Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Oh the fun we have!

We are home safely. We had a totally uneventful drive. And a good vacation.
We spent the first half in a town just west of Dallas where we did lots of fun Christmasy stuff and spent lots of time in the pool and hot tub. Oh how I miss the hot tub! I think I may need one!
The second half was spent in Missouri with Matt's brother and sister-in-law and their kids. Good times were had by all. The adventure there happened when their heat went out. It was out nearly the entire time we were there. Gina blames me, rightfully so I suppose. Before going to visit she had told me it was very cold in Missouri. I joked about us not being able to go up there, and asked her how their heat was. She told me it was just fine, and to quit being such a wuss. We get there, the heat goes out. Clearly, my fault. Although, perhaps she was just trying to toughen me up, and perhaps the heat wasn't out at all. It was one big joke. OK, not really, I saw the heating men there with my own two eyes, so it must have been legit.
We baked lots of cookies and ate way too much, but it was fun.
We arrived home on Friday night. That's when the adventure began!
The kids had slept a lot on the way home, so of course they were all wide awake when we got home.
Because everyone went to bed so late, we were late getting to church. It was my week to work in the kitchen, and Matt was leading the song service. He had asked Matthew to watch Emmie while we did our duties. Emmie was spinning in a chair and fell off and hit her face on a metal folding chair. She knocked two of her capped teeth out of alignment. There was blood everywhere and she was screaming bloody murder. We raced home to call the dentist. After talking with her, we decided there wasn't anything more that could be done, but that we would go in for x-rays today.
She has swelled a bit and I noticed her nose was out of alignment now.
The x-rays revealed that her root was fractured and also the bone that holds the teeth has a hairline fracture in it. Nothing can be done, and it's just a waiting game to see if the teeth die. If they die they will have to pull them, so we are praying hard that they stay alive.
Today the teeth are still loose, so we know she hit pretty hard. Thankfully though, she has caps. They told me if the caps weren't there her teeth would have broken right off at the gums.
I think I have been more worried about this than I realized because tonight I am absolutely beat. Not sleepy, just physically exhausted.
Collin had an ophthalmology appointment today and they discovered he is seeing 20/30 corrected now. So that is great. The other doc had said his eyes had gotten worse, but today they said no. YIPPEE!!
Tomorrow night we are having an agape feast at church and I'm apparently in charge of it. Didn't realize that till today, so it's been last minute rushing about to get things done.
I think I need another vacation!!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

What has happened to the Monkey's??

So after my last entry we all proceeded to get sick. It hasn't been fun in these parts.
It's starts out innocent enough...just a cough. You don't even feel bad, you just cough. And it's lovely, you cough up phlegm. But alas, you just cough.
But then, oh my lands, it hits you. And it plows you down like the snow plows that are undoubtedly plowing in other parts of the country.
It comes with a nice high fever (104 in my kids) and aches and pains. And sleepless nights because of the endless hacking.
And. if you are particularly lucky, it all changes into pneumonia like it did for poor Zachy.
The very worst part of all of this is that we are leaving tomorrow for vacation. Friends, the Monkey Family never goes on vacation, and we were so looking forward to this break from reality.
But, we will forge on. We will pack our family up along with a plethora of cough meds and antibiotics and throat lozenges. We will brave this illness and be determined to have a good time. And we will SUCCEED!!
I think this may be possible because I think we are all on the downhill side of this. Everyone except Matt, who is just coming into it. Poor thing.
While I'm forcing us to have a good time, I won't have computer access. We are old school folk who don't have a laptop. But I want to take this opportunity to wish every one of you a very, merry Christmas. I hope you all enjoy your families this year and please don't forget the reason for the season. Our wonderful savior, Jesus Christ. May God richly bless you this season.
I'll see you on the flip side!

Friday, December 12, 2008

This is me, at 33.

Yesterday was my birthday! I'm thirty-three now. And it seems a significant number. You only get those doubles every eleven years. This coming year will be special for Dillon since it will be his first ever double!
At any rate, I've decided, this is the year I vow to truly love me.
I looked in the mirror the other day, and I saw something unfamiliar.
I saw stretch marks that are the reward for the five biggest accomplishments of my life.
I saw saggy breasts that sag from years of not only nourishing, but comforting those five children I love so much.
I saw extra pounds packed on during the most stressful of times. Made stressful simply because I love these people so deeply. To watch others go through what my kids go through wouldn't affect me nearly as much.
I saw dark circles under my eyes. They were the result of little sleep. I had been up the night before nursing a sick Emily. They spoke of love to me.
The very best thing I saw was wrinkled creases at my eyes. Crows feet. But guess what. When I frowned and made a face I might make while crying, they weren't there. In fact, there were no wrinkles there. However, when I smiled, and laughed, they were. This is proof to me that my life is much more about laughter and smiles than about frowns and sorrow.
I looked deeper. I saw a heart that should be burst right open. I can't describe how much love is bursting out of my heart. Both my love for others, and their love for me. I must be the luckiest person alive!
I saw compassion. I saw a person able to empathize with many in a way most people cannot. Not because I'm so much better, but because I've been there.
I saw a mature woman.
My mom said this would happen when I turned thirty, but no. It's happening now.
I'm learning that I don't have to be perfect. I don't have to look perfect. Those that matter love me no matter what. And I'm so glad.
Yes, this is my year. I may not lose all this weight. I may not be the perfect mom. I may not be the perfect wife.
But I will be me. And I will love me.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Six Flags Sunday Night

This is the only decent shot we got with Santa. Em, of course, would have nothing to do with him, but the boys..even Matthew...all sat on his lap!

The hot cocoa was a bit too hot, so Matt just gave Emmie the lid with the whipped cream on it. That's the best part anyway!

Dillon was impossible to get shots of that night.

This is a horribly fuzzy picture, but it is Zachy going down the sledding hill. You should have seen how thrilled the kids were. It's the only snow any southern Texan kids see, and they thought it was the greatest thing ever!

Matthew wanted to take Emmie on all the rides with him. This is them on the giant ferris wheel. Of course, Matt was with them, and I was in another bucket with the other three kids.

I have a bunch of pictures of Emmie and Matt that look just like this. For some reason, she thought it was great fun to look at him like that!

Self portrait of me and Collin.

This is my favorite picture of the night. It is the perfect visual for how Emily has been lately. So very, very happy.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Does this make me a hypocrite?

Thursday, Collin had an appointment that brought us to the base.
We were having ice cream at the BX when I noticed our surroundings.
We are at a training base, and every week there is a graduation from Basic Training. Families normally arrive for this on Wednesday or Thursday. Graduation is Saturday.
We were surrounded by young men, and their parents. And suddenly, I was very afraid.
"Do any of you want to join the air force when you grow up?" I asked timidly.
"ME! I do!" Dillon exclaimed excitedly.
My heart sank.
Not my boy. He can't join the military!
OK, now here's the kicker. I love the military. I love what it has done for my family. We are so much better off being a military family than we would be if we were just plain civilians. BUT. Isn't there always a 'but'??
BUT...Matt isn't deployable. And, he isn't my child! (Sorry Anna!)
I really don't make a great military wife. I would be really upset if Matt had to go to war.
Currently, Dillon and Emily are the only two children who could even join the military in our family (which I'm secretly glad about!), and it could be a huge help to them, like it was to us.
But, that doesn't change the fact that they are my babies!
Matt thinks it would be great, and can picture the day we would be back in San Antonio with Dillon for graduation, but me, I'm not so sure.
I mean..look at that innocent little face!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Something wonderful happened last week.

