Saturday, December 31, 2005

Happy New Year!

On the way home from a New Year's Party tonight when told to take quiet time, "Daddy I'm looking for the Red deer Rain nosed" from Little Guy.

Yesterday I was spelling out a consequence for him, he'd just asked for cereal and I told him he would have to eat it all because he asked for a lot and then he hit his brother and it went bad so I told him he couldn't have any more cereal. He sniffles a little and says, "That is so yukky." I laughed and said I would give him cereal in a bowl and milk and told him how well he communicated by saying what he felt.

Friday, December 30, 2005

What Is

A home without laughter from the loved ones of your extended family?

A home without the joy of births, babies, pain, and joy?

A home without grandparents, aunts, uncles, oma's, opa's, cousins, brother in laws, and sister in laws?

A home without the comings and goings of those who love you most, will take advantage of you the most, and who you can take the most advantage of?

A home without an extra kind word from someone close enough to care when you just don't have the extra kind word in you?

A home that sighs at the happiest of occasions because of the people that are missing in it?

A home that drops tears silently at night, in the morning, and in between?

A home that would prefer the tears to be silent rather than be comforted?

This is our home, at least the part of me that is this home.

The Sun Is Pink Streaked

Outside my bedroom window just before I closed the curtains to signal nightfall.

Arizona Sunset
Arizona Sunset

We had a wonderful holiday. We drove over to my Grandma's in Arizona and made it there in a day and a half. We had a comfy stay at Comfort Inn and enjoyed the hot coffee and cream before we leisurely hit the road. We arrived at Grandma's about noon on Saturday and. just. relaxed. My sister's family was there with her three boys, and my parents had driven in from California. Our boys immediately took to the golf carts as my Grandma lives in a very nice senior community intermixed with a golf course where their main form of transportation are golf carts. The house next to them even has the cutest golf cart garage! I took a ride myself that evening to get showered and refreshed for our Christmas Eve dinner and enjoyed the warm breezes of the 84 degree weather and the beautiful sunset on the way back. Grandpa even let Big Guy drive all by himself, pedals and all!

This is my sister and I being escorted off the golf course pathways by super fast old guy. We were having too much fun with this.

Christmas Eve dinner was of a Mexican origin, absolutely delicious and STUFFing. Friends of my Grandma's came over, brought tons of desserts, presents for all, and joined in the fun. Later on after they went home we opened up presents and enjoyed the oohs and ahhs. Christmas morning we woke up to a delicious Grandma only breakfast of sausage, bacon, eggs, biscuits and gravy, and, our contribution, stollen. The boys, hubby and I opened our stockings and Santa brought the boys a present (with a note saying he'd left more at home). My stocking was stuffed full with every kind of Victoria's Secret underwear imaginable and a Borders gift certificate, the boys had their special ornaments in theirs with a few fun toys and Aslan slippers for Shawn, and Brandon had his special ornament from me and Garlic Stuffed Olives which he finished off by the next evening.

Mommy and Daddy's Stockings
The boys made these for us and put them in our stockings.

I'm not exactly sure what we did Christmas day except more eating and more relaxing. We did make the turkey and ham dinner and fussed all day over whether it was cooked or not. It was, and delicious. And we stuffed ourselves once more. Oh and I went wild with the camera and the mirror. You'll see what I mean.

Our Christmas Feast
Christmas Feast

Monday was more relaxing and then we took off for back home. Not without an honorary stop by In N Out Burger though! At 7:30pm the place was hopping and even though we'd just ate there magically appeared room for a hamburger for each. Only the best.

Phoenix, Arizona In N Out
Phoenix In N Out

We made it home Tuesday evening after a stop in Fredericksburg for Chili's, still enjoying a friend's gift, Johnson City for Christmas Light and to see PEC Headquarters all lit up.

PEC Headquarters
PEC Headquarters

Wednesday Hubby went up to the mail room and collected all the presents from his Mom which took up half the mail room, and are still taking up half our house. I'll try to find links because it's all too much to describe. She got a game table for the family, a chocolate fountain for me - ooh, don't be jealous, I'll share if you come visit, a portable office for Hubby, comfy chairs for the boys, and an extra table for all of us. So that was Wednesday. The boys love their game table and played all day, I am fascinated with my chocolate fountain and was going to break it out at the New Year's Party we were to attend tomorrow night. Turns out the host had a medical emergency on his way home from his Christmas holiday, so we'll be stopping by another party which there won't be any other kids there so more than likely we'll head home before too long and have a nice quiet evening at home. Maybe we'll break it out any way : ) .

Chocolate Fountain
My chocolate fountain - yum!

Last night Hubby and I went out on a date to... (drum roll) The Melting Pot. yes our first time, and I won't be as graphic as Alyssa was with Sephora, but it was pretty darn good. The dessert, oh the dessert. Hubby almost didn't want to stay for it as he was too stuffed, but I convinced the Melting Pot wasn't complete without dessert and once they brought out our white chocolate, caramel, bananas, and Captain Morgan Rum Banana Fosters fondue flambeed at our table with pound cake, brownies, strawberries, bananas, cheesecake, and marshmallows smothered in graham crackers and oreos, he magically seemed to find the room.

Melting Pot Dessert
Melting Pot Dessert

Pictures are up! If you need an invite to view the private ones, just email me at sundrops at gmail dot com.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

We Are Back

From the sun filled land of Arizona! We went to visit my Grandma over the holidays and had a fabulous time.

Pictures, memories, and Christmas list soon to come...

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Deck the Halls with Boughs of Holly

I am sitting on my computer under my newly wall mounted panel TV that cleared up lots of room on my desk. The Christmas tree is decorated next to me and the sun is setting through the windows next to it. The boys are creating all sorts of creations with Tinker Toys in their room. Hubby is wrapping presents in our room and just handed me my Christmas stocking stuffed full with red tissue paper peeking out the top. There is Christmas music streaming online through I love the alternative versions of the traditional Christmas carols and the wonderful Christmasy feel I'm feeling right now.

My Stocking
My stocking from Hubby. Taking a hint from Amanda's setup...

Mosaic 101

Use the reheat setting on your microwave. It'll get things started by breaking in your plates in half for you. You might even be able to use the charred pizza it will create for you. All in under two minutes. It fills the house with smoke as well, but that's a side note.

I know I've been asked this in a meme before, but I'm going to say it while I'm thinking of it. My favorite song? Lifehouse "You and Me".

What day is it
And in what month
This clock never seemed so alive
I can't keep up and I can't back down
I've been losing so much time

Cause it's you and me and all of the people
With nothing to do, nothing to lose
And it's you and me and all of the people and
I don't know why I can't keep my eyes off of you

All of the things that I want to say
Just aren't coming out right
I'm tripping on words, you got my head spinning
I don't know where to go from here

Cause it's you and me and all of the people
With nothing to do, nothing to prove
And it's you and me and all of the people and
I don't know why I can't keep my eyes off you

Something about you now
I can't quite figure out
Everything she does is beautiful
Everything she does is right

Cause it's you and me and all of the people
With nothing to do, nothing to lose
And it's you and me and all of the people and
I don't know why I can't keep my eyes off of

You and me and all of the people
With nothing to do, nothing to prove and
It's you and me and all of the people and
I don't know why I can't keep my eyes off of you

What day is it
And in what month
This clock never seemed so alive

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Christmas Cheer Meme

Found at Amber's.

1) What is your favourite Christmas scent?

Evergreen and peppermint. Evergreen fresh from the trees, it can't be a candle. And peppermint - well from anywhere.

2) What do you think is the most enjoyable thing to do in the snow?

Making snowballs and snowmen. They had snow at the local ice skating rink the other day and that's exactly what we did.

3) If you were a photographer who was given the chance to go back in history to capture a Christmas photograph, where would you go and what would it be?

It would be a Victorian Christmas with the Christmas tree lit with actual candles with the family gathered around singing Christmas songs and a fire lit nearby on a cold Christmas Eve.

4) Regardless of monetary value, what is the single most meaningful Christmas gift you’ve ever received?

My beautiful gorgeous pots and pans last Christmas. To me, that made the last five years of enjoying, loving, and just doing cooking validated. Too bad I don't cook anymore. Haven't gotten back into it I should say, but then I wonder when I'm going to when I say that.

5) If, like Santa, you could take a night flight in a sleigh over any city in the world, which city would you choose?


6) What ingredients go into your favourite Christmas drink or beverage?

Apples, cinnamon, cloves and sugar, in Hot Spiced Apple Cider.

7) Do you prefer blinking or non-blinking Christmas lights?

Flickering and white.

8) Out of all the musical instruments, which one do you think is the most appropriate for the Christmas season?

A string instrument.

9) At Christmas time, which do you honestly enjoy more, giving or receiving?

Giving, without a doubt. Though I do love receiving from my hubby!

10) Do you have any ethnic or ancestral traditions that you honour during the Christmas season?

