Monday, May 23, 2016

The Falls in Wichita Falls, TX

Something we love doing when we move to new places is checking out what the new digs has to offer that's different from everywhere else!

I know Wichita Falls itself has the word 'falls' in the name, but all I knew about this place was that it had recently been through a pretty bad drought. I had no idea there was actually a waterfall here.

Sure, it's manmade... but it's really neat! It's not running all the time, but luckily, we caught it on a perfect evening! You can see the falls from the highway, so after we finished dinner at the Club on base one Friday evening, we headed down there for a family walk. We had a lot of fun and even walked up the path to the top!

I'm glad we found something cool we can take visitors to see! Fun fact: Niagara Falls actually donated this, and we just went there in January!

Do you have a place you take visitors?

Friday, May 20, 2016

The Salvy Splash is Where It's At

If you know anything about me, you know that I'm from Kansas City (Missouri) and am proud of it! And that I love the sports teams from there - namely the Royals and Chiefs!

Well, after an amazing two years in a row in the World Series (a loss in 2014 followed by a victory in 2015!), the Royals have captured the hearts of many... and one player, known for his Gatorade baths after every win, had his time to shine with this epic billboard!

When I learned it would stay up longer than previously thought, I was stoked because we'd be able to go see it as we passed through KC during our PCS. It was seriously put in a spot for people to go take photo with it - awesome idea! 

We hd to get a little family photo and also a four generation photo. We take those every time we get a chance to! 

What is your favorite sports team?

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Our Little Bookworm

As a former (and maybe someday again) language arts teacher, I have always been terrified that any child of mine would hate reading.

And for the first several months, Annabelle wanted nothing to do with books. She cried when we pulled one out to read to her, and she always squirmed away.

I was horrified. How could MY child not enjoy books? Her dad and I read all the time. Isn't this genetic? (ha!)

But all worries aside, we officially have a little bookworm now! She crawls up to her (overfilled) bookcase each day and pulls out books to chew on read. She has her favorites for sure, but I don't even mind reading them over and over again because at least she wants to be read to!

Adorable onesie from Line Liam Boutique!

Do you enjoy reading with your kids?

Monday, May 16, 2016

Traveling With a Baby: Packing Edition

We travel with our daughter. A lot. Over the months, I've perfected how to pack for her in the most efficient way. It's taken some trial and error, and sometimes I don't even follow my own directions because I'm trying to save a teeny bit of room in our bag. But I ALWAYS regret not doing it just like this. I'm here today to show you what I do - and really, it's so simple I shouldn't even be writing a blog post about it... but if I were new to traveling with a baby, I'd want to read this!

My little traveler herself! This is during our recent PCS (military move) across the country. I'm so glad she sleeps well in her Pack n Play, and aren't her little dino sheets the cutest?!

I start out by figuring out how many days we'll be away from home. Normally we have access to laundry somewhere on our trip, but for our PCS, I didn't want to chance it, so I packed enough outfits for as many days as we'd be gone - plus a couple because, well, babies. Her pajamas (just the little footie sleepers so far) are not pictured, but I keep them all together and just pull one out when needed. She usually sleeps in the same one two nights in a row when we travel. 

I lay out every outfit for the trip, and then I add matching socks/shoes when necessary and a matching bow for each outfit. The goal here is to do the work up front so it's easy peasy lemon squeezy when you're actually on the road. This way, I'm not spending precious time digging through all of her stuff to coordinate pieces, and she can still wear her adorable outfits.

Then, I fold or roll everything up into a small Ziploc baggie. I was able to fit entire outfits in these bags until she surpassed the 3+ month clothing. Then, I simply started using bigger bags.

While we are away, whether in a hotel or at a friend/family member's home, I can spend less time figuring out what Annabelle will wear by simply grabbing a Ziploc baggie out of our suitcase. It's so easy, and it allows Dan to dress her as well without throwing together a bunch of mismatched pieces. 

This is what I include in one bag - enough for an entire outfit.

*As a side note, I will say that we also go through a bib and burp cloth every day, but those don't fit in with the outfits if using small bags. To combat that, I also pack a Ziploc baggie of bibs and burp cloths, and each morning, I am able to just grab one of each item to place in the diaper bag so they are fresh. 

This may seem a little silly and wasteful to some, but we re-use the baggies for sure. You can save them for your next trip, use them for whatever else you want/need (even food!), or use them as makeshift wet bags in your diaper bag when there's an accidental diaper explosion.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Eight Months: Annabelle

It doesn't even seem possible that I'm already sharing Annabelle's eight month update with you, but... here I am. She actually celebrated eight months on the outside yesterday on Cinco de Mayo - how fun!

As you can see from this month's photo, she is one happy, smiley baby! She was so excited to smile at her daddy while I took her photos that she's pretty squinty-eyed... but I think it's adorable because I know that's a REAL smile! :)

Annabelle had a HUGE month! It was her first full month in Texas, and it will forever be remembered as the month that she did EVERYTHING! Okay, so not quite everything, but this girl started:

• sitting up all on her own
• crawling (and she's getting really fast!)
• pulling up to standing (she's getting more confident)
• talking (she says 'dad' while looking at him and cried "mum" for me - maybe she thinks she's British!
• and she finally has one tooth! It's on the bottom, and it's sharp, but we're so happy it's there!

Annabelle also spent lots of time playing in her room this month (because there's carpet in there...), went to her very first air show, met lots of new "uncles" (Dan's friends from the Academy who are also here for pilot training), went on her first play date (she does NOT know how to share), and got a visit from her Grammy and Great Meme!

I can't believe my next update will be at nine months! She will have been on the outside for the same amount of time she was on the inside at that point! Be on the looking for a comparison picture! :)