Friday, May 28, 2010

Seven Quick Takes

I've never participated in Seven Quick Takes before, so I thought I would try it out today. It's hosted over at Conversion Diary. Head over there and link up.

1)Landon had a great day at the library on Monday! He actually sang the songs and did the fingerplays. I'm so glad that we started going to story time. It has helped him so much!

2)Dakota had an award assembly at her school. I didn't go because the teachers had told the kids that if they were getting anything big that their parents had been contacted already. She ended receiving an award for A-B honor roll, a participation award for the geography bee, and an OUTSTANDING MUSICIAN AWARD for band. Now I wish I would have gone. :( She didn't seem to care though.

3)Speaking of band, I am so proud of her! Dakota has been first chair trombone in the 6th grade band since before their winter concert.

4)Cheyenne's softball team is getting so much better! They scored the most runs of their season in the last game they played. They didn't win, but the score was 12-7. Last time they played that team, it was 12-2. Chey's team caught 3 fly balls and made some really awesome plays! One of our girls even hit a homerun! It's fun to see how they grow through the season.

5)I started really cleaning things out and getting ready to pack this week. I really hate packing! You'd think as much as we've moved that we really wouldn't have that much to get rid of. I don't know where it all comes from! Some days I'd like to just shovel it all out into the yard and strike a match to it...

6)Yesterday was the girls' last day of school! I don't know that I was even this excited for summer when I was a teacher. I'm so happy to have the girls home during the day. It's going to be a busy, but fun, summer.

7)I need to find a way to convince my kids that summer is for sleeping in-at least until 7 or so. This morning they were all up by 6:30 and at least two of them were up at 6:00. They are big enough that I don't really have to drag myself out of bed as soon as they get up anymore but they are anything but quiet when they get up. I'm thinking that their rooms all need blackout curtains when we move.

There you have it. Seven quick takes of our lives at the moment. Can't wait to share what the next week brings. It's sure to be interesting with the start of summer vacation!

Five Question Friday May 28

It's Friday!!! Even better than that, it's the first day of summer vacation for my girls! I am so glad to have them home. We're taking time this weekend to relax before we start of all our summer adventures to the duck pond, zoo, splash park, library, and where ever else we decide to go (oh, and packing up our stuff and moving). We're going to have so much fun!
Yesterday, Landon and I went to watch the talent show at Cheyenne and Sierra's school. Each class had a song to sing. In between, there were performances by individual kids and small groups. It was cute, but LONG, nearly two hours. I felt bad for the kids who were having to sit on that cold tile floor for all that time!
Sierra sang with the kindergarten. They were so cute. I had several of those kids in class last year, so it was fun to see them up there. They have grown so much! I was sitting close to the back of the gym and Sierra was kind of hidden behind some other kids, so I didn't get many pictures. of her. This is actually the best one
She's in the middle behind the #11 boy and the superman boy.
Cheyenne was chosen by the music teacher to be one of four little girls to dance on the stage during the thrid grade performance of "I'm a Believer." She has been practicing for a couple of weeks now during class and even a few times before and after school. Last week, she brought home a copy of the music, so I've been hearing that song in my sleep! It was cute when she showed it to us at home, but I really loved seeing her up there with her friends.
I'm still fighting with my computer over posting videos, so I can't show it to you now, but I promise it was cute! :)

Now, for the best part of Friday. Five Question Friday with Mama M. I'm kinda thankful that I can't post video because if I could, I might be tempted to jump on that whole Vlog bandwagon. No one wants to see that! I promise, you are thanking me for NOT doing that. So here are my Five Question Friday answers, the old fashioned way.

