Monday, June 30, 2014

Short Hair, Don't Care

It's officially summer..

..I chopped off my hair!
My cut is an A-Line Bob (I have a random line on my neck that's sole purpose is a haircut reference point--I always have it cut to there).
I'm not a hair person whatsoever.

I can't use a curling iron, I don't own a curling iron, I can't do an up do (besides my sweet signature side ponytail), etc.

With that being said, I always opt for the easy, blow dry and go styles.

This happens twice a year; once in January and once in the summer.

Last year, I made it to late August.

This year, June.

Anyway, I'm loving my new do and am enjoying the fact that it's too short to really style.

Short hair.. really don't care!

Friday, June 27, 2014

Jackson's 1st Haircut

ICYMI: Here's Part 1 (The Great Tornado of 2014), Part 2 (Les Mis(souri) and the Prettiest Wedding Ever), and Part 3 (Handsome Branson) of our vacation.

We left Branson early Wednesday morning and headed west to visit family and to get Jackson's first haircut! As expected, the 4 hour drive from Branson to SE Kansas turned into 5 1/2 hours.. but we made it and the world was good. Shortly after arriving at my Uncle Denny & Aunt Jean's house, we headed to my uncle's barber shop for Jax's first trim.
(Before) My 5 1/2  month old's post bath hair.
My Uncle Denny has been a barber for over 45 years and does all the kids' first haircuts--I'm so glad that he was able to do Jax's, too!
Audience :)
"Whatcha trying to do, Great Uncle Denny?"

Jackson was perfect (see videos below). 

He didn't flinch. 

He didn't cry. 

He just happily sat there and looked around. 

I've been told by multiple sources that I cried and screamed through my entire first haircut.. I'm so glad that Jax takes more after his dad than he does me! 
Same barber, same shop.
Jackson with his Great Aunt Jean & Grammy.
Cousin Evelyn is so fun!!
One interesting comment that my uncle made about Jackson's hair is that he has the worst crowns he's seen in his 45 years behind the chair (he has two gnarly, side-by-side crowns on the top of his head). However, it sounds like its a fairly easy fix; he just needs to either wear his hair longer or really short.

Leave it to Brandon (with his thick, full head of hair) and me (with my fine, limp, and wavy in all the wrong places hair) to create a baby with mutant hair.

Short (& Sweet) Videos:

After Jackson's haircut: 
  • My uncle trimmed both Brandon's and Joey's hair.
  • We met my cousin Vici and her boyfriend back at the house and visited before heading to dinner.
  • Dinner at a delicious fried chicken restaurant.
  • Back to the house for more visiting and marbles (which I slept through--Jax and I were spent!). 
  • Slept like babies. 
  • Bid my parents and brother farewell as they headed home.
  • Ate breakfast, visited with Aunt Jean, and played with Jax.
  • Hit the road for our next adventure.
We had a wonderful visit with my Aunt, Uncle, and cousins but the time went by waaaaay too quickly. Mom, Jax, and I are planning another trip to KS later this summer to visit everyone again so I'm looking forward to seeing them and other members of the family. 

Have a fab weekend, y'all! See ya back here on Monday!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Handsome Branson

ICYMI: Here's Part 1 (The Great Tornado of 2014) and Part 2 (Les Mis(souri) and the Prettiest Wedding Ever) of our vacation.

Mom, Dad, Joey, Brandon, Jax, and I left St. Louis late Sunday morning after sleeping in, enjoying another delicious hotel breakfast, and repacking basically everything we own (see picture here). Since Turin and Peter's gorgeous wedding was only a few days before my parent's 25th wedding anniversary, we decided to caravan down to Branson to celebrate for a few days.

Bullet points and pictures commence!

