and kids

and kids

Monday, August 30, 2010


When we moved into our home seven years ago, the whole house was trashed. The kitchen was especially terrible. We had to live with my parents for four months just to get the house in livable condition. Jason installed new cabinets and we were able to get a new refrigerator, but we decided to hold off on getting a new stove. The one left behind worked and we were trying to keep the "fix-it-up" costs low.

Cooking on this stove top has been a challenge. The coils were lopsided, so if you wanted to cook fried eggs, you would have to hold the pan the whole time, otherwise, all the eggs ran together in one corner. I managed, but when Jason was helping me by cooking the eggs the other night, he decided it was finally time to get a new one.And thanks to Best Buys 18-month no interest plan we were able to get a nice one. The only problem (one I didn't foresee while buying it) is that it was an Open Box Item and, therefore, no box.

You should have seen Daegan's disappointment when this realization hit him. I wondered why he was so excited about a new stone?

Sunday, August 29, 2010

How quickly we forget!

When you are in the midst of parenting little ones, you wonder how much longer you can handle certain things. With an infant, I never thought I'd get a full nights sleep. With toddlers, I never thought I'd get a shower at a decent time of the day. With potty training, I never thought I'd get to wash my face at night without wet underwear draped over the sink.

Everyone tells you, enjoy your little ones, they'll be grown before you know it. Mine aren't grown, but after 9 1/2 years, I don't need a diaper bag anymore. I might throw an extra pair of Mac's underwear and a drink in my purse, but really I don't usually need anything.

Babysitting a 14-month old two or three days a week has made me realize that I have quickly forgotten and that my house is no longer baby-proof. I've forgotten how babies put everything in their mouth. And I've remember why we held off so long buying the boys Legos. I've forgotten how you have to schedule your day around naptime. I've forgotten how messy feeding a toddler can be. I've forgotten that you have to leave the bathroom door closed so toys don't end up in the toilet. I've forgotten that if little hands get a hold of your remote control, you may never see it again. And I've forgotten just how stubborn some little ones can be, but I haven't forgotten this about the older ones.

But, I don't want to forget all these things. Good and Bad. Mac will be 5 soon (as he tells everyone as if it will be next week instead of a year and a half away) and be going to kindergarten.

Then what will I have forgotten? Thankfully I have the blog to help me remember.

Friday, August 27, 2010


Sometimes you forget about the simple delights.

Mac got his first birthday party invitation to a party last night. The party favor was bubbles.

So, today, Mac and I spent a lot of time on the deck blowing bubbles. I forgot how much time a child can use up blowing bubbles and then catching them
When the kids got home from school they wanted to join in the fun. (My front porch needs to be rinsed off now from the multiple spills) They decided to go inside and blow bubbles out the window.Mac was a little late to the window party, but looked so cute in the window by himself.
Let us not forget about B-U-B-B-L-E-S!!! (you didn't think I was going to make it for Fun Mom Friday, did ya?)

Thursday, August 26, 2010


Some would say I'm a control freak. Maybe I am, a little?

When the kids were little and we had a 1, 2, 3, and 4 year old running around, I would give Jason too many instructions when I'd head out the door. Cut Daegan's crust off his sandwich. Don't use too much jelly it makes a mess. Don't forget to take (whoever was potty training at the time) to the bathroom. etc. etc. etc. You get the point. But in my defense, kids weren't always taken to the bathroom and allergy medicine isn't always remembered at bedtime.

Sending my kids to school was a challenge for me in the beginning because I relinquishing that 'control' to someone else. The alternative is homeschooling, which I don't feel I am cut out for, but I am careful to never say never because I know the Lord's plans are not always my plans. For now, I am beyond thankful we are able to send them to a Christian school.

I love being involved in the classrooms at school. Two years ago I was Room Mom for Mollee's class and loved every bit of organizing the parties and being in charge. The only down fall was that I was in charge of her parties and wasn't available to participate in the boy's parties.

I've always wanted to be more involved in volunteering in the classroom but I've always had two or more at home that would need a babysitter every time I did something. Each class has "centers". This is when the classroom divides into four or five small groups and works on different activities, whether it is math or reading or a craft. I've wished that I could volunteer to help the teachers these centers and also with lunches. Each grade has a day that the teachers meet at lunch and they have a parent stay with their students and then takes them to recess.