My hubby is German so we do St. Nikolaus day as well on Dec. 6th and Stolen for our morning breakfast. I just read Amber's answer about opening presents on Christmas Eve, my hubby's family does that too (German). I've been considering it as it makes the Christmas morning less hectic when they only have Santa gifts to open. This Christmas we've been doing a few presents a night since Monday because we're going out of town for our actual Christmas.

11) Everyone in the office has been asked to place an ornament on the company Christmas tree that best represents him/herself. What would your ornament look like?

A sparkly snowflake.

12) If you could spend Christmas in any European country, which one would it be?

I'm not sure of the country but London would be where.

13) If snow could fall in any flavour, what flavour would you choose?


14) What is the longest line you can remember waiting in during the Christmas season?

I don't.

15) If you could indulge in only one type of cookie this holiday season, which cookie would you be eating a lot of?

Candy cane cookies.

16) What gift have you wanted for years but still haven’t received?

I got my Christmas village this year, complete with a choir inside the church windows and a couple getting married inside the City Hall's windows, so.... a shopping spree at Sephora where I could get anything I want would be just fabulous.

17) What aspect of preparing for Christmas do you like the most?

The lights, the tree, the ornaments, the gift wrapping.

18) What is your favourite Christmas decoration in your home (your tree doesn’t count!).

It's a toss up between my Santa Fairy and my German Nativity Scene Carousel.

19) If you had a great voice and could record a Christmas duet with any famous singer, whom would you choose as your singing partner?

The Trans-Siberian Orchestra.

20) If you could take a scenic drive anywhere in America this holiday season, where would you most want to drive?

Wherever there are lights. There's a place in Provo, Utah where every.single.tree in a Christmas Tree forest of backyards was lit.

21) What is the biggest change in your life since last Christmas?

Moving cross country from the coast to the hill country.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Comfort Space

Right now I'm in an extreme comfort space. Curled up on my bed with my chenille light pink socks on and a cup of coffee in my lap, leisurely doing school work and fun Christmas art projects with the boys. Toast with melted butter and strawberry and apricot jam. Feeling like there is nothing in the world to do but to enjoy being with myself and my boys and just be.

My sister and her three boys came over yesterday and power decluttered my house with me. I had made a list the day before of all the things I wanted to get done for hubby and I, and then begged her to come over after church to help us, or at least keep me company so I'd actually get it done. Thing is I didn't have to do much begging. Her guys entertained my guys and even tidied up their room a bit, and she, Hubby, and I powered through the list. I feel like a huge weight has been lifted, not off my shoulders but off my house and it is so enlightening. Enlightening in that I have time to do the things I really want to do without tripping over things and feeling the guilt of not getting that taken care of.

Sure I still have a ton of laundry, the boys and I still need to do schoolwork, and my closet needs a little adjusting, but I can take my time and enjoy those things. And then pack to head to my Grandma's in Arizona for Christmas, or even pack in between, but for the moment my cup of coffee, my chenille fuzzy slippers and I are sitting and enjoying a quiet, sweet moment alone.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Can't Shovel the Snow for the Snowing

You know that saying, "Keeping house while your children are growing is like shoveling snow while it's still snowing." That's just about where I feel right now.

To my left is our Christmas tree, with presents underneath, and to the left of that is a few still unopened birthday presents from LG's birthday party last week. Underneath my feet are our DVD's, the photo harddrive, my computer case, and I think there's a speaker in there somewhere, so my office chair is backed out so I have to lean forward to be typing on the computer. In front of me is piles of papers, not too horrendous, but enough to make me sigh. To my right is a new file organizer full of every kind of craft supply imaginable that my MIL bestowed upon us from Costco while she was here, and next to that, my purse, coats, hats, junk from the car that needs to be gone through, and a birthday present that needs to be wrapped for later today. My kitchen isn't too bad. There is a bag full of left over birthday party trinkets that I really should up and toss in the trash rather than take the time to go through. In my dining room I have gift wrap on the table, and plastic garbage bags underneath where I brought my plants in to keep them from freezing. My bedroom is pretty haven like, fortunently. There is a paper bag of computer stuff sitting on the trunk waiting for Hubby to go through, but I may just toss that too.

Seriously it would make me happy to throw all this junk away and start fresh. Of course I can't do that, well not all of it any way. I've been feeling this way since the second we dropped my MIL off at the airport Wednesday morning. Throw in two reading appointments, going to the snow at the local ice skating rink, two soccer lessons, a movie night at the business center, a birthday party today, and a dinner tonight, BG getting hurt inside his fort on one of Daddy's drums today, and me, well I'm not going to go there, but let's just say a part of my skin is stinging REALLY bad where it shouldn't be, and I'm a total wreck. Not physically, but mentally. And I just want. my. house. in. order.


Monday, December 12, 2005

Not the Best Weekend Ever but a Very Very Good One

Last Wednesday night my MIL came into town in the middle of an ice storm. Well it was icy. Storm is to be considered. Thursday we laid low until about 1:30 when we went up to the local grocery store and invested in gloves and a few Christmas DVD's. Then we went to say hi to hubby who was studying at the local coffee shop, enjoyed the fire, a game or two, and a chai latte, then promptly locked the keys in the car. Albeit completely on accident, who'd have ever thought it would lock itself up when you start the car and turn to take care of your four year old who is enjoying breaking the icicles off Daddy's car sitting nearby.

So for the next three hours we played games, drank more coffee, and finally decided to take the boys next door and get haircuts before the Premium Triple AAA tow truck got his call and showed up.

Friday we had Shawn's third fourth birthday party, at Austin Parks N Pizza only this time we had all his little friends there - all eighteen of them, and had a fabulous time just as much as the other times. All the little kiddos were so well behaved and one little four year old girl actually sat still long enough to watch him open ALL of his presents, including the many from Oma (Hubby's Mom, my MIL) and Mommy and Daddy, and even Big Guy.

Applebee's has seen our business three times, and their Perfect Margarita many more than that, since her arrival as that is the place we have dubbed "Oma's place".

We shopped pretty much all weekend and I would list all the stuff she spoiled us with, but you would get bored. The most exciting part for me was the household supplies I don't have to pay for anymroe, and the TONS of fun crafty (even though I'm not a crafty person, stuff that the boys can be artsy fartsy with) stuff from Costco. LOVE Costco. And hearing a "That's perfect." when mentioning boots as a present for ME for Christmas. Yet to be done, but we'll see : ) . Did I mention she has purchased gift cards for us at every. single. place. we have eaten at? Talk about spoiled. We'll be eating out for months on her bill.

Today we went ice skating on top of Whole Foods again and I ICE SKATED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I LOVED it. I couldn't believe it. That hour and forty five minutes that I watched BG learn to ice skate, I also observed all the other people learning and succeeding or not succeeding in their first attempt at ice skating. I determined I was not going to be the wall hugger that still had shaky legs when she stepped off the ice after a half hour or so of trying. I got on the ice, held on to Hubby's hand for the first few rounds, let go and let my arms determine the balance, then I made my body determine the balance for my arms and I was off!!!! I absolutely LOVED it!!! And can't wait to go back. I hope we get a chance to go for a date, just Hubby and I.

Saturday we went to a Christmas party for our young marrieds class that was a blast. First time we'd ever done White Elephant gifting, though we brought a nice gift that got stolen a few times, it was fun to see all the different things people brought in jest or for fun.

We intended on celebrating our anniversary that evening as well and ended up at a beautiful little place with a breathtaking view at the top of the stairs, beautiful rustic furniture including a gorgeous old time trunk with lock and key, a super soft comfy gorgeously made bed, his and hers sink in the bathroom and a perfect soaking deep set bathtub. Our room. That was after we ditched the crummy ass bed and breakfast we'd made reservations at when we entered and noticed the office was her HOUSE that was packratted and FILTHY, the bedrooms looking like the pictures posted online but only the really good corners where all the dirty filthy old crap WASN'T sitting. Needless to say we paid our dues and ran out of there with fire on our heels. Bitch lady took our money too.

We came home and slept in our beautiful bedroom and lit candles all over the flat surfaces of our bedroom and bathroom, watched Grey's Anatomy, got to see my little guy's first tooth that he lost while we were at the Christmas party that night, had a WONDERFUL night's sleep in our very own super comfy bed and enjoyed every penny of it.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

"Creativity Is...

expressing a part of yourself in some tangible form." Pink Sun Drops

Girl is creative in decorating her nursery, in her passion for life, and in her passion for her relationship with her husband.

Allison is creative in redesigning her kitchen, in her passion for making other people feel worthy and worth something to this world and other people, and in her passion for the beauty of the world around her in people and in hearts.

Cecilia is creative in her choice of words, in her flow of thought, in her easy breath of silence into each stunning memoir, and in her passion to seek out the best that she can be in life.

Big Guy is creative in his use of tinker toys and legos, his choice of art subjects, his immediate pen to paper whenever the moment strikes him.

Little Guy is creative in coming up with words to rhyme with anything, his way he strives to do and be without making it a force.

I am creative in my passion for teaching my children to be able to attain their very best and it doesn't have to be anybody else's best but their own, in my passion for my family relationship, and in my love for learning.