I have no idea what it was, but something happened.
Could it be a new and budding (finally) vocabulary? I don't know, but Emmie went from being so very whiney and demanding to being a sweet, silly, happy girl.
It is so wierd.
She has been sooo difficult all her life, and now just suddenly, she seems content.
I thought maybe it was all the company and the non stop attention, but even with them gone she is so sweet.
She's using new words all the time, and I think that helps a lot. But it seems like so much more than that.
She's just content. And it is so very, very wonderful!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

We had a FANTABULOUS time!

Would you believe that for the first time in three years, we were blessed with extended family here for Thanksgiving? Well, believe it, it's true!
This is big to us.
You see, Thanksgiving has always been a big time to be with family. Especially with Matt's family. I love Thanksgiving with Matt's family. It's the one time of the year that we could see everyone, and it was always fun! Not to mention the most excellent food!
But, no one wants to come to Texas for Thanksgiving, so ever since we've been here, it's just been our little family. Which is all fine and good, just not the same. Every year, I've had a feeling of loneliness, and longing to be with our families.
This year however...oh this sweet year...Matt's brother and his family came to be with us!
Gina and I spent Wednesday baking pies. Four all together, and I just don't think it was enough! Matt made our turkey and Gina and I made the various side dishes. She even made our mother in law's dressing! YUM!
They got to experience a Texas Thanksgiving and thought it was quite different to let the kids play outside because it was so warm.
The kids all had such a good time playing together, and it was just so nice to be with family!
Thank you Tim and Gina for making the drive and coming to be with us. It was the best Thanksgiving since we've been here!

Monday, November 24, 2008

How long?

How long do you think it takes before one stops reciting lines from a play one was just in? Or for one to stop listening to the cd with the music to said play?

My entire family can recite nearly every word of the play and will randomly say something.

Just now, Collin was doing something and I hear, "shut your piehole toots!" This was Dillon's first line, and it comes out all the time.

And then, Violet sings the "blew it" song. You know the one...she is blowing up like a blueberry and she sings, "I guess I blew it, blew it, BLEW IT, BLEW IT!!!" And then she screams and "rolls" off the stage. My kids sing it, and Emmie sings along. Then she screams...for a loooooong time. It's awfully cute.

But really. When do you think we won't be listening to all things Wonka?!?!

Friday, November 21, 2008

I think she is wrong about something

The last day of the play, another mom and I were putting things away backstage and we were chit chatting. Somehow, she had overheard someone else say that I homeschool.
She looks at me and says, "you have five kids?"
"and you homeschool them?!?"
And then, completely nonchalantly, she says, "you must be mentally ill, and all the chaos in your life keeps you sane, yes mentally ill" She was walking away at this point so I didn't respond, only to chuckle a bit.
But I think she has it wrong.
You see, she doesn't have a clue about the chaos that is my life. She has no idea that the chaos goes much, much deeper than homeschooling. She doesn't know of all the trips to the doctors we take, of the pulses we check regularly, or the meds we administer do different kids every day. Homeschooling is what keeps us sane. Not the chaos.
I think I would lose my mind if I had to schedule things around school!
I also start to lose it when I have an abundance of extra stuff to get done. Like today, I'm kind of feeling overwhelmed. I've been baking all day for a bake sale on Sunday. And doing the normal laundry, and schooling, and cleaning, and tending to Emmie. But just that one extra thing has thrown me for a loop. My day feels all out of sorts!
But hey, it's alright, us mentally ill folks thrive on the chaos!

Monday, November 17, 2008

The shining moment

Willy Wonka Jr ran this weekend. As you know by now, my eldest two were in it. Matthew (12) was Grandpa Joe and Dillon (10) was Mick TeaVee. They did so very well.
Every night, flowers and Wonka candy were sold. The actors were always given flowers or candy from their family and friends who came to see them.
Everyone, that is except for one girl. Caili, aka Mrs Bucket. She was the only other homeschooled kid and she is also a military brat.
So, like my kids, there wasn't anyone to see her. OK, as a side note here, the last day my kids did have friends see them, but that was it, us and them.
We had searched and found Wonka Bars at Toys R Us. Now, the Wonka Bars were prized candy. In fact, before the last performance, they auctioned off a bar for $35. Insane, right? All in the spirit though!
At any rate, the Wonka Bars didn't show up till the end, and we had already given bars to our kids.
What I didn't know, though, was that Matthew had saved his. The next day he said he needed to talk to me. I asked him what was up and he said, "I really appreciate that you got us Wonka Bars, but I'd like to give mine to someone" Me, "oh really? who?" "Caili, she never has anyone to watch her and she hasn't gotten anything after the play"
Oh my, I was so proud of him!
And so he did. Only the exchange was much less grand than one might think. He stopped her and said, "here, this is for you" She looked confused and said thank you and walked off. She'll never know how much thought went into that gesture, and how huge it is coming from him.
Yes, the kids were awesome. Many, MANY people told me how great they were and especially how wonderfully Matthew can sing. But this one act, that was seen by no one, was definitely the shining moment for me.

Friday, November 14, 2008

I'm so proud!

Last night was opening night!
I worked backstage so saw the whole thing from the wings.
For the first time I saw the show without Emily squawking in my ear. It was so great.
I've said it before, and I'll say it again...my boys can sing!
But aside from them, everyone did a great job. I was a bit concerned during dress rehearsal. I wasn't sure the younger kids could pull it together, but they did.
I felt bad for my kids though, because there was no one in the audience for them. After the show they said, "go out in the audience and see your family and friends" and my kids had no one. Oh well, Sunday their friends will be there.
Anyway, I'm pretty proud of them today.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Let's just jump right to it

I'm in the living room and overhearing Dillon and Collin.
Dillon is teaching Collin how to find the area of a parellelogram.
Ok, let's think about this. Collin doesn't know how to multiply yet. Nor does he know how to find the area of something simple like a rectangle. We won't mention that he doesn't know what area is!
He seems to be understanding Dillon though!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Don't forget

Today is Veteran's day. As I drove around town (yes, the great white is fixed, oh how we love her), I saw very few flags flying. You wouldn't even know it was Veteran's day.
A couple people called Matt and thanked him for his service, which was nice. But in general, I think it is so easy for people to just ignore that there is a war going on. And that so many of our troops are over fighting every single day.
We go to the doctor at Brook Army Medical Center, which has a burn unit. Everytime we go, we see the results of war. What these kids sacrifice because they are proud to live in the greatest country there is.
Today, we remember the vets who have served in the past, and are serving today. We remember their families who sacrifice so much. The wives and children who say goodbye to their husbands for way too long. The mothers and fathers who have buried their children much too soon.
If you forgot, please thank a vet, for all they do, have done, and will continue to do...voluntarily, so that you might live in freedom.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Poor Great White

