About Me

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Married twenty-five years to my wonderful husband and best friend. We have 3 "home-grown" kids and 1 hand-picked by God from Africa. Our life is blessed. We are a close knit family with strong Christian beliefs. Come along with us on our journey…you might have a great laugh or two.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Good to be home...

After a bazillion miles on the road...okay, maybe not that much....we finally made it home.  Daddy was waiting for us with open arms and the kids could not get out of that car fast enough.  To be honest, neither could I. 

Oh, it's so good to be home...

...oh, and sorry about the bug juice in the picture

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Goodbye Dallas...Hello Oklahoma...

Today we said goodbye to Dallas, goodbye to all the blooming flowers, goodbye to the hot weather, and goodbye to my beautiful niece, my wonderful sister in law and my fantastic mother. The last three goodbyes were the hardest...

Thanks for the best five days y'all.

Now, I'm going to rope me up my trusty steed and head on to Oklahoma and then finally home...to someone who is ready and waiting for us to come home. See you soon sweetie...

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Gardens...

Today was the day we went to the Dallas arboretum. It was another glorious day and the gardens were just beautiful. You might think that this place would be a little boring but seriously it's not.

Obviously there are a mountain of flowers to see, winding paths to go on, but they also have these cute playhouses that are designed around various artists that the kids can run around and play in. As well as they had brought in the work of a visiting artist who does these enormous blown glass sculptures which were all over this place. They were so cool. I'm not really a lover of abstract art, but this I really liked.

My little brother was able to take the afternoon off to spend with us and we had such a great family time. Tomorrow we will begin our trek back to our house, driving part of the way this time. It's never as much fun to leave as it is to go. It's times like these that I am so very thankful for my family and the time I get to spend with them.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Dallas Zoo...

Today we went to the Dallas zoo.  Wow, oh wow is it ever a really cool place to go and visit.  Not that I'm a zoo connoisseur or anything but I do have 4 kids who claim to be complete experts in the zoo area.  Or at least that what they tell me...

The zoo had the obvious animals that a zoo should have, but what it did have that lots of other zoos don't is a wonderful Africa safari base camp area.  Think the best backyard oasis you can think of and then put it in front of a bunch of elephants.  It was really relaxing.  We stayed in that area for quite sometime, just to give the kids a nice break. 

While we were relaxing, a zoo keeper said that a "special animal" was coming in.  Of course, the kids jumped up and couldn't wait to see what it was.  Our smallest little one grabbed onto the railing and low and behold a horn bill came flying in from across the zoo and landed within a few inches of him.  He was so startled and screamed..."that thing scared me".  Too funny...

We're headed to the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Gardens next.  It should be great!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Hello from Dallas...

The kids and I made it here in "not so record time", of course, we weren't really trying to break the sound barrier or anything. My expectations were just a bit lower...just get there with a tiny bit of sanity left. Mission accomplished.

Today we got to meet my new niece and man oh man, was she ever worth the drive here. She will study and look at you for a little while, then completely break out into this enormous toothless grin. Just the cutest little thing. We went to a park to let the kids run off some of their built up energy from the past couple of days and they just had a blast.
The weather is wonderful here...warm, sunny and all the flowers are in bloom. That's my kind of place. However, I have to tell you that for place that loves to brag about how everything's bigger in Texas...they have got some crazy small driving lanes on the expressway. Man oh man, you just hold on for dear life and hope and pray you don't get side swiped. Get bigger lanes people...

Tomorrow is the zoo for us. The kids are excited and finally sound asleep...which is where this one tired momma is headed.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Never leave a man behind...

We have two rules in our house.

One...has to do with the dinner table and we like to call it "you don't have to like it you just have to eat it".

Two...really hit me hard as we were pulling away from home this morning to drive to Dallas leaving Daddy waving goodye..."never leave a man behind".

See you soon Daddy, love you!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

My Friday night date...

I know that at 11:00 o'clock Friday evening, my husband could think of a thousand more things he wanted to do than this.  But there he was standing beside me...and I just had to giggle.  Of all the things to happen right before we are about to leave tomorrow. 

A giggle came out and he stared at me.  "What?"  "Nothing.  It's just that I really do love you.  And it's better to laugh than cry."  He smiled and kept right on wringing out the clothes. 

So there we stayed for at least an hour or more "hand-washing" the load of clothes that had only gotten halfway done when the washer completely died on us that afternoon.  And I needed those clothes cleaned for our trip.  Ugh! 

Well, after almost 20 years of marriage I either have lowered my expectations of a Friday night date night or I am completely crazy about that husband of mine.  I giggled again...I'm bettin' on the the crazy part.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Heading South...

We awoke this morning to temps in the 30s.  Ugh!  Is it ever going to get warm and STAY warm.  I guess I really can't complain too much.  We have had a very mild winter, but personally, I am a warm weather person and I am ready for that warmth to come and stay.  Probably stems from me being born and raised in the south.  I love the heat, humidity (okay, maybe not that as much), the early flowers and long summers. 

So the kids and I have decided to go South for a little while...a little while meaning about 5 or 6 days.  My little brother and his wonderful wife had their first baby about 9 months ago, then transferred from Chicago to Dallas....and now, I just can't wait any longer to meet my new niece. So, like the crazy person I am, I've decided to pack 4 kids in one van, drive the 12 hours (without my husband) just so I can hold that baby.  The good news is that my mother will be flying out that same week to also be with us at my brother's house.  Can't wait!

Now the kids are use to travelling long distances, but I'm not usually the person doing the driving (what can I say...my husband spoils me).  So I'm going to look at this like an adventure.  Hopefully nothing will go wrong, because it's been a really long time since I've changed a tire, much less know anything about an engine (except that I know "where" it is).  So with a band of guardian angels travelling with us, we'll let you know how it goes as we are...

