Last night was the last of our favorite Friday night concerts!!! I did not want to miss the last one, and David had to work, so my parents were nice enough to come help me out with the kids. Definitely not enough of me to go around at something like this- It would not be safe for me to take them by myself!! Anyway, they had never been and I think were wishing they had not come with me- the first band was an EXTREMELY loud hard rock band!! NOT AT ALL the usual kid-friendly make you want to dance music they had been having!! But, the second band was great, and I think SuSu and G ended up being glad they went. Plus they had a ton of fun watching the kids dance. Let me tell you, Lila is a dancing machine!!!
G listening to the music...
SuSu and the babies....(I guess I have one more day to call them the babies....)
Elise in her "slice of summer" skirt- one of my favorite ETSY purchases!
Lila loving some sno-ball (just like her Mommy!)
I am so sad these concerts are over...But, I think they are planning on doing it again in the fall...I really hope so...The kids love it and we do too- and it's FREE!!
Hope everyone has a great weekend. I have Suzanne's baby shower tomorrow. Can't wait!
We are so excited because my brother, Jared, proposed to his longtime girlfriend, Erinn, last night!!! Yeah!! We absolutely love Erinn and are so thrilled that she is going to be an official member of the family- even though she has felt like a part of it for years!!
CONGRATULATIONS! WE LOVE YA"LL!!!
Sorry for the old pictures. We have actually seen them since Elise's 1st birthday party!! Jared just seems to have a way of hiding from the camera....
In case ya'll were up all night the past few nights worrying (HA!HA!), the transition to the new bed has gone really well. I am MOST impressed with how easily she surrendered her beloved "baboose". I seriously thought it was going to be a nightmare. Our little girl is growing up....
Those of you who know me well would not be surprised to find out that as soon as we found out that we had another baby (little did we know babies - plural) on the way, I started work on Elise's "big girl" room. Because we did not find out her sex and didn't plan on finding out the sex in future pregnancies we had a very tiny and cute little neutral nursery, which in my grand plan would have remained, and been the nursery for all of our children. That went out the window with the news of two on the way, but anyway, I digress. So, back to my point. We got Elise's big girl room all ready and made a big deal of her move down the hall WAY before the babies got here, in order to make sure she didn't feel "kicked out" of her old room. We are lucky enough to have David's Grandmother's old bedroom set, which is perfect for a little girl's room. Since she was not ready to get out of her crib yet, a sweet friend let me borrow one (thanks Casey!) and we set that up in her new room. We, of course, figured the crib thing to be very short lived. Especially since she would be staring out of her crib at her big girl bed....but, until very recently she has been quite content to stay in the crib. Tonight, that chapter is closing!! Because of her increased interest, and our desire to get rid of the pacifier that she was still clinging to (although only allowed in the crib - for nap and nighttime), we set up the bed rails and she made the move tonight! In the above picture you can see my little tiny "big" girl...getting ready for bed. I swear it looks like a king sized bed or something, when it is only a full!
She is so excited!! Never even talked about her baboose- that is her funny name for her pacifier. We never figured out where that one came from.
Her Dad kissing her good night...
We are so proud of her!! Let's just hope we are still feeling that way tomorrow morning.... Good night everyone! Love, Nicole
This picture has nothing to do with my post. But I couldn't resist little Bennett in his LSU hat. My little man....
I rarely post about things other than my children, but I just feel that it is very important today to ask anyone who reads this to please pray for the Smith Family. I do not know this family at all in the usual sense of the word. I have been following their story on their blog - Bring the Rain. You can access it from the side of my blog. Angie is a very inspiring person and through tons of loss she remains dedicated to God. She is a very gifted writer and the way she tells her story, along with the elements of the story, have kept me intrigued for months. I don't think that it is an "accident" that I found this blog. They lost their daughter Audrey less than 2 months ago and now they have lost their 2 month old nephew as well (to what looks like SIDS). It is overwhelming to me how much they have been through. Please, please, add them to your prayer lists tonight. The thought of anything happening to one of my children brings immediate tears to my eyes, and so I don't even think I can begin to imagine a fraction of their pain. It is hard to feel powerless in these types of situations, but the only way that I, or any of us, can help is to pray.
