Sunday, May 31, 2009

Mother's Day, Memorial Day, Italian Fest, etc.

I know I have been a BAD BLOGGER lately. If I have posted, I haven't posted pictures....I know....BORING. Well, even though I have tons of things to do today, I am taking time to blog WITH tons of pictures...

Let's get started. Mother's Day weekend, we dedicated Mateo at our church. We didn't get any great pics of all 3 of us, but here is what we got.

Below is our pastor, who we LOVE!!! His preaching is just amazing. It is real-world and we just love our church. If you live in the Memphis area and are looking for a church home, please try our church. We also have a church in Collierville and as of this weekend, one in Jackson, TN too.
We go to church on Saturday night. Since so much of our family was able to come to Mateo's dedication, I rented out part of Garibaldi's so we wouldn't have to wait forever to eat after church.
Here is my mom with my niece, Mya.

Laurie, my sister, and Cyp, my brother-in-law. They were having fun and being silly.

My grandmother, Gran, and Mateo.

This picture below was taken at church. My parents and grandmother with all the girls. My grandmother is holding Mckayla's american doll. She even made some clothes for the doll. Mckalya was so excited to get more clothes for the doll....I don't know if this doll has a name, but I am pretty sure she goes everywhere with Mckalya.

Antonio, me, and Mya. She is getting so big and is just the sweetest thing. It is so much fun watching Tatum and Mya playing together these days. I can't wait for Florida in a few weeks.

Me and Antonio again.

Mya and me. I was too busy talking I guess.
Memorial Day we had a relaxed day and just hung around the house. We had a few friends over, but I didnt even get the camera out while they were here....I was too busy talking and catching up I guess.
Anyway, before everyone came, Tatum asked to hold Mateo....this has been pretty rare. She has always talked to him, given him kisses, read books to him, etc, but she hasn't asked to hold him very much. However, she has started asking to hold him more and more. We always say yes, and I will have to start taking more pics when this happens.

All was good until Mateo decided to start pulling on her ponytail. She never got mad or anything, but she just kept telling him "No sir! Don't do that!" It was pretty funny.

Here is Tatum looking out the window and asking "Where's Timmy, Jenn, Baby Luke, and Brandy??"

We grilled out, ate well, visited, and just hung out. It was a great, laid back day.
This past weekend, we went to Italian Festival. We have some friends that have a booth every year and it is fun to go hang out and catch up with old friends.
Tatum has become quiet a little poser when the camera comes out. I'm not gonna lie, I love it!! It sure beats the days of her HATING the camera. "CHEESE!!!"
Carter and Tatum playing together.

Carter is the son of our friends that have the booth. He had been such a trooper hanging out up there, skipping naps for 2 days, and staying up late. Here is the beginning of the end for him.....
Carter sat in his stroller for a bit and eventually tuckered out and took a long nap.
Antonio, Mateo, and Chuck

Cindy and Me....I think this is the first picture we have taken together....we hang out all the time, but I guess we are usually so busy talking and catching up to take pics. She is such a great friend and since she has 4 boys, she is a great go to person with all my parenting questions.

My precious boys....Antonio and Mateo.

Riley and Tatum.....Tatum started eating Riley's Cheetos.
I think this picture says it all about how Riley and Tatum felt when all the Cheetos were gone. Tatum-happy, Riley-um, not so happy.

I think this is the first picture of Jenn and I with our boys (in our arms and not in our bellies). Me, Mateo, Jenn, Luke
As the night was wrapping up, another great friend, Brandy stopped by to see us.
Mateo, me, and Brandy
Mateo, me, Brandy, and Tatum
We have had a busy May. Lots of fun times with friends and family. We are very blessed to have such great friends and family all around us.
A few more updates:
Tatum is 100% potty trained. She hasn't had an accident in a week! (and only 1 accident in 2 weeks). She definitely took to it much faster than I thought she would(especially the pooping in the potty). I have heard that this is the hard part that takes a while, but Tatum took to it well! While we are at home, she will just go to the potty when she needs to. She doesn't wait on us to take her. This is especially nice if I am feeding Mateo or something.
Tatum also LOVES to sing. Her favorite songs right now are "The B-I-B-L-E" and "One Way" by Hillsong Untied. I will have to get her on video singing to the Hillsong song because she is so funny. On the CD, the singer asks something like "Is anyone here believing for God"(or something like that) and she yells "YES!!!!" everytime!
Tatum loves Blues Clues right now. Mateo has a bib with a Memphis Tiger's paw print on it and everytime she sees it she says "A CLUE! A CLUE!"
Tatum has started asking for different people in the morning. She will say "I wanna see......" Sometimes we call the person so she can talk on the way to school or we will call them at night or something. Here are just some of the people she has asked to see lately....
*Aunt E.E. (Eliana-we usually call her on the way to school and Tatum will talk and sing to her the whole way which is about 10-15 minutes)
*Timmy (she talked to him on the phone one night and told him all about pottying, asked him if HE goes to the potty, etc....I couldn't help but crack up over the conversation)
*Baby Luke

