Wednesday, February 29, 2012


Finn on one of her many walks...with the ipod : )
Dillon helping little sis!

Finn at the Duck pond with her new boots!

Shopping helper!

Dillon's orthodontist appointment - Finn front and center.

Duo sliding!

Off for another winter walk.

Finn girl!

Smiley Lucy girl.

Dillon fights for the ball!

Post #2: Atempt at a catch-up!

DID NOT WORK: March, and I am only on Post #2!! I have already failed on my resolution to post monthly. Not my only resolution that I've failed : ) Why do I make those each year? It's not even a matter of them being unattainable, just lost my resolve. I really gotta find that again.

Finn deciding that sleeping through the night is overrated. That, or in her mind there is a lot going on before 5:00AM. She wakes up pretty happy, so it is very hard to be too annoyed. She has also decided that riding in the car seat is the worst thing ever and that I am torturing her daily by putting her in it. Oh, and she will allow me to put her down for one nap a day. Did I say put down, I meant allow me to hold her while she sleeps. Be tough I am told, but if I try and lay her in her crib she is awake and a NIGHTMARE for the rest of the day. Sometimes if I am lucky I can set her down next to me on the couch. And since I am on a roll, my resolution to work out has also been derailed by my baby girl. I get maybe 20 minutes of her in the jogging stroller before she throws the biggest fit and must get out. Then she has to get her walking time in, so we spend the next 20 minutes walking and exploring what she wants. Ok, that part is kind of fun : )

Dillon being an 8 year old boy and growing up. My kid and I are so much alike in some ways that we just butt heads. I know he is totally normal, but I am so tired of arguing with him, repeating myself three or more times, and battling daily over the smallest things. My personality doesn't help the situation, I really need to practice more patience! And schoolwork! My son is a smart kid, but we are trying to figure out just how to tackle homework and approach school. I am not sure if he is lazy or if I am expecting too much.  I think it may be me as he has all "A's" and it is only third grade! Patience, don't quit on me now!

My Lucy girl, our 90 lb. yellow lab, is getting older and lately can't make it up onto our bed where she has slept since a pup. Part of the problem is our bed is so high, but her age is showing. Breaks my heart, but I lift her up and reassure her I will lift her up onto the bed every night she is able.

Chris, his work!

WORKED: Every day is a new day to start fresh and move forward. I am blessed with a great family and support system. Communication in my marriage is strong, we are on the same page, and family time has been premium. Lent has started and I dare say I feel very in tune with my spirituality. I really do feel closer to God and believe that what I am able to enjoy in life and how I view and value my life is due to this peace. I'm just say'in : )

Finn is 17 months old and a true miracle in our family. She is pure joy every day! As you read, she has her moments, but her general mood is one of mischief and happiness. She adores her brother and barges into his room to "bouncy" on his bed all day. Every morning after breakfast Dillon asks Finn if she wants to play and even if she isn't through, she practically leaps out of her chair to go be with him. Chris and I hear them giggling and laughing behind his door. It makes my heart soar. She is still so little, but her personality is HUGE!

Dillon is the best big brother. He is so good to Finn and has really been a big part of who she is.  He has taught her all of her silly little "tricks" that make us laugh. He loves to make us laugh and be silly too. He works very hard at basketball and his coach told him that he is the teams hardest worker. He still tells us how he feels, cuddles with us, and wants to be with us. Basketball season was a huge highlight and he had the best team and coach. Great experience and they placed fourth in their league, losing out on 3rd by a point in the play-offs.

Both of my kids smiles light up there face and brighten the world around them.

Lucy dog is the greatest kid dog ever. She has both kids feeding her at her meal times and has Finn trained that all table scraps go to her. Even with her aging body, she allows our little girl to crawl all over her. Nothing about Lucy is off limits for Finn. Finn tugs her ears, bounces on her back, kisses her, grabs her collar and generally messes with her daily and the dog just takes it.  She is so gentle with Finn and was the same way when Dillon was a baby. But she is my girl and demands, and gets, hers from me every day and always will : )

Chris and I have been communicating so well. We still miss-communicate, but getting back on the same page is much easier. We are leaning on each other and tackling life together. Just like we promised : ) For his birthday Chris got a bike attachment so Finn can ride on one of our bikes, so we are looking forward to family bike rides.

Ok, attempt number #2 is over and I am not sure about how this went, but it is, what it is. Enjoy!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Christmas Eve and Christmas Morning Pics

2012 Commitment to Blog

So I have a childhood friend who a year ago decided to keep a family blog that she updated monthly. I have thoroughly enjoyed her posts and particularly love her format of talking about what did work and what did not work each month. This struck me as being truly real about the "good" and "challenging" moments that occur in every family. So this year I am going to try and do the same. I pledge to, on a monthly basis, try and keep it real for you all regarding the Portland Grady Family; the highs and lows, the hilarity, the challenges, and the fun that our family of four and one pet have every month.

