Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Fire the Babysitter!

Today, being the last day of 2008, I decide to clean out the kids' rooms of all unused, old toys to get the tax deduction and also make room for the 1000s of new toys gained this last week.

Judd had Josie and Jarrett out doing errands. That left me with Jayce and Jeven. Jayce asked if he could play his video game and I said sure. I am cruising right along, throwing toys in the Goodwill tote when I make a trip out to the living room. And find this:

(Oh, yes. The Wall-E pillow is essential to the whole "dump-baby-powder-operation". And you can't wear pants either.)

And this:

Jayce, being totally oblivious to it all.

To anyone that says video games don't make their kids stupid... think again!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The Rash Chronicles

Way back in March, we went through this. Now it is Jeven's turn.

He fell asleep today on the couch with Judd so I thought I would take a picture. You can only see how his face is affected but take my word for it, his body is covered in red spots.
I am hoping the antibiotics will do their job soon.

Josie's birthday

Today my one and only daughter turned 6! With her birthday coming so soon after Christmas, it's hard for us, her parents, to get enthusiastic about a party and such. Actually, earlier in the month, we had a combo party for both her and Jayce, one that family comes to. Jayce also had his own "sleep over/video game" party on his birthday with his friends. And we will let Josie have a party with her friends later next month. So, don't think my kids are deprived of special birthday happenings, despite our lack of enthusiasm.

Tonight, I made her an ugly birthday cake, we gave her a new comforter for her bed. My mom came over and gave her new sheets to match. Right now, her room is ugly (not as ugly as her cake) and I'd like to redo it but she keeps drawing on the walls. She denies it every time but since she writes J-O-S-I-E all over the place, I am guessing it is her. So, we discussed keeping her room clean and treating her belongings better so that she can have a big girl room. Maybe in the spring.

Josie has grown into a beautiful young girl. Although, she's always been beautiful. She was tiny when she was born, 5# 7oz. She wore premie clothes for the first few weeks but quickly grew fat and quickly out grew her newborn clothes.

Seems just yesterday she was just learning to walk and now she runs to the school bus every morning.

I pray that God allows me to slow down and appreciate all the things that make up my daughter, for I realize now the days are only going to go by faster.

Dec.2002, dressed and ready to go home. (Actually, I guess the picture is Jan. 2003!)

Mar. 2003, with Great Grandma Ruby. As you can see, she got fat. Fast. (Josie,not Grandma)

Feb. 2005, holding baby brother Jarrett for the first time.

Tonight blowing out her candles. On the ugly cake.

With her new comforter.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Christmas Pictures

Christmas was great. Or, is great. We are not done with Christmas, we have one more get together to go to. We are up to 5 now. This is the curse blessing of having a large family that is in the same area.
First, we go to Judd's dads. Then our own little party at home Christmas morning. Then my moms family, aunts and uncles and my grandma. Then Judd's moms. Then my dad's side of the family. Then one party with just my parents and hopefully my brother. This is the one we have remaining.

I tell you all this so you will be extremely jealous of my busy, fabulous life.


I tell you all this so you'll hopefully forgive me if I don't go into all the lovely details of our Christmas. I am pooped. And to top this all off, Jeven developed some sort of scary leprosy looking rash. We took him to the doctor today because a) nothing was helping it and b) our deductible will start over Jan. 1st.
Turns out is a strep rash. Huh. Yeah, I was confused a little as well. He doesn't have strep throat, just a rash. But, regardless of my medical expertise failing to diagnose his condition, he is on antibiotics and should be looking somewhat normal soon.

The kids were all extremely happy with their gifts and our house looks like a tornado has hit it. An- inside- the -house,- spread- toys- around- and- leave- cardboard- boxes- in -it's- wake-tornado.

Here are some pictures. Enjoy!

Jeven with Dorothy the Dinosaur from the Wiggles. I don't know about where you live, but here, Wiggles stuff is HARD to find. I found this, with the tags still on it, at Goodwill for 99cents!

