Welcome to Kelly Martin's Blog! Here I share my stories from my blessed life as a wife to a super-talented man, Jason, mom to my precious kids, Lucy, Jack, and Connor, and friend to my amazing girlfriends who inspire me every day!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Awesome Sale!

I'm always up for a great bargain, and expressionery.com is currently having a huge clearance blowout- 60% off the already low clearance price, and it's free shipping! ( I sound like a tv commercial ;-)

Anyhow, I got three super cute gifts (one for me :-) for $13 and change...not a bad way to spend some extra tutoring money.


Monkey 'Pee', monkey do

Funny learning experience at the Pediatrician's today...

I took Lucy to the doctor because after going to the bathroom last night (she's totally got the potty thing down by the way! AWESOME!) she announced that it made her v. hurt. Then, this morning, she refused to go again, and made a huge scene about not wanting to go -- odd behavior, as she's been so happy to go the last week or two while she's been potty training.

The pediatrician's office is next door to her dentist, which is where we were this morning for her teeth cleaning/checkup, so I called to see if they'd take her, for I was pretty sure we're dealing with a urinary tract infection. Poor girl-just as she learns to pee in the potty like a big girl, this happens! :-(

So, we hurry in (notice my word choice of "hurry"? 'hurry' you may be asking...how can you hurry anywhere with two kids in tow? I could only 'hurry' because Tiffany was kind enough to watch Jack so I could take Lucy to the dentist and focus just on her-HUGE thanks, Tiffany!)

Of course Dr. Susan needs her to pee in a cup. Right, Lucy who's adamantly REFUSING to pee. How can I make this happen???? Fortunately, I had some sweet tarts in my purse, so I donned the biggest grin I could, hiked up my voice a few notches, and trotted Lucy into the bathroom on my hip, baiting her..."Look what I've got! Some sweet tarts for a game we're going to play."

Lucy: "Game?!?!?!" "Sweet tarts!?!?!?"

Me: thinking, okay, got her interest..."Yes, we're going to play a game where we try to get our pee into this cup (lots of theatrics as I reveal a plastic cup with green lid)-awesome, right?"

Lucy: blank stare

Me: decides the sweet tarts might be more appealing to Lucy if they were POURED out of the bag so she could see all those little morsels ripe for the taking.

Lucy: watches the sweet tarts spill over the counter (Damn! Wait, it's okay...I have breath mints in my purse-crisis averted!)

Me: "Okay, Lucy, I'm going to put you up on the potty, and I want you to let your pee pee out and I'm going to catch it in this cup! (Lets me put her up on the toilet seat, but then covers her v. with her hands and begins wailing, "NOOOOOO PEEEEEEE PEEEEEEE, Mama {this "mama" phrase is new, and I much prefer "mommy"} but anyways, we're going downhill and fast).

Lucy: quickly scoots herself off the potty, jumps over my legs (I was sitting on the bathroom floor, legs straddling the darn toilet so I could hopefully catch this elusive urine! throws open the bathroom door, and runs BARE-ASSED into the hallway.

Okay, time to regroup (Thank God Jack is not here with me!)

I discover my half-naked daughter at the end of the hallway, near the waiting room. I scoop her up and we walk to the nurses station so I can get another pee cup -- a pee cup for yours truly.

Me: "Okay Lucy...new game: who can put more pee pee in the cup. I have my own cup I'm going to pee in, and you have your cup for you to pee in. Let's see who can get more pee. I'll go first."

Lucy: face lights up, "Okay!"

Me: okay, I think I've got another chance here, please God let this work!

And it did...I was a big girl and put lots of pee pee in my cup, and then Lucy happily and willingly did the same.

We almost had another problem when Lucy wanted me to put my cup in the magic wall door along with hers, but I was able to distract her with a breath mint while I tossed my very full cup of pee in the trash ;-)

And this time when she returned to the hallway to walk back to our room, her cute little butt cheeks weren't jiggling around for the world to see...

Kids sure do imitate lots of things we do and say; use it to your advantage when necessary :-)

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Playing Around

While we were in Atlanta last weekend, we joined my college roomate, Laura, and her two boys, Grant and Jack, for some fun at Catch Air. It's like the indoor kid playground in Huntsville, Kidventure, but WAY better -- LOTS more for the kids to play with and on.

