Thursday, April 28, 2011

Charlie's Easter

I realize Easter is like sooo last weekend, so this is a pretty pathetically overdue post. It has just been such a busy week! This is my last week of work before I'm officially a SAHM and I've been trying to get ready for company coming in and Charlie's baptism this weekend. Phew!

These are just some of the pictures, but I haven't yet figured out how to load photos from the SLR on my computer yet. Brad got some good ones! He's finally getting the hang of his camera. Of course, there are no family pictures. As soon as we got around to posing for one, Charlie was tired and didn't want to sit still and threw a fit. Photo session over. So there are photos of Brad and photos of Charlie and photos of me. Brad now takes pictures of me without telling me. Kind of unnerving!

Anyways. Our Easter was a good one, but rather tiring. And more eventful than probably any of us wanted. We decided last week to head down to Williamsburg to spend Saturday night and Easter Sunday with my in-laws. We drove down during Charlie's nap time, hoping he would sleep in the car. He didn't, so we just thought maybe he'd go to bed early that night.

When we arrived, Brad and his dad took off to play some golf and Sue and I waited for Clare to get in from Charlottesville and played with Charlie. During a rambunctious game of Ring Around the Rosy, Charlie fell down on some toys (big Legos I think) and banged up his face. Two cuts on his brow and some scratches on his face. He was bleeding and screaming. Not happy.

I thought for sure it would turn into a black eye, but really it just bruised a bit. Anyways, I think it must have hurt even after he settled down because he didn't want to go to bed that night. He finally went down, a tad later than I was hoping, after some ibuprofen.

We had a really nice dinner of steaks and crab cakes, along with a salad from the farmer's market. I had made my family's traditional bunny cake - strawberry cake with white frosting, cut to look like a bunny and decorated with paper plate ears and jelly beans. We went ahead and ate it that night because Clare was dying to have some! Boxed cake and a tub of frosting - I don't eat it often, but when I do, it tastes soooo good.

We watched the Social Network and then went to bed. Or tried to, at least. At 2am Charlie woke up screaming and crying. I think his cuts hurt, so we gave him more ibuprofen, calmed him down and put him back to bed. That lasted about 15 minutes.

When he was upset again, I told Brad I'd take care of it, since there was no point to us both being up and Charlie tends to want me when he's upset. He seemed hungry so I fed him, read him some stories and tried to put him back to bed. He immediately crawled out of the pack n' play and gave me his stubborn face. Excellent.

I think I finally got him down around 4 or 4:30. I went back to bed hoping he'd sleep in. He didn't, really. He was up and ready to go around 8. I was kind of delirious at that point. Brad went and got us some Starbucks and we got ready since everyone was coming at 11 for lunch.

Charlie and Brad took a walk and he came back bleeding and crying again - this time on his knees, from falling down on the street. After we got him cleaned up, I put him down for a nap and said I was just going to close my eyes for about 30 minutes. Two and a half hours later I woke up. Eeek.

We had a really nice lunch of ham, potato salad, fresh asparagus and roasted beets with key lime pie for dessert. Charlie sat at the table like a big boy and had some food and of course, talked the whole time.

After lunch, I let Charlie take apart his Easter basket... ok basketS plural. I got too much stuff and had to make 2 baskets. And Sue's sister-in-law Nancy also brought Charlie the sweetest little basket shaped like an egg and filled with adorable stuff.
His favorite items were this little wind up chicken that hops around - and scares him to death. He also really loves this Fire Truck book my Aunt Judy sent him, which has a very loud noise that goes off every time you push a button on the cover. I'm not sure what I did to anger my aunt and make her want to punish us so with that sound!! But he loves that book, carried it around all day.
After that, Sue's nephew Richard had very sweetly set up an Easter egg hunt for Charlie out front. Charlie didn't really understand the concept at first, but both Brad and Richard walked around with him, pointing out the eggs and he finally got it after the first few.
Sue just put one jelly bean in each egg, and it's a good thing - he wanted all of them opened and would have been sick to his stomach if each had had a ton of candy.
Finally, everyone headed home and we packed up and left for Richmond... and hopefully a nap. We were so exhausted from the night before. I think I got more sleep the night before Charlie's first Easter, when he as 6 weeks old! I remember that was the first night he slept through the night.

