Thursday, January 31, 2008

It's Official!

I'm Sick! Old man winter has brought the gift of nasty, disgusting, creepy crawly germs into my home. It started with a "froggy in my throat" as Lexi calls it. And I thought it would just GO AWAY but it kept lingering and now I have a full blown cold. I feel like crud. I can't breathe, which kind of works out well because that means I can't smell the dirty diapers that have piled up since last night because I don't have the strength in my legs to walk them to the outside garbage can. Daddy has been out of town all week, which hasn't helped. I didn't want to make mention of that before today in case some crazy looney tune was reading my blog. But Daddy comes home today...YEA! He was supposed to be home by 3 p.m. but because of bad weather, has been delayed until 10 something tonight. Last night was miserable. But since I couldn't sleep, I stayed up and watched my Aggies stomp Texas in basketball. It was beautiful! A nice little dose of medicine for my homesickness.

So I think I'll go take some sniffling, sneezing, coughy, achey, fever, why did I wake up in the bathtub naked medicine!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

School Visit

Well, I thought I'd update you faithful readers about the kindergarten dilema. I did visit the school today that Lexi would attend next year if we go to public school. Aesthetically speaking...not impressed! But I'm trying to keep in mind that the school I taught at was aesthetic perfection. So I'm not sure anything will ever measure up in that department. Academically speaking, it is an "A" rated school, however all the elementary schools in our city are "A" rated, so that tells me that getting an "A" rating must not be as tough as my standards would prefer. The teachers were VERY casually dressed, which I did not approve of (t-shirts and jeans or capris). I think educators should always dress professionally. The Asst Principal was wearing blue jeans...on a WEDNESDAY! That is just not acceptable to me. Once again, I'm trying to keep in mind that all schools are not like where I came from. Technology was lacking. This is 2008. There was no PTA. GASP! I assured him there would be one next year and I would be the president. (And we'll take care of that aesthetic problem!!!) There were just lots of details left untouched, which makes me wonder what else is untouched, academically speaking.

However, everyone I met was VERY helpful and accommodating, and seemed to genuinely care about the children. When it all comes down to it, I just want my child in a safe, nurturing, structured environment where she is thriving socially, emotionally, and academically. Is that too much to ask?

I did stop and talk to a mom in the parking lot that I knew and she was there for the same reasons, kind of. Her son goes to the free Pre-K at that school and she said he's already reading and she just loves the school and has had a great experience there. I think her exact words were, "You just can't beat public schools!" And she was a speech pathologist.

So to summarize, I was NOT overly impressed. It was adequate. (I would LOVE to get my hands on a school like that as a principal!!!) I've just about ruled out the private school option for financial reasons. Yes, I do believe God provides but God also gave me a brain that does math and the money ain't there. Homeschooling will never be an option, so don't go there.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008


Today was election day in FL, the presidential primary. And I'm all about exercising my right to vote! So I voted for Hillary. I'M KIDDING! Would you still be my friend? I have no "like" in my heart for her, but come on, give her some credit. She DID, after all, remain married to her fleabag husband after he cheated on her. Oops, did I say that? The pastor's wife? Okay, but seriously, would it really be ALL bad to have a woman president? I didn't vote for her, by the way. I voted for Huckabee. Who is in 4th place in FL, so as you can see, my vote really counted. But my children saw me vote, that's what's important here! So back to Hillary, think about this gals, I want to think she may have our backs on some things when it comes to "domestic" affairs. Like, say, making cosmetics tax deductable?? Yeah, that's gonna happen. Okay, maybe SHE can balance the budget. I've said all along that those politicians really just need to turn the budget over to a WOMAN, but not just any woman. A woman who has been a stay at home mom and lived on one income. A woman who has had a garage sale every six months to PAY HER BILLS! (Been there, done that, got the t-shirt, had to sell the t-shirt in the garage sale to FEED MY FAMILY!) A woman who sits in the floor every Sunday evening cutting coupons until the circulation in her legs is totally cut off but she STILL keeps cutting just to save a few bucks! A woman who has bought non-brand formula to feed her baby because she couldn't afford the name brand. A woman who risks her life drinking tap water because bottled water is a luxury she can't afford. A woman who has driven a mini-van with no a/c in THE SOUTH with her 6 children hanging their heads out the window to feel some breeze because she couldn't afford to get the a/c fixed. A woman who has cut off the sides of the carseats in order to get 3 carseats to fit in the back seat of her car (I really know someone who did this). Yes, a woman like that could balance the budget I tell you! I could go to town on the federal budget. As could many of you. "Private jet? Son, you can walk for all I care, we ain't payin for no private jet." "Did someone say 1200 thread count sheets? No, no, no, the 400 thread count from Target is purely delightful!" Seriously. Okay, so that woman probably would not be Hillary. But this country does need more women in higher places. We could get things turned around in a jiffy!

Well, I gotta run. I need to go find a way to get my name on that presidential ballot.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Kindergarten Blues...Already!

Boohoohooo, can you hear my anguish all the way to Texas? My baby is starting kindergarten already. Well, in 6 months. Okay, so I have some time. But what has spurred my sadness is that she was given a kindergarten registration form at her school today and it's due FRIDAY! I'm still in shock that I'm already making decisions that could potentially affect THE REST OF HER LIFE...gracious! So it's decision time. I thought my mind was made up, I had already filled out the "yes we're interested in coming here for kindergarten" form 2 months ago. But now I'm getting cold feet. It's the dern pressure I'm telling you. The school she currently attends is AWESOME and she is totally thriving there. They are starting a kindergarten next year for the first time. It's Monday-Friday from 9-2. $300 A MONTH!!!!! Ouch. But it's like the perfect place for her. Smaller class. Awesome teacher. 5 hour school days. No pressure-filled kindergarten testing like they do in public schools here. Ashton will be there next year too and will also have to be there at 9, making it easy to drop them both off at the same time and at the same place.

BUT...I'm a HUGE advocate of public education. There, I said it! Burn me at the stake! The benefits are ENDLESS and totally outweigh the negatives, in my opinion. As a former school teacher in the public schools, I'm telling you public education is priceless. It's wonderful (in most places). I know there are some rotten schools out there, but I've never been in one. I know there are some rotten teachers out there, but I've never met one. There are many rotten kids and parents, and I've met a lot of those. The endless state testing, not a bad thing in my opinion. It's all about accountability. Don't want my kid learning from a multiple choice worksheet all year, but the testing itself is not a negative. It has, in fact, raised the standards FAR beyond what they were when I was in school. So I'm okay with that. But I don't think a 5 year old should be in school for 8 hours a day.

Do you see my dilema? Go to private school for a shorter school day, learn lots and be ready for 1st grade in public school, but pay a LOT OF MONEY, or go to public school where she will be in just as good of hands, for FREE, but have a way too long school day for a 5 year old in my opinion!

Okay, time for you to weigh in with your thoughts. Homeschooling is not an option, in case anyone was going to say, "Well, you should just homeschool!" I'd rather stick needles in my eyes. I can't get her to sit still for 5 minutes to FINISH A MEAL, much less read a book, learn some letters, or practice writing her name. Not an option!

Voter's Guide

Be informed!

The Christian Coalition puts out an excellent voter's guide for every major election. It shows how the candidates stand on major issues. Tomorrow is election day here in FL. But no matter what state you live in, you can go to this site and click on your state and get the voter's guide that pertains to you.

Test Results

HOORAY! Ashton's CT scan was totally normal. Nothing to worry about.

And Lexi does not have a urinary tract infection. That came back negative. (So why is she wetting her pants???)

Anyhoo, good news all around!

An Apple A Day...

