Wednesday, December 29, 2010

happy new year!!

Happy 2011 New Year's
Holiday cards personalized with your favorite photos.
View the entire collection of cards.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

emma words.

a few days ago, emma was in her bathroom by herself. it got very quiet.

when jason called her name wondering what was going on, she came out of the bathroom very quickly and warned:

"daddy, don't see the mirror.... don't EVEN see the mirror!"

{needless to say, daddy promptly when into the bathroom to "see the mirror." fortunately, it was just very wet. there are much worse things that have been all over that bathroom mirror than water.}

we are still laughing about it. :)

pumpkin fills.

i was emptying out the camera today in an attempt to finally update the ol' blog-a-roo, and i came across some really precious gems - one of which being this video. :)

this was filmed only about 2 weeks after emma kate's 3rd birthday. we were making jack-o-lanterns. her first ever, in fact. i was about half-way through my last semester of college at TWU, and i was also about 6 weeks pregnant with our sweet rylie.

my, what a difference 10 months makes - especially in the growing-up of my "baby" girl!! i was shocked as i watched, how young emma looks and sounds in this video. her voice sounds so baby-ish and although she's always be very advanced verbally, i couldn't believe she sounded this young so recently. her vocabulary and sentence structure is so "toddler-ish!" it seems like a lifetime ago... and its only been a few months.

anyway, enjoy this little peek into a sweet family memory. i'm so thankful i found this!

{aren't you a bit ready for fall, now?} ;)

Friday, July 2, 2010

summer fun.

since i am now the mommy of a 3-and-a-half year old AND a newborn, i'm sensing the need to be equipped with some fun things to do to keep my oldest little princess entertained and feeling special this summer. rylie is still at an age where it will be pretty easy for her to tag along to most things we do, so these activities will be perfect to do with emma. i'm hoping we can hit up some of them with daddy, too, to make it a full-family affair! :)

i found the following summer activities on a mom's website called "around town kids." (click here for more information and lots more activities!)

::: summer movie programs :::

cinemark's summer movie clubhouse :: click here for more info

schedule for the cinemark movies 14 theatre in mckinney:

schedule for the cinemark legacy theatre in plano:

schedule for the cinemark west plano theatre (used to be tinseltown):

studio movie grill's 2010 summer children's series :: click here for more info
tickets for these 11:00am showtimes are $1/child and $2/adult

"planet 51" (6/28-7/1) (PG)
"kung fu panda" (7/5-7/8) (PG)
"madagascar 2" (7/12-7/15) (PG)
"monsters vs aliens" (7/19-7/23) (PG)
"ice age 3" (7/26-7/29) (PG)
"rugrats in paris" (8/2-8/5) (G)
"cloudy with a chance of meatballs" (8/9-8/12) (PG)
"muppets from space" (8/16-8/19) (G)

the village at fairview's free family movie night :: click here for more info
the new village at fairview shopping center in allen, texas (at stacy & 75) is hosting a free family movie night on the first saturday of each month.

may 1 - september 4 at dusk :: the grand commons stage at the village fountain

upcoming movies:
june 5 :: where the wild things are
july 3 :: cloudy with a chance of meatballs
august 7 :: monsters vs aliens
september 4 :: up

::: summer reading programs :::

half price books :: click here for more info
all kids 14 and younger can earn a FREE $3 gift card each week by reading for 15 minutes a day.

reading with ringling :: click here for more info
kids can earn a FREE circus ticket to any dallas/fort worth ringling bros. performance in july & august by simply doing their library reading! enroll with the librarian to get started. frisco, mkinney & plano libraries are participating, plus many more in the area.

local library
most libraries have summer reading programs and weekly storytimes for younger children. check with your local library for details.

