Monday, April 22, 2013

Amber, Beth, Sharon...In search of ABS

Two of my friends and I have decided to start a new blog to share our journey through weight loss, exercise, eating healthy journey, and saying goodbye to anxiety medication.  We are moms, wives, teacher, therapist, and friends so we have faced challenges but happy to say that we have pushed through since January!  I won't go into stay tuned for the link to our new blog. We are still trying to decide on a name.

This is my friend Sharon and I at the beginning of our journey.

Looking back

Well alot has happened in the last year since my last post! We have added a precious little baby boy to our family, moved back to Northeast Arkansas and remodeled a house...just to name a few!

Drew graduated Kindergarten and this picture is just ONE of the many attempts we make to get family photos. This is a true capture of our chaotic but wonderful life!
David & I celebrated our 10 year anniversary! What a blessing he is in my life. When life gets crazy & we want to run away, we just say..."oh no no no...we are in this together!" Since we were amidst a move and new baby we celebrated with dinner in Mountain Home while my sister watched the boys for us.  It was a nice quiet steak dinner!
One of our first blessings of being back HOME was getting to have Will's baby dedication.  FBC Jonesboro has been such a HUGE part of mine and David's life for the past 14 years.  It was such a special time for us to have Brother Bruce dedicate Will because he married us and dedicated Drew and Alex also.  Life is not perfect whether we are in NWA or NEA but we are thankful for our friends and family in both places that make life fun and enjoyable!

Happy Halloween!
 Another blessing of being back is getting to do everyday life with  my nieces!  We are happy about that (despite Alex's face in this face).
 Since we've been in Jonesboro Drew has started Karate. That's all I will say about that. Ha.ha.ha
 We spent many hours remodeling our house.  This is just ONE of MANY projects we have done.  We spent Thanksgiving weekend tearing out the wall between our kitchen and den. 
 Happy Thanksgiving from this precious baby boy who brings SUCH JOY to our lives!
 One of many attempts to get a GOOD picture of the boys.'s a challenge! I'll just take what I can get.  I smile when I see the 3 of them together.
Our last hoo-rah of 2012 was celebrating New Year's Eve with some old and dear friends...the Blaylocks!  Yet another blessing of being back in Northeast Arkansas.  We've been friends with them since we were newlyweds.  Our kids are just weeks apart which is so fun. 
I'm thankful for friends that you can go days, weeks, or months without talking but when you are together it's like you never missed a beat. 

Goodbye 2012...hello 2013!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A Rainy Day

Today it is rainy like CRAZY outside! It is nice to be able to stay home today with just not alot of pressing things to do. I decided that I never blog about everyday life for us. Will be boring for others to read but it will serve as our "scrapbook" one day.
I was up from 3-6:00 this morning wide that part of pregnancy (saying that in a very sarcastic tone). Alex crawled in our bed at 7:00 so I laid down with him to watch his favorite shows on PBS (Curious George, Cat in the Hat, Sesame Street, Super Why). We also looked at Lego toys online and he LOVED that. He says all he wants for Christmas is Legos. His birthday is in December and I am planning a Lego themed party. My sister is going to make the cake in the shape of Lego blocks. For party favors I am going to make crayons and gummies with Lego molds. Alex is never had a "real" party before so this will be his first one. The last two years we just did small family parties at home and he was perfectly happy with that.
After the battery ran down on the IPad from looking at soooo many different Legos, we decided to get up & make blueberry muffins. My sister had given us a huge box of food because her family is doing the gluten free diet now. I never buy the muffins with the "real blueberries" and I was so excited to see those in her box! I'm sure Alex & I will go through the whole dozen this morning. After all the 4 of us almost finished over a dozen chocolate cupcakes last night. Ooops!
Tonight we are planning to make homemade pizza & play games. Loving this day at home & looking forward to our night at home too! Days like this make me miss Drew even more because he can't be home with Alex & I playing all day.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Disney World

During Drew's October Intersession from school we went to Disney World. It was fantastic! It is definitely not a "relaxing" vacation but what vacation is when you have small children, right? We had so much fun.

