Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Meet Mr. Gecko

Mr. S has had a stuffed leopard gecko he's been sleeping with for the past year and has been asking for a pet longer than that. Last week he caught me a butterfly read: moth and cried when we had to let it go. So we decided. It was time for a pet. Yesterday (Happy Memorial's Day everyone!) we went down to south Austin to Herpeton Pet Store. *giggle* that reminds me of herpes every time I read that. Not so funny and off subject. Any way, we got him a little teeny tiny leopard gecko and he LOVES it. This little guy is about two inches and will grow to be about ten or twelve inches long with spots like a leopard. Right now he has a few stripes thrown in there but those fade.

We got him his whole set up, including heat pad, water rock, carrying case, and crickets. Ew. I told B I all of a sudden feel like I'm the mother of teenage boys. S is all over his pet and we're teaching him to take care of it. By the way, the official name? Red and Green Dragon. aka, Leopard, Gecky, Mr. Gecko. Right now both the boys are in their room with him wrestling away. He's going to have to get used to the noise.

Leopard Gecko
Notice he has one eye open to check me out. When there's two of us he'll open two but apparently just one isn't worth the effort.

Shawn and His Leopard Gecko
That's S's universal symbol in pictures nowadays meaning he's four.

Monday, May 29, 2006


It's been a quiet week in the blogisphere. Actually now that I look back I think summer's do tend to get a little quiet around here. I'm coming up on my second year here of blogging at the end of July. The first summer was quiet and I'm starting to think this one will be too. Wow. Two years. I never thought I'd be around here that long. I thought this would be a passing fascination - move on to the next way to journal life. But actually. It's really easy. And fun. And a community.

Writing in a journal is euphoric but there's no way you get the feedback you do here. Blogging keeps you on your toes. Nobody's going to want to read your junk so you tend not to write it. As much. We want readers. They provide a sense of validation to what we're doing. A sense of how well we're doing. And a sense of how exciting the world see our lives as.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Turning into our History

How is blogging going to affect our children? Never in our lives, or our parents lives, or our grandparents lives, has there been such an up to the minute account of our lives. We've never had the opportunity to read the day to day mundane experiences of our parents. How is it going to affect our children being able to read our and most of their entire life history right at their fingertips? Yes I try to write their cutesy little stuff. Some of it escapes into their little notebooks I have sitting by my bed (an idea from a fellow blogger! I wish I could remember who), like last night for example I just didn't want to turn my computer back on and it's nice to have something actually written in my handwriting. But most of it ends up here. What also ends up here are my happy days. I love to write about those. And my happy moments. Not that they are few and far between but those are the ones I want to look back on and read the most. Not much of the struggles B and I go through as a couple end up here. I just don't want to read about those later. And if I do read them they're one sided, and while it might be nice to have a gang of supporters :o) , I know if B doesn't have my back who does. But how will that affect my children? Will they think things were all peaches and cream except for the not so good memories they remember? How will that set them up for marriage? I may be an oddball, but I went into marriage KNOWING it would be hard. Granted I didn't know how hard, but I actually wanted to go into marriage with NO money so that when we did have money we would be okay. And we did. My $3.5k ring and no money. B worked for his Dad out in Cali and made excellent money, but a car salesman even if it meant one day leading the company was not up his alley. It may be someday, just not then and not now. The Navy was always his dream and when he got there they medically discharged him for a disease in his eye that after cliff diving and tearing his retina off as a result of the disease weakening that eye now has him blind in that eye. He came home knowing God had another purpose for him. We looked into colleges I refused to have my baby live though days of 'Daddy's away at college'. And I wasn't going to live with him. In July of 2000 for my birthday, but 8 days afterwards from recovering from eye surgery, he proposed on the beach at sunset. Natural Bridges State Beach. We walked along the tidepools for a bit until it was a completely private moment. Just him and I. And he asked me, "Can I keep you?" He'd always asked me that. And I always said yes. This time I wasn't sure what to say, he was so serious. I said yes, of course. And then he said, "No. Can I keep you?" I said of course. He got down on one knee and said, "Rose, will you marry me?" I said yes, but you know you'll have to ask my Dad. He put the ring on my hand and we we walked back to the sand and watched it sparkle in the fading sun. A few days later, gorgeous ring on my hand, we took my parents to dinner, and shaking, Brandon asked my Dad if he could have my hand in marriage. My Dad thoughtfully stood up and walked out of the restaurant and then came back and said something along the lines of we couldn't be prouder to have a man like you take care of our daughter. Awwwww. Okay now I have to finish up real quick. I guess this is going to turn into a history of our lives. For the sake of our children. For the sake of this analyzation. Hehe. More to come!! I promise next time I'll try to break it up more.

