Friday, December 19, 2008

I'd like to tell you a little bit about myself....

Hello. My name is Annabel. I'd like to tell you a little bit about myself. I can't talk yet, but I have so much to say so my mom is teaching me some sign language. I am still catching on, but there's one thing I learned very quickly. It might be because people tell me this particular thing everyday, everywhere I go. I want you to hear it straight from me.

There is a small chance you already figured it out.



Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Everything is moving so fast...

Time keeps slipping away, so a few quick updates from November!

Sea World!!! Again! It is even better in November than in the summer. The weather was 7o degrees and all the Christmas decorations are up! The shows were awesome and not crowded and there were Christmas carols playing. What more could you want?

Annie and her "dadadada"

The dolphins are a little more friendly this time of year. They get super close. Maybe because there are less tourists feeding them. Maybe because it's just Christmas spirit. Who knows?

Molly and Ellie on their favorite ride. Hard to say who liked it more.

Leslie and Halle. Two of the most photogenic people on the planet!


My cousin, Kayla, in Plano had her baby, Bailey! She is such a cutie!


Justin's parents made the big move to St. John and his sister's family (The Burtons) came in town to celebrate Thanksgiving from NC. So fun to have them and reconnect. They come a couple of times a year which i always wish was more, but when they come, they usually get to spend a week or more, which is so nice!

Johanna has a slight obsession with a few things... sucking her thumb, touching her bellybutton and rubbing people's cheeks if they are soft (babies are prime targets). This picture displays two of her obsessions in action.

Baby Lydia! She is 2 months and 1 day younger than Annie! She is affectionately called "Wydia" by her sister and most of us!

Annie and Lydia happen to look alot alike even though they look more like me and Greg, who are not related. Hmmmm.

What a cutie pie!

Brittany (J's sister) and Wydia!


Then one of our good friends, Parker, came! He is the best! He played baseball with J at A&M and continues on with baseball (he is in his off season now). He loves Annie and she loves him, too. He is one of the biggest encouragements to us and if you know him, try to convince him to move to Austin!

December updates are coming soon!!!

Hope you all are enjoying the holidays! Much Love!


I've been tagged!

It happened awhile ago, but I am just now catching up! :-)

Here are the instructions...
1. Go to your pictures
2. Upload the fourth picture in the fourth file
3. Post
4. Tag four friends

A picture at the park during our engagement! Who is impressed by my brute strength?

Beth, Katie, Olivia, Jenny... you're up next!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Best music video of 2008

The other day I was strolling through Gap Kids with Annie and the song "New Soul" came on. You might not have downloaded it, but you surely have heard it. It is the song that features a long string of "la-la-la la lala la-la-la la lala" for almost the whole song as if she were on a deadline and ran out of lyrics. All that to say, the song is pretty cute.

So we are strolling along and Annie is repeating her new-found words "la la la la." I thought surely it was a coincidence, but she
seemed to be singing along. :O I get home and tell my sister, Molly, about it and she informed me that she was one of the people that downloaded this song and that we could test it out.

No coincidence here. We ran several tests on Annie and she definitely has an affinity for "The La La Song." We played several other songs and we got some dances and shakes, but no words. The minute the la-las hit in "New Soul", she starts-a-singing.

Now presenting the best music video of 2008.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

A new-found love...

... the door jumper! The other day I was giving my niece, Ellie (3), a bath and needed a place to stick Annie. I remembered the doorway jumper. The last time we used that thing Annie would put her hands on the outside of the tray in the front of her and then swing herself into the doorway, smashing her fingers ... so we ended up putting it away. Annie is a couple months older now so I thought I'd bust it out as the "look, I have a new toy" trick. (Whisper: They are never new toys. They are always old ones I put away and then get back out. Shhh... don't tell Annie).

Not only did this sucker get us through bath time, but it is her new favorite toy (with the exception of paper, which also doubles as her favorite snack).

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Happy Halloween, Goat Girl!

