Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Remember This?

Me at the hospital with sweet Kate-2007.













Me with sweet baby Blake-2008.












Well... get ready to see a similar picture this July! We are having Baby #3, due July 19th. Sorry I have been MIA, I have not felt great, but have had a TON going on as well. I am a little over 11 weeks, so I am hoping to feel better soon. I am still exhausted and can't do a lot of cleaning or sewing, it seems all I can do well is rest. :)
Just wanted to share the good news! We are praying for a healthy baby and I do not care if it is a girl or boy, but we ARE going to find out, I just can't handle the wait!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

New Recipe

I have a new recipe we tried that you have to try. It has dijon mustard in it, but it is not very mustardy once it is cooked, it just adds a little flavor. It is a Paula Deen recipe, and anything from her is delicious to me! Even my kids loved it-Kate loved that it was crispy. Try it!
Oven Fried Chicken
1. Preheat oven to 400. Line a baking sheet with foil, then place a cooling rack on top of the baking sheet and spray with Pam.
2. In one bowl, mix 1/4 cup dijon mustard, 2Tbsp water, 2 Tbsp olive oil, and salt and pepper.
3. In a separate bowl, mix 2 cups panko breadcrumbs, 1 cup shredded or grated parmesan (it tastes better to shred some fresh parmesan and makes it crispy), 2 Tbsp olive oil, and salt and pepper.
4. Pound out 2-2.5 lb chicken breasts to about 1/4 inch thick.
5. Dip in the mustard mixture, then dredge in the breadcrumb mixture and place on top of the cooling rack. Bake for 25-30 minutes.
Enjoy!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Babysitting

I need some help from other moms who use babysitters. I have always used family to babysit, but now that my parents have 5 grandchildren, they aren't always available. I need to know what is the "going rate" for 1 kid, 2 kids, 3 kids per hour. We shared a sitter with a friend this weekend, and she normally pays $10 for 1 kid per hour, but we added my two and I felt like I needed to pay way more. I am out of the babysitting loop! What about overnight babysitting? Can any of you give me tips so I don't run off babysitters.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Missing Him Already

I just lost my precious grandfather, Dink, this week, and I had no idea that it would feel like someone took a part of me with him. I don't even know how to write about how I feel because I am not used to feeling so many emotions at one time! I feel sad that I will not see him, but I feel so thankful that I know he is in Heaven rejoicing and thankful that his body is now whole again. I was so blessed by the number of people who showed up today at his funeral to honor him. He touched more lives than I ever knew, but that shouldn't surprise me. His smile was contagious! He made everyone feel like they were a part of his family. I used to sit at their house when I was in high school and college, and he and Nanny would ask about our friends by name. They took an interest in our lives like we were their own kids. Our friends all new Nanny and Dink!
My sister and I used to talk about how we dreaded the day we would have to say goodbye to Dink, and while it was so hard, it was harder to see him suffer. We went to visit him just a week ago, and he had such a different look on his face than usual, he looked like he was in pain and exhausted, and he wouldn't talk. In all the years of pain from broken hips, broken legs, etc., he always smiled and pushed through. The other day, I just held his hand and he squeezed it a few times. Kate tried to talk to him, and she held his hand and later told me that he squeezed her hand too, and I never knew I would be so thankful for such a sweet memory. We left and Kate asked why he didn't talk to her, and I had to start explaining to her what I didn't even want to deal with myself. We knew that his end was getting closer.
Dink was one of the most amazing people I have ever met. He was a leader, a great example, a generous giver, and he could make anyone smile. He loved kids, and would light up whenever I brought my kids to visit. He was the only person in my life to call me "Lynn," and I loved it when he did. He loved my grandmother with a protective, unselfish love. He was a great father and grandfather, I tell people that he was really more like another father figure to me. We lived next door to him since I was about 14 years old. They would take us on trips to the beach every year, they would keep us for weekends, and they took each grandchild on a special trip for their 13th birthday. He made sure each one of us had everything we needed, and made sure we were happy. He and Nanny took me to England when I turned 13, and sent me to Germany when I graduated high school. I can thank them for my international travel before I was 18!
Dink was such a good example of what to look for in a husband, and Brandon has said several times how much he looked up to him. We would go to their house and Brandon would help Dink plant his garden. Dink would be on his hands and knees, covered in ants and probably in pain, but he would get his garden planted. I loved watching him eat his fresh tomatoes like apples. On our way to the beach, we would pick up a basket of peaches, and he would finish the whole basket while we were at the beach. He loved to eat! He loved working outside, so Brandon loved going out there with him and hearing stories about his life, about war, and about all of the things he had repaired in his little workshop.
I am so thrilled that my kids knew and loved him like they have. We would walk in their door and they would start heading for his room calling, "Dink, Dink." I know it will be hard to take them to see Nanny and watch them look for him again. It has been interesting explaining to Kate how we will not see him again, but that he is in Heaven with Jesus. She understands more than I thought she would, and she has even tried to comfort me and my mom. I picked her up from MDO the other day, and Kate said, "Let's go cheer up GiGi and tell her we love her." I was crying the other day, and Blake just came and held my leg and said, "No tears, mommy." When I picked the kids up from school the other day, Kate asked me what I did while she was at school, I told her I went to see Dink and she couldn't understand why I would go without them.
While I write this, I am sad because I miss Dink, but it makes me so thankful for the family we do have here, and so thankful that I can still share these sweet memories with Nanny. I keep wondering why I am even sad, because I know where he is, and that is the place we should all long to be, but I miss his sweet face! As they took his body out today, it was like they took a piece of me with him, and I am sure I embarrassed myself with the crying and sniffing, I almost couldn't take it. I ache for Nanny, thinking about how it must feel to lose her best friend of 70+ years. I ache for my mom and her sisters saying goodbye to their daddy. I ache that I won't see him the next time I go over there, but I rejoice knowing he is in the arms of our precious Savior, Jesus Christ. What a comfort, KNOWING that he is there!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

