Hadley: 14 Months!

Ok, so let's try to pretend we didn't skip months 12 & 13, and let's also try to pretend that I'm not 10 days late on the 14 month mark..and we'll just jump to the part where we say "Happy 14 Months, Hadley!!" ;)

I just went back & read Hadley's 11 month post {SEEN HERE} to see what's changed since then, and oh my word--EVERYTHING has changed since then! At the time of the last monthly update we had a sweet, content 11 month old immobile baby, and here we are today with a sassy & sweet 14.5 month old who loves to speed crawl, pull up on anything & everything, and cruise all the time! My how things have changed!!!

Hadley continues to be such a sweet-natured go with the flow baby. She loves to blow kisses and be held. But she's also developed a good deal of sass over the last few months. ;)  If she sees something that she wants, she thinks she's entitled to have it right then & there and she isn't the least bit shy about letting you know. ;)  When Shelby was younger, she was always so timid around other kids. If another child took a toy from her or even looked like they wanted to take a toy from her, she would just set it down & go play somehwere else. Hadley is a TOTALLY different story. ;)  We're definitely starting to see the beginning stages of tantrums, which is a huge learning curve for us b/c Shelby never really threw tantrums.  It's fun to see how two little girls who look exactly alike are developing their own unique personalities.

Hadley has a mouthful of teeth now! She's got the top 4 (although the middle 2 are still working on coming all the way down, so when she doesn't open her mouth all the way it still looks like she's got fangs!), bottom 2, and two others with about 5 more ready to pop through any minute!

Notice all the bruises on her legs in the picture above? Hadley will crawl anywhere and everywhere. She doesn't care if there's ten toys in her way--she'll bulldoze right through them. I always laugh to myself when I'm doing the girls' laundry b/c I vividly remember scrubbing the bottoms of Shelby's pants as a baby--b/c she booty-scooted everywhere, the bottoms of her pants would be so gross. Now with Hadley, the knees of her pants are completely black by the end of the day b/c she crawls around outside on the playground quipment & sidewalks while her big sister plays.

Another thing that is totally unique to Hadley is her snacking. ;)  Shelby never really enjoyed eating as a baby, but Hadley is a totally different story {a lot of thanks goes to baby-led weaning for that!}. Because we could barely ever get Shelby to eat her meals, we didn't bother with snacks so she would be hungier at meal times {plus, she didn't want the snacks anyhow!}. But Hadley snacks all.day.long. & still eats big meals! Whenever I pack the diaper bag, I always have to make sure I have at least 2-3 snacks on hand for Hadley. Don't come between Hadley & her food!! ;)

Hadley is so smart, but I know every parent thinks that about their baby! ;) You pick up on so much from watching Shelby! When you see her putting on her shoes, you grab a pair of shoes and try to put them on your feet. After we brush Shelby's hair, you will whine until we hand you the brush & then you try to brush your own hair {which is really just you banging the brush on your hand repeatedly, but it doesn't seem to phase you, ha!}. When we're at Kangarooz & they are doing songs/fingerplays, you do all the motions along with the teacher. It's so cute to see you following along like a big girl!! You are saying several words & mimick/repeat even more. Your favorite word by far is "dada." Shelby & I can just be having a conversation about something and mention Daddy's name in passing, and Hadley will start shouting "Dada! Dada!" and looking all around for you. It's seriously the cutest thing ever! And I'm only a teensy bit offended that you never seem to care about me at all except to whine if I'm not giving you enough attention. ;) 

Hadley Mae, you are the perfect mixture of sassy & sweet, and we love you to pieces! Parenting you brings us such joy! You are so different from your big sister, and it keeps us on our toes every single day--but we wouldn't have it any other way!!


Tuesday Tidbits!

Happy Tuesday, Everyone!! Here's a few tidbits from our little corner of the world:

--The movers come to pack us on Monday....MONDAY! Crazinness! We officially have less than a week left in our house with our stuff!
--I don't know how, but I completely forgot to blog about our visit from BooBoo & Pop-Pop earlier this month! BooBoo brought kids card games for Shelby, and boy were they a hit!!!
Playing cards with BooBoo :)

Shelby is very into taking pictures these days, and she snapped this one of BooBoo & Pop-Pop.
It's blurry, but I thought it turned out cute!!

