Saturday, March 29, 2008

Quotes and Flowers

Kids With Character

Short Story #3
Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck - these are all characters you think about when you think Disney. We went to Walt Disney World when Ashlyn was 18 months old and she ran in front of at least 20 people to give Minnie Mouse a hug. Because she was cute with a headband bow and a pink pacifier in her mouth no one gave her dirty looks. I will never forget that. She was so excited, when most at this age would be scared. This memory is one of the main reasons I wanted to go back again while Ashlyn is so young. She believed that every character she saw was real. Trey never let on that he did not think they were real either. (The only thing he questioned while we were there was the Easter Bunny, since Easter was in a few days.) So, anyway, I could not wait to see how she would react this year. And, she did not disappoint me.

The first day we were at Magic Kingdom we saw Buzz Lightyear. Nana had made Ashlyn and Trey autograph books, so Buzz used his autograph stamp to be the first in their book. We saw Minnie, Pluto and Goofy after waiting in line for an hour. As cranky as Ashlyn got, the frown gave way to a smile the minute she saw Minnie. She laughed at Goofy and kept her hands in Pluto's "mouth" to pretend he was biting her. It was funny. Trey was a trooper, he got his picture made and got the autographs. I am glad he did not think he was too big for this. As a mom, I love capturing the memories through pictures. (A lot of pictures.)

At Hollywood Studios we saw Chip and Dale. They saw Emma in the stroller and went over and waved at her. Ashlyn thought that was funny. They had actually closed the line for Minnie and Daisy, due to time constraints, but somehow I managed to sneak myself into the back of the line while the character "guard" was talking to someone. Some things never change with me. I guess I will always be sneaky :). Daisy Duck is a hard one to get pictures with so we were lucky that I am sly like that! Trey opted out on this one but that's okay.

Back at the Magic Kingdom we saw Mrs. Easter Bunny, Captain Hook and Mr. Smee. These characters were funny and would mess with the parents to make the kids laugh. At the Animal Kingdom we finally got to see Mickey Mouse. That was the main goal for that park. We had not seen the main mouse and I was determined to find him. He was dressed in his outdoor attire. I made my mom get in this picture. The last park was Epcot. Here we saw Donald in Mexico land, Dopey (Ashlyn absolutely loved Dopey, she acted so silly), Mary Poppins, Pooh, Tigger and Eeyore. I was satisfied with the character greetings. I wanted to see as many as we could and we accomplished that.

The great thing about these character greetings is that they don't rush you. Every child can interact and get autographs and the parents can take all the pictures that they want. (The flip side of this is that the lines don't move quickly.

We have autograph books and pictures to remind us of this fun experience with the characters that bring Disney World to life.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Top Ten

Like David Letterman's top ten lists, Ashlyn had ten reasons she did not want to ride in the stroller with Trey.

10.) She wants to lay down

9.) Trey hits her and she hits him back

8.) He says bad words (stupid and shut-up)

7.)He be's mean

6) He be's pokey

5.) Because she just got comfortable

4.) Emma needs a seat

3.) She wants to be alone

2.) Trey pooted

and the # one reason that Ashlyn did not want to ride with Trey....

1.) His breath stinks

Wednesday, March 26, 2008


Short story #2

The day before we left to go to Walt Disney World, the right side of Ashlyn's right foot became swollen and very infected. She has gotten bad about going barefoot in the shop and ended up cutting it on something a couple of days before. But, of course, it did not infect until the weekend. So, after church my mom has a nurse look at it and she says that it is infected and that the best thing to do for it would be to soak it in hot water but if it streaks, we should definitley take her to a doctor as soon as possible. Mom soaked the foot and wouldn't you know it streaked. I am at Wal-Mart with Trey taking care of some last minute necessities for the trip when my mom calls and says that I need to either get Ashlyn to a medical facility or call her pediatrician. I choose to call the pediatrician. The doctor is not overly concerned since Ashlyn is not running any fever or acting like it hurts. So, she says that unless either of those occur, it will be okay to bring her into the office the next morning.