Jarrett with his new Wall-E undies! Yay!

Josie was surprised at her Barbie. She REALLY wanted the new Diamond Castle Barbie. She was happy because she got both of them!!

Jayce with his video game. He was surprised because normally "Santa" can't afford the PS3 games, but the one he really wanted went on sale at the last minute.

I had the kids put all their names in a hat and each picked one. We then split up and took them each to the dollar store to buy something for the name they picked. Jeven drew Josie's name and Judd took him to the store. He picked out this puzzle all by himself. Luckily, in the spirit of Christmas, Josie thought it was funny.

This last picture is not really a Christmas picture, more of an aftermath picture. Jarrett had more fun with this box than anything else. He's such a ham. A cute ham.

I hope you all had a merry, blessed Christmas!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Visit with the Big Guy....

....You know the one in the red suit and white beard?

I know that some Christian families don't do the whole Santa thing. But we do. To some extent. We don't push it on our kids and we don't ever, ever say that Christmas is "magic". I don't have a single decoration that has Santa on it. My kids go see him once. And if they don't want to, they don't have to. Jayce does not believe in the guy, but the other kids do so he plays along.

Frankly, I was raised in a house that Santa visited but I always knew what Christmas was really about. It's the same in my house today, with my kids. We celebrate Jesus' birthday along with some fun with surprise presents and some mystery of how Santa comes through our pellet stove.

This year was the first time that Jarrett was brave enough to sit on Santa's lap and talk to him.
All of my kids (so far) at the age that Jarrett is at now, think that Santa is a one stop shopping center.
When Josie was 3, we visited Santa and as we walked away, she started crying. Loudly. We finally figured out that when she told Santa she wanted a Dora doll, she thought she'd leave with the toy. We had to explain that she didn't get anything until Christmas morning.

When we went to visit Santa this year, Jarrett walked right up to him and said "Do you have that Wall-E robot?" like one does at Walmart when you're looking for the low fat crackers: "Where would I find the Wheat Thins?".

Jeven would have none of the strange man so he sat in the stroller.

Santa did say that I had cute kids and I am sure they are the cutest that he's seen all year. Santa wouldn't lie.

I'm Busy

Before there is any finger pointing, I must clear something up from the very beginning. I TRY not to say to my kids "I'm busy" when I am well, busy. I will say "I will do that when I am done with this" or "In one hour,it will be lunch time" or " You have to wait just a little while then I will get you some." I want them to know that I do have work other than meeting their every want and desire. Sometimes, what I am doing is more important than getting them their 4th cookie.

But, somewhere my little boys have picked up the term I'm Busy. However, they don't use it in the right sense.

At the dinner table, I told Jarrett he needed to eat 3 green beans. His response: "I can't. I'm busy."

"Jarrett, you need to go get dressed"
"I don't want to. I"m busy"
"Jarett, it's time for bed"
"I don't want to go to bed! I'm busy"

And it's not just Jarrett.

This morning, Jeven wanted to come into bed with us. I asked him what was wrong and he said "I don't know. I'm busy."

So, apparently "I'm busy" is a general term to either get you out of something you don't want to do or when you are trying to get something you don' t normally get.

I am curious where they've picked this term up in the first place.
At least it's not pure sass. It's hard to keep a straight face when they defy you with the use of improper grammar.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Snow Days

Outside our front door

Today is the third day this week the schools have been closed because of snow. What makes this lovely situation even worse better is that today was suppose to be the last day before Christmas break. This last week has been hard, (finding things for the kids to do, the fighting, the whining)and now, since they are out of school for the holidays, there is no end in sight!

Sending the kids out to play in the snow seems like a stupid wonderful idea. If you enjoy an hour of putting on warm pants, long sleeve shirts, coats, hats, gloves, boots on 4 children (ok, technically Jayce can put on his own clothes but sweats and a t-shirt don't pass inspection, buddy roe), send them outside only to have them come in 5 minutes later because GASP! they are cold! Then you take off all the clothes, wipe up the wet floors, dry the clothes and feed the hungry polar bears. Only to have them ask 5 minutes later if they can go back outside!

