Monday, March 29, 2010

Snaps from the Phone


Some photos I took with my cell phone documenting the last few weeks of our life:


A comforter set I'm thinking about buying for our bedroom- but I can't decide if it's too busy of a pattern or not. What do you guys think???


"HI Mommy"


Our new curtains- this took a lot of brain power. . . seriously.


My sweet, sweet friend, April, was in Houston on business. We met up at a hotel downtown and grabbed lunch together. She is the best.


I take Brennan to the park by our house quite a bit- here he is about to pet a puppy we met!


Last Wednesday night, Jon was working late on a video shoot he had at the church. I took B to ToysRUs to waste some time. I took this photo for Aunt Sue!!!


I made chocolate chip scones this weekend for the first time. They were yummy, especially with the morning coffee!

Brennan sleeping in the car on the way home from Old MacDonald's Farm.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Swagbucks

Hey Everyone! I recently signed up for Swagbucks-a site that you use as a search engine and earn points in the process.

Click on the link below and then register (doesn't even require your address, credit card, etc.). Start searching through swagbucks and EARN points to cash in for things like starbucks cards, amazon gift cards, etc. I put swagbucks as my home page so I remember to search through that site instead of google.

BUT please make sure to click on the link below so that I get referral points for you! THANKS!

Search & Win
Right now I'm. . .

-Reading cleaning tips from Show Us Your Life at Kellyskornerblog. It's seriously challenging me. I love a clean house (who doesn't) but I suck at cleaning. I'm learning so much, seriously!! haha

-Flipping through the Park Lane Jewelry catalog online, I went to a girls night out party last night that my friend Cathi hosted- featuring this jewelry. SUCH cute stuff!

-Wondering why Brennan kept waking up for Jon last night after he put him down to bed. Eventually Jon just took him out of the crib and waited for me to get home. I tried putting him down to bed and he still cried. We let him cry for about ten minutes before he finally fell asleep. What the heck? NEVER does that. Children- they're nothing if they aren't unpredictable!

-Still digesting information from a deep conversation we had with friends last night- about healthcare and student loans and the death penalty and human trafficking and bailouts. It's always great to be stretched by friends. Lots of stuff going on in our world right now, LOTS.

Loving the fact that it's Saturday, it's sunny, and it's warm! Have a great weekend!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Family Photos

After cancelling twice- once because of Jon's trip to Las Vegas and once because of rain- we finally got our family photos taken! We wanted photos for Brennan's 12 month age, and we needed some updated family photos. It was a SUPER windy day out, and we almost cancelled again, but decided to just see how it went and maybe do a second round later. But I think the photos turned out good, so hooray! I like the rustic southern feel some of them have. Here's a sampling:
All photos courtesy of Chris Yarborough.

(My favorite photo)









Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Doggies and 5K's and Stroller Fit (oh, and a fun video of Brennan)

***UPDATE- Forgot to include this in my post- I took Brennan to the ENT yesterday and although he still has fluid in his ears, they are not infected. She wants to see him again in six weeks- if he's got an ear infection then, then we'll do tubes. If not, he's free and clear. I really do think the antibiotics were hurting him more than the ear infection- he was a different kid as soon as we took him off those.

I went for a run this morning by myself because Jon's got a head cold. I rounded the corner of our neighborhood to head into the gated part of our neighborhood and lo and behold a little doggie starts running next to me. At first I stopped and told him to "go home". And then I looked around to see if any neighbors were looking for him. Nothing. So I put my headphones back on and continued running. And it was the CUTEST thing, this little dog ran next to me the entire run- and when I rounded that corner again to head home, he took off into someones yard (obviously his home) and went through a doggie door. Apparently, he just wanted a little exercise this morning!! Isn't that hilarious?

I haven't run on a regular basis since before Brennan was born. Heck, I haven't exercised on a regular basis since before B was born. Jon and I are thinking about entering a 5K race for mid April. I'm slightly nervous to register because we've only run a handful of times so far and I'm only up to running two miles right now. And the race is like 2.5 weeks away. But it would be fun, and it would be good motivation AND there's free ice cream at the end (anyone ever heard of Blue Bell ice cream? Yummmm). So we'll see. I'll probably pass out if I try to run 3 miles and Jon will end up pushing B and heave hoing me over his shoulder that last .1 miles. haha.

Speaking of exercising- I'm thinking about joining a stroller fit class. Anyone ever done one? An article on "mommy and me classes" was featured in the Houston Chronicle last weekend, so I googled some of the classes. I'm going to a free "check it out" class tomorrow and then I'll decide if I want to join or not. I like the thought of meeting other woman with small children and getting exercise! I'll letcha all know how it goes!

