Monday, January 23, 2012


I know I've said it time and time before but I just cannot get past it. My two wonderful children amaze me every single day. I am utterly amazed at how BIG they are, how SMART they are, how KIND they are, how LOVING they are, how AMAZING they are. Literally, they are my world and I love cherishing every single moment with them. Especially the moments where I catch them realizing and learning the wonderful things their world has to offer.

Sometimes Cohen, age 2, gets lost in the shadow of his sister when it comes to brains. Holy goodness he is SO smart. I guess I spent so much time watching Chyenne learn at incredibly fast paces that I never really saw how much sweet Cohen was soaking in. He was slower to speak his mind, but NOW? WOW! He's nonstop and I love hearing the incredible things that he comes up with. Today alone, he counted to 17 without ANY help, signed 'silly' in ASL for the first time (on his own when I showed him a flash card for the first time), counted numerous objects, grouped toys into color groups (without any direction from me), compared and contrasted toys (again, without any direction) AND told daddy an entire imagined story! GOSH! He is just so AMAZING (for lack of better words). I can't get enough of him. I love him more than words can express.

Sweet Chyenne, 3.75 years old, is equally as amazing. She has been so mature and grown lately. It's definitely bittersweet. I can barely contain my emotions when I look at her. She's slimming out and getting taller... losing all of the bits of baby. :'( On Friday last week, she decided she was ready to have her ears pierced (she has chickened out THREE times previously). So I took her. She was incredible! She walked up to the lady, said "may I have my ears pierced please?" (what happened to the "can I may" just a year ago?), picked out some precious earrings all on her own, hoped into the chair (then back down and up onto my lap in the chair) and held still. She cried for a second but then she muttered "are they beautiful? May I please see a mirror?" whoa! GROWN lady here. EEP! She made me promise to not tell daddy because she wanted to surprise him. She was napping when daddy got off work, as soon as she woke up, she ran to him, and he noticed right away. He was so proud that she was such a big girl. Mommy is too. :)   Earrings are just a tiny hint of how BIG she is now. She has been doing awesome at sounding out words, it literally melts my heart to hear her read! Last week she had a dr's appointment (stupid UTI) and the sign said "Reach Out And Read"... Chyenne looked at it, slowly pronounced the words "reach out and read". Amazing. She does well at reading small books without much help from mommy. Ending sounds are still a little tricky...but she's doing so amazing. I LOVE it. She is wise beyond her years, comes up with the most wonderful stories, jokes, etc. She can solve math problems, simple fractions, write her letters & numbers, count to 50 or more, rhyme, etc. She blows my mind every single day. I adore her more than words can describe.

Without further ado, a few pictures. :)

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Cohen's New Favorite Place: The Dinosaur Museum

Today we celebrated our last day of Christmas vacation from school/work with an awesome family trip to "the dinosaur museum" aka Fernbank Museum of Natural History in Atlanta, GA.

Cohen discovered his favorite place on the planet.

His excitement cannot even be put into words. He was more than excited/thrilled to visit a place full of dinosaurs. He was absolutely amazed.

My inquisitive little sponge (Chyenne) was so inspiring to watch as she took everything in and asked a million questions about all of the exhibits. Her mind is absolutely fascinating. She was beyond joyed to learn about the history of EVERYTHING the museum had to offer. She had a blast discovering all of it.

My favorite part (sans watching Cohen's adoration of the dinosaurs) was all of the hands-on experience that the museum had to offer. The kids got to play with soapy water to make gigantic bubbles. They got to learn how sound travels and how our eyes often play tricks on us. They learned what green screens are and got to pretend to be a weatherperson. They watched and awed over the tornado exhibit. They played with their shadows and discovered all sorts of different scientific facts. I'll be sure to quiz them on everything. ;)

The museum had a lot of animal exhibits to hold our attention as well.

The designated play areas was too awesome. They got to learn about everything as they played. I LOVED it. Daddy had a great time too. I can't wait to go back.

We even watched an IMAX film "Born to be Wild". It was wonderful. Chyenne was heartbroken that so many animals lost their mommies and daddies...she is such an empathetic soul. Cohen thought it was pretty neat that baby elephants are still huge animals. He loves HUGE animals.

(PICTURES... no particular order bc it took TOO long to upload all of them)

Overall, it was a fantastic ending to an amazing Christmas vacation and the perfect way to start off the new year!

Monday, January 2, 2012

2011 Recap

2011 definitely flew by far too fast and I didn't get to blog nearly enough!

