Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Just a FEW things that I am thankful for:

• God
• My health and my family's health
• 2 beautiful, healthy, strong, silly boys
• My husband, who makes me smile, most of the time...
• Brody recovering from the yuckiness and starting back to school yesterday
• Wade showing tenderness towards his brother when he was sick
• Having family and friends to share Thanksgiving with
• Parents and Grandparents and Great-Grandparents and Aunts and Uncles and Cousins
• Sneaky, shark Buckley and laid back Miller
• Clothing and jackets to keep us warm and food to fill our bellies
• Time...I am trying not to take it for granted
• The Internet :)
• Milk instead of expensive formula
• Freedom we have living in the United States and our Military who works hard to protect it
• Good books, TLC and Discovery Health
• Sushi, subs, sunshine and slurpees
• Our family business that grants me a paycheck
• Digital cameras, memories and photos
• Invitations, baby announcements and Christmas cards
• The hard times, because they make the good times all the better
• Being me
• For my children's smiles and laughter

I could go on and on.....Have a safe a Happy Thanksgiving! We will be in Macclenny, FL with all of the Harrell's so I am sure I will have tons of fun pics to post next week.

Here are a few pics from the boys first Thanksgiving:

Friday, November 20, 2009

Go Big or Go Home.

Well, us Harrell's like to do things big. We didn't get just 1 puppy, but 2. We didn't have just 1 baby, but 2. Brody didn't just have an ear infection, but a double ear infection and then he got dehydrated and was admitted to the hospital. Todd told the nurse, "We Harrell's always go big. Go big or go home." Cracked me up...because it is so true!

To make a long story short, Brody seemed to be getting worse instead of better and basically quit drinking and slept and slept and slept. So on Wednesday, I brought him back to the Dr. and we decided to admit him for borderline dehydration. His pain was so bad, that he was not able to drink or eat without being in pain. The dehydration was causing him to be lethargic. The Tamiflu that they had him on for the flu, which he did not end up having, was causing lots of vomiting. So after 24 hours of being in the hospital and getting pumped up with tons of IV fluids and IV antibiotics, we are all home! I am so thankful for having healthy children. This is our first illness, and Brody did it in true Harrell fashion. He went big.

Here are some pics from our hospital stay. Some of the pics are poor quality because they were taken with my cell.
Check out his crib! We called this the jail cell crib. It even has a hard plastic top on it!

He actually slept very well in it...

But we spent the majority of the time in the big boy bed...

he actually felt ok for about an hour while we were there and played...

And did lots of snuggling and visiting and reading books...

But the majority of the time was spent just being really tender and listless and pulling on Mommy and Daddy's heart strings...Look how sick he was!

And while we were nursing Brody, Wade was having a blast at school! He has gone all week long, by himself and his teachers say that he is adjusting perfectly. He actually falls asleep within 3 minutes for nap time on that little mat thing. Still amazes me!!!You know, people always ask me if it is hard raising twins, and while it is difficult at times, this was the absolute hardest. Brody needed so much attention and I felt as though Wade was kind of neglected, just a little bit, anyways. It has to be too weird for him to still be adjusting to a new school all week without Brody and then come home Wednesday night and not have his Mom or Brother there. Todd said he was out of sorts. After Brody was discharged yesterday afternoon, I went to pick up Wade at school and he ran across the play yard and gave me the biggest hug he has ever given me!


"Before I Was A Mom"

Before I was a Mom I made and ate hot meals.I had unstained clothing. I had quiet conversations on the phone.

Before I was a Mom I slept as late as I wanted. And never worried about how late I got into bed. I brushed my hair and my teeth everyday.

Before I was Mom I cleaned my house each day. I never tripped over toys or forgot words to lullabies.

Before I was a Mom I didn't worry whether or not my plants were poisonous. I never thought about immunizations.

Before I was a Mom I had never been puked on, pooped on, spit on, peed on, or pinched by tiny fingers.

Before I was a Mom I had complete control of my mind, my thoughts, my body and all my feelings. I slept all night.

Before I was a Mom I never held down a screaming child so that doctors could do tests or give shots. I never looked into teary eyes and cried. I never got gloriously happy over a simple grin. I never sat up late hours at night watching a baby sleep.

Before I was a Mom I never held a sleeping baby just because I didn't want to put it down. I never felt my heart break into a million pieces when I couldn't stop the hurt. I never knew that something so small could affect my life so much. I never knew that I could love someone so much. I never knew I would love being a Mom.

Before I was a Mom I didn't know the feeling of having my heart outside my body. I didn't know how special it could feel to feed a hungry baby. I didn't know that bond between a Mother and her child. I didn't know that something so small could make me feel so important.

Before I was a Mom I had never gotten up in the middle of the night every 10 minutes to make sure all was OK. I had never known the warmth, the joy, the love, the heartache or the satisfaction of being a Mom.

