Monday, June 30, 2014

They say it's your Birthday...

This weekend I celebrated my birthday! All weekend long. No, my birthday is not technically til tomorrow, but I went out and did lots of things and the weekend was easier! I blame my mother.. she always made a big deal over birthdays, and now I do! 

Anyway, Friday evening I had a girls' night. Unfortunately a lot of my friends were either out of town or sick or something, and couldn't make it, but we still had a good time with the few who came. We went to dinner at Ocharley's. We have been doing that for the past 5 years or so, so it has become a tradition! Joanne surprised me with an OWL birthday cake! It was beautiful and tasted yummy. We had a lot leftover, so we gave a piece to our waiter, who made a big deal over it and said it was the best ever. It was hilarious :) Several people came by our table to comment on the cake, and then wished me a happy birthday ;) It did get called a penguin and a frog though... hmmmm. I was spoiled with a lot of fun gifts, including  a lot of OWL stuff of course. An owl pen, notepad, and mug. And I also got some bath and body works stuff and some Godiva chocolate! Do my friends know me or what?! When we left the restaurant it was raining.. just like last year! Although this year we didn't go skating.. haha. We decided to go to the movies instead. We had some time to kill, so we went to Walmart to walk around. Then finally at 10pm we made our way over to the movies and bought our tickets and filled up the popcorn bucket. We saw "The Fault in our Stars." It is based off a pretty popular book. I read the book and I'll have to say the movie was still pretty good! Everyone kept telling me to take tissues because it would be really sad, and they were right! I didn't get home until nearly 1am and I was exhausted! This mama isn't made for nights like that anymore ;)

The next morning I met mom at my favorite nail place, and we got manicures and pedicures. That is what I told her I wanted for my present! We got there when they first opened and had even put in an appointment, but still had to wait forever! I had only had one pedicure before, and forgot how wonderful they are. Sitting there relaxing your feet in warm water and getting a massage. And then I got my nails painted in red and blue with little white stars. I wanted to be patriotic since it's almost the 4th of July! :) Mom asked me why we don't do this more often, haha! Then mom got a manicure and french tips, but I got nails put on since I bite my nails (gross habit, I know!) and needed some on to look nice. We finally got out of there around 12:45!! We met dad at Olive Garden to have some lunch. I got five cheese ziti, which is one of my favorites. I tried to show off my pretty nails to dad, but he didn't seem very impressed ;) Mom and I made a stop by the mall before I went home. She always gives me a hard time about how I wear flipflops ALL the time and they don't give any "support." She saw a commercial about these flipflops that are actually GOOD for your feet and offer arch support. So she got me a pair. They are pretty.. silver and sparkly and look like normal flipflops just thicker. And much more expensive! But they really do feel good! 

While we were busy, Arnold took the kids swimming with some family. He came back home and we all got ready, then dropped the kids off with his parents. We went to a friend's wedding that night. Arnold had been in a band awhile back, and it was one of the band member's daughters.. I have gotten to know her and be friends.. and so I was excited to see her get married! They had it at their church at 5pm. I love weddings.. they are so sweet and romantic. But now that I have kids I always look into the future and imagine our kids getting married and it makes me sad! I started to cry several times, just couldn't help it! After the ceremony they had a reception with lots of yummy food! We sat down and had dinner and listened to some music. It was fun being out with just Arnold and not having to worry about the kids running around! They had the cutest touches.. a photo booth, coke in glass bottles, picture trees at every table, a delicious wedding cake, and a candy bar.. you could fill up a bag of sweets to take home! We ended up taking home some gumballs and sweettarts for the kids since they hadn't gotten to go ;) It was a beautiful wedding and Jessica looked amazing.. she had a big, poofy dress that was to die for! Congrats Jessica and Nick! We wish you lots of happiness in the years to come! :)