5 days until Lila and Bennett's big birthday!! In honor of that I thought I would do my "Top 5" things I am loving about each of them right now:
Lila 1. I love how you scrunch up your nose when you are happy or proud 2. I love how you are brave enough to stand, but not quite brave enough to take a step (yet!) 3. I love how you beat on the highchair tray when I don't get the food to you fast enough 4. I love seeing your big round soft blue eyes looking at me through the crib when I come to get you from your nap 5. I love how you let your brother steal your toys without complaining
Bennett 1. I love how you hug me extra tight when I hold you (even though sometimes it is to bite me!) 2. I love how you play catch and fetch -- with yourself! 3. I love your funny big and second toes! 4. I love seeing your big almond shaped royal blue eyes looking at me through the crib when I come to get you from your nap 5. I love how much you remind me of your Dad
Together 1. I love how you chase each other around the den and laugh 2. I love trying to decipher your babbles to each other that ya'll seem to understand 3. I love how Bennett can fall right to sleep, despite Lila's longer "protests" 4. I love how Lila can stay asleep when Bennett wakes up from his much shorter naps 5. I love how ya'll already look up to your big sister
Sunday afternoon we went over to Su Su and G's house to spend some time with Aunt Monique before she had to go back to Nashville. Lila and Bennett had fun hanging out in their new wagon, a birthday gift from Emmy and Pop!
Elise had a blast playing in the new sprinkler that L & B got from the Mills family! She was so thankful that her brother and sister shared their new toy with her!
You can see Lila laughing at Elise in this one....
Elise took a turn in the wagon with "crazy howie" as she likes to call him!
She is sad that Aunt Mo had to leave...and so am I!!
I meant to post on Friday, but with everything going on this weekend, I just didn't get a chance to sit and type...It was a year ago on Friday that I went into the hospital to stay until I had Lila and Bennett...I really can't believe it. Thinking back to that day, the first thing that comes to mind is the word grateful. I really am overwhelmed when I think about that time in our lives. I had a relatively "easy" twin pregnancy...my nausea and discomfort are nothing compared to the complications that many women experience...I was just going along thinking I would make it until the end! I think my VERY optimistic Dr. had convinced me we would be reaching 39 weeks!! But that morning I woke up with some cramping and so I called the Dr's office. They had me come in, just to make sure...I remember like it was yesterday my Dr's face when she checked me. I was already 3 1/2 to 4 cm dilated. I had to go right to the hospital. Granted, at this point I was 34 weeks along, so it wasn't as if the babies would not be able to survive had they been born that early...it was just unexpected. Anyway, I remember thinking to myself, "Today is the day....we're having babies today!" Obviously, that is not what happened....My Dr took excellent care of me and the babies and although the next two weeks are not those that I look back on with the fondest memories, it was so worth it....The hardest part was leaving Elise since I had never been away from her for more than 2 days... Anyway, I am digressing, back to being grateful....I was just thinking back to all of the people that visited me, that helped with Elise, that brought me food to give me a break from the hospital food, that rubbed my HUGELY swollen legs, that talked and sat with me even though i was pitiful and probably hallucinating most of the time (thanks magnesium sulfate!!), that checked in with David, that called to check on me, and I could go on and on....I truly hope that I thanked each and every one of you back then, and if I didn't SHAME on me (can I blame it on the drugs? :) just kidding...)...you know who you are and I couldn't have made it without ya'll... And to David, for taking care of Elise, and everything else....like always you lifted my burden and my spirits....you are really the best.... Thanks sincerely from the bottom of my heart....
P.S. I will try to keep these emotional posts to a minimum over the next week, but I am not making any promises...This is just going to be an emotional week for me...My "babies" are just getting so big....
