Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Tater Man Christmas Tree


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Turkey Day 1- Smith House

I always look forward to the holiday season. I believe I do better under stress and I simply love the madness of planning and partying. I know it’s not a piece of pie but I wouldn’t change a detail. That being said our holidays are hectic and sometimes cause rifts between Mr. Randolph and I.

It would be ideal to have everyone be able to get together for every holiday in one place and be able to get along. Well that is not the case (at least, not currently) for the Randolph-Smith family. So our holidays are spent running to each house making sure to get that quality time. Mr. Randolph wishes all would be happy and get along but he is also very tolerant and understanding of where we are in this madness.

Our family of three headed to my parent’s house for our first Thanksgiving feast of the day. My mom always has an insane spread although we couldn’t fully enjoy it because my dad and brother were working. They were so very much missed but thankfully we will be throwing ANOTHER Thanksgiving dinner sometime this week just for them. I know it sounds crazy but I love it! Plus we are having goose!

Since my mom is a photographer we always get plenty of family and Tater Man photos year round. How lucky are we?!?! It was such a beautiful day so instead of having to do shots in the studio we headed outside.

The kids made sure to be as difficult as possible but Momma being as talented as she is she got the shots we wanted and more.

After the photos we went inside for the feast followed by the girls chatting and both my Randolph men sleeping. We still had one party to go to so I could not have them being grumpy.

Stay tuned for the second part of our Turkey Day at the Wilson’s.

Um yeah he is only 3. Don't believe it? Me neither!!!!

 Love my sweet family of three!

I couldn't survive without these sweet babies!

My SIL and my sweet CC and Lil Buck.


Monday, November 28, 2011

From Mother to Son

When I was a baby I slept in my parents bed because there was really no other option. I do believe it is vital reason why I have so much trouble now being alone and sleeping alone now. As I got older I remember my daddy letting me squeeze on his side of their small full size bed. He never fussed, only pushed over so that his baby girl could snuggle.

Then I got older and there was no way that I would be fitting anywhere in that bed so I got desperate. I used to sneak into the living, which was right next to my parent’s room, and sleep on the couch. I felt safe, secure, and loved as long as I was right next to them. My parents soon caught on and started shuffling me to my bedroom in the middle of the night.

Well I just started taking matters into my own hands and decided that my little brother would just have to start sleeping in my bed. I was safe and secure once again. As you can tell I did not give up! My brother and I got older and our beds went from queens to full size and all that meant was that we wouldn’t be able to sleep side by side. We had a head at each end of the bed and snuggled all night.

Then I hit my teen years and my personality must have changed because I no longer needed someone to cuddle with each night.

Now that I am married cuddling is a must and I am always the baby spoon!

What this post is really about is the Tater Man and his new habit he is forming.

I put him to bed last night at 8:30 p.m., which is kind of late. Prayers were said, ABC’s and Numbers recited, along with some fresh cozy winter pajamas.

Mr. Randolph and I headed to bed after watching or DVR recordings at about 11:30 p.m. When I walked past Tater’s room I noticed his door was cracked open. I know I shut it each night. I didn’t think anything about and headed to my room. Mr. Randolph was right behind me as we walked through the room and turned on the side table lamp. We both looked at the bed and this is what we saw!

My heart just melted. I had a couple tears swell into my eyes. It wasn’t a sad moment but a moment of remembrance of my childhood. Mr. Randolph thinks it is because Tater’s bed is too small and uncomfortable and he is mostly right. I still would like to think and hope that Tater feels the same secure, safe, and love that I felt when I was a child.

The best part was when daddy went to put Tater in his room and realized that the kid had stripped off his bottoms and was going commando. Yep! All four of butts were there waiting for mommies pinches!


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

How Cajuns fight dat cold front!

In Southern Louisiana a cold front gets all the locals excited. We don’t see weather like this much and as soon as it comes it seems to go, unfortunately. Even still you can almost hear the clanking of our Magnelite pots when we catch went of cool weather.

