live strong. austin.

it's that time again.

my third marathon is 20 days away.  i am so excited!  i've never been to austin but i've heard it is an awesome town.  i'm going down with one of my dear, and oldest, friends and i cannot wait.  i'm truly blessed to be healthy and able to run.  i'm blessed that i have support and friendships that allow me to enjoy it so much.

ready jenn?  it's for real and we're going to rock austin!!!


poor baby james.

i've been with my baby.  he's been sick.  there is nothing worse than a sick little one.  on one hand i get a super snuggly little boy but on the other i have a baby who's temperature i cannot get below 100 degrees.  i have a child who will not eat or drink.  not even cookies or vanilla pudding.  or pedialyte pops.

sunday night i noticed james was running a fever and had a rash on his face and his torso.  the rash on his face was like one i had never seen before. it was bright red, flushed cheeks that looked more like a sunburn or a windburn than a rash but james wouldn't have been able to get either in the natural elements.  so, i took him into the doctor on monday and he was diagnosed with both fifths disease and the hand, foot and mouth disease.  one would cause a rash and high fever and the other caused blisters in the back of his throat preventing him to eat.  those are both in the "it is a baby virus that all babies get but we can't do anything because they just have to heal on their own" virus category.  awesome.

mr. h was out of town so we sent him these pictures from mondays events:

james stayed home from daycare on tuesday with mr. h because i had a deadline at work. james was still running a fever on wednesday morning so we kept him home from daycare one more day. we were convinced he was on the road to recovery and would return to daycare on thursday.  we just didn't want to be those parents that send their feverish child to daycare risking the health of a classmate.

james has been treated like a king propped up in our bed able to watch toy story 2 and 3 on demand. see, he still loves his woody doll.  woody's cool factor dramatically increases if he has the removable, little cowboy hat too.  luckily we had it but it once again missing in action.

wednesday night took a turn for the worse.  james' fever was sky rocketing into the 102s and he was so uncomfortable.  he was coughing and had very short breath.  i called the doctor first thing yesterday morning and got him in for a followup at the first available appointment.  we got the news that james had a severe right ear infection (which was perfect on monday) and either pneumonia or rsv.  james got a shot that requires a 20 minute wait in the office after administered.  while we waited i gave james his first  breathing treatment.

this was so sad.  james didn't even fight it.  he was so puny that he just laid on my lap and patiently took medicine threw the machine.  we were then sent down to the lab to have an rsv test run.

i don't think you understand that this is the opposite behavior of my usually active, happy, curious, little boy.  while we were waiting, i asked the nurse if we would rather have pneumonia or rsv.  she said pneumonia because it is a bacterial infection and we could get antibiotics to start treatment immediately.  

well, the test came back.  rsv.  we have another antibiotic but mainly for the ear infection and our very own breathing machine.  we were instructed to give treatments every two hours.  all night long.  luckily james still doesn't fight them.  i think they actually bring him relief.

for now, we are trying to force pedialyte and fluids down his throat.  if is does not get enough, he will have to be admitted into the hospital for dehydration.  this is what we like to see.

right now my little prince is sleeping.  i'm hoping he'll wake up feeling a little bit better.  and have a wet diaper.  i know, totally a mom thing but diaper matters can tell a lot about a baby.  they have been a staple conversation around our house.

please pray that my sweet baby boy has a speedy recovery.

thank you.


first dental appointment.

yes, you read that right.  james had his first dental appointment.  i know, he's barely 18 months old but the dentist asked me to bring him in. so i did.  i'm a teeth freak.  i don't mind going to the dentist.  i don't have any cavities but i have one filling.  tmi.  i know.  i'm just saying, i like the dentist.  they are our friends.  they keep our smiles pretty and our gums healthy.  so, you better believe my baby is going to go to the dentist if they ask.  they pretty much just want to get him in the office a few times before they actually want to do any "work". and by work i think they start with a cleaning and then it goes from there, if needed.

this is how it went down....

james, want to sit in the chair?  look at the animals on the computer screen.

 absolutely not.  i can slide down this chair. watch!

