Category Archives: HOME & FAMILY

October was a very busy month for us in 2014! Not only is it my most favorite month of the year (and so I cram a lot into the month anyway) but we were also able to spend about two weeks of the month in Utah visiting friends, blessing Chayse and doing a TON of really fun activities!

All of those posts are on their way, but first I thought I’d put up our typical Month in Review post. So this post is basically all of the photo’s that didn’t fit into the fifteen other posts I have to get up from October 2014! (I know, I know…I’m like 6 months behind!)

And the photo overload starts now… πŸ™‚

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At the beginning of the month we decided to try out a restaurant that was recommended by our neighbor called Mama Randazzo’s. It’s a little ma and pa type Italian restaurant over in Altoona, PA. Apparently Sal’s Six Packs (which is basically a beer and bevarage store) which is right next door to the restaurant is owned by the same owners and so the two places are connected. As we pulled up Titan’s first words were, “Um guys! I don’t know about this. Look at all those beer signs!” LOL He thought we were going into Sal’s Six Packs!

Once we convinced him that we weren’t going in the beer place, but rather to get some pizza or other yummy italian food, he finally was ok getting out of the car.

This place was definitely an older place but their portions were huge and the food was really yummy! The picture of the calzone above was HALF of their medium calzone. We started out ordering a large and the waitress quickly explained to us that a medium would probably be sufficient!

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My two cuties waiting for dad to get home from an all night shift at the hospital! I saw Chayse’s adorable headband and glittery spider leg warmers for sell through an online shop and couldn’t resist getting them for the month of October! Especially since all of October she was still in her Pavlik Harness. Her super cute “I’m FABOOLOUS” onsie was surprisingly a $3.00 Walmart find. Loved the saying and the super cute polka dot sleeves!

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Baby girl getting kisses from dad after his long shift! We LOVE hearing his keys in the door after he’s been gone on a 16 hour shift!

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A quick picture I snapped at the beginning of the month as everything here in PA started to change color. We missed the peak of the changing colors when we were in Utah but, all in all, what we did get to see was gorgeous! I still can’t believe how lush and green it is here in PA. Definitely different for someone like myself who grew up in the desert that is Utah!

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Shopping with the little man at our most favorite grocery store here in PA. We love ALDI! Titan was looking over the ad as I was checking out to make sure we hadn’t missed anything on our list. I love taking him with me because I can tell him what we need while we are driving there and 9 times out of 10 he can remember the list perfectly while we are in the store. No need for a day planner or written out list when he’s around. πŸ™‚

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I went to make eggs one morning and realized our egg carton had a scripture on it. “This is the Day which is the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it.” – Made my morning!

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Another thing I was loving in October…lots and lots of hot chocolate with some french vanilla creamer mixed in! So yummy! Our Cocoa Motion basically had a permanent spot on our counter all month long.

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Twice a year in April and then again in October our church has General Conference and I almost always make a batch of blueberry muffins that Sunday morning. In fact, we’ve probably had them so many times, now we could probably start calling it a tradition. πŸ™‚

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October is also the month of our anniversary! This year it was our 8th anniversary. For our anniversary we (and the kids) went to dinner at a mexican restaurant we’d been told was good (it wasn’t! but it was nice not to cook that night!) and then made a trip to Coldstone for dessert and to Toys R Us for some browsing for Titan! Things sure do change when you start adding more kids to the picture! πŸ˜‰ Β (At this time Chayse was still exclusively nursing so she couldn’t be left with a babysitter for very long and if we were taking her along, we figured Titan may as well join us too!)

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Chayse checking out her photos while we pass more time in the Mother’s Room at church. This girl…she cracks me up!

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When we left for Utah, this tree was still 100% green. Coming back from Utah though two weeks later, we were greeted with this gorgeous and bright yellow tree! So pretty and such a fun surprise!

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Each year I try to pick up a couple new Halloween books to read all month long. Over the years our collection has grown quite nicely. Little did I know, Titan would want to read every single one almost every night! LOL

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And here is a quick shot of what our front entry looked like a day or so after we got back from Utah! I debated posting this, but this is real life at our house! πŸ™‚ We got in at like 2:00am and just dropped everything in the entry. Then, the next morning it was back to work for both Broc and I, and back to a normal schedule just in general which doesn’t leave a lot of room for spending an hour or two unpacking. So yes, this is what our front entry looked like for 2-3 days until I could get all the laundry sorted out, the pumpkins back on the front porch and everything just back where it belongs.

