Sunday, December 27, 2009

Christmas with the Knipple's!

Christmas with the Knipple's is always fun, but I think this year was especially great! The kids really enjoyed their time together, and the adults did too!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Santa Time!

We ended up at the "big" mall this year to see Santa! I feared the crowds and cranky kids, but there were none! No crowds, happy kids, balloon animals...Yay! We celebrated even Grandaddy's birthday afterwards with dinner at Nakatos!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Just Dance!

Both girls did great at their Christmas Dance Show!


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

A Christmas Concert

This was a big deal. Sure, for most kids and parents it was a standard school concert, but for Ellie? It was a breakthrough. Last year the first grade concert was extremely difficult for Ellie. She was so overwhelmed by the whole thing...standing close to people for long practices, controlling her body, hearing lots of voices...she was a mess. She did make it through that concert, but not without a LOT of anxiety.

This year she did great!!! She handled everything better, didn't seem as anxious, and looked happy while she performed! We are SO proud of Ellie. For how far she's come, for how hard she's worked. Keep it up sweet girl!


Friday, December 11, 2009

I love a good tradition.

The Branson Adoration parade is always a good time!

Me and my BFF! :)

Wingman! It was pretty cold this year, so wingman snuggled in the back of my moms car. Looks comfy!

Annie and William waiting for candy!


Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Second Grade

Second grade for Ellie has been a little rough. Her class has some difficult kids, and it's been hard for her to handle that at times. I like her teacher, but I feel like what she's having to deal with is just too much. We're making it through though, and I do think the school and Mrs. Stine are trying to set up some strategies to help my girl. Ellie does love her teacher, and has made a couple of friends in her class. For that I am thankful!

Ellie and her teacher Mrs. Stine, and Ellie with her friend


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

A Challenge!

Good Luck...

...getting a picture...

...of this boys...


He's always ahead of me. Running. Fast. I yell..."Austin! Look at mommy! Where's mommy?" an attempt to catch a glimpse of those blue eyes. He's such a cutie, but it takes a whole lot of effort to get just one picture of that adorable face!


But when you do, it's pretty cute! Thanks to my friend Sheri for that last picture!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Aunt Bev!

Daddy's Aunt Bev (Nana's sister!) is always a hit with the kids. She has several little chihuahua's that she brings when she visits! The kids love seeing her and the dogs!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Christmas at SDC!

We had a wonderful time this year enjoying Christmas at SDC with our cousins!

By the end of the day we'd had all the fun we could take, and this picture inspired our Christmas card. :)

I love keeping it real!


Monday, November 30, 2009


Thanksgiving at our house means yummy food, wonderful family, fun, and lots of shopping ads! :-)


Saturday, November 28, 2009

Sometimes we get it right...

Every now and then we get it right...

Last Sunday we went to Silver Dollar City. In the past it's been chaotic and stressful, with a little fun thrown in. This time it was just fun!

We went with a single stroller, we didn't have any major meltdowns (okay, one at the end with Annie, but we were in line for the tram ride to the car, so that doesn't count, right?!) , we took our time, we rode rides, we ate yummy stuff, we enjoyed the Christmas was a wonderful day! We even got...A GOOD FAMILY PICTURE! Amazing!

And every now and then we don't get it right...

Monday night we decorated our family tree together. It was the only time we could do it before Thanksgiving, and I really wanted to get it done. So even though we were all still worn out from all the Silver Dollar City fun, I had Jason set up the tree, and I dragged the boxes out. It was chaos from the start. As I straightened tree branches, the kids were being wild. Jason was grumpy, I was cranky, and the kids were exhausted. When we started decorating, things went downhill fast. I may have shouted out a few things like...

Be Careful! Stop it! NO, I WILL DO THAT! Stop it! NOT THERE! I thought I told you to STOP! NO FIGHTING OVER THE ORNAMENTS! Okay, everybody just CALM DOWN. Would SOMEONE (and obviously by "someone" I meant Jason) watch Austin?! Okay FINE, put him to bed!

And then finally, the cherry on top was when I shouted...



So that wasn't quite the "picture perfect" moment that I'd envisioned.

But it's okay. We have our good moments, sometimes even great moments, and we have our totally insane moments.

That's what a family is all about!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I hope you had some great moments of your own this weekend.


Friday, November 20, 2009

Full Circle

It used to by me, and my friends, singing at the top of our lungs to Amy Grant in the back seat of my mom's car.

