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Thursday, May 13, 2010

Mother's Day Weekend

Saturday, we went to Botanical Garden and Grant's Farm for the first time this year. Botanical Garden has a dino exhibit. Kaitlynn was excited to look around the Garden for dinosaurs, even though there were only 2 exhibits (unless you actually went through the paid exhibit). We walked around the Garden and Kaitlynn fed the Koi fish. She loved feeding them. Then we walked around some more. Kaitlynn enjoyed taking pictures. At one point, she was actually taking a picture of every step she took. It was so funny! At the Botanical Garden, it was pretty windy, but thankfully the sun was out almost the entire time we were there. We went to lunch at the Bread Co. and then went to Grant's Farm. At Grant's Farm it was pretty chilly and windy. The sun wasn't out as much, but we still had a good time. Kaitlynn and Dave spent quite a while with the goats. First, Kaitlynn tried feeding them through the fence because she didn't want to go in the pen. Eventually, her and Dave went in the pen and after spending about a half an hour with the goats, they were finally able to get a few goats to drink from the bottles of milk. I guess the goats were very full from being fed by all of the people visiting. Kaitlynn rode the carousel and we looked at the other animals. Kaitlynn said the elephant was talking to her. When asked what about, she said something about the water. She had a snow cone, while Dave and I had our 2 samples of AB products. Yum! We walked around the stable and then headed home.

Mother's Day Declaration
I wanted you before you were born. I loved you when you were born, I saw your face and I knew that I was in love. Before you were an hour old, I knew I would die for you. To this day, I will. This is the miracle of life.
This came from a friend on facebook.

A Mother
When you're a child she walks before you,
To set an example.
When you're a teenager she walks behind you
To be there should you need her.
When you're an adult she walks beside you
So that as two friends you can enjoy life together..
Author Unknown

Sunday we had Kaitlynn dedicated at our church. What a special way to celebrate Mother's Day! To honor God that way and to make a commitment to raise her in the church community was so amazing. I look forward to the day that she is old enough to make the decision on her own that Jesus Christ is her Savior and she wants to be baptized.
Our families met us at church for the service. Dave, Kaitlynn and I had a family photo taken. We helped our families find seating. Then we waited in the lobby with the rest of the parents and children being dedicated. We talked with our dedication mentor couple. They were so supportive to us on Sunday. All of the dedication families processed in and stood in front of the church. Our lead pastor talked about what dedication is. Then our associate pastor introduced all of us to the church community. We were given a moment of prayer, where our families were able to come stand with us and pray with us. Our mentor couple said a prayer with us and our families. What a powerful moment!
We took Kaitlynn to her class and went back to service. After service, we sat outside of church with our families and talked. Kaitlynn had fun opening her gift from Hanna and Adam.
We went to Cheesecake Factory for lunch. After lunch MawMaw gave Kaitlynn a present. It was a beautiful cross frame that says "Bless this child."

First Week of May

May 1st marked our Engagement Anniversary. 6 years ago, Dave came to my apartment dressed in a nice suit and had my favorite car waiting in the parking lot (a black Jaguar). We drove to Creve Coeur Park, where he gave me a rose and got down on one knee and proposed. It was amazing! Then we drove around to our families' houses telling them. Our parents already knew. I was so glad that Dave respected my family enough to call and ask my dad for his permission to marry me / at least let him know that he was going to propose to me. That evening our parents threw a party for us. It was such a special day and evening. About a month later we had a "formal" Engagement party that was held at a park.
Looking back at these pictures, really brings back memories. I can't believe how young we all were. My nieces and nephews were so little, they ranged from 4 to 13 years old. Dave was 25 and I was 26. What special memories, even though it seems like a lifetime ago!

May 5th marked 2 years of my dad's passing. I still can't believe that he is gone. I still sometimes think "Oh, I have to call him to tell him about..." Other times, I think "I wish he were here to see Kaitlynn..." Actually, there is not a day that goes by that I don't wish he was still here. I have finally stopped begging God to bring him back to us and almost stopped questioning God as to why he took my dad and not someone else. That is a question that I will not know this side of eternity. I cling to the fact that I know one day I will see him again. We will be reunited. I know he is better off, but it doesn't stop the fact that it still hurts. It is an emptiness in my heart, a piece of me that is missing. I have faith in God everyday that He will give me the strength to go on. I thank God for Kaitlynn and Dave because without them I don't know if I could face days like May 5th, Father's Day, October 5th (his birthday) and all the other holidays. They make me realize that life has to go on. We were never promised forever here on earth, but we are promised eternal life if we believe and trust in Jesus.

On Cinco de Mayo, Kaitlynn played outside with the dogs. I cut some flowers from our Peony "garden". We have white and pink ones. They are one of my favorite flowers. Later we made a Mexican fiesta. We had spinach and cheese (and chicken on Dave and Kaitlynn's) quesadillas, rice and refried beans. Kaitlynn had sparkling grape juice. Dave and I had margaritas. We enjoyed a fire in the chiminea. It was a fun night at home!

Kaitlynn's last Kids in the Kitchen class theme was Cinco de Mayo. First the kids made covers for their recipe / cookbooks. They decorated the covers with pictures taken in the class by the teacher's assistant. Inside the cookbooks, were recipes from each week of the class. At circle time, after singing the usual songs, the teacher read a book about vegetables. Then it was time for the kids to wash their hands, set their places and get cooking. They made root beer floats, tacos, chicken tortilla soup, pudding and guacamole dip. Kaitlynn liked the root beer float and the taco. She refused to try the soup, pudding or dip. I liked the dip and I am not a fan of guacamole dip. The pudding was good also. Kaitlynn brought the soup home for Dave to eat, which he said was good.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Rest of April

Kaitlynn made Annabelle and herself bracelets.
Kaitlynn and daddy made me a bracelet.