Okay so remember my post about how healthy we are? Let me re-phrase that. We don't EAT healthy, but for some reason we remain healthy. Well since that post, Daddy has been sick twice. But that's nothing new. He's always sick for some reason. He must not be eating enough junk food! Well, aside from a few breathing treatments due to the cold weather, and a snotty sneeze here and there, we remain relatively healthy. No fevers. No ear infections. No bronchitus, (yet) no runny noses, no flu,which seems to be going around these parts. And then, yesterday, after discarding the remains of the 4th or something like that apple of the day, I lost count, it occured to me. Maybe there IS some truth to that statement, "An apple a day keeps the doctor away." My girls go to TOWN on apples. Last week, Winn Dixie had the bags of apples buy one, get one free, so I got two bags. That was less than a week ago and they're already gone. I had to get more this morning after Lexi threw an absolute FIT at the breakfast table that there were no more apples! What kind of kid gets mad about not having an apple??? I said, "How 'bout apple SAUCE? It's really the same thing." I buy the unsweetened.

I don't know if it's the apples or what, but I'm going to keep buying them just in case!

Sunday, January 27, 2008

In Honor of 7 Sweet & Wonderful Years...

(Today is our anniversary! Read the post below this one if you haven't already!)

Here are some pics from our special day, 7 years ago. Time flies! This was before the days of digital so I had to take digital pics of my wedding album pages. We watched our wedding video with the kids this afternoon and I cried like a baby, as if I were watching it for the first time.

This was the BEST chocolate cake I believe I've ever tasted in my life.

On our way to the Hotel Intercontinental by the Galleria. BEAUTIFUL hotel. I guarantee there was only ONE THING on our minds at this point....FOOD!

Oh look, Cary had hair! He didn't start shaving his head until we had been married for about a year. He HATES our wedding pictures now because he wishes he had been shaving his head back then. He said he wants a re-do! Maybe I'll get skinny and we'll get married again for our 10th! Heeheee!

And all God's people said, "Amen"!
And all the Aggies said, "WHOOP!"

We had a snowy theme. The bridesmaids all wore white (cause I like to break the rules like that) and the centerpieces had floating snowflake candles with snow, with white roses, greenery, and pine cones around the base. We had a sit down dinner with prime rib and all the yummy fixings. The reception was held in a room at First Baptist Dallas. It's their reception hall and it was just as beautiful as any hotel ballroom. Extra gorgeous with all the table linens and chair coverings.

The Cake to die for! I still have my cake topper. Yep! It traveled in my car all the way from Texas. It's in a glass case with acrylic coating to preserve it. ALL of those flowers were edible, all sugar! Gorgeous! That ain't no Walmart cake!

Our engagement picture that everyone signed at the wedding. It's currently hanging in our dining room.

Sweet friends!

LOVED my bouquet. Can't remember what those flowers are called, but each flower had a pearl in the middle. So beautiful!

In honor of 7 years...7 Things About Our Relationship:

1. Our first fight as a married couple was a few weeks after the wedding when Cary was plunging the toilet, then walked into the bedroom (where I was putting on my makeup) and set the plunger down on the carpet. I'm really not kidding. The PLUNGER on the CARPET...EEW!!!

2. Our most romantic date EVER was our first Valentine's as husband and wife. After work that day, he sent me to get a manicure and pedicure and told me not to come home until he called. When I got home, he had cooked a 3 course meal and served me each course in a different room of the house. Crab bisque was served upstairs on our balcony. The main course was served in the formal dining room (steak and lobster), and dessert was in the bathtub! The tub was full of hot water, bubbles, rose petals, and candles were lit all over the bathroom.

3. We broke up twice after getting engaged. I even gave the ring back. It didn't last for long though, like a few hours. Cold feet. His, not mine!

4. The first time I met Cary, I told 3 people that day that he was the man I was going to marry. They thought I was crazy of course. And our first meeting was simply a "Hi, I'm Cary, nice to meet you" surfacy conversation that lasted about 20 seconds! I knew immediately that he was the one!

5. We were friends, then best friends before we ever dated. And even after we became best friends, he was sure to have the "let's keep this purely plutonic" talk with me. YEAH RIGHT!

6. We were having a fight one day because I was sick and tired of dating, totally ready to get married, and he still couldn't make up his mind as to whether or not he was ready to get married. And in the middle of the fight, he proposed. No ring. I got the ring a week later. Then we walked outside on the balcony to make some phone calls or something and noticed my apartment complex was on fire! (My apartment didn't burn, but the building directly across from mine was totally gutted!) If I believed in omens, that would not have been a good one.

7. In 7 years of marriage, we are currently living in our 4th house! Not on purpose. We sold the first house to make a quick $20k to pay off debt, save up for hospital bills to have a baby, and put the rest on another house, we sold the 2nd house because after having a baby and me staying home full time we could no longer afford the payments, then we moved from the 3rd house to FL. (And we are currently looking at houses and hoping to move soon into a nicer, newer, bigger home here in FL.)

Happy Anniversary Honey Bun! I enjoyed my breakfast in bed this morning! You're the best!!!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

January 27, 2001

Dallas, TX. It was a cold, rainy day. The weatherman was predicting freezing rain and sleet by sundown. I awoke that morning all snuggled up next to one of the loves of my life. Not Cary. That would be Candice, my dalmatian. Little did she know her world was about to be rocked! See, back before Cary and I married, Candice slept cozied right up next to me, flat on her back, head on the pillow, covers pulled up to her neck. She really does think she's human.

As my alarm clock went off that morning, I rolled over and shared a wet slobbery kiss with my sweet fur baby, then popped out of bed and raced to the shower. Sleet, snow, floods, nor nuclear warfare would keep me from accomplishing my mission that day. While getting dressed, nothing could wipe the smile off of my face. Not even the weatherman! This was going to be the BEST day of my life!

I arrived at the church, First Bapist Dallas in downtown Dallas, BEAUTIFUL church (where Cary and I met!) We all dressed and ate and giggled and dressed and ate and giggled some more and then FINALLY, the time had come! It was the moment I had waited for my entire life!!! The day I had been dreaming of since the age of 5. I walked down the aisle and married the most amazing man God ever created! It was such a beautiful ceremony and there wasn't a nervous bone in my body. Why would I be nervous? God created him for me and me for him. I knew without a shadow of a doubt that we were perfectly in God's will. We had both remained pure until our wedding night.

There is nothing more precious and wonderful than two believers, who had saved themselves for the one God created for them, who had obeyed God's word and abstained from sexual immorality, who had allowed God to bring them together in His time, and who would be joined together "till death do us part." It don't get any better than that! That is the ultimate act of worship.

Our wedding was spectacular. People still talk about that cake, the prime rib, and the music. It was fabulous from beginning to end and I enjoyed every second of it! As much as I didn't want it to end, I knew, uh um, better things were awaiting me, if you know what I mean!

Honey bun, I love you with every ounce of my soul. You are my everything. I adore you in every way. You are everything I had ever dreamed of: Godly, humble, compassionate, nurturing, a leader, hillariously funny, the most wonderful father to our children, you have a passion for seeing people come to know the Lord, and you take such good care of me. God created a mate for me that I couldn't have created any better had I done it myself. I look forward to growing old with you.

Happy Anniversary, my love!

I love you to infinity and beyond!

Lexi Update

Thanks chick-a-dees for all your words of wisdom and prayers! We did take Lex to the doctor today and she was SUCH a trooper! The doctor had to peek at her privates (thankfully it's a female doctor) to make sure there was no irritation or anything and she said everything looked totally normal. Then she had to pee in a cup, that was a thrill a second! Kidding. She did great. She got her finger poked so they could check her blood sugar and it was totally normal (and my big girl didn't even cry!!!) The urine specimen showed "a trace of bacteria" but that doesn't mean she has an infection. Apparently, if there is a trace of bacteria, they send it off to the lab to be cultured and we will have the results on Monday. She sent us home with antibiotics and said to go ahead and start her on them, and that if the culture comes back negative then she can stop taking the antibiotics. She did ask Lexi a series of questions like, does your tummy hurt, does it hurt when you go teetee, do you have trouble going teetee, etc and she said no to everything. She didn't have any fever. The doctor thought it was strange that she can hold it at night, but have accidents during the day. That doesn't line up with an infection. So we will know something on Monday. She offered no possible explanations as to how to correct it if it is behavioral or why it could be happening if it's not infection related. So ???? Who knows!

