Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Blackjack!

Life with a 21 month old is interesting, to say the least. And before Bradley hits 22 months in another week (a few days, now that this blog got delayed), I wanted to document his milestones, and our daily routine at this point since I haven't done that in a while.  So bear with me as this is a long post mostly for me, so I can remember everything about this age.

I rarely have use for an alarm clock as Bradley normally wakes me up every morning somewhere between 7 and 7:30am. We eat breakfast together not too long after getting up, and Bradley now exclaims "Cha Cha" for Chandler, and asks for juice by name. A typical breakfast for us is fruit and cereal. Mondays and Fridays we go to mommy & me stroller classes, and for the past 6 weeks we've had toddler story time at the library on Tuesdays, but now that's over until the fall. Kindermusik is on Thursday mornings.  We play inside, go out back and blow "buh-boos" (bubbles), eat lunch, and then Bradley naps from 1-4pm. This is when I get the bulk of my housework and emailing done, as well as showering! When B gets up from his nap he usually has a snack- animal crackers, goldfish, or fruit snacks- his favorite- although now he also knows the word for cookie, and so he stands in front of the appropriate cabinet asking for them by name. (See, there's a positive and a negative to his vocuabulary exploding)

He watches Sesame Street in the mornings, and there are certain segments he does not like, and certain ones that he does (Elmo!).  In the late afternoon when I'm trying to start on dinner is when I usually give into the "momo" requests, and let him watch an Elmo dvd so I can cook.  We give baths every other night, and the bedtime routine commences at 7:30 getting into pjs, brushing teeth, and reading books, with lights out at 8pm.

Bradley is a stubborn little boy who does Not want to stop what he's doing to come and get dressed or have his diaper changed.  It frustrates me to no end to wind up in a battle over something as simple as getting his shoes on so we can leave, but I guess in his little world, that's about all he has to assert his independence over.  I try to stay cheery when I'm making my requests, and then when that doesn't work (when, not if), I count to three, and then after that, he gets a swat on the bottom.  I will ask Bradley, do you want a spanking?  And he shakes his head and says no, and then I respond with, then come here!  Sometimes this works.  Sometimes not, and I have to follow through with my threat.

In the past week or so, Bradley's learned the phrase "I dooit" which means he wants to do something himself- mostly brush his teeth, or feed himself, so I let him!  Below is the first time I let him feed himself an entire cup of yobaby yogurt.
Snug as a bug in a slanket!  I bundled him up to watch Sesame Street on one particularly chilly morning.
Reading books with Grandma Anna


B still has his buddah belly, and weighs 28 pounds.  We haven't started potty training although we do have his little potty sitting out and sit him on it from time to time when he shows interest.  Bradley loves to wave bye bye to people and cars, and even the excrement in the toilet.  He repeats everything now, and is learning to count.  He can throw a ball in the air and catch it, which other people say is amazing for a toddler his age.  He still doesn't sing, which discourages me a little, but I know he loves music, so I know he will come around.  I can't believe my little guy is quickly approaching two!  

Monday, March 29, 2010

First summer bbq

What better way to spend a warm Friday evening than a barbeque with good friends? We are so blessed to have great friends who also happen to be great neighbors. Jess and Wes live next door with their son Wesley, who is 6 months younger than Bradley, and right next to them on the other side lives Kim, David, Catalina (age 5) and Andrew, who is 6 months older than Bradley.
So that's what we did. Wes grilled burgers, Jess made quesadillas, David brought over homemade Chilli's-esque chicken crispers, I made some velveeta shells and cheese (hey, it's what I had on-hand!), plus we had hot dogs, and potato salad. Jess bought the boys all matching shirts, and the kids played, the adults hung out, and we celebrated what felt like the first official night of summer.
All the girls, L to R: Ami, me, Jess, Kim, & Catalina

the boys in their matching frog shirts, Bradley, Andrew, & Wesley



Four friends, and sometimes running partners!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Even dogs like Cats


Chandler was all snuggled up on the couch with me last night watching the Kentucky game, so I decided he needed to have some blue on, too. In case you missed it, the Wildcats are now on their way to the Elite Eight!! In the words of Austin Powers, and Dick Vitale,
"Yeah, Baby!"
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Monday, March 22, 2010

A Bradley-less Blue bash of an evening

Saturday, Kim and Greg had us over to their house for dinner. Kim made these amazing Chicken Chimichurri fajitas with drunken peppers and onions along with Mexican rice that my mouth is still watering over!
After dinner, we drove downtown to Pensacola where we dropped the guys off at the civic center to watch a minor league hockey game. We girls were supposed to go too, but once we found out that UK played at the exact same time, we opted to go to a sports bar to watch basketball instead. We've definitely got our priorities straight!
My friend Kim and I with our blue shirts and coozies, and new matching basketball key chains, thanks to the sports bar owner.

