Sunday, October 31, 2010

Boo at the Zoo

Ok actually the Dallas Zoo doesn't have "boo at the zoo".  Instead, they do Halloween Nights and the setup for that looked like it would be a lot of fun.  But we had a good time anyway.  The zoo has some great animals and for being a Saturday, there was no one there!  Of course we saw all your typical zoo animals:

 I didn't take a ton of pictures because we found out the camera's battery was dying when we got there.  But they have a lot of areas where you can have an "up close" experience with various animals.  We saw the elephants and the lions that way when they were being fed.  Megan of course is more than willing to sit on any statuary we see (and they have a lot), but refuses to ride the pony around the ring.  They have a fun children's area with barn animals you can pet and a little playground and Megan made a new friend!

We may have to go back periodically to visit him!  

Friday, October 29, 2010

Halloween Celebrations

No trick-or-treating for us this year.  With Halloween on Sunday and Stake Conference the whole weekend, we've resigned ourselves to simpler celebrations.

Last night we had a ward fall festival with a trunk-or-treat.  Megan was beside herself with joy over finally getting to trick-or-treat.  Chopper was a fabulous husband (please read the sarcasm intended there) and explained to her all about it a few weeks ago.  It has been on my shoulders ever since to deal with the issue of when -- still a foreign concept to Megan.  So last night, IT WAS ABOUT TIME!  Megan got through about 6 cars before she wanted to go back to Daddy.  I think the real reason was so she could sit in our car and eat her treats.  She didn't care that if she kept going she would have MORE treats.  What was in her "pumpkin basket" was just fine with her thank you.  Abby on the other hand rode the mommy hip and sucked her thumb for 2 hours straight.  I'm not sure if it's because she was hungry or tired but she was very patient through the whole night waiting to go home again.

In all honesty, with all the projects I have to complete, I didn't want to add too much Halloween to the list.  So Megan wore her flower costume from last year (that's why I don't have any great pictures of it -- well that and Megan wouldn't let me take good pictures of her for the most part) and I made Abby a cute little dress to be a witch.  The headband came from Target -- I love that place!  Actually, now that I think about it, both headbands came from Target!  Megan's was from Easter though . . . I double love that place!  But we had a good time and Mommy and Daddy are enjoying the fruits of Megan's labors (hehehe)!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

My Free Time

Other than exploring Dallas, I've been getting my household routine down and doing lots of projects. This is what happens when I don't have friends or a church calling -- I can read, craft, and quilt!

So of everything that needs to be decorated in my first house, what's the most important? Megan's room of course! After all, I've only been dreaming and scheming about this since before I was even pregnant with her. It's still somewhat of a work in process but I had to show what's been done because I love love love where it's going. And I justify doing her room first by telling myself that I only have so much time before she starts deciding how she wants her room decorated so . . .

Still using my old dresser of course -- why not? The ribbon board on the right is a great, EASY, quick craft from FamilyFun magazine (love that thing!).
Remember the tree that Chopper painted? He added a few purple leaves for pop and then I started adding birds. I found one I liked online, used the outline and cut it out of paper. It's has clear contact paper over the top and extending from the edges to stick it to the wall. It's a homemade sticker! And when you peel them off, no residue -- another FamilyFun idea . . .

But you can't have just one bird! You need a flock! They're a little hard to see because their bodies are mainly white with purple wings. And then one of course is taking a rest on top of the picture of the flower. I know though, I really need bigger frames and pictures. These were on a great sale at Michaels and I have no spatial sense so once I hung them I stood back and realized, they're a little small for the space. Well Megan doesn't care so they can stay until I upgrade!

Then of course the bed needed more pillows! It all has to match right? So I made Megan a pillowcase for her sleeping pillow and a few adorable throw pillows! Which she doesn't understand the concept of and keeps sleeping on with her neck at a horrible angle. But I suppose really it isn't logical -- a pillow you CAN'T sleep on. The green is a bird's next fabric I found at a quilt shop at Utah that I fell in love with and the flowers I learned to make at a Relief Society activity in Virginia!

