Thursday, March 15, 2012

Alcala Family Pictures

Family Pictures...

Boy do they never go as planned! Well, I decided that we needed some updated family pictures. The last time that John, Josselyn & I took a family pictures was when Josselyn was 2 weeks old. It is crazy how much babies change monthly, weekly & even daily. Josse looks like a completely different child now then she did at 2 weeks old. Sure, I try to take tons of phone pictures & I even try to take pictures with our Canon camera but it is extremely rare to get a GOOD picture of Mommy, Daddy & Josse!

Last "Family Picture" when Josselyn was 2 weeks old

Since Josselyn turned 6 months old (WOW!!!) I decided that a "Family Picture" was definitely in need. Now, I will be honest. There was a huge part of me that did NOT want to take pictures at this exact moment in life. Sure, I want to have family pictures of the 3 of us; especially as Josselyn hits different milestones (and to me turning 6 months old is a milestone) But, there was this huge part of me that did not want to be in front of a camera quite yet. Unfortunately I am still not quite at my per-pregnancy weight Ugh... & I am still not sold on my dark drown locks and even though my daughter is 6 months old, I am still tired 24/7 and I feel like a walking zombie 90% of the time. So, all of that does not make me want to try and dress myself up for family photos. Well, after contemplating back and forth "yay" or "nay" for family pictures I finally decided that my vain self needed to suck it up & document Josselyn's 6 month milestone with a family pic.

I decided to call my friend Ann Clark who not only works a full time job & leads worship at our church, but she is also an amazing photographer on the side! She took some gorgeous maternity pictures for John & I back in June so I knew she would take fabulous family pictures for us as well. We decided to take the pictures at one of John & mines favorite spots....yup! The beautiful Dallas Arboretum :) We tried to figure out the best time to schedule the pictures so that Josselyn would be in a good mood. We thought that 2:00pm seemed perfect because typically that is usually about an hour after she has waken up from her morning nap & she normally has had her post-nap feeding by then. I am not sure what I was thinking....the words "typically" "normally" "usually" should never be used in a sentence that is describing a baby's schedule. Most mom's will tell you that infants are completely unpredictable & there is nothing routine about the way they operate. To make a long story short Josselyn decided that she was on her own schedule that day.  She woke up extra early that morning, she took her morning nap way earlier than usual & by the time 2:00pm rolled around she was just about ready for her 2nd nap! Yup, right during family pictures Josselyn decided to take a nap! That is after she had a POOP EXPLOSION on our way to the Dallas Arboretum (Don't worry I learned my lesson last time, she was not in her picture outfit yet!). So by the time we got to the Arboretum and put Josselyn in her picture dress she had decided to fall asleep in her stroller. We had to literally wake up Josselyn to try and get a few family pictures in. She went from tired, to delirious, to slaphappy, to cranky, to just plain mad; all within about an hour! However I will say Ann got some wonderful pictures under those circumstances (I wish you could have seen all the CRAZY faces my daughter was making lol) Josselyn normally LOVES to SMILE, but that day it did not matter how high Ann jumped up & down or how much we tickled her, or played peek-a-boo or made other ridiculous baby noises, Josselyn was determined not to smile! She didn't mind sticking out her tongue, or screaming, or raising her eyebrows at us, but she tried her very best NOT TO CRACK A SINGLE SMILE!!!


All in all, I would still say that the family pictures were a success. Ann captured some priceless moments even though Josselyn was not on her A game. I am a firm believer that when it comes to kids (especially babies) there is no telling what kind of mood they will be in. All you can do is hope for the BEST but be prepared for the WORST :)


Hopefully Josselyn will be in a little better mood for her 1 year Family Photos!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Meeting Goompa!

Last week Josselyn went to Phoenix, Arizona for the very first time!