The Depth of Now

As much I miss the beauty and the excitement of California my life is full of more substance right now than I ever imagined it could be a year ago. Yesterday I asked B, "We used to get out more and have a whole lot of fun in California didn't we?" He agreed. Then I pondered, "Why is it we feel closer and more together here?" He commented that here it feels like we are closer and growing together towards a purpose.

In California we went out for regular dates, took ballroom dancing lessons and learned to waltz and samba the night away, slept in on relaxing weekend getaways, took long bike rides with stops for coffee and downtown shopping, and that was just as a couple. As a family we took more bike rides along the cliffs of the ocean, all day beach visits, day trips to the Monterey Bay Aquarium, Fisherman's Wharf, and San Francisco for friend's on the boat or Pier 39 or our favorite Chinese food near B's Dad's pier, weekend getaways to Monterey to sleep in the luxury of the Hyatt above Fisherman's Wharf and walk to the harbor for dinner. Our lives were very full. The point is the substance. Yes, they were things we enjoyed and never will forget, but we didn't take the time to sit back and reflect on what we are doing in our lives. We did nothing but enjoy ourselves, the uglies were quickly smoothed over and forgotten about, but still there. They would resurface again in a worse fashion and once again we'd smooth them over. Not til' we got here and were forced to have the time to deal with them have they been dealt with. And our relationship has become incredibly closer and more intimate.

Oh and I am feeling better - thank you for your prayers and concern! I was in bed all week, but have been rehydrating with Pedialyte, the God send, and am getting my energy back. Right now I'm just praying the boys don't get sick or that they fight it off quickly!!

I finally went in and edited this post and turned it into something completely different altogether! Which is why some of the comments don't apply so much. Oops!

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

My Favorite Magazine and a Bubble Bath

Yesterday I woke up with a sore throat. Yuk. It stuck around all day, lightened up at night and got worse during the night. This morning I woke up not so bad and got worse around 4pm. I've been gargling with hydrogen peroxide and colloidal silver, taking echinecea and goldenseal and praying my heart out that it is not strep throat AGAIN. Today was the first day I took J back to his reading teacher from after our break and I came home and literally fell onto my bed. H asked me if he could draw me a bath, make me clotheless and put me to bed... lol. So he did. Well both, really. He prepped my whole bath for me, I lit some candles, he got my InStyle and I sat and soaked and read that thing from cover to cover for an hour and a half. Oh yes and he brought me dinner in the bath. If I wasn't so sick I would've felt extremely pampered, but you know what I did any way.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Girlie Day

Today I went on a picnic with a girl from church. I'd made the plans earlier this week and completely forgot as the week just FLEW by. She emailed me last night so we set up a picnic for today at the Arboretum. I made a baby greens and spinach salad with avocado, chicken, and Italian raspberry dressing that is the mildest yummiest raspberry dressing I've ever had - not at all tart. I made a sweet raspberry sauce for the strawberry, orange, mango, peach, grape, and apple fruit salad I brought. Yum!

She took off and the boys and I trekked down the path to feed the ducks... and the geese... and the fish... and the turtle... and the blue small crane looking bird. The geese attacked us for a few minutes, but the boys got to pet a duck (probably not the most healthiest thing to do, I know!) and watch the fish swarm around one piece of bread.

Nigel Ducky

Afterwards we met up with my neighbor and her precious baby girl, mom and one of her fun sisters, at Whole Foods for Jamba Juice and Rice Dream bars.

Tonight I went to dinner at Cheddar's with a friend. We ate light and then ran by Costco for a meal for a couple at church with a new baby that's been in and out of the hospital. Then to Cheesecake Factory for Kahlua Creme Coffee cheesecake and took it to eat ate by the fountain at the Arboretum (again!). She went to Cali on vacation and brought me the cutest skirt back from Gossip on Melrose. Fun fun!

