Sunday, October 30, 2011

Allison and Spencer's Wedding Weekend-Rehearsal Day

This past weekend, our little family and Zue-Zue drove to Tennessee to watch Josh's cousin, Allison, and her fiance´, Spencer, get married. We met Spencer a couple of years ago and really enjoyed getting to know him. He fit right in with the family. Back when they announced their engagement, I jokingly mentioned that I had a ring bearer if they needed one. Well, it just so happens that they did! This was going to be Eli's second time to take a trip down the aisle as a ring bearer (the first was when he was the ring bearer for Uncle Josh and Aunt Andrea's wedding last year). I called my friend, Cheryl, whose little boy, Brody, had just been in a wedding over the summer as a ring bearer, to see if we could borrow his tuxedo. She was more than happy to let us borrow his tux, so the next time I went to my parent's house, I picked it up from her. We were ready! 

We left Thursday, October 13th, around lunch time so we would get an early start on the road (it takes about 8 hours to get there). We made it there in great time. Eli was such a trooper! He's such a great road traveler and never once complained or whined about being ready to get out. He did, however, talk incessantly about seeing his Uncle Dave. He and Uncle Dave really hit it off this past March when we visited them when Josh's grandfather was in the hospital in TN. He and Uncle Dave worked in the yard, took nature walks, and used their binoculars to look for animals in the yard. So for about eight hours straight our conversation in the car went something like this:

Eli: Momma, where we going?
Me: We're going to see Uncle Dave.
Eli: I want my Unca Dave.....

Five minutes would pass...

Eli: Mommy, I want my Unca Dave.
Me: I know, but it takes a long time to get there. We'll see Uncle Dave soon.
Eli: But I want him....

This went on for about the entire trip there. We finally arrived at our hotel that night around 10:00. Thankfully, Eli had been asleep for about two hours, so I didn't have to explain why we weren't going to be able to see Uncle Dave that night.

We woke up the next morning, got dressed, and went downstairs for some coffee and breakfast. Since it was vacation, I let Eli indulge on a chocolate chip muffin and chocolate milk for breakfast. He was very happy about that :) Josh and Shane went golfing and Zue-Zue, Sara, Eli, and I went to visit Uncle Dave, Aunt Lisa, and Allison for a couple of hours. 

Eli was SOO happy when he finally got to see his Uncle Dave. The moment Dave walked out of the house, Eli ran to him and gave him the biggest hug. Then he just laid his head on Dave's shoulder and let him hold him for the longest time. It was the sweetest thing ever! 

Dave, Lisa, and Allison had SO MUCH to do to get ready for the wedding, but they graciously took some time out for Eli. That's just how sweet they are :) Eli and Uncle Dave took a walk in the woods where Eli was able to find huge mushrooms and kick them over. He loved that! 

Eli and Dave got back from their nature walk and Eli went into the house to look for something and this is what he came back with. His memory amazes me sometimes. We've only been to Lisa and Dave's house one time, and Eli remembered exactly where the binoculars ("nocs") were.

Eli found Uncle Dave a pair of "nocs" too and they spent a few minutes looking for squirrels and birds in the yard.

Uncle Dave had to go to the wedding site to hang lights, so now it was Aunt Lisa's turn to have some time with Eli. She and Eli went to the swing and had a great time swinging together.

While the boys were in the woods playing, Sara, Sue, Lisa, and Allison worked on making the bouquets for the bridesmaids. I'm not that great at flower arranging so I was the self-designated memory catcher (A.K.A. photographer) of the day.

Eli saw what the girls were doing and he wanted to help, so he and Lisa created this bouquet for me :) It's the best bouquet I've ever received!

Eli also made a pretty bouquet for Zue-Zue. She loved hers just as much!

We left Lisa and Dave's after about an hour because we quickly realized that Eli was not going to let Lisa or Dave out of his sight and they had TONS to do before the wedding the next day. We went to a few stores so Sara and I could get stuff for our houses (we both just moved into new houses) and then went back to the hotel. Eli fell asleep in the car, so Sue stayed with him. While he was sleeping, Sara and I got ready for Allison's lingerie shower that her sister-in-law, Deb, was hosting. Deb spent the morning baking lots of yummy goodies for the shower. We were in chocolate heaven :)

We played a game where Deb read us a list of questions that she'd asked Spencer and Allison and then read an answer she was given from one of them. We had to guess who we thought answered the question that way. Sara and I had lots of fun with the props and Sara actually won the game! I was very impressed because she'd only met Spencer that day!