Nick, filling out the winner's bracket

Yeah, we did! Go Cats!

Throughout the evening, we met several other UK fans, and made some new friends. We also mercilessly harassed the North Carolina fan who was sitting at the table next to us with his wife, who was from Kentucky, and there to watch the UK game.

Checking out the competition. Nick is a Syracuse fan (the name of the sports bar is New York Nick's), so we had fun harassing each other all night.

Yeah okay, so he kind of has the dirty old man thing going on in this picture, but really, he was a nice guy!

Bracketology!

Brian and Greg are definitely in a Bromance.

After their game was over, the guys met up with us, and the four of us walked over to Seville, a bar complex in Pensacola that I've been hearing about for 2 years; 7 bars inside one building. With the hockey tickets we got in free, so we went in and headed straight for the piano bar. Besides Kim and Greg paying the pianist to play the UK fight song (which they didn't know, so they did a lame generic fight song with "Go Wildcats" inserted into it), we also met a guy from Kentucky who payed them to let all of us get up on stage and do the C-A-T-S cheer. I love meeting Kentucky fans wherever I go, and there's nothing like tournament time to bring the Wildcats out of the wood works!
Later on we moseyed over to the dance club portion of Seville, and at one point I was on the dance floor dancing to "I'm on a boat" and just laughed to myself. I had no idea that song actually got club spins! Kim and I commented several times how glad we were that we were not in "that" stage of life anymore as we noticed all the girls in their tall shoes and tiny dresses lamenting their boy drama in the bathroom. Hey Kim, I said during one bathroom trip (cause, you know, girls always travel in packs), darn it, I forgot my spandex dress tonight! Yes, it was nice to just be able to go and have a good time in our UK shirts, jeans, and tennies.
We had a great double date night, and are so thankful to Ann for babysitting Bradley for us so we could go. It's a rare thing these days to be able to enjoy a basketball game without a toddler clamoring for my attention. It's even rarer that we go out-out for a date night, so it was a lot of fun.

Lions, & Tigers, & Llamas, Oh My!

This past weekend I finally got to meet my (quasi) new niece, Jaelynn. She's now 6 months old, but this was our first time getting to see her. On Saturday morning we took a trip to the Gulf Breeze Zoo, and the weather was perfect. Actually, I feel like a bad mommy because I forgot a hat and sunscreen for Bradley, so with the Florida sun, his cheeks are still a little rosy a few days later.
I snapped a picture of this peacock, with his tailfeathers up on display.


"Pretty bird, pretty bird"

Bradley loves getting to feed the animals at our zoo. The goats were particuarly enthusiastic about the feed today.


Check out the giraffe's tongue!


Grandma Anna and Baby J feed the giraffe

Daddy and B take a break

I snapped this picture, and moments later, Ann and I were both spit on by one of these culprits. All of a sudden, regurgitated llama food particles were spewed all over both our arms. Seconds later we smelled something awful and realized it was us that stank! After slathering on some B&BW lotion, the odor eventually went away. I knew that camels spit, but Llamas? Who knew?

The cougar with the cougar! ha ha


The Kangaroo mama and her Joey



First cousins, Bradley & Baby J


Thanks Grandma Anna for letting us ride the carousel! (Weight limit, Schmeight limit!)

Brian got this monkey to eat out of his hand. I loved the little baby monkey hanging onto its mama. Apparently, these are spider monkeys, so Brian and I had to quote our favorite cheese-tastic line from "Twilight,"

"Hold on tight, spider monkey."

And thanks to Grandma Anna, Bradley now recognizes Bella and Edward from the movies and can name them. Great... Another Twihard in the family! Speaking of, Jaelynn is a spitting image of Brian's sister Heather! She sat on my lap almost the entire time Sunday evening while we watched New Moon. I stayed awake for it all this time!


