Tag Archives | Rand

Best of Summer

Since I haven’t blogged in 3 months…a recap seems like the most appropriate way to restart.  Notice, it is called “Best of Summer” – I have left out the 2 year old tantrum moments, the awesome new recipes that I didn’t try and my window box/planter fail…so…without further ado, here is a peek into the best moments of a great summer:

Summer began early for us…we headed down to our favorite New Smyrna Beach, FL and were delighted to be joined by the Stokes family for a few days!
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We had to visit our sentimental place on the Indian River.
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And we found some fun new places…

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Staying in a small condo that, at high tide, felt like we were actually on the water was heavenly – especially since the upkeep was so easy. Every morning, Rand would line up his animals. I would say his summer fascinations have been: animals, fishing, golf (his own versions of the last two, of course)

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So it was especially cool, if not somewhat unnerving to me, to see the fisherman catch exciting things each day.
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We had a special evening with my Great Aunt Bebe, who Rand got to meet for the first time
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And Wes and I got to celebrate our 10th Wedding Anniversary (10! I know!!!)
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With Sangria at our favorite New Smyrna restaurant, The Spanish River Grill.
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The highlight of the day was that we found out our Dossier officially went to China…a huge milestone in the adoption process for us…more on that to come.
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Who are those two young love birds???
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We also got to share the end of our trip with my mom, or “Ema” as Rand calls her, and got to see more family, including the Wallis cousins! Rand was overjoyed to get so much attention. It was hard to say goodbye to everyone!
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Coming home wasn’t so hard because the Kings came to visit! Here’s a photo of Jackson and Rand perfecting their snow cone eating skills:
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We are finally enjoying our pool (it warmed up mid-June!) this year too! Rand loves to walk around it and “fish” and he enjoys rescuing bugs and frogs with the pool net.
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Rand got to spend time with both of his grandmothers (and his pops and Aunt MD too!)
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The boys did a little more “fishing”
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I did a lot of blackberry picking
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and I figured out that Rand and I both share a love for the “Go Green” smoothie at 195 Nature’s Own. It has been our “special snack” place!
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This next photo deserves its very own post – the most major event of the summer – we were blessed with a new niece. Sweet baby Kara was born at the end of June (that’s right, we’re not even to July yet)! Here she is less than 24 hours old.
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Another important summer event included James’ ordination as a deacon in the Episcopal Church.
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We spent time with Wes’ family at Myrtle Beach (don’t let my amazing sis-in-law fool you – this photo was less than 10 days after baby Kara was born! We are all taking lessons from Jax and Matt on how to rally.
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Rand and MJ got to have some quality time that also involved lots of bubbles, duck feeding and swimming
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which all make for one happy kid
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We visited the Myrtle Beach Aquarium – which was awesome!!!  But then we realized they make  you exit THROUH the gift shop, which is also on the opposite side of the building as the baby ducks that Rand saw outside.  So going home was not as fun…
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We also took a trip to Wilmington to hear James preach on his first Sunday at his new church.
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And then we stayed for lunch and snuggles.  It is also important to note that this was the day that Rand first met “Buster” and “Maggie” – they are James and Samantha’s 2 dogs who have unknowingly been prayed for 2x a day (nap and bedtime) every day since.
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Overall we did a lot of swimming (bathtub, pool, ocean and lake)

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It was a good summer and we were so blessed to be able to enjoy all the “new” things with a 2-year-old!

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Happy Monday

Happy Monday!

Here’s the “watching golf with daddy on Sunday afternoon” photo…

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Also, a heads up. Thomas Paul pom-pom scarves are on sale today (big time!) at MyHabit.com. They are so cute. I first saw the cute pom-pom scarves on Emily over at Emphasis Added (fun blog to read!).  I love the grey pom pom one and the cute flag one…

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Out

We’ve been out.  This week has been so lovely, I don’t even mind that the groundhog saw his shadow (I’d actually like to wear the coat I got for Christmas at least once this season without having to travel farther from the equator).

So with all the sunshine, we’ve been in our backyard, riding on “the red car” and in the stroller, spray painting some fun things (more on this later), checking out the pansies and the Carolina Jasmine that has started to bloom…

And we’ve also been out in our friend’s backyard.

3 cute friends (actually, there were 5 total…2 6-month-old twin boys went in for a nap!)

Rand was enamored with his friend Janie

And food…he love’s these baby Mum Mum’s (least expensive at Wal Mart)


And cheerios (and grass too…)

Thanks for having us over Janie & Ginger!

Gotta run because I’m super excited that my 2nd StitchFix arrived in the mail today!  Can’t wait to see what’s inside…

Update: okay…so I know I promised a hair pic, but I gotta take a shower first and was waiting 24 hours to wash (not sure if that is a true rule for coloring hair, or if I just made it up…)

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Look, it’s a…

Rand-deer!  (or Rand-dear to us)

I have to show you his adorable “Rand-dear” outfit too…sent with love from “the Rands” down in Florida. We love it!

p.s. Friday flashback coming soon (I’m on the search for a good one)…I can’t believe I haven’t posted since Dec. 10! Sorry about that!

