Monday, February 28, 2011

josiah NEVER would have gotten away with that!

you know how the oldest kid in the family always says "you NEVER let me get away with that!" Well, i think it's probably true. and i don't think it's because you spoil the younger ones - at least not in every case. i think because after you have the first couple of kids, you realize that some things just don't matter. or not always. i just put caleb to bed for his nap and he's holding a ritz cracker. didn't want to eat it - wanted to go to bed - but was holding it for dear life! i decided it didn't matter. so what if he goes to bed today with a cracker in his hand? and callie is taking her nap today on the "blue" couch - the couch in the front room with the piano - instead of up in her room. does it really matter? i decided it doesn't matter! sometimes i think it's okay to say yes! :)

i've only got 7 days left in 2010 to update and was trucking right along until i realized last night that i hadn't even DOWNLOADED my pictures from Christmas off my camera yet! 600 pictures are now downloaded and need to be gone through so i can post!! it will be done in the next 10 days though because i have a coupon from blog2print that i want to use to have my 2010 book printed! :)

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Almost Christmas!

I've made it up to Christmas Eve now!! I'm beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel! (and I'd discovered a new obsession - this hoarders show!!) :) Good night!

are you kidding me?

I've got the TV on while I'm working away on the blog and the show "Hoarders" just came in. Holy cow - are you kidding me? This is unbelievable. I organized my bathroom closet earlier tonight and now I feel like I need to go through my house and throw a bunch of stuff away. These people are unbelievable!!

A Quiet Saturday

A wonderful Saturday so far. Enjoyed the last basketball games of the season with our boys. They have so improved this season. They gave 100% effort all the time - got hot and sweaty, learned a lot, and had GREAT attitudes all season long. So proud of them both...and glad to have a break now and my Saturdays back (until soccer starts at the end of March that is).

The week was GREAT - we so enjoyed having our friends over for the week. Those Shipman boys were sweet as pie - so well behaved, very helpful - never heard a complain or a whine from them. I was constantly counting heads and looking at the clock all week so that I didn't leave someone somewhere or forget to pick someone up - but we loved having them! The house feels so quiet now!

Worked some more on my blog - finished posting through Thanksgiving! :) It's fun reliving vacation memories...and I'm on a roll now. Hoping to get some more work done tonight. David's taking the boys to a Pit Crew night at church to work on their AWANA grand prix cars....Josiah's picked a Hershey car design and Jacob wants to do a shark, so we'll see what they come home with tonight!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

The last day

We made it through our week. This was often the sight to be seen from my kitchen - kids everywhere! At the table, at the counter - I loved it! It was a great week - no injuries, no accidents, no forgotten kids anywhere! I loved it - really did. The biggest stress for me was just the transportation of everyone to all their activities and making sure I didn't forget any of it. But we loved having them - they were such sweet boys! No one ever complained or whined - they were great and we enjoyed our week of 8 kids!!!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

6 of them...

Here's a picture with 6 of "my kids" this week - 1 (Caleb) was already in bed, and 1 (James) was sitting in the chair. The other 6 were all on top of me while I was reading books before bed. We read the devotion and then 1 book for each of the other takes a while with that many! :) LOVE my big couch though!!

just so you know...

....there are 8 kids at my house this week. Yes, 4 of them are mine. But the other 4 boys (yes, all boys!!) are the children of a sweet couple from our church. She surprised her husband with a surprise party for his 40th birthday and then drove off and told him they weren't going home - she planned a week away for the two of them! So I have all their kids - you all know how important I think time away is!! - and we are having fun! Managed to get 6 of them up, fed, dressed, and off to school by 7 am this morning. Picked 1 preschooler up mid-morning and he headed to storytime with my younger two. Caleb's taking his nap now and then the afterschool pickups will begin. Oh, and karate for 2, hip hop class for 1, then dinner, baths, and bed by 7:30. :) Fun fun. but now you know i won't be getting the blog updated this weekend either!! Sigh!

Monday, February 21, 2011

A Fun-Packed Weekend

Totally love this. All 4 kids gathered around looking at the pictures on the calendar that I make for my Mom every year at Christmas. They LOVE it! :)
We had a great weekend with Mom. Fun-packed, lots of things happening as always, but we LOVED every minute! We did the park, she got to come watch the boys' basketball games, was HUGE help while I was helping coordinate the surprise party, enjoyed grilling out (since there is still SNOW where she lives this was a big treat!), church in the morning, and she graciously took the younger kids home while we stayed after church for our big Worship Concert kickoff! She was able to come and watch the boys in kids choir and hear them working on our new musical! Whew - it was great. I always love having her here, and it's never for long enough! We love you Mom!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Thank heavens for Tutu!