okay, how about he sits on your lap. and we'll try to sit our hands in his mouth and ask a ton of questions.  yep, just like they do me!  except james wasn't really having it.  they got to peek in and said they could tell that his pearly whites and gums were healthy and didn't have any spots and such that could indicate a genetic problem or too many sugar products.  i proudly told them we brush our teeth every night.

which toothbrush?  it is a tough decision.

we have a winner!  we'll see you next year!

we were back there about 5 minutes.  10 minutes tops.  they gave me good news and james a new toothbrush and toothpaste.  score. 

and no, they didn't charge me or my insurance for the visit.  isn't that nice?


today's bucket list.

on of my friends posted a blog about her bucket list and encouraged more of us to do the same.  i throuoghly enjoyed reading her list.  while are bucket goals are not the same it is always inspiring at what others want to accomplish. 

i think that my bucket list items change.  a lot.  depending on my mood or if i've done one and it lead to another and so on.  i don't think i'll change my mind about some of these items but one never knows.  i hope i can look back and smile.  probably laugh too.
  • visit the Louvre.  i want to spend hours breathing it in and enjoying the scenery.
  • take james to the san diego zoo.
  • work an aid station/water stop for a large run. one much larger than in oklahoma.
  • find a charity and give both my time and money regularly to support and encourage others to do so.
  • go to a world cup with my husband.
  • learn how to play chess.
  • go on a weekend get-a-away with my mom.  and splurge.
  • complete a triathlon.  (yes, i had to mark marathon off and set another physical goal)
  • read the Bible from cover to cover.
there is my list.  it seems short for how long i hope to be alive.  some of these i am almost embarrassed to admit.  why haven't i done them?  why haven't i read the bible?  i haven't i donated my time??  truth is - i don't know.  i suppose i've allocated my time elsewhere.  but hey, i'm working on it.  if anyone has a plane headed to paris, please take me.  i'll sleep or read.  you won't even know i'm there.


gift idea.

i'm relatively new to the kid birthday party scene.  i mean, the kind where james is a guest to one of his friend's parties.  i'm always curious what people give and get as gifts.  i love when i see a unique gift idea so i'm going to post james' gift to hudson. 

first i would like to say that james and hudson have the same passion for yo gabba gabba. my idea started there but i knew just getting a dvd wouldn't be fun for a two year old so i got to thinking. i decided to make a movie night basket for the family. my friend ashley has her own business making personalized gifts and i remembered that she made personalized cups that would be cute. (she makes so much more so check out her blog!  she was so helpful and fast!  i can't wait to order more stuff for james.) so, i gave her a call and had two cups made, one for hudson and one for baby sister. it was too fitting for the cup for hudson to have a plex-like robot on it. ella's cup is hidden in the back. it was perfect and i wish i had taken a picture of it but i didn't. i used it to prop up the birthday boogie dvd. okay, so i was up to a dvd and personalized cups. then i remembered the dollar section of target. pot of gold! and i remembered that they had plastic popcorn buckets. i snagged two of them, one is again hidden, and a blue bucket also from the dollar section. i topped it off with some tissue paper, a bow and three packets of microwave light popcorn.

voila!  a movie night bucket tailored for hudson but made for everyone to enjoy!

if i had been more on top of my shopping list at target, i would have gotten some yellow paper stuff to put in the popcorn bucket but oh well.  i'm just saying, it drives me nuts but i'm pretty sure hudson didn't mind.


one or two?

do you put one or two spaces after a period? or question mark, obviously.

me? i'm a two spacer. not because i think it looks better or actually have an opinion on the subject. i do it because that is the way i was taught. yesterday i found out that i have been typing incorrectly my entire life. i'm actually forcing myself to only put one space as i type now and it is killing me. i type a period and then instantly, without though, hit the space bar twice...and then delete once.

am i the only one who is kind of freaking out? i know this isn't a major problem in the world today or on the forefront of the headlines or even on E! entertainment but it still bothers me. i think it is because i like habit and now my habit is wrong and i must change. change something that is so natural. i mean, this is killing me just typing this one little blog. one space. one space. i just keep reminding myself to only put one space.