Storytime with Pop-Pop

Storytime with BooBoo

--I totally forgot to do Hadley's 12 month photo & blog post...I had intended to pick back up with 13 months, but then the monthly stickers I ordered on Etsy took FOREVER to arrive. So I planned on starting again at 14 months, and I'm still late. Oops! We did get Hadley's 14 month pictures taken this weekend, so hopefully I'll get a post up before she turns 15 months old!!! Poor second child! :(

--Sometimes I think having 2 kids isn't that hard, and then there are times like today when I had to mail Shelby's flower girl dress & shoes along with a couple other things to my mom {so I don't have to take all of that on the airplane with us when we fly home for my sister's wedding}. So what should have been just a quick trip to the post office turns into a huge ordeal..unloading the stroller, unloading kids from carseats, and of course we have no boxes at our house {all our boxes have been used as we've been packing stuff up to donate before the move} so I had to carry all that stuff into the post office while maneuvering the stroller. I was quite the sight I'm sure. Before having kids, I never knew a simple trip to the post office could make you sweat! ;)

--The girls are currenly in a fun stage where they love each other immensely & can't get enough of each other and simultaneoulsy don't want the other one anywhere near them...it's super fun. ;)  And it brings me to a point of exhaustion that I never knew was possible. But as I was laying the girls down for their naps this afternoon and they could not stop blowing one another kisses, I was reminded yet again that it's all worth it.


Memorial Day Weekend!

This was our second to last weekend here at Keesler, and we were so thankful it was a 4-day weekend! Derek had kind of crazy week at work last week, so this break was just what we needed! Here's a recap of our weekend :)

We all did our own thing on Friday morning--Shelby had preschool, Hadley took her morning nap, I worked on chores & purging stuff for the move, and Derek had to run up to work to do some stuff for out-processing. After preschool, we celebrated the last day with a picnic party for her friends! It was a fun afternoon. And as a total aside, Derek was the only dad at the party and while I was watching Shelby on the playground he was sitting under the pavilion with Hadley where a lot of the other moms happened to be chatting. One of the little girls in Shelby's class has bad food allergies, and all of the moms were going on & on about allergy testing for this & allergy testing for that--I think it was an interesting insight to what Derek will be dealing with in the near future! ;)  He's definitely going to have a bit of an adjustment going from Internal Medicine to Allergy --elderly patients to concerned mamas of little ones. ;)  After the party, the entire family napped & then we went for a family run & ordered pizza for dinner. Derek put Hadley to bed after dinner while I took Shelby up to the pool for her first swim of the summer. I was surprised at how nervous she was in the water! Thankfully, by the time we left she was back to her old antics!

Terribly blurry picture, but this is Shelby's new official picture pose...why does she think
a headlock makes for a cute photo op?!

Saturday morning Derek & Shelby went to pick up Tatonut for possibly our last Tatonut fix before we leave! :(  Then Derek & Hadley stayed home to nap, while Shelby & I went up to the Marina Park splash pad on a base for a birthday party. It was a lot of fun!!

An attempt at a group shot of the kiddos at the party ;) 
Shelby is in the very back & third from the left.

The birthday boys! These two sweet brothers share a birthday--William turned 2 & Robert turned 4!

We all took naps again on Saturday afternoon before heading to Newk's & Target for the evening. The girls had a blast trying on sunglasses on Target :)

After we got the girls to bed on Saturday, we did a guy/girl house swap with the Goins. We love doing this! After the kids are all in bed, the guys hang out at one house & the girls hang out at the other house so we can all have a fun night visiting without having to have a babysitter. :)  Win-win!

We woke up early on Sunday morning and had a family run before the heat of the day...summer weather is definitely upon us here! After our run, the girls had fun drawing with sidewalk chalk together. Watching Hadley grow & master has really been fun! She has picked up on certain things a lot sooner than Shelby did b/c she's got the advantage of watching her big sister. It took for-ev-er for Shelby to be able to draw with crayons or chalk without putting it in her mouth every five secons, but Hadley is a pro already!!

While Hadley napped, Shelby got to watch Tangled. Then we had our first family trip to the pool of the summer!

Sunday night we did dinner at McAlister's then met the Goins at Hiller Park for playtime & feedint the ducks. And after we got the girls to bed, Derek's friend/co-worker Amanda came over to hang out with us. We had a lot of fun with her! Amanda & her husband just moved in behind us. While we were hanging out with her, I kept thinking of a comment my friend Erin had made to me earlier that week. Erin & I were talking about Erin's family's recent move to Montana and comparing our experiences with base housing. She compared living on base to living in dorms as college students--living on base really & truly is like living on campus..except with kids & more responsibilities. ;)  Living on base has truly been such a fun & unique experience, and I know I'm going to miss it immensely! There's nothing like being able to walk to your best friends' houses, a five minute commute to work for Derek, the sense of community, & the list goes on.

