June 15, 2020

The Pool is OPEN for the summer!

No public pools in Amarillo are opening this summer due to COVID, but the pool at our gym opened at the end of May! I was worried for a long time that they would also close, which would have made me cry because you really can't survive a Texas summer without a pool. At first they opened at just 25% capacity, which was actually really nice as long as you got in. Now they are operating at 50%, which feels busy, but still not as crowded as a typical summer. We have been swimming 4-5 days a week because it's one of the only things to do right now, and the kids love it!! 

On June 1st we were one of the first in line to swim!



Griffin also had a huge blowout on our first day and spent the rest of the afternoon naked. Now I have a backup onesie in our pool bag :)


We got this fun dragon float at Sam's once I heard the pool was opening.  


Griffin showing off his old man body


We talked our best friends into joining the gym so they could swim with us! Now we meet up with them 3 or 4 days a week. Sophie and Emery could swim together for hours. 


Griffin all bundled up after his first time in the pool! Some days it's just too hot to sit on side with him, even if we are in the shade, so I dug our our baby float and brought him in with me. At first he cried, but once he got used to the water he really liked it and eventually fell asleep!


Some tired boys - another wonderful side effect of swimming

June 5, 2020

Fun with Friends at Lake Makenzie

I would never take four little kids to a lake in the middle of nowhere by myself, but when you go with a friend it makes the day not only possible, but really fun! Neither of us had ever been to Lake Makenzie before, and we only knew about on recommendation from my friends pest control guy. It's a reservoir near Tulia, TX which is about an hour southeast of our house. Once you arrive, however, you have to drive down a crazy steel, unpaved road to get to water level. And there is no cell reception in the area. We were both worried about whether our minivans would be able to handle it, but we made it in and out okay!

Once you get down the hill you can pull your car right up to the water to unload your stuff, which was wonderful! We had a cooler, towels, toys, a shade tent, and more and I was so glad I didn't have to try and haul it all from a parking lot to the water. We just popped the trunk and dumped everything out right on the beach. We stayed and played for almost 4 hours, and even then the kids weren't ready to go home. Hopefully we can make it back once more before summer is over!

Overlooking Lake Mackenzie. The beach where we swam was on the other side of the lake. When water levels are high they allow motor boats and wave runners, but since we are in a drought right now the boat launches are closed and we had the lake to ourselves. 


We made it down the cliffs to the water!


Emery and Sophie spent hours digging a river in the sand


Jaxon, Davey and Tayson


Charlie enjoying a popsicle with his best frenemy Rossi


There was lots of sand to play in and the water was nice and warm. There was some muck all around the shoreline that I didn't care for, but it didn't seem to bother the kids.


I brought the baby bouncer, which turned out to be a fantastic idea. Griffin had somewhere to sit/sleep up off the sand and it wasn't as hot as me holding him in my arms.


Charlie loved floating around in the river tubes


These silly girls decided to turn themselves into mud monsters. Luckily it all came out in the  wash and her swimsuit was not stained black.

May 31, 2020

May 2020 Roundup

Well, we survived another month of Coronavirus! The end of this month marked almost 80 days since life as we knew it came to a halt. Things are slowly starting to improve, but I am tired of hearing phrases like "in these unprecedented/uncertain times" or "now, more than ever." I am sincerely hoping this is not our new normal. We miss people, and going places, and being able to take the kids out without treating them like plague bearers.

Our stay at home order expired this month and we are now in Phase 2 of reopening. Some restaurants are offering dine in again, our library resumed service after closing, gyms and pools are reopening and hopefully parks and museums will soon follow! Church is still a work in progress and we are anxious to find out what school will be like in the fall. In the mean time, here are some things we were up to in May:

Davey found this lovely "hammer" rock on a walk one morning, It is his new favorite and he loves to use it to smash things in our backyard. 


The kids saw these rocks in someone's yard on our walk and thought it looked like a crocodile and wanted a picture taken with it.


Silly Griffin on our walk


We bought this pool so the kids would have a place to play and cool off now that summer is starting to really heat up. It's been worth it, even if this is the only summer we use it.