The Great White has been having troubles. Specifically with her radiator. There is a leak in a hose causing her to lose all her coolant. She then says, "WAIT, I'm too hot...SHUT ME OFF" And so, we have.
Today, a great big truck came to our house, loaded her up and took her away.
How we miss her.
We missed her all weekend, even though she sat in the driveway. But sitting in the driveway does not help one get a family of seven any place. Everywhere we went this weekend we had to go in two trips. Thankfully, Matthew and Dillon are old enough to be left alone while Matt dropped me and the littles off wherever we needed to be. But still, such a pain.
Hopefully, soon, the dealership will call us up and let us know she is fixed. Although, we have no idea when that is supposed to be. I suppose, it could take days. We'll see.
It all goes along with opening week of the play, when the boys have to be at rehearsal at 5. Matt gets home close to 5. So yeah, our boys will be late until she comes home to us where she belongs!
Poor thing, she's awfully young to be getting hot flashes...

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Treadmill test

After adjusting the settings on Zachy's pacemaker, he got to do his first treadmill test. Isn't he so cute??
And let me just add, that as cheesy as it may seem, it makes me very proud that the men surrounding him are all in uniform.

This is it!

Willy Wonka Jr runs this week!
I can't believe, after devoting all our time to rehearsals and tech days for the last two and a half months that it is finally here!
The kids are doing so great, and we are so very proud of them.
Last night, Matthew and Dillon put on a little performance for us. Dillon did his main song and Matthew sang and did the choreography of Dill's mother with him. Then Matthew did one of his big songs and Dillon played the part of Charlie during it.
My kids can sing! Not to brag, but they can. Which is huge to me, because I cannot. And I have always hoped that they would get their dad's musical ability. Thank goodness, they have!
I'm ready for the show to be done, but at the same time I'm not. It has been a great experience for the boys. We will be doing this more often, for sure.
But at the end of this week I'll be singing along with them..."no Willy Wonka just can't go!!"

Friday, November 7, 2008

Are you cold?

It is always so hard for me to believe that there are parts of the country that are cold right now. We got pictures from our old pastor showing us snow this week.
This is what it is like here. This picture was taken last Sunday. The pathfinders were working on their swimming honor.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Update on Zachy

So today was Zachy's appointment.
When he was originally paced, they were happy because he was able to get his heart rate up on his own. And by that I mean while active his heart would raise to the proper level. So, his heart rate was very low, but when he got active, he was able to get it up on his own.
That isn't happening now. So, he was being active, and his hr wasn't going up very much, causing him to be tired.
The dr changed the settings on his pm to now include the higher rates. So now, when he gets active, his pacemaker will kick in and raise his hr to a higher level, where it needs to be to properly oxygenate him.
We are happy about this, because it was a simple fix. We hope. We still have to wait and see if this takes care of the problem. It is a bit troubling though, because a year ago he was able to do that on his own, now he isn't.
Time will tell what the future holds for Zachy. But right now his heart looks great and strong, just a bit lazy.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Heart Video

OK, as if I'm not emotional enough these days...a mom on my heart list sent this video. Her son is Brayden.
This is so cool that I'm even removing my Christmas music for awhile so everyone can see just how awesome this is.
Of course, I cry through it like a big ol' baby!

*edited to add...if you can't tell, all of these are heart defects.

Friday, October 31, 2008

I just have to say..

I have the BEST husband in the world. He doesn't read my blog, but I wanted everyone to know just how much I love him and how wonderful he is.
I have been having a really hard time the last couple of weeks. All sorts of things have been bothering me. And he has walked with me every step of the way to get through.
While someone we know would say, "you're just being an emotional woman," Matt hasn't said it or even thought it. I think. And I say that because he has specifically said how much it bugs him when said friend says that.
On the other side of all this stress I have no doubt that I will be a much stronger person. I always am. But going through it always really stinks.
So to his parents, thank you for giving me such a wonderful man to share my ups and downs with.
And to Matt, should you ever read this, I love you more than you can ever imagine. Thank you for being my very best friend.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Heart Walk

I've really slacked this year. But the HeartWalk is November 8, and we will be walking it.
If you'd like to donate to this very worthy cause you can donate at MY PAGE

I know, I know

I know I said I was going to post pictures, but the Matt swooped in and stole the computer from me. Then I lost my umph.
And as you know, I'm in a bit of a funk. I'm trying SO hard to get out of it.
But I'm SO worried about Zachy and it's hard to be happy go lucky when you are worried about your precious baby!
So please, just bear with me, after next Wednesday I expect to be able to hop on here and report that his heart looks GREAT!
Please, just pray for him.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


I went and voted today. It was quick and easy.
Everyone should do early voting, it's so speedy. It sounds like there will be long lines on election day, but if you go now, you won't have to deal with that.
So go. Now. What are you waiting for??
And then pray your hearts out for the leaders of this country!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Keeping my head above water

I'm feeling better. Sort of.
Matt and I talked for a long, long time last night. I know what you're thinking. "What, MATT talks for a long time?" Why yes, he does. Of course, it is sometimes hard to keep the occasional snore from sneaking in, but he did well last night.
After my last post, things kept piling up. And not like things to do, but emotions. Some different things had been said, not to me, but about us, and it just made me go hmmmmm. And it pushed me a little further down.
But, I'm fighting my way back up. Things are good. Our lives are really, REALLY good, just sometimes challenging.
I must remember these things in order to keep from drowning!
I think I might go do a photo entry for you all! That's just the way I'm feeling today!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Forgive me

I realize it is too early for Christmas music.
We've been listening to it for weeks. And I'm always sad when it's over after Christmas. So, I'm putting it up here, to put you all in the spirit of Christmas. Plus, it lifts my spirits and I really need it right now.
So please, forgive me!


What a far cry from the last post, where I said I was full. I still am. I just feel like now I'm drowning under all the fullness.
Things are going well. I just have a lot to do, and it's ok. It's all good. But there is something that is weighing so very heavy on me. I had been telling Matt I feel like the weight of the world is on my shoulders, and I didn't know why. Just now, it hit me.
It's amazing how something can stress you out so much that you push it far down and pretend to not be worried about it. But it is still there, festering, weighing down like a ton of bricks.
What is worrying me, you may be asking.
All his telephone reports from his pacemaker have been great. But, in the last few weeks, he has gotten so very tired. He can no longer make it through a day without crashing. It's de ja vu, and quite frankly, it scares the life out of me.
His pulse is hanging in right at 80, so the pacemaker is working. Why could this be happening?
I'm scared. So very scared. Since being paced, they haven't measured his heart. They said it would take a while for it to go back to his normal size, but at the same time, they have never promised us that it would return back to normal. What if it hasn't? What if he is still in the early stages of heart failure? Why am I even going there? Everything will be great. He sees his doc the first week of November. But in the meantime, I'm scared. I'm so very, very scared. Something seems off. I'm praying for something like a growth spurt, but I don't know. Would that knock a 5 year old kid out, every. single. day.? He had been doing so well...what's happening??

