Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Papa's Visit

Austin's Papa came to visit us a few days after Christmas. Austin and Papa have a special's called fishing! :-) Austin loves to fish and even caught his first fish with Papa....believe it or not, he caught the fish with a cast he did all by himself and then reeled it in all by himself at the young age of TWO!
Anyway, since Papa knew Austin's love for fishing, you can probably guess what Austin got for Christmas from him! :-) Yep, a fishing pole! However, the fishing pole had Spongebob on it...and Austin doesn't like Spongebob, so we had to make a trip to Wal-Mart first and exchange it and get a fishing license for Daddy.
Of course, we walk out of Wal-Mart with a fishing pole that cost more than the orginal one....and actually casts itself! Austin calls it his fishing gun. You basically push a button and the line shoots out about 30 feet. A good thing about it is that we don't have to worry about him hooking us as he casts since the hook is hidden until it hits the water. Pretty neat for a 3 (almost 4) year old who doesn't quite have the coordination for casting safely. LOL.
We headed out to Lake Fayetteville to let Austin try out his new pole. It's a little cold to really catch anything, but Austin doesn't care...he just likes to fish! There were some geese and a mallard duck on the lake and they all came swimming up wanting some food. We had gotten some McDonald's for lunch and Austin still had french fries left, so after fishing, he got to feed this duck as well. The geese were startled by the fishing pole and never came back, but that duck was pretty smart and knew that food was worth it!

Austin had a great time with his Papa....we just need it to warm up a little so that when he visits again, we can actually catch some fish!

Saturday, December 27, 2008


I usually am REALLY good at getting pictures of almost everything...except this Christmas! I was busy doing so many things...and enjoying the moments that I missed a lot of great moments on film. However, I am telling myself that living them without ruining them with the camera are better! It doesn't help with the blog though!

Christmas was a little different this year. WE hosted everyone at our house. We usually visit our families...but with Colten due soon and all the travelling in November, we thought it was best for us to spend Christmas in our own home this year. We told everyone that if they wanted to, they could come stay with us...and that's what they did!

Brian's brother, John, was the first to arrive at our house on Sunday. He lives the closest and had off work the whole week. We are very happy that John lives close and can visit whenever he has a day off....especially since living in Hawaii made it hard for him and Brian to get together!

Brian's parents, Bill and Mary, arrived on Tuesday night with lots of food and gifts! We spent Christmas Eve baking cookies, a cheesecake and chicken and dumplings for dinner. We went to the Christmas Eve service at First Church and then hung stockings for Santa to fill. Austin went to bed and the rest of us hung out and waited for my mom (Patti), sister (Amanda), and brother (Jimmy) to arrive. They arrived after midnight (by that time only Brian and I were up...the others just couldn't make it!), unpacked the car and visited briefly before we all headed to bed.
The magic of Santa was so apparent this year. Austin loved any movie with Santa in it and even heard his bells before falling asleep on Christmas Eve. It was so fun to see his eyes light up anytime he talked about the Big Guy!

Christmas Morning was fun with Austin having to wait for all the adults to wake up and head to the living room to see his reaction. He was bouncing all over our room and was so excited to open gifts and see what was in his stocking! In fact, he woke up and said, "Mommy! Santa came!" before he even got out of his bed. (He slept in our room so his Nana, Aunt and Uncle could sleep in his room).

After we opened gifts and had breakfast, we all just sat around for a while and rested before the rest of the day's activities. Lunch was snack foods, appetizers, and other little things. Then, the food for dinner got started and we waited for Brian's older brother, Matt, and his family (Paula, Nathan and Anna) to arrive. Paula's niece was baptized on Christmas day, so they stayed in Little Rock so they could be apart of that celebration, then they traveled to Springdale that afternoon.

Dinner was prepared and served...and then gifts were given AGAIN. There was so much going on that I got very few pictures of this!