My mom is the best! She just goes with the flow!! She graciously stayed home with Caleb while I was helping at the party for Kevin at our neighborhood clubhouse. I had to help clean up and lock up so she stayed at home with Caleb while he took his nap. They were both two happy campers! :)

Happy 40th Birthday Kevin!

A couple of months ago, my friend Beth (I know a LOT of Beths apparently....this is my friend from here in SC...she leads one of the children's choirs with me) mentioned to me that her husband's 40th birthday was coming up. She wanted to do a surprise party but didn't know where she could have it. I suggested our neighborhood clubhouse (she lives just a few minutes from us) and helped work out the reservation details. It was perfect! Her friend Pat told Kevin (Beth's husband) that she was planning a surprise party for BETH (whose birthday is just a few days before Kevin's) and for him to show up with her on Saturday. The BEST part of the surprise though was that Beth booked a trip for JUST the two of them to leave for immediately following the party! Ya'll know I'm a big supporter of time away WITHOUT kids, and so I offered to keep her kids for them while they were gone!

So after basketball Saturday morning, we raced home to get the party decorations underway!

Kevin is a deacon in our church with an amazing story of how God transformed his life several years ago. What a precious family and one that we have grown to love since moving here just 2 years ago! It was so fun seeing all the people come to celebrate Kevin and love on him a bit!
This is Pat, Beth's friend, who did most of the work for this! I was just the location contact! :)
Kevin is a HUGE Clemson fan, and so the theme was pretty obvious for him! :)

That face says it all doesn't it? Here's the whole family!
Logan, James, Kevin (birthday boy!), Daniel, Tyler, and Beth
He LOVED the cake!

There were lots of old man jokes - someone brought him this old man cane :)
It was a gorgeous day and so we were able to open up the french doors to the clubhouse and eat outside around the pool and by the playground - perfect with all our kids! (David stopped by briefly with our kids and then took them to see Voyage of the Dawn Treader - the new Narnia movie. They finally finished reading it and were SO excited to go see it).

Parties can wear a person out! :)

The kids went home with their grandma for the weekend and then she'd bring them over to my house on Monday night! I told Beth that I would have loved to hear his reaction when they drove away from the party and she told him they weren't going home but going away for a week! :) That's awesome!

Friday, February 18, 2011


Several weeks ago, Mom said that this weekend would be a good one for her to come visit us. I had hoped to make it up there, but we had too many things going on during Saturday and Sunday that we couldn't miss. So I was thrilled that she had a free weekend and would make the trip down to see us. I decided to keep it a surprise from the kids this time and just let her show up! I almost blew it SO many times but managed to keep my mouth shut! :)

When I talked to Mom that morning, I was surprised to hear that she was ON the road by 5 AM! She said she woke up before her alarm went off and just decided to go ahead and get started! She was excited to get here too, and was hoping to make it here before the boys got home on the bus! And she did - she showed up at my door at about 1:30 pm!! Callie was downstairs and David had her open the door....
....and Tutu was there!!! She looked like this for about 3 seconds - I guess long enough for it to register. Then she started talking a MILE a MINUTE!! Just fully immersed in a conversation with Tutu! She cracks me up!

Not too much longer, it was time to head down to the bus stop. I was so anxious to see the boys' faces - I knew they would be SHOCKED!!! When the bus pull up, I saw Josiah look out the window and wave at me - and then stop. You could see his face processing, and then he looked at Jacob straight in the face like he was saying "JACOB! Tutu's here!!!". It was hilarious. They came off the bus and they gave her BIG hugs!!
Jacob ran straight into her arms :)
...and the first words out of Josiah's mouth - literally - were "This wasn't scheduled!!" I about fell OUT laughing! So funny. We told him it WAS scheduled - we just didn't TELL him about it! :) They were super excited as you can see!
Jacob immediately sat down to show Tutu his newest trick - tying his shoes! A few days before, our neighbor had given us some hand-me-downs for Jacob, including a pair of Nikes. Jacob saw them and said "well, I can't tie my shoes." I told him we would practice and that he'd learn soon. He sat down, watched me do it once, and picked up the laces and tied them all on his own! Just like that! No practicing, no trying again and again - just did it!
Callie would have loved to spend the whole weekend like this. She loves her Tutu, and loves to try to keep her all to herself. She LOVES your undivided attention, and will sit in your lap and read books for HOURS if you'd let her!
We headed out to a park a little ways away that has lots of bike trails, a fabulous playground, and nice picnic areas. Josiah was showing Tutu his latest karate moves that he's learned.

