Monday, December 1, 2014

Day 1 of Advent

Today is December first, the first day of Advent.  I love celebrating advent with our family.  So much so that we have 2 advent calendars.  We have a calendar that we open each morning that has an activity for the day.  It may be as simple as reading a new Christmas book or more complex like volunteering at Mission Arlington.  Some of the activities are service based and some are just fun.  Today was one of those, we went to see the trains at NorthPark Mall.  It was great!  It definitely got us in the Christmas spirit as we prepare for Christmas.

Our second calendar my mother-in-law gave us.  It is beautiful and each day tells a part of the Christmas story.  Today's told us that Joseph and Mary were engaged to be married but she was found to be with child by the Holy Spirit.  Don't think I didn't skim over that.  Drew would have had me explaining all sorts of things if I hadn't.

After the trains we had lunch at Corner Bakery. It was a fun day for everyone.  Except for Stephen because he has the flu.  Poor guy.  On another note, here's a fun fact... there are no restrooms at North Park.  I guess fancy people don't do that.  I am for real... they hide them in the big department stores but NONE in the actual mall.

The other night I dropped my laptop on my foot.  Holy Moly that hurt.  I should have bought the Air because the Pro was painful.  I couldn't walk on it but today it is just really bruised from my toes to my ankle.  

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Someone is listening to me!

I am not trying to say "I told you so" but, I totally told you so!  Years ago, here,  I wrote on the blog things I would like to bring back.  Well, apparently Michael Kors was listening because looky what I saw...

At the time my twins were little and I was tired of a big diaper bag and purse and never hand any free hands, so I suggested the return of fanny packs and mentioned 'ol MK by name.  I am checking the mail and I am sure my royalty check will be here soon.  When it comes I will take us all out for some fro yo.

Update: I just looked and overalls are coming back too!! Wow, I feel so... validated.

Saturday, November 1, 2014


This is the cutest thing I have seen in a long time.  It is better than a video with kittens, puppies, and babies all in one.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Day #264 Ellie is identifying with her captor

Ellie and Charis were doing yoga the other day.  Not for reals.  Charis was dancing and Ellie dances with her.  When Charis bent down Ellie struck a pose, too.  It just made me laugh because it looks like they are both doing the "downward facing dog" pose.

The other night I was enjoying a QUIET moment after the kids went to sleep and I guess I was boring Ellie because she jumped up on Drew's bed and started licking him.  I almost hurt her for that.  I mean I love Drew, he is my son, but I don't EVER wake him.  So when I saw Ellie trying to get him up I was suddenly hit with the truth.  My dog has Stockholm Syndrome.  You know, what Patty Hearst had.  The definition is:
             Stockholm syndrome, or capture-bonding, is a psychological phenomenon in which hostages express empathy and sympathy and have positive feelings toward their captors, sometimes to the point of defending and identifying with them.
Ellie has started identifying with her captor.  Drew can be rough and tends to "trap" her in places.  I don't know why she likes him but, she does.  She has never even growled at his antics.  All I can figure is that she has Stockholm Syndrome.  

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Ford tough

 My Dad recently came across these pictures and I love them.  When I was little we had a neighbor that was a writer for the Star Telegram.  She asked my Dad to be in an article about men and their pick-up trucks.  My Dad loved his FORD truck.  These are the pictures that she featured in her article.  I was 2 and a half and my Dad was slightly older than that. 

Let's Go Lugnuts

The Lugnuts had their first game on Saturday.  We played the Pirates.  It was adorable all around.  Aunt Lauren and Wes came to cheer Drew on. Our coach is great and the kids had fun! 
 He bats!
 He runs to FIRST base!

 He is on first!
 AND... He's out!  They got the ball to first in time. 

Saturday, September 6, 2014

I hope no one saw that

This afternoon I was getting a pedicure.  I was very tired and just enjoying the relaxing moment,  as I sat there I heard a Vietnamese man having a conversation with another worker nearby and then he started laughing.  I suddenly became aware that I too was laughing like I was in their conversation!  I was so relaxed that when he laughed I joined in!  I don't even speak Vietnamese.  I quickly looked around and thankfully I don't think anyone noticed.

