Monday, September 30, 2013

Running of the Bulls

Last Sunday Madeline participated in her very first race, the Houston Texans Running of the Bulls 1K. She was all excited until the morning of the race, when she realized she was going to have to wear a t-shirt.  It was obviously not girly enough for her.  We ended up bribing her by showing her one of Jon's medals from a race, which was in the shape of a rainbow.  She immediately agreed to wear the t-shirt once she thought she was getting a rainbow medal (oops). 

Jon ran the race with her, along with her friends Kaleb, Colton, Case and Graham. 

Happy and ready to go!
 M with Kaleb and Colton.  At this point she decided she was "cold" (it was 70 degrees).

 On the move!  It was so cute.  Jon said she was running 6 steps to his one.
Video of the action
Madeline and Case decided they needed a walking break.

Finished!  So proud!

2013 Christmas Card?  Just kidding.  Maybe.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Giving a New Meaning to Reality TV: Live Births

This morning I turned on the Today Show, only to find out that throughout the show they would be showing LIVE births throughout the morning.  They had crews stationed at 4 hospitals throughout the country.  One of them was The Woman's Hospital of Texas, where I had Madeline and Andrew (10,000 babies are born there each year). I was getting the kids ready for school, so I recorded it and just now fast forwarded through the show.

Y'all.  They were NOT kidding.  PLEASE tell me someone else was watching this.  The Today show was literally interrupting news coverage to watch women give birth.  In the first hour five babies were born, four of them at Women's in Houston.  Apparently the camera crews and news lady just hop from room to room as a new baby is about to be born.  I have a few questions:

1.  Despite what they are showing LIVE, I have yet to see anything X rated.  This is highly surprising considering I know first hand what is actually going on.
2.  Can you imagine the conversation? Knock on the Labor/Delivery door. "Hi, we're the Today Show.  Can we bring in a 3 person camera crew, producer, sound dude and news chick to watch you have a baby?  Oh yeah, millions of people will see this." 
3. At the hospital in Houston, I've seen the news lady stand right next to the doctor watching everything on three different deliveries ON NATIONAL TV, with a big grin on her face, while these poor mothers were trying to push a baby out. 
4.   Playing devil's advocate, I must say I do admire these women for sharing with the world a moment that many will never experience.  Just don't count on me to EVER be that person.  We all have our strengths.  Having babies on live TV is not one of mine.

When my sister Maria was born, they asked my dad if 13 nursing students could come in for her birth.  He said yes, and didn't tell my mom until a bunch of people started marching in right before it happened and my mom questioned what was going on.  I can only pray that the women on the Today show were asked before their births were broadcasted across the country.  See Mom, it could have been worse. :)

If you care to watch for yourself, here's a link from the Today Show.  If anything, you get to see cute babies!

Saturday, September 21, 2013

20 Months!

  • He weighs 26 lbs
  • He's wearing 2T clothes, size 5 diapers and 5.5 shoes
  • He sleeps from 7:30 pm - 6 am.  Um, yeah.  That's what we get for taking his pacifier away.  We just let him talk/sing in his crib until 7 am.  This morning I heard the ABC's 10 times before 6:30.  Every 3 days or so he'll go back to sleep on his own so I want to give him that opportunity.  :)  He naps for 2 hours in the afternoon.
  • He has the same food favorites: turkey, pasta, bananas, cheese and graham crackers.  Not a fan of most fruits or veggies.
  • He has turned into quite the chatterbox.  I won't list his "new" words, because there are way too many of them.   He did say his first phrase/sentence.  Are you ready for it?  "Mmmm, cake."  No joke.  I don't even remember why we were eating cake, but he kept walking around saying, "mmm, cake." It was SO funny!
  • If we ask him where certain things are (usually his sippy cup, which gets lost around the house) he'll say "right there." If he doesn't know where something is, he'll hold his hands out to the side and say "don't know."
  • He'll say "tight tight" and give me a big hug. 
  • He is really enjoying school but he is quite dramatic at drop off: big tears, screaming and crying. Sometimes I'll stand around the corner, and he's usually fine 30 seconds later.
  • He can identify his ABCs and numbers 1-10.  I credit this to practicing on the doodle pad during church.  For the past few months the only way we can keep him still is to write letters/numbers and he guesses them.  He'll bring us the doodle pad at home and say "color", which means he wants us to write letters/numbers.  We also have foam letters in the bathtub that we use for letter practice.  He handed me the "0" the other day and said "football."  Love that kid.
  • He likes to point out letters wherever he sees them.  If it's something that can be rotated (like a book) he flips it back and forth and says "M. W. M. W."
  • He loves shoes.  He'll go into my closet, pull all the shoes off my shoe rack and try them on. 
  • I actually just discovered this morning that he knows his shapes.  We have a shape game on the ipad, so I'm giving an electronic device the credit (embarrassing).  He knows square, heart, rectangle, oval, triangle and star.  For circle he says "circolo".  Spanish for circle.  I guess Madeline taught him that one.  I promise, I do pay attention to my children. :)
  • His favorite shows are Bubble Guppies and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.  He knows the Disney characters, which is great except the way he says "Mickey" sounds like "Aggie".  He has also developed a love for Elmo. 
  • The child sings his ABC's all. day. LONG.  When we put him to bed at night that's what song he wants us to sing to him. 
  • Random and gross, but the kid is a pro at blowing his nose; he can do it better than his almost 4 year old sister.  It's come in handy for the semi-permanent runny nose he's had since school started.
  • He is still terrorizing his sister.  The are starting to get a little better about playing together, only because Madeline is starting to accept the fact that he WILL touch/play with her toys.  He still loves to steal things she's playing with and run off laughing.
  • His favorite toys are puzzles, anything that makes noise, coloring and books (Brown Bear and Press Here).