After "staging" the pictures, I promptly had to re-dress the bear in his "I love my cousin" t-shirt (thanks Dan and Denise) and then Megan had to mess it all up. It will never look like this again!

I am very fortunate to have a daughter who understands my need to read. Of course I save the near constant reading for when Chopper is here and able to take over but I did finish The Hunger Games in about 24 hours . . .

And then I go back to being a mom. I love my girls whole-heartedly but I do get sucked into books pretty badly. Thank goodness I have no friends and no calling!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

We're practicing

I want to get cute pictures of the girls for the holidays but it really is near to impossible. Abby smiles if you look at her cross-eyed but often has her thumb in her mouth. Megan either doesn't hold still for the camera or says "smile" and doesn't do anything. Hmmm. So to get them together is an even greater feat! So we held an impromptu photo shoot when they were both doing tummy time the other day. These smiles were accomplished at great effort on my part -- effort on making myself so ridiculous that both girls HAD to smile! It worked for a while . . .

. . . But try to add myself into the picture (family ones would be nice too), and it falls apart!
Actually, we are all smiling! We'll see what happens!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

New videos

I haven't posted videos for a while and thought the girls were doing some cute things that are at least worthy enough for the grandparents to see!

It continues to amaze me how much Abby is advancing. I hope that I never lose that wonder with any of my babies!

Megan drew a pictures today of a face and announced "It's a face!" When I asked her who's face it was, she told me it was Grandpas. So I said, well, where's his hair? She drew one little line at the top of the head and said "there it is!" If you know my dad, you'll know that it's pretty funny. So here she is with her picture:

Monday, October 11, 2010

Not Quite Barcelona . . .

Happy Columbus Day Ya'll!!!!

Chopper had the day off (government workers ya know) so we went to The Stockyards in Fort Worth to see the sights. We were excited because the Fort Worth Herd is herded down Exchange St. every day at 11:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. I was prepared for a little more action than what we got -- just some longhorn cattle moseying on down. The cowboys didn't even have to direct them on where to go. But I guess I'd get tired of doing the same loop twice a day every day of the year too!

Well, Megan enjoyed seeing the cows and the longhorns are pretty impressive. I learned that the shape of their horns comes from the breed they're descended from and both girls were made Marshalls for Fort Worth for the day.

Most of the original stockyards have been turned into shopping and restaurants so we wandered around for a while and then finished off with a Texas lunch:

Nothing like ribs and fried pickles!

There is also a Texas walk of fame -- real cowboys and cowgirls, celebrities, and people associated with the Western ideal. We only took pictures of these two famous ones:

And no Texas day is complete without a pony ride!
Thanks Columbus for starting us off!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Cowboy Country

Since Chopper and I have been married, we have lived in New Mexico, Idaho, Montana, Virginia, and now Texas. Hmmm, 4 out of 5 have been pretty big on cowboys (well, maybe New Mexico is borderline and Idaho is farming but also big on cowboys . . . anyway). Maybe the message here is that Chopper is in the wrong line of work!

Megan, Abby, and I took Chopper with us yesterday park exploring. There was a small one in downtown Frisco that was a memorial to the cowboy. It had this awesome statuary and fun quotes everywhere having to do with the cowboy life. There were two fountains representing twin springs that were used for the cattle. Apparently, Dallas was one stop on a few trails.

We've also introduced Megan to painting. She loves it! She's very artistic and fortunately for us, careful enough that it's not too big of a mess! This is not the finished product -- her art I think could be called modern and will be for sale later on etsy. Just kidding.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

So I don't forget

I just needed to write these things down about Abby and Megan since I've been really terrible about keeping up baby books. Especially Abbys!