These thoughts came to me this morning. I list everyone else's as I had to think of all the wonderful and fabulous things that make them the creative wonderful people that they are before I could realize what I myself am creative in.

Monday, December 05, 2005


Big Guy: "Remember when you fell in the deep end at Opa's pool and I caught you."

Little Guy: "Oh. Yes"

Big Guy: "That was my favorite part because I saved you."

Little Guy: "That was my favorite part too."

Big Guy: "Why?"

Little Guy: "Because you caught me."

Big Guy: "Oh."

Note from Mommy: It wasn't really the deep end. It was off the stairs in the jacuzzi tub with Mommy and Daddy nearby and BG the closest and quickest : ) . Not to sound like an unattentive parent here although after that we really realized it sure can happen in the blink of an eye.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Break Me Through

Allison sent me an mp3 of Bebo Norman's "Break Me Through". The first few times I heard it my heart ached and broke just listening to it, I wanted to burst into tears but I couldn't, the tears wouldn't come in and I would have to turn off the song to keep from breaking.

Then I could listen to it with the thought of "Break Me Through" as breaking me through. Hurting, pain, but a purpose to it all.

Now I hear it with "light shining through". Let Your light shine through me and I feel hope. And I hear "I can feel You through this loneliness." My heart has settled into loneliness. Not for lack of friends, God has blessed me and my cup overfloweth with joy in that area, in ways I never imagined or dared hope for, but for lack of family.

My MIL mentioned reaching out to my sister that is here and making that my family. And I have, and my sister has been amazing with being there. Almost every Sunday we've spent together, which I can't believe. Her husband can get overwhelmed a lot, but she has been coming to church without him because of his aching back and then having lunch and spending the better part of the day with us. She has been reaching out and instead of holding in, I have been reaching back.

The loneliness is still there, for the family, the sister I can so vehmently be annoyed with at times yet is the closest thing to a fraternal in every way twin I could ever have, the grandparents who drive me nuts with their tendency to be close minded to new things but who treat my kids like they are angels on earth, my MIL who I used to butt heads so very hard with but who has become a very close friend that treats not just my kids but everyone around here like I imagine God would treat people if they were here on earth. The loneliness. I can feel You through this loneliness, breaking me through.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Oh Christmas Tree Oh Christmas Tree

We went and got our Christmas Tree yesterday! The parking lot was completely empty, just us. It was fabulous. We decorated it today and had a wonderful time revisiting all the special ornaments. LG's favorite question, "Is this one mine?" He didn't want to put it up if it wasn't. BG was reading the years on the different ornaments and he read 2000 on his second Christmas train from Hallmark and said, "Wow! I didn't know I was alive that long ago!"

The boys were like jack in the boxes and wouldn't stay down for quiet time afterwards and are paying for it with early bed time. Hubby says those are separate, the good time decorating the tree and going to bed early for not taking quiet time like Mommy asked. They were throwing things at me! Not meanly, just in play if that is ever in play but STILL. Any way they also got under the tree and collected all their favorite ornaments we'd already placed so sweetly on the tree to put on ONE branch. One BG branch and one Shawn branch. I'll admit it was cute if I had not told them half an hour earlier and every five minutes since to lay down for a second. And if I didn't have to climb back behind the tree to get all those ornaments out and rearrange them. Okay, it was still cute.

Elgin Christmas Tree Farm
Elgin Christmas Tree Farm - the only Christmas Tree Farm to go to around here. It struck me what a big difference it was from the California Christmas Tree Farms. There was no flat land in Cali, you literally climbed to your tree, and there was at least four or five different kinds. Here it was a flat span of tree after tree, and mostly Virginia Pines, which was what we ended up with.

Christmas Tree
Mommy & LG, taken by my hubby. I LOVE his pictures! This one strikes me, there's another that's similar that you can see of our faces, but I love the position of this one.

Christmas Tree Farm
This one seems ethereal to me. I love it.

The Gift Store

The Barn
No idea who that girl is but she looks good in the picture!

Our Christmas Tree
The needles just barely brush the top of our ceiling. Perfect!

The Finished Project with Purty Lights
The finished Christmas Tree!! Sooo purty.

Monday, November 28, 2005

Butterfly Feelings

We have two computers now, so I'll probably be on here a lot more. Good for me, maybe not so good for you as I feel like I tend to be very wordy lately. Just means I have a lot of thoughts on my mind, right? Too bad I couldn't express them so beautifully as the lovely Ms. Cecilia.

I sent off two things tonight and feel so good about the people I sent them to, and so happy that hopefully what I sent will warm their hearts a little as they have warmed mine. We went to Chili's afterwards for a family date and Hubby talked me into a Raspberry Chambord Margarita. Yuuuummmm. But it made me oh so tired. At least I'm not tense. What is it with us women? Not only do we have to PMS, we have that little thing called ovulating in the middle of it all that brings it's own hormonal imbalances with it all. I am grateful for it, though, because that allows me to have these beautiful children that are such amazing blessings that not all women are able to have for their own reasons or another. Amanda has made me grateful for that, and at the same time wishing I could share that power that is not mine.

Table Centerpieces

This was one of the centerpieces for our Thanksgiving table, as well as the flower my cousin used for her centerpieces this spring for her reception after her wedding.


Hubby and I were just talking to BG yesterday about the fact that he probably would be losing teeth soon. He was stuffing a piece of trash into a dinosaurs mouth so you couldn't see it and we were telling him about how Oma had given Daddy twenty dollars one time when he had to have a tooth pulled and she had made it super tiny and stuffed it into a super tiny tooth box.

This morning he comes into my room and says, "I'm losing my first tooth!" Sure enough his right bottom tooth is wiggling back and forth.

BG has a first tooth pillow to put his tooth in they must've been looking for as a few minutes later I walked by their room and hear LG saying, "Oooh MAN. I can't find your pocket with a pillow BG."

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Beautiful Moments

If you need a precious moment, go see Londyn's beautiful baby pictures and say congrats to Alyssa and Ben!

My parents visit was fabulous and wonderful. Every moment was cherished, knowing that those moments are coming much farther and fewer between than before. The hugs were a little stronger, the words a little kinder, the tears a little saltier.

Tuesday night we celebrated my Mom's birthday. They flew in in the evening and my sister surprised them at the airport with 55 red roses for her 55th birthday. We met them and caravaned to Olive Garden where we had a room reserved. Hubby stopped by to pick up balloons and a cake and met us with sleepyhead LG. We were more or less making it a surprise before my Mom turns to me in the car and says, "Are we celebrating my birthday tonight?" I say "Yeees." and she says, "I didn't know that, I just guessed." It was then I realized we hadn't said anything on purpose. Oops. It was wonderful any way and Hubby surprised her with the balloons and the cake that had Happy 110th written on it because he couldn't remember how old she was turning. Funny that he unconsciously doubled it. I told him it would've been better if he had put 24th. My Dad added to the laughter and good company with a card for all of us 'family' in Texas that had a picture of a very concentrated baby's face that said "I miss you so much..." and inside it said, "I could POOP." That is SO my Dad.

Wednesday my Dad took the boys fishing and my Mom and I had a shopping day. We raided Costco and afterwards we had a fabulous relaxing lunch at Panda Express outside on the cafe tables in the beautiful 75 degree weather. We picked up my sister and hit Pier 1 and World Market for ornaments. I buy the kiddos ornaments every year relating to their favorite thing that year. This year I bought LG two puppy ornaments as he adores all animals and a Santa Claus ornament as he adores Santa Claus. He's already been to see Santa Claus twice this year, telling him he wants a tiny snowboard and a snowboard guy. He still wants to go see him again. Tonight he was out of bed asking for water and singing, "Oh Santa Claus, santa claus." For BG I got a motorbike ornament as his request for Santa Claus was one of those tiny motorcycles they have. Isn't he getting too old for Santa Claus? Heh. We have told them he's just a story that people like to do but they refuse to believe it. Oh, yes, and LG made sure to tell me that Santa Claus reminded him to leave him milk and cookies and asked me to remember to remind him to make Santa Claus milk and cookies.

I will have to finish the recount of the visit later. It is Hubby's and my fifth anniversary tonight and we are sitting on our computers having a quiet night, so before we fall asleep I am off to spend some time with him and maybe a movie or two.

Update: Finishing up Wednesday, we ate at the Cheesecake Factory that night which was delicious as usual. I walked next door to the bookstore near the end for some space and me time and then came back.

Thursday we had our Turkey dinner at Le Madeline's with the back room all to ourselves. It was wonderful. No cooking, no cleanup. We didn't even sit around and lounge too much. After our dinner we came home and the boys and their cousins and I made a gingerbread house, or 'candybread house' as LG calls it which was a perfect thing to do on his birthday. We did a pretty good job if I do say so myself and I do. We went up to the pool for a little bit after that and played pool and shuffleboard. We came home and watched Robots, made frozen pizza for dinner, and then went and watched Yours, Mine, and Ours at the theatre. Then came home once again for ice cream before we called it a day. Whew. I'm tired just typing that. But it really was wonderful and not exhausting at all.