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Titan’s birthday is the first week of November so the last week of October he requested a visit to Game Stop to check out their games and to do some window shopping in anticipation of some birthday money he knew was coming he way. As you can see, he takes his window shopping quite seriously! πŸ™‚

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Ti Guy, our little man that is/was 5 going on 25! (I say was because’s he’s 6 1/2 now that I’m typing this up in May! LOL) It was killing me how grown up he was looking in his flip flop and jeans checking out the games. Pretty sure this site won’t change much between now and his teen years! We definitely have a gamer on our hands!

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The lighting is awful in this photo, but I couldn’t resist. My adorable little work buddy every morning. She loved laying on the boppy looking up at mommy work and I loved looking down and seeing her sweet face!

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Titan had been requesting chocolate chip cookies for weeks and I just never quite had the time to make them from scratch. So it was Pillsbury cookie dough to the rescue one afternoon! Love how they even have themed cookies for each holiday and that all I have to do to make them is pop them on a cookie sheet!

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Broc’s grandma always puts together really cute treat boxes for all of her grandkids (and now great grandkids) for Halloween! Chayse was of course too young for candy in October and so she very nicely sent Chayse a new toy rattle in her treat box and Titan couldn’t wait to show it to Chayse.

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Baby girl getting the hang of her adorable new toy and still rocking the Pavlik Harness on her favorite toy mat!

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…and this is probably my favorite photo of the month! Watching Titan be a big brother has definitely been one of my favorite things! He adores his little sister and seriously thinks the sun, moon and stars all revolve around her! πŸ™‚

September 2014 at The Parkers

September for me is always the start of fall! I realize the first day of fall isn’t usually until the end of September, but I start putting up the fall decorations and pulling out my sweaters and boots September 1st. πŸ™‚Β Here is our September 2014 in photos…
I was cleaning out Ti Guy’s room and suddenly a lot of his toys and things were “new” again. Funny how that happens with kids, right?! He found a bunch of his dress up clothes (costumes I’ve picked up on clearance after Halloween) and decided this day was a great day to be Mario!
The little man hard at work on his school work.
This little cutie turned 2 months old in September and this was one of my most favorite 0-3 month outfits. In fact, I also purchased it in the 3-6 month size as well. πŸ™‚
There aren’t A LOT of lunch restaurant options here in our area (well not as many as we were used to in CO and UT) but two of our favorite spots have definitely been Sweet Frog for yogurt…
…and Chipolte for burritos and their guacamole!
Baby Girl practicing with her binkie. We thought for a day or two she might be a binkie baby, but it never stuck. She prefers her two fingers, her middle finger and ring finger, instead.
Hanging out at church in the Mother’s Room. Since I teach Gospel Doctrine every week during second hour, this is usually where Chayse and I were the last half of first hour until Chayse was able to start eating some solids at around 4-5 months. I would nurse her and try to get her to nap so she’d be good for dad or whomever had to hold her so I could teach.
Love seeing my kitchen table full of school stuff and activities for the little man.
Hanging out at Ti Guy’s first Flag Football practice.
Every month all of the residents in Broc’s program at the hospital get together for a dinner and this month they went to our favorite Crepe place!
I LOVE the outdoor dining at the Crepe place!
In August I signed Titan up for a Pen Pal type of exchange. We only did it for a few months but we were able to receive some pretty cool things from places like Scotland & Canada.
Titan checking out the fish at the local library. There are two locations near our house and Titan likes this one for their fish and play area.
Feeding the library robot! Put a coin in and it lights up and makes all sorts of funny noises.
Chayse after her shots! She was so good. She got a little upset during the shots but then was fine as soon as I picked her up and then asleep in her carseat within 5 minutes!
And when we got home, she was pretty happy with her sparkly bandaid the nurses located just for her!
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One Saturday afternoon, Broc and I fit in a quick date. We got a babysitter for Titan but didn’t dare leave Chayse yet since she wasn’t really on a schedule yet. It was so nice to get away for an hour, even though I did have to share some of that hour. πŸ™‚
Love watching Chayse and Broc together!
More flag football practice…
Baby Girl would usually nap during the practice, which I couldn’t believe because they were SO loud!
Another visit to the library. Of course we have to stop and check out their selection off Wii games!
$5.00 flowers from our local grocery store! I grabbed these on a whim one day and couldn’t believe how long they lasted. I’ve gotten them a few times since and they always last at least ten days. Not bad for $5!
And more time in the Mother’s Room. Sometimes it’s just really hard being a two month old! πŸ™‚

August 2014 at The Parkers

Time for our August review! (And again, I know – it’s like 5 months late. Just expect that all this month ..and maybe some of next month!) πŸ™‚
In August…
We enjoyed the pretty flowers that were sent for Chayse and I from my work. And I started working again after a four week maternity leave. 

