Happy 2nd Birthday Sophie Grace

Hey you guys! Ashley here today – about to wax poetic about my little girl’s birthday. 😉

Today my baby girl turns two. Two. I really can’t believe it. Time flies so quickly when  you measure it against the growth and development of your children. I know that it may seem silly to some people that I would write a blog post to my two year old child. The thing is that we live in such a wonderful time where we have this beautiful thing called the internet. You don’t have to be someone of any significance to have your words immortalized online. I think it’s amazing that there are moms, dads, aunts, uncles, grandparents, friends and so on – putting their thoughts and ideas online. Our children and descendants will be have access to the word of the everyday man. My children will be able to look back and better know the person that I am through my words. They will be able to see world and life events from my perspective in a way that would not be possible without the internet and social media. Soo anyway, I had some things I wanted to say in honor of the life Sophie has led so far, and the limitless possibilities that lie ahead for her.

Sophie Grace I am so lucky to be your mommy. A daughter was something I hoped for but never expected to have. You have this ability to make the people around you melt to your will and desire. I see you make your stubborn Daddy do things and give into things without hesitation just because it’s you asking. You are happy and generous, but you know exactly what you want and aren’t afraid to let us know if you, “No like it. No like it.”  I hope that you always stay that way. I hope that you are forever true to yourself. Sometimes we lose that ability as we age. I want you to know that I named you Grace after your aunt because she is so important to me – and she’s an amazing woman – just like you are to me and just like I know you will be when you grow up. I want you to always remember that you share this birthday with my Mimi (your great grandmother) who is also an amazing woman. I wish that you could have known her better. Thankfully, I did and I feel like I have parts of her influence in me that I get to share with you.

 

Most of all I want you to know that you are loved and cherished beyond measure. You were the missing piece to our lives that we didn’t know we needed, but could never live without now.

 

Soso – you are just lovely. I love you, and I hope this birthday – and all the ones to follow – are all that you want and need.

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So, today you turn TWO and here are some things about you:

You love the movie Moana and this show on Netflix called Masha the Bear. You’ve watched both of these no less than fifty times(maybe a hundred??). You know the songs from Moana, and you sing along with them which is just probably the most cute thing ever. Like. Ever.

You say so many things. I can’t even begin to count the amount of words you say, and since your brother struggled with speaking…having a tiny little person running around who can speak so well is continually surreal. You are by no means chatty, but your vocabulary is incredibly extensive.

You are so chill. You don’t need other humans. You are content to spending long stretches of time alone. Sometimes I can forget that you are even there with me. Don’t ever let anyone tell you that’s not ok. I identify with that. I love that about you.

The only time you are not chill is when you aren’t getting your way. Lately, it seems we are seeing some typical “terrible 2’s” behavior. You throw some impressive fits, and the way you writhe on the ground while shaking your pointer finger at me saying, “no no” does nothing but make me smile. Cause you’re cute even when you’re mad. 😉

You LOVE your baba (aka the bottle). I’m going to try to start taking it away from you – I am fearful of this endeavor. Your baba is a source of comfort for you that is unmatched by any other object. So. We shall see.

You love for me to read to you. One of your favorite books is, ‘The Potty Train’. Hopefully soon we’ll actually be potty trained. 😉

You generally just go with the flow of things. You don’t mind a last minute change to routine which makes things easy – and that is nice. However, you do like to lounge in bed when you first wake up….gotta have that wake up time THEN you’ll be ready to start the day without a fuss.

And one of MY favorite things about you… 😉 You love shoppin … especially shoppin at Target.  

Week In Review: Rhonda

Another week has gone by and THANK YOU for stopping in again to see what I’ve been up to.  Honestly, I feel like I’m autopilot a lot lately.  It’s been awhile since I had a parenting break.  Fortunately, I have a long one starting Saturday.  Trust me, we ALL need it.

Monday through Thursday were pretty typical.  School, business, and domestic shit – including, but not limited to, breaking a vintage pyrex mixing bowl.

