Friday, May 09, 2014

Go Rebels!

We have had some fun times in Oxford over the last year.  Football and Baseball games in Oxford are the best.  I don't care what team you cheer for, Ole Miss and the Grove is where it's at.  We did travel to a few away games too.

The 2012 season took Ole Miss to the BBVA Compass Bowl against Pittsburgh in Birmingham, AL in January 2013 (yeah, Pittsburgh *crickets*). Awesome thing is that our good friends from Koz had just moved to B'ham so we got to be their first house guests and crash their new house!  Yay!  The Rebs won 38-17 probably because my kids were so freaking cute in their Ole Miss gear...and because it's Pittsburgh...(yeah, Pittsburgh *crickets*)  Well we didn't go to the game - the dads went to the game.  The kiddos and moms just hung out.

Are you ready!?!

Hell yeah!

And we went to a baseball game last Spring.  If you haven't taken your kiddos to an Ole Miss baseball game please do so. It's a whole lot of fun....well it was for us.  It's a nice safe closed in area and has a play ground section.  And they have sno cones.  Us Hawkins folks are suckers for sno cones.

Plus, when you are a diva, such as Reid, then anywhere you go will be a fun glamorous time.

Then foozeball season started back up and we were READY!
The first game we traveled to was the Vanderbilt game in Nashville (August 2013). Chip's best friends from college live in Nashville and we are always looking for excuses to go hang out with them!
Hill had just had his 3rd surgery to repair his cleft and we may or may not have arranged for his follow up appointment in Memphis to be around this football game. Memphis straight on to Nashville.

Having a picnic in the Sanders kitchen
Reid in the walker, Hill in the construction safety vest,
Kellan by the fridge while Murphy the dog watches on.
Craig's mom was awesome enough to watch Reid and Kellan 
while we all went to the game.  
Thank you Mrs. Sanders!

Hill was a jewel throughout the game. Also, Vanderbilt has the best freaking hot dogs on the planet.  I swear I will talk about that damn hot dog the rest of my life.
Towards the end Hill got a little ansy so Lyndsay and I took him to the car.  
Meanwhile, Ole Miss had everyone pacing.  I was getting texts from Chip that can not be repeated, I'm pretty sure he almost had heart failure.  In the end, Ole Miss brought it home...crazy.

Vandy Game 2013
Ok, then there was this trip....2013 Ole Miss vs A&M
October 12, 2013
This is the trip I'm pretty sure Chip was so tired of dealing with 3 kids in the back seat.
Reid, Hill and Me.

This terd jacked with me the whole 2 hour trip

I'm not touching you!
Can you see the amusement on my face...
she says sarcastically.
 Then we got out of the car and had freedom in the Grove
left to right
front Harvey & Emory Hart
middle Hazel & Reid
Back Tanner & Hill

This little angel and I had a fun time at the game

because she slept the entire time
No clue how she slept it was SO LOUD!
Everyone around us was like, seriously?  She's asleep?
Rebs ended up losing to A&M 41-38 what a tense game.
A good game though!

New Year & New Things!

The month of January marks a new year 
and a lot of new/firsts for the kiddos.

Reid's first snow
January 2012
Heaven save my soul... my hair was so dark and drab and funky.  
Glad I got over that look...not soon enough.

Then as I mentioned in a previous post about Mama Lou being in a wreck and breaking her arms.  Reid and I went to visit her in Texas in January 2013 and give her get well kisses.  
So this is Reid's first airplane ride.
She was 10 weeks old and a super trooper.

She got a window seat

She slept

And slept some more in the Bjorn

Hill had his first spend the night friend, Tanner!

Big Guys!  1-30-13
This next picture has a story and it is quite HILARIOUS.  Hill got his bike for his 2nd birthday.  He wanted to go and ride through the neighborhood...little did he know our neighborhood is not flat.
He got off a couple of times to just walk.  FYI - It's hard pushing a stroller and a bike.  Finally we just left the bike on the side of the street and came back around on our walk to get it later on.  I had him get back on and ride it home.  Here's how the conversation went...

