Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Christmas Eve Marathon, Phase 1

Happy 30th Anniversary to my Mom and Dad! Every year we go out for breakfast on Christmas Eve morning to focus on Mom and Dad's Anniversary for a little while before all the Christmas madness starts. Aren't they such a beautiful couple? Another cute couple, if I do say so myself.
My brother and his new found chest hair (I can tease because D.J. never looks at this...no one show it to him, OK) and his wife, Jeni. Again, pretty darn cute, right!
But the cutest couple of the morning was definitely Braylon and my niece JoLee. Jeni got them the cutest sweatshirts. Jo's had Clarice and Bray's had Rudolph and they both said Santa's little helper. They were so perfect because Mom and JoLee have watched Rudolph approximately 500 times this year (they watch it all year round...poor Dad) and JoLee always says that she is Clarice and Braylon is Rudolph because she thinks he's cute.
The above picture turned out so nice and shows how much they love each other, but the picture below was actually taken first when I said "give each other a hug"...Miss JoLee doesn't mess around!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Question of the day...a break from the Christmas posts

Kooky Mama...(picture taken by Braylon)
...As my husband and son so often and affectionately call me. I know we all do crazy stuff just to put a smile on our kids faces, but what is the kookiest thing you have ever done to get your kid to do something without a struggle? I have recently started something that is so crazy that as I do it I say to myself "I can't believe you are doing this," yet I persist for lets see, I think this is the 4th night in a row. I'll tell you mine but I want to hear yours too (unless of course I am the worlds one and only kooky mama):
In order to get Braylon to pee in the potty one more time before bed (despite his insistence that he does not need to pee, MOM!) I have been moving the toilet seat like a big mouth and in a silly voice saying "Braylon, I am hungry for some pee!" Crazy? Yes. But it works every time.

Sometimes Christmas is a Pain in the Ear

Poor Bray! Last Monday, just one day after finishing up an antibiotic for an ear infection, we had plans to have our Christmas with Auntie April. Just before starting the festivities Braylon started complaining that his ear hurt. A few minutes later it was obvious that he was in a lot of pain. We offered to just head home and open gifts another day, but Bray wanted to open presents. We rushed through it and owe April another more pleasant visit soon. Contrary to the look of the picture above, Bray adores his Auntie April. As always April spoiled us all. She got Braylon a "Jedi Math" game for his Leapster and the mama duck to go with the baby duck she got him the last time she babysat for us. Braylon happened to mention to her recently that he "really needed a mama duck to go with his baby duck so it would not be lonely"...what a rat...he knew April, his Fairy Godmother, would not let him go around with a lonely baby duck!
He tried to push through, but the poor little guy really was in a lot of pain. We go tomorrow for a consultation to see about getting tubes put in his ears because he just can't seem to shake this ear infection.

Christmas with the Hattens

We had a wonderful evening with our friends Lydia, Paula, and Mark about a week before Christmas. Paula invited us over and had prepared some sugar cookie dough. The kids cut out the cookies and decorated them. Then they opened presents from one another while the cookies baked. It was so nice! Braylon took the Transformers they got him (which he was super-psyched about) along to play with in the car as we traveled for the holidays. They also got him a really nice WVU backpack. Thanks again Hattens! I forgot my camera at home (bad-mama), but Paula has posted some pictures on Lydia's blog...check them out. Paula also has a link on there to pictures of them from Christmas last year. It is amazing how much they have grown.

Rad Christmas

This evening Braylon was looking at the pictures on our refrigerator and he pointed to the lovely picture we got in our Christmas card from our friends John, Stephanie, and Paige. Braylon said, "hey look...there is John, Paige, and Stephanie...they're Rads." Its a long story, but Drew put the nickname Johnrad on our friend John and over time it has developed into Stephrad and now little Paigerad. Braylon knows his Rads when he sees them! We spent a quick, but nice evening with the Rads last week to let the kids open gifts from one another.
In addition to an operation game and some cool dinosaur pajamas, Braylon got a totally rad Star Wars book, which I have been forced to read at bed time nearly every night for the last week.
Paige is so beautiful and so smart. She has really started talking since the last time we saw her.
A true friend lets you hold her pink teddy bear every time you come to her house and never questions your masculinity.
Paige gives the Raddest hugs!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

On the Road Again

Last Sunday we went to PaPaw and BooBoo's house to see their Christmas tree. Braylon loved that Lando slept with his head on his foot during the trip.

BooBoo, Braylon, and Papaw.
They got the reindeer Braylon's first Christmas and he has to get his picture taken on it every year.

Braylon and BooBoo made food for Santa's reindeer and we sprinkled it off our back deck before bed on Christmas eve.

Even Lando had to get his picture made with the reindeer.

Whoa, Comet!
(Braylon called this reindeer every name at some point during the visit...except Rudolf...as Bray pointed out, he does not have a red nose.)

