Monday, August 31, 2009

Happy 7th Birthday to my Sweet Boy!

7 years ago at 1:46 AM I became a mommy to a precious, tiny preemie. I can not imagine my life without Brandt. I am so very proud of him, and thank God daily that he picked me to be his mommy. He is so smart, kind, tenderhearted, generous, and has such a love for the Lord. We are planning on celebrating him all day long. We will start with donuts before school, then cookies with his class, followed by a Happy Meal lunch date with mommy and daddy. After school he hasn't decided what he wants to do yet, but I am sure it will be lots of fun. He is having his birthday party this weekend at a local swimming pool.

Happy birthday sweet boy!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Interesting Dinner

Tonight I made meatloaf, mashed potatoes, and vegetable medley. My kids are very visual eaters meaning they can tell if it tastes good just by the way it looks...or at least they think they can. So when it came out of the oven and I put it on plates I looked at Dustin and said "I bet we get some crying over this". Sure enough Brandt and Brayden took one look and pushed their plates away and declared dinner nasty. Brayden made some of the funniest pouty faces I have seen in a while. Dustin and I did our best to stifle our laughter, I mean it was pretty hysterical at this point. I am certain if we had a video camera recording it we would have won $10,000. Bryson however took a bite and said it was yummy and started eating. We were very surprised how well he was doing so Dustin told him if continued to eat well he would get a special dessert. The older 2 boys told us how unfair we were, dinner was so nasty, etc. Dustin and I decided he would take him to McDonalds and let him pick out a dessert while I bathed the baby and put him in bed (btw he also ate great). So the older ones decided they might be interested depending on how much mean mommy and daddy made them eat. Once we showed them the 1/2 they had to eat Brandt asked if he had to swallow it. Um, yes how else would you eat it? He replied swallow it then burp it back up into the trash can...ah the joys of raising boys. In the last minute before Dustin left with Bry the older 2 came through and ate what they needed to. So the big boys and daddy went and ate ice creams and an apple pie.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Wayback Wednesday

My good friend Carrie watches my younger 2 boys while I work. Her 2 kiddos are close in age to mine. Her son is 11 months older than Bryson and her daughter is 6 months younger than Brennan. She just emailed me these pictures as a comparison and it is amazing how quickly they grow from a baby to a toddler.

Brennan and Ellie 6 months ago
He was 10 months old and she was 4 months old

Brennan and Ellie today chasing each other down the hallHe is 16 months old and she is 10 months old

Monday, August 24, 2009

"Not Me!" Monday

Welcome to Not Me! Monday! This blog carnival was created by MckMama. You can head over to her blog to read what she and everyone else have not been doing this week.

This past weekend in Texas was tax-free weekend which means extra long lines and people EVERYWHERE lots of deals to be had. I decided to buy a few pair of capris I could wear to work, not that I was sweating to death in my regular pants or anything since it is only in the lower 100s here. Of course, 3/4 of my children did not fall asleep on the way to the mall since they refuse to take naps at home they certainly wouldn't do it when it wasn't convenient for me. My 3rd son, whom I find incredibly cute and irresistible would never have thrown a fit for an entire 30 minutes because we did not let him bring his blue Power Ranger into the mall. He has way more restraint than that, nor would he have rather gone shopping with me than play in the food court playground with his daddy and brothers just to show how grumpy he was not being. His mood is not that dependent on if he gets his nap out or not, nope not my child!

He is only 3 years old and a BOY after all, so he would not have been telling me things like "I like that pair, no that pair doesn't fit you, oh lets buy the black pair", remember boys don't care about clothes at all. Boys have way more important things to care about like light saber fighting, bug catching, perfecting their burping noises, etc. Nor would he have decided he wanted to try on clothes himself, much less clothes for next summer. This child has never tried on a piece of clothing in his life, so he certainly wouldn't start now with this enormous crowd his daddy and brothers waiting. He would not have asked me to step out of his dressing room so I wouldn't see his underwear and refuse to budge until I did so. I mean this child still asks me to wipe his bottom for him for crying out loud. Nor would he have caught me peeping in his room TWICE to make sure he was doing ok, because I would totally respect his wishes more than that. He also did not grab his shorts and try unsuccessfully to cover himself when he felt I wasn't given him enough privacy, I mean doesn't that start way closer to teenage years?