Hill: (in a gasping for air breathing hard over dramatized manner) Mama. My legs, they are burning. Oh, they are on fire mama.  My knees, mama. Mama, my knees are broken.  I can't move them any more. Oh mama, my legs can't peddle any more.  oh, mama.  Mama, "hep" me. a quarter mile behind him laughing so hard trying not to pee my pants.

Riding the bike sans drama 1-23-2013

Then this is January 2014
Eating brownies...on our head!
and my sweet babies feeding Reid's babies
Melt. My. Heart.

Over the River and Through the Woods - To the Coast We GO!

For those of ya'll that know us, if we aren't in the Land of Koz we are on the Coast.  It's our happy place and when I say coast I mean the Mississippi Coast and not the beach part...the water.  
I gently remind you that the things I dislike the most in life are glitter and sand.  Eekk.

I've lost track of how many times we've been to the coast since Reid was born.  I know she was there when she was like mere days old.  I was on maternity leave and she wanted to see her Aunt-y J.C. (Aunt Jane Claire) and JC lives on the coast so it's like double whammy awesome all rolled into one when we get coast trips like that. 

Here is a snapshot of my favorite peeps in America
December 2012

We went to a parade in March 2013 was Mardi Gras and she's covering her eyes.

 And because I don't want to hold my kids back from any experiences 
some times I have to take one for the team.

Like sitting in the sand

So she can say she's been on the beach

and then get over it
 I feel ya sister.  It's not all it's cracked up to be.

But moments like this are pretty precious
My guys headed to Ship Island
about to board the Ferry

And hanging out with our cousins at our favorite eatery
The Sycamore House in Bay St. Louis.
Do yourself a favor and eat there.
 This was our trip to the coast with the 
Warrington folk in March 2014
Hill and Hazel counting for Hide & Seek

Me and my bugga boo

Hill & Harvey fishing buds

Good Catch Buckaroo!

The guys showing off

I love this picture of Hill poking the fish eye

Whoa there Catch O' The Day!

Hey, this thing is bigger than I am!?!

It's a hard life folks.

But a beautiful view

with a lotta Jesus

Superheroes, Lemonade & Pirates

What do Superheroes, Lemonade & Pirates all have in common?

This is the ultimate of all ultimate photos.  Hands down, my favorite in the universe.

Captain America and Hulk

Hill had a superhero 2nd birthday party...
.....and this was the cover of his invitation

This was before the tennis courts at the Country Club were torn down.  I drew the sky scrapers and had him lay down with his cape on and drew wind behind him.  Still cracks me up.

Batman (Hill) and Superman (Judson)

All the ladies were super into Hill,
especially once he got his new set of wheels.
Maci sure was digging on him.

It wouldn't be a superhero party IF superheroes didn't come!
All of the girls were scared to death of them,
but the guys were like What! What!

 Then Miss Priss had her Lemonade Party
Sweet Little Mama
All of the pics for Reid's party are on my Mac.  I'll have to do a recap of her big day soon!

 Then Hill had a Pirate Party for his 3rd birthday 
Our Tree House served as the Pirate Headquarters

Even Katie participated.
Argh Katie!

The birthday boy and AWESOME shirt
Mrs. Whitney made him

Friends and doesn't get much better than that.
Can I get an Amen?

Where does the time go?  These babies are just tiny babies and the days and years keep flashing by!  
I love birthdays, they are my favorite. I don't love them getting older!

Thursday, May 08, 2014

Cliff Notes version of Christmas 2012 & 2013

Keeping on with the chronological aspect of things I figure we better cover Christmas of 2012 and 2013.

