Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Got soap?

So this is just one example of what happens when we leave our children alone for an extended amount of time and don't hear a thing. Caleb must have thought that Wes needed a new bar of soap, or five.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Egg huntin'

It is that time of year, time to hunt Easter eggs and refill the candy jar... again. Today we had our first official egg hunt of 2010. We've been practicing for a few weeks at home - there is a strategy to egg huntin' and we couldn't go to our first hunt cold turkey. We were invited out to an annual egg hunt put on by two families, one of which has a daughter in Austin & Avery's class. When it comes to Easter Egg hunting, these people know how to do it - visit from the Easter Bunny, hayride, egg hunt, and yummy snacks.
When we first arrived to our destination, we were welcomed by the Easter Bunny. Note to anyone out there reading who may want to have us over anytime soon - do not dress up in a large white bunny costume if you expect for us to hang around long. Austin & Caleb will avoid you like the black plague and Avery will be on pins and needles until she is assured that the Easter Bunny has left the building... for good. The pic below of Avery in tears shows what I am talking about. This was as the kids were loading up for the hayride and the bunny was still around, hanging out with the kids who actually liked him. As the hayride took off, the Easter Bunny spread out the eggs for the hunt and then disappeared. Avery was more excited to hear that he had left than she was seeing a pasture full of Easter eggs ready to be hunted.

As for the hunt itself, I was glad to see that the kids didn't go overboard with putting eggs in their baskets and unlike last year, they didn't open every egg right away to see what was inside. After hunting, the kids huddled together to examine their loot. I haven't seen them get along so well in weeks. Nothing like a little sugar to bring siblings together. We have 5 scheduled Easter egg hunts next weekend. We'll see if they continue to get along so well.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Put 'Em Up

This is the other half of our "princess". She has to hold her own when wrestling with the boys!

High water jeans.....

Within the past week, Austin has gone from preferring to wear jeans to "I will only wear jeans." It has made for a few rough mornings and yes, I have broken down and let him wear the dirty jeans in the hamper.... two days in a row. We are down to 2 pair of jeans that are long enough for him since he decided to shoot up a few inches recently. I'm hesitant investing in new jeans when I know he'll be wearing nothing but shorts in just a few weeks. He has other pants - khakis, brown cargos, and the oh so comfy wind pants, but only jeans will do.
After telling Austin his jeans were in the washing machine this morning, he decided to take matters into his own hands and dug in the hamper to find a pair of Caleb's jeans and this was the result. No worries, I didn't let him go to school like this.... we managed to get the jeans in the washer dry before leaving the house.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Jaxon's Bday party

Mr. Jaxon Schramm turned one last week and we got to help him celebrate. Who knew that after a week of temps in the 70s, we'd get this winter like front and force everything indoors? It actually turned out ok because instead of the jumping house, they called in a balloon master and face painter. A&A&C loved that!

Just a swingin'

3 great things about these photos: 1) the kids are barefoot and in short sleeves which means it is warm outside and spring is here. 2) The playhouse/swing set is being put to use, 3) I am not the one having to push the kids in the swing - Thanks, Popo

Avery, Austin, and Caleb all LOVE to swing. Unfortunetely for us, they can't do it on their own yet, or at least say they can't... though I know they make them do it on their own at school. So when they plead long and loud enough, Wes or I get to push all three for as long as we can stand it. They'd let us push them all day if we would, but neither of us could handle the constant "Higher! I want to go higher." "Mommy, push me" "I'm not going high enough".... they can be pretty demanding. I have a feeling we will spending a lot of time on the swings this spring/summer... even more reason to keep teaching them how to pump those legs.

Favorite Dress

So this is the dress that has caused many a tear to be shed. Avery loves her Hello Kitty dress and would wear it every day if she could. Due to the spaghetti sauce stain and dry erase marks, I have pretty much restricted it to around the house only... hence the tears.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

ER - should I stay or should I go??"

