Wednesday, December 30, 2009

looking back part 2

Continuing the recap...

I absolutely loved Washington D.C. and I would go back anytime.  It had so much history, so many beautiful things to see, so much to do and we also got to see my sister, Krista and her family, so that was an added bonus.  The weather was just perfect when we went in the middle of July which was good, because we walked and rode the subway everywhere. It was here I rediscovered my brain, which sounds funny but it is true.  There is so much I want to learn about what happened here, especially during the Civil War.  I have many books that I have just started to get through, thanks to my dad, the history buff.


The boys were on the swim team and it was actually so much fun to watch.  Well, the last meet was way too long but the races were fun.  I never got to do anything like this when I was a child (living in a small town had a few disadvantages) so it is cool to see my kids swimming so well. 


I turned 32 this month.  And Seth sent me flowers. Love him!

October and November:

These two months I am going to lump together.  They weren't the best months for us.  We were struck with the flu and for two to three weeks, we were stuck in the house.  It was also when I found out two of my good friends were moving away and taking their children, my kid's friends, with them.  We were all down in the dumps.  I think this picture of Noah says it all.

I do have to mention that we went to Longview for Thanksgiving to see Seth's brother and his family and that was fun.  Especially the night of Thankgiving when some of us went to the midnight Toys R Us sale.  What were we thinking?  I don't know, especially now, because what we waiting 2 and a half hours in line for to get, will ultimately be returned because Rhett changed his mind on what he wanted.  But we will always have IHOP.  Good times.

I do also have to mention that I have been actively green this year, at least when it comes to trying to get our school to be a little more green.  I think the magazine drive really helped get more people to recycle paper at least.  I am happy to say that part of my goal was realized. 


Mile of Magazines! Happy Birthday!  Happy Birthday! Water slides! Snow sledding!  Hellos! Good-byes! Merry Christmas! We have had it all this month! It has been busy but good.  My favorite part was seeing my family.  The White Christmas was nice although a blizzard was a bit much I thought.  :)

It has been quite a year.  I don't think I will choose a word for the next year.  I think I just want to see what this next year holds.  All the surprises, all the changes that may come, all the good and even the not so good.  I wish for health for us and all our loved ones, happiness and awesome adventures. 

Happy New Year everyone!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

looking back

First:  Happy Anniversary Mom and Dad!  We love you!

Second: The first of 2009 I wrote about wanting to rediscover passions, creativity, relationships and my brain.  I wonder how I fared?  Let's look back on this year and I will also point out the highlights.


The first of this year, we celebrated the New Year with my sisters, brother and their kids and our parents. I really love the first day of the year because you know that you have a whole new year ahead of you, full of promise and change.  This picture reminds me of that.  It also reminds me that Rhett, Mallory and Jana were sick that vacation and Rhett and Mallory had stomach issues all through January, but I guess that is life.  Here is hoping this January is better for all. 


It snowed one of the only times that winter in early February and it was enough to miss school for a couple of days, although none of the parents could understand why.  :)  I picked this picture because we went sledding with one of my good friends, Cathy and her children.  Cathy and I became very good friends over the course of the almost three years that she lived here and it was she that made me realize that friends don't have to come in one kind of package.  There are different kinds of friends and she was my "daily talk about nothing but also everything, make me laugh and have fun and just be there" kind of friend.  I miss her dearly since she moved, but when she calls or I email her, it is like nothing has changed.  We still talk like we live right down the street from each other and I love that.


My mom came down in March when Rhett had his hand surgery. Moms are great like that.  No matter how old you get, you still need them.  Rhett was so brave during his surgery and it was the last of the month when he had it, meaning we fretted all month over it.  I think all of us did. No matter what I do with my life, I am a mom first and this situation cemented that for me.  It was hard to do much else or concentrate on much when your child is hurt or has fears and worries.  His fingers are doing quite well now by the way.


