Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas Wish Come True

Avery's Christmas wish came true! Santa brought Avery her very own pony! Actually, this has been Avery's wish for some time now. She always says, "I wish I had my very own pony." When we ask her where we would put one, she always replies, "On the deck!" With the help of our Ms. Heather, (By help, we really mean Heather did all of the work and coordination. We just fit the bill.) Avery was finally able to have a very sweet, very broken, very gentle pony named Baby. She had no idea what the apple was for that Santa left her under the tree. After we opened all of the presents Christmas morning, we all went outside and surprised Avery with her pony. Of course, Avery cried when Baby had to be taken to the barn to stay, but will be visiting her often. I believe Baby will be able to be in some horse shows pretty soon!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

All She Wants To Do Is Stand!

All Addison wants to do is stand. She still has not crawled. Eight months and as far as she has gotten is to stoop over from the sitting position and get on her tummy. Once she's there, she can scoot herself around, but doesn't want to use her knees. She also does not like spending a lot of time in this position. Avery crawled when she was 7 months, so once again, you can't compare children. Each one is different, even when their yours! Our beautiful, blue eyed, baby girl does love to stand in her crib, stand and hold onto the couch, cruise around in her stroller, be walked around a room with both hands holding onto someone else's, and she has even stood on her own for about 5 seconds. Where, oh where, did the "infant" time go?

Sunday, November 16, 2008


I feel the need to spend a little bit of time talking about my Avery. Yes, a lot of times you will see the two of us "butting heads." She is my fiercely strong-willed child with a headstrong determination to have things the way that she wants them. She is wildly creative! She loves playing dress up and telling stories about horses and princesses. As I've talked about before, she has that great balance of wanting to be outside and into everything with her daddy and then come in and dress up and be girly. She is crazy about drawing. She will erase something 20 times until she has it just the way she wants it. She is so bright and is asking me all of the time how to spell things. She has even started sounding out some words and writing them. She is extremely loving and affectionate. She is a wonderful big sister and is loving teaching Addison things and "reading" to her. She is so silly and her laugh is infectious. Avery has been so inquisitive about things lately. Always asking why and how. I can't believe that she is going to be in kindergarten next year. She will always be my little girl no matter how old she gets. I think of the book I'll Love You Forever, as the mother talks about holding her child in her arms no matter their age. Avery often says, "Mommy, I want you to snuggle with me." As I do with my mom, still today, I hope my beautiful child will always feel drawn to come and snuggle with her mommy even when she is a mother herself.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Pumpkin Hollow

Long time, no blog. I know, I know! A few weeks ago, the Collins Family made the long (and I mean long with a 4 year old and a baby!) journey to St. Francis to partake in the Pumpkin Hollow experience once again. This was my 10th visit (love school field trips!), Joe and Avery's 3rd, and Addison and Nana's 1st! It was a fabulous day and we all had a really good time. Avery, of course, was eager to ride the horses, but thought that the ride was much too short. I agree. For $5, I expected at least 5 minutes. She also got to feed a miniature pony along with the goats.
Addison was carried around the whole time in one of those baby papoose things. She really enjoyed it and it was easy for me too! She enjoyed watching her big sis on the little tractor "train" ride while she feasted on a big helping of carrots. My favorite part of the whole day, was watching Avery chase the pigs during the pig scramble. It's fun taking these traditional trips every year with the family.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Duck Tub

Avery is always asking me to let Addison take a bath with her. Yes, we are still using that infant sink tub. AJ (as she is called by her daddy) is almost sitting up all by herself, unless she moves slightly and then she does a nose dive. Anxious for them to be able to take a bath together and cut down on time, I finally gave in to Avery and placed Addison in the "duck tub" in the bathtub with her. I forget how slippery little babies can be. I placed her in the corner and the second her back got wet she began slipping completely down into the water. So, I'm holding her up with one hand and trying to bath her with the other, while my 4 year old is squished in a 2x2 area of bathtub with her back and head in the water and her legs hanging out over the side. Avery thought that this was so much fun and quickly realized that she had a bathtime playmate to entertain. She began throwing the rubber duck into the air to make Addison laugh. She couldn't take her eyes off of the flying duck! Of course, Addison loved the new experience and enjoyed watching the Avery show. Needless to say, we are back to the infant tub until little AJ aces the sitting test.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Avery's 4th Birthday!

