Thursday, October 28, 2010

Emerson at 3

The birthday has passed, the birthday party post has been written, now I just want to jot down a few things about Emerson at this age for record keeping sake.

It is very evident that Emerson has my personality. Exactly my personality. My stubborn, silly, passionate, eager and impatient personality. I love this and hate it all the same. It is fun to watch her in many situations but when we butt Seriously ugly. Our stubborn and passionate nature's just battle each other. Of course, mommy always wins, but the method to my win is not always ideal. Currently this happens on a daily basis. "This too shall pass" chants through my head on a daily basis.

Emerson is spunky, bubbly and loves to chatter. She is so talkative at home and with her closest friends. She loves to give compliments to others and almost always says "bless you". She also loves to pray at all her meals, naptime and bedtime.

Emy is a big time rule follower- that is, for everyone except mommy. In fact, she also tells others what to do when they don't follow the rules or do something the right way.

Emerson loves school and her dance class. She comes home from both telling me and showing me the things they learned. I love hearing the excitement in her voice about things, "Mommy, yellow and red make orange!" Precious.

Speaking of dance, Emerson loves to dance and sing. She is constantly dancing around the house and singing various songs. She has all these silly dance moves that she has made up or combined with "real" moves from her school. She sings songs that she knows as well as makes up songs to familiar tunes. I love that she makes up songs because I remember doing that as a kid too and they are just funny to listen too.

She LOVES surprises and "adventures". Steve and I can make anything into a "surprise" or about "going on an adventure" and she is hooked. She also loves to surprise others. I really love this quality about her. She already realizes that giving is better than receiving.

Emerson loves to help. It is easy to engage her in most anything by asking her to help. This has been truly wonderful with Ashton's arrival. She is always helping with diapers, bathtime, laundry, all of it.

One thing I have really noticed about Emerson lately is that her mannerisms are so adult-like. The way she crosses her legs, covers her mouth when she coughs (most of the time), turns the page of a book, folds her napkin at the table, etc...all these things just give me a glimpse of what she will look like years from now.

Emy loves daddy. They have a special bond that I am totally left out of and that is okay with me. They are really fun to watch together. Steve treats her like a big kid and gives her more freedom than I do. They have special things that are just for them and it warms my heart to see their special relationship.

Emerson is so fun at this age. She is learning so fast and really loves to get to try new things. I cannot believe she is three already and fast approaching kindergarten. My baby girl is growing up so fast!


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The Art Party...

...also to be known as the party-that-mom-almost-ruined.

Saturday was Emerson’s 3rd birthday party. We did an art-theme because she is really into arts and crafts right now. After last year’s huge party at our house I knew that with a newborn I would want something simple where I could literally just show up. There is a place here in Fort Worth called Van Grow. It is a studio for kids and they do birthday parties. I looked into it over the summer and decided it would be perfect.

I booked the party and ordered the invitations in July. I wanted to get as much stuff done before Ashton arrived as possible. Van Grow takes care of most of the decorations, the craft activities and the party favors so all I had to do was bring food and balloons. Easy, right?

A week before the party I started to make notes for myself so I could make sure to have everything together. I kept waking in the middle of the night and remembering stuff to add to my checklist. The funny thing is that I was not remembering little stuff. It is MAJOR stuff, like “order cupcakes”. Oh my word, I started to freak myself out. I just knew that in my newborn-exhaustion fog, I was going to forget something huge. Like cupcakes.

As Saturday approached my checklist was getting more detailed in hopes that everything would be perfect. Friday night I picked up the cupcakes (to be SURE I had them) and Steve and I talked about the plan for the morning. I was going to leave the house at 9:15am to swing by and pick up balloons and Chick-fil-A breakfast minis. I wanted to get there at 10am to set up and get situated. I told Steve to get Emerson and Ashton there at 10:15 or so. I wanted Emy to be there before anyone else so that she could see everyone come in one at a time. She seems to do better in that situation than when walking into a crowded room and being overwhelmed.

Anyways, the plan was set and everything went fine. We were on schedule. Saturday morning at 10:02am I have all the supplies and am 2 minutes from the location when my cell rings. It is my friend Jennifer, whose daughter is Emy’s best friend. Here is how the conversation went down:

Jennifer, “Hey, is everything okay?”

Me, “Yeah, I think we have it covered. Thanks”

Jennifer, “Okay, well we are here, where are you guys?”

Me, “Oh, I will be there in just a second. The party is at 10:30- you guys are early.”

Jennifer, “No. The invitation and the lady that works here say that the party is at 10am.”

This is where panic sets in. My heart is racing. My mind is searching…Yes, that is correct, the party is from 10-11:30- WHAT WAS I THINKING? Expletives are running through my brain. Jen can sense the panic…

Jennifer, “Don’t worry. No one else is here yet.”

Me, “Okay, I will be there in a sec.”

I furiously call Steve. In an almost scream, “Get over here immediately. The party started at 10am, not 10:30. She can’t miss her own party! HURRY!”