Ashton is NOT potty training. Although, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" right??? Philipians 4:13. Ashton is totally capable of being potty trained. She does sit and go on the potty all the time, #1 and #2. But she's an absolute toot about it. She plays in it, she washes her hands until there's a stream of water coming out of the bathroom, she uses up a whole pumper of soap in 2 days time, she poops then refuses to let me wipe and instead slides off the toilet seat leaving poo all over it and then sits back down on it and slides her feet across it (????not sure how one could accomplish this but she does), she wipes and gets the toilet paper half way in the toilet water then brings it back up! Oh, the list goes on and on. And I know what you're thinking..."So why aren't you helping her mom?" Well, because MISS INDEPENDENT will have no part of that. I take the soap away and she errects a wall to climb up to get to it. I try to wipe her myself and well, let's just say, the mess is even greater in the process of me fighting with her. It's a nightmare. So I'm just waiting. She'll be 3 in March. There's time. She's a bit mischevious to say the least. Good thing she's so cute! Teeny tiny body, BIG HUGE personality.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

The Song That Moved Me to Tears...

(In a good way)

I was driving along tonight and THIS SONG came on the radio and I just lost it! Rarely, very rarely does a song move me in such a way. And rarely am I actually listening to ADULT music! I came home and searched for it online and have listened to it at least a dozen times and can't stop. I needed this song in a big way. Click on the link below and it will automatically start playing. ENJOY!

Potty Training Woes

Let's say a child has been wearing panties and using the potty for 2 years. She's fully potty trained, even at night. And then ALL THE SUDDEN, she starts wetting her pants, not like going all the way, but enough that the pants are not wearable and have to be changed. She only does this during the day, not at night. She used to go hours without going potty and would be fine. At night, she goes about 8-10 hours staying dry. She does it at home, at school, at church, basically anywhere. All you moms of older or grown children, why is this happening, when will it stop, is it behavioral and should be a punishable offense, or is it psychological and can't be helped? Please, impart your wisdom upon me! I've tried being sympathetic and understanding and it only got worse. Then I tried to correct the problem with punishment and it didn't seem to phase it. Now I'm setting the stove timer for every 45 minutes and MAKING her go every time the timer goes off, whether she needs to or not. I should add nothing has changed in our lives or family or routine or surroundings. Nothing tramatic has happened. She's her normal happy self in every other way.

Teach me of your ways oh great and wise ones.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Observations From Today

1. The people who put those tacky plastic coverings on their dining room chairs probably at one point in their lives had a two year old who ate aqua and hot pink Trix yogurt at the dining room table. Need I say more.

2. A TRIPLE whopper? Really? A little bread with your meat? Who eats those???

3. Cheese tots? How DO they get the cheese in those things and what will they fry up next?

4. Ellen Degeneres is the best talk show on T.V. these days. She tops Oprah. GASP. I know, she's a lesbian. But her show is HIGHLY entertaining.

5. I'm in love! With my two year old. Nothing melts my heart more these days than her sweet hugs and kisses, the way she sits on my legs and opens my eyes with her fingers while I'm "resting my eyelids" in the afternoons, the way she opens the refrigerator and grunts and makes gremlin noises while she's picking out what she wants to eat. Don't get me wrong. I love my 4 yr old too, but she's in "a stage". She's too cool for school these days and doesn't want to have anything to do with me. Kind of like a teenager. I hear they go through this in preschool and then again when they hit the pre-teen years. If that's not true, don't correct me. I'm just going to keep believing it will go away.

Lurking Defined

I guess I should have defined "lurking" a little better. A lurker would be a person who I don't know, never met, who reads my blog and NEVER comments. If you've ever commented, you're not a lurker. If I know you personally and I've given you my blog address, you're not a lurker. If I know you personally, but I've never given you my blog address and you've found your way here and NEVER commented, thus meaning that I know you but don't know you read my blog, well, then you're a lurker. Well, that is my definition at least. I guess everyone has their own definitions.

Clear as mud?

And once again, I don't mind lurkers, as long as they don't have ill intentions. And leave a comment every now and then!

Carry on with your commentin' selves. It makes me feel so good! I think I'm getting teary eyed. Not really. But it does give me warm fuzzies! Like all my hard bloggin' work is not in vein! YEA!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008


Today, I was talking to a friend about the subject of blogging and she asked me how I feel about "lurkers". And not that I've never thought about it before, because I know I have lurkers. But honestly, if my life brings that much joy to someone's day, then bring on the lurkers! (Although I can't imagine that to be the case because the garbage man seems to have a more exciting life than I do!) I average 75-100 hits a day and only 5 repeatedly leave comments. Obviously there are lurkers out there. And for what it's worth, you don't have to have a password to leave a comment...hint hint! Let me say that again. YOU DON'T HAVE TO HAVE A PASSWORD TO LEAVE A COMMENT! As for security, I never put our last name on the blog, nor the exact city we live in, or where we go to church, or where my kids to go school, etc. So I think a person would have to try REALLY hard to track us down if they had ill intentions. I know that most people who read our blog are people who love us and just want to know what's going on in our lives. What does bother me just a bit are the very few people who may be reading in a judgemental way, in an effort to scrutinize my family. And I don't know why I care. I shouldn't let it get to me. As a pastor's family, we do live in a glass house as it is. Like it or not, it is what it is. And I've kind of accepted it (though not happily!) And to those people, I would say, I may not be like you or have the same lifestyle or thoughts or beliefs, but don't judge me for that. It's okay for us to be different. God loves us equally and uses us in different ways to achieve His purpose.

So welcome one and all. And don't be a stranger. Leave a comment!

Monday, January 21, 2008

A Florida Tamale???

So I had a Florida tamale today. I know, kind of sounds like an oxymoron to me too. I usually shy away from tamales because typically they are made with pork and I don't eat pork because I'm really Jewish. I'M KIDDING! Although, my father was a Jewish carpenter! But I really don't eat pork. And I've actually MADE tamales before and after you make them, trust me, you'll never want to eat them again! But I used to work with a girl who would bring me BEEF tamales and despite the tub of lard that went into them, they were DEEEELISH! (Do you remember our attempt to make tamales Mom??? I think I was like 10!!!) So before I give you my report on the Florida tamale, I must tell you WHY I had a tamale, because I know you care. I have had the most WRETCHED craving for Mexican food for the past 3 weeks. I've tried to fulfill my craving by cooking fajitas at home, Cary even bought me one of those $1.50 Banquet (frozen) enchilada dinners (GAG) and my craving would not subside. So this past week, I suggested that we save ALL of our eating out allowance and go eat at our favorite Mexican place here, Aztecas. It's not Tex-Mex, but it will do! So yesterday, after church, we went to Aztecas and had A FEAST I tell you, A FEAST! Oh, it was heavenly. Cary brought half of his home, which ended up being my lunch today.

Now, on to the tamale. And let me preface this by saying I KNOW MY MEXICAN FOOD. There was this BIG ROUND thing in the container and I had NO IDEA what it was. I thought, maybe a chimichanga, maybe a burrito??? So I tasted it. And I still couldn't figure out what it was. It was good, but I had no clue what I was eating. I took another bite. And then another. Still, nothing was coming to me. It definitely was not an enchilada. About half way through, I asked him, "Honey, what the heck is this thing???" And he replied, "Oh, that's my tamale!" ("You mean, MY tamale, right?" Heeheee.)

