I think this might be the longest I've ever been away from my blog. Life around here has been busy, as usual, and on top of all the busyness I was without my beloved MacBook for a couple of weeks so the only computer time I had was when Ben would bring his laptop home from work occasionally at night. I did miss my computer (and blogging, of course!), but it turned out that not having the distraction of the Internet was a really good thing. I now realize exactly how much time I had been wasting during the day, and I have changed my ways---I will no longer be visiting Facebook every hour during the day and reading blogs during nap time, and my children, husband, and housework thank me! :) I'll still blog and check FB, of course, (how could I not??) but it will mostly be at night after the kiddos are in bed.
Now that that is out of the way, I thought I would do a summary of what we've been up to the last month. LOTS has been going on and I have the pictures to prove it!
First, our sweet baby Whitt was baptised the Sunday before Thanksgiving. Our good friend, Andrew, did the baptism and our friends Christie and Brad (also Grayson and EC's godparents) and Lil and Shay became Whitt's godparents. Whitt was named after Lil and Shay's son, Charles, and we wanted to honor Charles again by asking his parents to help us raise Whitt in the church. It was truly a wonderful day, and Whitt did perfectly.
Shay, Lil, me, Ben, Whitt, Christie, and Brad
Lil and Shay with our sweet boy
Couldn't you just eat him up???? My parents' friend, Laura, made his gown and it is spectacular. It means so much that she put all of that time and effort into making something so meaningful.
Twins, 4 years apart :)
Next up....POTTY TRAINING!!!! I seriously put no thought into this at all. One day about a month ago Emma Claire, who had never showed any interest in using the potty and had probably only used it less than 5 times in her entire two years, woke up from her nap and I randomly decided to try some underwear on her. Two days and two accidents later, she was potty trained. Seriously! I even bought a pack of pull-ups for her to wear at naps and nighttime and she wouldn't have it---she's even in "big girl underwear" when she sleeps and has yet to have an accident. We are so proud of our big girl! :)
A couple days after potty training came Thanksgiving. We spent a few days in Hendersonville, NC, with Ben's family and had a great time. It was awesome to get away from the heat (for real!) and enjoy the crisp mountain air before returning to weather in the 70's.
The only half-decent picture we got of the grandchildren together: Dylan, Grayson, EC, and Whitt
Gee Gee and Pop Pop with their babies
After that, we came home and started to get ready for Christmas. Insert cute picture of our FIVE MONTH OLD:
Early in December, we took the kiddos to see Santa Claus, and put them on the couch right before we left and took a few pictures. Amazingly, we got our Christmas card picture on the second try! This isn't it, but it's one that was in the batch. So great and unexpected, especially since last year it took about five different days with five different photo shoots to get the Christmas card picture, and even then I was never able to get one of Grayson and EC together so I ended up doing two separate pictures of them by themselves. We lucked out this year and ended up with two smiling and one looking at the camera---not bad! :)
This was about as excited as they got meeting Santa. Not what we'd hoped for, but at least they weren't screaming!
Next up...girls' weekend in NC at The Umstead Hotel and Spa! Christie and I met our friend, Gretchen, halfway between here and Maryland (where Gretchie lives) for a little getaway and it was soooooooooooooooooo fabulous. The Umstead is a beautiful hotel and the spa is to die for. I had the best massage I've ever had, and I cannot wait to go back. We also saw New Moon while we were there, and all I can say about that is WOW!!!! I was always "Team Edward" when I was reading the Twilight series, but after seeing Jacob in New Moon, I just might have to be Team Jacob! :)
Not a great shot, but our bathroom rocked. It also had (not pictured) frosted glass doors to the toilet and the shower, and I enjoyed tormenting Christie while she was going to the bathroom.
view from our balcony
The day we came home from our trip, I met Ben and the kiddos at the Christmas parade and then we went and picked out our Christmas tree....
Came home, took a cute picture of Whitt...
and decorated the tree.
Looked at the beautiful lights...and more about the tree in a minute.
I forgot to mention that the day of Whitt's baptism our cat, Chester, disappeared. Ben gave Chester to me almost nine years ago and he was my first baby. Chester is an inside cat and is declawed so had never been outside. When we left for our trip to the mountains during Thanksgiving, I mentioned to Ben that I hadn't seen Chester in a couple of days. He isn't a big fan of the children so it's not unusual to not see him all the time, so we just filled up his bowls with lots of food and water and figured he was just hiding somewhere. We came home almost a week later to discover that the food and water hadn't been touched, and nor had the litter box. It was really sad, and I spent another two weeks looking everywhere, inside and out, for him. We assumed he'd gotten out and either been hit by a car or just died somewhere. :(
Never, ever did we imagine that after being gone for three weeks, I would FIND HIM!!! Last Friday, I was doing dishes and looked up and out the window to see him walking in the alley behind our backyard. I went running outside calling his name and he came running to me meowing as loud as he could. I'm still in shock that he is back and alive!! He lost a lot of weight---from 17 lb down to 12.5---but I took him to the vet and he checked out fine, just thin. We are thrilled to have our sweet kitty home again!!
