Friday, January 30, 2009

Happy Birthday My Man Elliott

Elliott's Birthday

It is hard to believe that my favorite nephew, Elliott is turning 3 years old today. When I think about my man, Elliott, my heart melts. I love this kid so much....just like he is my own. In fact sometimes I forget that he is not mine. Secretly I wish he was...don't tell his parents. He is so wonderful. He has the best personality. He is so smart, talented, and without a doubt a charmer. I can't imagine my life without this little man in it. Elliott I hope you have a wonderful day and weekend. We can't wait to spend it with you at ELMO Live. Always remember that your Aunt Howie loves you SO much. Uncle Kevin and Zachary love you too.

Here are some of my favorite photos of my man.

Taking a bath at Aunt Howie's house
Waiting for Zachary to arrive....Elliott is my 1st little man.

Getting ready for Elliott's 1st birthday

This is one of my favorites....Rachel and I put him in the special chair for baby's while the mom uses the potty. Isn't he funny!

Happy Birthday Elliott!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Frosty has arrived!

For those of you who know Zachary well know that he LOVES Frosty the Snowman. In fact I think he likes him more than Santa Claus. He sings the song, watches the old fashion Frosty movie, gives the figurines hugs and kisses, and talks about Frosty ALL THE TIME! So last night when the snow was coming down, Kevin mentioned that they could go out tomorrow in the snow and make a Frosty. I quickly remembered my mom gave us a "Frosty the Snowman" kit last year but we never got to use it. I dug it out of the closet and showed it to Z. He was bursting with excitement. The Carrot nose, buttons, a scarf, hat, and corncob pipe were carted all around the house until bed time. Zachary was quick to hop in bed because he knew when he woke up it would be "tomorrow". Sure enough this morning he came out of his room with all the Frosty items and his boots ready to go outside. So at 8 am on a snow day, Zachary, Kevin, and myself were outside making a Frosty. Kevin did all the work, Zachary added the parts, and I took the photos. Zachary LOVED it and is still enjoying Frosty from his bedroom window.

Putting Frosty's arms on

Zachary adding the nose

Kevin and Zachary putting on the mouth

The boys posing by Frosty

Zachary watching Frosty from his window

P.S. Kevin wanted me to mention that "Frosty" is not a typical 3 layered Frosty because the snow is too powdery. Just in case you thought we were being slackers.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

A Must See!

Today Kevin and I finally got to watch a movie that we have been dying to see since it came out on the big screen. FIREPROOF! I usually do not get too excited about a movie but this is much more than a movie. It is an excellent way to live and grow with your spouse. Kevin cried all the way through it....don't tell him I posted that on the blog :*). I shed a few tears too. It was that good.

No matter what your marital status or how strong your relationship is with your spouse...YOU MUST SEE THIS MOVIE with your loved one. If you go and see it or if you already have I would love to hear your thoughts and comments. Please share!

*Thanks mom for watching Z for us this afternoon while we enjoyed some time together! We love you!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Kids Say The Darndest Things...

This is a funny that happened this morning. I was on the phone. Z was playing with his John Deere tractors. As soon as I hung up, Zachary says, "Mom I am scooping up your diapers". I had no idea what he was talking about until I looked in the scoop of the tractor. He had taken a maxi pad from my stash and was scooping it up. Hilarious! I thought it was hilarious that he thought they were my diapers. Hope this made you laugh too. Have a great day!

Saturday, January 17, 2009


Ever since we moved into our home we have wanted to finish the basement. Well after 4 years we finally did it. We started getting bids for the basement in August. They started work the week before Thanksgiving and they completed the work last Tuesday. A little over 9 weeks. Carpet was laid Wednesday and Thursday. I am going to post the befores and afters. Now comes the fun part...decorating, accessorizing, and using it. We only have 6 more weeks until our furniture arrives. After than any one is welcome to come over and hang out. It is so nice to finally have more room in our house. So glad the construction part is over. Zachary is sad because "Bob the Builder" is gone. He loved having the construction men at our house everyday. He thought it was great! I personally thought it was loud, inconvient, and a pain.

Before: Basement windows
After: Basement windows
Before: this picture is looking through the wall at what will be Kevins new home office

After: Kevins home office....he started to move furniture before I could get a picture of the empty room.

Before: this was a concrete indentation in the basement wall. I always used it to store garage sale items or stuff for goodwill.
After: A much needed storage closet for family games, decorations, and stuff.

Before: Wall to the main part of the basement
After: The wall now has a bar against it.
Before: Hallway to the existing home office
After: Hallway to the new guest room and bathroom
Before: The room that was planned as a bathroom. If you look closely you can see a small closet cut out.

After: Linen closet
After: Looking through the bathroom doorway. In the mirror you can see the shower

After: Bathroom vanity

After: Bathroom shower

Like I said we can't wait to have family and friends over! I plan on posting more before and afters once we get our curtains, furniture, and decorations. Enjoy!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Happy Birthday Uncle Jeff!

Today is a BIG day for Uncle Jeff! We all wanted to wish Kevin's brother, Jeff, a VERY HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Unfortunately since we live about 20 hours apart we will not be able to celebrate together. However we will be thinking about you all day. Jeff thanks for being a great big brother, brother-in-law, and uncle. We love you! Hope you have a wonderful day and year!