So that was my first experience with a Florida tamale. I didn't even know what it was!!! He assured me it was a BEEF tamale. Shew! Good thing! I wouldn't want to eat Babe. But still, it made no resemblance to any tamale I've ever seen. Except that it was round. And full of meat.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Gentlemen, Start Your Engines

Tonight at church was the annual AWANA Grand Prix. The best way to describe AWANA is to say it's like the Christian version of scouts. They have to memorize memory verses every week and they have short assignments to complete, they get patches on their vests for completing them, they do crafts and games, and have a lesson time too. It's a great program that many churches all around the world have for kids in the community. Anyhoo, Lexi is in the "Cubbies" division and tonight at the Grand Prix the Cubbies raced their hotwheels while the older kids actually built wooden cars and decorated them and raced them. Lexi won 2 out of 3 of her races and (even though there wasn't a 4th place) she came in 4th. (I know this because I was keeping score, cause I'm kind of competitive like that!) COME least I wasn't chanting LEXI, LEXI, LEXI...okay so maybe I was! Well, still, at least I congratulated the 4 yr old who won. Okay, not really but I'm kind of a sore loser like that. But, really, it's all about having fun right? (We'll CRUSH'EM next year Lex!)

So, here she is BEFORE the big race, showing off her hotwheel, that SHE picked out at the store, Daddy oiled it a little and taped the doors shut, you know, to make it more aerodynamic.

Have you ever seen a cuter cowgirl? Check out those big pink earrings! What can I say, the apple didn't fall far from the tree, folks!

The pre-race prayer. "Dear God, please help Lexi WIN WIN WIN!!!"

She took her first loss pretty rough. I'm not sure where she gets that competitive nature from!

The sympathy/participation ribbon!

Well, hey, we didn't win, but by golly, if you can't win, at least dazzle them with your good looks! Isn't she beautiful!

Friday, January 18, 2008

Zoom Zoom Zoom

So the newness of the big girl bike has already worn off and the item that she once couldn't put away (I think she even asked to sleep in her helmet one night) has now become a distant memory. It's back to ol' reliable. The good old fashion, radio flyer, little red tricycle. And why not? This way, you can torture your sister who is clinging on for dear life while hitching a ride! Yes, the tricycle is MUCH better!
(Click on the picture so you can get the full effect of the look on Ashton's face.)

Thursday, January 17, 2008

On My SOAP box (literally)

If cleanliness means nothing to you, please do not read this!

If you LONG to be cleaner and more organized, read at your own risk. You may hate me when it's over.

If you are clean, mean, moppin' machine, read on and give me an AMEN!

Now I may be preachin to the choir, but If I've said it once, I've said it 100 times people...cleanliness is next to Godliness. Okay, so I'm kind of kidding. A little. The topic of my level of home cleanliness has come up at least a dozen times this past month alone, or how I keep my house so clean, and after laughing hysterically at their perception of my clean ways, I often say in a half joking (but really I'm totally serious) kind of way, "Oh you know what they say, cleanliness is next to Godliness." So I thought I'd share my "methods" to keeping a neat and tidy, clean house. HIRE A MAID!!! Ba-da-bing. I'm Kidding! Okay, seriously, marry a man who values cleanliness and knows how to scrub a mean toilet. Okay, again, I'm kidding.

No, really, keeping the house clean is a FULL TIME JOB and requires a lot of work. There is no fairy Godmother, unfortunately, there is no magic wand. Every time my mom calls and says, "What are you doing?" I answer, "vacuuming, sweeping, doing laundry, doing dishes." And you may be thinking, "I don't want to be that way. I don't want to spend my day spinning my wheels. Spending time with the kids is more important to me than cleaning." And to each his own. In my opinion, if the house is a wreck, I'm a wreck (emotionally) so in order to maintain JOY IN MY HEART, the house must be clean and orderly at all times. And when it's not, I'm a grump!

Now, if you have a child over the age of 6, GOD HAS GIVEN YOU A HELPER....put that kid to work honey! And I've heard moms say, "Well, it's not their job to clean house, it's my job." BULL-ONEY! It's your job as the parent to teach your children how to be neat, organized, responsible, task finishing individuals. One way to accomplish that is with chores. By the age of 8, I was cleaning the bathrooms, vacuuming, sweeping, folding clothes, cleaning out my closet regularly, and helping with the dinner dishes every night. Not because I was obsessive compulsive (at least not yet), but because those were my daily chores. We didn't leave the house for school each morning until our rooms were tidy and the beds were made. Oh, yes, indeedy, my children, God bless their souls, will be doing chores as soon as they are able. They do attempt to clean and vacuum their rooms, make up their beds, and feed the dog already. Oh, I fully intend to use the help God gave me one of these days. And it is my opinion that children who do chores are less likely to make as many messes. They take pride in their cleaning job and don't want it to get messed up. But since I have a 2 yr old and a 4 yr old who make plenty of messes these days, I thought I'd share my cleaning "schedule". This is just a CLEANING schedule. Not a "what we do all day" schedule. We do bathe, play together, do crafts, play outside, run errands, and such. But here's when I clean.

Morning: Each morning after breakfast, I unload/load the dishwasher, tidy up the house, vacuum, sweep, and almost always fold a load of clothes and put them away. About twice per week, the floors get mopped. I usually spend about an hour each morning on housework, sometimes two. And what are my children doing during this time? Playing independently, artwork, or playdough, and helping me a little here and there. The t.v. is on IN THEIR ROOMS (yes, they have a t.v. in their rooms...gasp...just like I did growing up) but they really could care less. It's just noise. (Sometimes I WISH they would just sit still and watch the dern thing!!!) Basically, they are making more messes as I'm cleaning. It's a vicious cycle, but hang with me here! You can't feel guilty that you're not spending every waking minute entertaining them. If you are, you're setting them up for MAJOR disappointment in life. Playing independently, or with siblings, is a life skill.
Afternoon: after lunch, put dishes in dishwasher, more laundry if needed. This only takes 10-15 minutes to clean up after lunch.
Evening: the children can't go to bed until their rooms are back in order, toys put away and this requires INSPECTING, not EXPECTING...this is a hands on job that requires teaching with modeling. Once again, all dishes are put in dishwasher and the dishwasher usually gets started every night. No dirty dishes are left out. Cary takes out the trash almost every other night. Sometimes I run the vacuum again, depending on how much food and dirt made it to the floor that day. Sometimes another load of laundry is put in and folded. This takes about another hour or so of cleaning at nighttime.

Once per week, I do a deep cleaning where bathrooms get scrubbed, floors get bleached, everything gets dusted, towels on towel racks get washed, and the bed linens get changed. My weekly deep cleaning usually takes about 4-5 hours. I do this when the children are OUT of the house. Most of the time, it's on Mondays when they are in school. But before they started school, I had Cary pick a day or night and he would take them somewhere for that long so I could get it done without a million interruptions. That's what worked best for us. This may not be an option for everyone. But he knows this is what makes Momma happy, therefore everyone is happy!

Once per month, the rugs get washed, windowsills get cleaned, baseboards get dusted, ceiling fans get dusted, etc.

And I admit that some days, the job seems overwhelming and I want to say, "WHERE DO I BEGIN???" I start at one end of the house. For me, it's the eating area. And I work my way from that end of the house to the other, room by room, space by space. When I'm putting things away that were in the living room area, I just go lay it in the room it belongs, and then when I get to that room to actually clean it, the object gets put in its proper place at that point. This is the most efficient way I've found to clean and stay on task. As you get through with each room, you'll feel such a sense of accomplishment that will inspire to you press on!

