Wednesday, December 15, 2010


The biggest news of late is that Gavin got a haircut. Gary likes it, but I miss his curls! I think Gavin misses them, too...he sure is fond of hats lately!! Here are just a few pictures of my boys.
Gavin truly does love Jack. He wants to play with him all of the time. Jack just thinks he's annoying right now, but one day he'll be thankful for him and the outlet of energy he provides.
Roasting marshmellows.

"Who Dat?!" Gavin put this on all by himself.
Look at those blue eyes!! And Gavin has pretty eyes, too.
Gary raked some leaves for Gavin to play in. I think Gary had more fun then Gavin did.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Thanksgiving 2010

Thanksgiving 2010 came and went pretty fast. But, it was pretty amazing! We knew very early on that the Saints were playing the Cowboys right here in Dallas, and that we wanted to go!! We realized rather quickly that it wasn't worth the $250 plus they were asking for noise bleed seats, so we resolved to have Thanksgiving at home and watch the game with family. But, as fate would have it, we scored 50 yard line seats in a suite with food and drinks included...for 6! Enough for everyone to go minus my sweet baby and sweet sister who stayed with him while we enjoyed the high life in the Death Star (aka Cowboy Stadium). Not only did we score these tickets, we scored parking right in front of the stadium. I really could have thrown a football at the stadium from where we were parked...and I throw like a girl!! This parking came in handy since it was brrrrr-freezing that day! I mean COLD! We ran into to some fellow Saints fans that were tailgating and my mom, Josh and Leonard got back in the car until we were ready to go into the stadium. Only the Marchands stayed outside, braved the cold and had some beverages :)

The view from the suite was amazing. It was really surreal. I couldn't believe I was going to watch my favorite team play from here. Add all of that + food + drinks + family = heaven! We had a great time. I'm not really sure we were supposed to jump up and down and yell and cheer as loud as we did. The other suite occupants, including the owner of said suite, (Cowboys fans) did not seem thrilled. In fact, after the game was over, they just got up and left. No good byes or anything. Sore losers? Who knows!? All I know is that we had a fantastic time despite some awkward moments with strangers and traffic nightmares!

Leonard and Michelle
Josh, me and mom

Gary and I...this was our view. OMG!
Since we went to the game on Thursday, we had our Thanksgiving on Friday. I woke up early Friday morning to cook the bird (that I brined for about 30 hours), make sweet potato casserole and stuffing. Michelle made mac n cheese, mom made mashed potatoes, Gina made green bean casserole and Leonard made dessert. Everything was incredible!!! I think this was by far THE tastiest Thanksgiving EVER! Yes, I want to go on record as saying this was the best feast EVER!
My bird.
The table all fancied up.
The family eating.
Gavin reliving his fireman days.
Jack got plenty of turkey and some exercise in the park.
Random. This cracks me up. My sister started to put olives on her fingers and talk to Gavin. Then, when was done talking, she would eat it! Gavin looked horrified the first time she did it!! So what did she do? Kept on doing it...who got involved??
"Apple", "Ma-maw", "Geeda" and Gavin. Weirdos ;)
After dinner on Friday, we went to get a Christmas tree at Home Depot...a Marchand family tradition since 2004. Michelle and Leonard came with us to help pick out the perfect tree! We also got a fire pit. Later that night after Gavin went to bed, we roasted marshmallows and made S'mores!
Our tree!

Gary got right on it and put all of the lights on. We decorated that weekend, too. Gary also put up our blow up snowman and lights around a tree outside. Everything looks great! What a fun weekend. I'm so glad everyone came in to spend this time with us, and I was so sad to see them go. But, we'll see them in about 3 weeks for Christmas!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Zoo to Do 2010

This past Saturday, our friends invited us to Zoo to Do at the Dallas zoo. In a nutshell, it was really cool! When we first walked in, there were a couple of different keepers with animals. One was an armadillo that folded up into this perfect little ball. His head tucked in on the upper right and his tail tucked in to the lower left. There was also a chinchilla, penguins, a snake, and a porcupine.