Jack and Lucy had a ball (no pun intended ;-)

Grant and Lucy building towers

Jack loved the ball pit!

Bump, woops! :-)

Thursday, November 26, 2009

My Thanksgiving List

in no particular order

1. my beautiful babies jack and lucy; being their mom is the greatest blessing i could ever receive
2. jason and the strength, encouragement, acceptance, and love i receive from him
3. my Lord and savior, Jesus Christ
4. Fall and the fun that usually comes with: great weather, fun football games
5. jodi picoult books
6. outback cheese fries
7. my three years teaching at randolph
8. my family-immediate and extended...the good, the bad, and the ugly, there is always something to be learned.
9. Fiskar scissors
10. my girlfriends
11. Spanx
12. comfy pants
13. bubble baths with a good glass of wine
14. my mom's awesome xmas gift many years ago of a family ski trip to CO...it would have been so sad if i never got to experience how fun skiing is
15. being free of disabilities
16. generous parents
17. my awesome mattress-seriously, EVERY night i look forward to sleeping on it
18. my dog, toby
19. baby's breathing when they sleep
20. Food Network
21. my bunco group and how Molly's antics usually leave my sides hurting from laughing so hard
22. Sam Adams
23. Terrame
24. being able to go to college
25. digital editing software
26. ice cream cakes
27. my inclination towards crafty things
28. epidurals
29. that so many of my friends are going to be mommies soon
30. Shel Silverstein poems

and if i had more time (and if this computer hadn't already died unexpectedly and lost this list once before), i'd keep going, but it's time to tuck lucy and jack into bed, and THAT is a favorite part of my day -- for more than one reason ;-)

happy thanksgiving everyone!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Little Engineer

Lady found a visitor in her bed this morning, quite early...Lucy crawled in at 5:50am my mom told me-ouch!  Glad she preferred lady to me this morning-I really enjoyed sleeping in until Jack woke up at 8:30.

Anyhow, as the rest of us were rummaging around the kitchen at a much more decent hour, my mom told us a story about something Lucy said that had us so tickled.

My mom was making pancakes for Lucy.  A simple dialogue ensued...

"Lucy, do you want your pancakes cut into squares?"  

To which Lucy answered "No, I'd like trapezoids."


Switching gears, if you haven't heard the story yet about the global warming emails that were exposed after a hacker broke into the email accounts, check this out -- Jason's all riled up about it.  Now, I hardly ever dabble in political conversation, but this was pretty interesting...

I wish you all a wonderful Thanksgiving!  I am certainly grateful for all of my wonderful friends and family!  Love you all!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Fallen Idol

Well, turns out I will NOT be running away with David Cook after all, and not because he turned me down.  Rather, I didn't feel compelled to ask him if he would  ;-)

If you know me and have been in my presence anytime in the last month, then you probably witnessed my excitement in anticipation of last night's concert and "meet and greet" with David Cook (winner of American Idol two seasons ago).  I LOVED him (stress the past tense form of the verb).  

His concert was okay, certainly a lively show, but the meet and greet with him was so disappointing, horribly tenebrific!  I've been lucky enough to be able to meet lots of singers and bands growing up and even from time to time as an adult (thanks Dad!), and this ranks as the worst one EVER!  

Here's how it went down... there were about fifteen of us who were ushered silently into a front room in the Tabernacle (where the show was), and eventually David Cook and the other band members entered the room.  Without so much as an acknowledgement of the fans that were gathered in this room-not even the utterance of a "hello" or "glad you guys are here" or at the very least a "thanks for coming", they stood in front of the fireplace against the wall and his band manager started pointing at people and indicating they should stand in front of the band while he took a picture.  

Cook offered some "hellos" once or twice to people as they walked up to him, but that was it!  The group of us sat around uncomfortably in the still and quiet room until someone finally got up and approached the band with a sharpie and article of clothing to be signed.  Others followed suit, including me, as I stupidly handed the cd cover from their album to the band guy standing at the end of the line.  My square little paper was passed down the line, silently signed by each person and handed back to to me.  It was made quite clear that this pathetic little meet and greet was done when the band manager announced and gestured toward the door, "You can leave through this door."  Thanks...

I left deflated, all my nervousness and bundled energy that had built up the entire day- no make that the entire month beforehand-left my body in a mere "sheesh" as my friend and I made our way to the Ladies Room.  "Lame, lame, lame!" I vented to Laura.  