Sunday morning we went to early service at church because I had to work in the baby class. We ended up with about 6 little ones in there. First thing that happened was a blow out that I had to clean up.. fun fun! It had been a long time since I had changed a diaper.. don't miss that at all! ;) We had a good time coloring pictures (even I did one, even though it was scribbled over ;) having snacks, and building towers (which the boys kept tearing down!) After church we went over to mom and dad's for lunch. Mom makes homemade lasanga that is to die for, and she makes it every year on my birthday.. it is a tradition. She even made homemade garlic butter to put on the french bread! The first loaf she burned to a crisp because we weren't paying attention... so dad went and got more. Everything was delicious! and we got to take the leftovers home for dinner. While we waiting on lunch we looked through photo albums at old pictures of me and my brother. I was such a nerd growing up. I am sooo glad that I look better than I did back then.. I was so awkward! Plus the 90s fashion is always fun to look back at ;) The kids love seeing pictures of me when I was there age. Brooke saw a pic of me in a flowery dress and said I looked so "beautiful and fancy."

So that's about it for the weekend. Yes I know that was a lot of celebrating and I know I am "spoiled" by my family but so what?! We had a great time. And I plan to do the same with my own kids as long as they will let me! ;)

My awesome owl cake made by my BFF Joanne!

My new owl mug!

Some of the best friends ever-- Cori, Joanne, and Erika!

Waiting in line at the movies

Being a dork like usual. The movie actually was at 10:15pm.

Mom and I waiting at the salon on Saturday morning

Mom in the chair getting her pedicure

My patriotic toes and new flip flops!

Jessica and Nick right after they were married!

Playing around at the reception.

Rachel wearing her new dress she got for her birthday, to church on Sunday

Yummy lasanga at moms house! Mom wouldn't be in the picture.. she is a party pooper :(

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

What I'm Loving Wednesday

~We got pretty good news at Brooke's appt this past week. It is a long story and I will probably write another blog about it soon. Thanks for everyone's prayers and support during all this!

~Saturday we went to celebrate my friend's daughter's birthday. Stella was turning 3 and had her bday party at a local airplane museum. It was really neat.. we got to look around at things and go outside and see planes. One of them let you walk up steps and look inside. Inside they had snacks, cupcakes, lots of balloons and fun stuff. Cute chocolate airplane suckers to eat and favors to take, including kits to make an airplane! They even had "adult favors" which were little airplane bottles of liquor ;)

~Sunday we worked HARD on cleaning the house, and it's about as clean as it's ever been! Arnold recently cleaned the living room carpet, so that looked great. We did all the dishes and laundry, Arnold swept and mopped, we vaccuumed, put away toys, changed sheets, and all that good stuff. I wish the house stayed that clean all the time!

~I worked HARD on the girls' room yesterday. Cleaned out their closet (most of it anyway), their toy box, and bookshelves. I got rid of a lot of things. And found a lot of things they had been missing (imagine that!) Now I really need to work on the top shelf of the closet and pack away special things, like baby blankets. They have been there all that time taking up space!

~I am trying to win a contest to win Skynyrd tickets! I usually go every year but this year Arnold got me tickets to another concert, so I couldn't really spend the money to go to that one too. You go on this site and win points every day for doing stuff like watching videos, listening to songs, sharing stuff on FB, etc. So if I send you something on FB, I'm sorry, but I'd really love to win! I'm currently in 7th place and that's pretty good!

~Speaking of concert tickets, Arnold surprised me with Dave Matthews tickets for my birthday!!! We had talked about maybe going, but the tickets were expensive, so I kinda thought not. But Arnold got them and emailed me the confirmation. We are going on July 22nd. We even already have his parents set up to watch the kids over night. I am so excited! It will be such a fun night with my hubby! :)

~The deposit we paid for Rachel's birthday party FINALLY came in the mail. Thank goodness! Could have used that money last week though! Sheesh.

~I've enjoyed sitting outside in my new chair Arnold got me, watching the kids play. I've gotten a lot of reading done like that, too. I finished "Wedding Night" by Sophie Kinsella yesterday. It was pretty good.

~I just finished episode 11 of Orange is the New Black.. which means I only have 2 left! I am trying to space them out because I will be sad when the season is over! I never thought i'd like a show like that. I don't like the inappropriate scenes very much, but I love the storylines and seeing what happens next.

