skills and grades


Yesterday, Jake got his first Karate "Report Card".  He got B's on his kick form, discipline, and focus.  He got A's on his balance and flexibility.  He got a B+ on his kata memorization.  And he got A+'s for having a positive attitude and speaking up (yes sir).  His Sensei wrote this at the bottom, "I have enjoyed teaching Jake Karate this year very much.  Whenever I see him, he has a smile on his face, and he is always willing to try whatever I ask of him.  He does struggle with focus and discipline every now and then, especially when he and Gabriel get together.  We have worked on this, and he is improving his control, and I am proud of his progress.  Keep it up!"  I'm proud of him in every way, but I'm especially proud of those A+'s... not because they're A+'s but because of what they're for - having a great attitude and showing respect.  He's got heart, he's building character, and he's working his social game.  High five, Buddy!



Last week I was in a total funk, and I think my coworker, Misty, described it best when she said I probably had the winter blues.  I feel like I do this every year/Winter, but I think it hit me hard last week because our three-day weekend just flew by, I didn't sleep great on Monday night, and I woke up so overwhelmed by stuff that now doesn't seem worth being overwhelmed over.  

What a huge plus it was to have sunny skies the past two days and temperatures warm enough to get outside for a little while.  I even got started on my Spring cleaning projects.  I've decided I'd rather do it now than during Spring Break (one of the best perks e-verrrr about working for a University).  So on Saturday, I started with our laundry room, kitchen and sitting room (they're all connected) and gave all three areas a top (from the vents in the ceiling) to bottom (to the floors) wipe down/vacuum clean (leaving some of the vacuuming like the tops of the cabinets to Jim).  I even polished our kitchen cabinets, and they look fabulous - even with all the nicks and dings and scratches they accumulate daily.  Oh the territory that comes with having boys and their toys.

Here's a quick snap I got of Parker at top speed on his newest toy that he got for his birthday.  

I hope y'all had a great (and sunny) weekend too!

fifteen extra minutes of fame


I'm so excited!  A few days after Parker's second birthday party, I submitted my blog address - specifically the post about it - and details about putting it all together to Kara's Party Ideas.  The next day I got an e-mail from one of her team members letting me know she had chosen to feature it on her blog.  And about a week and a half later, there it was.  Her website is my "go to" for the best of the best when it comes to party ideas, so I'm giddy to say the least.  And kind of honored actually.

winter white


Snow started falling about mid-morning on Thursday and by noon, it was looking like something from a movie scene.  I couldn't take it anymore (watching it from our office windows), so I texted and called the boy's teachers and said I'm on my way.  After slipping and sliding off campus, kidnapping my honeys, waiting over fifteen minutes for a train to pass, changing to a different route from the one I normally take to get home, and spending altogether over an hour on the roads to get home, we spent two glorious hours in our front yard winter wonderland. 

Parker was not the snow's biggest fan.  He laughed when I got hit by balls of it that Jake threw at me, but when he noticed it sticking to his shoes, it ruined the fun factor for him.  He chose to stand on the sidewalk and watch...and cry.  Oh well.  The rest of us had a great time.

Jim even skipped the change-into-something-weather-appropriate and helped Jake build a monster snowman - still wearing his tie.  Hey, in Alabama you just never know how long it will last so the minutes and hours are pretty precious.

Ahhh...two hours just wasn't long enough.  Here's to hoping we get another "dusting" that they're calling for as soon as before the month of January comes to an end.

snow excited


Well, I'm happy to say we are soooo much better.  Jake is still somewhat congested and still getting daily doses of his medicines, but Parker and I almost sound as if we'd never been sick.

Today, we're watching for snow to fall.  I can only imagine how many times Jake will look out of his Kindergarten classroom window to see if it's coming down yet.  Heck, I'm as excited as he is to see everything covered in white!

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!  

water-logged and over it


As of this past weekend, chest congestion and coughing has infected us all.  Jim had already had a touch of it a few weeks back, and I felt it coming the Saturday before.  Last Wednesday, Parker started waking up with a gooky nose, and I could hear Jake clearing his throat from his bed.  By Saturday, it had hit us all, and our only outing was to stock up on cough syrup and decongestant.  

Out of all of us, I think Parker has had it the worse.  On Sunday, he started running fever and had one off and on throughout the day yesterday.  So Jim took him to his pediatrician (He said his ears weren't fully infected but were definitely irritated, so he prescribed him an antibiotic for him to take for ten days.) and hung out with him here at home the rest of the day.  

Today I took off to make sure he stayed fever-free, got his appetite back, and stayed out of this nasty weather for one more day.  Ugh!  I'm beginning to wonder if we'll ever see the sun again.  We're all wondering. 

This is the look he gave me when I told him it was still raining...which meant no "ide" (outside).

What were the dimensions of that ark again?  

And this is why I love Pinterest.


Besides some really awesome diy projects I'll most likely never get around to doing, great looks I'd love to have in my closet to wear, fabulous birthday party ideas, anti-aging secrets (If the Evening Primrose Oil supplement I've started taking works, you'll be the first to know.  And you might actually see a picture of me on this blog!), recipes that if I tried them they'd never look like they do in the picture, and room designs that made me drool, I also find God's promises.

