Thursday, June 12, 2014

9 Month Old Baby Cate

It's been forever, I know. I figured it's time to make a new blog when my husband starts hinting that I should write one, and says, "send me the link when you're done." So, I will update everyone on our favorite little girl!

Cate Elizabeth is doing phenomenal. She grinned and coo'ed at the doctor, showing off her two little teeth. She is a ridiuclously happy and content baby. We are so blessed! Here are her 9 month stats...

Height: 29 inches, above the 90th percentile.
Weight: 20.3 lbs, 75th percentile.
Teeth: 2 on bottom
Diaper Size: 4
Clothes: 24 mo, except all of her Nike outfits are 2T.
Shoes: Size 3
Mobility: She is a crawling champ.. She's so fast!
Favorite food: Avocado
Favorite toy: Anything her brother is playing with, haha. I'm trying to get her into baby dolls.
Favorite show: Jake and the Neverland Pirates & Mickey Mouse Clubhouse
Favorite Outdoor Activity: Swinging
Sleeps: 8+ hours,  sometimes random feedings.
She loves baths, especially with her brother.
She's pulling up on everything, and can stand for a few seconds by herself.
She's still nursing. We love it!
I just ordered her big girl car seat.
She loves to clap, laugh, and Skype Daddy.

She loves her brother so much. They wrestle all the time, and she puts up quite a fight. She's grown so much, and it's crazy to think the last time Cody saw her she was 2 months old. He's almost home though, a month and a half to go! Maybe she'll be able to walk to him at the airport. :)

Thursday, January 30, 2014

24

1. I have seen every episode of Law & Order: SVU. I'm obsessed, and now, extremely paranoid.

2. Crab is my favorite food. Do you pity my husband? You really should.

3. I'm a HUGE Texas Ranger fan. I'm still upset over Young & Napoli.. Don't even mention Kinsler in my presence. I might cry.

4. I went to Kenya on a mission trip the summer before my senior year of HS. Life changing.

5. Harry Potter. I'm in love. Snape is my favorite. Judge me!

6. I knew I was going to Texas A&M as a child. It was the only college I sent an application. Gig 'em.

7. I'm bilingual. English & Spanish. I'm extremely shy about it, so don't get excited. 

8. I chewed out a lady in the mall who didn't think I could understand her. Oh, hey!!

9. Rizzo in 'Grease', Belle in 'Beauty & the Beast', and Maria in 'Sound of Music'. Parts in musicals I had in high school. Don't get excited about that either, I won't randomly sing for you. (Again with the shy thing.)

10. I have a white ink tattoo. I know,  I'm cray!

11. Elephants are my favorite animal, and I HAVE to ride one before I die.

12. Cody says this will never, ever happen because it'll be the reason I die. Boo.

13. Aggie football. Need I say more? 

14. I donated 14 inches of hair to Locks of Love in 2008. 

15. I bombed my first semester of college. I graduated in 3 years. I have no idea how.

16. My best friend, Jess, and I became BFFs by messaging on FB. We recently saw each other for the second time. Ever.

17. As cheesy as it sounds, I honestly believe God made me specifically for my husband. Both of our stories are just too crazy, and the chance of us finding each other was so incredibly small. Thank ya, Lord. I 'preciate it.

18. I am one of four kids. My childhood was... Not lonely. It was awesome. Those 3 were my first loves.

19. I can quote 'Step Brothers' start to finish. I'm not sure if I should be proud of this... Or make this public knowledge. Did we just become best friends? Yep!

20. I would rather get bitten by a shark than by a snake. It makes complete and total sense to me.

21. My wedding dress? Isn't my wedding dress. Borrowed it from my other best friend, Casey. #quickieweddingprobs #sisterwifeforlife

22. My first boyfriend was Basil from the Disney movie, 'The Great Mouse Detective.' I know, that's adorable & creepy.

23. I love being a military wife. I love being a key spouse for the AF and helping other spouses. I'm extremely proud, and supportive, of my husband and his career choice. I make sure he knows it, every day. 

24. My children.. They are my world, my everything, my life. They, with my husband, are my greatest blessings. I'm so lucky to be their mom, and I try to be my very best for them. They deserve it. I'm extremely protective. Crazy 'Mama Bear' ova here!