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Avery's 4th birthday!

Avery had her 4th birthday party at Jumping With Joy in Paragould. All of the kids and parents (especially Amy Reed who braved the slide with Berkley) had so much fun. Avery loved being around all of her friends and family who came to help her celebrate her big day. I can't believe our little girl has turned four. It seems like yesterday that I was . . . looking into her eyes for the first time whenever they placed her in a tightly wrapped blanket by my head in the hospital, watching her take her first steps, hearing her say "momma" for the first time, even better - hearing her say, "I love you, momma!" for the first time, watching her being so independent in her first year of preschool and now she seems so grown up. Now she is a beautiful, entertaining, dancing, horse loving, big sister, with a huge amount of determination and a very strong will who is so brave, so loving and so smart. No matter how big you are, Avery, you will ALWAYS be my little girl! I will cherish every minute of our walk together along the way!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Happy Early Birthday, Avery!

Avery's birthday is August 25th. She will be the big 4! We are so excited! Joe has been talking about getting Avery her own four-wheeler for quite some time now. He decided a few weeks ago that her 4th birthday would be the perfect opportunity to get her one. Her researched several different kinds online and finally decided on a Kawasaki 50. I was really wanting to get her a green one (they didn't have pink) so I was thrilled whenever Joe brought it home the other day and discovered I had gotten my wish. Now to see if Avery liked it. She came home from her Nana's today and Joe was chompin' at the bit to give it to her. There is no way that he could've waited until the 25th to give it to her. So, whenever we were all ready, I armed myself with the camera and we all went outside and waited for Avery to see her birthday present. As you can tell by the video (hopefully coming soon), she was pretty excited. Joe and I were so excited as we watched her eagerness to ride it and learn all about it. Of course, Joe had to tell her numerous times to slow down. I rode on the back with her which was really strange having my almost 4 year old as my chauffeur! Addison and I loved watching big sis and daddy riding four-wheelers together! Now, all we need to complete the picture is a helmet. Yes, all you safety people out there in blogger land - she will have one soon!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Hot Trip Pics

One Hot Trip!

This past weekend, our family joined Joe's parents, his brother's family, and his sister's family in Branson. Our first stop was the Dixie Stampede. Of course, Avery was thrilled to be there! She loved pointing out all the horses and telling us was kind they were. She was even chosen to do a rope trick during the show! The next day, it was off to Silver Dollar City. Avery loved riding the small roller coaster, the flying Dumbos, the underground mine, and the teacups. She did not, I repeat, did not, like the large ship that swung back and forth (neither did her daddy). Addison was such a trooper as she braved the heat in her stroller with her own personal fan. We could only handle about 4 hours of the fun in the sun. We were all very hot, worn out and ready to go (as you can see Avery is in the picture of her with the straws). Over all it was a wonderful family trip that I look forward to taking again sometime in the winter!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Sweet and Funny Words

Avery has been known to say some pretty funny and out-there things. Here are some recent ones:

When talking to her Nana - "Nana, I can't come and stay with you now because I am a kid and I need to stay with my mom and dad. When I am a parent, I will come and stay with you. That way, you won't be lonely."

Yesterday, I had a ton of raffia laid out to use for VBS. She laid down in it with her baby doll and said, "Look, Mom! I'm Mary."

Whenever she was talking to her dad on the phone while we were visiting Nana, her daddy was telling her how much he missed her and was ready for her to come home. I knew that she was having fun, and although she missed her daddy, was not ready to go home. So she offered him this, "Daddy, you'll be in my heart."

Recently, when her nose was stopped up she proclaimed, "Momma, I need you to pray for my nose. It's stopped up!"

Whenever she talks about going and seeing Carrie Underwood she says, "Momma, I can't wait to go and see Carrie Hoodwonder!"