After the lingerie shower, it was time for us all to go to the wedding rehearsal. Eli found my mustache prop from the shower and had lots of fun playing with it on the way to the rehearsal.

The site for the wedding was simply beautiful-trees everywhere you looked, a bridge, a pretty meadow, and a beautiful house.

Eli was ready to practice!

The owners of the property had a big, black lab and Eli really enjoyed playing with him while he waited for his turn down the aidle. They played catch over and over, which had Eli cackling out loud. Every time Eli tried to get the ball, the dog would make a move for it and would accidentally lick Eli's hand. Eli thought this was great fun!

It took a couple of tries for everyone else to get their parts down, so while we waited, I happily snapped pictures of my cute, little man. He was very cooperative with me, too.

Allison's dad, Dave, was not only walking her down the aisle, but he was going to be the one to marry them as well. He married his son, Corey and his wife, Deb, a few years back too. What a special memory it will be for both couples to know that their Dad was the one that married them!

The plan for Eli was that he was going to sit with me until Uncle Dave called for him to come down the aisle. That seemed to work out perfectly. When it was time for him to go, he walked down the aisle just like he was supposed to and gave the rings to Uncle Dave. We found out right before he went down the aisle that Allison wanted the real rings to be tied to the pillow that Eli was going to carry. I was a little scared, but we had Eli practice with some rings and he did great. I just told the lady that was in charge of the pillow to tie those strings really really tight!

Afterwards, we had some time before leaving for the rehearsal dinner, so I snapped some pictures of our family that made the trip for the wedding.

Sue and Jordan

Corey and Sue

Jordan and Sara (with Baby Brett in her tummy)

Deb and Sue

Me and my sweetie
Can you believe we'll be celebrating our 10th anniversary in January?

We went to a local Italian restaurant for the rehearsal dinner and it was YUM-O! We had a blast getting to enjoy each other's company over the delicious food as we celebrated Allison and Spencer and their love. We left with full bellies and happy hearts. It was going to be a great wedding the next day! We all couldn't wait!

Sara and Shane

Josh and Sara

Me and Eli

Jordan, Logan, and Addi
(Jordan and Logan get married next in December!)

Eli and Addi

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Playing with Zue-Zue

A couple of weeks back, Zue-Zue, Eli, and I went to the playground to play. The weather was BEAUTIFUL! Eli and Zue-Zue had fun playing on the fire truck. 

Then it was time to slide. Eli had lots of fun sliding down over and over again!

Daddy came by when he got off work and he and Eli had fun climbing the jungle gym. I showed Eli how to hang by his knees (while I was holding him of course) and he loved it. He's such a cute, little monkey!

It was a wonderful, beautiful fall day to spend at the playground!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

The Wilson's Build Their Dream House Update

Just to show you that our life has been pretty crazy lately, I originally started this post September 29 to update all the changes to our house (the pictures at the beginning were taken mid-September). Now it's October 18th and I'm FINALLY sitting down to finish this post. I debated whether to do two updates for the house because a lot has happened since my original September 29th update, but I ultimately decided to do one GIGANTIC post. Get ready for picture overload :) 

Back around September 29th...

The guys doing all our tile work finished our kitchen backsplash, and I have to say I absolutely LOVE how it turned out. It's even better than I imagined!

Our new appliances were installed. My stove is awesome! It has gas burners for the cooktop and the oven is electric.

We ended up going with the side by side refrigerator (cue the sighs from the audience). The french door model in the same line was about $1000 more and let's just face it...I would rather spend $1000 more somewhere else in my house than on a refrigerator. Plus, we have a deep freezer already AND we have another small refrigerator (the one we've been using at the rent house) that we'll put in the garage. Needless to say, we're going to have plenty of refrigerator/freezer space!

The plumber came and installed the plumbing fixtures for my bathtub. I was a little scared at first when I saw that huge hand shower, but the more I see it, the more I like it. 

Jeff and Foley started laying the hardwood flooring in the master bedroom.

Eli and I stopped by frequently to check the progress on his room. No hardwood floors yet, buddy, but they're coming soon!

Here is a look at the completed portion of the flooring in the living room and kitchen. I love my floors!

I discovered that our electrician started the process of installing our under mount cabinet lights. I can't wait to use these at night. I think it'll create great ambiance :)

Josh and I started the process of painting the three rooms upstairs. Whew! I quickly remembered why I hate painting so much. It takes FOR-E-VER! I think I stayed in the rooms for 8 hours one day doing all the edge work. It was exhausting, but it's free labor :)

Jeff and Foley started working on tiling Josh's shower in the master bathroom.

They also laid the granite tiles on the laundry room and mudroom counters.