Working moms obviously cannot stick to such a schedule as mine, but since no one's home all day, things should stay a little cleaner. When I did work full time, I just made sure I went to bed every night with a tidy house. Even after Lexi was born and I was working full time, I would clean up every night which usually took about an hour, including some laundry and vacuuming and doing dishes.

Some may wonder, WHY be so clean, what does it all benefit? Well, in the second chapter of the gospel according to Heather, it clearly states that cleanliness is next to Godliness. I'm Kidding! A clean and orderly home results in less stress for you, better health (dust mites are EVIL), teaches your children organization and cleanliness so they can function in life. I can't tell you how many roommates I've had that couldn't clean to save their life! Momma always did it for them, so they were just slobs. No one wants to live with a slob. Your husband may say he doesn't care how clean the house is. It's not true. You don't believe me? Clean your house. See what happens. He cares, he just may need help realizing he cares. My husband always says he doesn't care if I "let things go" but when he gets into bed after me changing the sheets, he often comments on how good clean sheets feel. He notices and he cares.

I'm PASSIONATE about teaching children the value of cleanliness, can you tell? I know a lady that had her children taken away from her recently because of an unclean home. Now that's extreme. And I'm probably extreme in the other direction. And I often find myself praying, "Lord, help me to not care so much about that spot of juice on the floor, or the playdoh stuck in the rug" because I don't want to be the Natzi Mom all the time. But I hope I've created a balance in our home. Cleanliness at all times. But perfection only comes one day week! (And lasts for about 30 minutes at most!) Now my closets...organized but crammed. And my car...A WRECK! Does that make you feel better?

And this has been your public service announcement.

How Cute is This?

Found this ADORABLE table topper on a new website that Kristi sent me today (mom2iande). has very unique handmade boutique-yish items. I had one of these round tables in the girls' room and hated the blah white table cloth I had on it. What a cute idea to make it look like a ballerina skirt! Going to have to try to make this idea myself. $149 on this site. Bet I can I can do it for under $50!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Herbie Fully Loaded...Now Seriously...

So we rented a movie from the library (I guess I should say "checked out" not "rented" because you can't really rent from the library) and watched it while all huddled around the laptop on the coffee table. Yes, let me repeat that sentence so you can grasp the fullness of it. So we checked out a movie from the library and watched it while all huddled around the laptop on the coffee table. Have you grasped it, fully, that we are just really NOT a movie watchin' kind of family??? Back up, the reason we watched it on the laptop, you ask? Well, because we're not a movie watchin' family,therefore we don't OWN a DVD player. GASP! I know! Can you believe it? And yet, they don't even rent VHS movies any more, so at some point we will have to cave and buy a DVD player. But we're in that stage of life where you don't buy something unless it's an absolute necessity, such as, oh I don't know, FOOD, toilet paper, gasoline... I think they call that stage POOR!

But it's really all my fault that we don't watch movies as a family. I'm not a movie kind of girl. I can't sit still that long, seems like such a waste of time to me. I could be doing imporant things like laundry, or blogging, or who are we kidding...I woulnd't be exercising. But no matter how good the movie, I have been known to sit through 3/4 of a movie only to get up and walk out and NEVER be remotely curious as to how it ended. I know! Crazy!

So back to the Herbster. Tonight, after church, we all huddled around the laptop on the coffee table to watch Herbie Fully Loaded. As we watched this movie, all I could think was, now seriously, WHY COULDN'T I FIND A CAR LIKE THAT FOR $75 BUCKS!!!!! Well that, and if only I could travel back in time and tell that cute little Lindsay Lohan girl to "JUST SAY NO, SISTER"!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

New Blog Design

I hope you don't mind some publicity Rachel!

I just finished my friend, Rachel's, bloggity makeover. Pretty dern cute if I do say so.

I'm getting pretty good at this whole photoshop thing!

Check it out:

Monday, January 14, 2008

Buick or a Lexus?

Okay, so I've gotten a little spoiled these last few weeks. HOLD's not the way it sounds. I'm not "driving" a Lexus. But when you think of a Buick, what comes to mind? Silver hair, old people, SLOW! When you think of a Lexus, what do you think of? Sleek, sophisticated, smooth ride? So you all know I've been in the business of sprucing up people's blogs for them recently, for free now, but later as I get enough practice, doing this for income. Well, all of my digital scrapbooking elements (which I use for blog designs) are on my old computer...the "Buick". Yes, I could MOVE them over, but that would take HOURS on my cheapo $20 flash drive. But after "driving the Lexus" (my new computer) these last few weeks, it's like TORTURE to get back on the Buick! So everyone waiting on their blog designs, please be patient. I'm in the process of moving just the basic necessities to my "Lexus" so I can design you blogs while sitting in the lap of luxury.

And on a totally UNRELATED note, I had one of those good, long, nose stopped up, can't inhale, deep from the belly cries today, TOTALLY unexpected. I really am not depressed (I don't have time for that). I'm not unhappy. I wasn't even THINKING about "home" but Cary came in and laid down the mail on the counter top. I walked over and looked down at the stack and what was laying on top? The latest issue of the Texas Aggie magazine. There was a picture of an old Ag on the front standing in his fields of farmland and I don't know what came over me, but it was quick and the tears just started flowin'! I couldn't stop them. It was "home" in a magazine and I was a wreck! I went to my room, face down in the pillow and boohooed for a good long 10 minutes or more until Cary said, "Dinner's ready!" And you know, food, that always makes you feel better. Especially when it's prepared by someone else!

What Did You Do This Weekend???

We had a jam packed weekend, as usual. Cary "performed"/"preached" his first funeral this weekend. Interesting! It wasn't anyone we knew, but an older woman that formerly attended our church prior to us moving here. She had been ill for the last 15 years. So Cary spent the morning putting together an order of service and burning a music CD for the service. Then after the service, he went to the reception. So he was gone from 9 a.m. till about 6 p.m. which meant it was just me and the girls all day. We enjoyed the nice warm weather and played outside most of the day. That evening, we watched football and I helped Cary rehearse his lines for Kidzchurch. Their Kidzchurch series right now is about a nutty professor (played by Cary) and his android assistant in search of a way to win the Plutonium Award. In his search for pure genius, he learns many lessons about the pure genius of God. It's really funny and Cary plays the PERFECT nutty professor. Sunday, he was gone to work by 4 a.m. which is kind of his normal time to get to the church to get ready for Sunday mornings. After church, my little partner in shopping crimes, Lexi, and I went on a little shopping spree, thanks to GRANNY, thank you Granny! (Shopping is good for my soul...and my PMS!) I got the girls a few more winter outfits. We went to the outlet mall. They have a Gymboree store there where I always find great things for Lexi. Then I got Ashton a cute outfit at Baby Gap and some super duper cool jeans from Tommy Kids. Lexi begged for coffee from Starbucks. GEEZ...4 going on 24! So we went to Starbucks and sipped on our coffee together and had a nice little chat about, you know, 4 year old dolls, lizards, and boogers of course. Then we got home and watched the HORRIBLE Cowboys game (BOOOOOOHOOOOOOOO...I'm still wiping the tears) and then I went walking with Milinda. We walked a little over 3 miles. When I got home, I practiced my Kindermusik songs because I had a voice test today over the phone! And I passed! YEA! I mean, let's just say she didn't say I should be a professional singer or anything, but I passed! And that was our weekend, in a nutshell.

And now I must go change poop in da pants! (Not mine, Ashton's!)

What did you do this weekend?

Saturday, January 12, 2008

All About Food

I have food on the brain lately (what's new) so I'm making up my own food Meme! And tag, you're it! Cary's answers are in red!

1. If you knew you were going to die, what would your last meal be? Veggie pizza with ground beef ; Cary-Chinese buffet

2. Favorite restaurant (anywhere in the world): Uncle Julio's (in DFW), Luby's (don't laugh), and Texas Roadhouse Cary-Pelican Reef (I think that's what it's called, in Mobile, AL)

3. Favorite restaurant in the city limits where you live: Seriously, we have Chili's and that's about it. So I guess I have to say Chili's. Actually Dairy Queen is a close second! Cary-Mambo's (I've never been there but he goes there for lunch.)