It was Alex's first plane ride so that was exciting! Drew was happy to share with Alex that he had been on a plane MANY times & it was fun. Ha! Drew was also the "safety patrol" worrying about getting our seatbelts tight enough, chewing gum as we took off, everything being in the right place while flying such as our bags, toys, etc. Once on the plane Drew got stuck in the bathroom. David was taking Alex to the bathroom & noticed the door shaking so he knew it must be Drew stuck! :-)

It was so wonderful to see the boys' faces when they saw the castle at Magic Kingdom on our first day. It was as if we weren't at Disney World until we saw the castle you see on TV because when they boys saw it they said "we're here! we're here!". I can, without a doubt, say that every sore foot, soaking wet clothes, exhausted meltdown, pennies spent, long line, and crowded bus was far outweighed by the wonderful time we had!

I'm not going to deny it though...crowds make me CRAZY and ANGRY and FRUSTRATED. By Thursday I was tired of the crowds for sure! I don't even like shopping in a crowded store at home much less having people sit on top of me in a bus. The boys did great though & understood going into that there would be times we had to be "patient". David & I needed to remind ourselves of that as much as we told the boys. ha!
Our first night we ate at Rainforest Cafe at Downtown Disney. We waited over an hour (I felt a little like Clark Griswald on National Lampoons Vacation where they visit the amusement park) because I was determined to wait because I just KNEW the boys would love eating there for the surroundings. Well...I was WRONG! Alex did not like the thunderstorms. When we finally got to our table he said "I not like the rillas (gorillas) moving or that tunderstorm. I not like this bacation (vacation). It too cary (scary)." I just had to laugh!

While there Drew found a pen he has been asking for since September. Someone at school had a pen with fuzzy hair & he wanted one too and insisted Gran would know where to find one. Well, Gran couldn't find one. Instead though we went all the way to Orlando, FL to find that pen.

We also went to the Legos store and the boys were in absolute heaven. They are so into playing with their Legos right now. We let them each pick out 1 box of legos and they couldn't have been happier. They played with them every time we were in our hotel room and Drew actually asked one morning if we could stay at the hotel that day to play Legos. We didn't, of course, instead of we made them suffer through another terrible Disney World themepark! Ha! :-)
We had a 6 day pass so we repeated Magic Kingdom & Hollywood Studios.

At the end of the week we asked the boys their favorite things...
Drew - Thunder Mountain Rollercoaster & Haunted Mansion & Tea cups
Alex - Haunted Mansion & Indiana Jones
Poor Alex has no fears...he wanted to ride every ride David did but didn't meet the height requirements for a few. He was so sad to not get to ride the "big rides" with daddy & Drew.
On Tuesday night we did the "Not So Scary Halloween Party" and it was fabulous! The boys loved the parade & fireworks. My favorite thing was that we were able to stay late & ride any ride without a long wait!!! When we were there during the day we didn't do anything in FantasyLand because of the long lines & no FastPass. That night we did every ride in FantasyLand. The park was only open to those who bought the Halloween Party tickets so it was crowded but not as crowded as during the day. Disney amazes me with their productions, upkeep at the parks, & friendliness of workers (besides the lady who wouldn't let us on the Buzz Lightyear ride 1 minute before our FastPass started). ha!

Just a few factual things or pointers to look back on that we took away from our 1st Disney trip...upgrade to ParkHopper next time, expect to pay for additonal table service meals because the quick service meal choices got old after a few days, DO NOT go in the summer when it's hot because we so much enjoyed the perfect weather while waiting in lines, utilize fastpass as quickly as possible or they run out, value resorts were completely fine but a moderate or deluxe closer to the parks will be our choice next time.
By the end of the week we were ready for homecooked meals & our beds but sooo very thankful for an opportunity to go on this trip.