Now it's my girls, and my nieces, and me, singing at the top of our lungs to Hannah Montana in my car.

This is one of those full circle moments that is totally awesome! I wish I could have videoed it, it was so darn fun and cute. I'm sure there will be a next time though, and I'll get that video then! A pic will do for now...

Fun times in the 'burban!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Who Knew?!

Remember Chinese Fire Drills?

In case you don't...

In junior high and high school, my friends and I would yell CHINESE FIRE DRILL when the car we were in was stopped at a traffic light. Everyone would jump out of the car, run around the car, and then jump back in. The goal being to be back in the car before the light turned green!

It was a silly, fun game. Harmless really. Even my mom allowed it during church youth group road rally scavenger hunts!

She was a cool mom. Still is!

So why am I thinking about that now?

Yesterday I jumped out of my own car at a red light. Not for a Chinese Fire Drill, but to retrieve a dropped sippy cup, and jump back in. About 5 minutes later, I did the same thing, only to retrieve a dropped blankie.

You see, I drive a Suburban, and I cannot reach the dropped things from the drivers seat, especially since Annie and Austin usually ride in the "very" back, as we call it. That's when those expando arms would come in handy!

But since I'm not the mom from The Incredibles, I jump out of the car at stoplights, and jump back in. I use my lightning fast reflexes (HA!) that I learned years ago, to stop a screaming child in it's tracks.

All those Chinese Fire Drills prepared me to be a 'Burban driving mother of three.

Who knew?!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

The Property!

Our family is the proud new owners of a piece of land! We can't wait to explore it more and have some outdoor fun!


Tuesday, November 3, 2009


Happy Halloween! We gathered once again at our friends the Cummings' home for our annual trick-or-treating and pot luck party! After a quick dinner where we force the children to eat something healthy, to hopefully counteract all the sugar that's soon to come, we headed out!

Annie and Tessa!


My sweet friend Janelle and my Super Man.

Super Man!

My sweet Tinker Bell!

Oooooo, scary!

This year I let go of dressing the kids in a "theme". I knew it would happen eventually, and you know what? It was ok! They still looked cute! Oh the silly things I hang on to. One more Halloween goes down in history!


Sunday, November 1, 2009

It takes a village...

That was the title of my friends email she sent out a few days ago. It takes a village. Her sweet baby was sick, and it was one of those days when it wasn't very convenient for that to happen! She had two kids to pick up from school, one that had two back to back activities, and a baby who needed to get to the doctor. How is a mom supposed to be in 2 or 3 places at once?

Friends, that's how.

And Family.

A village.

I firmly believe that we, as parents, are responsible for our children's discipline, teaching them good morals, and responsibility, and about God's endless love.

It gets overwhelming though, sometimes. How am I supposed to keep all the plates spinning? Between the hours of 4 and 8, we usually have an "extra" activity or two, homework, playtime, dinner, baths, reading time, and finally bed! By that time every night I am totally wiped out. And compared to some of our friends, our schedule is light!

Sometimes I have a little pitty party, because our family owns a business, and my husband can't just take time off if I need him to. He works a lot of hours and Saturdays, We have stores to run, no matter what. So every now and then, I get frustrated, and cry and stomp my feet, and wish he had an easier job so he could help me out. And then I remember that our business is doing okay. That his hard work takes care of us. That he is a wonderful husband and father, and he loves us so much. And I remember that yes, I need help, but God has provided that too.

If I am running late for school pick-up, I have a list of friends I can call (and often do!) If I have to be in two places at once, I have family that can "replace" me in one of those places. If I am sick, I know there are people who love my children, that can help me take care of them.

We help each other. We love each other. And when my friend called, we were there for her. It might take two or three friends to get the job done. And in the end, you might have to figure out who has what kid where! But it all works out.

So today, this first day of November, this is what I am thankful for. Family and Friends that I can count on.

My village.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

First Meet!

Annie's enjoyed gymnastics since she was 2, and was so excited to compete in her first (mock) meet! My little girl did a cartwheel and a forward roll to the delight of the crowd! (alright, to the delight of her mommy and Grammie. :)

Annie's class with Miss Jeanie. We adore Miss Jeanie!

Annie and a friend!

Getting medals!

Sweet friends since babyhood! Avery, Langley, and Annie!

Grammie with the gymnast!