do you think i'm crazy?!!???

either way, here is the link to the article:

long story short and my paraphrasing of this long article -

Who says two spaces is wrong? Typographers, that's who. The people who study and design the typewritten word decided long ago that we should use one space, not two, between sentences. Hundreds of years ago some typesetters would end sentences with a double space, others would use a single space, and a few renegades would use three or four spaces. Inconsistency reigned in all facets of written communication; there were few conventions regarding spelling, punctuation, character design, and ways to add emphasis to type. But as typesetting became more widespread, its practitioners began to adopt best practices. Felici writes that typesetters in Europe began to settle on a single space around the early 20th century. America followed soon after.

so, see.  i'm wrong. i have been typing incorrectly. so, if you've been reading my blog and cringing, i'm sorry. i am going to try to put this nasty, little, bad habit behind me but i'm not going to lie. it will be hard. but i guess with the starting of a new year, it will be a good time to finally start typing correctly. i suppose this is another non-resolution for me. man, i'm making too many non-resolutions. the list is getting longer than i anticipated.

are you confused? will you continue to use two spaces now that you're aware that is is wrong? have i been hiding in a cave to not know this tidbit of information? i am telling you - i am in shock.  before i read this article i would have said two spaces with pride. good thing i've never had to have an intellectual conversation about it. but still this is a tough one to swallow.

dear second, unnecessary but wonderful space after punctuation,

i will miss you.

mrs. h


never grow up.

i've recently heard this song and it actually brought tears to my eyes.  my little boy is growing so fast.  as much i love seeing him develop and grow, i want him to stop.  i want to freeze time and bottle up the good feeling he gives me in his innocent bliss.

turn on your speakers. if you're a mom, you may want to grab some kleenex. enjoy.


hudson's birthday.

saturday, after soccer, james had a birthday party to attend.  mr. hudson was celebrating his second birthday.  my friend, jen, is his mom and did such a wonderful job planning this party.  please go to her blog and check out how perfectly she documented her little buckaroo's special day.  she is such a great multitasker.  i'm telling you, she was the party planner, photographer and super hostess.  phew!  i'm tired just thinking about all that.

i know that people stress out about having winter birthday parties but it was 115 degrees during james' party so i guess there are only a few oklahoma months with "perfect party" weather.  well, i have to say jenn picked a pretty daring, yet awesome, party activity.
yep folks.  that is in fact a little bounce house in her living room.  the kids loved it.  oh my goodness they had so much fun.  i randomly snapped this picture, on my way out the door, to show the size of the bounce house.  had i been paying more attention, i would not have cut off the birthday boy's head, at the bottom of the picture.  that slide was james' favorite part.  and if you look to the left, you'll see part of jenn (and no she's not the sweet, 12 year old girl).  see, this is what happens when you just snap away.

when we got there, 30 minutes late due to a necessary nap, the kids were going wild.  laughing with delight and having the most wonderful afternoon.  james' eye got so big as he just stared.  we let him take it all in before we decided it was time for him to try it.

he timidly sat near the edge...
and peek out out at us. check out that static hair! glad i'm not the only one.
and then made an escape. 

until he discovered the slide.

 he loved the slide.  i think he would have sat/laid right there watching all the action all afternoon, if he wasn't hogging the slide.  or until he got bounced off.  i suppose that is just what happens in a bounce house though, right?
thank goodness we put on a pair of white socks.  this could have been really embarrassing.

 luckily, we just had one happy boy!

my boy loves cake.  are you surprised?  below is his "please give me more cake" face:
and the classic yearbook pose.  and yes, this earned him more cake.  how could i resist?

this past saturday was so much fun.  i wish every saturday could be this family friendly and fun for everyone.  if my living room could house this thing, i might invest in one.  as for now, if anyone we know wants to set one up in their house, we'll come over for a play date.

thank you hudson for inviting us to your birthday party.  we had so much fun!  happy birthday!!



ever have one of those mornings?  i'm totally having one right now. i'm trying not to let it ruin my day but in all honesty, i'm in a pretty bad mood.  or a bad, morning mood for me. 

