Monday, May 31, 2010


Jared has been using the word awesome A LOT lately. As a result, so has Connor. Between the two boys, SOMETHING is constantly awesome.

During teacher appreciation week, Jared wrote this note to his teacher:

I love the "O by the way you are osum" part (LOVE the phonetic spelling!). LOL!!!

Yesterday, Connor was sitting in my lap snuggling me and he said, "Mom, you are awesome, and it's awesome that we can snuggle right now, right?" How adorable was that?!?!

As much as it makes me laugh, it does my heart good to hear and see the boys expressing themselves so enthusiastically. Does my self-confidence a bit of good, too, when I hear about the awesome dinner I made, or how I'm so awesome, or how the outing I planned is awesome.


Friday, May 28, 2010

Things that make you go "Hmmm..."

Emily told Connor last night that she saw a show where they were testing out toothbrushes on skeletons.


A lady at JoAnn Fabrics yesterday was questioning why she wasn't being charged more for the fabric she was purchasing. It was a certain price per yard, then was on sale for 40% off. She was insisting that she was supposed to be charged X amount of dollars, which would have been 40% MORE than regular price, not OFF regular price. Took two employees and a calculator to convince her.


Saw a guy driving down the road, making a right turn with his left blinker on.


Jared, playing T-ball with his mitt on his head


Would you believe I actually had several more, but then drew a blank when I actually sat down to type up this post?? don't you hate that?!?!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

5th place and a freebie

Our family attended a 3K race last Friday, hosted through the kids' Elementary school. I attended the same school as a kid and always enjoyed participating, so was anxious for my kids to all be old enough to be involved as well. It POURED down rain for the bulk of the race, so I'm sure a lot of people who had signed up didn't end up attending, but I figured I'd spent enough money to enter that we were going no matter what, and would just make an adventure out of it! The kids had a GREAT time. I am in far worse shape than I thought, and can't even really blame my SLOW final score on slow-poke Connor, though he definately contributed! LOL We're discussing "training" for next year. And putting in an order for better weather, too!

Dan tried to talk me out of letting the kids stay for the awards ceremony stating there's no way we won anything anyway (he wasn't feeling much of the adventure in this whole ordeal), but I figured we may as well get the full experience, and cheer on the winners whether we won or not. It's a good thing we stayed because Mr. Jared won 5th place for Kindergarten boys! We'd made a big deal to the kids that there's no way we won and to just be happy for the people that DID win, and remember how much fun we had, so we were ALL very surprised that Jared got a ribbon. I'd purposely not taken a camera with me, knowing the weather, and not wanting it banging around on my chest as I ran/jogged/walked, but I am really kicking myself for not having it!! The look on J's face was PRICELESS!!! He was so stunned, and totally confused as to what he needed to do. Everyone got a nice chuckle of out it. It was SOOO cute/funny!!! He's very proud (as am I!) of his 5th place ribbon.

Connor, the second he crossed the finish line, was telling everyone how he "won the finish line" was going to get his trophy. He planted himself right in front of the trophy table and kept asking the people "Is that going to be my trophy?" "When are you going to give me MY ribbon?" "Are you going to call my name next?" etc etc etc. We tried to move him away from the table, but the people handing out awards waved us off and said he was totally fine right where he was. At the VERY end, one of the ladies came up and wanted to know his name and age because he was so adorable and they wanted to give him award. SO, they made a final announcement that Connor had "won" the preschool division and gave him a first place ribbon. LOL!!! Oddly enough, they didn't even acknowledge preschoolers in the award giving!!! They gave out first, second, and third place awards for men's and women's categories separately in age 50+, 40-49, 30-39, 20-29, high school, middle school, then started from Kindergarten and went up through Fifth Grade, giving awards to the top six boys and top six girls for each grade. If you're going to give awards to the 50+ people for doing the race, give some credit to the not-quite four year old who did the whole thing, too! SO, while I'm not sure I agree with giving the kid a ribbon because he was nagging them for one, a part of me feels justified that he got SOMETHING because he was one of very few kids his age that wasn't being shoved along in a stroller!!!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Polar Bear!

