Monday, December 31, 2012

Good Bye 2012

Well another year bites the dust. It should does seem like the years are starting to literally FLY by us now. I'm going to go through each kid and give highlights of their year...I'll start with the youngest!

Peanut and I enjoyed the first part of this year just hanging out together while the older three kids were in school. This summer she was tall enough to go on the Demon at Great America. That is the roller coaster that goes upside down. She loved it! She must get that from her father ;) She also learned how to ride her bike without training wheels. That has been nice for our park and library bike trips! She also got really good at swimming under water but not quite ready to make the jump off the diving board. In September she turned 5, a whole hand, and started school 5 half days a week. She has started to read and do simple math problems. Helping out in her class with their Christmas party I was able to see her personality. She is quite the little leader. She was organizing the kids and giving them intructions. It was really funny to watch. I have a feeling she might end up teaching. She has a lot of friends at school and church, too. She is currently doing her last year of Awana Cubbies. She just finished gymnastics and ballet but we are going to be taking a break at the beginning of this new year. She is such a lovely little girl and always good for a chuckle!

Red finished 1st grade and turned 7. He played baseball for the first time this summer and was a total natural. He loves pitching. His coaches were amazing and we were so blessed to have them both as his coaches! He also made the all star team. He is my little athelet, probably because he has the two older ones to keep up with. He is now playing basketball for the first time and loving it. He is my super active child. Loves to be outside or doing something inside. He went to sleep away camp this summer for the first time and had a blast. He is loving 2nd grade and he has a real young and fun teacher. His grades continue to be As and Bs. He is in his last year of Sparks at church. He loves to tell jokes. He asked for more joke books for Christmas and he got them. He also like to make up jokes...there have been a few that were actually pretty funny. But not always! He has the most contagious laugh I have ever heard. He has lost 3 teeth this year and the only ones he has lost so far. He currently has the one front tooth smile...love it. He is going to catch up with his older brother height wise pretty soon if he keeps growing at the rate is he going.

The first part of this year for Monkey was pretty slow. He played baseball for the 2nd summer. He got a ton better from the year before and his confidence grew. He ended up making the all star team for the first time this year too! I was so happy that they both made the all stars. His baseball coach talked him into playing soccer this fall for the first time. Jeff and I were pretty excited that he wanted to try soccer. We both really love watching soccer! I think we found his sport. He loves it and he is really good at it too. He was so excited when he got his first goal! His coach was begging us to sign him up for soccer this spring instead of baseball. And by begging I mean every practice or game the coached asked if he was going to play in the spring and would say "I would really love to have him on my team." In November he tried out for basketball at school and made the team. I love seeing him improve his basketball skills as the season has gone on. He went from playing like 2 minutes or so the first few games to playing the entire game. He also is doing well in school and getting As and Bs too. He is also my one who will also come and snuggle with me on the couch when we watch our television show "Once Upon a Time".

Glamor Girl tried track and field at the beginning of the year. At first she didn't like it because there was a lot of conditioning. But she really liked the track meets. She is not very fast though. Have to admit that track meets were not my favorite sport to attend but I am a great fan of my daughter so I was there rain or shine. She also got the lead in the play at school while she was in 5th grade. She loves to act. This summer I took her away for a weekend just her, me and my mom we had a great time! This fall she played soccer as well. She liked this league much better than the one she played on a few years ago. The best part was that Monkey and her were on the same team. It was great for our family only one game and practice. She did really well and got her first two goals this season. She decided not to do cheerleading this year. She started her last year of elementary school...we are going to have a Jr. Higher next year. She continues to get all As on her report card. Her favorite activity of all time is reading. She reads 500 pages books in 2 days. She can't get new books fast enough

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Weight...

I know, I know two posts in one week! Hopefully this will be a trend...
We finished our last Christmas celebration of this year, today!!!

Ok, so I think I'm just going to put this out there because for one it's my blog and for two it has been on my mind. I love the holidays getting together with the people you love the most and just spending time together. Love it. What I do not love is the consistent comments about my weight. Throughout the year people will make random comments about my weight but during the holidays it is full force. Though there are a few people, that say something every time I see them no matter what time of year, I expect it and move on. Yes I am thin. No, I am not under weight. I do have flab, trust me. Yes, I do eat. I actually eat often. I will admit I do forget to eat occasionally but that is when I am super busy but that is such a rare thing. I get hungry, I eat. It makes me very self conscience, like do I look sick? I'm only saying this so people are aware that thin people are insecure about their weight too. At least this thin girl is. It also makes me nervous if I do end up putting on extra weight what will people say then? 


Friday, December 28, 2012

Long Time

Well this year is coming to an end. We had our Christmas get together with my mom's side of the family last weekend and my sweet Aunt Lori reminded me of my blog that I have let go. So this post is for her and will hopefully be my motivation to post more! Hi Aunt Lori :) I really do miss posting but I have enjoyed my blogging break.

To be honest it is hard to pick just one thing to write about...these kids are crazy up in here! But this story happened tonight and I just had to share. It was time for Peanut to go to bed. She has stopped taking naps and has made bedtime so much easier for everyone! However after tonight I think she isn't going to be so easy to put to bed, anymore. Jeff told me to tell her to get in bed when she came up stairs because he was going to hide under her bed to scare her. He has done this before and he usually scares her before she gets in bed so I was waiting for it but it didn't happen. I stood outside her door trying to figure out what he was doing. She says, "Mommy I feel something weird." I didn't respond just waited. It took about 5 minutes before he finally jumped out and scared her. She screamed so loud and started crying immediately. She normally just screams and then laughs. Apparently, Jeff was pushing up on her bed which is the something weird she was feeling. Then he said he was shaking her bed. Finally her little foot was hanging over the edge and he was touching it. All before he jumped out to scare her. She was so scared. Jeff said she did not move at all. I think she was paralyzed with fear. Poor girl. We asked her what she thought it was and she screamed "A MONSTER" She was really scared, I felt horrible. I held her for 5 minutes before she stopped crying. When she calmed down Jeff said should I do it to Red. She lit up and agreed that he should scare her brother! The worst part for me is I remember being her age laying in bed paralyzed with fear. She is so my daughter. This house is crazy!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Running...

