Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Go Long

Tonight at football practice, Sebastian threw a pass for a touchdown! Unfortunately, I didn't see it - Lucas did, though. See, I took Sebastian to practice, along with Isaac and Meagan, because Lucas had to stay over at work. After he got home, he came to the football field to stay until practice was over, and I took the other two home to warm up. It was about 40 degrees and windy today. After about 15 minutes in that kind of weather, out in the middle of an open field, we're pretty much ready to be done. So, while I very much appreciated the relief from the cold, I was bummed that I didn't get to see his pass. I did, however, get to see him run for a touchdown earlier in the practice, so I guess that's something! Only one game left in the season - that's this Saturday. I have really enjoyed watching him play, but I'm not sorry to be done sitting in the cold. :) (Yes, I acknowledge that I am a major wimp.)

This was NOT on our To-Do List Today...

...But we did it anyway! This morning, Meagan asked me if she could get real earrings. She had been playing with her costume jewelry, and one of the earrings kept breaking and falling off. She asked. We talked about it - I was up-front with her about the fact that it hurts for a second. She said she still wanted to do it.

So, after lunch, we headed to Wal-Mart to see what we could see. They had a bunch of different earrings to choose from, and the piercing itself was free. We only had to pay for the earrings. She chose a pair of pink (PINK...she isn't my child!) cubic zirconium studs. Even though they're pink, they're pretty cute.

Two ladies worked together to pierce both ears simultaneously...thankfully, because we would have only gotten through one ear otherwise. For a second, she wrinkled up her nose, squinted her eyes, and whimpered like she was going to cry. But the earring ladies were quick to distract her with a sheet of stickers to choose from. That was all it took. Instantly, she forgot to be upset, and she suckered them out of four or five stickers instead of one. She has a knack for that, ya know?

So for six weeks these have to stay in. But after that, she can change them out if she wants. We just may have to put fancy earrings on the list for stocking stuffers!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Trick or Treat - Round 1

Today was round 1 of the trick-or-treat extravaganza that is our week. Meagan had costume & candy day at story hour, so I thought I'd share a few pictures. This is Meagan and her favorite girl in the world, Julia. You may notice that she is not, in fact, the giraffe that I thought she would be. See, when we went costume shopping for the boys this weekend, she went with us. In the process of things, she gave me her very cutest eyes, and her very sweetest pleeeeaase, for the Cinderella dress that she 'really really likes because it's sooo beautiful,' and I caved (without much fight, really). So, she is going to be Cinderella for Halloween (not very different from her princess costume she wore last year...a lighter shade of blue, I suppose). But she's happy, and she's only young once. She may as well dress it up!

A Good Decision

Well, after today, I believe that moving Meagan up to the next class level in gymnastics was a good decision. Today she had her first class with the preschool pre-team girls. I was a little surprised, truthfully, at the content of the class. It was made up of 4 other little girls, all of whom are 5 and 6 years old. When I realized that, I was a little concerned, but I figured I'd watch and see how she did. I was pleasantly surprised.

She got right out there with them and jumped right in. No hesitation. When she didn't know what she was doing, she watched someone else in the class and copied them. She took instruction from her coach really well. She stayed focused the entire time. She even shook it off when she fell and got right back up again. I could tell at about 50 minutes she was getting tired. Just before beam, toward the end of their bars rotation, she was wearing out a little, but she hung in there.

They started on floor and vault (the vault is a spring board, a mat, and a barrel mat to dive over. I was surprised to see that they were doing fundamentals for front handspring vaults already. But she did what she was told, no hesitation, and she did it well. After floor/vault, they moved to bars and girl on the bar at a time, the others at various conditioning stations. They are all working on pull-overs on bars. Again, I was surprised to see that Meagan was really right there with the other girls as far as skill level goes. She was pulling over with just a little spot, which was true for all of the girls in her class. Funny, she wasn't too keen on the sit-ups station (LOL...she's my child!) The last rotation was beam....HIGH beam. They didn't even step foot on low beam. Her coach had 2 girls go first (on 2 separate beams at the same time). Then Meagan was in the second group to go. The first time, she climbed up, and only got as far as her hands and knees. She froze, and was not about to stand on the thing. He helped her up, and helped her get her bearings, then he went to the other end of the beam (where she was headed). First she was just supposed to walk the length of the beam toward him...her walk was definitely a lot more of a foot shuffle than steps...she never picked her feet up...LOL! After 2 passes down walking forward, they did one pass walking backward. Surprisingly, she did better going back than going forward...??? By the time they got to the leg kicks, she was chillin' on the beam, and was telling him she didn't need his help for anything. She got over her uncertainty quite quickly.