I'll leave you with a short video of Brennan. A few nights ago we were just hanging out in his bedroom before bedtime and he was being so cute. Note the pj's, I bought him 18 mths pj's thinking they'd fit him- no way, check out the feet!


video

Monday, March 22, 2010

Tips and Tricks

Thanks to everyone who commented on the last post, I feel the blog love right now!! And I must say, I am renergized to blog a little bit more. I do blog for our family, so we have a lot of Brennan's milestones recorded and photos and funny stories. And I also blog to stay in touch with family and friends. So I will continue and press on and journey on and (key Independence Day soundtrack!).

Here's a photo from today of the B-Man:

Look at that crazy face!! And that crazy hair!!
So my friend Rachelle and I painted some wooden B's from Hobby Lobby for Brennan's birthday party to be used as decorations. But I loved them so much, I hung them up above his crib, check it out:

I loved the way it turned out!!

My friend Mariam called this morning and we were chatting about a bunch of stuff, one of the things being a crock pot roast. We were talking about cuts of meat and whats expensive or not (hello, I sound like were senior citizens, talking about expensive cuts of meats, too funny!). Anyways, I was telling her about crock pot chicken that I found from this blog. You basically buy a whole chicken, they are quite inexpensive, around .88 per pound at our local Kroger. Rinse the chicken of and pull out the bag of yuckiness from the cavity of the chicken. And then stick it in the crockpot on low about 8 hours. How simple is that!? It cooks in it's own liquid! I usually sprinkle some spices on top- paprika or garlic powder- whatever you like. We have chicken for dinner that night and then I use the leftover chicken (usually there is quite a bit) for a casserole later that week. It does take more time to pick all the chicken off the bone, but it's worth it for me! Here's what it looks like:

And if you are super frugalicious, you can make your own chicken broth out of the bones and liquid. To do that, you stick the bones back in the crockpot with about 4 cups of water and heat on low overnight. Scoop out the bones and pour the liquid into a freezable container. Put in the fridge for a day and scoop off the layer of fat on top. Freeze (or refrigerate) the rest!

I got this cookbook for Christmas and found another awesome way to save money with meats. Instead of buying the lean or extra lean ground beef, buy the regular ol' ground beef. Follow this method and your regular ground beef becomes lower in fat than extra lead ground beef (according to the Canadian Beef Council). Check it out:
-Cook broken up ground beef in skillet until brown.
-Remove it from the skillet and let drain in a bowl lined with three layers of paper towels (or I drain it using a strainer).
-Microwave 4 cups of water on High, until VERY hot.
-Place the beef in a mesh strainer or colander and set it over a large sturdy bowl.
-Pour hot water over the beef and let drain 5 minutes. See?:

Whew, how's that for a blog? I'm BAAACK!

Chaeli

Friday, March 19, 2010

Life in Brief

I think Brennan is getting better. The last two days have been awesome with him. I love that kid.

Ate at Gringo's tonight on the patio. Split fajitas with the hubs. So good. Ate fast, B was restless. The free ice cream is always amazing.

Told Jon I wanted to stop blogging. He told me to continue so our family and friends can keep up with us. I told him I hate putting time and effort into posts and not getting any responses- I wonder if people actually read it and appreciate it. He told me to do it for the love of blogging. I do not love blogging. But sometimes it's fun.

SO excited that I'm going to Chicago in July to meet up with some very good girlfriends for a weekend. SO excited. Did I say that already?

Family photos tomorrow. Trying to decide between matchy outfits or not. Hope it doesn't rain. Hope the photos turn out. At least one. Feel slightly guilty that these are only the second professional photos we've had of Brennan. But then not so much considering we have The Daily!

Loving this weather. I have a tan. Yes I do.

Next week is the last week of our Inheritance study of Beth Moore's. Then we move onto studying the book of Revelation by her as well. I've never studied that book. Looking forward to it.

We bought curtains this week for the living room. The house feels so much more homey.

I'm tired. Only thinking in short sentences. I need to go get my beauty sleep for tomorrow. I hope Jon doesn't kick wet leaves all over me like he did for our engagement photo.

I really need to lose these last few pregnancy pounds. They are frustrating the crap out of me.

Can't wait for my parents and Steve to get here in a few weeks!

Nighty night guys!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St. Patrick's Day!




Top of the mornin' to ya!

No really, it's 10:28 pm and I'm about to hit the sack, so it's not really morning. But Happy St. Patrick's Day regardless! We did nothing to celebrate- heck, we didn't even WEAR the color green! If I was on top of things I would have cooked an irish meal, worn green, and read the story of St. Patrick. Oh well!

B's been really struggling this week. Jon and I made an executive decision two days ago and took him off the antibiotic he was on for his ear infection. Our guess is that the antibiotics are ripping up his stomach. We'll see if our guess is correct! I really hate to sound like a broken record, but he's pretty much non stop whiney/wants to be held for a while now and it's getting tough. We've seen a little improvement today so maybe we were right. . . who knows. Parenting is hard. I know, I'm a philosopher, what can I say.