Its time for soups, stews, and GUMBO. These are the staples for Cajuns and Southern folk, all the same. It’s also sort of a race for everyone to see who can cook the first cold weather meals. I don’t mind being the turtle to this race but eventually I stop sampling and start cooking some for my family.

Last night Mr. Randolph and I took on a load of cooking. We have a system for Gumbo cooking. It is ALWAYS a team effort and mostly quite a pleasant time to spend with one another. He cuts all of the veggies (onions, bell peppers, celery, etc.), prepares the sausage and tasso, along with making sure the Tater Man stays clear of my roux (oil and flour) while it is cooking. I have never escaped a gumbo with out a few spattered burns and I would freak if Tater Man got caught in the crossfire.

Roux is also a very delicate since it can burn so easily. There is constant stirring going on and you can never leave it unattended. Once burnt you have to throw it out and start ALL OVER. Of course I have never done that before LOL! Since all true Cajuns claim to have the best recipe for Gumbo then I will just have to say that I have the best recipe. My brother-in-law taught me all I know about the process so I am a true Cajun by spirit.

I made two pots this time, one for Mr. Randolph and I, and one for the shindig that will occur at my friends on Black Friday. All of her family will be coming in from New York and Las Vegas to celebrate their first Thanks Giving in their new home. We are very excited and very nervous to meet the family of some of our dearest friends. I am nervous for them to sample the local cuisine and even more nervous that I will be sort of representing the Creole flavor with my big pot of gumbo. No pressure, right!?!

I am sure everything will go off without a hitch and if all else fails I know the gumbo will not go to waste!

Starting to get some nice color. 1 more hour cooking time!

Vegetables added and oh I know you can smell it!


Friday, November 18, 2011

Tater Birthday Party!

Birthday weeks are not just for me anymore….Tater Man had a birthday week of his own. He felt so special and spoiled this week and I have to thank all my family and friends for loving him SO much!
His Auntie Sameemee and Uncle Chris gave him a little taste of his birthday early last week with some dino pajamas. Tater would pull the jammies out of the bag about 50 times, each time in total shock because there was a present for him in the bag. It was a dark hour when I finally put the jammies in the closet. He kept asking for his pezent!

Then on Wednesday, November 2, his actual birthday; Mr. Randolph and I met his parents at Toys-R-Us to pick out some more presents for the Tater. We wanted to get him a bike but after a few tears and unwillingness to peddle Tater decided on a Thomas the Train scooter. He also racked up on some more Hot Wheels and a big Mater truck. FYI the Mater truck has gotten more play time from the adult men.  After shopping we went out to dinner at Ground Pat’i. Tater Man ate all of his dinner and got a huge brownie/ice cream for dessert.

Saturday, was his birthday party with our friends and family. It was a big hit even though the guest list was small. We had a nice spread of food, chicken tenders, chips and queso, cupcakes (brachiosaurus), cake (Lightening McQueen), cookies and brownies. If the guests left hungry it was their own fault lol. Tater got another Clovis the Crawfish book (Grandma and Grandpa Clavier), Super Hero outfit (Uncle Joey), Helicopter (lil friend McKayla), Cars 2, Dino plate/cup, Cars writing board, and AIRPLANES (Cuz Jackson), Lunar Moon Lamp and Remote control Truck (lil friend Milly), and Cammo pow-pow (Uncle Richey). I hope I didn’t leave anything out! I swear this is why the child is rotten.
He had such a great time at his party and to end the day we watched the University of Louisiana win their football game in the last minute, followed by LSU beating Alabama in overtime by a field goal. Tater loves his Tigers and growled the whole night.


Its like they are stalking him lol
I agree cuz!

Love these sweet boys but not that damn spot of light!


King Tater readying the army!

Loves his new airplane. He is addicted now!

Love my boys!

Our sweet baby boy is THREE!

