Grace and Hope

Grace and Hope
Wait for God. Wait with hope. Hope now; hope always! Pslam 131:3

Sunday, October 14, 2012

HAPPY ONE YEAR BIRTHDAY Aubrey Hope and Avery Grace

As I look back on the year in review, I am just flooded with joy remembering how much fun we have had and how much I love being a mother to Aubrey and Avery. God has blessed me with full arms and an even fuller heart and I couldn't be more thankful. Here are some highlights from this past year:

Avery Grace: Born October 14, 2011 at 6:28pm      3lb 14oz  (Currently: 17 lbs)
Aubrey Hope: Born October 14, 2011 at 6:29pm     3lb 14oz  (Currently: 15.6 lbs)

Discharged to home on December 1, 2011 (after 48 days in the NICU) and we became a family of four under one roof.

Celebrated all the "firsts" for holidays.

Smiled, cooed, laughed, squealed, rolled, sat-up, pulled up to standing, crawled, started solid foods, and stolen our hearts.

This last month the girls have really enjoyed having more mommy and daddy time as they have longer wake periods. They love playing with all their toys, babbling and laughing at eachother, racing around the house, walks in the stroller, going to the park and being in the swing, running errands, eating out, people watching, play name it, they love it! Aubrey has had major physical developments over the past two months and Avery has made major vocal developments in the past month. So, now at one year, they both talk and gab a ton and they both are cruising along furniture, just on the cusp of walking independently. As any proud momma would say-they are beautiful, smart and perfect in everyway.

I still love seeing their personalities develop and grow. I love watching how they are similar and also different. I just love everything about them! Here are some of the fun developments this month:

-In the bathtub, Aubrey loves to play on her belly. When she isn't playing with toys in the tub, she is splashing water all over the place and loving every minute of it. Avery prefers to sit up in the tub and play. Ironically, her favorite "toy" is sucking the water out of the washcloth. If Aubrey comes close to trying to take her washcloth--there is an all out brawl that will ensue!
-Both girls get so excited when it is time for a trip (either in the carseat or the stroller). Avery kicks her legs with excitement and they both light up with smiles.
-Both girls get excited over "Amen" when we pray at meals--they think it is pretty exciting that it is time to eat (who knew we would ever have that day!). Eating is always fun as they try to new foods and tastes. I love how Aubrey can "bite" foods because she now has two top teeth and two bottom teeth, while Avery crumbles the food in her hand to bite sized pieces if she needs to since she remains with just two bottom teeth.
-Frequently, Aubrey prefers to feed herself the bottle, because she wants to do it herself. Avery sometimes like to feed herself too, but usually she just wants to be held close to take her bottle and snuggle--I'm ok with that too!
-It makes me laugh when I try to get a cute picture of the two and they are doing their own thing--crawling away, looking somewhere else...just about anything but both looking at the camera!
-Now Avery also talks a lot like her sister and guess what--so many of their noises sound identical. Sometimes we are doing a double take (literally!) when we thought it was Aubrey talking and it was actually Avery.
-I love listening to the girls on the monitor (and then watching them on the camera in the nursery) where they are standing in their cribs just talking and laughing back and forth to eachother--seriously, what are they plotting?!
-Avery loves to carry things in her hand (something small) and crawl around the house with it. She will take a bottle lid or a link and just keep it in her hand all moring because she loves keeping something with her for her pitstops to play. Aubrey is more likely to find new toys as she goes because now that she pulls up on everything, she has a whole new world to discover!
-We bought our first Halloween outfits this year (pictures next month for all our Halloween festivities!). Even though they were with us last year, spending in the NICU just isn't the same. This year they will be pink poodles and it is going to be so cute. I guess that makes Jay and I their keepers:)

This past month was birthday preparation time. Jay and I have had fun planning, organizing, and throwing the party to celebrate this special day. We decided that since they were the only true Texans of the family (while we might be at heart, we aren't true bloods!) that we needed to throw a party with a cowgirl theme. A wonderful friend who did such a great job making all their bedding etc for the nursery also helped create their birthday outfits for the party. I loved how they turned out. Jay and I also were able to play the role of cowboy and cowgirl and I have to say we make a pretty cute family! We had good food, good company, and good times! I couldn't have imagined a better party. Many have asked if I'm sad that they are one already and my response is that I'm too happy to be sad--I am loving every minute and I'm ok with living in the presesnt and just enjoying the ride:)

Here are some pictures from the month:

Two thumbs up is all I have to say!
Aubrey "eating" chicken and rice--smears it around her tray.
Avery "eating" chiden and rice--get in my tummy!
What's that mom?
What are we going to do with this hair?
Does this outfit make me look fat?!
A jumper and a duck--that is all Aubrey needs to stay happy for a long time!
The girls look so big in the stroller now--I remember when they were too small to fit into the straps!
Drinking water after a fun time at the park!
While this photo might not capture their excitment, the girls really do like to be in the swing together.
Trying to mix it up a bit and stimulate different senses (fleece for touch and the zipper for noise) and it is just too hard not to squeeze a baby with hugs when she is so soft and cuddly!
Aubrey is slightly embarrased and won't even look at the camera! Needless to say, we had fun trying on different outfits for the girls birthday party.
Aubrey's first ice cream cone. She is a very dainty eater.

Avery's first ice cream cone--she is "all in!"
Shaking out the cheerios.
Munching on cheerios while playing.
Avery loves to pull her sister's hair!
Silliest picture ever!
Hey mom, come in here! Notice Avery trying to lick the door!
Sweet, happy babies!
Just a little close!
Having a blast!

So silly!
Still fit in the swing together.
Time for fall.
Avery: Mom--this hay is touching me...I'm out!
Avery wasn't too pleased about sitting for this picture!
Aubrey looks like she just gave Avery a giant push....and Avery is over it!



This is what our pictures look like anymore!


The girls first "choo choo" train ride at a friend's 2 year old birthday party. Avery was having a blast. Aubrey was busy doing a risk assessement, hodling on for dear life since there were no seat belts!
I love this sweet.
Those are my cuties!
Avery is having a blast.
Avery is having the time of her life and Aubrey is a little skeptical!
My gems.
I've recently read a blog about "being in the picture"...and while this isn't picture perfect, I'm going to try to take more pictures with the girls and with Jason in the coming year.
Bath Tub FUN!

Four Generations: Aubrey, Mommy, Gramma and Poppy and Great Grammom
Beautiful crocheted sweaters handmade by special:)
Gramma reading to the girls
Thank you Aunt Maria and Uncle Jim for our most precious first cross pendants (all the way from Florence, Italy). What a special treasure and keepsake.
Uncle Joel being silly.


Time to help with the dishes!

Birthday Party Pictures



Kissy Time!

Great Grammom and her sweet peas!

Proud mommy and daddy!

Bounce house time!
Baby strollers from Nana and Grandpa
Our first Radio Flyer!
Love me some teething beads!

Thanks for all the wonderful help from family to make this such a special birthday party celebration!
Aubrey enjoying the ball pit.

Celebrating (again!) on their actual birthday with a cake made special from MOM.

And...the party continued at 6:28pm and 6:29pm on October 14 as we celebrated with party supplies sent by my best friend Liz and her daughter Kate who is 3 months old. This fun is just the beginning of many more celebrations to come!