For the past few weeks, we've had a new arrangement in our living room due to the mobility of a certain little person. Behold: the baby fort.
This morning, the little stinker moved a toy to the ottoman, climbed on top of it, and lifted her leg to try and climb over the furniture and escape. This was right before she fell. I missed the part where she had her knee on top of it.
I love weddings. Food, dancing, getting to dress up... (my favorite part is watching the groom's face as the bride walks down the aisle). This weekend, my college roommate Jennifer got married. We lived together for 3 years, so I was very excited to be able celebrate her marriage to Jason. I don't think you could have paid them a million dollars to wipe the smile off their faces! Friday night was the rehearsal dinner at Amici's in Sugar Land's Town Square . The Schwartz family rented out the place for all 160 attendees! (no pics...I had a fork in one hand and a wine glass in another for 3 hours). So, how do you follow that sort of party? Luckily the Simars are excellent party planners and left no detail untouched for Saturday's events. Jennifer hosted a bridal lunch at Sandee McGee's in Richmond for all her girlfriends. We all enjoyed some casual girly chat. (No, we were not trying to be patriotic. Outfit colors and background was a coincidence).
On Saturday night, the ceremony and reception was held at Briscoe Manor in Richmond. It was such a neat venue. Lots of stone and very "Texas".
(Please excuse the quality of the remaining pictures. Pics in low lighting were not coming out.) Jennifer comes from a Catholic family and Jason's family is Jewish, so they had a ceremony that combined both religions. They had a cantor explaining the Jewish traditions. At the end, the cantor told us all to shout "Mazel Tov" as Jason broke a bag of glass. Jon got an enormous grin on his face and I think he yelled the loudest. He said he wants us to get married again just so he can break glass and yell Mazel Tov. I told him he could do this on our back porch instead, but he didn't think that was funny (plus, the neighbors would think we're weird :)
Following the ceremony was a cocktail hour in the courtyard...
Followed by dinner...
And by dancing, I mean par-T! We all got to dance around in circles while Jennifer and Jason were carried around in chairs. For all my Cajun family and friends: think Second Line. For all my Bryan family and friends: think Grand March after a pitcher of Margaritas. Yup, it was a good time. I thought Catholics knew how to have fun, but a Catholic+Jewish wedding...watch out! So a shout out to my former roomie, her family and new husband.,.Congratulations! You guys know how to throw one heck of a party!
So, the other day I was basically whining to my mom about how I have all these unfinished projects that I can never get to and how I feel like my life is never in order. What does she say? "Well, at least you always know what the latest gossip is on Perez Hilton."
Madeline holds sippy cup on her own. I bust out the camera. She smiles, while still trying to drink out of the sippy cup. Good thing she was wearing a bib.
I'm embarrassed to say I have no idea how this happened. She looks pretty impressed with herself though. Extra points for creativity??
All of this minimal nap business means this child needs to be entertained for 12.5 hours a day and I can only handle so much before we bore each other (especially the past 2 weeks while she's been in quarantine and we haven't seen our friends). I am not ashamed to say that I think this might be the new key to my sanity for 30 minutes a day. Thank you, Yo Gabba Gabba.
This weekend was very eventful for the Kleckley family. On Friday, Jon's brother Luke got his Aggie ring and graduated from Texas A&M. He worked extremely hard for this day, and we were so proud of him! Madeline was very well behaved and we were able to stay for the whole ceremony. It must have been her outfit (or the amount of puffs we were feeding her), because girlfriend knew she was looking cute!
Maddie with Uncle Ben
Class of 2032! We'll be submitting this with her college application.
Luke with our fam
And to think all of this Aggie goodness wasn't even the best part....
Luke and his girlfriend Jordan have been dating for awhile, and we've all been bugging the heck out of them about when they were going to get married. (In this house we've been saying "Aunt" Jordan since Maddie was born. I got lots of flack for it, but whatever :) Luke kept saying he wasn't going to propose to her until after he graduated. Well, he didn't waste any time! After the ceremony we all headed over to Casa Rodriguez in Bryan. The graduate decided he needed a slight detour, took Jordan to a location that was special to them and popped the question! When they walked into the restaurant we all started cheering for Luke, not knowing what had just happened until Jordan flashed the bling!
Soon to be bride with her mom and future MIL
Saturday was Luke's graduation party. Jon's parents decided they needed a big shaded area for all of their gatherings. So what do you do when your family owns a welding business? You build one.
My mom had gotten this outfit for Maddie...very appropriate for Bryan, TX.
Front: What does the cow say?
Back: Moo Moo!
Madeline also got to meet some new friends, Mattie (3 days older than her) and Bella (2 months old).
Everything was fine and dandy until Mommy decided to hold Mattie. Someone was NOT happy!
Sunday morning the whole clan went to eat breakfast at the Hullaballo diner. It opened a few years ago and was featured on Diners, Drive Ins and Dives. I had biscuits and gravy and am not ashamed to admit that I ate over half of this plate...it was so yummy!
We had such a fun time celebrating this weekend but we are worn out. There is so much wedding goodness to come: my college roommate Jennifer next weekend, a Kleckley family friend on the 28th, BFF Stephanie's shower and Bachelorette party in September, her wedding in October, and now Uncle Luke and Aunt Jordan next year! Congrats to everyone!
PS - So after all of this wedding chatter, I had one of those long, drawn out dreams last night that Jon and I had just gotten engaged and were planning our wedding. In the dream I remember very vividly being so excited about marrying him and living our lives together. Then I woke up and realized I had been living that exact dream for almost 5 years! ha. Cheezy, I know, but I thought it was pretty funny.
I know many family members have been looking forward to this one...