Once back in his crib, Charlie slept for a very long time that night! So did Brad - he went to bed at 8! I stayed up a while to talk to my mom, but was dead asleep by 9:30. Felt soooo good!

As a side note to our trip, the weekend before Easter, a tornado came through Art and Sue's neighborhood and we saw the damage as it stood a week later. It was incredible (in a bad way). I wasn't able to grasp the level of destruction from Sue's email about it, but after seeing it I'm amazed no one on their street was hurt or killed.

They live by the James River and there are some condo buildings right on the water, probably a half a mile away. The tornado must have come off the water and hit those buildings directly because big (several feet wide) chunks of roof came flying into the houses on their street - including one that slammed into their garage doors and another that is so big it's still sitting in their front yard, too heavy for people to lift.

One big chunk of the roof flew into their neighbor's house two doors down and went straight through the house. The tornado must have hit that house directly too because it is condemned now. Fortunately, the man who lives there was down the street having dinner with friends when it hit.

The other thing that was scary was seeing all the trees. I think trees damaged by tornados have the eeriest look about them. Just shorn off at odd angles and leaning in strange directions. The creek behind their house has tons of downed trees and a very large tree in their backyard was uprooted. Fortunately it fell parallel to the house because it would have slammed into the den where they were sitting at the time - until a wheelbarrow came flying by 6 feet off the ground. That's how they knew this wasn't just wind off the river or a thunderstorm coming.

All in all, it was very scary - mostly because they had no warning. There was no tornado warning in their county and so they didn't realize what was going on until they saw the wheelbarrow fly by. At that point, the storm was on top of them and there wasn't much they could do but get away from windows as quickly as possible. We feel very fortunate that they are safe. An early Easter blessing for sure that nothing happened that day that can't be repaired.

So that was our weekend! I know this is quite belated - but I hope everyone had a very Happy Easter! xoxo

Friday, April 22, 2011

Bad Mommy

Wow, so 2 year olds... yeah. There's a challenge for you. Charlie has definitely gotten the memo that he's 2 and wants to make sure nobody doubts he is up to the task. Don't get me wrong, he is still sweet and loving and funny.... but there are moments I'm pretty sure his head is going to start spinning.

I think I'm just having a rough week with him. I hate that. I want to eat up every bit of this cute stage where he's talking and learning things so quickly. But some days - like yesterday - I really miss my 18 month old! You know, the age that was so easy because he was old enough to do a lot of things but hadn't discovered the art of the temper tantrum yet.

Yesterday in particular was rough. He woke up early and had about 3 tantrums within the first hour. I was pretty close to putting him back to bed. That just seemed to set the tone for the whole day. I wanted to take him out somewhere fun to play but even getting his shoes on was cause for screaming, so I just gave up and we stayed home. Where Hurricane Charlie systematically destroyed the house, room by room.

To vent I started texting. First Brad to tell him he must fly home immediately because *his* child was pushing me out of my sanity safety zone. And then the babysitter, begging her to please, come as soon as she could that night. She's a smart one, that babysitter and must have been able to interpret my texts because she wisely only showed up 10 minutes early.

At any rate, by the end of the day I felt like a bad mommy for not being able to find some way to deal with it all without wanting to pull my hair out. For practically flying out of the house after the sitter arrived, despite the cries of separation anxiety following me. For relishing every minute I got to peruse Lowes, Target and the grocery store that night by myself while feeling so relieved I didn't have to fight any of the bed time battles.