**both barnes & noble and borders books have summer reading programs going on, but they are for grade-school aged children. since emma doesn't fit into that age-group, i didn't include them, but if your child is at least in first grade, i would say totally check them out!**

::: family fun & learning :::  

frisco fire safety town :: click here for more info 
safety town family nights :: friday nights are FREE :: 5-8pm during june - august

::: farms & orchards :::
:: to buy or pick your own fresh fruits, veggies & flowers ::

dallas farmer's market :: 1010 south pearl street :: open daily 7am-6pm
frisco farmer's market :: every saturday 8am-1pm :: frisco square
mckinney farmer's market @ chestnut square :: saturdays 8am-noon or @ adriatica :: thurs & sun 1-5pm
plano farmer's market @ fairview farms :: daily tues-sun (closed mondays) 8am-9pm :: 3314 north central expressway, suite 100 

gnismer farms :: pick your own berries :: 817-469-8704

balch springs: 
the merry berry farm :: pick your own blackberries :: mon & thurs 5-8pm :: sat 8am-12pm :: 971-286-2287

henrietta creek farms :: pick your own apples, peaches & veggies :: open daily from july-october :: 9am-4pm :: 817-439-3202

rjr farms :: pick your own veggies :: open sat, sun, mon 11am-8pm :: 214-542-7866

red river peach orchard :: pick your own peaches starting june 17th :: open 8am-1pm thurs, fri & sat :: $1.50/lb :: pack a lunch for a picnic :: they provide free lemonade :: 940-612-6200

lavender ridge farms :: pick your own veggies :: open fri-sun 9am-5pm :: 940-665-6938

duck creek blackberry farm :: pick your own blackberries :: $15/gallon :: open tues 6-8pm & sat 7am-noon :: 940-458-3217

sadler: (north of gainesville, south of oklahoma)
the berry patch :: pick your own berries :: they'll provide a gallon container for you to use while you pick :: 903-564-6228

i'm hoping to hit up some of these fun things this summer with our girls... hopefully you'll find some fun things to do, too! :)

happy summer!

Sunday, June 27, 2010


rylie is here! and things have been a little busy, to say the least. and through it all, i have been so concerned with making sure emma gets enough time, love & attention to ensure she does not feel replaced at all by her new baby sister. really, it's a self-inflicted anxiety. i have actually been missing emma over the last few days. i'm just craving time with her, and feeling a little wistful for the way things "used to be," although that is so entangled with joy for "the way things have become." emma is actually dealing wonderfully with this "little" transition. the love she has already for her sister is overwhelming. we are so thankful for it.

i will post, soon, about rylie's arrival and all that has happened over the last week, but i wanted to share this sweet moment. so i don't forget it. :)

this afternoon, i got to take a shower... my first since we've been home. {i know, it's gross, but it's the reality of being the mommy of a 5-day-old.} as i was finishing up, emma came in, just waking up from her nap and asked if she could join me. usually, this would be almost a burden for me, since i am admittedly a bit selfish of my shower time... it's one of the only blocks of time i get that belong solely to ME. but, today, i saw it as an opportunity to steal some one-on-one moments with my emma-girl.

and i'm so glad i did, because this precious conversation took place:

me: {kissing emma on the forehead} i love you, emma-bear.
emma: i love you too, mommy!
me: emma, do you know how much i love you?
emma: yes... i do.
me: you do? how much do i love you?
emma: mommy, you love me the mostest.
me: {tearing up beacause i'm so relieved she knows this & because i gave birth 5 days ago} that's right! i do love you the mostest! do you know why i love you the mostest?
emma: because you do, mommy. because you love me. because i'm your baby. and you always love me.

then she smiled at me the sweetest, most confident smile, gave me a big kiss, and went back to playing with her "ariel" doll in the water.

and that's all i can ask for. that she is sure of my love for her.

and it seems like she's got it down. :)

Sunday, June 13, 2010


we were so blessed last night to have beth of beth moore photography take some incredible family and maternity pictures for us! she is such a sweet heart, and obviously so talented.

these 6 pictures are just a sneak peek of what's to come... i am in LOVE!

this was emma's "excited face." classic.

could she BE any cuter?
by far my favorite picture of emma. 

baby rylie belly.

i heart this one.

j + s = baby r

our family of 4!

what do you think??

the best part is, beth is coming back within the first 10 days of little rylie's life to do a newborn session! i cannot wait... it'll be so neat to look back on these pictures - rylie is IN MY BELLY. 

