Monday, January 31, 2011


Rosebud drove home to our house for the first time when I was about six. (Of course this was long before the time she would come to be known as Rosebud but that's neither here nor there at this point.) Rosebud was a lovely, sparkly shade of blue and she was brand new. She smelled lovely. She was a two door hatch-back and was super cool to my six year old self. The town we lived in hosted an air show every summer. My Dad loves airplanes and flying and we went every year. The first week that Rosebud lived with us, the weather was probably somewhere in the 90s. We were of course going to the airshow and I had decided to occupy myself with some take along "art". I did not share my dad's love of airplanes at all and knew I would be bored in 3 minutes flat. I climbed into sweaty leather backseat, we rode there and sat in the car drawing as the rest of my family watched the planes performed. When it was time to get out, I guess I didn't clean up my supplies very well because when we returned my crayons were melted to the back of my Dad's brand new car. A lovely, rainbow colored puddle. I am a parent now and I am sure that my Dad was furious but he didn't yell at me that day, he just shook his head and said look what you did to your car.
I am here to tell you that 10 years later when I learned to drive, she was still around and Rosebud was formally named. Her crayon puddle was still clearly visible in the backseat. I drove my dad around and sometimes rode with him. Putting my feet on his dashboard or up on his seat, writing on his clean windows. He would always say, "Wait until you get your car. Wait until I ride with you." And I would just laugh because my car would surely be clean.
That was before the days of Milkshake,Chicken Nugget,Sucker Stick and Save the Trees paper decided to ride along with me.

Poppy obviously has my kids on his payroll and I'm desperate to get them removed.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

a day with Daddy

My children will tell you that they have the very best Daddy in the entire world. They adore him and the time they get to spend with him. Yesterday our heat went out again and the house was freezing. The kids woke up to a roaring fire and immediately wanted to roast some marshmallows for breakfast. The middle two kids and I left for school with a promise of smores as soon as we got home.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Ten on Tuesday

1. My sweet friend had her very first baby last week. We're a bit biased towards Wills in this house but he might be one of the cutest babies I've ever seen.

2. Will has decided he's now going to be called "great big Will" so you don't confuse him with "little baby Will".

3. Drew currently is working towards a career as a locksmith or maybe an engineer or possibly a catburgler. I'm really, really hoping for engineer here people.
I have nothing against locksmiths, I'm totally biased towards catburglers.

4. My public health announcement for the day..you are all contagious 24-48 hours after anyone in your house is vomiting. Even if you're not vomiting. I don't want what you have, please stay home.

5. Lysol is not my favorite hair scent. If it keeps the stomach but out of my house, I'll take it.

6. I realized that by the time you get to child number four, you could care less if they sleeps in pink pajamas if that's what is clean and within arms reach when you pull them out of the bathtub. The color blue would never have touched child number one until it was clear, she was a she.

7. I'm heading to Nashville this weekend to kickoff training for VBS this summer. I'm very excited about it.

8. If you go to our church you should be excited about it too because I'm coming after you next for help :)

9. Drew reminds me a little bit of Forrest Gump these days. Everywhere he's a going he's a runnin'.

10. I'm going to give a salute to the good old southern weather that I've come to know and love. A good old snow delay over a little bit of rain. People complained about it but I'll take it, any day of the week. Tick, tock..

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

ten on tuesday

1. I never want to see snow here again. Ever.

2. Did I emphasize the ever part?

3. Living in city, that houses a major federal installation, that shuts down for five days because they can't properly and efficiently remove snow is embarrassing.
I pay my taxes and I'm entitled to my own opinion.

4. Until this week, I haven't been told I "sweat the small stuff" since 1997.

5. Will greets naptime and bedtime every single day like it is the end of the world. I have never seen such a dramatic, opposition to naptime.

5. We attempted to get rid of his nap today in hopes that he will go to bed easier at night and sleep better. He's doing great and loves being a big boy.

6. I'm not sure I'm really ready to have only one child napping.

7. School starts back for all of us today. I'm not sure who is more excited me or the kids.

8. Drew's new favorite word is nuh-uh. I know this is terrible English but for a little boy that doesn't talk very much, I'll take it.

9. Amelia and Isabella are single handedly spoiling their baby brother.

10. I realized last night that Drew is now 18 months old. Bella asked me last week when we were bringing another baby home. It made me laugh but at the same time made me realize in her six year old head, it's about that time :)

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Every cowboy...

Needs their horse.