Friday I lifted weights for the first time since moving into the new house.  It was actually under 90 degrees for once, so working out in the garage was a perfect solution.  I smashed the workout, then ran some errands with the kids before coming home to do more domestic shit.  I love starting a weekend with a clean house!

Starting the weekend with a clean house allowed me to be able to sunbathe all weekend again.  Claudia and I totally enjoyed the lower temps.

She got her first haircut.  She had nonstop asked for me to cut it, so I gave in and I have to admit, it looks a lot better.

There is literally nothing I love more than lounging in the sun with a cocktail and some great music.  Sealing in my color before it gets too cool and I am loving the way I feel in my skin.

Did you have nice weather this week?  What did you do?

Week In Review: Rhonda

Dang, it’s Monday?!  Only discovered that when I saw that Ashley posted the recap of her week.  I guess I’ll update you on MY life.  I’m sure you’re just dying to hear all about it.

You all know what Monday was – big eclipse day!  Well, it was also our first day back to school and we had a great day!  We watched the big event live on NASA’s Facebook feed all day.  Later I found Harper using a flashlight to recreate the eclipse.  I love watching his mind work.

Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday were pretty basic.  Figuring out a school routine and general household and work duties.

I got a great surprise Friday when I woke up and Stuart was still in the bed, smiling at me.  He had taken the day off unexpectedly and it made my day.  He helped me with school, which the kids really seemed to enjoy.  We played Trivial Pursuit, during which we discovered Nick has never heard of Levi’s.

Saturday, we took another trip to IKEA, this time with two kids.  We spent so much time there, during which we LOST CLAUDIA.  We were in the kitchen area of the showroom and Quentin was marveling over some stools.  We mentioned that we were headed to the dining tables to take another look at the one we wanted.  Some baby girl hobbled over and touched my leg and I looked down expecting it to be Claudia. It was not and it was then that we realized Claudia was not with us.  Panic.  I immediately turned around and retraced my steps, thinking she got turned around in the crowded store.  Stuart and Quentin were searching the surrounding kitchens.  When I didn’t find her in the last few areas we had been, I switched directions and went ahead.  I found her with an employee who was calling to report her found.  Turns out she had wandered off and a customer found her standing alone.  Scariest moment of my parenting so far.  It was probably only 2 minutes, but it felt like an hour.  Once that nightmare was over, we finished shopping, picked up Claudia’s bed from a friend, and headed home for a late dinner.

Sunday, we started putting together our lovely IKEA haul and that was quite the adventure.  Quentin and Claudia were surprisingly helpful. Stuart’s coworker Jim came over in the evening with his power tools to help with one of the more complicated assemblies in exhange for a steak.

 

Week In Review: Ashley

Monday – Hmmm what did we do Monday. Just the usual. I woke up at six and started my day by getting ready. Then at about a quarter til seven the chaos of getting a four year old to dress himself and rangle a 1.5 year old began. We all survived to leave the house and head to work, school, and grandparents for the day. After all that? Well we had chores, dinner, and playing until bath/bed time. 🙂

Tuesday – I ended up being off this day instead of Wednesday. Cooper and Sophie had dentist appointments at 9 and 9:30 that morning. The dentist again? Yup. This time Cooper had a cleaning and Sophie was there for her 2 yr old check in. She turns two in September so we went ahead and got that taken care of since Cooper was there for a cleaning anyway. They both did great. I don’t know if you guys remember me telling you about Cooper falling and hitting his two front teeth a couple weeks ago? That was why were just at the dentist a couple weeks ago. Well they are both loose, but the one on the right has started to darken in color and die. So, it looks like we will have a toothless wonder soon. Otherwise, the dentist said his teeth look fantastic. 🙂

Wednesday to Friday – See Monday above for details..lol Same ole same ole. Although, Friday Cooper missed school because he was running a fever.