1. Is there something you've always wanted to try but just can't muster up the courage to actually do yet?
It's not something I actually want to try, but I'm getting to the point where I'm going to have to-color my hair. I have NEVER put any kind of color on my hair. I'm really scared of how it will come out. I have no idea how to find the right color and I don't have the money to spend to have it done at the salon. I'm actually okay with my hair the way it is right now. I don't really notice the grays too much. For the most part, I don't even think of it. But, the other day when I was talking to my friend, her little girl suddenly looked at her mom and said, "Mom, you don't really have very much gray hair, do you?" Ha! So, I'm thinking it might be time...

2. If you had $100 handed to you in cash without your significant other knowing about it, what would you spend it on?
I'm pretty sure that the guilt of keeping it a secret would get to me before I could spend it, so I would tell my husband. It would probably go toward clothes/shoes for the kids or something practical like that (after, of course, we used some of it to go out to eat).

People who know me have figured out that it's better to give me a gift than cash because I won't spend the money on myself.

3. What was your favorite piece of playground equipment as a child?
The school I went to for 4-6th grade had this weird metal spaceship thing that we used to play on a lot. It had a ladder that went up into the middle of it. Kind of like this
We would climb up in it and have a "club". The boys liked to climb all the way out through the top and jump out. I was never brave enough to try it. You know, that thing was surrounded by the hard ground- no wood chips or pea gravel-and in all the times I saw someone jump off the top of it, I don't remember anyone ever getting hurt. Hmm...

4. Do you prefer a sweet or hearty breakfast?
I used to be all about the sweet breakfast, but these days, it gives me a headache if I don't eat something a little more nutritious than cap'n crunch. I really don't like any kind of breakfast food that much anyway. I'd rather eat dinner leftovers for breakfast than anything else.

5. Are you a Neat Freak or a Messy Bessy?
It really depends on the day. Most days, the neat freak in me gets overwhelmed by the size of the mess and just gives up.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Post-It Note Tuesday! May 25

Tuesday Tips

The Crayon Wrangler has come up with a great idea for a blog hop carnival that starts today. It's called Tuesday Tips. All you have to do is share what you have learned about the topic of the week and link up. Pretty simple and fun. Can't wait to read everyone's tips this week!

This week's topic: Cooking with Small Children:

My favorite thing to cook with my children is sugar cookies. After much trial and error, here is the way it works best for us.

*Step one: call children into the kitchen and tell them that you are going to bake cookies today. Gather supplies needed to make cookies-pans, cookie cutters, sugar, eggs, flour, etc. Trip over two different children while doing this because they are standing within 3 centimeters of you the entire time.
*Step two: clean up the half bag of flour and egg that you dropped when you tripped over said children. Start to wonder if this was such a good idea.
*Step three: send children to wash their hands. While they are gone, quickly get as many of the ingredients into the bowl as possible.
*Step four: allow each child to put one of the remaining ingredients in each. Give each child a turn to mix the dough. Retrieve a new spoon because a child put the one they were using in their mouth at the end of their turn. Finish mixing the dough yourself. Think to yourself that maybe next time you should get the dough ready before calling the kids to help.
*Step five: Prepare the surface for rolling out the dough by covering with flour while unsuccessfully attempting to keep children from also covering themselves and your floor.
*Step six: roll out the dough. Tell the kids to grab a cookie cutter. Children begin arguing over who gets to use the star. Take the star away from both and tell them to choose another. Children now argue over the heart. Take all the cookie cutters away. Put them behind your back and pass them out randomly to the children while using the quote "you get what you get and you don't throw a fit." At least one child misses the part about not throwing a fit. Decide that when you do this again, you will just make dropped cookies.
*Step seven: Let the children cut out one cookie each. Switch cutters in a clockwise direction. Repeat until every child has used every cutter. Send children to wash their hands while you finish cutting the cookies because "mommy's going to do it really quick so we can hurry up and have a cookie." Tell the children to go change their clothes because of the flour. Cringe at the thought of ANOTHER load of laundry to do today.
*Step eight: Put cookies in the oven. Take two tylenol. Sweep flour off kitchen floor. Wash flour off table. Make mental note to make cookies while the children are in bed from now on.
*Step nine: Remove cookies from oven. Pour cups of milk for you and the children. Call the children to come and have some cookies while they are warm. Watch their eyes light up as they eat the cookies. Get several cookie crumb hugs and kisses as they finish as you are proclaimed "the best mom ever!"
*Step ten: Think to yourself, "We really should do this more often."