Setting on Santa's Lap

Braylon got to visit Santa at the mall this year and did a great job sitting on Santa's lap and telling him what he wanted. He didn't seem to be afraid at all...maybe just a little nervous. We didn't pay the $14.00 for the 3X5 photo in a paper "frame". But I did get a cute picture of Bray on Santa's lap at MaMaw Helen's Christmas party.

So I Won't Forget

This is what Braylon's hair looks like about 3 out of 5 mornings when I wake him up for school. Not much fun to comb out, especially when we are running late. Good days are when this only occurs right in the center of the back of his head and doesn't spread clear across the back like it did this day. The kid must grind his head back and forth on his pillow all night long.

Not related to his hair but another Braylon story I don't want to forget:
The other day, Braylon was playing with his nativity that BooBoo and Papaw bought him. Then he comes rushing down the hallway toward his room. I ask what he is doing to which he replies, "I've got to kill those Wise Men; they set the manger on fire." Oh, the imagination of my twisted three year old.

A Christmas Story

The week before Christmas we got a heavy, wet snow one day, followed by kind-of warm weather the next day... perfect for making a snow man. So I bundled Braylon up Christmas Story style and we went out to make a snow man.

Pretty good, huh. Well, I have to take all the credit since Braylon rolled the first snow ball for about one whole second and was done. He made a quick snow angel and then spent the entire rest of the time (with me begging "Braylon, why don't you come over here and help me") doing this...

Apparently, snow is the best tasting thing in the world.

The kid ate almost as much snow as was in the snowman. (I did warn him not to eat the yellow snow, but who knows if he listened.)

Notice he is even too busy eating snow to look at the camera when I made him stand next to "our" snowman for a picture.

Mountaineer Recruiting Class of 2023?

Braylon has recently become very interested in dressing himself. If we are at home, his chosen get-up usually consists of his Mountaineer jersey (which almost always goes on inside-out, backwards, or sometimes both) and anything else he feels like pairing it with. Check out this football pose!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

More Christmas Photos

My handsome little man.
I loved the idea of the train set in front of the fire place, but none of them turned out great.

And this was the point when I knew I had to just call it quits and work with what I had.

Christmas Pictures

Since I spent a ton of money on Braylon's 3 year pictures, Drew was not too keen on getting Christmas pictures made this year. So we just took some at home. I didn't know who would be more difficult, Braylon or Lando, but Bray took the prize by a landslide. Lando just laid there as content as could be. This is the one that made the Christmas card.
Braylon insisted that he should lay like Lando.
What an angel.... But it quickly turned into sheer frustration with me.
Even Lando eventually had enough!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Oh Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas Tree

The Christmas Tree Search... (I have no idea what was up with the tongue)
Since I don't get home from work/picking up Braylon until 5:00, it was already getting dark by the time we got to the Christmas tree farm (which luckily is just down the road or we wouldn't have had any daylight at all).

I had Drew to take a picture of me and Bray to which he replied, "It looks kinda crazy, but I got one." It does look pretty crazy, doesn't it. Note to self: always look at myself in the mirror before leaving the house in a new toboggan in case it sticks up two feet on top of my head. And it was all Bray's idea to hold the "tiny little Christmas trees" for the pic.

My tree hugger.

We finally found the perfect tree and the boys discussed how best to cut it down...

Braylon elected to supervise while Drew did the work.



I think my favorite thing about this picture is something that I didn't even recognize when I snapped it: Not only did Braylon manage to get himself turned sideways during the night, but also all of his stuffed animals.

Let it Snow!

Teething and bored while we are away at work, I came home the other day to find that Lando had been using the stuffing from his $36 dog bed to decorate his crate.
Yawning after all his hard work.

Thanksgiving Day

The most wonderful thing about the holidays is all the time you get to spend with family. Braylon has got to spend a lot of time with his cousins the last couple of weeks. Although I didn't get pictures of everyone, I did think to break out my camera at MaMaw Helen's. The one above is Cousin Kelsi (I think she is one of the most beautiful kids I have ever seen in my life) and Braylon holding the newest addition, Cousin Amara (she is a beauty too). Check out the resemblance between Bray and Kelsi in this picture.

Braylon adored Amara. (It looks like he is about to pinch her, but he was actually tickling).

Kissing her hand, which he did over and over. He would love to have a baby sister.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Little Drummer Boy

Things have been crazy lately and I have quite a bit of catching up to do. Here are some pictures from our trip to visit Boo Boo and Papaw in Spencer the weekend before Thanksgiving. We had a wonderful visit with Drew's family and Aunt Sharon and Uncle Dean had us over for a wonderful Thanksgiving meal.

This was Drew's Fisher Price drum when he was little...my brother had one too. Braylon plays it like a pro!

The dinosaur parade. I think these were Braylon's Uncle Geo's.

The ride home. Lando has quickly adjusted to car trips and does very well.

Settled back in at Home Sweet Home!