Extra hour...

Oops! I added an entire hour to Casey's time in my last post. He ran in 1 hour 58 minutes... not 2:58!! :) I think he'd appreciate me clarifying that... And thank you, Tiffany- I'm sure he appreciates you catching that, too!!

Aramco Houston Half Marathon

Casey has been training for the Aramco Houston Half Marathon for several months now- and successfully completed it under his goal time this morning!!!!! He finished in 2:58- and he ran between 8:30-8:55 minute miles the entire 13.1 miles. Good job, Babe!! We're so proud of you! Here are some pictures of the adventure (on which Ada and I tagged along, of course!):

Leaving the house at 5am to get Casey through traffic and to the starting line by 6:15-
After dropping off Daddy, Ada wishing all of the runners walking by good luck-
A projected 20,000 racers and 200,000 spectators! I believe it!
Once we got parked, Ada and I headed to the Hilton for a leisurely breakfast of chocolate milk and croissants while Casey ran the first hour in the rain (she refused to pose for any pictures this morning! This was as good as I got)-
Ada got ansty, put herself in her stroller (still wouldn't pose for a picture), and wanted to go outside to cheer on the racers-
We stood outside for an hour cheering on random people. "GO RACERS! WOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!" -Ada
Getting prepared to see Daddy cross the finish line. "Go Daddy!!! Run FAST!"
And, OF COURSE, right at 2 hours 58 minutes, we were in the middle of a minor issue and MISSED CASEY! I was SO sad!!! We waited at the finish line for another 20 minutes (with me freaking out something had happened to him) until he called me from the reunion area. Bummer!
But we reunited in the George R. Brown, Casey had an Ice Cream cup for Ada, and let her wear his metal... so all was well! :)
Family picture. Love these guys so much!


The Mod Pod Upgrade

Ada's big girl bed came today!!! I could not be happier with it- it's AMAZING and I can really see her in it for YEARS to come! It has little bulletin boards in the windows of the side compartments, so we will be decorating those up soon, I'm sure! And places for her phone charger, whenever she'll need one... which in this day in age will probably be age 4. (She picked out the flower throw pillow by herself- she HAD to have it one day in Target. Ha! Like mother, like daughter.)
Yes, that's a Jack-O-Lantern on her dresser. It's from Halloween, she loves it, and it gives off a really soothing light that she likes to read herself to sleep with each night. :)
For the story and how-to behind the whole room re-do (and pictures of the decaled-up wall you don't see here), go here:http://thedailydowell.blogspot.com/2010/08/adas-mod-pod.html

In other huge news, Ada's hair fits into a ponytail!! These are a few pictures of Ada and Mia Schilhab playing in the backyard, in which Ada is sporting her new 'do!
We took a picture of Katy and I with our bellies- but it's TERRIBLE of me (cute of Katy, of course!)... and I'm too embarrassed/vain/etc to post it!! Hopefully we'll get together with them a time or two before the boys come so we can give it one more shot!! :)

African Safari

I finished Dax's room- and it turned out pretty darn cute! I love it- and Ada loves it. We spend a lot of time in there just piddling around and talking about Dax. :) Can't wait to meet him in 9 weeks!

31 Weeks!

I'm 31 weeks and some days pregnant with Dax! I had Ada at 37 weeks- which is full term... which is only 5.5 weeks away!! ACK! Here I am with my Chemistry girls who are ALSO pregnant with BOYS- Megan (far left) is due May 5th, I am due April 1st, and Ashleigh (far right) is due March 1st! Something is in the water in the Chemistry hall!
I think I'm standing weird in this picture, because I'm actually much bigger than I look here, ha!

Name Decision

Well, we've made a final decision on the baby boy's name... and it will NOT be Noah. EVER. I never ever ever want to think of him as Noah again- I'll tell you why, but you're going to be appalled!

