7UP Smoothie

I heart Pinterest!

A few years ago I found this drink on Pinterest.  Every now and then I'll make this drink and it's always so dang good.  It's like a bananaslashstrawberry smoothie/slush.  You see, I have a huge sweet tooth.  A meal isn't complete until I've had a taste of something sweet.  So when I'm looking for something to cure that craving that isn't tooooo bad and when I have everything on hand I'll throw this smoothie together to fill that craving.  It seriously is so delicious.  You can also use LaCroix sparkling water.  I often do that, too.  

The 4 ingredients you need: banana + strawberries + ice + diet 7UP or Sprite! 
The order you do things is totally up to you.  I like to blend my strawberries first, banana second and ice third.  
Once texture is nice and slushy (the way I like it), I add the 7UP and blend it, too.  If you don't like it slushy, it's also really good with whole ice cubes.  Kinda like an "on the rocks" drink.  :)
Pour it in a glass and enjoy!  Ahhh...can't wait to make another one tomorrow.  
Let me know if you try this!  I'd love to hear your thoughts.  :)



We Voted....With Toddler In Tow

We are a family of voters.  We vote at every election and make it a big deal.  Photo sessions and all.  Primary's, too.  :)  So this morning before daddy went to work, we dropped off Bossy at preschool and went to vote.  It was Navy's second time to vote.  Last time, he was almost 1 month old and he slept the whole time curled up in my wrap as I "wore" him.  Not a peep out of him.  THIS time, total opposite.  He wanted to cast my ballot for me.  Ha.  So I let him walk around while I finished up quickly.  I had one eye on him and one eye on who I was voting for.  ;)  

But that's okay.  Making memories is what its all about.  Wellll, and choosing the right candidate.  I remember taking Bossy with us to all of our voting sessions and I still cherish those photos.  You learn what you see so hopefully we're training up some little voters who will exercise their civil duty, too!

Typical photo with the Navy-dog.
Passerby-er's were hearing daddy sing to him to get his attention.  Ha!
Until November....



Alone Time with Mr. Navy Cross

Oh Navy!  You are such a cool little guy.  I don't write a lot about our days like I did when your brother was your age, but that's gonna change.  I'm gonnaA to start making it a point to set some time aside each week to write, reminisce, blog, just talk about you.  Mainly for our memory books.  There's so much that goes on during the week and so many changes that happen that I want to document.  I've made sure to photograph you a lot, but I just don't write about you enough.  We need to keeps things fair around here, right?!  :)

So here she blows....my first post this year about just you!  Since my new schedule (which I'll talk about in a later post) allows me more time at home with you we get to play and just be mommy and son more.  This particular day you had just woken up from your morning nap.  Our routine is to change your diaper, let you play in front of your mirror (clearly from all the finger prints) to see "that" baby in the mirror then to read some books.  You loooove books.  You love pretty much all books that I'll sit and read to you but you do have one particular book that you like the most.  The one that we take with us everywhere we go.  It's our saving grace at restaurants, grocery store, shopping, soccer practice....you name it, it saves us!  After reading and sitting on the floor in your room you frolic around and you eventually navigate your way into the next room, the play room.  
 There's something about a baby's tooshie and little legs that give me googly eyes.
 Making a dash toward your closet to get a shoe out.  I find your shoes all around the upstairs.
Trying to push the button on Scout's leg to make it play music.  Like your brother, you too, love Scout.  You sleep with him every night.
One of your Christmas presents (a blog post that I almost have ready to hit publish on) was this Melissa and Doug shapes set.  You are first learning your colors and then we'll move on to learning their shapes.  But between learning the colors, you like to tump the whole thing over to make them all fall off.  You are all boy!  Everything has to be dumped out or thrown down.
Fun fact: lately you will go up to the play room all by yourself and play.  Play for a good 20-40 minutes all alone.  There's so many toys up there that keep you occupied that you must forget that the rest of us (or just me when we are home alone together) is downstairs.

This day, I broke out my camera and just started shooting.  Shooting you play, walk and explore everything around you.  You had your toys and your mama right there with you.  I'd say you were a happy camper.
High up on the list of favorites is this latch board.  It was a toy that your brother played with and loved and now you get to play with it.  Under each door there are animals and every time you open a door we say the animal and then make the animal noise.  

And now every time you open a door you stop and look up at us waiting for us to say the name of the animal and make the sound that animal makes.  It cracks us up.

Here you are about to open a door.....
....and now here you are waiting for me to tell you the animal and make the sound.  Ha
You're very forceful when opening those doors.  You aren't playing around, you mean business.  :)
Your sweet face is so adorable.  This is clearly before you got your first hair cut.  I actually kinda miss it.  It was so "you."  Our little wild-haired man.
I loved that day and want to bottle it up and never forget how care free and peaceful it was.  But after about an hour of playing, it was lunch time.  