Here's what I have....
Christmas Tree of 2012
(my friend Whit made my tree skirt -
it's reversible and awesome)

The gift that he STILL to this day,
 and we are in May 2014, puts on weekly

Hill Captain America racked up on superhero stuff
Christmas morning

Here is the Commemorative 2012 Christmas Photo
Hill looks like such a tiny baby too!
So, Christmas morning 2012 was good.  I'm not a big over the top gifter.  I collect things throughout the year (aka catch things on sale) to gift them at Christmas and then Santa bring a big item and maybe a truck or doll or something.  I like to keep things real and about sweet 8lb baby Jesus.  I love birthday's and so therefore it's not just about opening presents day for the kiddos when Christmas comes around.  Do you get presents on your friends birthdays?  No.  Plus, their birthday's are like the day before and the day after Christmas so I don't want to have crap toy over load that makes me pull out my hair because my OCD can't keep all this stuff in it's place.
Hill pretty much got superhero everything.  I think all in all Reid had a good first Christmas she slept, ate and pooped.  Sounds phenomenal to me.  Hill "helped" her open her presents which consisted of pretty much diapers. He opened one big box of diapers looked at me and said, "This is not a good present."

Now, Christmas 2013

A magical magical fairy came and decorated
our house for Christmas

The Elf theme and whimsical colors were
Redonk-ulously cute.

Even my mantel was decorated
Long story short - yeah right, who am I kidding I can't tell a short story!  My friend Megan and her mom, Sherrie, and their uber talented selves came to our house while we were in Texas visiting my friends (more on that in another post.)  This was all pre-planned.  I gave Megan a budget and creative freedom to do whatever.  All I have to say about that is I am still not sure exactly A) how they made all of this come together B) how Megan did it with my stupid tiny budget C) how this awesomeness is in my house!  I felt like I walked into a freaking Southern Living Magazine house when we got home!

They did not leave out any details.  Doug our Elf got a mailbox that we could stick letters in to for Santa.  My Christmas cards were hung from strips of burlap and clothes pins adorned at the top with ELF PANTS stuffed with tinsel!  Are you kidding me?  Who thinks of this stuff?  Santa left cookies and candy on a tray in our kitchen.  My dining room table and buffet had ensembles that I will never be able to replicate.  Needless to say, it was Ah-mazing.

There is one thing I left out though.  It's a story all in itself.  Megan is such a thoughtful giving person. She's our friend that when Chip's mom, Adrienne, died made us this chocolate chip cake straight from heaven above.  It's Chip's fav.  People ate this cake, which was the intention, right?  Well Chip didn't want to share it, but they ate some of it.  So he had me call Megan and ask if she'd make us another one.  Who does that?  "Hey, that cake was so good but Chip wanted to eat the whole thing by himself, can you make another one just for him?"  That's seriously how the conversation went.  By that night, Chip had his own cake.  Meanwhile, as we have Megan slaving making cakes, her mom Sherrie who was Adrienne's best friend helped us make it through that rough time.  During Adrienne's sickness Sherrie was who we called on, but never had to really call on her because she was always there and knew what was needed.  She did everything, all of Adrienne's friends did everything.  Without those precious ladies I am not too sure how Chip and I would have made it through that time, at. all.  So, as I continue on about this Christmas story....

Sherrie and Megan didn't leave out any detail.  Seriously, if they hadn't have done this, my kids may not have had a Christmas tree in 2013.  I wasn't going to set it up - where would that time come from? They said they had a great time doing this for us. They did it because Snooks (Adrienne) would have wanted them to have this whimsical fun bright cheery Christmas decor and fun surprise to walk into when arriving back from TX....and the toy tractors and ball toy that were left under the tree by Doug the Elf from Santa while they were gone.

So, we get in from Texas.  It's late.  Kids are asleep in the car and you have to do the - fingers crossed unbuckle the car seat lift them out of it and carry them into the house to their bed - thing.  Hoping they don't wake up.  Well it worked for Hill, got him to bed and tucked in for the night.  Reid on the other hand I wasn't so smooth about. Got her out of the car, carried her inside and she woke up. Mesmerized by the lights on the Christmas tree.  Doug the Elf and his magic mailbox. The stockings hung with lights and bright colors.  All of the Christmas photos hanging from the french doors....and the ball toy just for her.  So we played with her toy touched the decorations and she went back to sleep.

