Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Merry Christmas...I'm exhausted!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas! We sure did. I'm exhausted and have a stomach bug so I'll have to post all our festivities another day. And now the little miss is 1 and hasn't stopped having a blast!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Friday, December 9, 2011

Cherish the moment

I was home with a sick Ava all day yesterday. She got sent home from school an hour after I dropped her off. She was fine when I dropped her off but by 8:30, she had a 101.7 fever. Her fever spiked to 103 later in the day so off to the doctor we went. It seems to be just a virus so not much we can could do besides motrin and extra cuddle time! No complaints here!

She slept through the night and was fever free this morning but I kept her home just in case she spiked a fever again. Nick had a client coming in this morning so he went into work but is coming home so I can go into work for a few hours. I've got to try and save my time where I can since I depleted it while on maternity leave.

As I was rocking Ava for her nap, I kept thinking ok little miss, it's time to go to sleep so I can get in the shower and get ready for work so that when daddy gets home I can go. Ava had other plans of exploring my face...today it was eyelashes. She would crack up every time I opened and closed my eyes and batted my lashes. At the sound of her chuckle through her binkie, I forgot all about the rush to get ready for work. I just simply cherished the moment we were in. I work everyday and don't get to spend these moments with her. I have to cherish them when I do. Almost a whole year has flown by before my eyes and it's not going to slow down. Before long, she was snoozing away...

Yes, she sleeps with a blanket in her crib and sometimes a seahorse or two! Don't judge, it works for us.

So what that I got in the shower later than I thought.
So what that I didn't get fully ready before she woke up (short nap).
So what that I didn't get to finish cleaning the kitchen.
So what that there's enough dog hair on my floors to fashion a little brother for Thor despite the fact that I vacuum every other day.
So what that I just lied about how much I vacuum. It's more like every weekend!
So what that the gas station has their Christmas lights up before we do.
So what that I'm only a quarter of the way done Christmas shopping.
So what that there are more birthday decorations around my house than Christmas ones. (they're not up, I'm just in the process of making them so they are out)
So what that my living room is full of toys. I love that quote "please excuse the mess, children making memories here!" or however it goes.
So what that it looks like a fedex packing facility downstairs. We shop online and have yet to open the packages and wrap the gifts!

Will it all get done? Of course! Ask my mom, she knows me! I'll get it done at my own time. We are getting our tree today and will hopefully get all the Christmas decorating done this weekend.

I'd rather be soaking up this smooshie face when she needs me most than checking items off my never ending to do list!

That's her yummmmm face while eating!
- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, December 5, 2011

11 months

Ava my love, you are 11 months!  Can it be possible that almost a whole  year has gone by?

YAY!  You are becoming such a little girl right before our eyes and I don't know if I can take it.  I know I probably say this every month, but the stage you are at now is soooo fun and I love it!  You are developing your little personality and it's delightful to interact with you.  I look at the little things you do each day such as raise your eyebrows when we talk to you (is that a precursor to eye rolling?), and I think how could my little baby be becoming such an adorable little girl?

Here are some things you are up to these days...
  • your 2 bottom teeth finally came in and the 2 top are bursting through any day now.  
  • your still in size 12-18 and some 18-24 month clothes and size 4 diapers
  • you pretty much eat everything except nuts, strawberries and fish.  
  • as soon as i take yogurt out of the fridge, you get this huge smile on your face so i'm going to assume that is still your favorite.  black beans and guacamole are some new favorites as well.
  • you have figured out the whole "throw my food off my highchair and watch the dog eat it" game
  • you are adjusting to daycare so well.  you love to play with the kids and have even made art projects for Halloween and Thanksgiving!
  • sleep has gotten better (only in the last week or so).  it started to become a little bit of an issue since you were joining us in our bed every night around 4 am AND refusing to nap in the crib at school.  so at home, we let you cry (don't worry, mommy watched you in the monitor the whole time to make sure you were ok) a little and after 2 nights, you've been sleeping through the night!  at school, they started you on the cot (3 inches off the ground) and you've been taking 2 hour naps almost every day!
  • your favorite toys are your music set, stroller and piano.  i just love the way you get on and off the seat of the piano as if you've been doing it all your life.
  • we're waiting for those first steps on your own.  you cruise everything, stand on your own without holding on and even can drink from your sippy cup or dance while standing.  you're just a little hesitant to actually walk.
  • you've become a little sensitive when we tell you no.  like when you stand in the bath tub and I tell you to sit down, you sit down and cry.  then you stand up, do it again, sit down and cry.  this happens a few times a bath.
  • you love to dance, wave bye bye, clap (you actually wake up clapping sometimes, clap the whole way to school, clapped through Kara's whole christening...maybe you'll be a cheerleader!), laugh
  • you say momma, dadda, dissss (like this...for everything)
  • you crack up when we kiss your cheeks or tickle your belly
 I'm excited to see what this month will bring with Christmas time and your birthday coming up so soon!  I have a feeling we might need to get a bigger house for all the new things coming your way.  You are loved by so many and they all want to spoil you!