We would never stay at the mall so late that my kiddos started getting restless from being hungry nor would we try to soothe the savish beasts by feeding them Casa Ole. When the waitress only brought 2 crackers for the baby we certainly wouldn't have improvised by giving him chips when they were gone in 0.2 seconds. I would never have added salsa to the chip just to get him to stop squealing for it. I mean he is only 16 months old he does not know that it is hot and will burn him, but I most certainly do and I can outlast a 16 month old for pete's sake. So I would never have been floored when he didn't even bat an eyelash or want his water, but just begged for more. I mean that was some pretty spicy salsa, even the older 3 said it was too spicy for them to eat.

This week when I was teaching a Pre-K class for the 1st time I certainly didn't laugh out loud at a little boy when he picked his mouse up and tried to click the computer monitor with it. I mean he had been using his mouse correctly for the past 20 minutes so surely he knew you didn't actually make your mouse touch the screen where you wanted it to go. It is now a week later and I still don't get a chuckle out of his sweet innocence of doing everything very literal. I also did not stay up WAY too late typing this when I have to get up early for school tomorrow, as evident by the time stamp. Nope, not me!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Flashback Friday

This picture is of Brandt in Feb. of 2004, when he was almost 18 months old. I was hugely pregnant with Brayden so didn't want a huge mess to clean up, but wanted him to make a card for Dustin for Valentine's Day. I set him in his diaper in the bathtub and gave him paper and finger paint. I thought I was genius for figuring out an easy clean-up for finger painting, but as you can tell he ended up finger painting the tub and not the paper. No matter how hard I tried he would not touch the paper, but the tub was beautiful by the time he was done.

So crazy to me that he was only 2 months older there than Brennan is now.

Thursday, August 20, 2009


The boys have been packing their own lunches for school. Tonight I found Brayden's sugar rush lunch for tomorrow. I think he is going to need a little help from mama on this one. haha

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Broken Hearted Little Boy

Last year a little bit into the school year, Brandt's class got a new student. We moved almost every year while I was growing up, even 2 times a year on occassion. So I remember being the new kid, and I told Brandt to be nice to him and to be his friend. Well he took that to heart, and they became fast friends. Brandt went every few weeks all year long to playdates at Sean's house. He absolutely loved going over there and learning alittle bit about Korea and the Korean language from his mom.
Brandt, Sean, and another friend Jakob
Today Brandt had his last playdate with Sean. His dad has finished his dissertation and they are moving back to Korea. It has been a really hard night for Brandt since he knows Korea is on the other side of the world and he will probably never see him again. It made me misty eyed when they hugged each other bye tonight knowing that was the last time. They are going to be penpals, but that isn't the same thing. I was always the child moving on, except 1 time a friend of mine moved away. For me it was a lot easier to be the child moving, because you have the excitement and unknown to look forward to but it is really hard to be the child left behind. So hard to tuck a crying child into bed, when there is nothing I can do to ease his broken heart. Wow, being a parent can be super hard sometimes.

Ok, didn't last too long...Brandt is now in our bed. Can't stand to listen to him cry himself to sleep.

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Ten on Tuesdays

With school starting and getting back into the swing of things, I want to focus on things I am grateful for today.