my alarm went off at 5:05 but of course i hit snooze twice.  dang!  i really should only hit it once before crawling out of bed but today it was so nice and warm under my covers and it was so cold outside of them.  but around 5:25 i did it.  i made myself get up and do a little ab and arm workout.  i know, it was only about 35 minutes but it has got to be better than nothing, right?  i tell myself that it may jump start my metabolism too but i should google it.  anyway, i did that and got in the shower so in turn, i'm having a pretty good morning.  the only thing that would have made it better would have been a nice cup of coffee from my keurig.  the keurig i do not currently own but will be getting very soon.  i need one.  there, i said it.  it moved off my "want" list and onto my "need" list this past weekend.

i check the weather this morning, on my phone, and it says that it feels like -5 outside.  awesome.  have i mentioned that i lived in a character home in midtown?  this is a nice way of saying i live in a home built in 1949 where the garages are tiny and are used more for storage than for parking.  so, i loathe this weather.  i do have remote start so it hasn't been too bad but today, well, it just didn't help.  when i was time to get james out the door, i put a warm sweatshirt, stocking cap and his warmest jacket on him.  he was good to go. i took a few cell snaps of him in his osu sweatshirt to send to my mom as a little morning present.

mr. h takes james to school.  so, they were out the door and just fine.  i finish getting ready, coax waylon into his kennel, bundle up and head out the door.  it is freezing!  i mean, it is below freezing!  i get to my car and nada.  i pull the handle and the door won't open.  well, it moved enough to make you think it may open or i may rip the handle right off.  hummm.  this is annoying.  i have to go back inside and to the garage because the de-icer is in there.  so, i now back at my door fumbling for my house key.  got it.  find de-icer.  please be on the shelf.  yes.  thank you.  go back out, re-lock the front door and spray de-icer on the door.  nada.  what?  nope.  not working.  well great.  i then have to do the whole key thing again and get inside.  i call mr. h but he doesn't answer.  i can't remember if there are rules about using cool water versus warm water versus hot water.  okay, i'll start warm water.  get water on gloves.  great, this really sucks.  poor water on door seal.  nope.  not gonna happen  the water is just freezing back to it.  this isn't what is supposed to happen.  so, i go back inside and get hotter water.  calling ben and about to scream.  no answer.  i'm doin' it.  go out, still gloveless, and try hot water.  i'm thinking "1,2,3 pour and handle".  did it work? h*ll no.  now i'm out of ideas and calling my female co-worker.  she has no idea but thinks hot water will work.  i now have two glasses of hot water and am back out the door.  i spill some on my pants but i'm so mad that it doesn't really even phase me. i get out the and just start pouring the water on every place possible.  even the places that don't look stuck.  i go for the handle and nothing.  what?  how is that possible?!!  i try again with a little more force and it finally worked!  yes!  now i can finally fight the traffic and go to work!  well, first i have to go back inside, grab my purse and put down our kitchen glasses.

so, i'm driving to work and noticing that the water is still stuck to my window.  it is not supposed to get above freezing temperatures today so does this mean it will just re-freeze while i'm slaving away at the office?

this is the frozen mess as i'm almost to work while sweating because i have the defrost cranked all the way up in hopes to melt some of this.  i get to my parking garage and of course my window doesn't work so i was one of those people.  you know, the ones you laugh at because they are awkwardly trying to do something while opening the entire door?  well, that was me and i now have a new found sympathy for people with broken, or frozen, windows.  oh, and i almost forgot - when i was pulling off my street my car told me that i had a door open.  really?! funny.  that's what i've been trying to do for thirty minutes.  so, i have to pull over and crawl into the back seat and pry open my back doors and slam them shut so that i have a battery later today.  i did the passenger side too, for good measure.  anyone jealous yet?

i am at work.  i am a peach.  i am listening to music and drinking hot coffee.  i will turn this day around.  i won't let this ordeal ruin a whole day but i'm praying all day.  i'm praying that the same thing doesn't go down tomorrow morning.  or today when i try to leave work.  i now have spoken to mr. h and will require some husband help in the morning.  i think he knows he just got another "honey-do" added to his list.  luckily, he's smart and knows not to debate with me right now.