The Grady Family consists of Patriarch Chris Grady (sounds so formal), Matriarch Shannon Grady (me), oldest son at eight years old, Dillon Grady, baby girl Finley (Finn) Grady at 16 months, and our lovable ten-year old yellow lab Lucy. Oops, I might disappoint the boy if I don't include the two fish. I have no idea their age, they are just lucky to still be swimming : )

We had a great holiday season. I say season because the celebrating was kicked off at Thanksgiving when the whole family, sans pets, traveled to Parker, CO to celebrate Thanksgiving with my older brother and his family (Joe, Lynn, Keegan, Cobi, and Allie), my sister and her boyfriend (Anne and Steve), and my little brother and his girlfriend (Michael and Cathy). To say the least it has been awhile since all of the Holloway kids were together for a celebration and it was awesome! So much fun with our family and all of the significant others. We even managed to bring back the Turkey Cup, a soccer game we used to play each thanksgiving back when our knees didn't ache just thinking about exercise.  The field was much shorter and the pace much slower, but the amount of fun we had was the same. Shout out to team Keegan with the big "W" that day! Thank you to all my sibs and their families for a truly blessed time.

Next we welcomed Chris's Dad and his wife for an early Christmas celebration the second weekend in December. We love their visits for the obvious reasons, but it also gets my butt in gear to get the house ready for Christmas. Got the lights up on the house, got the tree and for the first year the family decorated the tree together, and the house was decorated. Even Finn helped, and never stopped helping until the tree came down. She just couldn't resist the ornaments. Their visit was great with good conversation, meals, family time, and they even got to cheer Dillon on in his basketball game. We never get them long enough, but what time we get we cherish! Thanks Pop Pop and Nana Linda for coming out this and every year!!

Then we had a whirlwind of Christmas time events; the school Christmas Concert at Holy Trinity, enjoying the Christmas lights, and loving our cool, but clear weather. As always the time went way too fast. Once Dillon went on break from school he had a series of overnights with his best bud and great grandma Mary, lots of basketball practices, and we just filled the time hanging out. For the first time we made the Childrens Mass at Holy Trinity where Santa made a visit. We tried unsuccessfully before Mass to get photos with Santa (something I am ashamed to say I had not done earlier and did not get done this year), but we ended up taking some great family photos outside of church that were truly memory worthy. After Mass, we headed over to Grandma Barbara and Grandpa Eric's house for our annual Christmas Even celebration. Great food, great family, and fun times for big and little kids alike opening presents. We are blessed every year by the love showered on our family by all of our family. Thank you Grandma and Grandpa for another great Christmas Eve celebration, we are spoiled by your love and generosity : )

This year too for the first time we shared Grandpa Joe and Nana Sarah with my Aunt Mary in Houston, Texas. Since we missed them so much we aren't sure we want to share them again during the holiday : ) They had a great trip and Christmastime in Texas with Aunt Mary and still managed to FaceTime with us and wish us Merry Christmas and lots of love!

There was a big relax the day of and after Christmas. We visited Daddy downtown at his office and managed to have lunch and even hit Target to spend a holiday gift card or two. Dillon added to his Skylanders stash and Finn picked out a new baby. The rest of the week we really just lounged about enjoying our new things, each other, and being on "break".

New Years we celebrated with the Mustonen and Feduccia families and wrung in the New Year with ribs, chicken and sausage gumbo, video games (NCAA football and Wii Dance III), good conversation and good friends. We even made it to midnight!! We hosted this year and this kicked my butt in gear to put all the Christmas decorations inside away. We left the lights up, but they came down the next day. Always a little depressing the first night the lights aren't up anymore.

Finally on the following Monday our beloved alma mater, the University of Oregon Ducks, won the Rose Bowl for the first time in 95 years.  It was so cool and Chris, the kids, and I watched together with Finny yelling touchdown with her arms thrown in the air at the encouragement of her big brother. Warmed my heart to see Chris and Dillon high-fiving and screaming at the TV together. Great family time!  And an added bonus was that morning after a family breakfast I took Dillon in and had his hair chopped off. Those of you that have known Dillon these past few years know this is huge! Finally I can see those beautiful brown eyes again.

Anyway, 2012 has started out great for the family. We have our challenges ahead, but I feel so strongly coming out of the holidays that we have great family and friends who support and love us that 2012 will be our year to follow our dreams and make ourselves and those around us happy. Our goal is to make those we love know they are loved and appreciated, to stay healthy, and to be happy. Truly happy in every moment. We are so lucky to have what we have we just need to remember it daily that we are blessed. Happy New Year!