Lilypie Second Birthday tickers

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Love her....

Monday, July 26, 2010

What we've been doing....

It's been a while since we've updated the blog with what has been going on at the Hall house. Rather than a quick pic and a post....this is a full blown update of what...and why.

So, the deck. The deck was in super rough shape. The pic below doesn't really prove the point, but it just looked bad. Old and gray and...just ucky.

 Sure, we dressed it up and kept it with flowers and potted plants and so on. But it still looked bad. So...I decided to stain it. I had to go solid stain since last coat applied was like a semi-transparent and alot of times folks associate solid stains with the redwood stain that everyone thinks of for decks for some reason. Well, we went lighter and when we did that....we decided to replace all of the spindles and really dress up the deck....voila!


Ok, so the next thing to point out is that we needed a gate on the all reality the gate started the whole thing. Not long ago when I took a day off work because I cracked my noggin, I decided that I would measure the opening for the deck steps and draw up plans for a gate. Couldn't be too hard right? Turns out, it wasn't that hard but I peeled back idea of replacing the spindles with these black aluminum "decorative" spindles and had I reeeeeeally thought about that in depth and analyzed the cost. I would have put wood on the gate.


The gate can lock closed or lock open which just makes perfect sense with a little one around. I didn't want the gate to be slamming around the place or closing during the day with Baxter....but I did want to lock the gate closed to keep in Reese and keep out Baxter if we decided to eat on the deck. This one little item really started this whole train wreck but a very necessary wreck to spruce up the house.


I think it looks SOOOOOO much better than it did. I still need to add a top coat just to finalize the process and clean up some scuffs from moving the furniture back on but that really shouldn't be that big of a deal. We're so excited to have a nice deck now....I've never stained or treated any deck we've had so this was a major deal for me in admitting a previous homeowner mistake by not taking care of our decks. 
Next....the fence.

With Bax sort off locked of the deck for a while - to prevent dog prints all over everything - our little, friendly, able to be adopted and sent to a new home Beagle decided that he should find a way out of our yard so he literally started busting old pieces of fence down so that he could get into Barbara and JRs yard behind us. JR feeds him cheese and he loves that so JR encouraged the behavior but the fence was in bad repair anyway.

So about two Saturdays ago, JR and I decided to fix my dog's handy work and we put up a new section of fence. Keep in mind that this is just a section of the whole but it looks decent to us. I think we decided that if need be...we could be fence builders. I mean this would be a worst case scenario of the economy really tanked. But then we thought about this harder and come to the realization that if the economy tanked...there probably wouldn't be alot of fences being built. Oh well....


I mean you couldn't even tell if the new wood didn't stand out like a sore thumb. So that keeps the destructive, lovable, so ready to have a new home wouldn't you like to adopt him right in check.

Ahhhh. Owning a home is blissful. The next projects seem to be more interior related. stuff to the kitchen? Maybe. Some new furniture? Possibly. It's sort of hard to say what we'll do next but what isn't hard to say is that Kim got creative recently as well and decided to bake some banana bread.....mmmmmmmmm. We took a tried and true recipe from Aunt Norma and Kim worked her magic with the baking gods. I'll have to good as I think the deck turned out. The bread turned out better. Kim is an awesome cook and it was just to die for. Note the controlled chaos that is happening in our kitchen but the bread was amazing.

Whoa!!!! That is some daggone good bread folks.

So that's what we've been doing at the Hall house. And here is a pic of Reese to cap off the post. Thanks for checking in!

What a face.....

Sunday, July 25, 2010

We finally ordered our pics.....

And this one is our favorite...

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Happy Birthday Kim!!

Reese and I are so lucky to have you....Happy Birthday sweetie.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Change isn't easy....

So a follow up to my most recent post regarding Reese's Dr. visit starts off like this....Doc wants us to drop the pureed foods from Reese's diet. No more #2 baby foods and if possible, no #3s either. Um.....ok. Let me explain, I've been on the food change kick for a while now but we've sort of done what was convenient rather than push Reese out of a comfort zone.

I mean think about it. She never took a paci, we weaned her off the bottle at 12 months and a few days, she literally went milk free for a while after that, and now we're changing the only constant that she's had for nearly 9 food. Safe to say that she's resisting. One day she'll eat something...the next she won't. We've been challenged a little with sitter vacation days and trips so we've had to lean on Krissy, Nana, and most recently Lynne so we've tried to keep it easy on the fill in sitters and leave the tough work to Sherry and Mamaaaa/Dadaaaaa. We've assumed that the child will not starve herself and will eventually get back to eating her normal allotment but its tough to watch her boldly declare that Chicken and Stars will not be a part of the menu. Neither will Graduates.....We don't like mashed potatoes, carrots, peas, chicken, noodles, pears, bananas, ANYTHING that isn't baby food.