An armadillo ball.
The porcupine was really kinda cute. His keeper tried to keep him up on his little stoop by feeding him biscuits (BTW, porcupines prefer their biscuits soaked in water), but he just kept throwing them on the floor. He just wanted be held by the keeper...just like a spoiled child!

Penguins. They didn't really do anything cool. They did smell like fish.

Gary and I at the front entrance.
Tina and I with the really tall man.
We made our back to the animal exhibits. There is a new portion of the zoo that is really cool. You get to see the animals really close up.
This was really cool. The front of this truck was outside of the exhibit and the bed of the truck was inside of the exhibit, obviously separated by a piece of glass. There was a piece of meat tied to the back of the truck that lured the cheetahs so we could get a really good look at them.

This was the coolest thing of the night! We got to feed the giraffes lettuce and crackers. They come right up to you and eat out of your hand! You're not allowed to touch them, but I just want to nuzzle this little guy. They're awfully skittish.
Gary, me, Tina and Jonathan
Our first self portrait in a while
"Tinathan" They love it when we call them that :)
The boys
The girls
So, after we mingled with the animals, we headed back to the dinner area. There were about 25 booths set up from great places all over Dallas. We got to sample some food from each one. One of my favorite booths was the coffee one! It was pretty cold outside, so the hot beverage was much, they spiked our coffee with Baileys. YUM!
We went back to sit at our table and listened to the live auction. There was also a silent auction, but I didn't see anything I was that interested in bidding on. Gary was pretty intent on bidding on something. Suddenly, something caught Gary's eye. He saw "Thanksgiving tradition with the Cowboys" and asked what it was. I secretly thought, "Who gives a crap, it's the Cowboys" Well, the Cowboys are playing the Saints this year on Thanksgiving! Sure enough, it was 6 tickets to a suite on the 50 yard line!! No one bid on it! So, Gary and I briefly discussed whether or not we would bid and what would be our limit. After a nervous hour, we discovered we won the tickets!! How cool is that!?

It was a wonderful night filled with unique experiences, good friends, stiff drinks and great food! And, we get to go see the Saints play!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

'Tis the season!

The weather is getting colder and that just reminds me that the holidays are here! I did deem this time of year "fat season", but I really LOVE the holidays. Here a few of my favorite things:

1. Peppermint hot chocolate/milkshakes/latte
2. Fuzzy sweaters
3. Sweet potato casserole
4. Spending time with family
5. Boots
6. S'mores!
7. Sleeping with the windows open
8. Snuggling
9. Scarves
10. Presents
11. Football
12. Turkey
13. Christmas shopping
14. Christmas lights
15. Fresh Christmas trees!
16. Flannel pajamas

Monday, November 1, 2010

Halloween 2010

Happy "fat season"!! That's what I call it. Beginning today and lasting until the beginning of the next year, we will be stuffing our faces! The start of the season was fun. Gavin is old enough now to be interested in things....even if it is for a moment. This weekend, Gary and Gavin carved pumpkins. Well, Gary carved and Gavin checked in every now and again to see how things were going.
Looking at the insides...
Watching Dada scoop it out. He lost interest shortly after this!

The finished product! A Jack-O-Lantern with a crooked smile...just like my boy! And, Gavin in the background not really giving a crap.
We already revealed that Gavin was a fireman for Halloween. But, we did not reveal that Jack was his trusty side kick or his cool ride. Art really does imitate life ;) I made Jack a Dalmatian costume by using one of Gary's old, white shirts. Gary made Gavin a cool firetruck using cardboard and other stuff.
Gavin: "Um...I'm not really sure what we're supposed to be doing here..."
Jack: "Just don't make eye contact and you'll be ok!"

The fireman in his cool fire truck!

The boys heading out...
Gavin's first "trick or treat" at Jeanne and Glenn's. He caught on really quickly.

