Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Hello Summer...we missed you!

It's officially summer and the McCarty's couldn't be happier!


We are clearly water bugs and love to spend a hot South Carolina summer day lounging in the closest pool...


Just call me a pool whore...I don't care...if you have a pool, I'm there!


My friend Heidi took this picture and commented that Auralee had Christopher much higher in the air than I had thrown Ruth Ann...fyi: Ruth Ann weighs at least 5 pounds more than Christopher and I'm sure that even at 7 months pregnant, Auralee still has more upper body strength than me!

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Monday, May 30, 2011

Parenting Fail

This is Ruth Ann...


and I love her with all my heart...but this potty training business is just about to make me lose my mind! Overall, I would say parenting has been an incredibly humbling experience. I'll admit I was critical of poor parenting prior to becoming one myself and I must say, it looks easier when you're on the outside looking in.  For me, potty training has become the most humbling experience of all.

After weeks of bribing, regularly scheduled potty breaks, pull-ups, big girl panties...you name it...as of last week, we were no more closer to being potty trained than when we started. I can't tell you how upsetting this is when you have a child with a seemingly limitless vocabulary not be able to tell you when she needs to go to the potty! I have a new found respect for any parent who has ever potty trained a child...it's a battle & my hat is off to those who have fought & successfully won this battle!

This weekend I reached by boiling point...a big part of our problem is that Ruth Ann wears real panties at our house and pull-ups or diapers at my in-laws house...a tactic which I plan on changing this week. During my time off this week I changed my strategy. I had been putting Ruth Ann in big girl panties and a t-shirt...no bottoms. She wasn't the least bit bothered by wetting her panties...but this week I made her wear shorts...and not just any shorts, jean shorts. This led to immediate discomfort when she wet her panties and then I made her stay in her wet clothes for a few minutes...big improvements started to be made. Then on Saturday morning she wet her pants, I made her go to the bathroom but she came out a few minutes later naked from the waist down. I cleaned her up, changed her clothes and literally 10 minutes later she wet her pants again. I was seeing RED! This was first time since potty trained where I felt like a serious scolding was needed. I scolded her and walked her back to the potty only to discover she had pooped in the potty on her own...for those who haven't potty trained a child...pooping is the Holy Grail of potty training! I felt terrible...here was my child in tears & me yelling when I discovered she had pooped on her own for the first time...GIANT parenting fail!

The good news...Ruth Ann has been dry all day as of 7:30pm.  If this holds up until bath time she gets to open one of her new Barbies!  Please Lord, let this be the light at the end of the potty training tunnel!

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Sunday, May 29, 2011

Last day

For weeks I've dreaded this day coming...the last day of school.  Not because I don't want Ruth Ann home with me more...I'm actually looking forward to not having to be anywhere on Thursday mornings.  No the dread I felt came from knowing there was a change on my horizon.  I don't handle change well, never have and since I'm 32 years old now & I still hate change then it's pretty safe to say I'll always hate change. I have loved the church pre-school Ruth Ann has been in for the last year. It's the same church pre-school my brother went to and most of my friends have their kids there too. But due to the location of our house, my in-laws house and our places of employeement...it just wasn't going to be possible for Ruth Ann to stay at this school next year. She's going to a great school next year and I know she'll meet lots of friends and have sweet teachers just like this year...but it's change and did I mention I hate change?

Here's Ruth Ann on her first day of school in August...


And then on her last day...


Is anyone else looking at these pictures through teary eyes...or is that just me...and maybe my mom too?

More evidence of change...which I hate...I just can't believe how much she has changed in one year. I keep hoping she's going to stop growing up so fast but apparently that's not going to happen.

Here is Ruth Ann with her sweet teachers...


So many days Ruth Ann would come home smelling like their perfume. I knew that was because she had been sitting in their laps or they had been giving her hugs during the time she was with them and it warms my heart to know that during the few short hours she was with them once a week they were loving my daughter. I don't know who had a harder time saying goodbye to them...me or Ruth Ann...who am I kidding...it was me. I had to hurry out because I was on the verge of tears...see, this is what change does to me...I melt into a pool of tears. My worry now is that if this is how I handled the end of Ruth Ann's first year of school...how will I handle 17 more years of this?