From Their Eyes

I have a lot to be thankful for! Two of my biggest ones would like to share some things they are thankful for now. I have been asking them to tell me what they were thankful for, so this is straight out of their mouths.

Kate- Campbell (her BFF), Mommy and Daddy, Bubbie (Blake), all my grandparents, Sage and Montana (some more friends), Caroline (a buddy from MDO), rambling about when she behaves and gets to watch "toons."
Blake- Mommy, my head (as he points to his head), Dora and Boots (Do NOT forget Boots!), Cheetos, Kate, John Burke, Turner, K.K. (Kelly), baby Chloe, Pop Pop, my back (pointing to his back).

Obviously there are a lot of things left off of this list, but these were straight from them tonight. Just thought I would share that you are never too young to be thankful! I am thankful for these 2 silly kids.

Monday, November 15, 2010

She Is NOT Shy


I sometimes think that Kate should belong to Kelly. She talks to ANYONE any time, loves talking about silly things, wants to stay up all night reading, always wants to be around people and says things that could make you stop in your tracks and say, "Did she just say that?" Most people who know Kelly already know she is this way, but it is always funny to be around when she meets new people. Kate is the same way. If you try to not talk to her, she will go out of her way to say, "Hi, my name is Kate." Even to strangers walking by while we play in the yard! Other times, she will say things that I have to quickly correct... some quick stories:
Last week, I was picking up my kids from the nursery after Bible study and a men's group was leaving their meeting at the same time. A "little person" was leaving just in front of us and my friend Jamie said her daughter pointed out the little man, so I thought I was in the clear. Until we were in the parking lot and he was a few steps from us, Kate said loudly, "Look Mom, he is a little boy daddy." I gave her a look and said, "let's get to the car." But she continued! Then she explained to me, "he is a daddy, but a little boy too." At this point, Blake chimed in too and pointed while saying, "A little boy" over and over again. I was MORTIFIED. The man was very kind and just smiled at us while I mouthed "Sorry." We had a little talk in the car about appearances, and how God makes each person different, and we shouldn't talk about it.
Apparently, the talk didn't work! We were out to dinner and a little girl (who happened to have an afro hairdo) said something loud and Kate stared until she was redirected to our table. A few minutes later, Kate said, "Did you hear that little girl with the fuzzball hair?" No You Did Not! Of course, I grabbed her arm tightly and said we do NOT talk about other people's appearances, EVER! We have been talking at home a lot lately about the way God makes people different and getting her to understand that she is not the definition of normal.
Let's hope these talks spare me from more public red-faced events, and her from hurting someone's feelings!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Happy Birthday Blake and Happy Halloween!

