Friday, December 11, 2009

Breakfast with Santa

For the second year, we had Breakfast with Santa as part of the Mistletoe & Moss Market. Anna Kate LOVED getting to meet him. She asked him for a piano, a pink fourwheeler, a dollhouse & a trampoline. She will be getting 3 of the 4 of those for Christmas. The Trampoline will have to wait until her birthday when we have a place to put it!

We tried our hardest to get a cute picture of the kids with our cousins, Jackson & Caroline, but they kids were NOT cooperating. This was the best we could get!

What's America?

I sadly don't have any pictures from our Thanksgiving festivities, except for this one that was taken in my kitchen not even on Thanksgiving! We had four delicious events- Thanksgiving Eve at my parents, Thanksgiving lunch at the Perry's, Thanksgiving dessert at Nanaw's & Thanksgiving supper at Michael & Kari's. Our favorite dishes were Denise's Rosemary Turkey, Mom's Crabmeat casserole, & my Pumpkin Cheesecake.

Anna Kate learned about the first Thanksgiving at school and informed me of it on the way home from school one day. Out of the blue she said Mommy, I learned about the Mayflower today. It was a big ship with Pilgrims & they came to America. But Mommy, what's America? I was so taken aback that I didn't even know what to say. I tried explaining that we live in America. Her response was well where's the Mayflower? I have new respect for teachers as they try to explain concepts such as the states & America to a 3 year old. Anna Kate has such an imagination & absorbs things like a sponge that every day she is coming up with funnies & asking LOTS of difficult questions!

"Fall"ing Behind!

OK, so I haven't been good about keeping all of you updated on the Hankins Happenings for the end of Fall, but I do have a good excuse. We have been out of town EVERY weekend in November. Three weekends to Houston for a cousin's wedding, Nutcracker Market shopping & a visit to see Kate & Neil who were visiting to Chicago, then off to Dallas the last weekend in November for Jenni Lee's Bachelorette Party. As I'm clearing up my Memory card for the Hankins family Christmas in Marlin this weekend, I decided to give you a glimpse of the Halloween fun that we had.

Our church had its annual Halloween festival. I had the cutest little bumble bee & dragon ever! & there was even a surprise appearance by Mr. Gecko himself!

The Gecko Returns to Win Best Adult Costume! The Toddler Area- Adli, Will, Jett & Avery.

Cuties! Anna Kate's Buddies- Ava, Sarah, Allie & Anna Kate

Liz is So creative!

Anna Kate's PK3 class also had a little Halloween party. I was in charge of drinks, so I brought a "Witches Brew" complete with dry ice in a caldron. Well this was definitely an experiment and while visually it was a hit with the kids, I didn't realize the dry ice would disintegrate & contaminate the entire punch. Thankfully I had brought along a pack of Capri Suns so the kids didn't go thirty!

Finally, on Halloween evening we had a fun party at our house. Our neighborhood goes CRAZY for Halloween. We had an estimated 1000 children come through our neighborhood trick or treating. I am still finding tootsie roll wrappers from that evening. Our friends, Paul & Denise Perry got the award for most creative costumes. Paul was the Balloon Boy & Denise was Octo-Mom! I remember going to Halloween parties atheir old house (which coincidentally on my street) & how creative they always were!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

All the Grandparents

As promised, here is the picture of the whole family at Grandparents Day.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Chaos Halloween Party

Saturday night our Mardi Gras Krewe had our annual Halloween Party. We invited our friends Dustin & Lauren to join us. We had fun seeing how ridiculous of a costume we could come up with. Yesterday, JD put his costume back on & scared the daylights out of Anna Kate! It took her several seconds to figure out it was JD & not a giant lizard monster!