Happy 11 months beautiful girl!  You are the best Christmas gift I could've ever gotten in a million years!  Mommy and Daddy love you so very much!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


Since I failed at actually doing a Halloween post, a apple/pumpkin picking post and a Thanksgiving post, you're getting an all-in-one!

We began our nice fall with our annual apple and pumpkin picking with Kayla and Jada.  We started this with Kayla probably when she was about 4 and have continued (almost) every year.  We were so excited for Ava to join our tradition!
Jada and Kayla
Kayla in the tree
Jada in the tree
As much of our fall has been, it was a warm sunny day.  The girls were all dressed for cool fall air in their fun Halloween attire, so the 75-80 degree heat caused us to make this a quick day out!

Pumpkin time

Fall 2011

my baby's first pumpkin
Next up was Kayla's birthday.  She had a Costume Zumba party!  All the kids dressed up and did zumba!

beautiful Kara Bear!

Now, terrible mom-of-the-year award may go to me for not getting a good picture of Ava in her first Halloween costume (homemade may I add).  I kept meaning to put her back in the costume and take pics but it is now almost December so that is not happening.  Oh the shame...

And then we trick-or-treated with Maxx, the fisherman and his cousins.  Ava actually took a nice snooze as we walked around the neighborhood.

Maxx and Ava

On to Thanksgiving...We did our usual at my mom and dad's house.  Lots of family, lots (too much) of food and lots of laughs.  

Here's Ava before we left.  Don't mind the mess and the binkie, this is (our) real life.  Remember that pile of fabric and ribbon from a post a few weeks back?  Well here she is in all her glory!  I made Ava's dress!  Let me repeat, I MADE A DRESS!

Thanksgiving 2011

the feast
 This horse was given to my brother for his first Christmas (or birthday?)...anyway, it's about 30 years old and I remember playing on it like it was yesterday.  My dad took it out and cleaned it up for the kids to play on.  It's funny how I remember it being so big and swinging on those bars like it was a jungle gym.  Now, it seems so small.  I guess it's all relative!

Anyone still reading?

We'll round out Fall with Kara Bear's Christening!  She was the perfect little angel and looked just like Ava the puritan in the family Christening dress!  This dress was worn by my mom and her 2 sisters, my cousins, me, Sarah, Kayla, Jada, Ava and now Kara.  (have I ever mentioned that we are so creative with our names?)  It's a little piece of love that all the little girls have the honor of wearing.

Mommy and Kara

Uncle Rick, Ava and Lolo

Ava was really into the sermon

The Godparents

how gorgeous is she!
So that's what we've been up to this fall!  Now it's on to Christmas time and someone I know is going to be one very soon.  How did that happen?

Monday, November 21, 2011

Weekend recap

This weekend was relaxing yet I'm exhausted! Friday night, I made Ava a dress for Thanksgiving! Now, I do not know how to really sew. My Great Grandparents were tailors and my Grandma Josie learned from them, my mom learned from her, and then there is me. 7th grade home-ec is about the extent of my sewing knowledge! I have watched my mom do things but never really made anything myself. I asked for a sewing machine for Christmas with hopes that it will not become a dust collector! There are so many adorable, homemade things out there that just don't compare to the massed produced. Some people are really talented! Just do a quick search on Etsy and you'll see what I mean. So I bought myself a pattern, some fabric, thread, etc. and set out to make a dress. I borrowed a sewing machine from my mother-in-law and got to it. I did have to read the sewing machine instructions on how to do the bobbin, thread the needle and so on (also consulted with YouTube on making a ruffle) but it came out pretty good for my first creation...just don't look that closely and the seams and stuff!

I can't wait to put it on my little smooshie face!