Those suspenders were too cute! I love his white undershirt!

Went to "trick or treat" at Ian's house. He was the cutest giraffe I've ever seen!

Ian trying to help Gavin put his hat on. Isn't that cute!

Going home.

One last stop at the neighbor. Gavin was mugging down this other fireman.

The boys before we went home.
We were only gone maybe an hour, but we were all tired and Gavin was on a sugar high. Poor little guy! Guess his system couldn't handle all the suckers. We had a great time going around to see our neighbors. It was a lot of effort by team Marchand, but the results made it so worth it. I can't wait to do stuff like this for Gavin (and Jack...sorry) when he's a little older. Who knows what kind of stuff he'll dream up for his daddy to make! I look forward to it.
Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Today was a bittersweet day for me. My little man turned 20 months old....he is no longer a teen-month-ager (we made that word up this morning) He is an independent little boy! When did that happen? I know it's silly, but it's a reminder of how fast he is growing up. I'm so grateful and so blessed to be able to stay home with him for five days and to have a flexible job that I love and to have a great "school" for Gavin. I will never get this time back, and I'm soaking it all much as I can anyway. I'm also so grateful for my husband...more than he'll ever know. How lucky am I to have a husband to support me and encourage me no matter what I decide? That's only one of the reasons I love him...

Speaking of my husband, Gavin is so into his Dada right now. Around 5:45 every day, he starts to ask for Dada. He knows that Dada will be home pretty soon. Then, when he does get home, it's the Dada show! Gavin wants Dada to bathe him, to feed him a snack, to watch Elmo with him, to brush his teeth, to read him books and to put him to bed. When I tell him it's time to take a bath or brush his teeth, he walks over to Gary, grabs his hand, and says "Dada?" Gary says, "Oh, you want Dada to bathe you?" To which Gavin responds, "Uh huh!" I've done this for sooooo long, but it's good to see my boys bond. It's a good opportunity to spend family time together. I think he really enjoys us both putting him to bed.

We love you so much baby boy. You are so much fun, and we look forward to every moment we spend with you. I don't know what the future holds, but I sure am having a great time with you... and every day gets better.

School Halloween Party

Today was Gavin's school Halloween party!! He woke up a little bit grumpy this morning, but we decided to take him anyway. I knew he would have fun once he got there. He did NOT want to get in his costume.

Dada getting Gavin ready for the party.

Last minute adjustments to his costume. Gavin was so happy Dada was was Momma :)
Finally happy!! Is he the cutest fireman you've ever seen. I'd buy his calendar!

Momma brought a "healthy, sugar free" dessert (??) It was a challenge to be creative with that. I could have just brought yogurt and fruit, but that's boring! So, I made peanut butter mud balls and graham cracker covered bananas. (Note to large groups of children, there WILL be someone allergic to peanut butter.) There were two kids, twins, allergic to peanut butter. Apparently, they can't even come into contact with residual from peanuts, like the oil. So, all the kids that ate the peanut butter balls had to have their hands washed so they didn't leave peanut residual everywhere. Scary! Oops...

There was a feast! Pizza, chicken nuggets, fruit, cheese, pretzels, milk! Gavin loved it! When he was finished eating, he got up, pushed his chair in and threw his plate away! What a big boy!

The room was set up so nice. I heard that his teacher got there at 6 AM to prepare the room. Thank you Ms. Carmen, you did a wonderful job!
We got to sit in for circle time. The kids sing some really cute songs. Every now and then, Gavin would join in with some hand motions.

Gavin wanted to come sit with me after a while.
It was so fun to get a glimpse into how Gavin spends two days per week. I'm glad we found this place...I think it's really good for him, and the teachers really seem to enjoy him. Especially Ms. Lindsay. When it was time to leave, he waved goodbye and gave everyone kisses. We have such an unbelievably sweet little boy. He was exhausted when we got home and took a 3 hour nap!