Monday morning I look at Ashlyn's foot and it looks better but my mom still wants to take her to the doctor for safe measure before we go on our walking vacation. She goes to the pediatrician, I go get a pedicure. Bad mom, I know. Turns out that her foot is infected, she needs an antibiotic and needs the wound to be soaked in epsom salt at each bath. I go to get her prescription and they tell me it will be $43, with insurance. They also tell me that this Augmentin will probably cause nauseousness, needs to be kept refrigerated and must be taken with a meal. I decline the medication. Bad mom, I know. I just could not see spending so much money on medicine when her foot looked good and I did not want her to be sick on the trip and where could I keep this refrigerated throughout the day. My mom and I decided that if worse came to worse, we could always have the doctor's office call in the prescription where we were and we could go from there. Plus, we had the epsom salt and an antibiotic ointment.

By the time we left Monday afternoon, the foot was great. Great enough to wear the cute flip flops that I had bought her to go with her Hannah Montana shirt that she planned to ride on the airplane. It looked like we had overcome the foot obstacle UNTIL the cute little flip flops rubbed blisters on the other side of her foot! She cried and carried on. The handicap cart stopped and gave us a ride to the T.G.I.Fridays that we were trying to find. I had to pack her flip flops in my carry on and thank goodness Emma was wearing socks that stretched out enough to cover Ashlyn's foot as she walked around DFW. That is, when she decided she was okay enough to walk. And thank goodness that an hour later we found a pair of white "crocs" to purchase for the rest of the trip. It wasn't until the blister incident that I realized that the only shoes I had packed were cute flip flops and I had left her tennis shoes at home, of all things to forget. The crocs were a blessing all week.

The foot was not a problem the rest of the trip. Ashlyn was even able to wear a different pair of flip flops all day one day. So, all wasn't lost. There were a few other random "ouches" that happened throughout the week. The minute we got into the Magic Kingdom I whipped my camera out of the bag and smacked Ashlyn right in the nose with it. She cried because it hurt. Dadgum. Trey wanted to beat us to the bus terminal by running in the dark. He didn't see the chain that was ahead of him so he ran right into it and it flattened him on his back. My mom, Ashlyn and I were a ways back so a friendly, non-English speaking woman helped him up and comforted him until we got there. He had a chain imprint on his stomach. Then, I was pushing him in the stroller and went down two stairs and it hurt his back enough that he cried. I thought it would be a fun ride. He was so mad at me.

Despite the ouch issues, we had a great time and all injuries have healed nicely :0)

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Up, Up and Away

We are on our way to Walt Disney World, finally boarding the plane on Monday night. Ashlyn has been so excited about flying. I think she was just as excited about this part of the trip as she was going to Disney. We stopped at the cockpit and Ashlyn and Trey got their pictures made with the pilots. Obviously, things have loosened up a bit since 9/11. I sat with Ashlyn two rows ahead of my mom and Trey. She could not understand why Emma could not have her own seat. We sat with a lady who reminded me so much of my dad's step-mom. She was friendly with a smokers cough. It did not take long to taxi onto the runway and as we sped up for takeoff Ashlyn says, "I don't know about this..."

On any flight to Disney be prepared to be on a plane with a bunch of kids. There was a puppet show going on in the seats in front of us as they tried to keep 18 month old Stephen entertained. There was constant movement in the aisle as kids and parents headed to the bathroom. (Of course Ashlyn did not decide she needed to go until the seat belt light came back on to prepare for landing.) You could hear excitement in everyone's voices as we were on this journey to a magical place. But even two and a half hours gets long for young kids and the parents trying to keep them satisfied.
Ashlyn and Trey both looked forward to finding the barf bags. Ashlyn thought that chewing gum would keep you from getting sick so she wanted me to make sure the lady on my left had some, too. As the flight attendants walked up to the front with their cart, Ashlyn wanted to know if they were offering stuff. She wanted her Hannah Montana journal but I had put it in the overhead bin. Her reaction was, "mighty me". As our altitude got higher we could see clouds all around us. Ashlyn must have been convinced that we were in Heaven or at least pretty close because she wanted to know if we would see Granny up here. Trey and mom were pretty quiet, they were playing a blackjack game. As we landed, Ashlyn told the lady on my left that she almost needed her sack. She laughed. Mom and Trey enjoyed me telling them all the things that Ashlyn said.