Saturday was spent shopping for a few things for Ava's upcoming 1 year old photoshoot as well as a Christmas party dress. I had a 60% off 2 items, 40% off the rest coupon for Gap so I got 2 dresses, a shirt and tights all for $41! One of the dresses was $54 on it's own so I was very excited about that deal!

On Friday when I was picking Ava up at school, I was chatting with her teacher about the weekend and I said that I wake up so early because I'm just so used to it. She was like,"what do you do when you wake up at 6:00?". Little did she know that unfortunately (maybe fortunately for them I guess), I have inherited my mom's "up early baking" disorder. So I whipped this apple cream cheese bundt cake. They all devoured it today!

Then we went to the Giants game. Pretty ugly game. We didn't get home til around 2am so that explains my extreme exhaustion today.

However, my night is not over. I'm off to get my hair cut. I hope I don't fall asleep while they are shampooing!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Friday, November 18, 2011


Hard question to ask on many levels. I'm currently asking myself this right now. There have been 3 deaths in my family's almost day to day relationships and all were way too young.

The first was a mother of two of Ava's classmates. She passed away while out of the country and left behind a husband and 2 beautiful girls, 3 and 5 months. Although I did not know her personally, I see her daughter almost daily. I can't even begin to think about those girls growing up without their mommy. The second was the man who does my mom's nails. He owned a local nail salon and was the nicest, most professional and compassionate man. He did my nails a few times and welcomed my whole bridal party to his shop right before my wedding. He passed away doing the only thing he ever did for himself, fishing. He also leaves behind a young family. The third, and closest to me, is my best friend's future mother-in-law. I think of Christine and Seth as my family and hate to see them go through this, especially with their upcoming wedding.

I know many people of faith will tell me that the answer to my question is that it's God's plan. I guess I don't have strong enough faith because I'm really not liking his plan right now.

Rest in Peace Tatiana, Paul, and Pat. You will be missed by so many.

Another question of why I'm asking myself right now has something to do with this...

More like why do I do this to myself! Sounds pretty selfish. Hopefully I'll have a finished product to write about soon!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

What's for Dinner Mexican Chicken Stew (?)

Do you ever have those nights where you have no idea what to make for dinner?  Those are most nights in our house!  It happens to us from time to time.  We'll take meat out of the freezer in the morning to defrost and then realize, at 6:30, that there's nothing to really go with that chicken that we now have defrosted.  The other night was one of those nights.  I had defrosted chicken and nothing else really!  I scoured the fridge, freezer and pantry and came up with this meal.  It was delicious and I actually made it again since on purpose!

Mexican Chicken Stew

1 lb chicken breasts or tenders, cut into bite sized pieces
1 yellow onion, diced
2 carrots, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 can diced tomatoes with green chiles
1 can beans (I used kidney), drained and rinsed
spinach (about a cup fresh or 1 package frozen)
1 packet taco seasoning
olive oil
cilantro (I have these frozen cubes that are awesome!)

Saute chicken in a little olive oil.  Remove from pan.  Saute onion, carrots and garlic over medium high heat until tender, about 5 minutes.  Add tomatoes, beans, taco seasoning and water according to directions on packet of seasoning.  Return the chicken to the pan and bring to a boil for 3-5 minutes.  Throw in some spinach and cilantro, reduce heat and cover.  Let simmer until spinach has wilted or defrosted (?).

We ate this over brown rice with a little dollop of Daisy, aka sour cream.  The second time I made it, I didn't have any diced tomatoes but I did have a jalapeno, so I diced that up and sauteed it with the onion, carrots and garlic.  If you like things more soupy, add some more liquid (water, chicken broth, etc).

I don't have a picture because it really doesn't photograph well...and we ate it all!

