The Henry Family

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Random Catch Up Pictures

I'm sitting here at my parent's house because I could not stand another afternoon of trying to keep Maddie and Will out of the way while my kitchen is being worked on! The old kitchen was completely torn out and the new cabinets and appliances are in the process of being installed. I'll do another post about it when there are some pretty after pictures.

So, I thought I'd do some catching up with pictures my Dad has taken.

In March, something big happened in our house. Maddie decided, on her own, that she wanted to give up her night-night and sucking her thumb. She asked that, if she did, could she get her ears pierced. After a week of sleeping night-night free, we took her to get the job done and she was so excited!
However, no amount of excitement could change the fact that it does indeed hurt to have your ears pierced.
After lots of comfort and a trip to our favorite bakery, she was feeling great about the earrings!
Soon after, Madeline and I took a trip down to Texas with my parents to visit her Great Grandma and Grandpa Taylor. Their neighbors have a beautiful yard and my Dad took some great pictures. He took lots of picture while she played and caught this great shoot of her spinning around. She says that she was pretending to be Thumbalina.
This picture was my favorite because it is a common expression of hers when she looks up at me.
Here are my 2 brothers and I after John's law school graduation. Can you see the family resemblance? I'm so proud of my brothers and all they've achieved. Robbie is a pediatrician and is about to move to Tampa, FL to do a fellowship in Allergy/Immunology. I will hate having him and his family so far away! John and his wife Lindsey both graduated and are studying for the bar. They will be moving here to persue clerking jobs with 2 different judges in the area.
Here is Robbie and Gina's precious daughter, Emma. She is 2 1/2 and is very smart and fun to play with. I love when she has these cute pigtails in!
Here is a sweet picture of Will when he is not trying to attack the camera. I wish you could see the back of his hair. It has gotten so curly! Also, he wanted me to tell you that he has big news of his own! He has given up his paci and now sleeps in a big boy bed. Sigh! Where did my babies go?
My dad has an incredible camera with several great lenses, so he was able to get some good action shots at Maddie's recital.
I love this one of her going into a cartwheel!
Don't you think she has a pretty arabesque?
Now, I will keep saving so that one day, I will have a camera that takes wonderful pictures like these!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Traveling With and Without Children

My baby brother graduated from Law School last weekend, so we all headed up to Central and Northwest Arkansas to join the celebration. We had made the decision that, since the trip to Fayetteville is about 5 1/2 hours away, we would drop Madeline and Will at Granny's house in Conway instead. This was a mere 2 1/2 hour trip, surely that would be easy and fun, right?
Look how entertained Will is by this driving toy (excuse the blurry picture, we so need a new camera!).
Madeline is enjoying watching Enchanted for the 1000th time. She's even smiling because she is enjoying the ride, right?
Let me just say that these pictures were taken while I was leisurely riding along during the first 30 min. of the trip. Now, please notice that there are no more pictures of the rest of that drive because I was too busy trying to hand Will new toys/books to entertain him, only to have the thrown back a me! Madeline got tired of the movie and opted to entertain herself by whining and asking how much longer. We survived somewhat precariously by playing a Kidz Bop (sp?) CD found in a Happy Meal several times and bringing out the snacks, slowly, until we were close to Conway.
After getting both kids settled with Granny, we were on our way, kid-free. Now, please know that I love and adore my children, but Nathan and I RARELY ever go anywhere or do anything without at least one of them! So, this was so nice in contrast to the 1st part of the drive. We had such wonderful conversation and enjoyed the beautiful scenery on the way to Fayetteville.
We even stopped in a little town called, Alma so that Nathan could get some German Chocolate Ice Cream at Braums.

Then, when I went into a gas station to get a can of Dr. Pepper to pour over my wonderful Sonic ice that was left from my first drink stop in Conway (you just can't let it go to waste!), I found something amazing! The biggest can of Dr. Pepper I had ever seen. Now, for those who don't know, I LOVE Dr. Pepper!!! I even give it up every year for Lent because it is a BIG sacrifice for me. I wonder if I will ever find a can like this again?

The rest of the trip was wonderful. So wonderful, in fact, that I forgot to take anymore pictures. Oh well. I'm really trying to improve!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

My Growing Guy

My last post was all about Madeline, so I thought I'd give a good update on Will. He is now 22 months old. Let me tell you, it has flown by for me. I feel like he was this little guy just yesterday with almost no hair and still looking small in his highchair (this is him at about 8 months old).
Now, he has always been a big guy, coming into this world 2 weeks early at 9lbs 5oz! But, all of a sudden, my sweet baby boy is turning into a very cute but grown-up looking little boy. He is in the 75-95 percentile in height and weight! Here he is in his cute Easter sweater vest. When you see him next to Maddie, it looks like he will be the same height in no time, even with the 3 year age difference. He already weighs as much, even on his ultra-healthy food allergy diet. He has still not had to have a haircut but there is a cute cluster of curls at the back of his head. Nathan says we have to be careful not to let them turn into a mullet. We may live in South Arkansas but no mullets are allowed in this family!
I think he still looks a lot like Nathan, but people do tell me he looks like me from time to time. He does have my darker complexion and my brown eyes, which is nice considering Madeline is a mini, female version of Nathan.

