Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Wedding Weekend!

 
The month of October was all about celebrating Ivan & Kat getting married.  The countdown to the wedding included a bridal party pub crawl, the rehearsal night & then the wedding.  These pictures are in backwards order so you could see the beautiful bride & groom first!
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
Viviana was the flower girl & the boys were ring bearers (or barrels as Quinn called them). They all did great on the stage. I was so worried someone would yell "I have to go POOP" at the top of their lungs, or stage dive, the possibilities for mayhem were truly endless....   
 
 



 
Mr. & Mrs. Soler!
 
 We were so excited to spend time with all of Guillermo's family. It's a rare treat to have that kind of family reunion.
 
 
Titi Gloria!

 
Bisabuela!

 
Parents of the groom & brother of the groom & his lovely fiancé!
 
 
These are two pics from my phone, but it's like capturing the chupacabra on camera when it's the whole family LOOKING at the camera with fairly decent expressionsm, so I had to post it!

 
I had to post this picture because it's the only picture you can see my whole dress. Here you go Julie- you can see my blue dress, which I searched high & low for! I had to match the wedding party (which were in shades of blue) and it was so cute, G's Mom, Grandma & Aunt were all in the same shade! We should've gotten a matching photo....  

 
Father of the groom!
 
 
Everyone loves Sully! I can't wait to see the official wedding photos!
 
The Rehearsal dinner was at Ivan & Kat's fav haunt, a tapas restaurant called Barsa downtown.  I think I've had more delicious cheese in this past weekend than in my whole life. (This is also known as my personal HEAVEN!! Lol)....
 
Pretty Abuela!

 
Looks like Judah has picked up on Ivan's classic pose..... ;)

 
The happy parents of the bride.

 
Kat, her brother & sister.

 
Last night of being single!

 
I never get a picture of myself & the kids! The name of the game we were "playing" was how do you keep three little monkeys in the booth during tapas (many courses) dinner in a fancy restaurant? Thank God for Abuela helping with that!

 
Paella! It was soooo good. Just looking at this picture makes my mouth water.

 
It was also Max's birthday!  Celebrating all around!
 
 
At the pub crawl the Thursday night before the wedding we visited so many fun bars downtown. G and I never hardly ever get downtown anymore and certainly not to bar hop, so that was awesome to see some of Charleston's cool new spots! I am newly inspired to try to make it downtown at least once every few months to try a new restaurant/bar.  I feel like we're missing out on one of Charleston's best points by not going down there more frequently...

 
Too bad Jose Juan wasn't there yet... I love this picture of the boys!

 
The wedding party.

 
All I had was my small camera on that night and my flash was something fierce.... :)
 
 
On Sunday after the wedding we had one last hoorah with the Vicens. Maria, Carla & I went to a ghost walk while the kids hung out and watched the Steelers game with Jose & Max!

 
Ready to get out spook on!


 
I only had my small camera that night. So most of the pictures didn't turn out. But this one (plus editing) turned out so amazing! We'll miss you Vicens/Remus/Soler clan!
 

Monday, October 20, 2014

The Last Hoo-rah.

We've been sooo excited to throw Ivan's bachelor party.  We've been preparing for months!  It's the last big hoo-rah before he gets hitched next weekend!!
 
Guillermo wanted to throw him a big Puerto Rican style party in our back yard. This meant a big porch & backyard rehab needed to take place, but we were super excited to get it done.
 
 

 
 
I had to put a picture of this awesome grass plant that is finally flowering! I love it.
 
 
Our backyard was a bit like Sanford & Sons.... We don't have a garage and our shed is full, so a LOT of stuff sat under tarps.  Plus that horrifying overgrowth of weeds on the side of the house & side of the fence. I hated it! With the monsoons this summer we just could never keep up with the weeds.



 
Ahhhh, a million times better.
 
Now to find outdoor seating for over 25 people!  

 
I found these awesome chairs from a garage sale & the table at a thrift store.

 
My friend gave us these chairs, which I power washed & G painted. And my new rug was only $20 from Ross! I wish I had before pictures of this porch. It was like a hoarders porch for kids toys. Kids kitchen, every bike/push car, scooter you could think of. We had about a ten foot by 6 foot pile of "little tykes" land on our curb one week while we purged. It's so calm & peaceful now.  Now that all three kids aren't at home during the day anymore I thought it's time to get rid of the toys & save their favorite bikes/scooters in the shed & of course the best toy of all - the trampoline & swing sets...

