Thursday, February 28, 2013

A Day of Relaxation

Today was a busy, busy day!

Hudson and I dropped Madison off at school. Then, we went and ran some errands until my nail appointment. Hudson was amazing...he sat in his stroller like a perfect little angel for the entire time while I got a deluxe pedicure, manicure and my eyebrows waxed. :) I definitely was pampered this morning! It felt wonderful! And ladies, if you've never tried gel nail polish, man oh have to try it! I don't know where I've been this whole time, but it's revolutionized getting manicures for me. There is no chance of smudging or chipping (which I always do within the first 24 hours, thus the reason I never get manicures). Anyway, it's a little bit more expensive, but it's worth it to me since it's suppose to last 2-3 weeks :)

After getting my nails done, Hudson and I headed home so that he could play for a little bit before having to pick up Madison (it was her early day). He ran around and got all of his energy out! After picking up Madison, I rushed home to get Hudson down for his nap, since the house cleaner was suppose to arrive around 1:30. I wasn't sure how long he'd sleep with all of that going on. Thankfully he got a good solid two and a half hour nap and then we all picked up and went to the mall and walked around for a couple of hours.

By the time we arrived home, we had about a half an hour until bed time, so we played. Madison did some art. Hudson and I read some books. Then, the kids went to bed! It's been a run around type of day, but it's be a wonderful day!

Hope you guys had a beautiful Thursday!

***Please keep praying for Tori, however God leads you!!! Thank you!!!***

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Another Full Day...

Today was another full day!

After dropping Madison off at school, I rushed to the Y. I only had about 25-30 minutes until I needed to be back on the road again to Trader Joe's. I set the treadmill for 25 minutes and I ran 3.2 miles in 25 minutes! I was super excited. I am aiming to get to 22:00, which I believe is the perfect score for the 3 mile run in the PFT...ladies, do I have that right? Anyway, today's Trader Joe's shopping trip was extra fun because all of the meals I was shopping for were for once Alex is home! :) Yahoo!!!! After Trader Joe's I had to rush home because our housing area is updating all of our home alarms and I needed to be here by 9:30. I was here at 9:25! Perfect timing!

I had a little bit of a chance to facebook message Alex while Hudson was napping. So much fun getting to message with him and to be so close to actually talking in person! What a concept! :) I miss that man so much! I am so thankful that my days leading up to his arrival are full and will keep me occupied because I am getting a tad antsy. Every day this week, I've been waking up earlier than the day before!

Once we were home from picking up Madison, I finished prepping for bible study...just had a few things left on my "to do" list for the day! Tonight for Bible Study, I made an Apple Fritter Cake. I found this recipe on Pinterest and thought it looked rather tasty! This cake was a huge hit with my Life Group, so if you like apple fritters, it's a winner.

Our topic this week for Bible Study was prayer! We had a great in depth look at The Lord's Prayer and then we had a great time of praying with and for each other. Afterwards we broke up into our accountability groups! It was a wonderful evening!

***Please keep praying for Tori. They took her Trach out!!! Praise the Lord. I am including the LINK to her Caring Bridge Page, because today there were a lot of updated prayer requests. Thank you to all of you who have been faithfully praying! God is so mighty and He can heal sweet Tori!!!***

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Oh Happy Day!!!

I received some of the best news ever today: Alex is officially out of Afghanistan!!!!!

We are getting so close! Every day brings us one day closer to having him back home with us! What a glorious day that will be!!!

Today was a fun day! I had a good workout today. I pushed myself hard! One of the trainers there came up to me after I was done and asked me if I'd been a runner all of my life because he thought I was flying on the that always makes a girl feel good! It sure was fun! I like to race myself and what I did the day before. Anyway, all that to say, it's nice to know that a trainer thought I was running well! :)

After the Y, Hudson had his 2 year check-up. Everything went well and he only had to have one shot, plus I was able to see Devan and give her, her baby shower gift that I wasn't able to give her over the weekend!  At 2 years old, Hudson weighs 29lbs (68%) and is 34 inches long (50%). I sure do love my little boy. I love how everyone in our doctor's office (not sure my friend and our nurse) know him and talk to him from the moment we arrive to the moment we leave. He's already such a little people person!

