Love Overflowing

Oktoberfest 2009

Parades. Everyone loves them, right?? A parade to Emily means one thing…Maybe a few things but definitely one main thing… CANDY!!!!!!!! The funniest part about that is she usually only eats one piece and then forgets about it. Heck, I have forgotten where Stephen hid it. Might have to go find a Tootsie roll!

The Oktoberfest usually doesn’s disappoint. It’s not a super long parade and there aren’t wall to wall people. It definitely has a small town feel to it. This year was no different. Luckily, the rain held off until after the parade was over. We enjoyed the parade and made it about halfway through some of the booths in the park before the sky turned dark and threatening. Luckily, we made it to our car right as it started to downpour!

Of course, the weather was BEAUTIFUL during naptime. Of course. It always happens that way, doesn’t it??? We thought we would be able to check out the rest of the Oktoberfest fun after Emily napped. We got one ride in and a look through the German tent. And then it started to rain. We went home happy that Emily got to ride a ride, covered in mud and disappointed we didn’t get to feed our faces. But, as my hips can tell you, it’s ok. They definitely survived without the extra calories!

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Ever wonder….

how different your life could be if you had made different choices or life had taken a different turn??

Let me start off by saying, I truly love my life. I am happy as a clam. I have a wonderful husband, a good marriage and a beautiful daughter. I am expecting my unexpected 2nd child. I am blessed with the ability to stay at home and raise my children (Thank you Stephen). Life is good. Sure there is always room for improvement in every aspect but I truly wouldn’t change a thing.

But do you ever wonder how things would be different? Where would Stephen and I be if we weren’t able to have Emily?? Our lives have changed dramatically in the past few months. Definitely not a bad thing but how would our outlook be if we weren’t expecting a son in January?? What decisions would we have made differently?

How different would your life be if you had made different choices?

I know there is no point in dwelling in “what if’s” but it really makes you wonder. You have to live in the now but sometimes you need to reflect on what you have, where you are going and where you have been.

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Apple picking

We took advantage of an open weekend and great weather last Saturday and headed over to Eckerts in Grafton. We decided to take the long route and enjoy the drive. I must say that it was beautiful! I can only imagine how awesome it is when the leaves start to change. Might have to make the drive another time to check it out!

Stephen and I have gone apple picking once and that was about 6-7 years ago in my hometown with some of my family. It was  nothing compared to this! This was amazing! Luckily we got there shortly after they opened as there were no lines to get on the wagon. We rode the wagon out to the orchard and picked apples. It was opening weekend and it was totally worth it! There were so many apples to chose from! Everyone got a chance to sample them before we put them in the bags. Yummy!

After we picked our 15!!! pounds of apples (it truly didn’t seem like 15 pounds as far as quantity goes but there were some big apples in the bunch), we headed over to the kiddie area. On the weekends, they have pony rides and bounce houses in addition to the tire swings, horses, pig and slides. There were more activities but we didn’t make it to all of them. Emily ran to the tire swing first thing! Swinging is her favorite. She eventually made it to see the animals, go down the slide and bounce in the bounce house. We asked her if she wanted a pony ride. We really weren’t sure if she would want to because she is such a scaredy cat but she surprised us. It was really cute! They got her up on the horse and  she immediately started saying “Giddy yap!” and “Neigh!!!!”.

We finished up our trip with lunch at this little restaurant in Grafton. Their special of the day was fried chicken. What pregnant lady can pass up fried chicken?? It was delicious! Their kids meal was really cute too. It was character themed. Emily chose Dora. Came out with a Dora plate, Dora fruit snacks and her meal. For dessert, she had Dora Popsicle. They know how to please the kids!

It truly was a great day! We had a wonderful time doing something new as a family. I really see us making this a tradition.

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3 cousins, 3 babies and family fun

This past Saturday was spent with my family. Most of my family- extended family that is. There are six sisters in my mom’s family. They range from up near Chicago to down in Arkansas. Unfortunately, we do not get together enough. This is the second year that they had a family weekend together. Last year I was not able to attend due to family obligations on Stephen’s side but I made it there this year on Saturday.

They spent the weekend in Mt. Vernon and we spent the day with them. I wish we could have stayed longer but circumstances made that not possible. We met up with many of them at the Cedarhurst Craft Fair. Yummy food, lots of people and good conversation. Then we headed back to the hotel for a baby shower. A baby shower?? Let me back up….

