Good Ol' Boys

Monday, March 29, 2010
2 Good Ol' Boys hanging out on a Sunday afternoon in Austin
Brandon sportin' the Abeling widow's peak 

Truck Drivers wear Polos

this is the conversation each morning...

Nicky, you can't wear your tractor PJs to school
Yessth, Mommy, YESSTH!
Nicky, Do you want to dress like a truck driver?
(thinking...) YESSSTH!
Well then... Truck Drivers wear Polos. 

NickyI should feel guilty lying about his wardrobe, but I only have a limited amount of time where I get to dress him, and I am not giving up so easily. Plus it works every time.

Val and I joke that its our luck that I got the boys and she will get the girls. What do I  know about dirt, G.I. Joe, and Tractors? What does Val know about braids, My Little Pony, and tu-tus? I curled my hair for every T-ball game. Val wore Spiderman underoos. I rest my case.

Besides, having an Aunt like Val, the other great thing is that there are so many websites out there that make my job so EASY to dress Nicky like a BOY and satisfy this months obsession with anything and everything construction.

This website, Two Blue Cars, has the cutest t-shirts with Back Hoes, and Dump Trucks. Then I found on Polka Dot Patch, more t-shirts with Excavators and Lawn Mowers. Not to mention, the grand-pooba of anything custom. I can create T-shirts to meet every one of Nicky's whims. Truck Driver "Polos" and all.

Free "It's a Big World" Download!

 I was just on their website and they have a free download. yay.


It’s a Big World, baby, and you’re little for a little while ….

Like most parents, Dan and I have specific lullaby's we sing to our boys. Some of Nicky's favorite's are: Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, Hush Little Baby, Catch a Falling Star and Somewhere Out There from American Tail.
Dan even makes some up. And right now, every night we have to sing the "B" song. It's another Dan Song. Basically it goes, "buzz buzz buzz, buzz buzz buzz, buzz buzz buzz, bbbuuuuuzzzz" and then we tickle him.You should try it. Hours of fun.

But, the most special and meaningful is That Little Boy of Mine. My Grandpa Mario sang that to Val and I when we were little... Nothing made us feel so loved and special. I hope one day, Nicholas and Brandon come to treasure this song as much as I do. I hope they pass it on to their families and make special memories with their kids. More on this later, because it deserves its own post (as soon as my mom sends me pictures. ahem. mom!)

I am always looking for a new melody to sing and I came across this website, Jitterbug: Music for Kids when I was reading a blog, Kids Stuff World. One of the albums featured was by artists Renee & Jeremy. They have a song that is so beautifully sung and animated, I can't wait to play it for the boys. I am learning it already.

It’s a Big World, baby, and you’re little for a little while ….

Little for a Little While

Remember last month...

Friday, March 26, 2010
....when I said I want a girl SO bad. Yeah, here is another reason.

I wish I could take credit for this discovery, but I found them on Happy Hour Mom's blog...

speaking of Happy Hour! Time for a BEER. xoxox


Happy Friday, Love Brandon and Nicholas!

Minnie Mouse

so Nicky's best friend Kylee Jo is turning 2, on May 14th, 4 days after Nicky. Her mom told he they were planning a Minnie Mouse party. I told her that I saw the cutest Minnie shirt on Brandon's girlfriend, Anna last weekend at her big brother, Davis' birthday.  I would send her some pictures. While browsing last night I came across so many fun Minnie Mouse themed party supplies. I put together a little Party Board to help with inspiration for the party! I love those cookies and the banner. How adorable is that outfit for the birthday girl too? FUN!

Something New: Guest Blogger

Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Once a month I will feature a Guest blogger. This is a very important job (family) ahem...stay tuned....

(update) Oh and if YOU would like to write a note, share a funny story, memory to the boys, email me too. xoxo :)


His first OREO. He just knew where the good stuff was.

Deconstructing the Oreo....
Hey look at this! Yummy
Can I get the whole cookie in my mouth? Yes, I can
More please

First words: Does Japanese count?

Monday, March 22, 2010
Just like Hiro Nakamura, Brandon has started throwing his fists in the air, screaming "Yatta" (I did it)

I looked it up (やった) and its real saying, so it counts.