They also installed the travertine floors in the bathrooms.

The next day Josh's shower looked like this. Now all we have to do is order a glass door for the shower and it'll be complete!

Josh and I finally got tired of all the mess and started doing some clean up around the house. The house looks much better now!

Jeff and Foley finished installing the hardwood floors throughout the entire house (minus the rooms upstairs).

Around the beginning of October our cabinet guy, David, came back in and installed all my footings at the base of my cabinets. I love those little decorative pieces even if they did cost a pretty penny. They made the cabinets look fabulous!

Once the tile had set for a couple of days, it was time to start grouting.

Heath, our builder, and his crew came out and hung our shutters, thus completing the outside for now. 

They also took down the forms for our sidewalk and pronounced it ready to walk on. I can't wait to do some landscaping so I can make my house's curb appeal a little better.

Our plumber came back and installed the rest of the plumbing fixtures. I remember being so scared that everything wouldn't mesh and fit together but it all worked out perfectly!

I drove by after work one day and saw this truck in my driveway. Good news for us! Our furniture had arrived!!!

Eli decided to test out the new couch.

The painters were originally supposed to come the week before the furniture was delivered but they couldn't make it. Therefore, they got the privilege of painting around all our furniture the week after it was delivered. Luckily, most of it was placed in the dining room and it needed minimal touch-up from them.

The gas was turned on and I got to experience what winters will be like in my house. I can't wait until we can actually use this, especially at Christmas time!

Here is our future entertainment center. It is gigantic and has four pieces to it. I was so ready to place it where it was going to go, but I had to wait on the painters to finish. 

Josh, Eli, and I all made another trip to Lowe's (I'm telling you we should be in a commercial or something because all our products came from this store!). We had to take back all the tile we didn't use so we could exchange it and get flooring for the upstairs. Eli was such a cutie that day I couldn't resist snapping this picture of him :) 

You moms out there know you'll do anything to distract your child when they are approaching meltdown from boredom, so I handed Eli my camera and he took some pictures of random Lowe's customers. Say, "Cheese!"

We decided to go with carpet in every room upstairs except my craft room. We think it'll be a great muffler so you won't hear people banging around upstairs when you're downstairs. I picked out a nice looking laminate floor for my craft room since I'll be painting. I wanted something that would be easy to clean up if there was a spill.

Watching the machine roll up our HUGE roll of carpet.

My craft room

The Thursday before we were set to move in, I walked in to see my beautiful antique white kitchen cabinets and what I saw made my stomach drop. Oh, not because they were beautiful, it's because they were NOT what I wanted at all. Instead of waiting for the stain to dry after they applied it with a brush and wiped it off with a rag, they went ahead with Step 3-applying the clear varnish. The result was it took the stain and spread it ALL OVER the entire cabinet making it look brown. The painter and I had a quick "Mama ain't happy so you better find a way to fix this mistake" talk and after I showed him (again) what I wanted and how I wanted it to be done, they did it my way :) Friday afternoon when I walked in my kitchen looked like this...

I was SUPER relieved! I knew that these cabinets were going to be a major focal point in the house and they had to look great. THIS is exactly how I pictured them looking!

I stayed late Saturday night so I could clean up the kitchen and take some pictures of it looking all nice and clean. Oooh, I was so ready to be in the house!

Columbus Day weekend we started moving into the house. Thankfully, Josh's cousin, Brian, was able to help us move again. I had lots to do but my ultimate priority was making sure that we all had a place to sleep that night. Back during the summer, I ordered Eli's bedding when Pottery Barn put it on sale. I'd been counting down the days until I could use it and now it was finally here! I washed it and made up his bed. When he got home from Zue-Zue's house that night, his room was all ready. He was so excited about his new big boy bed! Josh and I especially love his new bed because we can lay down with him at night when it's time to read and say our prayers. We also get great snuggles from our little boy now!

Zue-Zue bought Eli a remote-controlled moon for his "Welcome to Your Big Boy Room" present and he was literally "over the moon" in love with it. He kept saying, "Watch Mommy, I show you!" It really is a great gift because it lights up and shows each phase of the moon with just a click of a button. It's probably Eli's favorite thing in his room right now.

So that's it for now. We are in and we have boxes up to our ears, but we're slowly getting settled. Every day something else is accomplished and scratched off on our "To Do" list. It's going to be a long time to get everything in its place, but hopefully before Eli's birthday party our house will be ready. I feel so thankful and grateful every day when I pull into the driveway. I keep telling myself, "Wow, this is ours!"  I feel so very blessed...
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