So it was just a "typical" weekday night with the exception of Wes having a 7pm church meeting. It had been a dreary day and knowing that we would not have the option to play outside that evening, I picked up Disney's just released Princess and the Frog and figured the kids and I would have movie night - early supper, air mattress on the floor, popcorn... the works.
Before the movie, the kids were going to shower off. A few minutes into the shower A&A started "dancing" which usually results in pulling each other around and someone falling down and eventually someone crying. I told them to stop - someone was going to get hurt -probably even yelled it a time or two. When the settled down I went into their rooms to get jammies.
As I was walking down the hall, I heard a high pitched scream - not an "ouch, I need attention scream." It was an "OUCH, I am really hurt, mommy please help me" scream. I found Avery crying hysterically (not necessarily an uncommon thing). I immediatley turned off the water, picked her up out of the shower, and started to dry her off. As I started asking the usual "What happened?" questions, I reached around the back of her head to dry her hair. As I pulled it back, the cream towel was now red - BLOOD! I quickly found the gash in the middle of the back of her head - she had hit the edge of the tile shower bench - and went into somewhat of a panic mode. What should I do? Does she need stiches? Should I take her to the ER?
As I am in panic mode, I hear Austin laughing and it brings me back to reality. In the shower I still have two naked boys, one of which just pooped on the shower floor and stepped in it. Really? Now? I swear Caleb has never done that before... was he testing me? Test or not, Austin sure was getting a kick out of it. Avery's gash was going to have to wait a few minutes so I could take care of the poop and get the boys dressed. I think I did it in record time, but can't say I would have won any kind of award for being gentle. Once the boys were dressed, I turned my attention back to Avery's gash and called Mimi to come over to help out in case we were headed to the ER and truth is I wanted a second opinion. During all of this, Wes & I were texting back and forth since he was in a meeting and his initial response was: this doesn't sound ER worthy... but he hadn't seen the blood!
While waiting for Mimi, Avery and I were able to calm down a bit. The cut was not bleeding that bad, it wasn't too deep and Avery wasn't crying too bad after the initial hit. The cut was gapping which is why I was thinking "stitches". While I was getting Avery dressed, I heard Austin sobbing in his room. When I asked him what was wrong, he said "I don't want Avery to have to go to the hospital. I won't get to see her for a few days." He has such a big heart!
So Mimi arrives, we both assess the wound again and after talking on the phone to Wes, a trip to the ER was no longer in the picture. Princess and the Frog was turned on and received Avery's full attention while I attempted to clean the cut and see if there was any possible way to bandage it. Since nothing would stick to her hair, I just pulled the hair aside and applied medicine. Avery got the prime spot on my lap for the remainder of the movie and for both of our comfort, got to sleep next to me all night.
Next morning.... all was well. No crying, not even when it came time to put in a ponytail. By the time I picked her up from school the next day, you could already see signs of the wound drying up. We just have to make sure and keep it clean.
I pray our ER visits are very limited. Maybe this was just a small test for what's to come.... let's hope not.


St. Patty's Day is about the luck of the Irish... or something like that. I'm not Irish, but I'd say I'm pretty lucky that I get watch these three amazing kiddos grow up every day.

No one in our crew was going to get pinched today (except for daddy - they got him good!). At least I got them all in green today.... not lucky enough though to get them all looking at the camera.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Rodeo time

Our Bouncing Bear Cowgirl & Cowboy. I regret that I didn't get a picture of Caleb. He insisted on wearing his cowboy boots (rubber boots) and straw cowboy hat.

Boot story

So at the beginning of March, the kid's monthly calendar of activities was sent home and we noticed that Avery & Austin would be having a good ol' fashioned rodeo - Bouncing Bear style. The rodeo is held in conjunction with the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo (at least I think they do... seems logical) and weeks prior they talk about Texas history and the cowboy way. The calendar was hung up in its usual spot, but it took until the week of the event that I REALLY noted, the kids have rodeo on Thursday this week! As I started asking a few questions and talked to the kids a bit more, I realized this rodeo was a little bigger deal than I thought. Then my last minute mind jumped into action... what are they going to wear? We are not quite the cowboy family. We love our outdoors, but they are usually steer and heifer-free. Besides a hand me down set of chaps, a few play guns and some worn out straw cowboy hats that we got as a party favor, our cowboy gear is slim to none.
So Tuesday, two days before the rodeo, I was determined I was going to look for A&A a pair of boots. Brenham has a great wetern wear store where you are going to get good quality, but also pay for it. I haven't been there in years, probably not since high school, so I wasn't sure what they'd have. Turns out they had a wide variety of kids' boots and a number of styles to choose from. After looking at the price and not knowing how long the kids would even be able to wear them, I determined Austin would be the only one getting boots. When it comes to shoes, he's usually the one that gets the shaft. Anyone who looks in Avery's closet would agree. So, after debating the shoe size and leaving the store to mull over my choices, I decided to go to the kids resale shop downtown. I have found a few random things there, mainly shoes for Avery. I had popped in the week before and they didn't have anything, so I wasn't holding my breath. I walked into the store and told the lady what I was looking for. We looked on the shelf, nothing. Then she remembered that a lady had brought in boots the day before... pink ones.... cute ones... size 9!!!! SOLD for $7.50. That sold the deal for Austin's boots as well, and a hat!
So on my way home that night (I had a church meeting so I was coming home later) I knew my next dilema was that I was coming home with 2 pairs of boots, not 3. Caleb would expect a pair of boots and I could see a total melt down if he didn't get any. Believe me, we've seen it happen. The kids were playing in the backyard with Kelcie when I got home and didn't see me when I drove up so my first stop was the attic above the garage. I knew Austin didn't have any boots to pass along, but there had to be something up there. As I walked up the stairs, my eyes darted across to where I have their hand me downs and there they were - a pair of black rubber boots... size 8 - Caleb's new cowboy boots!
Later when they all came inside, they were all surprised with a new pair of boots, of some kind, and we had smiles all around! Yee haw!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Tough question