Yesterday at lunch duty, there was a Mom volunteering for a fundraiser by my entrance and struck up a conversation.
-Random Mom: "How many weeks are you!? You're adorable!"
-Me: "31 weeks! Only 9 weeks max until I get to meet this baby!"
-Random Mom: "Awww. My sister-in-law was 31 weeks last week. That's when the cord got wrapped around the baby's neck and he died."
-Me (a little shocked at the major no-no that she'd just committed, but still trying to be pleasant): "Oh my gosh, that's terrible. I'm so sorry- I cannot even imagine how hard that is for your family."
-Random Mom: continues to tell me the gory details and physiology of this baby's death. That happens to be at the exact same point in pregnancy as I am. By this point, I'm brainstorming ways to change the conversation to something lighter-
-Random Mom: pulls out a picture of the DEAD BABY in his CASKET and SHOVES IT IN MY FACE.-
-Me: can't tear my eyes away from the picture. Image being burned into my memory.-
-Random Mom: "Isn't he just the most precious baby you've ever seen?"
-Me: "That's the saddest thing I've ever seen. I'm so sorry for your loss. What was his name?"
-Random Mom: "Noah."

NOW- if this were the baby's mother, I might have given her a pass for her socially incompetent behavior... but this was the baby's mother's husband sister.... WHAT IS WRONG WITH THIS WOMAN? Now she's ruined the name Noah for me, as well as successfully freaked the heck out!

Anywho- Dax it is! We were going to end up naming him Dax regardless of a psychotic stay-at-home Mom's screw up, I'm sure, but it's nice to know now instead of later, I suppose! :)

Better news: Ada's bed is arriving today AND I finished Dax's room! Pictures of both to come SOON!!! :)


The Perfect Lamp...

OK, so I was shopping for a friend's baby shower today at Babies-R-Us, and just "happened" to end up in the baby room section, and "coincidentally" ran into the jungle animal themed things... and TOTALLY saw this lamp!! Not sure if you recall the Alphabet painting I did for Dax's room that I posted about last weekend, but this shade mimics the painting pattern almost perfectly! AND it's animal themed. They are on Noah's Arc, which I think is adorable. (See side story below pictures) So, here it is, the PERFECT LAMP, in all its glory!OK, so most of you don't know that Casey and I heavily considered the name Noah instead of Dax for a few weeks a couple of months back. We ultimately decided to stick with Dax and dropped it... but after finding this PERFECT LAMP that was NOAH'S ARC, we got all wierd and started wondering if we should throw Noah back into the mix.... I think we are back up to about 93% sure that this baby is still Dax, but I wouldn't get anything embroidered for us just yet! :)


Daddy Daughter Day

Ada had her 6 month ENT consulation to check up on her tubes today- Casey took the day off to take her in (I need to save as many days as possible for maternity leave- I currently have enough to cover one whopping week of leave, so we're trying not to deplete that any more than necessary!!)... and they ended up having an amazing Daddy-Daughter day! He's such a good dad, and Ada and I are so lucky to have him!

Here are a few pictures he sent me via picture mail of their afternoon at the zoo. :)


Terrible Two Cure?

Ada is a precious girl- she doesn't like to disappoint anyone, doesn't like to be in trouble, especially doesn't like time out, and just has much more fun when we all get along. :) However, mornings for us were becoming a NIGHTMARE. None of us want to wake up at 5 and leave the house at 6- but a 2 year old just doesn't know how to express those emotions wihtout being a total hellion. It was a struggle almost 4 out of 5 weekdays. It ruined our days, and it was beginning to taint our afternoons, too.

SO, I decided to try a new approach. I let her sleep until 15 minutes before we need to leave. I turn on her lullabies and soft lamp, and tickle her back until she wakes up. We get up, gather her blankie and whatever lovie she wants to take on the car ride, brush her teeth, make a cup of chocolate milk to go, and hit the road. Notice I did not say get dressed! And it's been a MIRACLE. She's so good the rest of the time, I decided to let her win this battle. And it was the best decision I've ever made as a mother! By the time we get to school, she's awake, excited about the day, and ready to get dressed and inside to eat breakfast with her friends!

Before school: in her jammies drinking her chocolate milk.
In the school parking lot: dressed and ready to go!
Speaking of school (Kids-R-Kids), Ada is still LOVING IT. Her teachers said she came out of her shy girl shell about Wednesday of last week and hasn't looked back! They love her as much as the girls at Tigerland did, which was the main reason were keeping her there in the first place! They also comment on how incredibly smart she is- which I totally already knew, but it's nice to hear it from an outside source from time to time! :) Love that girl!


Gig 'Em, Aggies!