Monday, July 28, 2014

I'm All Growed Up

I am officially an adult.  LEGIT.  I travelled by myself, complete with connecting flights and riding a shuttle.  I confess that my personal assistant, Stephen, booked the shuttle and put all the info in my phone for me.  He is sweet like that.   I still feel very successful though.  I am also way out of my comfort zone.  I came to Orlando for a 7 day conference and don't know a soul.  I feel like I am constantly having a "first day of high school experience".  I also have to bum rides to go to restaurants.  That seems like too much commitment right now.  What if they are weirdos or don't like One Direction?  I can't commit to a whole evening with strangers at this point.  The past two nights I have walked 1.5 miles to grab some quick food and walked the 1.5 miles back.

The conference has been great.  I am learning lots, having some great refreshers of previous learned material, and hearing great ideas.  I don't have many pictures but here is real doozy.  I call it The Cafeteria Lady.  I miss my family and can't wait to see them.  I always thought a week alone sounded great but, it gets boring and lonely.  I have enjoyed being alone in the bathroom though.

This is a great video that they shared today.  We hear about bullying a lot in the news.  I have been very annoyed by that term because it is way overused.  Today Dr. Bailey said that even Barrack Obama has said he was bullied for his big ears and that was being made fun of, not bullying.  There is a difference between normal aggression in children and bullying.  I had no clue that you can spot a bully as a baby.  I know.  Watch the video and learn more.  

Saturday, July 19, 2014

The Great Outdoors

Friday night we went to Cedar Hill State Park.  It was a blast!  Stephen and I are also learning how to be more efficient campers.  I didn't even bring make-up!  We set up camp while the kids played around the site.  Then we went swimming.   By we, I mean the kids.  The swim area was perfect and only about 2 feet deep.
Catching butterflies
 That evening we made fajitas and had a family from Stephen's work meet us out there for smores.  They have a 6 yr old boy and 3 yr girl.  Our kids all play together so well.  They were so entertained that we were able to hang out with Jeff and Beth by the fire.  Somehow between the 8 of us only Beth and I got chigger bites.  I have over 80 bites!  I don't know how those little buggers made it through my clothes, but they did.  I sprayed my exposed skin but know I now to spray it all!
Stephen working by the fire

We caught lots of roly pollies.


Saturday morning we took what was supposed to be a 2 mile hike.  We somehow missed our way out and hiked about a half a mile back in.  I started noticing that some things were on the same side as before so we turned back.  By this time the kids were tired and we had to carry, piggy back, and give shoulder rides all the way back.
 It was beautiful and peaceful.  The kids slept great and had a blast!  Camping has been so fun for our family. 

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Back fire

Have you seen those ecards with Christian pick-up lines?  Here are a few below...

Christian pick up lines
After listening to my children and hearing tales from a few friends I thought we needed some for kids who misuse their Biblical knowledge.   My kids and others have used the good we TRY to impart for bad.  Here are a few examples...

1.  I will take your birth right away!
After hearing about Jacob and Esau that was overheard in my house when they were fighting over a toy.

2.  I will put chains on your heart!
Once again same child... After listening to Chris Tomlin they had questions about what "chains on your heart" meant and the next day this was an insult.

3.  I will sell you into slavery!
This was not my child but, a dear friends'.  His only prior knowledge of slavery was Joseph and his brothers selling him into slavery.

What do you have to add to the list?

Monday, March 24, 2014

Ears Pierced and Picnics

My girl got her ears pierced.  She had been asking for a while and I told her that it did hurt and you have to put medicine on them everyday and take good care of them and so she needed to think about it and let me know when she was ready.  I thought after said that it hurts that she would let it go but, she kept on.  On Thursday when I picked her up she said right away that she wanted her ears pierced.  So on Friday we went. 

