Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The Twin Cities Will Never Be the Same

Our whirlwind but fun weekend in Minneapolis for David's brother's wedding began Friday afternoon when we left the Nashville airport to go north. This was only my second time to visit David's hometown, and obviously Dawson's first. He did great at the airport and on the plane!
"What? We can go now? Are they serving snacks?"
"I'll get your bag, Mama..."

"...is this our gate?"
He fell asleep as we were taking off and woke up right before we landed. And no, I didn't give him Benadryl. After we arrived in Minneaoplis, we stopped by the church so David could practice singing and had a late dinner at Aurelio's. It's a local Italian restaurant - one of those tucked-away places - and they seriously had the best ravioli I've ever eaten. David and his dad used to eat here all of the time...
...and so he was excited to bring Dawson here. As you can tell, they both loved it.

On Saturday, we had brunch with David's boss and his family, and then it was time to start getting ready for pictures and the wedding.
"Ugggghhhh...there's a sweater vest, too??"

David's brother, Tom, and the newest Mrs. Fletcher, Lisa, were married at the church their family grew up in. David's other brother, Steve, was the pastor, and his sister, Sue, was the wedding coordiantor. His other brother, Paul, was the photographer and his wife, Renee, played the piano. David sang "From Here to Eternity" and "I'll Be There." So, basically, they're the Partridge Family of weddings.

My honey belting it out. Dawson was mesmerized by his daddy singing, and clapped after each song. However, it was after this point that he start getting pretty restless sitting in the pew. I let him do pretty much anything he wanted so he'd be quiet, including playing with my camera. Exhibit A:

It was also at this point that the distraction tactics started to fail. There was quite a bit of squirming and fussing, until I stood him up on the pew, pointed at Tom and Lisa right before they kissed and said, "Hold on, buddy, we're going to clap! Get ready!"

You may kiss the bride...
Had you been sitting in the church at this very moment, all you would've heard was Dawson saying, "OOOOOOHHHHHHHH!" as they were kissing.

I do believe everyone in the sanctuary was laughing. That's my son - the comedic timing was spot on.
After the ceremony, there was a brief reception in the lobby. Dawson got to meet a lot of the church members that David grew up with...even some older ladies who taught David in Sunday School when he was a little boy.

We then headed to Tom's house for a full reception and dinner in his backyard. Dawson had fun running around and meeting the rest of his Minnesota family.
"Uncle Jeff, if you make fun of my mama's accent one more time, I'm gonna beat you like you stole somethin'!"

Sunday, we met David's best friend, John, his wife, Shelley and their two kids for breakfast. Dawson put the moves on Dani pretty fast...
And also made friends with Johnny...

We had a wonderful time! Congrats to Tom and Lisa!


Friday, June 26, 2009

Happy 1st Birthday, Zoey!

My niece turns one today...it is hard to believe that The Zohan has been here for one whole year! She has had quite the little life in just 12 months...she's already lived in two cities, welcomed her daddy home from Afghanistan and schooled her cousin in the arts of fake crying and eye-gouging. Zoey is now walking, too - it's hilarious to finally see she and Dawson upright, giving hugs and kisses to each other.
It is incredible to me how even when babies are just a few minutes old, they already have - and show - their own unique personalities. I don't think you have to guess what she would have said here if she could've talked.
Holding Zoey one year ago...
...and holding her at her party on Saturday. This picture was taken right after I told her there was a strawberry cake and presents just for her.
Her Auntie Lauren got her a Disney Princess-themed gift...a princess blanket and cup...even princess fruit snacks and Spaghetti-Os. Did you know they make princess Spaghetti-Os?! Hilarious! Zoey had no trouble digging into her gifts.
While she was creating a tissue-paper disaster area, Dawson used some of the streamers to do his best Karate Kid impression. Wax on, wax off, baby.
Zoey's cake...she LOVES the strawberry cake my mom makes, and so she had to have one of her own.
I think she liked it. :) After eating all the yummy food that Krystal prepared and porking down cake, we just chilled....some of us even took naps...except for the smallest party animals:

Dawson: "I can so knock this bad boy down if you can just create a diversion."
Zoey: "Word. I'll just pretend to fall. Or - wait - I'll start talking or something."
Dawson: "Word. While you do that, I'll knock it down and break through. As soon as they've stopped freaking, you can sneak in after me."
Zoey: "Word."
Dawson: "Zoey?"
Zoey: "Yeah?"
Dawson: "Happy Birthday, yo. You're the best cousin ever."
Zoey: "Thanks. So are you. I'm going to go fake cry now so we can bust up out of this joint."


