Monday, November 30, 2009


I go back to work on Thursday.
So not ready.
Love my job. Love my students.
But not ready to be back there yet.
Actually, I don't think it's being back at school that worries me the most.
It's the mornings.

This morning I got out of bed (for real... not just to take care of a baby) at 6:45 am.
On Thursday at 6:45 am, I will have to be completely dressed, hair and makeup done, wearing clothes that actually have snaps and zippers and belts... not just elastic.
Because at 6:46, I have to start getting kids ready.
3 kids.
Dressed. Shoes. Hair combed. Bathroomed. (We rarely get teeth brushed. Sorry, teachers. We'll work on that for 2010.) Baby fed. Coats. (hats and gloves soon) Backpacks.
All of this and out the door by 7:15 am.

The part I am most worried about isn't accomplishing all of this (although it will be tricky).
It's being able to accomplish all of this without losing my mind.
Without getting frustrated.
Without yelling.
Without tears. (this part is mainly for the kids, but who knows...)

Corey leaves for work at 6:50 am, so I do nearly all of this on my own.
Not complaining, though, because I love the fact that he gets home at 3:30.
And actually, once we get our routine down, it can be more frustrating on the mornings that he is here. It messes up our routine.

I'm pretty sure by 7:50 am on Thursday, I'll be doing good.
Pretty sure I'll be welcomed back to school with lots of hugs from little people.
Pretty sure I'll be getting random texts and pictures from Jessi, letting me know how my baby is doing.

But everything before 7:50 has me pretty worried.

I did find a pair of pants I can wear on Thursday, though... so that's a good thing. :)

Sunday, November 29, 2009


We had some special visitors last weekend...

My sister and my youngest niece flew up from Houston to meet Miss Gretchen.
This is the first time that she hasn't had her own newborn at the same time... and she was pretty anxious to meet this new baby! (Sophie and Lawson were pretty excited to have her come, too!)

And... my Aunt Carol was driving through from Dallas, so she got to love on my baby, too!

So much love for such a little person.


Cara kind of liked Gretchen...

So did Aunt Kristin...


Cara kind of liked Marley, too.
(Pictures without a flash are blurry... but too cute not to share!)

Thursday, November 26, 2009


30 things I am thankful for this year... (because I couldn't keep up with changing my Facebook status everyday)

1. Corey... so, so good to me.
2. Sophie... so much like her daddy (this can be bad...).
3. Lawson... my favorite little man.
4. Gretchen... the baby God knew we needed.
5. Family... those who are close and those who are far away.
6. Friends... who are almost the same as family.
7. Jody... who has been an amazing help since Gretchen was born.
8. Danielle... for driving Sophie to ballet for the past several weeks.
9. Neighbors... that we can talk to for hours in the middle of the street.
10. concealor... to hide these dark circles under my eyes.
11. easy hair... that I only have to wash/style every 3 days or so.
12. my InStyler... the reason my hair has become so easy.
13. my Jesus... because he's the reason my life means anything.
14. our church... for teaching our kids about Jesus.
15. praise and worship time at church... makes my heart happy.
16. secure jobs... many are not so lucky.
17. health insurance... so we did not have to pay the full $8000 for Miss Gretchen.
18. Jessi... who loves our kids when we are not with them.
19. our van... so much room for people and packing.
20. the DVD player in the van... it can make the drive so quiet.
21. DVR... seriously love this thing.
22. our house... warm, cozy and colorful.
23. Diet Dr. Pepper... caffiene to get me through the day.
24. Sonic... my favorite place to get Diet DP and cranberry limeades.
25. Sonic Happy Hour... although I am usually working during this time.
26. clean water...
27. blogs... love reading them. love recording moments for my family.
28. blog friends... who are friends, even though we've never met.
29. my camera... and all the moments it has captured.
30. maternity leave... that has allowed me to spend the past 6 weeks at home, loving on my baby.

So much more that I could write.
I am blessed.
Very blessed.
And very thankful.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

happy heart.

I dropped my baby off at daycare for the first time this morning.
Just for a few hours.
I go back to school in 8 days, (so not ready!) and Jessi wanted to have Gretchen come a couple times before she starts full-time.
Not too hard this morning, but I'm pretty sure next Thursday will be.
I know she's in good hands and she has her big brother there with her.

But it made my heart so happy to get this text a minute ago:

Omg, im in love w gretchen!

My kids have always gone to daycare (during the school year, anyway) and I have always found comfort in this quote, "It is never a bad thing for a child to have someone else who loves them."

I know that my kids are safe.
I know that they are happy.
I know that they are having fun when they aren't with me.
But most importantly... I know that they are loved.

Thanks, Jessi.
We love you!

Friday, November 20, 2009

he loves her.

Just a little bit.

one month.

I really cannot believe it has been one month since this little one joined our family.
Cannot imagine life without her now.
So in love with this little face...

We sent these out a couple weeks ago. Tried to save money by only ordering half of what I originally planned. So if you didn't get one, it's probably because I figured you could see it here.
(Thanks Courtney and Cassie for helping me decide on a picture!)

Monday, November 16, 2009

what happens?

When we come together to spend $10 on Water as our First Gift of the season?

In 24 hours, over $10,000 was raised.

Proving life-saving, clean water to 524 people. 524 mothers and children and brothers and grandfathers.


Thank you.

Stole this straight from Jody's blog.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

growth charts.

I've had several people ask me about the kids' growth charts I posted awhile back...
I did make them.
But it was very easy.