That's the thing - right now, everything is a battle. Changing a diaper, putting on clothes, getting in his chair to eat, going outside, coming back inside, getting the car seat, getting in and out of the bath tub, not being able to unroll my entire mega-roll of aluminum foil on the kitchen floor. All of these things are met with screaming, no matter how fun or entertaining I try to make them. Well, except for the foil. I didn't really try to make that fun or entertaining. That box has a sharp edge!

This doesn't take into account the screams that come from stopping him from destroying the house or coming close to inflicting bodily harm on himself. By the end of the day - or heck, by nap time - I just feel... tired. Not sleepy, but just worn out. Where I just want to stare at something. Preferably dumb reality TV.

But after all that, today was better; Charlie was a lot more agreeable. We went to our play group and had so much fun together. We came home and had lunch together and he took a short nap and then we went to the playground. We read books and snuggled before bed time.

He was tireless, though, which is also what kind of wears me down during the day. He isn't going to bed as early, sleeping as late or napping as much. So not as much recharge time for me. He even ran around the track at the playground! I didn't expect him to still fight bed time after all that running, but he did. Talked in his crib for a full hour after putting him down.

In his own way, I think Charlie kind of knows when he's being challenging. Sometimes I'll be standing there in a daze, staring at the ruins of my kitchen and roll of aluminum foil and all the sudden feel two arms around my knees. And hear a sweet, muffled, affectionate "Mama" from the inside of his hug.

And then I hug him back and we start over. Because he really is just so very sweet and loving. He's just being his age. Which is probably what makes me feel like a bad mommy the most. How can you blame a 2 year old for acting like he's 2?

So that's why, despite the fact that I really don't like them, I'm ordering him some dang Crocs so he can put on his own shoes and be independent and we can get out of the house with one less battle in the morning. I just decided that.

I'm going to have to give some thought on the other daily battles because I just don't think I can compromise on the diaper changes or getting dressed. A naked, soiled toddler running around would for SURE make me a bad mommy!

Now I feel bad for complaining so much. Much like Charlie Sheen's Torpedo of Truth tour, I am not winning this week!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The What's Up

What's been going on here lately? Oh, you know, the usual.....
Making messes, causing trouble, being stubborn and just general 2-ness!

Brad was in Chicago for a training this week and got home early on Thursday. It's been a nice treat having him for such a long weekend. I also got a treat from his trip to Chicago - a key necklace from Tiffany! I loooove it! Such a sweet surprise. Charlie got a big sucker from the airport and was equally excited. He is obsessed with suckers lately. I'm obsessed with my new necklace.

Our good friends/former neighbors are in town from London for a couple of weeks. Well, 3/4 of them are. We had a quick play date Monday. Three kids under 4 means everything is quick! I got to hold the new baby (4 months? 5 months?) and it was like holding air. Seriously, he weighed nothing. Poor thing has the worst reflux, though. Reminded me of Charlie with all his tummy gas when he was that age. It breaks your heart to watch them be so uncomfortable.... and their mothers be so sleep deprived.

We got to see them again last night at another friend's house. What started as patio happy hour for the ladies while the kids played ended up as dinner and margaritas for everyone once the husbands arrived. Charlie had a fantastic time! They had a bounce house, T-ball, sidewalk chalk, outdoor toys. He didn't want to leave! He loves being around the older kids. Thinks he's hot stuff.

We were going to meet up again today for the Village Green Fair up at Collegiate but it's supposed to thunderstorm all day. It's such a bummer - that fair is so much fun. Charlie and I went yesterday to meet up with a friend from book club and her 2 year old daughter, but all they had open were the shops and silent auction.

Charlie wanted to bid on the electric guitar - I could barely pull him away from it. I found him some fun wooden toys... and for $2 avoided a screamfest by just letting him take home the lavender baby doll stroller he wouldn't let go of. That's right - Charlie's obsessed with trucks, trains, airplanes... and a lavender baby doll stroller.

I had a Stella and Dot party this week. I'm usually not into parties where things are sold, but this one ended up being a lot of fun! I think a lot of people got their mother's day shopping done - for themselves or their mothers/MILs. They really do have a lot of cute stuff.