I didn't know I was capable of feeling so much............before I was a Mom....

Author Unknown

Monday, November 16, 2009

We are 15 months old!

(This is a long post!!!)

I think this has been the longest I have ever gone without posting to the blog. Must be that I am extremely busy with 2- "full speed ahead" toddlers! They have started preschool, braved their first tropical storm, turned 15 months and we have experienced our first major illness...a double ear infection! Before I get ahead of myself, lets start with their first day of "Cool"...that is what Brody calls school. It melts my heart....

All in all, their first week was wonderful, considering it was only 3 days long. School was cancelled on Tuesday, due to Hurricane Ida, which downsized into a tropical storm, thank God! Then, school was closed on Wednesday to honor all of our Veteran's...so, their first week consisted of Monday, Thursday and, in late on Friday, because they had their 15 month check up and shots!

I think I was more nervous than the boys walking up the ramp to the front door of the school. In the mornings, all kids meet in the 3 year old room, until there are enough kids to separate into their individual classrooms. Brody and Wade were in awe of all of the new toys and kids to look at. They barely cried and survived their first day!

Daddy and his boys:

I forgot to tell the teachers that Wade does not like fruit, so when they served him peaches with his breakfast, he threw them on the floor. He also decided to stand on the top of the little playground in his classroom all day. Typical Wade. While Wade was king of the jungle, Brody talked on the "phone" all day long and gobbled up every bit of food that he was served! The school that they are going to is absolutely fantastic!! They emailed me and called me throughout the day, to assure me that the boys were doing fine.

Here they are in their 1 year old classroom, Miss Megan and Miss Sara's class! That is the jungle gym that Wade stood up on all day...and still does!

Miss Campbell, showing the boys how to dive in and conquer the toys:

Wade, looking around, wondering where all of these new toys and people have come from:

Brody, still looking sleepy, taking it all in:

Cristy, the Director, even sent me pics on my phone of the boys taking a nap on their maps! Seriously, how wonderful is that???

Can you believe that they are actually sleeping on those mats? I hear that Cristy has magical powers...

***(I am not going to post what school they go to, just because there are so many weirdo's out there, but if anybody is interested in knowing, shoot me an email. I HIGHLY recommend it...the communication is awesome, the areas are spotless, kids are happy and teachers are loving!)***

Here are 2 sweet pics of the boys after their 2nd day of school:

B-man is finally catching up with Wade in the bruise department. Check out his forehead!

Tuesday and Wednesday were spent indoors, because the weather left over from Ida was yucky... so as soon as the weather cleared up, we headed to the park!

I LOVE these pics of Todd throwing B up into the air...Could he be smiling any bigger?

On Friday, Todd and I took the boys to their 15 month checkup and shot appointments. Here are their stats:

Wade at 15 months old:
33 inches tall and weighs in at 30lbs! 90th percentile for both
14-16 teeth
Runs everywhere he goes
Is STILL becoming crazier by the day
Has actually started trying all types of foods and is liking them! Cheese is still his fav...
Still hates fruit of any kind
Is quite the cuddler
Very laid back, outgoing and does not know a stranger
Falls asleep easily, but wakes up a grump
Loves to be the center of attention and has turned into such a ham!
Has gone from our professor to our monkey, who climbs everything.
Still loves to drink(chug) and seems to always have a sippy cup with water around
He is obsessed with books and prefers them to all other toys

Brody at 15 months old:
33 inches tall and weighs in at 29 lbs! 90th percentile for both
12 teeth
He is a sensitive soul, and already a deep thinker
Is still very partial to people he knows and prefers females over ANY male, except his Daddy
Will eat just about anything and everything! Banana's and cheese are still his fav
Is very inqusitive and studies peoples lips movements when they talk
Would rather sleep with Mama and Dada instead of in his crib...which does not happen.
Is a great mimicker and loves to copy things that people do.
Is quite the talker and will repeat A LOT of words
Always smiling and flirting
Wakes up every morning with a smile, every single time
Points at everything, and his new fav is the sky
Loves to follow direction and loves the praise that comes along with it
Physically very rough, but has the most gentle eyes

B-man was just not acting himself this past weekend. Cried all night long on Friday and barely played on Sunday and started to feel warm. He woke up Monday morning with a 103 degree temp. Took him back to the Dr. (remember, we were just there on Friday for shots?) and she diagnosed him with a double ear infection. She also said that he was showing signs for the flu, and just to be safe, she put both B and W on Tamiflu to nip it in the bud. After 2 days of a lethargic Brody, he has finally turned a corner! The fever has been gone since late this morning and he is actually eating and drinking. Thank God! We are almost positive that it wasn't the flu, and just a horrible ear infection...which will be a blessing, because then hopefully Wade will not catch it!
Here he is asleep at the DR.'s office, on my lap...
And here he is, on the pallet that Daddy made in the living room today! He LOVED it and I think really enjoyed the 1-on-1 time with Mommy and Daddy, while Wade was at school.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Cannot sleep