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Third Tooth

Tooth FairyJ is losing his third tooth and it's freaking me out. The first two he twisted out on his own. This one I grabbed a paper towel and tried to remove it since he's been bugging with it all day, but all I succeeded in doing was making it bleed. And asking him if it hurt and he replied, "I can handle it." Now he's got a paper towel on it to stop the bleeding and I'm freaking out! Ack!

Update 10:02pm: It came out! We wiggled it a few more times and I'm sure he played with it all day. When Daddy got home we were at the neighbors and I sent J home to see if Daddy would get it out. J came back saying "Daddy says he needs pliers." Oh joy. He played with it some more and I sent him back in an hour to see if Daddy could get it this time. In the end J pulled it out himself. He's pulled all three out himself so far! B says J was playing with it in the mirror and he turned around and all he saw was a puddle of blood on the counter and a tooth in the middle of it. He came back with one tiny tooth. Soooo cute. And such a big man! He said it only hurt a little.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Saturday Night Whole Foods and Congress Ave. Bats

All day Saturday was rough. J's birthday party was on Sunday and Saturday I was dealing with pretty much everything to take care of it. So Saturday night I took myself out to go see something I've wanted to see for a long time - the bats under the Congress Avenue bridge. That was amazing, they kept coming and coming. There must have been thousands under there. Then I went over to Whole Foods to treat myself like I've always wanted to. This Whole Foods is the landmark headquarters store and has about six different areas that are their own restaurants in themselves. It's always so overwhelming I never know what to order. But THIS time I knew what I wanted. North Trattoria - the Italian pasta bar. Money was no option, so I ordered a vanilla Italian soda - I haven't had one of those in way too long it was sooo good, bruschetta, and cheese tortellini with roasted bell peppers and asparagus, fresh cooked right in front of me with a super friendly waitress which was nice. It was all absolutely delicious and blew me away. The bruschetta was like none I've ever had before. Warm melted halved cherry tomatoes, slightly melted fresh mozzarella balls, heaps of herbs, and perfectly grilled baguette. Yum! I almost took a picture of my Italian soda but the waitress was looking at me weird so before I had to make up some story that I'm a food blogger I stopped. Besides it was almost gone at that point : ) .

Austin Bats
The bats coming out from underneath the Congress Avenue bridge. This was amazing! They kept coming for at least five minutes and that's just when I left!! Before they took off when the sun set you could just hear them - their high pitched noise, but they were tucked up underneath the bridge where you couldn't see them.

Northside Trattoria Whole Foods
The most delicious bruschetta I've ever tasted.

Northside Trattoria Whole Foods
The cheese tortellini with roasted bell peppers and asparagus

Friday, May 12, 2006


Read "A family is gone, and a city is left to grieve". She was my Grandpa's Great Niece, and would be my 3rd Cousin, making her children my 4th cousins. She had confided in her mother three weeks prior and showed her bruises caused by an abusive relationsip. I never knew them, but my Grandma has known her mother since she married my Grandpa and it breaks my heart.

How sad that she didn't get out at an earlier time. How does a woman get to a point where her husband, boyfriend, significant other, whoever treats her so incredibly badly and still think she would be a bad person or not be loved if she didn't put up with it? Or that is the best she can get and someone far greater wouldn't love her? I ask this not only for her, but for all the women I know who put up with abusive relationships, verbally, mentally, physically, or otherwise and don't seek healing for their battered hearts. The ones who are too scared and don't know where to turn. My plea is for you to find one person to help you and don't leave that person's side until they do. God will carry you through. The pain will be great, but how much greater if you don't do anything about it.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Perfect Date


Perfect Flower
My Perfect Flower

Perfect Stop
Perfect Stop

Perfect Restaurant
Perfect North by Northwest Restaurant

NXNW Perfect Outside Seating
NXNW Perfect Outside Seating

NXNW Perfect Outside Seating
NXNW Perfect Outside Seating

Perfect Entertainment on a Break
Perfect Entertainment on a Break

Perfect Couple

Perfect NXNW Cobb Salad and Quail Salad
Perfect NXNW Cobb Salad and Quail Salad

Perfect Roasted Garlic Bulb & Goat Cheese Appetizer
Perfect Roasted Garlic Bulb & Goat Cheese Appetizer

Perfect Bottle of Champagne
Perfect Bottle of Champagne

Perfect Champagne and Entertainment
Perfect Champagne and Entertainment

Perfect View
Perfect View

Perfect Entertainment
Perfect Entertainment

Perfect Goofball

Perfect Far Away Glance

Okay I'm not THAT delusional. It was just such a good night everything seemed so wonderfully perfect.