 
I've become the crazy power washer lady. It took me about 8 hours, but I power washed the whole driveway, front sidewalk, fence, back steps, wooden benches, outdoor chairs, fort, etc.... again, with this rain & our Sanford & Son driveway the concrete was almost black!!  I'm so proud of how much better it looks, but the thing I hate about yard work is it'll all need done again within a year. Sigh. Stupid yard work. ;)

 
Months ago I had the "great idea" to make the kids an outdoor chalk board since our fence needs painted anyways (in the future) but when I bought the spray can I realized I needed a LOT more paint to cover the area.  I told G we needed to finish that project before the party & I'm so glad we did because I thought it added so much when I was able to add the artwork for the party.
 
While I was thinking about making the backyard & porch beautiful, Guillermo was dreaming about cooking the pig.  Guillermo's dad came specifically to help throw the party & help G cook the pig! They were quite the team and the pig was Ah-MAZING. It was from Righteous Ranch where they wrap them in blankets, sing them lullabies and feed them 5 course organic meals every day. Well, a lot of that isn't true, but they are a very incredible farm with great organic fed pigs. ;) And they are deLISH.


 
Twinsies.

 
If you don't carve your meat with a machete, you're not a real man. Lol.


 
It was no girls allowed, but it sounds like everyone had an awesome time! Most importantly, the guest of honor had a great time!



 
Beer pong. Drinks in a wheel barrow. Roasted whole pig. That's a man party if I ever saw one.

 
We love you bro! And we can't wait to celebrate the BIG DAY with you & Kat! We hope you felt the love from your bachelor party! 


So if you know our family, we can't ever have just one major event going on - we always have about five.. well G's been working nights again, so this tired non- cooking mama has been making some pretty lame dinners after football practices, and every other night function we have going on after work.
 
Last week I literally was about to fall asleep at the wheel and then to think about making dinner made me want to just say forget my diet and drive thru fast food drive thru.  But lo & behold, it was like a light shined down from the heavens & Panda Express was having a big grand opening celebration.  Complete with jump castles, balloons, game wheel and the panda mascot.  It was like in that moment when I pulled up and we won two free footballs, a mini panda, a free entrée & two free drinks I knew, GOD LOVES ME! There are so many times in life when you get that miracle "pick me up" right when you need it.
 
Oh and did I mention Panda Express has about 5 entrees that are 250 calories or less? And if you eat only about half of the white rice they give you your whole meal is about 500 calories! SCORE.



 
The kids are OBSESSED with mascots. They screamed "PANDA MAN" every time the panda came around. I'm telling you right now that "panda man" probably cursed under his breath every time he came near our table. Hahahaha. Like screaming like banshees PANDA MAAAAANNNN when he walked thru the front door of the restaurant and we're sitting in the back.
 

 
So this little gem, I have to share here so I remember this sweet girl.  The boys were at their football game Saturday and since G was home roasting the pig it was just me.  I was trying to watch the game and trying to watch her and socialize with the other kids parents when I noticed she was just staring at me. While I had a million things running thru my head and on my mind and I'm sweatin thinking about my to do list she was just looking so lovingly at me and asked "Mama, will you be my best friend?" Oh, I just wanted to cry.  Now she's not always this sweet, she can be miss sassypants too, but how frickin sweet is that? Oh my heart. I love that girl. YES Viviana, let's get BFF necklaces! ;)


 
Can I just tell you how happy this makes me? The kids each now have their own sets of weights. Quinn & Vivi used to use soup cans, but they wanted real weights like Judah & I.  I am so, so proud of the kids for working out & running with me. No matter how big & out of shape I've been, I've always had the kids be very active and we would rock out & have dance parties several times a week and the kids have always been in sports, but I think it's so important that we make this a priority as a family! And that they are so excited about it too! Now if I can just keep my little wild man Quinn from doing crazy windmill arms and a little 2 lb weight from flying across the room!


And last but not least, Judah lost TWO teeth last week! I still can't believe it took til 7.5 to lose his teeth, but he got his baby teeth super late too. The first tooth was loose for MONTHS. I'm talking like at least 6 months. I thought he'd be a teenager with baby teeth! 
 
The top tooth wasn't any where near ready to come out, but thanks for a flag football injury it was dangling by a thread... thank God Papa came to the rescue & pulled it, cause mama can't handle that!!!
 
I love his toothless smile!!