Friday, September 20, 2013

Aggies vs Alabama

Last weekend we headed to Bryan/College Station for our first tailgate of the year.  While our beloved Aggies didn't win the game, we still had a great time.  The energy around campus was crazy.  Jon and some of his brothers started tailgating at 7:30 am. 

On the hour beers with the neighbors

The kids and I got there around 9 and campus was already packed.  And it was HOT.  I immediately patted myself on the back for spending $17 on personal fans for the kids.  It seemed a little much at the time but it seriously contributed to their happiness.

Family picture #1.  I'll let you guess which one of us was lucky enough to go to the game. 
Hint: not me.

Family picture #2.  Notice the way in which Madeline is embracing/choking her brother.
Some of our good friends, the Stone's and the Roll's, came to tailgate with us (third year in a row).  Between the 3 families we have six kids and 3 double strollers. 
Funny how this...

Has turned into this! (We missed you, Kim!)
I mean, seriously.  It was fierce.  The sea of crowds will part for a double stroller parade.  My kids had their game faces on. 
I'm sure you can imagine the comments our stroller parade was getting.  We heard, "Look at all the twins!" no less than 5 times.  One girl said, "OMG, its a TWINS club!" Not quite, sister.  Anywhoo...
The kids were really well behaved as we waited for the kids' Yell Practice and the football team's spirit walk.  Or so we thought.  Turns out we (and thousands of other people) had the wrong information due to campus construction.  Instead we waited 45 minutes to watch the five Alabama team buses drive by.  Oh well.  We made sure to give Nick Saban and Co. a big gig 'em.

The kids
All was not lost: Sara's kids (the ones in matching denim) were photographed by the Dallas Morning News and Tuscaloosa News and were published by both! 
Back at the tailgate we enjoyed chatting and eating.  By the time the game started (5.5 hrs after we arrived) the kids were worn out.  They spent most of the time in their tent: an Amazon purchase from last year that was worth every penny.
 Andrew and Adam.  They also got a "twin" comment while playing.

I ended up leaving at halftime to take the Madeline and Andrew back to Jon's parents' house.  It was just too hot and they were worn out, but overall we had a good time.  We are looking forward to much cooler temps and lots of WINS for tailgating this fall!

Monday, September 9, 2013

Maddieisms and an Andrew Funny

Jon was making a cake (Yes, he likes to cook.  It's awesome.)
Jon: "Maddie, do you know what daddy's making?"
Madeline: "Money."

I took the kids to a photography studio to have Aggie pictures taken (we do this every year).  The photographer asked Madeline to lay on her tummy on the ground, then asked Andrew to sit on top of her.  Madeline looks at the photographer and says, "I don't think that's a good idea."

She asked to sleep with her magic wand so she could do magic while she sleeps.

While talking on her play phone: "Hi Rainbow Sherbet, it's me, Madeline.  What are you doing today? Ok, I'll text you."

At night we have 5 different prayers we say with Madeline.  She usually has trouble staying still and is easily distracted.  One night she sat still and said everything correctly.  I told her, "Madeline, Mommy is so proud of you for sitting still!"  She said, "I know Mom, it was totally hard."