Monday, June 22, 2009

Who's Your Daddy Now?

We spent this weekend celebrating Father's Day, birthdays and soon-to-be weddings!

My brother, Jason, turned 24 on Saturday, and so we went to Clarksville to help him celebrate. We also celebrated Zoey's first birthday, but I'm going to save those pictures for later since her birthday isn't until this Friday.

Mom made J and ZoZo their own strawberry cakes...
...and I'm not sure who's sweeter - the cake or Zoey?
My big little brother...
Sunday, we headed to 'Nooga for Father's Day. Dawson picked out a card just for G-Pa the Great and gave it with lots of hugs and kisses...
...not pictured is the Old School Dance Party that followed, featuring my son dropping it like it's hot. The child is so ghetto. I love it.
Me, my baby and my baby-daddy...

Mi madre y mi abuelo...
My dad and his sidekick, kickin' it in the F-150...

And finally, my cousin Ryan and his fiancee, Alicia. They will be married next month and then will be headed to PARIS for their honeymoon. Mama's a wee bit envious. :) Congratulations!

We hope your Father's Day was wonderful!


Thursday, June 18, 2009

"Ma'am, Please Tell Your Kid to Stop Screaming or You'll Be Escorted Off the Plane."

In a little more than a week, I'll be taking this:

Onto one of these:

To go here:

David's brother is getting married in Minneapolis, and he is a groomsman and is also singing in the wedding. This will be Dawson's first trip to meet his daddy's side of the family, and obviously will be his first time on a plane. It will be my first time flying with anyone under three feet tall.

Which brings me to my question for you - have you ever flown with a small child? Are there super-duper-secret tips to making it enjoyable and less like a root canal? Will we be escorted off the plane and dropped off somewhere awful like Nowhere, Iowa if the D-Word gets more than a little fussy?

I have a plan for things to do to keep him occupied during the two-hour flight, but you never know if those things will actually work. My last resort is Mickey Mouse Clubhouse on the portable DVD player.

Any advice or tips would be most appreciated.

If I don't get any, I might be blogging from Iowa next week and y'all, that will not make mama happy.


Monday, June 15, 2009

Weekend Wonderful-ness

Wonderful to have a new baby to hold and love on...
We visited Megan, Web, Vance and Baby Jack on Friday night. This is what I like to call his "Thinking Baby" pose.

Wonderful to have friends to play with...
Vance turned their living room into a campsite/toyland!

Wonderful to have friends who share their toys...

"If you think I'm leaving anytime soon, you've got another thought coming, woman."

Wonderful to eat breakfast for dinner at Cracker Barrel...

...and receive the confirmation that your child is, in fact, a genius...

Wonderful to have a sunny Sunday afternoon so Daddy can mow the grass...

...which is Dawson's favorite topless spectator sport.

We hope your weekend was wonderful, too!


Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The "Haves" and the "Have-Nots"

My baby brother (I say "baby" - he'll be 18 in October) is in Washington, D.C. this week participating in a scholar's program created by his school. He will get to meet heads of state, have dinner with congressmen, tour the White House, intern at the Pentagon - all sorts of fun and once-in-a-lifetime things.

This is Bran and Bud Krogh after their round-table discussion. You may know him better as a member of the Nixon administration who served time for his role in Watergate; he also is the guy who introduced Elvis to Nixon during his infamous visit to the White house.

This is a program Brandon was chosen to participate in by people at Baylor, the private school he attends.

I attended Ooltewah High, the very public Home of the Owls, at which I learned what a doobie was (not by experience) and the closest I got to meeting a diplomat was when I gave a tour of the new wing to a school board member.

My dad, ever the humble public school teacher himself, was quick to remind Brandon when he began Baylor that "there are the 'haves' and the 'have-nots.' We are the 'have-nots'."

I wasn't there for the conversation, so I'm not really sure what exactly we "have- not" of.

Until today, when I viewed this picture of Brandon on his trip to our nation's capitol.

What we have not of?

Is class.



Sunday, June 7, 2009

Sweet Baby Jack

Dawson and I visted Megan, Web and Baby Jack on Friday morning. He is so precious!

And not too happy that we unwrapped him!
We brought Web some Krispy Kreme doughnuts...something tells me he was a little too in love with his new son to care too much about the dozen regular glazed. :)

Dawson was very curious about the new little being in the room...as time went by, he'd get more curious and a little closer...
...and a little bit closer...

...and just close enough.

"Mama, can we get one?"

Ask your daddy, son. Ask your daddy.