This is the smile that shows up when kids find out that mom packed SODAS with their picnic dinner!!!
MAJOR treat!!!

In the summer, this area has a spray park - but for now it makes a great place for bikes! :) (We did actually go on some trails - but no pictures of that part...of course)
Doesn't he look like a big boy now with his big boy haircut? I love it - so cute!
I know it's hard to see, but David too over Josiah's bike and was riding him around on the back - they were like 2 little kids having a great time!!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Let's Play the "What are they Playing?" Game!

Any guesses? Nope, not surfing. Nope, sledding. You give up? They're playing "Back Doctor!" That's what happens when Daddy takes you to the chiropractor with him a few (too many apparently) times!!! :)

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!

This is what I get for taking pictures of the ones I love VERY early on a school morning :)
She's been all about wearing costumes to bed lately - she LOVES it! I can't imagine that it's comfortable to sleep in, but whatever! Not a battle I'm going to fight!
There's ONE happy child :) He's the only one so far that is my early bird - wakes right up almost every morning on his own, ready to go. Jacob is a wee bit slower to wake up :)
Freshly bathed in the morning...that means he probably woke up with a BLOW-out diaper!! (And yes, he got his hair cut! But I'm a loser and didn't have my camera with me. Sigh. He loved it though - sat on David's lap at Sports Clips and did great! Looks SO much better - and so much like Josiah did after he got his first hair cut!)

The boys thought it was VERY cool that I made a heart cake....without using a heart-shaped pan!!! I used a square pan and a round pan...can you figure it out? :)
David and Callie bought me these tulips :)

We got to go to Jacob's class for his valentine's day party. It threw me off all day because Mondays are usually my stay at home, get the house back in order after the weekend, get all my laundry done, house cleaned, etc. But not today! I had things to do and places to go! :)
Their parties always take place at 1:00 pm - which is their normal snack time and is right after rest time. We went in around 12:30 during their rest time to get the party things together. Callie went over and laid down on Jacob's rest mat while he was passing out his valentines :) She SO thinks she is PART of his class!

The kids are really so sweet. We had the normal cupcakes but then also had some fun things to do chocolate fondue! We had strawberries, apples, marshmallows, pretzels - all kinds of fun things to dip in the chocolate. YUM!
Not ENTIRELY sure how she ended up with sprinkles on her face...
A very fun-filled day for sure!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Superbowl Sunday

Even though our beloved Titans fell apart this season (and committed the atrocious act of firing our highly esteemed favorite coach ever - Coach Fisher), we still decided to still have a little fun with the Superbowl. This was the first year the boys were REALLY excited about it - I don't know if it's because they enjoyed playing football so much in the fall or if they're just old enough to be more aware of all the hoopla - but they were excited this year!
I made jello helmets and footballs in the team colors (black and yellow on the left side for the Steelers, and green and yellow on the right side for the Packers) which were a bit hit with the kids and our neighbors' kids!

All Sunday night activities at church were cancelled for the night (I know, it's terrible but that's reality!) so we didn't have kids choir or anything that night. We enjoyed the extra time to be together as a family and with our friends outside before settling in for the game. I made some fun snack food for our "party" - some queso and chips, some chicken fingers - and we even had some "Touchdown Sundae" ice cream that had caramel filled footballs in it! The boys had taken a nap that afternoon because they were insistent that they wanted to stay up and watch the whole game!

Callie did NOT ever sleep during rest time, so she was fading throughout the whole first quarter - but was insistent that she was NOT tired! That girl just does NOT want to miss a party. She was "watching" the game - although I'm not sure any of it makes sense to her - but she SO wants to be a part of everything that's going on! I finally convinced her it was time for bed at halftime when she saw all the players leaving the field and thought the game was over. Bless her little social heart!

Jacob made it until the start of the 4th quarter and then he finally closed his eyes. Josiah held on until the very end and watched every last play. They were very cute. They thought alot of the commercials were hilarious - our favorite was the Doritos commercial where the guy licks the other guys' fingers and smelled where the guy wiped his doritos hands. It was one of those nights where we had a glimpse of our kids being REAL kids - not just little bitty kids, you know? We enjoyed it (knowing that we'd pay for it the next day after letting them stay up so late :) )