Saturday – We spent the day at Grammy and Ppop’s . The kids have been sick so they were a little under the weather. Plus it rained most the day…which you guys know is just my absolute favorite. Not. Cooper stayed at my parent’s house that night, while Soso came home with me. We stopped by Kohl’s on the way home to do a little shopping. Their towels were on sale plus I had coupon so I was able to get us some much needed new towels for the house. That night I cut up the old ones to use as rags. Super exciting Saturday night… 😉

Sunday – Thankfully, there was no rain! We had lunch at my sister’s house that day. Cooper had another low fever so we went home that afternoon for some rest and naps. Both kids have had a cold for about a month now that they just can’t seem to shake. I thought it was just their immune systems adjusting to Cooper being exposed to new germs from school. However, I’m now thinking there may be more going on. Anyway, we shall see when we go to the doctor. 🙂 I ended the night with Game of Thrones and an early bed time.

 

Hope you guys had a fantastic week and weekend! What were y’all up to?

Week In Review: Ashley

Well well…look who’s late to the party? Anyway, I made it…with a few hours to spare! So, let’s see what we were up to last week….

Monday & Tuesday – Usualness allll around over here. Per usual. 😉 Work, school, pick up kids, play time, make dinner (that they don’t eat), break up fights, threaten them with time out, sneak in some kisses and sweet cuddles…then bath and bed time at 7:30.

Wednesday – We were up bright and early to take Coop to school. I told him that after school we’d have to come straight home for naps. However, after Sophie and I met up with Aunt Grace at Target, after school drop off, I decided that we’d surprise Coop and go straight to the Trampoline Park after I picked him up. Wednesday night was Wine Wednesday on our Facebook page. Rhonda and I went live to discuss life…and whatever else came to mind with a glass of wine in hand. It was a lot of fun…make sure you’re there next week to catch the fun!

Friday night there was some shopping…Marshall’s has some super cute home decor stuff out right now. I also stopped by Kohl’s. These two songs are my current obsessions: Jule Vera Bad Company and Imagine Dragons Believer

Saturday – There was actually not another trip to Target. That picture is from Wednesday….. 😉 There was wine and catching up on West World…and some face masks…and as always..meme searching.  I spent Saturday Day at my parents.

Sunday – I had tentative plans to take the kids to the beach BUT of course it rained. Again. Like almost every other day since the beginning of May. So we went back to Grammy and Ppop’s for some family time …and yummy food.  And of course Sunday night was Game of Thrones. 🙂

What were YOU guys up to this past week???

Mommy Confessions Volume III

 

Hey y’all, and welcome back to another installment of Mommy Confessions. This is where we talk about things that we do…thoughts we have.. things we don’t do…as mothers…that are not usually widely accepted. I mean. It’s what we do. This is Rage Against the MOMachine..is it not? 😉

Ok, so Ashley here today to spill the beans on one of my Mommy Confessions. Are you dying to know? Are you sitting on the edge of your seat?

Alright. Alright. WHAT is it you say?

Here’s the thing. I don’t censor myself in front of my kids. Specifically I don’t censor my language which is what I’m here to mainly talk about today. However, I don’t censor much of anything. I don’t censor my body. I don’t censor the music I listen to. I don’t censor conversations I have around them (unless it’s a surprise for them – or something that would just hurt them). I definitely don’t censor my opinion.

Before I became a parent and even during those first few months of Cooper’s life – I felt like at some point I’d have to start giving up all those things I listed above. I’d have to watch the words I use, because heaven forbid he says a curse word. I thought that basically I’d have to not be myself in front of my kids. The thing is… That’s crazy. I know that as they grow their view of me will change. They will lose that childlike innocence that they see everything and everyone through; however, I don’t want them to be in middle school or high school and wake up one day and realize that I’m not actually the person I portrayed myself to be in front of them.

I know that we all have different value and belief sets. I know that language I use or behaviors I exhibit may not be acceptable under someone else’s set of values or beliefs. I’m not here to shame you because you don’t cuss in front of your kids or let them listen to music with mature lyrics. I’m just saying that in my household, those things are non issues. So why would I censor that?