and so soon, she'll be in my arms. 


baby face.

again, i've been horrible about keeping up with this. i have so many blog posts rolling around in my head that i mean to write but then i never do because something else becomes a priority.

and i feel awful that the last several have had nothing to do with emma... she can't take the backseat already!!! rylie's not even HERE yet! :(

so, i'm really going to try and be better about blogging - however rylie will be gracing us with her presence within the next 2 weeks, so i may go on a bit of a hiatus for awhile... you know how those newborn days go... and if you don't know from experience, well... just trust me. ;)

so once again, here are some sonogram pics of our sweet rylie-girl. these pictures are absolutely amazing because you actually can see her face. i mean her real face. they are regular sono pics... it's just amazing!

the following pictures are from our sonogram on 05.05.10 - 33 weeks:

here, she was suckling and sticking out her tongue a lot... we caught her in mid-tongue-sticking! :)
(it does look a little like something from a horror movie; as if her jaw were unhinging...)

her cutie little foot - looks so much like emma's feet - long & wide :)

rylie's profile - looks like she has mommy's nose! :) and cute pouty lips...

our first look at her face. literally her face. we can see her eyelids, nose, chunky cheeks, beautiful lips and little heart-shaped chin. she looks like a little baby doll!

another look at her face... can you see her eyelashes? isn't that wild???

another profile picture - definitely mommy's nose. and apparently angelina jolie's lips... goodnight, baby girl!

i could look at her sweet face all day (soon, i'll be able to)! :) she has the fullest lips ever - daddy is SO in trouble!

this is one of my very favorite pictures... it's two different shots of her lips. you can see almost up her nose. in the left picture, you can see her eyes a bit too, in the shadows...
how gorgeous are her lips???

these next pictures were taken at my last sonogram on 05.26.10 - 36 weeks:

sweet profile - sucking her thumb!

another shot of her face

angel face

another profile.

that was probably our last look at our baby girl until she blesses us with her presence in this part of the world. we can't believe that's in only 2 weeks!!!

we think rylie will be just as big and strong as her sister - at 36 weeks they "measured" rylie to be around 6 lbs. 9 oz., which is exactly what they measured emma to be at 36 weeks!

emma was 7 lbs. 12 oz., which i know is almost 8 lbs.... but she was also 21.75 inches, which is SO long - so she was pretty long and skinny... so i'm not worried about having a big baby. :) i know i can do it!

we can't wait to meet our rylie-girl and introduce her to her big sister... who is going to be the best big sister ever, i'm sure! :)

Monday, April 12, 2010

baby girl.

these are our most recent sonogram pics - they were taken on march 24, 2010, at about 27 weeks. it was actually a surprise sonogram. i had been feeling some pressure and stuff that i didn't remember feeling with emma. when i expressed my concern, dr. hsu wanted to go ahead and do some fetal monitoring, a sonogram and an exam, just to make sure what i was feeling wasn't contractions or pre-term labor.

and we were fine. :) my fluid level is great, baby rylie is movin' and groovin' like a little diva, and there is no progress whatsoever... which is GREAT news at 27 weeks... maybe at 37 weeks, if i hear that there's no progress, i'll be a little frustrated. :) but for now, it's great!

right now, we're 30 weeks along - that leaves only 10 weeks - 70 days!! - until we are expecting to meet our sweet baby girl! we can't wait to meet her and see what she looks like, and begin getting to know who God has already made her to be. what a blessing!

here are the pictures of our girl - we already think she's so beautiful - and just might have mommy's nose. :) it will be so fun to see how different/similar our two girls are!

sweet rylie's profile - mommy's nose?

touching her toes! :)
her little foot is on the right, her fist on the left

another profile shot - see her fist to the right?
and her eyelid, and her sweet lips & chin?

i LOVE this one... you can see her little poochy lips & her chunky cheeks!

creepy, i know... but look how you can see her eyes! this one, too - you can see her left eyeball (the top one)

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

still here.