Friday we celebrated LG's birthday at Austin Park N Pizza. We were there from 1pm to 11pm with a birthday cake and present break at a nearby restaurant in the middle. The kids had a blast and have asked to go back every day since.

Saturday, my parents took off and I was less sad than I thought I would be, but not in a bad way. Just in an accepting of this is where I need to be way. It WAS a fabulous visit, we couldn't have asked for anything more.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005


This started out as an update to the below, but when I finished I decided it deserved its own post.

I just read a kick in the pants email and so now I am going to say what I am grateful for, not all-inclusive. I am grateful for my family. I am grateful for my extended family being here to celebrate this wonderful holiday. I am grateful for my beautiful home to raise my children, be it the home we are in forever or just the home we are in now. I am grateful for my son turning four as we speak, laying here sweetly sleeping next to me. I am grateful for my six year old sleeping on the couch above Grandma and Grandpa's heads. I am grateful for the gorgeous weather we had today. I am grateful that there is a place that we will get to go that has reserved a room all for us at no charge. I am grateful that the rental car company gave us an incredibly good deal on our red SUV, so much so that my Dad returned his previously rented minivan to use this one which is a much nicer drive. I am grateful that God is good and ever faithful. I am grateful that I can realize when outside forces are affecting my attitude and hopefully adjust my attitude to be able to handle those forces. I am grateful that LG is going to have a present from his sweet, darling brother, and a few from Mommy and Daddy too.

I pray that LG has a wonderful fantastic birthday and a memory to hold onto as his memory is so very good lately.

And a few cute kid stories before I go...

Yesterday I was painting my nails and LG comes in the bathroom and says, "When you are done painting your nails and your nails are dry, will you wipe my popo when I am done going poopoo?" Of course I say yes. And he very patiently waited on that toilet until he was absolutely sure my nails were all the way dry. He always takes his shirt off to go number two and when he's on there awhile, as was the case here, his little pants fall down around his ankles and fall off so he ends up with nothing but socks on, sitting very cutely on the toilet.

Today BG asks me to babysit his bear and take good care of her while he goes fishing with Grandpa, and gives his bear a sweet hug and kiss before he hands her over to me. I called him to tell him I was taking her shopping with Grandma, Auntie W, and I and he says, "Kisses to my bear AND Auntie W."

Tonight the two of them saw my stress and sat down next to me as I was folding clothes and LG started folding washcloths and BG did the socks. LG says, "Now I know how to do it!" He was all smiles the other day when he discovered all by himself how to fold washcloths.

Thanks Giving

The Thanksgiving holiday has started and it goes from super high to super low. Today was great, but throw my husband in the mix and well... things didn't go as planned. I never thought of my parents as the cause of stress between us but boy did they seem to get there tonight. Not anything they say or do, just my perception of how I say or do things when I'm around them. I feel like I have been on Hubby's back, and at the same time I feel like he's feeding me to the wolves when he's not there supporting me through every. little. decision. Not only do I have to make all the decisions which is hard for me to do any way, but both my sister and my Mom have their decisions, and then you decide's to input and it just makes me go haywire. And, no, Cecilia, this time I didn't vent before I pulled my hair out.

I got PO'd at Hubby tonight and I'm not even sure what for. I just feel this incredible amount of stress on my chest and it ain't right. I am so glad my parents are here. My heart would be breaking from loneliness if they weren't, but at the same time it is darn stressful. Not having a three bedroom sure complicates matters as well. I still need to upkeep the house, usually after hours as we're gone all day, shopping or whatnot. That's a little difficult to do when they're sleeping in the middle of the living room. We tried to convince them to take our room but they wouldn't bite. Tomorrow we'll move the air mattress into the boys room, as the boys are sleeping next to them any way. That'll probably be a little better.

Did I mention my nephew got sick Monday night? So we cancelled Thanksgiving dinner at their house, decided not to do it at mine in case anybody got sick and now we're doing it at a local restaurant. My worst Thanksgiving nightmare come true. But whatever. I've learned to deal right? I just love Thanksgiving dinner at home, doesn't matter whose home. So Turkey dinner at a restaurant is not fun for me. Besides the one Turkey dinner I remember at a restaurant as a kid was not a pleasant memory for me. Maybe that will be my goal. To make it a fabulous wonderful one for my kiddos. That'll work.

And ANOTHER thing. Okay I am venting even if it is after the fact. What is up with Hubby giving the boys stinkin' half baths? When I say they need a bath they NEED A BATH not a freakin' rinse. Don't get me wrong, I love giving my boys a fun bath. But every. single. night. Surely once a week for someone else to give them a good, thorough bath isn't too much to ask?!? Apparently it is. I need to summon up some Alyssa strength, I don't know how that girl does it (and thank you for your sweet comments, by the way, I really appreciate it). Cecilia, you are too sweet, and yes WHY is it that when one thing goes wrong it's just that everything else gets to be WAY too much. Allison, that is very true I should just do that all day, and speaking of, I have a surprise for you... : ) . That was strange replying to comments in my post, but it's 11pm and I need to get to bed so I'm not going to go back and comment on them.

Happy Thanksgiving Day everybody!! What are you grateful for (mine to be posted when I'm in a gratefulesque mood...) ?

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Little Stress

Well we haven't had a second car since we got here. The van's transmission went out on the way here and has yet to be touched. We had it in one shop, decided we didn't like their estimate, took it elsewhere, and the guy didn't even look at it til' yesterday.

Up until last week that was just fine. Hubby had his classes I could take him to and have the car. This week, not so much. He has various appointments and trying to get a second job as well which means driving to the various different job places. So this morning BG has an appt. with his nice lady at 10:15am, Hubby has an appt. at 9:30am - oops, my sister who last night said she could take me had her eleven year old throwing up all night, the other ride who said she could do it this morning had to back out when she realized she had no gas and no gas money not to be remedied til' this afternoon. Well yes a taxi would've worked if the carseats weren't still in the car and it's just not THAT important to me to have LG riding around without a carseat with somebody I don't even know. Well the lady is going to end up coming here this afternoon, thank God. Maybe that's just what we'll have to do until we get a second car, or the van back.

Not having a car SUCKS!! I'm trying not to stress about it too much but I get the feeling Hubby told the people to 'take their time'. Sure no problem. I can be without a car as long as necessary. Keeps me from getting any errands done or spending any money. Not to mention in the meantime we're going to have to rent a car while my parents are here, which they come in tonight. Oh yeah? And the sister whose son is sick? We're supposed to have Thanksgiving at their house. I just pray that the rest of us don't come down with anything, my parents are only here for three days and besides not wanting them to get sick I just want them and us to have a nice time while they're here.

ARGH Other than that things are just dandy. Really. I just needed to vent :) .

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Happy Saturday!

It's warmed up a little here, 67 degrees today. And the sun is pouring in. Have I mentioned how much I love afternoon sun?? I got my wish with this place. It warms up the house just where it's needed.

Hubby is gone today, finding a fill in job and filling in on his current job. Right now he's hanging with the son of the guy who runs the group that he's working with, who also works with the same group. The boys and I have started the day out like any other day, only a little more loose. BG and I did a family tree and an American flag this morning. It was fascinating to discover that for the stars there are five rows of six stars alternating with four rows of five stars to make the fifty stars. And for the stripes there are seven red, beginning and ending with the red, and six white. The family tree, well BG decided Tony Hawke should be on that as well as his puppy that's named the same name as him. Friends are family too is what I say.

I have started Flylady again. Not that I ever stopped, but I did slack majorly. 'Fell off the band wagon' as Flylady would say. Allison and I got to talking about her emails while she was here. It reminded me of how wonderful her system was for me. That and knowing how I've really wanted to get BACK into that in the first place was just enough to get me to stop deleting all the emails until I've done them one by one. I still delete all the testimonials, most of them I wonder exactly what stage they're at and know that I'm either past that or not there yet so they don't do much for me. The ones that remind me to get off my patookie and get something done really help though. I just spent the last twenty to twenty-five minutes or so and my bathroom is sparkling, the laundry's set, my island is perfectly clear, and my living room is cleared out a bit. I'm reminded of all the reasons I love those emails so much - especially the fifteen minute rule, after fifteen minutes you're done. Keeps me from getting overwhelmed and not wanting to do ANY of it.

I'm So Proud of You!

Cheesy bow : ) , but I've had one of these pens since the beginning and still have it. It's my favorite pen and the only one I keep in my purse!

Friday, November 18, 2005

So The Story Goes

Yesterday the kids played and played and played SOOOO wonderfully and I got so much ME time it was incredible. 37 degrees cold but still somehow an absolutely gorgeous day. I had the blinds completely open and the sunshine was pouring in. The boys were playing contentedly - some of it outside. I made myself a Salsa Turkey with Ranch Dressing on French Bread sandwhich and a tall glass of iced tea and sat at my dining room table with my computer. It felt like home. And summer.