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Trying to catch up

Boy oh boy..I am struggling here. Which, I decided is a good thing. Things are going well, very well in fact. And I am full. When I am full, I don't feel as much of a need to write on a blank screen about my life. After all, there are many people around me enjoying watching my life. But then, I realize that there is family, outside of the family we have made in Texas, that is still really interested in our lives. There are grandparents who wonder what their grandbabies are doing. Best friends who wonder what their bosom buddy is doing. And so I must write.
I wanted to add loads of pictures, but that would take too much. Hopefully, I can get a photo entry up later.
So let's see, where do I even start?
We are members of a homeschool group that gets together every Friday. The kids love it, but let me tell you, it is really interfering with my day. I find that as the Sabbath rolls around, I'm still so far behind in preparation. I was just telling Matt this, and realizing that I need to get my bootie in gear. The kids are making such great friends and I'm enjoying my adult time too. I need to find a way to make this work better.
Last Wednesday, we(me and the kids) drove to Houston to the NASA space center. It was homeschool day there. This really deserves an entry all to it's own, but it's going to have to go here.
Driving through Houston was crazy. For some reason, I expected all the high rises to be all repaired. But from far away you could see, amongst the glass walls, the brown from the windows being boarded up. Along one part of the freeway the trees on the side of the road were all blown apart and down. Power lines were leaning. Blue tarps covered the roofs that had been ripped off. But what we saw the most of was the signs. Imagine the golden arches, you know that type of sign? With the light in the middle and plastic surrounding it? They aren't made for hurricanes. Many, many signs were blown out. The space center is south of Houston, and the further south we went, the worse it was. It was crazy. I've never seen a town after a hurricane before, so this was new to me.
When we finally arrived at the space center, we drove into a parking lot full of 12-15 passenger vans. I told the kids to look well because only at a homeschool function will you see so many big vans all together! The center was closed to the public, and it was totally packed. It was so good to be surrounded by like minded people! And I was also struck by the amount of special needs kids I saw. I often hear, "oh I could never homeschool, I have a child with special needs" Kids with special needs can hugely benefit from being homeschooled, in my opinion. Anyway, it was great.
All the space stuff was really great too. And I could go on and on, but I'm tired, so I won't.
The oldest kids are still doing rehearsals for Willy Wonka Jr. The show starts November 14, and it will be nice when it's over. They love it, and will do it again, it's just time for a break.
Pathfinders has also started, so the kids are really busy, all the time.
I was just voted in as head deaconess at church, so I'm spending any free time I have trying to organize the rest of the deaconesses. It's a job that has kind of gone to pot over the last few years, and I'm trying to fix it.
Sunday, we are having one big giant party for all four of the boys. Three have August birthdays, and Dillon's is in October, so we are just having a big party. I do hope it is fun, and the kids have a good time. It's been chilly and rainy, and I hope it passes. We are planning a luau in the evening, so pray for the weather.
OK, that is what's been going on, in a nutshell. I'm sure I've bored everyone, and that's ok, at least I won't forget these busy days!

Monday, October 6, 2008


My goodness, I'm slacking here.
Last week was insanely busy, and I have lots of pictures to share.
What I don't have is the umph it takes me sit and upload them all to my computer and then here.
I need to get to it though, because Wednesday, we are going to Houston, to the Nasa Space museum for homeschool day. We are all excited about it (not the drive and getting up an insanely early hour to get there by 9 though!).
It is also the first night of Pathfinders, Wednesday, but the kids and me will have to miss.
Anyway, at some point, I really will get here and write something interesting!
For now though, it's off to teach my children.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The gum chewer

Zachy asked me the other day, "why did God make love gum so much?" Only it still sounds like "why did God make me lub gum ho mut" I said, "I don't know, He just wanted you to enjoy gum" He responded with, "cause you know, I really don't want to be THE gum chewer"
I'm thinking this is a result of hours and hours of listening to Willy Wonka stuff.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Does it get any better??

I have an entry in my head that I need to write..all about how Emmie is taking Prevacid now, and is a different child. I wrote it last week, but blogger ate it. I wrote about how I could hear the angels singing with me..HALLELUIA. Do you hear it?
It turns out that Emmie is silly, and loving, and just a great baby. For 18 months, we've struggled with her. It kills me to think that she was just hurting.
Right now, I'm sitting here, she is beside m eon her own chair. Everytime she looks at me, if I'm not looking at her she says, "mama" then I look, and she blows me a kiss.
How did we get so blessed??

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Pepto Chango

So I'm still waiting to hear from Emmie's pediatrician about the reflux.
I'll tell you, that looking at her through reflux eyes, I can totally see a pattern to her fussiness. Nighttime is worst, I'm assuming because she actually eats dinner. She barely eats the rest of the day.
So, last night, while she was screaming and screaming and screaming and writhing and screaming we gave her a children's pepto. Even though, technically, she's too young. But, we were desperate.
Within 5 minutes she had completely relaxed and conked out.
I feel like such a bad bad mom. How could we not have caught this before??

Monday, September 15, 2008


Pictures of Emmie's surgery. And the night before.
I'm no longer doing slide shows because my dear friend lives in the boonies and doesn't have high speed internet. So, for you Theresa..normal pictures!

It was 5:30 am, and she was so sleepy. She loves her baby.

Not too tired to play games though!

All dressed up and ready to go.

Unfortunately, it was a long wait, with lots of time to kill.

When it was about time to go, they gave her some versed, nasally. Now, versed is a wonderful thing, but it doesn't matter how it is administered (nasally or orally)it is icky. It tastes bad, so it's tough to get babies to drink it. But who really likes the feeling of fluid being pushed up their nose?
This picture was taken when the versed was starting to work. Not enough for her to be drunk yet, but she had been crying a lot before this. She was settling down at this point. Please don't pay any attention to how tired I look here.

Relaxing, almost drunk. If you look closely, you can see my watery eyes. Let me take this opportunity to tell you something. It does not matter how minor a procedure is, it is still very difficult to think of your child being sedated and undergoing surgery. You would think, after open heart surgery, I would be able to say, "hey no big deal, it's just teeth" but no. She's still my baby. And it's still hard.

Finally drunk. I have pictures that are almost identical to this one of Matthew and Zachy. The mouth falls open, their eyes droop, and their heads flop back. Hello giggle land!

Bye Bye Sweet Girl.

And then it's all over and we're ready to go home! Still sleepy, but awake.

OK, I had to take this picture. They insisted on pushing her out in a wheelchair. This is how the pictures always look when there is a new baby, but I'm in the chair, holding the baby. I told Matt now he knows how it feels to be a total goof being wheeled out when you are perfectly fine!

