Thursday, April 29, 2010

To-do list

So every year about this time I start this summer to-do list. It usually contains the things that are impossible to accomplish during the school year. You know...organizing, scrapbooking, cleaning, reading and these are just to name a few.

Of course my list is ridiculous and not even humanly possible to accomplish, but I guess it makes me feel like I have high ambitions, except for the end of summer when I see everything I didn't get done. Well, at the top of list are two things...get this blog all purty (yes I said purty) and take some photography and Photoshop lessons. My husband is absolutely amazing when it comes to Photoshop (he's a graphic artist) but he's gifted and talented and I'm more on the special ed spectrum. So I decided I should probably stick with lessons from someone who uses it like I want to use it - B.A.S.I.C....not a word in Justin's vocabulary.

Justin has this awesome camera that I'm clueless on using. I'm getting more comfortable to use it without the automatic setting (watch out, I'm getting wild and crazy!), but still need some help. A friend who recently read one of my posts about photography told me about Jessica Sprague and the classes offered on the site.

It's self-paced and affordable (that's what I'm talking about). Hopefully, the boys will allow me time (nap time) to do these classes. I might have to do some at night when Justin's home to help. I'm so excited to really learn and try more. I can't help but feel a tinge of "I wish I could do that" every time I see amazing photos. I'm not wanting to be a professional or anything...I just want to be a poser and look like one!

In the meantime, here are a few shots that I even surprised myself on. I took them into Photoshop and did some very minor tweaking. Everyone gets lucky every now and then, right? 

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Show and tell

Campbell definitely knows his body parts. Probably because the words "sit down on your bottom," come out of my mouth at least 40 times a day... mostly in grocery carts and bathtubs. Hey at least he's learning, right?

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Shiners and fevers

You know us, we do so well with traveling (insert sarcasm here). This past weekend we went to Camp Arrowhead for a church retreat. We were so excited to see a playground  when we pulled up and knew that would definitely keep the kids occupied for the weekend. That is until it was decided that we should have a monsoon all weekend long. I can't remember the last night it rained that long consistently. Guess it was bound to happen with all the beautiful weather we've had. Our nursery workers had to entertain all our kids in one room pretty much the entire weekend. Don't you feel for them? The boys thought it was so fun to have bunk beds and loved "camping."

Nolan is ridiculously ticklish. I mean I can't even give him a bath before he's hystercially laughing thinking I'm tickling him. Even worse, he has NO control over his body when he's being tickled...I'm talking completely body flailing spasms people. So an innocent tickling match landed him meeting a chair, and he got his first real shiner. The chair definitely won. It was nasty looking on Saturday and swollen, but this kid has some super healing powers and now it just looks like a scratch. So in the last couple of months, he's stabbed himself with skewers in his gums, stabbed an inch from his eye (skewers again), ran into a friend at school and got a gray bruised tooth, and now his first shiner. He's falling right in his daddy's footsteps who had three sets of stitches before he was 2.

Campbell was being pretty fussy off and on all weekend but we just attributed it to being out of his element. Saturday night, Justin slept with Nolan in the bunk bed and I had Campbell with me in the double bed. We both woke up feeling like we had been in a car wreck. Nolan has such horrible eczema on his ankles this time of year and he rubs his ankles together like he's a cricket all night long with a few kicks to Justin every so often. Campbell was pre-fever and just not sleeping so when I woke up the next morning it was one of those mornings where it felt like you slept 5 minutes.

He ended up running 101-102 for the rest of Sunday. I took off on Monday fully prepared to take him to the doctor. To my astonishment, he was fever free all Monday! That has NEVER happened. It's usually something crazy like swine flu or pneumonia when he shows any type of symptoms. For the first time ever he actually just got better on his own! Maybe we're growing up and finally building up a better immune can only hope.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Kids say the darndest things...

Here's a few of my recent favorites that I don't want to forget. Man, this kid is funny!

1. Nolan's teacher was teaching the kids some words in Spanish and he tried his hardest to say por favor by saying, "4-5-4". My Spanish speaking mother is proud of his attempt.

2. Nolan: What are those cars doing there?
    Me: They're fishing
    Nolan: Cars can going fishing?

3. Me: Your teacher told me you want to be a policeman. Is that true?
    Nolan: Well (whispering as though it's top secret). I want to be Wolverine.

4. But my most recent favorite is what he calls tarantulas. It sounds something like "trilantrilia"...with about 3 extra syllables.

5. And lastly, I hope that this doesn't offend anyone but it's Nolan informing me when Campbell needs a diaper change. This is my life in a house full of boys!

Friday, April 16, 2010

A family picnic

I know it's going to end sometime soon, but this weather is unbelievable right now. I just want to stay outside all day and play. I find myself taking my students outside to do our lesson out there because I know the days of 100 degree heat and needing a shower after recess are around the corner.