Monday, November 14, 2011

It's Been Quite a Week or 2 or 3

I've definitely been slacking in the post department.  In the past 3 weeks, we've been to the doctors 3 times, the ER, gotten a nebulizer and antibiotics and did it all with a smile!  Since my post about the nebulizer, Ava sprouted 2 teeth that brought on a nice case of the poops an upset stomach.  It started last Saturday while I was at a baby shower, so Daddy had to deal with it! haha love you Nick!  After 3 days of that (she stayed home from school Monday and Tuesday just to be safe), I noticed something on her bum while changing her diaper Wednesday night.  She went to bed...I went to Google.  The internet is the best and worst tool for new parents and let me tell you, my google history has some interesting searches in it!  Many things I began to read were frantic mothers of babies diagnosed with a staph infection or MRSA.  Hello panic, my name is Katie, nice to meet you.  I waited til morning to see what it looked like and then more panic set in when i felt this huge hard lump under her skin...it was about the diameter of a quarter at least. (and yes, I just had to google diameter and make sure I was using the correct term!  I miss high school)  So off the ER we went and when I said to the doctor and nurse, "Well, I saw online that it could be a staph infection, etc..." they both looked at me like "typical first time mom"!  They diagnosed it as an abscess, prescribed Ava some antibiotics and said to follow up there or at my pediatrician.  We went to the pediatrician Friday and she prescribed an ointment to be used in conjunction with the oral antibiotics and gave us a few instructions like salt baths 3 times a day.  Ava didn't seem to mind...
Splish Splash, I love a salt water bath!

Nick stayed home with her today since I was out of work 2 days last week.  His only concern was, "What outfit is she supposed to wear today?", since I left while she was still in jammies.  I had to inform him that the bottom left drawer of her dresser contained actual outfits (pants folded inside the matching shirt).  I've now named it the Daddy Drawer!  They had a fun day together...breakfast, nap, lunch, Target, snacks...and were both still happy when I got home!

**I realize (or have been told by Lolo) that I haven't done a Halloween post yet.  I will get to it...hopefully before Thanksgiving!**

Saturday, October 29, 2011

10 months

Ava, you are 10 months old!  As I say probably every month, HOW DID THIS HAPPEN?  Weren't you just a little baby?  Now you are like a toddler and, even though I enjoy you're little personality and the new things you do each day, I wish I could hit the pause button and keep you my little smoosh forever!

Here's what life is like at 10 months...
  • you started daycare on October 11th.  it was an adjustment for all of us and many a tear were shed among me, you and Lolo.  BUT you are doing better each day and learning (and eating) so many new things!
  • you wear mostly 12-18 month clothes with some 24 months thrown in there and size 4 diapers.
  • at the doctor the other day, you were 25 lbs and 29 3/4 inches.
  • sleeping has been touch and go.  you've been sick so i've been sitting up holding you some nights due to your cough but hopefully that gets better real soon.
  • Baby Signing Time is still your jam but you also like all the cartoons on Nick Jr. (which are a great distraction when it's nebulizer time)  you also still love commercials on any channel which we'll never figure out.  who wants to watch that crazy Blinds to Go guy with those ugly red metal blinds?
  • you eat breakfast and lunch at school and you've had so many new things!  you mostly eat what we are eating for dinner now.  mandarin oranges are a new favorite snack and you drink a juice box like you've been doing it your whole life!
  • that little bottom tooth is finally coming through more.  that's the only one in your mouth but it doesn't seem to stop you from enjoying your meals!
  • you move all.over.the.place!  you can stand on your own and cruise all the furniture like a pro.  it's only a matter of time before you're running around.
  • you can clap, wave bye bye and do rolllll it while doing patty cake.  
  • you love mommy's iphone (all cell phones actually) and play tap tap baby and pat the bunny apps.

This is my serious face!
Happy 10 months Baby Girl!  You amaze Mommy and Daddy with the things you do each day and we can't get over just how much we love you!

***Please disregard the picture quality.  It was a rainy day and the lighting is terrible in our house! (and a moving 10 month old is hard to photograph!)***

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Nebulize the Mucus

Eww, how gross does that sound!  Not quite as funny as when Ace Ventura said exercise the demons.  Anyway, we are the proud new owner of this baby...
Ava's been a little congested for a week or so.  I thought it was just teething since her little speck of a tooth is finally popping up a little bit more.  This girl better get a full grill all at once or she's going to have to gum stuff for a long time!  However, for the past couple days, she's been waking up around 3 or 4 coughing really bad...like choking coughing.  I've sat up and held her while she restlessly slept and coughed and choked and cried and moaned and oh yeah, she vomited on me a few times too.  It was oh so pleasant.  I took her to the doctor today and she performed for Tatyana, our beautiful Russian pediatrician, who then told us yup, she needs a nebulizer!  And we did the first treatment right there in the office.  I sang my repertoire of songs to her as I struggled to hold that mask over her face.  I'm sure I entertained the entire office (since the walls are paper thin) especially with the Diaper Dance song!  We did it again tonight and she was a little bit better since she had the tv to distract her.  Hopefully she kicks this upper respiratory funk real fast so we can stop the nebulizer (and the vomit my whole bottle on mommy thing, too).  