The other day I thought I would start running. Yeah I know I'm SO not a runner. But after two days I think I could start to like it...maybe. I am a long way away from being any good at it. I did the run 60 seconds walk 90 seconds for 20 minutes. It is harder than it sounds especially if you are out of shape like I am!!! The funniest thing that happened on my first run was a nice little elderly lady asked if there was school today. I replied yep. Then started thinking about why she would ask me that. I think she thought I was in High School. Haha. I had on a t-shirt and sweat pants on because it was cool out. Well now that I posted this to the world I feel like I have to keep doing it...

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Soccer

Since I am waiting up for my dear sweet hubby to get home so I can spend a little bit of time with him today I thought I would update the ole blog!

So my two oldest are playing soccer...yes I am officially a "soccer mom". I have to say I absolutely love fall soccer. GG did spring soccer two years ago. This is so much different. Anyway both kids are on the SAME team. Bonus! It has worked out great for us. The practices are super close to our house they could ride their bikes and they do when Jeff goes to the practices to help! As I mentioned GG has played once before but this is Monkey's first year playing. I have to say this boy has completely impressed me. The first game he played the WHOLE game. They didn't have subs and he never stopped running full speed. As the season goes on his skill with handling the ball has gotten way better too. He does great in defense though he really loves offense. The best position for him is midfield so he gets to play both! This last weekend they had their 5th or 6th game and Monkey got his first ever goal. It was such a cool thing to witness and he was SO happy. I watched him run with his arms in the air and then chest bump one of his teammates. I even shed a tear. I was so proud of him. Another cool part is hearing the parents talk about him most of them know this is his first year. But one dad had no idea I was his mom or that it was his first year and went up to the coach during a corner kick and said, "Have him kick the ball to number 2." Monkey is number 2!!!

As for GG, she played two years ago but that was pretty much a joke. They had practice once a week in a park and most of the time the practices got canceled. Not only did the practices get canceled but some of the games did too and were not rescheduled. I felt like we wasted our money. This league is so much better and is not the same as the one she did two years ago. She is playing really well too. Again she is best as a defender but likes offense. This last game they out her in the goal for the first half. She was absolutely adorable whenever the ball got close to her she would yell at her teammates to "get it out of here" totally something I would do. She had two stops which was good. I think she did good in goalie since the final score of that game was 2 - 0 with us winning! So as it's looking now Monkey will probably be playing soccer in the fall and GG will play in the spring at school. Though I am really enjoying having them on the same team next year GG is too old for the co-ed. It's interesting too how each team has 3 to 4 girls on it and in every game I've seen those girls are pretty good!!!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

I'm still alive...

barely. The kids started school on Sept 6th and since then I feel like I am just trying to keep my head above water. All 4 kids come home with tons of homework each day. As they have gotten older the homework amount has increased and it has gotten harder. I just feel like we are drowning in it right now. We need to find our routine. I have half the day to myself and I feel totally and completely ADD in that time period. I am trying to get everything I need to get done in said time period before I pick Peanut up. I just need to realize that I have all school year to slowly get the "to do list" done. Typically I thrive on busy but this year for some odd reason I'm not. I need to get out of this funk. Or we are going to have a rough year.

In other news we bought a new refrigerator!!! We finally sat down and talked about all the thing we want to do to this old house and prioritized in the order we wanted to do them. Then put a price to them. Number 1 has been checked off. Now we wait a good 18 months and we will have saved enough to do the next on the list...New doors. Exciting I know, right? ;)

The kids continue to crack me up and frustrate me all at the same time. I posted two of many funny conversations I have had with my kids on facebook.
Me: Get your stuff animals away from me
GG: This is totally why I'm not going to be able to sleep with my husband.
Me: Why because of all your stuffed animals?
GG: NO. no because I keep rolling over on top of you.



And the other...

Me: I can't believe you are going to be 5 yrs old. You make me feel old.
Peanut: I don't want to turn 5 years old.
Me: I don't want to turn 34...
Peanut with most surprised face: Oh that's old. Are you going to die? 


Oh and tonight at church Red lost his second tooth! That was pretty funny. He was screaming like he had blood squirting out of his mouth. I had him suck on an ice cube to help numb his mouth then took a look at it. I moved it forward and backward and then went to pull but it just fell out. I knew it was ready to come out because the big tooth was already coming in behind it. 

Monday, August 13, 2012

injuries and firsts

This summer has seemed to be filled with injuries. Red being on the receiving end of most of them. He had a summer of firsts. He lost his first tooth...FINALLY. He only turned 7 in May and
 lost the tooth July 24th. Though he doesn't have any more loose... Then he went to camp for the first time this year and while at camp he got his first black eye. Then last week he got his first broken bone. We went to Play it again sports to get the kids some cleats for soccer and he dropped a 25 pound weight on his finger. Ouch.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

This old thing...