Jared LOVES polar bears, and I was soooo disappointed he wasn't at the zoo with Connor and I recently (CJ and I were there for a preschool field trip and J and Em were at school), because we arrived at the polar bear exhibit just in time for feeding time, which meant that instead of sleeping up on the hill where you can't see him/her, the polar bear was actually swimming around in the water, totally visible from the viewing areas. It was AWESOME. Standing by the glass seeing polar bear feet on the other side the size of your head is pretty incredible, as well as witnessing this HUGE bear tiptoeing along a skinny ledge to lap up food floating in the water...

This was the best picture I managed to get through the thick glass, the large crowd, the cloudy water, and a very swift-moving polar bear! He/she was diving down for a fish that fell to the bottom.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Quote of the Week

Connor asked me yesterday what happens to people when they die. After having a bit of a discussion with him, it became clear that he just really wanted to know what happened to the physical body after a person dies. I told him most people are placed in a coffin and buried underground in a cemetary. After a long pause, he said, "Is that when the vampires bite them?"

Friday, May 21, 2010

Thursday, May 20, 2010

The nonchalant T-ball player


Couldn't even be bothered to take his hand out of his pocket while he ran to home base.

He's got his tongue out in concentration, though!

I think someone with awesome zoom lenses and mad photography skills should come photograph this T-ball stuff and create a book of all the funny stuff that goes on during the practices and games. There were kids laying on their backs in the field, kids with their mitts on their heads (ahem...Jared...), kids swinging around and around in multiple circles to hit the ball off the T-ball stand, kids running in large groups after the ball, etc. Funny stuff!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm pretty sure the mitt belongs on his HAND??

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


Every so often, I end up taking a picture that I feel "works". It has nice lighting, good focus, and just has an overall nice look to it. (like maybe I know what I'm doing...). Most of the time, my pictures are just random snapshots and nothing to brag about.

We went to the kids' school playground on Mother's Day since it was such a nice day, and I took my camera, hoping to capture SOMETHING good along the way.

We started on the "Little field" (Kinder-2nd grade play on this one at recess time). I was quite pleased with this picture of Emily: It could stand be lightened just a touch, but overall, NOT BAD!

I was desperately hoping to get similar ones of Jared and Connor, but it just wasn't happening.

Connor wouldn't stand in the spot I needed him to, so the lighting is different on his (and while it looks okay by itself, when you put it next to Emily's, it falls really flat since hers has a nice color and more of a "warmth" to it). He's kind of got a cheeseball smile going on, too.

Jared wouldn't do a real smile for me, no matter how hard I tried! But it has a similar "warmth" to it that Em's picture has, so I'm fairly pleased

We went to the "Big Field" (3rd-5th grade play on this field at recess) and there was a stump with some greenery growing around the base, with lots of leafy green bushes and trees in the background, which I thought might be a neat place to pose for some pictures. Jared was closest to me and posed this way all on his own. Dan and I cracked up, and he joined in:

I knew I wasn't getting anything NICE out of him at that point, so never even bothered posing Em and CJ. Maybe another day!!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Dogs and Cats and Pigs, oh my!

Or maybe the title of this post should be "One of these things is not like the other..."


That sign is posted on the fence around the playground at Emily and Jared's Elementary school. It makes me laugh everytime. If you're going to say No Pets Allowed, that's one thing. But it just seems funny to then list and picture three animals, as if they're the only ones the rule applies to... And are pot-bellied pigs really that common of a pet??

Friday, May 14, 2010

Introducing Eva!!

My brother had said I could post Eva on my blog after they'd sent out announcements of her birth and had had a chance to share pictures with friends and family themselves. The announcements have been out for quite some time, and so I am thrilled to finally get to post my sweet niece on my blog.

She's now two months old (crazy how fast it's gone). Such a little peanut, still.

Eva, I have waited and waited for the chance to be an auntie, and am so thrilled you are in our lives! We love you dearly, and look forward to watching you grow and learn. You are such a blessing, not just to your mommy and daddy and big sister, Ali, but to your grandmas and grandpas, aunties and uncles, and cousins as well.

We ♥ you!! XOXO

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Tug of War

Charlie LOVES to play Tug of War. He is constantly bringing us his rope toys trying to coax us into playing it with him. Connor thinks it's soooo funny!!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Happy Birthday Emily Grace!

