Friday, October 31, 2008

rockin' the block

Halloween is my least favorite holiday. Not because I think it is satanic but maybe in part because I am a little lazy. There is never a time that I look forward to walking around the block. This year it was different and I might even look forward to it in 2009. Ashlyn and I, (the boys are past the age of trick-or-treating), went up on the hill to be with our very best friends. We usually go to my mom's neighborhood but she was planning to be out of town so we made alternate plans and it was so much fun.

Here are our A girls all dressed up like Hannah Montana. We have the dancer, the concert and the Miley version. Just like their costumes, they all have unique personalities. Alex is sensitive, Ashlyn is loud and Anna is motherly.

They could not wait to say " trick-or-treat, smell my feet, give me something good to eat. If you don't, I don't care, I'll pull down your underwear. We really tried to discourage this and just say trick-or-treat and thank you.

These just might be John McCain and Sarah Palin's littlest supporters.

After a serenade by Elvis, Ashlyn firmly decided that she was voting for Elvis AND McCain.

The little friends also joined us on this candy capturing adventure. Little A taste tested along the way and R was so sticky by the time we headed back home the wrappers were sticking to his hands.

When we got back to Jen-Jen's house we washed up and enjoyed pizza for dinner. There was a group bath and brownies for dessert. At one point R was lost and found (in his sis' room with the door locked) and Ashlyn was as white as a ghost for reasons unknown. It is always eventful with the girls and the brother and it made our Halloween a special treat :0)

Sunday, October 26, 2008

daddy's girl

9:13 a.m. The phone is ringing but I am still in bed.


9:15 a.m. The phone is ringing again, Ashlyn manages to find it and answer it. She is trying to tell her Mimi a story but she is interrupted and is told to give me the phone. In a voice of panic my mom tells me that my dad was having chest pains and is being taken to Baylor by ambulance with Jared on board.


9:16 a.m. I am speechless. I am worried. I am scared. I am sad. I need my dad. I pray.


9:17 a.m. I get up and call Jared. Jared has the same quivery voice as my mom. This is when I know that things are not good. Nobody is calling it a heart attack but I know that is what is going on. It breaks my own heart. I need my dad. I think about our last conversation and a flood of memories come over me.


There are four kids in the house because I was babysitting a friend's little boy. I tell my boys to shower and get ready, I shower and put the little ones in the bathtub while I get ready. Things seem to be in slow motion and there are a lot of loose ends to tie up - the boys are going with a friends husband, Ashlyn has a birthday party to go to and I am making arrangements to drop off Jase. In the meantime I am in touch with my mom, my brother and friends.


10:40 a.m. I leave the house and go to my mom's to get something she needs. I notice a jar of mine and my dad's favorite pickles sitting on the cabinet and it makes me smile. I take my kids to Crandall. I stop to get gas. I head to Dallas. On my way my mom calls to tell me that my dad has already had the procedure - they put a stint in an artery that was 100% clogged - and he is doing great. A wave of relief comes over and I don't forget to thank my Heavenly father for sparing my dad's life.


11:45 a.m. I finally make it to the hospital, find the right building, the right floor and the right waiting room. There are so many of my mom's friends here and my grandparents and aunt. They tell me how good my dad looks and Patti shows me the way to his room. I see my daddy. He does look good with just a few monitors, machines and oxygen. He takes my hand. I love my daddy and I am thankful I have been given this opportunity to tell him that I love him. I ask him if he had pickles for breakfast and he tells me that he drank some juice :) I knew it!! I am just like him. His only complaint is that he is hungry but at least he is able to watch the Cowboy game.


As I sit here in this waiting room surrounded by friends and family I realize the importance of a friend, the bond of a family and how precious life truly is.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