Friday, May 21, 2010

Five Question Friday

Oh my! Where did this week go? I have been so out of my routine this week that I feel like I didn't get anything done. The dishes and laundry are behind, the living room is a mess, the dining room and kitchen need to be swept...this house LOOKS like I did nothing this week. It's not that I actually did NOTHING this week, it's just that most of what I did was not at home. My husband has been really busy with extra stuff at work since Saturday evening. That put me in charge of picking up kids after school, which is usually his job Tuesday-Friday. Totally threw me off schedule.
Plus, there was tons of extra stuff to do every day this week (until today-hooray!). Monday, we had about a million errands to run after school-bank, post office, grocery store, etc. On Tuesday
Cheyenne had dance practice for the talent show after school until 4:30, then softball practice from 5:30-6:45. Wednesday there was that whole pesky tornado thing. Thursday afternoon, Cheyenne had dance practice again until 4:30 and a softball game at 6:00 (which I got to take all 4 kids to because Daniel was out of town for work stuff). Today I finally get a break. Daniel is getting off work on time and picking up the girls from school. Yea! I am so happy that next week is the last week of school. I am ready for summer vacation!
So, have I used my break to catch up on things? Well, not exactly. I mean, I have done one load of dishes and about three loads of laundry and an hour of school with Landon. But the rest of the time, I haven't done too much. The girls will be home tomorrow, so they can help me get everything back on track in the morning and we'll still have the afternoon to have fun.

Right now, I'm waiting for the dryer to buzz so I can start another load of laundry and then load the dishwasher again. While I'm waiting, I think I'll play my favorite game-Five Question Friday!

If you want to play along, head over to Mama M.'s blog and link up!

Do you have an iPhone and, if so, how do you get apps and what are your favorites?
Nope, no iPhone here. I would LOVE to have one! They look like loads of fun! But, I really don't have a very good track record with phones-I've washed one, dropped one in a puddle, and had one get run over by a car-so I don't know that I should spend that kind of money on a phone. Plus, that whole Dave Ramsey thing I mentioned before kind of gets me. There are so many other things I need to be using my money for right now. Maybe someday...

2. What is your fondest memory of K-3rd grade?
Oh, it's going to be so hard to choose. K-3rd grade were the best! I think the thing that I remember most is when my 2nd grade class hatched chicken eggs in an incubator. We waited and waiting for those eggs to hatch. They ended up hatching over the weekend, which would have been unfortunate except that our awesome teacher called us and let us know so that we could come up and watch.
I actually got the chance to relive that moment with my own class a few years ago. Our eggs hatched on Friday evening. I called the kids and several came up and watched with me for a while. So fun!

3. What makes you cringe at the thought of touching?
Spiders! I have chills just thinking about it now. Even getting close enough to step on them of smash them with something is almost too much for me. I can barely pick up a dead one with a paper towel. I have this crazy fear that it's going to suddenly come back to life and attack me! Yuck!

4. If you could have any celebrity show up on your doorstep who would it be and why?
Ty from Extreme Makeover Home Edition. Although, I don't think I would want anything like what they usually build for people. It seems like too much. I'd rather see two families get new, simple homes.

5. What would you say is your best physical feature?
I'm going to go with my eyes.

So, there it is. Can't wait to hop around and see what everyone else had to say today.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Tornado day #2

**UPDATE** We did end up in the cellar for 30-60 minutes. We got some hail, but no tornadoes at our house. There was a touchdown about 15 miles to our west. Not sure about damages yet. We are still watching more storms that may or may not come our way. We're really hoping that's the end of it, but we left all our things underground just in case.