And, see, they even look alike!


Friday, March 19, 2010
Dan is a middle child. He has an older brother F and a younger sister Alex. Both are stunningly beautiful and handsome. Then F had to go an marry the gorgeous Amy and could they be anymore adorable? They live in the fabulous OC now, and have views of the ocean and make me very jealous. Nicky and Brandon don't get to see them that often, but when they do, lots of hilarity ensues. Usually because they are fascinated by F's facial hair... Anyways, Amy always captures the moments on camera and I think she needs to give up consulting to become a full time photographer!  Even the picture on my blogsite is one of Amys! Here are some of my favorite pictures of them with the boys. (How fun is my new picture collage tool?! yay me)

Soccer Mom Part II

Thursday, March 18, 2010
I realized after I posted THIS, I left of 2 very important pieces of influence...

First - Valerie was the one kicking me in the shins. No kidding, but really she was so amazingly good at soccer, I was probably watching her and not paying attention, thus the bruised legs. I have a video at home, I will post tomorrow of Val playing soccer when she was 5. I think. Still, worth watching

Second, Shauna, who played PROFESSIONAL soccer for the San Diego Spirit and has 1800 nieces and nephews knows all about being a Soccer Mom. She and Val bought Nicky his first offical MLS Soccer ball last summer.

I look to them to provide valuable coaching lessons and kicking techniques. They are also on the hook for funding all lessons until he is 18. haha.

Happy St. Patrick's Day 2010

Wednesday, March 17, 2010
Today everyone is Irish and drinking green beer. I'm a quarter Irish, so I am legit, so are my boys..Dan not so much. We took the kids to Fion, our Irish wine bar & pub in Steiner Ranch to celebrate. 
More pictures are posted here.

Happy St. Patrick's Day to all of you!
ps. notice my new look? welcome to the new face of Adventures in Abelingland. Hope you like it

Soccer Mom

When I think of soccer, I think of AYSO, orange slices,  Michael Owen. (If you have no CLUE who I am talking about, shame on you, and now go google him.) and Adidas. I remember my mom cutting up orange slices every Saturday and me getting kicked in the shin a lot. At least I curled my hair, so I looked cute.

I can't wait to be a Soccer Mom - I already have the boys, OJ, and Gatorade. I have Austin's version of the soccer mom minivan - the Lexus RX 350,  now all I need is Michael, er, um I mean some Adidas.

Recently I discovered the ultimate soccer shoe for my little Michael or David Beckham (you pick). Two of Nicky's friends, Ryder and Hudson, wear Adidas Sambas. And its the most adorable thing. Now Nicky has a pair so he too, can look cute and kick people in the shins (kidding!), without me curling his hair.

Angels & Cherubs

Someone has been PERFECT for the last 3 days. Did the stork bring a new Nicholas when we weren't looking? Is the phase really truly maybe just a phase? Two nights, no crying, no tantrums, no whining (maybe a little) but it's almost like he KNEW...I don't want to jinx it. I love you, my little Angelbug.
and just because HE is always an happy little cherub.

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Hardly an angel....

Monday, March 15, 2010
I realized that most of my posts recently have been about how awesome and sensational Nicky is (of course!)But I also want to make it clear, he is no Angel. And I mean that in the nicest way possible. Our little Angel is really a high need monster! When we do get those golden nuggets of awesomeness from Nicholas, they are worth posting. However its the REST OF THE TIME that is making me question how in the world we will survive this PHASE. I highlight PHASE because this PHASE has been going on since he was 6 months, 10 months, maybe 16 months - depending on which "need" needs attention. He's now 22 months! We will get a break soon right?