i hope everyone is warm. and safe.  and not stuck outside their frozen car.


lil' kicker

i am officially a soccer mom.  minus the minivan.  and the soccer stud.  well, maybe.  we took james to his first soccer "practice" on saturday morning.  it was so much fun. james was the youngest kid in his class but he kept up.  kind of.  he did the things he wanted and didn't do what he didn't.  he wasn't the only one with his own agenda though.  i think he enjoyed running around on the turf the most. he enjoyed trying to escape, building towers and playing with daddy.  i don't know who had more fun, daddy or james.

first james was trying to get all the soccer balls near him. while it was cute, he was not paying attention to his teachers at all.  luckily, they didn't really seem to mind.


stomping bubbles was another fun activity.  at first james was confused but then he caught on.  i wonder if he'll start stomping bubbles around our house now too.

this is james on the other half of the field.  where another class was taking place. 
i love this picture.  james was squealing with delight as he was trying to escape and fake mr. h out.  can you just see his happiness?

next up: squishy balls.  no lie.  technical term. 

most of the kids were bouncing on them, throwing them, and having a good time.  as you can see, james liked to lay on the rest of the squishies.  he played right there until the teacher needed the sack to put up the balls.

next up were these little cones.  james was pumped.  he kept going to these on the other side of the field. 

you were supposed to build a tower and kick it over.  um no.  james just wanted to keep building them over and over.  taller and taller.  when it was time to put them up, the class was almost over but james was done.

i would like to report that he was unhappy because we had to leave but in reality, he just didn't want to stop making cone towers.  plus, it was almost nap time. obviously this was a bad combination.

overall, we all had a great time though.  mr. h will take james back on saturday mornings and i can't wait to go and see how much he learns and improves.  i think it's too late to quit my day job and get corporate sponsors, but maybe one day...



do i make resolutions?  no, i don't.  not really.  i know i didn't for 2010 and i know i don't have any set for 2011.  not that i don't set goals for myself.  i suppose i just don't classify them as resolutions.

i never look in the mirror and think "dang!  how did i get so perfect?!"  never.  i will always be the type of person who will want to lose (at least) five pounds.  i will always see that wrinkle.  i will always wonder if i said something wrong and may have offended someone.  if i'm a good mom.  if i should be more Godly.  if i should be more of a suzie homemaker and less of a i need to run type person.  i've told you before that i'm a worrier.  see, i'm doing it again.

but i do have some things for 2011 that i'd like to tackle.  i was emailing a friend the other day and this is the gist of what i said were my non-resolutions:  i want to paint my fingernails more.  i want to find a balance for myself, my son, my husband and my work.  i want to clean more and complain less.  i want to work on not looking like darth vader on the weekends and try to be presentable for unexpected company (and my husband).  as i said, i don't consider these resolutions but things i should always work on.

am i the only person who doesn't set resolutions?  from the blog world, it seems i may be.  so cheers to all you non-resolutioners out there!  2011 will be a great year to complete our non-resolutions.  i can feel it.

random:  i just googled "darth vader" to make sure i spelled it right before i published this post and i did.  maybe i'm a subconscious star wars buff. well, i'm not but i'm still pretty impressed.  i actually don't even know what comparison i have to darth vader when i haven't brushed my hair or put on makeup but i suppose i just don't think darth is pretty.  i love it when the smallest thing makes me happy.  happy correctly spelled random word day!


lyllaby time.

after the christmas and holiday season, james has decided that 7:30 is not his bedtime any longer.  now he wants to take a bath, drink some milk and play, crawl, climb, anything but sleep.  he'll make himself miserable but he's awake.  it gets to the point where i know if he would just be still for two minutes, he'd be out cold.  i think he knows it too.  that is why he refuses to be still. 

the other day i stumbled across our vast collection of baby einstein videos.  one is titled "lyllaby time".  a-ha!  i tried it.  while it errs on the boring side, it seems to do the trick.  i can tell it is meant for little babies but it still works.  it has soothing music and ocean sounds.  james likes to name the animals and say "baaby" over and over until he rubs his eyes, leans back and slowly falls asleep.

