All Rowelled Up

All Rowelled Up
All Rowelled Up

Saturday, December 30, 2017

.....2017

Well, here we are at the end of another holiday season and the beginning of another new year.  And here I am again having the holiday blues AGAIN.  Every year!  Ya’ll know it takes me a few days to get over it but by the 30th I’m usually good to go, ready to get all the Christmas stuff out of sight and focus on getting ready for the new year.  I’m sad to see all the Christmas commercials fade away and the lights in the neighborhood be taken down but I’m really looking forward to 2018.  I’ve got big plans organizationally, financially, professionally,  and spiritually that are on my To Do list.  Oh, and of course I can’t forget the always lingering staple New Year’s resolution of nutrition and fitness.  Which, I kind of got a head start on in November.  I joined Beach Body on Demand and got involved with an awesome group on Facebook that has helped me stay accountable for my workouts and nutrition and has introduced me to a group of ladies who are on this journey of weight loss and life style change with me.  Now, I’m not gonna lie, the holidays have been really hard to keep up with the promises I made to myself but it has not been as bad as it could have been.  I was ready just to put December on pause and just watch holiday movies all month and pick it back up January 1st.  I’ve had some hiccups but it hasn’t been too bad.

Because I have been a terrible terrible blogger this year here are some updates since the last time we met…..

August

Evelyn started Kindergarten!  She made it to official BIG SCHOOL!  We were a little nervous because she was going to be walking the hallways with kids that were in 5th grade and we didn’t want her to be scared since    Pre-K was all 4 and 5 year olds.  We planned to walk her to her classroom the first couple of days of school to make sure she could get there and that she knew her way.  The only time she had been to her classroom was to meet the teacher a couple of days before school started so of course there was no way she would remember how to get back to that room in this big school building, right??? Oh, no no. Wrong.  This little girl  knew exactly where she was going.  The exact hallway.  The exact turns.  The exact door.  We were impressed aaaannnd just a little sad.  She didn’t need us that morning like we thought she would.  And deep down I’m okay with that.  I’m okay with having a child who is independent and confident and not clinging to my leg not wanting to leave my side.  No fear.  I’m okay with that.  It would hurt me more to walk away from them knowing there’s nothing I can do but walk away praying that they get better.  This girl is going to be just fine and she is proving that every day.  After the first couple of weeks of school she was moved to a K/1 class which is a combined class of 8 kindergarteners and the rest are first graders.  She is learning things that I swear I didn’t learn until 2nd grade.  It’s really a blessing and we are thankful for this opportunity for her.  I wonder when I can start teaching her to balance the checkbook…..hhhhmmmm???



September

It’s time for the Tulsa State Fair!!! I love when the fair comes around because for me this is kind of the kick off for the holiday season.  Usually the weather has started changing and long sleeved shirts and jackets have been pulled out of the back of the closet.  Although the past couple of years that we have gone it’s been a little warm but I think it’s because we go during the day instead of at night.  Because when you have kids you gotta go when the crowd is not so rowdy and try to beat the lines. Oliver wasn’t quite big enough for the rides this year but he got to ride one and he LOVED it.  The look on his face was so sweet and I wish we would’ve let him ride it a few times but we didn’t know until the end that he was even big enough for it.  I was nervous at first because the kid that was riding before him was freaking his freak and trying to stand up. But he did great and was laughing and smiling the whole time.  So we will be ready for next year and make sure he gets his fair share of rides. 




