Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Vacation post

So...I am trying the mobile blogging thing with hubby's blackberry. We are at Disney,or the happiest place on earth for eight magic filled days. If you think you can hear the sarcasm in my voice you are really listening well! We have now been here four magical days and I can tell you it is great and horrid all at the same time. Currently we are sitting at waiting (we have done a lot of waiting) for the Finding Nemo Musicaln for which we had priority seating so we are right by the stage. Just this second I am realizing that seeing my kids' eyes light up when they realize that the show will be right next to us makes it all worth it! More details to come...

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Procrastination, and some fun pictures

Oh procrastination, how I love thee! Let me count the ways! So since I am procrastinating and I have some more cute pictures from our Sunday at the Beck's I thought I would make another post. Enjoy the new pictures and think of me the next time you are procrastinating, because I probably am too!

Also you will notice these pictures are of the twins. I am just amazed at the energy Tracy has to keep up with these two wild boys. If you ever "wanted" twins take a look at these pictures they might help you decide. They are adorable, but a bundle of energy!

Griffin eating a stolen jelly bean.

Elijah climbing up the swing set with his bubbles in his hands because he LOVES his bubbles like a girl loves her rag doll.

Go Griffin!

Griffin and Elijah...one is climbing the other is sliding...that is the way they were all afternoon.
Elijah with his bubbles.

Griffin getting ready to do some toddler gardening.

Getting his dirt ready...

Dumping the dirt on his leg...

Going for more dirt...

"Bunny Hunt"

On Sunday we went over to the Beck's for a Bunny Hunt or an Easter Egg Hunt, whichever you prefer to call it. These are some pictures of our afternoon fun. Enjoy!

Crazy kids before the Bunny Hunt.
All five kids...the boys are getting so old, both walking now. They are a handful!

Lilly and her basket finding eggs or bunnies I am not sure which.

Boys searching for eggs too...look out!
Look at my eggs, Mom!
Princesses looking for eggs. Discussing who has more. Emily does, of course. She is a great finder!
All the kids discussing who was going to get the last egg.
Ben looking at his yummy bunnies.

Lilly trying to figure out just how much we are going to let her eat.

Ben counting his jellybeans after they are hatched!

Emily preparing her candy feast!

Poor Elijah...all he really wants is one little jelly bean, maybe next year little buddy!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Random RANT

OKAY...I rarely use this as a forum to rant, but today I am REALLY frustrated! If you live in Texas you are used to fire ants, right? BUT, I ask you are you used to them crawling ALL over you kitchen counters? How about a big pile of them on your stove? Or a long line of them from the back door to the stove?

Well, the kids and I went over to the Beck's this afternoon for an impromptu "Bunny Hunt" as Lilly calls it, but for the rest of you it is an old-fashioned Easter Egg Hunt. So, we had a great time and leave about 4:00. Just in time for me to get home and make dinner for two whiny, tired (no naps), and hungry kids. I am thinking, cool I can get them to bed early and start on some stuff I need to get finished this week.

So I come in, am asked several questions by the husband who is doing our taxes, YIPPEE. and then I proceed to the kitchen to prepare dinner. I get out the ground beef for spaghetti and get ready to set it down on the stove and lo and behold I notice a GIGANTIC pile of ants that have come in after one little bread crumb that has been left on the stove during my after breakfast clean-up. Then I start looking around and I notice a line of ants from the back door to the stove, and then I pull out the crock pot, toaster, and can opener and see even MORE ants. Did I mention that I HATE ants? If not, I HATE ANTS!

Apparently, in Texas, if you leave one bread crumb out on the stove your house will be infested with ants. And I say, SERIOUSLY???? Because the one thing that I wanted to do right before dinner tonight is pull out the oven to clean the sides and the floor behind it and disinfect my counter tops under the crock pot, toaster, and can opener. AND to top it all off I had to mop the floor. No spaghetti tonight...I am thinking that I deserve a little wine of my own and whatever fast food the kids would like for daddy to go and pick up!

Oh and btw...if anyone was wondering...I did get bitten by said ants SEVERAL times!

