Thursday, January 27, 2011

Party for a Purpose

I need your help. I need you to help spread the word about Tonya's upcoming fundraiser Feb. 27th. I've already been overwhelmed with the generous hearts of those who have already donated money as well as items for raffles and auctions.

This is a fundraiser to help with medical cost for Tonya's cancer treatments.
Tonya has Stage 4 Triple Negative Mastatic Breast Cancer which means it went to the left lymph node and into both lungs

$15 dollars at the door. Come out and enjoy local food and music graciously donated by local restaurants and bands.

We will also have complimentary Rahr beer during the event!

All that attend or donate will be greatly appreciated.

Bring the kiddos!. (kids 16 and under are free.) Tonya has 3 girls, Avery 10, Adalynn 12 & Madison 15yrs.

*We are looking for raffle items and live auction donations.

Come out and help us! This is a public invitation.

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Sunday, January 23, 2011

These boots are made for walkin'

I can't believe that I'm a native Texan and that I've never owned a pair of cowboy boots. Isn't that some sort of blasphemy?

We have a Justin boot outlet in town and took a family outing to go get some boots. And we walked out with these...


I've worn mine a few times but Justin hasn't worn his just yet.  But lucky for us, we're headed to the Stock Show next weekend....woo hoo! Nothing breaks in a pair of boots more than the smell of cattle and other livestock.


As we were walking out we saw the kids section. I've never seen a child more into cowboys and cowboy boots than Campbell. Anytime we see someone when we're out and about with a cowboy hat, he points his finger and shouts, "COWBOY, Mommy!" It's almost as embarrassing as him pointing his finger to all white hair men with beards and screaming, "HO HO HO!"

I have a firm rule that I've followed although it's gotten harder to follow now that Nolan is in big boys clothes. I don't spend more than $10 for a single article of clothing on my boys unless it's a special event. Well, shoes I might spend more. But as hard as it was, I splurged and bought these boots for Campbell because his face just lit up when we put them on. I bought them big so I'm hoping that they last for more than just a year. So far it was well worth the investment. He would sleep with them if I let him and I can just threaten to take away his boots for discipline and can get just about anything I want.


And you're not a cowboy without a hat. He's already been very clear on what he wants to be next year for Halloween. Lucky that Nolan was a cowboy at this age and the costume is already taken care of!


He's taken his new role as a cowboy very seriously and even tips his hat and says, "Howdy ma'am!" 

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I felt bad not getting Nolan a pair but he said, "I already have a pair Mommy." Little does he know that his cousin Avery gave them to him. Shhhh, we won't tell him that they're girl boots!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Hoola Hoopers

Oh what a week. Tonya, my sister, broke out in a severe rash a little over a week ago. When I say severe, I'm talking about something out of a medical journal. Oh and it was head.to.toe.

Exhibit A:


Everyone with me....Bless her heart! At first we thought it might be a food allergy. One of her neighbors made her something that had a very exotic Mexican spice in it. We were all thinking that is one CRAZY spice!

After tests and tests, it turns out it was strep! With her immune system really suppressed after chemo, her body really did a number on her. She's still in the hospital and the rash is getting better, thank goodness! Now they have found some bacteria in her blood by her port for her chemo. So they are having to take out the port and she'll be there until her blood is clear of bacteria. Poor thing wants to come home so badly. I don't blame her but glad that they found this!

I decided to do what little I could and bring my youngest two nieces over for a slumber party to give my brother-in-law a much needed break and to give the girls a break from the hospital.

We watched movies, played outside and played plenty of the Wii. My favorite was the Wii Fit game of hoola hooping. As you can see, Nolan is hoola hoop challenged to say the least. But that's ok, he's a boy. I love this video. Don't know what's the funniest...the girls about to knock someone out with their booties, Nolan's doing his rendition of a robot hoola hooping, or Campbell trying to ride Bandit like a horse because he's got his cowboy hat on.

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Campbell thinks that hoola hooping uses a lot more elbows than your hips. Man, does he look cute doing it though.
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Sunday, January 16, 2011

Academy award winner part 2

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We knew from an early age that Campbell was made for acting. Don't remember? Check this or this to jog your memory. This only confirms our suspicions. My personal favorite is his sad face. I see this quite a bit when he doesn't get his way. And yes, it's just as hard not to laugh at it when I'm frustrated with him. Guess that's why he does it. He knows what makes his mama laugh!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Fort Woof

"BC"-It's what Justin and I refer to as "before children". As in, "Oh remember when we used to go bike riding for hours BC?" Well a big part of our BC life was our dog Bandit. He was our first child. We used to walk him like crazy, play with him, buy him toys. Poor thing now just plays with sticks outside. Back in the heyday of our BC days, we used to take Bandit to Fort Woof...as in the #1 dog park in the country.