Last night I decided to get into the kids closet. I realized I had left everything special, meaningful, and just plain nice here so that it wouldn't get ruined in California. It was like Christmas opening all these wonderful toys that I had no idea were here. I called Hubby before he got home from work and asked him to stop by our newly discovered 2 minute away Target and get some shelves for their closet so there would actually be a place to put everything. He came home with these Sauder closet organizer cubes (similar to those but only two shelves) that work perfectly - two huge deep shelves in each, enough to fit their biggest toys with room to spare. And while I was working on the closet? They played for four hours with their new toys in the middle of the living room, having a blast.

Today we started out with school and did a little workbook we had from a group we went to on Monday that was a blast, both the group and the book. The kids had fun with that and then we did some artwork. BG drew a parachuter in the middle of a pine forest (okay not underneath him) and used a technique with his crayon that he had observed from the art teacher sitting next to us at the Indian Powwow we had gone to with a friend a few weeks back. He used the end of the crayon and loosely held it to be able to easily cover a large area with color. The guy had his class with him and was doing charcoal drawings. It was amazing, as BG put it, the things tiny kids can learn from big kids.

That same art teacher I started talking to and he told me about a wonderful art program in the city that I finally checked out online yesterday and they are incredible!! They have every kind of art class imaginable, for adults, for kids, for preschoolers, and even for homeschoolers! I'm thrilled to find out more about it, and their winter classes are starting soon so that will be perfect after the holiday rush. They do have a small individual Saturday class for parents and kids that I may take them to beforehand just to check it out.

Well I'm just rambling, but God has been amazing in His blessings that He has poured out on his here. The support and friendship He has given me these first few weeks has been priceless and literally blows my mind. To find such amazing people that actually want to have a relationship with you and are in a space where they can have a relationship with you, and for them to have children that are in the same space with your children is amazing and absolutely mind boggling.

Then on top of it all to have someone who knows the ins and outs of your situation, not only from reading it, but actually going through it herself, have the opportunity to come by in the first few weeks of being here and visit and totally fall in love with your kids and they her, is absolutely priceless.

Even through my sadness, God, through these people and countless other things including, and so much more than I ever thought he could be - my husband, has given me nothing but encouragement since the day I got here. I am beginning to see the rays through the clouds. The sun is there, it has always been there, it's seeing it that's the hard part. I may have to change my Walk By Faith words, "I will walk by faith even when I don't see the light." to "I will walk by faith as I see your amazing grace.".

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Hi Allison : )

We had a beautiful day today. As promised I took Allison to the Cheesecake Factory for yummy coffee, Dulce de leche Caramel Cheesecake, and hot chocolate for the boys - who promptly decided they could sit nowhere else but beside her. I got my side all to myself - a rare occasion. They totally LOVED her. And after meeting her last night I knew they would. They know and appreciate only the sincerest of hearts. Little Guy totally dolled up on her, and even Big Guy did, who is VERY cautious at warming up to people - it takes him a good long while to get to the cuddly stage with anybody besides Mommy, but it was instant with her.

We went to the Arboretum that has a gorgeous fountain area and discovered a beautiful vista point and just beyond that a little winding rock path down to a duck pond that I had no idea about. The little pond had fountains in the middle, a little duck house, picnic benches and a winding path around the edge, as well as the sun setting with the light reflecting off the pond making it even more gorgeous. The kids loved it, as well as the marble or alabaster - we couldn't figure out which they were and I can't seem to find it online - cow sculptures they could climb on that they had above in the park area.

Next stop was picking up Hubby after his class. I'm so happy she was able to meet everybody! We even got to stop by our house and give her the grand tour - thank God because LG was in tears that she wouldn't get to see his toys before she left. 'Next time' was not quite good enough for him. So they got to play Star Wars with the light sabers and Batman and Darth Vader with their Halloween capes and hide in the closet for BG to find them.

It was a wonderful, wonderful visit - I couldn't have pictured it going any better. It was so strange because I felt like I knew her already and she knew me, we didn't have to deal with the so what do you do? questions and worry about what kind of impressions we were making, we were just able to get into the meat of things - that and girl talk without it being small talk. Love, love, LOVED it. Pictures are up! Don't forget to sign in to see the most recent ones.
Arboretum Duck Pond

She IS Blonde, Beautiful, and Brilliant

And just as sweet as you would think. We went to the famous Chuy's that both of us had never been to before and enjoyed Margaritas, very spicy and very yummy jalapeno ranch and really good chicken. In finding that link I just realized they own the Hula Hut which is another really fun restaurant in town. Any way, it was late and we made it even later by chatting til' midnight. The indepth conversation was already covered thanks to our blogs 'cept for a few tears and vents so we were able to just GIRL talk, which was so wonderful for me. No pictures yet but hopefully we will get some today when she gets to meet my sweeties!

I've finally had a chance to just BE home this morning and actually get some laundry done. The boys and I did school - BG made a Mario hat, and LG played with playdough as he loves to. Now I'm off to the shower so I can get out of here!

Monday, November 14, 2005

Cute and Not So Cute (but still Cute)

Awwwwww my little guy just said, "I love our house." and I said, "Why did you say that?" And he says, "Because this is our house and Grandma and Grandpa's house is Grandma and Grandpa's house." And then Justin says, "Yeah and we don't have to get yelled at by Grandma." My Mom's a sweetheart but she gets easily stressed out. When they say things like this it's not so hard to remember why we're here.

And then my hubby, in the shower tonight... "Three more days in this boring ass class, before I have to get up off my ass. To go to work and make a buck, so me and my wife can have a nice place to f#@k." I won't even tell you what it was to the tune of. He wants to add a disclaimer that he's not usually this blatant (but he really is : ) .

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Walk By Faith

Hubby and I went to a Jeremy Camp concert tonight from his Restored Tour. It was a blast! I was crying through the two of his songs "I Still Believe" and "Walk by Faith". He wrote "I Still Believe" two weeks after his wife died of cancer and said "If one person came to Christ because of all this it would be worth it." Before she passed she witnessed the nurse by her said come to Jesus. That started the tears and those two songs he sung after that continued them for her, for him, for me, for my walk with Christ.

We went to Cheesecake Factory before. Why didn't you people tell me?!? Okay okay I know some of you have. But their menu has always intimidated me - it's SOOO huge, how can it all be so good? But it is. We actually went because we wanted a nice place for coffee and decided to eat as an afterthought. Well the coffee was delicious, comparitive with my favorite place for coffee in Santa Cruz, The Farm, and my "appetizer" chopped salad with chicken, balsamic viniagarette, apples, and bacon was huge and enough for an after concert bite. The atmosphere was gorgeous, we sat outside with a beautiful 69 degree temperature and the sun going down.

My kiddos are spending the night at my sisters and though I'm a bit apprehensive I'm sending them happy thoughts and will look forward to seeing them tomorrow. I have BG's little puppy, "Captain", near me.

It was a beautiful night. The tears came back today and now I just don't know. Are they gone or not? I suppose they won't be for awhile, all I can do is walk by faith. He has a plan, and a purpose. There was a verse up there tonight that said "without faith you cannot please God." Above all else I WANT to please God, and so I pray He helps my unbelief, helps me to have faith in His every work, His every plan.

Hug Time

My six year old just told me as he and his brother go off to spend the night at a friends house, "Just remember when you cry, tell yourself BG and LG kisses and hugs."

Monday, November 07, 2005


I thought going back and reading some of my old posts would make me feel better. Not so. Happy happy happy freakin' posts. The first sad one I found was in April. Maybe that was when I started categorizing them though. I'll have to look into it more, but right now I just don't want to go through all the happy.

My husband keeps telling me to stop looking at all the negatives, but try as I might the only positives I could come up with were counteracted with a negative. So I wrote down all the negatives of living in California, the negatives of living in Texas (no family, kids not growing up around family), the positives of living in Texas which ended up being ones that I still need to work on, and the positives of living in California which were ones I worked on during the year there and wouldn't have been able to write down right away. It helps, at least I have something in solid form and I don't have all these thoughts floating around in my head making me crazy.

I've been meeting up with people and going out as much as possible to keep myself sane. It helps. I usually get sad when I wake up and all these thoughts rush into my head, although this morning was okay, around 2pm, the downtime of the afternoon when I'm just tired and don't have the energy to be doing something that takes my mind off all these thoughts, and night time. Hubby has been working until 7:30-8pm every night and after 5pm it gets really hard to not think about all the sadness.

I've been praying for the sadness in my heart to go away and be replaced with happiness. The sermon yesterday at the church we attended was on faithfulness, how being faithful to your spouse/family is not just about adultery, but about giving your whole life to them, your whole mission and thought process. That was good for me to hear. Damn, I can't believe all the happy posts in California, I'm really going to have to reread through those.

Update: ahahahahaha. I just found my Quiet Dreams and Passing Nightmares blog. I had forgotten about it. There's were all those unhappy thoughts went. Now I'm reminded of why I went to California. And reminded of why I kept such a happy blog. Oops. Reasons for everything there are.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

I'm Here

And Internet less, at least for a few more days. I'm in the business center right now.

