Thursday, March 31, 2011

Josie is Graduating

I can't believe my fingers are having to type these words, but Josie is graduating-from K-5 that is. She will start kindergarten this fall and if I want to try to pick a teacher I have to register her in April.

The ceremony will be at her school on Friday, May 20, 2011, at 11:00 a.m. She will wear a cap and gown and will "walk." Hopefully this will be the first of many graduation ceremonies for our sweet, smart, precious baby girl. I think we will be able to invite people, but we will not know for sure until next week. At that time I will find out how many people I can invite. If you are interested in coming go ahead and let me know, so that I can let the school know as soon as possible. She actually takes her cap and gown pictures tomorrow at school. All of this is surreal for me. It is hard to believe how fast she is growing up.

As promised yesterday here is a picture of her Hippo she painted at Brush Buddies:

And these are pictures of her at school celebrating her teacher's birthday:


Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Yeah Caden!!!

We have made it another week with no major sicknesses. All three children are having allergy problems, but I can handle that :)

We had a pretty quiet weekend. Friday night we went to Bass Pro Shops. It is so cute because the girls get excited as we get close to it. They know it from the interstate, and as we approach it, they love the winding road.

This was Joe's weekend to work so the kids and I got up early Saturday morning to watch Caden play his first t-ball game of the season. It was a practice game but he and his team did great. We were so proud of him and the girls did really well sitting there watching him play.

Joel and Ansleigh "watching" him play:

That afternoon we hung out at the house while some pretty nasty storms passed through. That evening we went to MeMaw and Paw-Paw's house to celebrate MeMaw's birthday.

Sunday morning the kids and I went to church and after church we ran home to get Joe (he had just gotten home from work), and then went to Chris & Crystals to spend the day.

All in all it was a good weekend.

Yesterday was a particularly good day for Josie. It was her teacher's birthday and it was Brush Buddies. She got to eat cupcakes at school and painted a hippo. It is so cute because everytime she talks about painting a hippo she starts to sing the hippo Christmas song. I forgot to take a picture of it, so I'll post it another time. However, yesterday was not a good day for Jolie. Obviously she was so disobedient that her teacher threatened to call Joe to the school. She has been giving us problems at home as well. Please pray for us as we get through the "3"s, but also please pray that Joe finds a job closer to home. I know that that is part of the problem. He isn't around that much and as summer gets here he will be around even less. It is hard for me to give all three children the individual attention they need and so we are all stressed and need him to be home more. Josie has started saying "our family needs to be together." I have no clue what where she has heard that from and I try to explain to her that Daddy has no control over his work schedule, but it is hard for a 5 year old to understand why Daddy isn't home when Mommy is. So please just pray for us and if anyone hears of a job that you think Joe could do, please let me know.

Another big accomplishment for Josie is that she can now spell "apple." She came home from school one day and said Mom do you know how to spell apple,and she spelled it out for me. Sunday I told her since you can spell it out loud, I want you to write it, and she did. Now she writes it all the time. It won't be long until our baby girl is reading. It makes me happy and sad at the same time.

Joel is growing so fast. His bottom teeth are just about all the way in. I need to take a picture of them as well. He says "Mama" all the time, but of course he doesn't associate it with me. He is starting to get adjusted to a sippy cup and eats jar food three times a day. He can scoot with his head, so I'm sure within the next month or so he will be crawling. His hand-eye coordination is really good and he loves pulling the girls' hair. He loves his sisters and his face just lights up as he watches them or when the interact with him. He is still a happy baby with the cutest little dimple and smile.

I'll end with some pictures:

Josie wanted me to take this one of her and Joel this morning:

As did Jolie:

This one is from last week. Joe put Joel in bed with me when he left for work and then Lol came and got in the bed with me when she heard Joe leave and they are snuggled together asleep. So sweet:


Monday, March 21, 2011

Family Weekend

We finally got it-- the family weekend that we so desparately needed. We did stuff all weekend, but to me it was the most relaxing because I got to spend it with all my Js. We had been going on almost 3 months of not having a family weekend because of Joe working or someone in our house being sick.