  1. My kids love their school, their friends, and their teachers. The pure excitement they have when they get up everyday and get ready to learn, even Brayden now too.
  2. The older 2 boys are about to start Upward soccer, where they learn to play in a Christian environment.
  3. The older 3 boys will be involved with Awanas at church for almost 2 hours on Sunday nights, which means we can eat dinner in piece with just Dustin, Brennan, and myself they are learning God's Word and storing it in their hearts. It is amazing how quickly they pick the verses up, and how well they remember them.
  4. I have more patience with the boys since I only get to see them a few hours in the evenings before bedtime.
  5. From 7:15 to 4:30 5 days a week I do not have to change a dirty diaper my younger 2 boys are loved on by someone who has become a very good friend of mine and who has way exceeding what I could have hoped for to watch my children. She takes such good care of them, and really loves them. I know 100% God brought us together, because I could never have done so well on my own.
  6. I have a few minutes in between classes where it is quiet, and I can hear myself think. It is wonderful to have a few breathers during the day when I don't have to worry about anything or anyone at that moment. It may only be 10 minutes, but I'll take it.
  7. 3 days a week I get to have a lunch date with my hubby. When we are togther as a family we rarely get to have a decent conversation until the kids are in bed, but during the school year we get to eat lunch just the 2 of us. This is the 1st year when it will only be 3 days instead of 5 due to my schedule, but I still am looking forward to the 3 days.
  8. Brayden will start speech again for his last year. I always love watching how far he comes with his speech during a school year. It is amazing to me that this is his 3rd year already with Mrs. Jones. She is amazing. He would have to be retested after 3 years, and he has done so well that he wouldn't qualify at this point.
  9. Once I clean my house it stays cleaner for longer than 5 minutes. With everyone out of the house from 7:15 to 4:00 everyday the kids don't have enough time to make such a huge mess so it is easier to stay on top of everything.
  10. I love how excited the boys get over something so simple as a new lunch box or a new pair of tennis shoes for school. Or how big it makes them feel to pack their own lunches. It is the simple things in life they seem to really appreciate.

Monday, August 17, 2009

"Not Me!" Monday

Welcome to Not Me! Monday! This blog carnival was created by MckMama. You can head over to her blog to read what she and everyone else have not been doing this week.

This week my oldest 2 boys started back to school. I teach at the school that they go to so I knew I wouldn't be one of those moms weeping as they left their kids on the 1st day of Kindergarten and 1st grade. I mean anytime during the day I want to see them, I can walk right over and peer through their window. So I wouldn't have gotten all sad on the verge of tears over something so small and silly as a Big Kid Celebration at church celebrating Brayden being a big boy and leaving the preschool side nor would I have gotten sad when I had to drop Brandt off in the commons at school today instead of his classroom like the last 2 years. I mean there are 1st graders through 12th graders in there, I know that. I wouldn't have forgotten something like that and tried to drop him off in his classroom and had the matching shocked look when the teacher said he needs to go to the commons. I mean I have early morning duty in there tomorrow, surely I wouldn't forget my own child was big enough to go in there. Nope not me!

This week I also did not daydream about grocery shopping for almost 5 days before I actually went to the store. Grocery shopping is one of my least favorite things, because it either involves taking lots of kids or waiting until they are in bed and I can go by myself which in turn makes it very late before I can get in bed. So I surely wouldn't have been anxiously awaiting the store on Saturday. Nor would I have spent a couple of hours cutting coupons, printing coupons, and loading e-coupons to my Kroger card. Who has that kind of time? And I certainly wouldn't have gone to 3 seperate Krogers in one day, that would be torture. It is not like Kroger's Double coupons up to $1 sale would be worth that. Or saving 81% on my shopping bill be worth the headache and time. No, I am not totally in love with coupons and saving money. Doesn't describe me at all!

Friday, August 14, 2009

First Day of School

Today was the 1st day of school. It is amazing how quickly the summer flew by. It seems like life is constantly moving faster and faster. Today Brandt started 1st grade, and Brayden started Kindergarten. This time next year we will have 3 boys going to school. We attend a small Christian school, where I teach. We feel very blessed that our children are here, and I love that I am on campus with the boys. I ran into both boys today during the day, and they both looked like they were having a really good time.
Brandt's grade is small, and in fact there is only one 1st grade class this year. He is loving it, because he is with all his friends (they were split in 2 classes last year). Please pray for his teacher as there are 11 boys and only 4 girls. haha When they started in Pre-K there were 12 boys and 2 girls, so at least there are a few more girls now. 14 of these kids were here last year, and there is only 1 new student in their grade which is really strange.
Brandt and Mrs. Mobley
Brandt sitting at his 1st real desk, the last 2 years he had tables

