This is the last day I'll be checking this. Because in 7.5 hrs we will be at the airport picking up my most favorite missionary!!!!! 


Memorial Day Weekend

This weekend was quite the dream.

We took a family trip to Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
It was perfect.

We got stuck in bad traffic right outside Pigeon Forge, but thanks to my handy-hubby we bipassed it & made up for some lost time. Ivy was a champ on the drive. We only took her out of her carseat once in the mega-drive. We ended up being in the car for about 9 hrs that day. We took an hr break at walmart to give Ivy a little out of the car, time. 
We got to our campsite around 5:30 & Weston set up our mega-tent* while I had baby duty. AKA while I played. I would have laid Ivy down to work on the tent with Weston, except the HUGE jumping spiders that were around our campsite would have probably carried her off.  
We didn't order it in time for the weekend, but it showed up on the doorstep Friday morning!
Anyway, he set up the tent & we got all snuggled in. Both he & I were wiped. He'd just gotten off a full work week & I had had a huge to-do list the week before. I had a lot of cleaning and tasks to take care of & pretty much packed us for our whole trip. Ivy was a champ & was so happy the ENTIRE TIME. Seriously didn't cry once. She loved sleeping between us! I slept restlessly, waking up to feel Ivy's cheeks & make sure she was still warm enough. She woke up at 5 the next morning & babbled to herself for an hour while I fake slept next to her. She is such a sweetheart. Really.
Saturday was a dream. We camped at the Cosby campsite & just left our tent there to tour the park.
We drove around, but tried to keep it to a minimum & do more hiking because Ivy was in HEAVEN out there.
She looked like this the ENTIRE time:

Aren't these mountains gorgeous?
This was a tiny little hike we did & the backdrop was beautiful.
Weston was patient with me taking so many pictures.
He's so nice to me.
This was before our hike to Clingman's Dome the highest peak in TN & the 3rd highest peak in NC! 
Ivy & I at the top of the peak.
This is on day two of no naps.
This girl does not nap if the sun is up!
We're talking about black-out curtains are a requirement.
BUT she didn't cry, either.
How is she my child? I am so not that laid back.

Our new family photo.

Climbing back down from Clingman's Dome.
With the extra from Weston's gift cards he got this amazing high chair.
Best investment ever.
She loved it & it's so well constructed.
We will be using it for everything from barbecues to camping trips to washing the car.
We came back late Sunday night so I Ivy could get sleep that night & spent Monday with my dad & Grandmother. My mom & brother are gone visiting family in Houston.
We had a fun barbecue with them before my dad had to fly out for work.
We got me Ivy a baby pool & she loves it.
I bought all of Ivy's now baby clothes (that wasn't a gift from my mom or someone else) on season sell-out sales last year. Some of the stuff I worried about sizing, etc.
 I took the chance on this 6 month swimsuit that was $3 right after the fourth of July last year.
I am so happy I did.
It's so funny & really adorable.

Seriously, guys. These aren't edited (The lighting outside was ideal, though). Can I please have her baby blues?

For those of you worried, the pool is in the shade, & if this baby's skin is in the sun it's lathered in sunscreen.

That evening we went to Downtown Franklin for the veteran's memorial monument.
I have had 2 friends die in combat in The War on Terror.
I think about how I alone personally was friends with two who have died & think about how so many more have given their lives for our freedom & I can't help but have such heartache for their families. I cannot imagine the loss they have felt. I hope they feel my appreciation for the sacrifice of their husband, wife, son, daughter, sister, cousin, friend to make it possible for me to live safely in Franklin, Tennessee.

I hope everyone had a fun & Memorial Day. We most definitely did.

* Our mega-tent (we give it 2 thumbs up). My parents had given Weston Cabela's gift cards for birthdays & graduation & so he used them on a mega family tent so we can use it for our family down the road! We are used to our 2 man tent that basically you pull it out of the tent bag & shake it & it sets itself up. This one was more involved than that.


Cowboy Up, Y'all.

The Franklin Rodeo is a big deal.
& let's be honest, if you don't like rodeos, you're probably not American.
We took Ivy to her first rodeo last night.
She loved it!
It STARTED at 7:30 & she has a very strict 7pm bedtime, but she handled it like a champ!
but she was a total gem the entire time.

It was a really fun night.
 No cowboys were seriously maimed & it was full of awesome events!
My whole family went & it was so fun!
 Testing out her Protection Earmuffs on the way to the Rodeo.
She gave it 2 thumbs up.
We got ours here.
And once again, we went with gender neutral green, because I'm all about only buying baby gear once. & if I can help it, I refuse to make my boys wear pink. Except with their baby bath tub, that thing is pink.

I have a lot of cowboys & girls in my family & have always loved rodeos!