Here are some "highlights":
  • Since 6 months we have not been able to change him without screaming, twisting, arching, crying. Poo-poo diapers are the worst. Its usually a two man job, someone holding him while the other does the cleaning/changing. or we resort to bribes. sometimes he surprises us and will lay down all by himself. that's when we pat ourselves on the back :)
  • Same for getting in the Car. people stare at us, like we are hurting him. Dans been late to meetings, etc because Nicky REFUSES to leave the store, park, ice cream...
  • He never played independently. We were always involved 24/7
  • He NEVER let us put him down as a baby. He'd go UP UP UP, then Down Down Down! we couldn't win. He never sat in our lap. never stopped struggling when we held him
  • He STILL screams almost every time we put him to bed. we are BEYOND "cry-it-out". We had some good months, but the last 3 have been terrible.
  • He will not stick to a routine because he knows that its time for bed. We can't get his diaper on, pjs on, no more reading books, wont lay down in bed. We have to let him scream for 20 - 30 minutes or we have to lay there until he stops crying.
  • Nap times on the weekend are the same. We are lucky if he falls asleep after 10 - 15 minutes. Some days we don't nap because who wants their baby to CRY HYSTERICALLY EVERY DAY?
  • Sometimes, even after a 2 hour nap he will just scream for no reason. Scream. And bang his head on the floor. Get rug burns on his forehead
  • and I haven't even started about the separation anxiety and jealousy. He is SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO jealous of Brandon. He loves him. and thinks its fun to play peek-a-boo, but Daddy CAN NOT hold Brandon in front of Nicky. Not only is it terrible for Dan to do anything, its hard for me to actually leave the 2 of them with Dan. We dread mornings because Nicky hangs on Dan's arms, legs. And he isn't quiet about it. He's loud and whiny. and he makes our ears hurt. Dan can't cook dinner with out Nicky in his arms. Nicky begs for Daddy to hold him. We ignore him. We don't talk to him. He doesn't seem to listen. Or care. He is stubborn. Like me. But he's better at it than me.
  • did I mention how much I LOVE him, yet? :)
  • and then there are the Tantrums. enough said.
Ok, so I know that a lot of this is probably just a phase, but he isn't even TWO yet and he is so challenging already. I read this article and was like, Wow, they are talking about Nicky. Anyways, the point is that Nicholas is difficult and we are evaluating a Child Behavior Specialist. Maybe we can channel this energy and create a more happy (and less draining) environment for Nicholas and us

Spring picks for my boys (part 1)

Thursday, March 11, 2010
Spring is here (almost) and over night it turned green in Austin. The lake is full, the "sometimes islands" which became the "permanent islands*" are now "all gone" islands, and the sun is out! Nicky yells everytime he sees the lake. When I ask him what do you do in the lake, he yells back equally as loud "Swimming!" followed very quickly by "NEMO!"I haven't the heart to tell him Nemo doesnt live in the lake yet, but whatever. He's still a smart kid.

In the next couple of weeks, the bluebonnets will bloom, Easter will be here and we will enjoy endless warm days (with a beer...or three) under the Texas sun. That means its also time to pop out the shorts and sandals! Here are just SOME of my favorite picks for the boys this Spring season in Austin!
 1. Striped Polo 2. Striped T-Shirt 3. Insect Rain Boots 4. Robot Tie  5. Band Jacket  6. navy  Striped Outfit
7. Skull Shorts  8. Orange Converse Hightops  9. Camo Shorts 10.Star Baggies 11. Yellow Hoodie 12. Bulldog Onsie
13. UCSB Onsie 14. Tough Tee 15. Puffer Vest  16. Grey Hoodie 17. Monster Tee 18. Tie Tee Shirt 
19.Zipper Jacket  20.Shark Backpacks  21. Olympic Sweatshirt 22. Monster Truck tee  23. Big Brother Tee 24. Vintage Demin Jacket
25. Play outfit 26. Boatman thongs 27. Seersucker Plaid Jacket 28. Alligator Onsie 29. Daddy's jeans 30. Sun hat
31. Pirate Polp 32. White cardigan and Tie 33. Rugby Hoodie 34. owl Pjs 35. Seersucker Shorts 36. Dock shoes

More picks coming soon!
* I got that from Alyse

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Zara for Kids: Whimsical magic!

A little birdie (Amy) told me that Zara now has a collection for babies and kids. Always on the outlook for new and unique clothing, I stopped by a Zara in France. Look at what i found!
I am so in love with all the clothes, the styling, the colors! What a great collection and so affordable for all boys and girls.  These would make the perfect Easter look!
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Fantastical Brandon

Wednesday, March 10, 2010
Dear Banjo,

Hello littlest big man. You are a whopping 8 months old today and what a bundle of joy you are. I believe God gave me what I could handle, and he did me right with you. What a happy, independent, charming little boy you are. You constantly make Daddy and I realize that having a baby CAN BE relaxing. mostly.

