Monday, January 31, 2011

Brooks Rocks One!

Strike up the band, Brooks turned one and we were there to celebrate! It is no secret that Brooks has a love for all things music. He's got rhythm and he isn't afraid to shake his groove thang!
As I know I have mentioned before, we have a love affair with the Domann family and feel like we won the lottery when our paths crossed. Our lives have been forever changed by this amazing trio. (Carin's sister is pretty great too!). Brooks and Liam are 5 days apart. I only wish Carin and I would have known each other during pregnancy... but never less we have become great friends now and our boys share in that friendship. We tease because even though we know all babies are different. They all grow and mature and learn and reach milestones in their own time and in their own ways. I get that... Brooks and Liam have been tracking together since pretty much the beginning. SO, we like to call our boys the "normal" ones. You know like when you ask all your other mommy friends... am I crazy? is this normal? and your close friends just laugh and tell you yes. And then there are those of you who have super babies that do everything early and they are just so perfect and you make the rest of us want to never invite you to the playdate again?  Well, Carin is my normal. We never really thought anything different. So the first time I took Liam to a birthday and we got the "how old is he? or oh my goodness he is huge!" or well, you get it. I chose to go back to my "normal" where Liam was not in the 90th percentile and it was little Brooks and little Liam... haha!

They go to the same school and are so completely adorable together. I have visions of little league games and family vacations and I get so excited for them to grow up together.
Of course they will be following right behind the cooler, older, all the girls wanna date: Noah... but I don't think either of them mind because Noah truly is a pretty cool little guy!
It was Brooks' day. And his mom made it so incredibly special. There were drums and pianos and every musical instrument to play in celebration of the big day.
 The cake was amazing...
Even Brooks' dad Trey thought so!
And I could tell that Carin was glowing as much as I did on Liam's day. Our boys are really one. It was such a special day. Carin had musically inclined snacks (pretzel rod drum sticks for example) and the most adorable record theme photos everywhere! It was the perfect be bopin' birthday!
Since our daddy was still hunting, he missed out on the festivities, but Ashley and Ben were there to help mommy! I could not have asked for a more incredible set of God parents for Liam. This photo makes my heart happy. Because I know they will always be there. They love him like he could be one of theirs. They are amazing.
And Liam could not adore Ashley more. She teaches him all the cool stuff like how to throw your arms in the air and say "So Big!" or stick your tongue out and make turkey noises....
Noah even shared his cake.
There is just something about the older kids that the younger ones cannot get enough of. They just cannot help themselves and want to join in so badly. Whether that be the ball pit...
or sticks and a football game.
The ice chest was another favorite of the 'twins.'
And when it was time to exit stage left, we got the most fun tambourine and musical cd that has become our new ride along favorite. In fact, mommy even sings along to Brooks' party hits on her way into work and it makes for one happy morning start to the work day! Thanks Domann family for an amazing day and for your amazing friendship. I truly admire you as parents and I cannot wait to continue on this journey with you and our very special boys!


How Big is Liam?

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Kari is Engaged

A few weeks back I was thrilled to learn that a dear friend and sorority sister got engaged! Kari is truly an amazing person and she and Noah make one beautiful couple!
Ellen hosted us girls for wine and snacks and to hear all the sweet details. There was lots of oohs and ahhs over her fabulous ring and I had such a wonderful time catching up. I was thrilled to be included as I just cannot say enough about these women. I love them. They are genuine and kind. They are true friends and I am so glad they are in Houston! Congratulations Kari. You deserve all the happiness in the world and you are going to make one stunning bride~

Friday, January 14, 2011

Happy Birthday Mobs and Ashley

It is sometimes hard to find the time in our busy schedules to properly celebrate friend's birthdays that fall around the holidays. But that doesn't make them any less important. It is important to show them how much we truly value their friendship and how blessed we are to be a part of their lives... Ashley and Allison (Mobs) are two amazing women and I consider myself lucky just to know them. They are true friends. The ones you call when you have had a bad day, a great day, when you need advice or you just want to chat about nothing at all. They are always there. Always genuinely happy for you. Encouraging and just wonderful to be around.
We all met at La Vista for wine and a side of dinner to celebrate! It was a great evening filled with holiday stories and laughter. I am not sure why, but for whatever reason we have started a traditional round-table question that someone comes up with and we all give answers to. This round table question was to name your best and worst Christmas present. Very light-hearted and good, silly fun!
And then it was time for gifts. I love the way we do presents. We all pitch in and find that one special gift that she wouldn't buy for herself. We turn a small gift into something fantastic. Something that when asked, you can say "My girlfriends gave it to me." Something to love! For Mobs we did a perfume sample set. From the 50 or so samples they provide, you select your favorite scent, then trade your voucher in for a full size bottle. This is the way to buy perfume. How many half-empty bottles do we all have lying around the house because we are not all as big a fans of the smell as we thought we were?
And for Ashley a Kate Spade crystal bracelet. It really made the outfit!
Happy Birthday to two amazing girlfriends! Hope it is one, fantastic year!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Auld Lang Syne

"This traditional New Years song was put together by Robert Burns, the famous Scottish poet in about 1788. Auld lang syne can be loosely translated "for old times sake". The answer to the question posed in the first verse is NO. We should not forget our old friends. They should be brought to mind. Especially those who are no longer with us."
-Bruce Robinson

Yes, I realize that we are well underway with the new year and I am extremely behind on blog posts. There has been so much fun and so many activities that I am doing good to get them pumped out at this very slow pace and keep my day job and my mommy title in tact!