We went to the Baby Kid Expo in St. Charles. I worked at the MomsLikeMe booth for a few hours, while Dave and Kaitlynn walked around. Kaitlynn got an elephant balloon made, got her face painted like a butterfly and had a flower balloon bracelet made.
(sorry these are blurry, they are from my cell and Kaitlynn wouldn't stand still)
eating kettle corn
While working at the booth / table, I got to see some friends from MLM and a fellow blogger. After working, Dave, Kaitlynn and I walked around together. We had a lot of fun.
After we got home, Kaitlynn played out in the yard. While Dave mowed the lawn, I vacuumed the house and Kaitlynn climbed the tree in our backyard. She also played with Mya and Leah.
After Kaitlynn went to bed, Dave and I had dinner outside by the chiminea. I love relaxing outside in the spring evenings with the chiminea going!

Kaitlynn, Aidan and I met Eileen, Gabe and Merci at the Children's Zoo. The kids had fun seeing and petting a tortoise and a snake. We went through River's Edge where we saw a rhino, hippos, hyenas, a cheetah, and the elephants. We stopped for lunch, then went to the Jungle of the Apes. We saw them being fed. Kaitlynn and Gabe played in the misters and afterwards Kaitlynn said "It was like taking a shower. A shower with Gabe." I looked at Eileen and we just smiled and laughed. We saw the penguins, puffins and bears. The kids had a good time running around and seeing the animals. It was a beautiful day for the Zoo!

We adopted an 8 week old puppy. Kaitlynn fell in love with him at the Expo. Kaitlynn, MawMaw and I went to pick him up from his foster family. He is just adorable! His name is Lever (like the soap) and he is a terrier.
Why are there 3 dogs in these pictures, you ask? MawMaw has been having trouble taking care of Sassy (her puggle) since getting out of the hospital, so we brought her home to take care of her for MawMaw. Kaitlynn loves Sassy.
Bailey and Sassy get along really well, too. She has done well in our home.
Sassy and Lever get along really well. Bailey is not so much into Lever. It will just take time for her to get used to him. Lever is going to be a big boy - probably about 50lbs!

Kaitlynn attended her Kids in the Kitchen class. They made Fred Bird hats, had circle time, sang "Take Me Out To The Ballgame" and then got started on cooking.
They shredded cheese for nachos, counted out the number of peanuts that corresponded to their age and cracked them, made caramel popcorn, put ketchup and relish on their hotdogs and made a slushie. Kaitlynn did great in class this week! At the end of class, all the kids wore their Fred Bird hats along with their teacher and had a picture taken. It was so cute!
Kaitlynn and I came home and took the dogs out. Lever loves our big backyard! Then Kaitlynn and I went to MawMaw's. We took MawMaw to the mall to get her out of the house and walking around.

Kaitlynn had an activity at her school called On The Go. Different vehicles were there for the kids to explore like a police car, paramedics, mail truck, water patrol, caterpillar and fire truck. You could also take a school bus ride and see a helicopter land. Kaitlynn enjoyed the school bus ride. She was a little apprehensive about checking out some of the cars / trucks. She loved the police dog, Ola and learning about what she does.
Lever loves it outside. We had Bailey, Sassy and Lever outside most of the day. Kaitlynn loves running around with them.
Kaitlynn attended her friend's birthday party.

Kaitlynn had fun playing with the dogs. Hanna and Adam came over to watch Kaitlynn, so Dave and I could go to church. Kaitlynn has so much fun with Hanna and Adam. Kaitlynn and Adam usually play Yahtzee Jr. together.

Kaitlynn's P.A.T. Educator came over. This was Kaitlynn's first 3 year old visit. They played a dice game that involved counting and turn taking. They did some more counting activities with cheerios.
Kaitlynn had fun playing with Lever outside.
I went out for a M.N.O. with one of the playgroup's were are involved with. There were 6 of us that were able to make it out. Last year there were more like 13 of us. We had pedicures / manicures and then went to The Cheesecake Factory for drinks and dessert. It was a fun night!

Kaitlynn, Aidan and I met Gail, Parker, Leah, Ryan, Stacy, Sophie, Camden and the twins (our CBW Playgroup) at the Zoo. We were hoping that the rain was going to hold off until late afternoon. We were wrong. As soon as we headed out of The Living World, we started feeling sprinkles. We took cover in the Penguin and Puffin Cove (and gift shop). The rain let up and we headed over to the Jungle of the Apes. We got stuck there and were luckily under a covering. We went to the Primate House and Reptile House, ate lunch and then went to Zoomagination Station.
Kaitlynn and Aidan playing at Zoomagination Station.
Dave and I went on a Date Night at a church. We listened to Michael O'Brien and heard his love story (for Jesus and his wife). There was a surprise visit from Deidre Pujols. Albert and Deidre contacted Michael to sing at the renewing of their vows. Deidre wrote a song with Michael for that occasion. It was a wonderful night of great music, great speakers and worship!
Kaitlynn was so excited that Hanna came over to stay with her. She was a little upset that Adam couldn't come. But still had a blast with Hanna, as usual.

We went to an event for Dave's work. They had a bounce house and face painting for the kids. Kaitlynn had StL painted on one hand for the Cardinals and Elmo on the other hand.
Then we went to a Kidgit's event at the mall called Little Planet Helpers. Kaitlynn received a tree sapling and got to spin the wheel. She planted Sweet Basil seeds and danced with the girls from Radio Disney. We ate lunch at Chevy's and walked around the mall.
That evening we went to church. Kaitlynn said she learned about praying and showed us how she prays.