Tuesday, March 19, 2013

My Birthday

I know you all recognized and celebrated my birthday last week, but we haven't acknowledged it on the blog yet, have we?  I turned 23 for the fifth time, and it was amazing!  Ryan got me a camera bag and a new strap for the camera he got me for Christmas, plus a vintage-looking Aerosmith tee from one of my favorite boutiques in town.  My parents came up and got to see Alli play some soccer too.

We also helped Lindsey move into her new place - she's out on her own!  And then on my actual birthday, we had french toast for breakfast and went shopping in Prairie Grove.  I got some awesome steals...

Then my wonderful family sang happy birthday to me over a Ricks cake!  I wrapped up the evening with some Cracker Barrel takeout.  I got to have chicken and dumplings, which can't hold a candle to my Grandmama's but was the best Ryan could do.  And I went to bed early.  Talk about a perfect way to celebrate.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Wildlife Safari

We've lived here almost ten years and have never visited one of the biggest family-friendly attractions in the area - the Gentry Wildness Safari/Drive Thru Zoo!  When I saw the forecast for 75 & sunny this weekend, I decided visiting Saturday would be the perfect family excursion.  We packed up around 10:30AM and headed out on the 30 minute drive.

It wasn't especially beautiful, and I have some reservations about the establishment (part of the reason we haven't gone before) but everyone with kids that I know has been and their kids love it.  So I put my reservations aside for Alli's enjoyment.  And man, did she enjoy it!

When we pulled in, the man taking money told us they had baby lions and baby giraffes in the barn, but warned that the baby lions might get cranky before too long.  So Ryan decided we would go to the petting area first and then hit the drive through portion later.

We saw peacocks, capybaras, goats, kangaroos, llamas, ponies, and camels - most of which Alli could pet or feed.  Along the way, we found the baby lions and actually got to go in the pen and pet them.  Ryan went in and sat on the hay bale, and one of the little ones actually jumped on the hay bale and crawled into his lap.  It was seriously the cutest thing.  And Alli got to pet a lynx (??) named Sheila.  She says that was her favorite part of the day.

After going through all of the petting areas, we went through the drive through.  It was pretty neat - they had big cats, deer, yaks - all kinds of cool animals to see up close.  When we were almost done going through, the gas light came on in the car.  We sweated it, but we made it!  Thank goodness - we weren't stranded in the drive through safari.

Afterwards, we hosted a zoo at our house - three of Alli's friends came over to play!  We walked them down to the neighborhood playground to enjoy the gorgeous weather.  And after a very full day, Alli curled up on the couch for a movie.  It was a wonderful, gorgeous day, and I'm so happy we got to spend most of it outside!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Pregnancy Update - 28 Weeks

Disclaimer - I currently hate all pictures of myself.  I look swollen!  Like I got stung by a bee!  But I am going to press on with documenting this journey, hoping one day I will look back on these pictures and laugh about how fat I look instead of wishing I were this size...

How far along: 28 weeks

Size of baby: According to The Bump, baby Riley is the size of an eggplant, weighing 1.5 to 2.5 pounds and measuring 13.6 to 14.8 inches long.

Maternity clothes: Clearly.  I need more tops.  I'm starting to bare belly under my normal ones.

Gender: A precious little girl named Riley Rachelle.

Movement:  Regularly.  I feel her in my ribs, I feel her flip and roll around.  The kicks are getting really strong - sometimes they even hurt!!

Sleep: Sleep lately has been pretty great.  I don't know if daylight savings time helped or if I'm just finding ways to get more comfy, but I haven't had too much of a problem, which is a blessing.

Symptoms: Fatness!  Heartburn hasn't been as bad as it was because I am learning what triggers it and can avoid it.  I get a lot of pain in my shoulders right now, I think from sitting up at work all day.

What I miss: Still wine & coffee.  Red sauce.  Not looking like a pot-bellied pig!  

Cravings: Not too much lately.  I still drink more sweet tea than I should.

Food aversions: Nada.

Best moment this week: I'll go back to last week when we saw her precious precious precious face on our 3D ultrasound.  It was an AMAZING experience.  I cannot wait to meet this little lady!  Also passing my glucose test.  I was nervous about that for some reason.

What I am looking forward to: My baby shower next weekend!  Getting her crib and chair in around the end of April.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Soccer Stud

Thursday was Alli's first soccer game!  She started and got to play a lot.  She took some shots at the goal and was really aggressive going after the ball.  Her team tied 1-1, and most importantly, she had an awesome time.  I can't wait to see her back in action Saturday!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Read Across America Day

Last Friday was Read Across America Day.  All students at Alli's school were encouraged to dress like book characters, and the day was filled with parades, reading, bands, and a meet and greet with the Cat in the Hat himself.  Alli was pretty set on being the Cat in the Hat as well, so we ordered an outfit from Party City.

I love Dr. Seuss, don't you?  I mean The Sneetches, One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish, The Lorax, and my most favorite, Oh the Places You'll Go!  He's so wonderful and fun to read, and I love his little underlying messages.

So, without further ado, the Cat in the Hat.

Isn't she adorable?  She was so happy with the costume (especially the tail) and she had a wonderful day.  She even got called up on stage to do a dance with a group.  I just love elementary school events like this - so much fun!

And just because I love you guys, here's the video of her dancing.  She's the Cat, obviously.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

I'm Big on Little Rock (Half Marathon Edition)

No really.  Call me crazy, but I love my hometown.  Sure, it's in the top 10 most dangerous cities in the country.  But I love me a good trip to the Rock Town.

We went down this past weekend because my amazing daddy was running in his first official half marathon.  He's supported me so much over my life - softball games, riding lessons, etc. - that there was no question in my mind that we needed to go support him.  He has run the distance before, almost exactly a year ago, but he did that on his own.  This time it was going to be official.

He's been struggling with some tendonitis in his heel, so I think he was a little nervous about how that would go, but he rested it pretty thoroughly leading up to the race and iced and stretched it a lot on Saturday.

Sunday morning was in the upper 20s or lower 30s, and we got up at 6:30AM to head downtown.  The race kicked off around the River Market, so we saw him off, and then headed quickly over to mile 1.  We held up the signs Alli made and cheered loudly the minute he passed.  Then we headed to Ashley's at the Capitol Hotel to eat breakfast.

Daddy spent the next portion of the race on the North Little Rock side of the river, so we wasted some time at breakfast and then went across the street to the Peabody Hotel.  The ducks weren't out yet, but Alli rode up to the 17th floor in the glass elevators no less than four times.  Mama only made it half of that time - yikes!!  Talk about queasy.

Once we had sufficiently wasted time and stayed warm, we tromped to the finish line.  We got to see one of my best friends Lara cross, and then a few minutes later - here came Daddy!!  It was so exciting to see him!!  He was exhausted after the half, understandably, and said he couldn't feel one of his feet, but he was so happy to have finished.  We found out later that his time was 2 hours, 13 minutes - I was so impressed!  One day I'll blog just about how wonderful my daddy is, but let me tell you.  You'll never find anyone more hardworking and dedicated.  I am so proud of him and all he has accomplished!!

Making signs for the Didster

Alli and Diddy before the race

Scenes from the race - doesn't he look so happy?
 Congratulations to my daddy - love you!!