Monday, August 30, 2010

First Day of School

Today was Handley's first day of 3-year-old pre-school.  She was excited to go this morning and when we got to her classroom she walked right in and didn't look back.  I think I was more nervous than she was!

When I picked her up this afternoon she was happy to see us, and was all smiles.  She talked the entire ride home about what they did, her friends and the books they read.  Robby and I talked to her last night about the importance of following directions, listening to her teachers, and being a sweet girl.  She was excited to report to me that she followed all the directions ("even though some boys didn't follow directions" - her words).  She also told me as we were coming inside that she didn't want to play, she just wanted to rest and watch a show because she had played enough at school.  I guess she was worn out!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

A weekend with Mimi and Dadaw

This weekend my parents met us at the lake and we enjoyed getting to spend lots of time on the water with them.  They've only been to our lake house one other time, so we enjoyed showing them all of our favorite spots and letting them enjoy what we do most summer weekends.  Trey also joined us for the day on Saturday (Stefanie was working and we missed her).  Handley and Harper had been talking about seeing Mimi and Dadaw for a few days and were SO excited to see them.  Harper took a little bit to warm up to them, but then didn't want them out of her sight.  When I put her to bed the first night all I heard was her calling out their names like she wasn't done playing. :-)

Harper being silly with Daddy on the way to dinner

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Sneak Peek

Today was Handley's sneak peek day at pre-school.  She will be attending the same pre-school, but will be in the 3-year-old, 3-day class this year.  She's been excited about starting school, especially since so many of her friends started last week.

My great friend,  Tiara , kept Harper so that I could really put all of my attention on Handley.

In our short time at school Handley got to look around her classroom, find her cubby, check out the baby dolls and kitchen, do a few puzzles, and make a place mat that she'll use when she eats lunch at school.  I think after being in her classroom today she will feel excited about going by herself on Monday.  I volunteered to serve as room mom again this year and signed up to help with all the class parties. Her teachers, Mrs. Nina and Mrs. Gloria, seem to compliment each other well, so I'm really looking forward to the new school year.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Hummus and Girlfriends

This evening while I was trying to get dinner ready I put a bowl of carrot sticks and some hummus on the counter for the girls' appetizer (or appletizer, as Handley likes to say).  When I turned around I saw that Harper decided to forgo the carrots and just focus on the hummus.

This weekend I spent some quality time with some girlfriends.  I love being at home with the girls everyday and really feel lucky to have that opportunity.  I also think it's really important to have some "me time" and to stay close to girlfriends.  We had our monthly girls night out on Saturday at The Dinner Afare .  It's one of those places that has every ingredient for the specific recipes prepared for you and you just put the meals together.  I'm excited to have a lot of delicious meals ready to go when I need them.  I loved it because I got to prepare some meals that I know I never would have done on my own, but that I can't wait to try.  After that we went to dinner at one of my favorites, Cheesecake Factory. Yummy.

On Sunday I attended a baby shower for my friend Lizzi.  Our end of the table was such a hoot.  There were lots of pregnant friends and one of Lizzi's other friends is a Labor and Delivery nurse and was sitting on our end of the table.  We were all cracking up and I loved all the baby talk.  I can hardly wait for all of the new babies to start arriving.
Me (the not pregnant one),  Lisa (due in 2 weeks), Lizzi (due in Oct) and Jen (due late Jan/early Feb)

A big THANK YOU to Gigi and Papa who came over to help watch the girls on Sunday while I was gone so Robby could get some stuff done around the house.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Fun while it lasted

Handley and Avery have had a sleep-over before, but it was at the lake house where both sets of parents were there.  Today was our first attempt at having a real sleep-over, and it was fun while it lasted.  We picked Avery up on the golf cart this evening and were ready for an evening of fun.

The girls loved playing, singing, make-believing.  They ate dinner at the little table I recently moved from the playroom to the kitchen.

After dinner it was time for one of Hadley's favorite games, Elefun.  It consists of an elephant trunk filled with little butterflies.  When you turn on the game a fan blows the butterflies up through the trunk and into the air.  The object of the game is to catch as many butterflies in your net as you can.  We probably played it at least 10-15 times.

After all 3 girls helped clean-up all of the toys downstairs and in the playroom we got baths, and got ready for a movie.

Harper was unhappy when it was time for her to leave the party and head to bed.  She kept repeating Handley's name (she calls her De-da, or something like that) and pointing towards the door.  Next, it was time for the big girls to get to bed.  All was going well until about 9:30 when Avery decided she wasn't quite ready to stay for the entire night.  I told her it was more than OK for her to call her mom and go home and she decided that was what she wanted to do.