The next Mia Hamm

Well JD's dream since before Anna Katharine was born finally came true on Saturday, she is officially a soccer player!! The YMCA in Lake Charles has a 3-4 year old league & of course JD signed up to be the coach! They stress teaching the kids the game in a non-competitive environment. Our team was severely outnumbered (5 against 10) because they let all the kids play that show up. However, despite the odds, we won 5-2 (but who's counting!) Our team is made up of Anna Kate & her two good friends Kohl & Karsyn, as well as a little boy who was in her MDO class last year & a new friend, Mason. JD is still working on Anna Kate getting a little more aggressive towards the ball. At one point during the game, she ran off the field to tell me she was hot & just ready to go eat cookies!! Maybe she is my child after all :)

Grandparents Day

Anna Kate's School hosted Grandparents Day two weeks ago. She was so blessed to have had ALL 4 of her grandparents attend as well as one of her great-grandmothers. She definitely won the prize for the most family in attendance. I just pray that she will understand how truely blessed she is to have such loving, suppotive grandparents. They each have their own unique personalities and qualities that help in molding their grandchildren. Sadly, I didn't get any pictures of Anna Kate with her grandparents at the program. However, the school took one they are supposed to be sending to us.

Speaking of school, Anna Kate LOVES her school! The first picture is of her little girlfriends, Charlie & Kierstin. They have a fourth member of their little posse, Chloe, who didn't make it in the pictures. It has been so fun to see Anna Kate make friends on her own that hopefully last a lifetime!

Bibbity Bobbity Boo!

At the end of September, we took a family vacation to Orlando. My father in law has a timeshare at a great resort that he generously let us use for the week. When my parents found out we were bringing the kids on their first trip to Disney, they wanted to tag along to. So all together, we had 9 people (our 4, my parents, brother, father in law & JD's sister). Even with so many people, we had a FABULOUS trip! The entire week revolved around Princess Anna Katharine & Price William. It was absolutely magical to see Anna Kate light up everytime she saw a princess. We went to every park, Magic Kingdom twice, outlets malls, resort day complete with golf, spa & lots of swimming, Football night by the pool on the giant screens, three character dining meals (the highlight was dinner at Cinderella's castle), Downtown disney, and most importantly a weeks worth of memories that will last a lifetime.


Friday, September 11, 2009

Summer of Fun

Well now that the summer is officially over, I have been in a reflecting mode of where the past 3 months have gone. We didn't go on a "big trip" over the summer, but we were gone almost every weekend on lots of little trips. So here are pictures from our summer of travels.

June 5-7- JD & I took a little pre-anniversary trip to Dallas for the Grand Opening of the new Texas Stadium. It was a perfect combination for us- JD is obsessed with the Dallas cowboys & I am obsessed with George Strait (who was one of the performers for the grand opening concert). So we left the kids with my parents, stayed at the Hyatt downtown, had dessert at the top of Reunion Tower (the revolving restaurant), went shopping & had brunch with my cousin & her family. Overall, it was a relaxing little getaway for just the two of us.

June 12-14- We headed down the Texas coast to Port Aransas, TX with the Tahoe loaded to the brim for the annual Hankins-Kenny family reunion. We even brought our fabulous babysitter, Sarah Jones along to help me watch the kids while JD did guy stuff. On our way down, we stopped in Victoria to have lunch with a girlfriend of mine from law school. We got to see her new house & play with her precious little girl, Penelope. It was so much fun to catch up on life post-law school. We rented a condo close to the beach so all day Saturday Sarah & I hung out on the beach with the kids. Another friend of mine from law school, Sara Giddings lives in Corpus now & she came & spent the day at the beach as well. There were very few moments that entire weekend that we weren't in swimsuits between the beach & the pool at Uncle Doug & Aunt Jenny's house.

June 24-26- Our most spontaneous event of the summer was our quick trip to Omaha to the College World Series. Our favorite team, the LSU tigers were in the championship series. On Monday night, we had several friends over to watch the game. Then Tuesday, I worked all day, had a late meeting & came home exhausted & went straight to bed. Well about 10:30 pm, JD woke me up & said hey LSU just lost so game 3 is tomorrow, want to go? Well I'm always up for a trip & Nebraska is a state I have never been to, so we searched & found flights out of Lake Charles the next morning that would put us there in plenty of time to watch the game. My parents were gracious enough to watch the kids & we had an AMAZING time. It just so happened that our anniversary was the day after the game, so stayed an extra night in Omaha to celebrate our annivesary (again). While we were in Omaha, we cheered on our tigers to a win (of course!), slept late, visited the Omaha Zoo, drove across the bridge to Iowa (another state checked off my list), drove past Warren Buffet's home, ate a yummy steak at Omaha Prime & celebrated 4 years of marriage. The past 4 years have flown by, but I love my husband more & more every day.