Now I was just mad...I get few precious hours away from my kids, time to hang out with girlfriends, and I have to stomach that my precious time (had to be there two hours before show time for this event) was just wasted.  I would have much rather gone out to some great restaurant with Laura and enjoyed a few martinis and shown up for the musical part of the evening.

But the bright side, and there IS one, was that both opening bands were awesome!  My favorite music of the whole night came from the band "The Script."  Lead singer had a very unique voice.  Cool show.  And Cook did do a fun cover of the song, Hot for Teacher.  And even though I was no longer in love with the American Idol winner, I did swoon a bit when I closed my eyes and just listened to his voice as he sang.  I do love his voice...

And hey, a night out with a good friend listening to a concert-really any concert-is always a fun time.  Even if the beers are $10 a pop...

Monday, November 23, 2009

At Papa 'n Lady's house in Atlanta

Hi, it's Jack! I'm writing because my mom is too excited to type today-she's meeting some singer named David Cook tonight and she's off doing her hair or something...

I'm in Atlanta at the g'parents house, and having a great time getting into all kinds of fun, new things...check it out:

Daddy's good friends Chris & Emily and their super cute new baby, Elise, came over to visit on Saturday night. She sure was really beautiful...I was considered breaking up with my girlfriend, Claire so I could ask out Elise, but then I decided a long-distance relationship would be too difficult to manage being that I can't drive yet...

Here are the Daddies with their daughters :-)

Found something new-STAIRS!- and I LOVE climbing on them!

Look! I can even do it with one foot!

Big Sister went to see some horses on Lady's friend's land...

but they scared her and she didn't like it very much.

I spend a lot of time playing in Lady's kitchen drawers and pulling off the window dividers. Rocky's food bowls are fun to dig in, and once I even managed to sneak away without anyone noticing. It was a good ten minutes or so before anyone realized it! I was playing in Lady and Papa's bathroom, trying to get in the shower. Mommy felt terrible for forgetting about me (again!)...I think we're heading out for lunch soon, which is good, because it's already been a full 45 minutes since I last ate, and I'm hungry.

Oh, and Lucy told me to tell everyone that she's still accident-free, and using the potty like a big girl without any trouble! I don't understand why everyone gets really excited and claps every time she goes "potty," but whatever, I guess I 'll learn about that soon enough. She's really proud of herself, and so are mommy and daddy!

Well, my tiny fingers are tired, and I'm itching to get into something else new that I'm not supposed to...catch ya' later!


Friday, November 20, 2009

Old Macdonald had a donkey, an emu, a bunny, and a porcupine, E-I-E-I-O

Now that you have that lovely tune stuck in your head, it will provide nice background music for today's post ;-)

We headed out to Old Macdonald's Petting Zoo this morning with Tiffany and her girls as well as her friend, Lindsey and her two kids who were visiting from Illinois. As soon as we arrived, the kids immediately darted off to the play area where old Little Tykes Cozy Coupes and sun-faded playhouses sat waiting patiently. Of course... we pay to see the animals, and they want to play with the old, plastic toys...

After some prompting, we managed to get the kids wandering near a row of small goats and one very loud donkey who showed us just what the notorious "hee-haw" donkey call actually sounds like. It was pretty funny, and it definitely freaked out the kiddos. On to the safer area where the bunnies were located. Except Jack just tried to grab them, so they scurried away from anyone approaching. We saw a porcupine, which was pretty neat as well as the pigeons with "lace" feathers-very cool. The mommy deer and her baby were sweet, and the kids spent a while feeding those two. And then we ended our trip at the play area, of course.

But my favorite part of the trip was when Lucy went pee -- in Tiffany's portable potty which she set up in her trunk (very cool product, see here). One would think a little girl just learning how to do her business might be a little freaked out by the surroundings, but Lucy dropped her drawers and did her business without any hesitation. It's been another accident-free day and she even pooped in order to get a smore for dessert tonight :-)

This is so "jack"

He found a friend...