When we arrived back home, Hudson was more than ready for his morning nap. Later, when we went to pick up Madison, Kristyle and I had "volunteered" to help our kids' teacher man the silent auction table at school. This week there is a fundraiser going on where the parents can bid on different teachers and the winners get to go on a special outing with the teacher. The kindergarten teachers are taking the kids to Islands and then to see the new movie The Croods.

After school, we headed to gymnastics. As always, Madison was super excited. Today in addition to practicing the things they've been learning, they started learning the basics of a head stand! It was super cute to watch Madison get down on her head and practice balancing her knees on her elbows! I wasn't able to get a picture of it, but you can trust was pretty stinking cute! :)

Well, I am off to go make some yummy popcorn and relax a bit! Hope you all had a lovely Tuesday!!!!

***Please keep praying for Tori! Thank you for your faithfulness to this beautiful girl!!!!***

Monday, February 25, 2013

Happy 2nd Birthday Little Monkey!!!!

Today was a very special day!!!!

Today my little monkey turned 2 years old! These past two years have added so much love and laughter to our home. It was no secret that when we found out I was pregnant for the 2nd time that I really wanted another little girl and that I was more than disappointed when we found out we were having a boy. Oh man, how I think back to that time and laugh now, because I wouldn't have it any other way. The love I have for my baby boy is so special. I know that he was the missing component to our family, that I didn't know was missing until the day he was born. This was definitely a time where God knew best (as He always does) and I was happy to be proven wrong. I am blessed by the sweet relationship Hudson and I have. There is a bond there that I just can't explain. I am also very blessed by the sweet friendship Madison and Hudson share. Those two bring me so much joy, especially when I see them interacting and playing together. Oh, the love this little guy has for his daddy!!! It's priceless. At least once a day, he walks around our house and points out every picture, blanket and doll with his daddy's picture. Any time my phone rings, he starts saying, "Hi Dada!" Hudson may not have been talking much when Alex left, but that hasn't stopped him from expressing now, just how very fond of him he is! I can't wait to see those two back together.

Here are some of my favorite pictures of my sweet boy:

This morning, Madison and I woke Hudson up by walking into his room singing Happy Birthday to him. He was all smiles!!! Hudson went and ate breakfast, while Madison finished getting ready for school. Then, while Madison was eating breakfast, Hudson started opening his presents. He had so much fun. Thank you to everyone who mailed gifts to our sweet boy and to those of you who dropped them off at our house today! I think Hudson was overjoyed by how many people called, sent video messages, and just showed him they loved him today! 

Here is a video of Hudson (bed head and all) telling me how old he is now:

After dropping Madison off at school, Hudson and I went to the Y. All of the workers in the child care center were so sweet. They knew it was his birthday and they sang him Happy Birthday and made a big deal out of it! It was super sweet. Once I had finished my workout, we went to Jamba Juice for a little mommy/son date. We both had smooties (although Hudson quickly finished his so he finished the rest of mine). Then, we went across the street and hand selected a dozen buntinis from Nothing Bundt Cakes for his little evening celebration. 

Once we had finished getting our buntinis (and Hudson was done with all of his yummy samples), we headed home so that He could take a nap.

We went and picked up Madison and then came home. The kids played with Hudson's new toys for a little while and then went into their quiet time. After quiet time the kids played together once again until dinner was ready. Hudson's favorite dinner right now is pretty much anything pasta, but he really loves elbow macaroni pasta with just a little butter, salt and pepper, so that was what we had tonight. After dinner, our sweet friends Seth and April came over to help us celebrate Hudson. We sang Happy Birthday to Hudson and enjoyed some of the little buntinis. The kids each had two...whoa, talk about a sugar high before bed! Seth was so sweet and got down on the floor and played with the kids for about an hour and helped to wear them out!

It was a very special day! Again, thank you to all of you who contributed to that! It means the world! Hope you all had a very special Monday as well!

***Please continue to pray for sweet Tori! Thank you!!!***

Sunday, February 24, 2013

My Favorite Picture To Date

Today was a fantastic day!!!!

For starters, Hudson was completely back to himself! :) Also, I figured out how to take apart the stroller (it ended up being a very involved process) and was able to wash the entire cover...yay!!!!

Here is the stroller all stripped down:

This morning, we were all ready early, so I treated myself to a little Coffee Bean (I still had money left on a gift card from my parents). Then, we headed off to church. The sermon was phenomenal this morning. Pastor Mike really nailed it today!