July 4th weekend- Well the following weekend, we packed up again & headed to our ranch house in Nacogdoches for the 4th of July weekend. There were like 12 adults & 10 kids under 5 (can't remember the exact number now). It was a fun weekend of grilling, riding four wheelers, fishing, playing cards, & spotlighting at 2 am. We have been blessed to make friends with several families from church who have kids about the same age as ours. I've mentioned our life groups before & most of the couples who went on this weekend getaway are part our life group.

July 13-17- Vacation Bible School. Our theme this year was "Riders of the Great Roundup" which was a cowboy theme. Naturally, my parents provided most of the decorations since their ranch is full of cowboy stuff. Mom & I teamed up & taught the bible story class to the 3 year olds- 1st grade. Anna Kate had so much fun at her first year of VBS to go all by herself (last year I brought her & stayed with her the whole time).

July 17-20- My cousin from Dallas came down with her 2 girls for a weekend visit. Anna Kate & Camille are only 5 days apart & Kate is 5. We had the BEST time riding horses, four wheelers, dune buggies, swimming at Uncle Larry & Aunt Fran's house with more cousins, Jackson & Caroline, & brunch at the Country Club with the whole family.

July 24-27- We realized that we had never made a trip to San Antonio since Will was born to meet JD's grandmother. So we both felt a strong urge that we really needed to make that a priority this summer. On Saturday, JD spent the morning bringing the kids to his grandmothers & great aunts homes while Paige (JD's cousin's wife) headed to the San Marcos outlets. My sweet husband told me to buy myself a purse, so home I came with 2 new Kate Spades & a Coach :) All for less than I would have spent for one full priced, retail one. They were having such great deals, that I actually got a lot of Christmas shopping out of the way. That evening we had dinner with JD's Uncle David & Aunt Danielle. The next day we visited with his Mom, then headed to Justin & Paige's house. That evening we stayed with them, had dinner with Uncle Charley & Chrissy & just watched the kids play. They have 3 kids- Addison (5), Gavin (2) & Gaege (5 months). Anna Kate & Addison played so well together & made lots of cousin memories. We stayed around an extra day to bring the kids to Sea World. We even brought Addison with us. The girls were so fun to watch bounce from one exhibit, show & ride to the next. William even LOVED the Shamu show & just stood there in awe at the whales.

Whew...well that is the highlights of our summer, pre-school starting..I'll get to post-school in a little while. JD started a project at our Sam Rayburn property right after the 4th of July weekend, so he actually worked up there 3-4 days a week for 6 weeks of the past 2 months. So needless to say our cars have a lot more miles & the piles of laundry continue to multiply, but overall we had a fun summer!

*I have pictures from most of these trips, but no time right now to post them. I'll try to add pictures when I have time.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Almost a year!

Yesterday, Will had his 1 year old pictures made!! I can't believe that he'll be 1 in less than a month. It seems like yesterday that I was hot, swollen & wishing time would hurry up so we could meet our little man. Now I relish every hug, coo & snuggle knowing that before long he won't want to cuddle in my arms & instead be trying to figure out what to get into next. To take a look at some of the pictures, check out These girls are fabulous. So fun & easy to work with. They took our family pics/Will's 6 month/AK 3 year old pictures a while back. Katie took the pictures yesterday & I'm so pleased with how the one's I have seen turned out. Can't wait to see all of them!