... that i am.


i have lots to blog about - i just feel like i never have enough time and want to save my ├╝ber important posts for when i have enough time to really invest in them.


anyway, i promise to post pictures and stories galore. very soon. this week, maybe. or even this weekend.

stay tuned. it'll be worth the wait.

{maybe. hehe}

Thursday, March 4, 2010


so this post is just over a month overdue. i'm dreadfully sorry. i wanted to include the sonogram pictures with our "gender reveal," and jason was just able to scan them and get them to me... so it's overdue.

i think it's so funny that with 34 votes on our little baby poll, the vote was split RIGHT down the middle, with 17 guessing girl and 17 guessing boy! really??? well, i guess there was a 50/50 chance... and 50% of you guessed correctly...

we're having another baby girl!

we have decided to name emma's baby sister, rylie elizabeth. we can't wait to see how God has designed her to be the perfect "new addition" to our little family.

here are the sonogram pictures of baby rylie... they were taken on january 28th - i was a little over 20 weeks along.

here is our sweet girl's profile... it's amazing how identical it is to emma's sonogram! hopefully i'll post that soon!

she's looking right at us! see her skull? kinda creepy, i know... BIG eye-sockets. :)

i love this little foot. 
(her foot looks like emma's too!)

another face-to-face - see her big healthy brain?
she's so smart already! :)

another little profile shot. love those chunky cheeks!
see her arm up by her face? looks like she's already a little drama queen with her hand on her forehead, woe-is-me style

a shot of "the goods."
basically, her two little legs, like she's sitting on the screen... 
the little "hamburger" lines mean girl!

and just in case you didn't catch it in the first image, the sonogram technician has spelled it out for you: "FEMALE." :) again, there's the little hamburger to the left of the telling letters. :)

so, another little girl for the rains family - maybe we are destined for spunky little princesses! :)

i'll post pictures of our super special reveal party soon. but now, i'm exhausted, and i'm going to sleep!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

emma words.

last week, when we were visiting jackie, michael, and baby eliana, jason and i were sitting cozy on the couch. jason was holding eliana, and i was looking adoringly at them - probably thinking a) how excited i am to have our own little one so soon, and b) how great my hubby is with babies!

emma sighed, gestured towards eliana, and, in all seriousness, said to me:

"baby... i KNOW you want THIS baby, but that's jackie's baby. you can't have her. we're gonna get our own baby really soon, ok? you just have to wait..."

i love my daughter's concern for my sanity. i may have run off with baby girl blow if emma hadn't been there to speak some sense into me. :)

baby eliana michelle.

a new love has been added to our "family."

sweet baby girl

in daddy's arms

hi mommy!

we are so blessed to have an amazing group of friends. God has surrounded us with sweet brothers and sisters in Christ who are walking this journey of life with us, and it is a blessing to have the opportunity to walk with them, as well.

in october, our group welcomed miss shiloh ann smith to the world with reci & marc. she is such a joy!

2 weeks ago, we gathered in the waiting room at the medical center of carrollton, anticipating the arrival of eliana michelle blow. most of us were there all day, and it was a great memory, and i think, a great new tradition for the babies-to-come in the future! :)

eliana is perfect. just perfect. we are so happy for jackie & michael and cannot wait to see how the Lord changes eliana's life as she grows into a beautiful little girl and a woman of God. we're excited for emma to get to grow up with these girls, and to introduce our new little one to both eliana and shiloh in june!

life is so rich!

emma words.

so, one thing i would like to do on here, is to take the time to record some of the funny thing miss emma says throughout the day. at three-years-old, she is constantly making profound declarations that boggle our minds... some are sweet, some make us laugh so hard we almost pee in our pants, some make us simply scratch our chins in confusion...

but either way, we for sure don't want to forget the words that come out of her precious mouth. because i know that so soon, we won't be shocked and awed by her words... because she'll be grown up, and it'll be normal for her to talk to much. makes me a bit sad.

anyway... a daily occurrence right now is for emma to call us "baby."
as in: "baby, i can't snuggle-nuggle with you right now, because i'm playing with my trains."

or as she is standing on my shins and i'm asking her to get off because it hurts mommy:
"baby, i'm not hurting you... i promise. you will be ok."

and she always has the gravest look on her face when she says it. too funny.

so, two nights ago, we were hanging out in the living room, and i was messing with jason by pretending to have things to talk about so he would pause the dvr. :) (i'm so mischievous.) finally, emma looked at me and exclaimed:

"baby - it's not ok! this world is MESSED UP!"

needless to say, jason and i lost it. where did she hear that??? oh my.

and so true! but hopefully she won't truly know the weight of her words for many years to come.