It's been hard, very hard. I miss the grandparents and the fact that they are not near. I haven't cried so much since I got pregnant and the guy left me. It's breaking my heart. Slowly it's mending or at least being temporarily glued until it can be where it can heal. I had no idea this move would be so hard. But I'm surviving and I can't wait to get back on and read my archives about how hard it was being IN Cali. The thought now is to make it where we can move and HAVE OUR OWN PLACE back there in a few years. That would be a blessing. I would LOVE for my kids to grow up around their grandparents. Girl, you are so lucky. I'm so excited for you.

Talk to you guys all soon!

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Go Check out Flickr

Lots of pics are up! Don't forget to sign in to check them out. This will probably be my final post until we are in Texas so enjoy. Hubby takes off Saturday and the boys and I fly out on Monday. We'll probably have internet set up Tuesday or Wednesday. See you then!

Monday, October 17, 2005

In Honor of Allison

Her post reminded me of this story and instead of making a post on her comments I decided I'd post it here...

The best Halloween trick ever played on me was my son's godmother's son (got that :) ?) sitting out on a chair on his front porch with a friend of his sitting in front of him, both with super gaudy freaky masks on making them look like mannequins or puppets just laying there. While I knocked on the door, peeked in the windows, and looked around to the driveway to see if they were home they sat perfectly still. When I finally stood in front of the door for a bit pondering how to get a hold of them the 'mannequins' reached out towards me as his Dad stood behind the front door and set off the fog machine with its huge noise. My scream was heard around the neighborhood.

SIG & Mommy's and Big Guy's Pumpkins
Little Guy's Pumpkin
Happy Halloween!!!

The kids did these at SIG's house on Tuesday. She had a little pumpkin carving kit and we did lunch and then carved pumpkins all afternoon - her first time, and only my second. It was fun and such a wonderful memory. She also had little bags of candy for each of the kids, which are almost gone!!

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Happy (Early) Anniversary

Hubby and I went on a date last night to the place where we had our first date six years ago. We had a babysitter for the kids and it was just a normal average night, albeit our last week in Caifornia, and he made it a surprise. Our fifth anniversary is coming up next month so it made it very special.

There are so many kid comments that have been made in this last week that I'm just going to list them in random order. I don't have the energy to embellish any more than that.

Big Guy says this last week, "If Daddy dies, I will die." When asked why, he says, "Because he's my Daddy." with a very sad look.

Upon being offered ice cream over going to Oma's (as Mommy and Daddy were very tired but had promised to go there that evening), Little Guy refused. If you haven't caught it, this is a BIG thing. Below Mommy and Daddy and apparently now Oma, NOTHING is better than ice cream. We ended up giving him the ice cream any way as that was too sweet to not.

Little Guy has been declaring the things he wants, needs, etc. with a "pronto!" at the end. Personally I prefer it to the otherwise ugly "RIGHT NOW!!!" (not used by him, but by other children in the past : ) .

Big Guy has been requesting to do things "one last time". He really realizes we are going to be away from all this very soon and it breaks my heart. On the other hand it heals it in the same beat because I know I am not going to have to deal with the realization of how far away we are once we get there. Little Guy, on the other hand, has no clue...

Fortunently Oma is planning to drive out with the Hubs and spend the first few days with us there. And my parents are coming out for Thanksgiving and LG's birthday.

That's it for now. I know there's more I just can't think of it. Favorites list for Santa Cruz coming soon...

ALSO spam is killing me!!! I had SEVENTY FIVE of them to moderate the other day. AND I get notified on every comment so that means a bajillion emails in my inbox that are just plain ANNOYING. If I can ever figure out how to only let registered users comment I'm going to. Or go private so I can just post pictures and be done with it. Any advice on how to do that is most appreciatively welcome.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Special Memories

The sore throat was a hoax and I'm hoping it stays that way. Well yes I did feel quite horrible for two days, but it didn't turn into anything worse and is only a slight tickle in the throat at this point. I am soooo glad because we ended up having a fabulous day on Saturday.

We went to San Francisco to see the Blue Angels fly! It took half an hour to get from the freeway to Pier 39 where everything was going on and half an hour more to find parking and miraculously we got free front row parking just a block away from the entrance to Pier 39. You have to understand that just does NOT happen in San Francisco on a day when half the world is there. It was such a blessing, especially with the kids. We walked to the end of the pier, enjoying the sights and sounds along the way, and looking for the crab bush. We came across the seahorse bush which I forgot to get the kids picture with only because I was still hoping to find the crab bush they so badly wanted to see.

Pier 39 Crab Bush

We found out before we left that apparently they take the little guy down and put up a stage over his spot on days when a lot is going on. That day he had a band playing on his stage.

Any way we found our way to the end of the pier and made our way to Bubba Gump's for lunch. That little dancing shrimp? BG made sure to buy the biggest one they had available for $18 with his own money before we left. They seated us in the. perfect. viewing area for the Blue Angels show. We couldn't believe it! We told the waitress we'd be taking our sweet time (and made it well worth her while) and enjoyed appetizers, lunch, drinks, and dessert for a good two and a half hours all while watching the breathtaking show. The best part was the kids were occupied for the entire time because you can only take so much jet tricks at three and six. They had a blast though and we did too. Especially watching that poor crowd below us straining for the front spot at the fence along the edge of the pier. Hehe, okay that probably was not nice. Especially when a fire truck and ambulance with their lights going squeezed through to get by. That was the strangest thing.

Blue Angels

Today we went up to Greyhound Rock and the boys prospected for gold and climbed huge rocks in the ocean with Daddy. Mommy stayed safely on dry ground. Then we check out the butterflies return to Natural Bridges State Park where they had Monarch Day going on. An eventful weekend and we got a lot done that we wanted to do before we go, or at least attempted to : ) and saw things we didn't even expect along the way!

PS My own images coming as soon as I get them uploaded.

Friday, October 07, 2005


I'm not feeling well and sick of directing my kiddos. I don't want to move from my comfy spot on my laptop with my laptop propped up on my knees but my voice is hoarse with corralling kids, keeping them from beating each other up - even if only in play, or putting too huge of nicks in the wall, or systematically trimming every single plant in the backyard (a neighbor took care of that one for me, ha!). Besides being asked to play a million times including when my oldest set up the three person party outside complete with a half castle turret and a deck of cards for each person, I finally sent them to their room which oddly enough they have not been in all. day. long. And they're not in it now, fifteen minutes later.

*sigh* My throat is sore, my voice is tired, and the organic mint Trader Joe's tea I brewed seems to have only made it warmer and fuzzier. My body is wracked, not aching, thank God, but just TIRED. It's not that bad yet but I'm hoping it doesn't turn into anything worse. And I'm taking my herbs like a good girl. Colloidal silver, noni, echinecea, gargling hydrogen peroxide. Sore throats are my worst enemy, especially when they turn into STREP!! Heard that is going around in Texas and praying sincerely none of us will get it, here OR there or in between just for good measure.

My six year old just changed the light bulb in a lamp including finding the light bulbs in the box in the garage completely by himself, "Here's why that light wouldn't work. Oh and I saw a box that started with l and thought light starts with l and it does!". Maybe I should just hand over all the motherly duties to him. Wash? Sure he could do it. Pick up? Well after some reminders. Folding? I'll stick to that I can do it on my bed. Taking care of the little brother? He's been all day. Thank God for blessings in small doses.

Now my youngest is "Captain" the dog, and they are getting him some bread for his food after asking for meat first, of course.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

The Wish of the Wash

Why is it that when you're getting ready to move and have a ton of things on your plate that it is so hard to get together with all those friends you so desperately want to say good-bye to one last time?

Ha. I just answered my own question.

Ton of things on my plate and they're still living their lives equals not a whole lot of flexibility.

Sigh. I wish I could be more flexible or not have so much on my own plate but that's just not reality. I'll only end up stressing myself and my family out. And right now the most important thing for us is to stay calm : ) . So here's sending out my prayer that I will be able to get together with those that mean the most to me and stay in touch with them.

It's strange because I REALLY made an effort to stay in touch with those back in Texas because one, they mean a lot to me, and two, I knew I was moving back and didn't want to lose contact or my level of closeness with them. I don't know how it's going to work staying in touch with those I have met here. I know I'm not going to be back for a long time, if at all except for vacations, and those are usually short and jam-packed.

What is the best way you've found to stay in touch with those long distance friends you know you may never live near again? An occasional phone call, an email? Usually I find email separates even further. It's just too easy not to email. And the phone is so much more personal. But maybe it's worked for some? Also I'm not too public about my blog, I just don't want famiy reading my personal ins and outs for various reasons, but has anybody found that sharing your blog (and maybe discovering they have one as well) is a good way to stay in touch?

Monday, October 03, 2005

Google Rocks (Still)

Has anybody checked out the new Google personalized page? I love it.

You can have ANYthing you want on it, drag and drop to however you want it arranged.

