Thursday, November 29, 2012


Thankful for lots of things these past few days...

* A Grandpa with a day off work who could come pick up Sophie when she threw up at school Tuesday afternoon

* A local grocery store (our only one!) that had lice treatment shampoo (I really didn't want to drive 30 minutes to Wal-Mart at 8:00 pm)

* Gretchen's blonde, blonde fine hair is easy to look through and spot little critters

* I finally know what lice look like (14 years of teaching and I've managed to avoid it at my house for this long)

* Gretchie apparently never shared her little critters with anyone else (so, so thankful for this one!!)

* Sophie's stomach bug was short lived and not shared with anyone (so, so thankful for this one, too!!)

* We had plenty of laundry detergent on hand (I did 47 loads of laundry yesterday. Or maybe just 17... but it felt like 47.)

* My house just might be the cleanest that it's been since we moved here

* A sweet 3rd grade teacher who let Lawson play on her computer after school and then brought him home so that I could let my coughing snuffly baby nap extra long yesterday.

* Peppermint ice cream with chocolate Magic Shell topping (that might have been my supper last night)

* A thoughtful care package in the mail from my sister (a complete lice removal kit may not have been on my Amazon Wish List, but still...)

* A sweet neighbor/friend who brought me over a Dr. Pepper when we were out warming up our vehicles this morning.

* A funny little baby (toddler) who abadons her footy pjs, tosses her warm blanket aside, tosses her pillow aside and crawls inside an empty pillowcase to sleep. She reminded me of one of those little Glo-Worm toys. I needed that smile/laugh last night before bed.

Funny... I'm pretty sure a week ago at Thanksgiving, I wouldn't have been thankful for most of these things.
It's all about perspective.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

my day.

They say God won't give you more than you can handle.

Potty training.
Throw up.
And lice.

Seriously, God??
That's a lot for one girl to handle.

I'm thinking large amounts of coffee, Dr. Pepper and cookie dough will be required tomorrow.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Saturday, November 24, 2012

thanksgiving day.

75* weather on Thanksgiving Day. It couldn't have been more perfect. 

My sweet niece, Madison. She gets LOTS of love and attention when my kids are around.

Somehow, tossing around the football turned into a family game of dodgeball. Kids and adults.

I missed out on playing, because I was doing this important job. (which was fine with me!) =)

Gretchen would dash through the middle of the game every few minutes for a hug from her Daddy.

The competition was pretty fierce at times...

I was still busy trying to keep this little miss from eating my camera strap...

Someone finally went and woke Uncle Brian up so he could join the fun, too.

Sorry Heather, this one just makes me laugh... =)

And someone finally warmed up to Uncle Casey a bit. (Meaning she was willing to look at him and walk close to him and even take something out of his hands.)


Getting every last bit of ice cream...

It was a happy, happy day with lots of fun memories! So much to be thankful for this year!
(Our 10 mile commute to Grandma Jones' was one of them!) =)

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

pumpkin pie in a bag.

For some reason, now that I have my own classroom camera, I can't seem to remember to take pictures.
We carved a jack-o-lantern on Halloween... no pictures.
We did a fun little activity yesterday... no pictures.
But in case you need a little something fun to do with your little people over Thanksgiving... this is a good one. I had never tried it before, I'm not even sure where I got the recipe... so it was a bit of a gamble. But it worked... it was fun... and the kids (and grown ups!) all liked it!

Pumpkin Pie in a Bag

* Combine 2 2/3 c cold milk and 2 small pkgs instant vanilla pudding in a 2 gallon Zip Loc bag.
   Remove all air, seal shut and have kids squeeze and smoosh it all together. 

* Open bag and add: 
   1 small can pumpkin pie filling, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp nutmeg...   Squeeze and smoosh some more.

* Open bag and add: 
   1 tub Cool Whip...    Squeeze and smoosh

* Put graham crackers in another bag and smash/crush into crumbs. (We did this part first and passed it all around the room while we worked on the other steps.) I used 2 packages of graham crackers and we ended up with 25 Dixie cup servings. (A grandma that was visiting our room finished crushing them by rolling the can of pumpkin back and forth over the crumbs.) 

* Put graham crackers into bottom of a Dixie cup (I didn't use the teeny ones... the ones a little bigger. 5 oz, maybe?) 

* Cut a corner of the Zip Loc bag and squeeze filling into cups. 

* Top with whipped cream from a can and ENJOY! =) 

{I used this as a little writing activity for my kids while we worked on it. As we did each step, they worked on writing the directions and I walked around having all the kids help with a different step.} 


So far today, we've...

* Let in a plumber to fix the kitchen faucet. (Actually, Lawson let him in while I was still upstairs in my pajamas. Hello, Mr. Student's Father... welcome to my messy house. This is me in my pajamas. I wasn't really expecting you at 8:05 am. But... welcome!) 

* Cleaned up all the dog pee from the dog who is freaking out that we just let a 6' 4" strange man in the house. (And she hadn't been out yet for the morning, so there was a lot of pee. Awesome.) 

* Texted our landlord to tell him we also need an electrician to come. (Lights sparking and popping when Corey turned them on this morning. Which then blew a breaker. Probably not the safest light fixture to have hanging in our dining room.) 