So, it was a longer class (by 15 minutes), and she is definitely the youngest in the group, but all in all, it seems like a really good fit for her. When we got in the van to go home, she told me she wanted to stay so she could do gymnastics for a longer and longer and longer time. I guess she likes it. :)

Happy Halloween

As I was laying in bed last night, trying (rather unsuccessfully) to fall asleep, my mind went on a whirlwind rampage and thought about almost everything, including scrapbooking (which, I'm sure, is not all that difficult for you to believe). Anyway, as I was lying there, this layout came together in my head really clearly, so when I got a free minute today, in between everything else that was going on, I threw this layout together in a matter of 10 or 15 minutes total. Love that! I know I've mentioned before that I keep finding myself tending more and more toward simplistic styles, and this layout follows right along with that, as you can very well see.

Journaling: Every year, come Halloween time, I put up a fight against decorating for Halloween. It's really not my favorite holiday, and decorating is just more work than I want to do. But it seems that year after year, much to your delight, Grandma Hilleary makes sure the decorations go up. I admit, the house does look festive with all the orange!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Tough Boy

Sebastian is on a kick lately about being tough. The other day, he fell on the stairs and hit his shin on the edge of the step, which normally would send him into high drama (and understandably so...that hurts!) This particular day, however, he just said 'Ow' and moved on. I commented to him about it, and his answer was, "Yeah, well I'm working on being tough."


Tonight, we got in the van to head to his football game, and he fell backwards and landed in between the seats on his back side. I asked him if he was okay, and he said, "Yeah. I'm a boy." Then, when we got to the football field, it was rather muddy from all of the rain we got today. I made a comment along the lines of, 'Yuck, mud.' He was quick to respond, "Well, it doesn't bother me. I'm a football player!"

(In this pic, he's the one on the right running with the ball)

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Saturday Football

One more thing before I call it a night. Sebastian's flag football team has a game to make up, and they're doing it this Saturday (November 1) at 9:00 in the morning. If anyone wants to come see him play football and can make it on a Sat, you're welcome to join us. I know a few of you have asked me to let you know if any weekend events ever came up, so considered yourselves told. Love ya! 'Night!

2 more layouts requested!

Holy moly! I guess when it rains it pours! I opened up my email the other night, and there was an email request from the Creating Keepsakes editor. They have requested 2 of my 2-page layouts for a special book they are putting together. I think the book is going to be called Easier Than Ever 2. The premise is to publish a book full of layouts that are quick & easy and can be used over and over without getting old. So 2 more layouts of Meagan - both birthday picture layouts. Very fun. It's funny to me that, for so long, I really really wanted the approval of others when it came to my scrapbook pages, and I wanted more than anything to get my pages published. And the whole time I felt like that, I got nothing. Now that I've let that go and have made it my purpose to scrap for myself and my family, and not to need the approval of others, God has apparently opened up the doors and let His favor fall on my work. Because truly, compared to so many other amazingly talented ladies out there, my layouts are really nothing exceptional. I just do what I do because it's important to me to live a life worth remembering, and to remember the moments that make life worth living. So anyway, it was just a bit of fun news, and I thought I'd share.

Apple Pizza

I made this the other night for desert (mostly motivated by the idea of using our apples before they went bad). I didn't have a recipe handy to go by, so I made something up, which I often do (sometimes it works out better than others). If anyone wants to give it a try, it was pretty tasty. Here's what I did:

  • Unroll a refrigerated pizza crust

  • Coat it with a layer of unsweetened applesauce

  • Dice some apples. In a bowl, coat them with Sugar (about 1/2 cup), cinnamon (about 3 tbs), nutmeg (about 1/4 tsp), and cornstarch(about 3 tbs). Then throw the apples on the pizza

  • Melt some butter in a bowl. Mix in some oats and brown sugar (I have no idea how much...just until it looks & tastes good). Then spread that around over the apples.