Thanks so much to Davis for taking these great pics!! Without him, we wouldn't have had these great memories captured!!
**Another important note: Lila said her first word!!! Yeah!! I wish I could say that it were Mommy or Daddy, but instead she is now saying "BALL"! She does blabber a lot and often says Mama and Dada, but "ball" is the first word she has said where it is obvious that she knows what she is saying...She holds the ball up and says, "ball"!! Yippee!! I try my hardest not to compare my children, but I have been a little worried since they are doing everything way behind when Elise did. This is probably a combination of their "preemie" status (four weeks early) as well as the fact that Elise is a little bit of an overachiever!! She was walking at 10 1/2 months and we are not there with the babies yet... Their time will come!
These adorable birthday crowns were given to Lila and Bennett by their Aunt Monique! Aren't they precious?? These will definitely be a tradition in our house...
Can't believe they are almost one....Personalized napkins were definitely a must! You only turn 1 once!!
Here is a shot of our dining room, ready for the party.... This is funny to me, because usually the table is pushed against the wall in order to make room for my kid corral!
Double Bubble- Aunt Mo's awesome suggestion for party favors to thank everyone for coming!
The birthday cake!! I'll try to include some "before" pictures of their smash cakes soon... Needless to say, the pictures that will come later are much more exciting. I just wanted everyone to "feel" like they were here celebrating with us!!
We've been getting ready for this weekend and Lila and Bennett's birthday party...Elise wanted to help, and so here she is working in the yard with her Dad! Can't wait until I can really assign her chores to do!!
Meanwhile inside....Lila thought she had found a fun new hiding place in between the wall and the armoire... (and no, our children do not usually go around with just a diaper...we are in between wardrobe changes here!!)
Until she realized she couldn't get out!!!
Yesterday Kate and Myrt stopped by on their way out of town...Elise was dying to hold Myrt.... Notice her EXTREMELY jealous baby brother and sister....
Two little cuties...Elise was sooo sweet and gentle with the baby...I was very pleased...
We are looking forward to a fun, family filled weekend!!
We are all very excited because Aunt Mo (and crazy cousin Howie- her maltipoo) drove into town today!! I am thrilled that she will be here to celebrate Lila and Bennett's first birthday with us (just a week early!)... Needless to say, Elise is totally over me right now and completely focused on Aunt Mo. She painted her at least 5 paintings while waiting for her arrival. And, once she got here Aunt Mo had to do everything. "Aunt Mo needs to buckle me in, Aunt Mo needs to read me a book, Aunt Mo can you please get me a drink..." Aunt Mo is probably going to be ready to go back to Nashville by tomorrow! HAHA!
I'll post pictures soon!! Thank God for my sister! So glad she is here...
It has been raining like crazy for the past few days here so I don't have much to report... We have been stuck inside and doing lots of art projects... Elise is very into her glitter paint right now...I love encouraging this side of her! It is lots of fun...
Thanks to all of the rain (one of the silver linings!), my hydrangeas are blooming beautifully... I am so thrilled...They are one of my favorite flowers and it is so nice to have fresh flowers inside... ESPECIALLY on gloomy days like we have been having...
We'll see if the rain stops in time for our Friday Night concert...If not I know we will be facing complete devastation on Elise's part!
Today was a very special day for me... I am often overwhelmed with how blessed I am and today was one of those days. David and Elise worked very hard together to make sure that everything was perfect! (Don't worry Lila and Bennett, I know next year you'll be right there with them!) I am so glad that David documented their morning, as I was instructed to stay in bed... Inspired by the book "A Special Day for Mommy" that they found on a trip to Barnes and Nobles a while back, the day started with me being served cereal in bed, while wearing my special "Mommy" crown (pink, of course, with sparkly letters!). After I ate my cereal, Elise held my hand and guided me into the kitchen where I had heart shaped jam and butter sandwiches, flowers picked from the yard, and a beautiful homemade card waiting... Below you can see Elise working on the card...it was very elaborate and I was very impressed with David's craft skills!