Friday after I got off from work I picked up the girls (Joel had been with me at work) and we drove to Greenville to Joe's work. We rode around the golf course and the kids loved it. They get so excited looking for animals. We saw tons of squirrels, some geese, some ducks, a turtle the size of a quarter, and Joe caught a bigger turtle from a stream. He put it back after the girls had inspected it. Joel is just like his Daddy and loves to be outside. He just sat there and looked at everything and never made a peep the whole time we rode. After about an hour to hour and a half we went and got something to eat and went back to ride in the dark. The moon was so bright and beautiful that we didn't even have to turn the light on the golf cart. It had the potential of being very romantic if you didn't have three kids with you :) It was after 10 when we got home that night. Saturday morning we got up and headed to Pump It Up for Elias' birthday party. What kid doesn't like Pump It Up so of course the girls had a blast.

That evening we had dinner with Other Mama and Pap-Paw. Pap-Paw grilled out steaks and chicken and we had mashed potatoes and roasted corn on the cob. It was so good. The girls always have fun playing at Other Mama and Pap-Paw's house, but I think their favorite thing is taking a bath in their big tub.

Sunday we went to church where Josie "did the plates" again. She gets better and better each time she does it. I'm just so proud of her. After church we headed to Montevallo which is about an hour drive from our house. We stopped halfway in Clanton and ate lunch at Peach Park. We got back on the road and stopped at a rest area to change into our "play clothes." About 20-25 minutes later we arrived at Orr Park. It was beautiful and obviously a great asset to Montevallo because their were tons of people there. There were people swimming in the creek, there was a group of guys playing flag football, there were two "birth" parties (that is what Jolie kept calling it), people walking around the park, and kids playinng on the playground. What is special about Orr park is that a gentlemen named Tim Tinglewood has taken time to go through the park and carve things into the dead trees so that they once again serve a purpose. I copied pictures people had posted online and made a scavenger hunt out of the pictures. I thought the girls could look at the pictures I had printed and find the trees. They LOVED it! Josie was so excited and Jolie was too once she started finding the trees. This man has put a lot of love, time, and creativity into his art, and it was a really great afternoon. I'm posting a few pictures so you can see what I'm talking about. These are pictures other people have posted.

The girls with what looks like a character from Harry Potter

The two most handsome guys in the world:

We left Orr Park a little after 5 and Joe wanted to test his navigational skills and see if he could get to his grandmother's which was about 20-30 minutes away. It was pretty easy saying that there were tons of signs saying Maplesville this way, but I'll still hand it to him that he found his way. So we visited with Gigi, Unlce Lynn, Aunt Holly, and Matthew for an hour or two before heading home last night.

It was a great weekend. We didn't rest all weekend. The only naps the girls got were in the car going from this place to the next, but we sooo needed the family time together.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Spoke to Soon

Well I spoke too soon. The stomach bug hit our house and hit it hard. All five of us had it to some degree at the same time. Joel threw up Thursday night and we just thought he had ate too much, then Joe had the brunt of it Friday. I was nice and let him sleep and kept the kids away until almost 9:00 p.m. Friday night. After I picked them up from school the girls got hair cuts, we went to Target to pick up a few things, picked up some dinner, and then we got some movies. Since last week was Dr. Seuss week, I rented a Cat in the Hat cartoon for them. On the way home I told the girls that Daddy was sick and that we had to be very quiet and we could not go into his room. Josie then said, "Well Mommy we need to pray for him if he is sick." Aww, that little girls knows how to pull at your heart strings. So we got home and got into our pjs, got our pillows and blankets and watched Cat in the Hat cartoons until all three fell asleep. The next morning it hit us girls. I had often wondered why we all got sick at different times, God reminded me this weekend. If we are all sick at the same time, there is no one to take care of everyone else. Our house was pitiful looking Saturday. We made it through Saturday and lounged around on Sunday. Not exactly the family weekend I had had in mind. Finally feeling a tiny bit better Sunday evening, we decided to go outside for a little sunshine. The girls rode their bikes and Joel rode in the car. Pap-Paw got Josie this car for her first birthday and that car has been the best thing. It has lasted through all three kids and they have all loved it. Jolie even still loves it. She was a little conflicted with Joel riding in it yesterday, whether to be jealous or not, but she was ok with pushing him.

When Josie first started school at MCDP there was a group called "Brush Buddies" that came to the school and helped the kids with an art project once or twice a month. They took a break during the holidays, and just started back up. Here is her project from this past week:

Well hopefully this week will go better with no illnesses and we will actually get to spend a real family weekend together.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Ash Wednesday and Prayers

Last night we had our Ash Wednesday service at church. It was a good service and the girls were excited about getting their crosses. Jolie was upset though that Joel didn't get one. It is our tradition to eat Mexcian with good friends after this service. They couldn't make it, so we went without them. Here we are sporting our crosses. (The girls' crosses are either gone or rubbed into their forehead where they kept touching them):

On another note, my cousin Amy had her baby via c-section this morning. At the moment, he is in the NICU. His name is Nathaniel. Please pray for both of them.

