Friday, September 30, 2011

This is how to turn 40!

My awesome sis-in-law Michelle turned 40 this year, so you know we had to celebrate big! Her amazing hubby helped plan a trip to Kansas City for her and all her friends!

In the car on the way to KC!!!
 PF Changs! Michelle's sister Becky joined us as we arrived in KC!
 And we ended the trip with a record busting trip to Trader Joe's!
We had a blast. And yes, I'm taking notes to use for a few years down the road!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


I never in a million years would have thought my cousin Lauren would have TWIN boys, but she does! Congrats Lauren and Will!!!

Lauren and Will with Tripp and Jake! 
Born: 9/27/11

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Austin is FIVE!!!

My baby is FIVE today! I can't believe how fast his years are flying by. It feels like we should be celebrating his 3rd birthday, not his fifth. Sigh... 

Austin is FULL of life, an absolute charmer, adorably handsome, and just a tad mischievous. :) I adore this boy. He makes me smile and laugh every single day.  He gets away with more than he should because of his endearing hugs and perfectly timed I love you mommy!'s  Little stinker. He completed our family, and I am so thankful for him! We love you little man!
Thomas Cake!
Love that laugh! (and blue icing mouth!)
He LOVED his presents! Hot Wheels Scooter from Grammie and Grandaddy!
Hugs for G-ma!
He loves these people. :)
Excellent candle blowing out skillz.
After school at Daddy's shop! His own tool box!
Playground party with Reiss and Rhory!
I'm 5!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


Annie at SDC with her tater twist! She's too cute for her own good... :)

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Nine Eleven

On this day 10 years ago, Jason and I slept in a little. It was his day off from work, and who knows what we had planned. Life was so simple back then. I was 3 1/2 months pregnant with Ellie, and over-the-moon excited about becoming a mommy. Jason worked 4 days a week in the family business and we spent lots of time together. We shopped, we ate out, we planned the nursery, we saw movies, and every couple of months we'd travel to Kentucky to see Jason's brother Chris, his wife Michelle, and our sweet toddler niece Olivia. It was a gloriously easy time of life.

I remember turning on the Today show, as I usually did when I woke up. The first plane had hit TWC, and the news was all abuzz with what that meant. Within minutes the second tower was hit, and I ran to wake Jason. We watched in horror as the rest of the morning played out. I cried and cried, fearful of what this might mean for the world my baby would be born into. We called Michelle, Chris was serving as a psychologist in the army at Fort Knox. She was scared and nervous about what this meant for them, Chris' job, and sweet Olivia. As the day progressed, I remember we went to get gas in all our vehicles, just in case. The rest of the day was spent glued to the tv, flipping between networks, and praying to God that everything would be okay.

In the last 10 years, many things have changed. Ellie is 9 1/2, and we added two more children to our family. Our sweet niece Olivia is 11, and is a great big sis to Elaina. Chris finished his military job, and he and Michelle moved to our little town to help us run the family business. 4 day work weeks are a thing of the past now, life is crazy busy, and at times pretty complicated.

Today Jason and I took the kids to Silver Dollar City. As our tram pulled up to the entrance we saw this...

It was beautiful. And then the questions began..."Mom, why is that there? What's going on? Is today a holiday?". As we walked into the park, God Bless America was being sung. I paused and listened, and remembered. I gently and simply told the girls the meaning of "Patriots Day", and how it evolved, and then they ran off to pet the goats. Tears filled my eyes as I watched them be so carefree. I am so thankful.

I am thankful to the men and women who serve our country. Military, Firefighters, Police...all those who protect and serve. I am thankful to God. Yes, our world has changed in the past 10 years, but my family is safe and our country is free and today I was able to enjoy a day of fun with my family. Thank you Lord for my family.

We will always remember.


Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Labor Day at Razor Ridge!

Grammie and G-ma visited us at Razor Ridge!

S'more's and Guns...what could be better?!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Doggie Dive-In!

We took (poor) sweet Delilah to the Doggie Dive-In at the RecPlex this year. Not sure how Delilah felt, but Ellie had a blast!

Friday, September 2, 2011


Ellie reading to Austin, as she does almost every night. Tonights selection is "Where the Sidewalk Ends" the poems and drawings of Shel Silverstein. Sweetness!

Back to School!

It's another new school year, and yes. I'm already behind!

For the first time ever, all three of my babies started school on the same day!!!

I was concerned our morning would be crazy hectic, but because of my fear, I over-prepared and over-organized and we ended up having the smoothest first day of school morning we've ever had, which left us with plenty of time for cute First Day of School Pictures! Yay!

Ellie is in 4th grade this year. Seriously? How did that happen? She has a great teacher that I've had the pleasure of getting to know, and getting to help already. Ellie has some special needs, and it takes the right kind of teacher to make her life, and therefore my life, go well! Mrs. V has been a blessing in so many ways already, and we're only two weeks into the school year!

Annie is a sweet First Grader this year! She was so excited to get back to school, see her friends, and not be bored by mommy anymore! :) She wore the cutest watermelon dress for her back to school outfit, that my dear friend Jeanette made for her! Seriously, I love having talented friends. Annie has been loving the first grade, and reports that her favorite things have been recess with good friends Avery, Gracie, and Elizabeth, PE, and Library!

Austin gets to be in two preschools this year, lucky boy! They are in the same building, even on the same hall, AND on the same hall as Annie's class! His mornings are spent in Pirate Preschool, where he has Mrs. C and is learning how "real" school works. After lunch he goes down the hall to his ECSE school, where he's been for the last two years. He has new teachers, but is familiar with everything, and is doing great!

So every morning for two weeks now, all three kids go to school. Wow. I'm still getting used to the quiet house, and my "free time". It's an adjustment for sure! So far I think I've spent way too much time wandering around with a blank look on my face, almost lost without the screaming/yelling/chaos around me. My brain has been wired for almost 10 years to work within the chaos, and now I have to remember how to work without it! It's good though, I really do enjoy the time while they're at school. And I am so much happier and more patient with them when they come home.

Yep, it's all good! Happy new school year!