After church, we headed to Lowe's for some flowers and a few other things to decorate our home for homecoming (that I can't post just yet b/c it's a surprise for Alex, but pictures will come later). Here are our beautiful new's to hoping I can keep them alive. :)

After Lowe's, we came home and had some lunch. The kids went to quiet time and I was able to talk to Alex for a little bit through FaceBook Messenger. While chatting with him, he sent me my favorite picture from the whole deployment thus far! (Oh and I apologize to all of you who keep asking on FaceBook what day Alex is coming home, I am not able to share that information for security purposes. I am not trying to be rude. But no worries, there will be plenty of pictures on that very special day. Thank you all for your prayers)!

When I received this picture, I couldn't help but smile and it hasn't left my face since! I have just been one big ball of energy. After I dropped the kids off at AWANAS tonight, I zipped over to the Dollar Store and picked up some festive balloons for Hudson's birthday. I can't believe he's going to be two tomorrow! He's getting so big! 

After Hudson went to bed, Madison helped me decorate the kitchen and bring out his presents to the table. She even made him her very own special card!

Tomorrow after we drop Madison off at school. I have a fun little date planned for me and my little monkey, but that will be for tomorrow!

Hope you all had a fabulous weekend! 

***Please continue praying for Tori. Thank you!!!***

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Not Exactly How I'd Pictured the Day Going

Well, today definitely took a different direction than how I'd planned it.

I woke up early this morning, did my quiet time and then took a shower to get ready for the day before the kids were up....or so I thought. Once I was dressed, I heard Hudson sort of fussing (which is unusual for him in the morning, he's usually just talking away). I walked in and could instantly smell the problem, but had no idea just how bad it was. He was in his Christmas footie pajamas, which are quite thick. Well, when I went to lay him down on the changing pad to clean him up, as I unzipped his jammies I could see that the poor guy had had a MAJOR blowout and part of it had pooled at the bottom of his right foot. :/ I felt awful that I didn't know that before I'd taken my shower...I have no idea how long he'd been stuck like that. I cleaned him up the best that I could and then I plunked him in the tub. While he was soaking in the tub, I stripped his bed and started the laundry.

After Hudson was all cleaned up, he had some breakfast and Madison took her shower. We then all finished getting ready and we ran some errands. We went to Costco and to Berean...we were suppose to go to a few other places, but we ended up heading home. While at Berean, as I was checking out, I started to smell something funky. I figured Hudson had a dirty diaper, so I planned to change him when we got to the car before finishing the rest of our errands. Well, when we got to the car, sure enough...Hudson not only had a dirty diaper, but he once gain he had a major blow out. We're talking up his back, all over his stroller (which I can't for the life of me figure out how to take off of the frame so I had to clean it attached), down his legs, etc. It was a mess. So, here I am standing in the parking lot (with about 6-8 old ladies, who were having a bake sale outside of the store, staring at me) and me trying to figure out what in the world I was going to do...there was poop everywhere. Well, thankfully I had those disposable diaper bags (think what people use when they take their dog for a walk). So, first things first. I took Hudson's shirt off and threw it in one of the bags. Then, I used wipes and wiped down his back, neck, and arms and used another one of those bags as a trash bag. Then I took Hudson's shoes off and stood him up in the street (thankfully it's not a very busy parking lot) and stripped him and put his socks and pants in the dirty clothes bag. Then, I once again used wipes and wiped him down until he was clean enough to pick up and lay on my changing pad to put a new diaper on him. Once he was fresh and clean I put him in his car seat, but then there was still the issue of what in the world to do about my stroller. I couldn't just close it up all nasty like that, so I grabbed my wipes and just began cleaning the seat, the belts, the back rest, and the buckles until they were "clean" enough to at least be folded up and taken home. Once home I had to spray the stroller down with my all-purpose anti-bacterial spray and used a rag soaked in hot water to continue to clean this darn stroller and then I sprayed it with Lysol.

I gave Hudson a squeezie yogurt (only thing he wanted at the time...but now he won't touch them) and then I put him to bed. He slept from 11:45 until about 3:30. I think he would have slept longer, but alas, he had another blowout. :/ Thankfully this one wasn't nearly as bad. I think I caught it shortly after it had happened, so it was manageable. Anyway, he's not acting like he doesn't feel well. He doesn't have a fever or anything, but after his nap, he pretty much just wanted water and crackers, which is definitely uncharacteristic of him. He has been fine though in the diaper department, so that's good. Now praying for a good evening and that it was just something funny that he ate yesterday that didn't sit well in his tummy.

