Monday, March 31, 2014

All Aboard!

Saturday morning we got to take Eva on her first train ride! A friend passed along tickets to Grapevine's Day with Thomas the Tank Engine and part of that included a ride with Thomas on the Grapevine Historic Railroad.
We kept this surprise a secret from Eva until right before we did it. There is truly something wonderful about knowing that you have a great big surprise that you are about to bless your child with that is about to light up their world. As we were driving to Grapevine I kept thinking about how I LOVE blessing Eva with good surprises, and how I feel like God is the same way with us. I think that as our Father, God must take such delight in working in our lives in ways that He knows will surprise and bless us. I sure hope God has some great surprises planned for my life!

When we had almost arrived in Grapevine Eva suddenly pipes up, "Ride choo-choo?" from the backseat. Umm, what?!?! How did she figure this out??? We had been careful to spell the word T-R-A-I-N and its not like she knew that the train was that way or anything. We played it off like we might get to ride a train one day but still didn't tell her what was going to happen. Then when we were standing in line and the train pulled up we said, "SURPRISE!!! You get to ride a train TODAY!" She was pretty excited :)
Her first real ride! We've ridden those dinky 4 car "trains" that they have at community celebrations but nothing they are nothing like this.
As the ride took off we kept talking about what we would see and how exciting everything was. I was also thankful that the train was heated because it was a chilly morning.
 "Yyyoook, Daddy!" She liked to point out things she saw out the window. I think her favorite was the random trash pile in the woods along with way. Go figure. The train ride took you through Grapevine, out east towards George Bush highway and then back to the station.
After the ride there were lots of fun activities for the kids to do. She got a Thomas tattoo on her hand that is still there 3 days later.  
They had a petting zoo. Since we had just been to a petting zoo in Fort Worth the day before I wasn't sure how excited she would be but she really liked it. This time she could actually be in the fenced in area with the animals. 
The train table area had lots of tracks with different trains for kids to play with. There is no room in my house for a train table, but they are fun! 
Bubbles! What kids isn't enthralled with these? Who cares that we have them on our back porch all the time? These are special bubbles because there are other kids there to enjoy them with you. 
"Bye Thomas! Bye choo-choo!" As soon as we left and were back to the car she told us that she wanted to ride again. Haha, maybe one day sweet girl.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Fort Worth Stock Yards

This morning we took a much needed family day and headed out to the Fort Worth Stock Yards. It was Eva's first trip to Cowtown so we wanted to teach her what being a Texan is really about.
Our first stop was the petting zoo. Eva really liked the camel. The camel was a big fan of Eva. Every time his big tongue licked her hand she giggled in delight.
They also had lots of sheep and goats and other small animals. I was hoping they would have a pony or cow but they didn't. 
Doesn't it look like this llama knows to pose for a picture? We need to train Eva to pose this well!
As we walked around we did find an actual longhorn for Eva to sit on. Could this cow BE any more excited to have a two year old on his back? 
 And we got to pet a horse and see a real cowboy!
We picked a beautiful day to be outdoors - perfect slightly cloudy weather. I love spring.
We got to see the cattle round up right before lunch. I thought this was going to be like 100 cows and it was maybe 20......I guess the wild west isn't quite what it used to be.
Yee-haw! Let's be honest, her favorite thing in the world is to ride these silly animated rides. Lucky for her I had 3 quarters in my purse. Note to grandma's: a few quarters hidden inside of Easter eggs would be thrilling for Eva.
I love our little cowgirl and am thankful for a little family morning.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

2 1/2 Years Old

Dear Eva Kate,
Saturday was your half birthday - you are 2 1/2 now! Or as your Daddy said, half way to 5! (SLOW DOWN there.) I haven't written you in so long so I'm excited to update everything for you.

Right now your favorite things to do are coloring, painting, dancing, running, playing with your babies/animals and blankets.. Your coloring and painting has gotten pretty awesome - lots of circles and lines. You like to "shake what your mama gave you" when we put on the song Single Ladies by Beyonce. You can run next to me for 5-10 minutes straight while I walk (and push the stroller that you prefer not to ride in.) You have developed a sweet, loving connection to all your little stuffed animals.
Our growing girl....right now you are 33 1/2 inches tall and 24 pounds. You wear 18 months/24 months/ 2T clothes (depending on what it is) and a size 6 shoe. You have tons of personality to make up for that tiny frame!

You are talking in full sentences. You know about half of the alphabet letters and are learning to count to 10. Your favorite movies right now are The Little Mermaid and Beauty and the Beast, although we don't watch the scary parts so each movie can be viewed in about 30 minutes. You love to listen to music from theses movies and Frozen when we are driving in the car. You are easily motivated by M&Ms. You have an odd fascination with snakes (eww). You like to jump around with both feet off the floor like a beautiful frog whenever you are happy about something. You can spot the tiniest piece of dirt or fuzz or a dead bug on the floor. You like to dig in the dirt more than you like to be a princess. You absolutely love any baby and enjoy playing with your friends from church, MOPS, and cousin Mallory (or Waddy as you call her).  You like reading books and listening to Bible stories. You are in the "I can do it" stage and love to do things on your own....sometimes this makes life easier, sometimes it make life messier! You like to pick out your own snacks from the fridge, get out your pjs at night, and climb in your car seat all by yourself. This takes some patience on our part, but it is so sweet to see you feel so proud of yourself!
Some people call this time the "terrible twos." I would not say terrible. There are difficult days when you push the boundaries, don't sleep, refuse food, cry over small things, or require us to chase you down at the grocery store. But all that is NOTHING compared to how much we enjoy you. Getting to see how smart and funny and loving you are becoming each day is so awesome! I am thankful every day to have you as my mini-shadow and to hear your tiny little voice talking to me all the time. Being your mama is wonderful and I love you more than you will ever know, even on the hard days. Some days I wish I could bottle you up and keep you 2 years old forever.