Mateo is doing great. He just turned 5 months on the 29th. He is such a happy baby. He only cries if he is hungry, sleepy, or dirty.
His teachers at school are constantly telling me how laid back he is and what a great baby he is. They tell me that even when all the babies start crying at the same time, he just sits back and looks around.
He is on a great schedule. He gets up around 6am (he is my alarm clock. I don't even set one because I know he is going to wake me up).
Here is his feeding schedule right now(this is for my memory, but it is about to change this week)
6am-bottle (about 8 ounces)
8am-food (1/2 container of Stage 1)
10am-bottle (about 8 ounces)
2pm-bottle (about 8 ounces)
4pm-food(other 1/2 of container Stage 1)
6pm-bottle(about 8 ounces)
After his 6pm feeding, he tries to stay awake, but he is usually OUT by 6:30 or 7 and will sleep til 6am. I know God blessed me with such great sleepers because He knows that I must have my sleep to function.
Mateo LOVES to watch faces and will smile at pretty much anyone who will talk to him. He loves Tatum and can't take his eyes off of her if she is in the room.
Mateo rarely cries in his carseat anymore. I love taking him and Tatum to school in the mornings. Every morning when I get to school and open the door to get Tatum out, she is ALWAYS holding his hand.
Mateo also likes the bouncer, Johnny jumper, swing, etc. He loves grabbing the toys. He also LOVES taking to the baby in the mirror.
Bathtime is one of my favorite times with Mateo now. For a while he HATED bathtime and I would try any and everything to change this(we tried the tubs you buy, the sink, his tub in the big tub, his tub on the kitchen counter, etc). However, I finally figured it out. I put him in the big tub and just fill it up with a little water. He loves to just lay there and kick and move his arms. The only hard thing about bathtime is fitting it in before he is asleep for the night since he passes out so early in the evening.
Something that has brought me some giggles lately is watching people's reaction when they ask what his name is. When I say Mateo, it is funny hearing/seeing reactions. I know not everyone is going to like his name, but we love it, so that's all that matters. And some people just go on and on about how they like his name. These people are my kind of people, the ones that like unique names.
Antonio is doing great. He is still loving his job. He is a great help with the kids. He is going to be a one - man - show this week because I have to go out of town for a few days on a business trip, but I know he will do great.
I have been back at work for 4 weeks now. Things are getting back to normal there. It is good being back, being in a routine, and bringing in an income so we can start saving again for the future.
Well, there is the updates for May. I will try to get better on blogging.

42 Day Challenge 1 Wrap Up

Well, Saturday officially ended the 42 Day Challenge. I definitely got better results than I thought I would.

I lost a total of 12 pounds in 42 days (6 weeks)!!!! I know I lost several inches too, but haven't measured yet. My goal was to lose 10 pounds, so I met that goal and must say I am pretty proud about that.

The good news???

Well, Monday we start Challenge 2!!! It will be 12 weeks long. Since I got such great results with the first challenge, I am definitely in for the 2nd! I have my 10 yr reunion coming up, my brother's wedding, and I just want to get my healthy body back!! I have set a goal for the next 12 weeks, and I am determined to make it!!!

What needs to happen...

I must go to the gym more OR figure out how to get that intense workout by doing something at home. I have started using my treadmill at home, but I just dont feel like it's the same workout. When I leave the gym, I am pretty soaked in sweat.