Needless to say, I am not at my sweet friend's baby shower tonight. I desperately wanted to be there. :/ I am hoping and praying that she feels very blessed and "showered" tonight. Thankfully though, I will see her on Tuesday, when we go in for Hudson's 2 year check-up, so I can give her her present and hear all about how the shower was.

I think tonight I will read a book and finish up my 5th load of laundry today (I had to change Hudson's sheets 3 times today, plus all of our regular laundry).

Days like today remind me how precious and wonderful it is to be a mother. I could tell Hudson was embarrassed by his blowouts, but I could also tell, how much he appreciated me cleaning him up, giving him baths, changing his sheets, and letting him snuggle with me when he wanted to. God gave me grace and patience today as I dealt with my sweet boy, especially in the parking lot of Berean. I love how God always meets us where we're at.

So, today didn't go as I had planned, but God's plan is always so much more grand than anything I could ever dream up. Today, while I was excited to go to the baby shower and spend an evening with my friend and other adults, God needed my son and I to bond in a way that only blow out, after blow out could do. God uses all circumstances as opportunities for us to bring Him glory. So, I am thankful for being elbow deep in poop today because it allowed Hudson and I to grow in our relationship as he has one more day before his birthday and now one more memory of how I was able to help him in his time of need. Time will never slow down, but we can slow down and enjoy the time we're given, no matter what the circumstances.

I hope today, you can find the joy in whatever circumstances were thrown at you!

***Please continue to pray for Tori. Thank you!!!***

Friday, February 22, 2013

One More Friday Down

Today was filled with more errands and wonderful conversations.

Hudson and I dropped Madison off at school and then went to Target and to the Post Office. If you have a little girl, Target's dollar section is filled (as in it was just stocked) with amazing fun Disney items. There was enough stuff for little boys too, but it's definitely heavy on items for girls....I very easily bought and filled both of the kids Easter Baskets today and most of the items came from that dollar section. I didn't buy any candy. It was all fun art stuff, stickers, cute socks, bubbles, books, etc...

Anyway, I had a wonderful talk with our Family Readiness Officer and received even more details about Alex's homecoming today. I also had a phone date with Renee and we actually were able to talk for a long time with minimal interruptions. It was wonderful! I love and miss Renee so very much, but always am so encouraged by our conversations!

Back during the Super Bowl, we had won a free pizza from Papa John's, which I took advantage of tonight for our movie night. The kids and I picked the non-animated 101 Dalmatians for our movie. Madison had never seen it and was never really scared during it, but her sweet, tender heart definitely was worried about what would happen to those cute little puppies when they were stolen. Love her little heart. Hudson was constantly pointing to the TV and saying, "Dog, mom, Dog." It was too cute!

Well, another day down and another day closer to having my man back in my arms! I am so glad that I have very full days ahead of me because it will help the time to go by quicker. It will be here before I know it! Eeeeeekkkk!!!!! Just the thought of it, gets me all excited again!

I was very excited about something I discovered today. While talking to the Family Readiness Officer, she did tell me that the homecoming would be indoors, which is different than she had told me before. This means I don't need to stress about quickly finding new outfits or really cute layers for the kids to stay warm. They'll just need something to keep them warm from the car into the building! :) It's the little things, right?!?

Hope you all had or are having a wonderful Friday!!!!!

***Please continue your prayers for Tori! Thank you friends!!!***

Thursday, February 21, 2013

What a Day!!!!

What a day (in a good way)!!!!

This morning after dropping Madison off at school, I had a wonderful conversation with my friend Kristyle. We totally were in the parking lot talking until we were the last cars there (other than the teachers and staff). We always have such wonderful conversations! She is such a blessing and I am so thankful for the friendship God has grown between us and continues to grow!  :)

Once Hudson and left the parking lot, we ran a bunch of errands. While on the way to Kohl's I had the chance to talk with my bestie, always a wonderful add-on to my morning! We went to Kohl's so that I could return something and look around for a few items we'll need for homecoming now. We were successful with the return, but they didn't have what I was looking for. Then we headed off to the mall. We went to Old Navy first...I went to get some new jeans, but I'm in between two sizes there right now and so I left empty handed. Then I went to the kids section and I was able to find one item I might be able to use with Hudson for his homecoming outfit. So we had a sort of successful trip to Old Navy for Hudson. Then, we went to a few other stores real quick before we had to leave to go pick up Madison (it was a half day).

