Thursday, July 31, 2008

Aransas Pass Chowder

I have a Girls' Night Out to the Cheesecake Factory tonight with my fellow blogger, Stefani. So, I made Aransas Pass Chowder for lunch so Ben and the girls could have leftovers (sounds crummy that I will be at CCF while they are eating leftovers, but I am over it.) This chowder MAY have had one weight watchers point. It is loaded with veggies, shrimp and clams. Seafood could easily be substitued with chicken, just make a chicken stock instead of seafood stock. It was so yummy and filling!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

busy week

What a week! I cannot believe how busy we have been. (cute pics to come later!)
LE turns 3 next month and I cannot believe how stressed I have made myself over planning the perfect party. I love this kid and I want to give her the world, but man at what cost? We rented a pool for her party through the Rec. Dept. and we were so excited about the idea of her party. We knew we had a great location and a great plan, then we visited the pool on a weekend (her party would have been August 16th) & umm, no. It was overcrowded and I think our kids were the only ones in swim diapers. So, we decided to do an indoor bounce house~ all-inclusive, 25 kids, parents free! Yippee, we are set! Then this morning I had a revelation, the kid does not know 25 kids. She knows, um maybe 9 or 10, Ben and I have friends with 25 kids, but not her. It dawned on me; I was doing this for me, not her. So, today we had a play date with friends at the Sprinkler Park and it hit me, why not do it on her birthday, (a week day) and just have her play friends. Yes, some of our favorite friends are not going to be able to make it b/c of work schedules, but I know you parents are secretly thanking me that you do not have to spend 2 - 3 of your 48 hours off at my 3-yr old's b-day party. So, weight is off my shoulders and we are going low-key, sprinkler park/cupcake party and a family BBQ back home for aunts and uncles.

When we got home from San Fran, Ben made a new family rule ~ if it does not work for our family, we are not going to stress to make it happen just b/c we are "supposed" to do it. I think I finally get what he means. We were having this big ole shin-dig for a child, who simply wants a cake and her friends (insert your child's name) to come play with her. Why do we make life so complicated, now new rule - take the lead from my kid sometimes.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Gossie and Gertie

Tonight, we read one of my favorite books to the girls, Gossie and Gertie. Gossie & Gertie are two little ducks. The book's text is repetitive and very catchy. Gossie and Gertie are best friends. Gossie wears bright red boots and Gertie wears bright blue boots. Everywhere Gossie goes, Gertie goes too. So, after the story I asked LE, "are you Gossie and Bella, Gertie?",
"No, Mommy, we are not ducks."

Friday, July 25, 2008

Ben's new website

This is Ben's new website with samples of how he has been spending the past 9 months! It takes a bit to download the reel but it is really cool. I am proud of him.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

blog is under construction

Erica had originally gotten me started on all of this bloggin' cutsieness and I am trying to step out and be crafty and create my own. So, please excuse the mess while I play around. I am still trying to learn the software too!! Thanks Erica for the encouragement, ideas and my original banner idea!
Ben and I are going to a wedding this weekend and I purchased the couple a set of plates off their registry. Ben and I love our Fiestaware, that yes, we registered and received 12 settings of, (we each had 6 people in our families was my reasoning). This week, I had to replace my vacuum that was a wedding gift and the only appliances that still works or is used is the can opener (but is in storage b/c it is a mounted one - rental house) and my hand-held mixer. Other than that I have replaced 4 toasters, 3 coffee makers, most of our glasses, & a DVD player. I still have a lot of my cooking ware, but not much of a casserole eater anymore, so they don't get used very often. We still have & use (and are in pretty good shape) all of our JC Penny's collection of pale yellow towels. All new shower curtains & accessories.
So, curious what do you still have and use that you received as a wedding gift. And for the newlyweds out there what did you receive that is still in the box OR has already broken and been replaced?? Just wondering...

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

just because...

Just because He loves me...