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Monday, May 23, 2011

Stylin' & Profilin'

About 2 months I started planning Tripp's 3 month photo session with our favorite photographer, Heidi Graves. I'm making an effort not to turn every photo session for Tripp into a photo session for Ruth Ann...but that's nearly impossible for this momma who LOVES having pictures taken. I don't want Tripp to look back one day and realized every picture I have of him has his sister in the picture too. However, Tripp's 3 month pictures needed to be taken around Easter and that meant bunny pictures for both kids. Thanks to a very rainy month our pictures were postponed until Tripp was actually 4 months old...oh well, so goes the life of the youngest child.

(Let me first say the statement I'm getting ready to make is very shallow and if this is the worst of my problems then life is pretty good.) In past I've been unhappy with Ruth Ann's hair in the pictures I've had made...see, I told you, shallow.  Overall Ruth Ann has pretty good hair, but the longer it gets the stringier it seems to look to me...I'm itching to cut it off but the majority of my friends think it looks cute longer, so we're trying out a longer style...for now. I still think her hair looks cute cut off in a chin length bob but long hair is what I have to work with now. In an attempt to make her hair look fuller and less stringy I broke out my old velcro curlers...it seems too "Toddlers & Tiaras" for me to apply hot rollers to my 2 year olds hair!


I found her hair to look much better this time and plan on trying the same thing out the next time we have pictures planned. I hope the velcro rollers will continue to work for us...otherwise I may just be a hot roller away from being a stage mom from "Toddlers & Tiaras"...and I'm afraid that looks to be a very slippery slope friends! I give you all permission to intervene when I start talking about having Ruth Ann fit for a flipper!


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Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Back to the pool

Last weekend I ventured back out to my mom's pool with both children. My mom assured me the water temperature had warmed up during the week and she felt sure I would be able to enjoy the pool this time. The bottom half of my body was all I managed to submerge...the top half felt it was still a little too cold and each time I tried to get a little farther down in the water I started to freeze...so I'll be taking baby steps in trying to enjoy the pool fully.

I did think it was time Tripp-man take a dip in the pool...he disagreed, but I was able to get this picture during the few minutes he wasn't screaming his head off...


As always Ruth Ann loved spending the day at Grammy's house. When I asked her on the way home what her favorite part of the day was she replied simply..."Grammy was my favorite." She's so sweet...sometimes!





After being tortured by his momma, Tripp went inside for a nice long nap. When he woke up he ate his usual 7 oz bottle and then lounged by the pool for a little bit before we packed up and headed home...


He seemed much happier to be poolside rather than in the pool. I feel confident he'll like the pool much more when the pool temperatures feel more like bath water and less like ice water!

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Monday, May 16, 2011

Mother's Day...one week later

This past weekend we had a belated Mother's Day dinner with Arch's parents and his brother's family. Many of you know how fortunate I am to have in-laws who very graciously keep my children during the day while I'm at work. Because of their willingness I'm able to work part-time allowing me to be home with my kids 2 out of 5 weekdays every week...which I value and highly recommend to anyone who can swing it...I'm not sure I'll ever be able to work 5 full days...in a row...ever again! To say I'm grateful to have in laws who want to have such an active role in their grand children's life is a huge understatement!


Here is my mother-in-law with all her grandchildren...looking at this group together only confirms what I already believed...don't you think they all look similar...even though I still like to believe Tripp resembles me & my family, I think McCarty genes are very, very strong!

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Saturday, May 14, 2011

How rednecks bathe their babies...

Tonight we had Arch's family over for a be-lated Mother's Day dinner. As I was getting ready Arch came in the bathroom and asked me to come get Ruth Ann whenever I finished getting ready. She had been outside with her daddy & brother and usually after about 45 minutes outside with Ruth Ann...Arch is ready for a break...but that wasn't why he wanted me to come outside...

This is how I found Ruth Ann, in our driveway, in the broad day light...


