Tuesday, December 9, 2008

What you won't be seeing on our Christmas card...

My mom made the boys' Christmas outfits and they weren't yet monogrammed when we took this picture, so they ended up looking like miserable and/or drunk clowns. Not really the look I'm going for this year!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Pray for Mike

Please pray for Mike Reed - this latest round of chemo has left him with a serious infection and he's in the ICU in Montgomery. His wife, April, is one of my very best friends from high school and they're expecting their first baby, little Trent, next month. Visit his CaringBridge site for more details.

Friday, November 14, 2008


A Weekend with the Rays

The Rays came to visit last weekend and we had a fantastic time! Although with nine people under one roof, and 5 of them 3 and under, our time together wasn't exactly peaceful or quiet...but we wouldn't have it any other way! For those of you wondering logistically how we all slept, Mark and Parker were in the playroom, Jennie and Maryn were in Ford's room, Emma was in Luke's room, Ford was in our closet, and Luke was in the laundry room!

The scene in the living room...bodies and babies everywhere!

My absolutely adorable nephew and nieces!

These two got their first taste of something besides milk...yum!

And the babies, one week apart, side by side. Emma is a lot longer than she looks in the picture:)
We can't wait to see you in 2 weeks for Thanksgiving! It's going to be CRAZY, but there's nothing I'm more thankful for than the people in these pictures. Deep friendships, healthy babies, and incredible memories made every time we're together.

Monday, November 3, 2008

the birthday party

a HUGE thanks to everyone who made ford's birthday so special! we had a fantastic time at his "things that go" party. my parents were kind enough to let us have it in their backyard. the weather was perfect, and other than ford deciding since he was now '2' he didn't need a nap, it went off without a hitch! it was really incredible to see ford surrounded by these precious children that he'll grow up with...lifelong friendships in the making! we are so blessed to live in a place with so many amazing families with young children! as you can tell from the pictures, the yard was taken over by cars, trucks, trains and children!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

FORD is 2!!!!

Many, many, many more pictures to follow tomorrow, but I had to post one of my sweet little baby boy on his 2nd birthday! Happy birthday, buddy! You are the biggest blessing! We love you dearly!

Sunday, October 26, 2008


We had a weekend full of birthday parties, Jo's bank's Family Fun Day, and a Halloween party this afternoon with about a bazillion kiddos in oh-so-cute costumes! The boys went as a football player and a tiger (thanks William for the costume)!
A rare picture of Mama with her boys!
This picture is for my mom ~ I know everyone thinks Luke looks like Joseph, but there is a baby picture of me that is IDENTICAL to this one that Joseph took of Luke tonight. I tried to find it and couldn't, so Granny, you need to be on the lookout! I need proof!

Happy Birthday to Maryn!

Happy Birthday to the sweetest little girl I know! Your Aunt Say sure does love you! I can't wait to see you in 2 weeks! I hope you had fun at your birthday party ~ hopefully we'll be there next year!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

School Pictures

Doesn't he look like such a big boy? I definitely teared up when I saw these for the first time!

Monday, October 20, 2008

My Boys

I could eat this one up with a spoon!

Ford loves to sit in the Bumbo and immediately yell, "I'm stuck!" I can't believe he'll be 2 in less than 2 weeks!

Bed Head

Sweeter than Sugar - he smiles ALL the time!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Kathleen Elizabeth

Shealy and Clayton are having a GIRL!!! She's perfectly healthy and she's a girl!!!!!!!! Can you tell I'm a little excited? She will be named after both of her grandmothers; my mom is slightly overjoyed to not only have a little girl to sew and smock for but to also have a namesake. Pretty special! Kathleen (or Kate - they haven't decided what to call her) and Luke will be in the same grade ~ how fun is that! The first thing Clayton said when they told us was "Luke, you're now my eyes and ears!" This little girl is going to be rotten to the core - her favorite (only) aunt and granny will make sure of that! Congratulations, Bug and Clayton. Your little girl sure is blessed to have the two of you. Know she is prayed for constantly! Love you!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Let me just tell you...

how excited I am about having an entire weekend alone with my husband! Well, not exactly alone, since we'll be hanging out with his entire graduating class (almost all 48 of them) and listening to Drew tell his favorite Joseph stories, number one being the one where Joseph's mom was the one to tell him that a girl broke up with him:) I've heard all the stories a million times, but there's nothing like seeing Joseph with his childhood friends ~ they love to tease but they would all still be there for one another in the blink of an eye! Shealy and Clayton are taking care of Ford and my parents have Luke, so my boys will be well taken care of. Thank you sweet family for making this weekend possible! We owe you BIG time!!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

As close to a "vacation" as you can get with 2 kids...