We went swimming at the pool at our friend’s apartment complex. Baby girl looked SO cute in her swimsuit from Crazy 8. And, Titan enjoyed getting to spend lots of time in the pool! 

Chayse wasn’t so sure about the sun. LOL 
We LOVE spending time with our friends Andrea & James! 

Titan realized there are perks to being one of only 8-10 kids in our ward’s Primary! I am seriously amazed at how much he comes out of Primary with each week. 
This was one of our first weeks back after I had Chayse and he came walking out with a balloon, a dessert, and a few other things. 

Chayse started to focus a little better. 

Broc spent a lot of time sporting his white coat and looking all official. πŸ˜‰ (Seriously though, that is one handsome doctor!) πŸ™‚

We made lots of visits to the library and got to meet a guy who has taken paper folding to the extreme. These animals/figures were even more incredible up close and in person. 

We also got to check out the local Fire Station’s fire truck up close and learn from the fire fighters about their jobs and fire safety 

We went on lots of walks up and down our street. And yes, I did let Titan out of house in a regular shirt, pajama pants and flip flops. Pick your battles, right?! 
This is his, “Hurry up Mom! You and baby sister are SO slow!” face. 

I watched LOTS of Gilmore Girls while Chayse nursed, and we snuggled. It seriously felt like those first 8 weeks all we did was nurse. But, now those eight weeks seem like a blink of an eye and I am grateful for the down time & bonding time we had. Nursing definitely forced me to slow down A LOT more than I did with formula feeding.
I choose Gilmore Girls because the episdoes make the time go by really fast, there are a lot of them & let’s face it, TV shows in the summer just aren’t that great. 
 (Note: Of course, it would have been nice if Redbox’s release of Gilmore Girls would have happened a little sooner. I was watching old school and had pulled out my Gilmore Girls DVD collection!) πŸ™‚
We took Chayse to her first hip ultrasound. This was the first check they did, just in case. 

Baby girl after her appointment. She was SO tiny! 

We played lots of board games as a family. Monopoly was a favorite. (And were still working on getting moved in, as you can tell from the background of this photo!) πŸ™‚

We went to the Drive In Movie Theater a town over and saw Guardians of the Galaxy! It was A LOT of fun and something we definitely want to do again once it opens back up for the summer. 

Baby Girl turned 6 weeks old! 

And she made lots of funny faces during nap time. 

We worked on trying to replace her two fingers with a Binkie and worked on her learning to like the Rainforest Bouncer Chair

And this is ultimately how Chayse felt about the Binkie. πŸ˜‰

Titan’s supplies for Kindergarten through the PA Virtual Charter School came! 

I couldn’t believe how many boxes there were. It was like Christmas in August!

Baby Girl got lots of beauty sleep. 

…and bonded with big brother! These two are seriously the sweetest with each other! Love watching them interact. 

We went to a church BBQ. 

Where the boys played some kickball with some friends and Chayse and I cheered from the sideline.

We fit in some grocery shopping! Titan was highly entertained by this corn sign every time we went. 

We learned Chayse really likes the sound of water running. If she gets fussy and you turn on the shower or water, it generally calms her down. 

Chayse perfected her smile and started showing it a lot more! 

…and just perfected being super cute overall! 

I started working out again with some leopard print Nike’s that were my gift to myself for making it to six weeks nursing! (I couldn’t find the exact ones, so I linked you to similar ones. I purchased my pair at Nordstrom during their big sale.)

We hosted a game night with friends. And got to try a ton of flavors of Snyders of Hanover Pretzels that one of our friends brought! (PS: These are SO addicting & yummy!) 

I believe the game the ended up playing was Munchkin. A definite family favorite! 
Titan started his first day of school. We are homeschooling but using the PA Virtual Charter School program, so we follow their schedule. 

I cannot believe my baby boy has started Kindergarten?! Where did the last five years go??? 

LOVE this little man! 

Titan hard at work on his assignments. 

Chayse made friends with the bears on her mobile. 

…and she pretty much had us all wrapped around her finger ALL month long! 
After a very crazy June and July, August was basically a month where we just adjusted to being a family of four and slowly integrated work and school back into our lives. I was really happy that the scheduling worked out so that I had a month off after I had Chayse and then Titan’s school didn’t start until two weeks after that, and then my school didn’t start until two weeks after that. 
It definitely helped us to get our bearings to have everything not start up all at once. I was also glad that in August I chose not to sign Titan up for any extracurricular activities. I felt like we needed a month to just be and be homebodies and I was right!