At this point I am pulling into the parking lot and Jen and the host come running out to help me unload and set up the few things I have. Luckily, only a couple families were on time to see this frantic mess. Of course, since I tell everyone everything about me, I couldn’t keep it to myself and let everyone think the party was perfect. Nope, everyone knew the story and thinks I am crazy- including my husband and mother-in-law. Whatever. Try planning a birthday party on 7 weeks of no sleep.

Emerson showed up at 10:30 (I think) and walked into the craft room with all her friends already there. It was more like a surprise party than anything. Surprisingly, she did really well and was not shy at all. She really did have a blast.




Painting hands and making handprints

Concentrating on getting the hand totally covered with paint

Annie and Izzy



Getting some coloring advice from daddy

Perfecting circles

The distracted artist. Coloring while she is watching something else. She does this a lot.
Working with grandad


Coloring with Reese

Bo working on beads (check out his cute TCU football jersey- Ashton will need one of those!)

Making a puppet with daddy

Ashton got lots of snuggles

More snuggles
She loved us singing Happy Birthday to her. With as shy as she is, she really loved being the center of attention on her day.

Chowing down
I know this picture is blurry, but it totally depicts the present-opening frenzy that happened when we got home.

Other than that minor(!) issue, the party was perfect. There were stations for the kids to paint, make hats and crowns, make puppets, color and make bead necklaces. It was really quite precious. After the kids crafted for an hour or so, we sat down for cupcakes and snacks and then everyone went home for naps.
PS- I tried to get cute pictures of all the kids there but it just didn't happen. 3 year olds are hard to photograph. Not pictured- sweet Ethan. Sorry kiddo.


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Friday night fun

We are in party season around here. Seriously, between the holidays, TCU football, Emerson's birthday and all of her friend’s birthday parties, we have been doing some serious celebrating lately. Don't get me wrong, it is a nice change from the summer when we had nothing to do every single weekend but it is getting a little exhausting. And Halloween has not even come yet. Oh well, we are enjoying it while we can.

On Friday, one of Emerson's friends had a birthday party and then we went straight to the TCU homecoming parade. It seemed ambitious for us to attempt to attend both but the schedule actually turned out to be quite perfect. From 4:30 to 6pm we celebrated a birthday and ate dinner and cake. Then we did a quick wardrobe change (Emy HAD to be in her TCU cheerleader outfit for the parade) and booked it over to campus. The parade ended and not 30 seconds later it started pouring rain. We all got a little wet on the way to the car but had a good time...that is, except Ashton. Poor guy had a meltdown all the way home. It was sad. Really sad. Friday night festivities are just too much for him.

The birthday party was for one of Emerson’s classmates this year. His name is Luke and I swear Emy has a crush on him. She sits with him at lunch and when she talks about him she has a little grin about her. It is sweet. Anyways, Luke’s grandparents have a house in Fort Worth that is on a huge, tree covered lot. They played that up and did a construction themed party. It was super cute. The entire time I was telling myself to take mental notes since I will be planning boy birthday parties in the future. They had cardboard houses to paint, sandboxes for digging, a bounce house and an actual construction digger for climbing on and exploring. Luke’s mom gave all the “workers” plastic hard hats, Lowe’s tool aprons and inflatable hammers. Seriously, it was a cute party.

Emerson and Izzy hammering golf tees into a pumpkin

Painting a house

Sitting in the digger (or whatever it is called)

Looking totally tiny in this enormous piece of equipment

The birthday boy. Cute, huh?

Ashton just hung out and got a lot of attention from Izzy and Mari

After the party we drove less than 2 miles to the TCU campus and got situated for the parade. We ran into several families that we knew since it was homecoming weekend. The kids ran around while we waited for the parade to start. When it started, the girls were all lined up on the curb waiting to see what was going to happen. When the candy and purple beads started flying, the girls got so excited. Now, let me pause here to tell you that I actually teared up at the parade. I know that I am postpartum and the hormones are still messed up but there is something about sitting and cheering for your alma mater with your child who is genuinely as excited as you are. It was a really sweet moment that I hope I never forget.

Here is a cute story: When the cheerleaders passed us, you should have seen Emerson’s face. Awe is the only appropriate word to describe it. Her eyes were huge and completely focused on them. She didn’t move a muscle. I asked her, “Emerson, do you like the cheerleaders?” and her response (without taking her eyes off them) was a quiet and simple, “Yea”. It was like her little brain was already trying to figure out how to get to be one someday. It was so cute.
Trying to get the girls to look at the camera. This is the closest I got. I promised they loved it although they all look miserable.

Being coy for the camera

Ashton got to hang out with daddy

By the time we got home it was time for baths and bed. We had to make sure Emerson got her rest for the big birthday party the next morning. More on that later…


Monday, October 25, 2010

Happy 3rd Birthday Emerson!

Birthday party recap post coming soon!


Saturday, October 16, 2010

Pumpkin carving

Emy and Steve carved our pumpkin today. Emerson was enthusiastic about picking out the pumpkin and the design of the carving. She was not, however, interested in helping pick out the pumpkin seeds. "Daddy, it's yucky!" were her exact words.

And for fun, here is a glimpse into the many faces of Emerson:

Here is what Ashton was doing while Emy and Steve carved the pumpkin