We had the best time at the beach this past weekend! My dad recently bought a condo in Laketown Wharf, a new development in Panama City. It is the most kid-friendly place I have ever seen! A zero-entry pool (or zero gravity as my parents kept calling it), a kiddie pool with tons of water features, a nightly "liquid fireworks" show...the list goes on and on. The elevators are glass and have a view of two of the five pools, and everytime we'd ride one, Ford would shout "My POOOOOL!" He was in heaven! There was a lake that had a bazillion turtles, which just so happen to be one of his favorite animals. And he had the almost undivided attention of 6 of his favorite people - pretty much the best weekend of his life!

Luke was a total angel the whole time we were there - happy as could be to lay on a blanket and watch the ceiling fan for hours. Both boys slept in bathrooms ~ and they slept HARD! Shealy and Clayton were a huge help with the boys and got in lots of good practice for Baby Mac. My parents absolutely adore their grandchildren, so I think a good time was had by all. Although I will never again go on a trip with my dad during an Auburn game...let's just say it put a bit of a damper on the Saturday night festivities!

Here are some pictures...if you're ever interested in renting a fantastic 3 bedroom condo, let me know!

Sliding with Daddy

Baby Mac's first appearance on the blog! We find out next Wednesday if it's a boy or a girl!

Ford "posing" ~ he kind of likes to be the center of attention! Wonder where he gets that from?

Ford loves his Aunt Bug and Uncle Clayton

See this little boy? He's totally stolen my heart. He's got a dimple in his left chin, and when he smiles, I pretty much melt into a big gooey puddle. He's going to break some hearts one day, and I have a feeling mine will be the first!

Not the greatest family photo ~ unfortunately it's the best one out of about 33! And it was obviously dinner time!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

My little tigers

We had another great football-filled weekend! One of my favorite things about living in Auburn is we are almost guaranteed to have friends stay with us every home football game. Last weekend it was Wes, Allyson and baby Harper, and this weekend we had Brent, Ashley, Abby and baby Collins! I love it!
We took the boys tailgating for the first time this year and they were amazing! Ford and Abby loved all the activity - corn hole with the daddies, lots of fun snacks, and a rousing game of beer pong at the tailgate next to us to cheer for! Luke was his typical laid-back self, and his aunt Lenzie was there to be an extra set of hands when he got tired of the stroller. We had planned to walk around and see other people, but Ford was having such a great time we just stayed put! We headed home for naps and watched the game with the Muncies ~ all in all a perfect day!
We're heading to the beach this weekend with my family. The boys and I are going with my parents tomorrow afternoon, and Joseph, Shealy and Clayton are coming after work on Friday. It's the first Melton family vacation we've taken in a long time ~ since before Ford was born! The car ride should be interesting...me between 2 carseats in the back of my dad's truck might make for a long ride. The portable DVD player is charging as I write this, so I'm sure we'll watch a whole lot of Mickey!
Oh, Luke slept from 8:30 - 7! Praise the dear sweet Lord! We made the tough decision to let him cry it out Sunday night. It was AWFUL!!! Babywise says you should let them cry for up to 45 minutes 3 nights in a row to break the habit, so that was our plan - 45 minutes of pure torture. I lay there with a death grip on the sheets, sweating, heart racing, watching each minute tick off the clock. Joseph rolled over at around minute 37 - "Oh, is Luke awake?" WHAT???? How do you not hear that piercing cry that shakes my very soul? Are all men like that? Anyway, at exactly minute 44, the crying stopped and he slept until 7. So I was geared up for another round of Torture Mommy last night but he slept straight through! It definitely makes those 44 minutes of HELL well worth it! And we had turned Ford's sound machine up a few notches so he didn't hear a thing. Hopefully tonight will be another good one!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Joseph is 29!!

