July 28, 2011

Summer Shootout

As I've mentioned before, we live in a racing town, and I guess it's to be expected when the Charlotte Motor Speedway is only a couple miles down the road, but even when NASCAR isn't going on, the speedway still hosts tons of other racing events.  On Monday and Tuesday nights during the summer there is a special series going on called the Summer Shootout, and this Tuesday night Austin and I had a date!!

Ryan had been out of town for awhile so Grandma Jo Ann came up to keep us company for a few days and kept Owen while Austin and I went out for our mommy-son evening at the track.  It was HOT, but it was FUN!!

Austin so excited to walk through those gates!!

Standing on the track with his new Monster Truck toy!

Since Austin is all about Monster Trucks these days we of course had to go on Monster Truck day.  He got a free toy for being one of the first kids through the gate and they even had Monster Truck rides!!  He was a little intimidated by the size of the actual truck but we climbed on board still really excited about our upcoming ride.

Strapped in and ready to ride!

I strapped Austin in tight but in all my worrying about him, I forgot to put on my own seat belt!  I didn't think it would matter until I almost ended up on the floor as soon as the thing started moving.  I clutched the seat in front of me with my left hand and held onto Austin with my right.  It was wild and very loud!  I think I had a nervous laugh going on the entire time and Austin had a blank stare on his face and didn't make a single noise. When we finally went to get off he said to me, "That was scary!"  I asked if he wanted to ride again and he quickly responded, "NO!"  We sat there for about 30 more minutes and just watched as other people rode and took some pictures.



There was a car parked near by and every time the truck would start going again Austin would ask me when it was going to jump over that car.  Apparently he is not nearly as fascinated with Monster Trucks when they are just driving around...he needs to see them crush cars and fly through the air.


After saying goodbye to the Monster Truck, we took a golf cart shuttle back to the main track where the preliminary races were taking place.  Austin loved the golf cart ride more than his ride in the Monster Truck...who would have guessed?  We made it back just in time to watch the 8-11 year old qualifiers.  Yes, that's right, 8-11 year old kids were driving miniature versions of race cars out on the track.  It was wild!  These kids aren't even old enough drive a car or get a license but here they were driving on a NASCAR track...better than most adults!  We even witnessed a small crash and I almost started to get a little emotional just knowing that there was a young kid in that car.  He handled it like a pro and Austin couldn't stop talking about the crash and the tow truck that had to come tow the car off the track.

The crash 

The little boy on the big screen was the driver of the car above that crashed.

Austin cooling off and watching the races!

After qualifiers were over, the big races started and it began it get really loud once those cars started going all out.  I couldn't believe the difference in noise from the qualifiers to the actual races...and this is what Austin thought about that...


Next time we'll remember our earplugs!!

July 27, 2011

We Rode in a Monster Truck...


...this monster truck to be exact.
What a fun night!!

More coming soon, but I just couldn't go to bed without posting this picture first...for Ryan who is out of town and had to miss this fun adventure, and for my mom who called me today asking why I had not blogged about her precious grandchildren in several days!

July 17, 2011

Writing Sample

In my last post I mentioned that Austin loved to write his name.  He can write most of the letters of the alphabet pretty well but has yet to grasp the concept of making them all relatively the same size.  After 10 sheets of paper with giant A's and U's and barely enough room for the S, T, I and N...I came up with a method that has worked pretty well.  I draw circles for how ever many letters are in the word he wants to spell and he has to write each letter in a circle.  Here's an example of how well he's writing these days...


I wrote the purple letters up top to give him a reference, but the blue letters in the circles are 100% Austin's writing.  I find it pretty funny that his S's are always backwards because when I was younger I used to always write my name with a backwards J.  :)

July 16, 2011

Favorite Things Friday (a day late)

For no particular reason and in no particular order, here are a few of my favorite things at the moment.


1. Zulily.com:  Seriously...I love this site!  I've found some of the cutest things on here for the boys and for me and it's all at a discount!  It's the only "deal" site I go to on a daily basis anymore, but I probably need to stop for awhile before my spending gets out of hand!!


2. Tosh.0:  I feel like I shouldn't like this show...but I can't help it.  Rarely does something on TV actually make me laugh out loud, but Daniel Tosh's questionable, yet witty humor gets me every time!  Ryan often says he loves to watch this show with me because he likes to hear me laugh. :)  Just another reason I like it!


3. Rompers:  For Owen of course, not myself.  It's hassle-free, mistake-proof, cool and comfortable clothing! It's also about the only thing Owen has been wearing these past few 100+ degree days and I'm dreading the day he gets too old to wear them anymore.