Anyway, here are Challenge 2 Details:

Challenge 2 Details:

Monday June 1-August 22
12 weeks long
16 cheats (make your coupons)
Take a before picture
Check your weight before it begins
Take your inches (waist, hips, chest, arms)
Record your current size of clothing
No fried foods
No sweets
Only 12 ounces of soda per day
Exercise 3-6 times a week
We will only weigh in every 2 weeks

Friday, May 22, 2009

American Idol - Kris Allen

I am so excited Kris Allen won American Idol. I picked him as one of my favorites from the beginning. I think he won over America after he sang this song just a few weeks ago.

I couldn't figure out how to make the video show, so the link above will have to work...

That being said, I wonder if this was his inspiration for his version??

Like I said, I LOVED Kris Allen and I am sure glad he won, but as soon as he started singing "Heartless" I immediately thought of Mia singing it on "Taking the Stage".....anyone else??

Monday, May 18, 2009

Potty Training/Challenge Update



As I posted below, today was the first day for Tatum to go to school wearing 'big girl panties'.....and I was nervous!!

I packed 4 extra outfits (including extra panties, socks and shoes). I wanted to call during the day to see how things were going, but I decided to just wait. Antonio and I picked Tatum up around 5:15 today and Tatum was wearing the SAME OUTFIT she left the house in!!! She didn't have any accidents!! So, she has only had one accident in 3 days!!!


We just finished week 4 of the challenge. Here are my stats...

Weight lost last week: 0.5 pounds (I think it was only 0.5 lbs because my dear "Aunt Flow" showed up. She hasn't been around for 16 months!) Sorry if that's TMI...
TOTAL Weight Lost: 8.5 pounds
Cheat Eats Used this week: 1
Total Cheat Eats Used: 2

Only 2 more weeks left in the challenge and my goal was to lose 10 pounds in 42 days, so I think I will make my goal. However, I plan to continue on this journey and keep losing weight, toning up, and eating healthy!!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

I'm In LOVE...

.....with this little man!

Michael Luke Sere was born May 14, 2009 at 12:50am.
He weighed in at 7 pounds 8 ounces and 21 inches long.
Let me just say that I have been praying for Luke for SO LONG!! Jennifer and Tim, Luke's mom and dad, have always been so great with kids. I LOVE seeing them with Tatum and Mateo. When Jennifer told me she was pregnant, well, the FIRST time she told me it was a big joke on me and she wasn't pregnant. I fell for it though and cried when she told me only to find out later it was a joke (still want to kill her for that However DAYS later when she found out she really was pregnant, Tim and Jennifer came to tell Antonio and I and we didn't believe them. lol. It took a little convincing to finally relize that it was true. That night when they left our house i think I went through every emotion. I danced, I laughed, I cried, I prayed, I did it all. This amazing couple, that I have watched love on my kids, were now going to have their own.
Jennifer and I went on a girl's trip a few months later. I am so glad it was just the two of us on this trip. Funny how things work out for the best. We were both pregnant, but Jennifer was having some issues. The whole week we were gone, she was dealing with things, but still trying to have a good time. What was happening to her, sounded too familiar. It sounded lots like what happened to me when I was miscarrying. I shared my thoughts with her and Jenn was also in contact with her nurse all week. I must shamefully admit that I was sure she was miscarrying. When we got back from our trip, she went to the dr. to figure out what was going on. Jennifer called me (or maybe it was a text message) and told me things were fine! She got to hear the heartbeat and all.
I must admit at this point I felt like THE WORST friend. Here I was thinking she had miscarried and I was trying to comfort her. God must have laughed at the situation. Little did I know that God and Baby Luke had much different plans.
Jennifer's pregnancy progressed. She never got big. She never really complained about being pregnant. When Tim and Jennifer found out they were having a boy, I was so excited! Mateo and Luke are only 4.5 months apart in age. I am sure they will be the best of friends.
Anyway, Jennifer got induced on Wednesday....a little later than first planned, but still Luke was going to be here soon! I guess he decided he didn't want his birthday to be on the 13th, so he waited for the wee hours of the morning before he arrived.
I got to go see(and hold) him yesterday. He is SO PRECIOUS!!! He has the thickest head of beautiful hair! I could spike it a little with my hands and it would stay up. I called it 'surfer hair'. I did fail to remember my camera in all of my excitement to get to meet Luke, so I had to steal the picture at the top.
Jennifer and Tim ~ You guys are already such great parents to Luke. There is no doubt in my mind that he has the best parents and family surrounding him. You have both loved on our kids (along with everyone elses), so it is exciting to finally have Luke here so we can spoil him and love on him! I can't wait to see Luke grow up, but for now, I just want to get my hands on him again and enjoy his baby stage! Love all 3 of you(and Weasel too)!! Let us know if you guys need ANYTHING!!
. more precious (stolen) picture...this one is MY FAVORITE of Luke....