Ada (pointing to and reading the letters on my t-shirt): "A. T. M."
Me: "Yes- it's an Aggie t-shirt."
Ada: "GIG 'EM, AGGIES!" (and instead of giving a thumbs up, she makes a pirate-hook-like motion with her pointer finger)

This cracked us up! As much as we love our A&M, we don't really pound it into our child(ren)- it's probably been weeks since we taught her that phrase! I think we have a future Aggie in our house....

What a Weekend!

We had an AWESOME weekend around here at The Dowell house! Here it goes:

I've had a few fuzzy ideas about what I wanted to do with Dax's safari room since I bought his bedding a few months ago (http://thedailydowell.blogspot.com/2010/10/18-weeks-preggo.html), and honestly that DRIVES me insane to have a creative idea just laying dormant in my head. I've been itching to get my left hand moving and right-side of my brain working. :) Which I FINALLY found some time to do Saturday and Sunday- and here are the finished products! They are still taking up the entire garage getting nice and dry, so I'll post pictures of them in his room soon:

I am really happy with the canvas behind the letters (which if you know me, you know is uncommon- I am RARELY happy with anything I paint!) - I might paint another and leave it plain for somewhere else in the house.
I found these animals as templates at Hobby Lobby! So painted them up, glued them to canvases (with a big D-A-X on them), and oila! Actually it wasn't that easy- the lion's face and the elephant's tusks just about killed me. In fact, the tusks are still awful! The giraffe is my fave.
Then, we had a slumber party at MiMi's! We went to dinner with The Schilhabs (love them!), and Ada will probably stay with MiMi a day or two when Dax is born, so we thought we'd go for a test run. She had a blast (of course), and got to put her Rapunzel SUITCASE to use! :)
Walking up to MiMi's door:
Earlier in the day- rolling the Rapunzel suitcase everywhere. This is at Lowe's, and later on to the Sprint store.
Speaking of the Sprint store, I got a new phone! I had some birthday money burning a hole in my wallet- and I'd been watching this one for a while waiting for the price to come down! So, here it is, in all its glory. The HTC Evo- it's AMAZING and I LOVE IT and now Casey is going to get one, I think!

And the best part of the weekend is.... it's not over yet! Ada and I get a three-day weekend for MLK Day!


Ada's New-and-Improved Big Girl Bed!

Grams and PaPa offered to buy Ada a bigger, better big girl bed that could last her much longer than her current "big girl bed" (which is essentially just another crib I purchased when I re-did her room, and used as a toddler bed instead of a full crib). I knew I was dead set on a daybed (her room now is not huge, nor will it be in future homes, probably)- and I always thought they were "cool" when I was younger (ok, even in High School) because they were kind of like your own sofa in your room! This one has a trundle for when guests spend the night (ie: MiMi, MorMor, future little girl friends!)- and I will probably pee my pants the day it arrives! I LOVE IT! I'll post more pictures when it's assembled in her room, I'm sure. :) Thanks AGAIN, Grams and PaPa!


Cotton Bowl 2011

Grams and PaPa surprised with Cotton Bowl tickets to watch our Ags play LSU! And MorMor was sweet enough to volunteer to watch Ada for Friday and Saturday so we could make a mini-vacation out of it. Even though the Aggies didn't end up pulling off a win, we still had an amazing time!! The Cowboys Stadium is MIND BLOWING, our seats were INCREDIBLE, and road trips with Casey are one of my top favorite things in life! :)

We ran into The Schilhab's at Buccee's in Madisonville! So we caravanned with our matching Aggie flags flying the rest of the way to Dallas- along with a MILLION others!
Casey's becoming quite the tailgate connoisseur- in addition to our usual bacon wrapped-cream cheese stuffed-jalapenos and burgers, he made the most perfectly seasoned, perfectly cooked Lamb (it was half-off at Randall's, so he felt compelled to buy it, ha!)- I'm not usually a meat-girl, but even I was impressed. So I took a picture of it:
Casey and Brent, watching the meat:
The boys, posing for some random lady taking pictures of all of the tailgaters:
The Guys (Casey, Brent, Derek, Blake, and Lane):
The guys, again:
Look at that sunset!
Hullaballoo, Canek Canek!
The Ags on the mega-huge, super-ridiculous Cowboy's stadium big screen:
I was obsessed with the big screen- and this view of the stadium wasn't shabby:
Reveille on the big screen:
The Ags in action:
Thank you Grams and PaPa and MorMor!!! We love y'all!!!