Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Pregnancy Update

If I ever needed affirmation to the fact that M and I are COMPLETELY clueless about becoming parents, going to register was just what I needed to send me overboard.  It's enough to make you go from feeling anxious to inadequate in about 0.5 sec.  Now, I blame part of this on the baby industry.  There is NO reason to have so many different types of bottles and pacifiers, what's wrong with just a few?  

M and I spent the better part of 3 hours at Babies R Us wading through baby gear with our handy book in tow... Thank you J and K..without it, we would've been even more lost.  Thanks to friends who have suffered countless calls and texts from me, I feel semi-confident that we have registered for most of the "must-have" items before Avery Grace gets here.  Wish I could say the same thing about her nursery....

Let's just say that Andrea is a little lot indecisive when it comes to outfitting Avery's room.  I have this wonderful picture in my head of what I want it to look like...it's just actually putting it all together.  I wish I had a decorator on speed dial to do it all for me.  We went to one baby boutique in town, and within minutes of looking at fabric swatches, I was feeling completely overwhelmed.  Had to save it for another day!  Thankfully, I'm going to Nashville this weekend, and hopefully Mom and I will be able to get some things done.  Also, after having a mini freakout on the phone with Mom a while back, she and Ash are going to come down in February to help me even more!  And celebrate Mom's bday while we're at it!

25 weeks yesterday!  Getting very close to the 3rd trimester!  Today at my doctor's appointment, he said, "Ok, I will see you in 3 weeks, and then we will be switching to every 2 weeks".  WHAT!?  Has it really gone by that fast.  Energy level has come back up in the last 2 weeks...yesterday after work I not only went to the gym, but did laundry, washed dishes, and cleaned bathrooms when I got home...I used to barely be able to do all that pre-pregnancy after a long day at work!  Unfortunately, my back hasn't fared as well as my energy level, but since I've been sleeping with a snoogle (big body pillow) it's been a lot better.   M hasn't complained once about having a monstrous pillow taking up a foot of space at night...bless his heart. 

Other than that, we are counting down the days until Avery's arrival!  Just not too soon baby girl, your mom needs to at least get you a crib first!

24 weeks
25 weeks

Monday, January 23, 2012

From Decatur to Houston

Last weekend, our good friends Charles and Cara came to visit us here in Houston!  They were our first couple friends to come see us, and we were so incredibly blessed to have them here for 3 days.  We went to church with Charles and Cara in Birmingham, but they now live back in their hometown of Decatur, AL...a short 1 to 1 1/2 hour drive from Bham.  We only wish we could've convinced Charles to take the Texas and Alabama Bar so that they could've moved here with us :)

After they got in late Friday afternoon, we took them to eat at our favorite Mexican place, Lupe Tortilla, before we headed downtown to see the Rockets play the Sacramento Kings.  It was our first Rockets game.... more fun for the guys who actually care about NBA basketball (I usually only halfheartedly cheer on the Celtics), while Cara and I were far more entertained by the "cheerleaders"/dancers.   
Love my sweet friend

Charles won a free hat AND t-shirt at the game. 

Saturday we slept in, cooked a big breakfast, and lounged around all morning before we could all get up the energy to get up and head down to Central Market to eat lunch.  Saturday night we stayed in, watched the playoffs, ate white chili, and most importantly made homemade donuts.  It's a Hardison family tradition to make homemade donuts on Martin Luther King Day....M decided he wanted to carry on the tradition this year while we had our friends here.  I'm generally not a big donut person, but M knocked these out of the park!  I was bragging on him all weekend. 

Charles and Glen were in the same social club at Harding, so were friends while they were in school.  Cara however had never met Glen or Kelly.  No surprise, they loved her!


Thanks to Ed and Shawn for their leftover fry pan.

Best part...icing them

This is how much Glen participated...by watching the 49er's game

Yummy goodness.

Sunday we took them to church, and then to eat at BJ's.  I had promised Cara that I would take her down to the Galleria Sunday afternoon, until BOTH of us proceeded to fall asleep on the couch for a couple of hours Sunday afternoon.  Whoops!  Next time I guess! 

We had a blast getting to catch up with y'all.  We miss our friends back in the Magic City terribly, so it was nice to have a little bit of home come here for a few days!  Thank you so much for coming!  We will hopefully be able to return the favor sometime soon!