Some cute pictures of our little Griffey Guy


Sophie used some of her points (that she earns from doing daily jobs) to buy a play doh set from my gift closet. She spent all morning crafting this dessert to make it look just like the one on the box. I was impressed by her creating!


Hanging out with my little man - he went on his first date with me to Sonic one night to get a cherry limeade because it was a hot night and we needed refreshment :)


Charlie is adapting to big brotherhood pretty well, but sometimes he still likes to be a baby


Climbing trees during one of our morning walks


We tried out a new recipe for a GIANT cookie! It was so fun and easy to make, and also tasted delicious. I think this will become a snack staple in our house. 


Davey is becoming a little bug collector and is always catching various insects. Charlie is following in his footsteps and always wants a turn to hold whatever his siblings catch. Lately he's become an expert on finding spiders - yikes!


Griffin on the receiving end of a little too much loving


Bedtime is Davey's nemesis. He is so tired buts fights getting in his bed almost every night.


We bought a big climbing dome for our backyard! It had been out of stock for months, but then I was able to snag one this month when they were briefly available on Amazon again. The kids have loved having something to climb and I love anything that makes them want to be outside.


They "helped" us build the dome, which took about 2 hours, including time spent looking for the screws and nuts that Charlie dumped in the gravel. 


I lost Charlie one afternoon and found him sleeping on the floor of the van


A bed full of boys - only Griffin was missing out on this moment


The kids and I grabbed lunch at Sonic one Saturday as a reward for getting chores done


We have started seeing friends again for play dates in back yards or parks. Sophie has missed her bestie Emery so much after not seeing her for two months!!


These little choo choos have been Charlie's favorite toy. He never gets tired of lining them all up.


More hammock time with this nugget


Sophie watermelon vs. Davey watermelon. This is actually an improvement for Davey. He used to eat the white and sometimes the green parts too!




Griffin at Two Months

Griffin is two months old now! His biggest changes have been learning to smile and becoming a better sleeper. He is such a happy guy and his face just lights up whenever someone pays attention to him. He's especially happy to see me in the morning, and the feeling is mutual! 

He is now sleeping 6-8 hour stretches at night which is a world of improvement from his first month of life. He is also a champion at putting himself to bed. The experts always say to put your baby down drowsy, but awake for the best sleep and he is our first baby to comply with this method. After his last feed I swaddle him up fully awake, lay him in bed, and then 10 minutes later he's out without any crying! I'm hoping that he will still go to bed this easy when he have to stop swaddling him a few months once he begins rolling.


Griffin at 2 Months
  • 24.5 inches (86%), 12.9 pounds (62%), and 44% head. He is long, and not quite lean, but not quite chunky either. Both Davey and Charlie were close to 14 pounds at this age. 
  • Now wearing 6 month clothing and size 2 diapers. 
  • He enjoys going for walks and is our first baby that seems to be immune to the lull of the stroller. Griffin loves to look up at the trees and gets mad when we have to cover his seat because it's too sunny or windy. 
  • Bath time is a favorite activity and he loves to kick his legs in the water. I spend most of the bath repositioning him in the bath seat because he wriggles down to try and splash. 
  • I have realized that I will be wearing my hair in a bun for the next year or more with him. The few times I've bothered to wear it down he has spit up in it, or gotten all tangled up in it because he grabs it and then doesn't know how to let go. 
  • He's holding up his head really well on his own, but is still not all the way stable. He also still has the newborn flailing arms and legs that he can't quite control. 

He starting smiling, but it's still a work in progress :)


Having a great nap at 8 weeks old


We gave Griffin his first haircut this month. After all his hair on top fell out, the sides and neck looked really scruffy so I shaved it off to even things out. It was hard to cut off all that soft fuzz, but he looks so much better now!


Such a cute little guy


At his 2 month check up he was so happy during the exam, and then the shots came at the end...


The only time his eyes aren't are big is when he's smiling



His fuzz is starting to come in more!


He's discovered his hands and loves to suck on them. It keeps him very entertained and I'm glad he has something to keep himself busy when I have to set him down.