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Good news, a giveaway

Where do I begin…tonight was a blast. First, we got to do our usual bedtime routine for Rand. Here’s Rand in his sleep sack ready to hit the sack, and me ready for a fun dinner out with the girls followed by…

A book launch party! My talented friend Rachel Hernandez wrote “My Secret Angel and Me” – a well-written beautifully illustrated book that is also a great tool for parents to teach their children the gospel story of Christmas, and it even touches on Santa (you could say it is the Christian version of an Elf on the Shelf type book). Brilliant.  Not to mention, the book itself is a work of art by Ashley Adorno (Rachel’s sister-in-law).  I can’t stop reading it.  It’s already sold out online, but here’s a list of retail locations who will ship one to you…or even better…just keep reading…

So you may wonder…what’s Rach doing in this picture? She is signing a copy of the book & angel set for a Paper Road reader!!! This book set will be our very first giveaway (hopefully more to come). Here’s how to enter:

1. Post a comment briefly telling why you want the book OR who you’d gift it to

For additional entries (one for each additional comment), post in the comment section that you have done any of the following:

2. “Share” this post on facebook (see bottom for link) and then post a comment that you shared it

3. Tweet the post, and post a comment that you tweeted it

4. Mention/link to the giveaway in your blog and post your blog link in comments

There will be a random drawing done at the end of the day on Monday, December 5th so start blogging & commenting!

I’m so excited that Rachel’s book is our first fun giveaway.  When I moved to Pinehurst, Rachel and I were introduced because her mom and my mother-in-law are friends.  Rach invited me to join a bible study she was starting in her home and even though I barely knew her, I went.  So did a bunch of other girls – none of us knew each other, but all were asked by Rachel, who was lead by the Holy Spirit  (She invited a girl she met at mother’s morning out and another was standing in line near Rachel at Chick-fil-a)!  Now, 3 years later, we are all still great friends and the bible study is still going.

11 super sweet ladies…would you believe that between all of us there are TWENTY-FIVE KIDS?!  (some still in utero) What’s in that Moore Co. water?

Speaking of kids…Rand had on his Tim Tebow jersey today in support of his favorite football player.

And here he is working on his Heisman pose…

Wes and I wish there were a lot more Tim Tebows out there. He inspires us to be bold in our faith.  CHECK IT OUT. (note: I fast forwarded and linked to the last of the interview, but feel free to start it over and listen to the whole clip)

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Weekend fun

This past weekend we walked to a local crafts festival. I found some really cute handmade puzzles – Rand will get it for his 1st birthday so don’t tell him. We also found the funnel cakes…

And we found Grandmommie…and Nina decided to catch a ride.

All the weekend fun landed me in bed Sunday with a sore throat.  Rand (in his new Mater Onesie) had a little cold himself but he wasn’t letting it get him down.  I chose this photo because it shows his sweet little dimple (and it isn’t too zoomed in on the piece of dog hair on his cheek! Errr!)

I almost forgot…last week we took belated 5 month photos before Rand grows even more.  This one’s for you Auntie Jax!

 

 

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Home away from home

We just spent the past two weeks at our 2nd home – New Smyrna Beach, FL.  We’ve visited every summer but, this year, due to my grandmother’s illness, we pushed the trip back to the Fall.  I think we’ll visit in the Fall from now on.  It was nice to have temps in the 80s and low 90s vs over 100 degrees. The water was definitely warm enough for swimming.

Plus, we almost had the beach to ourselves (I even took this photo on a Saturday!)

We visited all of our old favorite restaurants (with no wait time!) like JB’s Fishcamp, the Spanish River Grill (just ask Wes about his Krispy Kreme Bread Pudding with Maple Bacon and a Fresh Farm Egg that he had for brunch…) and a new addition, the Taco Shack. It is exactly what it sounds like, except for Monday night we lucked out with $1 tacos, yummy queso and sangria!

Ocean’s Seafood was still crowded…

Not just with people…

 

But most days we just ate in.  I’m obsessed with Publix and wish we had one here at home.  We got some great things while we were there but my favorite had to be the Wheat Italian 5-Grain bread.  We stocked up before we left.

We had an entire week all to ourselves and enjoyed showing Rand the beach, relaxing and being a family of 3. Since Rand wasn’t really ready to “beach it” all day, we did some other fun things like visiting the local farmers’ market

where we bought some yummy mangrove honey to have on our Publix Wheat Italian 5-grain toast, experienced the local life

and lingered around to watch the boats sail in.

It was a full week of sunrises, sunsets and sea air.

After a whole week to ourselves, the family arrived and that was fun too. Rand got some quality time with his uncle Sam

He cheered up his “Beebo” who had lots of good stories about Florida

He met his Granny (on the Franklin side) – they really hit it off

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And we hung out with uncle Sam some more.