As I was shopping for the perfect first Halloween costume for Annabel, I saw all of the cute butterflies, princesses, bumble bees, etc. and knew that of course they would be adorable on my precious daughter. But then I saw the billy goat costume. I thought to myself, "how long has it been since I thought about a billy goat?" Maybe a decade. Not since that Saturday Night Live skit about the goat boy. I started to picture Annie with the cute little horns and the little ears, but then when I thought about the beard, it sealed the deal! She was the cutest billy goat I have ever seen!

This is Annie with one of her new friends!

Here is Annie with her seasonal gourds.

As if we hadn't been to enough pumpkin patches, we made a last ditch effort to go to another on Halloween. It was, of course, all packed away, but that wasn't going to stop us. Me, Judy, and Annie took ourselves to Central Market and set Annie up in the gourd bins in her costume and took some pictures anyways.
Here is Nonnie (Judy) taking pictures.

Every year since we have lived in our house in North Austin, we invite our North Austin friends over, move our lawn furniture to the front yard and have dinner together while being entertained by small children walking around in costumes. This year we put forth a huge effort to be known as the best house because we all chipped in for the BIG candy bars. Maybe that will deter our neighbors for leaving the neighborhood to go to the fancier neighborhoods. SPREAD THE WORD, KIDS! We also had appearances from Sarah Palin, a pegasus, a garden gnome, a shark, the color purple, and a turtle. I am kicking myself for not having pictures!

We ended the night with all of the kids asleep in the house and the adults getting some much needed adult time.

Our friend Micah (age 19 months) fell asleep on the couch like a teenager while we were all outside. What a cutie!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Elgin Pumpkin Festival

I feel like a true southerner! We went to a pumpkin festival in Elgin this past weekend with my brother Sam's family (Jennifer, Samantha, and Jack) and my sister Molly (back from Alaska).

Truth be told, Annie is on the brink of enjoying events like this, I can feel it, but not quite there yet. Everything is just as you probably imagine. There was a bake sale, a hayride, some farm animals, some pumpkins, some face painting, but unfortunately the 95 degree weather robbed it of it's fall festivity for me. I would have rather been wearing a scarf than slapping on the sunscreen.

In any event, we enjoyed some family time! We are really looking forward to going back in December because this place doubles as Christmas Tree farm. We will go to Elgin Christmas Tree Farm and pick out the perfect tree that we would have gotten if we did not intend to use a fake tree "until Annie can fully appreciate a real tree and ask for one herself" (Justin's words). You gotta love my practical man!

Molly, Samantha, and Jennifer!

Annie and her daddy!

Jack and Samantha when they realized they would be riding the train without everyone else!

Samantha taking care of Jack during the crisis!

Annie shaking it for the camera.

Molly and Jackaroo!

Annie's first face painting.
It is a really disturbing-looking hippo.

Samantha got a really cool red butterfly.

Annie in the pumpkins!

These are some of the all-time best pictures of Annie.
She had a major connection with the pumpkins. :-)

Thursday, October 2, 2008

High chairs and high heels...

I am a very unfaithful blogger. I tell myself that once Annie picks up the pace with doing new things, I will post blogs about it, but I guess the time just seems to escape me. As I look at the last blog I posted I realize that there are some major things happening.

We started solids.


I thought that once I had a baby that ate solids I would feel like a different person. One of those seasoned, capable mothers that really knows what she is doing. After trying to get a step-by-step list from all of my dearest friends, I realized that no one does it the same so I can't screw up too bad. ;-)

By the way... Annie loves her solids. So far she has tried rice cereal, bananas, sweet potatoes, carrots, peas, prunes, apples and she has no complaints. I realized that the noises I made when I feed her are what she thinks one is supposed to do when eating. Before the bite is a "Ahhhhh" and once it hits the lips, "mmmmmm."

Here is her first bite of solid food!

Along with our major accomplishment of eating real food, Annie has started to wear high heels like the working woman she is.

The real story: Nonnie (or Judy Lopez, Justin's mom) found these amazing shoes at a boutique by her house. Later, Justin saw an ad on that said "Baby high heels... cute or creepy." The verdict is still out...

but Annie loves them. The real question is why she loves them- because they are elegant and beautiful or because they are spongy and feel good on her teeth? Hmmmm... you decide.