**Original Post**

We are currently watching a storm that is headed our way. Possibility of tornadoes in our town tonight.

Our things are packed and in the cellar. We are prepared. Please pray for those who are not...

Another lovely spring day in Oklahoma-but I would definitely rather deal with tornadoes than earthquakes. At least we get some warning.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Five Question Friday

Woohoo! It's Friday! I've got a busy day ahead, but it's going to be fun. I get to go with Cheyenne's class on their field trip today. We're going out to Camp R. for a fun day of exploring nature-in the rain it looks like. I've been a teacher since before my kids were in school, so I've never gotten to go with any of them on a field trip. Dakota had her spring band concert last night and Grandma Debbie came up for it and spent the night. Today, she and Landon are going on "vacation" to Tulsa. It worked out great for me because siblings aren't allowed at camp, so now I get to go! I'm going to meet them at camp in a couple of hours for lunch and then fishing if the rain holds off.

Go check out Mama M.'s blog for more Five Question Friday fun!

1. Take your night, girls night out, or night out alone?
Oooooooooooh! That's a tough one. I think I'll have to go with date night. It's been sooooo long since we've had one of those. Hopefully when we move we will get one!

2. Can you touch your nose with your tongue?
Uh, no. Can't do it. (and yes, I just tried).

3. What is your favorite flower and why?
My favorite flowers are pink tulips (I think I might have mentioned that before). They make me think of springtime and Easter.
4. If you could go back in time, what advice would you give yourself?
I'm really not sure. There are lots of things that I should have done differently, but they all served a purpose in my life. I think I would tell myself, though, not to worry so much about what certain people said or thought about me, because once high school is over and the real world begins, those people aren't going to matter anyway.

5. If you won the lottery, what is the very first thing you would do?
Okay, I've thought about this. I would first pay off our debts, then I would set the kids up with plenty for college, etc, then I would take everyone in our family on a big vacation somewhere warm and sandy...
I would continue, but I just noticed that it said FIRST thing, so I'll stop there.

But, I'll probably never do any of those things. I hear that you have to actually play the lottery before you can win. Guess I've been listening to too much Dave Ramsey because I just can't bring myself to spring the $2 to buy a ticket.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

My Cousin's Wedding

This weekend the kids and I traveled to a town about 3 hours away to attend my cousin A's wedding. We were pushing it to get there on time and had to madly change the kids' clothes when we got there, but we made it. It was a pretty ceremony with a beautiful bride.

I took tons and tons of pictures, but my photography skills were somewhat lacking that day. Thank goodness I was just taking the pictures for fun and not as their official photographer! I did get some fun shots though.

Here is my favorite shot of Landon. He's waiting in line to go into the church. He had only been to one wedding before this and didn't know what to expect. He was so excited and he looked so handsome in his suit!
I found this dress in the box of summer clothes I unpacked for Sierra a couple of weeks ago. It was Dakota's Easter dress when she was Sierra's age. Sierra had been dying to wear it. She spent the entire day showing off how twirly it was!.
The ceremony started with the mothers each lighting their side candle for the unity candle. The lovely lady on the left is my aunt-my mom's older sister.
Then, the guys came out. I thought the look on the groom's face was so cute! Can you tell he's nervous? I hear he's pretty shy, so it took lots of courage for him to be in front of all those people!
Then, it was the big moment! The bride and her daddy coming down the aisle. (This is where some of my awesome photography skills came in. Because, of course the daddy should be the focus of the picture instead of the bride, right? Ugh! I really have to work on that).
Here's daddy giving the bride away.

The pastor who performed the ceremony is my uncle C (my mom's younger sister's husband). He is so special to me! He came into our family when I was about 5-6 years old. I remember having so much fun playing football and wrestling with him. He performed the ceremony when Daniel and I got married. I was there when he baptized my grandpa. He did the service when my dad passed away. And now our family has another special memory with him. We are blessed to have him!