The weekend Peter and Niki got married, one of the big jokes was how my mother in law can be a baby hog. It certainly became more of a joke than reality,but she was a good sport and played along. My Aunt Ronda nicknamed her "Teri: Ruler of the Skies". Watch the video for an explanation. Keep in mind this was about 2:30 am and we had quite a few adult beverages. It might only be funny to those who were there, but my Aunt is quite the comedian.
I know my posts are usually light hearted or "look what Maddie did", so bear with me on this one. The past few weeks have been quite a challenge for me as a mommy. The past month Madeline has sleeping even less than she normally does, then for the past week she's had tummy issues and just got a runny nose on top of it all (also the first time she's been sick). I'm a control freak, so to not be able to cure sleep troubles with every method in the book, or to have to "wait out" her sickness...this stuff is killing me. I've spent alot of time wallowing in my own self pity, this came to me at the perfect time.
My 16 year old sister Aimee will be speaking at a church retreat this weekend, and she wrote a wonderful personal testimony. The subject matter is not what got to me, but rather the way she talked about my dad's mom, better known as MiMi. She was an amazing woman that overcame great obstacles, and always lived in the moment. She passed 5 years ago and I find myself thinking about so much. Reading Aimee's testimony is just what I needed and helped me realize that my issues are SO petty compared to the cards others are dealt, and how 99% of it is attitude. It was just the motivation I needed and if you have a challenge in your life, hopefully this will touch you too. Mucho kudos to Aimee for allowing me to share an excerpt of her story with you...
My dad’s mom or known to me as Mimi died of a long fight with cancer. She had taught me so much in my 11 years with her, things that I will remember for the rest of my life. I would like to tell you a little bit about her, that way, you will understand that even though she has been gone for 5 years, she speaks to me every day through the life she lived.
Her Father died when she was 9 months old. My Mimi, her sister and their Mom, survived on welfare checks from the government and extra sewing her Mom took in. When my Mimi was 9, her Mom moved the family to New Orleans in hope of a better life. However, it was not to be. Her Mom remarried an alcoholic who was not kind to her or her Mom. It also didn’t help that my Mimi was dating an Italian, which her French Mother strongly opposed. At 17 my Mimi left home to move in with older sister. At 18 she married my Italian grandfather and everyone said the marriage wouldn’t last 3 months. It lasted 51 years.
But my Mimi was never bitter. She taught me what was important in life, that life had better things to offer than unforgiveness, regrets, and complaints about how things could have been. She liked to say, “Life’s journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, and shouting Holy Cow, Whatta Ride!” You see, she was too busy LIVING LIFE to let the PETTY THINGS IN LIFE consume her.
My Mimi taught me not to worry what people think about me. She walked around in Mumus , no makeup and grey roots that should have been dyed 3 months before. She spoke up for those who couldn’t or wouldn’t speak up for themselves, not caring if someone was going to speak about her behind her back. She cared about what God cares about, loving others. It meant that her homeless sister-in-law and 4 young kids could move in her modest home with her family of 7. It meant that instead of spending a day with friends, she took the nuns shopping for underwear. It meant being silent when her ailing mother had to move in with them and still complained about her Italian husband. Finally I would like to share this poem read at my Mimi’s funeral, I think it can relate to all of us about looking at the bigger picture in life.
It’s In The Valleys I Grow
Sometimes life seems hard to bear,
Full of sorrow, trouble and woe
It’s then I have to remember
That it’s in the valleys I grow.
If I always stayed on the mountain top
And never experienced pain.
I would never appreciate God’s love
And would be living in vain.
I have so much to learn
And my growth is very slow,
Sometimes I need the mountain tops,
But it’s in the valleys I grow.
I do not always understand
Why things happen as they do,
But I am very sure of one thing,
My Lord will see me through.
My little valleys are nothing
When I picture Christ on the cross
He went through they valley of death;
His victory was Satan’s loss.
Forgive me Lord, for complaining
When I’m feeling so very low.
Just give me a little reminder
That it’s in the valleys I grow.
Continue to strengthen me, Lord
And use my life each day
To share your love with others
And help them find their way.
Thank you for valleys, Lord
For this one thing I know
The mountain tops are glorious
But it’s in the valleys I grow.
On Saturday, we took Madeline to Galveston for her first trip to the beach! She loved the water (as usual) but was a bigger fan of the sand. She kept grabbing it and would watch it run through her fingers like it was the coolest thing she had ever seen. She especially liked playing in the shallow water, splashing, and climbing back and forth over Jon's leg to grab more hand fulls of sand. When we'd take her under the tent to cool off she would cry because she wanted to be playing in the water! Jon and I had not been to Galveston since November of 2008 and I forgot how gross the water is. (Poor child, one day she'll look back at these pictures and ask why we let her play in dirty water for her first trip to the beach) Despite the nastiness that can be Galveston, we had a great time. Maddie had so much fun that we're planning on taking her to Palm Beach at Moody Gardens later this week. She hasn't been feeling well so I'm hoping she gets ALL better today so we can go play in the sand again!
Last Thursday, July 29th was our dog child's 3rd birthday! We made sure to give her lots of extra treats, extra attention and Madeline tried not to take all of her toys. Jon even came home early so we could go to Pets Mart and get Fergie a new toy and treats. We also let her have people food for dinner: Chicken Pot Pie served in a glass bowl. :) We concluded the day with her annual birthday photos, and decided both of our children should be in it. During the photo shoot Fergs and Maddie actually sat STILL next to each other! Didn't last long though. In the past 8 months, the poor little furball has realized the world no longer revolves around her, but she's a good sport. Madeline adores her and will follow her around the house! We love our little Fergie!