Cooper recently picked up the word ‘fucking’. I know exactly where he heard it. I use it. I don’t use it in a derogatory manner. I don’t use it in reference to it’s sexual meaning in front of him. I use it as an expletive. Maybe we’re behind someone driving frustratingly slow..I might says “Geez why are you going so fucking slow?” I don’t use it all the time. He picked it up though. He uses it just like I do. At first I didn’t even really acknowledge it – other than to ask him why he said it. We were sitting in the Target parking lot and there was this huge very nice white pickup sitting across from us in the parking lot. Cooper says, “Mommy!! Will you just look at that fucking truck?!” He was in awe of it. It WAS a nice looking truck. I think a legitimate use of the word …right? 🙂

Anyway, I told everyone I was ok with it. I told his grandparents that if they didn’t want him using that word in their homes  – to tell him just that. I DIDN’T want anyone making a huge ordeal over it. Drawing attention to his use of that word. I didn’t want anyone to give that word more power than it should have.

For a while it was just here and there that he used it. Then all of a sudden it seemed like he was using it every single day. Just to describe things. On the Fourth of July he was looking out the window at his Uncle Shane’s new lawnmower and said, “Look at that new fucking lawn mower.” Why? Because he was impressed by it.

He’s going to school now, and he needs to know socially accepted use of language and behaviors. Also, even though I have no problem with the use of the word fuck…I don’t want to hear it in every single sentence. From anyone. So I started just suggesting other words. He asked me why I did that. I let him know that there was nothing wrong with the word fucking…but isn’t it boring to use the same word to describe everything you’re excited by? He agreed. He’s a pretty smart four year old .. 😉

The bottom line is… I can’t be a hypocrite. I can’t use words that I’m telling my children to not use. So I don’t do that.

 

Week In Review: Ashley

Hey y’all hey! Hope you guys have had a good week and weekend. Have you been dying to know what we were up to? You were?! Great…let me fill you in then. 😉

Monday & Tuesday- normal everyday stuff. This was Cooper’s first week at DayCare. He’s going half days Monday through Friday. I was pretty much a wreck starting Sunday night. I am super great at compartmentalizing things and not thinking about something until I have to actually deal with it. I knew Cooper would be starting school on Monday…but I just didn’t allow myself to really dwell on it until Sunday night. My stomach was in knots. He was SUPER excited. My hands were literally shaking as I filled out some last minute paperwork at the school that morning, and I promptly shed many tears when I got back in my car. Cooper had a fantastic day though!

Wednesday- I was off work, and we started to see some weather affects of Tropical Storm Cindy. Sophie and I dropped Cooper off at school though, because it really wasn’t even raining for most of the day. 🙂 PLUS he still wanted to go. So, Soso and I killed time at WalMart and visiting Grammy at work, because it was her birthday. Around lunch, we headed back to school to pick up Coop. We grabbed some lunch…then headed home to eat and commence nap time. I can’t really remember what else we did…I’m pretty sure I grocery shopped that day. Not positive though.

Thursday- I had to work. The weather was bad thanks to TS Cindy.  There was lots of rain. Cooper’s school was even closed. We all survived though. Starbucks was still open, which I was very grateful for. 😉

Friday- We had work and school of course, but that night I got to hang out with my sister and brother in law who had just gotten back from Europe on Wednesday night. Grace and I had dinner with our friends Michael & Michael – then we headed to meet up with Grace’s husband, Dejan, at their new house. Grace and Dejan got back in to town on Wednesday night and closed on their new home Friday morning! This was my first time seeing the inside. We hung out there for a while talking and catching up before we went to downtown Ocean Springs to grab a drink.

Saturday & Sunday- Just the usual hanging out at Grammy and Ppop’s for the day on Saturday. I got my haircut that afternoon. Saturday night and morning I did spend quite a bit of time catching up on some shows on HULU. Sunday was a lazy day. I picked Cooper up around lunch time and we just spent the rest of the day hanging at home…with a short trip to Walmart for some more groceries.

And that is all folks! What were you guys up to??