The time came when my Mom, sister and brother had to leave to go back home. They had a long drive and it was going to be late when they got in. The rest of the night was spent visiting with each other as much as possible. Nathan, the poor boy, got sick and had to spend the rest of the night in a guest room with Paula (poor Anna had already been sick a few days earlier).
The next day, everyone left and it was just the three of us again. We watched movies, napped, and rested after a very fun couple of days. That afternoon, it was so nice outside that I let Austin put on some shorts and his crocs and we played out in the backyard until dinner. I couldn't believe we could actually wear shorts the day after Christmas!
As you can see, we had a wonderful Christmas and hope that you did too!!!!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Razorback Basketball

Thanks to Courtney Coleman, our family had tickets to two Razorback Basketball games right around Christmas.
We figured Austin would like it, but had no idea that he would be able to sit through 2 games...and still ask to go to more!
Despite being too scared to get a picture with Big Red (the mascot for those who didn't know), he loved watching for him and pointing him out! The game started and he enjoyed watching the players while eating kettle corn (he's a popcorn fanatic!).
Overall, he was excellent and we are excited to be able to take him to watch more games and hopefully other sports as well! Now, if we could only get him to get over his shyness and CALL THOSE HOGS!!!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Christmas Lights

We went to Fayetteville's Town Square to look at the Christmas lights with our friends Brian, Meredith and Payton.
We got to the square and the lights were just gorgeous. The weather was pretty good too...until about 15 minutes after we showed up and a cold front blew in! Even with the cold, we still had fun visiting with Santa and one of his reindeer (they wouldn't let me take any pictures of Austin talking to the Big Guy), getting a pony ride (that ended prematurely due to a nervous horse), and a dinner of pizza and salad!
Here are two pictures that I got....
Austin was so proud that he was riding the pony. At first, he didn't want to, then we walked around a bit and he decided he did want to ride one and he and Brian got in line. He got on and they started walking around. After about 30 seconds, the horse got nervous and started prancing around....which had Austin looking a little nervous. The horse didn't settle down, so Austin was taken off and a refund was given. Austin said he didn't want to ride much for future pony/horse rides!

Gingerbread House Fun

This year's Gingerbread House went so much better than last year's did! Austin got to pick which "kit" we bought...luckily it was one that had a tray that made it very easy to use! Last year's house didn't last very long due to the heat and humidity in Hawaii making the icing melt and never set up. This year's house sat out until after Christmas, making a wonderful decoration for our table!
Best part about it was that Austin loved it and had fun doing it! Here are some pictures of Daddy and Austin (and a rare picture of me) putting everything together!

And it just wouldn't be fun if some tasting didn't get done!!!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Santa...Angry Guy No More!

Austin has had only one year where he would get near enough to Santa to sit on his lap...and that was before he was a year old. Every other year, he has been too afraid to even approach him, much less sit on his lap!
Back in the Spring, Austin begged to sit on the Easter Bunny's lap. Seriously, I thought he was crazy because the Easter Bunny is usually pretty scary since he just doesn't even look real! However, my silly boy was just enamored with the big eared guy and loved sitting on his lap. We asked him why he liked the Easter Bunny but not Santa and he said, "The Easter Bunny is happy...Santa is ANGRY!" It has been like that ever since.
UNTIL NOW! We have watched all kinds of Christmas shows and movies lately...Santa Claus 2 being one of them. Brian and I were talking to Austin last Sunday about Santa and how he was nice on the movie, etc and that he's not angry...he's happy. That he gives all kinds of toys to boys and girls and that if Austin didn't tell Santa what he wants, Santa won't know what to bring him!
Austin thought about it for a bit...then said he wanted to sit on his lap.
That's all it took....we got dressed and loaded up in the car and headed to the mall. We waited for Santa to show up and when he did, he walked through the line and talked to all the boys and girls on his way to his chair. Austin was excited and actually said hi to him and gave him a high five!
We wait in the line....almost expecting him to say he wanted to go home at any minute...until we were the next to see Santa. Austin went right up to the Big Guy and sat right on his lap. He told him he wanted Transformers and Star Wars for Christmas, got his picture taken and then got his candy cane (which was one of the reasons he agreed to see him...bribery works this year some of the time).
So, we are afraid of Santa no more. Here's a picture of Austin and Santa....