  • Bake it according to the crust directions

  • While it's baking, mix powdered sugar & milk to a good drizzly icing consistency (it doesn't take much milk, be careful...I drown my first batch of powdered sugar & had to start over!)

  • When the pizza has cooled, drizzle the icing over it. (I was way too impatient to wait for the cooling part, so you can't really see the icing in my picture, because it melted instantly. oh well. it still tasted good.)

Just thought I'd pass that along for something to try. It was easy & very yummy. Hope you enjoy it!

We're raising William Wallace?

A little marker-on-the-face a la Braveheart. We tried to get her to shout FREEDOM, but she wouldn't do it. :)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

It was a good day

What a day! I love Wednesdays!! It's one of my favorite days of the week - besides Tuesday and Thursday, and Friday (and Saturday and Sunday and Monday...okay I'm being a dork, but as I was thinking about it, there really are things that I love and look forward to every day of the week...moving on). I love Wednesday's for a few reasons in particular. First, it's a day home with Meagan. Also, I enjoy watching her at gymnastics and spending that time with her. I also (usually, barring FREEEEEZING COLD WEATHER) enjoy watching Sebastian's football games. And when there's not football, I really look forward to Wed. night church and seeing all the kids on the bus. And also usually Wednesday is my get-together or talk-on-the-phone night with one of my favorite friends in the whole world (not to offend any of my other favorite friends in the whole world, of course!). So anyway, you can see that Wednesday's are typically good days.

Well, this morning, we woke up to a baby girl in our bed, sleeping in between us. She obviously had made her way in some time during the early morning. So, although I'm not a fan of letting our kids sleep with us, it was a nice surprise to wake up next to the most beautiful little girl face in the whole world. The good mood of the morning continued, with the boys getting up, eating, and getting ready for school with plenty of time to spare. Nice start!

Gymnastics was adorable, as usual. She's just so darn cute when she's concentrating so hard! I talked to her coach a bit more after practice today, and have decided to go ahead and move her up to the next class level starting at the beginning of November. I really wasn't going to, because I didn't want to push her to fast. But after watching her last 2 or 3 practices, I really think it will be to her benefit. She's starting to get aggravated with the other kids' getting distracted from what's going on. I think she has realized that when they do that, her coach has to stop everything so that he can bring them back in line with what they should be doing. She's not a fan of all the stopping and starting and waiting and repeating. An she went through their beam rotations 3 times before the others got through it once. She is just spending a lot of time waiting around on the others. So, I'm going to try putting her in the next level up to see if that suits her better. She's excited to be able to practice in the big gym instead of the preschool gym. I'll let you know how it goes.

After gymnastics, it was pretty late (almost 1:00) before we left there. So, we decided to have a special girls lunch date. We went to Steak-n-Shake, which she absolutely LOVED because she got a banana milk shake all her own. That makes a happy girl! :) So, we didn't get home until about 2:00.

I laid down with her at nap time...just for a few minutes, I help her settle down from all the activity. I'm not sure which one of us actually fell asleep first, me or her! LOL! It's been a while since I've had an afternoon nap. That was pretty nice! Until Lucas called and woke me up! (Actually I was glad he did, because, like I said, I had only planned on laying down for a few minutes).

For the rest of the afternoon, I was pretty groggy / lazy. I read a little, and laid around (it's crazy how naps can make you feel more tired, isn't it?). For dinner, I decided I would be a very nice wife and make a meal that Lucas loves but that I'm not really a fan of (to put it mildly)... so I made sloppy joes. BUT. There's more. I made them with deer meat. I thought maybe it would be a way to use some of the ground meat we have. By the time I got to the point of mixing the sauce in with the meat though, it was evident to me that I was going to struggle to eat this meal. It looked like BBQ soup! I don't know, I have a weird issue with food textures, and that texture / consistency was ALL WRONG! I tried, but I really only managed about two bites (nibbles) before I had to quit. If I would have kept eating, it wouldn't have been pretty. I admit, I know where Sebastian gets his irritating dinner issues - like gagging down food and having stare-downs with dinners he doesn't want to eat. Hmmm... moving on.

