7 posts categorized "Friends"


Rasing Her Up Right

My friend Jacque came over with her own bundle of joy, Hudson, who is now almost 20 weeks old.


The size difference between Anna and Hudson is pretty laughable. It makes sense since they are 10 weeks apart. Anna now weighs just a little over what Hudson did when he was born. So, to humor Jacque and myself we laid them side by side in Anna's pack-and-play and got a kick out of how different they are from each other.


But then Hudson made a move.


"Hey Anna. I like the rolls on your thigh."


"Your skin is pretty soft. Does your Mom use Johnson and Johnson's too?"


"You know, the kind in the yellow bottle?"

I don't think Anna was having any of it.


"Um, excuse me Hudson."

"But my Daddy said I can't touch boys until I'm at least 35."

Yep. Her Daddy is raising her up right!


Wanna-Be Maternity Photographer

My friend Jacque asked me to take some maternity pictures this morning. She is due in the next few weeks and getting preggo pics before she popped was a must!

Being able to become a mom is something she's always wanted, so capturing her pregnancy this way is something I know she'll treasure forever.


We headed to downtown Arlington, TX this morning--which is an up and coming area here in North Texas. It was a bit chilly (for Texas standards) but warmed up quickly.



"H" for James Hudson (but they are going with Hudson for his day-to-day name).


The morning light was pretty harsh, but we ended up finding some great lighting options under a performance pavilion across from City Hall.



We also took a few pictures at a historic site just a few blocks from the downtown area. This was a little too weird, but the homestead's original owner is actually named James Hudson Knapp. Strange coincidence!


It was so much fun and I'm happy with the way they've turned out, even if I'm just a wanna-be maternity photographer!


Baby Boom

I don't really have a lot of babies in my life. Out of my three sisters and Cody's two sisters, we will be the first to have a kiddo. Outside of my limited babysitting experiences in middle and high school, I am still pretty clueless about what it takes to take care of a baby (although Cody reassures me, and I know he is right, that by day 2 of having our daughter I will be a diaper changing pro).

But, with that said, my friends and I are going through a bit of a baby boom. I had never co-hosted a baby shower before, but that recently changed--and I know I'll be getting lots more practice in the upcoming months as all these little ones start to make their appearance.


Jacque is one of my closest friends and after being married for ten years, she will FINALLY be a mom to baby James Hudson in just a few weeks.

We had planned the shower pretty far in advance (six weeks or so) but it ended up being bad timing as Cody's grandma, Bonita, passed away the Thursday morning before. So, on the day of the shower, we had her funeral at 11am, a two hour drive home, and the shower at 3pm. Whew!


Jacque was so sweet and offered to reschedule, but my co-hosts pulled off an amazing feat and everything was set up and ready to go when I walked in my front door at 3:05pm.

It turned out so cute, and the food looked so good! Stacey, a friend who went to Africa last year with Jacque and I, made the adorable diaper cake. Again, I am a total baby shower novice and had never seen one of these before. I guess they are easy to make, or so rumor has it, but I was impressed.

(Love that she put the African animals on here to tie into our trip!)


Since my co-hosts had already rescued me from prep and set-up, it's not a surprise that Megan, who was in charge of games and prizes, totally kicked butt on the shower activities. I know any guys reading this won't agree, but the games were actually fun and not cheesy at all. (Note that Cody and Jacque's husband, Dace, were babysitting Spangler upstairs while this was going on . . . . They had some man activities planned, but the were cancelled because of Bonita's funeral so they just played xBox instead. I'm sure they got a kick out of listening to us.)

We had to figure out how many words we could come up with, just using the letters from "James Hudson." We then separated into two teams for game #2 where we picked an item off a given list and Jacque had to dig in a bag to try to find that particular item. Whatever team had the smallest cumulative amount of time, won.

(My team dominated this one.)

During the shower everyone was given a clothes pin to wear with either "baby" or "boy" on it. If you said the word and someone caught you, they'd get to take your clothes pin. Whoever had the most clothespins at the end of the shower, won.

(I did not dominate at this one at all. In fact, I think my clothes pin lasted about 2 minutes on my shirt before I said "boy.")


We opened gifts, which is always fun. Jacque's Mom made her a "J HUD" teddy bear and she got some way cute little man clothes.

What is cuter than a miniture old man argyle sweater?


I'm pretty sure she felt showered after surveying the goods, post shower . . .


And we had plenty of help, especially with Jacque's two nieces around. Ali, the oldest one, had her fair share of guidance when it came to how to open each gift.


After the guests had left I had to bust out the Gap jeans since we were all in baby mode.


And Spangler finally got to make his appearance.

He was just DYING having to stay upstairs while all these people and food were downstairs. Luckily, Jacque's nieces have a big dog at home so they had no trouble telling Spangler to "sit" over and over again. I'm just glad they didn't mind getting licked on the face over and over again by a 75 pound dog.

So, we have three more babies coming in the next six months ago, and hopefully another one coming shortly after that (ahem, Randy and Jace . . . hint hint).

Lots of babies. Lots of showers.


All Dressed Up With Somewhere (in Dallas) To Go

I've talked about our friend Norm before. He led our trip to Kenya, Africa in December and I guess he liked us enough that he cooked us the longest/best dinner we've ever had. Norm is a total foodie and has continued to show us the finer things in life.

We made plans last month for dinner (finding an open Saturday that worked for everyone was next to impossible!) and he recommended a place called Old Warsaw, located in the "Uptown" neighborhood of Dallas.

It's old-school Dallas. Think oil, big hair and lots of money. Three key things that made us not fit in, yet they seemed to let us in anyway.

We got all dressed up. Cody's tie matched my skirt. Love it when we match.