Four days later we are back at the airport, only this time we are exhausted and glad to be heading home. It is very early in the morning but the Cinnabon place was a welcome breakfast. As Ashlyn said, "this is a good smell in my nose". We ate and waited for boarding.

I sat with Trey and my mom and Ashlyn sat right in front of us. She slept almost the entire trip back. Trey and my mom played blackjack and deuces wild, which they had no idea what they were doing. I dozed on and off. It was easier to doze when the biggo loudmouth lady behind me wasn't talking or kicking my seat. She said something profound as we were nearing the ground, "of course we're in Texas, I see big trucks" and her husband said something back that ended with the word yeehaw.

Back in Dallas, ready for home. Tired, sore legs, nothing but rest...

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Just the beginning

Hey friends. We are back from Walt Disney World and while we were having a magical time, I had blogging on my mind. I took notes, took pictures ( a ton of pictures), became very observant and was always thinking of ways to record this memory-making trip. I thought maybe this could be my first novel in my wannabe writing career but then I realized that maybe I should start with short stories. So, here is how I have decided to set this up. I am going to list the chapters of my short stories. Hopefully they will capture your attention and make you anxious to read each one.

Chapter 1: Up, Up and Away
Chapter 2: Ouch!
Chapter 3: Top 10 Reasons Ashlyn Does Not Want to Ride in the Stroller With Trey
Chapter 4: Kids With Character
Chapter 5: Adventures in Walt Disney World
Chapter 6: Quirks of My Four Year Old
Chapter 7: Simply Trey

These are the chapters I have notes for. I plan to start writing my chapters next week. Stay tuned :0)

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Truly blessed

Truly blessed is what we are. Here are some of our most recent blessings.

* Trey was saved at a christian wrestling match a couple of weeks ago. As a parent, it is so joyous to see your kids come to know the Lord and know who holds their future. We met with our pastor this morning before church and Trey walked down the aisle as his profession of faith and was then presented to the congregation. He will be baptized in April. Blessed be the name of the Lord.

* On Friday, we closed on our interim home loan. This means that we are good to go and can start building our house! It has been exactly two years since we moved out of our house in Combine. We were blessed to have Jared's parents share their home with us and I am blessed to have a talented husband with talented friends who built the "love shack" for us to live in on our land. Construction on the house is scheduled to begin tomorrow morning. We are very excited and hope the scattered showers are scattered around, but not in, Combine. This week we hope to get the pad built up and the plumbing rough in started. Sounds like I'll have a lot of blogging to do for house news.

* Clayson had a friend over Friday night and all day Saturday. It is really hard for me to let the kids have friends over for selfish reasons. One, I am around kids all the time and two, I tend to be gripy. Always in teacher mode. I wanted to be nice so I let Collin come over. His dad brought his dirt bike for him so that they both had one to ride. We got home after the closing and those boys stayed outside until around 10:00. Jared, Ashlyn and Trey were also out there. I had a relaxing night inside and even went to bed early. Jared had things under control. They all slept in their dirty clothes, except Ashlyn, and were worn out. Saturday morning, Clayson and Collin got up and went right back outside. They couldn't ride dirt bikes because Jared was at work so they built jump hills and trailers and rode the bad boy buggy. When Trey and Ashlyn got up, they went right back outside to join in on the fun. I cleaned the entire house. They got along, (the siblings), for the most part. There were only a few squabbles. Collin left at about 5:00 and Clayson was satisfied with the weekend. He was blessed by a friend who shares so much in common with him and I was blessed to be able to rest and have a clean house.

* We are always blessed by miss Ashlyn. She is cute, smart, funny and helpful. Yesterday she decided to spray paint some wood while the boys came in long enough to eat lunch. She ended up with black freckles but thankfully her clothes remained paint-free.