I have no pictures of our day today, but it was so nice & low-key--the perfect end to our weekend. We ate breakfast & then took a leisurely morning stroll through the neighborhood & along the back bay. (I sure am going to miss that view!!!) Then while Hadley napped, Derek & Shelby washed cars & then Shelby & I went swimming for a bit. Shelby was exhausted after all that outside time & exercise, so we had yet another viewing of Tangled followed by lunch & naps. Derek grilled out for dinner tonight (so yummy!!) & then we enjoyed one of the many benefits of living on base--got to walk over to one of our neighborhood playgrounds, and our girls got to play with their best friends while Derek & I got to chat with our friends. :)  Life is good here at Keesler, and we will certainly miss it!!!!!


Goodbye, Trinity!

Today was Shelby's last day of preschool for the year & her last day at Trinity since we'll be moving this summer. We tearfully said our goodbyes to Trinity & the two fabulous teachers that Shelby was blessed to have for the past two years! Trinity has been such an amazing first school experience for Shelby, and for that I am so grateful! The school, her teachers, and her sweet classmates & friends will be greatly missed!

Shelby with Mrs. Karen (left) & Mrs. Leslie (right)

Shelby & her BFF from school, Elise

Shelby & her friend Emily

Shelby & Emily
The first & last day of preschool for the 2013-2014 school year!

Had we stayed in Biloxi for another year, Shelby would have had new teachers at Trinity but the majority of her classmates would have remained the same from the past two years. And had we stayed in Biloxi, Hadley would have been able to join Shelby at Trinity in the younger Mother's Morning Out class with Mrs. Karen & Mrs. Leslie, and the majority of Hadley's classmates would have been the younger siblings of Shelby's friends. Although I know we've got lots of great experiences waiting for us in San Antonio, it was very hard to say goodbye to Trinity today! Change is hard!


Pictures from Camp Grammy & Grampy

Here are a few random pictures of the girls while they were at Grammy & Grampy's house last week! They had so much fun! :)

I can't get over how much I love this one!!!!!

Grampy took the day off of work one day so the 4 of them could all go up to Babyland General one day :)

Shelby holding the newborn baby named Shelby Ann that they named after her & another little girl that was there :)

And here's a couple of pictures taken after my parents brought the girls back to Biloxi & were spending the weekend with us...


Our New Home!

Derek & I spent the first half of last week in San Antonio, and we found our new home!

Our new home in San Antonio!
Posing in front of our new house! :)

Derek & I got back from San Antonio on Wednesday evening, and my parents drove the girls back to Biloxi on Thursday & then stayed with us through the weekend. We are so grateful to them for keeping the girls for us while we house-hunted! It was such a blessing to know they were having a blast & being spoiled, so we were able to focus all of our time & attention on house-hunting without worrying about the girls. And we were thrilled to be able to spend some time with my parents here at our house in Biloxi one last time before we moved! It's so hard to believe that was the last time they'll be at this house...now that we have a new house lined up in San Antonio & the movers are scheduled {they'll be boxing up our stuff on June 2nd}, it's really starting to sink in that our time here at Keesler is coming to a close! Crazy!


Camp Grammy & Grampy :)

We met my parents for lunch today in Montgomery & then they drove the girls back to GA with them for the week. Derek & I will be San Antonio bound tomorrow morning!!

This past week, I have been more than ready to hand Miss Hadley off to anyone who was willing to take her...she's been teething & super fussy/irratible. Add to that the fact that she thinks anything & everything she lays her eyes on she should be able to have in her hands IMMEDIATELY..and you can imagine how fun our week has been with her. ;)  So all week I was looking forward to handing Hadley off...but then Thursday & Friday, she was sweet as pie. So of course, I was in tears as I buckled my babies into their carseats in Grammy & Grampy's car. Shelby assured me she'd be having too much fun with Grammy & Grampy to miss her Mama, but she said she'd still miss Daddy. Thanks, Shelby-girl! ;)  I know the girls will have a BLAST, but we sure are missing them already! Derek & I are beyond thankful for parents who will drop everything to make our lives easier & spend time with their grandbabies. House-hunting will be about 1.5 jillion times easier & more efficient without having to drive the girls 10 hours away and then drag them in and out of the carseats over and over again as we drive around looking at houses. Thank you, thank you, thank you Grammy & Grampy!!!