And here's Jack scaling the fence around the donkey cage...(just kidding, although that wouldn't have surprised me all that much ;-)

And just for fun, here's a picture from our visit last Fall when it was just me and my little girl...so small!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

It's a "Pee-utiful" Day

Sorry, I couldn't resist the corny title. Can I just tell you how stinkin' excited I am! Lucy announced yesterday afternoon that she wants to wear her big girl panties, and she has been accident-free since. (Now, she hasn't pooped yet, but she has gone pee three times in the potty. This is a HUGE accomplishment considering a few months ago when we tried this whole PT thing, she only went pee in the toilet TWICE in TWO WEEKS!) So, I'm thrilled!

Audrey prompted this blessed occurrence...she was over here playing (and fighting :-) with Lucy while her mom, Tiffany, took her other daughter Claire to the doctor. Audrey has been potty-trained for a while now, and back when she first started using the potty, I tried to use it to our advantage, prompting Lucy, "Lucy, don't you want to go potty like Audrey?!?" To which, Lucy loudly and without hesitation replied an indifferent, "No..." Darn! Guess that wouldn't work...

Guess it wasn't quite time to begin potty training. So,a few months later, back around early September, I was positive Lucy was ready. I had read the literature, and I could check off each benchmark that suggested a child was ready. Lucy was two and a half exactly. It wasn't me pushing the issue, according to experts, Lucy was ready. Well, two weeks later, after too many tears (from Lucy and me), too many Elmo panties in the trash, and too many lysol wipes used to clean up messes, I waved the white flag. Lucy had only gone in the potty twice during those interminable fourteen days. So, after crying to the pediatrician (again! :-)and feeling like a huge failure, I did what I SWORE I'd never do... and went back to diapers. This was the first thing I couldn't keep my word on, and it just killed me. But the struggles I had breastfeeding Lucy had taught me a valuable lesson: if a child is not ready or just has their mind set against something, your efforts (no matter how consistent) are futile.

So, we decided January would be a good time to try again. And sure enough, here she is in November telling me she's ready. Awesome!!!!! I'm so proud of her! She's so excited, enthusiastic, and seems to be motivated intrinsically this time-which is so important. It's only day 2, so I don't want to jump the gun, but if Lucy follows in the footsteps of how's she's been in her life thus far, it won't be a surprise if HER making the decision rather than ME makes all the difference in the world.

And this time, I'm not even going to crack open the pages of any potty-training book! We're two smart girls, we know what to do! :-)

Will keep you posted!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Breakfast at Tiffany's (almost)

It may not be Breakfast at Tiffany's, but it's a priceless breakfast here with these two sweeties.

Both of them are on a turkey sausage kick, and Lucy has requested oatmeal every morning for the past two weeks-good thing I have a Costco package of instant oatmeal... :-)

Jack is officially weaned from breastfeeding, and he's two weeks away from turning the big "1"! He did much better than I thought he would, being as though he was such a big eater. He was slightly fussy the first morning I did not nurse him, but never had an issue with it since. He didn't care for the "Next Step" formula I got him to take him through the two weeks until he was one, so we tried whole milk, and he LOVES it! Turns the cup up and chugs-it's quite cute.

Everyone is healthy (finally!), happy, and looking forward to the fun family gatherings we have planned for Thanksgiving (with the Martin's in Oxford, AL) and Christmas (with the Terrana's-my family-in Steamboat, CO).

Monday, November 16, 2009

This and That...well, a lot more "that"...

I'm officially letting myself start my countdown to what may be the next most exciting thing I'll ever do behind meeting my babies and marrying Jason...meeting David Cook!!!!!! One week 'til the concert! I simply will not know what to do with myself when I get to meet him...showing self-control will be tops on the list, of course, but I'll have my friend Laura there to make sure I keep breathing. I know, I know, I'm such a dork...LOL!

Had an AWESOME weekend...weather has been so beautiful, mild, and warm, so we've been outside with the kids a bunch.