Sunday we spent most of the day lounging and letting Tater Man play with all of his new toys. Later that night we went to my parent’s house for dinner and Taters umpteenth birthday party. He racked up on Cars Jammies, Cars 2 characters Siddley and Holly, candy, and T-Rex shoes (they are Reebok's that I guess remind him of T-Rex?). His cousins CC and Lil Buck bought him this cool easel with a chalk board on one side and dry erase board on the other. It also came with magnet letters and numbers and they also got him some new coloring gear. Tater was so happy. Although we had a mental break down after the airplane was unwrapped. He did not care to open anything else. I guess he felt the best present was already opened and he didn’t need anything else?!?
My mom made the best spaghetti and meatballs along with bread. Mr. Randolph and I made some pigs of ourselves. Momma got him and awesome Cars cake that had Lightening McQueen and Mater toy stuck on top.  Tater’s Nanny joined us at my parents so she could get some time with him and then we rolled home to pass out.

Look at my cake toppers and my new jammies from Maw and Pap!

 It would have been out of the norm for the Randolph birthday celebrations to be over after only 3 birthday parties. Of course we had to have a special birthday celebration with Auntie Mishy and Uncle Kris because they were unable to make one of his other birthday parties. Mr. Randolph and I were so amazed at the spread and detail that our friends went into for our little Tater Man. Thank you both SO much!

I want to say thank you again to all those that spent time with us for Tater’s special birthday weeks! We love you all very much.  Still today he wakes up yelling, "LETS GET THE PAWTY STAWTED!"


Sunday, November 13, 2011

Big boy chair!

We went to visit Tater Man's Nanny today and she was able to give him his present. He finally has a car seat that fits him! I mean really the child's head was above the top of his old chair. Now he can grow with his new chair. I am so excited! It's his Lightening McQueen chair. I guess its the red liner that reminds him of his Kachow?! It has two cup holders but instead of putting his water in either of them he has one car in each.

Gotta love the fake cheese, right?!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: For the love of CARS

I didn't have the heart to move them.


Monday, November 7, 2011

Chick or Chreet!

Halloween was crazy this year. Tater Man and I went to several stores and he tried on 3 costumes only for him to fall in love with the last one. Go figure! I was a momma on a mission.

So happy....for candy!
We missed doing our trick or treating with The Smith’s this year because we went to the neighborhood where Mr. Randolph’s parents live. There was definitely a lot more going on in this subdivision than we were used too. They had trucks pulling trailers full of kids and lots of scary costumes.

I am glad Tater Man was not scared of the trailer ride but sad because we were holding back the other kiddos Trick or Treating. Tater needed to look at each pumpkin, black cat, and play some red light green light whilst the other kids knew to get in get the candy and then get out. So instead of him riding in the trailer with the other kids we walked, skipped, and hopped to each house. Oh well, I will be bringing the wagon next year.
Chick or Chreet with mommy.

I was a little upset at a few of the parents because they were not watching their preteens that were practically running over the toddlers to get to the candy. Not Cool! Then on top of that why in the world would you have a Jason/Freddy Kruger/Slasher mask on when a group of two year olds are coming up to your table? All you had was freaked out babies either crying or running away or if you are Tater, just decided to skip that house completely! Mr. Randolph had to gesture to a few of the guys for them to take their masks off. At least I was not alone in my feelings.

Besides all that drama Tater had a great time and even got in a little hopscotch and had the ladies oohing and ahhing over his skills. Big Ham! I believe it would have been more fun for Tater to be with one of his cousins. Maybe next year!
Tater Man was not happy because Lightening kept him from running fast-fast!

I am happy to say all my nieces and nephews were some of the best dressed babies for Halloween, there was a Cowardly Lion, T-Rex, LSU Cheerleader, LSU Football Player, and a Greek God!

Daddy was our hero and made all the bad scary people go away!

Of course Papaw makes all things better!

Its blurry but I still find Tater's expression priceless!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Happy 3rd Birthday Tater Man!


Hi honey! This is mommy and I am writing you a special letter today in celebration of your third birthday. I can’t believe that I have watched a beautiful baby grow into a sweet boy. I am amazed each day at how much you learn and how mature you are for your age. It’s a real blessing .

Our morning routine is me fighting you to get out of bed because you have become your father, meaning you are not a morning person. You stumble into the bathroom with your eyes closed grumbling the whole time. I have to cover my mouth most times because I giggle. You look forward to your daily green beans (vitamins), as well as, passing out mommy and daddies green beans. I love the fact that you make sure daddy eats each one. The best part is you count each one of your own green beans to make sure mommy is not holding back.

