Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Destin Beach Trip 2009

Last week, Neely and I went to Destin with my friend, Marlana, and her family. This was a last minute trip for us, but we were happy to go. The 10 hour trip went great--not one minute of crying either way! Neely loved the beach and the ocean--It was so crazy to me how fearless she was in the waves. I am just going to post a bunch of pictures, because there is not much to say. We spent our days eating, playing on the beach, and taking naps!
Marlana and I couldn't believe how the years had changed us. We used to go to Destin and would lay on the beach and just read. Oh, how I would love to do that now!
Neely could have spent hours filling the buckets with sand...

Neely & Marlana's oldest child, Hanya

Marlana and Me
For some reason, Neely decided to be an awful eater last week. I think she had crackers and ketchup for dinner every night.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Where we've been, what we've been doing...

Tonight will be the first night in 12 days that I will be sleeping in my own bed, and I am SO HAPPY. Neely and I have had a fun 2 weeks, but I am glad to be home. Let me just say once again how BLESSED I am to have such a good toddler (it hurts my soul not to write baby anymore). This girl rode 26+ hours in the car and never once fussed. I am dividing my post into two, because otherwise there would be picture overload!
So, for the first part of our trip...
On Tuesday, Neely and I headed to Little Rock to stay with my aunt and uncle (can't believe I didn't get a picture of them) because we had Dora Explorer Live tickets for Wednesday morning. We met my friends Lea and Leah from Blytheville & their 2 girls Emerson and Anna Claire. Here we are waiting for Dora to begin. I was really unsure if Neely would enjoy it for 2 reasons--1. because she is so young and 2. because she rarely watches tv and has only seen Dora a couple of times. But, she seemed to love it. She sat on my lap and watched it for the entire show. AMAZING. I am positive that I have never seen her sit still for that long ever before! Here is Neely and Anna Claire. Anna Claire is the SWEETEST little girl.
Here is what Neely thinks about getting to the show early and having to wait!
After naptime, Neely and I decided to go explore at the Old Mill in North Little Rock. This was right around the corner from where my family lived and was the perfect place for Neely to run out her energy!
She loved climbing up all the stairs and over all the bridges.
And it was absolutely beautiful. While we were there, a girl was getting her bridal pictures taken there.
On Thursday, we met my friend, Angela, from high school and her two boys at WonderPlace. Neely loved it. I so wish that we had something like this in NWA.
Neely shopping in the pretend grocery store.
Neely at the water table. I had to remind her over and over again that she couldn't dump the water on her head.
Still playing in the water table.
Making some art--that I forgot to pick up before we left. haha.
Here are Neely and Blake. He is SOOOO sweet.
After WonderPlace, we went to the Purple Cow for lunch. The kids loved their purple milkshakes and I enjoyed getting to catch up with Angela. Here are all 3 kids--Blake, Neely, and Tucker. Aren't they adorable?
Then on Friday we left for Destin...hopefully, I will post about that tomorrow!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Yard Tour

I am participating in Kelly's Show Us Where You Live Friday again this week. This week's "room" is the yard/garage. There is absolutely no way that I would show you our garage, but I am really proud of our yard. When we moved into our house, I don't think Brad had ever even mowed a yard, but now he loves all the yard work. I'm not kidding.

Here is the front of our house. Brad re-did the front yard last fall.
I love the tree on the left. It blooms white in the spring & then has berries in the fall & winter.

I love the golden barberries and the roses. We have these in almost all of our landscaping. They add great color and are almost no maintenance.

And here is the backyard coming in from the side yard.

Again the golden barberries and roses--I wish they were blooming right now so you can see them. They turn completely red & are beautiful.

We use wavy petunias for a lot of the annual beds. These are so hearty and stand up the the heat.

The rock weighs 1400 pounds. When the stone company dropped it off at our house they put it in the front yard in the wet grass. I can't tell you how hard it was to get it back there.

And this is the left side of the yard. The begonias haven't really started to spread yet. I think the heat is getting to them. By the fall, they will cover the whole area.

And here is the left corner of the yard. I love that we always hear the sound of running water when we are in the yard.

And the very left side...

Looking in from the side yard... The picture doesn't do it justice. The waterfall is running and there are lots of plants and fish in the pond.

And this is the other side yard. This is where Brad puts all the plants that we have had in the landscaping and didn't belong or just plants that he likes but that don't have a home.

More of the side yard....

And Neely's swingset. This caused MAJOR issues in our house. Brad did not want to have one, but Neely loves to swing and slide, and he can't say no. One of our friends gave us this because her son had grown out of it. I sanded and stained it during Neely's naptime and made the canopy. I think it turned out great!

We added a deck on our house this week this year & I am so happy how it turned out.

I knew exactly what I wanted--a 2 level deck with built-in seating and planter boxes. The guy who built it did a great job & I highly recommend him. I'll post his contact information on the bottom of this post.

Just another angle... I am in the process of making red covers for all the furniture.

Hope you've enjoyed my tour. I have to give credit where credit is due though...

1. Brad has done ALL the manual labor and upkeep for the yard. I have not planted 1 flower nor watered one plant.

2. My cousin, Jonathan, has taught Brad all he knows about landscaping. He has worked on the design & plant selection for the entire yard. He is AWESOME. If you live in the San Diego area & would like him to do some yard design work...let me know.

3. The deck builder we used was Scott Helms. He is based in NW Arkansas & his phone # is 719-229-9816. Please tell him I referred you!