October 

So as long as I can get away with making Evelyn someone who has red hair or making Evelyn and Oliver be some sort of theme together I’ve gotta do it.  This little boy is obsessed with Toy Story.  Buzz, Woody, Buzz, Woody!  He’s got those names down.  This year since he was Woody I thought it would only be appropriate to dress Evelyn up as Jessie.  A redhead AND a part of a theme.  Winning! This was Oliver’s first time to be able to go up to the door to trick-or-treat and it didn’t take him long to understand that when you hold your bucket out, you get candy.  Sometimes he held it out a little too long and scored a little more ;) He can’t help it if he’s so adorable!  It was really cold and wet and I thought my the kids holiday was going to get ruined but we bundled up through it and only walked up and down our street.  It was just too late and cold to do anymore but we got enough candy to where there is still some sitting on the dryer that needs to be thrown away.  We also celebrated Zach’s birthday this month.  Happy 37th!! Which only means mine is less than 6 months away after his and I get to be the big 37.  Is that possible?? I sure don’t feel it the way I thought I might when I was younger and you think about being close to 40 was being old.  I really do feel great!




November 

Turkey Time! This year was our first year to host Thanksgiving at our house.  It turned out wonderful and I’m so glad to make these memories for my kids.  Evelyn was excited to have everyone over because she loves having visitors.  She probably asks every day if someone is coming over.  She loves company! It was also the first year in a long time that I had the day after Thanksgiving off.  I usually work because I don’t participate in the Black Friday madness but I took off this year and just hung around the house.  It was nice to have a long weekend and work on getting all that Christmas stuff out :)


Evelyn tried out skating for the first time.



December 

Busy busy month!  Oliver turned 2!!! You read that right, 2!!!  We had a Toy Story party for him where him and Evelyn got to dress up again in their costumes.  Might as well get my money’s worth on those things.  We had a nice turn out and once again I was reminded how much love my kids have all around them and how pretty great my tribe is.  Zach and I are truly blessed with all the people that make up our family.  Blood or not.  My sister celebrated her 40th birthday a week later and all of a sudden it’s Christmas again!  Oliver wasn’t really into opening his presents on his birthday but by Christmas he had the concept down and of course everything was “stuck” after the wrapping paper came off :) He needed that stuff out of the boxes immediately!  Only until the next present was unwrapped.  There are still plenty of toys that are “stuck” in their boxes because I’m not ready to let all of them lose yet.  Little by little we will introduce new toys.  They got so much I don’t want to be overwhelmed with all the new noises and smells.  Yes smells.  Did anyone get a Pikmi Pop for their kid?  Well, be warned.  We opened one before leaving the house, came back a couple hours later and thought there was a maple syrup explosion somewhere but had no idea where that smell could be coming from.  About 10 minutes later it was discovered it was from the little animal that came out of this sucker thing.  It is currently living in a ziplock bag.




Oh yeah, and I can’t forget that Zach and I celebrated our 10th anniversary! I wish there was a fancy little trip we could have taken or maybe some spectacular memorable gifts but let’s be honest for 2 seconds, we can’t stay away from our children for more than a night’s sleep and I’m too budget crazy-why is the checkbook off by 2 cents–that will go on sale eventually-if not I don’t need it-I’m not fancy-I love a good clearance-kind of gal. So I have a hard time splurging on something for myself. So I thought the photos would be a nice keepsake and we would get to dress up a little and have something of just the two of us.  I love me kids, obviously, but this time it was just about us and celebrating something very special.

These are just a few of my favorites.







I hope everyone had a wonder holiday season and a wonderful 2017.  Many blessings for a 2018 and Happy New Year to all my friends and family and possibly new readers.  I’ve made some new friends since my last post :)

Much love to you and yours,

April

Monday, July 3, 2017

Five

Happy 3rd of July to everyone!  No, I'm not a day early on celebrating America, I'm right on time to celebrate Evelyn's birthday.  FiVe YeArS oLd!!!! I keep looking at her while I write this and can't even believe that she is 5 and that she belongs to us.  We truly have been blessed with one amazing girl.  I know I say it all the time but sometimes she just leaves me speechless with her humor and wit and sweetness and calmness and just every little thing about her.  My sister tells me all the time that she is her favorite person.....like ever.  My family absolutely adores her and I am blessed that they have so much love for her and Oliver that they will make mid-week visits sometimes just to see them because they can't wait for the next weekend.  And I love the relationships she is building with them.  I love the little quirks and characteristics she is picking up from each one of us.

