Monday, December 19, 2016

2016 Fall Pictures

The now famous Lara Carter took our fall family pictures in October.  Call me biased, but they came out great! :)

Celebrating Peter's 31st Birthday

Peter's birthday was at the end of November, and we celebrated with a family dinner at King's Biergarten.  They sat us on the patio, so the little cherubs were able to run around and act like crazy people.

 We must have partied hard...

Grandma and Grandpa Go Viral

Back in November I posted these pictures to the blog, honoring my grandparents' 70th wedding anniversary.  Many family members posted them on their Facebook pages, including my Grandma.  Her old neighbor, Paige, saw the photos and posted them to her Twitter page.  The week after Thanksgiving Huffington Post came across Paige's Twitter post, and the rest is history!

Huffington Post contacted my friend Lara, the photographer, and asked for permission to use the photos in an article.  They also asked for "how they met" information and other stories.  My mom took care of that for us, and Huffington Post published this article.

What followed was an absolute whirlwind of media inquiries.  Because Lara's name was attached to the photos, she would get the initial contact, and would pass my name along to anyone who wanted additional information for their articles.

We did phone interviews with the online producers at the Today Show and Good Morning America, and my grandparents spoke with both organizations over the phone.  They also did a FaceTime interview with Buzzfeed.  They were mentioned on Live with Kelly, and numerous local television stations, including Houston's Channel 11/CBS.  Perhaps our favorite mention was on Fox News' "The Five".  After the first story we were able to relay a message from my Grandpa to Juan Williams, so it was mentioned again the day after the first story ran.  They were even mentioned on the radio in San Antonio (which a friend of mine heard).

We have also been talking with The Steve Harvey Show.  They were going to initially have a live Skype interview on the show, but after my grandparents talked with the producers, they decided that they'd love to have them live at their studio in Chicago!  We are hoping it will be sometimes in January.  I'll share those details once I get them.

Many have asked how my Grandparents are liking the attention, and the truth is they are LOVING it! So far it's been a great experience.  They've been recognized in public and someone even bought their lunch.  I LOVE the fact that they are on Facebook and has been able to see all of the wonderful comments and mentions they've gotten on social media.  This truly could not have happened to a better couple, and we love that they are enjoying this.

Here's a round up of the media mentions, from people that contacted us or things we have come across. There are countless other news pages that have re-posted original articles.  I want to document this, because I'm sure one day their Great Grandchildren will appreciate how "cool" Grandma and Pa are!

TV MENTIONS (click on the link):
Live with Kelly
CBS/Channel 11/KHOU 
Fox News "The Five" #1
Fox News "The Five" #2
BuzzFeed Video (219K views)

ONLINE ARTICLES (click on the link):
Original Huffington Post Article
Today Show (video has
Good Morning America/ABC News/YAHOO
Buzzfeed (58K shares)
Scary Mommy
The Daily Mail (6.2K shares)
Inside Edition
Little Things
10News in Tampa Bay
Good Housekeeping
ABC Channel 13 in Houston
NBC Channel 2 in Houston
Fox11 in LA
The Advocate (Grandma and Grandpa's local newspaper)
Fox7 Austin

FACEBOOK/SOCIAL MEDIA SHARES (these are the biggest ones):
ABC News - 71K likes / 4700 shares / 793 comments
Good Morning America - 76K likes / 3400 shares / 766 comments
YAHOO News Video  - 4.2 MILLION views / 39K likes / 64K shares / 5500 comments
Today Show Video - 325K video views / 11 K likes / 1071 shares / 228 comments
Today Show Article - 8.3 K likes / 565 shares / 70 comments
NBC Channel 2 Houston -  14K likes / 1700 shares / 543 comments

 And a few photos from websites...

That moment when your grandparents get the "trending" icon on BuzzFeed....

...and the front page of!

Friday, December 16, 2016


With Preston getting older, we're very slowly seeing our house evolve from one meant for babies into one meant for active, growing kids.  And I must say it makes me slightly melancholy. 
(Side note: This post is in no way meant to be confused with baby fever.  I look at it as a change in life stages: New and exciting, but sometimes a little sad. And like most things in Kleckley land, it makes for good blog material :) 

Now that we've gotten that out of the way....

Over the summer Preston had decided he no longer wanted to sit in his high chair, but at the table with the rest of us.  I kept the high chair in the kitchen for a few more months in case he changed his mind, because there are very few things that can keep a toddler contained in one place and I was hopeful he'd return.  Didn't happen.  So in September I squeezed him back into it for his last high chair picture.

And because I'm a glutton for nostalgia, here is P's first time in the high chair...