Hard to believe that 8 years ago, my sweet Emily Grace was born. She was the perfect Mother's Day present, and has continued to be such a blessing. She's really growing up to be quite an amazing young lady. She's sweet and funny, helpful, considerate. She harrasses her younger brothers, but I think that's just how it goes when you're the oldest (and they do their fair share of harrassing in return...LOL). She loves to sing and dance. She loves to be surrounded by friends, but she also loves to curl up with a good book at night to read (she's read no less than six chapter books in the last two weeks!). She's quiet and polite, but has a touch of a wild streak in her when you catch her in just the right mood. She once had a pale pink pair of ballet-style flats with a pretty little bow on top, which also were peppered with white skull and crossbones. I always felt those shoes summed up Emily perfectly; Girly and sweet, with a touch of rebel/spunk!

I couldn't ask for anything better than this amazing little girl in my life, and while I feel she's getting way too big, way too fast, I'm enjoying the ride, and look forward to the rest of our adventure together.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, my beautiful, sweet little girl! May your day be full of wonderful things, and may the coming year bring you health, happiness, and dreams come true. I LOVE YOU Lulu Bug!!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


Emily had her birthday party at a local rollerskating rink over the weekend. The kids had a blast! I didn't get permission from parents to post their kids on my blog, so I'll only be showing you my own kids. I truly thought I was taking a bunch of pictures, but still managed to not end up with pictures of some of the kids (good ones, anyway), and a lot of what I took was blurry (kids moving too fast on their skates, I guess!).

Miss Em, in her new outfit from her favorite store: JUSTICE!! She was THRILLED to finally have a bigger area to skate in, besides the narrow loop through our kitchen, diningroom, hallway, and entryway... LOL

Jared spent the first few laps hanging onto the wall (having never rollerskated before), but got the hang of it quite quickly and charged around as best he could. He made me LAUGH. As fast as he'd fall, he'd be right up back again before you could barely blink. Reminded me of a Jack-in-the-box or something. He's begging for his own skates now!

Connor mostly clung to the wall, but was getting more brave after awhile and making attempts at skating. At this point, he'd fallen down and I was on the other side of the rink from him (he'd refused to let me help him AT ALL, wanting to do it on his own), and couldn't quite get back up again, so started doing the crab walk! He flopped back down by the time I'd dashed over to grab the camera, but you can kind of see how he must have looked. SO FUNNY!

At one point, they called all the kids having their birthday parties to the center of the rink, and then gathered around them to do the Hokey Pokey. Kids were having problems figuring out where to form the circle, so the DJ asked the birthday party kids to raise their hands so everyone knew where to start gathering.

You put your right hip in...

You do the Hokey Pokey and you turn yourself about... (sorry, it made me laugh to see Dan in his tacky Hawaiian shirt out doing the Hokey Pokey on skates...LOL)

I showed up at the grocery store the day before Em's party to figure out ordering a cake. I had no clue what I should get (I figured there wasn't going to be any rollerskating themes, and she's past the Disney Princess stage...), so just started flipping through the sample book and came across this one, and it called out to me (it's girly without being little girl, AND it has butterflies, which is what her research project has been this school year).

Let's just say I earned brownie points with that cake. The girl was jumping up and down screaming in excitement. She LOVED it. It tasted good, too! White cake with FUDGE filling. YUMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM!!

Make a wish!

Emily, who is normally pretty stone-faced when opening presents (leaving the gift givers to wonder if she even liked what they gave her), was rather animated and lively this year. I don't think there was any confusion this year as to whether she liked her gifts or not!






And I was reminded that it's not always easy capturing decent pictures when paper is flying everywhere, kids are crowding around, and "party consultants" are wanting to discuss the bill... (Do you think I could have at least noticed her face was covered?)


My kids have been begging every since Saturday to go back and rollerskate some more. I think we'll have to make more of a habit of going!!!! It wasn't even very crowded, though it was a GORGEOUS day (first we've had in awhile), so it might have just been that everyone was out enjoying the sun instead. I guess we'll see next time!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Oh, my aching shins!

My friend Jami and I have been using the last three Wednesdays as our buddy work-out days. It's been really nice! Time spent with a friend, but also getting in a good work-out. The first week, we did some Zumba DVD's she bought online. The 2nd week, because it was sunny outside, we decided to do a walk outdoors on a new trail in our area (very hilly for 5 miles round trip). I pawned Connor off on my FIL for that walk because I wasn't messing with going his pace, or shoving him in the stroller (all 42-ish pounds of him). The third week, we decided to do the trail again, but this time we took Connor. I hauled out the bike trailer/stroller and reassembled it and off we went. It's wide enough that we could both push the handle up the hills and I figured it wouldn't be a very big deal. Um... I thought wrong! We got to the top of the first large hill and we were both pathetically out of breath. LOL! Connor asked if we could sit on the bench for a few minutes and Jami and I gratefully agreed. ha! We spent a minute or two sitting (didn't want to lose our momentum by sitting too long) and then headed out again. As Connor wanted in or out of the stroller, we took small breaks, but mostly kept up a pretty good pace (in my opinion). By the time we got back to the car, I was pretty convinced I wasn't going to be able to walk the next day, and I was POSITIVE I wasn't ever taking Connor in a stroller on that walk ever again.