Happy 24th Birthday to me! Xoxo

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Cate is 4 Months

Baby Cate had her 4 month check up last week, and girlfriend rocked it! I honestly can't even put into words how much this little girl means to our family. She completes us perfectly. On top of being the sweetest, prettiest little girl I've ever seen, she's also the happiest. She never, ever fusses. (Unless she's hungry and having to wait for food- but who doesn't get grumpy when that happens?) That happened last night in the truck, and Gimme said,  "Oh my gosh. I think that's the first time I've heard her fuss."

So back to her check up... Like I said, she did great. The doctor was extremely pleased with her progress, and she was pleased with his doctor skills apparently since she cooed at him the entire time. After the normal check up, baby girl had to get 4 shots. She did awesome... Fussed, but calmed down quickly, and then started grinning. Typical.

Stats:
Weight: 17 lbs, 12 oz, 98%
Height: 24.5 inches, 50%
Sleeps 8 - 10 hrs at night (by herself)
Still nursing, and starting on cereal
Bath times are fun times!
Wears 6-9 month clothing
Size 3 diapers
Giggles. All. The. Time.
And she laughs so hard she snorts.
It's hilarious.
Her brother is her favorite person.
No seriously. Our children are best friends.
Literally never fusses.
Diaper rash free!
Rolling over, tummy to back.
She loves tummy time by the way.
She's perfection.

Cason is still loving 'Baby!'... He wants to hug and kiss her constantly, pet her head all the time, and he really enjoys 'dancing' with her. He is in love, and she is too... Even more so! If he walks in the room, she's smiling. She laughs at him all the time. It's adorable.

Cody and I are extremely blessed. Our life rocks.

50 Days Down...

Crazy.. I can't believe it's been 50 days, and SO much has happened. I am just going to warn you-I'll be a bad blogger during the doployment. I'm only getting a small taste of what single parents go through, and let me tell you... I have so much more respect for them now. For. Sure. The first 50 days had its ups and downs, and I'm definitely realizing how strong (or some days, weak) I am. I'm so blessed to have God, family, and friends to help me through it.

We are able to Skype Cody everyday, (unless he's in Afghanistan) and that is a HUGE blessing.
Saying goodbye to Cody at the airport was one of the hardest things I've ever done. Cason didn't handle it well, and I swear Cody and I said our "I love you"s and "goodbye"s many, many times before we finally accepted that he had to leave to get on the plane. Sweet Cate slept right through everything, haha. The next few days flew by. My daddy and two of my uncles moved the babies and I down to Texas, and into my parent's home in Pittsburg. Cason immediately settled in- playing with Grandfather and Uncle Grant, getting anything he wanted from Gigi, and tormenting their cat. Cate, of course, had everyone wrapped around her finger Day 1.
We enjoyed visiting everyone the first week or so. We took a few trips to Carthage to see family. Cate was able to meet everyone, and Cason hadn't seen them since May. We got to see sweet Gracie and Aunt Barbie, Aunt B, Granny, Aunt Dale, and all the sweet ladies at the Popcorn Place. We love Carthage visits. Within a few weeks of being home, both babies got RSV. Cate had an ER visit,  and Cason had multiple doctor visits. Both were put on  antibiotics, and both got better within a couple weeks. I don't feel like they're 100% yet though. I need the cold to go AWAY.
The Carthage Bulldogs made it to the football state championship game, and my husband said to me, "Please take our son to the game so he can experience bulldog football." I can't say no to him, dang head over heels in love thing. We drove in early so we could spend time, and do Christmas with our close friend, Jimmy. We ate Canes. YUM. We always love our time with J! Afterwards, my sweet in-laws met us in Arlington, and they were able to help me with the kiddos. We had a blast at the game, and hanging out the rest of the weekend. (And the Dawgs won, whoop!) I also took the babies to see my sweet grandparents. Cate won them over instantly, and Cason had everyone laughing the entire visit. A successful trip, for sure.
Christmas was great! Christmas Eve was a hard day for me, more emotional than the days prior. We drove to Carthage Christmas Eve morning. Kiki and Gimme (Kiki is Ricky for anyone confused, lol.) came in from Pampa to spend Christmas morning with us and Brooke. We had our traditional Christmas Eve with the Works side of the family, and we had a blast. Nothing is more important than family, and we love our time with them. Christmas morning, we woke up and opened presents with Kiki, Gimme, and Aunt B. The babies got spoiled. Bad. Around lunch, we drove back to Pitt to do Christmas with my family... Another ridiculous amount of spoiling ensued. I honestly don't know why Santa, Cody and I even get them anything, haha.
Cody spent a week in Afghanistan,  so we weren't able to talk for a while. He did get back to Qatar safely though, and had plenty of stories to share via Skype. (He also bought my birthday present while there... And I'm SO excited!)
Skyping Daddy on his birthday!
We took a weekend trip to Ardmore, OK to see one of my best friends and her husband, Jess and Austin. We had a blast! We had plenty of yummy food, watched some awesome movies, and had lots of laughs. Austin took us out on some land that the company he works for owns so that Cason could see the "moos", and Jess let him drive the truck around the pasture. Needless to say, he L.O.V.E.D. it. We got some country in him after living in D.C. his whole life! Jess and I stayed up talking until at least 2am every night,  so the next few days following the trip I did a lot of sleeping,  haha. The visit was awesome, and we are already talking about having another one once it gets warmer so Case can go fishing and spend more time with his "moos". :)
Cate had her 4 month check up. I'll do a separate blog post about that. She's doing awesome though!
This past weekend, we drove to Dallas with my family for a little family reunion on my Daddy's side. Friday night, my brother, the babies, and I met Jimmy for dinner and then walked around North Park mall.. We spent the majority of our time in the Disney store. Love that place! Cason was allowed to pick out one toy and he had to have a "vroom, vroom". (A gas truck from the movie, 'Planes'.) The next day, we all went to the George W Bush Library.. Awesome. (My family is really big on Presidential libraries.. I love it.) Then we spent time with some of my Daddy's brothers and their families. (Missed our Arkansas Goodings!) Cason had a blast playing with his cousin, 'Yeeyee', and Cate was as sweet as ever. It was an good visit, and I wish we all saw each other more.