This month, I took the boys to meet a children's book author. Tedd Arnold was pretty cool and I love that we experienced that.  My boys love to read and I hope this is something they will always remember.  Just seeing Mr. Arnold draw pictures on the fly (He is the author of Fly Guy, you know) was amazing and made me want to do that.  Not that I did.  Of all things I wanted to "rediscover," creativity ranked low on the list this year.  I did not do much about that this year.  I wanted to but something always came up, ect.  I did do a few things, like make costumes and sew baby presents and helped the boys with their craft projects, but I wanted to do so much more.  I don't know why I didn't.


Noah graduated kindergarten in May.  We did mostly school stuff in May and I was so glad it was summer vacation.  The end of May we went to Friona to celebrate a huge milestone:

65 years is how long my grandparents have been married.  I hope in 54 years, my great-grandchidren are sitting on Seth's and my laps as we celebrate our 65th.  :)  That is a long time, isn't it Seth? One of the things I wanted to rediscover was reasons I liked my husband.  And I did.  This year has been so much fun with him.  We had our ups and downs like all couples do, but I remember mostly the fun I had with Seth.  The effort he made to spend time with us.  The times he made me laugh when I needed it most.  The way he is always there for me and makes me feel special.  I am very lucky.

Very lucky indeed. (This picture is from one of our friend's birthday celebration.  Our friends, Erin and Andy, really helped Seth and I come out of our shells.  They introduced us to people that we call good friends today.  They were the people that we spent all our weekends together.  This year was a wonderful year for new friendships and deepening existing ones.)


Can you believe the only pictures I took in June were pictures of my garden?  But I guess that is okay because I really stepped up and with my family's help, we created a wonderful butterfly garden.  That the bees really, really enjoyed!  We did see some butterflies in the fall but mostly it was the bees.  But I was happy.  I hope next year it is even bigger and better.  Rediscover my passion for the environment?  Check.

Because this has turned into such a long post, I will finish up tomorrow.  See you then.

Monday, December 28, 2009

a random post for the end of the year

I re-read the last Harry Potter book a few days ago.  By this point, I don't read the entire thing...I like to skip the parts I don't really care too much about.  Anyway, I read it over again because I watched the newest Harry Potter movie on dvd which is Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.  It left me with many questions.  This post is probably only for those who have read the books and/or watched the movies, so I apologize to anyone else. But in case you ever want to read them and still want to read my post (because you are that loyal), then I won't give too much away.

  1. In the book, a seeing mirror was given to Harry Potter by his godfather.  Harry broke it when Sirius died but kept the shards.  The mirror comes back in a major way (to me, at least) in the final book.  BUT, they left the mirror out of the movies completely.  How are they going to work that out?
  2. Tonks and Remus fall in love and eventually get married in the books.  Again, they left their relationship out of the latest movie.  Are they going to ignore it or find a way to put it in? 
  3. Bill, Ron's brother, was not in the Half-Blood Prince movie at all, although something life-changing happened to him in the book.  And he is a part of an important plot point in the last book.  Why did they leave that part out in the movie?  And how are they going to explain his changed appearance in the final movie, if they are at all?
  4. The more I watched the Half-Blood Prince, the more disappointed I was in it.  They essentially made it to be a teenagers have hormones movie.  They cut out a huge action sequence (the fight at Hogwarts and the end)  and added something I didn't understand (the fire at the Weasley's house).  Ok, this isn't a question, just a complaint. 
For those who have followed Harry, what do you think?  Am I being too critical?  Are there any questions you want answered?  Any major holes you see?  And for those who don't follow Harry, check back tomorrow and I'll have some pictures.  Not of Harry Potter. 

Saturday, December 26, 2009

a week later...

Well, it has been a busy week but I wanted to show you the pics of Noah's birthday.  He turned 7 last Saturday and was so excited.  We spent it doing what he wanted for the most part, but we were also trying to get ready for our family trip to the Greatwolf Lodge.  We met my whole family there the next day.  It was great fun!  I didn't get a lot of pictures there because we were so busy doing stuff! 