During the kids quiet time, I had the chance to catch up with my wonderful friend Melissa. It was so wonderful to talk and catch up! I sure do miss that lady! I hope that at some point we're stationed near each other again!

We then had a random cloud just dump rain on us, so I gave in and told the kids we could have a fun rainy day movie (we normally don't do tv during the school week). We had fun snuggling on the couch and watching Tinkerbell. When the movie was over, we ate dinner and did baths/showers. It was very close to bed at this point, so we just moved on to bedtime routine and saying good-night.

Now I get to sit here and daydream about seeing my husband soon! Oh how I miss that man! He is such an amazing husband and father. It sure will be nice to have him back under our roof! I will be completely honest (and I know this might sound crazy), I think I'm probably more excited about Alex's homecoming than I was about our wedding. Don't get me wrong, I was beyond excited to marry Alex and to have a beautiful wedding, but I think it's because we've been married for almost 9 years now, when Alex is gone, I feel like part of me is missing. I long for Alex. He's my very best friend and I miss our conversations (in person) and just having him here. So, this time around, unlike the wedding, I know what I'm getting back, whereas when you get married it's all new. So, I think that is probably why I'm feeling this way. It's so much fun planning and anticipating everything. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it!!!

I hope you all had a great day!!!!

***Please continue praying for sweet Tori!!! She's been heavy on my heart today!!! Thank you!!!***

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

On The Edge Of My Seat

Today was such a FUN day!!!!

This morning a stranger hail storm came through San Diego. It hailed when I first woke up. Then, it hailed as I was taking Madison to her classroom. Finally, it hailed as I was leaving the school and heading to Orange County for the morning.

My wonderful friend April, came over and watched Hudson for me all morning/early afternoon, so that I could go to Orange County (as soon as I dropped Madison off at school) to get my hair done by my sweet friend Brienna. She's been doing my hair for, gosh, at least 10 years. I have only had one hair cut in the last 10 years that was not by her. :) Anyway, I was bold and daring today (for me anyway) and I chose to do some color today. If you have seen my wedding pictures of knew me during that time, I had her do my hair similar to that. I kept the length of my hair, but Brienna added long layers and fixed the choppiness that the other lady who did my hair added (that I wasn't crazy about). She also added a lot of fun front layers (I am sure there is a fancier name for them). Anyway, I am not posting a picture, because I don't want Alex to see it until homecoming!

Today was so much fun because I was able to spend some good time with Brienna catching up, but also because today marked a huge milestone for me. I remember when this hair appointment seemed sooooo far away and it finally arrived! One more item off of the "to do" list!

Then, tonight was Life Group! I made short bread cookies for our snack! We had a great group discussion tonight and almost everyone was there....almost.

I am sitting here on the edge of my seat as I await more details of my wonderful hubby's homecoming! It's so close, yet not quite close enough! Trying to remember to enjoy every minute of the anticipation and count down!

Hope you all had a fantastic day!!!

***Please continue praying for Tori!!! Thank you!!!***

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Today Made Me Smile

Today was a very productive day!

This morning I dropped Madison off at school and then Hudson and I went to the Y. I was did a hard run today. It felt great! I am extra motivated right now. I have less than a pound to go to reach my weight loss goal for while Alex was deployed. His homecoming is quickly approaching :) and so I am working extra hard to be able to say I reached my goal of losing 20 pounds while he was gone!

Anyway, after the Y we headed to Trader Joe's, my happy place! I just LOVE going there! It makes me feel so good about the food I provide my family, since nothing there has any GMO's and pretty much everything I get is Organic and I save more money than when I shopped at other places!