sunshine after the rain

I know you have all heard the term - when it rains, it pours. Well, it has poured at our house all week. The computer issues. The propane gas running out after only two months (and I don't cook that often). A leak in the gas line and bad valves on the tank (a more reasonable explanation as to why the gas has run out). A water leak in the front yard. Sheep getting out. The gate battery going dead. Jared threatening to throw away things I have not brought inside from the shop to the new house since the move.
I won't bore you with the details as I did with my laptop story. Everyday this past week brought a new challenge but we conquered them all - well, almost. The propane tank still has to be fixed. I'm hoping that happens early next week because breakfast for dinner sure sounds good and you can't cook pancakes and eggs without the stove. I am very fortunate to have a husband who can do/fix just about anything. But he claims that he does not have room to work in the shop until I get the rest of the boxes/stuff out of his shop. That is my goal for the week. I can't wait to rummage through spider webs and get things cleaned off to bring into the house. It's the stuff that you don't unpack until you need and I haven't needed it. As soon as he throws it away it will be a necessity. I will finish moving, I will finish moving, I will finish moving...
The kids have had a good week. Trey - what can I say about Trey. He's not very active, easy to please and not involved in anything at this time. TV time makes for a great night for him. Clayson got a Sonic gift card from his coach for playing such a great football game last weekend. He has found out what it was like to get picked on by older boys and even boys that claim to be his friend. I told him if he would just treat those boys like he treats his brother they would leave him alone. Both of the boys are hunting this weekend since it is youth weekend. Ashlyn cheered at the 9th grade half-time. She loves it and the attention she gets from the cheerleaders. She went to a spa birthday party last night and believe it or not, her favorite part was getting bit by the birthday girl's hamster. Rodents love to bite her. I hesitate to write this but one night this week she told me that she wanted to wear her dress and her retards to school. Jared and I looked at each other and laughed knowing that she meant leotards.
Halloween is upon us and at this point I have one Hannah Montana and two boys who are non-participants. We will be carving pumpkins this week and attending festivals. It is red ribbon week so we will have some freedom of dress each day. That's exciting.
I am thankful for a happy ending to the week of minor catastrophes and look forward to things going right and lots of good candy next week.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

internet interrupted

Who knew how much the internet really impacted my life. The past 5 days have been a reality check for me with some irrational decisions along the way - many trips to Best Buy, many phone calls to the Geek Squad and Acer, frustrations beyond my control.
Last Thursday my new laptop screen cracked internally - no idea how. This crack caused the LCD stuff to bleed and the screen was unviewable with lines and a gray area. I got on the phone, you would have thought it was a medical emergency and the Geek Squad was my 9-1-1. They diagnosed it as a cracked screen and this was not covered under the manufacture warranty. Friday I continued making phone calls and finally made it up to Best Buy on Saturday. One look at my product and in so many words, they told me I was screwed and the cheapest route would be to buy a new laptop. I have only had that one for TWENTY days and there was nothing they would do about it. The luck. I went back to Best Buy Saturday night to argue with the manager and the only advice that she could give me was to buy a screen and just set it up like a desktop. I took her advice and all was well until the profile destroyed itself. Not only can I not see the screen but now there is a software issue. I took the screen back Sunday where I wanted to go postal on them but that is hard to do in your church clothes. The boys and I decided to buy a desktop set and go with that. Got it home, set it up and it won't hook up wirelessly to the internet. Took that back today. I hope they are as frustrated with me and my returns as I am with them and the worthless laptop. I did buy a laptop today and was sure to buy the accidental insurance this time.
I missed being caught up on the blogs, downloading my pictures and the internet. I can't say that I got any more housework or laundry done than normal. I don't know what I did with all my time. Well, yes I do. I spent time in Mesquite and on the dern phone. Thank goodness for the speakerphone option. There was only so much of the elevator music I could take.
Enough of that. It makes me sick.

Here are some Saturday hilights featuring two of my little pirates.

Ashlyn went to cheer clinic and had a great time.

Here we are at Clayson's game - with the sun in our eyes.

Clayson finally got his hands on the ball on the kickoff return.

And here is some random fall fun.

Align Left

He's sure to sneak up on some big ol' bucks with a face like that.

Our littlest punkin'

It's been real and it's been fun but it hasn't been real fun...

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

October 15th

Another year older, another year wiser... Cliche, I know, but I have to agree with this statement because I know much more now than I did back in the day. Not that there is anything drastic I would have changed but maybe I would have argued with my mom less, spoken to my dad more and befriended my brother. Thank goodness I have been given the opportunity to do these things in my adult years.

Yes, today is my birthday. My birthday is not high on my list of priorities but there are some people I would like to hear "Happy Birthday" from and all but one did not let me down. You guessed it, Jared did not realize that today was my birthday until about 1:00. After fourteen years of being together he knows the date but he did not realize that today was the 15th. He thought it was the 14th. He made up for my temporary hurt feelings by offering to take me out to dinner. For once, I did not want to go out. I wanted grilled hamburgers and bbq chips. He gave me the best birthday present ever, (this is how I know I am getting old), he stopped at Wal-Mart and got the two things I needed - bread and milk - along with the ingredients to make the burgers. I just hate having to go get groceries so him doing this was such a relief. Shout out to Jared for going to Wal-Mart, making me dinner and for the clock to hang above the kitchen window.

My students were so sweet to bring me gifts and cards. They showed me some love today. I'll have snacks, drinks, pickles, journals and candles to satisfy me for a long time. They're the sweetest.

I got the nice comments on myspace, the voicemail, and the text from my brother who told me I was only seven years away from forty. Yep, I'm headed right up that hill but am so glad I have such great friends to make the journey with me.