Uncle Jeff, Karen, and Kevin: A mom and her two sons

Jeff and Kevin fishing in the ocean

Our family this Christmas

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Baby It's Cold Outside's cold here today. I thought I would post an adorable picture of Zachary in his winter sweater and hat. Isn't he cute....the only blue eyed person in the Austin family! Got to love the baby blues! I must add that even though it is freezing here it was a lot colder when we lived in Iowa so I am thankful for where I am at!

I also wanted my blog readers to know that I will be posting before and after photos of our newly finished basement soon. I could run outside and scream YEAH because they are DONE! I am tired of the workers being in my house 8-5 everyday. Zachary is a little sad because "Bob the Builder" no longer lives with us. Stay tuned!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Our Baby is growing up

Last Tuesday during Zachary's nap I was in the living room working on some stuff for our MOPS group on the computer. I was deep in thought and concentration trying to arrange the MOPPET children into their classrooms. Next thing you know I feel a little tap on my shoulder. It scared me to pieces. I turn around to look and it is Zachary. He said, "Mom, I am awake". It took me a couple of seconds to realize that Zachary was in the living room. Nothing wrong with that except Z still sleeps in a crib and he was in the living room staring at me. I hopped up and asked Zachary how he got out of his crib. He quickly responded, " I climbed out Mom". So I walked him back to his room and put him back in his crib. I asked him to show me how he did it. Very easily he threw his leg over the rail and shimmied his way down the front of the crib. I could not believe it. Yes, I know he is 2 years and 3 months old but I was not ready for this. I love Z in his crib because I know where he is when he is sleeping & napping. I don't have to worry if he is going to get up and wander around the house, I don't have to worry if he can get into anything he should not, and I don't have to worry if he is going to get hurt.

After much realization I realized that Zachary is growing up. We no longer have a baby in our house....we have a BIG BOY! Kevin removed the front of the crib that evening and to our surprise Z did phenomenal. He went right to bed after saying his prayers several times through at his request. Nap time is not as easy...instead he "rests" in his big boy bed with a book or toy for an hour. I am thankful for that hour but he does not nap like he used to. One nice thing is since he does not sleep his normal 2.5 hour nap he goes to bed earlier. I guess it is a fair trade.

Here are some photos that I took this afternoon during Z's nap. Funny thing today after church Zachary asked if he could take a nap. So we happily let him. After about two hours of napping I went into to capture a photo. As you can see his eyes are kinda closed kinda opened in the photos. He woke up a little when the flash went off but he went back to sleep. He must be a tired little guy. One another note....when we were planning on what theme we were going to do his baby nursery we quickly chose the farm animal theme. It was a pretty easy choice....I have always loved animals and when I was four I had my own pink farm pig. Also my dad, Jerry, grew up on a dairy farm so I have always heard stories of his siblings taking care of the farm animals. Lastly, Kevin's parents have a horse on their property so we thought it was a great theme for our son. We could not have picked a better theme. Zachary LOVES farm animals and tractors. Look super close at the photos...he is even sleeping with his new John Deere tractor in bed.

Today at naptime...Zachary in his big boy bed.
Stretching as I snap the photo
Back to sleep like Uncle Matt

Here is a trip down memory lane for you. Zachary at 6 weeks old in a sleep sack or as Kevin would call it a sleeping dress. :*)

Look how little he was

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Summing up Christmas

I know it is January but I never really got to post about our Christmas extravaganza. This year we had an added bonus to Christmas because Kevin's brother, Jeff, our sister-in-law Kathy, and our nieces flew in for Christmas. Because of their arrival we tried to do our "regular" Christmas traditions but do some new things because they were here. We did manicures, family photos, Nakatos, bird dog hunting (Kev, Jeff, and Marvin), Bass Pro trips, Lambert's, SDC, etc. It was quite the Christmas. Here are just a few of the weeks events.

One day we had a girls day out. I took my sister in law for her first ever manicure. My nieces loved all the special spa treatment. I loved the girl time. We also had our eyebrows waxed & lip waxed....don't worry I did not post pics of that! Here is Karsen getting her manicure.

Later that night we had family photos taken. As you can see we all wore red & black. After the photos we took the gang to Nakato's for a yummy dinner.

Our niece, Brynn got to spend the night. We loved having a girl in our house even if it was for less than 12 hours. Zachary loved having her spend the night too!

Brynn and I awoke early to tie-dye t-shirts. I loved having one-on-one girl time and it was less of a mess since Z slept through it. This was one of Brynn's creations.
This was a timed photo taken from atop the coffee pot. I loved having girl time with Brynn.
Christmas Eve with the Lemon's. Santa made an appearance.

Brynn, Karsen, Elliott, & Z with Harley my cousins Great Dane...when I say Great. I mean GREAT!
Christmas morning at our house. Zachary loved the tractor books that Santa brought him.

Look what Santa brought to Karen & Marvin's house. We spent Christmas day at their house with a huge dinner.*Because I was corraling a busy, tired 2 year old on Christmas night I do not have any photos of us opening all the gifts at my parents. I am bummed. These are all the photos I have on my camera...I am hoping someone else got some more.
On Christmas night we had our traditional soup & sandwich supper at my parents.
My entire immediate family (both sides) in one photo. This probably will not happen for another 5 years :*)
To sum it up we had a wonderful, blessed Christmas!