After school, Madison had gymnastics! It's always a happy day! It was raining today, so Madison was so excited that she was able to wear her new long sleeve, pink leotard! Amazon was having a killer sale on these the other day. I only paid $10.00 for this one and it arrived the next day! They had a bunch of colors, but Madison wanted pink, since she didn't have any pink leotards yet. :) I told her to strike a pose, so that daddy could see her new leotard and this is what a got! What a goofball! :)

After gymnastics, I came home and popped my already prepped Chicken Fajita Casserole into the oven. It was super tasty. I was very happy with this recipe find. Brittney had pinned it on her Pinterest Board and told me it was tasty, so I gave it a shot. I LOVED it. Hudson loved it too, all except the onions. Madison, on the other hand, had quite the issue with it. She didn't even want to taste it because she saw the peppers. I had only given her one in her bowl (she likes to create taco bowls instead of an actual taco/fajita), but she refused to eat it. So, unfortunately, she was sent to her room while Hudson and I enjoyed our dinner. When we were done, I went back into her room and told her that she could either come eat what I'd made her or she could go to bed hungry. She came out and ate the chicken, cheese, guacamole, and olives. She even said she liked the chicken....go figure. Needless to say, we had a long talk about not judging a book by it's cover and what exactly that means.

I just wanted to share that I did start my new Prayer Challenge last night and I can't put it down. I have one more day and I will be caught up (so between last night and today, I will have done 7 days). If you're looking for a way to grow in your prayer life, I highly recommend this book. I am not even 1/4 of the way through this book and I can already tell it's going to be a life changer! It is Draw the Circle: The 40 Day Prayer Challenge. I ordered it off of Amazon and had it in two days and I believe it was maybe $10 (if that).

I hope you all are having a lovely Tuesday (although it definitely doesn't feel like Tuesday to me). Hope this week is a good one for you all!

***Please continue praying for Tori. Please keep praying that her therapies would make her stronger and that her cognition would improve 100%. Thank you!!!!***

Monday, February 18, 2013

It Was Mardi Gras At Our House Today!!!

This morning, my parents left to head back home. The kids and I had a lazy morning. They played and I did the bills and picked up a bit and started some laundry. Then, all played together for a little bit before Hudson went down for his nap.

We all had a lovely afternoon. After lunch, we played and enjoyed each other's company. Then, it was quiet time. During the kids' quiet time, I had the major cleaning bug! The closest thing I can compare it to, is the "nesting" phase during the third trimester of pregnancy. I was on a major cleaning and organizing kick. I am not done, but I got a big head start on my list for next week! :)

After the kids were done with quiet time, we went to the park for a little while. When we arrived home, we had two packages waiting for us. The first one, was one I'd been waiting for, for almost a week. It is the Drawing Circles, 40 day Prayer Challenge. I am going to catch up to day 6 tonight after I am done blogging, but I had wanted to do this along with several other at our church who are doing this. It is 40 days, so it's perfect to do in preparation for Easter!

Then, there was the second package! It was HUGE and it was HEAVY!!!! Madison went and took her shower and I told her we could open it after she was out. So, we opened it and the kids went crazy. My Aunt Robin, that lives in Louisiana, went to SEVERAL of the parades and collected things for the kids to send them! She definitely spoiled them. There must have been at least 10 pounds worth of necklaces, bracelets, and rings. Then in addition to all of those goodies, there were cups, toys, footballs, and frisbees. The kids spend the better part of an hour just going through everything and playing. They were rather disappointed when I told then they had to clean up and get ready for bed!

How did you all spend your President's Day? Hope you had a wonderful day and spend some time outdoors (especially if you live in SD, because the rain is suppose to be coming tomorrow). 

***Please continue praying for Tori! She is getting a little better and a little stronger each day. Thank you for your prayers!!!***

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Silly Little Monkey

This morning the kids and I got up and got ready for church. We hung out with my parents for a little bit, before we had to go and then we headed off for service. Here is Hudson in his new shirt....I think his hair color and skin color look awesome with little beach boy!

After church, we ran back home and picked up my parents and headed to the Corvette Diner. Last time my parents were here, I took them here for the first time and they loved it. It was requested once again this visit. We arrived just as they were opening (perfect timing) and we told them that we were celebrating Hudson's 2nd birthday, since my parents won't be here a week from tomorrow on his actual birthday! We all had so much fun! Our waitress came and brought us all hats and made a special one for Hudson that said Happy Birthday!!!!

 (This photo ended up being taken before the hats had arrived)

We all enjoyed our lunches very much. We also had so much fun watching Hudson rock out to all of the music (like he's done every time we've eaten there). Once they cleared most of our table, our waitress (along with a few other waitresses) came over and brought Hudson a little Sunday and sang him a special birthday song. 

Hudson very graciously shared his ice-cream with Madison, but that was short lived...when he realized she kept going in for more, he began to want it all to himself. I snapped the picture below and then took the following video, which captured the realization perfectly! Such a silly little monkey!