Thirty-three holds special meaning to me because of a #33 I once knew and loved. I'll enjoy being that number all year long.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

fall fun

Today was a big day. It was a day for celebrating birthdays and we had the event at my house. Besides bunco (right after we moved in), this is the first gathering we have had in the new house. Many of the family members had not seen the house so we were excited to have them over and enjoy the comfort of our home. I cleaned my heart out last night and finished with the steam mopping this morning. It was time well spent.

The family started arriving around 12:30 and when everyone was here, there were 23 people in the house. We all seemed comfortable on the sofas, in the recliner, on the bar stools and in the patio furniture. Lunch was chili pie or chili dogs with all the fixins. My dad thought I should have supplied alka-selzer for dessert. Instead, we had banana pudding, pink stuff (my Granny and Ed's specialty that all the kids love), chocolate cake, pineapple cake and banana nut bread. If anyone left hungry it was their own fault. Some went on for round two later in the afternoon - but I won't mention any names :)

The kids - there were 6 - rode around the pasture, played with silly string, threw rocks and sticks in the pond and enjoyed a special treat. The treat was caramel apples. (Shout out to Jennifer and Diane for this idea.) I made the apples and after lunch we went out to let the kids enjoy them and got some pretty cute pictures. Ashlyn can't be my child. She picked all the caramel off and just ate the apple. What a waste...

So, here is our fun fall day in pictures.

We are blessed.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Hips & Lips

This coming from a kindergartener was quite amusing. Last week Ashlyn told me that her name got put into the "good news" bucket for hips and lips. What? She told me that when they walk down the hall, they put one finger over their lips and their other hand on their hips. Knowing Ashlyn, I am sure she does this quite well and probably even looks forward to it.

Last night, she drew a picture of herself doing the hips and lips and I wanted to use my bragging rights and show it to you.

Isn't that cute?! She took it to her teacher today but I hope to get it back eventually. Please note: my daughter does not get ANY of this talent from her mama but her daddy and his family are extremely talented when it comes to drawing, painting, etc. Yesterday she went to the book store with her Nana and Pop and chose a drawing book as her one thing to get. She sat in bed and drew her heart out last night.

One more Ashlyn story to share from her music teacher. Every Tuesday I ask Ms. Hoffman how Ashlyn was - one day she cried when she got chosen to do something but she must have been in the game today because she sang a Halloween song, that her Aunt Patty made up, in front of her class. Ms. Hoffman told her it was good but Ashlyn told her she wasn't finished and then went on to sing the rest. Then, she wanted the class to sing it and Ms. Hoffman told her that they might not know it yet. Ashlyn said (with a sassy- but not disrespectful - attitude I'm sure) - I sang it twice. I see teaching in her future...

That's my blog and I am sticking to it! Hope your week is going good and fast. I am looking forward to the cool weather sticking around :)

Sunday, October 5, 2008

At least I had the weekend

Well, I have had a nice long weekend. I took Friday off and the three days have been nice and filled with fun. Throughout the weekend I have had some wonderings, an odd occurence, shopping frenzies, football, a night out and graded a whole lot of papers. I consider it a highly productive weekend - even though the house did not get cleaned, only straightened. Maybe it was more "funductive". The family is all coming over next weekend so I figure that I'll be cleaning all week, why start now when I have so many other things that I would rather be doing?!
Here are some weekend hilights and tidbits:

Friday morning, I went to the weekly assembly at Crandall Elementary School. Here they have a class perform, pledges and announcements, winners drawn from the "Good News" bucket and the birthday twist. Clayson and Trey never participated in this but as you will see in pictures, Ashlyn was all involved!

From the assembly, I headed out to First Monday for some impulse shopping. I get so overwhelmed when looking at all of the stuff that I cannot even focus on what I had in mind. I saw so many people carrying things around and I wanted to ask them what they planned on doing with certain things or how they were going to use it. I am not interior decorating crafty. I need to see it so I can copy the idea. There was a detox booth next to a chips and dip booth next to a craft booth. Random for sure. This randomness causes me to lose my train of thought. When I was leaving a woman followed me to my self-created parking spot and told me that she was about to ask the most odd question I had ever been asked - and she wasn't kidding. She asked if I would mind her slipping into my back seat to try on some jeans. What?! And, I could not come up with an excuse fast enough to tell her no! So, this lady gets in my back seat and tries on her Seven jeans - I drink my coke and eat my cinnamon pecans. Then, she wants fashion advice. You have got to be kidding me. And, she tries on a second pair. I was in shock with the whole situation. Those that know me know what I must have been thinking. I finally escaped the dressing room atmosphere and headed to pick up Ashlyn from school. She was highly disappointed that I picked her up and not Mamaw and Papaw - we don't have ice cream at our house, she said.

