Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Tulsa Trip!

When Jared found out he was off work for MLK Day, we knew we needed to plan a little getaway over the long weekend. We're trying to do as many fun activities as we can before April because we have no idea how the adjustment to three will go. Paxton voted for Dallas because he wanted to go to IKEA, but we decided that we wanted to stick a little closer to home and just go overnight. We decided on Tulsa. We have been wanting to take both boys to the aquarium for months now, ever since we saw how obsessed they both were with the fish room at the zoo. 

Jared got off a little early on Friday and we had the car loaded and ready for him. We got to the hotel with time to spare before dinner. The boys love playing in hotel rooms so we let them burn some energy. When we started getting hungry, we found a diner close to our hotel. 
The boys had gigantic pancakes for dinner. The waitress said that she had seen grown men not be able to finish them, but Paxton was done and asking for more in record time. Porter made a pretty significant dent in his too. 

We headed back to the hotel for showers and a movie. The boys are loving Wreck-It Ralph right now and it happened to be on TV so we stuck with that. Porter thinks he's too big for the pack and play now that he sleeps in a big boy bed, but I wasn't quite ready to put him in the giant queen-sized bed with Pax, so we brought the blow-up mattress and it's a good thing we did! After the boys had been asleep for about 30 minutes, I got up to get ready for bed. I walked past Porter's mattress to check on him and had a brief moment of panic because he wasn't in it! I found him curled up on the floor at the head of the bed. I tucked him back in and when I came back from getting ready for bed, he was gone again! This time I almost stepped on him because he was on the floor next to our bed! I tucked him back in, but he spent the entire night rolling around the disgusting hotel floor...

The next morning, Paxton requested breakfast at the hotel restaurant so that's what we did. 

Then it was time for the aquarium! They loved the part where they could reach in and touch the fish. 
And this tank was awesome. It had huge fish in it and a little tunnel underneath that kids could climb in and then pop up "inside" the tank. Paxton thought it was the coolest thing ever and we were cracking up at Paxton in there with the fish. 
They were most excited for the shark tunnel so we spent a lot of time running through that, and right outside was a photographer taking pictures of people and then putting them on different backgrounds. Pax saw some people get put in front of a shark's mouth and insisted that we had to do it. 
Then they wanted to touch the fish again. Paxton hadn't worked up the courage to touch the shrimp or the horseshoe crab and he wanted me to touch it first...I tried Jared's strategy of reaching in close to it but he wasn't falling for it this time. Finally, a little girl showed him that it was fine and he was so proud of himself when he reached in.  
We visited the gift shop and let the boys pick a souvenir. They both picked matching scuba diver bath toys and were so happy...until Porter spotted a helicopter candy dispenser. Since it didn't have a fish theme, we tried to talk him into the scuba diver but he wanted BOTH! We had to make a quick exit but he's totally happy with his scuba guy now. 
We stopped at Louie's for lunch and then headed home. We had some tired boys. 

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Big Boy Bed!

Porter has been asking for a big boy bed for a few weeks now...to be specific, he and Paxton want bunk beds, but he is very clear that he is too big for a crib. We entertained the idea of getting them bunk beds for Christmas since we have a third kid arriving and someone's gonna have to share a room, but we just weren't ready to put them back in the same room together yet. 
(last crib nap)

We decided to (temporarily) bring Paxton's crib/toddler bed back in since Porter's didn't have the pieces to convert to a toddler bed. That way we could see how the big kid bed went without any big commitments. I took Porter to Target to pick out some sheets for his new bed while Jared and Pax stayed home to get it set up. Porter excitedly picked Paw Patrol sheets and we brought them home and washed them while the bed was finished. 
At bedtime, we talked a little about staying in bed but tried to not make a big deal about that part of it and kind of tried to keep his routine as similar to normal as possible. He got up a few times requesting snuggles and we gave in instead of taking him straight back to bed...but finally by 10:00, we were out of patience. We put the baby gate in his doorway, I sang him his favorite songs and tucked him in and we sternly told him to stay in bed. He did! 

Since then, we have had a few tough nights and a few skipped naps and several attempts to get out with adorable tactics like "I need one more kiss" or "I heard a strange sound" or "I just want to snuggle", but we are staying strong. And it's all worth it when we go in to check on him and find this:
I think it helped to wait until he was ready and wanted it instead of kicking him out when we needed a crib or space or whatever. It also helps that he's a little boy that loves his sleep. We tried to take his pacifiers away the first night but he had found his back-up stash before he even came out the first time, we we gave that up. 

It's also funny to me to see the things he brings with him now that he has freedom. When he gets up, he always has his pacifier, his blanket, usually his teddy bear and his bedtime water and some random toy or book. And it's funny when we go in to check on him to see what he's brought into bed with him. My favorite was the night we found him on top of a pile of his plastic tools from his tool bench. And tonight it was a giant stack of books and 2 bouncy balls. 

Wednesday, January 6, 2016


We haven't really thought of very many fun New Year's traditions yet...Paxton was super excited about New Year's Eve this year and I think he ended up having a good night, but we definitely need to come up with some fun things to do! 

This year, OU was playing so we went to Grandpa Mark's to watch the game. 
After the game, the boys were begging for icees (my pregnancy craving has spread to them and they seriously can't get enough), so we stopped at 7-11 on the way home. Then I did a video interview of both boys which was kind of a disaster but will probably be funny to look back on. By then, it was 9:00 so we watched a New Year's countdown on Netflix (and then we watched 2 more) and gave the boys New Year's kisses and put them to bed. 
On New Year's Day, we all slept in a little and then had a lazy morning. Justin came over to hang out with Jared and the boys while Jessie and I went shopping. 