A little more about Emmie

My dad was here for the weekend and is now home safe and sound in Oregon. We had a nice visit, and it was really nice to have him here for Emmie's surgery. We had to be there at 5:30 and it was nice to not have to worry about the boys.
Emmie's surgery went well. It took them three hours instead of one and a half because nothing ever goes as planned with my family! Most of the time was spent trying to get an IV in place. Her hands and feet are now massive bruises. Poor punkin.
I keep thinking this may have been a blessing in disguise. The dentist said she is definitely refluxing. The decay on the back of her teeth was so great they were cupping. So like if you took them out, laid them on their fronts, they would be like a cup.
I hope so much that we will be able to treat this and finally have a happy baby.
We had looked into reflux a long time ago, and she was actually treated for it, but it was more in response to the fact that she couldn't breathe. That has resolved itself, but evidently the reflux hasn't.
I was looking on line for symptoms in toddlers and they fit her to a T so I'm really hopeful that she will get treated and finally be happy. Or at least not totally miserable.
Pictures to follow, so be on the lookout. After we get school done I'll work on uploading them and posting them.
My kids are outside playing, would you believe it is cold here?? I need to check the temperature, but they are all in pants and jackets and sock and shoes. Very unusual for them!

Friday, September 12, 2008


Just wanted everyone to know that Emily is home from surgery and doing well.
As usual, things took longer than normal. The one and half hour surgery ended up being three hours. But alas, all is well that ends well!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

To put your minds at ease

I've received several emails asking me about Ike.
As of right now, it doesn't look like we will get much of anything from the hurricane.
Last night, on the news, they were telling us to get our emergency supply kits together, and to be ready because we would likely lose power and deal with tornadoes.
However, Ike appears to be headed more east today, so they are now predicting some strong winds and rain, but not much else around here.
The people who really need your prayers are the folks from Houston and Galveston. Last I checked, there wasn't a mandatory evacuation for them, and our newscasters were saying they are VERY concerned about that.
At any rate, we should be nice and safe here in San Antonio!

Drum Roll Please

We got the cast list today!
Matthew got the part of Grandpa Joe, and Dillon got Mike TeeVee.
They are both really excited about it!
And now, some pictures..that have nothing to do with any wonkaness, just pics I came across and are too cute to not share!

This picture makes me laugh. While she is thrilled to love on her brother, she's not so sure about the cousin hugs!! So cute!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

How to look good Naked

Lifetime has a show called How to Look Good Naked. I have never watched this show, but was alerted by the CHD community that last night's episode would be about a girl named Heather.
Heather had a complex chd and had a very hard time getting past her scars.
Ya'll I sat there with tears streaming down my face the entire show. It was so good.
Kudos to Lifetime for even getting the words Congenital Heart Defect out there. I believe people can live their entire lives and never hear that term. And yet, it's the number one birth defect. Go figure.
I desperately hope that boys view their scars differently. Although, in some ways I think it may be harder for them. After all, girls wear swimsuits that cover the midline scar nicely.
The other day, we were looking through scrapbooks. Now, Zachy asks me why his face was purple. At five, he doesn't get that his heart was broken. That makes no sense to him. He will also ask why he has scars. Again, he doesn't grasp that there is a machine in his body telling his heart to beat!
I just hope that he doesn't deal with self esteem issues because of his scars. I hope he knows always that he is a hero.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

If you're of the praying variety

If you happen to be a praying person, please say a few for my family.
First, on Thursday, Matthew has an ophthalmology appointment. If you recall, awhile ago, I wrote about Matthew having pain in his eye. He hasn't had any recently, but this appointment will tell us if the drop still has his pressure under control. So please pray that his glaucoma is being controlled.
Secondly, Emmie is having surgery on Friday. It's minor, just to cap her teeth, but she will still be under general anesthetic. Just pray that all goes well there.
My dad is coming in tomorrow, so he will be able to watch the other kids while Em is in surgery, so that is nice. Pray for a safe trip for him as well.
Thanks in advance. If you aren't of the praying type, please think good thoughts for us!

Willy Wonka Jr

Matthew and Dillon are taking an acting workshop.
They will be putting on Willy Wonka Jr in November, but besides just doing the play they are learning things. The first two nights they've learned how to do a proper audtion, how to project, and upstage, downstage, stage right, etc.
Sunday they auditioned. I think I'm more anxious than they are to see what parts they got. We have to wait till Thursday, and it's killing me!! I do hope they get good parts because they worked hard on their auditions.
You may recall them doing Charlie and the Chocolate Factory three years ago, and they were oompa loompas. I hope they don't have to be oompa loompas again, but they both said they would be happy even if they had to pull the curtain.
I'll keep you all posted!

Monday, September 8, 2008

A sight to behold

This morning, I was in my room and peeked out the window. I thought, "how odd, it doesn't look that windy" but there were leaves flying all around. And then, I realized it wasn't leaves at all, but butterflies!
I called all the boys up and we just watched the butterflies for a bit. They weren't too impressed.
I decided to google why in the world there were so many butterflies, and came across an article from 2006. When the drought caused the wasps that normally eat the butterfly larva to die, and we were beseiged by butterflies. Snout butterflies to be exact. I had forgotten that. I don't know how, because I put pictures of it and everything on my blog.
I wonder if that is what is going on again. Because there are just hundreds of them.
My bed sits a bit higher than the bottom of my window, so whilst I was nursing Emmie down for a nap, I just watched the butterflies swirling all about.
I'd put up pictures, but I just don't think you can really see the butterflies that well. You just have to imagine, tiny black butterflies, flitting about like mad. Once in awhile, I'd hear a tiny "thud" as they hit the window.
Totally cool, if you ask me!

*edited to add, I tried to take a picture of them, but they are just too fast.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Just stuff

Last week, one by one, my kids battled illness. From ear infections to bronchitis. Loads of fun, and doctor visits. Now, thankfully, everyone is on the mend.
To celebrate, we went to six flags yesterday. Well, not really to celebrate. We simply went because it was the last day the water park was open, and we hadn't been yet. It was hot. And crowded. Lest you be concerned that we can't keep track of all our kids amongst throngs of people, let me assure you that they are easy to spot. You see, my kids are TWKEs. The Whitest Kids Ever. They stand out among the crowd. It is impossible to see that we live in south Texas and that we wear shorts year round. We have no tans to speak of. All I kept noticing were the darkly tanned bodies around me, and how conspicuous our family was!
As we were leaving, a crowd of young people (early 20s? dang, I'm old) was in front of us. In short time, there was a fight. Two guys against one. Right in front of us. The sound of fists hitting bodies is still fresh in my ears. What point does fighting serve? Seriously. I guess it's human nature though. Thankfully, security was there in no time flat. Then the girls were trying to convince the security guards that no one was actually fighting. Here's the sad thing, during the fight, a little girl went and grabbed her dad's arm, "PLEASE STOP DADDY!!" While he was hitting the other guy. She was not hit at all, but can you imagine??? Horrible.
Today was our first day of school. It was a smashing success, and tonight I'm tired. No rest for the weary though. It's now time to get kiddies ready for bed to start again tomorrow. It's looking like it's going to be a great school year. I officially have a 7Th, 4Th, 1st, and K this year. And little Emmie tagging along. Fun times indeed!!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Great Wolf Lodge