Happy New Year... Family Style! Just the way the Robinson's like it. This is how we celebrated the new year!
It seems that NYE is almost always a let down. My hope is that some day I will have enough money to throw at New Years to do it right. Dressing up for some fancy course dinner and dancing at a top spot or traveling to New York to be in the very center of it all. But this year, I could not have asked for a better way to ring in 2011. Chris and Ashley are always amazing hosts and now that they are so close we can plan on many more family gatherings. We were thrilled to be included at this family bash!
Ella had received the most wonderful playset for Christmas and Liam wanted to join in on the fun so very badly.
In no time he will be swinging, sliding and climbing with Ella and all her friends!
Chris grilled up some fantastic burgers and then put his fire skills to use once more to help the kids light up the sky with sparklers.
Liam couldn't keep is eyes off of them!
Even us grownups couldn't help ourselves! We drew fun shapes in the sky and Ashley and I played with my camera settings to see if we could capture them. Well.... we tried!
It was a wonderful evening with families, soon to be new families (wink), and friends.
Photography by Ashley Petersen
We just love the Petersen family!
After returning home and putting the little one to bed, Bill and I had a special toast...

To the first birthday of one amazing little boy who has brought so much joy to our lives
To my brother, as he starts a new career here in Houston (we are thrilled for him!)
To a new management role and exciting new work challenge and adventure for me
To a year filled up with amazing friends and the continual growth of those friendships
To celebrating a big birthday for me on 11-11-11
To an unbelievable 6 years with the man of my dreams
To a class reunion and catching up with childhood friends
To all the love and support from our family and spending more quality time with them in the new year.


Saturday, January 8, 2011

Two New Firsts

When we returned home, we had some pretty big first around the Robinson household. Liam had been taking a few steps here and there. Mostly from the coffee table to the sofa. When I mean a few steps, I mean just enough to launch himself forward allowing the sofa to catch his fall. Then, over Christmas we spent some time with my uncle who started this whole "walking" thing. He is an awesome teacher. Awesome coach. Such patience. And Liam would try anything for him. So, to prove to him that he had come a long way from Thanksgiving... Liam popped up and took 4-5 steps towards him! He was proud, and mommy and daddy were so proud of him! And then... when Christmas settled down and he was settled into a nice clean home... Liam walked!!! For the remote that is... typical male!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Camp GiGi and Pappa

When we returned from our wonderful Corsicana Christmas, Bill and I knew that even though we had 5 days of vacation they would be filled up with the preparations for Liam's birthday. There were so many closets that were stuffed with toys, etc. And what working mother has time to spend organizing closets and guest rooms and utility drawers when they already feel like they do not have enough time to spend with their children? or husband for that matter. Too add insult to injury, we also had to take Christmas down. There was so much disorganization and if you know me at all... Without organization there is chaos. I cannot function with an unorganized house. I felt trapped by clutter. Kept feeling like I needed a bigger space. Better yet... I needed to get rid of anything that did not serve a purpose. Get organized and start the new year fresh. So when my mother offered to keep Liam for a couple of days, I thought hard about it and came to the conclusion that it was better to spend 3 quality days with him rather than 5 disorganized ones. That Bill and I needed some time to reconnect as well. To go out on a real date. To stay up late watching an uninterrupted movie and sleep in in the morning. To take time for us so that we could be the very best parents for Liam.

At first we were not sure what to do with ourselves. No one to chase after or say "no no." No one to feed or schedule naps. In fact, no schedule at all. We decided to fondue! A two hour dipping dinner at the Melting Pot. And to top off the evening, we rented Inception without background music of a banging remote on the coffee table. A quiet evening just the two of us.
The next morning we hit the ground running. We took down Christmas in nothing flat. Bill tackled the outside while I sorted through the boxes of fairies and ornaments inside. Within hours Christmas was over. Packed away carefully and ready for round 2. The utility room was no match for Bill. Just wait till you see it now. In fact, you can hear an echo. Tucker wasn't sure to be relieved that he could eat in peace or scared because it felt so empty. And every drawer has a purpose and every item a space. What in the world to do with all collected grocery bags? Daycare of course... and they were thrilled to receive them. After tackling the chest on chest organizing, I took a trip down memory lane and carefully packed tiny little clothes into 0-3, 3-6, 6-9, 9-12 and holiday shrink bags. All of those special little memories shrunk down into 4 bags and plastic bin. A bittersweet box.
We cleaned and de-cluttered and then cleaned some more until we just couldn't organize anymore. I was amazed at all that we had accomplished in such a short amount of time. We deserved date night #2! We decided to check out the new City Center. If you have not been, and you are in the Houston area it is a must. It was hopping.
The earliest last minute reservation at Eddie V's on a Tuesday night was 8:15. But we didn't care! Who has a time clock? Not us! We enjoyed a drink at the bar and one amazing meal!
On our way home, we took some time to look at the beautiful Christmas lights. We talked and laughed and pretended like Christmas wasn't over!
And on that night, December 27th 2010... we realized that 10 years had passed. Ten years since saying yes to that handsome football player wanting to make our relationship "exclusive." Ten years ago that two best friends, two soul mates started their journey. And as if someone else knew besides us in that car, we heard it. Yup, our song. The song we chose ten years ago to signify 'us.' One of those cheesy pop songs! And I had to laugh. It had almost been that long since I had heard it last. It was perfect!
While we had a wonderful 3 days together, we could not wait to get our hands on a little 11 month old! We met GiGi and Pappa half way for the hand off. There were some oh so fab places to stop for lunch... we settled on BBQ and then headed back a family of 3 again.
I cannot thank my parents enough for giving that little boy more grandparent love than he could handle and spoiling him absolutely rotten. I am not sure how he convinced them to give him his birthday prizes early, but they did! And from the looks of it, I would like to sign up for Camp GiGi and Pappa!