* Been thankful that we aren't the ones who have to pay the plumber (who has been here twice in a week) and electrician. (The one nice thing about renting.) 

* But so far, the dog's is the only pee I've cleaned up, which is good. Because this is our focus today... 

We're prepared with lots of cute little panties... (which is good, because she apparently thinks she needs to change her panties every time she goes. We're on our third pair in 2 hours. Hopefully we can break this habit after today. Otherwise, I'm going to need to buy a lot more size 2T/3T panties. Or start doing laundry a LOT more often.)

Also prepared with this... (Yes, I totally bribe my children when they are potty training. Whatever works. And we don't keep it up forever... just the first couple weeks. Or until we run out of candy.)

So this little miss is drinking lots of juice and water... watching Dora and Tangled... and hanging out on the vinyl tablecloth in the living room. My biggest problem is the other two, who are suddenly incredibly needy when my focus is solely on their little sister. Sorry, big kids... today is not about you.

And no, Lawson... I'm not going to give you two M&M's because you went potty in the toilet.
Good try, though.

Update: I've now cleaned up two puddles besides the dog. One from Gretchen, who snuck out to the playroom for some crayons and managed to pee in the one room in the house with carpet. The other one from Sophie, who can't seem to remember the rule about keeping drinks out of the living room. She spilled her glass of milk all over the loveseat. Lovely. We're back on the vinyl tablecloth now and planning to stay here or on wood floors! Keep your fingers crossed! =)

Monday, November 19, 2012

baby love.

We are definitely missing Grandma around here, but this sweet little bundle is a good excuse for her to be gone... 

Lots of hair and chubby cheeks... she's definitely one of my sister's babies. That's how they've all started out. =)

These little people LOVE having Grandma around...
{yep... you counted right. There's even one missing from the picture. 
No idea how she does it. I can barely manage my 3 somedays.} 

I'm telling you, sister... moving close to family has some HUGE advantages. 
You should definitely think about it. =)

Sunday, November 18, 2012

beauty and the beast.

5 years ago I had a sweet little pre-schooler who was so crazy shy. Frustratingly shy. 
It was a huge struggle for us at the time. 
Things got better when we changed to a different daycare (love you, Jessi!) and my sweet girl started to come out of her shell a bit. 

She started at a different pre-school that fall and I remember filling out a little information sheet for the teachers. (love you, too, Renee', Karri and Mari!) I had written that if this little girl would actually get on stage at their end of the year festival and sing... I would cry happy tears. 

She did. And I did.

She's come out of her shell at lot since then. But there has always still been a bit of shyness.
She has the sweetest little singing voice. She LOVES to sing. She makes up songs and sings in her room all the time. But she never wanted to sing in front of people.

Until this year.
Right before we moved, she and her best friend, Abi, put on a little talent show for my mom and dad and I. Abi danced and Sophie sang "Somewhere Over the Rainbow." And it was so sweet. My mom and dad were shocked at her pretty little voice. She's sang a few songs for Corey and I since then, but still... I knew there was that lingering shyness in her a bit.

Our high school was putting on a production of "Beauty and the Beast" this year. They wanted some elementary school kiddos to be some of the enchanted kitchen objects in the "Be Our Guest" scene. I encouraged Sophie to audition, but I wasn't really sure what all was involved. Auditions were Friday evening and Saturday morning. Friday evening, we went a watched for awhile. (Mommy might have screwed up the times and gotten us there 30 minutes late.) Then Saturday we went to audition. (Which ended up being perfect. There were way less kids Saturday morning!) They learned part of the song, learned a little dance to go with it and practiced several times.

Then... all the kids and parents were kicked out in the hall and the kids were called in one at a time to stand on the big high school stage... all by themselves... to sing and dance in front of the two directors.
Guess who wasn't one bit nervous??

43 kiddos auditioned and they chose 20 to be enchanted kitchen objects. I could not have been more excited for my little fork. =)

Lots of pictures... the cute fork is about halfway down...

Gaston and La Fou were two of my favorites...

Lumiere' was a favorite, too...

All the high schoolers really did a GREAT job, though! It was so fun to watch!

At the start of "Be Our Guest..."

"Be our guest, be our guest, get your worries off your chest. Let us say, for your entree' we've an array, may we suggest..."

Mrs. Potts and Chip...

Check out his face... he was so fun to watch. (Especially when Babette was around.)

Not a bit of shyness in this girl up there. So, so fun to watch! (All these pictures are from their dress rehearsal.) I might have gotten teary watching her during the actual performances. Just maybe. =)

{One little side note... just so I remember. I love working at a school where I can send out an email asking if anyone is good at braiding... and could they help with Sophie's hair before she leaves at 11:00 for a dress rehearsal/performance for all the elementary schools. Within 5 minutes, I had 2 different people in my room, armed with hairspray and ready to go get her from PE to do her hair. Thank you Jessica and Miss Savannah for doing her hair on Thursday and Nicki for doing her hair on Friday! You are the best!}

The best part about Opening Night for Sophie?? She had some really special guests in the audience...
{Loved that these girls and their mommas made the hour long drive just to be here. It meant so much to both of us!}

The girls were all pretty excited to meet the cast afterwards... 

Such a fun experience for my girl! I am so glad she got to be a part of this and I can't wait to see what all she chooses to participate in as she gets older! I see more musicals and performances in our future!