This was Emma Claire with him not long after he came home. She didn't feel well and he was letting her pet him, which never happened before he disappeared.
So that night, we bathed the kiddos and put them in their Christmas pajamas and decided to take a few pictures in front of the tree.
All was going well until we started noticing little bugs ALL over the place. After a phone call to Ben's dad, who owns a nursery and is very knowledgeable about both plants and bugs, along with a consult to the handy dandy Internet, we discovered that we had aphids that had hatched on our Christmas tree. Check out the link---you will want to barf---and see what they say is a 1 in 100,000 chance of happening to a Christmas tree. Yep, that's us!! :) Needless to say, we spent the evening taking the ornaments and lights off the tree, and had to get a new tree a few days later. They nursery where we got our tree gave us the second tree for free, thankfully, but they did come to pick up the infested tree so they could treat it and sell it again. So gross!
Another cute picture of my little Whitt, for your enjoyment.
Finally, after a crazy couple of weeks with lots of shopping, Christmas parties, teacher gifts, Christmas cards, etc., we were thrilled when my friend Erin and her adorable kiddos stopped by for a visit. I finally got to meet her beautiful new baby, AK. Isn't she precious??? I think Whitt is in love!
Emma Claire and C had a blast playing together...
and so did W and Grayson. I love that our children are all pretty much the same age and have so much fun playing together--I just wish they lived closer!
Alright, so now that I'm caught up (again!), I really do hope to update the blog more often. Thank you to everybody who has sent comments (I have received them all, just not publishing them so I don't broadcast all of your email addresses) and emails about wanting an invite to my almost private blog. I'm still collecting addresses and will make the blog private this week. I'm sure a lot of you have heard why I'm going private, but if not I'll elaborate more next time. I hope everybody has a very Merry Christmas!!!
I've decided to take the plunge and go private. If you are interested in remaining a reader, leave a comment with your email address or email me (my address is in the left side bar) and I'll send you an invite. I'd like to do this in the next week or so. Thanks! :)
Sorry to be MIA lately. We had Whitt baptised a couple of weeks ago so were busy preparing for the big brunch we had afterward at our house, then we went out of town for Thanksgiving, and a few days later I dropped my laptop AGAIN and broke the screen AGAIN, so I'm now without a computer. We just shelled out a ridiculous amount of money in August to have the screen replaced and have found a cheaper route this time but I had to send it off and don't know how long it will be until I get it back. It's definitely worth the money we're saving, though!
Whitt is 5 months old today.....WHERE HAS THE TIME GONE???? I was telling a friend today that I vividly remember Grayson being 6 months old, and that's only a month away for Whitt. Slow down, time!!!
Don't give up on me, all three readers I have left, I promise to be back soon with pictures of my sweet babies and stories about all of the crazy stuff they've been saying and doing. Just a little example...Emma Claire told me today, "I tried to bite Grayson but Grayson wouldn't let me bite him, Mommy!" If you only knew how hilarious that sounded in her raspy voice and funny Emma Claire pronunciation!
Oh yeah, big blog makeover coming soon....Jennisa is working on it and I can't wait to see the final result!
Three of my good friends (and also fellow bloggers: Christie, Lauren, and Jen) and I decided to start a collaborative blog of random thoughts and musings. We are excited to see how it goes, and would love for you to check it out! It's a little more anonymous than our individual blogs are so we won't be using our real names or kids' names. Lauren's husband, Andrew, recently found a list of preppy nicknames in The Offical Preppy Handbook and thought it would be hilarious to start calling me Muffie, so in case you're wondering who Muffie is on the new blog, it's me! Not my first choice of nicknames but there's not much you can do when other people give you a nickname---case in point, Christie's name "Trixie" was given to her a couple years ago at a drunken Christmas party and it stuck. :)
The new blog is called Three Rights and a Left, and you can find it HERE!
My friends Christie, Hunter, and I threw their sister-in-law Elizabeth a baby shower on Saturday and it was mighty cute, if I do say so myself. Elizabeth and Graham are naming their baby girl Collins, so we did a "C is for Collins" theme. I found a very talented and easy to work with seller on Etsy (a favorite website of mine---that could be a blog post in itself!) who made our invitations, banner, cupcake flags, favor tags, etc., and I think they turned out perfectly.
Check it out....
Elizabeth, the adorable mama-to-be
Sanders, Tyler, and Harper---three of Collins' cousins
Anybody need a party planner? I think I could get into this!! :)