Dear B and W,

Here I sit, not able to sleep, hoping and praying that you will love your new school. Daddy is fast asleep, not too concerned with tomorrows big events. But I am awake, thinking and worrying, as usual. Today I inadvertently read the news online. I hate the news. I hate reading about terrible things happening to people all over the world. Things that are completely out of my control. And I cannot help but to picture the two of you, and your sweet, smiling faces and chubby, little legs...your voices, your laughs, your tears. The way that you Brody, seek me out when you are in pain or scared, and how you Wade, are my little independent soul, swinging by for a hug every now and then. Still babies in my eyes, both just on the cusp of being a child. Still unable to do much for yourselves. Still dependent on others. And I want to be there for every single laugh and tear and boo-boo and pain, but, as I will do for the rest of your lives, I am letting you both go and watching you both grow and explore your little world, and this is just pre-school. The one year old class, for heavens sake, and I cannot sleep. This is just how much I love you both.


The boys last week at home and weekend away...

Hope everybody has had a wonderful, fall weekend! We are actually under a Hurricane watch here in NW FL. Imagine that. A hurricane in November. Say a prayer that Hurricane Ida dissipates does not destroy any lands/homes/businesses/ or lives.

Last week started off with a visit from my Aunt Marge and her husband Mike from Pennsylvania! There is a LONG story that goes along with our little get-together, but lets just say that we had A LOT of catching up to do! It has been 21 years since we last saw each other, so it was extremely wonderful to get everybody together. They took us out to Old Bay Steamer on Tuesday night (Thank you - it was wonderful!!), where we discovered that the boys aren't as good as they used to be at a restaurant...and then we had them over for dinner on Wednesday night, with Grammie, Nana and Gator: Nana, Aunt Marge and the B:

While we were catching up, the boys got into the Tupperware cabinet:
Grammie came over early Wednesday morning to watch B and W all day long, so that we could both put in a full day of work. Thank you so much Grammie! She spent the night and the next day, we decided to drive over and surprise Pop's at the office!
Pop's showed them the ducks that hang out at their office complex:
And managed to get in some snuggle time...
And catch up on some accounting...
And even sing a song or two...
Here are cutie pie pics of the boys and their sunglasses! They love to wear them around the house, and you can tell they think they are "big stuff" with them on!

Before we left Panama City Beach on Thursday, Grammie and I decided to take advantage of the beautiful weather and took them to Pier Park to ride the train and do a little shoppin'!
They LOVED, LOVED, LOVED the train:

Could it have been any prettier outside?

OK. I told Grammie that she had 1 very simple rule this weekend. To take pictures. They have an awesome camera, and they never take pics. So I demanded. And they obliged :)
I can finally...hallaleujah...show pics from one of their weekends with Grammie and Pop's! (Todd and I went to Apalachicola, FL for the seafood festival with our Bowlegs Krewe. Thank you SO MUCH Pop's and Grammie for watching Brody and Wade...they had a blast and so did we!)

They took the munchkins to K-mart to buy new umbrella strollers, because we accidentally forgot to pack ours...and then to a local senior fair, where HISC had a booth set up. Grammie could not get the the camera out in time, but we have been told that Wade boogied it down with the belly dancers!!
One of the boys favorite places to be at Grammie and Pop's house is in the hallway, looking up at the salt water aquarium:
Check out this picture of Brody covering Wade with the toy box. Priceless.
Here they are wrestling with each other. They do this all of the time now-a-days, giggling the entire time!
Brody hamming it up for the camera:
And Wade showing just how strong he is!
This is what they were doing when we pulled in to pick them up! Their house in a gated community, with barely any traffic, so it is a perfect place to wear out the boys!
Wade and Brody start school tomorrow! I know it is not "real school" just yet, but I consider it school, as it is not babysitting in any way. They have a daily routine, will learn to follow directions, interact with others, work in a group, do arts and crafts and how to relate to other grownups. I think it will be interesting to hear about how they do eating breakfast and lunch at a table, instead of a highchair...with a plate and utensils. Oh boy. I just think about how my kids will look at all of the other kids food and think they hit the mother load. They will be able to reach across the table and grab their friends food. Oh boy again. And then there is nap time. I have their little mats all ready to go, with their newly made, fleece covers and soft blankies, but I am having a very hard time, picturing them actually laying down on them, let alone falling asleep. Their friend Campbell attends the same school, and her Mom keeps assuring me that they will adjust and learn to eat at a table and fall asleep on a mat. She even told me that if I leave a camera for them, that they will take pics of their first day! I will update the blog this week with pics from their first day...I am already tearing up thinking about it.
Good night!