Please excuse the stained bib. Most of you already know I have issues with the slobber. I just can't stand for him to wear a soaked shirt but refuse to buy new bibs because I just keep thinking it has got to stop sometime soon. He's almost 2! I did find some measure of comfort in my trusty Parenting magazine who said it is still normal at this age. Whew! Now I'll just have to find something else to worry about.
Speaking of worrying about Will, we are having to do less and less of it. He was a very late walker, but is starting to run around and climb a lot. My P.T. friends should be pleased with all of that gross-motor progress. He is also talking a lot more, something that was becoming a concern about 6 months ago. He says a lot of words, repeats almost anything, and is starting to use a few short sentences. His favorites are: "I go outside" and "I sing ABC". He does love to play outside but we now have a big poison ivy problem in the backyard, so it is a little harder to do. If anyone has a full-proven way to get rid of it safely, please speak up!
He is much more shy than Maddie ever thought about being but warms up to most people pretty quickly.
He loves being in the toddler class at his school after being in the baby room for so long.
Lately, I just love watching him play and interact with Madeline. It makes me so glad that they have each other!
We also had good/bad news in the food allergy department. At his latest check-up, he still tested positive for milk and eggs and has now added peanuts on the skin scratch test. But, his blood work all came up negative!!! That means that he is eligible for a food trial. We will start with milk, when we can get an appointment. The trial has to be done at the hospital, just in case. Please pray that the milk trial works. It is so hard to find foods with absolutely no dairy in them at all, especially in this more rural area. It would open up a whole new world of food for him as well. I'll update when the food trial happens!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Madeline is a Star!

This year was Madeline's first year to take dance and gymnastics. We debated about whether to start earlier, but her recital this weekend made us glad we waited. She really learned a lot a knew her dances well. She made me so proud with the mature way she stood on that stage and was not intimidated at all. She was just beautiful.

Our dance studio decided a while ago to split the performances into 3 different recitals as it was lasting until midnight when they did them all together.
So, Saturday afternoon was gymnastics. Maddie's class theme was Wonder Woman. It was so fun to see these little 3 and 4 year olds in these cute costumes. She had such a great straddle roll, cartwheel, back bend, and toe-touch. We had to tape the boots to the tights on her little bitty legs but they held!

Saturday night was the tap/clogging/jazz recital. Maddie's class danced to a cute song about eggs and Easter. They were precious in their yellow dresses. We were worried about the hat (not pictured here) but it also held with some creative bobby-pinning. This was her favorite dance and she sang the song and did all her steps just right. She was especially excited about having her hair curled!

Today was the ballet/lyrical/point recital. Maddie's class did a dance to a really sweet song about nightlights and going to sleep. They even had their own battery nightlights that they danced with. This was my favorite dance and it made me tear up just watching how sweet they were. She looked so grown up with her hair in a bun and she was so graceful!
We did video tape each performance but didn't want to upload all of that right now. Also, I prefer to watch the actual performance instead of spending it behind a camera snapping pictures so we don't have any pictures of the performance on my camera. My dad did come and take some great pictures during her dress rehearsal. I will try to upload them the next time we head out to their new house in the country:)

Maddie left each recital excited about what the big girls did and learning those things herself someday. I'm so glad she has found an activity that she enjoys so much. She did not complain one bit even with all the waiting and watching. She just soaked it all in and loved it! I'm just so proud:)

Happy Mother's Day!

I have always loved Mother's Day. Even before we had children, Nathan would give me gifts from our dogs. I am very close to my own mother and love getting a special chance to show my appreciation to her.
I have seen a lot of really great posts from the various "Mommy Blogs" that I follow and felt that I needed to add one of my own. So here I go. . . .

I have had to make some big decisions about what kind of mommy I am able to be recently. We all know the labels: SAHM, Work at Home Mom, and Work Out of the Home Mom. In the blogs I follow, most are SAHMs who would not have it any other way. One (that I love to read still) even said that this Mother's Day was more special now that she gets to SAH full time because, before, her babysitter did most of her child's raising. This post made me happy for her but sad that some view WOHMs as ones who have less meaning in their child's upbringing. I have actually had all 3 mommy labels in the past and know, from this experience, that I have been just as involved in my children's' lives regardless of the label. There are 14 children in Madeline's preschool class, who all have the same teacher, but are remarkably different. That is because they all have different mommies and daddies who are raising them. Even though they are in daycare during the work week, their parents' impact is huge. Time does not always mean more impact.
As all who read this blog know, we have been trying to put me in the SAHM job for a while because it is what I would love to do. I would love to be there for every minute but circumstances dictate that I will work, for the time being. So, I am thankful to the wonderful people who care for my children when I am not able to. Most of those wonderful people are working mothers, like me, who miss their own children but are having to serve their families in other ways.
This all probably seems like a lot of rambling and I am not really trying to start some kind of debate. I just want everyone out there to know that, no matter what your mommy label is, you are a wonderful gift to your children whether you spend every moment with them or every morning, evening, and weekend. Thank you to those who help mothers as well, we could not do it without you!

Happy Mother's Day!!!