Christmas Road Trip

We're hitting the road tomorrow night for our Christmas tour of Arkansas and Tennessee! We decided to leave at night in hopes that the little one would sleep the whole way. He's not a huge fan of his carseat (doesn't seem to like being restrained from movement), so we were afraid it would take us forever to get there if we left during daylight hours. I sure hope this doesn't backfire on us! I'll let you know how it all works out!

Our first stop is Hope, AR...Daniel's hometown and where his father still lives. We'll be there until the 23rd when we'll head to Clarksville, TN. Daniel's mom moved there this year after becoming the director of the United Way chapter in Clarksville. This will be our first time to see her new home and the city she's grown to love, so we're excited! We'll be there for about a week and then head back to AR. We're not exactly sure when we're coming back to New Orleans. Classes don't begin for Daniel until the middle of January, and since I'm no longer working, we're not pressed to get back right after the new year. We figure this will be the only time we'll have this freedom, especially once he's back in a church pastoring, so we want to take advantage of it while we can. There is no internet available at Daniel's dad's house (think rural), so I'm not sure when I'll be back on to post. With that said,

Merry Christmas!!!!

We pray you all have an amazing time with family and friends! May we all remember Who's birth, life, death, and resurrection we are celebrating this month and all throughout the year! Thank you, Lord, for sending your only son, Jesus, so that we might be transformed into new creations!

We love you all and pray God's blessings on you!


I love Skype!

I discovered Skype a couple of years ago when my friend from Florida used it to chat with her family living in Michigan. I thought it was so neat that you could video chat with people thousands of miles away and feel as if they were in the next room. I decided I wanted a webcam for my computer last year, so my parents graciously bought me one for my birthday in 2008. When we found out we were pregnant last November, I knew we needed to get my parents a webcam for Christmas so we could skype not only during the pregnancy, but especially once the little one was born. We skyped a good amount throughout the pregnancy, but ever since Riley was born we've skyped just about every week. They love being able to watch him grow...even if it's through a computer screen!

This year is our year to be with Daniel's family for Christmas, so I thought it would be neat for us to skype with my parents when it came time to open our Christmas presents to and from them. Because my husband is like a kid when it comes to Christmas presents AND because we're leaving next Thursday for Arkansas, we decided that tonight was the night! We pulled our presents out from under the tree, and they did the same. One by one we opened the gifts...it was so much fun!

My parents opening their present from Riley - a Shutterfly book of his first 3 months in the world. Riley doesn't know he gave this to them, but he will one day. :)

Daniel loves remote controlled anything. My parents got him a remote controlled car that flips over and bounces back when it hits things. The intention was for him to share it with Riley when Riley gets old enough...we'll see if that happens. :)

I was SO excited about my big gift! I have been wanting an electric griddle for a long time now. I guess I mentioned it in passing to my dad once, and he remembered! Thank you so much, mom and dad!!! Pancakes, here we come!

Riley has gifts to open, too, but he was already in bed when we decided to open ours. Thanks to skype, my parents will be able to watch him open them on Monday night! I don't know who invented skype, but I sure am thankful!!!

Mohawk Man

When Riley was first born, he came out with a little bit of dark hair, but not a whole lot. Over the course of a few weeks, he lost all of it except the very back, so we called him our old man. :) Hair started growing back in all over, but just recently a large patch of dark wavy hair has grown on top of his head just in the middle. Yes, our son has a natural mohawk! Because you know I love snapping shots of the adorable one, here's the proof...

"Yeah, I'm cool!"

"Hello up there!"

Look at the wavy mohawk! I wonder which side of the family that comes from...

We decided to see what it would do after his bath last night...let's just say it still looked like that this morning when I went to wake him up! Oh Riley, I'm afraid you're going to take after your mama in the hair department! :)

Laughing at Daddy

We absolutely love hearing our little guy laugh! Tonight, while Daniel was changing his diaper he sang a little song to Riley. Evidently Riley loved it because he just kept laughing and laughing. It was too cute to not share with others, so we decided to catch it on video. Enjoy!


Dentures, please!

I'm not sure where my sweet baby boy has gone, but I think the teething monster took over his body! The past few days have been quite difficult with the little one. He's waking up at weird times, taking short naps, not wanting to finish his bottles, and very fussy. Daniel's mom told us that when he was a baby he teethed pretty much all at once. I would love it if that happened with Riley...let's bring those bad boys in all on the same day so we're done with it! :) I've read and heard from people that teething begins around 4 months and lasts oh until they're 2 or 3 years old! That's quite a few fussy, short nap days, and this mama is hoping she still has some hair by the time all of his teeth are in! Well, at least he's still cute...


I want cake!

Riley attended his first birthday party this past Saturday. Our friends from church, the Nease's, invited us to celebrate with both of their children. Austyn turned 3 in November and Bennett turns 1 on Dec. 9. We had a great time hanging out with friends, but I wish you could have seen Riley staring down the cake table! If he's anything like either of his parents, he's going to LOVE sweets! Not yet, though!! :)

Blowing out the candles. Amanda made the ice cream cone cupcakes and lion cake. They were both delicious and so fun to look at!

Cole and Riley. If only you could see what he was staring at...that's right, the cake table!

All of the kiddos enjoying their treats

Literally drooling with envy :)

Family shot before heading home and giving him his food...yay for Enfamil!

Battle of the wills

Flying & First Thanksgiving

Riley went on his first major trip for Thanksgiving! We flew to Maryland to spend the holiday with my parents, brother, sister-in-law, nephew, and close family friends. To be honest, I was a bit nervous about flying with a 4-month-old, but he was wonderful! He cried for maybe a total of 10 minutes round-trip! What a sweet boy!

The flight attendants on Southwest were so sweet and helpful. We asked for 'wings' for Riley and they brought us wings and a certificate which the captain signed. Such a fun way to document his first flight!

Watching the sunset on our way to MD

Needless to say, my parents were dying to see their 2nd-born grandson! The last time they saw him he was just a couple days old. We usually skype about once a week, so they've been able to track his growth somewhat through the computer, but as you can tell by the photo below, they were SO excited to see him in person!

Meeting Uncle Chad, Auntie Jill and cousin CJ for the first time

Liz and I have known each other all of our lives (literally). Our father's were in each others weddings, and once we got into high school we became really good friends. She and her husband, Dan, live in Southern MD, so they drove up for Thanksgiving day. Here's Riley with their newest addition (also have a 3-year-old, Jacob), Will. He's only 17 days older than Riley!

Liz and I with our turkeys :) (Liz's mom bought 3 turkey bibs for the babies - so cute!)

The ladies and the three turkeys!

We had such a GREAT time in MD...if only the trip could have been longer. Really, I'm just thankful we even made it there. The day before we were supposed to leave, Daniel and I both became very sick with some sort of 24-hour stomach bug. I woke up Wednesday morning (the day of our flight) with a fever and barely able to get out of bed. I thought for a while that we were going to be spending our first thanksgiving as a family in New Orleans! Praise the Lord, though, because He healed us both and gave us just enough strength to pack quickly and head to the airport to catch our flight. I'm so glad we pushed ourselves and went! I'm not sure when we'll head back that way, so it was wonderful to see everyone and spend good, quality time with family. There are a TON more pictures from the trip, so if you'd like to see them (and other pics from November), go here.