And because this wouldn't be complete without a picture of the little miss, here she is in all her cupcake glory!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Garden State Walk4Hearing

On Saturday, we participated in the Garden State Walk4Hearing to support our nephew Maxx and the school that has been providing him services.  Maxx was born with bilateral sensorineural hearing loss, which is a permanent type of hearing loss.  He started with hearing aids (awesome blue ones!) when he was 6 months and he is doing so well.  All the money our team raised was donated to the Summit Speech School, which provides hearing and developmental therapy services to Maxx.

Maxx Man with Mommy and Daddy
Team Maxx Man raised over $4,000 dollars!  I think it was a great accomplishment for our first year doing the walk.  

the kiddies of Team Maxx Man
There were people of all ages participating in the walk...many children and adults with hearing aids as well as their families and friends there to support them.  I overheard one man and woman commenting on how Maxx didn't seem bothered by his hearing aids and they said it was probably because they found out about his hearing loss at such an early age.  This is true and I really think, although devastating to hear, it was the best to find out when he was so young so he could get the proper therapy and services.  He says so many things and so clearly!  He speaks more than most kids his age I think!  (and has the cutest voice!)

Nice face Nicholas!
Cutie Cousins aka TROUBLE!

Thank you for all who donated to our team!  It was definitely a success and I look forward to walking with Team Maxx Man again next year!

For more information on the Walk4Hearing, check out Walk4Hearing and Team Maxx Man!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

First Day of School

Well, daycare but it's just a matter of semantics.  As I've said before, my mom, Lolo, graciously offered to watch Ava for awhile when I had to return to work.  It started out as just for the summer so she would start daycare right after Labor Day...which then got pushed back to mid September and here we are today, October 11th, and she just started.  I think it was harder on the rest of us then it was on her.  She is used to being with family everyday and now she's in a place full of unfamiliar faces, besides her boyfriend Gavin (14-month old son of my friend Colleen).  As a Federal employee, we are able to take advantage of the daycare on the nearby naval base so many of the people I work with also have their kids there.  It is nice that they will grow up together!  Ava has Gavin and Jake in her class.  And you should see this place...I mean it's nothing too glamorous (it's a government building after all) but they provide formula and meals! There's a full kitchen where they make actual homemade food everyday (for all those who can eat it.  all others get gerber).  There's like a menu and everything!

Not only did Ava start daycare today, but I went back to work full time.  It was a good week to start since yesterday was a holiday so I only have a 4 day week like my part-time schedule, but I have to add an extra hour to each day.  Our new schedule will be an adjustment for all of us but I think we'll manage!

Nick and I both went and dropped her off.  We put her signed her in, put her stuff in her cubby and met her other teacher.  She was shy at first but eventually let her teacher take her from my arms and bring her over to the rug with the other kids.  As soon as her teacher sat down with Ava on her lap, the other kids all circled around her.  (Nick said "oooh Fresh Meat!)  It was cute.  We said bye and I love you and she gave us a smile through her binkie!  We knew she was going to be ok.

I couldn't wait to go pick her up, but I also wanted her to experience a whole day in her new place.  She was a little hesitant when she saw me but quickly dove into my arms!  Her teacher said she did great for her first day...only a cried a few times when she realized she was in unfamiliar territory but they comforted her and she was on her way! (at least that's what they told me)  She napped for an hour and 45 minutes which is a big accomplishment for miss nosey pants in a room full of kids!  And she ate breakfast, lunch and a snack (not surprised there).  I really think she is going to do great and I'm probably going to melt when her first art project gets sent home.  Am I really this old?

First Day of Daycare
 I think she's going to be a ballerina :)

Sunday, October 2, 2011

9 Months!

I'm a week late but who cares.  My Ava Jo is 9 months old!