Happy birthday to my dear sweet husband! I wish I had time for a long post detailing the billions of reasons I love this birthday boy, but both boys are waking up from naps and duty calls! I love you, honey!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

current faves

In no particular order...

1. Babytrend double jogging stroller - this makes me want to go walking in the mornings! I LOVE it and highly recommend it! Luke has been in it since he was about 3 weeks old, I just put a rolled blanket around his head for a little extra support. I don't use it as my everyday stroller because it's quite large in the back of my car, but it's a must if you plan to lose that baby weight by walking or running with the kiddos!
2. Fiberone Oats & Chocolate Bars - my perfect snack! I'm hungry ALL the time due to nursing, and these are almost as good as a Snickers...almost:)

3. Babywise - I know this book is controversial, but I tell you what, it has saved my sanity! We used it with Ford from the beginning, but with Luke's early entry into the world I kept putting it off. I started my version of baby boot camp this week and it's been fabulous! He's taking 2 2-hour naps and 1 1-hour nap consistently everyday like clockwork! He's still waking up once in the night, but he's not at 12 pounds yet and Jennie tells me that's the magic number. Since she's the best (and most experienced) mom I know, I tend to take her word on just about everything!
4. Peanut Shell Sling - a must for for #2. I can get so much done - be it laundry, dishes, or playing outside with Ford - while Luke just chills in the sling. We take a walk around the neighborhood most afternoons while waiting for Joseph to get home from work and I use this to keep my hands free to grab Ford as he attempts to dart off the sidewalk every chance he gets!
I would like to point out that while that is my sling, that is neither me nor my child {I think my baby's cuter than that one - but I'm slightly biased}
5. Epidurals - have I mentioned there wasn't time for one of these with Luke? Man, oh man, it was not a pretty sight. I screamed just like the crazy women on tv do. And he was only 5-3!
6. Facebook - my latest addiction! As if I needed something else to fill up my time!
7. These little guys - 2 of my 3 most favorite people ever! Ford is loving school, loving his choo choos, and loving his little brother! And Luke just gets bigger by the minute! He's really long! He's in 3-6 month clothes now and some are already short in the stride and he's only 11 weeks old! Some days may be crazy around here, but I wouldn't trade a single second of it!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Controlled Chaos

We had a great weekend in Charlotte - for having 5 kids 3 and under, and 4 of them under 2, it was surprisingly easy! Ford had a cold (which he passed on to his momma) and was a little cranky, and Luke didn't sleep all that great at night, but all in all, the weekend was way more successful than I ever could have imagined! We even took all 5 kids to the mall to play on the indoor playground. Those Ray kids are as cute as they come! Parker is smart as a whip, and Maryn is an absolute doll. She is talking so much now and it gets me so excited for Ford to start talking more! She just loves on everyone, especially the babies. And Emma is precious...I thought she looked like Maryn, but now I think she looks more like Parker's baby pictures. I sure do love my nephew and nieces! It makes me really excited to find out what Shealy is
The first picture is of Ford and Maryn at around 3 months, and the second is Luke and Emma at 8 and 7 weeks! Maryn is 7 days older than Ford and Luke is 8 days older than Emma. Jennie keeps telling me I'm on my own next time around, but with kids as cute as hers, it would be a shame not to have another one! Thanks for a great visit, sweet family! November can't come soon enough!
And by the way, my littlest man is 2 months old today! It seems like he's always been with us! The one word I'd use to describe Luke is content. The child didn't make a peep in his car seat the entire 6 1/2 hours trip both ways. He's sleeping pretty well at night - sometimes he'll go 9:30 to 5, which is amazing considering his adjusted age is only 3 weeks! He weighed 10-11 at the doctor yesterday, which means he's more than doubled his birth weight! You always wonder if you'll love the second as much as the first - the answer is YES!!! He has my heart in a different way than Ford does. Ford's my little pistol, and Luke seems happy to sit back and watch. I wonder how long that will last! I adore my boys...we are blessed!
Last thing - a tip for all you moms out there: if you have to give your baby medicine, put it in the nipple of a bottle and let them suck it out. One of the nurses in the NICU taught me this trick and it worked like a charm this morning! I waited until Luke was hungry and he sucked that stuff down in record timing! I always worry about how much they're getting of an antibiotic and how much ends up being spit out, but this is a sure thing!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Back to School