I felt pretty good the next morning. Shins were a little achy, but not terrible. I didn't feel anything in my butt/thighs. Back felt decent (still having problems in that one area from being rear-ended almost two years ago). Jami and I decided that maybe adding Connor as a way to intensify the work-out wasn't such a bad idea.

Fast forward to today, and my shins are KILLING ME, my butt/thighs are decently achy (that "good" pain, though, not the "I can't walk" pain), and I can feel I used a lot more muscles than I thought.

Dan says I just need better shoes (the shin thing has been pretty persistant for me after a good walking or running work-out). I guess it's worth a try because I don't want to give up the exercise.

My thoughts on taking Connor next time??? UNDECIDED! He was good company and well-behaved, and it was definately a better work-out than NOT having to push him up and down big hills, but I'm not huge on self-torture, so I'm not sure I can very willingly take him, knowing how tired and sore I'll be afterwards. LOL

PS Any tips on good walking shoes? Or tips on how to deal with aching shins? I've been icing off and on and taking Ibuprofin, but I'm not feeling any difference.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Little Prince Charming

I took Connor to the grocery store before preschool on Tuesday so he could pick out a bouquet of flowers to take his teacher for Teacher Appreciation Week. I showed him a gorgeous bouquet of roses and lilies, with pretty little filler flowers (Between my three kids, this is our fifth year straight having her as a teacher, and we LOVE her and consider her a friend as well as our child's teacher so I felt a little justified in splurging on a nicer bouquet). The child stuck up his nose at the flowers I was showing her, marched right around to the backside and plucked up a bouquet of two-toned tulips and said, "I'm giving my teacher THESE ones." Okay!

As we were in line to pay, he was eye-balling the strategically placed candy bars at the register, and I could almost literally see the wheels turning in his head. He opened up his mouth to talk, and I was prepared with a polite, but firm, "Not today!" response to his request to buy candy, but he fooled me. Instead of a plea for candy for HIMSELF, he looked pleadingly at me and said, "Can I buy my teacher some of this candy because she really likes candy." And how could I turn him down? He'd also drawn her a picture and dictated what I should write on the backside (kicking myself for not scanning it into the computer before letting him give it to her!).

We arrived to class and he marched through the door, stuck the flowers behind his back (totally his own doing) and yelled, "I have a suprise for you!", then gifted her with the flowers, the picture, and the Snickers candybar he'd picked out. It was soooo stinkin' cute, and she seemed extremely pleased with the gesture.

I had a little "moment" while paying at the store, that my not-quite four year old just gifted his first girl with candy and flowers. LOL

Jared may have some competition for the "ladies man" title!! ha ha!

PS Happy #60 to my FIL today!!!!!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


We pet-sat the preschool Hampster, Honey, over the weekend, and the kids really enjoyed having her around. It's the perfect way to have a pet! Keep it for a few days and then give it back. LOL


After getting bit HARD by one of Emily's hampsters (back before we gave up trying to own them), I've been a little "shy" of handling hampsters, so I agreed to take the hampster IF I didn't have to try and hold it. I'd feed it, give it water, maintain the bedding, etc, but I wasn't taking it out and trying to socialize it. Teacher agreed, and we gained a hampster for four days.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Birthday Card

My brother and SIL gave me this card for my birthday:


Monday, May 3, 2010

Play ball!

Jared had his first ever T-Ball game yesterday. He had a BLAST!! It's kind of a "learn to play" deal, where practices and games are held back to back in the same day, they don't play a full game, and no scores are kept. There was a batting and fielding station for practice, then they practiced running the bases before getting started with the "game".

Jared practicing running FAST through 1st base:

Jared and Zander working on "shagging" balls that came their way during the hitting station:

J-man up at bat!

(this turned out to be a really nice hit, too! I wish I'd been zoomed out further)