Saturday, July 19, 2008

The Girls

I absolutely love this picture that I just got in (thank you Greg - we love Pinkston's)! I think it is so sweet that Addison is looking at my mom. Can't wait for Avery to take her 4 year pictures in a couple of weeks. It will be so much fun! Check out the professional poser on the Cheatham Blog.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Fun at Nana's

Avery, Addison and I spent the week with my mom (Nana) in Searcy. Avery loves her nana so much and was so excited to spend some time with her at her house (Nana usually comes and spends time at our house). This was Addison's first trip to Nana's so there was a lot for her to see and take in. **My mom had a large tub of dress up clothes all ready for Avery to try on. Of course, that's one of the first things that she did. She also had fun piling all of the clothes on my mom's friend, Daniel. He sit very still as Avery covered him completely up with silk scarfs, skirts, princess clothes and dresses. Avery thought this was the neatest thing to do! **Avery's cousin, Hailey, came over to play and the girls had a fun time posing for the camera. **As you know, Avery loves swimming and water, so she was very excited to put on her bathing suit and play in the little pool. She also was able to play with bubbles - giant bubbles! **I remember playing with sidewalk chalk when I was younger. I loved it! Avery does too! She had fun writing her name with different colors of chalk. **Just like at home, Addison loved swinging in Nana's swing. **I love playing Scrabble. Mom and I stayed up after the girls had gone to bed and had a friendly little game. We get pretty competitive. I have to brag on myself. Mom made the word "round" and I added a "g" to the beginning and an "s" to the end to make "grounds." The "g" and the "s" both feel on double word score so I was able to make 36 points by using only 2 letters!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Five Things Friday

Our Friday:
1) Addison had a terrific day and was a wonderful car rider!
2) Avery found a deceased ladybug in the house and decided to keep it as a pet. She named it Jennifer although she said it was a boy. She carried it around and even took it outside. While up at the garden, she lost the dead ladybug. She began yelling, "Here Jennifer! Where are you Jennifer?" and searched for her for about 10 minutes. Jennifer, the deceased ladybug, was never found.
3) Something ate the corn in our garden. Two thirds of the corn was stripped back and eaten completely. Joe thinks it was raccoons. He was very upset and kept saying, "Something (animal) is going down!" which Avery found fun to repeat the rest of the night. Joe then rigged lights around the garden and prepared to "take down" the thief.
4) I went to Wal-Mart after the girls were good and asleep. I got there at about 10:45. I couldn't believe how many people were there! Mostly college kids and teenagers. A LOT OF STRANGE PEOPLE come out at night to go to Wal-Mart. I was very glad to get out of there!
5) After I left Wal-Mart I rewarded myself for being such a trooper, and Joe for staying with the girls, and indulged in some Andy's frozen custard -- peanut butter shake (thanks Amy B!) and a raspberry concrete! A wonderful snack for late at night (their open until 12:00 in the summer)!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Garden Fresh

Another wonderful thing about my husband, Joe, that some people may not know is that he is a terrific gardener! We have a large garden with 5 rows of corn, 2 rows of squash, 1 row of tomatoes, 1 row of various types of peppers, and 2 rows of cantaloupe. Joe plants, hoes, tills, waters, and picks the garden all by himself this year -- with a little help from Avery. With Addison being 3 months old, I am no help at all. Last night, we had our first harvest of the season. I tell ya, there is nothing like fresh corn! Avery LOVES it! Along with the corn, my amazing husband also cooked fried green tomatoes, baked squash, and grilled pork chops. It was a fantastic meal. We sat outside on the deck and feasted on our home grown (sans the pig) meal.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Water Baby

Last week, our beautiful three month old, Addison, had her first swimming pool experience. She loves her bath, so I thought that she would enjoy the pool. Looking at this picture, I really don't think enjoyed is the word. She seems like she tolerated it. She did enjoy watching her sister, Avery, and her friends swim and splash in the pool. After a little swimming and resting on my knee, she was ready to take a little nap. She just conked out on my lap. Poor thing! She's such a little trooper!