Let me just start this post by saying that all of you parents out there will probably be able to appreciate this more than those with no kids. Trust me, before kids I never thought this event would cause such joy in my lets get to it...


We have been working on potty training Tatum for a while....not pressing it, just introducing it. Tatum's school has worked with her since she moved up in her 2 yr old class room. Well, we got the note Friday that we have been waiting for (even though it secretly scares me a little). It read..."Please bring Tatum several extra outfits including socks and shoes on Monday. Oh yeah, and BIG GIRL PANTIES!!!!" She has been doing great, but her teachers and I have not thought she was 'ready' yet.

Today, Antonio had to work for a while so Tatum, Mateo, and I have been playing all morning. Tatum has done GREAT going to the potty. She has pretty much gone all morning on her own. She just runs off and goes. After lunch she was playing in her room. All the sudden she starts opening and closing the hallway door. That usually isn't a good sign cause that's when we know she is hiding something. I went to check on her and she told me she poopooed. I gave her a disappointed look cause I could smell it...and then she runs to the potty and points! She pooped in the POTTY!!! All by herself, didn't tell me she had to go or anything. However, she didn't wipe, so we still had to clean her up a little and change her pullup. Pooping is what has held us back from big girl panties, so this is HUGE!! For a brief moment I thought about taking a pic of the poop in the potty or Tatum with the poop, but I decided that this might not make many blog readers happy to see poop

So, that's our good news for the day. I will let you know how this week goes.

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Week 3 Stats

We have all been doing the 42 day challenge for 3 weeks now, so we are already half way through the challenge. However, I am sure this challenge will go on for me since I have greater goals.

Here are my stats for weeks 3:

Weight lost this week: 2.5lbs
Total weight lost over the 3 weeks: 8 lbs
TOTAL cheat-eats used: 1
Total inches lost so far: 4.5inches

I think that is it. Anyway, I think the group is doing great! I will update this post later with group results when they are posted.

Keep up the great work Beauties!!

Monday, May 04, 2009

Back to Work....

Today, after 6 months off, I finally returned to work.

My day kind-of started last night. I tried to get as many things done last night that I could so I could cut down some 'get ready' time this morning. I packed Tatum's lunch, made Mateo's bottles, packed both of their bags, layed everyone's clothes out, got my computer together, samples ready to go in the bag, etc.

I went to bed originally at 7pm and was fast asleep, but Mateo wouldn't go to sleep for Antonio, so I got up and get him down around 8:30. I ended up not going to sleep until 10:30. I got up at 5:30 this morning. Mateo woke up a little earlier than normal, at 5:45. While I fed him, I ate breakfast and checked my work email. After Mateo's belly was full, I put all the bags, samples, and my computer in the car, and then got myself completely ready. After a little playtime for Mateo, I got him completely ready. Around 7:10, I finally had to wake Tatum up since she was still asleep. After getting her ready, we were all in the car and headed to school by 7:30. After dropping them off, I got gas and picked up my manager by 8:15.

I was never in a rush this morning and that was great. I am going to sleep an extra 15 min tomorrow since it didn't take me as long this morning as I thought it would.

My manager and I got to sit down and go over stuff that I have missed at work. We went to a few offices and I got to dust off my skills. It was nice to be back out there. There are lots of new things, so i need to get more familiar with the new things, but that shouldn't take too long.

Anyway, it was a good day. It felt good to get back in the game! Now I just need to figure out how to fit some exercise into my daily routine. I know things will slow down once I get caught up, but I need to do a little something now. Currently this is how my days look like they will go...

5:30-6:00am ~ Wake up
6:00-7:30am ~ Get everyone ready and out the door
7:30-8:15am ~ Get the kids to school
8:30-5:00pm(4:30 at the earlierst) ~ WORK
5:00-5:30pm ~ Enter calls, expense report, check work emails, etc
5:30-6:30pm ~ Prepare and eat dinner
6:30-8:00pm ~ Feed Mateo, baths for Tatum and Mateo, bedtime for Tatum and Mateo
8:00-9:00pm ~ BEDTIME FOR ME (I need my sleep).