We told Noah his big gift was a bike that he could pick out himself.  He loved that idea and now owns a green bike.  His next favorite gift was a Webkinz gecko and I wish I had a picture of his face, but my camera battery died.  He loves it though!


Oh and did you hear? We had a White Christmas of epic proportions! Ha! Ha!  At least that is what the newscasters would descibe it:  The Great Christmas Eve Blizzard of 2009!  We got 14 inches of snow which means that Rhett and Seth could build a huge snowman!  Seth tells me I better be careful for what I wish for.  Hee hee. White Christmas indeed.

Look how tall he is!  I'll let you guess what the eyes and nose are.  That was my idea and pretty clever if you ask me. :)


And here is one last picture.  This is my whole family at the Gaylord Hotel, which is right across from the Greatwolf Lodge.  We spent an hour or so there just looking around, taking pictures of us. Really, that is what we did.  We actually went there to see the Ice sculptures but didn't realize we needed reservations for 15 people to get in to see it.  Don't know why that didn't occur to us. :)

I hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas!  And have a wonderful Happy New Year!

Friday, December 18, 2009

it's that time of year

*when I get a sore throat.  I thought it was just a cold. Now, I am thinking otherwise.  I may head to the clinic to get checked out and get antibiotics before it is too late. 

*when we are ready for a break.  Last day of school for awhile.  Boys are excited.  Noah is especially excited because tomorrow is his birthday.  We are taking him to BJ's, his favorite restaurant. 

*when I should have all my Christmas shopping done, but I don't.  I didn't even have that many people to buy for.  And I haven't even mailed my Christmas Cards yet.  They have been ready for two weeks.  Just haven't gotten the stamps at the post office.  Maybe I'll do that after the clinic.

*when I get to see my family.  My sisters! My brother!  Their sweet kids!  My parents! So happy about that!

I'll post tomorrow because my baby turns 7.  Which means he is not a baby anymore.  But he will always be my baby.  I'll also wish you a Merry Christmas then too.  So come back and see because I'll have pictures! 

Wednesday, December 16, 2009


No, I am not talking about the new movie, Nine, that has been nominated for some Golden Globes...

I'm talking about Rhett who turned 9 today!!!  We all woke up early (for us, not for Seth) so he could open his presents.  I don't know how we got started opening presents right when they wake up, but I think it is fun.  And who likes to wait?  Not me.

Rhett was totally excited about his gifts.  First, he opened the gift from Uncle Scott, Aunt Melissa and Matt and Sara.  If you can see, he was pretty happy.  First he was happy that it was an Underarmor shirt.  Then he was even more excited because it had Texas Tech on it.  Good job fam!

This is after he opened his Madden 09 DS game.  He didn't like this one at all. ;)  Actually, even though he looks like he is about to throw it down, he really was just whooping.  Woo!

And in a big box, he received many things Texas Tech.  He wanted his room to be decorated in Texas Tech things, so I think we got him started with a blanket, several signs and a lightswitch.  Who knew I would have such a Texas Tech fan? 

Rhett has his first performance as Mr. Duffy today in his play and is extremely nervous.  I am thinking of bringing Tums just in case.  But he will do fine.  And I made Chocolate Crinkles for his birthday treat and a cookie cake for tonight.  We are set to celebrate!