  • After leaving St. Louis (and before heading to Branson), we made a stop in my Grandma Mitz's hometown of Linn, Missouri. My dad has a book about the history of Linn so we stopped at the Catholic Church (which had been torn down and rebuilt in recent years), cemetery, second cemetery (where we actually found family!), and then to Dave's Pizza & Wings for a delicious pizza lunch. 
  • Back on the road for what seemed like 10 hours (having to stop numerous times for a baby makes the trip soooooo much longer). 
  • Grocery stop in Springfield.
  • Checked in to our gorgeous condos (my parents & brother stayed in one and we stayed in another) and rested for a few minutes. 
  • Dinner at Starvin Marvin's--our favorite place in Branson!
  • Back to the condos for showers and sleep. 
A tribute to the unborn (at the Catholic church in Linn)--very powerful!
My Grandma Mitz's maiden name was Lock and her mother's maiden name was Hundepohl.. soooo, we're guessing the Hundepohl grave was her (my grandma's mom) parents. **Confusing much?** We're going to do some digging to find out if we're related to these Lock's in the Linn cemetery.
Our fabulous condo! My parent's was the same, just on a different floor.
All four of my guys at Starvin Marvin's--they have the best all you can eat seafood buffet and we go there every time we're in town. Yum!

  • Slept in and ate a small breakfast at our condo.
  • Lunch with the family at Steak and Shake.
  • Brandon, Joey, Jax, and I went to Ripley's Believe It or Not, waited in line for over 20 minutes, and then walked out when we were told the price of admission (we're very cheap).. so we went back to the condo and took naps. 
  • Shopping at our favorite area, The Grand Village, and dinner at Mel's Hard Luck Cafe (where Jackson managed to have the biggest blowout EVER). 
  • Long walk with my mom and Jax.
  • Visiting at my parent's condo. 
(If you follow my Facebook page, you've already heard this story so bear with me) The sweet waitress at Steak and Shake brought us a few little souvenirs for Jackson, including a paper hat--I immediately put the hat on him and got out my camera to snap a picture but he wouldn't smile. I finally got him to smile, snapped the picture, and then realized that I didn't even get the freaking hat in the picture!
Christmas store!! We bought a few Sesame Street ornaments for Jax :)
Tuesday (Parent's 25th Anniversary)
  • Breakfast in our room (Brandon made a beautiful breakfast for the whole family, complete with yummy Mimosas!). 
  • More shopping for the girls & Jax; movie for the guys. 
  • Dinner, show, & cruise on the Branson Belle--the "kids" anniversary gift to mom and dad!
  • Shopping and ice cream at the Branson Landing. 
  • More visiting at my parent's condo. 
Mmm breakfast foods..
Dinner on the Belle.
My beautiful family!
Jackson began fussing during the show so I took him to the (dark) back of the boat to nurse him--I could still see the show just fine and Jax fell asleep!
He laughed and smiled the whole time we walked the Landing--gosh I love this boy!!
My "little" brother, Joey.
The man on the right has the most honest face I have ever seen..
We had such a fun time in Branson and I think my parent's really enjoyed their anniversary--I'm so excited for our next big family vacation (wherever/whenever that may be)! 

Have you ever been to Branson? What are your favorite things to do there?

**Come back on Friday for Part 4 (Jackson's 1st Haircut) of this epic vacation saga**

Monday, June 23, 2014

Jackson's 6 Month Update!

I know I say this every single month but..

..I can't believe how quickly this month has gone! We've been go, go, go since May 22nd and here we are with a 6-month-old baby! I can't believe how much our little guy has learned and grown this month--we are really enjoying this stage he's in right now (rolling over from back to front, grabbing everything, excitedly watching the world around him, etc.)!

Jackson is such a smart, sweet, and FUNNY little guy--I never knew somebody so small could have so much personality! Jax is such a joy and I thank God every day for giving him to us.

Here's what Jax has been up to this month:

Weight: 16 lbs 4 oz. (25%)

Length: 27 3/4 inches (76%)

Nicknames: Jax, Jack, Stinker, Cheeks, Kiddo, Pumpkin/Punkin (both his Grammy & Nana call him that), Bubbas, Jacksie, Jackie, Bubs, Buddy

Wearing: Mostly 6-9 month, size 3 diapers.