At 6:00 the next morning Hill bee bops into our bedroom...."MAMA!  There is stuff in our house! A Christmas TREE! Doug must have done this!  Mama! I saw tractors under the tree!  Any other day after traveling 13 hours in a car and beyond exhausted I'd have been like, juice is in the fridge, go turn on your tv in your room and don't go outside.  *snor-snor* Yet, I knew that I couldn't just leave him to figure out this magical wonderland that has become our house!  I got up really excited for him.  We walked around and looked at everything.  I read him the letter from Doug explaining things and that the tractors under the tree were his.  We opened the box and played tractors for a minute.  I was still exhausted.  I asked him if it was ok if he played tractors in his room and watched tv for a bit but if he needed me he could come get me in my bed.  That was at 7am.  Reid woke up at like 8 so Chip got up with her and Hill and they let let me sleep.  At about 8:30 Chip comes into our bedroom.  "Uhh, Rachel" - that's never a good sign-  "Sorry to wake you but I need to tell you this story."

Chip got up and tended to the kids and in all the hub bub of the kids excitement Chip dotted on Hill about his tractors.  "Man those are awesome!" he said.   Hill looked up and asked Chip, "Who is your friend that was with Snooks?"  Chip, who is a non believer in anything spirit / ghost like in the afterlife was confused.  You have to understand that Hill never met Snooks.  She died the August before he was born.  We talk about her and keep her spirit alive through memories but he's never mentioned word of her, much less about who was with her.  Chip asked Hill what he meant about his "friend with Snooks."  Hill elaborated that Snooks came to visit him and play tractors.  She had a friend with her and he was a man.  Snooks said it was his daddy's friend.  She went on to tell Hill about how she use to take care of his daddy when he was his age.  Hill said she played with the little tractors and he played with the big one.

This is when Chip came in to wake me up.  He told me the conversation that took place and he- the nonbeliever of afterlife visitation- was stumped.  Hill couldn't have made this up, he knew that.  And on the cusp of the whole spirit of Christmas done in memory of Snooks.  Hill didn't know any of this, he thought Doug the elf was the mastermind behind the wintery whimsical wonderland our house had turned into.

I got up and prodded the conversation a tad. It was the exact story Chip told me.  "Daddy's friend and Snooks came to visit me and play tractors.  Snooks said she would come back again to play with me but that she had to go."  I calculated in my mind.  I went back to bed at 7am and Chip woke up with Reid at 8am.  This had to have happened within that hour. He was well awake by that time so it wasn't a dream.  Even so, what a dream.  Later Hill and I went in his room to play tractors.  I asked how Snooks played with him.  I meticulously asked questions so they were not open ended or formed any persuasion of the answer.  Hill had to come up with the answers on his own.  He's a very flamboyant story teller so you know when he makes stuff up.  He said she had the little tractors and Snooks was making "vroom vroom noises" when moving them around.  Daddy's friend never talked or said anything, he was nice though.  Through a series of conversations with Hill I now know that Snooks came through the door of his room like you and I would.  He was not scared and knew who she was even though he'd never met her before.  They played, she referred to taking care of Chip when he was little.  She said she'd be back and then she left.  She has yet to revisit Hill, but what an awesome feeling knowing that she's looking after my family.

Of course I immediately called Megan, in tears.  I feel that because of her and her mom Snooks came to visit.  I'm not sure if it was the spirit of season and her being the reason this magical Christmas came to fruition, if it was to play with Hill, or if it was to let Chip know that she's truly here watching over us and that was needed to be proven through the innocence of his own child.  It doesn't matter, it's an awesome story and one I will always remember.  Makes my heart happy.....just like this picture.

2013 Christmas Photo

Hill had his Christmas program at school....he it was a success!  He didn't break down and dance this time on stage, but he did look mighty mighty adorable....


On Stage

I think he was looking for us the whole time instead of singing.
Why do I think that?
Because the teacher said, "Don't look for your parents in the crowd"
These cutie pattoties before the show

I die.
This photo is like the epitome of Reid.
I shall title it "The Epitome of Reid"
Cheesy, Hilarious, Messy, Eating 24-7, Into Everything...
and Adorable
There are 2,489 other Christmas pictures, but this hit the highlights.
Cliff Notes version of Christmas 2012 & 2013