Brayden's grade is now split into 2 classes, last year they were all together. They went from 14 kids last year to 28 this year, so his class had a huge expansion. His class is split almost 50/50 boys and girls. He also has a very young class, only 1 student has a birthday before Christmas. In fact by his birthday in April only 4 students will have turned 6 already. This is such a huge blessing for him. I am completely in love with his teacher, although she did give me a very emotional poem and package of Kleenex when I dropped him off this morning. Thankfully, I remembered that from last year and did not read it, maybe in a few days I'll be ready to read it. She is amazing, she handles her kids very well, but shows them love and compassion which is what he needs. He was not ready to head back to school and I am hoping some of her enthusiasm rubs off on him. When I ran into him he was smiling, so I am sure it has.
Brayden and Mrs. Taylor
Brayden reading Zoobooks while he waits for the rest of his classmates to arrive
Big brother helping out
Dustin and his big boys
Me and my 2 big boys

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Austin Park & Pizza...Warning Picture OVERLOAD!

This weekend we went to Austin Park & Pizza for my nephew's 9th birthday. We had never been before, but they have all kinds of stuff for kids to do. The boys had a blast.
Brennan saying "hi" with Grams (Dustin's mom)
Brandt and PawPaw (my dad)
Brennan showing me his silly face
Brennan chewing on his football
Older boys by the Putt-Putt golf course
Brandt loved riding the go-carts
Bry waiting for his turn to ride the go-carts with Dustin
Brennan got hot so my mom put water on him and then gave him a mohawk...kind of hard to see
Bry and one of his many silly faces
Look at that concentration. haha
Brandt and his buddy Michael looking on Brandt loved the bumper boats and squirting me with water
The boys begged Dustin to ride this with them since they weren't tall enough by themselves. By the end I wasn't sure who was having more fun.
Bryson and Brayden riding the spinning cups. They had this thing flying and the several times they rode it the guy had to manually stop their cup since they were going so fast.
Brayden and Bryson
Brandt and Michael turned their balloon swords into lightsabers and played Star Wars.

Monday, August 10, 2009

"Not Me!" Monday

Welcome to Not Me! Monday! This blog carnival was created by MckMama. You can head over to her blog to read what she and everyone else have not been doing this week.

This week we most certainly did not have a birthday celebration extravaganza. I mean there was Dustin's 30th birthday dinner as a family, and then his and my sister Kathryn's they just really love each other that much they share the exact same birthay: August 6th extended family celebration, and then my nephew's 9th birthday bash, but that's a pretty typical weekend with a large family. Right?

I certainly wouldn't have let my children order vanilla ice cream in Krazy colors while celebrating their daddy, I mean if they wanted vanilla they can eat the plain jane, old fashioned, non-staining kind. Remember I don't like messy children, and I certainly wouldn't have encouraged it.

I wouldn't have added bubble bath to their bath water in hopes that it counted as soaping them off. Nor would I have given them a popscile in the tub just to avoid having a mess to clean up afterwards. Nope, Not Me!

On the way home from all of our partying last night we certainly wouldn't have let Brandt drive our car. I mean we are the parents that STILL have our almost 7 year old 5-point harnessed and have no plans to stop anytime soon. We certainly wouldn't have been crazy enough to let him do that. Nor would I have panicked when I realized I told Dustin to turn 1 street too soon and we were not on the tiny country road I thought, but the much larger, with more traffic Farm to Market road.
And drinking while driving, absolutely NOT!!! Eyes on the road and hands on the steering wheel at all times!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Happy 30th Birthday!!!

Today Dustin turned 30!!! When I met him I was 19 and he was 20. It is amazing to me how quickly time has flown by. God has blessed us more than I ever could have imagined. I love you very much!

After we were in the car for dinner he changed his mind and we ended up going to Sodolak's Beefmaster. It is a local restaurant and one of his favorites.

Daddy & Bryson

I couldn't get Brennan to look at the camera, he kept starring at Dustin
Brandt & Brayden
The boys each got a Krazy Colors Ice Cream for stains EVERYTHING it touches!

Bryson enjoying his ice cream

The one I took of Brandt came out blurry, but he ate his in a cup so he wasn't nearly so messy. I ate the very last bite of Bryson's and it even stained my mouth with just 1 bite. We had a really nice time and came out to it POURING down rain. It was a total shock, but much needed. Although, it never did make it to our house...BUMMER!