I kept asking her to smile and she would not break from this face.


Let's all flashback to last year when I completely missed her whole birthday party because I was suffering from a migraine and ended up in the ER.  Not fun and I have been battling them for the past year. Hoping to get some resolution soon.  This year made up for it!  She had a blast at her party and everything turned out perfect.

I was concerned about the weather since we rented a blow up waterslide.  The weather man kept calling for rain early in the week and I kept praying it away.  It worked.  I couldn't have paid for better weather.  Just nice enough not to sweat like crazy but warm enough that the kids weren't just shivering in the water.  Well, maybe they shivered a little towards the end of the night.


Found a couple of trolls in the house.


Best celebrity encounter I've ever had. She was nice enough to stop for a selfie.
#poppy



We didn't tell Evelyn we were getting it so she could be surprised and if the weather was bad I didn't want her to be disappointed.  As soon as she saw it she freaked out, immediately wanted to get her swimsuit on and get out there.  She told me while getting dressed that it was the best surprise present ever.  As soon as we got outside she only wanted to play in the bottom pool part and had nothing to do with the water slide.  Hmph.  Should've just bought a $20 blow up pool from Wal*Mart.  Oh well, she had a great time and that's all that matters.  

Evelyn pretty much had a weeklong birthday celebration and tonight on her actual birthday it's been very low key.  She thought she was getting another birthday party today because it was her birthday so I had to keep letting her down saying the party already happened and it was just our little family tonight hanging out at home.  We ate cookies and pretend they were the birthday cake.


Oliver had to get in on the action too!


We can't go far this time of year anyways because of the fireworks.  Our dog does not do well with them and she also had surgery on her back feet today so she is all wrapped up and supposed to remain calm.  So we will see how that goes.  Poor baby looks like she has 2 big casts on and is having trouble walking.  

We are pretty much staying home tomorrow and being lazy before we have to return to work, will play with the 1,000 new toys we have in the house and of course watch the hotdog eating contest where I'm hungry for a hotdog when it starts but not so much when it ends.

My girl.

My boy.


Happy and safe Fourth of July to everyone and Happy birthday to my three friends who share America's birthday.

And Happy Fifth birthday to my baby girl! You are one of a kind!

April


(This is now typing from Evelyn)
Evelyn

ffrggggttghhhhjjmmkkjhhhbbnhggvvffvxxzzsaaqwwdddgffvvddcvvvfffgbnnnbbmmkjhbbgfffggghhhg

We thought these giant silk flowers from Hobby Lobby were pretty cool.  And if I don't get one soon I might lose it! :)

Friday, May 5, 2017

The Fifth of May

Hello wonderful readers of mine!  Yes, I know, it’s been awhile AGAIN.  It’s been a bit of a struggle to get myself to the ol’ keyboard and fill you in on all the happenings of the Rowell house these days.  But let me just be honest with you,  I just don’t really have that much to say.  We live a pretty routine life and not much changes from week to week.  And let me just say that I like it this way.  I’m a routine kind of gal and it keeps things simple.  At this point in parenthood there is not a lot of free time to do craft projects or take vacations.  I don’t think my kids have traveled more than an hour away from the house.  And I don’t have anything fun to show you either.  Our weeks currently consist of school, work and home.  Every now and then something fun drops in that line-up but nothing that I have felt needs it’s very own blog post.  Trust me, I want to write.  I wish I could make a living writing.  It gives me comfort and relaxation.  But for now I will just squeeze it in when I can. So here’s just a little glimpse into what the Rowell’s have been up to lately…..