I was trying to fix her hair and I said, "Madeline, sit still."  She told me, "Mommy, when you were a little girl you didn't sit still."

She was pretending to read a tube of toothpaste.  She said, "C-r-e-s-t.  Grown up toothpaste."

As Andrew starts to talk more, we're starting to get some Andrew funnies...
We were watching the nightly news and Andrew points to the TV and starts yelling "GiGi! GiGi!" 
He thought Hoda Kotb was my mom.  It must have been the hair...

Friday, September 6, 2013


Follow">">Follow my blog with Bloglovin

No, my children did not get ahold of my laptop.  I recently joined Bloglovin' to help keep track of all these fabulous blogs I keep finding.  In order to claim this one as my own, I had to copy the above into a post.  Carry on, nothing else to see here.

PS - If you have a blog that I don't know about please let me know about it in the comments!  I love using blogs as a way to keep up with and be inspired by others!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

First Day of School and First Day of Dance

Last Monday was the kids' first day of school.  Andrew is going to MDO on M/W and Madeline is in Pre-K 3 on M/W/F.  The kids are attending the same school, but it moved locations.  It's now literally right outside our neighborhood and a half mile from our house.  They were excited to get all dressed up and use their backpacks.
For comparison's sake, here is Madeline's first day picture from two years ago. (she would only sit still if Fergie was next to her)
All smiles for Daddy.

Not cooperating for Mommy.  Also known as reality.

On the way to school Madeline said, "We have to sing the back to school song!"  She proceeded to sing a song from the show "Bubble Guppies" about going to school.  It was cute.  I couldn't upload it on the  blog, so here's the YouTube link:

When we walked Madeline into her classroom she was so happy to see her friends.  She knows most of the kids from the past two years.  The class has 8 boys and 4 girls.  Her teacher, Mrs. Neelam, has been at the school for awhile so Madeline immediately felt at home. 
 Madeline and her BFF Samantha
Dropping off Andrew was much different.  Kids in his class were already crying, so when we left he gave us a look like, "Um, excuse me?  Where are you going?"  It usually takes a week or two for the little ones to warm up to the new environment, but a friend reported to us that he wasn't crying after we left.  We took a picture outside the class.  This was before he realized we were leaving him there.

When I picked them up in the afternoon they were both so happy!  When I asked Madeline about her day she said:
  • "Mommy, I had so much fun at school!"
  • "I can't tell you what we did today." (She told me this ALL last year and it drives me nuts)
  • When asked if she made new friends: "Yes, I played with Samantha and Colton (who we've already been close friends with for a long time) and the Dora Princess (huh?)
  • "I didn't take a nap because napping is hard."
This was Andrew's "report card" from his first day.  They sang songs and played.  At home he's been clapping his hands and saying "amen." The afternoon after his first day he didn't let me out of his sight, but honestly it would hurt my feelings if I didn't think he missed me while he was gone! 

Overall, school has been a success!  Madeline has had some "homework" and checked out a book from the school library.  Andrew came home with a two page outline of what they worked on their first week and goals for the school year.  I was impressed.

Here's a school related funny: Check out this article that came across my facebook feed.  Warning: colorful language.  Back to School Pinterest B*tches

Madeline also had her first day of dance class.  For the past 2 years she's been taking classes through Pearland Parks and Rec (which has fabulous programs).  This year she's attending Stephanie's School of Dance, a real dance studio with a recital in May.  Part of me felt like it was my motherly obligation to put my daughter in "real" dance at some point in her life, but she really does loves it! 

Summer Recap

In the Kleckley house summer has officially come to a close. I must admit it wasn't as taxing as I originally thought.  In May it felt like summer was going to last forever, but I really feel like it flew by!  In fact, dare I say, I'm not sure I'm ready for all the fall madness.  But ready or not, it's here!  Here is a glimpse into how we spent our summer.  Bear with me, because I'm trying to make up for my blogging laziness all summer.  I keep coming across things and thinking to myself, "oops, maybe I should have written about that one."

On Monday mornings Madeline had gymnastics at The Little Gym.  She was in the class with a few friends, and loved learning gymnastics skills.  She learned how to do a forward roll on the beam.  (see video below)  

Tuesdays were swim lessons for both kids.  Andrew and I had the "mommy and me" class  (swimming and singing songs the entire class), and Madeline moved up to the "dolphin" level, where she started to learn strokes.  Andrew loved swimming lessons, and tried to sing the songs we sang in class throughout the week.  Madeline's skills have improved quite a bit.  At the beginning of the summer she was scared to swim, and now can make it across the pool by herself.  She is very proud of her pink goggles, and I just crack up when she's wearing them.



