Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Hud on Wheels

That's right folks. We went skating today. Hudson was hell on wheels. My little sister in law works at the local skating rink. No worries: she's a professional in training small children to master the wheels. She invited us up for an afternoon of fun. Hudson loved it!

He did much better when we weren't holding his hand. He would walk/run/slide on his skates. He had a great time! We'll go back for sure!

He absolutely refused to look at the camera. He was probably mad because I was interrupting his fun.

Who knew they had such little skates?!? Oh nevermind...Hudson has a gigantic foot. They're still cute though.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Buh-bye Diapers

If you're my friend on facebook, you may have seen a little shout out to Hudson using the potty. If not, then I've got big news...we are diaper free in the Hollis House!! He's been in big boy undies for a week and a day today. I didn't want to say anything before the week was up for fear of jinxing it. The transition went incredibly smooth--so much easier than I ever expected. I know its way early in the game and we can back slide, but for now things are going great.

He's shown an interest in the potty for a few months, but he just didn't seem to know when he had to go. He would always tell me after the deed was done and then he would ask me to change him.

My first big clue that he might be ready was when he started waking up dry in the mornings and from nap. I bought "Potty Training for Dummies" and it was pretty informative. It said signs you should look for are: staying dry for at least two hours, showing big interest in the potty, asking you to change them when the are dirty/wet, and knowing the difference between #1 and #2. We'd reached all those milestones so I decided while he's out of school for the summer it was a good time to start. Now he can start to school diaper free in the fall!

We went cold turkey--no pull ups, no diapers and potty every hour. He's only had three accidents in 8 days and those happened when he was getting in trouble, there was some chaos going on, and the first trip out of the house. The first day I asked repeatedly if he needed to go. By day two he told us when he needed to go.

The first several days he was a little confused about the whole number #2 thing--he couldn't decide if he wanted to try it in the potty or put a diaper on, but today we've mastered that as well. I'm so proud! ...and I will not miss the diapers. I think we just got a pay raise!!

Any words of advice I have for those who haven't started the training of the John include:
  • I suggest training them directly on the big potty if they're not intimidated by it. Its so much easier for you--MUCH LESS CLEAN UP. Its not a fun job having to dump and clean the baby potty, but let's face it: you're a mom and you've done all kinds of gross things up to this point. Hudson is tee tee-ing on the big potty, but the other business he seems to be more comfy on the little one. Yay for me. Ha!
  • Read your child and when they might be ready. Don't compare them to everyone else' kid. They all develop at their own pace. You'll know when they're ready.
  • Give your boys a chance standing up. They may be more accurate than you give them credit for.
  • Pull-ups seem to be confusing. Its just like a diaper without velcro.
  • Make a big deal out of everything--the undies, every time they at least try to go--everything!!
  • A little bribery never hurt anyone. Ha! Actually we didn't bribe, but we gave rewards for successful potty trips and good tries.
  • Kids are like sponges. They soak everything up and learn so quickly! They adjust more easily than we do I think. I was more afraid of him using the potty than he was!

Every guy needs some reading material to help get the job done! :)

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Milk and Mischief

Remember the weekend of nothingness I hoped for? Well...that weekend of nothingness went well but not exactly as planned. There's just no such thing with a two year old. I didn't watch any movies and I didn't catch up on any TV, but I got in lots of family time and Hud love so that's even better!

Saturday included a photo shoot, a birthday party for Maw Maw and a three hour nap for me and Hudson. Then we grilled filets and Hudson caught lightning bugs. Sunday included lots of yard work, me cutting the back yard with the push mower (You're welcome, neighbors, for the entertainment I provided), and gutter cleaning. Our backyard looks like a zebra, but at least the job is done and Lantis had some help. Yard work was followed by some baby pool time for Hudson and popsicles for everyone.

Hudson did and said some hilarious things this weekend. Such as:

me: Hudson do you like your ice cream?
Hudson: uh-huh, I do Mommy. My ice cream is so good! I eat it up!

me: Hudson do you need to go poo poo?
Hudson: (straining) yes
me: Would you like to go sit on the potty and do it?
Hudson: No. Put my diaper on Mommy.

me: Hudson we have to get dressed to go. We are going to Maw Maw's birthday party today.
Hudson: I can eat cake?
me: yes
Hudson: ok. Where my doos (shoes) go? (then starts singing while trying to put his own shoes on) Haappy birrday to yoooo.