Pushing brother through Wal*Mart


Oliver

This boy!!! I can’t believe that he is almost a year and a half.  I look back on pictures from a year ago and it seems like FoReVeR ago.  We’ve had to lower the bed to its lowest position.  He was caught with his heel over the top trying to climb out :/  Too Big.  He’s not talking as much as Evelyn did at this age but he’s trying with all his babbling and he definelty understands us and does what we ask him to do.  I’m ready to hear that sweet voice of his use some real words. And I’m pretty sure he is just going to skip over momma and just call me mom.  :/ 
He is into EVERYTHING.  If he wants to get around the baby gate guess what, he just picks that sucker up and moves it to the side and continues on his way.  I am totally starting to understand this whole “all boy” thing.  Climbing on stuff and picking things up and being rough and tough and taking the hits and getting back up.  But when his sweet little side comes out it’s the best thing!  He’s giving kisses and hugs and hums to the music of his sound machine at night.  Heart melting!  And he’s also found some new friends that he’s become attached to.  Buzz and Woody!!! They did belong to Evelyn but she has so kindly let him play with them and sleep with them every night.  Such a good girl!

Early morning photo shoot


Evelyn

Well, we have just about made it through our first year of school.  I can’t believe it’s already time for me to start looking up “Teacher End of Year Gifts”.  It has been such a blessing that she LOVES school.  She has learned so much this year that I would never have time to sit down and teach her and her maturity has spiked and I know it has to happen but I’m watching her go from a babyish girl to a little school kid and it’s exciting but I can also see the countdown ahead of me and it makes me sad.  Every school year that goes by is a year closer to a tween then a teenager then a young adult then full grown adult having her own children.  Ugh! I gotta stop or I’m gonna burst into tears :|

Being her own stylist


Church

This has been on my mind for years now and honestly I’ve just been lazy about it.  I say I’m gonna visit a church and then Sunday comes around and I’m still in bed.  I want to find a church home for myself and for my family.  Evelyn is starting to ask questions about the devil and Jesus and I don’t have all the answers and don’t know how to tell her things in a way she will understand so I need her to start going to Sunday School so she can learn about the Lord and get involved and I want to be involved too.  A part of my problem is that I don’t know where to go.  Growing up I attended Baptist and non-denominational churches.  It doesn’t phase me to see someone speaking in tongues or raising their hands.  Zach would like to attend something a little more low key so I’m trying to see what is kind of there in the middle.  But I haven't come up with anything yet.

John Mayer

Can we just talk about his new album for a minute?  So good.  SO GOOD!!! I don't purchase an acutal CD anymore unless it's one of my peeps and this man is one of them.  Go get it if you haven't already.  The end.



That's about it for now.  Just sitting at home on a Friday night watching Peppa Pig and excited to curl up in bed and watch Friends at 10 while the rest of the town is probably gearing up for some Cinco de Mayo fun.  Bed time and Friends sounds so much better at this phase in life ;)

Have a great weekend and hope to catch up soon!

-April

Monday, January 2, 2017

Hello 2017!


Well, well, well. Another year is over and what a year it was.  If you know me then you know I am not good with change.  It takes me a few days to adjust and then I’m ready to go with the flow and all is well.  It’s those first few days that I struggle with.  Currently I am struggling with the fact that Christmas is over.  The holiday season of 2016 is just another one for the books.  I do this every year.  It’s like the tiniest drop of depression sits in on December 25th around 9:00 p.m.  Usually during the last scene of A Christmas Story when the mom and dad are sitting by the Christmas tree looking outside.  It’s such a joyful peaceful scene but it throws a lump in my throat every time.  Usually by New Year’s Eve I’m on the up and up and ready for the new year to begin and watch as Christmas begins to fade from the stores and Valentine’s Day takes its place.

2016 was a hard year but a great one.  That first year of life for a baby is so sweet and new and wonderful and short BUT oh so tiring and long and something changes every month right when you are used to the new way of life.  Oliver has been such a blessing to our lives and brings such joy and I’m so glad we decided to have just one more.  He absolutely adores his big sister and Evelyn has matured so much in the past year and she LOVES him so much.  We have some pretty amazing kids and not a day goes by that I don’t thank the Lord for our healthy happy good kids.