My friend April and I went to AAA's teacher-hosted yard sale on Saturday morning, and oh my gosh, I can't tell you how many incredible deals we got! The teachers were having this sale to pay for their copies (awful, isn't it, they have to PAY out of their pockets for copies!), and I scored so many goodies: adorable, in AWESOME condition clothes for Lucy, 5 pieces for $2. There were tons of 3T and 4T clothes, some never worn, and so I stocked up! Bought her a special edition Dora Candy Land for $2, lots of kid books 5 for $2, and a scooter for Lucy for $4. April found some great deals too-my favorite was a super-fun bead track, rollercoaster, twisty thing-y, for 50 CENTS! To Lucy and Jack's fortune, she accidentially left it behind, so I got to bring it to her later that evening, giving Lucy and Jack a few hours to play with a new toy ;-)

And even though AU lost to UGA, it was fun hanging out with the Rainoldi's and the Chasse's on Saturday night, talking baby stuff with the two mommies-to-be (April's having a boy and Laura a girl!), and keeping Jack out of the cats' bowls :-)

Then on Sunday, we heard another awesome message at church, still on the topic of generosity. Jason and I have felt such conviction through this 4-week series, and yesterday we took the first steps toward moving out of the "good intentions" parking space we've been well..., parked in (pun intended), for a while, and it feels awesome to be making decisions and more importantly, changes.

Little bit of back story: Bruce Martin had preached a sermon called "Road Blocks," and it was about the things in life that can often keep us from living more generously. There were so many parts of this sermon that stuck right at my soul, but I'll try to just highlight.

One of his first points was so spot on for the giving situation I'd categorize myself as currently in...Bruce made the point that many people give God the "leftovers." As in, we take the money we earn, figure out all the different ways we want to spend it, and then, if there's anything left, then we'll give that to God. Sometimes we even find excuses for why we can't give anything at all. Or sometimes using the rationale, 'something is better than nothing, right?'

Well, take a look at this...

"Leftovers are not merely inadequate; from God's point of view, they're evil. Let's stop calling it "a busy schedule," or "bills" or "forgetfulness." It's called evil. God is holy. In heaven, there exists a Being who decides whether or not I take another breath. This God deserves excellence, the very best I have. 'But something is better than nothing!' some protest. Really, is it? Does anyone enjoy token praise? I sure don't!"

From Crazy Love, by Francis Chan

Now, I do have to say, I was initially taken aback by the word, "evil". I mean, I don't think it's 'evil' to give less than you could actually give. But, thinking about it more, maybe it's the same difference in us thinking that worrying actually isn't a sin-when it is...anytime we do something we shouldn't do, it's sin.

"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own." -Matthew 6:34

And anyone, believer or not, could find value in these comments that Bruce made in closing:

* You will never change spending habits by good intentions, only by good decisions
* You will never get out of debt by good intentions, only by good decisions
* You will never stop giving God leftovers by good intentions, only by good decisions.

I was hanging on every word by the end of the sermon, an awesome feeling I experience often going to this church, which I love, but more than that, I felt a new conviction that I could no longer stand being a person of "good intentions."

Take this example: It's like, when a family member has hurt my feelings, and I'm upset and they say, "Well, I never MEANT to hurt you..." The hurt doesn't disappear when you find out that didn't mean to... 'Oh, okay, well, since you never MEANT to hurt me, then I'm not hurt." Wish it happened like that, but at least for me, that never makes me feel any better. So enough with my good INTENTIONS, to give more, spend less, make more time for _______, whatever it may be, it's time I turn that energy into making good decisions.

And that brings me to something new Jason and I have decided to do...

So, for Christmas this year, Jason and I are totally changing how we give presents. Our families are both so blessed; we don't have to "want" for much. But there are so many other people far less fortunate that we, dealing with sickness, or disabilities, or a tough lot in life.

Yesterday while Jack and Lucy were blissfully asleep, we did all of our "Christmas Shopping." At home. Amidst budgeting spreadsheets strewn across the desk, and several open tabs searching various charities on the web.

We sat down and first took a hard look at our budget (Well, maybe I should say, Jason explained and I tried to follow along ;-) and made some changes, some sacrifices, so that we can free up more money to give away. I questioned how sincere our current giving to the church was when it didn't really require much sacrificing. I mean, when you think of the sacrifice Jesus made so that I may have life, it really puts things in perspective.

Then, we had so much fun going through our list of gift recipients and finding a charity that would fit their personality and hopefully bring them joy to donate to in their honor. An uncle and aunt that we adore to pieces just lost their family dog this year. So, we chose the Delta Society-a charity that trains and uses dogs to help heal people- to donate to in their honor. It was hard to see the pictures of sweet cuddly dogs, lying at the feet of sick children who were undergoing dialysis or chemotherapy, without tearing up.