Corey bought me the boards... not sure what size... and I painted them in the backyard with my happy little helpers.

More happy helpers... (I just noticed that Lawson is painting glue on his hand instead of on his board.)

I bought measuring tapes from Wal-Mart and glued them down the middle with some heavy duty glue. Make sure you plan for where it will be hanging... the measuring tape starts at 5 1/2 inches because I knew it would be hanging above the baseboard in our hallway.

Lawson's is painted all blue and then I used scrapbook paper to decorate the sides. They are just glued down with Mod Podge. Sophie's is just painted half pink, half yellow.

The only problem I had was that I couldn't find a white measuring tape that went over 60 inches. I'm guessing Sophie will be taller than 5 feet someday. :) For hers, I ended up using two measuring tapes. The first one stops at 60 inches and then I started over again with a new tape.

Sophie's name is made using chipboard letters and Lawson's was just stickers (that I painted over with Mod Podge) and ribbons... all stuff from my scrapbooking supplies. There are 4 or 5 wooden flowers glued onto Sophie's chart (from Wal-Mart) and Lawson has a little wooden turtle at the bottom of his.

The kids LOVE them and are always asking to get measured and see if they have grown! I love that we have something permanent that can come with us if we ever move. (Our first measuring place was inside our basement door... hard to take with you.)

Let me know if anyone ends up making one of their own! I would love to see how it turns out! And I need to get some ideas for how to decorate a third chart!


I have ordered this calendar from More Organized Mom for the past few years.
Love it.

It hangs on our refrigerator... has one week at a time displayed... sections for Things To Remember, To Go, To Do and To Eat. I don't use the To Eat section like I should... planning meals is not my strong point. (Enjoying this little break from planning meals while Corey is in charge of cooking!)

Anyway... the MOM company has decided to close so I cannot purchase a 2010 calendar from them. Very sad. Looking for something new. I want it to be on the fridge... I want lots of room to write... I like that it has the To-Do section included (I'm big on To-Do lists)... and I want something permanent (not dry-erase).

Anyone have a family calendar that you love?

Thursday, November 12, 2009

first gift.

That's all it takes.
$10 to make a difference in the lives of children like this...

$10 will give these kids the opportunity to stop drinking water like this...

and instead, drink water like this...

$10 will provide clean, safe drinking water for one person in Africa for 10 years.
One child, one mother, one father, one brother.
One person.
One person who is deeply loved by God.
My $10 can give life to that one person.

4500 children die every day due to contaminated water.
That's not okay.
But the exciting thing is... there is something we can do about it. Something easy. Something that won't even make a difference in our day today. Something as easy as $10.

I will buy a lot of gifts this Christmas. But no gift I buy will be as important as this one. No other gift I spend money on will give life to the recipient. This one will.

Visit here and click on the yellow donate button. 100% of your donation will go to providing clean, safe water for families in West Africa. Let water be the first gift you buy this Christmas. The most important gift.

This is our opportunity as American mothers and fathers... we can unite from wherever we are…we can use our voices to say that we do “see,” that our own children are not the only ones dearly loved by God.

Go donate.
Go change someone's life today.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

love this little face.

Isn't she just the cutest thing you've seen today?

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

love. love. love.

Just had to share a couple of my favorite "new mommy" gifts I've been given that I absolutely LOVE!

Beki showed up at my door when Gretchen was just a few days old with this...

I can't even begin to say how much I love it, Beki! I've worn it almost every day since then. (Because it goes with the sweatsuits I've been wearing daily...) She said she was just waiting for me to name this little one so that she could make me this necklace. Isn't she sweet?
Visit here if you want to order one of your own. You will love it, I know!

She also gave us this super-cute Moses basket... which allows our little pumpkin to sleep oh-so-comfortably during the day on our dining room table. (Isn't that where everyone has their newborn sleep?!)

My sweet neighbor, Amy D., made this necklace charm for me. Love it, too! She had an advantage over Beki, though. She's known the name for a few months, so she could start working on hers ahead of time!

And remember that project that I started, but wasn't going to have time to finish? I did end up giving it to Amy D. and I could not be more thrilled with how it turned out...

Her ladybug and daisy turned out way cuter than mine would have!

You did an awesome job, Amy! I absolutely LOVE it!
Thank you for finishing what I started! (I actually did very little... Amy did all the hard work.)

So thankful for such fabulous, creative friends!

Sunday, November 1, 2009


Have you ever seen a cuter baby giraffe?

I mean, really...

We had Lawson's costume pretty much planned... except for the boots. He said he could just wear Corey's boots (he clomps around the house in them all the time.) He just said he wouldn't be able to walk very fast. Last week, Corey went to the Salvation Army and found these boots... for $1.99. Oh my, you should have seen his face! (Daddy even found plastic spurs at the Dollar Store!)

Happy Halloween from our neighborhood to yours!

carving pumpkins.

We missed out on our annual pumpkin party this year, since we had a 4 day old baby. So Corey had to take on the pumpkin carving by himself. This isn't really my favorite activity, so drawing the face was pretty much the extent of my involvement...

I took a few pictures...

but spent most of my time just doing this...

snuggling with a cute baby.

The kids helped get it cleaned out, and then just had fun playing with the guts while Corey finished carving...

The finished pumpkin... plus a watermelon that Corey carved just for fun. (They were leftover from our garden and we decided to just put them out with the pumpkins and pretend they were gourds. He says it's much easier to clean out than a pumpkin!)