Ford got his Back-to-School haircut tonight! Keys to Success: strapped down, watching Mickey, with a bowl of M&M's!! I'm not nearly as excited about tomorrow as I thought I'd be. We've had a great month - basically ever since my temper post, Ford has been the sweetest thing! We still have our moments, but he's been so affectionate and loving, and as long as I make sure to give him some one-on-one quality time, he's pretty precious! I'm going to miss the little man and our mornings together, but hopefully I'll be really busy with work and his little brother! It'll be nice to have some alone time with Luke!
We made it back to church this morning, and Ford walked right in his classroom like he owned the place! Going to school has been so good for him - I can't say enough great things about Parkway. Everytime we drive by, he gets so excited and shouts "SCHOOL"!! It is such an answered prayer - he used to cry the entire time at church every week and on Wednesday nights. I would wake up on Sunday mornings with a knot in my stomach - no fun! I guess that's one of the drawbacks of having family here. He never really had babysitters other than my parents and Shealy. Although I certainly wouldn't change that for anything!
Oh - notice Ford's knees in the picture - his first of many skinned knees! He fell at church Wednesday night running to the fountain. He cried for about .3 seconds and then was on the go again! He is ALL boy!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Good Practice

A little forshadowing...an engaged Clayton and Shealy holding baby Ford

I'm going to be an aunt (again!!) My little sister is having a baby! I am so excited for Shealy and Clayton - they are going to be amazing parents! It has been torture keeping this secret for the past 6 weeks - I've known about Baby Mac about 3 seconds after the stick showed a plus sign! So please pray for this little one, and also for the little mama - she's been pretty sick, and I can't imagine how tough it is to start a new school year feeling like you're going to have to stick your head in the trash can every 5 minutes! Not exactly the look you're going for with a bunch of 6th graders!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

He Woke Up

Sadly, this is the best picture we have of the two of them together...Ford doesn't exactly love to hold his little brother!

Luke has officially "woken up", as so many people warned me he would around his due date! He's still an angel baby - he'd sit in his papasan seat ALL day if his mother wouldn't suffer massive amounts of guilt for letting him - but he's definitely joined the land of the living. He's up twice in the night, usually for about 45 minutes a time, but luckily I have a fantastic husband who takes on one of these feedings so I just have to get up and pump. We're all a little sleep deprived - I can't say with 100% certainty that I brushed my teeth on Friday, but it could be a lot worse! Speaking of pumping, I've sadly stopped nursing and am just pumping. Luke is what we call a "lazy nurser"...he'd nurse for an hour a time and then want to repeat the process an hour later. Not exactly conducive to keeping up with a toddler! I thought maybe it was just a growth spurt, but after a week of this, we had to reevaluate the situation! I was spending half of the day sitting on the couch with a child attached to me while trying to entertain Ford, and it just wasn't working for anybody (except maybe Luke!) So now I'm exclusively pumping, which actually isn't nearly as bad as I thought it would be. Although everytime I turn it on, Ford yells "OFF" over and over again...but he's dealing!

Thanks Knox for letting me borrow all of your cute clothes! This is Mama's favorite!

And in a moment that will go down in Martin family history, Ford actually cleaned his plate for the first time ever on Saturday! He's finally decided to eat without fussing, screaming, cajoling, or bribery! It's amazing! I don't know how long it will last, but we're certainly enjoying it in the meantime!

He's also really gotten into trains and anything with wheels. Jennie got a bunch of Thomas stuff for him a few months ago, but we were saving it for when Luke came so he'd have something new to play with. He LOVES it! Although he can't quite understand why all his trucks can't fit on the track!
This is his new favorite spot - whenever Luke's not in it, he is!

And here they are together "playing" trains. Ford is actually very sweet with Luke, always patting him and giving him kisses, and he gets really upset if Luke is crying. And he's very good at sharing - the other day, Ford and I were sharing a cup of lemonade. He loves to drink out of real cups, so I just put a straw in everything and we're good to go. Well, I was flipping through a magazine, not paying 100% attention to the boys, and Ford took the cup over to Luke to "share" and dumped the entire contents on his sweet little head! Luke was shrieking, Ford ran and hid in his cabinet, and I couldn't stop laughing! Life with these two will never be dull!