If you know Arch well then you know he's never too far from a cooler...he usually has it in the trunk of the car or the back of his truck. This cooler has held cold adult beverages, vast quantities of ice, dead fish...and now our daughter...


Arch claims it was her idea...but I have video evidence from an eye witness that reports quite the opposite...however, the testimony is from a 2 1/2 year old...I'll post it tomorrow!


I only included this picture because I was amazed I was able to get a 2 year old, a dog and Arch to all have their eyes on the camera!

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Monday, May 9, 2011

Pool party Part 2

So to my surprise Ruth Ann, Ada and Grammy all ended up in the pool on Saturday. Then at lunch on Sunday my mom said they were planning on getting back in the pool that afternoon. This time I left Tripp-man at home with Daddy and Ruth Ann and I spent the afternoon at Grammy's house.


You can see Ruth Ann was still not the least bit bothered by the cool water temperature...


Ada, always putting safety first, floated around the pool...nothing was going to take her down...especially when using 3 different floatation devices...


Grammy spent a lot of her time in the pool getting the unwelcome guests out of the pool...


Then once the girls had all they could take of the cold water, they headed into a nice warm outside shower. I don't know what it is about my family...they ALL love outside showers. When Arch and I were still dating he and Spencer would join my family on our annual beach vacations. The house we use to stay in had a fantastic outdoor shower and from that moment forward Arch dreamed of installing an outdoor shower of his own...and 2 years ago he made that dream a reality. Once the weather warms up I'm the only one who showers indoors...everyone else enjoys and outside shower...and apparently this love of outdoor bathing is genetic...



Could Ruth Ann be any more excited to be in the shower...and this shower lasted for about 20 minutes...I'm surprised my parents had any hot water left after these two got done!

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Sunday, May 8, 2011


When my mom decided to put her pool in she added all the bells and whistles...including a slide! Ruth Ann fell in love with the slide late last summer and then spent about an hour going up and sliding down the slide at our Disney resort at Halloween. I can tell this summer those little legs will ge a work out going up and down the steps to slide down Grammy's slide. Here are the first slides of Summer 2011...

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Saturday, May 7, 2011

Thank goodness

All I can say is thank goodness my computer is smarter than me...I found the video files I thought I had deleted in my Trash file...so after a little editing...here is proof as to just how cold it was at Grammy's pool today...

After compiling all the videos I had 30+ minutes of footage that only members of my family would enjoy...these was just one of the funny moments!

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Not how I thought our day would go

Last week my mom called and told me Toni and Ada would be coming to town today. They were also bringing a very special delivery...2 kittens! I have a deep, deep love for all things feline and I may love holding a kitten more than I love holding a newborn baby. We packed up our gear because even though my parents and I share a zip code...we live on opposite sides of this zip code and it's about a 20 minute drive...without traffic...out to their house. We got there seconds before Toni and Ada, so our timing was pretty perfect. Unfortunately the kittens were not as big a hit with Ruth Ann...her father will be happy to hear this since it's my dream to take her to Pets Inc. to pick out her own kitty and it's his worst nightmare! But Grammy had some planting to do and she loves to have Ruth Ann and Ada help.  So I changed Ruth Ann into her play clothes...but it wasn't long before those two ended up in their pool Grammy's pool.

What started out as instructions to "stand" on the first step...


Turned into sitting on the first step before we knew it...


Who, other than the child's own mother, didn't see this coming??

Since I had not planned on today being Opening Day at Grammy's pool I didn't have a swim suit or swim diapers with me...but a Grammy with a swimming pool is aways prepared...


Well 50% prepared...she had a swim suit, but now swim diapers. Ruth Ann had already done her major business of the day just before she went outside but I'm pretty sure she most likely tee-teed while she was in the water...but who are any of us to throw stones...we've all done it!

And because Grammy probably loves these two girls more than anyone else in the entire world she put on her suit and joined in...obviously she loves them more than their own mothers because Toni and I sat pool side and watched Grammy entertain them in the water...I was freezing just watching them...


And who wouldn't be freezing when this is the water temperature...