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Avery's First Horse Show

Saturday was Avery's first horse show. She is doing Lead Line where they sit in the saddle by themselves and the horse is led around by someone. She was so excited! Ms. Heather has worked so hard with her getting her ready and teaching her how to ride a horse correctly. Avery sat on the horse like a natural and looked so cute riding it around the arena. She seemed so sure of herself. She looked so adorable in her black hat and outfit. I love her little chaps. She waved to us and waved to the judges. After all of the kids had been led around the arena twice, they lined them up and began calling places. Avery got FIRST PLACE out of seven. We were thrilled! What a great first horse show!

Friday, June 27, 2008

Five Things Friday

It's hard to find movies that both our daughter, and her daddy and I like to watch - even over and over. So, I have compiled a list of five for those of you who enjoy watching movies as a family, but do not enjoy watching those annoying kiddie movies over and over. In no particular order:
1) Nanny McPhee (o.k. - I do have to admit this is our favorite)
2) The Chronicles of Narnia (although we cut out some scenes)
3) The Water Horse (almost a horse, but not quite)
4) Enchanted (Avery loves the song and dance parts)
5) Dreamer (of course, it's about a horse)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Lots of Laughs!

All of the family was sitting on the swing (don't you wish you had a dollar for every time I mentioned the swing :). I was in the middle holding Addison up on my knees and her daddy and Avery were on either side of me. Every single one of us were trying to make her laugh. We were all making silly faces and talking that ridiculous baby talk. She was laughing and smiling so much. She kept looking back and forth at each one of us. We were all competing to see who could make her laugh the most. After a while it was like she was saying, "O.k., now show me whatcha got." We were all laughing - laughing at her, and laughing at each other!

Like Father Like Daughter

One of the MANY things that I love about Avery is that she loves to wear dresses, have her hair fixed, dress up in princess clothes, and have her toenails painted; AND she also loves to play outside, get dirty, ride the four wheeler, poke at worms, and ride her Barbie Jeep. She's a wonderful mix of girly girl and outdoor girl! Last night, she decided to help her daddy wash the four wheeler. She really got a kick out of spraying the water and sticking her hands and arms WAY DOWN in the soapy bucket to get the wash rag. She decided that she her Barbie Jeep needed a cleaning too. By the time she was finished with the ATV and Jeep wash, she was soaked from head to toe!

Friday, June 20, 2008

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

Today we went to see Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at the ASU Fowler Center. On the way there I prayed that Addison would be good - awake or asleep. Whenver we got there, we had to wait to see if they were selling any more tickets. Thankfully, they were. I was kind of upset to find out that I had to pay for my almost 3 month old who was not even in a carseat that took up room, but in a sling that I was carrying her in. Anyway - before the play began, I took Avery's picture with Snow White and the Queen. The play didn't stick to original script, but we LOVED their version of the story! Avery's favorite part of the play was seeing the seven dwarfs. They were hilarious! My favorite part was the magic mirror. The way that they made the mirror look was amazing! We didn't get to find out what Addison's favorite thing about the play was because she was ASLEEP THE ENTIRE TIME! Thank you God! We all had a good time.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Our Little Daredevil

Last Saturday, Avery's friend, Chloe, had her 4th birthday party at a swimming pool. Avery absolutely loves the water and couldn't wait to get in it. She swam all around the smaller pool in her floaties. She was like a little fish. Avery was putting her head in the water and going under the water. To my surprise, she told her daddy that she wanted to jump off the big diving board in the big swimming pool. I really didn't think that she would actually jump in, but she did! She didn't hesitate at all. She didn't jump off the diving board once, but several times. She was even doing poses before she dove. She is so entertaining!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Sleeping Angels

Oh, the joys of two children asleep at the same time! We are always on the go and stay so busy whenever we are at home. Our week consists of Mondays - major laundry day and just hanging out at home, Tuesdays - library time and then to eat with friends, Wednesdays - gymnastics, Thursdays - playdate with kids from church, Fridays - last Friday was pizza day and I hope this tradition continues! Whenever my precious little ones are asleep at the same time, this is my time to do extra cleaning (lucky me!), make grocery lists, clean off the deck, do more laundry, straighten my girls' rooms, check e-mails, update blog, read a book or magazine, hunt for new recipes, talk on the phone, plan for supper, and sometimes, if I'm lucky, take a nap myself. ***For those of you that read our blog on a regular basis, the picture is of the very famous swing.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Our Horse Girl