Reasons I Love Today

I stole this idea from My Life is Brilliant. I decided I needed it to gain a perspective on today at the beginning of FREAKIN' PMS.

-The new clothes I got this weekend have been worn and now are freshly laundered, dried, and hung up in my closet ready for me to wear again.

-J and S are not wrestling : )

-I spent an hour and a half just breathing and pruning all the hail damage off my flowers and sweeping my porch so it's back to it's outside room status

-My sister came over and let me vent for half an hour

-J is enjoying his Ipod Shuffle and speakers we got him for his birthday and I am enjoying the music

-The Family Stone was at the $1 rental place at HEB and now I have it to watch at my leisure. And my neighbor has Rumor Has It for me to borrow.

-There's an adorable brand new 3 day old baby next door with the silkiest softest long black hair that I can go over and hold anytime. Except for some reason I'm afraid to hold her like I'll infect her!!

-My house is clean.

-It's a GORGEOUS day outside - 81 degrees with a cool breeze.

-Mother's Day is this weekend and I already bought cards to send out.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

B's Brother is Here

We now officially have TWO family members in Texas : ) . Well, and the four that are attached to the one. And all the friends that feel like family here. MP is in an apartment just a few flights of stairs away. We are happy. He is happy. I pray God brings the people into his life that will support him in growing in his relationship with God, believing Him and all that He says He will do.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006


not quite off the face of the earth. Things are super busy so I'll be back when I can...

*B's Mom and brother are here

*B's brother is moving into our same apartment building

*My neighbor and friend had her baby girl yesterday two weeks early

*I spent the last day of my parent's visit here this weekend all day at the hospital with her

*J's 7th birthday is today. Happy Birthday Sweetie!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

*His party is this weekend.

*I have no idea when my MIL will be headed back home.

*I have about 22 and a half emails to return.

*People are emailing me again to make sure I got their first email.

*My nephew is over to help the boys put their new legos from Oma together.

*I went out to Target and got four new pairs of shoes. This is one of them.


*Now we're going to the pool.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Nothing Like

...the smile on J's face as him and his cousin K's face as they smile over eating J's birthday cake together

...the hug S gives Grandpa out of the blue at the dinner table

...spending a whole day of shopping with my Mom and my sister - at a Tanger Outlet center no less

...climbing in a van full of dirty, stinky boys who went fishing all morning long with Grandpa and Daddy

...hearing how K said today was the funnest day

...getting a new wardrobe including trendy items I'm usually too timid to get but splurged on today

...Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory Peanut Butter Caramel Apples and Chocolate Fudge

...driving in a storm with white knuckles gripping the steering wheel, watching lightning all around and hitting a puddle that splashes as high as your car

...dinner at the Olive Garden with the noisiest most loving family in the world

...freshening up in the car beforehand with my new Hurley strapless beaded top

...watching two very tired tuckered boys fall asleep within minutes

...one other should be very tired tuckered out boy crawl in bed with us and fall asleep then

Thursday, May 04, 2006

My Amazing Husband

In the last year at least four different wives or girlfriends have described him as amazing and their significant others have mentioned that they want them to be like B. One of their husbands told his wife when B’s around he feels bad because he’s so wonderful he feels like a horrible husband. Another said you just want me to be like B. It makes me CRACK UP every time I hear it again. The thing is, I don’t ever talk bad about him, and I always have amazing things to say about him, but anyone can say that about their significant other. They see it when they see not only how wonderful he is around us, but how he treats them and everyone else around him. He treats all the people the same like they all deserve the same amount of respect and admiration for the people that they are. That is so incredible for me and makes me sit back and just be so grateful that God had him for me.