My sister and I grew up with my cousin Donica. I can remember spending weeks together in the summer at one house or the other. We had so much fun together! We were each 2 years apart so it spread out pretty nicely. I am sure we gave our parents a run for their money as we were pretty ornery and got into quite a bit of mischief. I can mention lots of things but I won’t out of embarrassment for myself and the other two. Probably more for myself. There are stories to be told that won’t be. Some things are better left kept secret.

We grew up together and now we are all pregnant together. It’s really ironic too. We are all working on child #2. Two of us never really imagined having more than one child. We are all being blessed with one of each. We are due within 2 months of each other. Donica is actually due the same time I am so it will be interesting to see who gives birth first…My money is on me because I had a big baby before so if that is any indication, I won’t be going the full 40 weeks.

My wonderful cousin Jessica decided to throw the three of us a shower while most of the relatives were together. Donica needed one- her oldest is 11!!!! But Heather and I, not so much. We tried to reason with Jessica but she marches to the beat of her own drummer (that’s a good thing!) and she proceeded on. Don’t get me wrong, Heather and I really, really appreciated being included but it’s really not common to have a shower for second children unless there are a number of years between the last and the current pregnancy.  But who says we march to the beat of what is normal???

It was a wonderful shower. It was wonderful to get to visit with family that I hadn’t seen in a long time. Emily got to play with her cousins and run around. It was great. Jessica and Aunt Di did an excellent job of putting on the shower and the cake….well, besides being yummy, the cake was great. Jessica had a great idea on how to decorate it. She’s so smart! 😉

After the shower was over, everyone just sat around and visited. Later in the evening, the poker games started. My family loves a good poker game. I think my mom actually got beat! And she has some good luck! I got to enjoy visiting with family and Emily enjoyed playing with Chloe and the other cousins. As Stephen, Emily and I were getting ready to leave Emily and Chloe were having a love fest or wrestling match. I am not sure which. Chloe might be almost a year younger than Emily but she can definitely hold her own as she is almost as tall and as heavy as Emily. It was really truly funny to watch.

I love my family to pieces. My family, my siblings, my parents and my extended family. I never get to see them enough though. But the love is there and I hope they all know how much I love them. Love knows no distance and no bounds. It stretches on for miles. Life and God is good!

I took quite a few more pictures, but not as many as I usually do. Here is the link:
http://http://picasaweb.google.com/rinny0525/BabyShowerAndFamilyGetTogetherSept2009#

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It’s a……………..

 

 

 

BOY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

Everything looks great! The one issue I had been dealing with has resolved itself so I am free! Free from just a little bit of worry and free to do a little more too!

Our lives have been truly blessed. First, we were blessed, against all odds, to have Emily. She is a true joy. Now, God decided that we round our family out with a boy. We weren’t expecting this second bundle of joy. But what a wonderful SURPRISE it is! Our lives are full of love and laughter. God knows what he is doing!

I know that this little boy (yet to be named) will feel the love when he comes into the world. His big sister is ready! I think she’ll do great!!!

Life is good!

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The best things in life come in threes, like friends, dreams, and memories

There is something about friendships that run strong and deep. You can see a person every day or have never met them but they might be a very important person in your life. I have several of those “never met” friends. They have walked in my shoes, have stood beside me and kept me sane. I might have never met them before but that does not diminish their importance to me. In some cases, just makes it stronger actually.

In the past, I have been fortunate to meet one of these friends. She actually lives pretty close to me. Her twin daughters are a little older than Emily and are a delight. So bright and adorable. That reminds me, we need to schedule a playdate soon! I didn’t know if I would ever have the opportunity to meet any of the other amazing women that I know.

Thankfully, I was blessed with the opportunity to meet 2 amazing women while we were on vacation. These women are two of the funniest and sweetest people you would ever meet. They have been part of my rock throughout the past 4 years. When we got there to meet, I had butterflies in my stomach. You never know what to expect. If their online persona matches their real life personality. I had a feeling that they did but I still had butterflies. I shouldn’t have. Seeing Mandy and giving her a great big hug made all those butterflies go away. It was like old times, not like meeting for the first time. And then Lisa made it to the restaurant. The same with her. It was like a reunion of sorts. Or like 3 friends, 3 kids and 2 husbands who were just meeting for lunch.