Sleep: Great! We're still co-sleeping so he sleeps a good 12 hours a night, plus a 2 hour nap every afternoon. We're going to start crib training for real this time after we get him a new crib (the bars on the crib we have now are far apart so his arm falls out and he gets stuck and panics every time he rolls over onto his stomach).

Jax likes: Bitsy, other babies, his cousins, kicking, grabbing everything, books, tummy time mat, rolling over, teething rings/keys, being interacted with, songs, jabbering, mommy's red pillow.

Jax dislikes: Not being able to crawl (more on that in a sec), being in his car seat for too long, hitting his head when he tries rolling from stomach to back, rice cereal.

Mom & Dad's Favorite Things: How funny & curious he is, his big personality, his sweet smile & laugh, watching him discover the world around him, showing him off to family & friends.

Teeth: He has a few white bumps on his lower gums but I'm not sure if they're teeth or something else.. he sure acts like he's teething (extra fussy on some days, gnaws on everything, drooling nonstop)!

Happenings: Auntie Jen's going away party; first food (rice cereal); first cold; first tornado; first road trip, meeting Aunt Judy, Uncle George, Uncle Denny, Aunt Jean, and several cousins; first wedding; visiting St. Louis; first time swimming; visiting Great Grandma Mitz's hometown; Grammy & Papa's 25th wedding anniversary in Branson; first haircut; visiting Nana & Russell at their new house; fun with Aunt Britney & cousins; playing with baby friends in Hays; meeting mommy's cousin Julie; and Gabby's graduation.

~Jax was SUCH a trooper during our vacation and smiled the entire time! We weren't sure how he was going to be in a new environment with new people but he was his happy & sweet self--even without his regular nap/sleep schedule! It was the perfect first vacation for our little family of 3. 

~We've been going through a major daddy phase this month--Jax loves Brandon (which melts this mamma's heart)! He whines for a bit when Brandon leaves for work in the morning, constantly checks his spot on the couch to see if he's sitting there, and just beams every night when we meet Brandon at the door. They are too cute together!!

~We gave Jax his first food (rice cereal) a few days after his 5 month birthday.. as you can see from the video, he wasn't a fan so I didn't push it and we haven't tried it again since. I know I need to have a happier attitude about it ("Mmm, yummy rice cereal, Jax!") but I personally thought 5 months was still too young for solids. Now that he's 6 months, I think he's more ready so we'll start again with the rice cereal and work our way up to pureed veggies. 

~As previously mentioned, Jax got into the pool for his first time last month! The water was pretty cold so I wasn't planning to spend much time in it but it didn't seem to phase him one bit! He loved watching all of the other kids swim, play, and splash around. We live in a nice apartment complex with a great outdoor pool so I'm looking forward to getting in there with him during these hot summer days! 

~My 5-month-old had his first haircut a few weeks ago by his Great Uncle Denny (as you can see above, he NEEDED it)! I'll be writing an entire post about his first haircut so I won't go into too much detail now, but I will say that he was awesome.

~We discovered this month that Jackson loves to be around other babies/kids! Now that I know this, I'm going to make sure we get to play dates at least once a week to socialize! Once again, I'll elaborate more later.. it's worth it's own post!

~Remember when I talked about how frustrated Jax would get by not being able to roll over? Now he can! He has totally mastered it and is so proud of himself! His new frustration? Not being able to crawl. We went to my cousin's graduation party on Saturday and there was a 9-month-old there who was crawling all over the place--you could tell Jax wanted to follow him so badly but couldn't so he just stared and whimpered.. poor guy! It won't be too long for him though.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Les Mis(souri) & the Prettiest Wedding Ever

ICYMI: Here is Part 1 of our vacation (The Great Tornado of 2014).

Our alarms went off far too early Thursday morning.. after a good 3 1/2 hours of sleep, we were all up and getting ready to head to my Aunt Judy's house (the halfway mark to St. Louis and first stop of the road trip). Brandon's and my hope was that little Jackson would sleep the first 3 hours of the trip--well you know what they say about the best laid plans..