All three of us were sitting at the dinner table tonight and Hudson stopped eating and grabbed my hand with one of his and Lantis' hand with his other and then started singing, "I love you, you love me, we're a happy family..." Lantis and I both melted. I love that guy! No, we do not watch Barney at our house, but he watches it at my mom's. The big purple creature isn't allowed in the Hollis house. Barney would make me want to poke my eyes out with a dull object.

My favorite quote of the weekend:
Lantis: Where is Hudson, he's way too quiet.
me: He's in the living room drinking some milk.
Lantis: Yeah, he's only that quiet for two reasons, milk and mischief.

Hudson, Lantis and Maw Maw. She let Hudson have the first taste of her birthday cake. They have the cutest relationship. He loves his Maw Maw! Judging by this picture I know why! He also led the group in "Happy Birthday to Maw Maw"

Maw Maw and her boys.

Lantis' Maw Maw is an amazing woman who has left her mark on this earth. She has six children, 12 grand children, 21-1/2 great grand children (#22 is on the way), and 1 great-great grandson. What a remarkable legacy she has left. Happy 91st Maw Maw! I hope I'm as sharp as you at 91. We love you!

Sunday Fun Day Phone Pics-Edition 2

Welcome to today's edition of Sunday Fun Day Phone Pics. These are a few photos taken throughout the week on my cell phone that I thought were worthy of sharing.

Saturday at Maw Maw's 91st birthday party. Thank heavens the party was at a church and they have taken childrens' needs into consideration and placed stools in their restroom. How funny is this!? He even said "cheese" for the picture.

Playing in the sprinkler. Perhaps he needed to tee tee.

Cheesin' in the baby pool.

He's the definition of nosy neighbor. I caught him on the front porch staring down our neighbor who was trying to cut his grass--without an audience I'm sure. (Yes Hudson is not wearing pants. What's the point when you're potty training?)

Thursday, June 24, 2010

The Light of My Life...and 100th post!

This is my 100th post! I suppose that's worth mentioning at least.

I never posted about Mother's Day which was over a month ago. Not much to report. I had a weekend of great food and family time.

The important thing that me not mentioning Mother's Day kept from you all...the sweetest little gift I've ever received in my life. Hudson made his gift for me at school. He made a candle holder. Its covered in multi colored tissue paper to give it a mosaic look. It was accompanied by a card that he colored. It said "Mommy you are the light of my life." I don't know how many pieces of the tissue he actually glued and how many his teachers helped with, but just knowing that those sweet little hands that I created, made such a precious gift for me. I teared up when I picked him up from school that day. He ran forward and was so proud of his art work. Being a mom is a precious gift. It's an incredible concept that I have been trusted with this amazing human being. He was given to me to love, guide and so many other things. I love him with all my heart--in a way that only another mother can relate to. Moms are amazing creatures too. We are able to endure so much and able to give an unconditional love I never knew was possible.

Thank you for my gift, Hudson. YOU are the light of MY life. I love you!

Yeah...its a cell phone pic because sometimes I'm too lazy to get out the big camera!

A look-see inside this little noodle

My brain is a busy and random place. Would you like to see what's on my mind today?

1. I hate that I've been missing The Bachelorette this season. I can't stand the thoughts of missing a show that turns out such true romance and class.

2. Besides a photo shoot and Lantis' grandmother's 91st bday Saturday I'm planning a big weekend of nothing-ness: movie watching, a date with the DVR, no shoes and just t-shirts. I'd like to say I probably won't even wear a bra, but that's not true. I have to. Wish I didn't. That's enough.

3. I have no clue why I'm sharing under-wearing habits with you.

4. I'm out of floss in my purse and freaking out about it. I floss my teeth at least twice a day...apparently this is bizarre and some people don't even own floss. I know this to be true because the beach house we stayed in had none. I LOVE the mini packs of floss that you get at the dentist's office. I keep one or two in my purse at all times--except now. If you had big chicklets like I do, you'd understand my flossing obsession.

5. I've become a blog junkie. I stalk blogs waiting on their next post.

6. I'm reading a book called Radical by David Platt that I'm going to blog about when I'm finished. Its uh-mazing and everyone needs to read it.