4. Best fajitas: besides the ones we cook at home, Pappasito's (which we don't have in FL unfortunately) Pappasitos

5. Best Mac and cheese: Luby's or Boston Market ; Boston Market

6. Favorite place to get ice cream: Dairy Queen!!!! Dairy Queen

7. Best burgers: Red Robin (there are a few in FL, but none in Orlando. I miss Red Robin SO much!!!) Red Robin

8. Best fast food restaurant: Taco Cabana (which we don't have in FL), and Boston Market (but the closest one is a good 30 min away); Cary-Popeye's

9. What do you get at the foodcourt at the mall: We rarely go to the mall, but PIZZA for me, Chick fil a for the kids ; Chinese for Cary

10. What home made meal is your specialty to cook? teeheee...cook? What's that? Actually I do "cook" at least 5 nights a week, but that's if you consider putting a frozen meal in the oven. I cook a lot of spaghetti oh and I make really good guacamole. Cary-fajitas on the grill

11. Fast food restaurant you wouldn't eat at even if it were the last place on earth: I can honestly say, if it's the last place on Earth, I WOULD EAT ANYWHERE, but I really don't enjoy McDonald's or Taco Bellyache. Cary said some chicken place I've never heard of...Miller's??? Because it's always dirty.

12. Food establishment that you visit at least once per week (other than the grocery store): Sonic...not necessarily to eat but we do go for happy hour to get drinks. Cary-burger king

13. Favorite grocery store: My favorite is Central Market which we don't have here, but it's WAY too expensive so it was a treat to go there. I sure miss Tom Thumbs clean! I buy most of our food at Sav a lot, Walmart, and occassionally Winn Dixie. Cary-Winn Dixie

14. Amount of $$$$ you spend per week on food: $100/wk on groceries (that includes diapers and toilet paper and cleaning products and such not just food), and we allow ourselves $60/wk for eating out, but that includes lunches, which Cary eats lunch with people almost every day, so $60 doesn't go far! And then if we ever get extra $$$ for any reason, it usually goes towards eating out.

15. Favorite types of food: Pizza, Mexican, and Greek; As he has the toots, he says, "anything with beans!" Kidding...barbque or seafood

16. What is the nicest restaurant you've ever been to? Pappas Brother's Steakhouse, Del Frisco's, and Texas de Brazil ; Constantine's in Mobile and Del Frisco's

17. If you could wave a magic wand and have a plate of food sitting in front of you, what would be on the plate? Pita bread with Hummus, a nice Pappas Brother's steak, mashed potatoes, a greek salad, sweet tea with lemon, and a dipped dairy queen ice cream cone! Cary-every food ever created!

18. Favorite drinks: In the morning-coke, for a treat-sonic cherry limeade or chocolate shake, with dinner-sweet tea with lemon, on a cold night-white chocolate mocha, and on the rare occassion that I enjoy an alcoholic beverage in the privacy of my own home-tropitini (tropical martini) or pina colada. Cary-ditto, because he wanted to go back to the living room to watch the football game and is getting tired of me asking food questions.

19. Best milkshakes and flavor: CHOCOLATE...all the way...Braums (we don't have those here either), Chick fil a (YES, they're awesome) Cary-Braum's

20. Place you said you'd never eat but you did: the Target deli! Before I had kids I would say, "Who eats at Target???" But now I totally get it. Now that I have kids, it's all about convenience. I want to get in and out of the car as few times as possible, so eating at the Target deli just makes it easy! Cary-He can't think of anywhere he never wanted to eat because he's a guy! And he REALLY wants to get in there to watch that football game.

Ashton's CT Scan-Part 2

Well, it's over...PRAISE THE LORD! This one was worse than the MRI, as far as handing her over and her waking up. I had to hold her hands down while they put the mask on her face and stand there and listen to her scream through the mask. I kept saying to the anesthesiologist,
"Why is it taking so long, why isn't she asleep yet?" It was awful! And I was trying to hold my breath all at the same time because the mask was right next to my face, as I was holding her and I could smell the gas and I was so afraid I was going to pass out while standing there holding her and she would fall out of my arms! They sent me to the recovery area to wait, which I thought would take about 10 minutes, but 40 minutes later, I heard my baby screaming in the back! I asked if I could go back there and they wouldn't let me. I guess I kind of understand that they don't want the parents around when they are coming out of anesthesia and watching their vitals real close, in case something were to happen and they had to "get to work" on her really fast. So they don't bring the parents back until they know for sure everything is okay. But as soon as I walked back there, she started crying again, even harder! She still had the IV in her arm and the things on her chest that monitor their vitals. She was pulling at it all, like "GET THIS THING OFF OF ME!" They let me hold her while they took everything off and they cautioned us to not let her "ride a skateboard or roller blade today". I was like...She's TWO! We left and went to Boston Market and got the yummiest mac and cheese in the world after her long fast! She hadn't been able to eat since 3 a.m., which was during the night, she really hadn't eaten since 10 p.m. the night before and was 2 p.m. by that point. She ate the WHOLE BOWL of mac and cheese and I don't think she stopped eating the rest of the day! She had 2 bowls of taco soup for dinner, a bowl of chips and guacamole, and some yogurt. Her belly was about to pop!

But all in all, she did great and it's over! And I hope that's the last test EVER we'll have to go through! At least while she's little! When we got home, Lexi wanted the same kind of bandages on her arm that Ashton had on hers, she wanted the sticker on her chest (the thing they use to snap on the heart monitor), and the hospital bracelets. I gave her my bracelet and Ashton GLADLY handed over the chest sticker! She's so funny!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Ashton's CT Scan

Tomorrow (Friday) is Ashton's 2nd attempt at a CT scan. The last one was a nightmare. They only sedated her with chloral hydrate, which apparently has the opposite effect on my little sweatpea! So I requested by the neurologist that she put "anesthesia" on this script rather than sedation. The gas mask is our friend! We've done this before for the MRI, same hospital, same anesthesia, same process. So I kind of know how it all goes, but the hard part is not giving her anything to eat or drink from the time she wakes up at 7ish in the morning till NOON! Her appt is at noon, they asked that I have her there by 10:45. I'm hoping they will take her right in and get her to sleep. Otherwise, it could be a nightmare in the making. We kept her up late tonight in hopes that she will sleep late in the morning and not have time to think about food or milk or juice. My only complaint the last time we went through this was that they woke her up in the recovery area BEFORE they sent for me to come back, and she was scared to death, shaking, and crying that blood curdling scream of a cry. As soon as they opened the hallway door, I could hear her. It was awful. So I already requested on the phone that they make note of that and I will tell them again tomorrow, but the nurse said, "I know it's hard on you, but it's good for them to get their lungs clear after the anesthesia." I don't know! Sounds crazy to me. I just want to be the one to wake her up. Is that too much to ask?

I did ask the neurologist when I was there last month to explain the reason for the CT scan in greater detail and she said that it is possible to tell from this type of scan if the skull closed prematurely, even though it does close around 18 months. And that it's not too late to correct that with surgery if that were the case, so her brain could grow some more. And the pediatrician backed that up today when I talked to her. I had to take Ashton in for a physcial today because they wouldn't administer anesthesia without a complete physical in the past 30 days. And I checked her record while she was there....Feb 21st of last year was her last dr. appt with the pediatrician for a sick visit. AMAZING! That's almost a whole year!!!! The doctor even said, "I was beginning to think you guys found a new physician, it's been so long since you've been here!" I said, "Yeah I know, bad for you, good for me that my kids are so healthy right?"