I hope you all have a great weekend!  I plan to make rice krispie treats.  No recipe needed.  Exactly!



Today is the big day - Parker's birthday.  He woke up to us serenading him with a verse of "Happy Birthday", but at 6:30 in the morning, he didn't appreciate.  It's all good.  I got him dressed for school, and we cuddled on the couch to an episode of 3rd and Bird.  He skips breakfast at home now because he'd rather be snuggled while he drinks a cup of juice...melt.  I picked him up this afternoon and met one of his new friends.  On the way home, we stopped for McDonald's happy meals.  And tonight he was sung to by his Grandpa, Grandma, Aunt Cathy, and cousin Emily over the phone.  I'd say he had a pretty great first day of being two.

I think his party this past Saturday turned out great too.  Picking a theme for it based on what he loves was pretty easy.  That would be either Munchkin brand sippy cups or balls.  Balls it was.  

The guest list was a super short one because he just started going to his new school this past Wednesday and we're still fairly new at the church we're visiting.  It was just us and my family.

They came early, so we had tons of time for pizza, presents, cheese balls, and gum balls.  His new battery-operated four wheeler was a hit and so was the singing; but he didn't blow out the candles on his cake.  He blew after Jake showed him how to, but it wasn't enough to put them out so Jake blew out one, and I blew out the other.

Afterwards, we went to a place called The Playhouse.  They have a blow up bounce castle, two ball pits (one big one and one little one), and a big playground with two slides.

So, so fun (Even Grandma took a turn playing in the ball pit.) and the perfect place to avoid a meltdown from being pushed way beyond his normal nap time.

A quick ride home, and we all crashed.

Parker, you swell my heart to three times its size.  Happy Birthday, Hoo!  I love to the stars...and beyond!!!

Birthday party. Check.


Whew!  Birthday party...check.  Because I just crashed afterwards yesterday (Why do birthdays equal exhaustion?), I still haven't sorted through pictures from his big day.  So until Tuesday - his actual birthday (Because tomorrow our place will be crowded with friends watching a little something called Alabama football.), here is one that I took of the soon-to-be-birthday-boy's Big Brother doing one of the things that he does best - raiding our night.

A snack just before bedtime is a never-fail request from him.  Oh and this kid can't wait for his birthday.  He can sing the months of the year song perfectly, but bless his heart, he still doesn't understand the concept of time between each one.  He's been asking me since I started prepping for Parker's when it's going to be his.

Breathe...Roll Tide...and let the planning for the big number 6 begin!

after three days


I've been so distracted this week and knee deep in hot glue and party circles at night - so much that I haven't made time to write about our week.  And I totally get that I'm posting this on perhaps that means I'm wearing my Friday-colored (Rose?) glasses; but I have to say even after three days, it's been good. 

On Wednesday morning, we drove to school and parked in front of the preschool building.  Jake quickly unbuckled his seatbelt (Which he hates to wear now after almost six years of buckling up every time we put our vehicles in drive.  We have to ask him many times to put it on.  He groans about not being able to reach it.  He looks for reasons to unbuckle it.  Is this just a phase?) and grabbed his things.  Parker decided if Jake was bolting it might be high time for him to do the same, so he also started to get restless.  I asked, "Are you ready to go to school, Park?"  He said really excitedly, "Dooool!  Dooool!"  Ask me how much I LOVE him.  I gathered his new robot backpack and nap mat and carried him inside.  He hugged my left hip a little tighter as his new teacher approached us, and I knew then he wasn't quite as sure as he was just a minute before.  So we walked around to take it all in - see what his new classroom looked like and hang his backpack on "his" hook.  We made our way into the hands-on/one-big-children's-museum area, and that's when he saw it - THE fish tank.  After a couple of minutes of talking about the fish that lived there and watching his classmates crawl up on the table in front of it to watch them eat their breakfast, he pushed himself away from my shoulder and slid down my leg.  He never looked back or knew when I left.  Since then he's been just as cooperative when we leave him in the mornings, and he's been happy and content every afternoon when we pick him up.  The tears may come next week, of course, when the newness wears off, so for now we're enjoying the easiness of these first few days.

As for the rest of us, it's been just as smooth - even getting up a six in the morning.  Not fun.  Just smooth.  Don't take me too far.

I hope your week has been smooth (maybe even fun) too.  Birthday party photos are coming soon.  We celebrate our soon-to-be (Tuesday, to be exact.) terrific two year old tomorrow morning.  Eeeek!  T.W.O.!   

Two nap mats dried in our dryer today...


because we all go back to living in our real world tomorrow...including Parker.  

He will start K2 at the same school Jake goes to.  It's comforting in that respect; but he's been either at home or his grandma's since the beginning of November which makes it feel like it's his first day of preschool all over again.  I'm praying his adjustment to a new place, a new routine, a new teacher, and new classmates (and our adjustment to it all too) will be a smooth and quick one.  

If you happen to think of my little honey, will you say a quick prayer for him too?

I hope you all have had an awesome first day of 2013!