Anyway, we froze at football. They did not win. Sebastian played pretty well though. After football, I was pretty hungry, so I did a taco bell drive through. I brought it home and left it on the table while we read stories and got everyone tucked in. I came back down about 20 minutes later to warm it up and eat it, only to find that it wasn't what I ordered.

Since I was going out anyway (to get my order corrected...because I was not about to eat a steak something or other that was drowning in some kind of goopy sauce stuff!), I decided to drop by the church first and help with the take-home bus route. Well, one of the girls on our bus couldn't get into her house when we stopped because no one was home. So, she ended up riding the bus back to the church, and I took her home later (after exchanging my taco bell, of course!). It was a busy night, but a good one. It was a good day!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Fancy Green Sparkles - the Layout

I finished this one a few days ago, but keep forgetting to post it. It's Meagan's fancy green sparkles, of course!

Oh, and Grandma & Suzie, you might like to know that this week she wore her new fancy soft fuzzy green one. She loved it!

Friday, October 17, 2008

A sticky situation

It's amazing to me the way my mind works (or doesn't). Sometimes I can see all of the elements of a situation and still manage NOT to be able to put them all together. Yesterday evening was a perfect example of what I'm talking about.

After dinner, Isaac asked me if he could cut papers. Okay. So he got a big stack of construction paper and a pair of scissors. Soon, Meagan and Sebastian joined in. Sebastian went to the basement and grabbed a drawer full of markers, a few more pairs of scissors, and a glue stick. They all gathered in the living room floor and started cutting and making all sorts of randomness. Isaac especially was working very diligently on his projects. As he would get done with one, he would stick it up on the front door and move on to another project. I sat on the couch, talking on the phone with a friend whose daughter is in Sebastian's class, and I watched them as they cut and created. As Isaac got up and stuck his fourth or fifth project to the front door, something dawned on me. He didn't have any magnets. Or tape for that matter. And the papers were still sticking to the door. Hmmm...? He did, however, have a glue stick. I wonder... No, no way.... But if not, then how?

"Isaac, how are you hanging your papers on the door?"

"I'm just using my Diego glue."

Huh. Apparently so.

Unfortunately, as I tried to explain to him that we really shouldn't GLUE things to the door, that maybe we should find some tape or a few magnets, his ears turned off somewhere way at the beginning. All he heard before entering absolute melt-down was that he shouldn't hang his projects on the door. He lost it. He busted into HIGH DRAMA, crying HUGE tears, and sobbing, "I was just (sob, sob) trying (sob, sob) to make (sob sob) Halloween (sob) decorations for (sob) yooooou." So he grabbed them all off the door (thankfully, the glue stick is pretty old, and so not very potent, and it was still wet, so the papers came off rather easily), crumpled them all up and threw them in the garbage. Then he went upstairs and laid on his bed for at least 15 minutes, crying the whole time.

I gave him a few minutes to settle down, and then went up to spend some time with him and talk to him. At first he hid under his blanket and wouldn't talk to me, but he ended up smiling, then laughing, then finally rejoining us for a little more project time before bed. Poor guy. Sometimes his emotions just simply take over, and he has to really work to bring them back in line. He is definitely one emotionally-charged little guy. I was glad to see him rejoin us and make another project before bath time. He made a purple jack-o-lantern and hung it on the front door...with a Transformer magnet. Perfect.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

2 Layouts Requested!

What a nice surprise I had this evening! After we got the kids tucked in, I sat down in the recliner, ipod in, big green machine on my lap, ready to scrap a bit. As is habit for me, I decided to check email before I started. In my inbox, there were 2 emails from Scrapbook Trends magazine requesting 2 of my digital layouts for a digital segment they're doing in their March 2009 issue! I am very excited! It's always a good experience to have a layout published, although I really do try to create my pages to please me and not to please everyone else's idea of what makes a good page. Anyway, they requested Grown Up (the red, black & white one I did recently of Meagan in my shoes & purse), and Enjoy Life (it was green, brown, and red...Meagan playing outside in her purple coat...not sure if you remember, it's been a while.) The only bummer is that I have to go through and remove them from all of the online galleries where they're posted (including my blog). I will be able to repost them in May after they are published. (I would hate to leave my blog incomplete!) Anyway, off to scrap now...just thought I'd share my good news.