...heading south

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

One thousand twenty one cans...

I hate to recycle cans (you know, soda pop cans). I do recycle because we have kind of a forced recycle here (we pay 5 cents per can and if you want your money back...you have to recycle). But I still hate to do it. It's not because I don't want to help the earth or anything. It's just...well, icky. Sticky. Stinky. And... a... lot... of... trouble. Most normal people just take one or two bags at a time to recycle. But, nooooo. Not me. I'm so weird I take 15 large bags of cans at a time to recycle. And you have to file the cans through the machine ONE... AT... A... TIME. Ugh!

So today, after a weekend of cleaning up the garage I needed (or should I say wanted) that precious garage space those 15 bags were taking up. So 45 minutes later I came out with over $51.00 and left behind 1021 cans.

I guess it's good that my garage isn't any bigger. Or I just might hit the 2 or 3 thousand mark before I go in next.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Testing and prune cake...

For the past couple of days our kids have taken their annual standardize assessment tests. It's the same test that the entire state gives for public/private school kids. However, it is just administered to us later in the year with a bunch of other home schooled students.

With all that being said, I wanted the children this morning to have a good breakfast so that they would be geared and ready to go for their test. So last night, I made a prune cake for breakfast. It smelled wonderful all through the house. It looked so good with it's "candied" icing. And believe me, the next morning it tasted oh, so very good.

However, at the very mention of the word prune, my little girl wanted nothing to do with that cake. I even had her taste it....which I think she really did kind of like it, but still...she just couldn't get past the word prune. Since when did that poor ol' fruit get such a bad rap.

Well, I'll have to philosophize more about the prune later I guess. For now, the kids are home, decompressing and playing downstairs and I promised them I'd make them some "knock your socks off" brownies for snack. Happy Friday, everyone!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Laughter in my darkest hour...

Six years ago today I lost my father to a heart attack. Within 24 hours I had landed in the city where he lived and was sitting with my closest family members in a small room in a funeral home. We were doing what no person on the planet ever wants to do...plan a funeral.

I remember that day so vividly...the questions, the tears and yes, even the laughter. You see, God can give you the laughter just when you need it the most.

My little brother and I were walking with the funeral director through the area where you have to pick out the casket. Now, thankfully in this place they only had the "corners" of the caskets and the sample material on the wall so you could see what you were choosing. At this point, I was just about done "holding it all together" and I remember thinking that I was about to seriously fall apart. When all of a sudden the most unexpected thing happened.

The funeral director was trying to "help" us pick out a casket for my father. He was telling us all about this casket and that casket and then he mentioned..."you can even personalize it". With that, the director went over to a large wall and grabbed a wide mouth bass (you know, like the one that would sing if you pushed a button) and then took the corner off of the casket and put this enormous fish on the end. It looked like it would start singing "happy trails" at any moment.

I looked at the fish. Then at my brother. Then looked at the director. And... then... I... lost... it... I mean really lost it. I laughed so hard that I could hardly breathe. I laughed at the thought of my father's casket covered with wide mouth "singing" bass. I laughed at this man proudly trying to sell me this fish. I laughed because my brother was laughing with me. I laughed.

...and it was laughter in my darkest hour.

This one's for you Dad...I love you today, tomorrow and until I can see you again.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Happy Easter...

We had a wonderful Easter holiday with morning church services and hiding Easter baskets when we got home. We had a lazy lunch and now everyone is just relaxing and enjoying our beautiful weather.

As always, here's just a few of our family photos that we took when we got home from church. You'll notice that by the end of our "photo session" I was losing the kid's interest and things got a little creative. By then, I knew it was time to go inside and change clothes.

Friday, April 6, 2012

A perk...

After 15 months of torture, (ummm...I mean braces being on), our oldest finally got his braces off. Of course, I told him he got off easy with only having them on for such a "short" amount of time and that most people have theirs on for a least a couple of years.

...he did not think I was funny.

I think he looks so handsome...and old...and so very tall (I had to stand on my tiptoes to take this and still looked up at him). And then, I grabbed him by his waist (because that's the only thing I can reach around him) and hugged him so tight until he begged me to let him go.

"Oh my whittle bitty sweetie, I just wove you so bery much", I said in my most whiny voice possible. "Mom, you just love to embarrass me, don't you".

...Oh, at this point it's perk, really.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Brotherly love...

Our oldest child has taken a fancy to reading Dr. Seuss to our youngest. I love to watch them.

Ahhh, brotherly love. Don't ya just love it!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

In our house...

...this is our family

...especially the "do loud really well" (oh yeah, that is so us)

Monday, April 2, 2012

I cannot...will not...please don't ever make me...

...wear colored socks!

Yes, I know it seems a bit unusual or let's just say it...weird. But it's the truth. Funny thing is that mismatched and colored socks seem to be all the rage right now. Alas...not for me.

I told my Mother this just a few days ago and here's her take on this "so called issue of mine" ..."I put you in colored socks when you were little - of course, you can wear colored socks". No Mom, I'm sorry to say...I can't.

Something has got to be wrong with me, because I tell you the very second I put on any type of color - other than white (which is technically devoid of any color at all) I will begin to break out into a cold sweat, hyperventilate, panic attack and in the end completely pass out. Okay, maybe that was a bit exaggerating, but you get the basic idea.

This issue is now being passed down to all of my children, my husband is excluded from this because...well, he is the normal one. However, each and every single one of my kids have only white socks in their dresser drawers. I think that they believe that's all they sell at Walmart. (With only one exception in my older son's drawers - he has a pair of khaki and dark blue socks for church).

...so maybe there's still hope for me.