Blake turned 2 on Halloween! My baby is 2, I cannot believe it! We didn't have a party because I have only had first birthday parties for each, and I didn't want to have another for him and not for her, etc, etc. So we had a family cupcake night. Blake had asked for green cupcakes, so I just did green sugar on chocolate icing. The sad thing is he didn't even want the cupcake!








Kate is always happy to cheer him on!


Kate was a ladybug for Halloween, and Blake was supposed to be a monkey... but he would have NO part in dressing up. So, it was a good thing we didn't end up Trick or Treating.























My parents came over to celebrate and go out to dinner. When Blake woke up from his nap, he ONLY wanted Gigi... as in, would not let go of her. My dad (and Kate) put together his tricycle they gave him, and then Kate played with it since he wouldn't let go of my mom. We went to dinner and came home, not too eventful, but we did get to celebrate our favorite 2 year old! He is still his sweet self, but has been throwing some fits like you would not believe. We are going to nip this "terrible twos" behavior in the bud! Brandon worked most of the weekend, so we just rested and let Kate trick or treat from my parents, Blake didn't care! I don't know where I have been but I have been busy, and our computer was down, so maybe I will be back to the blogworld now!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Makes Me Smile

Something about sleepy kids makes me smile. Kate has been resisting naps lately, which means she will pass out later or be terrible the rest of the day. I let her watch cartoons so she wouldn't wake Blake one afternoon while I sewed, and I turned around and found her like this.



Blake is a typical boy- he wants food immediately when he wakes up! In the mornings, he gets out of bed saying, "I want bar," which means a Nutrigrain bar. In the afternoons, it is all about the "kackers." His sweaty bed head made me laugh today, and the fact that he couldn't shovel the Cheezits in fast enough.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

First Day of School

Sadly, these are the best pictures I got of the kids' first day of Mother's Day Out. I would have tried to take them before school, but we were already running late, and they were exhausted after school. So, this is after their nap and they were a little more smiley for the camera. Kate went to "school" last year, but this was Blake's first day, and he did great! His entire class (except his buddy York) was crying and screaming, and there were a few crying moms outside the room... what a welcoming sight! His teacher was blowing bubbles as he walked in, so he was fine. They did say that he got a little grumpy and took a 15 minute power nap, and he was good to go play some more.






(Kate had her pants on backwards and you can see the dirt she collected on her bottom!)





Kate's teachers said she was a trooper and that she just walked right in like it was nothing new. Thank God, because she has been super clingy the past few weeks. I think it is a good situation for all! Kids happy=mom happy. Mom happy=Dad happy!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Trees of Goodness

This morning I was praying for friends who are suffering with where they are in life, have just lost a baby, longing for a baby, lost a loved one, etc., and I saw a verse in my devotion book, Jesus Calling, by Sarah Young (the real book that should get credit is The Bible though!). Isaiah 61:3 says, "He has sent me to comfort all those who are sad and to help the sorrowing people of Jerusalem. I will give them a crown to replace their ashes, and the oil of gladness to replace their sorrow, and clothes of praise to replace their spirit of sadness. Then they will be called Trees of Goodness, trees planted by the Lord to show His greatness." Anyway, I was so encouraged by our Father's renewing grace and how He alone can provide the gladness when all we can feel is sorrow, and the praise to replace sadness. I hope this verse reminds you of His love too. And I hope that I can look to this verse the next time I am feeling down, and be called a Tree of Goodness instead of wallowing in my own sadness (because that is what usually happens :)).