Man I feel like I never update this blog anymore. Probably because nothing real exciting has been going on in our house. Other than the fact that we joined the 21st century and got a texting plan for our phones. We still don't have internet on them but we took a step up in the world of electronics. AND we bought me a phone for the first time since owning a cell phone. We have always taken the penny phones but this time we spent money to buy one. That felt weird. The biggest topic lately has been whether or not our almost 12 yr old should get a phone. So far she hasn't needed one and she still doesn't really *need* one. If she wants to talk to friends she can use my phone at any time. I see the positives and negatives to both side of the debate. Today we had our families over to celebrate Monkey's birthday and they all had opinions about the phone subject which I found really funny because Jeff's parents agreed with him and mine agreed with me. And this was before we even told them what we thought! Now that I've started writing this post I looked at the title and just laughed. Back to the electronic topic Monkey got a kindle fire for his birthday and he is loving it. Surprisingly he has actually done quite a bit of reading on it, along with playing games. I love the fact that both kids kindles are synced and they can share books. I really want the ipad but I am also trying really hard to manage our money more wisely. We have several friends who are taking the Dave Ramsay class at church and we've had many decisions with them about the class. It has motivated me to be more diligent with our money. But I have never been a spender which is why I haven't gotten the ipad, yet, because we do have the money to buy one. I just know that eventually we are going to need to buy a new refrigerator (it's like 20+ yrs old), television (8 yrs old), computer or laptop (both 5 yrs old), and the list goes on. I want to be prepared. Not to mention all the kids sports and equipment that goes with it. So far this year the two oldest are playing soccer, Red is doing basketball, and Peanut is doing gymnastics and ballet/tap. She couldn't decide which one she liked better so my dad and step-mom gave her the gymnastic class for her birthday and Jeff and I gave her the ballet/tap class for her birthday. She was happy. Monkey is talking about trying out for the basketball team at school and GG is possibly doing cheerleading again or something else. Then both older kids want to do track but thinking Monkey isn't going to be able to do track and baseball so we'll see. Both boys are planning on doing baseball in the spring. So yeah that is a perpetual "money suck" right there, but a good one. I'm trying to find a part time (real part time like 10 hrs or less) job while Peanut is in school to help offset these activities because having Jeff in grad school come fall isn't going to leave much time for him to be working overtime. Plus, I don't like when he works A LOT of over time. We'll see. If you have read this whole post congrats! I feel like that was very ADD...     

Monday, July 30, 2012

Girls Week

The girls and I have been trying to have a great time with just us girlies at home. Friday night we went to dinner with my parents and then out to see Brave. I loved the mother/daughter aspect of the movie just not so much the magic. Saturday we went shopping and to a birthday party. Sunday we headed over to my parents house. We had lunch with them where Peanut got hit on the head with the paper towel dispenser in the bathroom. Poor girl had a little goose egg. The restaurant did a great job making it right. They gave her a balloon and an ice pack. Then they took 60% off our whole check AND they brought out the biggest piece of ice cream cake I have ever seen. After lunch we went back to their house and grandma watched the girls while my dad took me shopping. I didn't know where I wanted to go but a store called Hot Mama caught my eye and I think the name was funny and wanted to see what it was like. OH MY GOODNESS! They have the cutest clothes but they are pretty expensive. I tried on about 50 shirts...I don't need any pants! Then we went to Best Buy to get a screen protector for Monkey's kindle fire. Then we went out to eat with them for dinner plus 2 of my brothers came with so that was fun. We came home and get ready for bed and just hung out. Today starts VBS at their school so I dropped them off and went grocery shopping we had no milk, bread, butter or much of anything else. Now I am relaxing before I have to go pick them up. So thankful VBS was this week :) The plans for the rest of the week are to check out the library for some chick flicks, swimming, and mini golf. It is definitely easier just having the two girls but man I really do miss my boys...

Friday, July 13, 2012

It's Time

I'm getting really bad at the updating of my blog. Life is just so busy with 4 kids that I forget or am too exhausted from the day to think straight! This past week has totally thrown off my sleep schedule. Tuesday July 3rd the kids and I went out on my dad's boat to watch fireworks on the lake. It was really a cool experience to be on the water when it was so dark! Driving the boat was harder because you couldn't see and we almost hit to buoys...oops. But it was way better putting the boat cover back on because the sun wasn't beating down on us. We ended up getting home that night around 11ish. On the 4th the two boys were in the parade for baseball and then we went to the "Fest" for the rest of the night with Aunty Becky. That was a pretty memorable night...one I don't think my kids will ever forget or let me forget! Let's just say that one of the carnival workers made it his goal to hit on all the women in attendance with the pick up line of "call me maybe" with his number. It was a good laugh but made for an awkward rest of the Fest for that one ride. Thursday my dad picked up the two oldest and took them to Great America on Friday and Saturday. So I only had two kids while I was single parenting it...woot woot. I say single parenting it because Jeff's work schedule was INSANE! The 4th he worked from 8am to 11pm, 5th: 3:30pm to 12:30am, 6th: 3:30pm to 1:30am 7th: 9am to 4am (the longest day) 8th: 7am to 11pm. So yeah not much help from him. Thursday the two kids and I met some friends at the Fest. Friday we had a going away party and then my future sil came over to hang out...SO fun! Saturday we rocked the Fest from 3pm to midnight (close) then we did the same thing on Sunday but it closed at 10pm. It was many late nights and it has thrown me completely off. But this week the kids have VBS at 9am not good when we have been sleeping in until 10am. Here are some pictures from the first night of the FEST!!! 





Sunday, June 17, 2012

We did it!!!

We actually bought a trampoline and it is up and operating!!! The kids are always wanting to go on it and I just LOVE that! We put it up after we went to Great America last Thursday and Friday morning the kids were up early and out on it jumping away. And every morning except for today they have gotten up, got dressed, ate breakfast and then outside to jump. Today they couldn't because we had church but as soon as we got home they were out there! I think it is the best purchase we have made for the kids to date. And I like that they are getting exercise and NOT sitting in front of the tv or playing video games.

So I said we put it up after our day at Great America. We had gotten home around 9:30pm and decided that we put it up. It was so funny because we had to set up a flood light so that we could see what we were doing. It took us a little longer than it would of it had been in the daylight because we had to almost take it all apart to fix a mistake that we had made because of the darkness. We had fun bonding while putting it up and we got to be the first to JUMP! At 11pm we were like two little kids jumping away on the trampoline. I was sitting and let Jeff jump and he bounced me so high that I ended up standing. Needless to say, if you are thinking of getting one totally do it! We struggled with size for a while and ended up getting the bigger one...15ft!  