It was like we had known each other for years. The conversation flowed so smoothly and never lagged. If there was one thing I could change about the whole meeting, it would be time. I wish we had more time. Lunch seemed to fly by and there was more to be said, more to be talked about. More hugs to be given. I am so grateful for the opportunity to meet two of my “angels”. It was a wonderful, wonderful experience. I am truly blessed to have such wonderful friends in my life.

You might think that I am exaggerating things. Emily is very discriminating on who she hugs and gives kisses to. She gave Mandy lots of snuggles and even gave her a kiss before we headed in our separate directions. And she wouldn’t sit next to me for pictures. She had to sit with Lisa. Kids are pretty good judges of characters and Mandy and Lisa passed the Emily test.

I also got to meet Noah and Lily, Mandy’s children. I don’t want to leave them out. Noah. What can I say? He has an old soul in a little boys body. He is so mild mannered and well behaved. I just wanted to scoop him up and cover him with kisses! Lily. She is so outgoing and friendly! She was saying hi to everyone! Both kids are absolutely ADORABLE!!! It was so cute when the three kids starting high fiving at the end. They got along great!

I hope some day to meet some of my other friends who have seen me through a lot in my life. Some day……. 

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What I did on my summer vacation

Vacations…never long enough are they? We have had our vacation planned since January!! Let me tell you, it took a long darn time to get here! So much had happened since now and then too! Luckily, we were able to keep our vacation plans and go on a much needed vacation.

Beautiful San Diego. Where there is so much to do and the weather is supposed to be wonderful??? Well, there was so much to do and it was beautiful but the weather….The weather was unusually HOT!!! I think I actually missed the St. Louis weather! It was nice and cool while we were gone. We sweated like crazy while on vacation but that was ok. It was nice pool and beach weather!

We didn’t get to do everything that we wanted to do. I don’t think there is any way possible to do that unless you have two weeks there! We just took things at our own pace and saw what we wanted to see. There were no hard set itineraries. We had a few places that we really wanted to go and we still didn’t get to do all of those but that’s ok. Just means we’ll have stuff to do when (if) we ever make it out there again!

We did get to hit Sea World. Emily was in LOVE! She loved watching all the whales, dolphins and sea lions. She laughed like crazy when she watched the shows, especially the funny sea lion show. She got to enjoy some time in the Sesame Street section as well. Stephen won “Daddy of the Year” award by taking her on some of the rides. We spent a good deal of time there but still didn’t get to see everything we wanted to see. We actually could have went back another day but never had the time. It was a great time. Hot but good. I was the only one that got burnt. We do think the heat was too much for Emily though as she got sick at dinner. That was one of the deciding factors as whether or not to go to Disneyland. We didn’t.

We also spent some time on Coronado, the Gaslamp Quarter, and malls. We got to visit with Stephen’s friends and their daughter. Emily was in HEAVEN! The next day we heard all about Ava and how she scared her. It was a good visit. We went to Old Town and visited with some of my friends. That needs a post of its own really. Emily also got to experience the ocean and the beach! She was like a kid in a candy store! The smile on her face stretched from ear to ear! I loved seeing her have so much fun and be so happy.

I know we did so much more than that. I just can’t seem to remember it all right now. I do know that all of us had a wonderful time. It was sad to come home but good at the same time. Emily did an amazing time on the airplane as well, both ways. The only time we had a meltdown was when we landed and had to wait for everyone to get off of the plane before us. She had no patience because she knew that Grandma and Papa were waiting for her!

I will post a few pictures but you can find the rest in my Picasa album, linked on the right side of the page.

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Whew!

We were on vacation last week. Finally! We had it planned since January so it had been a long time coming! I was a little afraid that my OB might tell us no airplane trips with all that was going on but I was blessed with no travel restrictions so we were able to proceed as planned.

As you can imagine, it takes a while to get back on track and in the groove again. Especially with this being a holiday weekend! I’ll begin to update next week as time permits. I make time tonight to update my Picasa album. I realized that there have been no new pictures since June! Yikes!!! So, that is up to date- including vacation pictures. That’s all I could accomplish tonight. So that should hold you over for awhile!

Pictures

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