Will turned 11 months old this week & here are some of his milestones:

*Crawling & cruising everywhere!
*Can stand for a few seconds by himself
*Has 7 teeth w/ one more inching out any day
*Says da da, ma ma, duck, bye bye, dog, eat on a consistent basis. He has a few more words that are one timers (Nemo, thank you, etc.)
*Likes to be held ALL THE TIME now. He does not like to be put down at all!
*Can climb up stairs (Gives me a heart attack when he sneaks away to try this!)
*His hair has really lightened up lately & gets super curly when it's wet
*LOVES the water & anything to do with it. He loves to splash, drink & kick the water.
*Eats really well. I weaned him about a month ago and he's done really well on formula with minimal stomach issues. He eats any food that he can't choke on (besides seafood, honey & peanut butter). The messier the better in his opinion. Needless to say I am constantly picking up cheerios, shredded cheese & pureed green beans from random locations!
*Loves to cuddle & has started reaching to be held when you walk in the room
*Smiles all the time & belly laughs when tickled

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Our big boy!!

Yesterday I walked out of the room & walked back in to find Will like this! He's getting so big!! He's starting to cruise a little bit after he pulls himself up, especially along the coffee table. It won't be too long before he's taking off on his own!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

9 months old!

Our little man turned 9 months old on May 28th. The week before he went for his check up & weighed 19 lbs. 14 oz. & 27 1/2 inches. He has since gained those extra ounces & passed up the 20 lb. mark! Other significant milestones:

*He has 4 teeth (2 on the top, 2 on the bottom)

* Can crawl- he started really crawling on May 11th- Anna Kate's b-day)

*Eats all kinds of foods (baby food & table food). His favorites are baked sweet potatoes, bananas, & pasta. He's down to nursing 2 times a day & taking a couple bottles during the day.

* Can pull himself to a standing position & stand holding onto something. He's not quite "cruising" yet, but that won't be too long

* Loves to babble. His favorite sounds are Dada & EEEEEat! He has said & waved bye bye a couple times, but he won't perform on command

* LOVES to swim. We went to waterpark last weekend & in the pool several times lately & he loves to splash & giggle.

* Really interacts with his big sister. I can leave them alone for short periods of time with a pile of toys and they play very well together. She likes to read him books. However, I need to buy some boy toys for him, because lately he has been favoring her princesses and baby dolls!

* Overall a sweet, laid back gentle little man. Everyone who meets him comments how docile of a child he is. We pray that he continues to grow up with a gentle nature. We are so blessed by our little man!!

Birthday Weekend in Chicago!!

For our birthdays, my friend from law school Lyndsey & I went to visit our other friend from law school, Kate. Lyndsey & I have the same birthday so it was a double celebration. We had SO much fun!! Kate had a b-day cake waiting on us when we arrived & the consumption of sweets never stopped the entire weekend- pound cake for breakfast, ice cream from the Good Humor truck. We even had dinner at a place called Hot Chocolate that was known for their desserts & more ice cream at Sweets in Lake Forest, IL. Undoubetedly Lake Forest is where Jennifer Aniston has a second home & was the home of the original Marshall Fields. We visited that suburb on our way to Wisonsin.

I'm sure you are wondering why we went to Wisconsin. Well if you aren't aware, I have a personal goal to visit all 50 states before I turn 30. Wisconsin was one of the states I haven't yet visited so we made a little road trip. Last year when I visited Kate in Chicago I was able to knock out Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan. So know with a little under 4 years left to complete my goal, I am down to 12 states left. Unfortunately, they are the most boring states (hence why I have not yet visited them). So if anyone is up for a road trip from Oregan to West Virginia let me know. I need an excuse to visit those states!

So besides the road trip & sugar induced coma, we had a fantastic trip. It was so relaxing to have 2 full days of no diapers to change, mouths to clean, toys to pick up, etc and lots of adult conversation! I missed my husband & kiddos so much, but I definitely enjoyed a little "me" time. Thank you JD for being so sweet. When I told him I was thinking about going to Chicago, his immediate response was I needed to go. He didn't complain the first time about having to watch the kids. I'm so thankful that I have a husband that loves taking care of his kids & doesn't mind me having girl time!