I went online tonight just to sort of research this little stage and it seems perfectly normal and quite honestly more like the norm than not. Sure, some kids eat like Billy Goats but not ours. I mean it would stand to reason that she would be this way since we're not blessed with expanded palettes but we thought it might be easier. Eh...maybe not so much.

I will say that she has been a much different baby since the 15 month shots last Friday. She was a bitter pill last week but I suppose I would have been too. Can't judge a girl for being a little ticked over those shots. The weekend was great, this week has been great, she was good for Lynne yesterday (another big thank you for the last second help) and good for Nana today so we're not into "attitude" just yet but we're certainly not into change either.

I'll finish this post with another little tidbit from my personal life. I love my wife dearly. She is a strong woman and a fantastic mother. She never complains and she does what is necessary whether she has the strength to do it or not. I've never deserved her and why she stays is beyond me....but I love her the best I know how and she loves me back despite my flaws. She is a team player....she gets it. We're on the same team pushing the ball in the same direction. She has a great attitude about things and sees good in everyone. I wish I could be more like her in that way.

But some folks sort of wear you know? We all know people that just suck the life out of you - don't worry the person or persons that I'm secretly referring to NEVER read this blog or I wouldn't breach the subject so it's none of you - and I guess I sort of reached my pinnacle the other day with the bad juju that was constantly being thrown my way. I hit the wall with something and didn't just bounce off...I crashed through. Bad attitudes are contagious and I was getting the Bird Flu version of this bad attitude. I'll stop short and simply say, that my wife and daughter mean more to me than anything else. We have great friends that we try to spend time with and good family around us as well. I wish we could spread ourselves around more but for now with Reese still being small, we'll change that in time. We're opening doors to new friendships and building life long lessons for Reese. I've got more to be happy about than to be sad about and I need to remember that all the time. And finally....I am so thankful for a strong woman. Kim, you make this journey fun. Thank you for being you. Love ya!

Friday, July 9, 2010

15 month checkup....

Reese has never really thrown a fit at the Dr. offices but mix her general un-easiness with a day full of schedule changes and you have a baby girl that really needed bedtime tonight and a Mommy and Daddy that were happy to oblige.

I was running a tad late to the appointment and it appeared that Reese was already crabbing a little bit so I knew we were in for a treat. She ate a little earlier than normal....she had to be woke up from her nap....she's at the Dr's office about to get a shot....and she can't get down to cruise around. Deadly combo.

I missed the weigh in but little Reese hits the scales at 26lbs. 8oz. She is 32.5 inches tall and her head measured fine. Her head and height are in the 95th percentile. Her weight is in the 90th percentile, so she may be leaning up a little bit. I get there and Reese is fine...she's wanting a book, she wants down, wants a bite, book, down, bite, get the idea.

Our Dr. checks her out and she's doing fine. We got a miniature scolding for keeping her on pureed food so it would appear that we have a tough couple days ahead of us pretty soon because we're going to have to start preparing real food for her soon. Baby food has been convenient and easy and she loves it. She's getting vitamins and nutrients and we're ok with that...but I know she needs to be eating. Doc says present things slowly and then don't offer a back up plan. Eat this....or don't. Bring it back in an hour or so and see what happens. She'll eat. Or throw a of the two.

We've allowed Reese a little too much flexibility on the eating plan. She's pretty happy to tell you "No." when you attempt to try something new but she says it nicely. It sounds like "Naw" instead of a demand. So we've got to get creative and quick.

On to the shots....the only reason I come to appointments is to make sure we get all the instructions and hold the baby. I'm the straight jacket....and Mommy is the hugger. I want to swap roles. I lay her down on the table and the nurse starts popping her with shots. All of the sudden Reese's world goes from mildly complicated to a full blown disaster. Crocodile faced.... screaming.....crying..... screaming....bellering... And it continued into the car. A bowed back fit took place in the car....Whining at the house, screaming, crying, whining.....sniffle...calming down. Smoothing over....wait...what was that? Something made a sound....BAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!! The crying commences. It was like this all night with the off and on frustrations.

I ran back to the office to finish some things and pick up food....we dare not attempt a night out with this level of boo hoo action. I check on the girls a couple times and Reese wasn't still slinging a rod but close. Tonight, we put Reese down with a mild amount of Thank you Jesus. She needs a good nights sleep in a bad way. Oh, I hope Saturday is a better day for her.

This one was a toughy. Ugh.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy 4th of July....