Thursday, March 31, 2016

Six Month Photos

Milestone photos are always a bit behind in getting posted because of the time it takes to get the final images back from the photographer.  As such, H is now 7.5 months old and I'm just getting around to posting his six-month photos. #BetterLateThanNever

We made a trip home to Kansas at the beginning of March so Lacey {LuLu's Pictures} could capture some keepsake images of our 0.5-year-old babe.  Here are a few of my favorites...

Photo Credit: LuLu's Pictures

As always, THANK YOU to LuLu's Pictures for these special photos to help document this first year of Huston's life...that is flying by wayyyy too fast!

Monday, March 28, 2016

Easter Celebration 2016

Pictures say it so much better than words, so I'll just let the photos do most of the talking in this post.

I happen to think this lil' Easter Bunny is pretty cute...
Photo Credit: LuLu's Pictures

I had Good Friday off of work, so Huston and I ventured down to Lee Park to have his picture taken with the bunnies. James French Photography was taking the photos, so it will be a week or so before we get the professional image in the mail, but here's what I snapped from my phone...

On Saturday, Huston and I met Ryan at Stonebriar for the Easter EGGstravaganza. We posed with the Easter Bunny...

...we checked out the petting zoo...

...and we had lunch with Daddy {too bad Daddy isn't pictured!}...

On Easter morning we woke up early to get ready for church {we go to the 8:30 am service}...

The beginning of a tradition: a family photo on Easter morning

After church we came home to find that the Easter Bunny had left baskets for the whole family...

I had so much fun putting H's Easter basket together, but the Hide & Squeak Eggs were pretty much the only thing he cared about {after he threw every.single.thing out of his basket}. Speaking of his Easter basket, thank you Grandma Jo for this fabulous gift, a special tradition among all the Martin grandkids.

I lost count of how many times we read "The Easter Story" book, but that's ok because it's never to early to start teaching our baby boy the true meaning of the holiday.

What a great weekend with our little family celebrating the resurrection of our savior, Jesus Christ.    

He is Risen!

Thursday, March 17, 2016

What does "Rock Chalk" Even Mean?

Rooooock Chaaaaalk Jaaaaayhaaaawk, K.....U.....
Rooooock Chaaaaalk Jaaaaayhaaaawk, K.....U.....
Rock Chalk Jayhawk, KU
Rock Chalk Jayhawk,KU
Rock Chalk Jayhawk KU!

Everyone's heard it...the eerie {incredible!} Rock Chalk Chant that Jayhawk fans initiate in the final two minutes of a game when it's clear that KU will win. It'll give you goosebumps every time!

If you cannot see the audio controls, your browser does not support the audio element. 
{Especially likely on mobile devices}

It's one of the most well-known chants in college sports, but lots of people wonder what it even means. I decided that today, the opening day of the 2016 NCAA tournament for my beloved Jayhawks, was as good a day as any to give a little background on the famous Rock Chalk Chant.

There really isn't a formal meaning/definition for "Rock Chalk, Jayhawk!" beyond it being the battle cry for the University of Kansas. However, there is a story/rationale behind the phrase. The original cheer was "Rah Rah Jayhawk, KU." It's important to understand that the KU campus is built on a limestone ridge {Mount Oread}, and limestone is commonly referred to as "chalk rock." Given that the university is literally built on "chalk rock" {and both words rhyme with Jayhawk}, these words were transposed to replace the "rahs" in the original version, resulting in the current Rock Chalk Chant!

It's more than just a chant's a universal way to connect with other Jayhawks. Living in Texas, I get super excited when I see anyone with any type of KU emblem and always give them a "Rock Chalk!" as I pass by. My friends and coworkers used to always ask "Do you know him/her?" but they soon came to realize that the exchange of the "Rock Chalk" expression is just a signal of camaraderie among Jayhawk fans worldwide.

Here's to hoping we'll hear the sweet sound of the Rock Chalk Chant all the way through April. #RockChalkInHouston #Final4

Rock Chalk, friends...ROCK CHALK!