4. Super Why:  Also known as the ONLY show Austin will sit and pay attention to anymore.  I enjoy the 25 minutes of free time while the boys enjoy some cute and educational entertainment.  It's a win-win!


5. Lilly Pulitzer Wink Perfume - I discovered this scent while perfume shopping in Hilton Head last summer.  It was on clearance and I loved it and it might just be the first bottle of perfume that I have used in its entirety.  I've heard rumors that it is being discontinued soon which stinks, but it also means you can find it online at a huge discount (like $20/bottle)!  


6. Laughing Cow Cheese:  Spread some of this on a Triscut and enjoy a delicious and healthy treat!  Only 35 calories a wedge!


7. Cargo Bronzer:  I haven't been tan since I got married.  Actually, I've never really been tan, just a darker shade of pale...and that took 3+ months of going to a tanning bed every other day to achieve.  I think it's safe to assume that's never going to happen again, so I guess I just better get good at faking a tan from now on!  I love this bronzer and wear it everyday.  It's not fake looking and the giant tin it came in has lasted me a really long time.


8. Joovy Caboose Tandem Stroller: The perfect double stroller may not exist, but this thing has got to be close!  It's light (for a double), not too big, extremely easy to fold and unfold, and it's a sit and stand!  Also, it was less than $150!  I love that I can take the boys to the mall or park by myself and let Austin walk with me while pushing Owen, but always have the option to strap them both in should I need to pick up the pace or should Austin get tired.


9.  Kumon Activity Books:  I learned about these books from another blog I read and figured they'd be perfect for Austin.  He really wants to learn to write lately, not color, but write.  He loves the mazes book and it has really helped him learn to hold a pencil properly, draw straight lines and make careful movements.  He also loves the tracing and drawing letters books and has recently learned to write his name!



10.  PlumSweets:  I have such a major sweet tooth and I have a hard time finding good and healthy snacks to satisfy that craving without sacrificing an entire day's worth of calories.  But thanks to my favorite daily e-mail "Eat This, Not That," I discovered these dark chocolate covered pieces of deliciousness and a small handful (or two) does the trick and they're surprisingly healthy!

So, what are some of your favorite things??

July 14, 2011

Wiggly Wednesday!

I won tickets to see The Wiggles in concert here in Charlotte last night.  We were actually going to buy them and go regardless, but I ended up winning a contest and saved us $100.  The seats were pretty awesome, too.  Dead center, no one behind us, and no one sitting beside us.  This was key because I'm just as much of a Wiggles fan as the boys are and I would have gone crazy if I couldn't get up and dance to a few of the songs...and you better believe I did!  I honestly was probably more excited about this concert than any other I've been to in the past 5 years.  I am such a mom...and I have a huge crush on Anthony, the blue Wiggle. :)

Austin's favorite Wiggle is Sam and he insisted he wear a yellow shirt to the concert to match his favorite yellow wiggle.  Austin's 2nd favorite Wiggle is Jeff and he really wanted Owen to wear purple, but when we could find none, he was ok with Owen wearing blue (the color of mommy's favorite Wiggle) instead.    The concert was great, they sang all our favorite songs, and we even got thisclose to Sam when he was wandering through the crowd.  The only disappointment was that Jeff was not there!!  Apparently he had some heart issues and was back in Australia having a pace maker put in.  This was the first show he's missed in 20 years!!  They had a replacement....but it just wasn't the same without Jeff.

Henry's Dance with replacement Jeff on the far left

Come back, Sam!! Austin's little hand was just about to disconnect at the wrist because he was waving so hard to Sam!

Enjoying a snack

Owen remained interested for a good 45 minutes, but wasn't opposed to the bites of popcorn and pretzel daddy kept giving him.

Both boys really getting into it!

It was getting really close to someone's bedtime... 

After the show

One happy little Wiggles fan!

1st Haircut Comparison

Y'all know how much I love comparison pictures.  A random journey through the blog archives caused me to stumble on a picture of Austin's first haircut and I couldn't wait to compare them!  Owen's about 2 months younger than Austin in his picture.

July 12, 2011

Owen is 14 Months!


And here they are....14 things about 14 months!

-Owen can tell you what sounds the sheep, cow, duck, snake and pig make.  The pig noise is my favorite because he actually snorts.

-Loves...and I mean LOVES to read Chicka, Chicka, Boom, Boom.  We read it 10 times a day...at least!

-Points out trucks when we see them driving by and says "Tuck!"

-Absolutely HATES riding in a shopping cart.

-His favorite animal is a duck and he will point and say "duck!" whenever he sees one.

-Sleeps with his lovie (duck duck) and stuffed duck (ducky) each night.  Pretty original names, huh? :)

-Will try to copy almost any sound we make or word we say.