Poor baby girl.

What a bummer. No gymnastics for Meagan today. Instead, we got a trip to the doctor's office. Last night around 1:00, she woke up screaming and crying. After about a half hour of trying to calm her down, I finally got her to tell me what was wrong. Her ear hurt. So, I gave her some ear drops and some Motrin, and rode out the storm until the medicine kicked in. Finally, sometime after 2:00, she fell asleep again. This morning, her initial report was that she felt okay, and she wanted to go to gymnastics, but about five minutes later, her tune changed drastically. She started whimpering, then crying, then screaming again. Again with the ear. So, I called the doctor. Thankfully, they had a pretty open morning, so we were able to get right in. His conclusion is that she has a nasty infection in her left ear, and a little junkiness in her upper chest. So, 2 prescriptions (one medicine, one numbing ear drops...thank the Lord!), and a follow-up appointment for next week. When we got home, I called her coach and let him know we wouldn't be there. I think we're going to try for a make-up class this Friday if all is well. One good thing that came out of the morning, though - at least in her eyes - is that she got a Hannah Montana sticker from the doctor's office. Sheesh. (Those marketers sure know what they're doing...and that is NOT a hint for people to begin buying H.M. gifts...please...I beg you, not to.)

So anyway, she basically has laid around all day. She attempted to eat McGriddle sandwich for breakfast after her appointment, but gave up after only a few nibbles. She even tried it a second time around 11:30 for lunch, but didn't get much further before she went and laid back down. She watched Robots and then laid down in bed for a nap. Hopefully she gets some good sleep, because she could surely use it.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


After a month & a half of being in school, finally yesterday Sebastian came home with HOMEWORK!! I had been starting to really wonder what the deal was, because kids at virtually every school around us have been doing homework since the first week, but Sebastian has had nothing! Yesterday, though, he busted out a F.I.S.H. (I can't really remember at the moment what it stands for...families and something something homework...??) homework folder. It had a list of homework assignments for the week, the book he is reading, spelling words to practice, and the papers he has to do. The homework is all due back on Thursday, so he can do it at whatever pace he chooses, as long as it's done by Thursday. I can't tell you how relieved I felt after seeing this folder! All I can say is, it's about time! :)

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Sunday, Bloody Sunday

It's been a beautiful Sunday morning / afternoon, but it's been a bloody one. It's also been a day of firsts.

This morning, Lucas went out hunting again. He's been out several times since bow season opened, but he's been disappointed every time, seeing only raccoons, skunks and mosquitoes. Yesterday, he went out and moved his tree stand, in hopes of improved location. He went out again last night, and still wasn't able to get a shot. He has been hoping to at least get a shot off with his bow. Finally, this morning, he got his wish. He finally saw a deer - a buck even - and it was close enough to take a shot...right under him to be exact. So, after feeling like he may never even get a shot, my crazy deer-hunting husband got his first deer with his bow & arrow. He was happy. (The back of the truck, however, was quite a mess. He took pictures, but I just can't seem to bring myself to post them...I'll spare you the details).

Then, to keep with the theme of bloody messes, Sebastian came downstairs this afternoon, with blood all over his mouth, and his bottom tooth hanging by a thread. He wasn't sure what to do with it, so I gave it one little yank (no string or pliers trauma this time around *lol*). He has now officially lost his first tooth. His only comment... "That didn't even hurt at all!" He must have been expecting something worse!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Grandma & Suzie

This past Wednesday, Grandma H. and Suzie came up to visit. They came up Wednesday morning, spent the night, and then spent all day with us on Thursday. They got here early enough on Wed. morning to see Meagan's gymnastics practice, which she LOVED! After gymnastics, we took her to McDonalds, which she also LOVED! Wednesday evening, we all went to Sebastian's football practice - in the windy drizzly weather. And somewhere in there they managed to clean and decorate my entire house! What a HUGE blessing to come home Thursday from work to a dusted, vacuumed, mopped house with clean bathrooms, made beds, and folded laundry!!! So as not to mess up the very clean kitchen (LOL) we headed to Applebee's for dinner before they headed home. It was a great visit, although very short.