Flashback Friday - on Sunday of course

Life has been CRAZY around here, a little cuckoo even! I feel like I meet myself coming and going most days and I really don't have much time to do anything anymore. Like go feed the baby ducks. We used to go every Saturday morning a couple of years ago. We were kid poor, and it was free except the stale bread, and both the kids loved it. They still do so this flashback is devoted to a slower time in our lives. Enjoy!

My red-faced boy running around chasing ducks. Everything got out of his way; the ducks and the squirrels.
I think I have already posted this picture of Emily, but it is one of my favorites. You can see her cute chubby legs and her bare baby feet! I LOVE baby feet and toes or "piggies" as they are affectionately known as in our house.

"Daddy why are the ducks running?"
"Well, Ben, I think they might be afraid of you."
(No this is not the conversation that took place that day, I am just imagining because I have forgotten. I was SO sleep deprived in those days this is about all I could manage to do, maybe that is why life was so slow and simple back then, eh?)

Let me get them, Daddy!

You can see Chris in the back ground getting ready to take the next video. This is HILARIOUS, enjoy!

I HAVE BREAD! Good stuff!!

Monday, March 16, 2009

You see that cutie over there kissing his sister?

Well, we found out today that he is indeed going to Hillside Academy in the fall! YEAH! We got our qualification letter in the mail this afternoon. And to make it even better he qualified in language arts, social studies, math, and science. Yes, folks that is all four areas, and yes that is a little bit of pride you see in my face! I take no credit, but I am proud of him. I knew he was smart, talented, and gifted even, but also he is a little snot sometimes. If he feels like it he will answer questions, and if he doesn't then, oh well. So I am proud of him for going through the testing and coming out with flying colors! HOORAY, BEN!

Of course we went out to celebrate at IHOP! Pancakes for the genius, what else?

Sunday's post....a little late

I started working on this post yesterday in church, I just never got around to typing it up yesterday. I am so excited because we finally got a semi-permanent worship leader for Sunday morning, and I just LOVE him. His name is David Quinones (there is a ~ over the second n, but I can't figure out how to do it, I used to be able to do it, but this morning the skill totally eludes me!)

I am so excited that David has decided to lead worship. He is so committed to worship and he does such a nice job. His still is perfect for us, and I love how he prays after every song. It really keeps you in the Spirit of worship. We only have him for six months though right now, so hopefully he will stick around after that. We have been trying out worship leaders for so long now that it will be good to have someone committed to us for awhile!

Okay as for the message yesterday, can I just say, amazing. Our pastor is still working through the book of James and yesterday we were in chapter 4. I cannot do this message justice, go take a listen here. The podcast hasn't been put up yet, but it is worth it to keep checking today. You can also hear all the messages from the book of James there. It is definitely worth your time!

And what do you do after a long swim?

You have a picnic on the beach with your babies and a girlfriend, of course! After Em finished swimming in the hotel pool she wanted to have a picnic on the "beach" with me. So she had me change into my shorts and flip flops. You will notice that I am wearing a sweater too. I was so cold, but I just pretended it is like in those catalogs of all the New England summers, everyone is wearing a "summer sweater". I will tell you in Texas you never have a need for a "summer sweater", unless you work in an office that is a meat cooler. But you are not donning one for a walk on the beach at night, it is still about 100 degrees at midnight so you're good in your swimsuit. A girl can pretend though, right? Here are some pictures from our picnic on the beach. I can't wait to actually have a picnic with her on the beach in Florida in a couple of weeks!

Emily setting up our picnic. She had to get all her babies in the right place.
Every little mama needs a feather boa with her swimsuit cover, right? That is an essential item at the beach, right?

Mommy and Em getting ready to eat since all the babies have their food.

Em eating the cherry off the top of her cupcake. She gave me the rest. A girl after my own heart!

Em pouring me some tea. It is so fun to have tea with your favorite girlfriend!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

What do you do when you are dreaming of Florida...

you have two weeks until your vacation, and it is 40 degrees outside and the sun is barely shining? You go swimming in the Hotel Cullum Pool of course!