I'll end with two more pictures. This is Joel at his first "Men's Breakfast" at church. Our good friend Tim is holding him:

Here is Joe and the girls during early morning singing at church:


Wednesday, March 9, 2011


For the moment everyone in our house is well. PRAISE THE LORD. Joel had another follow-up appointment yesterday. MeMaw was kind enough to take him again. The doctor said everything looked good. We have to continue with some breathing treatments, but only a couple more days. Our boy had gained another pound in a week. As of yesterday he was 19 pounds 4 ounces. Both teeth have broken through and I just can't wait to see those little pearly whites.

Friday night the girls spent the night with MeMaw and Paw-Paw. Joe and I enjoyed a quiet Mexican dinner and rented a movie to watch at home. Joe was up bright and early the next morning for work and I slept in until it was time to get the girls. That was so nice after going about a month and a half without eight hours of consecutive sleep. That evening Other Mama and Pap-Paw came over for dinner. Sunday we had church. Josie "did the plates" again. She gets better and better at it each Sunday. So all in all it was a quiet weekend.

Yesterday was Fat Tuesday and we had pancake supper at church. That morning I was telling Josie that we had the pancake supper for Fat Tuesday and of course her question to me was, what is Fat Tuesday. So I explained to her Fat Tuesday and Ash Wednesday and Lent and what Jesus did. I then told her it was our tradition to give up something for forty days and started listing off things people give up. Without me asking her, she said she was going to give up Yohoos/Chocolate milk. This is a big thing because the girls know they only get Yohoos in their lunch boxes for school. For those of you who have not bought Yohoos in a while, they are expensive, so we always have capri suns/Kool Aid Jammers that they can grab out of the fridge at any time, but they know the Yohoos are only for school and special occasions. So for her this is a big thing. I told her since she was doing that I would give up my cokes and she said and Daddy can give up his sweet tea. I told him we had to check with him first so we called him and he said yes. Joe and I already discussed something else we were giving up so we are giving up our favorite drinks also. I was very impressed with Josie that she grasped the concept and was so willing to participate.

Tonight we have our Ash Wednesday service. I have been telling the girls about the service and how the palm branches that they brought in last year for Palm Sunday were burned and were used to make the ashes that Mr. Jonathan will put on our foreheads. Josie is really doing well with all of this and is excited about tonight.

Sometimes I think I enjoy Lent more than Christmas time. We have so many special services that really make you stop and think about God and what all he has done for us. The faster my children grow the more I am trying to remind myself to stop and enjoy the moments. Enjoy the hugs, enjoy it when they climb in my lap, enjoy the smiles and laughter, and trying to even learn to tolerate the messes. As the song says, I have a crazy beautiful life. God loved me so much that he sent his son to die for me. He gave me free will so that I could choose him. He gave me a wonderful husband that I love so very much. Even more so he gave him to me early in my life and I am so thankful for that. He has blessed us with three beautiful children that make my heart swell with pride, joy, and love. He has blessed us with jobs, a home, and a loving, supportive, always there for you family and church family. We don't deserve any of this, and yet God graciously bestows all of this on us. Someone put as their facebook status the other day, what if God only gave you what you thanked him for each day. That really hit me. So much of our lives we take for granted. Remember to thank God for your blessings. Remember the love he has for you.

Friday night we have Jesse's birthday party and this weekend will be the first weekend in over a month and a half where we will get to spend the whole weekend together as a family. I am so excited. Everyday life can drag you down sometimes, so it is always important to have fun together as a family.

I'll end with some pictures. Some of these Ms. Debbie (the woman who keeps Joel) took. I love this first one. Monday I kept looking at it all day and it would just brighten my day. The other two were taken at MeMaw and Paw-Paws Saturday.


Friday, March 4, 2011

Cat in the Hat & Cindy Lou Who

I have been told that this is Dr. Seuss week, so the girls' school asked everyone to dress up as a character from any Dr. Seuss book. Without further ado let me introduce you to Cat in the Hat (Josie) and Cindy Lou Who from the Grinch (Jolie):

They were so excited and everyone at school made a big deal about how cute they were.