10 more degrees and I may consider getting in!


But clearly these two don't care and they played in the pool for about 2 hours!



It may look like Ruth Ann and her Grammy are having a sweet conversation, but I recognize that little bossy finger...she's obviously telling Grammy which way to pull her on the float!

Eventually Ruth Ann began to border on hypothermia...if you can't tell by the color of her lips in this picture...


Then have a look here...


I had a funny video of her shivering and talking to my dad...but because I'm borderline computer illiterate when it comes to my video camera I have accidentally deleted all the videos I took today! Trust, she was cold and it was funny! My mom has been talking about putting in a hot tub and until today I wasn't on board...but I could have been talked into a nice relaxing dip in the hot tub this Mother's Day weekend!

We had a fun day spending time with some of our favorite mother's today...I hope they had fun too and I hope everyone, mother's, mother's to be or mother's in waiting are enjoying their Mother's Day weekend too!

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That was quick!

So last week Tripp had is 4 month check up. He weighed in at 15 lbs. 12 oz...a full pound ahead of his sister...but because boy vs girl normative data is different, he is in the same percentile rank has Ruth Ann...mid 60's.

As usual our doctor talked about what Tripp is doing and what we can start trying in the next few months before we check back in at 6 months. To my surprise he gave us the green light to start eating cereal! I couldn't stop myself from saying "Wow, that was quick!".

In a whole lot of ways I feel like Tripp should be doing more and I keep trying to remember when Ruth Ann did all these same things. I felt like Ruth Ann went from a newborn to a toddler in the blink of an eye. And I kinda thought Tripp's baby days would go by even faster. Until this point I have felt like I was going to be washing baby bottles forever...but hearing our doctor say he was ready to start eating solids made a very big part of me want to cry. Tripp is absolutely my last baby and now I'm starting to have that feeling of wanting to slam on the breaks and keep him at this age forever. Sure washing bottles is a pain and it would be nice if he could sit unsupported...but he sleeps through the night and is just about the most snuggly thing you may ever meet!

Tripp obviously shares my opinion that he is not ready to grow up and act like a big boy because his last two feedings have gone something like this...

Food goes in and then....



food comes out.

This is probably the 1001st way to show how different siblings can be. Ruth Ann took to eating right away...she couldn't help it, she is her mother's daughter! I know Tripp will come around...it's in his genes...but right now eating is a very, very messy activity!

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Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Baseball isn't our thing

Sorry USC friends, but during football season I was pretty sure Auburn was going to take home a victory when our two teams met. I will admit, my hopes began to fade during the first meeting late in the 1st quarter...I actually left the game because I got so disgusted by our terrible performance in the first quarter...and one of my best friends was in Auburn and I decided visiting with her was way better than watching Auburn play crappy football. Little did I know I would get the best of both worlds...chatting with Candi and watching Auburn win!

In the Spring however, my confidence in the Auburn Tigers baseball team is not nearly has high as it was in the football team during the Fall. Not because I don't think they're a good team...they are...I just don't think they're as good as Carolina's team...there, I said it!

This past weekend Auburn was in town for a 3 game series and we joined the Brown's Saturday night for a little pre-game tailgate and 6 innings at the baseball game.

Since it is near impossible to get a good picture of 3 children under 5 all at the same time, I'm including a good picture of each child...

(cutest picture of Ruth Ann)

(cutest of Jay)

(cutest of Betsy)

We sat in general admission seats in the outfield which is basically a grass covered hill and is perfect for little kids who want to run around, be wild and not confined to a seat in the stands. I got lots of pictures of the backs of their heads...




Here's why I was pretty sure Auburn wasn't going to take home a win...


The 2010 NCAA Baseball Championship trophy...it really is something to be proud of and strikes fear in the hearts of the visiting team!

One USC fan laughed when he saw Ruth Ann posing for this picture and he told Arch he needed to work on Ruth Ann. I'm very proudly raising 2 little Auburn Tigers...I laughed and told him at Auburn we have our own trophy to take pictures with on campus...which I hope also strikes fear into the heart of visiting teams in the Fall!

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