To show Ivy the importance of enjoying rodeos, my mom made Ivy this adorable rodeo shirt.
because my mom is a little crazy & completely awesome.

& she made this thing from scratch & created the design herself.
Seriously, she's amazing.
(She's really good. Also designed & created my wedding dress on her own, too. & prom dresses, presentation dresses, etc. Basically I'm the luckiest girl on the earth. K, bragging on my mom is done.)
 The adorable back of the shirt.
 The adorable front of her shirt.
 It's embarrassing to say how little Ivy & I ever leave the house.
(With one car & a husband that is either at work or school all the time...that's how the story goes)
If "We don't get out much," doesn't paint the picture well enough, Ivy shrieking & laughing as we walked on the gravel road to the Ag Center should do the trick.
She was literally so excited that we actually went somewhere.
Adorable, hilarious, & definitely a certain level of sad.
 A family Groufie
(Anyone watch Jimmy Fallon?)
Oh, hey, mom!
 10 mins in....
10 mins later...

 10 mins later...
It was so much fun & we all enjoyed ourselves a lot!
I love the bareback bronco riding & the bull-riding.
Both always exciting events.

My mom & I used to stay up late at night watching bull-riding on TV.
It was one of my favorite things to do with my mom growing up.

One last family photo, since we don't take enough. Er, wait, yes, yes we do.
This was at 11PM....Ivy didn't even fall asleep on the way home. She looked totally buzzed.
She passed out the second she was in her crib.
I am having so much fun living back in my stomping grounds & being able to share my childhood with Weston.
I always went to the rodeo with my friends in high school & it was even more fun being back after so many years with my family!

Life Lately. Again.

We've been prepping for my brother to get home from his mission (IN LESS THAN 2 WEEKS!!)
& I found this in his closet:
This is a church program folded up into the tiniest little folded bit.
Every Sunday Spencer folds up the church program and scratches the back of his hand with it.
It's hilarious & weird.
& I can't wait till he comes home!

I was changing Ivy's diaper & she kept wanting to roll off the changing pad.
So I gave her the baby powder to hold & look at. She tipped it over to look at the top & I didn't realize it was open.
Content girl helping me clean!
Ivy has done this since day one.
She stiff arms all the time & it's the funniest thing ever. When Weston puts her up in the air both of her arms do this & she looks like SuperMan. Naturally.
There's that stiff arm again.
I love that girl.
My mom makes her a new outfit multiple times a week.
Ivy clearly loves wearing them, my mom enjoys making them, & I love the outfits & things she makes more than I can tell you.
They seriously mean so much to me.
Long after my mom's gone (like 100 years down the road) these outfits will live on.
Probably with lots of yellow spit up stains.

She was playing in her crib while I was cleaning.
I walked in to find that she had climbed* on top of her stuffed animals.
I was laughing so hard.
Olivia the pig didn't know what hit her.
Adorable, right?
Ivy has been using my brother's room while we've lived here.
Since he's coming home we are moving her to another place.
When I moved her crib this is the crime scene I found.
Many rejected binkies under the crib.
She's not a real binkie lover, so she just uses it when she sleeps, but they usually get tossed out when she's playing in her crib when she wakes up!
We got a real deal high chair off Craigslist...my life is changed forever.
 This is the greatest thing EVER.
 The Bumbo was great for a while.
By great I mean HORRIBLE.
She only wanted to play with her toes or reach for anything not within her reach when in that thing, so it made feeding very difficult. But we still love to use it...just not for feeding.
It is the greatest baby tool. I'm so happy we got it!
I just think this is cute.
She was sitting but SOOO tired.
So she cried.
It was cute & pathetic.
Now she's happy. hahah her emotions are all over the place. But not really, she's extreme happy 80% of the time, sleepy/serious 10% of the time, & hangry 10% of the time.
She's a pretty predictable baby.

Ivy is so cute & I love hanging out with her all day long!
We've got this mommy/baby thing nailed down pretty well (at the moment) & I'm really liking it!

*I use this term loosely. I didn't see it, so she probably just rolled on top of them from the sitting position.


She's got chompers!

Well, here's a vid from a couple weeks ago. I'm pretty crazy about this baby.
Feel free to make fun of the ugly noises I made that she thought was so funny.

Did I tell you Ivy got her two first teeth? It was a week after Easter! She's so much happier after those suckers have popped through!
She has her two bottom center teeth.
& they are more adorable than they even sound.
I think her front middle teeth are about to pop through any day now, too.

We have all been taking our turns getting sick around here.
My brother was sick first, then me.
& now Weston & Ivy.

I feel so bad for Weston having to go to work horribly sick.
& I feel bad for Ivy, because her coughing keeps waking her up at night & during naps.
BUT she thinks coughing is hilarious & usually (unless it's an extra long coughing fit) she is smiling & laughing afterwards.
Cutie pie.

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