7. I have a new found love for Tyler Candles. They are wonderfully scented little jars of glamor. I love anything/anyone who is bold enough to put leopard print on their lids. They are freaking fabulous! They also have laundry detergent, soaps and car fresheners. Its all very girly and makes you feel pretty. Pineapple Crush may just be the best smell ever. I have decided that's what my mansion in heaven will smell like. I wish I could put a scratch and sniff right on this page for you to experience the goodness that is Tyler Candles. Check out this cute car air freshener. Its like they made it for me! Cute huh?

8. One Republic is my musical obsession right now. Jack Johnson's new album and an old one called En Concert is really crankin' my tractor right now also. I can't live without music or my iPod/iPhone. I scour iTunes every Tuesday for new releases.

9. My family is technologically retarded. They frustrate me. I bought my mom and dad a digital camera three years ago and they've used it approximately two times and never done anything with the pics that are on it for fear of turning on their computer. My dad then goes and purchases a really nice digital camera. He's used it a few times. He's still never done a dang thing with the pics on it! If you'd like to see the photos from my niece's dance recital, you'll just have to look at them on the camera. No exceptions.

10. Number 9 reminded me that I bought dad a digital pic frame that is still in the box. Lesson learned: never buy mom or dad anything that requires electricity. Its all gas lanterns and cast iron skillets from this point forward.

11. I want a Jeep really bad. One of those four door Jeep's. Hudson and I would be hot cruising in one of those! I would also own a Vespa if it were socially acceptable...but I live in Alabama (not Switzerland) and us mom's around here like to haul our offspring around in big gas guzzling, ozone depleting SUV's. :)

12. I'm frustrated with people who think something that they know nothing about is "stupid". Ignorance. Now that's stupid. Make an educated opinion before you decide what's stupid and what's not. (ex: just because you don't understand technology or know how to operate a computer doesn't make it stupid!)

13. My car is a dutch oven right now. Its 300 degrees outside, I have a black leather interior and non-tinted windows. Mr. Hollis will soon bestow upon me the gift of tinted windows. Not because I'm ridin' dirty, but because I'm arrivin' a sweaty mess.

14. How dare you interrupt me with work while I'm trying blog!?

15. I have an incredible craving to be behind my camera. I don't mean taking pics of people which I will be doing this weekend. No, I need to get out and do some artsy fun pics. Its like therapy for me.

So those are just a few things taking up space in my already full head. You're welcome.

Muffin men and a dash of Father's Day

Sunday was Father's Day. I don't have major Father's Day celebrations to report, but it was an all-about-daddy-weekend. Friday night we grilled burgers with the Courson's. Saturday torrential downpours came out of no where and changed our plans for a lake day...so we made the best of being stuck in B'ham and went to Superior to pig out on cheese dip. :) Sunday we (Hudson and I) got up early, made muffins and cards for dad while he slept in.

The Hud loves to "help" me with whatever I'm doing. He begged to "tirr" the muffin mix, so after I blended the majority of the clumps I turned the bowl over to him. He was so proud of himself. He stood in front of the oven and watched them bake and kept asking me if we could eat them yet. Finally the buzzer sounds and he runs to wake dad. He jumped on the bed and whispered to Lantis "Happy Tader's Day Daddy! I tirr mutmins por you. Let's go eat!" They are so sweet together. He led Lantis into the kitchen and pointed to the card and muffins and said "I made it!!" He melts my heart. I think Lantis too was a big puddle in the floor.

After breakfast we went out on the boat, had lunch on the water, and were back in time for nap. We hit up the evening service at church which was great!

So there's the overview of the weekend. Riveting, huh?

This post reminded me that I never posted about my Mother's Day or Hudson's school year. I'm so far behind! I also need to post about Hud and what he's up to lately. I'll just say this and not one thing more for fear for jinxing it...I think I may have bought my last package of diapers a few weeks ago. Too bad it was a Costco box of diapers and there are approximately 4, 874 of them. I may have size 5 diapers for sale soon. Stay tuned!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Sunday Fun Day Phone Pics-Edition 1

I've decided to start a new little segment I will lovingly call the "Sunday Fun Day Phone Pics". These are some pictures I've taken over the last week or two with my handy dandy cell phone that I feel like are worth sharing.

