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My Last Day

Today, if I was a working mom, would be my last day of maternity leave.

I am 100% the luckiest person ever to get to stay home with my 2 sweet T's - Tate and Tenley.  I thank God every single day for letting me be here with them.  It's not the easiest gig on the planet, a lot of days are super challenging.  I might cry, yell, get frustrated and just plain give up but in the end I always go back to feeling so blessed to be able to be here with my babes day in and day out.

Tate Lately \\ 2 Years Old

I can't believe it but my little Tatie Tot is 2 years old today!!!  TWO!!  He's gone from this...

.... to this in the blink of an eye.

A little bit about my sweet boy:

  • He loves fruit.  When he eats raspberries he puts his pointer finger in their hole before plunking them into his cute little mouth.  Blueberries, bananas, raspberries and oranges are his favorites but I have yet to find a fruit he'll turn down.
  • Tate is a great big brother to Tenley!  All the kisses he gives her, each and every one melts my heart.  He is (mostly) gentle with her.
  • Tate LOVES his big brothers!  Aiden is more like a buddy to him - Aiden fawns over Tate, gives him anything he wants and is totally smitten with him.  Brennan is definitely his brother - they fight then make up and wrestle and laugh and have fun together again.  All 3 play basketball in Tate's bedroom with his Little Tykes basketball hoop, it's their special time together.
  • He is very good at putting together cut-out puzzles.  You know, the kind where each piece has their own precut spot to fit back into and they have a little peg/handle sticking out of the top of them.  He does them over and over and over again.
  • Give Tate his shoes and he'll put them on and take them off again, over and over.  Last week he did this for half an hour, no joke!
  • This little boy is NOT a picky eater.  He is 100% a carnivore - he loves steak, chicken and pork and always ask for more.  He eats his veggies like a champ, too.  Pizza, chili, casseroles -- anything I feed him he will eat!  He even likes pickles!  And recently he has started liking to dip things in ketchup.
  • He is talking more and more every day.  He asks "what's that" five hundred times a day, at least, which is helping to increase his vocabulary.  I wrote down all of the words he knew a couple weeks ago but have lost track because he is learning so many new words every day.  He's stringing 2, 3 sometimes 4 words together in sentences now, too.  
  • Tate is quite chatty - at home - but get him out in public and he clams up.
  • He is a wild man!  He runs, he jumps, he crawls, he does silly things - he's wild!  
  • Tate is a book worm!  He pulls out tons of books every day, sits and reads them out loud to himself, brings them to me or Andy to read to him, shows them to Tenley, takes one or two to bed to read as he's falling asleep - he just loves books!
  • One of Tate's very favorites things to do is play in the basement with the big boys.  They got a mini pool table for Christmas and Tate thinks it's pretty cool to hold the pool cue and push the balls into the pockets.
  • He likes Daniel Tiger, Thomas the Train and Curious George, although he doesn't sit and actually watch these shows for more than 5 minutes. But if I turn the channel before the show is over, oh no!
  • He loves playing outside!  The sandbox is his favorite place to play while out there.
  • Tate is an independent player, meaning he can play by himself very well.  We are working on sharing when other little kids are around.  
  • He is the baby hog!  Any time the big boys try to have time with Tenley he barrels in on their fun and gets between the boys and Tenley so she can only see him.  I can't help but laugh every time!  It totally irritates the big boys, though. :)
  • Tate shares his most prized possession with Tenley - his snuggle blankie!!!  He doesn't share Snuggle with anyone, yet when he sees Tenley uncovered he grabs his snuggle and tucks her in tight.  That's true love!
We had Tate's well child check on Monday.  His doctor checked him all over and he's healthy as a horse!  He's lost both of his tubes now, but both are still dangling in his ears.  The right one has been doing that since November!  Fingers crossed for no more ear infections.  

Weight:33lbs, 96%
Height: 37 1/2 ", 98%

We love you, love you, LOVE YOU Tate!  

Tate's 2nd Birthday Party

We celebrated Tate's 2nd birthday this past weekend.  It was a nice, small party with family.

We started with lunch.  Andy grilled brats and hot dogs while I made some of Pioneer Woman's Rosemary Potatoes.  We also had a lettuce salad and chips.  It wasn't a huge meal but we figured with everyone going to Super Bowl parties that night they wouldn't want to eat too much.  Everyone loved the meat off the grill - winter gets long around here and everyone gets excited to eat off the grill!

For dessert it was cake and ice cream!  Tate is a fan of Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood so we asked a local bakery to make him a Daniel Tiger cake. They did a great job decorating the cake special for our little Tatie Tot!  He was SO excited to see Daniel on his special cake!  When it was delivered the day before his party he was went nuts over the cake!  He actually screamed and cried big ol' tears when I put the lid back on the cake box!  So, he was very happy about his 2nd birthday cake.  :)

We lit the candles and started singing.  He started with a huge smile then as the song went on he became more and more shy and withdrawn.  I thought for sure the tears were about to start but nope!  He pulled out of it!