And, baby, this is your birthday post I wanted to write but never did. Happy Birthday sweetie, you are my amazing 25 year old man and I love you with everything God has given me.


Remember the Nightfox's laser dance song from Ocean's Twelve that's not on the soundtrack went? I LOVE that song. And I couldn't find it anywhere!! Well I finally found it. Free. And in Itunes format. It's The a La Menthe from Nikkfurie De La Caution by Kourtrajme and you can download it free here from the artist.

My Break

It might not be apparent here but I have been on major burnout lately. I went through a tough period of completely losing my focus and came through that fighting out of the ring. But the burnout stuck around. B finally noticed what was going on and strongly suggested I take a break. He validated me by making me aware of the fact I've been homeschooling for going on four years now, starting when J first started all his speech stuff. I worked through the summer in California last year, subscribing to the feeling I needed to make up for what we had missed. Well no more! I am on a BREAK. And this only my second week. Break, in this instance, means ABSOLUTELY NO SCHOOL. Yay! And the fun thing is... the kids seem to be learning just as much or more without it ; ) .

Last week we went to the park three times, got together for three playdates, the pool twice, a one hour walk once, and made cookies. This week so far we've gotten together for playdates three times, had friends over at our house for the first time (with kids)!!!, checked out an organic farm in South Austin where we fed chickens carrot tops and picked strawberries, attended an orientation for chess club for J that we'll start next week, stayed in our pajamas all day once, and made peanut butter cookies once. I feel like a Mom again and that I have a relationship with my kids again!!! I am LOVIN' it.

Not to mention all the bubble baths I've taken. I have to clarify, I hate bubble baths. Well I did. Until I started taking this break. The second day I was taking a shower and just had this overwhelming feeling of wanting to sink down into the tub, it was a feeling of utter exhaustion and giving up. I finished my shower, started the bath and bubbles, got my bath pillow and a stack of washcloths so I can dry whatever needed to touch things that couldn't get wet, lit my candles, grabbed my magazine and sunk in. When I was done I felt renewed and refreshed, like everything had been washed away. Every time I've gotten that feeling of wanting to sink in since I've done it. And I absolutely LOVE it. I've been able to catch up reading my magazines, do my Bible study - although that one I won't do in there again it was too uncomfortable to write, and pretty soon I'll have to start on books since I'm almost done with my magazines. I only have two that I read each month, but I have to read them cover to cover before I consider myself done. I've been LOVIN' it.

My anger... has been so nil it hasn't even been funny. The boys, who wrestle all day every day, when it gets too much for me instead of fighting the battle of trying to get them to go take quiet time on their beds I just turn up my Ipod, stick it in my ears, and take my quiet time away. The recipe J made to make cookies that he taped to a kitchen cabinet we've made twice. That was one of those things I used to do when they were littler, always want to do now but after everything else don't have the energy for. Now I do. Playdates were another thing that always went on the back burner. Now they're on the front burner. The kids get to know their friends and feel like they have friends and the fun thing about playdates so far, is that they're not just fun for the kids, the Mom and I get to have a good time talking too!

J is going to that school we'd talkeda bout twice a week next year for four hours each and I can't wait to have the time with S to just be and discover who he is. I hope I will take moments like these to enjoy being with him. I'm so glad my husband had the wisdom to perceive that, and to present it in a way that I feel like I've done enough to actually deserve a break cuz this break has been the BEST thing for me.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

About the Previous Post...

Wow. That was really hard for me to talk about. And it brought tears to my eyes to read over it again. Those are some tough times we've been through and I am so thankful for every moment of them that brought us to here.

A Comment Turned into a Post...

Normally these are not things I would post about, I try to keep most of B's and I relationship out this realm of blogosphering, but there has been so much SEX talk I wanted to put in my 2 cents and it wouldn't fit in a comment : ) . So this is for you, GFF, and Allison, and Dazed, who I have not had the fortune of reading enough.