Not that you don't have your moments, but those months of sleepless nights seem to be behind us, and we just have BIG firsts to get excited about. These past couple of weeks have been big for you. First we have 2 new top teeth, and now you have four. You've learned to bite. And leave marks. And you squeal with delight and this new discovery.

You make lots of new sounds; yep, yip, and lalala, dadada, and bababa are new to your vocabulary. You've started blowing raspberries and you crack yourself up with the sounds you make.

Your plump little legs have gotten so strong; you are crawling super fast, pulling yourself up like a superchamp and you SOOOOO want to be like your big brother, you are already letting go and taking steps before you tumble to the ground.

You also have a soft spot for me...and I love it. Its fantastical. The next 4 months are going to be crazy, so hang on, my little man, and lets go to the moon!

I love you as high as the moon.
xo Mommy

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Sensational Nicky

Darling Nicholas, its your 22 month birthday today! You are becoming my little ham man! It's hard to believe that this little person I created has a mind, opinions, feelings, and can express his own thoughts now!

And in 2 months you will be TWO. A full blown toddler. a terrible two toddler. but all my toddler. I don't know where the time has gone, or how I am going to deal with this big birthday. It feels bigger than your 1st. That day was filled with excitement and lots of big firsts: cakes, party, celebration, friends...this time I don't want it to come. I want you to stay little and, well little. The next thing I know you will be 22. Then you will be gone. In the meantime, I will stare at these pictures and remember you exactly the way you are right now.

Sassy, Silly, and Sensational

I love you to the moon and back!
xo Mommy

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Favorite Time of Month!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010
Its everyone's favorite time of month. Noooo, not that the Texas Redbuds are blooming, or its almost time for green beer, or even March Madness - ITS new Pictures and Videos from Abelingland!

I've posted more pictures (340) than you can possibly view and 12, yes TWELVE new videos. Most of these are from February, but I have been delayed due to travel. The exciting new announcement is that Brandon is crawling, standing, trying to walk, and 2 new teeth sprouted! More to come tomorrow during his 8 month birthday post tomorrow. In Nicky news, he is now counting to 15, responding to questions with answers, and is still the most challenging, screaming, adorable, handful monkey. More to come on that front tomorrow as well. Enjoy!
And *EXACTLY* a year ago today I took these 2 pictures of Nicholas. He was 10 months old! (a week later, he would start walking. I don't even want to THINK about his second birthday in 2 months....)

Watching planes, trains, and tractors..and a little snack

Monday, March 8, 2010
Just watch, Nicky is all boy!

(you will need to log onto website to see video)

Hello Bootie.

Saturday, March 6, 2010
Somedays, all you need is a little bootie.
Brandon, 7 months, March 2010

A little personal but...

Tuesday, March 2, 2010
I want my boys to know how much it meant to me to nurse them. Even if it was only a short time. Even if they never want to think they did that with their mom.. I was that guy  that thought it was abnormal and it would never happen. I opposed it, and fought Dan on it. I thought it was "granola" and "gross" and totally "disgusting".

Then I had Nicky and the minute I saw him it all changed. It was natural and instinctual. In that instant, I became a MOM. It was a connection, a bond, an emotion I never felt before. I was moved. I cried. I LOVED it. I embraced it. But Nicky didn't. Dan and I spent the better part of two weeks getting it right. Finally he did and it worked.

I was devastated at 5 months, when Nicky started to deny it; when a bottle gave him more substance, but it was ok. There would be more.

When Brandon arrived, not only did he take to nursing, he was a natural. Together we were in unison, we spoke the same language. We understood each other. It changed me once again.

Two weeks later, during Brandon's newborn pictures with Michele at Pinkletoes, I had to stop to nurse him. She offered to capture these precious moments on camera. I refused. Now I am heartbreakingly sad that I did. I am not sure if I felt it was too private or I was shy. Or maybe I didn't understand how haunting an image like that could be, but I missed my opportunity.

Every so often she features these special moments between a mom and her baby and my heart aches. Her work is so beautiful, I wanted to share. She calls this "Someday...."


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