I really feel like the magical thing called neighborhood pool was the key to this summer's sanity.  We were there 2-3 times a week.  Pool days also meant we didn't  have to get dressed nice to go anywhere, and they usually resulted in good naps.  Our neighborhood built this fabulous new pool with a large 1ft deep section (perfect for Andrew) that led to a big 3ft deep pool (perfect for Madeline).  I'm thankful for our many friends who joined us!  Happy days for mommies and kiddos!



The kids also enjoyed playing in the backyard sprinkler, especially when Jon made a water slide.


On a somber note, heaven gained two angels over the summer.  In June Jon's Grandma (Dad's mom) , and in August Jon's Paw Paw (Mom's dad).  Both had fought illness for the past few years.   Although we miss them dearly, I'm grateful for the time we had and the moments they were able to spend with Madeline and Andrew.

A few other fun and random things we did this summer...
We celebrated my friend Stephanie's 30th birthday with a crawfish boil at her house.
I found this beauty in the parking lot at Hobby Lobby.
One week in June Madeline had princess camp.  They learned manners, painted their nails, had dance class, did crafts and had a big Princess Ball on the last day.  She was in heaven.
We picked up a fun but unhealthy habit, by enjoying way too many donuts and dosants (cross between donut and croissant) at Pena's Donut Heaven near our house. 
 At the Houston Rodeo (in March) they have an area where kids can plant a small sunflower seed in a cup and take it home to grow. Madeline was very observant in watching it grow and watering it.  Three months later, she had a big sunflower!
My dad's Fathers' Day present was a family golf tournament.  It was "Team Daddy" vs. "Team Who's Your Daddy."  It ended in a tie.
 It should come as no surprise that the tournament included a soundtrack of booty music.  Happy Father's Day, Dad.  You're the coolest one around!
We made a few trips to Bryan for the usual: cow observing...
cookie baking...

and loving on the dogs (at least for Uncle Ben).
Andrew had his first dentist appointment.  It worked out well considering he tripped  and busted his mouth as he was walking towards the dentists' chair.  No better place to be than in a dentist office for a mouth injury.
 We celebrated Andrew's half birthday with half of a cupcake.  He was not happy that he devoured his before Madeline could even touch her half.  Luckily she only eats the icing.  They make a good match.
We did quite a few cooking lessons this summer.  Madeline loves to help me cook, and Andrew likes anything that makes a mess.  We now use two chairs for cooking lessons. 
Madeline attended Vacation Bible School at St. Paul's (my parents' church).  She absolutely loved it.  We were given a CD of the songs they learned, and the kids love to sing and dance to them.  Madeline was in the same class with kids of some friends of mine from St. Mary's at Texas A&M.  On the last day the parents were able to come for a presentation/show.
 An astronaut was the guest speaker: The perks of having a church across the street from NASA.

 We went to Eddie V's the night before Aimee left to go back to LSU.  I had never eaten there before and it was SO good!
We miss Aimee terribly (ask Andrew about it and he'll repeat her name for an hour) but know she's having a blast in Baton Rouge.
Babies, Babies that are NOT mine! :)  My childhood friend, Lisa, had baby Matthew.  He was so snuggly!

Jenny, my friend from college, had Reed in June.  He was born almost 6 weeks early.  By the time I met him he had doubled in size but still seemed so small to me.   
 The kids went to Bryan for "Granny Camp."  I enjoyed 2 days of "Houston" time, shopping, visiting with friends and a 2 hour lunch with my mom and sister at Brennan's.  It was fabulous.
We went to H&H Ranch for my dad's company picnic.  The kids enjoyed riding rides and fishing.

We purchased and consumed WAY too many blueberries.  In the off season, they sell for $5 a pint at HEB so I spend months telling Madeline that she can't have them, considering she goes through a pint every few days.  They went to sale at Aldi for $1.50 so I bought 10 pints to freeze for winter.  The next week HEB had them for $ .98 so I bought 10 more.  Then Aldi matched that price, so I bought a case of them (12 pints).  Half my freezer is full of blueberries. (And for those who are curious, fresh then frozen berries are MUCH better than the berries from the freezer section at the grocery store.)

We prepped for back to school with a little backpack and nap mat practice...

And with that, summer is OVER!  Goodbye pool days, lazy mornings, my tan and no make up.  You have now been replaced with football, school for the kids, pumpkins and cooler temps (eventually). 
Happy Fall, Y'all!!