apparently it works on everyone in the house...

even woody.

the funny part is when i crawled into bed, james shifted a bit and i heard woody's spanish phrase.  neither mr. h nor i can figure out what he is saying but oh well.  if we can't, james can't.  it is something gusto, me gusto.  but whatever.  both boys were fast asleep and didn't hear it.  i managed to pry the doll from james' grip so that i wouldn't be woken up to more fun toy story 3 phrases.  even though i've seen the movie several times and have yet to hear woody speak any spanish.  i'm not sure what's up with it but i'm not going to complain. 

in review, lyllaby time works.  for now.  thank goodness.


santa what?!!

occasionally when i'm signed into blogger, i click the "stats" tab and look at the referring websites.  normally these are my friends' blogs and i'm happy that people find me through that friend avenue.  but occasionally the "search keywords" portion freaks me out.  not too long ago a searched word was "amanda bonner hale".  okay, so i'm aware that there may be more than one first name amanda, maiden name bonner, and married name hale but it still freaked me out.  like why on earth would someone google me.  should i be flattered?  should i be concerned?  i mean, someone - anyone - can google me and find a personal link into my life.  but more importantly, they can peek into my son's life.  i chatted with a few friends about it and came to the conclusion that it was nothing and blogged on.

yesterday i did the same thing and below is the searched keywords that led people to my blog.  please read carefully.

really?  someone found little ol' me on "pictures of duck diaper cakes".  weird.  but then there is the last search.  what to say about that?  hummm.  someone googled santa gets a ... and i'm assuming they typoed.  but regardless - they found me!  some pervert they googled that and found me!  oh my goodness. 


i've fainted.

okay, i'm back but still a little concerned.

as for now, my blog is open to the public.  i tried the private/password thing but it just seemed to cause more problems for the people who i actually wanted to read it so, i went public.  i haven't had any creepy comment, yet, and other than the keyword search, nothing has really bothered me.  i mean, i blog for myself. i like looking back on the memories.  i like looking at the pictures and having a reminder of that night and those times.  and don't get me wrong, i am super flattered that other people read about me.  i love comments and i actually just enjoy the whole blog world.  so, i'm not going anywhere...but seriously? santa gets a what?!!?

oh and for those of you who only know me via the blog world, you now know where the name of my blog came from - my maiden name.


christmas card.

honestly, i don't know why i didn't set this to auto post on christmas day.  i really wanted too.  fail.  anyway, i plan to get family pictures every october or november and then use those pictures for our christmas cards.  i think it is good to get a professional picture at least once a year to document your family.  we'll never look like this again.  i often wonder when james looks back at these pictures if he'll wonder what the heck we were wearing and why did we dress him like that.  i love looking back at old pictures of me and my family so i hope james appreciates it as well.

if you know me, you know who took my pictures.  my miracle worker, aka andrea murphy.  you don't understand.  the morning of this session was cold.  the first real cold of the season.  james was snot-faced and cranky.  he only lasted about 30, maybe 40, minutes. we even tried goldfish crackers, cookies and bubbles.  he didn't care.  he only wanted daddy.  to be held by daddy.  yet, somehow andrea got some great shots.  some perfect memories.  some wonderful images.  i'm so glad that we got them despite all the obstacles.  i'm so grateful for her.  she has captured so many of my memories that i'll get to cherish forever.  and i'll look great when i look back.  even better.

here is our christmas card this year.  i loved my card last year.  i wish i had a digital image to show you.  i loved it so much.  (hint, hint andrea) so i wanted something equal to last year and andrea delivered!

stunning, right?  i sound really vein.  i'm sorry.  i really am an insecure person if you know me.  but i think she captured some stunning moments of my little family.  i cannot wait to get some framed on my walls and some to put in the fireproof safe. 

the following image was another one i really liked.  i originally wanted it to be the back of my card but it just didn't work out.  i still love it though.

from the bottom of my heart, thank you andrea. 
(no pun or pun intended.  haha.)