Then the boys came into our lives. I'm envisioning Bandit's dog thoughts being very similar to Lady from "Lady and the Tramp". Therefore, Fort Woof was not seen for a VERY long time.

Well, we thought the boys would love see all the dogs running around so we made it a family event.

It's a fenced in area with two sides...one for large dogs and one for smaller dogs. There are tunnels, balls, and hydrants all for having territorial wars to their hearts content.

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Campbell wasn't so sure right when we got there. New friends were checked out from afar at first.


But then the doggie cuteness couldn't be resisted. So Campbell inched closer.



Instantly, friends were made and how did I know? A sloppy lick from a dog and a giggle in return = BFF in toddler terms. I love how everyone at Fort Woof is so friendly and proud to show off their "children".


I think the boys thought that it was a playground for them. They were playing with all the dog toys and playground equipment. Thank God for Purell.


We weren't brave enough to take the boys to the large dog side. Mostly because some dogs Campbell could ride as a horse. Campbell loved watching them through the fence though.


And while we were there we even got to enjoy a beautiful sunset...we've had some really amazing ones lately.


Nolan and Campbell loved it and are still talking about it. I think that we won't make our poor Bandit wait another five years.


Monday, January 10, 2011

Wanna come out to play?

In Texas, we know that our winter lasts about 4-6 weeks. It's a blessing and a curse. Don't get me wrong. I love me a nice cold snow and watching the snowflakes dance to the ground while I'm all wrapped up, Snuggie style with my boys. But after a couple of days of it, I'm over it and snow is only fun when you don't have to get out in it. Shovel driveways? Ummm...no thanks. 

So we heard our "Arctic blast" was a-comin' and so I enforced my mama rules...no TV, no playing inside because next week it was going to get cooooooold. Anyone else feel frightened when they hear themselves sound like their own mother?


There's a mix of guilt and satisfaction that comes along with telling my boys to go outside and play. The guilt pulls at my heartstrings when I hear, "Come push me on the swings, Mommy." And believe me, my arms can testify to plenty of swing pushin' going on in this backyard. But then I want my boys to feel independent enough to play outside in our backyard without me. They have a playground and each other...that was more than I had most days playing outside. When I see them giggling and playing outside it warms my heart that they love playing with each other and can entertain themselves.

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For the record, the idea behind Toy Story where toys play and come alive when you leave the room was part of my reality at the age of 6. Why didn't I get that written at the age of 6 so I could be rich is beyond me. I played with toys out of obligation because I hadn't played with them in a long time and I thought I was hurting their feelings by not playing with them. It was people pleasing at its finest but rather more appropriately named inanimate pleasing.

So in an effort to not hurt our brand new scooter's feelings that we just got from Santa, we took it for a stroll...
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And we even picked up a little two-on-one basketball game.


Cam has got some b-ball skills...ain't gonna lie. It must be that 6'4" Kentucky basketball blood he's got.


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And I brought back my 8th grade b-ball skills and that's just about how ridiculous I looked out there.

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 I loved this day. I loved how we got to play like we were kids again and that our kids interacting with us playing and not just watching. I hope that my hips stay in place as long as they can so I can have more days just like this one.


I'd say by these pictures of my big kid husband that I'm not alone in this thought. And we'll keep playing until they are too embarrassed.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

As seen on TV

I think there's something about blogging 101 where you're supposed to be timely with your posts. Well, as you can see, that ain't happenin' so bear with me.

I remember that feeling of being so bummed when Christmas was over when I was younger. Now as an adult, I get that overwhelming feeling of having to take all the decor down.  With everyone's busy schedules at church we had to do our Christmas party AFTER Christmas this year, but then again the 12 days of Christmas actually starts on Christmas so really we were just having it on the 5th day of Christmas as in FIVE golden rings. So that still counts, right?

My mother-in-law and I hit the after Christmas sales at Pier 1 and stocked up on some really cute stuff but I sure do miss my discount...awww, those were the days! Nothing I bought was over $10 after Christmas...score!


The perk about having a party at your home at Christmas is that you feel like all that work going into decorating wasn't all for nothing so then other people can actually enjoy it too. 

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I just love this group so much. We can put a mean taco bar together and those margaritas....well, I'm still talking about those.


We've started a new group at church for the women our age. What's our name you ask? Soul Sistas, of course. Now these two are actually really sisters.