I'm happy to say, we've had many more days just like this lately and its so refreshing.  I look forward to those 3 whole days without interruption that I get to spend with you and to capture more memories.  


Jennifer Ann - NEW Product Launch

After a lot of thought, time and hard work we finally launched our new Personalized Short-Sleeved Onesies!  We are thrilled knowing that lots of babies will be sporting these in the coming spring and summer months.  We can't wait!  

They are made out of organic cotton and come is 6 different colors.  We are so proud of them and we know that you'll love them, too!



Navy Turns 16 Months - Wowzers!

Dear Navy,

     Holy smokes, we're already talking about your 16th month?!! Totally crazy how fast that went.  You have been such an awesome baby.  We still tend to think of you as a baby because the word toddler just sounds so old.  :)  Your little personality is really starting to shine through.  You're more vocal and mobile and really sweet.  We can tell that you're gonna have a gentle spirit.  You are not a fan of loud things.  Like, when you do something awesome and dada says, "Yayyy!!" you curl your bottom lip down and have a total meltdown.  We still can't figure out why that sets you off.  But it too is pretty cute.  For that reason, you still won't clap for us.  Because every time we've ever wanted to you clap we say, "Yayyy!" so now we think you correlate that with clapping.  You've only thrown a handful of tantrums but when you do it's the cutest to watch.  Even though it's a little sad because our communication barrier is what causes it.  The way you tell us that you don't want anymore of a certain food is by throwing it on the ground.  So, in a way, you're also upfront about things.  One more cool fact about you,  when you are eating and we tell you to "drink some water" you reach back and grab your sippy cup to drink your water that we have hanging from your chair.  It's fun to know that you know what we are saying even though you aren't talking yourself.  :)

Here's how awesome you were this month:
- you now have 10.5 teeth
- when we ask you if you want to watch your movie, you will walk over to your little bouncer chair, sit down and kick your legs in excitement.  Ha
- you know 3 words in Spanish: leche (milk), queres (want), aqua (water)
- you also know what mama means when she says, "Donde Esta?" that means "where is?" 
- you got your first haircut on January 23rd
- you know where your ear is (but we clapped and said, "Yay!" the first time you touched your ear when asked and now you won't do it anymore)
- LOVES reading books.  Your favorite being your book called First 100 Words
- loves to food
- you have a latch board toy that you love to open doors to.  Behind those doors are animals and you know that when you open the door we will say the animal name and then the sound and every-time you open a door now, you'll look up at us as if you're waiting on us to say the animal and make the sound.  Ha.  Makes us laugh.
- when you push your airplane around the house you've figured out how to navigate it and turn it so that it doesn't hit walls or run into anything
- still a mama's boy.  You'd rather mama hold you over anyone (even dada)
- you don't like walking in public.  In fact, you haven't walked in public once.  You'd rather be carried.
- sleep great at night.  Although, for the past 3 weeks you'll wake up at 5am, we'll give you a bottle and then you'll sleep until 8am
- we started trying to wean you off the pacifier at night and it's been going really good
- you love to move the curtains and run through them and behind them
- you are trying to veto your 2nd nap.  But we still get those in most days.
- by the end of the month you are completely weaned off of your pacifier!  Great job, kid.

We'll love you forever, sweet one!
Mama, Dada and Bossy


Navy Turns 15 Months!

Dear Navy,

    What a month!  These months are going by so fast and make us so sad.  We can't believe that you're approaching 18 months.  But let's not get ahead of ourselves.  What we do love is that you make us so proud.  You have really grown into a cool little guy.  You are starting to show your personality more and more, and it's a really sweet one.  Keep up the good work, kid!

Another amazing month with you!

Here's how it went down:
- you're still a champ at eating pretty much everything we give you
- you love to be held by mama
- you love to put your hand up to your mouth to make noises
- you take 2 naps a day now
- you still sleep great through the night
- you're in a size 4 shoe
- you love when we sing songs to you.  Your favorites are, Jesus Loves Me and the Wheels On The Bus
- you know what water is when we tell you to drink it.  You reach back behind your chair and pull your sippy cup up to drink.
- you know what "movie" is.  You love your Baby Einstein movies and squeals when you know its coming on.
- you celebrated your 2nd Christmas
- you celebrated your 2nd New Year's with us
- you do not like it when brother takes things away from you
- you have the cutest tantrums - you lay face down on the floor and cry.  Sad but adorable.

Happy New Year, little lover!  May it be your best yet!

We'll love you forever,
Mama, Dada and Bossy


Happy New Year 2016

Happy New Year from The Cooks!!
2015 was a great year.  

Daddy worked hard as an attorney, mama worked hard on growing her business, Boston turned 5 and started a new preschool and Navy turned 1 and grew so much.  We got to take a few family trips throughout the year.  We visited Florida in April, Branson, Missouri in July and the Atlantis in the Bahamas in October for Boston's birthday!  