Ava, here are some 9 month old updates:
  • you have not been the best sleeper this month but we really think it's those mean teeth that interrupt your beauty sleep.  some nights you sleep from 7-6, other nights you are up at 11 and 3.
  • you have started eating so many new things.  you still love yogurt and cheese but we can add chicken, pancakes, meatballs, carrots, mashed potatoes (preferably garlic), cream cheese and jelly sandwiches and grilled cheese to the list!  you have a perfect pincer grasp and you are a very dainty eater.  i think you just don't want to miss a piece!
  • you've mastered crawling and can get anywhere in 2.5 seconds flat!  you are now cruising the furniture, standing at your music table, going in every cabinet that we have yet to lock, taking a couple steps with your walking stroller and have even stood without holding on to anything.  you go girl!
  • you love watching Baby Signing Time.  in fact, you watch in about 4 times in a row and literally watch every second.  you dance and tap tap your way through each time.  and, although you haven't done any signs yet, mommy and daddy are experts at all of them and can sing all the songs!
  • you had you're first sleep over without mommy and daddy!  LoLo and PopPop watched you while mommy and daddy went to the Giants game.  you did great!

  • you had your first juice box to start practicing with a straw.  umm, you didn't need any practice.  one squeeze to show you juice came out of the straw and you sucked away finishing the entire juice box while eating breakfast.  can you be a genius at 9 months because i think you are.
  • dada is still the prominent babble at the moment but you've started mmmmama mmmmama when you are tired or whiny.  it melts my heart and makes me roll my eyes all at the same time.  say mama when you are excited please!
  • you are generally a happy little girl.  very serious at times but i think you're just taking it all in.  mommy's the same way :)
  • you are officially 24.6 lbs and 29 1/4 inches.  you haven't gained any weight in a month but  you've grown 2 inches!  
  • you are wearing size 12-18 month cloths and size 4 diapers.*

Happy 9 Months beautiful girl!  Mommy and Daddy love you!

*sometimes I think it's strange to put her stats (height, weight, clothing and diaper sizes, but it seems to be the thing to do!  I guess it's good to write it down somewhere as a point of reference but I mean, we don't post our weight or underwear sizes anywhere...oh well, sorry Ava!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Happy Birthday Daddy!

Tuesday was Nick's birthday.  Yes, I'm almost a month older than him!  He was a little spoiled this year and got to have 2 birthday parties and a birthday dinner!  Geez, being 28 rocks!  On Sunday, we had some friends over to watch the GMEN kick the crap out of cry baby, dog killer, piece of shit (we can go on and on) Michael Vick and his dirty birdies...aka the Eagles.  Here's the Giants #1 fan in her new jersey...
what? you don't have red yoga pants?
How cute is she?  Her and Ava Manning are going to be bffs some day!  I didn't take any pictures of the festivities but it involved grilled cheese, chili, and lots of happy bellies!  Nick was making chili so I tried to think of something else to serve that went with chili.  I had the idea to do a make-your-own grilled cheese bar and let me tell you, it was phenomenal!  We had 5 different types of bread: rye, pumpernickel, seven grain, cibata and white wonder bread.  5 different cheeses: american, cheddar, swiss, muenster, and mozzarella. Many different additions/inserts (not sure what to call them because they aren't really toppings): ham, turkey, bacon, apples, roasted jalapenos, roasted red peppers, sauteed onions, cream cheese, tomato, guac, and maybe something else but I can't remember right now.  Everyone had fun trying different combinations out on the panini press.  My favorite was actually the one that inspired the whole idea...jalapeno popper!  It was cream cheese, jalapeno, and cheddar cheese. Delicious!  We also had some other snacks, PB&J cupcakes and an oreo cake (some of Nick's favorites).

Ava took an hour and 45 minute nap during the game even though the guys were all screaming downstairs!  They resorted to dancing when a good play happened so they wouldn't wake up the princess!  She was such a good girl with all our company!
Me and Ava after everyone left

Monday, we celebrated Nick's birthday with our families since Tuesday wasn't good for everyone.  We got take out from one of our favorite Mexican restaurants, Joses and had ice cream cake!

Daddy and Ava
On Tuesday, we were tired of celebrating we went out to dinner at Lubranos for Nick's actual birthday.  Nick met Ava and I straight from work and we had a nice time.  Just when Ava was about to flip, our dinners arrived and she chowed down on my garlic mashed potatoes and sauteed carrots.  I think she's had a taste of the good life and no longer wants the bland stuff!  My baby's 9 months and definitely knows what she wants!  How have 9 months gone by already?