Look closely, really, really closely and you might see Mr. Man's. His Rah-Rah gave him a stick horse this summer and he became entirely too brave and road the top of our bannister like the stick horse. After that, the stick horse was permanently stabled in the garage. Will, however, remains determined and his loved of cowboys true. Nothing makes this kid happier than riding his horse "Bullseye" around the living room. He could care less that Bullseye is the size of his shoe.

11 step program for first time parents

A little how to for first time parents or people thinking about having kids. It was too funny not to repost!
Lesson 1
1. Go to the grocery store.

2. Arrange to have your salary paid directly to their head office.

3. Go home.

4. Pick up the paper.

5. Read it for the last time.

Lesson 2 Before you finally go ahead and have children, find a couple who already are parents and berate them about their...
1. Methods of discipline.

2. Lack of patience.

3. Appallingly low tolerance levels.

4. Allowing their children to run wild.

5. Suggest ways in which they might improve their child's breastfeeding, sleep habits, toilet training, table manners, and overall behavior.

Enjoy it because it will be the last time in your life you will have all the answers.

Lesson 3 A really good way to discover how the nights might feel...
1. Get home from work and immediately begin walking around the living room from 5PM to 10PM carrying a wet bag weighing approximately 8-12 pounds, with a radio turned to static (or some other obnoxious sound) playing loudly. (Eat cold food with one hand for dinner)

2. At 10PM, put the bag gently down, set the alarm for midnight, and go to sleep.

3. Get up at 12 and walk around the living room again, with the bag, until 1AM.

4. Set the alarm for 3AM.

5. As you can't get back to sleep, get up at 2AM and make a drink and watch an infomercial.

6. Go to bed at 2:45AM.

7. Get up at 3AM when the alarm goes off.

8. Sing songs quietly in the dark until 4AM.

9. Get up. Make breakfast. Get ready for work and go to work (work hard and be productive)

Repeat steps 1-9 each night. Keep this up for 3-5 years. Look cheerful and together.

Lesson 4 Can you stand the mess children make? To find out...

1. Smear peanut butter onto the sofa and jam onto the curtains.

2. Hide a piece of raw chicken behind the stereo and leave it there all summer.

3. Stick your fingers in the flower bed.

4. Then rub them on the clean walls.

5. Take your favorite book, photo album, etc. Wreck it.

6. Spill milk on your new pillows. Cover the stains with crayons. How does that look?

Lesson 5 Dressing small children is not as easy as it seems.

1. Buy an octopus and a small bag made out of loose mesh.

2. Attempt to put the octopus into the bag so that none of the arms hang out.

Time allowed for this - all morning.

Lesson 6
Forget the BMW and buy a mini-van. And don't think that you can leave it out in the driveway spotless and shining. Family cars don't look like that

1. Buy a chocolate ice cream cone and put it in the glove compartment.

Leave it there.

2. Get a dime. Stick it in the CD player.

3. Take a family size package of chocolate cookies. Mash them into the back seat. Sprinkle cheerios all over the floor, then smash them with your foot.

4. Run a garden rake along both sides of the car.

Lesson 7

Go to the local grocery store. Take with you the closest thing you can find to a pre-school child. (A full-grown goat is an excellent choice). If you intend to have more than one child, then definitely take more than one goat. Buy your week's groceries without letting the goats out of your sight. Pay for everything the goat eats or destroys. Until you can easily accomplish this, do not even contemplate having children.

Lesson 8
1. Hollow out a melon.

2. Make a small hole in the side.

3. Suspend it from the ceiling and swing it from side to side.

4. Now get a bowl of soggy Cheerios and attempt to spoon them into the swaying melon by pretending to be an airplane.

5. Continue until half the Cheerios are gone.

6. Tip half into your lap. The other half, just throw up in the air.

You are now ready to feed a nine- month-old baby.

Lesson 9Learn the names of every character from Sesame Street , Barney, Disney, the Teletubbies, and Pokemon. Watch nothing else on TV but PBS, the Disney channel or Noggin for at least five years. (I know, you're thinking What's 'Noggin'?) Exactly the point.

Lesson 10
Make a recording of Fran Drescher saying 'mommy' repeatedly. (Important: no more than a four second delay between each 'mommy'; occasional crescendo to the level of a supersonic jet is required). Play this tape in your car everywhere you go for the next four years. You are now ready to take a long trip with a toddler.

Lesson 11
Start talking to an adult of your choice. Have someone else continually tug on your skirt hem, shirt- sleeve, or elbow while playing the 'mommy' tape made from Lesson 10 above. You are now ready to have a conversation with an adult while there is a child in the room.