I served this Cooking Light Spinach Artichoke Dip that is a huge hit every time I make it. I also had a bunch of onions to use so I caramelized them and bought a round of pizza dough. Olive oil, onions, fontina and rosemary, 15 minutes in the oven and it was quite tasty! For dessert, fresh strawberries and pineapple with Nutella dip and store bought brownie bites. Yum yum!

Next weekend is Easter and I think we're going to try and take Charlie on his first Easter egg hunt! Other than that and church, we don't really have any plans. I'm sure Brad will have some food requests - probably my potato salad, which is a recipe I made up, and deviled eggs.

The weekend after Easter we are having Charlie baptized, so we're getting ready for that, too. His godparents and their son are coming down from DC and it will be fun to have them. Since Charlie is 2, the church wanted to do a private service for his baptism. I agree with them that trying to have Charlie up front during the main service for an extended period of time is probably not a great idea. I think the whole thing will be very low key. I'm just anxious to have it done - we have procrastinated long enough.

Brad and I are starting to think about taking a trip this summer, just the two of us. Because of his travel, we don't get much time together and time alone is even scarcer. He's got a bunch of Starwood and Ritz Carlton points and American Airlines miles. We will probably try and do the whole trip on points and miles. We originally talked about going back to Hawaii to where we spent our honeymoon, but now are starting to think of some other options. I'd love to do some scuba diving.

So that's about all that's going on with us. In other news, here are some Charlie anecdotes that surely only his grandparents and three adoring aunts will appreciate:

Charlie has been wanting to have his hair blown dry after his bath each night. Actually now he wants to hold the blow dryer himself. And one of my round brushes. If this isn't a sign that Brad needs to cut down on his travel, I don't know what is. Charlie also loves my makeup brushes.
I'm not sure where Charlie picks up some of his phrases, since he only wants to watch one TV show, but his latest one is to say Later! - instead of bye. Like, later dudes! I have no idea where that came from - heard it the first time when he said good bye to my mom after the wedding weekend. Later Nana!

The other thing he likes to tell everyone is that it is his turn. When he gets ahold of something he shouldn't have, he tells me MY TURN! No Charlie, it is NOT your turn with the scissors/that sharpie/dangerous cleaning product, etc. And it is pretty much perpetually his turn - I'm quite certain I've never heard him point out it is anyone else's turn!

We've had quite an issue lately with Charlie dumping things out all over the floor - water, juice, SAND, you name it. Afterwards he runs over and says Oh No! Like some tragic accident just occurred instead of him intentionally making a huge mess. It's a bit exasperating.

And lastly - Brad took this photo of Charlie during the wedding reception. Yes, Charlie is holding a pen and wearing a white shirt. The white shirt was much luckier than my mom's car and escaped without any pen marks. I think it's so cute how intent Charlie is on what he's writing. A congratulatory note to the bride and groom, I'm sure.
Happy Weekend everyone! xoxo

Sunday, April 10, 2011

My Sister's Wedding, Part 2

I think I'm going to have to do a Part 3 because I'm still waiting on photos that are not from Megan's camera. In fact, she even sent me a few that the photographer sent her, but made me promise not to share them yet!! There was such a cute one of Charlie, too. But soon, people. Soon.

The wedding day for us started early, at 9 am, time for a Starbucks run and then to the salon where we all got our hair and makeup done. Starbucks was essential as Charlie woke up in toddler prison at 3:30am.
I really loved my hair and make up, Megan picked great people. The salon was also just a nice way for the bridesmaids to just hang out and have some down time. We had these little boxed wines you can stick a straw in (awesome) and Potbelly for lunch while we were there. Meanwhile the groomsmen did... nothing. Men have it so easy!