This year, it is just me and Mac. I've signed up to help with lunches for 3rd grade on Wednesdays and 4th grade on Thursdays and Mac can just tag along. I'm also going to help with Centers for 1st grade on Fridays and for kindergarten on Thursdays. I won't be doing this every week, but I will be doing it for each class at least twice a month.

Why? Because I love it! I know it isn't for everyone, but I am so excited to be able to do it this year. There is a good chance that when Mac goes to kindergarten I will be getting a job, so, for now, I'm going to volunteer as much as possible.

Just this morning I've been asked to be Room Mom for both kindergarten and 4th grade, and I'm actually thinking about doing both if I can pull it off.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Germs, germs everywhere...

and it isn't even September yet.

I mentioned that Daegan already missed a day of school because of strep. Friday, Jason didn't feel well and by Saturday morning, I felt terrible. I went straight to the Minute Clinic and they gave me antibiotics for a sinus infection. Jason also got on antibiotics for a sinus infection. We had a long weekend of Mommy and Daddy in bed, while the kids did well to entertain themselves.

By Tuesday, Mac had a pretty nasty cough and a snotty nose. I took him just to make sure he didn't have strep and he ended up having a sinus infection, along with an ear infection.

So, now it is Friday the following week and I'm just now getting back to this blog that I started two days ago. We are all on the mend. Still a lot of tissues being used and a line up of Amoxicillin bottles in the frig, but I can guarantee we will have a better weekend this time around.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Ahhh...the things kids say!

**WARNING** politically incorrect ahead...

I've mentioned many times before that my sister, Ruth, has moved to South Africa. She spent several summers in a row in Kenya and felt she was being led to Africa as a missionary. On her Kenya trips, these are the pictures we saw when she returned
When plans were being made, she was led to Cape Town, South Africa. I felt relieved for her because it is a little more modern there than in the Kenya locations. She wasn't sure where she would be living, but ended up with an apartment at the seminary.

She has had to learn a different culture. She has learned to eat different foods, to drive on the left side of the road, a different form of barbecue and she has learned many phrases that are not used in America. I even believe that when I talk to her via Skype she has adapted the South African inflection for her sentences.

The demographics in South Africa are different than the rest of Africa. You have about 20% White South Africans, 30% Black South Africans and 41% Coloured South Africans (mixed). Personally, when I think of "Africa" I think of Kenya where you only have about 1% of non-Black Africans, and apparently, so do my children.

Ruth has met someone who is a student at the seminary. His name is Gary and right now they are in a 'courtship' together. We met him via Skype (you've got to love it) the other day. He got to meet the kids and when we were discussing the meeting before bedtime one of the kids, who will remain nameless said, "I liked him, except he wasn't as black as I thought he'd be"!!Politically incorrect, I warned you!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Our Creator

Anyone see these beautiful masterpieces all over town today?GORGEOUS!

The Hornet's Nest

The moral of this story is consequences.

If you don't know Tavis, age 8, let me try to explain the enigma that God has created in him. He is a sweet, kind, doesn't want to hurt anyone's feelings, people-pleaser kind of person. He is great to make new people feel welcome and he was an angel to help take care of David over the summer. He is also scatter-brained (he already missed bringing home homework twice in the seven days we've been in school), very loud (or shall I say LOUD!) and loves to annoy. I'm not sure what the attraction of annoying his brothers or his sister is (maybe I should ask Uncle JR?), but he is quite good at it. He knows exactly what buttons to press (a gift from his father) and for some reason he usually goes too far.

Now, let me try to explain Capps, age 6 (Daegan is between them in the age line up). Capps is hard to explain but not because he is an enigma. I'd say he is fairly black-and-white. As you can probably tell from previous posts, he holds a special place in my heart. Don't judge me on that one. He has little quirks that make me smile. Up until he went to school last week, he has always been a little particular about what he colors with, but we've been prepping him to use crayons and markers instead of gel pens. He hates to be in chaos, so if too many people are around (like too many cousins) he will go off somewhere and do a puzzle or color. At dinner time he is always the last left at the table. He is very methodical about eating - one thing at a time and he can't move to the next item until the previous one is gone. And nothing on his plate can touch, that is a tragedy. Like I said, a little quirky.