I can't take credit for this wonderful idea. My cousin called me this morning from Washington State to chat and we were talking about how she had to sit outside in the freezing rain and cold to watch her son play water polo. Emily came out and asked if she could wear her new swimsuit and cover-up today because she was ready to go swimming. My cousin says to me, "You know, she could always go swimming in the Hotel Cullum pool." I was still pretty fuzzy since I had only had one cup of coffee but it finally hit me, "That's a great idea!" So I sold it while we were on the phone and Emily put on her bathing suit, and the rest is here in the pictures....
I made the water blue by putting in some of those bathtub tablets. However, Kandi says that if you add just two drops of food coloring it won't stain the skin or the bathing suit.

I even found a little bug that had crawled into the tub, and a leaf so it was just like having to clean out the pool!

M - "What are you doing Em?"
E - "Swimming mommy!"

Friday, March 13, 2009

Flashback Friday

Memorial Day 2005 I was very pregnant with Emily and we went to visit Gma and Gpa Marks in Houston. Ben was only 16 months old here. This was his first discovery of mud puddles. It had rained all weekend and this was the first almost sunny day. So we went to the park down the street from their house.

What's this daddy?

OOH, it is more fun to put my hands in it!

Jump, jump, jump, splash, splash, splash!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Want to feel rich?

Have you seen Slum dog Millionaire yet? This movie is so depressing to me, and it made me think that I have more than I could ever possibly need. Then this evening I read a post on The Clutter Diet Blog that I just love about how rich we really are. She sent us to the Global Rich List so we could see just how rich we really are. Go take a look. Then if you really want a kick in the pants read what $8.00 can do, or even $73.00. Very, very humbling if you ask me. Makes me want to do better things with my money. Be more conscious how I spend it. Do I really need that coffee from Starbucks, or that new pair of boots I have had my eye on?

Not much going on...

Well, as I write the title I realize that is not entirely true. Just nothing that seems important to write about today. We actually have ALOT going on these days. I am in full vacation preparation mode. Most of my thoughts right now are geared toward getting ready for our eight day vacation. I am trying to work nonstop to stay caught up at work and actually try to get ahead so I will not have to work while we are in Florida. However, I figure there are worse places to have to do my day job! Reading manuscript while sitting at a pool in the most magical place on earth might actually make it a little fun. Not to mention the cocktails making the edits more interesting. ;)

I did not realize how much I really have to think about to make this vacation run smoothly. I have to pack for the kids, and this is no easy feat. If you have a kid with asthma you know what I am talking about. I am pretty sure everything will be fine since it is so humid there, but I don't want to take any chances and I don't know if the Disney conglomerate has a 24 drug store equipped with a nebulizer. UGH! And then there is the issue of the plane. What do I take on the plane for them to do? We don't have handheld game devices like so many people do for their kids these days. I don't think books are going to do it. YIKES!

Then there is the issue of packing for Chris and I. That is not really that difficult, but how many nice outfits should I pack? Will we really get to go out after the kids are in bed, will we want to? Then there is that weight requirement for luggage these days on top of having to pay for every piece we take on the airplane! Again, YIKES!

Chris will have his birthday while we are there. Do I take his present with us, or do I just wait until we get home, or do I buy him one there?

Then there is the issue of the time of our flight on Saturday morning. We leave Dallas at 7:50am. That means that we will have to be at the airport about 6:30am if not earlier. We are about a thirty minute drive from the airport, so that means we have to be out of the house by 6:00am. What in the world was I thinking?

The last little issue that has come to light in the last few days is that Chris will be traveling that week as well. GREAT! No help that week. He will get back on Friday night before we leave. UGH!

Okay...so I did not mean for this to be a complaining or whining post. I realize that it certainly sounds that way and you all are probably thinking...Oh I feel terrible for her, she is going to Disney World, I feel SO sorry for her. I am just starting to get a little overwhelmed with everything. We have gone on vacation before, but never to this magnitude, and never on a plane. I could pack and pack and pack until the car was full. I even have a luggage rack on the roof so if I needed to add more stuff I could. AND all of this is going on along with everything else in life.

Need to make a list...need to pack a little every night...need to get back to work...

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Today is Dawn's B-day!

Today is one of my best friends from Junior High birthday. This post is dedicated to her. It is so funny because I don't have pictures of her. We have been friends for so long, but we hardly ever take pictures of one another.