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Need to make a plan...

My oldest and I were sitting down watching television tonight and the show was all about a teenage girl getting prepared for having sex for the first time. We don't watch a whole lot of television but this is one of our shows we like to watch together so it opened the door to a great discussion on sex. It was just her and I in the room and she was able to ask questions and I answered her honestly and accurately. This summer I have been planning on taking her on an over night at a hotel where we can talk more in depth about the subject. I was convicted during the hearts at home conference about the topic of sex. I want my kids hearing about sex in our home (not from friends) and what the Bible says about the topic (in the confines of marriage). There is a program called Passport to Purity that we are going to go through. My prayer for my children is that they are pure until they marry. But I also need to be willing to talk to them about it and teach them about it. This is on the list of things for the summer. And as taboo the topic is in most families I am kind of excited to spend time with her just one on one. Pray for me! I will hopefully let you know before we go so that you can cover me in prayer while we are gone. 

Monday, June 04, 2012

So giddy!

School is almost over for the summer! This week is going to go by so fast and I am SO giddy about having all my kidlets home with me. I have planned lots of bike rides to places this summer. I still have to pick up the tandem bike though but once we get that we are GOLDEN! Can I just tell you how much I just love Peanut's heart? Today we were outside enjoying the beautiful weather and she was riding her bike. I said to her that she should try the bigger of the two bikes there really isn't much difference between the two. She did NOT want to try it because she was scared. I talked to her about how scared she was to ride the littler bike but that she was able to do it. She tried the bigger one and realized that she COULD do it. She says, "We need to find someone to give my little bike to. And also the one with the three wheels. I don't ride that one anymore." Then she started naming friends who she could give those bikes to. I just love her so much. She is *probably my most stubborn child but she has one of the biggest hearts I've ever seen.

I say probably because she does have a little competition in that department from one of her siblings who will go unnamed ;)

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Coming to a close

I started nannying for a friend last year at the beginning of June. With my kids crazy schedules it has gotten harder for me to be available to her when she needs me. I had been putting off talking to her about it because I really do love her kids and watching them. But I really do need to be there for my family too. So next week will be my last week watching those little kidlets. I started watching them when the little boy was 8 weeks old. I've seen him roll, crawl and walk. He hasn't started talking yet but I really am going to miss his cuddles. The little girl and Peanut have been come like sisters. They even tease and fight with each other like siblings but when they play together they have the greatest fun! I am going to miss hearing their imaginations. They crack me up. I have been so blessed to be able to help them out this last year. I hope and pray that the new girl will love and care for them too. I am also glad that I will still get to see them at church. That makes it easier for me. 

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

This week...

I haven't had much time to myself so I am making some time now to blog. Jeff left for a week long training in another state on Sunday (Mother's Day). He left about 2:30pm. Since then two of our children have lost a tooth. I'm not good at being the tooth fairy and with everything else on my plate this week I forgot one morning. Ugh. Monday it was up and getting the kids ready for school and to school on time. Then Peanut and I had some serious grocery shopping to do. Come home and unload said groceries. Then go outside and enjoy the beautiful weather practicing riding her bike without the training wheels. She is getting better but doesn't quite have it completely. While I was picking up the toys outside that I had asked her to help with she went inside and gave herself a hair cut! Which I wrote about on the last post. Then get the kids from school. We had an hour to get homework done and dinner eaten before we had to head out the door for Monkey's baseball game at 5:30. We got home around 8:45...grandpa took us out for ice cream afterward. Tuesday up and out the door and then come home and clean the house that hasn't been cleaned or vacuumed in days, plus a load of laundry that needed to be done so that Monkey's uniform was clean for his next game. My mom-in-law comes over to try our blendtec...which was so fun! After lunch we ran to the library to take back a movie and get a book I have waiting for me. Then more work on riding the bike before we have to get the kids from school. GG had track practice until 5:30, so the boys came home and did homework and ate dinner before we had to take Monkey to practice and pick GG up from practice bring her home and feed her and get her started on her homework. Gave the little kids baths before heading back out to pick up Monkey from practice. GG took a shower while we were gone so that Monkey could get one when he got home. Put the three youngest kids to bed, after Red and I researched Ruth Wakefield for his project due next week, then helped GG with her science fair project until 10pm. Realize that I wanted to take a bath and soak but was too tired at that point so decided I would get up 10 minutes earlier and take a shower in the morning. Wednesday get up take kids to school go to Bible study and then work in the cafeteria. However, at Bible study Peanut had an accident which is SO unlike her but still it happened and I didn't have extra clothes. My friend has 4 boys one her age so she lent us a pair of gray sweat pants. Peanut was NOT happy about the clothes. She refused to come out of the bathroom. I finally got her out and she was fine. Then she flipped out on me again at school when I took her to the Kap room. She said, "They are going to laugh at me." I assured her that no one would know she had on someone else's pants or that she peed her pants. But if she didn't stop crying they were all going to be looking at her because she was making a scene. No one made fun of her, she told me when I picked her up! We got home around 1:30 and decide Peanut needs a nap today because Monkey has another game tonight. This afternoon will be another round of quick homework doing, lunch making, dinner eating and out the door for Monkey's game. Then get home and put the kids to bed so that I can decorate Red's room for his birthday which is tomorrow! I hope I don't forget the ice cream sandwiches in the morning. Thursday Peanut has her last class before her recital this weekend. Then after school Red has baseball practice and a spring concert at school. So it will be another crazy busy day. Friday should be pretty laid back once I get the kids to school. I do have to work from 1:30 to 4:30. But once I get the kids from school we will eat and I will put on a movie until Jeff gets home! Then we can tag team this weekend ;) Which believe it or not is WAY more crazy than this week! I look forward to Friday...and give single parents a big hand for all they do! Being the only parent is exhausting work.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Mother's Day

Well this year was different then all the others I have ever celebrated. We got up early and went to early service and then went to the flee market with my in-laws. We walked the whole place which took about 2 hours and got some good finds one being a new bike for Red's birthday coming up soon. It wasn't a super hot day out but I got some sun! The rest of the day was pretty laid back because I ended up getting a headache but the kids were really good so that helped big time! I got some really cute homemade gifts from the kids...all but Peanut because I didn't make anything with her and she didn't go to Sunday school at church to make anything there she was pretty sad.