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

Even though we hadn't gotten everything quite unpacked yet, we had to drag out the Christmas stuff and start decorating. It just didn't seem right to put it off any longer! Here are a few pictures of the Christmas tree getting put up and decorated....

Catching Up...

What a bad blogger I have been lately!!! I noticed I didn't even get Halloween pictures online! I'm sure everyone knows how busy we have been lately, so I would think I have a TINY excuse, but now I'm really behind and I want to catch up before the barrage of Christmas pictures and Colten pictures that will definitely be posted on here before we all know it!

So, the next few posts will be to catch everyone up on what we have been doing over the last month or so!

And here are those late Halloween pictures I was talking about!

Austin was Bumblebee from Transformers for Halloween. However, we also had Optimus Prime as a back up and the day before Halloween had gotten a great deal on a Buzz Lightyear costume from the Disney Store. This boy loves to dress up!

Austin got back from trick or treating and wanted to hand out candy to other kids. However, by the time we got done, so had most of the other kids! He got to hand out candy to one little girl before he headed out and that was it....but he had fun anyway!

Austin had to wear his Buzz Lightyear costume as soon as he woke up on Halloween. It was way too warm to wear for any length of time, but he loves it anyway! I think we might already have a costume for next year's Trick or Treating!

Monday, December 8, 2008

The dogs....

Yes, another post about the dogs! I just can't resist these two pictures though! I'm probably very biased, but we have two very cute dogs....and I love how our puppy, Koa, just LOVES to be around Abby! She acts like she's only tolerating him, but I really think she likes it.

Since leaving Hawaii and almost not getting Abby on the plane because she weighed so much, I am happy to report that she has lost a few pounds! 4 pounds to be exact! She's looking great...and you can really tell she's losing it when you see her waist and the fact that she actually HAS one! :-)

The dogs LOVE our backyard. There's a spot in our yard where they enjoy laying in the sun and I caught them both laying the same way and looking at something the other day. Can you tell which is Abby and which is Koa???

Sunday, December 7, 2008


When we found out we were going to be back on the mainland in November, Brian automatically started looking at tickets to the annual Battle of the Golden Boot game. Thanks to his parents and the Coleman's, we were able to well as Matt, Paula, Nate, John and Shandy (a friend of John's).
We got to the parking area to tailgate at 9:30am....with low temps and rain threatening. That didn't stop everyone from having fun though! Well, it helped that Brian's dad went to Wal-Mart on Black Friday to get us a canopy and delivered it to us!!! :-)
The game was cold...and wet. A LOT of people left at half time....but those who stayed witnessed a great victory at the last second.

A not so flattering shot of us (or is it just not a flattering picture of me?).

The final score!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Trip to Missouri

The week before Thanksgiving, we visited Missouri. We got to visit a lot of family after not seeing everyone in a year! Here are some pictures:
As you can see, Austin has figured out that a coat is necessary...even if he doesn't like it.

Launching things with Lincoln Logs with Papa.

Fishing in the cold....because Austin wanted to and we couldn't tell him no!

Petting the horse with Grandpa Frede...later it almost ate his glove!

Outside with Nana on our last day.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Happy Birthday Hope!

Austin finally got to go to one of Hope's birthdays! Hope is the daughter of our friends, John and Jill. She was born a couple of months before Austin and since then we have always said they were going to grow up and get married someday! We even have pictures of them holding hands as infants!
Well, since we have been in Hawaii for the past 3 years, Austin has never been able to attend one of Hope's parties....until now!
What a great party! It was at a gymnastics place and was perfect for this age! Austin spent a lot of time running down and jumping into a pit of foam blocks. It was definitely his favorite thing to do!
After playtime, Hope got to open the gifts...and each kid got to sit beside her while she opened the gift that they gave her. This was the closest that the two got to each other during the whole party! :-) There was just so much going on!
Cake and Ice Cream came after gifts and then it was time to go home. I think Austin had a great time...what do you think?

Even Daddy got in on the foam fun!