~Only 2 more days till the weekend! I am so excited because I am celebrating my birthday! Friday night I'm going to dinner with friends, and hopefully to the movie afterwards. Saturday morning mom and I are going to have some girl time together! And Sunday evening mom is making me her famous homemade lasagna, which she does every year! We also have a friend's wedding to go to Saturday evening! Can't wait!

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Why Today Sucked...

Ever have one of those days where you feel like nothing is going right? Like it's Friday the 13th or something but it actually isn't? Like you are cursed?? Not that I really necessarily believe in curses but anyway... Today was one of those days for me! I try to be a pretty positive person but by the end of today I was just cursing everything! Haha.. some days are just like that I guess. Here is an account of my day...

~I should have known the day was going to be rough when it started out with me waking up to the sound of our cat... knocking over my water class... on to my iPAD! Thank goodness I jumped out of the bed just in time to move it, and it still works ok. Yall know me and my curse with electronics!!

~Went to the mailbox fully expecting to get a check for the deposit we put down on Rachel's party at the park, and it was not there. It was a lot of money and I was pretty sure it was going to be there today! Grrr.

~We left Sheldon in our room with the door shut while we took the kids to a birthday party today. Even though it wasn't for that long and he very well could have napped the whole time we were gone, he decided to get revenge on us and ripped up my sheets on my bed. A huge rip down the side of the bed. Not to mention they were my pretty yellow sheets I had JUST gotten from Kohl's.

~I found out one of my very best friends won't be able to make it to my birthday dinner this Friday evening :( I know summer is a busy time for everyone and I totally understand that. I guess it sucks having a birthday in the summer because everyone is always busy or gone and can't make it to stuff! And to think everyone thought it was awesome to have summer birthdays! They aren't as fun when you don't have all your buds there to celebrate with you!!

~Was happy that I got to go to the grocery store all by myself this afternoon without the kids. This is a major thing with parents.. just wait if you aren't already a parent you will soon understand! I bought all my groceries.. had everything I needed for several days worth of lunches, dinners, snacks, etc. Got home and was unloading everything. And realized I forgot the milk! Of course...

~Decided I was going to make breakfast for dinner tonight. Arnold and I were going to cook together but he was out running an errand so I decided to do it all myself. I usually cook bacon in the microwave, but decided to do it in the frying pan this time to make it "better." Let's just say this resulted in a big fire on the stove. I. was. freaking. out. I yelled at all the kids to run outside. I grabbed the dog and threw him outside also. By then I was inhaling so much smoke into my lungs that I felt like I might pass out. The fire was actually pretty big! I threw some water at it and it got even bigger. Then i realized that it was because it was from the oil. Sheesh. Eventually it went out. Thank God. The neighbor came over because she said she heard the kids screaming. Way to go mom!!!! What a memory you created for everyone tonight!! 

~Thought the dinner fiasco was over with the fire.. turns out it wasn't. I had resorted to making the bacon in the microwave after that (like I should have done in the first place!) and was pulling it out when the kids came dashing in the house. They were screaming "she hit me!" "he bit me!" and the like. I got distracted, the plate tipped, and hot bacon grease went ALL down my leg. I started screaming, Rachel started screaming.. then I realized a little had gotten on her foot. Oh yeah.. we are both ok.. after lots of cold water and ice.. but ya know.. I am starting to think I should never cook again. Which would be ok with me.

~I was putting some laundry up this evening and knocked one of my owls on my dresser onto the floor. The bottom and part of the top broke off and shattered. Like Caleb pointed out, I DO have a surplus of owls around the house and one shouldn't matter that much. But it does! It was a special one.. a gift from a friend. Arnold tried to set it back up for me but it started tilting to the side.. and I said... JUST FORGET IT!!!

So... there ya go. My wonderful day. And I say that with lots of sarcasm. I got to the point tonight where I just sat down and about cried. Why are some days like that? Where you just can't get back up when you are knocked down? Sheesh... I hope today is better!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Rachel's 5-year Interview

I have started doing an "interview" with the kids every year on their birthday, so we can look back and see how much they've changed! Here are Rachel's stats and answers for this year.