And on a further note, knocking on wood didn't help...Lexi had to have a breathing treatment tonight. Her first time on the nebulizer since the wildfires in May! I knew typing that post the other day about their health was going to jinx me!

Daddy's Cookin' and Mommy's Wearin' Jewelry...

This morning, the girls were playing so happily in their rooms while Cary and I had some "alone" time (heeheee). When we went to check on them to see what they were into, Lexi said, "We're playing Mommy/Daddy. Ashton is the Daddy and he's cooking and I'm the mommy. I'm wearing jewelry. And I'm going to a party...a MOPS party" (Mothers of Preschoolers).

Is that funny to anyone else???

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Leavin' on a jet plane...

don't know when I'll be back again. Sorry, couldn't resist. Just booked my flight for our next trip to Texas...WOOHOOO! The girls and I are leaving Feb 14, and returning Feb 26th. Cary will also be in Texas for a portion of that time to attend a children's pastor conference at our beloved Fellowship Church where we attended the last 2 years we lived there. I'll be flying in and out of San Antonio, but will drive up to the Big D when Cary is there to join him and visit friends. So DFW area friends, mark it down. Feb 19-23! I can hardly wait! We're staying near the airport, so kind of centrally located. Let's pray for warmth while we're there. Our Florida bodies can't handle the North Texas arctic winds any more!

Can I brag for just a sec???

Of course this post will require that I be sitting near wood so I can knock on it when I'm all finished. And this is BY NO MEANS an attempt to make anyone else feel like pond scum. Because God knows, most days, I'm functioning at just about that level myself!

But my children have not been to the doctor since FEBRUARY! Which means...TOTAL PICTURE PERFECT HEALTH for them and I couldn't be happier! And may I add that they were FORMULA FED (GASP!) Now, Cary is sick at least once a quarter, but as for me and the girls, we haven't had a cold or cough or any snotty stuff since February...that's almost a WHOLE YEAR! YEA!!!!! In May, Lexi had her last episode with asthma due to the smoky haze in the air because of the wildfires in Georgia. But that's it. She used her puffer one time on our trip to Texas back in August, and I haven't used it on her since.

Want to know the secret to keeping your kids healthy??? Well, first of all before you say, "They don't go to daycare," you're right. But they do go to the church nursery for an average of 6 hours a week, sometimes more than that, they both go to preschool (Lexi 3 days and Ashton 1 day), we take them to the park and indoor playgrounds weekly, they sit in those germy carts at Walmart, we share straws and plates as we do eat and drink after one another OFTEN, so we're defintely not living in a bubble by any means! But I truly feel like GERMEX is the key! I go through a big bottle a week! And I know the doctors say not to, but it works! I will frequently walk into the nursery or their preschool classes and see kids who are snotty and hacking away and I'll think, "Oh no, here we go. We're all going to be sick by the end of the week!" But nothin'! And just recently hand/foot/mouth disease AND lice went around our church nursery and my kids were probably there more than any of the kids that got it and I thought SURELY they would get it, especially Ashton who still puts everything in her mouth. But they didn't! Now I know lice is not an immune system thing, but I just threw that one in there for kicks!

The second key is to NOT eat so healthy. Apparently preservatives maybe form a layer of protective coating around your insides keeping the germs out. That's just Dr. Heather's theory, for what it's worth...heeheee. Vitamins are essential! I always let fever do it's thing unless it gets above 101. Then I medicate. It's you body's natural defense. And we made a $50 investment months ago that has been worth $500 in medical bills I would estimate. We bought the hypo allergenic protective coverings for their mattresses and pillows. They eliminate the dust mites, which I think was the reason for 90% of our snottyness. That was the best investment we ever made! I also got rid of Lexi's comfortor. I think that was another leading contributor to the problem. She does take Singulair, but a year ago even on Singulair she would still get snotty every once in a while. I'm going to get her through the winter and then talk to the doctor about taking her off Singulair because I'm just not sure she even needs it any more.

And now I must go knock on wood because someone is BOUND to get sick now that I've bragged!

Ofcourse tis the season! So I fully expect for someone to be sick from now till about late March. But if I can keep them healthy for 9 months out of the year, who cares! That's awesome!!!

Monday, January 7, 2008

Another Year...

So the last of the Christmas decorations made their way to storage bliss last night. And all I can say is "HALLELUJAH"! Cause you know how I just LOVE me some Christmas! (gag) It was back to a "normal" routine today, whatever that means. Oh wait, I know, children roaming the house aimlessly fighting with each other and leaving piles of mess in their tracks while I walk behind them and clean it up. Totally normal! I'm kidding. Sort of.

So another year has come and gone. And what do I have to show for it, besides 10 more pounds, and the Aggies 7-6 record? Does anyone else just about want to gag over all the Christmas letters that come in the mail? I got a FOUR PAGER this year. If I'm lyin' I'm dyin'! FOUR PAGES! Seriously y'all. If you have to write a four page Christmas letter, SHAME ON YOU for not keeping in better touch with your friends all year! Four pages. And guess how far into the four pages I got??? About line 2! And then I said, "ohp, it's another story of child prodigies, expensive vacations, and look at what a great mom I am!" Are you kidding??? Nope, not me. Ain't no Christmas letters leavin' this house! You're lucky to get a Christmas card from me!

But if I were to write a Christmas letter, here's how it might go...

So if you're wondering why we haven't come to visit you this year, it's cause WE PO! Not poor...PO! We live pay check to pay check. That's why! Lexi and Ashton are such a handful these days. Lexi HATES to bathe. She's like the dirty boy from Charlie Brown, a trail of dirt follows that child everywhere she goes. If making messes were an Olympic sport, she'd have a gold medal! But she's just precious. The doctor said she was a tad bit overweight when she went in for her check up. I believe his exact words were, "She just carries more calories on her body, like you. It's genetic." But she's beautiful and so creative and TOUGH. In fact, my creative child could beat up your creative child. And Ashton LOVES her sister. Despite the torture she endures from her daily, battling over toys, old juice, and space in my lap. She has had a year full of medical testing related to her virus starting with an EEG, an MRI, a CT scan, a speech eval, a hearing eval, an occupational therapy eval, and a vision test. Everything has turned out great though. She's our miracle girl! And speaking of miracles, it's a miracle she didn't get kicked out of school this year! She had a rough start to the school year. Fortunately everything is fine now. I started walking 9 miles a week this past year. I started in April and I walk Mon/Wed/Fri mornings at 6 a.m. and despite the hundreds of hours of sleep deprivation that has caused and hundreds of miles that mounts to, I've managed to lose a WHOPPIN 2 pounds, and cause more damage to my back and feet in the process, I'm afraid! And I had my first ever cavity this year! Actually I had four. Cary is doing great. He started his new job last January and just loves it! We didn't see him much for the first 6 months of the year, but he LOVES his job! We live month to month, but he LOVES his job! Weekends are no longer weekends, they're work days. But he LOVES his job! And we took an awesome vacation to Europe this past fall...IN OUR DREAMS!

All in all, I'd say it's been a GREAT year!

Happy New Year!

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Sweet Ashton

She absolutely melted my heart tonight. I was pointing at body parts like head, nose, ear, tummy and making her say them because I'm trying to work with her on her ending sounds. So I would point at my head and say, "What's this?" And she would say, "Head" and so on. Cary held up his thumb, expecting her to say "finger" or "thumb" but she didn't.

Are you ready???

She said, "AGGIE!!!!!!"

And if you're not from Texas or don't know this, the thumbs up is the gig'em sign, which is the Aggie's hand signal.

So the thumbs up sign only means AGGIE to her, not "finger" or "thumb" or "one" like a normal child. Because I don't raise normal children! I RAISE AGGIE CHILDREN....WHOOP!!!!!

Melted my maroon bleeding Aggie heart!