On our way back from Missouri, we stopped at the Great Wolf Lodge. The kids had such a good time that we would like to make it at least a yearly trip.
There is a game there where you buy a wand that is programmed by a computer. On all eight floors of the lodge are pictures and statues and different things. There are 13 different games and 3 adventures. It is like a big scavenger hunt. You read the clue, then find the object it is talking about, wave your wand and move on to the next item. At the end you battle a dragon. Matthew and Dillon did all of it, and Collin and Zachy did parts of it.
They also all got airbrushed tattoos. For some reason, I don't have a picture of Dillon's in the slideshow, but it was a wolf head.
There was also an animatronic show in the lobby that the kids thought was cute.
We wanted to stay in the area and finish the scavenger hunt game, so we actually stayed in a campground the second nigh..that's where the s'mores picture is from!
Click to play Great Wolf Lodge
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Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Fall is on it's way

I love fall. I love the smell of cool crisp air. The crunch of leaves under your feet. The cozy feel of rainy days. The smell of baking (cool days lend themselves to lots of baking around here!) in the oven. Everything about fall..I love it.

But, my love of fall is being threatened. For one thing, there is no fall in San Antonio. The leaves never change color. They just die, and one day they're gone.
There is no cool crisp air. There are rarely any rainy days, and when it rains, it's still quite warm outside.
More than that though, the last two falls have been very dark times in our lives. Two years ago wasn't as bad as last year, but last year was one of the worst times of my life.
I have been praying that this fall will be different. That there will be no upheavels. That life will go on as scheduled.
I do not want to hate fall. I want to love it again.
No matter what though, there will always be pumpkin ice cream, and cheesecake, and bread, and......

Come back please, and comment!

Will the reader who searched for "post TAPVR repair & pacemakers." to get to my site please come back and post a comment? I can only assume that you too, are dealing with a TAPVR kiddo being paced. I would love to chat with you! Please come back! :-)

Sunday, August 24, 2008

How did that happen?

Yesterday, my sweet baby boy turned 12. He was born at 11:54 pm and stayed up till then. Which is why I'm still awake. He yelled out, "I'm TWELVE!!" My heart sank.
How is time getting away from me? I remember that night, twelve years ago, so clearly. How could twelve years possibly have passed already? And how quickly will the next twelve go? If he follows in our footsteps, I'll be a grandma in twelve years, twice. Wow, that's an eye opener.
He is turning into such a wonderful young man. His sister is certain that he hung the moon, and he urges her on! He loves that little girl so fiercely. At night, she goes and crawls in bed with him, lays her head on his pillow, while he talks to her and tells her night night. She says, "ni-ni" and kisses him, then climbs down. She does this all on her own. So so cute. It makes my heart melt.
All of his brothers adore him, even if they don't quite want to admit it. Just today, Zachy said, "you're a good brother, Matthew" AWWWWWW!!!
To celebrate, he decorated his own cupcakes. We then went to the mirror maze and went through the maze for about an hour. We also did a lazer vault thing where you had to dodge the lazers going across the room and make it to the other side. The boys thought that was so much fun.
And now, I officially have a preteen. I don't feel like I've been a mommy for that long. I still am astonished when people ask for any kind of parenting advice. I shouldn't be, because we've been at this for awhile now, with several different personalities, but I still feel like a novice. Some day, when they're all grown, I may feel a bit more experienced.
I love this kid more than anyone could love their first born son. He is such a precious, precious gift. We are truly blessed to have him

I'll share pictures soon, for now I'm off to bed!

Funny, this says I posted at 8 this evening. I started it then. I actually posted it after midnight on the 25th, which is why I said his birthday was yesterday. But Matthew's birthday is indeed the 24th.

Friday, August 22, 2008

He is a funny one, that boy

We're watching soccer. US against Brazil. US just scored first. The crowd went wild. Dillon jumped off the couch, "YES!!" Zachy says, "USA Exclamation point wins??"
Where in the world did he get the exclamation point part???

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Craniofacial Board Today

We had a long, busy day today.
Matthew got hooked up with the craniofacial board today. The purpose of this was to establish him with the plastic surgeons and ENTs here on base. Of course, the craniofacial board includes speech, audiology, oral surgery, orthodontia, pediatrics, genetics, plastic surgery, and ENT. Everyone sees him. Except, genetics. We needed to see them, and they didn't show up. Phooey on them! We had some unanswered questions for them.
Everything was as expected, except for a couple of things.
The first being that this base actually provides orthodontic care for children. Most do not. I didn't know this. Matthew is to the point where he just needs braces. Once all his permanent teeth come in. We've already used up his lifetime maximum amount of insurance coverage, so we are looking at paying 100% of his braces. If I can get him taken care of on base, it'd be free. We are definitely going to go forth with this plan as his teeth come in.
The second is that the ENT says it's time for his tonsils and adenoids to come out. Matthew says no way, he thinks his body parts need to stay right where they are. We go back in September, after Matt and I have discussed it, to schedule everything. We will be going forth with this too.
The plastic surgeon and ENT both agreed that he still has too much growing to do to be worrying about his final rhinoplasty. Originally, we were told 12-13 years old. Today they agreed on 15-16. So that makes Matthew happy. Although, when we left, I asked him how he felt about it. He admitted that sometimes his nose really bothers him. There's not much we can do about it though. Just wait.
So that is about it from the board.
In different news, Emmie saw the dentist last week. She essentially has bottle rot. We are so devastated about this since she doesn't take a bottle and we brush her teeth regularly. After finding out about the different meds she's been on, including inhaled steroids for months while her teeth were coming in, and reflux and whatnot, the dentist said her poor mouth didn't have a chance. So I feel better about that, at least we didn't do anything wrong. But, she has to have caps on all four of her front teeth. Which will be a sedated surgery at the hospital.
So, this year we will have had Zachy get a pacemaker, Matthew have oral surgery to remove teeth that were ankylose, Emmie getting caps, and Matthew's tonsils and adenoids out. That's about 4 too many surgeries this year for me!!
So that's what's up in our neck of the woods today!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