A.'s sweet daughter, Miss S, decided that she needed to get in on the action. She was the cutest little flower girl in her pretty purple dress.

Here is another of my aunts. She sang beautifully (as always). She also sang at my wedding.
Aren't they so cute? You can see the smile on her face, even from this angle.
Little miss S decided she wanted to sit with my grandparents. When she spotted them, her face lit up and she said "Memaw!" So sweet!
Cheyenne has started making this face every time she wants me to take her picture. I'm not sure what that's about, but she's cute anyway.

My favorite part of any wedding ceremony. I almost set myself on fire during my wedding because I forgot about my veil being in front of my face when I was trying to blow out my candle.
They are now husband and wife!
The cake was very pretty.

Here's another shot of little miss S. along with my cousin C. This little boy has the cutest personality ever! He makes me laugh.
While we were waiting for the cake, there was much skirt twirling from these two girls.
Landon decided that his tie looked better on his ear than on his neck.
And Dakota sat wishing she could take that dress off and put on some jeans. :)
The bride and groom with my grandparents (Pops and Memaw). Doesn't Pops remind you of the guy from UP? Go watch it, you'll see (and if you know him, you'll see it's not just looks, but personality as well).
And here they all are with the bride's parents.
Cutting the cake together. Love her smile!
The look on his face is just priceless! I think he will fit in with our family just fine.
It was a beautiful day, a beautiful wedding, and a beautiful day spent with family.

Mama Guilt Monday

Mama Guilt Mondays

Cop Mama is taking a break from hosting Mama Guilt Mondays, but that doesn't mean the Mama Guilt has taken a break from me. So, I'm going to continue posting some of my Mama Guilt Monday moments from time to time (this week on Tuesday, which is just my style).

My mama guilt this week involves my oldest, Dakota. Dakota's school starts at 8:05am. In order to have enough time to put her instrument away, go to her locker, and still get to class on time, I need to have her dropped off and in the building no later than 8:00. This means that we can leave our house no later than 7:35am to make the drive across town to the middle school.

The little girls' school doesn't start until 8:50. Starting at 8:15, they can be dropped off at walk-and-talk (or sit-and-talk in the gym if it's raining), but they HATE that. I can't say that I blame them. There are two assistant teachers (3 on a lucky day) on the playground to monitor ALL the kids who are there before school. By the time the teachers come out to get the classes, there may be 200+ kids out there. I know the ladies who are the monitors and they are wonderful people, but they can't possibly monitor everything with that many kids.

So, I usually try to kill some time after we drop off Dakota and drop the girls off around 8:35. Sometimes we go to Wal-Mart and look at toys or pick up an item or two that we need. Sometimes I have an errand I need to run, like dropping something in the mail. But usually, I don't really have anything in particular to do. I feel bad for them because I have to get them up earlier than they would like and rush them through their breakfast, etc just so they can go wander around the store or ride around in the van. They would so much rather be at home watching Zula Patrol or sleeping in another 3o minutes. So, occasionally, I will pick up a treat for them. Sometimes, it's donuts. Other days, it's a drink to share from the gas station. Today, it was chicken biscuits and hashbrowns from Chick-fil-A (the biscuits were free. Hooray!).

Then, I feel guilty because Dakota wasn't included. The kids are really good about not saying anything to her about it, which helps, but I still feel bad. But, to include her in the treat, we would have to get up and ready even earlier and would still have that 30 minutes to kill after we dropped her off.

I always try to remind myself that Dakota does get special treats that the others don't get too. Just the other day, I took her to hear the High School band play. We stopped at the dollar store on the way and she got a candy bar. She's gotten to go to 3 dances at her school this year and we've given her money for things there. It all works out in the end, I guess.

So, how to you make things "fair" when they aren't necessarily "the same" for your kids? I'd love to hear your ideas. Leave me a comment and let me know.