She had a whole crew along for moral support.  Wesley, Aunt Lauren, Katie, Dina, and Drew came along.  She did excellent and didn't shed a tear or make a peep.  I am proud of her.  She has been very good about not touching her ears except to turn them and with clean hands. 

After the piercing was done. I realized I was totally THAT mom.  The one who acts like her kid is the only one to ever get her ears pierced but I was nervous.  I remember that it hurt and was loud.  I hated knowing she was going to feel that but she didn't care at all.  

Today we went on a picnic.  It was a great day.  Being outside to run, slide, get dirty, and jump was just what Drew needed.  I loved watching him explore and get filthy.  He found us a waterfall and other cool things. 

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Go ask your father

Well, I have been in a word DONE since Friday.  Put a fork in me.  Then instead of relaxing we took a fast trip camping overnight.  It was fun but lots of work so we all took a nap on Saturday. When we woke up Stephen was sick with the flu and still is.  So that break I needed... not happening.  That is all okay now, I am catching my second wind, but I tell you this to let you know my frame of mind.  Tired.  Weary.

Now why is it that when we are at the end of ourselves is when we are hit with the hard questions from our children?  Maybe it is related to:
 "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me." 2 Cor 12:9

This morning as I got dressed Charis walked in and asked when she wore a bra how would she know how to put it on.  So I told her that when the time came that I will teach her.  Apparently, this child stewed that over all day because this evening as I took a quick bath she walked in (no, there are not locks on my bathroom door... I looked) and asked if when I got out if I could teach her how to wear a bra.  I was caught off guard and said "baby, I am not ready for that yet".  She told me that she is and she is ready to start wearing bras now.  

This evening Drew asked me about why men have boobies.  I didn't have a great answer because that is a really great question.  Then he hit me with, "I already know women have boobies to feed the babies with".  Wow.  Then he asked more questions regarding why only women carry babies and the course of the conversation I had to use the word "uterus" with my four year old.  You know that will come back to bite me.  So then he asked why some men have babies and I restated that they don't, they can't carry babies and don't have a UTERUS.  Drew then said "Their bodies look like they have babies".  That is when I realized he was talking about beer bellies.  

I am thankful that these conversation took place within the privacy of my home because usually these kind of things are said in a very crowed, quiet, public place.

And now I  leave you with this... 
At least she doesn't ask questions.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014


I am always going to the Kroger by our house and I see the manager every time I go.  He works ALL the time and walks around with a feather duster sticking out of his back pocket, so you can't miss him.  One evening Stephen and I saw him at Cheddar's and recognized him from our trips to Kroger.  Stephen told me that he saw him in our neighborhood one day and thinks he lives here.  I tell you all this because last night I went to Kroger and saw him again.  When I came home I told Stephen, "This may be really strange but I feel like I need to introduce myself to Kroger manager because I see him so much.  I want to be able to say "Hi, Alan"."  I don't know if his name is Alan but he looks like an Alan.  Stephen said it wasn't weird at all because he has felt the same way.  So my question is...
A) Is it weird to have theis desire to know the Kroger manager?
B) Is not weird to have the desire but strange to talk about it?
C) Is not weird to have the desire or to talk about it but weird to blog about it?
D) No, this is all "normal".
What do you think?  Should I make a new friend?

Sunday, January 26, 2014

New Understanding From An Old Verse

And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight,  so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God.
Phillipians 1:9-11

This has been one of my favorite verses since college.  I memorized it then and have referred back to it many times.  

This morning I am alone at home still recovering from the Bubonic Plague or something similar and God led me to this verse again and then I looked it up in The Message.  I love how God can take a verse you know and 14 years later make it brand new.  The Message says...

So this is my prayer: that your love will flourish and that you will not only love much but well. Learn to love appropriately. You need to use your head and test your feelings so that your love is sincere and intelligent, not sentimental gush. Live a lover’s life, circumspect and exemplary, a life Jesus will be proud of: bountiful in fruits from the soul, making Jesus Christ attractive to all, getting everyone involved in the glory and praise of God.