Once we were home, Hudson went down for his nap and Madison had her quiet time. When quiet time was over, the kids had United Through Reading Videos to watch. We'd received the package from Alex yesterday, but when I went and got the mail the kids were just getting ready to go to bed, so I saved it for today. Hudson stood and stared at the TV and Madison followed along in the books. This is the last United Through Reading package the kids will receive before Alex is home! So fun! Here are some pictures that I snapped as they kids were enjoying their "daddy" time!

This evening the kids had AWANAS. They were celebrating Valentine's Day tonight, so the kids brought drinks and cupcakes for their perspective parties! They had so much fun and during the awards part of the evening, Madison received her Hang Glider Review Patch! So proud of her little girl! She is soooo quick at memorizing things. She has a much higher capability than I do when it comes to all of that!

While the kids were at AWANAS, my parents and I went to dinner. We haven't gone to dinner just the three of us in a very long time. It was fun just enjoying their company and having a quiet dinner!

Hope you guys had a great weekend!

***Please keep praying for Tori. Thank you!***

Saturday, February 16, 2013

2nd Place Overall (for her age division)

Well, today was the big day: Madison's Gymnastic Competition.

Before we were able to get ready for the competition, I had to go back to Toyota to pick up the Prius. My dad went with me this morning and I returned the rental car and picked up the Prius....everything looks wonderful on it! We then took the old battery back to Auto Zone and received the credit back on the credit card.

Once we were back at the house, we ate breakfast and all took showers to get ready for the competition. Madison was jumping off the wall with excitement this morning. Here are some pictures of my sweet girl right after getting her new leotard on.

Around 11:00, Alexis came over to watch Hudson so that we could head over to the YMCA. I wanted to get there early because for the holiday program I was there an hour early (what I thought was early enough) and I ended up standing the entire show. Well, this time there weren't nearly as many people and we ended up standing around for a bit, but Madison had fun watching the other classes that were going on. Here is a picture Madison and I took while we were waiting.

At 12:30, the kids all were able to start warming up with their coaches. Here is one of my favorite videos I took during the warm up. It is a video of Madison being asked to go across the floor doing cartwheels.

Madison was having so much fun during warm-ups. They practiced their routines and then at about 1:05 they started their competition. It was super cute to watch. All of the competitive team girls were the judges for this meet. Madison started on the Bars with her team. Here is her doing her little routine.

After her bar routine, they went to the back area to practice some more for their next event, which was Beam. Madison did such a great job. Here is a little photo collage that I created from the warm-ups and of Madison while she was waiting to take her turn on the beam, along with the video from her beam routine.

Here is Madison sitting and watching her teammates on the Beam:

When Madison and her team finished the Beam, they headed over to their final event, which was the floor! Madison was first on floor and was super cute! :)

After Madison finished her final event, her whole team was called to the floor, along with all of the other gymnasts to wait for the announcement of the awards!

I was so proud of Madison and how well she did today. I was also so very happy with how much fun Madison had! She didn't appear nervous at all and she was glowing the entire competition. She placed 2nd on Bars, 2nd on Floor and 3rd on Beam for her age division and she placed 2nd overall, so she received the most adorable medal! She was ecstatic.

This is Madison after she just received her 2nd Place Medal for All Around, Saluting the Audience!!!!

Me and my little gymnast!

Madison and her coaches, Miss Marissa and Miss Lily.

Madison showing off her ribbons and her medal.

After the meet, we went home and grabbed Hudson and headed to an early dinner at PF Chang's to celebrate our little gymnast. The kids LOVE PF Chang's and we had so much fun together. Hudson was a bottomless pit while we were there. He had lettuce wraps (a huge portion), he had a spring roll, he had steamed rice, and he had their kids portion of crispy chicken (he ate the whole thing), plus two full glasses of water.

Here is our cute little girl snuggling with grandpa, while waiting for everyone to finish their meal! Such a cute photo:

After dinner, we swung by the See's Store and picked up a little box of Scotchmallows (Madison's request). We then came home and played with the kiddos for a little over an hour and then it was bed time. Man, were the kiddos tired. They fell right to sleep. I love when you can tell the kids had a good day by how quickly they fall asleep :)

Hope you all had a beautiful Saturday! 

***Please keep praying for Tori. Thank you!!!***