* Tomorrow afternoon we are leaving for Walt Disney World. Clayson and Jared did not want to go. My mom, Ashlyn, Trey and I are looking forward to the trip. I know that it is hard to believe that Clayson does not want to go but if you knew his daddy, you would understand why. They don't like crowds, lines or people. If Clayson had not been I would have made him go for the experience but we went four years ago and does not want to go back. He looks forward to being an only child next week and all the things he'll get to do. I still need to pack, get a pedicure and get all the cameras charged and ready. Outfits have been sorted, there are bows and flip flops to match, bathroom stuff ready and waiting ... now I just need to get the rolling suitcases from my mom and add a few things here and there. I'm not sure if Ashlyn is more excited about Disney World or the plane ride.

Blessed is what we are and we are thankful to all those who are a part of our many blessings. Happy spring break 2008!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Middle Son's Future Plans

Name: Trey-boy

Age: 8, almost 9

Grade: 2nd

Future plans: In 11 years, Trey plans to attend Southern Methodist University and play football for the Mustangs

Occupation: Undecided

On the way to church this morning, Trey told me that he had 10 years of school left and the rest of the conversation went as shown above.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Bummed and Bored

I really have nothing interesting to blog about. No themes or excitement. I am blogging just to be blogging. I am bummed and bored. And you know what they say, misery loves company.

Why am I bummed, you might want to know. I don't know. Nothing in particular. It's just one of those days where it takes too much effort not to be. Have you ever had one of those days? We left the house at 8:45 this morning and got home at 4:00. Trey had a basketball game at 9:00, then we went to Wal-Mart to get some birthday gifts and a baby gift. We left Wal-Mart, ran through McDonalds and then went to Mamaw's. My cousin Matthew and his girlfriend were coming over with their new baby, who will be called Junior. He is such a cute baby. But no, it does not make me want another one. We left there to go to Clayson's batting practice from 12:00 to 1:00 and went back to Mamaw's to visit before having to go to Trey's last basketball game at 2:00. Back to the gym then back to Mamaw's where I was in a rush to get Clayson and Ashlyn and get home. Papaw had his projector fixed so they wanted us to watch an old film of my mom when she was a baby. It was neat to see and I wanted so many things that they used to have in my new house. Vintage and meaningful. I'll save that conversation with them for another day. I was ready to get home.

We get home and I attempt to clean out the car which is a pile of laundry from the boys shedding their outerwear as soon as they get in the car. I put the sheets in the dryer and the car clothes in the washer. Trey wants to finish the game of pool that he and Clayson started this morning, Clayson doesn't want to because Trey never wants to play with him. Argue, fuss and fight. Ashlyn is mad because I went to Wal-Mart and did not get any string cheese. I get out the cherry cheese cake and finish it off with a Dr. Pepper. Trey says we need more Golden Crisp cereal. Yes, I took my medicine - thankfully.

I want to think about the house but Jared does not get in a hurry to make decisions on decor. We went to Home Depot last night to browse around after a disgusting dinner at Pasados. Jared has the flu. We looked at appliances and he was a little enthused about those but the bathroom sinks, doors, lighting and paint were of no interest to him. On the other hand, this is what I like to think about. He walks around silently looking and I have no idea what he is thinking. I grabbed some paint colors that I have been considering but have not been in the mood to look at them since. It's just so overwhelming. I know Jared is having to do all of the behind the scenes work and I am thankful that he has the time and skill to do this. I am just ready to make some decisions on the interior design. Now I know why Cathy Clugston wanted to do this for a living.

We leave for Disney World in nine days and I am trying to get excited about that. I look forward to going but just can't think about all I will need to do to prepare for this. So yes, I am bummed but I should not be bored. Being bummed makes me not want to do anything but sit on the couch, get on the internet and listen to the TV. And see what else I can finish off in the refrigerator.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Miss Davis

As I was laying on the couch this evening, trying to stay awake during American Idol, Ashlyn brought Emma, Brittany and Arron downstairs. These are normally her babies but tonight they were her students. Arron got spankins for sleeping during her lesson. Then they all got their hand stamped for being good, even Arron. Ashlyn leaned them all the babies up against me and she became their music teacher. She went and got a sheet of notebook paper, wrote something on it and began singing, "I'm a little cowboy....", to the tune of "I'm a little teapot". She said that she could hear Arron and Brittany singing but she could not hear Emma. She wanted to hear all of them. Class was over and it was time for them to go home so Brittany, Emma and Arron were lined up on the stairs and had to wait until she called their name for them to go.