When looking for a charity for us, I found a wonderful cause called Make A Child Smile...stay tuned, I want to devote a whole post to bring attention to that cause, for it's wonderful and truly worthwhile.

Because I don't want to totally ruin the surprise for our family-- the fun will be in finding out what charity was chosen particularly for them- (I know of a couple of family members who read this :-), I won't share the other charities we found quite yet.

But, I hope it will warm their hearts, and is more meaningful that any Zaxby's gift card, golf ball pack, or winter sweater that I may have bought them instead.

Friday, November 13, 2009

"All Better"

"I not sick anymore, Mommy; I not sick." Lucy loves saying this today, and yea! it's true! She's been without fever for well over 24 hours now, and she's her usual, bubbly, endearing, and demanding self! :-)

The sick bug not only hit our house, but unfortunately our Atlanta friends', Laura and Brad's, family, who were going to come visit us in Huntsville this weekend. Unfortunately, their son, Jack got sick yesterday :-( So, we're super sad we won't get to see them this weekend.

Hey, for you Huntsville crowd, especially you all that love checking out yard sales like me, the school AAA is having a school-wide yard sale tomorrow 7:30-12:30 where all the teachers are selling items. It's not just school items, either; just whatever they want to get rid of from home.

But, get this...the money the teachers make is going to be used to pay for their COPIES! Yes, you heard me correctly-there is no money available for schools to pay for teachers' copies, so the teachers have to pay to make their own! HOW AWFUL! So, they're joining together and having this huge sale.

Anyway, I'm going to go check it out, let me know if you want to join me! :-)

And speaking of schools, check out this BEAUTIFUL tree at Lucy's school. It was so gorgeous, I had to capture it!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Lucy Update

We have such a wonderful group of family and friends-I truly thank God for that blessing in our lives. Many of you have asked about Lucy and kept her in your prayers, thank you!

We went to the doctor this morning. Strep test was negative, lungs and chest sounded fine, ears were problem-free, but her throat was very red and swollen. Fever has come down to around 101, so that's a huge improvement.

Lucy thrashed about when Dr. Susan was taking a throat culture; we had to restrain her-it was so terrible! I thought she was going to throw up from keeping her jaw shut so tight and crying all at the same time. But, she got a sticker and lollipop when it was over, so hopefully that undid some of the damage :-)

She's on antibiotics now as a precaution, but looks like this is just something that will have to run its course...I'm hoping we're on the downhill slope since this has been going on four days now. And hopefully the prescription will start to help.

Thanks again for keeping Lucy in your thoughts and prayers!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Fingerpainting and Fevers

Lucy's still quite sick, but it's like a lightswitch being flipped-after a very rough night she woke up without a fever and she was in wonderful spirits.

We had a sleepover in her room last night; I slept on her trundle bed, and she thought that was very cool (she's taking her nap on it right now :-)

This morning she had a blast finger painting with Jason who is off for Veteran's Day.

And little Jack was just a doll like always!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Ballerina Bow Holders

Such a fun project! I've seen these at Twice Upon a Time, and wanted it, but you know I would never pay the $40 and up these things go for. Plus, it's so much more fun for me to make things for Lucy!

Armed with our glue guns, fabric, and yards and yards of ribbon and trim, Tiffany and I got together Sunday afternoon to make bow holders for Lucy and Audrey. Aren't the fun!?!

What prompted this specific project is that I totally scored 30 bows for $25 from a lady on Craigslist! Oh yeah! And they're really well made, too. I've got her name and contact info if any of you are looking for affordable bows. In the store, a big bow can cost you $5 and up...that adds up pretty quickly when you're attempting to coordinate hair accessories for cute little outfits :-)

Here's Lucy's:
Here's Audrey's-don't you love the pink flowers!

What else is going on? Poor Lucy is pretty sick-been running a high fever since last night and she's just so out of it today. Very un-Lucy-like. She fell asleep in the car on the way back home from my dentist appt. I can't remember the last time she fell asleep in the car. Well, I shouldn't phrase it quite like that, considering I have a hard time remembering extended family members' names and what I ate for dinner last night. But it's been a long time...Poor baby is feeling pretty rotten. I miss her giggles, and I even kind of miss her shouting at Jack and Toby. It's just no fun when your child is sick :-(

Jack, on the other hand, is super smiley today and had the best time walking around the dentist's office, peeking in rooms and flirting with all the dental hygenists and patients. Lucy kept needing constant reassurance that the dentist wasn't doing anything to her mouth, just mommy's! :-)

It's just past noon, the kids are down, and I get to eat my lunch in total silence! Ahhhhh! Enjoy your day!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Well What d'ya know...