i will post more of our session soon and link up her blog, when she blogs about me.  i know her blog readers are probably tired of me and my family plastered all over her page but i hope they enjoy watching james grow.

i hope everyone had a merry & bright christmas.


merry christmas.

i told you about the christmas eve blizzard in 2009 and i'm happy to report that she was no where near oklahoma this year.  thank you baby jesus.  therefore, we got to celebrate with our families like normal.  my normal is hanging out, eating too much and somehow finding room for some fudge.  never fails.  there is always room.

the tradition for christmas eve has been to go to my sister's house and eat chicken and noodles, other yummies, decorate santa cookies and open one present.  can you guess what it is?  yes.  if you guessed christmas jammies, you were correct.  so original, i know.  but who doesn't need love new pajamas??!  i'll just let you know that last year i was a little late in the game in ordering james' first christmas jammies.  oh my goodness.  when i realized this, i was devastated!  i was searching local stores high and low.  i ended up with gap stripped jammies and one big, fat shipping fee.  totally worth it.

these were cute until about the third wash and the red stripes kind of faded into the white and they looked more like pink and red pajamas.  good through valentine's day, right?

this year i was much more on top of it.  i did not want my baby to not have christmas jammies.  i, of course, scoured the internet for some cute ones and again i ordered from baby gap.  i swear i should just buy some stock.  anyway, they are so cute.  i ordered his new size, 2t, but they are a little big so he has some grow room. of course james got to open his present.  i was hoping that he would love it.  love the paper.  love everything.  not really.  he did enjoy the tissue paper...but i had to open his present for him.

he loved stuffing the tissue paper in this truck.

i could not get him to sit still or remotely pose for a nice picture in his new jammies so we put the truck by the tree.  at least this way i could get him and the tree in the same picture.  oh, and see the truck.  he loved that toy.  it wasn't even a christmas present.  it was a toy that used to be my nephew's.  my sister held on to some random toys for younger children who may visit.  i think james played with this toy and the vet/doctor set more than any other toys while we were out there.  you know, children play with the "free" toys.  never fails.

so, after playing and playing we had to take james home before we could decorate christmas cookies.  it was okay though because by this point i had realized that james just wasn't catching on to the whole christmas/baby jesus/gifts/family time thing.  i think the closest thing he came to understanding was that he was on the santa clause diet.  milk and cookies only.  do you remember when i left james for the first time at the beginning of december?  well, i came back and my genius had learned his first two syllable word.  the first non-repeating, two syllable word.  cooook-ie.  it is so sweet.  he says it so innocently.  well, this stole every one's heart this holiday and if he asked for a coookk-ie, he got a cookie.

james fell asleep on the way home and we set out the santa presents.  we all went to sleep and woke up to james' internal alarm clock.  we set out all excited to see the presents under the tree.  james walked out and squealed with delight.  then i am not kidding, he walked straight over to the tv.  turned it on and paid zero attention to the presents.  so, we once again packed up to head out to my sister's and celebrate with family.

grammie got him lots of melissa & doug goodies.  big hit at our house.  see that doctor's toy.  not new but i told you he wouldn't let that stuff go all weekend.

love at first sight. 

toy story 3 and these characters (mr. h doesn't think james has dolls) are inseparable.  keeping up with woody's hat has been the biggest challenge.  it's the most important, james' favorite toy and the easiest to lose.  go figure.  luckily, i know exactly where it is right now.  on my night stand.  perfect place, right?

meet bullet!!! 
you guys - this horse rocks, neighs, moves its head and tail.  it is pretty much awesome but a little too tall for james. he's a little scared of it.  he'll grow into it just right though.

obviously i'm not in any pictures.  if i were i'd be in my cute christmas jammies too.  except for i didn't sleep in them on christmas eve so that they would still look clean and crisp for christmas day.  i cheated.  i get too.  i'm the mom.  i actually didn't take very many pictures.  i was more interested in opening presents and chasing james all over the house.  i have some to document the moment but most of the memories are kept in my heart.  i loved spending so much time with my family.  i loved being together.  family just warms your heart and fills your soul with such immeasurable joy.  and that to me is the best christmas present i could have ever asked for.