Have a great day!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

today feels like a Monday

Yesterday was a nice day.  Today, ugg.  (and I am not talking about the boots)

  • This is the fourth time I have been up to the school to help decorate the stage for the 3rd grade musical and we are still not done. 
  • My wonderful craft idea for Rhett's 3rd grade party (writing letters to servicemen) is now a no-go. But does anyone tell the homeroom mom (that is me)?  No.  So I have to come up with something else in 3 days.
  • I have to go to Wal-mart.  Enough said.
  • I totally made the wrong copies for Noah's teacher and I made a lot of them.  I wasted her paper and the number of copies she has.  I feel so bad.
  • Noah and Rhett did not put their bowls in the sink this morning.
So, let me think about yesterday again:

  • Rhett and Noah got to pick out their birthday gifts from Grandmom (she sent a gift card) and they had so much fun playing their new DS games.
  • My friend from far away called yesterday to be a good friend to me.  Miss you Cathy!
  • Seth's Christmas present from me came in the mail yesterday and I totally gave it to him already.  I just got to excited.  You want to know what I got him, don't you?
Saucony Running Shoes!

                  He likes them but needs to break them in a bit.  I think they are totally going to help his feet.  His poor no-arches feet.  :)

Here is hoping your Tuesday didn't feel like a Monday.  Or it was like my Monday, yesterday, then I hope it was like that.  Are you confused?  Because I am.

Monday, December 14, 2009

little gifts to me

Today is only Monday and I am noticing little gifts all around.

  • My two wonderful boys put their cereal bowls in the sink when they were done without even being asked to do so. 
  • Chai Tea Latte:  A little piece of heaven in a cup
  • Bath and Body Works socks:  A little piece of heaven on your feet.  They are infused with shea butter.  So soft and warm.
  • Little baby girl:  As I write this, one-handed I might add, I am babysitting my friend's one month old daughter and she is the sweetest!
Hope your Monday is going well!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

this week

For some reason, this week hasn't found me in the Christmas spirit.  Or maybe it has.  Because doesn't everyone get grumpy and stressed out before Christmas?  Ha. So maybe I haven't been in the right spirit of Christmas.

This week, I have been short on temper and time.  This week, I don't seem very happy (in the words of my dear oldest son).  This week, I have grumbled and complained and cried and fretted.

This morning, I have decided that the reason for all of this is because I have finally gotten fed up.  Somehow, this past year, I have lost my faith and my optimism.  My inner joy if you call it.  And I don't like it one bit.

I want those things back. I am going to find them. Somewhere, somehow, I will find those things again.

Have you ever lost your faith?  If you are asking "faith in what?", well, I say to you, (in the nicest way possible and very gently) "It doesn't matter in what."  Could be in one thing, could be in all things.  Could be in small things, could be in big things.  Could be you aren't sure.  Which is where I am.

I think saying it out loud is the first step to findig those things again.  At least, I hope so.

Monday, December 07, 2009

impossibly true

Last night, Rhett asked Dad a question. 

Rhett:  Dad, I have a question.
Seth: Okay.
Rhett:  What is a seven letter word that starts with a P and means "impossible, but true"?
Seth: Umm, I don't know.
Rhett:  You don't know?
Seth:  No.  Why do you need to know?
Rhett: It is for enrichment.  Our teacher tells us a story and then asks us a question about it.  Sometimes the word is in the story but sometimes it is not.
Rhett:  So you really don't know what the answer is?
Seth: No son, I really don't.   Maybe you should tell me the story.
Rhett:  Well, the story is about a bird named Paradox. This guy sees this bird that looks like it is filled with water and...
Seth:  Wait, wait, wait.  What is the bird's name?
Rhett:  Paradox.
Seth:  Do you know what paradox means?
Rhett:  No.

Seth gets a dictionary and looks it up.  He reads it to him:  A seemingly contradictory statement that may nonetheless be true. 

Seth:  Don't you think that sounds like your answer?
Rhett: Wait, paradox has 7 letters?!?

Friday, December 04, 2009

yie! yie! yie! yie! yie!*

So glad it is Friday!  Long week.  So much to do, especially clean the house.  That is why I am blogging.  Don't want to begin that chore.

Wednesday, Noah had to do his monthly family project.  The "family" is supposed to do it together, but Noah really dislikes for anyone but me to do anything for him so usually it is a "Noah" project, with a little help from mom.  Rhett is doing a project of his own, so he won't be left out. 