So, the other evening, we could hear Capps hysterically yelling. We didn't check it out right away because we usually just wait and see if things need our attention or if they can work it out. Capps continues yelling with I. Told. You. I. Don't. Like. That. And then Tavis was crying.

Apparently, Tavis kept grabbing Capps from behind in a full body bear hug. Capps does not like to be confined. We have dealt with Tavis doing this before, informing him that it may be wrestling with others, but for Capps, it really freaks him out. Another thing you should know about Capps is that he is about to pass Daegan in size and he is solid as a rock, without one ounce of fat on him. Maybe he'll play football? The first time Tavis did this, Capps asked him not to, but when he did it again, Capps had had enough. Capps just got on top of Tavis and kept punching him in the chest telling him I. Don't. Like. That.

Jason felt it was necessary to deal with Tavis in this situation. Capps had asked nicely first and then he was just defending himself. Of course, in the end, he was upset that he hurt Tavis, but was more insulted that Tavis was so blantantly annoying him. Tavis openly admitted that he knew Capps didn't like it, but why did he do it? "I dunno?"

Jason explained to Tavis that when you constantly annoy someone like Capps, it is like poking a stick in a hornet's nest. You just keeping poking and eventually you are going to get stung. This particular evening, Tavis got stung.

So, will Tavis have learned his lesson? Probably not. Unfortunately, his next target will just be Daegan instead...

Thursday, August 19, 2010


My new best friend.

With a sister in South Africa, I can't imagine life without Skype. Yes, we are spoiled, but this is a spoiling I am especially thankful for.

I think back to the generation before and those that chose to serve on the mission field. Your only communication was a letter via snail mail that was usually full of two week old information. Or a phone call that cost way too much.

One of my best friends in middle school went to Zaire, Africa, missing out on our high school years together. I remember the frustration (from a 14 year old's perspective) of the lack of communication. Thankfully, our friendship remained strong and we are now enjoying having our children in class together at the same school we attended.

So, back to Skype. Twice this week, I've noticed my sister's Skype button "ON" and I've been able to click it and say hello. Not only does it not cost me anything, but I can see her during the conversation. Crazy!!

It is always a good excuse to put housework on hold for a few minutes. And maybe a reason to get out of my PJs???

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

A Mommy's Birthday Saga

My birthday started early this morning when Mac woke up at 12:49 AM. If he awakes in between sleep cycles and sees a light on in the house, he just assumes it is time to get up. Disclaimer * Jason and I do not leave lights on, the kids leave them on when they go to the bathroom. Unfortunately, this happens a few times a week. Thankfully, he goes right back to sleep as soon as I inform him it is the middle of the night. Unfortunately, I usually can't get back to sleep.

I usually work on Tuesday, babysitting David, but I asked for today off many weeks ago. I did not ask because it was my birthday, but because the three oldest kids were getting reading awards in chapel for their summer reading. Of course, I really wanted to be there! This event started off the crazy/hecticness of my day when it was pouring down rain while Mac and I were trying to get to the auditorium. We made it, got seated and when I got my camera out to take a picture of the kids getting their awards, the card was still in the computer at home so I couldn't take any pictures. And we all know how important pictures are to me....

I did stay to eat lunch with the kids, which is always a treat for me. Daegan's class was first in the lunchroom and he came to sit, but didn't want to eat because he had a bad headache. For Daegan not to eat and complain of a headache usually means strep.

Capps came and got to invite his new friend Keegan to eat with us. Apparently, Capps fell on the way out of chapel (or got pushed) and he fell into a puddle, soaking his clothes and he had to change before coming to lunch. This did not please him, but he was excited that I brought doughnuts for our Summer Reading/Mommy's birthday celebration! Tavis' class was next and he invited new friend, Benjamin. Mollee, of course, invited Katie. It is so fun that Katie is one of her friends because Katie's mother and I attended this same school together many years ago.