Friday night we all five went to Roadhouse. I dared my family to turn me down again. Next time, I won't force the issue. Feeding three boys that all eat like men is too much for my budget. I thought that was what the rolls and butter were for - to fill you up so you're not so hungry. We should have eaten more rolls before placing an order. I think the 32 ounce steak was ordered in their prime of hunger.

Saturday, I spent the morning washing sheets and straightening up before heading to Mesquite for more retail therapy. I was on a fall decorating / good buys extravaganza and found some cute stuff. I am excited about buying the book, Fireproof, to read before seeing the movie. (Jennifer, I know you'll want to borrow this one.) After shopping and a brief nacho lunch at El Fenix, it was off to Clayson's football game. No, he still isn't running the ball but he is one heck of a safety on defense :0) Here are some pictures to prove it.

From football to friends. I got home, straightened again, did a little more laundry and then got ready for a girl's night out in Terrell. I just can't hang like I used to. I was the first to leave. Jared didn't go because he hurt his leg and was sick so he ended up staying home. It was some good country music, interesting conversation and active line dancing. Here are pictures from the GNO.

Sunday we slept in. (I feel guilty, don't worry). The boys went to help my dad and I put Ashlyn on the back porch for her acorn crafts. I put off and put off going to Wal-Mart until it came down to not having make-up for work tomorrow so I knew I would have to face the crowd and the same people on every aisle because having make-up is a must. I wanted today to be a no make-up day but I ended up having to get ready and go to the dreaded superstore. Ashlyn and I came and went from there just in time to settle in for the game. I have been grading papers ever since.

Now, I am off to bed.

p.s. I am so frustrated with the blog posting, I have no control of how it looks. The preview is not dependable. So, I will post this and then make changes. Does anyone else face this problem of unwanted spaces and such?!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

pedicures and such

This week has been totally rad. Yes, I am product of the 80's. Like, I have had so much free time. And the 90's.

Ok, getting real. I have realized that I am obsessed about blogging, always looking for something to write and something to read. I have decided to write about my week - you know, the radness of it.

Sunday was a good day. I got my new laptop because my old one died. I got the house cleaning done and the laundry washed, dried and put up. We had steaks on the grill and baked potatoes during the Cowboy game (which was not so rad) and then I just layed around the rest of the day. I am stingy with my Sundays. Church is the only place I want to go. I spend the rest of the Sabbath resting. It's necessary.

I have had some gracious grandparents take their grandkids all three evenings this week - leaving me to have some time to do what I like to do and what I need to do. Monday afternoons the kids go to their Nana and Pop's to spend time and eat dinner. While they were there this week, I did absolutely nothing. Jared was at the station so I completely chilled out. To the point that I was having to pack Ashlyn's lunch in a rush the next morning (instead of in my free time).

Last night, Ashlyn and Trey went to Mimi and Pawpaw's and Clayson and Jared went to football practice for over two hours. I used this time to get into the loft and bring down the fall decorations. I sorted through it and put up some pumpkins and Halloween stuff here and there. I lit a pumpkin spice candle to enhance the fall atmosphere. Ah, the power of orange.

Tonight I had made plans to go out to dinner. Jared is a homebody and likes to always stick around but I called him at lunch and said let's go to dinner tonight - it's been a long time. He agreed and I told the kids after school that we would be going to eat, possibly at Roadhouse. Clayson decided that he wanted to invite a friend and go to church with Mimi. Ashlyn also decided to go to church. My dinner bill was slowly shrinking. As we were getting ready, Trey decided that he wasn't hungry (maybe after two brownies) and that he wanted to go to church. Looked as if it would be a date night until Jared opted out, too. I was cranky at this point. Jared did not say he wouldn't go - he just would not make a decision - where to go and whether to go at all. I took it upon myself to count him out. (We all know that when a man is hungry he can decide or agree on where to go eat - I was getting little to no response from him.) So, I was talking to Allison and she said that she was up to having dinner as long as it was mexican. I was game - it beat the leftovers I was going to have to resort to. We went to eat and I enjoyed her little A girls and some good conversation. We strolled down to Payless and I realized that if I had two cute girls I would be in debt forever. She got some cute shoes for little A. From there, I had time for a pedicure and enjoyed all the effects of the hot, bubbling water and the brown polish. I got home with forty minutes to spare before the kids got home from church.

I have enjoyed my week. I feel rested and vibrant. I was given some much needed time to recuperate from long days at work and the kids always enjoy the lovin' they get when they are with the grandparents.

Coming soon: things i have learned :)