Monday, January 18, 2010

gender reveal invitation.

i whipped up this little invite today for a gender reveal party we're throwing for our family next week after our "revealing" sonogram for baby rains. :)

i actually made this on powerpoint and just saved it as a jpeg file. i'm really excited about how it turned out... i think it's super cute, cheery, and fun. :) cupcakes will be a big part of the evening... our little announcement will be made with them!

can't wait!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

cast your vote.

i've added a fun little feature to our blog!

at the top of the right sidebar, you'll find a little poll, asking for you to make your guess on the gender of the little one growing inside me!

we go to the doctor to *hopefully* find out on thursday, january 28th, and i'd love to see what the popular guess is! :) make your guess, and sometime on the 28th or 29th (after we've revealed baby's gender to our family and closest friends), i will reveal the answer to YOU! (granted baby cooperates and lets us see his/her goods!)

so, go cast your vote... i want to see what you think! :)

{you can leave a comment with your guess, too... it'll be fun to see who's right!}

baby rains at 11 weeks.

even though i am over 17 weeks now, and we'll be having another sonogram in a couple weeks, i wanted to update with pictures from our LAST sonogram, which was at 11 weeks. our baby has grown SO much since then, and i cannot WAIT to see how. :)

here is our baby:

12/1/09 - 11 weeks exactly
:: about the size of a fig ::

you really can see the little one, now... see baby's head, and little legs & feet at the bottom?

 baby was kicking and squirming like crazy! :)

 you can see the profile a little better here... little nose and mouth/chin... and his/her tiny forehead... it's amazing to me that this little human really exists - and is fully formed - yet still only 1 1/2 inches long!

 baby rains turned to look at us full-on! do you see his/her eyes?? baby still kinda looks like an alien, here... but we love our little alien! :) hehe

 baby rains was moving his/her arms, too... you can see a tiny hand right up by his/her head... it was amazing!

baby rains, just over 1 1/2 inches long, is now almost fully formed. his/her hands will soon open and close into fists, tiny tooth buds are beginning to appear under his/her gums, and some of his/her bones are beginning to harden.

baby is already busy kicking and stretching. these movements will become more frequent as his/her body grows and becomes more developed and functional. baby rains is even starting to have tiny hiccups! :)

we can't wait to see our little one again on the 28th... AND find out if baby rains #2 is a girl or a boy!

any guesses??? :)

christmas card 2009.

this post (like all others coming soon) is super overdue!

this was the christmas card from the rains family this year... i designed it at and think it turned out really great - especially for what it is! the colors on the actual card are SO much more vivid and festive... the scanner didn't do it justice. :)

...and i love this picture for 2 reasons:

1) emma's smile is simply irresistable! it is definitely kiss-worthy... and we laugh, because she totally looks like she came right from an episode of "toddlers and tiaras!" don't you think? :)

2) this is our very first picture as a family of four! our friends, the stewarts, snapped this photo at a trip to the big orange pumpkin farm in october - right after we'd found out about the little bean growing inside of me. so fun!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010


i know, i know... its been nearly two months since i've posted! i must say that i have excuses... good ones, too! i mean, finishing school, graduation, being pregnant and exhausted, having a 3-year-old, thanksgiving and christmas, a trip to destin, a new year's trip to ohio for a funeral... whew... its been one crazy 2-months!

but they are over now. and i am done with school.

and currently, i am home. in a quiet house. with my daughter at mother's day out.

and no homework to do! :)

so, i promise... i will be catching you up on all of our adventures from november and december... this week!


right now, i have to finish some plans for lindsey's 21st birthday. fun stuff.

there will be posts about that too, i'm sure of it. :)

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