I don't know what's wrong with me. I just haven't had it in me to post. Since returning from our trip I've been busy cleaning out rooms. Just going through kid clothes and getting ready for the upcoming school year. Speaking of which, we'll be starting sometime in September. My dad is coming to visit on the 10Th, so I think we'll wait till the following week. That way we don't do three days and then stop. Or maybe not, we'll see how things go.
Some of you asked about our trip. Here are some details.
We left Friday after Matt got off work and camped in West, Texas. Which is actually in east Texas. It was hot and miserable. We had to roll over every once in awhile because we were sweating so much. Just to air off the side that had been down.
The next day we drove to Missouri, where we were able to camp out in my brother and sister-in-law's house. THANKS GUYS!!
When we got there, all of Matt's family was already there. They had come along to help drive the moving truck.
We stayed with them until Wednesday. We had a great time, and got to meet our niece for the first time. Now we just have one other niece that we have yet to meet.
While there, we celebrated Zachy's birthday. He's such a big boy. Although yesterday he said to me, "mommy, why do you love me so much? Oh, I think I know why." Me, "oh? Why?" "Because I'm so little!" HA!! I'll love him just as much when he's big.
So Wednesday afternoon we headed out. We made it into Wagoner, Oklahoma, where we got a motel and stayed the night. They only had suites left, so we took a suite. I tell ya though, it was the size of a regular hotel room, I'm sure of it. Two kids still had to sleep on the floor.
We loved the vegetation in Oklahoma and Missouri. Who knew they were such beautiful states?? I wouldn't mind living there.
Thursday, we went to Grapevine, Texas. To the Great Wolf Lodge. My oh my, that was so fun. If you're not familiar with the Great Wolf Lodges, they are hotels with indoor water parks. Only guests of the hotel can use the water park, so it isn't overly crowded. Although, it was packed when we were there, so there were still lines for water slides. We used the water park on Thursday and Friday. We had read about Grapevine, and decided to camp there Friday night and just look around the town. We hung out till early afternoon on Saturday, then headed home.
Sunday was Collin's birthday. He's the big 7. How is this happening? We took him to chuck e cheese's for dinner.
It was such a great vacation, but we were glad to get home. Lots of driving involved. And Emily didn't really enjoy that part, so it was a bit stressful.
I don't know why I didn't put pictures of Matt and his brother in the last set. I know they don't like their kids on the net, but I put his sister and sister in law on, so here's a picture of Matt and his siblings. And his whole family. In case you're new to my blog, my beloved is on the left.

Please know that we don't always dress alike. The pictures had been thoroughly planned, and yet we still forgot to do one of Matt's parents with all of us. They wanted it for their Christmas card. Silly us! By the time we remembered, his sister had already left. But I tell ya, there were probably hundreds of pictures shot that day, scrolling through them is quite dizzying! All those stripes!
There w as also a ton of laughter going on, and honestly, it's a miracle there are any decent shots!
So all in all, a great trip!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Monday, August 11, 2008

Home again, Home again

We're home.
What a great vacation we had.
I have so much to write about, a pictures to share, but I just don't have the umph.
I have tons of laundry to do, and now a very messy house to clean up.
How does that happen? It was clean when we walked in!
We did learn that camping in Texas in August is something we will never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, EVER do again. The two nights we spent in the tent were pure misery. The other nights were spent inside though, so all was well.
I'm off to put away some clothes. Then it's off to the post office!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008


We haven't been on a vacation since 2005. This will be our first time to leave Texas since moving here three years ago. We are all very excited. Did I mention we will be camping? As in, outdoors.
All seven of us have come down with sore throats, stuffy noses, and coughs.
We're pushing the vitamin C and praying everyone can get well before we leave.
What a rotten time to be getting sick.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Public Education at it's Finest

On my way home from the bank, I drove past the local high school. I just had to take this picture. I could say so much about it, but will refrain.
I will say this, I'd hate to be the parent of a Junior..who knows when their registration day is. And I wonder how many "Cafes" they have. If you are the lucky parent of a Senior, you can circle the block and get the sign from the other side. That's where their info is.
I wonder if they teach grammar or spelling to their kids. Maybe the administration is exempt from having to have grammar or spelling skills. OR..maybe..as my kids say..they just spell things differently than most people. Yeah..that must be it.
Whatever it is, I think I'll just keep my kids home.

Sew much to do

Oh my. I think I've taken on a bigger sewing project than I should have.
I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed.
I was hoping to get it all done today.
Then tomorrow was going to be laundry day.
Thursday I was going to pack.
Friday I was going to clean so we could leave after Matt got home.
I just don't think the sewing will get done today. I actually know it won't.
Emmie is getting sick and is a CRAB-O. Figures.
I can't wait till all the sewing is done though. I'll be sure to take pictures so you all can see my handy work. Can't tell you what it is though, because it's still a surprise for certain people in our family.
OK, gotta run to the bank! See..too much to do!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

The point at which my heart breaks

My kids are watching the Hannah Montana, Miley Cyrus 3-D Concert.
Dillon, Collin, and Zachy keep saying, "whoa! that's cool"
The problem is, you can't see 3-D images when you are blind in one eye.
Matthew is watching, and says he is enjoying it, but still, I know it must be hard to hear his brothers talking about how cool it looks. It just kills me.
He's such a great sport, and just accepts it, but as a mom..it breaks my heart.

Friday, July 25, 2008

I knew there was more than one of me!

LogoThere are
people with my name in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

The Queen

It's true, around these parts I am indeed, the Queen.
I mean, it only makes sense.
I help run a small kingdom here, so queen is a fitting title.
Besides, if Emmie is a princess, I must be a queen.
We have the tent set up in the garage, letting it air out. I told Matt I am too old to sleep on the ground anymore, and that we needed an air mattress. So we got a fancy schmancy ordinary flock topped queen mattress. We laid all the pads out and the mattress to see how well everyone would fit. I gasped. The mattress is tiny. Much to tiny for a queen like me!
You see, we have a king size bed, so to then look at a queen was shocking.
No worries though, Matt informed me he would sleep on the ground, because he wasn't that old. *snort*
So the princess and the queen will be sleeping on an air matress, while the king and his princes sleep on the ground. I don't feel too special though, because I've never known an air mattress that doesn't pop!
Speaking of being a queen..my all time favorite queen sentiment is, 'I know I'm a queen, my pantyhose say so'
For all you thin, young whippersnappers who might not know, when you get into plus size nylons ( I don't even think they call them nylons anymore..what are they??) they are called queen sizes.
OK, I'm off to sew. My shoulders hurt from sewing yesterday, but alas, I must get it done.
The queen has left the building blog.


Collin thinks that whatever he does, he can say it was an accident, and all will be well. Only he tells us, "it was on ass-ki-dent". It is so funny. He cannot get that word right.

Yesterday, the kids were playing Cars on the Wii. Mater said, "when I grow up, I'm going to be a monster truck" Zachy yells out, "ME TOO MATER!" Oh boy, I hope not.

Tonight, at dinner we were discussing the fact that I say something and the kids don't even acknowledge me. Zachy says, "maybe you should get new kids who listen to you. We'll go live somewhere else..like grandma's" AAAHHH Break my heart. This from the same child who always tells me, "I mit you ho ho mutt mommy"(I miss you so s much mommy) when I run to the store by myself.

OK, it's tired, I can't think of anything else. But I had to write down the asskident. So cute.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Too many projects!

I have too many things going on. All by choice, so I need to prioritize. I just suddenly got a hobby bug.
I decided to sew birthday gifts for my nephews and niece. While doing this, all the kids decided they wanted their own. So, now I'm working on 8 sewing projects. I have Dillon's done, but Matt decided he wanted one too. I'm almost done with my eldest nephew's.
I also am working on a photobook at shutterfly.
And two nights ago, the kids all pulled out their scrapbooks and were looking through them. I haven't scrapped in ages, and haven't scrapped anything of Emmie. So now I'm wanting to scrap.
So I guess I'm only technically working on two projects. But I want to be done with the sewing to get to the scrapping.
I'm really limited though. I basically sew when Emmie is asleep. So, an hour during the day and at night after she goes to sleep.
I've been thinking of sewing for my other nieces too, but we'll see. I may be all sewed out.
I guess this is all a good thing. I have a nice comfy, warm home to let hobbies grow in. Yep, it is a good thing.