Bring on the bullet points and pictures.
  • We drove a whopping hour before having to pull over so I could nurse Jax.
  • Made it to Hays (which is where we hoped Jax would sleep to), went to close our old bank account, waited over a half hour for somebody to help us, (I) walked around with Jax, got frustrated & left, grabbed Arby's, and hopped back on the road. 
  • Stopped in Salina to try closing our bank account again (there was another branch there)--waited only 10 minutes this time and got it closed. 
  • Arrived at Aunt Judy & Uncle George's and chilled on the porch while we waited for the electricity to return (remember that little storm I mentioned? Yeah, they got it too). 
  • Cheered and clapped when the electric guy came out to turn it back on.
  • Dinner, visiting, and lots of laughing. 
  • Jax's first sink bath!
    The best part of long road trips? Naps.
    Jackson and his Great Aunt Judy hit it off from the get-go!
    Aunt Judy's is one of my favorite places in the whole world.
    Aunt Judy, Jax, and Grammy (formerly known as Mimi--we're over it)
    Spoiled baby :)
  • Another early wake-up call followed by goodbyes. 
  • McDonalds stop in Kansas City. 
  • Witnessed a drug transaction during a gas stop in Columbia, MO (the home of Brandon's beloved Mizzou.. ha). 
  • Listened to Jackson scream bloody murder from the back seat during the final hour of the trip (we had to be in St. Louis for my friend's wedding rehearsal and were already cutting it close).
  • Checked in to our beautiful hotel room, got ready, and let Jackson kick and play for about an hour.
  • Wedding rehearsal/dinner for one of my dearest friends (and Jax's godmother), Turin. 
  • Jackson's first time swimming! 
  • Early to bed. 
Twizzlers: the official snack of any Annie road trip.
My boys in the room (we were greeted with beautiful goodie bags put together by mother-of-the-bride, Auntie Sharon).
I literally gasped when we walked into the church--it was breathtaking!!
Rehearsal dinner with Brandon, my mom, and our friends, the Porters (by the way, Nicole is crazy talented and makes the most beautiful signs and home decor--you MUST check out her shop! She designed amazing signs, favor bags, and centerpieces for the wedding).
The beautiful bride (center) and her maids.
Jackson has such a sweet and pretty god mamma!
Jax's first time in the pool! He didn't mind it too much--he enjoyed watching the other kids play.
  • Slept in (it was fabulous!) and enjoyed the hotel's yummy all you can eat breakfast.
  • Took Jackson to hang out with the girls in Turin's hotel room. 
  • Went to the salon and had my first ever blow out and makeover. 
  • Headed to the church with the girls for pictures/to get ready. 
  • Witnessed the beautiful wedding of Turin and Peter O'Brien. 
  • Danced, drank champagne, and ate delicious cake at the reception.
  • Headed back to the hotel at 11:30pm and crashed.
Tough life, kid.
During the blowout (before the makeover)..
..and after... I'm not a big makeup wearer and felt like Bette Davis in "Whatever Happened to Baby Jane."
I cried when I saw Turin in her dress for the first time--stunning!!
Turin and her dad, Ross.
The DJ began talking right as we were snapping this pic.. hence the big eyes.
The O'Briens!
First dance.
The centerpieces were so pretty! The wheat was from Turin's family farm and the breadboards had both the Hansen's & O'Brien's brand printed on them.
You two look great with a baby.. *hint hint*
Circa 2007, 2013, & 2014
The wedding was gorgeous (I felt like I was in a Pinterest board the entire time!), the bride & groom were perfect, and the company was fabulous.. all the makings of a perfect wedding! 

Our time in St. Louis was way too short but we made so many memories that we will cherish forever. Thank you to Turin & Peter for including us in your special day--you two are perfect for each other and I can't wait to see what God has in store for you two!

Have a great weekend, everyone! I'll be back on Monday with Baby Jax's 6 month update!!
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