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Monday, February 24, 2014

Oh Boy!

Tonight we went to Chris and Janelle's gender reveal party.  We were super excited to find out what they were having.  We were all anticipating the cutting of the cake.  Janelle and Chris had the ultrasound tech write down the gender on a piece of paper and seal it in an envelope.  Janelle took the envelope to a baker.  The baker dyed the icing on the inside of the cake the color that matched the gender.  When they cut the cake we saw that the icing was BLUE!!!

During the party Arden kept coming at me with all of her questions!!!!

Her: "When are we going to cut the cake so we can see the baby?"
Me: "The baby isn't in the cake.  It's in Janelle's tummy.  We will just see pink or blue to tell us if it's a boy or girl."

Then she was hit with a realization.  In a worried tone and a horrified expression, "How will the baby come out if there's no holes in tummies?!?!?!?!"
Me: "The doctor helps the baby come out of the tummy."
Her: Almost in tears, "I don't want to ever have babies!  It will hurt so so bad!

After she had cake and was calmed down again, "Are we going to open Janelle's tummy now?"

Oy.  Should have stuck with the stork story.

Halle and car shopping

Brian sold his truck yesterday (**tear, sniff).  We're in the process of buying something with better gas mileage and that fits our family of five better.

Halle has been looking all over the internet for a "new" used car with our search criteria and budget.  She was completely absorbed in this all night last night.  She is definitely her father's daughter; they both like the challenge of searching for the best deal.

Three observations she made yesterday that made me smile
1) "People tend to look like the cars they drive.  Like, if you have a long pointy nose then you drive a car with a pointy front end.  Or like Daddy is a big guy and he drives a big truck."  Me: "So what you're saying is I look like an Equinox?"  her: "Well, sort of.... except you're not silver."

2) "Why are mini-vans not cool?  I mean, they have so many cool features.  DVD players, lots of room, doors that open.  When I grow up I'm definitely getting a mini-van, I don't care what anybody says!"

3) while looking at a picture of a van.  "That is one dirty car.  They must have kids."

Valentine's Week

The girls had two parties:

The Wednesday before Valentine's Day the girls had a small party with their Ice Skating club.  The girls skate every Wednesday from 10-1ish.  The loooooove the ice skating lessons.  There are about twenty other kids that skate that day, too, so they had snacks and exchanged Valentines.
These are my kids' Valentine boxes.  Arden and I made this owl, Halle made her own dolphin box, and I made the Mater box for Jack.  Halle thought it was funny that her dolphin looked whale-ish.  She got several compliments on her whale. :)
Myleigh and Arden.  They are both sporting their Flipeez hats.
Jack just hanging out trying to sneak Valentine cookies every chance he gets.  He threw several fits when I cut him off at 10 cookies.
Crystal tried to take him for a while to distract him from the cookies
Friday's party.  I had some of my mops ladies over at my house for a small valentine exchange party between the kids.  The kids decorated heart sugar cookies, I served a few snacks, and the kids played outside.   Cracked me up that the two and unders all took bites out of their cookies as soon as they got them.  The kids frosted the cookies, poured sprinkles on them.  One kid ended up with a whole bottle of sprinkles on hers.  Jack was content with just licking the frosting off of the spoon.  

a great picture of the kids and Rudi.  It was a happy accident.  Jack jumped in at the last second.

 That night Brian and I went to eat at Peli Peli and then went to a pottery class.  The class was a lot of fun!  It was a Valentine class just for couples.  There were four other couples there and we had a great time as a group.  The instructor made the husband and wife work together.  One person had to control the foot pedal and the other one worked the clay.  Then we switched roles.  Hahaha!  It was almost like a couples therapy session with the bickering between spouses and having to do team work.  It was fun!  My plate came out better than Brian's because I followed instructions. Both of our plates turned out great!

our sexy blue-jean aprons

our plates pre-baking.  We have to pick them up two weeks later.
For V-day I just gave the kids all a package of Valentine pop rocks candy.  Good thing about Paleo:  one small sweet thing to them is like a piece of Heaven.  Doesn't take much!  Jack freaked when the pop rocks starting fizzing in his mouth.  Arden took advantage of the situation and ended up with two packages for herself.  


Friday, February 21, 2014

We have some sprouts!