Handley was pretty upset when Avery left, but Avery gave her a huge hug and assured her, "it will be OK Handley.  I just miss my mom too much."  We promised we would try it again soon.

Busy day

Today has been an extremely busy day.  We started the morning bright and early with Handley's last ballet class of the summer.  She has learned so much in 12 weeks and really enjoyed her class. I kind of wish I would have signed her up for ballet this fall, but we decided to give gymnastics a try instead and with pre-school 3 days a week I didn't want to over-do it.  However, seeing how well she did in the ballet class I might try to get her in a class later this fall or winter.

While the big sisters, Handley and Avery, were twirling away, Harper and Dylan got to play together.  Harper just loves Dylan.  He is the cutest thing and she has a major crush on him.  Every time I tell her we are going to see him her face lights up and she is always quick to share toys or even her snacks with him.  Today she kept him entertained with goldfish.

After ballet we were off to Handley's first gymnastics class.  She did a tumbling class last year, but this is in a real gym and she did really well for her first day.  She listened, followed directions, and tried her hardest at every skill. They got to do the beams, bars, floor, trampoline and vault.  The didn't stop moving once during the 45 minute class.  Her friend Addyson is doing the class with her so the two of them were a hoot together.

After gymnastics we went to lunch and then even made a quick stop by Rita's Italian Ice for a special cool treat on this hot day. It was delicious and made everyone smile!

Tonight, Avery is coming over for a special sleep-over.  The fun just doesn't stop around here!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Fun with Gigi

Handley spent the night with Gigi last night and got to enjoy all sorts of fun.  Whether they are just playing around the house or out and about, she always has such a great time with Gigi and Papa.  I love that Helen takes lots of pictures during Handley's time there and always sends me cute updates with pictures over my phone during the day.

She has a baby doll that lives at Gigi's house named Ruthie.  Every time she goes over there she likes to give Ruthie a bath in the sink.  This is a very special treat because at home it would make too much of a mess, but she knows Gigi will always say yes.

She also got to put on some of Gigi's old make-up.

Today they went to a little girl spa called Sweet and Sassy.  She got her finger nails and toe nails painted, glitter hairspray and a glitter star on her face.

After that it was off to Fernbank to see the imax movie and tour the museum.

She was very excited to tell us all about her fun day when she got home this afternoon.  She was also very excited to see Harper and spent the rest of the afternoon playing so sweetly with her.  I could tell Harper missed her big sis too and was happy to have her playmate back.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Pickin' blueberries

We spent the weekend at the lake with Gigi and Papa, but unfortunately, the weather wasn't all that great for boating.  In an effort to get out of the house on Saturday we went to a local Berry Patch to pick blueberries.  Both girls had a lot of fun.

Handley was very serious about getting the good ones and filling up her basket.  It didn't take Harper long to figure out what was going on.  As soon as I showed her how to pick them and put them in her basket she'd do it and say, "more" and walk off to another blueberry bush to pick some more.

Harper insisted on carrying her own basket, but as a result, most of her blueberries ended up on the ground. 

Updated blog design

I've had a lot of people asking me about my new blog design so I thought it would be easier to do a post here to tell you how I made all the changes.  I used to love other people's blogs with BIG pictures, cute fonts, etc. and I finally took the time to figure out how to do it with the help of some great directions from a few friends.

New Background

I used to use hotbliggityblog for my backgrounds, but blogger has actually updated it's designs and has a lot of choices.  Log in to your blogger and click on the design tab.  Look for the NEW template designer tab.  I played around with this, but you'll see there are lots of different options for layouts and backgrounds.

Here's what I did:
  1.  Click on background > back ground image and click around until you see something you like. 
  2. After you've chosen one, click on the layout tab > body layout, and choose which one you like.  I picked the second one. 
  3. A tip from my very tech savvy friend, Jen ...if you want XL pictures (see directions below), while on the layout tab choose > adjust width and you will see two sliders.  Move the top slider for the entire blog far right to the MAX of 1000 px.  If you don't do this and you choose to do XL pictures, they will bleed over into your sidebars.  For the sidebar slider I just left it at 260 px. 
XL Pictures

Let's all be honest with each other, the main reason most of us look at blogs is to see the pictures, right?  I longed for bigger pictures and I knew Jen had told me there was a lot of html code I could use to get bigger pictures, but I just didn't have time.  Well, now blogger has made it really easy to make your pictures really big.  If you haven't already adjust the width of your blog see the above directions (#3).  You had to do this first or they won't fit right.  Also, I couldn't get it to work with my background so that is why I switched to the blogger background.  However, yours might work, so if you love your background, just try doing #3 above first to see if the XL pictures will fit.  