He ate NONE of his cake but almost ALL of his frosting - true 2 year old!

Once the cake was all gone and the sugar was doing it's job it was time to open presents.  Tate must remember Christmas very well because he knew exactly what to do with those presents!

Tate had so much fun opening and playing with his new presents!  He was very spoiled!  He will get the presents from us on his actual birthday, tomorrow.  I can't wait to celebrate our little Tater Tot some more!

Last night we had some of his leftover cake and we sang Happy Birthday to him again - he really loves that!

Happy Birthday, Tate!

So What Wednesday

It's been forever since I did a So What Wednesday post so I think it's high time to get one written up.
Here's what I'm say 'So What' to this week:

So what if...

\\ Tate shoved a raisin up his nose yesterday.  He sneezed, it flew out, all's well that ends well.

\\ I'm drinking Mt Dew like a pro again.  I'm tired, I don't drink coffee and I'm just trying to function like a human so if that's what it takes... :)

\\ I absolutely despise dress up days at school.  They are work for the parent, not the kid.  I don't have the imagination to think up and put together these outfits but if they don't get dressed up then they feel left out.  How many students feel left out by these days because the parents don't have the resources to dress their kids up for them?  They are supposed to be fun but for me they create all kinds of anxiety.  I hate school dress up days.

\\ I've decided to stop turning the big boy's and Andy's shirts right side out when folding them because, lets face it, they're lucky I even fold their clothes these days!  Hello, laundry for 6 people?  That's a lot!

That's what I'm saying So What to this week!

Weekend Rewind

Hey hey hey!!! It's FEBRUARY!!! The best month of the whole year  in my opinion!  It's my birthday month, love is in the air, the air is going to start warming up... It's just a great month!

Another great weekend in the books here!

Saturday morning we loaded up the crew and headed to the outlet mall.  I had 3 outfits that were given to Tenley that were the wrong sizes that I needed to return to Carters and Aiden needed new shoes...again.  That boy goes through shoes like crazy!  But I guess that's a good thing, it means he's active.  Carters always has a sale going on it seems so I may have spent more money than I was given for the returns. :)  Tenley came out of there with 5 new outfits for this spring/summer and Tatie Tot got 2 new shirts.  Oh, and Andy picked out some super cute bows for her!!!  He is so smitten with Tenley and would buy up all the bows if I wasn't already doing a good job of that. :)

From Carter's we went to Old Navy. They were having an additional 30% off their kids clearance racks so I went crazy!  Tenley has a good start to her winter 2016/2017 wardrobe already!  I lost count of how many things I bought for her there.  Tate got a couple of shirts, Aiden got a Bears sweatshirt and 2 long sleeved dress shirts and Brennan got a dress shirt.  We walked out of there with a big bulging sack of clothes, most of which were under $4 a piece.  We even got some things for 97cents!  It was a heck of a deal, I tell you!

Last stop was Under Armor.  Aiden needed those new shoes so we stopped there.  He picked out a new pair and I snagged a new pair while there, too.  We also found a new sweatshirt for Aiden and some basketball shorts for Brennan.  It was a good trip to the outlet mall for sure!

We decided to continue our road trip on over to the big city to get some supplies for the basement bathroom.  It was lunch time so we gave ourselves 30 minutes or less to get what we needed and pick out the floor tile.  We knew going in that we wanted the tile that looks like wood flooring so that gave us a lot fewer options to dig through.  We walked back to the flooring and in less than 30 seconds picked out and agreed on the tile.  We grabbed one box to bring home so we could lay it out and get an idea for how it would look.  I think it's a keeper!

Is it ok to use the 'cool' tones of the flooring with the 'warm' tones of the vanity??? HELP!!!

We grabbed what we needed and headed out.  Andy and the boys ate at Pancheros (burritos) while Tenley and I sat in the car nursing her.  Then we ran through Panda Express for my bowl of orange chicken and came home.  Andy worked on the cabinet that goes in the bathroom downstairs and I did a little cleaning up and laundry here in the house.

Sunday morning the boys helped me make Monkey Bread while I baked a quick chocolate cake for Sunday Dinner at my parent's house.  It was pretty darn good Monkey Bread, they did a great job!  Andy worked in the garage on the cabinet some more while I finished the cake (chocolate cake with peanut butter frosting, yum!), then we loaded up and headed out to my parent's.  The sheep shearer was coming so we had planned on eating lunch then going out to the barn to watch. Well, he arrived 2 hours later than expected so we didn't get to watch at all. What a bummer!

We came home, Tate took a nap, the rest of us watched Iowa beat Northwestern (men's basketball), then back out to the garage Andy and the big boys went. It was 45 degrees here so a great afternoon to be outside playing (for winter, that is!).  I worked on a menu for Tate's birthday dinner next Sunday, plus what to make for our little Super Bowl gathering we're hosting.

After that, Andy grilled some brats for supper and we just chilled for the rest of the night.  Homework, baths, etc.

How was your weekend?  This week we have our tax appointment, otherwise it's a quiet week before another busy weekend.  Have a great one!