While I was busy getting ready, Brad and Charlie were hitting up the fire station. a nearby park and a sports bar for lunch. Fire stations are Brad and Charlie's new thing to do together. Charlie looooves to talk about BIG TRUCKS. He also loves to eat chicken fingers, so it was his kind of day.

After hair and makeup, we headed over to the Old Red (which I keep mistakenly typing as Big Red, like that soda I used to love in the 80's) to get dressed and do pre-ceremony photos. Megan and Bruce opted not to see each other before the ceremony so we just did our photos with Megan.
Megan looked absolutely stunning in her wedding gown, didn't she? It fit her perfectly and I love the veil she wore with it. I helped pick it out! She's been so dedicated to working out and man did she have the toned arms and back to prove it. I know it must have blown Bruce away to see her coming down the aisle.

Also looking stunning? My mother. Wow. I HAVE to find a few good photos of her to post because she looked so beautiful. She wore a peacock blue colored raw silk dress that was just stunning. I have never seen a Mother of the Bride wear that color before. I will post photos, I promise.

And of course, also stunning, Charlie, who showed up a little while later - clutching a half eaten chicken finger no less - and we got him all dressed in his suit and tie. My mom had told me it would be best if he got there pretty close to ceremony time and she was right. He had just woken up from his nap, asked for chicken and Brad drove him over to the Old Red. By the time he was dressed and had a few photos, it was time to walk down the aisle. Not enough time for any 2 year old-ness to start occurring.

Now, 2 years old is pretty young to be in a wedding party, so I think we all had limited expectations of his ceremony performance. I was very impressed he made it all the way down the aisle with me without getting scared because there were a LOT of people staring at him. As we got towards the front, Charlie started recognizing people and calling out their names. NANA! BOOCE! (Bruce), DADA! All with the most sincere shock in his voice like WHAT are you all doing here??

Charlie sat down in the front row with his daddy and I took my place with the bridal party and... that's where things started to take a downward turn. Charlie didn't want to sit with his dad, he wanted to be by me, but not stand still really. Basically, he wanted to be 2 and be all over the place. He was also making a lot of noise, so unfortunately Brad had to take him out in the hall for the ceremony.

My dad presided over the ceremony, which was lovely. It was pretty funny, though, the first time my dad mentioned the rings my sister had this look of panic cross her face. At the time I thought she was thinking I might have forgotten Bruce's ring. But she told me afterwards she couldn't actually remember ever giving me his ring. Ahhh, but the Matron (yes, I know, MATRON) of honor would not let the bride down! I still need to ask her if she worried about it all through the ceremony until I actually handed her the ring!

After the ceremony we took some more pictures and Charlie played his tambourine with the cocktail hour band. He was fascinated by them. Long after they were done with their set, he would run down to the end of the hall to see if they were possibly back playing some more.

The reception was lovely, Megan and Bruce had a sit down dinner buffet and a caricature artist come and a pretty good DJ! I really couldn't concentrate on much until I got done with my toast because I was SO nervous! There were so many people there. Meredith didn't let that phase her one bit, though. I think she must have gotten the public speaking gene from my dad. She was phenomenal. So glad we did a joint toast, she really raised my performance quite a bit!
Of course, I also got a wee bit distracted during my toast because Charlie managed to wriggle away from Brad and run up to where we were toasting! When he got there he wasn't quite sure what to do other than say MAMA! Surprisingly, he didn't throw too big a fit when Brad picked him back up and carried him away.

Once the DJ started with the dance music and the lights went down, it was time for Charlie to go to bed. I could tell he just couldn't handle how loud the music was because he would run into the ballroom and then back out. By this time he had taken his shoes and socks off and was running around barefoot. The jacket from his suit was long gone and I couldn't keep his button down shirt tucked in for the life of me. So he was looking pretty classy.

I fortunately made it back from the hotel in time to see the bouquet toss and garter toss. Megan was smart and threw that bouquet before any of the girls had time to get cold feet about catching it! The girl who caught it looked rather shocked!