Everyone who knows Avery is very aware of the fact that she loves horses - I mean REALLY LOVES HORSES! She began falling in love with them when she was about a year and a half old. She called them "hoewees." So, for her second birthday, her daddy arranged for horses to be brought to our house and give the kids rides. She was amazed! We recently cleaned out Avery's toybox and discovered 57 horses of various sizes and colors. Because her toybox is overflowing, we decided to buy her one of those large, plastic, drawered carts to go in her room - just for her horses. Those horses join her 15 stuffed horses, large Butterscotch Pony that moves, neighs snorts, swishes its tail, chews on a carrot and swishes its' tail, approximately 30 horse books, a large plastic horse about 2 feet tall, her horse bedspread and pillows, her fabulous horse mural on her wall, and her horse lamp. Everywhere we go, she points out horses. She absolutely loves them. She can never get enough! Today, we went to the library and they were having a Scholastic Book Fair. Guess what she found? Two horse books! She looked at them all the way home and was so excited to tell me about what the books had in them. Whenever I say something about going to someone's house that she doesn't know or if I tell her about someone new, she always asks, "Do they have horses?" Every once in a while, she will (out of the blue) say, "We really need a real live horse." We always agree with her.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

10 Reasons

It's got to be difficult being the only man in a house of three girls. Even our dog is a female. I'm sure he feels like he is being pulled in several different directions all of the time. He is a wonderful father and a terrific husband. Here are just a few of the reasons that make him so great:
1) He lets Avery paint his toenails (picture).
2) He will go to Wal-Mart, no matter how late it is, to get something that I should have remembered to get. Tonight, he went to get Infant Tylenol for Addison. She has her two month shots tomorrow.
3) He cleans better than I do.
4) He can create anything. We currently have a contraption on the bathroom light switch so that Avery can turn the light on and off.
5) He can fix anything - the washer, our vehicles, the lawn mower, my jewelry, a squeeky swing, etc.
6) He says the words, "What can I do to help?".
7) He gives me compliments all of the time.
8) He watches Grey's Anatomy with me.
9) He keeps a garden and works so hard in it so that we have wonderful fruit and vegetables that last all year long.
10) He makes me laugh and when he does, it seems like we are two giggly teenagers again.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Endless Joy

I've been sitting here trying to think of words to describe how this picture makes me feel, but there are none that can even come close. Seeing our two girls sitting there smiling is making me smile and laugh just looking at their picture. I love watching them interact. Avery loves to entertain (she actually used that word 2 days ago) her sister. This morning, we were outside on the swing and Avery was talking to Addison and making faces at her. Addison was smiling so big and actually laughing! It made my heart feel like it was going to leap out of my chest! I absolutely adore them and look forward to seeing their bond deepen as time goes by.

Thursday, May 29, 2008


Addison is displaying her unique personality! Her open-mouthed laughs are my favorite! She is such a happy baby in the mornings. And, since she has been getting her stomach lined out, smiles and coos all throughout the day. She loves having her big sister entertain her. Lately, her happiest times are outside on the deck, swinging in the swing that she, her daddy, and her big sister got for me for Mother's Day.


Avery began gymnastics about a month ago. She really loves tumbling, jumping in the foam pit, playing with her friends Eva Grace and Chloe, and her teacher, Ms. Cassie. Her mom believes her favorite part is dressing up in her leotard and skirt and looking at herself in the big mirror!

Avery's Preschool Program

Avery had her first preschool program on May 15th. Her classroom performed Surfin USA and The Twist. It was so cute! Avery stood front and center for everyone to see. She put on quite a performance and even walked to the edge of the stage to hold her arms out to her daddy and me right in the middle of the song! I shook my head no from the second row and she folder her arms and got very mad! The audience, of course, thought this was very funny! She proved to be a true "teacher's kid!" She did look really adorable doing the twist and interacting with her classmates.