I know this is a cycle that mothers have dealt with for centuries. It's part of a mother's job. And I am sure looking back on it, it will create some great memories. Hopefully, they will remember the fun playing outside w/ their friends, the movies and popcorn, the hot chocolate, the lights of the Christmas tree and the excitement of waiting for the BIG day. Hopefully, they won't remember their mother getting grumpy at the extra laundry and constant work in the kitchen, or when their little brother pulled all the ornaments off the tree and it fell over (then again, maybe that will be a humorous memory later).

Hopefully, I can bottle up the cold noses and wet, cold kisses and save them for when I am old and gray and they're dealing with their own snow days with their own children.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Christmas Tag

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? I like the look of wrap but use bags more often
2. Real tree or Artificial? Real
3. When do you put up the tree? After Jayce's bday on the 9th
4. When do you take the tree down? A little after New Years.
5. Do you like eggnog? No, Gross!
6. Favorite gift received as a child? Three-story barbie house with elevator.
7. Hardest person to buy for? Most of the men in my family
8. Easiest person to buy for? Josie
9. Do you have a nativity scene? Yes.
10. Mail or email Christmas cards? Usually mail but not this year ) :
11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? Judd bought me a thing that attatched to the side of the bathtub that made it into a "spa". Yeah. It blew a fuse.
12. Favorite Christmas Movie? Christmas Story ("You'll shoot your eye out!")
13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? I like to start Oct. but can't always afford to.
14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Not really. Ok, maybe.
15. Favorite Food at Christmas? Lil' Smokies wrapped in crescent dough. Yum
16. Lights on the tree? White
17. Favorite Christmas song? Away in a Manger
18. Travel at Christmas or stay at home? We have a rule, we stay home until noon then travel to family.
19. Do you know all of Santa's reindeer's? Not personally.
20. Angel on the tree top or a star? I would like to have an angel but our trees are never big enough!
21. Open presents Christmas Eve or morning? Christmas morning!
22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? Losing the meaning of Christmas.
23. Favorite ornament theme or color? white and red with white lights
24. Favorite place (other than families) to go during Christmas time? church
25. What do you want for Christmas this year? For the joy to last all year

Friday, December 12, 2008

Josie Lynn

Ok, I am not biased or anything but isn't this the prettiest young lady you've ever seen?

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Time Goes Fast

10 years ago today, I was in the hospital. About this time that night, I lay exhausted but elated in the bed. In my arms slept my new son. I stared at him and wondered what kind of boy he'd grow up to be. I prayed that I would be the kind of mother he deserved.

Looking at him, it was the first time ever that I knew without hesitation, I would lay my life down for his. Looking at him, I was looking at my heart.

Jayce has grown up to be an exceptional young man. He has a wonderful role model in his father and grandfathers. He makes wise decisions (most of the time) and is compassionate and kind. He has grown up to be the kind of boy I feel I don't always deserve. I have not been a perfect mother to him. There have been times I was short with patience, too quick to snap and not quick enough to laugh.

I prayed today that he will continue to be a fine young man as we enter these pre-teen years. I prayed that God will help me and his father raise him to His liking. I thank God for giving us Jayce.

10 years ago today, my life changed forever. For the best. I became a mother, for the first time.

10 yrs ago. (sorry but we don't have a scanner, had to take a picture of the picture) What are those young kids doing having a baby?

Tonight opening birthday presents.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Nap Time

Jarrett, Jeven and Jayce share a room. Jarrett and Jayce have the set of bunk beds, Jeven is still in the crib. No little kids are allowed up on Jayce's top bunk.

Jarrett and Jeven take their naps together. Sometimes, they are good and go right to sleep. Sometimes, they play around a little, get spankings, then go right to sleep.
Today, today was not a good nap day.