Okay, these are phone pictures since I wasn't sure if old-school Dallas people would like it if I brought in my big camera . . . But trust me in that it was super good.


The funniest part of the evening was when Jacque noticed the bread knife at each of our plates. In the midst of old, heavy and real-silver flatware, the bread knife had "IKEA" stamped on the side.

All of a sudden I didn't feel quite so out of place!


Good Food and Good Company at Ruffino's of Fort Worth

This past Saturday we had dinner with friends at Ruffino's Restaurant in Fort Worth. It was named one of the top 10 restaurants in Fort Worth (10best.com) and did not disappoint.

Norm had suggested the restaurant last month and this was the first Saturday that worked for all of our schedules. Reservations were for 7pm. We shared a couple appetizers, ate our entrees, and enjoyed a 3+ hour meal together. A good way to spend a rainy Saturday night.

It wasn't so much about the food, although delicious, it was mostly about the company. We discussed everything from a potential trip back to Kenya, Africa in December (still praying about that one) to Norm and Tiffany's dog (and, I'm sure I talked too much about Spangler) and everything else that may be going on in our lives.

Good food and good friends . . . with some bad pictures of the meal. Excuse my iPhone pictures.


Mushroom crostini, eggplant fried things and calamari.


I ordered a lamb, goat cheese and mint tortellono (bigger tortellini) while Cody opted for the ribeye. I didn't try his ribeye, but the pasta was amazing.


I Thought My Arms Were Going to Fall Off

Last Saturday we had a canoe/kayak trip with some friends. We were calling it the "Greenhorn Canoe Trip" and I didn't realize how "green" I really was.

We paddled 10 miles on the Brazos River, which comes out of Possum Kingdom Lake.

We used a local outfitter and we had a choice between getting a canoe or a kayak. Cody and I ended up being the only pair in a canoe, the remaining five chose were in three kayaks.

It was a beautiful day and we got into the water about 8am.



We knew the forecast included wind for later in the day, so we were glad to set out early. It was beautiful! The wind hadn't picked up yet so we were able to do a better job of keeping the canoe straight. I was in the front and Cody in the back.


I thought there would be more water flow on the Brazos. Only in a few places along the 10 miles would we get much water movement. We had to paddle pretty much the entire time to keep moving forward.

Since I was in the front I would paddle and Cody would try to go to the opposite side to keep it straight. I don't think I did a very good job at staying in any kind of a pattern. Left . . . Right . . . Right . . . Right . . . Left . . . Right . . . Left . . . I try to keep Cody guessing, you know?

My river experiences have mostly been whitewater, in New Mexico and Colorado, so I didn't think it'd be this much work. I'm used to somewhat of a current, which can give your arms a bit of a break!


We also hit some pretty low areas. We've had a pretty wet winter, but we haven't had a lot of rain recently this Spring. Also, the Brazos is controlled by the dam at Possum Kingdom Lake. Unless they're releasing water, it can get pretty low.



My butt starting hurting at this point. Next time I go canoing I'm going to bring one of those seats you bring to football games.


We stopped for a break. Food break, bathroom break and I-need-to-rest-my-arms break.


Jacque and I, the only females on the trip, set off to find a place suitable to use the bathroom. The sides of the river in places were a thick mud that was really hard to walk in, as you can see . . . Dace fell and was covered in the mud. It was pretty funny.


Later on the route we would pull over to the side of the river, grab a tree and take a break. This is one of the last times we took pictures on the trip. Largely because my arms stopped working after this point.

I kept paddling, but they have never quite been this tired before.

The last 2 miles of the trip were the worst. The wind was blowing so hard and Cody and I had to paddle 100% of the time to try to keep the canoe going forward. The wind would then catch the canoe, on either side, and literally send us straight into the bank.

We zig-zagged across the lake while our kayak-counterparts had a little bit easier time keeping their boats straight.


Words can't describe how glad I was to see the pick-up point! We dragged our boats in and waited for the outfitter to pick us up.

We waited for an hour and a half.

Then, finally they came.


We had to ride in the back of the truck. The 15 minute ride, to sum it up, was essentially sitting on dirty life-vests, under some canoes that were tied to the top of the truck, holding on for our lives.

And my arms were shot.


Fred's Texas Cafe and Some Mighty Fine Singing

Cody and I had to run an errand Tuesday afternoon and as you may guess, we decided to grab something for dinner (an unintentional theme that has been occurring on my blog lately . . .).

We drove through Fort Worth on Camp Bowie Blvd (which, I just love this area of Fort Worth) and ended up at Fred's Texas Cafe off of 7th Street, known as Fort Worth's West Side.

This bar and grill has been around for over 30 years and was featured on Food Network's Diners, Drive-In's and Dives:

Cody had heard of this place and had tried it just last week. It's just as you'd imagined: a Texan spin on your average local bar and grill (the video above does a good job of showing you the place).


Anyway, Cody got the Diablo Burger and I opted for the beef tacos. The only problem is that I didn't pay attention to the words on the menu that said, "All Tacos Seasoned with Outlaw Chef Taco Seasoning." Holy moly that taco was HOT! I am a wimp ever since I moved away from the green chile world of New Mexico. I could barely eat it!


(You can see that a lone fry that made it onto my taco plate. The server said it was my dessert.)

We were on our way out the door when Cody noticed a list of bands scheduled to play over the next few months. He saw "Luke Wade" and then just happened to see that he was playing right then!


Luke is from the same area that Cody is and I got to know him pretty well in college. He even played at our wedding.

When he saw us walking up towards the stage to sit down he said, "Whoa, is this really happening?" Haha. We hadn't heard him sing in years, so it was great to listen to his new songs. We could tell that he'd grown in his musical capabilities--I was blown away with how good he is.

Enjoy the video. You can also check him out at myspace.com/lukewadeandnocivilians.