My favorite things in 2011:
*Hubby/Daddy wasn't deployed!
*Chyenne turned 3 and celebrated with a cowgirl birthday party.
*Cohen turned 2 and celebrated with an awesome pirate pool party.
*Bittersweet, but Cohen weaned before his second birthday from breastfeeding. First time in 3.5 years that I was not nursing. Hooray!
*Cohen potty-trained, well before his 2nd birthday.
*I started teaching K-4 for an amazing Christian preschool... best part? MY kids get to go there too, for free. So I spend time with my kids, make money, and teach. WIN WIN WIN! It's only half-day preschool too, which allows for plenty of time for homeschooling. :)
*Chyenne & Cohen developed the BEST bond and are now each others favorite play mates.
*Cohen developed an amazing relationship with daddy. Something daddy strived SO hard to achieve since he was deployed until Cohen was 7 months and it took Cohen a LONG time to get REALLY close to him. Now they're like 2 peas in a pod.
*We decided that we will NOT be adding to our family. Hubby was fixed. :)
*We completed our studio apartment addition to our house.
*Cohen learned to pedal his tricycle.
*Chyenne played her first season of soccer. I was the coach (I have coached youth soccer for a while) and we ended up with an undefeated season. :)
*Chyenne & Cohen both sleep in their own rooms/beds. I LOVED co-sleeping...but NOW I actually get to SLEEP! ;)
*Chyenne won her first pageant. We have yet to do another one, but she is anxious.
*Chyenne learned to sound out words... well on her way to independent reading!
*Cohen learned to spell his name and can write C and O.
*Chyenne practiced writing a lot and can write all letters and numbers and spell/write A LOT of words on her own.
*My granny (80 years old) made it through a quadruple bypass heart surgery and a major knee surgery within the same week. She is still recovering but is doing fantastic.

2011 year was a great year for us. I know there is so much we enjoyed that I did not post as a favorite. I'm thankful for every day we got to spend together in 2011. We are excited to see what 2012 brings. I cannot wait to see what our amazing creator has in store for us this year.

Christmas 2011

Christmas is perhaps my absolute favorite time of the year. There's not much that beats holiday cheer, Christmas joy, and spending time with friends and family.

Our 2011 Christmas was spectacular.

Chyenne and Cohen made out with more loot than they know what to do with--yet they still remembered the TRUE meaning of Christmas: The birth of "King Jesus" as Chyenne says.

North Pole Breakfast With an Elf 2011

Christmas is my favorite holiday of the year. The whole Christmas season has me full of excitement and Christmas cheer. I never thought Christmas could be SO FUN until I had kids. Let me tell you, Christmas is immensely more fun.

We decided to start a new tradition this year. We figured 2 & 3 year olds are old enough to have a LOT of fun with. We bought an elf (similar to the Elf on the Shelf) to keep an eye on our little munchkins in honor of this beautiful time of year. He is to report back to Santa Claus before Christmas Eve. This elf has been great so far. My little trouble-makers have actually been more considerate of each other and their things today. Let's hope they keep it up. ;)

I was looking on PINTEREST (you know you are all adicted too) and came across a glorious idea. A North Pole breakfast to introduce the kiddos to their new elf. Now I'm not sure if I pulled it off as well as my pinterest inspiration did, but we sure had fun.

Last night (11/26/11), before bed, Chyenne and Cohen were rough-housing and daddy said "I bet Santa will send one of his elves to keep an extra eye on you two!" Chyenne said "nuh-uhhh! The elves are busy making all of the toys!" Well little to her surprise, an elf was sent!
Here is the set up. Ah! I could hardly contain my excitement as I set it up last night.

The kiddos slept later than usual and Cohen was a bit cranky when I wouldn't carry him into the kitchen to see who was waiting for us. Chyenne was more than excited.

Our North Pole Breakfast consisted of snow-covered donuts, floating glacier hot chocolate with candy cane stir sticks, and a banana for each lovely child of mine.

They LOVED it. Literally, they stuffed themselves full of the yummy, junk food, North Pole Breakfast.

Best of all? They were intrigued by our little elf's story and how he popped into OUR house to watch over OUR children for Santa Claus.

They decided that it would be okay to have little Christopher Elf pop back in to the North Pole tonight while they sleep because they could NOT resist hugging the cute little fella.

They were especially pleased that little Christopher Elf was so thoughtful to bring them each 6 pairs of socks to keep their feet cozy and warm.

I can't get enough of these beautiful smiles!

Soccer 2011

Chyenne played her first season of soccer this year.

TOT SHOT (3-4 years old)
I was her coach... and we finished with a completely undefeated season (I have coached youth soccer for several years).
She wasn't the BEST player on the team, but she did HER BEST and it was awesome. So proud of my princess. She scored a total of 12 goals during the season. :) Excited for Spring Soccer and Cohen cannot wait until he is old enough to play on the team too!