We have a few plants sprouting from our garden in spite of the frosts!  Woohoo!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Halle's Blog

In order to develop Halle's writing abilities and progress her typing skills we have started her a blog!  It is meant to be a collection of journaling, creative writing, essays, and book reports.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

If I would have planned a party....

Brian and I decided to not have a birthday party for Jack this year.  We had a huge party last year for him, and he is still too young to know the difference or care about his birthday.  We decided instead that we are going to do something as a family that Jack would enjoy.  Perhaps go to the Livestock Show/Rodeo or visit a petting zoo.   So, in honor of the terrible twos that we have entered into full-force, I am going to blog about the party we would have had.

A satirical "Terrible 2s" themed party. :)

The invitation would have been a picture of Jack throwing a tantrum.  Perhaps this picture of when he threw a fit because I moved his high chair from it's usual position.
For food I would have served boneless buffalo "bites",  cake "bawls,"  ice "scream", and chocolate melt-downs (chocolate milk).  The food would have been eaten with "spankin'" spoons.

For his big cake, I would have made it very ornate, and then displayed it with a big hand print smashed smack-dab in the middle of it.

For our game we would have played musical "timeout" chairs.

And then for the goody bags I would have included Crybaby candies.  

Kidding, kidding, of course.    ;)

Jack at 23 months

I scolded Arden yesterday for disobeying me.  She was in tears afterward.  Jack went to her, laid his head on her shoulder and wrapped his chubby arm around her to give her a sympathetic hug.  THE CUTEST THING EVER!

Since I'm on the subject of Jack I'll go ahead and list some stuff that he does at 23 months.  I've mentioned before that he is extremely observant.  I'm wondering if it's because he's the third child and just does what everyone else does.... or he's just that meticulous.

He puts his empty food plate in the sink without being told.
He throws away his trash without being told.
The trash can was out of place in the bathroom.  He moved it back to its usual spot.
He thinks my phone has to be with me at all times.  If I leave it on the couch and I'm in another room then he'll bring it to me.
He took off his socks last night and put them in the clothes hamper without being told.
Nothing can be in his crib with him at night except Bear and his blanket.  He'll chunk any other toys out of the crib.
He has to sit in his high chair with the tray covering him in order to eat his food.  He'll throw a fit if you try to deviate.

He's such a messy boy that spills stuff constantly, leaves Legos on the floor for me to twist my ankle on, and slathers himself with dish soap......yet is quirky about certain stuff.

His communication right now is transitioning.  He understands what we say, but still speaks a lot of Jackanese.  He's added some new words to his vocabulary: boot, shoe, teeth... but mostly is caveman-ish by pointing and grunting.  Or he just points and says "Mama, mama, mama, mama" repeatedly until I figure out what he's wanting.  I can tell that he gets frustrated when he's not getting his idea across. The other day he wanted more chocolate milk (he'd had a lot already) so he brought his sippy cup to me, shoved it at me, "mama, mama, mama."  He wanted me to get up from the couch and refill his cup.  Partly because I was being lazy and partly because he'd had enough milk to drink, I avoided getting up to get him more.  I tried to distract him from his cup by getting a book that was next to me.  "Jack, do you want to read your book?  Come sit with me and let's read!"   He took the book from my hands.  I thought I had been successful in my redirection attempt, and that he was going to sit next to me with his book.  Nope.  Not kidding, looking me in the eye with determination and a perturbed expression, book in hand, he turned and marched to his room.  I heard his dresser door open and close (this is where we keep his books.)  As if he were saying, "I'll fix this little situation."  He then marched back to the living room empty handed, picked his sippy up and shoved it at me again, "mama, mama, mama!"
I just shook my head, got up and gave him some water.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

My New Song.

This is my new song for the kids (sung to the tune of Rain Rain Go Away).  The cold has made me a bit crazy.

Cold, cold, get out of here,
Come again another year.
Little children want to play outside,
Ride on bikes and slide on slides.
Your chilly bite on my nose,
Makes me shudder down to my toes.

Cold, cold get out of here,
Come again another year!
Trying to train for a marathon,
But end up keeping my jammies on.
You would be cool if you brought some flurries
But all you bring is ice and worries.

Cold, cold get out of here,
Come again another year!
I can't deal with your bipolar-ness,
It makes the kids a snotty mess.
One moment's cold and another's hot,
And then one day there's Dippin Dots.