As a surprise to Bruce, Megan was wearing a New Orleans Saints garter and the DJ played When the Saints Come Marching In for the garter toss. It was the most wild garter toss I've ever seen! Those Tulane guys are cuh-razy. They went nuts and marched around for the whole song... with Charlie's tambourine! Meredith and I have decided every wedding needs a tambourine. It's as crucial as cake.

After that, the DJ played what he called the Tulane Fight Song. Apparently Tulane doesn't have a fight song? I don't know. Nobody was quite sure what song he was playing. The Indiana University contingent of the bridesmaids was expecting the IU fight song, though. It wasn't pretty when they found out it wasn't going to happen:
The rest of the night is kind of a blur of dancing (more tambourine involved) and helping my mom get everything loaded up after Megan and Bruce left in their limo. I was absolutely exhausted. My mother went on to stay up until the wee hours getting ready for the brunch at my sister and Bruce's townhouse the next morning. She is a rock star. I have no idea how she did it!

Charlie slept late, finally worn out from the fun. In fact, I kind of had to wake him up a bit so we didn't miss the entire brunch! As we were getting ready I managed to drop the iron on my foot. It hurt so bad I saw stars. But we had a brunch to get to! So I just gave it a few minutes and put on my shoe and went on to get us checked out. I am nothing if not task oriented.

The brunch was nice, a lot of people showed up but we missed the migas. I think my dad cooked something like 100 eggs worth of migas. I think those cuh-razy Tulane guys were ready for some cuh-razy plates of migas that morning! It's ok though, I know where the chef lives.

Brad and I headed back up to my parents' house with Charlie after the brunch and that's when my foot started to really hurt. I ended up having to go to urgent care for an x-ray and I fractured my big toe. Chipped the bone they said. I've been trying to stay off of it the past week, but it's hard with such an active toddler. Stuffing it in a shoe to fly home the next morning was a real treat, too.

The flight home was first thing in the morning and I've decided that is the golden time to fly with Charlie. He was too out of it to really be that much trouble. He wouldn't sleep on the plane, though - even in first class. Brad upgraded us. I had a lovely omelet and coffee, though, so at least one of us made the most of it!

Megan and Bruce are on their honeymoon cruise now, loving every minute, I'm sure. They've got to be so happy with how the wedding turned out. It was pretty perfect!

From my perspective, it was amazing watching my baby sister marry someone so wonderful. Bruce just fits in our family like he's always been there. They are so great together. I don't think I understood before I got there how meaningful that part of the weekend would be for me. I couldn't ask for a better brother in law! And Charlie sure does seem to love his Uncle Bruce. He kept following him around the brunch, calling out his name. Very cute.

Ok, more pictures to come, I promise!! Congratulations Megan and Bruce! Love you!!

My Sister's Wedding, Part 1

With my mom and sisters the day before the wedding

We've been back since Monday afternoon and you can be sure my delay in updating the blog is the result of exhaustion from 1) the jam packed fun time we had and 2) the difficulties in taking a 2 year old to an out of state wedding.

Also, I've been hoping more pictures from different cameras would pop up as I got next to none on my own camera. So far I've just seen pictures from my sister's (the bride's) camera and there were none of Charlie or Brad at all and non of any of us at the rehearsal dinner. I distinctly remember posing for photos, just a matter of photos popping up as people get around to downloading them.

ANYWAY. We arrived in Dallas Wednesday night after an evening flight. I decided to switch up flight times for this trip to see if we would have any better results than we've been having with the afternoon flights. There are 3 directs a day between Richmond and DFW. I would say the evening flight was a smidge better, but not by much. We even had the bulkhead row.

Fortunately, there was a lovely and very patient woman in uniform who Charlie took a liking too. He kept busy delivering all sorts of magazines and those little paper bags the airline provides in case you get airsick. She didn't look airsick, but had plenty of bags, just in case.