Pregnancy update soon!  I would say nursery update, but there's been no progress...does that already make me a bad Mom?!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Ash and Laura's Visit!... Also, Can I Get a Roll Tide?!

Ash and Laura gave up their New Years to come see us in Houston this year!  This is actually saying a lot, because the last 2 New Years they spent in Chicago and NYC... I'm sorry we can't live up to the hype of a big city celebration, but we were SO happy to have you both here.  We spent the weekend eating (Mexican and BBQ- what could be more Texas than that, although nothing remotely compares to Memphis BBQ), shopping (we have it all here), and relaxing on the couch....plus watching our Titans beat the Texans in what ended up being a pointless game for us anyway :) 

Lexi wanted to be BFF's with Laura... The feelings were not so mutual ;)

Love this...  Apparently something was funny.  Most likely Laura trying to evade Lexi kisses

You know what else my husband can bake?  Homemade tres leches cupcakes!  To DIE for!

This was before I told the man sitting behind us that he was being extremely rude for shushing my sister... Just my little bit of Vicki coming out

So thankful to have visitors for our first NYE away from Nash in 5+ years.  Please come back! 

On a Side Note... Feeling extremely happy to consider myself a former Alabamian.  ROLL TIDE!!  LSU got owned!

Now, we just need UK to pull one out in basketball... It's been too long.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

2011 Review

*Warning!  Long Post Ahead!*

2011 has been a roller coaster.  We started the year off with me in a new job and finally falling in love with Birmingham.  We settled into an incredible group of friends, were forced to say goodbye to them in June, found out we were expecting in August, and when that was all said and done, realized we were both a little more homesick than we thought.  It's been 1 crazy year...definitely more challenging than we anticipated, but I cannot imagine a better partner to go through these ups and downs with me.  With 2011 ending, I can honestly say that I cannot wait to see what God has in store for us in 2012.  In a few short months we will be welcoming our child into this world.  What could be a bigger blessing for the year than that?!  (Plus a big tax break! ;)


Went to Memphis to see Mimi and Papaw.

Hardison family Staycation in the Magic City
Knoxville to see Heath and Russ

Went to the Final Four in Houston!  Outcome= Not So Awesome.  Ok...I think the game was actually the beginning of April..but it counts for March Madness!

Completed my first half-marathon with my Dad and Sis!

Went to the beach with great friends.

Same as Above

June (busy!):
Said goodbye to friends in Nash

Hardison Family Vacation

Visited Senath, MO for the first time!

Goodbye to the Fam

Went out with a bang in NOLA!

So Long to Geoff :(

and Ed and Shawn

Going Away Parties x3

Moved into our first house!

Saw the final installment of Harry Potter; coinciding with the end of my childhood. :)
Matthew's parents came to visit

Matthew and Kelly's birthdays!

Aimee's came to see us!


Mom and Dad in Houston

Trip with the Allens, Hasselbrings and Joneses to Chicago

Benjamin and Morgan's wedding

Trip to see friends back in Bham

Geoff came to Houston

Thanksgiving in Cinci

Game in Rupp


It's a GIRL!
Bump and Baby keep growing!

Post soon about Ashley and Laura's visit this past weekend!  Happy Near Year!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Christmas Part II

For the 2nd part of our Christmas holiday, we headed down to Columbia, TN to spend time with Matthew's grandparents, parents, brothers and their wives, and of course our favorite nephew Sam!  We hadn't all been together since Benj and Morgan's wedding, so it was so nice to be able to catch up in person!

We spent our time there mostly eating Grandma Eva's delicious food and desserts....If you want to taste the closest thing to heaven bottled up in a jar, you need to have some of Grandma's strawberry preserves (M would say the peach)...  Either way, I firmly stand by that statement. 

Monday the 26th, some of M's extended family came over to his grandparents house for the annual "26th Hardison Lunch"...  I was at the "Big Table" again :)  Not to make anyone else in the family jealous, but I've always gotten to eat there :)  I'm sure it has nothing to do with my shining personality but more likely due to the fact that because of my work schedules over the years, I've only made it about every other year...but who's really counting!

Uncle Neal...Aunt Kay refused to be in the pic :)

Vising Nannie

All the Kids

On the move for presents!

Christmas 2012 has some big shoes to fill!  But who am I kidding, because of baby girl, all Christmases from now on will be infinitely better!