Sunday, the babies and I drove to Pampa to stay with Kiki and Gimme for awhile! We're loving our time with them. (Our plan for the doployment is to move back and forth between grandparents. I am all about being fair, and I think it'll help time fly quicker.) Cason is actually in love with their dog, Sophie, and isn't scared to have her around. So that's great! (He's not used to dogs, so he's usually really unsure about them.) I am so grateful to them, and my parents, for everything they've done, and are doing, to help with this deployment. I love you all.

Cody is doing awesome! He really enjoys his job, and has a lot of respect and admiration for his boss. We talk to him daily, and he is sending me emails every chance he gets. We love hearing his stories and have already sent 7 care packages. (Including, ~180 homemade cookies for him and the troops he works with... 5 different kinds... Thanks Mom.) Haha, I know.. He's spoiled! Cason loves talking to him and has to show him everything little thing. Cate just grins at him. Today she was talking to Cody while on the floor, during her tummy time, and rolled over for the first time ever. He was so so SO happy he was able to witness a 'first', even with the distance.
So, this first bit has been challenging-- and I didn't even get into everything. I do know this though, I wouldn't have been able to transition so gracefully without the love and support of my parents, I have some of the greatest friends, I'm married into one of the strongest families I know, I'm so grateful my children show me unconditional love- because this has been a learning process for me, and my love for my husband grows stronger everyday. He is my soul mate.

.... ~178 days left!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

NYC, The City that Never Sleeps

A few weeks ago, we were running errands around town and Cody said that we needed to talk about something important... My first thought was, "Oh Lord, he saw how much I spent at Target." While I was trying to come up with a valid reason for the clothes I bought our children, (I can't go to Target without shopping for my kids. I can't.) I heard random phrases like, "Need to start pumping... Mom is looking at plane tickets..." (I tuned back in at that part.) Then I heard, "It's non-negotiable. I bought us train tickets to NYC and we're going to see Wicked on Broadway."

I literally sat there stunned for at least 10 seconds before I was able to form the question, "Are you being for real right now?" .... And then I started freaking out and mentally planning every outfit that I would take on our trip.

I am going to start off by saying that we absolutely L.O.V.E.D it.