While eating breakfast this morning, I indulged in a favorite activity-reading my Real Simple magazine. (Lucy has her Highlights magazine so she can do what mommy does :-). This is truly a great magazine, and I always find such practical tips (LOVE the section, "New uses for ordinary things"); this month was no different.

Surprisingly, I was able to read more than just two pages before something required my attention elsewhere, and I found so many fun facts and tips.

There was an article about the dishwasher-filled with tips on how to load your dishwasher so you get the most from cleaning it, what the parts of the dishwasher do (not at all interesting to me, but I'm sure my engineer husband would have appreciated it :-), and finally, a part about things you may be surprised that can go in the dishwasher...

Like potatoes (rinse only cycle). Heck ya! I can certainly put this to good use -- every Thanksgiving, well the Thanksgiving meals I cook when we're home, which has only been one to date-last year because Jack was due any day, I love to make Tyler Florence's "Grainy Mashed Potatoes." (recipe) Oh my goodness, they are so delicious and not difficult at all to make! And I hate spending so much time washing the darn potatoes, so this is genius! Stick 'em in the dishwasher!

Other cool things I learned. let's see...oh yeah, the criteria that makes it okay to regift:
1. It's new and has never been opened
2. It's something you would have bought for this person anyway
3. The original giver and new recipient don't know each other at all
4. You've completely rewrapped it.

There were some funny stories about people who have received "regifted" gifts and knew it because the giver was careless. Happened to me once too. My third year teaching, a student gave me a cookbook for Christmas. It's turned out to be my very favorite cookbook because all the recipes are make ahead and bake later style. Anyhoo, about a year after having it, I discovered an sweet message intended for the original recipient (the mother who sent her daughter to school with this book as a gift for me :-). LOL! But, seriously, I don't care one bit. I really enjoyed (and still enjoy) the gift!

Finally, this one's for Barbara, my mother-in-law, who always pays such attention to wrapping her Christmas gifts and spends so much time adorning the gifts with beautiful ribbon and tiny festive accessories. A little ribbon math: take the gift-box length, multiply it by 7, and that's the length of ribbon needed.

Says who? I have no idea, nor do I have the patience when I'm wrapping gifts to actually measure the box and perform mathematical calculations, but there ya go :-)

I'm off to go enjoy the beautiful day the Lord has made! It is beautiful outside and there's a tiny little lady who wants to go swing!

Picture for today: Jason's and my first Thanksgiving together, well as husband and wife (2004). Toby was only 5 months old, and already HUGE! :-)

Friday, November 6, 2009

Playing in the Woods

We've been blessed with another BEAUTIFUL, picture-perfect Fall day today. Jason took the day off and I sent him off to the golf course to get a much-needed break, but before he left this morning, we took the kids to the woods near our house. The trees are peaking with some beautiful colors, and I wanted to see if we could get lucky and get some great photos of our darlings...I LOVE how they turned out! (Wall Project!)

Oh, and finally, I got the best news EVER today (no, I'm not pregnant again, although that would be wonderful news :-)! My dad called and told me the news that I'll get to go backstage and meet David Cook at his concert in Atlanta in a few weeks! OH MY GOODNESS! I know it's silly, but I absolutely LOVE David Cook. I will simply not know what to do with myself when I get to meet him. I'm sure it will involve stumbling over my words and giddy behavior matching that of a thirteen year old! Can't wait-thank you dad, you're the best!

I may just have to whip out some wallet pics of these two beauties! ;-)

Toby was with us running free in the woods; that's who jack is waving at :-)

trademark squinty eyes-that's straight from me :-)

love, love, love!

when did my baby girl grow into a tiny lady?!?

might be my favorite pic of Jack!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

They're like two ladies in a nursing home...

So, the title of the post-that's what Mrs. Debbie told me about Lucy and Audrey when I picked up the girls from school today-LOL! She said all day, these two holler back and forth to each other, "Hey Lucy, whatcha doin?" "Hey Audrey (pronounced, "Orrrrdrey")..." So darn cute, these two.