Other than that today Peanut gave me a present of cutting her hair. Ugh it looks so scraggly and she has her ballet recital this coming weekend. Great timing!

Saturday, May 05, 2012

I'm still alive...

Yeah baseball season has started which means total BUSYness! Here is a glimpse of our upcoming week...
Tomorrow: Peanut has pictures for ballet and Monkey has a baseball game at 1pm. Then night church.
Monday: track practice was canceled :)
Tuesday: Monkey has practice and GG has a track meet
Wednesday: JAM
Thursday: Red and Monkey both have games at the SAME time! It is Red's first game of the season. And GG has track practice.
Friday: GG has a birthday party and we have the last Friday JAM of the year!
Saturday: GG track meet (morning) and Monkey has a ball game (evening).
Sunday: Mother's Day...I get spoiled ;)
 
Just in case you were wondering JAM is the Junior High Ministry at our church. Jeff and I help out with the youth!  So that is just a glimpse of our crazy schedule as the season gets going there is something every night it seems. We are so blessed to have two vehicles. Only 5 more weeks of school!!! And we got our pool pass renewed, oh yeah!

Friday, April 20, 2012

The last of the trip update...this may be long!

Tuesday the men went golfing and us girls took the kids to the San Antonio Zoo. It is ranked 5th in the states. This was the only picture of all four kids together and I realized I didn't take that many pictures while we were there! oops
 
That night for dinner we went to a Bar-BQ place that ended up having live entertainment on Tuesday nights, score! Peanut loved dancing to it and get a few people to dance with her :)

Since this was the last night with my Aunt Ellen and Uncle Roger we had to get a picture with them!

Wednesday morning we got up and started our trip back home. We stopped in Georgetown, Tx to go in the caves. That was pretty cool, the kids loved it. Just a few pictures from there...
 We got to touch only this section...
 group shot minus Jeff
 There was water running down that thing behind the kids it was really cool. The water was super clear! After the caves we drove to Oklahoma where we spent the night. Thursday we drove to Branson, Mo getting us there around 3pm so we had some time to explore and relax. For dinner that night we went to The Hard Luck Diner where the waiters and waitresses sing to you. Our waiter sang, "I can't help falling in love with you" to Peanut. It was super cute! So glad Jeff was able to capture it.

The next day, Friday, we did a ton of fun things! One of which was the old time photos that you see around my blog but I will add one to this post because I doubt I will keep them up for years to come! Enjoy some pictures...
 we went go carting and GG was the only one tall enough to drive her own car and she was thrilled!
 The rest of us doubled up.
 Then we did the bumper boats so the three older kids could each drive something.
 Peanut with my dad, getting sprayed by Monkey. My favorite picture of this activity!
 The boys in a water battle :)
all 8 of us in full color
Then we rode the Ducks. Once we got in the water the "captain" let each of the kids drive the duck. We do have a picture with each kid driving but trying to keep this somewhat decent in length! 

After we did the Ducks we went to The Dixie Stampede with the horses but cameras were allowed. It is a lot like Medieval Times where you eat with your hands. I think the funniest thing was when they dropped the whole chicken onto Peanuts plate for her to eat. That was really fun and I think the kids really enjoyed that experience. I just wish I could of taken pictures. After dinner we went mini golfing. I took pictures but they didn't turn out good because of the movement they were somewhat blurry. But you all know what mini golfing looks like. And that concludes the day in Branson, Mo. It was a fun filled day.
  
Saturday we got up and drove to St. Louis to visit with my oldest brother and some of his kids. We also saw the Arch but didn't go in it the line was WAY too long. But the kids enjoyed seeing it up close. Here are some fun pictures we took.
 see that clump of people? That's our kids :)
 up close to the Arch
 That is what it looks like looking up
 Jeff and I by the Arch!
We got home late on Saturday night and it took about a week to get back to normal non-vacation life! I also want to say that our kids did a great job on the road trip since we were in the van for about 40 hrs getting there and back.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Part 2 of our trip!

We've been home a week now and I finally feel like things have settled down and we're back to normal around here! I want to start this post off with the video that didn't work in the last post because I want people to see it :)

Moving along...on Monday we went to the Alamo and River Walk in San Antonio. I thought it was super neat to hear the story of the Alamo, because I honestly didn't remember it from school. Here are some cool shots we got at the Alamo...


For lunch we ate on the River walk



After lunch my dad and step-mom took the kids to the Children's museum and Jeff and I went on a segway tour of San Antonio. It was SUPER cool. Once I got over my fear of falling off or getting hurt I had a blast. We had a private tour because the other couple canceled, score for us! First pictures of us on our segways!
 Jeff getting his lesson
 Me getting my lesson
 In front of the Alamo 
Now what the kids did while we had fun :)

It worked out great that the San Antonio's Children's Museum was right across the street from where Jeff and I had our segway tour. And bonus with our museum pass they all got in for free!
Then we walked back down the the Riverwalk and took a boat ride and got some ice cream! YUM!
 




Once again this is getting really long it will have to be continued...and I'm not even adding all the pictures we took!



Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Our long awaited Texas Trip!

Remember last year how Jeff and I went to the Bahamas? The cover story for the surprise cruise to the Bahamas was that we were going to Texas. Needless to say that the kids were disappointed that they didn't get to go to Texas last year so we made it right this year! Friday (30th) we got up and loaded up the rental van and started out on our road trip. We did as much driving as we could that first day so that we could get to my Aunt's for dinner on Saturday.
 