And Andrew...

...and Madeline.

I had every intention of passing the high chair on to future nieces/nephews until I got online to order a new tray, and realized it had been recalled in 2011.  Oops.  Sorry, kids.

The next big transition was converting Preston's crib into a toddler bed.  Since August Preston had been crawling out of his baby bed.  Madeline did it once, Andrew maybe twice, but Preston was crawling out at nap time, night time, in the morning, and anytime he decided he didn't want to be there.  One morning we found him sleeping at the top of the stairs (who knows how long he had been there).  

We really had no good reason not to transition it, other than me being sad.  One of my very favorite things about having little ones is pulling a happy baby out of a crib in the morning.  Since he was climbing out anyway, we decided to just rip the bandaid off and convert the crib the same night as the time change.  The morning before I tried to get one last picture of Preston in his crib, but he quickly showed us how he felt about that.

That night he seemed pretty content with the new arrangement...

...but the next morning he was wide awake at 5:00 am because of the time change, and was delighted by the fact that he could pop out of bed and run out his door.  What was not delightful was his attitude later that day.  

And it took 6 weeks later and us locking him in his room before he got the hint that waking up before 6:15 am was not ok.  Sheesh.  Now we get to "let Preston out" every morning and he's a much happier boy!

Here was his first time sleeping in the crib, at 3.5 months old.

And a few days after we transitioned Preston's crib, this happened.

 My parents had gotten this baby swing for Madeline's first Easter.  Our babies (and others) have spent hours being pushed in this swing.  Even though P hadn't hit the weight limit, he was already preferring to use the "big" swings, and the baby swing was getting climbed on by Madeline and Andrew.

Can you guess what our next transition will be???

He has been telling us he needs to go potty for a few months (and we help him go through the motions) but nothing yet.  This isn't my first rodeo and I know he'll be ready when he's ready.  I'm sure potty training this little firecracker will be the most interesting of them all. :)

SO.  Along the same lines, as the kids move from one stage to the next, I think a lot about things I miss/will miss about that particular age, and things I will not.

Things I do NOT/will NOT miss

  • Running errands with a baby in an infant carrier:  Seriously, those things are bulky, heavy and a giant pain to lug around.  And I do not miss it one bit.
  • Changing babies clothes 9798734 times a day due to various bodily fluids. Enough said.
  • Buckling kids in/out of car seats.  We're 2/3 of the way there with this one.  I don't know why but it makes me batty.  Plus, it so much easier to say "get in the car and buckle up."
  • Getting up multiple times a night to feed a baby: I've heard some people say they loved the quiet of feeding a baby in the middle of the night.  Not this Momma.  I love my sleep.  On the occasion where we have kids up at night now, I don't know how I ever functioned with newborns, where I got 4-6 hours of combined sleep for months at a time.
  • Toddlers/Preschoolers throwing fits over irrational things.  Because how was I supposed to know that you wanted your sandwich cut in 4 pieces instead of 2?  Get OVER it, child.
  • Kids fighting over every.little.thing.  Although something tells me this won't end anytime soon.
  • Having to wipe multiple little hineys a day
  • Carrying a diaper bag.  Words cannot express the sense of freedom I felt when I switched back to a normal purse (cross body  that weighs 12 pounds, but still).

Things I Miss/Will Miss
  • Napping with a newborn baby sleeping on my chest.  There is nothing better.  This stage only lasted 2 weeks with Preston because he was so heavy I couldn't breathe.  Future nieces/nephews, watch out.  
  • Changing diapers.  Bear with me here.  Changing diapers has never really bothered me.  It's expensive and gross, but it's a sign that they still need me.  
  • Kissing chubby cheeks.  Thank goodness Preston still has them.  This runs about even with napping with a newborn.
  • The "I'm just learning to walk" penguin waddle walk.  Find me something cuter than a baby learning to walk and how excited they get over it.
  • The storage of a stroller.  Those things hold so much stuff!
  • The questions.  Kids are SO stinking funny.  Today we were at the vet and Andrew asked, "Does the vet take care of a hippopotamus?"
  • The innocence.  This one is really starting to hit with Madeline.  At school they have lockdown drills.  She's starting to ask hard questions, and they'll only get harder.  Yesterday she asked if Santa was real, and I just about had a heart attack.
  • MDO/Preschool: I love the boys preschool, the accessibility and that I can openly talk to the teachers about anything.  Although Madeline's teacher is only an email away, I miss the openness we had at HCA.  
  • Listening to my kids read.  This is something I thought I wouldn't have the patience for, but I love listening to Madeline and Andrew read, and watching how excited they get over reading books to others.