My MIL, our Gimme, came in a few days before we were scheduled to leave so that she could get used to the babies' schedules and what-not. She shopped with me for last minute things, sat through a mini-fashion show to approve all of my outfits... You know, normal MIL things. :) I had a little bit of anxiety leaving the babies. I had never been away from Cason that long, and Cate was only 2 months old. I promised my husband that I would try not to worry the entire time, and I knew Gimme would take great care of them. We made sure she and the babies were all set, and headed out around 5a.m. Thursday morning to catch our train.

So Thursday morning, a lieutenant that Cody works with, LT Quadrino, picked us up from temporary housing on base and drove us to Union Station in D.C. to catch our train. The train ride was awesome- extremely comfortable and the whole experience was pretty laid back. We ordered breakfast from the food car and enjoyed the 4 hour trip into the city. As soon as we arrived, we walked to our hotel, taking pictures and making comments like... "Everything is so tall." We stayed at the Paramount Hotel on Times Square. The location was amazing. Staying right on Times Square is definitely the way to go if you are going to visit NYC. We checked our luggage since we weren't able to get into our room until later that afternoon, and then headed out to find lunch. We had heard from my sister, Sarah, about a Texas themed BBQ place that serves 3 major Texas things.. 1. Brisket (No one up here knows what brisket is. Bless their hearts.) 2. Shiner Bock 3. Blue Bell Ice Cream. My husband doesn't drink, so he enjoyed 1 & 3. This girl had all three. Yum! Cody had Big Red with his meal, which is another thing you can't find up here. That meal was delicious and exactly what my husband needed before his 7 month deployment. Afterwards, we headed to Central Park to walk around. I had told Cody, while we were planning our trip, that we weren't allowed to go to Central Park at night- only during the day. My love for Law & Order: SVU has taught me a lot and, basically, I saved our lives. (You're welcome, Cody!) To make this even more funny, Cody brought this up to LT Quadrino when he was driving us, (He's a native New Yorker.) and he said, "Oh, she's definitely right. DO NOT go there at night." A-Ha! I was right! (Me being right is a rare occasion, so I'll take what I can get.) We loved walking around Central Park. It was absolutely beautiful. It rained a little, but it couldn't put a damper on our mood. It's so neat recognizing things from shows and movies. After spending a couple hours walking around, we decided to head back to our hotel to check into our room and get cleaned up before heading out to dinner. Since our hotel was right on Times Square, we were able to walk through there on the way back and see a lot of sights and cool stores. We went into M&M World, the Hershey Store, & the huge Disney Store. (When you become a parent, on default you always look for your babies instead of yourself.) After we cleaned up in the hotel, we headed out to dinner. We ate at Planet Hollywood on Times Square. It was delicious, and the atmosphere was fun! It was the first time for both of us to eat at a Planet Hollywood, and I definitely see us doing that again. After dinner, we got a Starbucks, (We got SB at LEAST 3 times a day, every day, while in NYC.) and headed to the Empire State Building. This part of the trip was one of our favorites. We went up to both floors, the 86th observatory/deck and the 102nd deck. The view at night was breathtaking. We walked all the way around both decks, very slowly, pointing out all the buildings and landmarks we could spot. It was freezing, but we didn't mind! We didn't want to rush the experience, so we snuggled and enjoyed. :) When we finished there, we headed back to the hotel- taking in more of Times Square along the way.