Week In Review : Ashley

 

Hey hey! So glad to see you guys back for another look at what we did last week. What did we do? Not much really. Just the usual. Did I take a lot of pictures? Heck no. But what’s new??

So anyway. Let’s just start with Wednesday – you know as we usually do. Monday WAS Memorial Day, but we talked about that in the last WIR.

Wednesday we lounged around the house. The kids drug out all their toys, because would it really be playing unless every single toy was out of the toy box and half brought into the living room? Yeah. I didn’t think so. I mean. At least that’s how it goes around our house. We did manage to get our act together though and get dressed for the day at a reasonable time. Look at those cuties in their matching outfits!!

We went to the ‘park by the beach’ per Soso’s request. Sophie is finally at the age where I let her go on her own on the play equipment. I still hover close by, because she is still likely to easily fall down or you know, just walk off the side. But hey, we’re getting to more independence. 🙂

After about thirty minutes of play time the bottom fell out and we were confined to the pavilion. I had actually remembered to bring the bubbles, which were a big hit to pass the time as we waited for the rain to slack off. The kids ended up having a blast playing with each other under that pavilion.

Friday night the babies stayed with Grammy and Ppop, and mommy got to spend some time with Aunt Grace and Uncle Dejan. Their flight to Dallas then London that was supposed to leave Friday afternoon was delayed and then cancelled. That sucked for them. BUT we all got some extra time to see them before they left for two weeks. So yeah. We had mexican for dinner and then saw Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. It was a really great night. Saturday morning we all just hung out at my parents, and that afternoon I took Grace and Dejan to the airport. They are currently in London having a blast and sending us some amazing pictures. 🙂

Doesn’t that look amazing? 🙂 Anyway, what you all up to this past week?

Week In Review: Ashley

Well Well look who has finally made it to the party.. I know slacker. {{raises hand}} It’s almost nine pm and I’m just now getting up my WIR. I had an early doctor’s appointment this morning that jacked up my whole morning routine of writing my WIR. Ah well. I’m here now. Better late than never…right?? 😉

OK. So what did we do….what did we do… just the usual. Duh. 😉

This is what Wednesday morning looked like. Just LOOK at those cuties having a moment of sibling bonding and love time. No fighting. Just cuddling. I can’t tell you how big that made me smile. 🙂 🙂

After that brief moment of sweet baby love…there was plenty of whining from a four year old who shall go unnamed. He was ready to G – O. And well. Mommy wasn’t. So after much anticipation we loaded up and headed toward WalMart. It was for sure one of those days that before we even pulled out of the driveway, I told Coop we need a reset. He was a on a different level that day and it wasn’t even 11 am. He needed to chill. Mommy needed to chill. There were tears and yelling already. So we both agreed to calm down. He agreed to check his attitude. And well I agreed to just let it go. So breathed in and out for a few minutes…then I pointed the car toward WalMart.

We grabbed some things I needed for my front porch project. Have you checked that post out yet?? You totally should. Then we hit up another nature trail – per Coop’s insistent request ALLLLL morning. I said I let that go right? Ok. For real. Letting it go….. 😉

These two love to be outside. Cooper loves to ‘explore’. I can’t say I don’t enjoy it either. 🙂

After the trail they both took naps and I worked on the front porch…Sophie woke up before her brother so she got to join me out front while I finished up.

After Cooper woke up we took my car to the car wash for a much needed bath – and then of course we had to go to Target. It’s not a day off without a Target trip. 😉

Thursday night. Well that night there was wine. It was a drama filled night for me. I’ll leave it there. Just know I drank wine and stayed up way to late.