These directions are from my friend ERIN .

i updated my post editor
here's how:
dashboard >
settings (should already be on basic tab) >
scroll to bottom 
choose "updated editor" in post editor
when you post pictures you will see new options for XL pics!

Note from CB - The picture uploading feature on the new "updated editor" is a little different and takes some getting used to.  Just a warning for those who don't like change.  However, after you get the hang of it it's much easier to use.  When moving pictures around in the post it's a little different, but you'll get the hang of it.  Plus, you can upload an unlimited amount of pictures to each post and when it is uploaded you can click on what size you want it to be (small, med, large and XL) and also add captions.

Cute Fonts for post titles

Warning - This is the most difficult, time consuming, and tedious change!
  1. Go here and see which font you would like.  Download it to your computer. 
  2. Follow the step-by-step directions found here .  Warning, there are LOTS of steps and a bunch of html code you have to manipulate.  It's a little intimidating, but if I can do it, you can too!
If you follow all the steps and do everything exactly right it should work.  Actually, her directions are supposed to change the post titles, date, and sidebar titles.  I got two out of the three.  For some reason my sidebar titles are still the old font, but I have NO clue how to get it to work so I'm just going with what I've got.

Happy Blogging!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Ballet Recital

Handley's summer ballet class is almost over.  She has enjoyed the class and today they had a recital.  Really, it was just an in-class demonstration of what they had been learning all summer long, but she was very excited that we would be in her class watching her dance.  Daddy and Gigi were both able to come, so that made it even more special.

There were only two of them in the class today, Handley and her friend Annabelle.  Several of the other girls were out of town today.  It made it nice though because they got individual attention and we were able to watch every move she made.

Here is a video of some of the things she did across the floor.  We were SO proud of her.  She listened to her teacher, Mrs. Kate, very well and followed directions perfectly.

This is the "dance" they did.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

A fun day with girlfriends

Today we had a fun day with some of our girlfriends.  We went to Riverside Park in Roswell.  They have a "sprayground" area with lots o fountains for the kids to run through.  It was really crowded though, so we weren't sure if the girls has as much fun as we thought they would.  Plus, food isn't allowed inside the gates of the water area and all this crew wanted to do was eat.  We wrapped it up early and headed to lunch.  That made everyone happy.  All of us had fun eating and chatting with each other and the little girls had fun playing.  

The cafe was very eclectic with lots of fun things on the walls to look at.  Handley and Annabelle discovered the stuffed dogs that were hanging out under the bench with real leashes on them and started "walking" them around the restaurant.  The owner promised us she didn't mind and that they had them there for that purpose.  Handley's was so big that when I asked to take their picture, I couldn't even see her! 

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Hilton Head - Day 5 and 6

Friday was our first full day all together on the beach in the morning.  Robby and Justen, who both are not too fond of the sand, somehow managed to avoid being buried in the sand.  Instead, they spent a few hours walking up and down the beach with Handley looking for sand dollars.  Jen and I, who had been on the beach all week, had not seen a single one, but these two knew the trick.  We kept filling our bucket with them and at the end of the day had a total of 48!  That afternoon we soaked them in bleach and turned them from a dull brown to a beautiful bright white.  I have a few ideas of what do do with all of them and plan to make some Christmas ornaments out of a few to remember our trip.

That evening we went back to Shelter Cove Marina for a yummy seafood dinner and of course we had to go see, "that man that sings songs."  It started slow.  Handley and Harper were the only two kids on the stage for a little while, but they were perfectly content to play with the shells and make little piles on the steps.  It wasn't long before there were a lot of other kids surrounding the stage and taking part in the show.  At the end all the parents were encouraged to come down and dance with their kids, so we all put on our dancing shoes.

Saturday the guys decided to play golf just one last time.  While they were swinging the clubs, the girls enjoyed our last day on the beach.  Handley kept asking Jen and I to help her find more sand dollars.  Apparently, the lessons we'd gotten the day before didn't do much good, because we came up empty handed.  However, while playing in one of the tidal pools Handley looked up at Jen with wide eyes and exclaimed that she had found one!  She was so excited and we were so proud of her!

Handley's sand dollar

Our last night was spent at Shelter Cove. After dinner we let the kids run around on the stage since there was no show that night.  You can probably guess what entertained Harper...yep, the shells.  She spent at least half an hour making little piles all over the steps and bleachers.  Handley performed a few songs and dances before we loaded up on the shuttle for the last time.
flying high