I've got the first nine most recent emails on there; the weather for Santa Cruz, Cedar Park, and Austin; links to my favorite web-sites (including blogs!); word of the day (todays word is: effulgence, the state of being bright and radiant. I love it!); and my five most recent Google searches, all with the best simple search engine right on top at my fingertips.

Ads? Most definently not. Simple? Most definently yes. I'm not sure if it's only available to those who have a gmail account, which I do, so if anybody finds out let me know. If you do I still have a ton of invites left so feel free to ask. So if you haven't come across it already GO CHECK IT OUT. It's the best thing, since, well, since a lot of things.

Saturday, October 01, 2005


The sobbing has stopped. For now. I spoke with my sister in Texas and she's always super encouraging. She just confirmed how hard it is when going through a change like this, and how even though you know it's what you need to do when it comes down to it and you really realize it's happening it's still really. hard.

We are enjoying our last few days here and getting in as many events as we can. The homeschooling support group that I've hooked BG up with has had some really neat events and field trips and I am trying to get him to as many of those as possible before we get to Texas and might not have those options. We went to the California International Airshow last night and saw the Showcopters, Robo the car eating robot, and the Wall of Fire. The boys loved it.

I have had to put my foot down as far as filling up my schedule too much and have been telling friends and family that I'd love to visit with one or two last times that I just need to be home and I am more than happy to have them come and visit, or even go to a nearby park. But going elsewhere just takes up too much of the day.

I've already packed quite a bit and am pretty much down to only the things we use. Now I just have to prioritize what we can do without for the next month and pack that.

Somehow I've managed to create a group for the homeschoolers in the town I'll be in and there's already 25 members. One of the ladies in there is really interested in doing a co-op and has already spawned off a second group specifically for that purpose, which is great. I just hope we can take it slow and not burn out. She has LOTS of information to give, all good, but still lots, and I hope it can be absorbed in time to make a solid foundation for the whole group. Already it has brought ladies together that have not had this kind of opportunity and I'm excited that I will be able to be a part of it once I get out there.

So things are coming along swimmingly, especially if you include the tears in that swimmingly : ) , but I think those are over for now. At least let's hope so.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005


I feel like a frog in boiling water, it's soooo comfortable in here but I KNOW I need to go. I'm just scared of what's outside the pot. A new job, possibly twelve hour a day shifts for BOTH of us, a new place and an apartment no less, a new town, new friends. Hell why not just a new life? Oh yeah that's kind of what it is huh?

I feel like I'm dropping all the balls here, and I don't want to, but at the same time I know I need to because I know there's one ball I need to hold up - getting back to getting that new life started. Sometimes I wonder is this the smartest thing and then I convince myself, yes you KNOW it is, it's just terrifying at the same time. I will miss SO much my kids being able to see their grandparents at the drop of a hat. Even when that hat is caught midway and both Oma and I are waiting for the other to call to confirm a kids night sleepover. Even when my parents are running in and out the door so much that my kiddos actually end up spending more time with them when they come out for visits when we live 2000 miles away than when we live WITH them.

We also made our reservations on American last night for the boys and I to fly and I admit it. I am TERRIFIED of flying. I've never really said that before but I am. Especially on American after 9/11 and because they are very unfriendly to kiddos, unless you're lucky. I'm already doing birthing breathing through take off and landing.

Friday, September 23, 2005


It's 1am again and here I am. Funny how staying up late once so easily starts a pattern. No matter, I have the time and the thought to blog and so I am.

So. very. much. happening. I am in the middle of packing - thank God for forums where people are motivating because the majority of it is sailing right along. One of the hardest parts will be packing up the last bits and pieces, the things we use everyday, but at least all this other stuff will be taken care of so I'll actually have the energy to handle that.

Remember when we first got here and I was so very anxious about finding Big Guy a 'nice lady'? I finally found one. Right before we're moving. These people, they are a husband and wife team, are absolutely amazing. And the only reason I can search my soul and come up with that I didn't find them earlier is that I think I would have had a VERY hard time leaving here had we started anything with them, and God knows where He wants me. These people are amazing. Oh did I already say that? We did an intake on Thursday, for me it was a matter of seeing if he should be seeing someone this last month while we are here, as well as getting another resource, someone else to bounce off. Their learning center had been recommended to me by a mother of a kid with similar difficulties as Justin, and I am so grateful she did. We went in and immediately the guy started playing Legos with BG - if anybody knows how to get him to warm up, that's it. The wife and I sat and discussed things for 15 or so minutes while her husband played and got familar with Justin. Then they switched playing with him and the husband talked to me. Apparently he has/had dyslexia and is brilliant, as people with speech or otherwise difficulties often are. The information he gave me was so much and so overwhelming, every word he said contained a world of information. And this is not easy to do to me, normally I am one step ahead of whatever somebody is discussing with me about my son. I know him. Better than anyone else. Except maybe these people. Okay haha I still know him better, but I could not believe how exactly. the. same. page. these people were on with what my feelings and thoughts for him are. They were in total awe and praise of his speech lady in Texas, which was sooo nice, compared to the other people BG has been going to this whole year saying oh well she didn't really do an eval, EXCUSE me?! She did what worked. *climbing off soapbox before I regress* They said she was doing exactly what he needed and there is no need for him to have to go through the trouble of warming up to them and getting used to someone new when he is going back to her in a month. Thanks for not wanting to take every penny out of me!!! Against my own want of wanting to have him have every opportunity possible I did not schedule another meeting, due to them thinking it would be too much on him, as well as my hubby saying the exact same thing the night before. Thing is he's already asking to go back!! To the 'Lego guy'. And you know what? That $110 for the intake I'd pay again in a heartbeat just for my hubby to hear what they had to say. And the best part? They practically required me to stay in touch, call if I had any questions, let them know how he is doing. Two of their long time students, now happy adults, were by for a visit in the time period that I was there. One of them put his arms around both of their shoulders as he left and said, "I love these guys. They are the best, they have the kindest hearts." The wife said they never leave, they always come back - they become a part of the family.

You have a child who can't speak, I guarantee you he will be speaking, confident, shining, and radiant within one year of being there. Depending on his legibility 50% legible by year one, and 90% by year 3, if not 99%. Okay most of that was an email I need to write to a friend here who is struggling with being able to understand her child. You know who you are if you are reading this : ) ! Yes, I actually told someone in 'real life' about my blog. And if none of it makes sense I apologize, as I told my hubby I'm just so excited about how wonderful these people are it's hard to get out a legible sentence as to why.

This weekend we are spending in Monterey at a hotel with Hubby's Dad and wife, brother and family. A mini family vacation of sorts. Should be interesting. All while Hubby has an appt. over the hill tomorrow, and I'll be fielding calls for Katrina and Rita evacuees as well as Katrina refugees (it's heartbreaking what's happening there, and it's all in my hometown), and on Sunday my nephew's birthday party that we more than likely will have to miss. I thought it was going to be tomorrow and planned for that but it changed to Sunday and so we're out of luck. Shoot. I still need to get him a birthday present.

I started my own homeschool group the other day where we are moving online and there are already nineteen members! I can't believe it, but I am so excited for the support when I get there. I just pray that everything melds smoothly. They've already gotten together for one playdate and have plans for a second. Hopefully things will be running smoothly by the time I get there and then I can plan my pool party, we're going to have an amazing pool where we'll be at, and girls nights outs - I miss those!

Well I have tons of gorgeous pictures to post but haven't taken the time to get them off the camera for the last week. That and once I do they go to a separate hard drive which I need to figure out how to hook up to the computer so I can get them online. Hope you all have a FANTASTIC weekend! Please say a prayer tonight for all those dislocated and in Rita's way.

Thursday, September 22, 2005


I am so SICK of these spam comments!!! I just realized I have a bunch on my site that I haven't even got emails for because gmail filters some of them and sends some emails to the spam folder before I even see them. So I'm hoping I deleted them all but who knows. What is with them commenting on old posts?! Any way does anybody have any suggestions as to how to bar them on WordPress? I'd be most grateful.

On another note lots of good things have been happening! I really need to be in the mindframe to sit and write about them but they're spinning in my head. My thoughts are with all those in Texas right now and praying their lives and their homes are safe.

Update: It's 1am and I'm still up!! That's what I get for drinking iced black tea at Kianit's, at 8pm no less. My kid has a field trip tomorrow, I didn't post any sort of an update, and I'm going to be exhausted in the morning! I'm going to bed. Right after I find that paper on the field trip tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Penguins and Little Guys

Commenting over at Hannah's made me think of this. Little Guy and Big Guy went to watch March of the Penguins with their Grandma and Grandpa and LG hasn't stopped talking about it since. He says, "The penguin baby comes out of their tummy and their tummy goes down to the bottom of their legs like that [and he moves his hand down to the bottom of his legs to show me] and the babies come out of their tummies." Just like that. And he says it just about every time we see a penguin picture.