I am definently NOT as open about sex as GFF, but I used to be a freak about it. Wanted it ALL the time. Well my hubs kind of changed that. And it's been a really good lesson in discipline for me, and finding out why I felt like I needed it so much. After the marriage conference we went to just a bit ago it released some of those apprehensions I'd always had about sex being "bad" or "dirty" to talk about and I don't discuss it with red cheeks anymore. Before I met B I was a crazy girl, but with B I told him I couldn't be that way otherwise I knew I would leave him - I had left all the other guys because I knew that wasn't what I was truly looking for. He somehow had the character to say no even when I begged for it. We DID do other things though and - from the skewed religious perspective - I didn't realize those things are included in the ultimate intimate experience, so I really can't say what I would do if I were single again. I do know that I WISH I had done it differently. The issues that my husband and I have had to work through on past hurts and relationships with each other have not been worth the having them in the first place. Our sexual lives have been a place of exploration with each other. Just a year or two ago we feel like we were able to begin with a fresh start - the past had finally been wiped away, dealt with, argued over, and come to terms with. Then we started anew. It has been a blissful two years of learning each others patterns and letting go of past expectations, ending with that marriage conference beginning our own personal world of passion in sexual intimacy.

Wow. That was really hard for me to talk about. And it brought tears to my eyes to read over it again. Those are some tough times we've been through and I am so thankful for every moment of them that brought us to here.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Super Relaxing Weekend

It was pure family.

I can't remember what we did Friday evening, but that's when it started when B said he was taking Saturday off. My plans adjusted to include him, and they did wonderfully. We stayed up til' 3am watching movies and playing games and woke up bright and early on Saturday at 9am to get J to his trial ice skating class at the rink by 11:10am. We got there right at 11:10am and he ended up being the only kid there for the trial class. So he had a private lesson. The coach was blown away by him. I told him he's only been a few times, and everything he asked J to do he did. I think he probably did about 4 lessons right then because he was so impressed how well he was doing.

Afterwards we headed downtown to Festival Beach for this years Dragon Boat Festival. The boats were so neat, with ornate dragonheads on the front and scales painted on the sides. They had some noteworthy teams there - Dell had two, Samsung had one, and the Austin Police Dept. had one. Those guys and girls were BUFF on their upper arms. We never really found out who won, but I think Dell won one and I'm pretty sure the APD won one as well. We walked around the park for a bit and watched some karate and asian shows they were putting on. Dell was giving away free water, and they had free Chinese food (yum!) but we'd already ate so we passed on that.

Dragon Boat Festival

We headed home and stopped by HEB for BBQ supplies and came home and barbequed by the pool. The kids splashed around for a half an hour and I read my InStyle magazine to B and we ended up coming home to eat before dark set in. The kids went to bed and B and I settled in for another night of movies and games. This time we only stayed up til 2am : ) .

Sunday we went to church and checked out the class for college age adults class, as B's brother is going to be moving here next week and wants to get involved in our church with us. They seemed like an energetic group and I loved their music so much I wanted to go!

After church we came back to our pool with our nephews and lazed around for a bit. I dragged a lounge chair into the one and a half foot area just enough so the I was lounging in a few inches of water and basked in the sun.

We met up with 3 other couples from our class for dinner at 4:30pm at a super fun place where the kids could play at the playground they had. My nephews were there, so one of them hung out with them outside which was really nice. It was fun to meet these people - one of them is pregnant and due next month and having a midwife. It was so fun to chat with someone who is going through that experience, so few people around here seem to. At least here up in North Austin, according to her South Austin is full of people who use midwives. Another lady was pregnant and due next week, she teaches the Spanish class at the place J will be attending school next year so it was fun to meet with her.

Waterloo Ice House

We didn't get out of there til' 7pm so we came home and settled in for... yup, another night of games and movies. Only this time we watched our Pastor from our Californian church on B's computer ahead of time with the boys. If you don't get a chance to get to church and want to listen to some really practical stuff, this guy is great and he's hilarious! And his sermons are podcast! Whatever that means I don't know, but I do know B downloads it on his computer. So we tucked the boys in bed and discussed our plans for the week. I made a quick run to the store with the neighbor's cute little dog who was missing his mommy for ice cream and reese's and we settled in for Dante's Peak and more games.

Did I mention I've taken three bubble baths, maybe four, in the last week? This break has been oh so good for me. Heh. I don't think I even mentioned I've been taking a break... I think I'll save that for another post.


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