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

potty training

I have said it for months, that Bell is going to potty train before LE. Today, I was changing my sweet 20-month old doll and she ran to the bathroom and pee~pee'd on the floor in front of the potty. Hoping her enthusiasm will encourage LE.

to listen or not to listen

It drives Ben nuts for websites to have music playing, but I think it makes them personable, so just wondering what do you think? Would it be annoying to put music on my blog?

Monday, July 21, 2008

win this quilt

NO time to waste-- I did not know how cool this website was...but DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT go to her website and register to win this quilt as it is too cute & needs to be in my daughter's room! And I do not like the music on her website and I did not sit and just vegg to it all afternoon. ENJOY! (you do know sarcasm, right?)

meeting baby Emery

Landry was very excited to meet her cousin, Emery. At the end of Marissa's pregnancy, she daily talked about baby Emery in her tummy. Even declining to eat food b/c baby Emery would not like it (she thought she had a baby in her tummy). On Monday, when Marissa was in labor, the girls went to see Gigi while we went to the hospital. It was a very long day and I am so glad they had their Gigi to play with during the day. On Tuesday, evening the girls finally got to meet her. I knew it was going to be a special moment, but with the girls you just never know. I am so glad Ryan had his camcorder b/c LE was so excited. When she first walked in my grandmother, Granny was holding her. LE's response, Granny has a baby, but when she realized it was Marissa's Emery, she proclaimed, "Oh, it is so good to see you. Thank you, Marissa for taking care of Baby Emery in your tummy. She is so beautiful." Bella was a little more apprehensive. She gave her kisses on her forehead, but she was perfectly content to hold Aunt Susan or play with Lindsay. Landry is saying in one of the pics, "she likes me."

Jake's game

I know you are probably waiting for Emery pics and they are coming, but there are a lot of them and I am having to decide which ones to post. It is a tough thing!! They are all blog worthy, so in the mean time here are some fun ones of Jake's last all-star game. They were in regionals and lost to last year's state champions. I am sure they were bummed to be eliminated, but I bet they are excited their summer will finally start.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

playdate with Connor

The girls got company very early this morning; they were so excited their friend Connor came to play. We watched movies, played puzzles, played dress-up and splashed in the sprinkler. They had a great time, we cannot wait to have more good fun with our little buddy, Connor.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

my sweet niece

I FINALLY have a niece.
Emery Joy
July 14th, 12:56 pm.
7lbs, 6 oz, 20 1/2 inches long.

More pics & stories to come soon

Friday, July 11, 2008

Happy Birthday Uncle Greggie!!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

creative girls

When the girls got up from nap, Bella got to make the snack. She wanted pretzels, bug bites (graham crackers), raisins & juice. She was so proud of herself. This is how she looks after waking from her nap, I love how wavy her hair is, I guess b/c mine is so straight! They had fun fingerpainting and then we made b-day cards for someone special. This was Bell's first attempt at stamping. You may be able to tell the stamp part is upside down (& there were tears in her eyes b/c I was helping), so she is actually stamping her hands, but she was having fun!

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

my new read

My friend, Stafani, gave me an awesome book for the last day of school. I took it with us to San Fran and I could not put it down. I read it almost cover to cover in 2 sittings. This book has so completely changed my philosophy on staying home during the day with the girls. We have always tried to limit the hours of TV at our house, so much they we no longer have cable, but now what to do with all of that free time? This book is full of ideas to spend your day actively creating and making memories together. I LOVE this book! I found the author's blog and her blog is great too (if you enjoy blue yonder). Today, the girls and I decided to paint. No, it is probably not the kind of painting she would encourage, but it is what we had on hand and the girls enjoyed their time together (pics to be posted later, camera in sleeping girl's room). My goal is to implement one idea a week. There are so many things to do, and many things that are above the girl's capacity now, but so many things I cannot wait to try.

update on arrival of baby Emery

Ryan and Marissa had a doctor appt. today, b/c their sweet baby still has not decided to join us in this great big world. She is acting like a Neal! The doctor does not think she will deliver before Monday (due date July 6th), and he thinks he will have to induce on Monday afternoon. So, our trip home is postponed and we are hoping she gives her mommy some rest over the next few days or decides to make her grand entrance! We are praying for you and the girls cannot wait to see their Emery!