Elise cutting out the heart shaped sandwiches...
Elise adding such a sweet touch, a toilet paper bow, to my flowers...
All of my loot- Elise's "to do" list, the book that provided the inspiration for my morning, my handmade card entitled I love you everyday of the week, the handpicked fresh flowers, and the copy of the order for a "pair" of shoes I had been eyeing (thanks for the hint Aunt Mo) from my "pair"- Lila and Bennett....(the shoes didn't make it here in time, but what a great thought!)
After we ate breakfast we headed off to church....After church we came home so that the babies could catch their morning nap and then we went over to my parents house for a late lunch. David grilled for everyone and it was delicious! He even made blueberry AND apple pie! Below you can see the babies watching their Dad cook....
Taking a rest after his long, productive day....
I am so, so thankful on this day...Not only for the three beautiful children I have been blessed with, but for their wonderful Dad. I love so much how he spent so much time with Elise creating just the perfect present- and how it was less about something he just went out and bought, and more about treating me like a Queen today. I love that she is learning from him about what is really important, and I loved seeing how proud she was of the work they had done together. So, I am especially thankful for David, today and everyday, because his support and dedication to our family are what enable me to try everyday to be the best Mom I can be to our children. He always makes me feel like the "job" that I take so seriously (but don't get paid for!!) is as important to him as it is to me... So, thank you to his Mom on this Mother's Day for the gift of him....And to my Mom, thanks for being the best role model I could have asked for. I hope I can be half the Mom to our children that you are to us.
I also want to say a special Happy Mother's Day to all of my friends with children, and especially those whose babies are still growing inside of them (Suzanne, Aimee, Currey and Theresa)..you have so much to look forward to!!
I am the proud wife of David and Mom to three wonderful blessings- Elise, Lila, and Bennett. I am thankful every single day that I have the opportunity and gift of spending the majority of my time with my children- who I love to pieces, and who challenge, inspire, frustrate, and teach me things every single day.
This is my online journal, which I am hoping the kids will see as a perfect substitute for a scrapbook or baby book--because I don't see those happening any time soon!!
Elise Laurent was born at 5:00 p.m. on July 19, 2005. We did not find out her sex during my pregnancy and we were thrilled to tears (and slightly shocked) to meet our beautiful baby girl. She was a big baby at 8lbs, 8oz, and David and I couldn't take our eyes off of her. Elise is an old French name that David and I have always loved. Laurent is both my paternal Grandfather's name and my Dad's middle name. We always dreamed of having a daughter and were so thankful and overwhelmed to be given such a blessing.
Elise is a true first born. She likes structure, likes to fully understand everything, likes her questions answered to her satisfaction. She loves to be challenged and to challenge. She is also highly sensitive and independent.
She is a wonderful big sister to Lila and Bennett....
Lila and Bennett
It would be an understatement to say that we were shocked to learn on November 11, 2006 that we were not expecting baby #2, but baby #2 and #3!! In just shy of two years we would have created quite a family!
But, on June 1st, 2007, at 36 weeks exactly, we were thrilled and completely overcome with joy and gratitude as we welcomed two big, healthy babies into our family. First, Lila Sue, named after my Mom at 7lbs 0.6oz, and secondly, Bennett Raymond, named after David, David's Dad, and my maternal Grandfather, at 7lbs 10.4oz.
Lila has been the vocal one from the start and to this day is still pretty much running the show. She is the life of the party, the entertainer. But she is also the most compassionate, most giving of our children.
Bennett is a true boy. He is active and rough and loves to tackle and throw. He also adores his sisters and his Dad and gives the best hugs around. His big baby blues get me every time.
Boss is the newest member of our family. He was born on June 15, 2010, and he came home to us on September 9th. His full name is Boss Brees Parnell. He is half maltese and half poodle, and 100% love. We are so thrilled to have him!