Before they left, they made me promise to take pictures of the kids & the Halloween decorations and put them on the blog. A little late, but I did it!

The kids are each standing by their pumpkin (the big ones are theirs...Lucas and I get the mini ones I guess!).

This year, Grandma brought the kids scarecrows to put outside...2 big ones (the boys) and one little one (Meagan...which, you might notice is acting a little like Meagan in this picture...not holding still and cooperating for the picture! LOL)

They also talked one of them...not sure if it was Grandma or Suzie...into the purchase of a new black cat from Wal-Mart. They LOVE the black cat. He (she?) seems to be moving all over the place...they just can't seem to leave him alone. Lilly likes the cat too. They're buds.

Autumn Play

I finished this one tonight. It's been sort of lingering in process for about a week now. LOL. I also reconstructed my album from my trip to Spain (from 1998). I took it out about 3 weeks ago to show one particular picture to a friend, and the album posts sheared right in two. Today at Hobby Lobby, I found a nice D-ring binder, and some page inserts for 50% off. Total, the whole thing cost me less than $20 to put back together. And because the pages were the kind that the pictures just slide in, the album went together in just a few hours (all 380+ pictures).
Other than that, today we accomplished very little. The kids played upstairs for a lot of the day. They played outside for a while this evening after it cooled off a little (now that the weather has gone from freezing cold back to 70 degrees, you would think the sun was going to melt my children...what wimps! LOL).

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Pumpkin patch in the morning

So this was our morning...we went on a field trip to the apple orchard / pumpkin patch with Meagan's preschool class. It was beautiful weather - clear and crisp...just the way fall mornings should be! We got to go to apple school, where we learned about the apple cycle. We saw where they keep their apples, how they sort their apples, and how they make their cider. We got to go on a hay ride out to the patches, where we got to pick on pumpkin and one apple to take home. Then we rode back to the front of the orchard, where we had a pumpkin doughnut and apple cider snack. Mmmm! They were so good, we bought a 1/2 dozen doughnuts to bring home! It was a great morning! (Can't wait to scrap it...maybe tonight!)

Friday, October 3, 2008

Backyard Exploration

This afternoon, when the boys got home from school, we headed outside for some fresh air and play time. For a while, the kids played in the yard, and I worked on winterizing the flower beds and the garden. Then the boys wanted to ride their bikes...which, of course, led to Meagan also wanting to ride her bike. Eventually, we all four ended up at the end of the road at the culdisac. There are some vacant lots at the end of the circle that are basically just overgrown with weeds and decorated with fancy piles of rock and dirt. But for the kids, it's a haven of territory that begs to be explored. So, they forged paths through the dried out weeds, found a 2x4 to serve as a bridge across the gully, and ventured past the edge of the bean fields behind the vacant properties.

They climbed rock mountains, and ran to the top of 'the tallest hill they've ever seen' (according to Isaac). But I think my favorite part was when they looked out over everything they could see from the top of the hill, and Meagan turned to me and said, "Mom, I think we're on top of the world!" And Sebastian said, "Mom, it looks like a dream up here. Everything is so beautiful!"

Ultimately, our exploration adventures were cut short by the cold air that was creaping in. Our hands were cold, and our noses were threatening to run. So we decided to head for home to warm up and eat dinner. It was a good evening!

He's on the verge...

...of losing his first tooth! It's very wiggly, and from a distance, it is visibly out of place. The spacing is just all wacky. Tonight at dinner he was demonstrating to us how it bends down really far forward - gross! It shouldn't be much longer. Heaven knows he has waited a child's eternity to lose his first tooth.

Tubby Scrubby

Journaling: There once was a time in my life when the shower was one of the few places, as a mother, where I could be alone...a quiet place to think without relax and unwind. Those days are gone (along with the days of general bathroom privacy). Somehow, you have made your way into my shower routine on an almost-daily basis. As soon as you hear the water turn on, you come running into the bathroom..."I want to take a shower with you!" At first I was set against it. I wanted to keep my shower time to myself. But when you came in fully loaded with all your tubby supplies...soap, wash cloth, a whole collection of scrubbies, and even a rinsing cup...well, really, how could I resist those big blue eyes and that big silly grin? My showers may no longer be havens of peace and relaxation, but they have certainly become more interesting.