Now, Rhett's project, with a little help from Mom, is hanging on our chandelier.  The snowflakes look neat when the sunlight is shining through.  So sparkly.

{Speaking of sun, well, weather, it is frigid today!  Early this morning, I stood outside with two other dynamo moms freezing our tails off just to collect magazines.  We love the earth so much! :) }

This is what I did yesterday:

Rhett and the 3rd Grade are doing a Christmas Music Program and I said I would help with costumes.  I made 6 soldier costumes yesterday.  It took all afternoon and evening.  The boys were basically on there own from the time they came home from school until about 8:30.  Thank God for tortillas and cheese.  Anyway, I did make it up to them by playing Beatles Rock Band with them.  I even let them stay up past bedtime to do it. 

Oh, and Rhett is the lead.  Yipee!  I am so excited for him. He is playing a janitor who doesn't like Christmas.  They are doing the play 3 times, once on his birthday, so he is so excited.  And nervous. And happy he doesn't have to sing the songs.

One last picture:

Because it is so cold, Scout has been inside at night.  (Brinkley is in the garage).  Scout decided to try out Rhett's "fossil" of a shell that he made with clay a couple of years ago.  I guess she thought it was a cookie, I don't know.  She must have liked it because this morning, it was in her mouth again! 

I know what you are thinking:  I really must not want to clean house. 

You would be correct.

Have a great weekend! And stay warm! 

*That is what Noah yells while he and Rhett are playing football in the house. Don't worry, it is not a big football. Actually, I don't know exactly what they play. All I know is that Noah gets the ball and then yells that over and over. The first picture made me think of this story. Noah looks like he is yelling that. Probably is.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

what is old becomes new again

You might not have noticed in yesterday's picture but my coffee table has had a makeover.  You see, above, the green stain toward the left of the picture?  That is the sprite that someone didn't wipe off the table.  But if you look closely, you will notice that the table wasn't in the greatest shape of its life either.  (This was one of our first big furniture purchases-the coffee table and the two matching sofa tables).  So, I had a wild hair one day the week before Thanksgiving and decided to do this:

It is now red!  I may need to darken it up because this red (paint that I used in the kitchen) is almost too bright compared to the other reds in the family room, but the concept is great.  It adds a punch of color to a very brown room:

And it definitely looks better than the before picture. 

Have a great day!

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

time for the merriment to begin

It is December!

Yesterday, the boys and I put the tree up.  Noah was so excited and happy-until he wasn't anymore.  Then he just wanted to watch tv or play the Wii.  He had been begging to see his ornaments for 3 days.  I guess he wasn't begging to put them on the tree though, so I shouldn't have expected anything more.  What was I thinking?

This is Noah hanging one of his first ornaments. Before he was not wanting to anymore.

Rhett was a trouper and hung all of his.  He had a comment about everyone of his ornaments, which reminded me of myself.  I remember every single ornament-where I got it, from whom it was given, the when is getting a little fuzzy but some of them have dates, which is good.

After the tree, I dragged the boys outside for their Christmas card picture.  Again, Noah was not excited to be doing this particular thing, so I had to resort to telling him to imagine Rhett was wearing a purple dress.  Low blow, Rhett thought.

I did get at least one good picture, which I am not showing because that would ruin the surprise of opening the card, but here is a gem that shows I have driven Noah crazy with pleas to smile for the camera.

And this was my back-up plan. Rhett made it at school-isn't it great? I'll definitely frame it but if Noah wasn't going to cooperate (I know, he is almost 7, how hard can it be to make that child cooperate! But I am slowly finding out that you can't MAKE Noah do anything.) it was going to be our Christmas card.

Happy Birthday to Mallory, my niece.  I hope you have a great, wonderful day!  Also, Abbey, happy birthday to you as well!