I had to go in several times and "lay down the law". I had to put Jarrett back up on his bed and put Jeven back in the crib. Then, finally I heard laughing and it sounded like someone was climbing up the bunk bed ladder. I walked in and found this:

Now, you can see Jarrett on the bottom bunk (and actually he's doing his famous "weiner thing").

But, where is Jeven? Hmmm....

It was hard to grab the camera and take a picture THEN be mean mommy and put him back where he should've been in the first place!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

End of a Era (part two)

I have received a couple emails and phone calls asking how the potty training was going.

In a word? Pretty darn good. Yes, I know that's three words, but it's going that well!

The first day, we went through 3 pairs of underwear, 3 pull ups within the first hour and a half. Seems my little boy pees often. Very often. My plan was to set the timer for every 20 minutes and take him. I finally had the time narrowed down to every SIX minutes.

Didn't get much done that day.

But, every six minutes, he would go pee. On the potty! He got 2 Skittles and a sticker every time he went and by the end of the day, his paper was full and half a box of candy was gone!

He even went poop on the potty that first day! Which, after doing this with 3 other kids, this is a huge deal!

He has continued to go whenever I put him on the potty and is going longer stretches of time. He has even gone in 2 different public restrooms. He has said "I have to go potty" but it's been after Jarrett has said the same thing.
But, he's doing awesome and I'm so proud of him.

He's getting to be such a big boy! Which brings up another topic. Both boys got weighed and measured last week. Jarrett was barely 30 pounds (if he'd been naked, he'd never have made it!) and was 37 5/8 inches tall. Jeven, his younger brother, my baby, was almost 34 pounds and 36 5/8 inches tall.

So, to those of you that have asked if Jeven is bigger than Jarrett, the answer is yes!

Pet Peeves

I am sure you have seen them. The signs posted at every entrance to a public place. "No animals allowed with the exception of service animals".

So why is it that as I cruise through Wal-mart, there's a lady holding her chihuahua? A man walking his poodle? Seriously? A service chihuahua? A seeing eye poodle?
Yeah, I don't think so.

The thing that KILLS me, employees see these animals and don't do a darn thing! Wal-mart even has greeters at the door for pete's sake!

This infuriates me to no end. I don't like dogs getting free roam where I buy my groceries. As a consumer, I think I have the right to shop without having to watch for dog poop on the floor! (this actually happened! dog poop down one of the aisles!)

Why do these people think it's ok to bring in their pet? If the dog can't be alone at home for a couple hours, then there's something wrong with your dog.

If you are reading this and are one of those people that takes their dog every where with them, well. I'd like to say I am sorry if I am offending you but I'd be lying!

I could complain to the store manager or whatever, but I know it won't do any good. The places I shop on a regular basis, I do so because it's where we can afford to shop. I can't switch stores.

So, if you know me in real life and you are in the store with your dog, and you see me, you'll be better off running the other way!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Bring on the Tots!

Let me present two different scenarios to you.

#1: You find exciting, new recipe in magazine. You purposefully go grocery shopping for dozens of new ingredients. Spend a weeks worth of grocery budget on one meal. You spend an hour reading and re-reading recipe. You chop, dice, stir, boil and bake. You present new dish to waiting family. Who then eat one bite and declare it gross and disgusting.

#2: At 5:30 you finally make your way out to the pantry and find cream mushroom soup and some peas. You find some tater tots and hamburger in freezer. You throw it all together, add some cheese,bake, and announce dinner is ready. Everyone declares it a huge success and gobbles it all up. You figure it cost about .50 per serving.

I think this is a mystery to all mothers. Why do we bother? Why do we make something simple into something complicated? Do we really expect 2 and 3 yr. olds to appreciate fine cuisine? When most of it goes up their noses?

If you have the answers, please clue me in. In the meantime, bring on the tater tots!

Monday, December 1, 2008