This is all very tongue in cheek; anyone who is parent will say 'it's all worth it!' Share it with your friends, both those who do and don't have kids. I guarantee they'll get a chuckle out of it. Remember, a sense of humor is one of the most important things you'll need when you become a parent!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


We're anxiously waiting on the snow to go away. Drew has been stuck inside for three days and is now shaking his finger at the window outside and saying "no, no, no". Poor little bug..it breaks my heart for him.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

second snow day

We thought we would make the most of snow day number two and I sent the kids out with their Daddy for some fun. A few of you have asked where the wee-est member of our family is and he's usually watching from the windows. Somedays screaming, somedays trashing my house. That's a different post for a different day. I know these pictures aren't the best because I'm shooting them from inside the house. I still couldn't resist catches these images of my kids and there Daddy in this crazy southern snow.
Amelia saw me in the window in these photos and decided she was going to have a snowball fight with me. I love the determined spirit of that girl and the hard work it took to get through that snow. She laughed as she came running and even got a little frustrated at how hard it was to throw a snowball up. Let's be honest, she got even more frustrated when the snowball she was throwing at me came back at her and I was howling from the window. She also ate snow for the first time and laughed hysterically at that.

Bella decided she was going to shovel the snow away. Big job ahead of her ;)

Here is the "sled" the kids played in all day. There aren't a lot of actual sleds around here. We've got plenty of beach gear and pool toys but the sleds were few and far between. I saw lots of cardboard boxes, plastic lids and innertubes out this week. The best we could come up with is a wading pool. The kids had a ball and I know they will remember it for years.

Ten on Tuesday

1. I love my husband. He is the sweetest, kindest, best guy and I am so lucky to have him as the father of my beautiful babies and my partner on this crazy journey.

2. I do not understand how someone that works in multi-million dollar technology - I'm talking big stuff - can't set up a Leapster Explorer.

3. The techno guru is also at war with my blackberry. In trying to help me with fitting the charger through the protective case, he got out his exacto knife and cut his own hole. On the wrong side :)

4. We finally had a Gigi's. I have the biggest sweet tooth around and I'm sad to say it didn't really live up to the hype.

5. Since we got hit with a winter blizzard worthy of New York state, I'm wondering if mother nature's going to give us some mild humidity this summer? She'll probably make it 98% just to prove who's boss.

6. The kids snowpants are currently in route from my parents house even though the mail is not currently running. I will not be unprepared next time.

7. Let's hope there's not a next time.

8. I went on a corndog run Sunday night after church and the grocery store was completely out of bread. I mean maybe 5 loaves on the shelf. Craziest thing I've ever seen.

9. Yes, I feed my children corndogs. I know they're full of toxins and not even made out of real hotdogs. My kids love them.

10. Jason is currently singing along with Barbie and the Diamond Castle DVD. It sounds lovely. Have I mentioned yet how much we need to go back to school tomorrow?

the pit stop

When we arrived in this little place in the world that we now call home, it was a temporary stop. When you are a military family you never get too comfortable anywhere because you never know when you're leaving. Three months, a year, two? Jason had lived on three bases, done three overseas tours and I can't even count how many schools before I met him. I met him when he returned from Irq at the end of '03on his way to yet another base. We moved five times in 26 months and for the first year of our marriage resided on different bases in different states, eight hours away from each other. The army has a funny sense of humor sometimes. As Jason finished up another tour in Iraq at end of 2005, he reassigned to a different branch and we were up for another yet another move. He put a lot of time into researching the jobs hoping he wouldn't be chosen for anything that would immediately send him back overseas again. I was more interested in the location, even though I knew it was going to be a temporary stop. A pit stop on our journey to the next destination. I didn't care what his job was, he wasn't leaving me in the sticks again. My requirements were 1)a Gap 2)a Target 3)an actual grocery store not the super walmart 4)no tornados 5)no snow 6)I must be able to drive to my parents in 8 hours alone with the baby. He looked and looked over all the jobs and made his selections. We waited and waited to see where he would end up. He returned to the states and finally got a telephone call asking if he would be interested in coming here. I remember looking at him and saying are you crazy? You aren't even a pilot and you're going to an aviation unit. There?! That place wasn't on our list and we just came from a terrible place and now we're going to another one. I braced myself and tried to be excited..it was four years, afterall, and I could do anything for four years. It was four years closer to getting me "home". I could do it.
We arrived and for the first two years here I wasn't a big fan. The heat was miserable. We chose to live in the country and it just wasn't the right fit or us. There weren't any kids to play with and I had a hard time making friends. Jason went to school, got sent overseas some, and traveled all of the time. Note, we have a difference of opinion on his traveling but when you're the one at home with the kids, it was a lot of travel. Let's not forget the blessings that arrived eleven months apart. And the last one that arrived a mere 15 months later. I am a planner and an organizer and I took a lot upon myself. I was counting the days to leave. We were at two years, and then three. And I remembered a something an old friend of Jason's told me, "You can't make a home anywhere if you're always waiting to get somewhere else." Around our third year here we sent Bella to preschool and she fell in love with the ladies there. We decided to try the church and felt at home, we've been there ever since. And slowly "here" has grown on me.
The friends from our past started arriving too. Their stays are brief, usually a few months for school, or at most a week to check on their systems and programs. They crowd around our dinner and become fan favorites of our kids. They all fight over who gets to sit by them and in the case of our good friend Leith, you're requested at bedtime for kisses and for bathroom/bottom duty because they love him that much. When June and Scott left, the kids cried and I'm sure it's going to be that way for Tyler too. I get to hear the funny stories that Jason tells only when his old friends are around. The college stories that are even more amusing hearing it from someone else that experienced it too. The older the story, the more entertaining it is. Hearing two men tell it, that are more like brothers, makes my heart smile. And I'm happy that we are here to provide a home away from home for our friends. I know, now, that's one of the reasons we are here.