Last night as we were about to take baths, I found Avery in the hallway looking at her Rhyme Bible. This was a gift that the kids got from the church when they turned 3. We've been reading out of it quite a bit lately before bed, especially the Easter story of Jesus dying on the cross. Last night as I was walking through the hallway I saw Avery on the page that showed a picture of Jesus nailed to the cross and Avery looked up at me and said "Mama, when am I going to die?" Talk about being taken back. I didn't know how to respond. Before I could think of an answer, she said "When I am old?" All I could think to say was, "I hope so."
As I walked down the hall, I thought how ironic that Avery would ask this question on the same day that baby Layla Grace passed away. For those of you who may not have been following her story and the familiy's tremendous faith, it can be found at www.laylagrace.org. Her story has touched the lives of millions of people, including mine. When you look at what their family has been going through, it really makes you take a step back and realize what is important in life. It makes me ashamed of some of the things I "worry" about. It makes me ashamed of wanting things I don't have when the truth is I have SO much. I have my faith in God and a wonderful family - including a loving husband and 3 healthy children. I get to hear their laughter everyday and together we have the opportunity to live life to it's fullest.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Half marathon

If you are looking for an interesting post about the kids, this is not it. This one is about ME! This morning I accomplished something I've wanted to do for some time now - I completed a half marathon... all 13.1 miles! I have run a few before, all before kids. In fact in 2002, a few months after Wes & I got married, I ran a full marathon. It's not for everyone and I don't know that I have the desire to ever run a full again, but the half is an accomplishment I am proud of. I ran a 1hour 53minute & 43 second race, under my 2 hour goal ... finished 5th in my age group (30-34 females) and if you do the math, that is a 8:39/hr pace. This was much better than I have run in "training", but having lots of people around me helped me pick up my pace. It was a great morning for running - cool, not cold, and most important - no wind.
When most people find out that I enjoy running, they ask "WHY?" Not real sure that I know the answer, but truth is I am not really "good" at anything else and running gives me some "me time", something I feel ALL mommies need. The next question is "How do you do it with 3 kids, a home, and a full time job?" Well, my answer to that is I make it happen. Wes often times picks the kids up during the week so that I can run after work and on the weekends I try to get up early and get a run in and get back home before the fam even wakes up. There are times it takes me away from the kids and mommy duties, but truth is, when I get to run, I feel better about myself. When I feel better about myself, I am a better wife and mommy. When I get my "me" time,I am ready to give 100% to my family.... of course running 5 miles makes me feel a little less guilty when indulguing in birthday cake as well.
Now that my half marathon is over, I don't have my sights set on any other long runs any timje soon, maybe just a 10K. I do hope to refocus an dkeep working out but do some strength training to tone up. Summer is right around the corner and we have a number of "swimsuit required" events scheduled.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Shoe fettish

Yes.... Avery has one. The other night this is what we walked in on.....

She had taken all the shoes out of her and Austin's closet.

Digging in the trenches....

What a great Saturday - spring like weather and NO birthday parties! Even better, Popo came and picked up the kids this morning to take them to the park for a little while. Now they are all sound asleep and fell asleep without us even having to "negotiate" with them. Did they play that hard at the park? Well, not exactly, though I'm sure it had something to do with it. In addition to the park, they spent about 2 hours playing in a trench... I know, only in the country. Wes has been doing some dirt work with the tractor around the tank and it involved having to dig out a water line on the lower half of our property. Today he was restoring that waterline but not without the help of his right hand men and woman. They loved walking in the trench with the small amount of water that had seeped in. Even more, they loved getting MUDDY, DIRTY, FILTHY.

As you see, by the time I got my camera the kids had stripped down to just the neccesities. I have more very entertaining pics of them due to the fact that by the time all said and done, they were completely naked and dirty from head to toe. Not sure who all looks at the blog, so I will save the naked pics for just my humor (and blackmail.)