Monday, August 30, 2010

Ready to Slow Down

We have been going in a million directions! We have been out of town for a week, and just got back last night. Brandon took his Step 3 boards last week, but we had to go to Dothan to take them, so we made a vacation out of it and stayed with his Grandmother and Grandaddy in Geneva. We played with Brandon's cousin and her daughter, Rylie. We forgot our camera, so these are pictures from our last trip there. These are two peas in a pod! Blake played too, but he found a friend in Grandaddy! He would go sit in his lap and read the same book over and over again.













After our trip to Geneva, we went to Greenville to see Brandon's youngest brother play his first football game of his senior year. It was a little humid, and the kids were WILD, so the kids and I left at half-time. We have eaten well, rested, and spent time with family, so now we are ready to wind down and get back into the real world.
The kids start Mothers' Day Out next week, and Brandon is starting a busy rotation, so here we go!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Chloe

Meet my niece, Chloe. She is Derek's (my brother) little girl, and if you have seen how wrapped around Kate's finger he is, you could only imagine his own daughter!

Chloe is playing at our house today, and I could eat her dimples with a spoon. My kids are loving it, especially Kate because she thinks she is the babysitter. Better go, I am not used to 3!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Delicious



























If you like Rice Krispy Treats at all, you have to make them yourself! The recipe on the box is good, but I used less rice krispies to make them Gooey-er.
Melt 3 Tbsp butter in a saucepan (on low heat), then add 40 large marshmallows and stir until melted. Then add in 5 cups rice krispies into the marshmallow mix. You will probably need to use wax paper over your fingers when you press into a pan to cool, because these are extra gooey.
Enjoy!!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Playing Inside

We have had to get a little creative to play inside since it is too hot to stay outside for long. So, last week a fairy princess invited Batman over for a tea party. She was so excited to put on her wings and princess high heels. And he was just excited to play at all!
























They slaved in the kitchen for a little while. But, they acted like it was the best food they had ever eaten. I might have slipped a twizzler in their teacups.













Batman was a very sweet guest, and the fairy princess was quite the hostess! This took up a surprising chunk of time one day, so we will be doing it again very soon!





























































We have also played some Rock Band with the kids, and Kate thought it would spice it up to play the drums with ski goggles on. She is so random!
We have tried to play with sidewalk chalk a few times, but Blake always turns out looking like this... so this is becoming less frequent!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Hot Days

It is so hot and we didn't have the baby pool set up, so why not just use the hose? It is too hot to play outside without being in some kind of water, so these two loved every minute!




Blake just wants to fill that watering can so he can water all the flowers, but his sweet sister is not always willing to share the water.
Sometimes she gets him right in the face, but he has learned to turn around and enjoy the cool splash.
He follows her around begging for water...
Then he gives up, and squeals with delight!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Dying Laughing

Brandon and I were watching this video tonight and were dying laughing. You may have already seen "Swagger Wagon" by Toyota, but this is right up there with it. Enjoy!


Friday, June 25, 2010

Everyday Stuff

Blake loves to dance, even if it is to Justin Bieber on the Today Show. I laughed so hard because the band's dancers were all over the stage and waving arms around, so that is exactly what Blake did!



Brandon collapsed after a call night, and the kids were running all around him and screaming... he didn't budge! He is finishing his last week as an intern this week! On to brighter days and less call nights!


Blake has been getting his incisor teeth- the pointy canine teeth- and has been a little whiny. One morning, he was up so early that he was exhausted by 9, and this is what I found around 10 am... a sleeping Blake with the world moving all around him. I guess he takes after his daddy in the sleep department.



We watched John Burke the other morning, and he is one easy/happy baby! Kate was a big helper, and I had to beg her to let me hold him. If I didn't have to carry it, Kate took care of it, and it was as easy as this one, I may think I could handle another one now! I think we will wait.

Blake is getting more independent these days too. He was a little bit of a plumber this day. He wants to feed himself- which is why he is only wearing a diaper- and has started pitching some nice fits. He is doing well with time out. I set him in his room and tell him that we do not pitch fits and when he is done he can say he is sorry. I really was doing it for consistency reasons, but he actually does calm down and walk into the room I am in and says, "Soddy." Funny little guy!