Be strong and courageous, for the LORD will be with you wherever you go
Joshua 1:9

Monday, January 10, 2011

snow, part duece

We have been under a threat of winter weather since last Tuesday. They've been warning us it's coming. Get your milk. Buy your bread and eggs people. The snow is coming. Sunday morning the thermometer read nineteen and the chance of wintry mix was one hundred percent. Super, just what I wanted to hear. We headed to church that morning and by that afternoon, without a snowflake in sight, school was cancelled. The snow started falling as soon as we got home from AWANA that night. I had to run to the store for some must have items and it started on my way home. It came down fast and furious and the flakes were enormous. We had thundersnow, something new, even for me. We woke up to eight inches of snow and I heard the squealing as the little feet came pounding towards my door Monday morning. They could hardly wait to go outside in it!! Jason took them out to build their snow person and our awesome neighbor came over to help him shovel our driveway. (Thanks Charlie! You're the best!) Now, we did have fun today and I'm sure we'll have fun tomorrow. But we really need to be back in school on Wednesday so lets warm up a little bit mother nature.

Amelia is really distraught over how the snowman is accessorized. Obviously, Will is too :)

The finished product..wearing her shirt per Amelia's request and we finally put the fish headband to good use! Swim little fish, swim on!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Ten on Tuesday

1. It has been brought to my attention that some of you don't know who Kit and Ruthie are..what planet are you living on and how do I get there?

2. I would like to say that we are no longer technological dinosaurs and welcomed technology into our home with an IPad.

3. Jason and I need to take a class to figure out how to turn the thing on and off. The kids can be found on youtube.

4. Now taking suggestions for delicious New Years Day food items to bring me luck for next year. Blackeyed peas and pork-sauerkraut dishes need not apply.

5. Way to represent, BIG10, in the bowl games. If my Buckeyes lose tonight I may take the very last seat on the Auburn bandwagon and call it a day.

6. Thanks to the lovely lady that sent us five pounds of gummy bears. Amelia saw the bears and knew immediately who they were from. I'm firing up my treadmill now.

7. Most annoying saying of Christmas break "You're not invited to my birthday." I guess when you're 3 and 4, that's about as terrible as it gets.

8. Jason taught a class that required his uniform yesterday. When he returned the kids said "Did you go to the Army today?" They've adjusted to college life rather well.

9. Bella started back to school today. She got up at 6:15, ate, brushed her teeth and was dressed by 6:35. I think she was a little excited to get back.

10. Has anyone tried the couch to 5K program? I used to be a runner but need to start slowly..I'm much more comfortable walking now.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

swan dive

Jason took the kids out for a daddy date yesterday. They went to eat more chicken and to see Tangled. Seeing as how Will usually chooses Barbie movies anyway, he was equally as excited as the girls to see Rapunzel. They enjoyed the movie and of course stopped at their favorite chocolate store for a truffle on their way out. They also had to make a wish in the fountain, another tradition, before leaving. Apparently this time however, Will decided to climb on top the fountain wall to throw his penny in. The fountain wall = forbidden territory. They were with Dad and he might not know such things. His rules are sometimes not as strict as mine.
Well just in case any of you are wondering about the mythological story you hear from your parents..kids really do fall in those fountains. Yesterday that kid was mine.
Will went in head first, fully submerged and arrived home wearing nothing but Jason's sweater. Jason said there were little wet foot prints leading all the way out into the parking lot.