She is an amazing woman. She has two kids, home schools both of them, runs a business with her husband, is active in her church, and loves sock monkeys! I am so proud of her. I love her dearly. We don't always see eye to eye, but she is the closest thing I have to a sister, and from what I can tell about siblings that is the way it is.

Happy Birthday, Dawn! We love you and we miss you! Hope we get to see you soon! Have a wonderful day!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Seasons in Texas

Seasons in Texas are very subtle. At least in Dallas. We switch very subtly from fall to winter, then from winter to spring, then from spring to summer, and then from summer to fall. My favorites are always fall and spring. These are the two that seem to have the biggest change. In the fall I love to watch the leaves turn beautiful colors and experience that first cold snap when it goes down from 100 to 70 degrees. Then in Spring I love to watch the buds come out on all the Bradford Pear trees and see the green grass start to pop up all around. I also love the first real warm day.

I have always wanted to live up north because I hate the summer in Texas, but I realized this week that I would really miss the heat on my skin. That first day when you can walk outside and feel the heat and know that summer is on the way. What is your favorite season?

Friday, March 6, 2009

Flashback Friday

Just a couple of random pictures of the kids.

Oh my goodness...look at those sweet cheeks, and the two teeth coming in on the bottom.
She was about 8 months old here. Wow...I can't believe she was that small.What a looker...he seemed so big to us here....

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The Wii Monster

Okay, so we have a Wii in our house. Chris and I decided that we would get one to play together, and I really do like playing it when I have time. Which I have to confess is not that often, but never fear, the boys in my house totally make up for my lack of use.

If we let him Ben would play Lego Star Wars, and Lego Batman twenty-four hours a day. I didn't think it would bother me that much to have him play video games, but oh my goodness, it really does. It is the first word out of his mouth in the morning, and the last thing he sulks about before bed each night. He has become our Wii Monster.

No with saying that he does come by it honestly. Daddy LOVES video games. Any type, really. He will sit and play solitaire on the computer for hours if he has nothing else to play. This morning he told Ben that if he was the first person in the house to get dressed he could play this morning. So my normally poky five-year-old is dressed in seconds. Within minutes, literally two or three, he is seated on the couch getting ready to play Lego Star Wars. Daddy keeps going into the living room to give him tips, and remarks to me, "Man, I really want to play too!" Boys!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

New Thing

I realized this week that I read ALOT of blogs. Most of them have a large following, but they are really good. So for those of you religious readers out there who want some more fun, I am going to highlight a different blog each week. So make sure you come back and check out the left hand side of the blog, very top. If they have a button I will put it there, then move it down so you can always find it! Enjoy!

March is already here!

I can't believe March is already here. Chris has come home from Dubai and now we are pushing toward our huge family vacation at the end of the month. I have also noticed that I have taken on quite a few extra-curricular activities. I have had to stop and make some priorities, but really I am loving it. I feel like I am doing what I have been called to do. And talk about taking risks! Geez, I am taking risks all over the place these days. My major goal this year is to take risks. Step out of my little box and do something. Well, I am here to tell you that I think I have made a good start.

Let me tell you what I have decided to do so far this year. I am leading my Thursday Night Coffee group and we are slowly working our way through The Shack. Which, as an aside, if you haven't read it is SO good. Do not be turned away by the seemingly unsettling subject matter. I promise you it does not dwell on that part. I have started a writer's group with two other writer friends of mine to help us grow in our writing and keep us accountable for writing. Writer's are not always good with follow-through if you were not aware. :) I am praying about leading a small-group for my church, I still haven't gotten a totally clear answer, but I feel like this is where God wants me to be. I am also participating in a mommy's group through the kids' school. We had our first night out last month and have one scheduled for this month. It is wonderful support since we are all working mommy's who dearly love our children. We can share the joys and sorrows of being a mommy. I am also in a Bunco group once a month with some wonderful women as well. Risks all over the place!

I promise pictures and wonderful stories of the kids soon, but I just wanted to check in since it has been two months since the beginning of the year and I have managed to keep my goals and start working toward them. Usually by now I have thrown the baby out with the bath water so to speak. I feel very hopeful, and I know that has to do with being in God's will for my life. Following Him and trying to listen carefully for His guiding. How are your goals/resolutions going?