This was the first time that I witnessed Ashlyn playing school. It brought back such great memories. It made me smile because she was so serious and I remember how involved I always got in my pretending. It's a world that I hope she stays in for a very long time.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Lists are my favorite past time

I love to make lists; grocery lists, to-do lists, honey-do lists and lately I have made a bunch of lists for the new house. Every room has a list and every different type of labor has a list. And, I usually don't write them just once. Now I have decided to make a blogging list of things that come to mind and things that have been going on.

1.) The Reading TAKS test has come and gone. I hope, for my teaching partner's sake, that the students did well. They were well-behaved to have sat from 9:15 - 2:00, with only one 45 minute break. This is usually the class that cannot behave for 15 minutes. I would like to think that they "stepped up" today and took learning and testing serious.

2.) Hillary Clinton won the Texas primary. I have never voted democratic before and it was a little odd to be on that side but between our lunch room chats and friend to friend chats, I think the reverse psychology paid off yesterday. The voting officials assured me that I could vote Republican in the November election. I almost wanted to go to the caucus to see what that was all about. But, my bed was calling my name. I did catch Mike Huckabee's concession speech and was "wowed" by him and his use of scripture and heroic men as a means of walking away a winner even though he lost. I hope to see him on the ballot again in four years.

3.) Jared took everything to the bank and we are scheduled to close on our interim loan on March 14th. This means we will be starting by the end of this month. I am not oblivious to the fact that things with the bank and closings don't always stay on schedule. I just hope that when I get back from Spring Break, there is a big 'ol piece of concrete waiting to be made into a house. I am ready to mark some things off of my lists :0)

4.) The kids are testing Jared and I. Clayson has an attitude problem. It is a little concerning that if he is this mouthy at ten, what will he be like as a teenager? Soon, we will have a room to send him to. He is a man in a kid's body most of the time. Trey is trying out bad words but claims that he doesn't know they are bad. A little back door burning let's him know that he better not say these things again. He got in trouble at school today for holding his tongue and saying six - try it and you'll see why he got in trouble. He also got in trouble at home. Our motto is that if you get in trouble at school you are in big trouble at home. Ashlyn seems to have the colic again. She is crabby - whining, yelling, talking back - every single night at about the same time. Too bad mylecon can't cure these pre-kindergarten moods.

5.) Speaking of kindergarten, I just got word that the Kindergarten Roundup is April 1st. It hit me. My baby girl is really growing up and I can't do anything about it. I am not ready for this. That's all I need to say for now.

6.) We had a good weekend. Saturday I got to keep the girls; Alex, Anna and little Ava. It is so funny to see them play together. It was from one thing to the next. They wanted to try it all. Their favorite thing was riding the bad boy buggy with Clayson out to see the sheep and around the land. They rode Ashlyn's scooter, which she had a real hard time sharing. Having brothers, she is not used to having someone want to play with her stuff. They played, they danced, they posed for pictures and they had a picnic. Ava hung out with me. She played with cups and as long as she had a little snack I could keep her happy inside. Otherwise, she wanted to be outside with the big girls.

Saturday afternoon Jennifer, Allison and I loaded up the four girls and Ross and headed to Rockwall. The girls went to a preschool classmate's birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese. Word to the wise, don't have birthday parties or even plan to go here on a Saturday afternoon. It was wall to wall kids and parents and chaos just trying to keep up with the ones we had. After cake, presents and a headache we went to the harbor to eat. When we decided to valet park, it was like the clown car at the circus when we all piled out! We started off at one place to eat and me, miss picky, did not like anything so we went to Ruby Tuesdays and waited by the lake. We found the perfect table, requested it and they gave it to someone else. Darn. We had to wait longer. It is such a beautiful place to wait. It felt like we were on vacation - because of the location and maybe the exhaustion. We finally got seated and let the girls sit at their own table. As long as we kept them loaded up with grapes they were good. We only ran off two people that we know of. We ended the Saturday with a rejuvenated friendship between us and the little friends.