Beautiful.  This is my life prayer.  I pray that I can learn to love in this way.  I have been able to watch my husband love a neighbor this way this week.  Stephen was discerning, bore fruit, made Jesus attractive and glorified as he loved our neighbor.  He didn't just provide what the neighbor thought he needed but took two nights to disciple him in life and the Lord.  In the end Stephen did meet the neighbor's physical needs but also his spiritual needs and practical needs as well.  It is an ongoing relationship.  God used that experience to show me what the love He is talking about looks like.  

My prayer for 2014 and on is that I will learn to have a love appropriately with a discerning heart (that is not always how we think it should look), that I will bear bountiful fruits from the SOUL, make Jesus attractive to all, and get everyone involved in the glory and praise of God.  

Saturday, January 11, 2014

The Underground World of Dog Parks

I feel compelled to let all you kind people know about an underground group of crazies out there.  Dog Park People.  No one ever warned me and so today I unwittingly fell into their strange underworld and it is scary people.  This group left reality long ago.  I felt like I was stuck in Best In Show.

This is how it all came about...  Stephen bought a rocket at Hobby Lobby (no, he is my husband, Drew is my son) and we were going to today to set it off with Aunt Lauren, Wes, and Shance.  There is a big field close to our house that has a baseball field and park so we chose that as our destination.  I was about to put Eliie, our dog, in her crate and Stephen said to just bring in on a leash.  I am trying to train her to be on a leash because she fights it and just lies down.  So off we go.

When we get there Ellie is doing okay on the leash and I just want to get used to it being on her.  We decide that the best place to launch is behind a fenced in area.  We go into the fenced in area and I am watching the kids and talking to Lauren and realize that it is a dog park but there is only one dog.  I can tell the man really wants to hang out so I chat for a minute with him but try to make it obvious that we are having family time.  Our whole group is in the far corner with Ellie when a new woman comes in and walks up to me and says "

Crazy Lady #1: "Why is your dog on a leash?".  I wanted to say "noneya" but, I didn't
Me: "she is still getting used to the leash and she runs away".
Crazy Lady #1: "Not in here... snicker"  (Call me stupid but with all going on this moment is when I realized that we are completely fenced in and it still doesn't change my plan because we are there to follow the rocket not chase Ellie.
Crazy Lady #!: "My dog won't hurt her, he wants to play. She wants off her leash".
Me: "What is your dog's name?" 

I am still not getting it... I think I am here for my kids to watch the rocket and I thought this was MY dog.  I just  moved farther down and kept talking to Lauren and the kids.  By this point there are about five dogs there.  Then a new and far crazier lady appears and comes out of her way to approach me.
CL #2: "Why is your dog on a leash?"
Me: "I want her stay with me".  (For real we weren't trying to be in a dog park.  I was there for my kids, not my dumb dog.) 
CL #2:  "Well, you are creating a lot of anxiety for her.  She sees the other dogs unleashed and it creats anxiety in her."
Me: "okay, thank you"
CL #2: "I am saying, I would take her off the leash if I were you.  See, she is friendly and wants to play."
Me: "Okay, thank you"
CL #2: "I mean she is going to be anxious." (walking away)

In all fairness I realize I had a dog in a dog park But come on... Who are these people that feel so overcome for Ellie's psyche that TWO strangers had to come up to me? 

I imagine that these people stand around comparing vets, organic dog treats, and doggie daycares.  Who knew parenting real live children would come with less condemnation that parenting a dog?  More drama happened as we left but this is too long already and THAT is a whole other story for another post but ended with a man calling us "Dumb and Dumber" and then backing down and saying he wasn't talking about us.  I almost had Stephen hold my earrings so I could take 'em all out.  In a loving manner of course.

So, in conclusion, do not go to a dog park.  Even on accident.  I think they were all on bath salts or something.