This year I felt like I celebrated Halloween for an entire month! We celebrated at Disney World then again at Drew's Costume Carnival at school then again on Halloween. We carved our first pumpkin at the beginning of October wish was dumb because it lasted maybe 3 days before it rotted! My sister sent the boys some pumpkin decorations & we bought some at Target. So when we got home from Disney World we decorated again. I plan on baking my pumpkins this year for pies!
Our Halloween night was LOW stress & lots of fun. We trick-or-treated with our neighborhood. The neighborhood tradition is to meet at the front of the neighborhood & trick or treat together. When you arrive at your house you run inside for the candy bowl & hand it out to everyone in the group. Some of the kids rode on a hayride behind a 4 wheeler, some walked, & I rode on my neighbor's golf cart. Yay for Carrie's golf cart! Our neighborhood gets large walking front to back to front. Ha!
I enjoy handing out candy & waiting for the doorbell to ring BUT this was fun so we will do it again.
I started thinking about past Halloweens this year...some of my favorite memories are..

Trick or Treating with our friends one year & someone popping out
of a coffin decoration in the yard!

Getting dressed up at school & trick or treating "uptown" at
the businesses with our class.
My mom always making chili for supper & I still carry on that tradition.
My friend & I sitting in my front yard to pass out
candy. Don't ask me why we didn't sit on my front porch. Maybe we wanted to be
close to the road so people would stop. ha!
Passing out candy at my Granny & Papa's house.
Usually always dressing up as a "punk rocker".

Drew's 1st Dental Appointments

I started going to the dentist when I was in Kindergarten so I figured that's when I would take my boys. WRONG decision!!!! Drew had 8 cavities when we went. His dental visits have been such an ordeal at our house. His first visit was just a cleaning & xrays. I was devastated that he had 8 cavities but his daddy has a mouthful of cavities. The dentist we saw recommended going to an oral surgeon to have one pulled but I just didn't feel completely good about that so after talking to friends & family I decided to take him for a 2nd opinion. The 2nd dentist was saw was wonderful & has a wonderful staff! I left there sooooo thankful for that 2nd opinion. The 1st visit Drew had there was great to him because they just looked at x-rays & checked his teeth. The 2nd visit not quite so cheery! He had to have 2 crowned & 2 filled. I felt so bad for him! I have 2 cavities in my mouth so I can only imagine the pain & fear he must have been feeling. He cried at the beginning but the assistant was so kind & patient. My sister was praying & I know it was an answered prayer because he calmed down & did great. He will go back in January for the other 4 fillings AFTER we add him to our insurance. Apparently dental work is a wee-bit expensive! Yikes!

Silent Auction Prizes

I have never bid on an item in a silent auction until Drew's school had one on Friday night. Drew spotted a basket he wanted so I bid on it just barely higher than the last bidder. I honestly did not think we would win. We did though! It was a basket full of games. Our boys love to play games but I have been so tired of playing the same ones & I'm sure they are tired of them too. We have about 3 we usually play.
In our new basket there are 8 games:
Sorry Sliders
Monopoly Cash

Last night we played "Sorry Sliders" and "HedBanz". It was so much fun! HedBanz made us laugh so much. The game is that you wear a headband on your head with a card on it. The other players give you clues or you ask questions to figure out the card on your head. The boys are still too young to ask all the necessary questions so we would give clues instead. They would scream & get so excited when they guessed their card correctly. Alex, just being 2, thought he was guessing what was on our heads too so he would shout out the picture on our head & get so excited that he figure it out! ha! Alex finally figured out he could see his headband & card in the fireplace glass!

I also won a Homedics sound machine for the baby's room. He displays a picture on the ceiling & plays lullabies or typical sound machine things like ocean, rain, etc. Again, I figured I wouldn't win it because I barely outbid the previous person. I know it will get lots of use in a few months.