At 6 months old:
*Abby sits up pretty well although still just falls over and can't catch herself. She loves to play with toys and grab things more and more. Once she gets a hold of it though, it's straight to her mouth!
*Abby is still napping twice a day and going to bed at 7 p.m. (yay!) Unfortunately, she is following in the footsteps of her sister and still not sleeping through the night! I suppose it's understandable, the fat rolls need to be maintained!
*Abby is eating solid foods -- a little here and there. She is doing much better with the whole process than Megan ever did. Megan hated the texture of baby food. Abby doesn't seem to mind the mush.

At 2 1/2 years old (and a little plus):
*Megan loves balls and coloring and her tea set. That's pretty much all we do all day. We finally convinced her to go on a swing and now every time we get near a park she wants to swing. Slides still are touch and go though.
*Who would've known that the toys that she ignored at Abby's age could be so fascinating now? We're currently learning how to share . . .
*Megan is such a good girl in public. She can pretty much walk anywhere with me and stays by my side and enjoys looking at things. She particularly loves craft and fabric stores (this is not wishful thinking -- she really does love them!).

At 33 years old:
*Chopper is enjoying his job as much as you can enjoy going to work every day. He prefers his weekends with all his girls (of course) and still hasn't found the perfect place to fish.
*He has become quite the handyman and loves that he is finally able to do the work on his own house!

At 30 years old:
*Kristy still quilts and reads, quilts and reads and takes care of the girls. There is also some house cleaning in there somewhere!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Let the adventures begin!

I feel like I need to start with the Star Trek theme: Dallas, the final frontier! These are the voyages of the family-ship Whittacre. To boldly go where no Whittacre has gone before! That's how I feel about Dallas after just driving through a small piece of it today! It's like exploring space! I'm glad that our town is contained enough that I don't have to drive all over to get what I need. But at the same time, there is so much out there! It's going to take us quite a while to explore. And then of course, there's Houston, and San Antonio, and Austin (oh my!).

Today we went to the Dallas Arboretum for "Autumn at the Arboretum". It was beautiful! They have fall flowers in bloom but the decorating with pumpkins was absolutely fantastic. There literally must have been thousands of them -- they lined flowerbeds and floated in ponds with fountains, they were heaped onto rocks and there was even a story book village made out of pumpkins! I didn't realize until we were leaving that section that each house represented a story book character who has something to do with pumpkins -- Cinderella, Tom Thumb, etc. We had a great time and a beautiful (mid-80s) day.
Megan in front of the Cinderella house.

The Tom Thumb, pick-you-own pumpkin patch.
Life would not be complete unless we kissed a pumpkin! But no princesses for Megan.
I apologize for the dozens of pictures (I actually took 133) but it was just so incredible. I highly recommend it (although it is a little on the pricey side).
Sitting on the statuary. Are we allowed to do that?

Relaxing in the pumpkin patch -- Abby was so good! It was tiring though. At one point, I'm carrying her around and thunk, her head falls on my chest and she's fast asleep. Just like that!
This is why I do NOT PAY ANYONE to take family portraits. Megan refuses to cooperate and Abby could care less. Unfortunately, at this rate, we won't take family portraits until Megan is old enough to want to small -- and that will probably be a very small window before her teenage years!

Their regular attractions were great too. There was a Texas area where they had several dwellings and things representing the settlement and growth of Texas with a real sod house! I had never seen one of those before. And it was cool on the inside but I really could not deal with the bugs, especially Texas bugs -- blech!! There were several simply beautiful areas and so many brides running around taking bridal portraits or getting ready for weddings it reminded me of Temple Square in Salt Lake . . . ok not entirely but you know what I mean!
Laughing at something, but not at the camera -- I just happened to take the picture.
There's her camera face!
And another, less hostile one.
And then Miss Goofy with the pulled in lip action. Already the ham . . .

This house is the cutest thing ever. The house and gardens are dedicated to Strega Nona, the book by Tomie dePaola.

Sailboats on the lake, beautiful scenery, and your favorite family! So who's coming to Dallas?