Josselyn meeting her great-grandfather

Mommy, Daddy & Josse took a very special trip to Phoenix for a few days. You see, my grandfather (Josse's great-grandfather) who we call "Goompa" turned 90 years old! My Aunt & Uncle decided to through Goompa a special family birthday party. Now don't let Goompa's age fool you, he is still one feisty Greek man! He is as stubborn as mule, a proud democrat and he is known for his jokes which can be a little R rated at times haha. When he was asked, "How does it feel to be 90?" his response was, "TERRIBLE!" lol Thats right there is My Goompa for you! One thing is for sure though, Goompa loves his family more than anything in the world and he has left a great legacy to be remembered by. It was absolutely priceless to have Josselyn meet her great-grandfather Goompa! Josse also had the wonderful pleasure of meeting my Dads only brother Uncle Nick & his wife Aunt Jane. She also met one of my best friends/cousin Dominique (who was my maid of honor),  my cousins Nycole & her daughter Amara, my cousin John & cousin Monique. It was also very special becasue my cousin Becca flew in from San Diego for Goompa's birthday. Becca's son Jack, who is only 3 weeks older than Josselyn also came along for the festivities! So Josselyn and her 2nd cousin Jack finally got to meet :)

Me & my cousin Dominique

Me, Josse, my cousin Becca & Jack

My cousin John, Daddy, Josse, Uncle Nick & Jack

Josselyn & my cousin Nycole

Josse meeting her 2nd cousin Amara

For the past few years it has been a little bitter-sweet every time I see my dad's family. Being around my Dad's brother (Uncle Nick) and Goompa always makes me miss my Dad. Ever since Josselyn was born, there has always been this part of me that is really sad that my daughter will never get to meet my Dad. My Father loved kids more than anything in the world and I know he would have been the absolute best grandpa. I just know that Josselyn would have had him wrapped around her long skinny finger just like I had him wrapped around my finger ;) I was definitely daddy's little princess and Josse would have definitely been grandpa (Papou's) little princess.

On the sweet side, I do feel like this weekend Josselyn got to almost meet my dad! When you combine Goompa's stubbornness with my Uncle Nick's goofy, crazy, love for kids, then you pretty much have a spitting image of my Daddy. So, since Josse will never know my dad I feel extremely blessed that she had the opportunity to meet his dad and his brother. We had a great time celebrating Goompa's birthday! There is nothing more fun than getting together a bunch of loud Greek's. Josselyn literally met every cousin on my dad's side except for 2, so that was pretty awesome. 

Now, not only did Josse get to meet the "Couvdos" side of the family this weekend, but she also got to meet some of our dear friends who are practically family! While we were in AZ we stayed with one of my very best friends Becky & her husband Ben (Auntie Becky & Uncle Ben to Josselyn). Becky spent tons and tons of time with me during my pregnancy but she & Ben ended up moving to Phoenix just 2 weeks before Josse was born, so they had never met! Josselyn absolutely adored Auntie Becky & Uncle Ben!

Auntie Becky & Uncle Ben

Ben & Becky weren't the only Aunties & Uncles Josselyn got to spend time with! Josse got to hang out with Auntie Kim & Auntie Nyccole one night (Nyccole I swear Josselyn does love you!!!) She also met Auntie Angel & Auntie Alison and she got to see Auntie Nina again :) It was great to spend time with friends that I know will be in our life forever! In the words of my niece Isabella "Not best friends, life long friends" 

Some of my dearest Phoenix friends

John & the Guys

Auntie Nina, Nana Cathy, Auntie Stacey & Auntie Angel

My dear friend Alison

Now I couldn't write this Blog and neglect to mention some of the delicious restaurants we ate at! When you got out of town you have to eat at fun, new spots, and Ben & Becky made sure that we hit up all of the yummy hot spots in Phoenix :) One night we ate at the Compass Grill which is a place I had always wanted to try. The restaurant is at the top of the Hyatt in downtown Phoenix and it slowly rotates 360 degrees while you eat! All of the walls are made of glass, so you have a gorgeous view of downtown Phoenix while you eat. It was a fabulous atmosphere but the food unfortunately did not blow me away. At least I can check that place off of my bucket list though. John's favorite spot that we ate at was LoLo's Chicken & Waffles (Surprisingly it was just as good as Roscoe's Chicken & Waffles in LA) John & Ben LOVED the Kool-Aid, the RED Kool-Aid that is haha (They even went back for 2nds later that day!) We also ate at the Windsor one evening and then had homemade ice cream from a fun spot called Churn which was right next door (delicious). One day we had coffee & cookies from Lux (everything was heavenly) and I can't forget to mention our night out at Pita Jungle (one of my favs). I loved Sunday brunch with my cousin Dominique at Olive & Ivy (it is definitely one of my new favorites). Well, that pretty much sums up our dining experiences! It was a blast trying all sorts of fun, new spots :)

It was wonderful visiting the desert & seeing family & friends, but I will admit it is great to be back in the South! What can I say...I do love good ol' Texas