As lunch time went on, Daegan seemed to get more and more pitiful. I decided he would leave school early with me and get him to the Dr. for a strep test. Jason called and said he was heading home early because of the rain, so we met at the house for a few minutes of down time and then I headed to the Dr. office and Jason took Mac and went to pick up the kids after school.

After a long wait, Daegan did have strep - so glad I took him in! I took him home, got the kids started on homework and headed back out the door to get his medication filled, along with picking up some dinner since our out-to-eat plans weren't going to happen with a sick kid.

I got home around 5:45 and we ate quicker than normal. With Mommy's birthday you are never sure if it is really going to be celebrated or not. Apparently, Mollee had snuck out with Grandma to get me a gift (having one girl does have its advantages) and Jason did a good job to get all the kids to make me a card. He also had a gift for me and had a cake for me that the kids were very excited about. He did a good job this year! :)

Unfortunately, I had to head back out the door at 6:45 for a 7:00 orientation meeting at school. Jason finished up homework help and I'm just back home checking my 55+ Facebook messages of birthday greetings.

Not exactly the hectic day I had planned, but that is how it goes sometimes with five little ones. I think a key phrase for a Mommy is: Be Flexible!

I do feel loved and appreciate all the wishes! Here's hoping Jason and I will end up on a date this weekend, if no one else comes down with strep.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Just Because!

Around here, there doesn't have to be a reason for a photo session, but I can always come up with a good excuse.

Today, it was because I actually had time before church to roll Mollee's hair. I thought that was a good time to get an update photo of the two of us!And this is what you get when Jason is "adjusting" the cameraAnd why not a new one of Jason and I! He just got new glasses that he let me pick out - sorta? We have totally opposite opinions (me=fun, Jason=boring) and these are the ones we could agree on.

Another long Saturday

We haven't signed our children up for sports yet because I don't want to be at the ball field every weekend. Even though I love sports and can't wait for them to play, I just haven't desired to add one more thing to our schedule. Somehow, our Saturdays continue to stay full.

Jason had to work today. So, my already busy Saturday just got a little more stressful. Tavis had a birthday party from 11-1. It was on the other side of the town from where we live so I didn't want to go back home and then head back out to pick him up. I decided to just stay at the party and pay for the other kids to play, thankfully, I was able to come up with four coupons to cover them.

The kids had a blast and I was so excited for them to burn some energyTavis and the Birthday Boy!Do you know how hard it is to take a picture of kids coming down the slide? I got a lot of thesebut got these tooThe party did have some excitement when Tavis' best friend hit his head and was gushing blood. No matter how many head wounds you've seen, it is always amazing how much a head wound bleeds and then it just stops. I helped his mother and a nurse (the birthday boy's mom) get Chase cleaned up. They decided to get his father to come pick them up to go to the ER, which was fortunate because all the excitement made his mother a little lightheaded. Thankfully, I noticed she didn't look right and caught her before she hit the ground. He ended up getting three stitches.
I should have been a nurse, I love helping in those situations - does that make me sick?
I then had a baby shower at 3:00 and a wedding at 4:00. Unfortunately, I didn't make it to the baby shower *hmpf* Jason didn't get home until 3:40 and I made it to the wedding while the first song was being sung. Mollee, of course, wanted to go with me, but Tavis and Daegan decided they also wanted to go because they had never been to a wedding. I thought that was great! They had to shower and get dressed up, but they were excited about it and I was pleased to have such handsome dates!
The reception was a dinner downtown and since Jason had been working all day and was home with the younger two, I decided we would just go home instead of prolonging our outing at least another two hours. The wedding was for a now friend that I used to babysit - it was gorgeous!!
I can't wait for the next two weddings we get to attend as a family!!!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Capps' Crown

At school today Capps got a crown that said, "I'm a Child of the King!" He is my one child that hates to have his picture taken, but he shyly asked me today if I wanted to take a picture of his crown, "because he has never been given a crown before".

And he is wearing it proudly......EVERYWHERE!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

First Day of School and a date with Mac

Today was the first day of school for the kids.