Sunday, September 25, 2011

No autographs please

Last Monday night we went to the first home game for the Giants!  And they WON!!!  We always have a great time at the games and there is never a dull moment!  We were actually on Monday Night Football!  Our phones started going off right away with people saying they just saw us!  Here's a video I took of my mom's TV the next day...oh the joys of DVR.  (just for the record, I was not falling asleep and Scott was not picking his nose!)  We are super stars!

Let's hope they pull a big W today against those smelly Eagles!  We're having some friends over for the game and Nick's birthday (which is Tuesday).  Ava got a new jersey and I can't wait to put it on her!  I'll be sure to post some cute pics of her!

Friday, September 16, 2011

What's in a name?

How hard is it to pick out a name?  I mean this is the name that your child will (more than likely) have the rest of their life.  This can shape who they become in the future.  Well, not really...BUT, can you imagine if in 30 years the president's name is Pilot Inspektor (son of actor Jason Lee) or Sparrow James Midnight (son of Nicole Richie and Joel Madden)?  I mean I guess no one ever expected someone named Barak to be president, but that's a topic for another day (who am I kidding, I'll never write about that, I hate politics).  So anyway, when it came time to pick a name for Baby Girl, Nick and I started a list.  Growing up, I always said I was naming my daughter McKenzie; however, while I still don't mind the name, it just wasn't at the top of my list anymore.  I knew I wanted a name that stood by itself.  I'm a Kathryn and I can remember every first day of school having to shyly say, "call me Katie."  Nick is Nicholas, naturally, but some people actually call him that and he's fine with it.  I've never gone by Kathryn so I doubt I would even turn around if someone said Kathryn out loud.  Ava was always on our list and it seemed to be the name we kept going back to.  Names would come and go for various reasons...Hannah, Brielle, and even Stella...but we kept coming back to Ava.  Short and sweet yet sophisticated enough to age with a our little cupcake.

Coming home from the hospital
Ok, so we got Ava.  Now for a middle name.  My middle name is Elizabeth after my aunt, although we call her Betty.  Ava Elizabeth sounded very nice.  We also toyed with Ava Jean since both of our moms have the middle name Jean.  But Ava Jean sounded a little too back woods Kentucky (no offense).  Anyone watch Justified on FX because I would put money on it that Ava Crowder's middle name is Jean.  Come on, say it out loud (with a Southern twang) Ava Jean, get your butt in here for dinner!  So we vetoed that.  Another name I've always thought about is Josephine.  Josephine was my maternal grandmother's name.  We called her Grandma Josie.  Although she was sick most of my life that I can remember, she was the most selfless woman.  She always saw the best in people, even when they wronged her more than any person should have to take.  That's an admiral quality that I'd like to someday possess.  She past away 1992 but her memory and traits live on in her sister Connie (our family matriarch!), her 4 children, her 10 grandchildren, and 7 great-grandchildren.  Ava Josephine...perfection.  I think Grandma Josie and Ava would've been best friends.  One of our greatest Josie memories is how she used to say she was eating apple pie to get her fruit and ice cream to get her milk.  Ava Jo, as we affectionately call her, would be right there next to her chowing down, I'm sure of it.

You Are My Sunshine
I made the above sign for Ava's nursery as a tribute to Grandma Josie.  She used to sing this to all the babies.  Now I sing it to Ava every night before I lay her down to sleep.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Weekend Recap

We had a very fun, family filled weekend! The Maxx Man turned one of September 4th and his birthday bash was this weekend.  The party was so nice and everyone had a great time but seriously, how did a year go by already?

September 2010

September 2011

Is he just the cutest lil' rebel you've ever seen!

Some more party pics...

Playing with friends!

bounce house

big bad Ava getting a tat

how cute!

with Mommy and Daddy

loving icing!

On Sunday, Ava got all dressed up for her opening day...GMEN style!  Too bad they lost :(  but at least she looked adorable!  We always joke that we don't have to wonder what she'll look like as a little girl because she already looks like one with all that hair!  Doesn't she seriously look like she's 3 years old here?

#1 fans

And speaking of being a little girl...this little one is crawling all over, pulling herself up on everything, and scaling most of the furniture!  Where did my baby go?  She even had her first taste of pizza!  Shocking...she loved it!

We threw together a little party with the Koropatnicks to celebrate all the parents turning 60 29 again

aren't they cute!

Today was my day off so after Ava napped, we took advantage of living at the Jersey Shore and headed over to the beach.  LOVE that we were 2 of probably 20 people on the entire beach!