I will have to squeeze it in somewhere and figure out which days are shorter/longer.

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Week 2 Results

Week 2 of the 42 day challenge is almost over. It has been another good week. I worked out hard and stuck to the diet. I did use 1 cheat-eat, but that is my first one to use. I used it on a Chick-fil-A chicken biscuit and it killed my tummy....but it was good.

I lost another 2.5 pounds this week, so 5.5 pounds total so far.

I took my measurements before the challenge and said i wasn't going to check them until the end of the challenge, but I broke down today and checked my waist measurement to see if any changes have been made. In 2 weeks I have lost an INCH on my waist!! I didn't check any other areas, but may do that next week because that will be midway through the official challenge.

I will be returning to work on Monday and I am a little nervous to see how things will go. I will probably have to dust off the treadmill at home if i plan to get in all my workouts for the week.
As long as I don't have many lunches this week, I should do fine on my diet.

Beauties, good luck on Week 3!

2.5 yrs......4 months

This past week Tatum turned 2 and a half and Mateo turned 4 months!

Let's start with Tatum....

Tatum makes me smile so much everyday. She is just so sweet and funny. Here are some things about her at this age...

~Tatum LOVES juice (we usually mix up the crystal light stuff or something with not lots of sugar). Just a few months ago all she asked for was milk, but now she only has milk a couple of times a week.

~Tatum is such an early bird. She wakes up between 5:30 and 7:30 every day. Usually if it is before 6am, we try to get her to go back to sleep.

~Tatum likes Dora now....and LOVES Diego! When she wakes up SO EARLY in the morning, her first words are ...."I wanna watch DORA...or I wanna watch DIEGO"

~Tatum loves to explore. She loves to explore new places we go. We have to watch her when we go to new people's homes. She will get into everything if we aren't careful.

~She loves to ask "What are you doing?"

~Tatum is doing great with the potty training. I have no doubt she will be 100% potty trained in the next few weeks. She has a cute little song and dance that she does after she goes to the potty. I will have to get it on video and post it.

~Tatum LOVES Mateo. She is so gentle with him and she tries to 'mother' him. Mateo got his 4 month shots yesterday and she kissed on his legs and rubbed his head. She was so sweet with him.

~Tatum is into the 'princess phase' these days. She went to a Princes birthday party last weekend. Here are a few pics...

At one point she grabbed the little boys outfit and decided she liked it better than her princess outfit. Maybe she can be a Princess Warrior??

~Tatum loves to count EVERYTHING these days. She can count to 15 in English and 10 in Spanish when she wants to.

~Some of Tatum's favorite songs these days are "ABC's", "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star", "I've Got the Joy( Joy, Joy, Joy Down in My Heart)", and of course "Single Ladies" by Beyonce.

~Tatum loves reading books to her Care Bears every night.

~Tatum also loves doing puzzles.

Now on to Mateo....

~Mateo weighed 13 pounds 13 ounces at his 4 month check up and is 24 inches long. He has grown 2 inches since his 2 month checkup.

~Mateo has really started liking his carseat. It is rare that he cries much in the car unless we are running errands and are in and out of the car alot. This makes life so much easier.

~Mateo has also started taking a bottle like a pro. I actually weaned him a couple of weeks ago when he started taking the bottle so well. I knew I would wean him when I returned to work, so I just did it a couple of weeks early.

~Mateo started daycare last week. He has done GREAT! His teachers have told us that he only cries when he gets scared by the other babies loud cries. However, they did tell me it has improved just in one week and he now rarely cries unless it is feeding time.

~Mateo has the most precious smile! His whole face seems to light up when he smiles.

~Mateo goes to bed by 7:30-8pm and usually doesn't wake up til 6-6:30am.

~Mateo loves to sit up. I guess he thinks he is grown. He could sit up and 'talk' to me for hours.

~Mateo LOVES his little hands. He balls them up, squeezes them together, and in the mouth they go. He will take a pacifier for naps and bedtime, but once he spits it out, he is done with it.
~Mateo's hair is going to be much lighter than Tatum's. I don't know yet if it will be blonde, but it will be lighter. He still has his beautiful blue eyes.

~Mateo is laid back and easy going. Here he is last week at the princess birthday party. Tatum wanted to put her wings on him.