Friday morning, we woke up, bought Starbucks, and jumped on the subway. First thing on our agenda was Ground Zero. On the way there, we enjoyed a few other sights. One was St. Paul Chapel. This chapel hosted George Washington on Inauguration Day, survived the 9/11 attacks, & is the oldest Manhattan building still in public use. We also were able to see the new World Trade Center. Since we bought our tickets online, and scheduled to go as soon as it opened, we didn't have to wait long to get into the 9/11 memorial. I honestly don't even know what to say about this part of our trip. The memorial is beautiful, and they did a phenomenal job with the design. We experienced many emotions- sadness, loss, anger... but more than anything else, pride for our country. The memorial does an amazing job honoring all who we lost. I wish we could've gone in the museum, but it doesn't open until 2014. Cody made the point to say, "We're coming back and bringing the kids. They need to see this." I definitely agree. After the memorial, we headed to Wall Street and over to see the Charging Bull. I took a picture with the bull to send to Daddy B. :) Not many kids grow up playing Stocks & Bonds with their dads, and can tell you what a bull/bear market means before the age of 10. We then grabbed lunch at a nearby Chili's, and headed over to jump on the ferry for the Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island. The ferry stops at both destinations, and you can get off to walk around and take pictures... So this is definitely a day-trip. We didn't realize how much time we really needed for this part, and we had to make sure we weren't late to our Broadway show.. (And it was freezing and the lines to get back on the ferry were ridiculously long.) So we decided to stay on the ferry, enjoy the view from there, and plan on seeing more of these places during our next visit. It still was amazing to be able to get that close to the Statue of Liberty- and to (here comes the cheesiness..) history. To think about all of the families that came to America and had to go through the immigration inspection at Ellis Island... Nuts.. We decided before we go back, we want to research our families and see if we had any relatives whose names we can look for next go-round. Once our ferry ride was over, we took the subway over to the Brooklyn Bridge. We didn't walk all the way across the bridge, or even halfway. We just wanted to be on the bridge- so we got our picture and turned around. Afterwards, we headed back to the hotel to get spiffy for Wicked. We thought about getting cocktails and appetizers before the show- but didn't want to be late. So, we got to the theater early and had drinks there. If you know my family, you know that we have seen multiple musicals, but this was Cody's first time. He LOVED it. Yes, you read right! L.O.V.E.D. It was by far the best musical I've ever seen as well. We laughed throughout the entire performance, and thoroughly enjoyed it! Cody was very impressed with the orchestra and the set, while I kept daydreaming about the musicals I had a part in during my high school years, and wishing I could have played the part of Elphaba. So. Awesome. I was so sad when it was over and could have easily sat through it all over again. (Casey, I know I sound nerdy. I don't care! Don't make fun of me!!!) Afterwards, we had a late dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe, took another stroll through Times Square, and headed to the hotel.
World Trade Center
Saturday morning... Starbucks. :) Then off to Rockefeller Center. We decided to do "Top of the Rock" during the day since we saw the night view of the city from the Empire State Building. Great choice! Central Park was beautiful, and the view of the city during the day was amazing. We did the walking all the way around, pointing out different buildings and what-nots, thing.. Taking a ton of pictures! After that, we headed down to see the ice-skating rink and the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree. They were in the process of putting it up... and we added, 'come back when tree is up and lit' to our next visit bucket list. Once we were done at Rockefeller Center, we headed over to Radio City Music Hall and then to the United Nations. This part wasn't as great as Cody was hoping, it's literally just a random building way out of the way... But we can say that we've seen it, so that's cool! Then we stopped for lunch at Korenet Pizza. NYC pizza is the BEST. Pizza is my husband's favorite food and he'd tell you that that pizza was the best he's ever had. This place was recommended to us by a friend and we highly recommend it to all of you. If you're planning a NYC trip, make Koronet's a must-eat-at place. After the pizza from Heaven, we headed back to Times Square to do last minute shopping, (We took the subway and planned it to where we went to Grand Central Station and walked around some there.) and we had some time to kill-- but not really enough time to go too far from our hotel. So, we headed to a movie theater right on Times Square and watched the new Thor movie. (We don't get to go to the movies often... Ok, more like ever. We don't get to go ever.) So, yes. We went to the movies while in NYC, haha! After our movie, (which was awesome) we grabbed our luggage from the hotel and went back to the train station to catch our train home.
We absolutely loved our trip. With Cody deploying, it was really nice to have time for us- even though we did miss our babies like crazy. I'm so thankful for my husband surprising me with this trip, and making it so perfect. We have zero regrets. We saw everything that we wanted to see and had a blast the entire time.. And a HUGE thank you to Gimme for taking amazing care of our hearts while we were gone. I will remember this trip forever. So, Cody, thank you for planning this. I'll miss you terribly while you're gone... but I'm SO proud of you! I love you so much, and I'm so excited to start planning our next 'adult' trip for when you return. (Vegas, baby!) Xoxo


(All the pictures are from my phone- we took a lot more with the camera, but those aren't uploaded yet!)