Monday, May 18, 2015

Bentonville Film Festival 2015

Earlier this month, our little town of Bentonville held a film festival. It brought thousands of people to this area to see what it was all about. Our family had to find out too!
 BFF! Jackson had a great time!
 There were many places in NWA that showed independent movies and familiar movies as well. VUDU lounge was one of them. Popcorn, Coke, or M&M's, anyone?
 Jackson kept holding on to that bottle of Coke. Too funny.
 We also had fun photo booth pictures made. So fun!
 The next day, I decided to take Jackson to the festival and it was just he and I hanging out together. Our first stop was the Coca-Cola vendor booth. I was so excited to get our names on coke cans. :) It's the little things, y'all. It was great to see Jonathan Martinez and Laine Baker from our local news station while I stood in line. :)
 Jackson and I even met Laine and she asked to get a picture with Jackson. Jonathan even took the picture and he kept commenting on Jackson's "little locks." It was great meeting them!
 What's a film festival without the Oscar Mayer weinermobile? Just fun to see.
I even ran into Amy Duggar! It was so crazy I met so many well known people in a short amount of time. Haha! Amy was very sweet and so friendly! So awesome meeting her.
I think there will be a festival every year, so that's pretty exciting!
I hope that next year, we can participate in more events at the festival. I just love this place!
 
Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to savesinners-of whom I am the worst. 1 Timothy 1:15

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Happy Birthday, Kelly Lauren!

Today is a big day! It's my beautiful sister, Kelly's birthday!
 I know this picture has been used almost every year, but I cannot help it-I love it. As a little girl, I of course loved celebrating my own birthday, but it was so much fun to watch my big sister celebrate her day. I still do!
 Everyone knows how much I love Kelly and I would do anything for her!
She is also a wonderful aunt to Jackson, who loves her very much!
Kelly, I hope you have a very special day. You are amazing and beautiful. Never forget it! Thank you for being you!
Love, Mer
 
For it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. Philippians 2:13

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Date Night, Farmer's Market, the Duggar's, and a New Princess

Of course I am catching up on the blog, but better late than never, right? So here's an update from two weekends ago. It was pretty memorable, so I had to document it.
 Friday night was date night for us! We were so pumped for a date night. We try to make it a priority to have one date night a month. Russell took me to one of our favorites for dinner, Venesian Inn!
 We also went to Crystal Bridges and saw the Van Gogh to Rothko exhibit. What fun!
This was a cool extra at the exhibit.  
 The next thing we did was stop by the buckyball.
 It lights up at night in every color and it's almost therapeutic to watch. Pretty neat!
 Saturday morning, we woke up early and headed to our local farmer's market! Jackson looked very handsome and like a big boy in his hat!
 Me and my baby boy.
 Gorgeous snapdragons.
 Beep, beep! Jackson in Sam Walton's red truck. :)
 So fun.
 When we got home, I watched on CNN and livestream the royal baby footage! I was pretty giddy, to say the least!!! I am so excited about the new addition.
 To celebrate, we even got Jackson the movie, Paddington. :) It came with a plush teddy.
On Sunday night, our church had about 20 special guests come, The Duggars!
They had special music and shared their testimony. It was so good. 
We even got to meet Michelle, Jim Bob, and many others. They truly were so kind and happy to be at our church. 
Anna and Josh were so sweet, too.
Jana and Joy Anna were precious. 
We also met Jessa and Ben, who got married at our church. All of them were incredibly genuine, authentic, sweet people who live for Christ. So inspiring. It was wonderful!  
That Monday, I was thrilled to find out the royal baby's name! Princess Charlotte Elizabeth Diana of Cambridge. I may have teared up a little bit, to be honest. HA!
Needless to say, it was a wonderful few days!
 
Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. and be thankful. Colossians 3:15


Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Jackson's Very 1st Birthday

Our sweet boy had a great 1st birthday. Last Tuesday, we celebrated even more all day.
 On the morning of his big day, we threw balloons in his crib and sang "Happy Birthday" to him.
Jackson and I played while Russell was at work and then we went to our favorite....
 Chick-fil-A!!! We got Jackson a kid's meal even though Russell ate most of it. HA! But Jackson did enjoy his big boy lunch. :)
He is always so happy!
 Me and my baby boy after our wagon ride!
 I made spaghetti and meatballs for his big birthday dinner. Jackson ate it up. :)

 We even gave him a number one birthday cookie for dessert. He loves cookies!
 We gave him a birthday card and gifts after dinner.
 Oh, he is just the best. He knew that it was his special day.
Cheese!! Jackson and his plush poky little puppy.
So now, he is working on walking...not there yet, but close. Our baby boy is almost a toddler... yikes!
Yes, I am still in denial. :)
 
Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God. Romans 15:7

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Jackson's Poky Little Puppy Birthday Party

We celebrated Jackson's 1st birthday with family and friends last Saturday afternoon. This was the most fun party to plan. Now, I cannot believe it's over and can't believe my baby boy is one year old.
WARNING: Tons of pictures! TONS! Haha!
 Display with framed picture and invitation. We got so many balloons. What's a birthday party without balloons? :)
 I found the plush Poky Little Puppy on Amazon. I also added fake bugs and greenery.
I really wanted the book, The Poky Little Puppy, to come to life. My father-in-law, Ricky, was so nice to make miniature fences for the party. This is what guests saw when they arrived at the door. The rain was hard on the balloons, but it was still cute.

 The first sign said, "Don't ever dig holes under this fence!" The second one said, "No desserts ever!" If you have read the book, you get the idea. It was such fun working on the signs. I actually wrote the words with my finger!
 We used green and yellow plates and utensils.
Most every table and counter had framed pictures of Jackson throughout the year, mostly his month to month pictures.
 Jackson's chalkboard stats!
We don't have a chalkboard and I am terrible at writing with chalk, so I just used paint pens and black foam board. Jackson certainly has grown a lot and certainly loves many things from stroller rides to giving kisses.
 Poky Little Puppy birthday cake.  The top layer was vanilla cake with chocolate mousse filling. The bottom layer was strawberry filling. And let me tell y'all-it was VERY tasty!
 Everyone got to take home favor bags. I added puppy paw stamps, "dog tags," and raffia to each one. The kiddos got cute sunglasses, bubbles, and a color sheet, and every bag had a dog treat for their little puppy, along with flower seeds.
Photo collage! Russell's mom, Jackie, helped with this.
Russell, me, and our little miracle, Jackson.
 Jackson had no idea what all the decorations were for, but little did he know, he was the star of the day!
 Cookies! My sweet friend, Robin, made them and did an amazing job. Just perfect!
 There's the birthday boy! He was so happy and that made us happy too. :)
 Aunt Kelly, Logan and Lauren gave Jackson adorable Poky Little Puppy books before the party. We displayed them at the party. This picture cracks me up because it shows how much Jackson moves at all times! He didn't want to pose for a pic! He wanted to crawl and cruise to see what was going on! We chase after him at all times. :)
 Lauren and Kelly!
 KK (my mom) with her three grandkids! Logan, Lauren, and Jackson. It's pictures like these I think about my Daddy. Always thinking about him. So special for sure.
 Most of the food served went along with the theme of the book. This is "pupcorn."
 We served rice pudding, strawberry shortcake, and of course, chocolate custard. The Poky Little Puppy loved his desserts! We sure weren't running low on sweets the day of the party!
 We also served Kibbles n Bits (BBQ snack mix), fetch sticks (pretzel rods), and spinach dip. Mama made the rice pudding and strawberry shortcake. Thanks, Mama!
 
 Jackson and Leighann loved their party hats. :)
 We love our sweet friends Julia and Harper! Harper is just three months older than Jackson.
 We had all of Jackson's big toys in his room so the kids could play. They had fun!
 Logan took so many pictures for us. He took this of Belle. So sweet!
 
 Jackson adores his awesome Aunt Kelly! YAY!
 Time to open presents!
 Jackson in his big boy chair. So precious.
 Tap-a-tune!
 Jackson loved the cozy coupe!
 Jackson and his loot.
 Aunt Kelly got to light Jackson's birthday candle.
 The first bite of cake.
 He really got into it. Let's just say it kept him occupied for a while. Ha!
 XO!
 Great Aunt Molly and Jackson
 Cake, anyone?
 Do y'all think he enjoyed it? Thank goodness for Dreft stain remover. :) Jackson went straight in the tub for a big bubble bath soon after this.
 So thankful for our friends, Mandy, Chad, Eden, and Ezra!
 Amy, Tony, and Leighann. So blessed to have them as family.
 Ricky and Jackie with their grandson!
 BA and KK! So glad they got to stay with us for the weekend.
 This picture absolutely warms my heart. Logan and his buddy, Jackson.
 After the birthday party, our family went for a walk and took Jackson on a wagon ride! Thank you, KK and BA for the wagon! I think we walked a mile or so. It was fun.
Look at this. Can you tell our sweet boy is asleep? I think the party and wagon ride wore him OUT! :)
It was a wonderful day, fun party, and so special to share it with family and friends. We just love celebrating.
So we have had our miracle, Jackson, for only a little over a year and it has been the best year. I have learned SO much as a mom, and know that motherhood is a journey where I will continue to learn new things. So thankful.
 
Know therefore that the Lord your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commandments. Deuteronomy 7:9