We had another young families get together...this time a picnic at the botanical gardens. Talk about a blast. We played frisbee, soccer, croquet, and even flew a kite before they asked us to put it away (they tend to be pretty strict about those beautiful gardens). Once again, I'm so grateful that our church is growing and that we have more children for our boys to play with. It gives me hope that youth group will be a integral part of our boys' upbringing and means as much to them as it did for Justin and me.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


I give a new meaning to the words LOL (laugh out loud). You see I have this incredibly loud laugh...especially when I find something hysterical or something takes me by surprise. I'm really pretty self-conscious about it and it's gotten me into trouble so many times. My parents just hated for me to have people spend the night growing up. Not because my friends were bad, but because I would never stop laughing...LOUD! I was always really good in school, made good grades, but my laugh always got me in trouble with my teachers! You either love my laugh, or you find it incredibly annoying. It's hard to come up with a new one...not exactly something you can go buy at the store.

So looks like Campbell got the loud laugh gene from me. He laughs so loud sometimes in the car that we have to tell him to not be so loud because I'm afraid one of us is going to get in a wreck. Boy, does that bring back memories of me with my parents, but if there's anyone who can be understanding about's his big mouth mama.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Bluebonnet bash!

It's that time of year...where the sides of Texas highways are covered with a blanket of bluebonnets. It's so pretty and every year I get a little panicked about wanting to get the boys pictures done and in the back of my mind knowing how much I'm dreading the process of it...but I do it anyway. My best friend, Angi, decided to try it again after our miserable attempt last year. Ugh, just thinking about it starts making me tired. Driving around for two hours looking for them and then taking pictures. We definitely learned our lesson last year. We scoped out a place way ahead of time, met and did pictures in a jiffy and went to dinner. We're getting smart about these things finally.

Apparently, everyone else had the same idea as we did. There was another family and even a bride taking her bridal portraits. Nolan was a champ. I bribed him before we even got there and said that I'd give him 5 stickers. He's working really hard to fill up his sticker sheet to get a car he's been wanting. So he was just a cheeseball out there and kept asking after every picture if he'd get more stickers. He knows how to work the system. Smart kid.

Angi's twins seemed to really it too. I think they were all a little itchy in the grass, but the meltdowns from everyone (including the parents) were nothing like last year, so no complaints. With it being an overcast day, it really was great lighting! All in all, it was actually fun..a first for bluebonnet pictures! We even had enough energy to take the kids to the park afterward! Who knows maybe we can make this a yearly thing!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Here comes Peter Cottontail

My mom got Campbell a little stuffed chick that plays the Peter Cottontail song and he is obsessed with it and just keeps saying, "Gen! Gen!" (again). You know that's my mom's greatest delight...finding toys that make me want to flush them down the toilet. We can't find it at the moment (darn!) but I'm sure it will be found and loved as much as the first day he got it.

Well you know me...holidays = trying to fit a million things in a very short amount of time. I can tell you that I don't think I sat down from Friday until Sunday night. There was cupcake baking, grocery shopping, laundry, church family picnic (pics coming soon), and Easter and all its festivities, of course! I desperately needed today off but then I remembered that Tuesday and Wednesday are only the most important days of a 5th grade teacher's year...TAKS testing. I guess I'll sleep after this week....yeah right!

Church was so wonderful. It was a packed house and it's so wonderful to see where our church has come in one year. After church we went to my sister, Tonya's, house and she lives on over 20 acres of land south of town. The boys love it. They love all the farm life. Last year, we got to see baby chicks and this year the cutest calf.  As exhausting as it was, I can say that it was definitely fun-filled and the only thing we just couldn't fit in was coloring eggs. I can honestly say that I don't think Nolan noticed with everything else we did.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Easter basket cupcakes

Okay, so I told you that I learned my lesson with the Valentine cupcakes. It was so hard to just buy plates and napkins for Nolan's party and not bring some fun cupcakes. I decided to not let that ruin my cupcake fun though and made them this morning for our Easter lunch tomorrow with the family. I saw this online but the recipe called for green coconut for the grass. My dad and husband won't come within 10 feet of coconut though. They think it looks like chopped toenails…gross! So I went with sprinkles but I think it works well. The Twizzler handles were so easy to put in although I wished that I didn't wait to the last minute so I could have used the Spring colored Twizzlers. I figure no one is going to complain...especially the kiddos. Happy Easter!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Chocolate bunny

The boys had an Easter party at their school along with an Easter hunt yesterday at school. I made sure to dress them up more than the usual play clothes that I put them in, just in case I got to see a few pictures from the hunt since I couldn't be there (sniff). When I picked them up this is what Campbell looked like with chocolate in places I didn't know he could reach. I absolutely try to avoid white t-shirts at all costs...even ones that are mostly white. Do you see why? Looks like he had a really good time. Note to self on Easter: DO NOT give them chocolate until after we change out of our Easter outfits!


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