Mollee was beyond ready for 4th grade with new bookbag, new dress and new earrings!Tavis was also ready to go back, even if Chase isn't in his class this yearDaegan couldn't go to sleep last night, so I hope he makes it thru his first day of 1st grade - and don't worry, I didn't make him match his clothes!And Capps was nervous last night, but relieved to find out that Daddy would be walking him in.
I was trying to get a group shot and this was my first shot.
After a few with closed eyes, I said, "OK make this one count - no closed eyes" and this is what I got (the other extreme)
Mac was asleep when the kids left and I debated whether or not to wake him up, but I didn't and when he came to the kitchen for breakfast and realized the kids were gone he said, "NOW can we go to the mall playground?" (We haven't been able to go because the other kids are too tall for it)

So, we went to TargetWe went to the playgroundAnd his other big request was a cookie with M&M's, so we got that too!We got home about 1:30 and Mac asked if it was time to pick up the kids every five minutes. We ended up getting in the carpool line at 2:45 and then just having to wait until the chaos of the first day was settled in the carpool area.

The kids seemed to have a good day. Capps said it was the 'best day in his whole entire life' and hasn't stopped giving me details the entire time he has been home. Daegan had a rough day because his popsicle fell on the ground and there weren't any spares, somehow that ruined the whole day? From the time we got home until dinner time he was hidden in his room building Legos, he must have been having withdrawals. Tavis said he had a good day, but didn't elaborate much on that. Mollee was a little nervous because she didn't know her teacher, but she said she really liked her and seemed to be pleased how her day went.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Last Day of Summer

For the last day of summer we went to McDonalds (after allergy shots, I can't be Fun Mom all the time!) and then had a relaxed afternoon together. I had grand intentions of a special craft that got cancelled when I forgot one thing I needed, so I'm hoping to get to that on Saturday. Stay Tuned.......

Instead we had story time with some new books.

Played with Playdoh, which is a big deal because Mommy is rarely in the mood to mess with it.And had some 'veg-out-technology-time'. The boys played Xbox and Mollee was on the computer playing Webkinz and then I think they kept switching out who was playing what. "Screen Time" gets cut way back when school starts, so I decided to just let them at it for awhile. (You can't see Mac, but he is sitting in the chair watching the boys play).At bedtime tonight, Mollee informed me she didn't have any earrings that really matched her new dress. She is in luck (and she knows it) that her mother makes jewelry. We pulled out my bead stock and made these:To go with a dress with this fabric:I have mixed feelings tonight. I'm ready for structure. Not ready for carpool. Ready for the kids to be back at school. Not ready for homework. Ready to have some alone time with Mac, who is 3 1/2 and doesn't know his colors (not because he hasn't learned them, but because he is #5, do you think I've worked with him?). Absolutely, positively, not ready for Capps to go to school. Ready for Capps to go to school because I know he needs it. UGH!


Mac and I have a date planned tomorrow that he can't stop talking about, so there is that!!

Divide and Conquer

That is what you have to do when you go to McDonald's with 14 kids, amongst 3 mommies. We ordered 70 nuggets, 5 burgers and 4 fries and only two nuggets remained in the end.

Last Hoorah with cousins before school starts tomorrow!

The big boys:
The little younger boys (and one girl):
The older (9 going on 18) girls:and the 'Roamer':

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Desks Packed!

Today we took all our school supplies to pack the kids desks and to meet their teachers Capps is in kindergarten with Mrs. Wieldraayer (and he gets to sit next to Keegan)Daegan is right down the hall in 1st grade with Mrs. BarrowTavis is in the newly remodeled hallway in 3rd grade with Mrs. Wilsonand Mollee gets to be in a seperate building in 4th grade with Mrs. Griffin
Now we are ready for school to start Thursday!!!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Nine Little Monkeys

Jumping on the bed! (OK, not jumping on the bed, but running through the halls)

Today I kept my sister-in-laws (my brother, David's) four kiddos for her to run an errand. The kids are always excited to have cousins in the house. Some may think this is crazy to offer, but if everyone gets along it actually makes life easier because my kids are entertained and not so bored!!

Trading Silly BandzPlaying with American GirlsAnd playing with Star Wars GuysAnd who wouldn't want to have this cutie in their house?

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