And Happy Mother's Day to all the mamas out there, especially our Grammy, Grandma, BooBoo, and Grandma Jane! :)


The Next Chapter.....

I mentioned at the end of {THIS} post that we've got an upcoming trip to San Antonio for house-hunting, and after I published that post I realized I'd never "officially" shared about our move on the blog...oops! I post a lot of our day to day stuff here on the blog, and the "big picture" stuff gets omitted sometimes. Here's my attempt at remedying that. ;) I wish I had blogged about all of this as it happened b/c it was definitely a bit of an emotional rollercoaster for us!

Derek finished his Internal Medicine residency last June and has been the Chief Resident for the program since then. Ever since last June, I've been meaning to have him do a little post on what life is like for him these days as Chief....and here we are almost a year later, and it still hasn't gotten done. ;)  Anyhow, during the fall of Derek's chief year, he began the application process for fellowship. Derek was considering a few different sub-specialities: Rheumatology, Infectious Diseases, Endocrinology, & Allergy. Ultimately, he decided on Allergy. He submitted his application in September if my memory serves me correctly, and we knew we woudln't hear any results until December. We spent the months of October & November thinking lots of what-ifs....what our life would be like if Derek was selected for Allergy, or what our life would be like if Derek wasn't selected and we got to stay here at Keesler for another year...or if he wasn't selected, what if we would have to be re-assigned to a new base? Lots of what-ifs! Being selected for a fellowship in Allergy was a really exciting prospect for us--it was what Derek really wanted to do, it would mean a move to a new city, and some of our best friends {the Goins & Gallimore families} from Keesler would be potentially moving out there with us if they were also selected for their fellowships. At some point in the fall, Derek went down to San Antonio to interview for the fellowship & learn more about their program, and he came home feeling really confident about everything. So as time went on, Derek & I found ourselves getting more & more excited about the potential move, but at the same time I was still very cautious to get my hopes up too much. Fast-forward to December, and we found out that our friends would be moving to SA in June to begin their fellowships in Cardiology & Nephrology {we were/are thrilled for them!} but Derek was selected as "alternate" for Allergy. Apparently, adequate funding wasn't available to fulfill the 2nd Allergy spot, so only one Allergy fellow was selected for the entire Air Force. It was very disappointing to say the least. Derek was devastated that his professional aspirations weren't coming to fruition, and we were broken-hearted on a personal level to be "left behind" here at Keesler while our friends would go on to SA in June. Don't get me wrong, we LOVE Keesler & everything about living here; but it really & truly felt like our time here was wrapping up and that we weren't meant to stay. Here's where the rollercoaster ride comes in.....days after learning about Derek's fate with Allergy, he was offered a potential fellowship position in Rheumatology. We were considering accepting the offer only to find out that the offer was no longer possible, again due to funding. Christmas & New Year's came & went, and with that time we finally began to feel at peace with the reality that we would indeed be staying at Keesler for at least one additional year. I can still distinctly remember a Sunday evening family run in mid-January where the girls were happily snacking in the jogging stroller & listening to their music while Derek & I discussed our future. We were getting excited about what another year at Keesler might mean for us despite the fact that we were still very saddened to see our friends and we had the very real possibility of a fall 2014 deployment on the horizon for Derek. We were excited about being close to home for another year. We were excited about being able to send Shelby to Trinity for one more year & have Hadley possilby join her there for the Mother's Morning Out program. We were excited for a good work schedule for Derek. We were excited about living at the beach for one more year & being close enough to squeeze in another Disney trip. I was excited b/c I finally felt like I was in a good rhythm with the girls here with our activities {Excel by Five, Kangarooz, storytime, etc}, and that we'd be able to continue that. The very next day, Derek found out that money had been moved around in the budget & we would be moving to San Antonio for fellowship this summer after all! Whew, what a whirlwind of emotions!

It probably wasn't until mid-February that we were really able to wrap our minds around everything! Once we were finally able to do that, we started to get super excited about this next chapter for our family! We are thrilled to be moving to a fun, new city where there is so much to do & explore, and we're excited to make lots of new memories as a family! But we're simultaneously saddened to leave Keesler & the only home we know with our children. We brought both of our babies home to this house, and there are countless memories we have here with them. It will be so hard to say goodbye to this house.

Derek & I will be San Antonio bound for house-hunting on Sunday! Because of the whirlwind of emotions that surrounded this PCS, it's never really felt "real" to me. But with our trip upon us, the reality is starting to sink in more & more. We are incredibly proud of Derek and eager to begin this next chapter of our family's story alongside our dear friends in San Antonio!