to go!
He did so great! He only fussed for a tiny second when she first put the apron on him. Of course, he was confused and wary as to who this strange lady was and what she was going to do to him. In typical David fashion, he had this odd confused look on his face most of the time. It was cute and I was just glad he was not crying. He looked so old sitting up on the chair all alone. He even got to play with the buzzer for awhile which he seemed to enjoy. I think she was trying to expose him to it so when the time came for side burns he would not be afraid.
Overall it went REALLY well and he was rewarded with a butterscotch lollipop which he LOVED.
Posted by elizabeth at 9:53 AM