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Martin Family Photos

Given that we all live in different states {Idaho, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas}, we aren't able to get together nearly as often as we'd like. Lucky for us, Ryan's sister is a very talented photographer {check out Maggie Malson Photography}...and through her work, we are able to capture the precious memories of the times we do get to spend together.

Here are a few of the family photos we took over the Christmas holiday...

The Martin Family, Christmas 2015

Grandma Jo & Granddad Brock with all the grandkids

Great-Grandma Janet with all of the grandkids

Mackenzie (12), Tess (11), Emma (9), Hailey (7), Jayten (6),
Jalyn (5), Brynleigh (3) & Huston (4 months)

These two just recently {February 28} celebrated their
 40th wedding anniversary! Incredible role models!

The Malson Family
Josh, Maggie, Mackenzie, Emma, Jayten & Brynleigh

The Hampton Family
Clay, Lacey, Tess, Hailey & Jalyn

Our little family

I am so grateful to have married into such an incredible that has welcomed with open arms and accepted me as one of their own. We can't wait until we'll all be together again this summer. Thanks again, Maggie, for capturing these priceless images!

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Seven Months

Our baby boy is seven months old today. Seven months?!? I can't really wrap my head around that because a part of me feels like it was just a few days ago when we were bringing him home from the hospital...while another part of me has no recollection as to what life was like before he arrived. 

A few notes from Huston's seventh month of life...
  • Based on our unofficial home estimates, we think he weighs about 16.5 pounds and is about 26.5 inches long.
  • He's wearing mostly 6-9 month sized clothes...but some of his pants are 12 months for length while some of his shirts/onesies are still 3-6 months. His footie pajamas are size 9 months and fit really well. He graduated to size 3 diapers about midway through the month. They still look a little big, so I'm sure he'll be in that size for quite awhile.
  • He's still doing great on the solid {pureéd} food front. He eats "real" food 2-3 times per day...some days he wants nothing to do with it in the evenings. I think apples were the only new food we've introduced since last month, and he seems to really like them. We also tried the MumMum cracker-type things. He did really well with it the first time we gave him one {see the pic below}, but he's only wanted to play with it {bang it on his high chair tray} since then. He takes five 5-oz. bottles per day {5:00-6:00 am; 9:30 am; 12:30 pm; 4:00-4:30 pm; 6:30-7:00 pm}. We've been experimenting with a little bit of formula mixed in with the breast milk because it seems my milk supply is starting to decrease. He does really well with bottles that are 1/3 formula and 2/3 breast milk...but the one time we gave him straight formula, he wanted nothing to do with it. We'll keep trying...and in the meantime, I'll keep pumping, pumping, pumping. Oh, he's also holding his bottle on his own...but only on his terms {when he wants}. We also introduced the sippy cup {of water} this month...his interest in that is also on his own terms.

  • We've learned that our little man's target bedtime is right around 7:00 pm...which means sometimes it's as early as 6:30 {which makes this momma sad because I don't have much time with him after work} and sometimes it's as late as 8:00. He definitely lets us know when it's time to get the bedtime bottle little rub of his eyes means he's ready to go down for the night. If we're on top of our game and get him a bottle within about 5-10 minutes of the first eye rub, he'll fall right to sleep on his own after taking the bottle. However, if he has to wait too long for his bottle, he becomes a fussy little monster and fights sleep. Either way, once he's down, he's pretty good about sleeping through the night. He sure does wiggle around a lot though...his head is usually facing the other end of the crib by morning.
  • Naps are becoming a more regular occurrence, but the length of naps is a total toss up. He's been napping in the morning and afternoon, but they range from 15 minutes to two just never know! 
  • He sits on his own and is very stable/steady to play with all the toys within his reach. However, if he falls while trying to get something outside of his reach, he can't quite get himself back in the sitting position. 
  • The boy is soooo ready to be on the move! He's started to army crawl, but he still gets pretty frustrated with that. He'll set himself up on his hands and knees like he's going to take off crawling, but he just rocks back and forth a couple of times and then collapses. He'll be mobile before we know it!
  • Huston absolutely LOVES his walker. Letting him use a walker is the only "rule" that I've knowingly broken {so far!}...but he loves it soooo much and we're always right there when he's in it, so we'll continue to go against the pediatrician's advice on this one thing. The floors on the main level of our house are either wooden or tile, so he can really zoom! I was super impressed with his ability to maneuver the walker around "road blocks," but I think that his ability to back up and re-route when he crashes into furniture or walls might just be by accident/out of frustration from no longer being able to move forward.  