Friday night I washed my hair and then played with some new bright eye shadows I got. Just for fun. Just for experimentation. Because…why not? 🙂 Rocking Friday night peeps. Do be jealous. 😉

Saturday we chilled at Grammy and Ppop’s. Coop stayed the night…so just a super duper tired Sophie came home with me. There was lots of chilling in the room while she watched TV and I browsed social media. After she went to bed I did some YouTube binge watching. 🙂 🙂

Sunday was Mother’s Day. I dressed Sophie like my twin. And treated myself to some makeup. We also had the entire family over that day for Mother’s Day Lunch. It was really great. Such a good day. Even Cooper told me at bed time “Mommy, I love mother’s day. Maybe we can have another one sometime???”. He’s the absolute sweetest. My parents helped him get some flowers and when he walked in that morning and handed them to me telling me “HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!” I literally had to fight back tears over those fake flowers and that sweet little boy’s proclamation! Man. It’s moments like that …. that make the tough mom moments totally worth it. 🙂

So that was our week. Was it worth the wait? What did you guys do? Any special Mother’s day traditions?

 

Week In Review: Ashley

Heeeeey you guys! Happy Monday and thanks so much for taking some time to stop by. 🙂 Another week has gone by and we are staring at the face of Monday again…how does that happen so quickly?? I can’t believe we are already in the second week of May. Anyway…let’s see what DID we do last week??

Coming back to real life and work from vacation is always hard, but somehow we survived it. 😉

Monday and Tuesday were pretty typical days…work and home stuff. Wednesday Cooper decided he want to hit up a nature trail again so we headed back out the Gulf Islands National Seashore Park. We walked a different trail this time and also stopped by the visitor center. The visitor center has some really great educational displays that tell you about the park and the wildlife in it. There were lots of things to look at and read and there were also some really great interactive displays that the kids really enjoyed. We had a lot of fun. Aunt Grace came over to the house after nap time and hung out with us. 🙂 THEN we had the bright idea to load up the kids for a Target run while it was raining.

Friday night I had dinner with Grace and our friends Michael & Michael (not a typo…two Michaels were present 😉 ). We attempted to eat at the Mexican restaurant in D’Iberville…but since it was Cinco De Mayo the wait was ridiculous. We ended up at Chilis…which was just as good. After Chili’s Grace and I hit up Ulta and Target. Yes. Target again. Confession time? I went to Target four times last week. Anyway. I got some awesome goodies at Ulta…yet I didn’t snap a picture? Did it actually happen?? 😉 haha

Saturday we hung out at Grammy and Ppop’s. Uncle Shane bought a house recently so he was moving some things out that day. How is it possible that my little brother is doing something so grown up as buying a house? I mean. Dang. But really…I am so proud of him. 🙂 🙂

Coop stayed at Grammy and Ppop’s Saturday night…so Sophie and I went to the At Home store to look for some things for a refresh that I’m working on for our front porch. We also stopped by Starbucks. I drank a crap ton of coffee on Saturday. Oh well. We met up with Daddy for some dinner at The Reef in Biloxi. That night I consumed several glasses of wine while folding mounds of clothes and watching Girl Boss and The Handmaid’s Tale. Both of those shows are so so good. Definitely must sees.

I also did some shirt cutting – in the midst of my laundry and show watching. I’d seen Rhonda recently do this same technique to one of her T’s…and as I was putting away this shirt the wine decided I should try it out. 😉

Sunday, Sophie and I picked up Aunt Grace for a little shopping at the Outlet malls in Gulfport – before we headed back to Grammy and Ppop’s.

I tried on some pants, but unfortunately they didn’t have the size I needed. 🙁 We spent the rest of the day at my parent’s. Eating. Relaxing. You know. The usual.

The rest of the evening we chilled at home. There was lots of wreaking havoc in a once clean room…lots of fun…and by the end of the night: two really tired and whiny children. This Momma was so ready for bedtime.

As I was looking through pictures to put this post together..I realized that 1. I take a crap ton of selfies…that I do have the common sense not to share every single one of them…BUT it’s slightly excessive.

2. I am a meme and screen shot hoarder.

Sooo I thought I’d leave you today with some of the things I’ve collected this past week…minus the selfies. Actually you can just go to my Instagram (@ansumrall) if you want to see those. 😉

Hope you guys have an amazing week! What did y’all do this past weekend?