 This is how the kids watched movies!
Not sure why he is making this face but since he did I am putting it online :)
We were super excited to cross into Texas that we stopped to get some pictures. As you can tell it was super bright outside and this is the best shot we got! 

Sunday we went to Sea World, I hadn't been there in years and I actually really didn't remember much of it. It was so fun! We went to all the shows and rode some of the rides. Here are some of my favorite pictures for that day....
 watching the dolphins eat
 my dad and Red
 Peanut was so excited to meet these Sesame Street Characters!
 Before the 4D movie
 
 Peanut in a cool tunnel
The kids watching one of the shows at Sea World!
(the video that was here isn't working and I don't have time to fiddle with it just yet...check back to see Peanut on down)
 
 Notice: Peanut has her hands in the air the whole way down. She is in the back row all the way over to the right.
 This is what they looked like after that water ride!

To be continued...

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Booked

My hair appointment for Friday that is! I haven't had a hair cut in, um, years?! That is really sad. The other day (about 2 weeks ago) I was sitting on the couch and looking at the ends of my hair. They were split and dead and just a hot mess. SO I got out my little nail scissors and started cutting all the split ends I saw. No need for a hair cut I just fixed my problem right?! WRONG. A week later I was looking again and saw a bunch I missed so I repeated the above process. I thought that should be good enough now. Well it wasn't I am still finding them. Which brought me to my breaking point, I need a real hair cut that gets like 3 inches of hair off of my head. So I did it. I called and made an appointment. I guess $75 for let's say two years is good for hair care.

On the topic of hair Peanut was outside riding her bike. We are currently working on her riding two wheels. It isn't going so well. Anyway, I was putting on her helmet and was looking at the ends of her hair and I saw split ends. I didn't think little kids could have that?! I asked if she wanted me to cut her hair and make it healthier so it could grow longer and be like Rapunzel. She was all about it. I took her to the bathroom and cut about an inch off of her hair. It looks SO much better now. GG needs a trim too. The girls are both growing their hair out to either donate or sell, so they've got a ways to go before they have the length needed. Haha I just wrote a post about hair. I have other things on my mind but I'm not willing to share them. But I wanted to write.

Oh in other news...I just got the book The Vow, you know the book that the movie is based off of? I read it in two days. It was so good. Nothing like the movie. I actually think I liked the book better because it was a true story. Though it has put a fear of driving in me. And we are taking a road trip this year. OY 

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Ahhh

Let me catch my breath. This weather has been absolutely gorgeous which means lots of days playing outside and all together busyness! On Friday night was the Sports banquet for the fall teams. Since GG was on the cheerleading squad she was able to attend. This was our first of many sports banquets I'm sure. It was really cute. And the best part is she won the Charger Spirit Award. I was SO proud of her. What a great award to win as a CHEERleader. Spirit is definitely something you should have an abundance of! I still haven't gotten a picture of her with her trophy...see we have been *that* busy. It is a really quality trophy with her name on it!

Jeff and I had been talking about whether we were going to go look at a van on Saturday all throughout the week with neither of us really committing to spending our Saturday van shopping again our curiosity won out! It was the best priced van we have seen for such low miles.The down side was it was an hour drive from our house. Since we had a ton of time in the van on the way there Jeff said he spent most of it praying that God would show us a clear sign if this was "the one". When we got there we were immediately greeted and shown where the van we were going to look at was. As we drove to the van the fan in our van started acting really funny. We turned the heat off and the fan started blower higher. It was so weird. First sign it was time to get a newer van. We looked at the new van and took it for a test drive. We were sold. Then we started talking price and they dropped the price a lot right off the bat and took our van for more than we were looking for and they gave us a FULL tank of gas. Which one dealership said they would absolutely would not do. This place was so nice and friendly. We drove away with a van with the lowest miles we have ever own in a vehicle. The only funny part of the day was the fact that all the kids loved the new van and wanted us to buy it and when we actually bought and we were driving away three of them started crying over leaving the old van. OY.

Another thing that stuck out in my head about the day was how many of the employees complimented us on the kids behavior. At least 5 people said something about how well behaved they were. I was very proud of them as we were there for at least 4 hours. Ok I'll tell you my secret. The three older kids have a ds and Peanut uses Jeff's ipod and we let them play games in situations like these. They don't have access to their ds at all the times so it makes it special when they get to play. Also they don't get bored playing them. It has worked great for us. I'm not a big fan of letting kids sit infront of a screen as much as they want. And it works in our house!

Today was Monkey's first practice of the season and it was beautiful outside. I think they are going to have a really great team this year. All the boys looked like they knew what they were doing. I am really excited for the games to start up. Plus, a boy whose mom I became friends with last season is on the same team! Good times. This week will probably drag though because on Friday I am heading out of town with some friends from church for a girls weekend/moms conference. I am looking forward to some free time.

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

sicky

Sickness always throws me for a loop lately. Like when the school nurse calls and asks you to come pick up one of your kids from school early because they have a fever or is puking. Thankfully we only get the calls to pick up for fevers and not puking. But those calls always seem to come at the worst possible times. For instance, today 10 minutes after Peanut fell asleep for her nap, which she only naps on church nights (Wed and Fri) because they are late nights, the phone rings. I finally found someone to sit at our house while I ran to school. It is now almost 3 hours after she came home from school and she is completely fine. Her head doesn't hurt anymore and she was running around with her brothers outside. Here's the kicker she can't go to school tomorrow even if her fever never returns tonight. So here I am with my 11 year old at home, the rest of the family is on their way to church for the evening. I guess a quiet night at home with my oldest child is just what the doctor ordered. 