-Calls Ryan "da-deee."

-Loves to pretend that he's talking on the phone and calls da-deee every time.

-Says "cheese" when he sees my camera.

-Loves to look at letters, read books about the alphabet and try to sing the ABC song. His recognition is spotty though, sometimes he calls everything an "A" or an "E" and sometimes he gets them right.

-Shares his snacks with our dog, Lucy.

-Drives toy cars all over everything going "vrrrrrrrrrrrr vrrrrrrrrrrrrr."  Wonder where he got that from??

-Weighs 21 lbs., wears size 4 diapers and size 12-18 month clothes.

July 10, 2011

4th Comparison

The morning of July 4th, before we left for Columbia, I couldn't wait to go outside and sit on our new front porch and get a new picture of me and the boys together.  We had taken a picture just like it the year before and I was excited to see the comparison.  As my luck would have it, however, we were running late, the boys were cranky and not wanting to hold still, the humidity fogged up my camera lens as soon as we walked outside and the sun was blaring right down on us.

And so these were the two best pictures we got.


 On your mark.....get set.....


Now everyone stare directly into the sun....and don't forget to smile!

Yeah, so those are totally frame-worthy....right??  

Not quite as good as last year's....but you can still get the idea!

July 9, 2011

Chomp!

Remember when I was talking about the insane amount of drooling Owen was doing in this post?

Well, I do believe this was the cause...


He doesn't even have all his little teeth in yet but he's getting molars?  It doesn't quite seem to fit the timeline to me, but Owen sure doesn't seem to mind the extra help when chomping down at the dinner table!

July 7, 2011

Hair Flower Fun & Giveaway

Have I ever introduced y'all to Owen's twin sister, Olivia?


Ohhh I hope this picture doesn't follow Owen around and haunt him for the rest of his life...but I could hardly resist considering the numerous amount of times people have mistaken him for a girl or called him "pretty."

Ryan brought home the bow last night after buying it from a girl on his softball team who makes them.  He bought it for me, actually, until I told him it was probably meant for a child and I didn't think I could quite pull off the hairbow look.  I couldn't resist trying it out on Owen though, and I have to admit, he would make a very pretty girl!!

But anyway, the bow is called a Hair Flower and it was beautifully made by Ryan's teammate, Alicia.  Please visit her website http://www.oneuniqueway.com to see all the other wonderful handmade items she makes and sells.  There are more fabulous Hair Flowers for kids and adults as well as some gorgeous jewelry!  She even does custom designs and there are a ton more Hair Flowers available that aren't even listed on the website yet.

So, on to something fun!  How about a giveaway??  The winner will receive one Hair Flower in the design of their choosing!  Just leave a comment below and you're entered!!  If you'd like an additional chance to win, go visit Alicia's site and come back here and tell me about your favorite item.  Winner will be announced Tuesday morning so comment now!  Good luck!!

July 6, 2011

The Fourth, Part 2

On the actual 4th of July, we went down to my parents house in Columbia for a little cook-out and pool party.  My best friend, Keri, and her family came to enjoy the day as well.  She seriously has the two cutest and sweetest little girls on the planet!!  I think I ended up taking more pictures of them than my own children...but Kylie and Blair aren't immune to my camera yet like my own two are! :)

The two babes.... separated by just 3 months!

 Beautiful Miss Kylie!

 This girl is one serious little fish!

After a long, hot day in the sun and water, these two boys we out! 

Best attempt at getting a shot of both the little ones.
At least Blair is not camera shy!!

Natural beauty!

 Watch out Keri, she'll be walking in no time!

Keri's 2 girls and my 2 boys!
This shot was NOT easy to come by!!  :-)

July 5, 2011

The Fourth, Part 1

We celebrated Independence Day on the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th this year!  It was a fantastic (but exhausting) long weekend.  Lots and lots of pictures were taken...as usual.  These are from our awesome first two nights at the Harrisburg Fourth of July Festival.

Choo-choo!! 

 Set him down for a moment and he's off!

Highlight of the night, listening to the Fantastic Shakers and doing a little booty shakin' of their own! 

Fireworks were a big hit with Austin this year.
"Look at that one, BOOM!" 

Watching the show! 

Favorite ride of the night! 

Day #2
Driving the race cars...boy was in heaven! 

Waving to big brother as he drives by! 

Can you tell he liked the swings? 

Watching Da Throwback Band and loving every minute! 

And then he was off!
(Due to a pizza incident, we had to go without the shorts for the remainder of the night) 

Traded in our side by side double stroller for this tandem and we LOVE it!  Got an additional $20 off for choosing purple...which is fine, I'll just sew some tiger paws on the side and, voila...instant Clemson stroller!!

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