I Miss...

Souper Salad
Southlake Town Square
Fellowship Church
Downtown Fort Worth
Riding the Trinity Railway Express to downtown Dallas
Going to Dallas Maverick's games with Megan and Jared
Hanging out at the Lay's till the wee hours of the morning, while our children were STILL AWAKE and playing happily
Eating Barbque and pizza with the Lay's, oh and Rosa's taco night too!!!!
Keller...the BEST place to live in the world!
Las Colinas...the 2nd best place to live in the world!
Living 3 hours away from Aggieland
The "Good Morning Texas" show
My former hairstylist, Eric, at Royale Maison Salon in Colleyville (the BEST in the one has ever cut or colored my hair like Eric!)
Celebrating special occassions at Texas de Brazil in downtown Fort Worth
The Fort Worth stockyards
Billy Bob's
And of course ALL OF MY MANY friends and family!!!! That just goes without saying!

Friday, January 4, 2008


You have plenty of reading material this weekend. I just posted FOUR, yes FOUR, picture posts. Enjoy!

Lizard on a Bike Ride

Today in the car Lexi said, "You know what I was thinking?"

"What baby?"

"I was thinking I could go home and find a lizard and put it in my bug box and take it for a bike ride."

"Okay, that sounds like fun!"

And so...the lizard went on a bike ride!


And now the lizard wants to come inside.

And sleep in our bedroom. And sit at the table to eat with us. And watch us take a bath.

Trip to Mobile

We went to Mobile to visit Cary's family last week and had a great time as always. Here are some pics from that trip.

Who is this buck toothed child??? I think this is one of the funniest picture I've ever taken of Ashton!

Our little submarine girl. This was taken at the Dauphin Island Estruarium.

Isn't this the coolest thing ever??? It's the skull of a certain type of catfish and it looks like a crucifix. AMAZING!!! I had chills when I was holding this.

Dada G made green eggs and ham for the girls.

Now Introducing...Snow White and Friends...

Snow White has really let herself go. Check out that belly!

Belle needs to have her roots done.

And this...this my the trailer park fairy. KIDDING! Lady of the night! Check out the tattoo!

My little rockstar!

Identity crisis...Belle wig with a tinkerbell costume???

Christmas Morning '07

You'll have to tilt your head sideways on some of these. I missed my chance to rotate them and oh well, you can still make out the picture just fine!

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Lexi's Latest Science Project

Lexi found her bug habitat today hidden under a pile of princess dress up clothes (what else) and decided she wanted to go outside and catch a lizard to go in it. (Yes, my PRINCESS catches LIZARDS...GRODY!) The only problem with that plan was that it's been like 30 below here the last two nights, therefore survival of the fittest has probably kicked in at this point and our once thriving lizard metropolis in the backyard is now nothing more than a lizard graveyard, at best. Okay, well maybe not 30 below. But 30 something. Very UNFlorida like, I might add. (And yet I'm STILL wearing flip flops.) But back to the lizards. This morning when I took Candice out, I noticed there were several lizards on the driveway either dead, or de-thawing. Either way, there were frozen in their tracks. I almost stepped on one and he didn't even flinch. So all afternoon, Lexi wouldn't let it go about catching a lizard for her habitat and I said what I always say when I'm trying to avoid the inevitable, "Wait till Daddy gets home!"

We both tried to explain to her that she would have a better chance of finding gold in the backyard than to find a live lizard with the weather being so cold. But Cary took her out there anyways, and they found this lil' fella instead. His eyes were rolling back in his head, his fingers were black and shriveling by the second, and he didn't even try to get away from them. I said, "Maybe he wants to get caught so he can come inside and warm up!" Well, he got caught alright and is now livin' the good life in this nice warm ICU, I mean "ACU" (amphibious care unit) we have set up for him. He's jumping again, so I think his vitals are looking good. Lexi is very proud of how she has "nursed" him back to health. By nursing him back to health, I mean NOT shaking his habitat and tapping on the sides for, oh, at least 10 minute intervals. Now I just need a picture of her dressed up in her princess clothes HOLDING this frog.

And when he's all healthy again, I think I'll take him up to Petsmart and sell him. I was in there yesterday and did you know they sell lizards and tree frogs for like $15 bucks??? My yard is LOADED with both. I'm thinkin' I'm livin' on a small fortune back there! There's at least $75 bucks worth of tree frogs attached to my window screens every night!

Who needs the Disney Animal Kingdom???!!!

Just a Wii bit Addictive

Okay, so this Wii thing is CRAZY! Who knew! Cary got a Wii for Christmas and what a hoot it is! He is, of course kicking my REAR END because I don't have one single wii athletic bone in my body. However, I must say, I broke some guy's neck on the boxing game tonight. His body was laying in one direction and his head was somewhere else??? Let's just say I put on the numchuck (sp?) and went to town on this guy. I even got the one and only instant replay for my "talented" hits. We both were laughing so hard, I wii-ed in my pants just a wii bit. And if you had video of "my moves" you would probably wii in your pants too! I have sore body parts that I didn't know existed. You really don't need to join a gym, just get a Wii!

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

So I wanted to Post Some Pictures...

But the connection is too slow and intermittant at our house because we have the city's FREE wifi service. So if there's a cloud above my house, or if a car drives by, or the computer is 6 inches too close to the concrete wall in the dining room, or someone sneezes, well, too bad...NO INTERNET! I will get to Cary's office this week and post our Christmas pics and pics from our trip to Mobile.

I'm going to call our one and only choice of high speed internet providers this week and get me some REAL internet in this here house. I have all this awesome new technology and no way to flaunt it...I mean, share it!

So since I can't post pics, how 'bout you just imagine you're looking at Lexi and Ashton in their new princess dress up clothes WITH MATCHING WIGS...uh huh, we have the Disney wigs to match our Disney dresses. See we're uptown here in Orlando!

What else is new? Let's see, the TEXAS tree is in the FLORIDA garbage. The girls said goodbye to the Christmas tree today. We cooked black eyed peas and cabbage. Which, by the way, I'm thinking does NOT bring goodluck after all. Let's see, MAJOR GAS in the tummy from the beans and fluid retention from the cabbage! This is not a pretty sight.

And speaking of cooking...I must vent! We live in a teeny tiny house with a teeny tiny kitchen and God has truly blessed us in that we HAVE A ROOF OVER OUR HEADS, so I don't mean to sound ungrateful, but I CAN'T TAKE IT ANY MORE! Ashton's room has become a storage closet. I never thought I would be "that woman" who turns a perfectly good room in the house into "storage space". I got an awesome new crock pot and ice cream maker for Christmas, both of which I am desperate to DAILY, except I have no place to put them. Thus, they are stacked up in Ashton's room...aka:the new storage closet. Don't get me wrong, I will use them daily, but will have to put them back in the "storage room" after each use. I need to buy new drinking glasses, because I have only THREE, but I think they too would be in the "storage closet". And today when I cooked lunch, I had to take all of my pots and pans OUT of the stove where I store them in order to cook in the stove, meaning all the pots and pans had to be spread out on the like 6 inches of countertop space I have to cook on, making it VERY difficult to, you know, COOK! I don't know how much longer I can take the smallness of the quarters. I can't open my closet door when Cary is in bed. I can't open my dresser drawers unless I stand to the side. I can't flush my toilet when the washing machine or dishwasher are in use. And my toilet is exactly 3 steps from my bedside. Okay, thank you for allowing me to vent. I will move on now and PRAISE GOD that I even have a place to live in this city where we can't begin to afford to buy a house, and I will put my bratty selfishness aside and continue to be humbled. This was God's provision for our family and I have to thankful. PLEASE remind me of that daily. Someone!

And speaking of my bedside toilet...I must go to bed. Or potty. Or both.

Happy New Year!