Monday, March 05, 2012

So blessed

This post is mostly for me to remind myself just how blessed I am. Sometimes I lose sight of the blessings. In our Sunday School class we were talking about this topic and one of the men was sharing that when we go through trails/struggles is when our relationship with God grows and how that is the biggest blessing that we can receive. I have been thinking a lot about that. When things aren't going exactly the way we want or things are just hard. First do we stop and lean on God through it and secondly do we count our blessings of the growth in our relationship to Christ through it? I would love to answer those questions both with YES. But if I really stop and think and I'm truly honest I think I do maybe 50% of the time or maybe even only 40% of the time. Let's just use tonight as an example. A typical day would be me picking up the kids and getting home at 3:50ish and Jeff pulling in around 4:10ish. Jeff would go over homework with the kids while I make dinner. Then we eat together and do the rest of the night together with the kids. Today I got the kids but Jeff didn't get home until 5:50 just in time for dinner, but he was still talking on the phone for work. He made it to the table right before everyone was done eating. He quickly ate and then left for a church meeting that will bring him home around 11pm tonight. Compared to my "normal" night these nights are somewhat stressful. Here is the blessing I can see in it. Today Red stayed home with me to go to a friend from church's birthday party. I had asked the teacher for his Monday homework last week so he was completely done with all homework for tonight. He is typically the kid we spend the most time helping and checking his homework. Thank you Jesus for this small blessing. There are others like it isn't shower night so it is a little more laid back. But I want to be able to count my blessings in the hard times and realize that they come from my relationship with God growing stronger!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Jumbled

My brain is trying to go a million miles a minute trying to remember all I've got to get done. I haven't taken the time to sit down and write in awhile. It looks like the van search is on hold for now. Though I was really frustrated with that one van that we had gone back to look at during the day and decided not to buy it. Well they still have it and they lowered it a thousand dollars. After all they put us through about how they couldn't lower the price even a few hundred dollars they dropped the price a grand. So annoying. As much as I want an 8 passenger van I am so ready to be done looking.

My mind has also been over loaded with all the things we need to have done to the house and trying to figure out how to save up to do those things or at least have a down payment on the expenses. Add that to the fact that our laptop AND television are needing replaced. It is just a matter of time before they just stop working and our hand will be forced to replace them. But for now I am not ready to pull the trigger on spending that kind of money on those items when the money can be used elsewhere.

Sports season is fastly approaching us I'm not sure how all of that is going to work out especially with me gone once or twice a week. GG has started track practice and I'm not even sure how the meets are going to be run or when and so on. Then both boys are in baseball this year which means two different teams with different practice times and games. I'm excited for these activities because I do love watching my kids play sports but at the same time a little worried that I'm not going to get to see them all and how to pick and choose who's game/meet to go to. Ok that feels better to get it out.

I couldn't fall asleep last night because my mind was going wild with all the thoughts I just wrote about and then some. We are plugging along though.   

Monday, February 13, 2012

A day with the Man of my dreams!

Jeff decided to take the day off of work so we could go look at a van we had already looked at once but at night time. We went with all intentions of buying said van but when we got there and drove it again Jeff didn't have a good feeling about it. It was nice to see it in the day light and have some closure with this particular van. But we also had hoped to be driving a new van tonight. Instead we are not. I have a feeling that Saturday may bring on a new van searching day since last Saturday was filled with other activities this one is wide open.

Other than that GG had her last basketball game tonight and the girls performed their pep rally cheer at half time. They did so great and I was so proud of her. Jeff even was able to video record it. Then the girls had a pizza party afterward. An added bonus that the boys won the game great way to end their home games with a win!!! I really enjoyed watching her cheer and I hope she will do it again next year but we'll see she keeps talking about playing girls basketball which she will not like but I think she just might have to try it to figure it out on her own ;) 

Friday, February 10, 2012

Birthday Sleepover

Tonight is the night of our first ever sleepover birthday party. I am really excited about it. She was able to invite 7 girls so that it would be an even number of girls if they all came. Two girls weren't able to come so our total for the night is 6 which I think is a perfect number because me and them all fit in our van!!! The plan as of now is the girls come over after school and they can play ping pong or whatever else they want to do then we'll eat at 5pm. After we eat she will open her presents and then Jeff will leave with the other three kids. We will have some time before we head out for a movie! We are deciding between Big Miracle or Hugo 3D. Then we will come back to our house and have a sundae bar and homemade truffles. Then they can get ready for bed and watch a movie or talk or whatever until they go to sleep. I will probably be with them until about midnight and then I will go to bed. I hope they go to sleep soon after. I really don't care unless they are too loud that no one else can sleep! Then we are having pancakes and eggs for breakfast! Then they go home. We shall see how it goes. All the girls that are coming over are really good kids so it should be just fine!

Saturday, February 04, 2012

What is the Deal?!?!

I told you about the van saga in the last post about the two vans we wanted to buy but ended up walking away from. Well Jeff found a van about 45 minutes away he wanted to take a look at today. He had talked to a salesperson about this particular van since Wednesday. The guy assured us that the van was ready and in great condition. Fast forward to this morning. We get up and head over to the dealership that is at least 45 minutes away. We get there and the van is not available to buy because last night it didn't start. It needed a new alternator which would be in on Tuesday. Um yeah thanks for wasting our time. You couldn't have called us to let us know this Friday night or at least this morning when you opened. I was beyond mad. We were there about 5 minutes from start to finish. What a complete waste of time and gas money. At this point I am just done with this whole buying a vehicle thing. Maybe in a month if that one dealership still has the one van we will go back and buy it but probably not. They were such jerks. I understand it is a business and they need to make money yada yada but I also need to be able to feed my family after buying a vehicle from you. The day wasn't a complete waste because we went over to Jeff's Aunt's house to get their ping pong table. It was the kids Christmas presents...a little late...but they LOVE it. We were able to spend some time with her which was super nice, since when we usually see her it is at a family gathering and there are tons of people which makes it really hard to spend good quality time with people.

