Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Catching Up...

Since we last posted Jackson has gotten to play at a carnival and be a lion in a circus at his school, as well as starting swimming lessons, Audrey has started trying to sit up and roll from her back to her stomach (ok...this has only happened once so far), and Ross and I have been busy working in the yard.

The carnival was lots of fun. They had a little ferris wheel, a carousel, and a train. Jackson wasn't so sure about the ferris wheel, but he loved riding the horses and train along with eating snow cones! Here are a few pics, but there are lots more of the fun in the album

Ross and Jackson enjoying a snowconeJackson riding the carouselRoss and Jackson riding the trainWhat next?

The next week Jackson's school put on a circus for all of the parents. It was a blast! Each class was a different animal or act. They had everything from strong men and clowns to tigers and trainers to lions. Jackson was one of the lions. His teachers made felt tails and ribbon manes and painted their faces. They were adorable. I didn't get any good pictures at the circus itself, but here is picture of Jackson at home after the show, and there are more in the album.

Jackson the Lion

Last week Jackson started swimming lessons at a local indoor pool. The first day was awful. Jackson was in the terrible two's mode. He wanted to do everything by himself and didn't want Mommy to hold him. Since he didn't have floaties, that wasn't exactly an option, so we struggled our way through the first lesson. Day two was a dramatic change. I think he was less tired and better prepared for what to expect because he laughed and smiled through the whole lesson. He kicked and jumped and dove and rode his bike (treading water) and did big arms upon request. His favorite parts have been doing the hokey pokey and getting his towel at the end. Somehow we were unknowingly smart in letting Jackson pick out a towel when we were in Florida. This has become HIS towel. It has prevented many meltdowns when transitioning from a water activity to something else. The lessons are four days a week for two weeks, and we're now into week two. He's doing great! Now if we only could finish this yard work so we have some free time on the weekends to take him to the pool again!

So what yard work are we doing? We are pulling out almost all of the existing plants, expanding flower beds, and planting new plants including a tree! These are some before pictures.


All but 4 plants and the existing trees were removed. Maas nursery planted a Summer Maple tree for us and delivered 7 yards of dirt last Friday, which we then moved one wagonful at a time into the yard...that's a lot of shoveling, trips, and spreading of dirt. These are some "in work" pictures. We've actually started putting some flowers in the beds, but I don't have any pictures of them yet. It looks really good though!

In WorkIn Work

Audrey is growing and changing fast. She is now on formula and doing great. She's almost 15 pounds and was at the 66th percentile at her 4 month appointment. She can almost sit on her own. Every day she seems to get stronger and be able to do more. She's a very observant baby. If there's something going on around her, she's likely to watch and study it. She seems to have really good hand-eye coordination. We put together her jumperoo this weekend, and to my amazement, she's already figured out each of the toys on it! This has also shown us what the future holds with Jackson and Audrey "sharing" toys...something for us to work on. Jackson is still adorably sweet with her. Even when getting upset about the toys on the jumperoo, he's usually just wanting to show her how to play with it.


We've had a busy but productive couple of weeks. We hope to finish the yard soon and get Jackson's swing set put together so we can all start having some fun back there!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

4 Months Old

Audrey is now 4 months old! The time is going by so quickly. It's hard to believe I've been back at work for a month. Audrey is doing really well at daycare. She's taking three good naps every day (8-10, 12-2, and 4-4:30). She's also eating well and has now switched to the fast flow bottles, which makes eating much quicker. She has her 4 month checkup this week, so we'll see how she's doing with her weight and growth. I expect it to be good with all of those adorable rolls! Speaking of rolls, Audrey has been rolling from her stomach to her back fairly regularly, and scoots around on her tummy when left to play. She loves to be talked to and sung to and is known to join in with beautiful coos from time to time. Her smiles are absolutely contagious as you can see here! I don't have any new pictures from this week, but this is my favorite of her so far.


Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Frances Marie Pfeifer Stone

Yesterday, I spent the day in Shreveport where we laid my maternal grandmother to rest in the morning and celebrated her life in the afternoon. She was an amazing woman who put all of herself into her 5 children, 11 grandchildren, and 18 great-grandchildren and, of course, her husband of nearly 67 years. Her home and her kitchen were always open and I spent innumerable hours at her house from early childhood through high school. Family was everything to her. She never missed a ball game and no conversation was more interesting to her than to hear about her grandchildren.

After a long battle with Alzheimer's that took away her memory but never took away her kind nature and her sense of humor, on Thursday, July 1st she was healed. I have no doubt that she is busying herself in Heaven making it feel more like home to those around her.

Monday, July 05, 2010

reBorn on the 4th of July

Our nephew, Mitchell, was baptized on the 4th of July. We made our way to Leakey on Friday to be there for all of the festivities. Neither Jackson nor Audrey slept well on the ride there, but they both loved spending time with Mitchell once we arrived...we all did! Saturday morning all three kiddos spent some time playing and checking each other out. Mitchell and Audrey just loved looking at each other, but Jackson was a little more hands on with his attention.

Audrey & MitchellJackson & Mitchell

Later Saturday morning we made our way to Leakey's 4th of July parade, which was made up of horses, flags, a chair brigade (dancing with chairs), and lots of homemade floats sponsored by local businesses. There was a good turn out despite a little rain. Jackson enjoyed dancing and cheering for the floats. He even managed to get a bouncy ball that was being thrown with a little help from Aunt Leslie. Audrey and Mitchell were crowd pleasers as well with their contagious smiles!

Leslie, Mitchell, & JDFloatsFloatsJD, Ross, & AudreyLeslie & MitchellE & Audrey

After lunch at one of the food booths in the town square and good naps back at the Rodriguez house, we went back to check out the goods being sold in town. There was lots of cute stuff, but I controlled myself and only walked away with this adorable headband for Audrey.


From there we made our way over to Grandmother and Graddad Taylor's house where Jackson attempted to fly his first kite. Graddad bought him a pirate ship kite! It never got to sail due to a lack of wind, but we had fun trying anyway. We expect it to be a lot of fun here in Houston!

Jackson flying a kiteRoss & Jackson

The day was over before we knew it, but we enjoyed every moment...especially with smiles like these around...

MitchellJackson & Audrey

Mitchell was baptized at church on Sunday, so he was re-born on the 4th of July. ;-)

We got a couple of family pictures before the service at the Frio Springs Lodges.

Taylor/Rodriguez FamilyRodriguez FamilyTaylor Family

There was a pool party and cookout to celebrate that afternoon. Jackson and his friend, Aiden, had fun running around and playing together.


Audrey seemed to enjoy talking to herself and anyone that would listen.


Jackson and Mitchell had fun swimming too. It was a little too cold for Audrey, but Jackson was fearless...a little too fearless. He would swim around on his own with his floaties and jump off the diving board with a little help. Then after deciding to be done and playing with Audrey for a few minutes, he decided to go back in without his floaties or telling anyone...fortunately Aunt Leslie and Uncle Philip were quick to grab him! I'm still a little traumatized by the whole event, but he is fine!

Ross & JDPhilip & MitchellJD & Audrey

All in all it was a great weekend with family and friends. There are more pictures of all the festivities in the album.