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

family pics

this is the life

Dillon & LE

My brother, Bryan & his wife Susan

Last month, we went home for a family reunion, which was "good fun" (LE's new word). After the reunion we went to a ranch outside of Bandera, my uncle had rented for leftovers, watermelon, Popsicles, and washers. This is my Granny's side of the family. June would have been my Nana's (Gran's mom) 100th birthday, I know she would have loved to seen all of her children sitting around together, 4 generations were gathered on this porch.

1st movie theater experience

I took the girls to their 1st movie this a.m. - Veggie Tales - The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything. LE sat and watched the entire thing, but she wanted me to hold her leg tight (some "scary" parts). Bell was done about 20 minutes into it. The music kept her attention, but she was ready to "go home, Momma." It was fun, but Daddy and LE will get to go next time and Bell and I will wait for the DVD release.

Way to go, Cameron!
One of my former students and children I babysat for many years! Very cool honor, highest for a high school singer.

Monday, July 07, 2008

i won i won

I won the Blue Yonder's How I Spent My Summer Vacation Essay. I am so excited, I cannot remember the last time I won anything. It was so fun to write and reminisce about spending the summers at my Granny's house growing up. Thanks Stefani!

Each of my summers were very similar, I spent them at my Granny's, who lived on several acres of land. My great-aunt lived "up the hill" behind her and my Me-Maw lived a few hundred yards back "in the pasture". I spent most mornings at Granny's eating scrambled egss made by Paw-Paw and watching Granny's stories (Young and the Restless - quite happy to see after 25 years Botox has worked so well for Victor,quick glimpse at the gym last week). Afternoons were spent in my aunt's air conditioned Ceramic Shop sweeping, unloading kilns, pouring molds or painting knick knacks for relatives. Early evenings were spent calling up the deer by shaking a metal bucket of corn while calling them by name, Apple Jaw is the only name that comes to mind. Then, my mom would come pick me up to get a bath, eat dinner and start all over the next day. I am pretty sure a summer day can be accredited for learning to read a Simplicity pattern, use a sewing machine or peel plums for plum jelly. I also learned to do crossword puzzles, bait a hook with PawPaw, and check a trot line in the Guadalupe River. Granny and PawPaw owned a fireworks stand, so 2 weeks of every summer was spent with sparklers in hand and blackcats popping in the not so far distant. Thanks for the walk down Memory Lane.

4th of July weekend

We had a great 4th of July weekend. Ben had off on Friday, which I just assumed everyone in America did, until I talked to 2 friends who did not! I was so thankful he got to spend the day with us. We went to downtown RR for the 4th of July parade and met our friends, Natalie and her kiddos, David and Blythe. The girls discovered all kinds of new candy, up until this weekend they had only known of jelly beans and they were so excited that people were just throwing it at them! LE saw one of her fave adults in the parade, Miss April. She used to be our neighbor. The parade was incredibly hot, so we had to go home shower and nap so we could go to our friends, the Chavez's that evening. LE was so excited b/c Annelise and A.J. (the Tangumas also joined us for the festivities) are two of her fave friends. Andrew grilled burgers, hot dogs and sausage and I "made" an apple pie (thanks to HEB). I was so bummed b/c I forgot to charge my camera batteries after our trip so these are the only pics I took of the night. Then, on Saturday we went to another BBQ at our friends, the Richards, Bizarro Ben and Julie. There were lots of older kids and the girls were a little more apprehensive about playing, but we had great food and fellowship, just no pics! Thanks everyone for the freedom from cooking this Independence Day!!