Here are a few highlights from this holiday season…..

Thanksgiving…..


Helping decorate the tree.

Celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary.....

Oliver’s birthday celebration…..



Evelyn's class Christmas party.....



Amber’s 39th birthday…..


Phoebe's 8th birthday.....



Christmas…..



New Year's Eve.....




So as I say good-bye to 2016 I just want it to know that it was a good year.  A year that brought us a new house, new jobs, lots of “babies firsts”, an introduction to public schools and memories that will always belong to 2016.  I wish everyone a blessed and happy new year.  Bring it on 2017!  I’ve got plans for you!

Happy New Year and may God bless you and guide you,

April



Sunday, October 16, 2016

Tulsa State Fair.....and some other stuff.

Well Hello readers!  Fall time has finally arrived on the calendar but I’m still waiting on that Fall weather to catch up with it.  Yes, it’s cooler in the mornings and yes, it’s not 100 degrees outside but I can’t really get excited about the Fall and holiday season until a jacket is needed for the whole day.  This in-between weather makes it hard to pick out work clothes and school clothes.  First I think I’m dressing Evelyn too cool then I think about her during the day and hope she isn’t sweating out on the playground.  I need some consistency mother nature!!

So, I think when we left off Evelyn was just getting ready to start school and I was the panicking mother holding back her tears.  Well, rest assured she is L.O.V.I.N.G school.  Like, can’t wait to get back to school and I am so unbelievably thankful for that.  What a relief to not have that strain and worry on my brain all day and not a day goes by that I don’t thank the Lord for this blessing. I would just be miserable all day if I thought she was having a hard time at school and there was nothing I could do to make it better.  These little blessings mean so much and I don’t want to take them for granted.  Another blessing I don’t want to take for granted…..a baby boy who sleeps through the night….I’m talking 12 hours of sleep.  
 #zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Time has gone by so fast with Oliver! He is 10 months old today AND he has already started walking and pretty much is running now.  He started almost a month ago and all he’s done is picked up some speed.  Evelyn didn’t walk until a week after her first birthday so now I feel like I’ve been robbed of his baby time.  I needed 3 more months of crawling and cuddles and him being a baby.  Now that he can just about keep up with sister that’s exactly what he wants to do.  He only wants me now when he’s getting sleepy and even then he most of the time gets too wiggly to rock him to sleep so I just put him in the crib and he puts himself to sleep.  Which by the way is the oddest thing I have ever seen.  He pretty much slams his face into his mattress and there is nothing I can do to stop it.  I asked the doctor about it and I googled it and what I have found out is that this is kind of a common thing, mostly in boys, that happens for self-soothing to go to sleep.  Weird right? I’m telling you, the first time I saw it on the monitor I didn’t know what to do cause he wasn’t awake and it freaked me out.  So now we just let it happen and are no longer puzzled as to why his nose is so red in the morning.

With Fall among us you know it’s time for the Tulsa State Fair.  We definitely don’t “Fair” the way we used to.  Instead of getting all cute for Saturday night and hoping you run into people you know and staying until it closed we were there on Saturday morning as soon as the gates opened and walked around the buildings looking at all the grown up stuff with 2 strollers leading the way.  And I wouldn’t change it for the world.  Getting to see Evelyn’s face as she rides the rides is priceless and I want to start building these kinds of memories in her head and giving her a childhood to look back on and remember it being awesome.


Sometimes you cry at the fair. 

One giant shoe please! 

My loves! 

Making daddy go through the fun house. 

Riding the bees! This little kid ride went way faster than I expected. My scared face is half real. 

My beautiful butterfly. 


Well, enjoy your week wherever you are and get out and make some memories!!

-April