For dinner, our tradition is to cook out steaks and have black eyed peas so we did that. The boys and I toasted with sparkling grape juice. 
Paxton said he's most excited about going to the lake this year. Porter is excited for icees and Jared and I are excited about completing our little family in April!

Tuesday, January 5, 2016


Christmas was so much fun this year! The boys were so excited about every single part of it and it was really neat to watch! 

Christmas at Granny V's:
We always celebrate a few days early with Granny V so everyone is available and has plenty of time. This year we decided on the Sunday before Christmas. I had the boys' reindeer skirts all ready to wear, but Paxton insisted on them both wearing their Santa jammies. How could we say no?
We ate dinner first: ham, macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes, rolls and green beans. Then it was time for presents! Paxton got a new remote-controlled car he was very excited about (but then very disappointed when it didn't work). Luckily Granny V is excellent with receipts and took Pax to exchange it the next day. 
Porter was excited about every single thing he opened. This was the first year that Pax wasn't really feeling the clothes and it was pretty obvious, but Porter exclaimed over every single thing he pulled out. 
Granny V got all three boys matching jammies and Paxton was so excited. He loves matching Porter and couldn't even believe he was going to get to match the baby when he's born too!
They also got matching Spider-Man umbrellas which were a giant hit. 

Christmas Eve:

Our first stop on Christmas Eve was Grandpa Mark's house. We had lunch first while we waited for everyone to get there, and then it was time for presents!

Paxton and Porter got to help pass them out and were so excited to watch their piles grow. 
Their favorite thing was this track from Grandpa Mark and Stephanie with battery-powered light-up cars. They each got a set but combined them to make one super track! 
Paxton also got a Thomas train set, a remote-controlled Jeep, an OU hoodie and a monster truck set. He loved it all. Porter got a giant play-with-me Elmo, a shirt with a tie (now he says he can go to work with Daddy), Darth Vader jammies and some Duplos. He was obsessed with all of it! 

That night, we got ready and went to Papaw's house.
We had some snacks and played a few games. The boys played the piano with Aunt Linda. Then it was time for the part Paxton was most excited about: Dirty Santa with snacks! He was disappointed when he didn't open the oatmeal cream pies that he had brought but was quickly content when he saw that Porter had reclaimed his bag of Cheetoh Puffs. After the game, the boys played outside with Regan and Emma for a little while and then it was time to go home and get ready for Santa! 

Christmas Day: 
I was so excited for Christmas Day! I love the whole doing Santa thing and seeing the boys with their presents is just completely magical. Both boys had asked Santa for pirate ships and they both had pirate ships waiting for them on Christmas morning! Paxton's was a Playmobil ship and Porter's was a Fisher Price ship and they played with them for probably 20 solid minutes before we reminded them that they had stockings and other presents to open. 
Santa also brought a Marble Run to share which was a hit!
We got the boys each a sleeping bag and a Kindle Fire and Porter got a Playmobil fire truck and a mom with a stroller, a set of Paw Patrol pups, and some Mickey Duplos that he picked out at the Lego store. Paxton got a Playmobil jet, a set of policeman Duplos that he picked out at the Lego store. 
After we finished opening family presents, we cleaned up while the boys played with their pirate ships. Then Gramsy and the aunts came over for breakfast and more presents!
We ate cinnamon rolls, powdered donuts, and breakfast casserole. Then we opened presents for hours. We had ham and some snack food for lunch and just hung out all day. We had a blast!

Christmas Preparations

Our Chriamtas preparations this year started the week before Thanksgiving. Since Paxton had been asking for the tree and decorations since Halloween, we gave in a little earlier than usual. As soon as trees were out at Lowe's, we loaded up and headed there to pick one out. We found the perfect one and the boys thought it was awesome that we brought it home on the roof of the car. 
We decorated it and the rest of the house immediately. Paxton actually helped hang up ornaments for the first time this year while Porter mostly just stuck balls into the branches. 
Jared and I got all dressed up and went to his work Christmas party. 
The boys slept in Santa hats almost every single time they wore their Santa jammies. 
One weekend, we loaded up in the van with Justin and Jessie and chocolate chip cookies and headed to Yukon to look at the lights there. The boys thought it was awesome and they were right! 
We baked and decorated peppermint sugar cookies for our annual Cookie Night with Gramsy and the aunts. 
I made the boys matching reindeer shirts and we went to see Santa. This was our first year with no tears and both boys actually asked Santa for what they wanted...pirate ships. 
Paxton had his own special version of "big smile" in the cousin picture...
Paxton had his first school "winter party" and had a blast introducing Porter to all his friends and teachers. 
Paxton was really excited about Chrismtas light night. We got hot chocolate and drove around and looked at lights while we listened to Christmas music. It was a perfect family night. 
We have also been watching Christmas movies on repeat. Paxton is obsessed with Home Alone this year since we told him it's the movie about the boy who looks like him. He seriously watches it almost every day. Porter has been loving Frosty and the Grinch and has started singing Christmas songs...he loves bursting into Jingle Bells as we shop at Target and I think it's adorable. He also likes to sing Frosty and Okd Toy Trains. The boys have been wearing Christmas pajamas almost every night. 
Granny V took them to pick out Christmas ornaments at Hobby Lobby and after almost picking a pink convertible, Paxton ended up with an RV hauling a Christmas tree and Porter picked out a Thomas the Train ornament.

Gramsy wrapped the boys a bunch of new Christmas books and they have been opening one each day and we have been reading those on a daily basis. 

It has been a really fun December this year. I love how excited they both are about Christmas and all the activities we do. Paxton remembered things from last year, so that has been neat too.