I love, love, love driving carpool because these two little biddies are so entertaining. From the moment we pick up Audrey, they talk non-stop. Some topics that are discussed every time: the cows in the field, Lucy reminding Audrey that I'm her mommy: "Audrey, that's not your mommy, it's my mommy" love that I'm referred to as 'it', singing songs and dancing-they love dancing to the radio. Audrey in particular gets her groove on.

But today the girls had a dialogue that could have sent me off the road I was laughing so hard...After singing, Audrey kept a little tune going by making a noise that could have been considered by some annoying. And Lucy considered it very annoying, for she scolded Audrey, "No Audrey! Don't do that!" When Audrey chose to continue "singing," Lucy took a stronger tone...

Finally, I hear Lucy shout over her shoulder, "What'd I tell you, Audrey, stop! What'd I tell you, what'd I tell you!"

And this is one of those things where if you were there, your sides would hurt from laughing, but if you've seen these two together, you can picture it in your mind for sure! :-)

And I know she totally got that from me...I've never heard Jason say, "What'd I tell you?" He has so much patience with Lucy, it's wonderful. And I'm pretty patient as well, but I know I've said this many time to Lulu, due to disbelief on my part. I mean, I know Lucy heard me tell her to stop squiggling so I can put her diaper on, why isn't she following my directions kind of thing: "What'd I tell you!?!"

But I know none of you parents out there have ever said anything like that, right? :-) Geez, these kids don't miss a thing! LOL!

Check out the video to see what Tiffany's ride home was like on Tuesday with the girls singing!

*these are older pictures, taken in late summer...

They really do adore each other!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

kids say the darndest things...

So my mom and dad, "Papa & Lady" were in town this past weekend to celebrate Halloween with Jack and Lucy. They love Rosie's-no argument here- so we went there Friday night for some yumminess. Well, on the way home, Lucy chimes in from the back, "Papa, do you like farts?" As Jason tries not to veer off the road, we all sit there a little shocked; but it wasn't long before the laughs escaped. Quickly catching on, Lucy asks again, but this time to Lady, "Lady, do you like farts?"

My mom suggests a new word to Lucy to use in place of "farts" -- "lollipop". This dates back to when I was little and my parents called farts, "lollipops." (They also told me that a vagina was a "tutu" and- my personal favorite- a penis was referred to as "tail." Led to quite a bit of confusion on my part as a child when my dance class wore tutus in ballet class and the position of a tail on an animal was the hind side...but, I digress).

So I pipe up from the front, exclaiming to my mom, "Don't call it a lollipop! That makes no sense! :-) 'Fart' is not a bad word."

Semantics aside, the rest of the ride home was spent giggling at Lucy, who was now fully aware of the spotlight on her and the cause and effect of saying "fart," especially Daddy's reaction (He was so proud! ;-) just kidding) My mom and I kept telling Lucy that no, we don't like farts, but my dad and Jason could not be counted on to teach the same message. Of course. Despite the awkward sounds and sometimes horrific smells that result from farting, most men think it to be one of the funnies bodily functions.

So, if you offer my daughter a lollipop and she farts on cue, now you'll know why!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Halloween Hangover

If only Lucy hadn't discovered so quickly that all it takes to get candy on Halloween is to knock on someone's door, then perhaps I wouldn't feel so full from the candy she "shared" with me :-)

We had a wonderful Halloween weekend! My parents came into town and got to experience all the fun Lucy has at Little Gym, we filled our bellies with Rosie's Friday night, went to a fun Halloween party at Graham and Wade's Saturday (and I must say, I LOVED all their decorations. I've never seen a more festive house. It was really fun to be there!), and enjoyed trick or treating with Jack and Lucy.

"Papa & Lady" even got into the spirit-my mom dressed up as Ariel's grandmother (Lucy was the mermaid, Ariel) and my dad was The Cat in the Hat. Although Lucy had a real problem with Lady wearing a red wig, so that was unfortunate b/c the wig really did make the outfit :-)

And now we find ourselves already in November, with Jack's birthday and Christmas just around the corner! Six weeks and counting 'til Steamboat-We can't wait!

Here's is some adorableness that can come only from little kids dressed up in costumes!

Lucy is a mermaid, and Jack is Puff the Magic Dragon (one of the kids' favorite stories currently.

Papa and Lady!