Aunt Amanda, Uncle Brian, niece Jaelynn, and cousin Bradley


Bradley gives baby J hugs and kisses
We had a fantastic weekend, and a great time meeting our new cousin/niece Jaelynn.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Blue & White Basketball Night

Last night we hosted an NCAA watch party, which I aptly titled the Blue & White Basketball Night. Invited guests were asked to bring food to share, and show up wearing their blue & white to support the #1 seeded Kentucky Wildcats. The evening was a blast. We had hamburgers, fries, Ice Blue Raspberry Lemonade, homemade mac & cheese, chips galore, sundried tomato jam on crostini with goat cheese and thyme (thank you Chef Boyrar-Greg), and of course, Blue & White frosted cupcakes!



I decorated with blue & white pom poms, and little basketballs I found at the dollar store, and as a table centerpiece, used 3 stemless wine glasses (thanks, Rhonda Lu!) and filled them with the basketballs, and some daisies in blue food-colored water.



Even Grandma Anna found some blue & white to wear!


Thanks aunt Peggy for that Kentucky flag you see in the background- at least, I think that came from you!


Cheering the Cats onto a victory- L to R, Brian, Greg, Kim, Anna, Felicia, and baby Nevaeh- check out her Wildcats cheerleading outfit!

With mommy's permission, Bradley gets a cupcake!


Our little cheerleader. He stood at the tv and shook his pom pom!


Me & my hubby- doesn't he look great in Blue??


UK alums befriended in Florida: Amanda & Kim

Group Photo- the only person we're missing is John (Anna's husband) who came early, then had to leave and come back later. We had such a great time hanging out and watching basketball together with everyone. Have I mentioned that I am simply mad about March??!!

Monday, March 15, 2010

A Season of Blue

Someone's Facebook status read yesterday, being a UK fan is soo much more fun this year than it was last year. I couldn't agree more! We have turned our team around, thanks to our new head coach John Calipari and his great recruits of our mostly freshman-starred team. As the season has gone on, I have met more and more UK fans, attended a NW Florida alumni watch party, and met some great new friends in the process. Bradley mimics me screaming at the tv during games, so he's the darling of the room everywhere we go as he shakes his pom pom and yells "Go, Go!" claps his hands, and says "Cats Cats!" (we're still working on the third Cats, but I'll take what I can get!)


I have aptly titled this blog post "A Season of Blue" after my favorite blog about UK sports A Sea of Blue. Watching games with friends and family this season has been a blast, and I love recruiting new fans all the time, especially turning my husband and son into Wildcat fans whether they like it or not. Here is a season's worth of our UK clad family and friends:

Bradley with Grandma & Grandpa B in Tennessee after the Louisville game


Freshman roommates Amanda and Ellen, with the littlest Wildcat at Christmastime



Blue Orleans: Conley, Ari, Bart, me, and Bradley during the Vandy game in January




The other Vandy game- the one we almost didn't win, we watched at a sports bar on Okaloosa Island as part of the unofficial NW Florida UK alumni association. Here we met our new friends Kim and Greg.



Tyler is happy because we're winning


Kim and I lead the old foaggies in the C-A-T-S Cats Cats Cats cheer


My boys in blue


Has anyone else noticed that getting your kids to say cheese does not result in the most natural looking smile?

One lone guy at our table, a friend of a friend, was a Florida fan, and this is what we do to Florida fans' hats


"Go, Go!"


Our friends Matt and Shannon and their son Braylon came to spend a few days with us, and were here to watch the UT game. Matt is a Kentuckian by birth, Shannon is a Wisconsin convert like Brian, and Braylon doesn't have a choice at this point!



Me with UK alum Kim, and her boyfriend Greg

Kim took and edited this picture of Bradley- we discovered that pickles are a good distraction and keep him occupied for a while!


Family photo in Blue taken at Pensacola beach after the UT game. Even the sun couldn't cheer us up after that tough loss.


Finishing up the regular season, we watched the Florida game at Buffalo Wild Wings. Ann took this picture with her phone, so it's proof that she was here rooting on the Cats to a victory this day, along with Kim and Greg as well.


Yesterday's nail biter we watched at Helenback's in Navarre with Tyler, Felicia, their friend Bill, and their daughter Nevaeh. Bradley was cranky by the time the game went into overtime, and so all the screaming when Demarcus Cousins made the last shot to send the game into OT made him cry! Otherwise he was a good little cheerleader.

Babies and Mamas: Felicia and Neveah in her pink UK gear, and me and Bradley in our blue

It's just been announced that we're a #1 seed going into the NCAA tournament, and the Florida chapter of Big Blue Nation is up to the challenge of cheering on our Wildcats to victory! In fact, I think we just decided to host a party at our house on Thursday night to watch the first game. Anyone got any great ideas for blue and white foods??