Cold, cold get out of here,
Come again another year!
The winter I would be quick to pardon,
If it didn't kill my garden.
I know I'll gripe when it's a hundred degrees
When my hair 'fros and there's no breeze.
With sticky air and mosquito bites,
But I'd rather that than freezing nights.

Cold, cold get out of here,
Come again another year!
Cabin fever and losing my cool,
I need to lay out by Jess' pool.
Winter blues I have for sure,
Swimsuit, floatie, and sun will cure!


Public school was cancelled on two separate days because of predicted snow and ice.  Snow never came for those poor Houstonian kids on those days.  It DID snow one morning, though, and was surprise all around town.  It wasn't in the forecast.  The amount of snow was typical for Houston: quick and not enough to stick to the ground;  but Arden had a chance to touch and see it, if only for a bit.  

This snow itself was funky.  It seriously looked like Dippin' Dots ice cream!  This is snow that I've never seen before.  Turns out there's a name for these odd little snow balls.  Graupel!

All of this talk of snow is making me want a snow cone......

Impromptu trip to Tomball

Halle had been gone this weekend to Freedom Weekend at our church.  We just had the littles with us, and were bored!  The weather has been yucky for weeks, so we were thrilled that today was sunny and cool.  We loaded the littles up and headed to a couple of parks in Tomball.  One is called Matheson park (the tire park) and the other one, Juergens, is right across the street.

TIRE PARK:  this park is fort-like and constructed out of wood and tires.  It's large and unique.  There's a lot of tire swings (the fun tire swings that swing high and spin really well!), ziplines, rock wall, and other stuff.  We'd been there once before when Halle was little, but this was the littles' first time.

Jack on the tire swing.  look at that little smile.

playing on one of the pretend tractors
rock wall.  Future Stone Moves competitor right there, ;)

getting ready to do the zip line


Juergens Park, across the street, is just as much fun for the kids because it has old-school playground equipment.

you rarely see merry-go-rounds any more!  This was a pleasant surprise.   I got on to keep Jack in place, and I got dizzy!

and there were large, wooden see-saws, too!  something hardly ever seen at parks anymore
We found out that there was a montly Tomball community event just a mile away!  They have concessions, games, and an evening outdoor movie each month.  The theme changes each month, and this month was rodeo-themed.  The best part was that there were just a few people, not crowded like most Houston events.  Plus it was free!
with rodeo clowns
learning how to rope a cow

face painting

horse rides!
We ended the evening with dinner at Salata, our favorite salad place.  Quite a site to watch Jack eat a slice of bread with a fork....

Father/son candid shots

This one is back from October.  I love the shadows
walking like he's a little man.  That hand in the pocket.
Both have their hand in their pocket.  Soo cute.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Brian's SuperBowl/Birthday Party

After eating strict Paleo for thirty days, Brian's birthday (and Superbowl) were good reasons to have a splurge!  And we did.  Since the Superbowl game absolutely sucked, I'll focus on the best thing about the party.  The food!  Everyone chipped in with bringing food so I can't take credit for all the yumminess.  All of the ladies that came are top-notch when serving up foods, so we had a glorious spread!

Brian got an indoor turkey fryer for Christmas so he fried up some wings for the party.  Chris made his special sauce for them and they were excellent.  We had chicken buffalo dip, stuffed mushrooms, cornbread stuffed jalepenos, 7 layer dip, and pizza, too.  It was all sooooo good!

 I don't have pics of the savory foods, but I do have pics of most of the sweets!

Chocolate pudding cake, Butterfinger cake, thin mints, thin mint truffles, chocolate popcorn, chocolate covered strawberries, cream cheese cherry pie dip!

thin mints and thin mint truffles

chocolate popcorn

football pizza

chocolate covered strawberries

triple chocolate pudding cake 
butterfinger cake and veggie tray

So yeah..... We stuffed ourselves.  We played commercial bingo and Crystal won.  She always wins.  I think she cheats.  ;)

Bingo cards

Crystal, Adam, Sarah

Amy and Jason
watching the exciting game [enter sarcasm]
Me and Nik.  I wore orange AND green.  I'm Switzerland.

Brian about to blow out his birthday candle

our cheerleaders

dual TV set up
After fighting over the chair with Jack, Delaney finally claimed it
Good food, good friends, good party!