We had the setup for the kids...playground outside, movie in the gameroom, and Santa brought a slew of new toys to play with. 

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Our theme in our gift exchange was to bring something on a "As seen on TV" commercial.

HIL-AR-I-OUS.

Things that made an appearance were:

1. a body lotion applicator...ya know, for those hard to reach places.

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2. A Snuggie...good thing I already have one or I totally would have stolen that gift.

3. Oh and some super magnifying toe nail clippers that look like they could have cut through barbed wire.

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4. HD glasses...I'm not really sure I want someone looking at me in high definition.

5. And nothing like bottle tops so you can put them on your coke cans. 

Only bummer was that I saw the commercial for pajama jeans after the party. Man that would have made an awesome gift! 


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Monday, January 3, 2011

2010: A year in review

2010 was definitely a year to remember. There were some highs and definitely some lows but one thing I can say for sure is that overall my feelings about being abundantly blessed are only more solidified.

Here's a recap of the highlights that really give a true picture of our 2010.

We're still talking about our 13" snow back in February. This is definitely in my top 10 family moments of 2010 for our family.

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Some of us were not a fan though...



And who remembers the blood, sweat,  and tears that went into these cupcakes for Nolan's Valentine's Day party?


And I'm still a sucker for love...

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March was a time to thaw out our feet and get good use out of our backyard.


Nevermind if the only flowers in our yards were weeds.

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I will make my family suffer through bluebonnet pictures as long as they will allow. Although this year there was hardly any suffering.

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When you're a mother, you have this dream in your head of what your want your childrens' relationship to be with one another. And this photo could not more perfectly portray that for me.

 Easter was gloomy this year in Texas but only because of the weather.

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Because the spring was full of smiles and silliness...

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Mother's Day was spent celebrating our mom. I'm still so amazed at all she accomplished raising three kids as a single mom before my dad adopted me.


In May we took time to see our cowboy in his school performance and we did take time to smell the flowers and spend more quality time with the cousins.

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Soon after that, summer started and it may not look like it, but fears were conquered.

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Sports were played and sweat was poured. Not just by Nolan but by his parents watching in the Texas heat...talk about being true fans.


We cooled off by going to pool school...better known as swimming lessons.

 Summer was filled with impromptu milkshake picnics.

We kept busy by making cookies for the firefighters in our neighborhood and we cherished our beloved lunches with daddy.

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And just like that, my baby turned 2...as in 2 YEARS old!!! How did that happen?

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Oh and there was eating....LOTS and lots of eating.

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Suddenly our world was turned upside down in June when my 39 year old sister found a lump in her breast...a very-aggressive-Stage 4-how-could-you-do-this-to-us cancer. The next six months were filled with chemo, mastectomy, and now in January she will be undergoing reconstruction.


But how do we show cancer that it's just a word and not a sentence? By living life. Trips were taken to Lake Ozark, Missouri...a middle ground for family in Kentucky.

 Oh what the heck, while we're half way there why don't we take an 8 state road trip and go see more family in Kentucky.

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And we didn't forget to touch the arch  in St. Louis.

We wouldn't be American if we didn't head to a baseball game at our minor league team here in town.
In Texas you need one thing to survive the summer:

1. air conditioning
2. WATER! Lots of it!

Even the dog needed to cool off. 

 This pool was the best $10 I've ever spent.


As summer came to an end, I started teaching at a new school and that meant a new school for the boys.

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In September, my other baby turned 5. Yes, I am fully aware that kindergarten is less than a year away now. Stop talking about it!
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And then my favorite time of year came...do I really need to say it? Fall! I could just marry it.

every.single.part.of.it

It took a village to make these costumes, but they're my absolute favorite of any that we've had for either of the boys.

  
My girls trip to New York started November in the most beautiful way. Oh, I so wanna go back. I can't look at a movie the same or New Years in Time Square without thinking about being back there again. 

Have I mentioned that I love fall?
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Christmas. I could seriously post 1,000 photos of Christmas but I won't torture you. Let's just say it was incredibly hard finding a few photos to wrap up our Christmas season. There was baking, letter writing to Santa, Polar Express...I could go on and on.

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These pictures fill me with a mix of emotions. I feel so proud that we did so much with our family and have these photos to document years from now what we experienced this year. Then I see how much the boys have changed just from last January and I have this little flip out moment where I take back every time that I've ever said, "I can't wait til they grow out of this stage." Because truth be told, I don't want them to. 

But with these mix of emotions, my prayer is that this year will be filled with as much happiness, stories, photos and stories of forced family fun because it's part of who we are. 

Here's to another abundantly blessed year in 2011.

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