Geez, was it a great year.

We can't wait to look forward to what the Lord has in store for us in 2016.

Annndd, I can't wait to get back to blogging!  :)



Navy Turns 14 Months!

Here's a recap of your pretty awesome month:

- you are starting to show more interest in walking 
- you love to walk around and push your helicopter that you got for your birthday
- you celebrated your 2nd Thanksgiving
- you started drinking lactose-free milk
- you are trying to say Bubba
- you took your first steps on December 8th after Bossy's Christmas program at school
- you can now hold your own squeeze pouch to feed yourself
- you wear a size 4 shoe
- you started full on WALKING a few days before turning 14 months!!  And we caught it on video!!

You're one amazing little guy.  We love you so much and look forward to another month with you to see how much you advance!  

We'll love you forever,
Mama, Dada and Bossy


Family Photos 2015

This was a photo session to remember.  We got all dolled up to go out in the 40 degree rainy weather. It was FA-reeezing!  You can tell on sweet little Navy's face how cold it was.  His little nose and eyes were so cold and red.  But both boys held tough, obeyed and got them done quickly.  Fastest family photo session we've ever done.  :)  But I love them so much.  They'll definitely be pictures we'll treasure forever.  

Our adorable and amazing friends Anna and Chelsea with A&C Photos did an awesome job and we are so thankful they were willing to freeze their booties off, too.  www.aandcphotos.com

Until next years photos....

xo, Jen


Navy Turns 13 Months!

Dear Navy,

We are so proud of you.  Proud of the little guy that you've become.  You are so kind and sensitive and we love it so much.  Every day is so fun with you and we love getting to watch you grow.  You've grown a lot in a year.  We'll look back on photos from this time last year and you were just a tiny little fella.  This year you look like a giant.  :)  We are so excited to see how much you evolve in the coming months.
- you went to your 1 year checkup on October 19th and you weighed 20.14 lbs and you were 30.5 inches long!
- you had your 1st birthday party on October 17th
- on your birthday we noticed that you were allergic to eggs or milk
- you had to get blood drawn for an allergy test
- on October 26th we found out you were "extremely" allergic to peanuts, egg whites, almonds, cashews and dogs.  And slightly allergic to milk, wheat and soy
- you love to swing on your swing on our back patio
- you're very sensitive and sweet
- you are about to be in a size 4 shoe
- you wear all of your brothers clothes and shoes
- you love to open cabinet doors
- you love Jets water and food bowl
- you love to take baths and splash the water
- you will mimic a coughing noise if you hear one.  It's so cute!
- VERY much a mama's boy
- you aren't taking to cows milk just yet
- you walked with your walker for the first time November 12th but wasn't able to get it on video

We will love you forever,
Mama, Dada and Boston


Navy Turns ONE!!

Can't wait to have a birthday fun-filled day with you!

We love you so much!


A New Preschool and Your First Day - 2015

Such a silly guy
Acting like a T-Rex

So excited.
Looking for his name and his cubby.
Oh Bubba.....where do I start?  

Preschool.  It's a bittersweet subject for mama.  I've never been a fan of knowing that one day you would be going off to school.  It's one of those things that makes me cringe thinking about you being gone from us during the day.  But with your personality, you thrive on being social.  School is good for you. 

Last year, we had you going 2 days a week.  This year, we decided to try a brand new preschool that was just built this year in the front of our neighborhood.  It doesn't have the option of a 2 or 3 day week for 4 year olds.  It's strictly 5 days a week.  Half day or full day.  

If it were up to your daddy you would be going full days all 5 days.  I wasn't on board with that idea.  I still needed more time with you throughout the week.  So we compromised that we would do half days this fall and then you could go full days starting in the spring.  So that's that.  

Your first week has already been a success.  You are LOVING your new school, classmates and teacher.  We know it's right where you belong and feel so blessed that you are being blessed, too.  

The second day Navy and I went to pick you up in your class we got there right when all of the other kids that stay all day were about to take a nap.  You walked to the door to me so we could leave.  I told you to turnaround and tell everyone bye and when you did the blonde little girl laying near the door sat up, raised her arms and asked you to give her a hug.  Little did we know that would create a ripple effect.  Each of your classmates got up and ran to you to give you a hug.  At one point you had 6-7 of your classmates hanging on to you laughing and hugging you.  It made my mama heart so happy and pretty much melt.  The smile on your face was priceless.  One that I wish I had gotten on video.  

We know that not only are you being blessed but you are also a blessing to your school and classmates.  Though we miss you dearly when you are gone, you shine, son.  And we are so proud of you and feel so blessed to be your parents.  The parents that get to watch you grow.  How awesome for us.  

As we always tell you, "when" not "if."  We can't wait to do life with you and can't wait "when" you are successful.  

We're continuously praying for you and an amazing school year, son.  

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