What else have we done in the month of September? That might have to be it's own post. Some brief highlights: J and Tata's Birthday on the 8th! J and Sally started an institute through our church focused on urban development! We are really excited to learn from people who know a lot more than us and to channel our passion the right way! We also went to Sea World again with the Gentry Family (read their blog- Gentrified- to find out more about this amazing family). Sally started teaching her women's class, Identify, for the 2nd semester (and I will say, it is going much more smoothly now that I'm not pregnant). I will try to blog more often, but for now, I will leave you with this...

Monday, August 25, 2008

Sea World is the place to be!

Strangely enough, I have lived in Austin my whole life and never been to Sea World San Antonio. I am making up for some serious lost time. I LOVE Sea World. The Shamu show, the Penguin Encounter, Shamu Harbor, Dolphin Cove, the flamingos, the sea lions... I can't get enough. I went once in June with my brother Kevin's family (Leslie, Ellie (3), Halle (10 months)), after which I bought a season pass. I went for the second time this past weekend with Justin's parents, Al and Judy and Justin's sister's family (Al & Judy, Brittany & Greg, Johanna (2), Lydia (3 months)). I think at this point, Annabel doesn't care at all... but she will! She had a significantly better time in August, than in June so either Shamu stepped it up a knotch or Annie got a little more attentive.

Here is the 1st trip...

Halle and Annie
They have no idea what's coming.
Ellie- what a big kid!

Kevin and Annie at the Shamu show
Notice Annie's attentiveness.

Leslie and Halle at the Shamu Show- cutie pies.
Ellie at the Shamu show
Oh, Ellie.

How Annie spent most of the day :-)

We may have jumped the gun on getting to ride in the cool stroller.

Ellie and Kevin

The second trip...
The whole crew!

Annie at the Shamu Show... notice her attentiveness now!Jo and Brittany before the big splash
Jo and Brittany after the big splash. Not Jo's favorite part!
Annie had a blast! Although she probably would have had just as much fun on her playmat at home. :-)

Some things don't change...

It was a pretty long day!

Brittany, Greg, Jo & Lydia came to visit from North Carolina for the week and it was such a great time to spend with family! We also went to the museum, rode the Zilker train, and swam in the pool a ton, but I forgot my camera until Sea World.

I am already looking to go back. Any takers?

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Introducing Annie

Annie is 4 months and still there are many of my dearest friends and family who have not yet met her. I thought for those of you who haven't yet met Annabel it might be helpful to know a few things...

1) she is very cute. here is a visual aid...

This is picture of Annie this past weekend in San Francisco. We went for Justin's cousin's wedding and it was amazing!! We spent time in San Jose, Santa Cruz, Morgan Hill and San Francisco. Most of it from the car, but we only had a few days. The best part was catching up with family. As you might notice, she is in her carseat. This is how she spent most of her time in sunny California, but she didn't really know the difference. As long as her toy monkey Melvin was there- she didn't really care where she was.

2) Annie is a big girl. You can't really tell until you hold her next to someone her age, but she tops the charts at a whopping 97%. I think she might take after me (Sally). Some speculate that her big size is what allows her to sleep so long (which is great) and go longer between feedings (which is also great). Yay for a big little girl!

3) Annie is pretty loud. Annie is a singer/yeller/chatterer/ laugher. On any given morning, she spends about 30 minutes to 1 hour talking and laughing to herself in her crib before she wants to get up. It is the best alarm clock I have ever had.

This will probably not be the last time you hear about Annie. :-)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

We're Online!

It has been a long battle with friends and family, but we finally caved and are now official bloggers! We hope to post both interesting events as well as tales of our every day life in Austin, Texas.

A quick catch-up... Justin is still working at Dell and leading the set-up and tear-down operation at our church, The Austin Stone Community Church, among other things. Our daughter, Annabel Lyn Lopez, was born on March 24th, 2008 and is almost 4 months now. She is a joy! Sally is staying home with her and enjoying all the amazing things to do in Austin during the summer. Thanks for reading and we'd love to hear from you. Really, if we don't hear from you, this will be a big waste! :-)