Then we brush our teeth. Clayton, you also have a bad gag reflex so this is a tough for you. I haven’t seen you give up though and you insist on doing it all by yourself. I am still working with you on spitting the tooth paste out because you swallow it then try and spit. I don’t know what to do with you!

Clayton you currently still attend a local daycare that we love. The class is capped at 10 and your teacher, Mrs. Cheryl, loves you very much. She says that you are her biggest eater and one with a great imagination. Sometimes you are caught in a day dream but she says that’s where you get all of your best ideas. You are quite the talker and great with group play. She also played a huge role in getting you potty trained. You look forward to see her each day and I will be crushed the day I will drop you off at big boy school.

Daddy picks you up in the afternoons since I can’t get to you in time. I am not sure what goes on for the hour that you guys are alone but you are certainly wound up and full of stories when I get home. Remember me mentioning the imagination you have grown. Well last week we found out that there is a Brachiosaurus living in our house! Thankfully he just hangs out in your room but he shows up a lot and makes a huge mess in your room. You tell us that we have to be quiet because he will hear us, so we oblige.

Our night time routine is much different then the morning. You run around like a crazed man and speak so much and so fast we can’t keep up. You like to help mommy and daddy cook and that has become our family special time. I let you stir and play with the spices. You were brave one day and tasted the coriander….lets just say you won’t like mommies spices again.

After dinner we go straight to bath time. You don’t spend a lot of time in there and I can’t leave you any more by yourself. Not because I am worried you will drown but mostly because when you are done you jump out of the bath wet and soapy and run to your room to play. I freaked out the first time I ran in there and saw you sitting in your lazy boy naked, playing with you know what.

When it is time to finally go to sleep daddy and I take turns with putting you to bed. You like to sing you ABC’s about 6 times, say your numbers about 10 times, and then con us into another 3 rounds of ABC’s only to follow up with a round of prayers. We don’t even care that putting you to bed takes about 30-45 minutes.

I am happy to say this year has been void of any crazy doctor visits or sicknesses. Truly a blessing! You did have an annual check up this year and of course you topple the scales with being 98 percentile for height and weight and I believe your head is 100 percentile. That noggin is a big one.

Tater you are getting great with directions and you tell us just how to get certain places. You tell us where to turn and who you plan to see that day. I guess what they say about men having a natural sense for direction is true. Each morning you go to daycare you tell me I am going the wrong way because Nana and Papaw don’t live on this road or Cousin Buck lives in the opposite direction.

Your daddy says that you sound like a little old Cajun when you talk sometimes. Phrases like “Meh yah” , “Don doo Dat”, and “Don eat Dat” come out of your mouth frequently. Hilarious!

Clayton I want to tell you how much you mean to me and that these last few years have been simply amazing. You have taught me so much and I adore you. I love your button nose and sweet disposition. You are very polite and say Please, Thank you, Welcome, Bless you, I sorry, we are working on the ma’ams and sirs and seem to be catching on nicely.

I love that now you finally like to let mommy cuddle and put you to sleep sometimes. You usually like to go to bed alone. Such a big boy!

I can’t wait to celebrate your birthday this weekend with all of our family and friends. They love you so much Tater Man.

Happy Birthday Baby!


Here is a note from daddy:


I am writing to you on your third birthday, before you know how to read, because I want to
you know now and always what a special place in my heart you hold. I hope that you will look back on
this one day like I do with the letters papaw has given me with a smile on your face and warmth in your

The first moment I laid eyes on you, I knew life would never be the same. I have cherished these
last few years with you, and I try every day to teach you and guide you through life both as a father and
as your friend. I hope that you will know that I will always be there for you and I look forward to the life
and adventures we will share. I know you will grow up to be a great man no matter what path you
decide to take at life’s many forks and I look forward to being by your side for many years to come.

I love you bubba and I hope you have a Happy Birthday and many, many more.


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