Thursday, February 02, 2012

total randomness

I have completed my second scarf and am working on the next. I am still thoroughly enjoying the hobby of knitting. I really can't wait to start to learn how to make other items. But I have a list of people wanting scarfs I need to finish first ;)

The last few days have been absolutely crazy here. Last Thursday night we decided that we were going to go look at some used vans, 4 to be exact. All of them were Honda Odysseys. The first one we looked at all of us feel in love with. But we weren't going to try and buy it that night because we hadn't really talked about whether or not we were actually planning on buying a new van. We had decided that we would try and buy it but we had stuff planned for Friday and Saturday until about 4pm. By the time we got to the dealership they had already sold the van we wanted. Oh well it wasn't our van. However, it made Jeff want to actively start looking at vans that seat 8 people. He found a few that were 40 minutes away so my dad and I (along with Peanut) went to look at them. I liked the more expensive one, isn't that the way it always goes, and we began the negotiation which is why my dad was there. That is what he does for a living! I think the guy was not expecting that and it made him mad. I have a feeling he saw me coming and thought awesome I am going to be able to sell this van to her...her dad just must be here to make sure the van is worth buying. But not the case. In the end we walked away from that van and it was probably the best decision. At that point all the kids were done with school and Jeff was home from work so we all went to look at a different van a Toyota Sienna. Long story short they were jerks would not budge on the price even $400 so we left without that van as well. I am pretty much done looking for now but Jeff is on a mission to find us a "new" used van. I give up! We have been saving but we don't have nearly as much money saved as I would like to start looking. I feel like those two deals not going through is our answer to this is not the right time but Jeff still wants to go look at another van this weekend. I feel like we aren't going to be driving away with that one either...just my gut.

Other than that I am planning GG's birthday party for next Friday. She invited 7 girls to spend the night! Yipes :) So far I have only heard back from 5 girls saying yes so we are still waiting to hear about the other two. I just hope it is an even number. One of the things we are doing this weekend is going and getting the ping pong table the kids got for Christmas so that the girls can play it at the party. Just another thing to keep them busy! Other than that I think it is going to be a pretty low key party. Just pray for my sanity and that there is NO girl drama. GG had a sleepover last Friday with 3 girls and it was great. They got along so well, no fights, no drama just FUN. Hoping for the same result next week.  

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

lifted spirits

The last week or so I have been having the winter blues, you know just kind of blah. This morning did not help because we had to all get up super early because I had a doctor's appointment at 8am. We usually leave the house at 8:05 so having to drop the kids off at school and then get to the doctor's office by 8 was a little rough this morning plus I hate "fasting" for the blood drawl. Then it was a whirlwind of errands I had to run, one of which was Walmart, (this is important) Peanut and I didn't home around 11:30. This afternoon as I was doing stuff around the house and thinking about the rest of our week I realized that I had forgot to look for ballet slippers for Peanut. Her first class is Thursday! We had some time before I had to get the kids so we went back to Walmart and what should of been a quick visit turned into a much longer one then I expected because I couldn't find the ballet section or an employee to help me. I finally found someone who took me to the small (I remember it being much larger in years past) spot of stuff. Then I had to search for the right sizes in slippers and tights. And I had forgotten my phone. It just wasn't a great day. We were late getting the kids, I couldn't call anyone, and I was tired. As we walked up to the check out Peanut dropped her slippers on the ground from inside the cart. The lady in front of us picked it up and handed it back to her. Then the lady said, "Here let me have that and I'll buy it for you." Me: "That is really nice of you but you don't have to do that." Her: "But I want to (and then she took the tights too) and these too." After she bought them she gave the bag to Peanut and grabbed her cheeks and said "Jesus loves you." Peanut told her "And I love you too." I told her to say thank you which she did and I thanked her too. She really didn't need to do that. But at that moment I felt God telling me. I see you. I know you are having a hard day. Here is some encouragement and know that I love you. Thank you God, I needed to hear that and feel that. I needed to write this down to remind myself of what happened because once I got the kids everything went up in smoke again. Have I ever mentioned I am not a big fan of whining, arguing, fighting or just bad attitudes? Yeah well I'm not.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Lazy Saturday...

This morning we took the kids sledding by our house. It was really nice when we got there around 10am there was only another family of 4 there. About 45 minutes later that place was crowded. We got a good 1 1/2 of sledding before we called it quits for the day. I loved the last two times we went down the hill we took our two green saucers and Jeff sat in one and sat in the other and connected them with our feet. Then one boy sat on my lap and one on his and we headed down. Then we did it again with the girls. Not sure how this happened by I had GG on my lap and he had Peanut and I had Monkey and he had Red. Though it worked out great for me because I got to see the little ones faces as they went down the hill with the BIGGEST smiles on their faces. Not sure if I would of had the same experience looking at the two older ones??? I guess I should ask Jeff. It was a great time with no injuries, always a big bonus.

The kids plus hubby were all sitting around the dining room table playing with the playdough that Peanut got for Christmas. Yes she got A LOT of playdough. I sat to watch them and the older kids wanted me to play too. I had nicely declined. Not really in a mood to have my hands smell like playdough. Jeff tells all the kids to say "LAME" which they did except for Peanut who says when they finished yelling as she looks at me with a huge smile on her face "pretty". It was too cute. Then 5 minutes later she said, "Mom can you play too?" I told her I was just going to watch. Jeff told her, "tell her she is LAME." She looks at me again and says, "I love you." She is such a sweet, sweet girl.

In other news...my 11 yr old is driving me CRAZY! I am trying to plan her party so we can get invitations out on Monday. Ugh she is so fickle. I think I finally got her to nail down who she wants invited, we're moving along slowly. At least we can get the invitations out to those girls and then figure the rest out later. She was annoying me so bad at one point I just had to laugh at her :)