First, and my personal fave: Grandma Hollis' birthday dinner at Red Lobster. Yes she ordered an entire lobster. Yes she weighs 98 pounds soaking wet. Yes, she is wearing a giant bandage that wraps her entire head due to a little tumble the night before. No, this pic wasn't taken in January--she wears a coat year round because she freezes constantly.

Hudson cleaning Buddy after he came in from the yard. Apparently he was tracking in too much trash and my OCD little Hud couldn't handle it.

This was taken after we got home from the beach and were picking up Buddy from boarding. Hudson missed Buddy so much and was SO excited that he got to go with us to pick him up and even MORE excited that Buddy was allowed to ride in the back with him.

Driving home from the beach I drove through a herd of bugs. It was ridiculous. I couldn't see afterward and when I tried to wash them off they merely smeared all over the windshield. Lantis tried to take a pic for me, but I don't think it does it justice. Out of boredom, he counted the bug guts and there were 237 bugs splattered on the windshield. They all said if they had the guts they'd do it again. Sorry I couldn't resist.

When in Orange Beach we always go to Tacky Jack's. Its one of our faves and we love the view. We tried it out for breakfast and Lantis had a massive pancake. Check this thing out! We were there just a few hours before Obama ate lunch there. That's my new claim to fame.

A speedo exiting the pool. NO. I did NOT swim with him! There isn't enough chlorine in the world.

The Hud enjoying the sand with his "special" kid sunglasses. He rolled up on the beach via short bus about 15 minutes prior to this pic.

I've saved the last and most shameful for last....

Hudson's Uncle Lindsey bought him a T shirt that will never be worn outside of the house. Hudson likes his shirt with the owl on it! :)

Friday, June 18, 2010

Kitchen Craze

I have a love for cookware, dishes and kitchen gadgets. Do I cook things that require incredible cookware? Am I a gormet chef? Not even close. I'd love to be, but I have too many other passions to pursue cooking as well.

Before we got married my parents gave me an awesome set of dishes that are fun and funky and I still adore. When we got married I registered for a very nice set of solid white china. After we got married Pottery Barn had this irresistible set of metal outdoor dishes--they are all different bright colors. We cookout a lot in the summer and eat outside when the temperature isn't set on HELL outside so I had to have outdoor dishes right? Then came the third set of dishes. Yes folks, we have three sets of dishes. All very different, but the fact remains...we have three sets of dishes and we usually eat off of paper plates, or plastic plates from Wal-Mart's summer collection. Not kidding. The plastic Wal-Mart dishes are Lantis' fave. They were his prior to our wedding and he won't let me part with them.

In addition to the dishes and china, we have four sets of flatware. I inherited my grandmother's silver, Lantis had a set of flatware before we married, I had a set of flatware before we married, and I sold Southern Living for awhile and I won the entire Gallery Flatware collection one month.

Through Southern Living I also acquired many random serving pieces to add to the random collection I had from our wedding and pre wedding collections.

You would think with all this I would never look in the direction of kitchen related stuff, but that's not the case. I have a girlfriend getting married in a couple of months and as I'm going through her registry I find myself secretly making a kitchen wish list for myself of spatulas, spoons, cute new flatware, new dishes, gadgets, and cookware. What's wrong with me!?

Despite our abundant collection of serving pieces, flatware, and dishes we have a very poor collection of cookware and glasses. Cookware wasn't gifted to us at our wedding, so we purchased some inexpensive cookware at the time. Now, over 4 years later, the inexpensive cookeware has reached its life span. Teflon coatings are scratched, handles are loose and they all need to go. I need the gift fairy to bestow upon me some really nice cookware. While we were at the beach I went in the Le Creuset outlet and drooled on their $250 pots. OMG! I am in love. I want this cookware and I want some in every color.

I am on a mission to save money for new cookware. Probably won't be the wonderful Le Creuset cook ware since it costs a gagillion dollars, but I do plan on getting something nice that will stand the test of time. I've bought the cheap stuff once and I wont do it again. You get what you pay for!! If anyone has any suggestions, I'm all ears.

When I've completed my cookware collection I'm on a mission for new stemware and glasses. Occassionally I'm all about a plastic stadium cup, but the incredible collection we have needs to go. We aren't college kids...but a stranger serching through our kitchen would certainly think so!