Thursday more people, including my sister Meredith, arrived in town and that night we went to my mom's Teacher of the Year banquet at Eldorado Country Club in McKinney. It was so nice! Well, except for the complete lack of wine. But there was a lovely beef tenderloin to make up for it.

There were speeches and videos of all the teachers in the district being interviewed. I loved my mom's video clip - it was very "her". Funny and heartfelt and sincere. In fact, this entire topic deserves its own blog post instead of being smushed in with the wedding events. Sorry Mom.

When we got home from the banquet Charlie was asleep and the house was just buzzing with activity getting ready to leave in the morning for the entire weekend. I think Charlie must have picked up on all the energy because he got up and would not go back to bed. And I couldn't force him because that little stinker can now crawl out of the pack n' play. Yeah. He crawls out and gives me the most defiant, stubborn look, which frankly reminds me of Brad.

I finally managed to get him down at 1 AM. Yeah. I was a zombie in the morning. Charlie was... just fine! Had delightful conversation with Mimi in the car about every truck we passed! BIG trucks!

We packed up the car and headed down to the Stoneleigh Hotel where Megan and the other bridesmaids were waiting and we were all staying for the weekend. I have to give props to the hotel - it was so nice! Beautiful historic hotel just a few blocks away from the action in uptown Dallas and the service was incredible. I'm pretty particular about hotels but would stay again at this one in a heartbeat. An excellent choice by the bride and groom.

We dropped Charlie off with his Didi and Papa, who were already checked in to the hotel, and headed to the nail salon where my sweet mother treated the bridal party to manicures and pedicures. The salon even let us bring in champagne to sip during our treatments! It was so much fun. We chatted and I felt so relaxed after the stressful bedtime battles the night before with Charlie.
Bride and MOB at the nail salon

After nails we went over to Saint Ann for Megan's bridesmaid lunch, hosted by her good friend/ boss's boss/flower girl's mom Tammy. Saint Ann is a relatively new hotspot in Dallas and is a converted schoolhouse. They've sleeked out the inside and have these huge doors out front they can open so the whole place feels like a giant patio. The food was delicious. I'd love to go back for dinner.
Bridesmaid luncheon at Saint Ann

Megan gave all of the bridesmaids some lovely, thoughtful bags of goodies to thank us for being in her wedding party. I think she'd been picking things out over the course of a year! She also got Charlie a giant tambourine so he could play along with the band during cocktail hour. They would be the same band that played at her engagement party, whose tambourine Charlie kept stealing.

After the lunch I headed back to the hotel to collect Charlie and attempt to get him down for a nap. My mother-in-law had been mostly unsuccessful getting him to sleep in her room since he could see her from his crib. Fortunately in our room, the closet was very large and had room to put the crib in it! Once Charlie was in the closet he was asleep in 10 minutes.

Yes, you read that correctly. I stuck my son in the closet to sleep. Like a little toddler prison. But it WORKED!

The rehearsal was that afternoon at the Old Red Museum, where the wedding was to be held, and the rehearsal dinner was that night at Mattito's in uptown. Are you starting to get an idea of why we were all so tired?! Action packed!
Bridesmaids at the Rehearsal

My sister Meredith compiled a slideshow for the rehearsal dinner that was so lovely. In fact, that was when it really hit me that Megan was getting married and I got a little teary. There was one particular photo that did me in - of the three of us with our Daddy Chuck, who Charlie is named for. I don't know that I'd ever seen that photo before. It was all very sweet. Meredith did an awesome job on that slide show.

After the rehearsal dinner, Megan and Bruce had reserved the upstairs room at the Ginger Man for everyone. Brad and I were going to head back to the hotel with Charlie but my cousin convinced us to come by since he had taken his young niece there before.

We gave it a try but unfortunately Charlie was just spent and all funned out. I was sad to miss the fun times, but hey, that's the life of a toddler parent. We took him back to the hotel, locked him in toddler prison and I collapsed.

Ok, I should stop now and write up the rest in a separate post. Part 2, the Wedding Day!