  • We don't have any doorframes that are wider than just a standard-sized door, so we had to pack up the doorway jumper when he started getting a little wild and was THIS.CLOSE to banging his head into the side of the doorway. However, his love for jumping/bouncing has not subsided...he just has to be held up to do it now {a good workout for Momma's arms!}. It's obvious that Maria does this with him a lot during the day while saying "Brinca! Brinca! Brinca!" {to jump/to bounce in Spanish} because anytime he hears "Brinca!" he gets a huge smile and starts kicking his legs to jump! 
  • Speaking of Spanish, it's so awesome to hear Maria going over the colors and pictures on his blocks in both English and Spanish. I should probably order Rosetta Stone ASAP so we can keep up with our babe! #BilingualBaby
  • He still loves to be read to, and we try to do this every night before bedtime. His favorite books {or at least the ones that get the best reaction} are the Old MacDonald book that has a finger puppet {that he constantly tries to grab} and the Barnyard Dance book {he laughs and laughs at the animal sounds...especially the chicks going "cheep cheep cheep!"}.
  • Baby boy is ticklish...especially around his ribs! 
  • Diaper changes are a nightmare these days because our little midget is a WIGGLE WORM! We've pretty much abandoned the changing table for the floor because he wants to roll...roll...and roll some more while we're trying to change him/get him dressed. 
  • He's started reaching out to Momma and/or Daddy to hold him...melts my heart!
  • He has TWO teeth: the bottom two front teeth.
  • A few more things that took place during Huston's seventh month...
    • He celebrated his first Valentine's Day...
    • He had his vision/eyes checked at his well-visit {everything is normal}...
    • Abbey came to visit...
    • Uncle Landon, Aunt Kelli, Nais and Mills came to visit...
    • He attended his very first music class...
    • He was baptized...what a very special day! {more to come soon!}...
    • He got to spend time with all of his grandparents...
H with Grandma Jo and Granddad Brock  2/27/2016
H with Grammy  2/29/2016
H with Grandpa Ted  3/5/2016
H with Great-Grandma Lois and Great-Granddad Huston  3/6/2016

A few more pics from Huston's seventh month of life...

#BlueEyes  2/16/2016

Flirting with Olivia  2/20/2016

Family Snuggle Sunday  2/21/2016

Who's this handsome boy?   2/21/2016

Just readin' some books  2/24/2016

Cruisin'  2/25/2016

Reading some Bible stories  2/29/2016

Playing the piano with Dad  3/5/2016

Chillin' with Dad  3/7/2016

Showing Lily some love  3/12/2016

Kickin' it in the BIG bed...who needs toys when you have a water bottle?

Bouncing on the trampolines at Kinsleigh's birthday party  3/12/2016

Dear Huston,

Wow, baby are SO MUCH FUN! You are so playful and full of life...ALL.THE.TIME! Now that you can interact with us more, we spend most of our time playing with you and literally laughing out loud. You are so very entertaining...and it seems like you surprise us every single day with something new that you've learned to do. 

I'm pretty sure I tell you "I love you" no less than 100 times per day, but that still couldn't relay the magnitude of the unexplainable, unconditional love I have for you. So many people told me that I couldn't possibly comprehend the love I'd have for a child until I was actually a mom...turns out, they were right! I knew that I would love you in a way that I never even knew was possible, but I wasn't quite prepared for these overwhelming emotions that sometimes bring {happy} tears to my eyes just by watching you sleep. You are a miracle, sweet boy...our perfect little miracle. We thank God for you every single day! 

We love you times infinity...and then some more! Thank you for making the past seven months the very best of our lives. 

All my love,