Friday, September 09, 2005


What's that saying muwhahahahaha. Okay don't know if I spelled it right but you get the point. I have added, or invited for those of you that didn't have accounts, all of you that I have emails for to my personal Flickr account as family/friends so you can enjoy the pictures of my family and boys that I put up without having to put them on here! Yahooo. It's my compromise between wanting to keep this blog public and wanting to post pictures. By the way my email address is STILL my gmail address, I just use the yahoo address for junk mail. So... if you email me there I may not get it.

Off to enjoy the weekend!!!

PS We're going back to Texas in the next few months! Yipppeeeeeeee!!

Monday, September 05, 2005

A Weekend in Pictures

A weekend on the beach in the sun, sand, and surf on the Capitola Beach with their favorite festival of the year going on. Who could ask for a better weekend?

Saturday, at the Capitola Sandcastle Contest

A few of the creations
Capitola Sandcastle Contest, Willowpond Boat

Capitola Sandcastle Contest, Reverse Spiral

The Grand Prize

Capitola Sandcastle Contest Grand Prize

Sunday, at the Capitola Begonia Festival

Our View from where we sat

Capitola Venetian Hotel

Trestle at Begonia Festival

Capitola Begonia Festival

Capitola Begonia Festival, View from Our Seat

Where we sat

Capitola Begonia Festival Seating

Some of the floats

Begonia Festival 026

Capitola Begonia Festival

Thursday, September 01, 2005

So Many

So many thoughts are running through my head. How many posts do I have that start out that way? Oh well.

Last night Hubby and I had an amazing date. Wonderful, fun, cultured, and sweet. We restaurant-hopped from Soif, to the El Palomar Taco Bar, to Cafe Limelight. We started out with Roasted Baby Beet Salad with Chevril, Fried Eggplant with Manchego Cheese, Figs wrapped in Pancetta, and a Lemonade Cooler at Soif. Feeling satisfactorily unstarving we moved on to the main course of a shared chicken quesadilla with pico de gallo, guacomole, and sour cream, at the El Palomar Taco Bar. Not to be without the wining and dining, I also enjoyed a margarita on the rocks, extra salt. After a short walk to the end of downtown we stopped at our favorite recent discovery, Cafe Limelight, for a cheese plate with Brie, Gouda, and Manchego. A Hefeweizen for Hubby and finished it all off with a root beer float for me, and a New York Cheesecake for him. Not once did the conversation stop, it flowed from restaurant to restaurant, with a small amount of open air in between. It was a romantic, peaceful, and delightful evening. I told Hubby this is what they are doing in the big cities downtowns, going from restaurant to restaurant for small appetizers, just to get a flavor of everything. Some restaurants are even catering to it, such as Soif, by offering small plates, separate from the appetizers and main courses. After just doing Santa Cruz's small but charming downtown I can tell you it was a delight and something to be savored and done again and again.

This morning Big Guy and I built a log ride (click around for some more fun pictures on that page) out of Duplo Legos this morning. It was a brainstorm of genuis and creativity mostly on his part. I supplied the concept of the conveyor built to get the log (a BG made raft out of castle pieces) up the ramp and he came up with the ideas for the rest. Five or six changes later we came up with a very satisfactory version of the Log Ride at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. The only thing that would have made it better was water for it to splash into and we'll work on that tomorrow.

On the other hand all these happy thoughts and we see New Orleans on the news last night. People wading in three of four feet of filthy water. People trapped literally in the rooftops of their house. People floating in water, waving to the news cameras, signaling for help. Children and babies. My prayers and my heart goes out to them. How sad and how horrible that such a thing could happen.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Sailing Through

It has been a wonderful weekend as yet. After dinner last night Hubby and I bundled everybody up with sweatshirts and beanies and walked down to the harbor and around it with the kids on their bikes. Today we pulled out the bikes again, only this time Hubby's and mine as well, and took a bike ride (with Big Guy on his own bike!) downtown, well first, by a friend's that I haven't seen in eight years which was really great to see her, and then for a rather leisurely lunch at Cafe Limelight and then by Spokesman to see if Big Guy's new bike was ready, which was his reward last weekend for learning to ride his bike so well! It was but still needed to be put together so we rode home and picked it up later.

After getting BG's bike we headed up to Ben Lomond to pick up my camera that Sweet Ireland Girl had borrowed yesterday at the hospital when hers was full of BABY PICTURES!!! Yes, she had her baby. On Monday though I'm just now getting to posting it. Beautiful little baby boy, 9 lbs. 2 oz. and 20". BIG guy! I am only posting a picture of his adorable little feetsies because even though he's a brand new baby I still feel weird about posting a picture of someone else's baby on here when I won't even post a picture of mine. Any way on the way home from SIG's Little Guy pukes all over himself and his car seat, poor guy! He puked Monday night and has been hacking since, but I thought we were over the worst of it. He's still hacking pretty bad, especially at night and in the morning, during the day he's okay, but any way we're not going to put him through the three hour drive one way tomorrow and have decided to stay home from Pismo Beach. It'll be better for him, and probably more relaxing for us any way.

Baby Feet

Friday, August 26, 2005

Sugar & Spice

Cooking with my Hubby is the best. Him, the worchestire, red wine vinegar, beer marinated oh-so-tender chicken. Me, the Summer Amatriciana Sauce with pancetta, cherry tomatoes, and red onion. The summer squash sauteed with garlic and butter red leaf salad with English cucumbers, ripe avocadoes, and burgundy wine tomatoes? We'll do together with Air 1 playing off the computer on the kitchen counter.

I talked to a few friends in Texas today and one yesterday, along with my sister. It reminded me of all the reasons I love here, and there, and my hubby. My boys are both in Spiderman costumes, after having relaxed in the pool all day being the best of buds while I laid out. My nails are freshly painted a silver white underneath with a sheer pink on top after a relaxing pedicure and manicure in my bathroom sink next to a softly lit Victoria's Secret red yummy smelling candle and a vanilla candle.

Saturday is a day free just for us. Sunday we are going to Pismo Beach for the daughter of my good friends birthday. This weekend is off to an amazing start. I am in a superbly wonderful mood and so looking forward to this weekend and just being.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

All the Little Cute Things

Yesterday Big Guy went with Grandma on errands and Little Guy and I got to hang out just the two of us at home. He picked up a math book I had pulled out that BG used to use but realized it was way too young, and he started counting the items on the front. So we opened up the book and did the first five pages verbally. I kind of wondered when he would start to show an interest in "school" type of learning. He's all over it now. How fun!

After that I took a shower while he roamed the house. When I got out I heard my bedroom door shut so I wrapped a towel around me and went to see what he was up to. I peeked around the corner into his room and he was sitting in the Lego corner giggling wildly to himself. Then he picks up Daddy's mag flashlight, which he must've gotten out of Daddy's tool area while I was in the shower because he knows he's not supposed to have it, and he starts shining it on the ceiling making spaceship noises. I just stood there and watched him be so absolutely adorable for a few minutes before I went back in my room and got dressed.

On a NOT so cute note, I feel like I am on PERMANENT PMS lately. I have these herbs that I used a few years ago that calmed my shot nerves down enough to help me realize I really wasn't a word with a capital B ALL the time, just right before my period, and two weeks after for a few days. Well it's been awhile since I ran out - read 9 months, and I thought I was okay. It's been slowly getting worse and worse to where I think I'm getting a two day break instead of a two day dose with this whole shot nerves thing. I am just being that capital B and I can't seem to stop! So it's on rush order, as fast as it can be any way and I can't freakin' wait. Oh yeah, and guess who gets the brunt of it. Hubby. Poor guy. Oh well at least me ditchin' him with the two kids (meaning I took them) tonight got him out of the house to hopefully go see his friend who just got home from Japan a week or so ago that he hasn't been able to see yet 'cause I've been too busy yakkin'. :D

UPDATE: Confirmed. Hubby is out with his friend. *sigh* Sometimes it's nice to be away from family because it's not such an easy escape. Tonight I went out with my sister, he with his friend. I don't think we would've survived the early years had we lived out here, we would've made ourselves too busy skirting our issues. It's days like this I remember how being in Texas forced us to have a stronger, thus better, relationship.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

My Son Learned To Ride A Bike Today!!!!

This is going to sound like a testimonial, but thanks to and their weirdest download program ever, my six year old son learned to ride a bike today! You have no idea how much this means to me and my Hubby AND my son, unless of course you have a 6 year old who has been wanting to ride for the past 3 years and can't get past the fear of falling or get the hang of balancing and is still on training wheels. That was my son this morning. This evening, after literally 5 minutes of working with him? He's riding all over the place. Best thing? Not a single fall. Oh, except when he was doing a one foot high wheelie. Yeah. He's already doing wheelies.

PS Training wheels are BAD, they don't teach the right balance. Fortunently my son, who has used them since his third birthday, picked up on the "re"training very quickly and didn't require the extra practices. If you have a kid on training wheels I recommend taking them off on a leisurely Saturday, downloading Pedal Magic, even with all the crap it gives you, and watching them ride a bike. Letting your kiddo watch the video gets them excited about riding too.


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