Bum Genius Giveaway

There's an awesome giveaway going on at Baby Cheapskate.
Go see! Now!! What are you waiting for???

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Severe Cuteness

These are just some random photos from the last couple days. I was going to caption all of them, but it's late, and I think you all know who is who by now.
For VBS, Matt was a crazy mad scientist. The kids have been wearing his wig and glasses all the time.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Getting ready!!

We are headed out for vacation next weekend. I'm getting really excited.
We'll be camping and visiting with all my in laws. All of Matt's immediate family, and his grandma and aunt. Also, some family friends will be there. So very exciting!
We haven't been camping since Zachy was a baby. And he managed to get pneumonia on that trip. How fun to go from the campsite to the ER.
We are also going to The Great Wolf Lodge on our way home. This is a huge birthday surprise for all the kids. I am super duper excited about that. They are going to have a blast. Last Sunday, we went to a pool with water slides. Zachy and Collin were too little to go on the slides and they were so sad about it. I'm excited to be able to go somewhere where they can slide.
We have lots to do to get ready, but it's all so fun!

Friday, July 18, 2008

The bush

My house desperately needs some cleaning, and I don't wanna do it! That was me stomping my feet like a two year old.
I have no energy. I think I'm still recovering from VBS. I can pretend anyway!
I really have nothing interesting to say, I just don't want to do anything.
I do have a crazy story though.
In between our house and the neighbor's is a big hedge. When we first moved in the neighbor told me, "don't touch that hedge, it hides my truck". Oky doky. Since we rent I had no intention of touching the hedge.
Yesterday though, our landlord had a different idea. He started hacking away at it. Now, understand that this was a leafy hedge, and very tall. To prune it you would have needed a tall ladder. Now, it is about 3 feet high. And of course, the tops are all naked. No biggie, it will fill back in.
Last night, the neighbor came pounding at out door. He wanted to know who did it. He was fuming mad. And how stupid. I mean really, we rent, we have no say over what the landlord can and cannot do to his yard! We don't particularly like it because now we can see all the neighbor's junk. But, it isn't ours, so we can't complain! Oh man, you would have thought that this bush was gold or something, the way the neighbor was going on and on about it!
Then later, Matt had to run an errand. When he came home he said, "did you hear S**** yelling at me?" He had let into Matt about how the bush was on the property line and as much his as it was our landlord's. Which, isn't true, it is clearly in our yard. He said he'd be reporting it to the home owner's association and he'd be in big trouble. He also said he was going to come and chop it down at the trunk.
OK, people..have you gotten it? It's a BUSH!!! For heaven's sake, Matt and I cannot believe that people would get so worked up about a bush! And one that doesn't belong to them!!
So, the landlord came to finish today. I told him and his wife what had taken place. The landlord says, let him cut it down, I'll sue him. And funny enough, our landlord is the architectural person for the home owner's association. Apparently, he owns 4 houses in this subdivision that he rents. I thought we were the only ones in here.
I just think the whole this is so funny. A bush. S**** just doesn't like it because now you can see all his junk. I don't like it because now I can see them! But I'm not going to make a fuss over it! Petty stuff, folks!
We'll see what the neighbor has to say this evening when he gets home from work. I honestly wouldn't have been surprised if he had stayed home from work today to give the landlord an earful. We had told him that our landlord would be back to finish up, so we really expected him to stay home. That's how upset he was.
OK, now I really must go clean. I still don't wanna!!
Have a great weekend everyone!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Technology amazes me

Awhile ago, I wrote about the results of Zachy's carelink.
It is absolutely amazing to me the things we are able to do in this day and age.
First, it is crazy to think that there is a gadget, embedded in his chest that is making his heart beat correctly.
And then, to be able to do these carelinks. We hook this machine up to the phone line, he puts a disc over the pacemaker, and all the information is drawn out and sent to the dr.
The dr was talking about how they are working on biological pacemakers right now. He said in Zachy's lifetime, he thinks they will be able to implant a microchip into his heart, and it will work as the pacemaker. AND..it wouldn't have a battery to wear out, or lead wires to break. How cool that would be!
Yes, technology is definitely amazing!

Sunday, July 13, 2008

A bit loco

Our VBS was a joint effort between our church and the spanish church that rents part of our building.
The kids were split about half and half between hispanic and white.
After being with hispanic kids for 3 hours every day for a week, and spending much time afterwards playing with new friends, my kids have only managed to pick up the word "loco".
And they keep using it. Nonstop.
Everyone is loco. Everything is loco. It's all pretty loco around here!

Friday, July 11, 2008

And Just Like That..

The week has come to an end.
Tonight is the last night of VBS. Tomorrow is our "graduation" program. I don't really know why we are calling it that, it isn't like anyone is graduating. Oh well, for lack of a better word I guess.
I've decided VBS is like Christmas. You spend months and months planning it. You dream about it. You worry about it. And just like that, it's over. This week has been so fast.
It has been awesome. Seriously. I had my doubts. I didn't even really want to do VBS this year. But my wonderful husband insisted. And he knew best. I am so glad we pushed on and did it.
I just filled out 58 certificates for tomorrow. Our largest VBS by far. Of course, we did join forces with the Spanish church who rents part of our church. But still, we almost doubled in size from last year.
I'm already looking forward to next year. I know though, that the excitement will wear off and we'll get busy with something else, and then VBS will sneak up on us once again.
The best part of all is that we've had several kids this year who had never met Jesus. Now, because of VBS, they know who He is! Awesome, awesome, awesome.
And now, I'll leave you with the lyrics of what seems to be the favorite VBS song this year. Just based on how the kids scream for it every night!
It's simple, with a powerful message.

Get up, Get up.
Get up and tell the world.
Get up, Get up.
Some people haven't heard.
That Jesus paid the price,
So we could have eternal life.
Get up, Get up,
get up and tell the world.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Day one = SUCCESS!

Every year, VBS is stressful. This year has been so much less stressful than normal. I don't know if it is because we are just getting used to it, and better at directing, or if it is because we've delegated a bunch this year. Probably a bit of both.
I have been less than enthused about the theme this year. And therefore, haven't gotten into as much as last year. I'm chompin at the bit for next year! It will be a bayou theme and it looks so cool. This year though, it's PowerLab. The kids enjoyed last night, but I tell ya, it's just hard. Decorating has been the hardest. But, it all came together.
I'm directing the preschool this year, so I'm not able to see any of the other action going on. Matt says it's going well.
When I see pictures like this, I know it is all worth it. And yes, that is my son who does not have his eyes closed in prayer. Goofball!

I cannot tell you how I feel when I witness kids learning more about our Lord. When I hear them singing, "Holy, Holy,". When I see them praying. It is one of the most awesome feelings in the world. And THAT is why we do this every year.
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