Beach Report

We just returned from a nice little vaca to the gulf coast! We were a little nervous about the condition of the beaches, but we were so desperate for a get away that only a hurricane would have kept us from going and possibly not even that. Just kidding. A friend of ours was nice enough to loan us his beach house for nearly a week. It was so comfy and cozy and perfect for us. We can't thank him enough!

I'll start off with the condition of the beaches because that has been the big question. We arrived Thursday. Thursday and Friday the water and beaches were beautiful! Here is a photo from Thursday: It looked very normal.

Sometime in the night Friday night the winds changed direction and started sending the oil directly our way. This is what we saw on Saturday and Sunday: with every wave that crashed onto shore it was nasty, dirty, water. The ocean looked orange.

Sometime in the night Sunday the winds changed direction again and no longer saw any oil or any traces of it. CRAZY! Monday-Wednesday we saw sparkling blue water and pristine white beaches once again. They even raised the yellow flags and gave the public the green light to get in the ocean again.

Nothing but sea shells here.

As beautiful as I've ever seen it on Tuesday.

Some things we saw a lot of on Saturday and Sunday when the beaches were at their worst were these:

(clean up crews reportedly being paid $14/hr by BP)

and this:
(tractors, tents and potties for the workers about every hundred yards.)

My other concern was how Hudson would like the beach this year. Last year he really hated it. This year, he's a big fan! He loved the sand and was intrigued by the ocean. The first half of the trip my sister and her family were down. The day they left, Lantis' family arrived. So not only were we able to get away, but we were able to have some family time as well. Here are a few more pics of us enjoying our trip with my sis and her family:

Bailey, Grayson and Hudson in the pool

How cute is this sandy hiney!?

Hudson practicing safety first by wearing swimmies in the baby pool.

The boys playing in the sand.

Hudson and "day-day" playing in the sand.

Ready for a dive mission I suppose.

Sassy britches enjoying a snack poolside.

Me and my sis.

Living the good life.

Bailey and her Malibu Barbie photo shoot.

Of course we had a picture night. Who's shocked? Didn't think so...

Hudson and me with news reporter hair...which brings to another topic: what the beach weather does to my hair. OMG! Scary!

Hudson and Daddy

The classic beach family portrait. What's a beach trip without the family sitting in sand dunes like its a completely natural thing to do.

I'm losing him. He's zoning out.

I heart this little boy!

I heart these kids too!

On Sunday Angie and her family and left and Lantis' family arrived.

Hudson showing Bebe the ocean upon their arrival.

Later that night we went to The Wharf. Home of the largest ferris wheel in the world. I don't know that to be a fact, but its the biggest one I've ever seen, so that makes it official, right?

We rode the ferris wheel at sunset. Pretty.

The big wheel.

I took a pic of a moving object at night. Quite an accomplishment for those of you who don't know!

The big trees I like so much.

This picture cracks me up! If you don't find it funny then you need to stop reading right now. Kidding. Poppy was taking a pic of us posing for Bebe's pic. Hudson's FACE!!! He's captivated by this ride we're on. Ha!

Bebe and Poppy on the wheel with us.

Checking out the wheel. And/or breaking his neck.

I think I would like a giant palm tree in my yard...to remind me that I'm unfortunately not at the beach every day. Jokes aside I love the trees at the Wharf!

My handsome men.

Ironically we went to the Hangout where they freely throw up the hang 10 sign which Hudson loves to do. Had to get a pic of him by the hand throwin' up his sign. Look closely or click on the pic to enlarge. There's a little Hud sized hang 10 in there.

...and us and Emma by the hand.

...and just us by the hand.

Hudson LOVED the Hangout! This place is genius. You can let your child run loose like a maniac and watch them play in the sand and tunnels and foam. We were there when the live music cranked up and they passed out 25 cent margaritas for the parents. We all had a good time!

Hudson watching the band. He was dripping in sweat because prior to this photo he had been cutting a rug in front of the stage.

Playing in the sand and tunnel. I imagine he's saying "I'm gonna watch what this big kid does and copy it."

It was a great trip and I was not ready to come home. Hudson was however! He told us the night before he left that he wanted to go to "Huddy's house". The first thing he did when we got home was run up to his room and crash onto his bed. He had a good time at the beach, but he was happy to be home!