But we did have a GOOD day today. The key to survival during these days is keeping him distracted and getting out of the house. This morning we ran errands, then he took a morning nap. Then we went to The Met to visit Jon and his co-workers and shopped at a children's consignment store. Came home, put him down for an afternoon nap (too short, dont' know what happened with that), and went and played outside at the park til Jon came home. This weather is pretty much amazing- 70's all week. Love it.

My husband's tired. He's lying on the bed whining right now. Apparently there are TWO whiners in this house. :) Gotta go..


Monday, March 15, 2010


Brennan and Lincoln sleeping on the way home from the airport

Brennan has been struggling for a month straight with a continuous ear infection. We're going to see the ENT in a few weeks. He also just got his 12 month shots which are giving him a fever. Plus he's teething. Oh, and he has a runny nose and a horrendous cough. Oh yes.
Despite that, he's been doing some really fun things and learning so much. I'm determined to focus on the good things right now :) Just the past few weeks he has started to do the following
-play peek a boo (he puts his hands on his forehead and a little bit over his eyes, too funny!
-give high fives
-sign "all done" and "more"
-booty shake dance to music
-give kisses (melts my darn heart)

And the cutest thing of all- his walk is like a high step bowl legged cowboy, and when I lean down and have him walk to me I just love it!

B man,
Mom and Dad hope you get better soon and your ears feel better. We love how cuddley you've gotten lately and how much you are learning.
You're the best!

Mommy and Daddy (aka mama and dada)

Friday, March 12, 2010

A week with our family

We've been living in Texas for a little over six months and we hosted our first visitors this past week. Jon and I have been looking forward to family visiting for a long time! We were able to show where we live and our favorite restaurants and take them to our church- so fun to share our lives with them! My mom and dad and brother, Steve, are coming down in just another month and I cannot wait!!

Here are some photos of the past week. . .

Brennan and Westin loved wrestling together. It was TOO cute! They would also run around the kitchen/living room loop in our house screeching at the top of their lungs- I was laughing so hard.
hahah, too cute!!




Mark, Erin, Jon and I and Westin went putt putting one night while Mom and Dad stayed home with Brennan and Lincoln. Then we went and got Connie's Custard. 'nough said.



While I was home puking my guts out and doing other fun things- the rest of the family went downtown to Hermann Park and Rice Village- two of our favorite spots!

We went the the mall one day when it rained- B loved the indoor playground and I calmly swallowed my urge to scream and run away due to germs.

We played at the two parks in our neighborhood. Westin is learning his dad's favorite sport- golf!

The three boy cousins.

Thank you guys for coming to visit! Y'all come back now, ya here?

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Brennan's 1!!!

After postponing Brennan's party a day due to my sickness, we finally threw that boy a birthday party! It was kind of a polka dot theme with blue, green and brown colors.


My mother in law made this cake- isn't it awesome??! I sent her some photos of what I wanted and she pretty much nailed it!

Mark put up some balloons around the house- here's a few in the living room


We had "the Daily" slideshow playing during the party. Click here to see the full album.

Cake time! He was pretty overwhelmed by everyone looking at him- he ate some cake out of Jon's hand but wasn't too into it. I was bummed he didn't stick his whole face in the cake! (and yes I made that sign, thankyouverymuch!!)






Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Coming soon. . . .

I WILL BLOG SOMETIME SOON. Promise. It's been a crazy week with family visiting, me getting a super sucky stomach bug, and throwing Brennan's birthday party. We had such a fun time with Mom and Dad Ackerman and the Zubert clan. Thanks for visiting guys!!

In the meantime, here's a fun blog to follow (well, fun is relative. . . I think this stuff is super interesting but maybe you're rolling you eyes. Too bad, don't read it then). Check out A Month Without Monsanto. This woman decided to go a month without eating/wearing anything with monsanto seeds and she uses her blog to document it. I learned about monsanto when we watched "Food, Inc." a few months back. They are a seed company that produces GMO seeds and owns the patent to those seeds. (Aunt Sue probably knows way more about this than I do!). Anyways, Monsanto GMO's seeds are in EVERYTHING and it's interesting to see this woman try to live without them. I don't know much about the ag industry- but this stuff is interesting.

Also- check out this blog for a yummy homemade mason jar frappuccino.

Adios!

Monday, March 1, 2010

I love this man


A small chronological look at our journey:

First photo together ever!! In Jon's dorm room (and man, I miss those jeans. They were my all-time favorite fitting jeans- and I got them for like $16.00. Finding good fitting jeans is so hard!).

One of our engagement photos (after Jon playfully kicked wet, muddy leaves ALL over my khakis!!)

Wedding day- first time we saw each other.

He's home from Germany (and look at that hair, sorry honey, had to point it out, you had been on a plane for 8 hrs so I shouldn't say anything. . . . )!!

Vacation in Mexico

Babymoon in NYC

The day Brennan was born

In our apartment in Texas

I don't really want to write much because it'll sound cheesy. This guy has my heart. I am beyond thankful for him!