After our “Geah’s” memorial service in Orlando, Rand got to meet lots of family.

Including his cousin (twice removed???) Rand. Here are some of the “Rands.”

It was sad to not have Geah with us – singing the songs and reading the scriptures she chose.  Rand cheered us all up with lots of kisses though.  His Geah would be proud.

 

We also tried to get a good family photo, but I just finished looking at them and there wasn’t a single one with all 3 of us looking at the camera.  Oh well.


The only downside to the trip…it was the end of “love bug” season. The Tahoe really took one for the team.

Is anyone still here?  This post is almost as long as our trip.  I still have a wildlife kayaking adventure to tell you about, but I’ll save it for the next post.

Finally, it was time to go home just as the rain set in.  Which made leaving a little easier.

Reminds me of a song I sing to Rand each night before bed…

Jesus, let us come to know you,
Let us see you face to face.
Touch us, hold us, use us, mold us,
Only let us, live in you.

Jesus, draw us ever nearer,
Hold us in your loving arms.
Wrap us in your gentle presence,
When the rains come bring us home.
(by Michael Card)

 

And so we’re home. For now.

Update: Speaking of bedtime songs…check out my guest post on fellow mom Johanna’s 101 Things I Love Blog


	
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5 Months, really?

Has it really been 5 months since we welcomed Wesley Rand Smith to the world?  Here he is about 9 days old in the arms of cousin Sarah.  Happy 5 months Rand!


 

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Photo Dump

Yesterday my sweet grandmother Elizabeth “Betty” Pfeiffer went to be with Jesus.  I will miss her terribly.  You can read more about her here.  Anyhow, I’m not ready to write about grandmother yet so, instead, here’s a photo dump from last week:

Happy Gafford, a dear friend, gave “Ema” a jumperoo thingy for Rand to play with at her house.  The first time he ever sat in it, the smarty pants figured out that if you hit the little figures, they light up.

After putting in some good playtime, he downed a bottle and then fell into a milk coma in his daddy’s arms at the dinner table.  Obviously, we are still working on manners…

Last week I almost snapped a good photo of Felton, the hummingbird, who comes to my window almost everyday. So far, this is the best shot I’ve been able to get of him. His is one quick little bird. I will keep trying…although I don’t think I have to many days left before he flies south for the winter.

We also went to Raleigh last week and, while I had a fun lunch with my old North Hills crew, Rand hung out with his cousin MJ and his Auntie Jax. Good thing his Auntie Jax loves him and doesn’t mind doing laundry. 4.5 month old kiddos spit up a LOT! Somehow Rand managed to keep his outfit (borrowed from his buddy Jay Halbert!) all clean.

This past weekend, Rand and Wes were having some good “daddy time” when I noticed Wes was walking around the house like this…last time I checked, the baby’s feet are not supposed to hang out of the bottom of the Ergo. This did not seem to bother Rand or Wes but Nina does look a little worried. Leave it to us girls to worry.

Speaking of worrying, I was slightly worried the other day when my caterpillar escaped from his parsley jar. He hasn’t been named yet, but Houdini might be a good one. Found him!  More on Houdini and his parsley-eating friends later.

 

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Aside

Evening Confession

It’s all I can do right now to refrain from going into the nursery and waking up this little cuddle bug. Is it wrong to hope that he’ll wake up and cry so I have to go in and kiss those chubby little cheeks?

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Wednesday Idiom

Is it really only 9am?  It feels like it should be lunchtime already.  I can vaguely remember the preggo days when I would just be waking up at 9am…

9:00am is naptime for Rand and “do whatever I can as fast as possible time” for me (if the little rascal goes to sleep).  I have learned that the 9am morning nap is pretty universal for babies and now I feel terrible for all the times I’ve been oblivious to this with my friends who have young children.  My new rule: Don’t make plans prior to noon.

In other news, Rand has found his feet.  Who needs a pacifier when you are flexible enough to fit your big toe (or both big toes) in your mouth?  Wes says we are keeping this picture to show him the first time he ever “put his foot in his mouth.”

Also, today I’m blogging on sandhillsdig.com…check it out.

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Flame Prince Peaches

Yesterday, Rand and I ventured over to the Monday Farmers’ Market (Ruben the crazy bird tagged along too).
Rand and Ruben the Crazy Bird

It was a busy day, but I had a hankering for some peaches…Flame Prince peaches to be exact (NOT Red October Sam Franklin & Wesley Smith). The Flame Prince is a really yummy yellow freestone peach that is usually ready in late July/August. I learned that “freestone” varieties are ready later in the summer and “clingstone” varieties are earlier. The names mean just what they sound like – freestone peach meat doesn’t stick to the pit, clingstone sticks to the pit. Now I just need to find the perfect peach cobbler recipe. Any suggestions?

Farmers' Market August

I also picked up some delicious multigrain bread at the market. Wes and I use it for our toast in the morning. Although I just noticed half of it is already gone so we must have snacked on it some too…

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