***Rachel at Age 5***

Clothes Size- 6/7
Shoe size- 11
Going into Grade: Kindergarten

Favorite Color: Purple

Favorite Toy: Dora Mermaid

Favorite Animal: Dogs

Favorite Food: Mac & Cheese

Favorite Drink: Apple Juice

Favorite Snack- Fruit snacks

Favorite Dessert- M&Ms

Favorite Season: Winter

Favorite Holiday: Christmas

Favorite Restaurant: Granny's Kitchen

Favorite Game: Animal Jam

Favorite Tv Show- Mickey Mouse Clubhouse

Favorite Movie: Frozen

Favorite Book- The Pout Pout Fish

Favorite Flower: Roses

Favorite Thing to do: Play with friends

Favorite Thing to do outside: Swing

Favorite part of school: Centers

Favorite Thing to Wear: Dresses

Best Friend: Kenzie and Hannah

What are you afraid of? Monsters

What do you want to be when you grow up? An artist

What do you want for Christmas this year? A paint set

What do you want to be for Halloween this year? A lalaloopsy (again?!)

What do you sleep with everynight? Leopard and Pupster

 Party theme this year: Lalaloopsy

Rachel when she was born!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Father's Day Weekend

Saturday night my parents watched the kids so Arnold and I could go out for the evening. I had wanted to go out and do something special, since it was Father's Day weekend. My friend from college, Matt, was in town for Rachel's party, so he went out with us, also. I know Arnold was glad to have someone to discuss guitars and other music-related stuff with ;) After we dropped the kids off we had a little bit of time to kill so we went to the Music Center. Usually I don't go there with Arnold but I knew it would make him happy! The guys walked around and looked at guitars and dreamed about new ones they would like. It was pretty boring if you ask me! But I did like the green and sparkly guitars ;) Then we headed over to Outback Steakhouse for dinner. Arnold's favorite food is steak, so I thought he'd like to go somewhere like that. Turns out he didn't even want steak that night, but the food was still good! I realized that I had been so busy that day with Rachel's party that I basically hadn't eaten all day, so I was starving!!! Food tastes so much better when you are that hungry! 

After dinner we went over to Best Buy to kill some more time. We looked at computer and DSLR cameras.. I'd like to have both! Haha.. I really need a new camera badly! Matt is really smart with all that stuff, so he showed me all the things I "needed" and why ;) After best buy we went over to the movies. We went to see 22 Jump Street. The theater was packed, and mostly with a bunch of teenagers that were taking up several rows and being so immature.. but at least they didn't talk too much through the movie. The movie was hilarious.. and I loved it. We had already seen the first movie and it was pretty good. I knew I wanted to take Arnold to something action since that is what he likes. Plus, who doesn't love a movie with Channing Tatum in it?! ;) Although everyone likes to point out how alike him and my brother look.. and it really screws with my head now! I end up missing my brother when I watch movies with him in it! Ha! Anyway, after the movie we went back home, so Matt could get his car. It was almost 11pm and we were all talking about how we were tired and needed to go to be since we had church in the morning. I felt so old! Before we went to bed that night I let Arnold open up his presents.. I knew it was early but I couldn't wait! I got him a bunch of things he had really been wanting and I was so excited to see him open them!

Sunday morning we woke up late... we were supposed to get up early and meet my parents and the kids at their church... but we didn't make it. But sleeping in was nice! Arnold and I got ready then went to get some breakfast at Burger King. While we were in the van that day I let Arnold listen to "his music." I had gotten him two new cds for Father's Day, so he decided to listen to them. Eventually we made it over to Mom and Dad's and had lunch with them. Mom and Dad cooked ribs (dad and Arnold's favorites!) and I mostly just ate sides because I DO NOT eat meat on a bone!!!! We had a good time hanging out on the deck talking. We gave my dad an El Paso giftcard because he loves that place, and he loved the fish canvas the kids made him! After visiting for awhile we went by Arnold's parents house to see his dad and give him his gift. Then we went home and rested for the rest of the afternoon. That night we ate leftover pizza from Rachel's party. Not the most extravagant Father's Day meal, but it was quick and easy!

Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend! :)

The guys checking out guitars

Waiting for dinner. At least we didn't have to wait long!

Matt and I at dinner. He is like a big brother to me!

At the movies. Arnold is pointing at Channing, picking on me!

Ready to open gifts. I loved the wrapping paper!

He wanted new hiking boots! He is being silly!

New Allman Brothers and Kenny Wayne Shepard cds.

New guitar shirt.

Visiting dad on Sunday

The kids with their wonderful Pop Pop!

Me and my honey!

Monday, June 16, 2014

Rachel's Lalaloopsy Bash!

Saturday we had the big Lalaloopsy bash to celebrate Rachel's 5th birthday! Don't you hate how you plan for months for something and then in a flash it is over?! I got to the park around 8:30am to set up.. I was there for 2 1/2 hours BEFORE the party started... but I got everything done! I had been praying all week long for good weather, and that morning we woke up to sunny skies! It was perfect outside! Unfortunately a few families weren't able to join us because of sickness or what not, but we still had a pretty great turnout! I loved having the building indoors to have the food and cake, and when people wanted to rest they could sit there in the air conditioning. The kids seemed to have a great time running around and playing together. Even Brooke had a few of her friends from school get to come hang out with her. 

I was stressed all morning and afraid something would go wrong, but the worst thing that happened was we ran out of sweet tea! I told Arnold he should have gotten more! ;) The cake was DELICIOUS.. my friend Chasity really did an amazing job on it! We have been eating leftovers ever since the party was over! When it was time for everyone to sing to Rachel, she got really, really shy and stuck her face in my dress... poor girl! But she warmed up to things later, I think. She even told everyone "Thank you" for coming to her party, and for her presents. She got some pretty great gifts.. including dresses, bows, sandals, pjs, baby dolls, books, and cash! She loved getting her very own money.. she ended up with $61 total! As soon as she saw it she said "give me that money-- I want to go shopping!" Haha, Arnold said she was "just like her Mama" ;) 

We had a pinata and that was probably the biggest hit of the party.. all the kids got 2 turns each, and no one could bust it open, so Arnold ended up letting all the candy out, and the kids went wild ;) We had a cute favor bar set up with things people could take with them when they left, and some bookmarks to make as a craft. One of my friends who had a baby just THREE weeks ago came, and let me hold her new baby boy, so I was in heaven! At the end of the party we had 5 pizzas leftover (at least we didn't run out!) so we sent a few home with friends and took the rest home for leftovers. A few friends were sweet enough to stick around and help us clean up afterwards and pack the stuff up in our cars. If everything checks out we get our deposit back, so that is awesome! It was one of my favorite parties we have done to date! Thank you to everyone who came out and celebrated with us!! :)

Check out some of the pictures from the party.. to see more of the details. These were taken by my friend, Erika. She got some amazing shots and I can't thank her enough for the memories! :)

Button suckers I made

Pink and purple paper straws for the drinks.. a cute little detail!

Pixi stick balloons! My friends helped me make these.

The favor table set up with goodies to take home.

Arnold made this for people to sign! He is quite the artist!

The amazing cake, made by my friend Chasity! It was delicious, and just how I had imagined it!

Rachel blowing out her candles!

A quick family pic in front of the cake.

Love this pic of Rachel with her Grandma and Pop Pop!

getting ready to open up her presents.

My friend Melissa made Rachel a bow holder and some homemade bows! So cute!

most of the kids at the party!

Love Rachel's custom birthday shirt that she wore!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Class Dismissed!!!

I am really proud of the kids.. they have officially finished up their school year! I now have a rising Kindergartner, 2nd Grader, and 3rd grader. What?! Wasn't it just yesterday that I was taking them home from the hospital, and spending my days feeding them and rocking them to sleep? People weren't kidding when they said the time flies! 

The 1st and 2nd grades did some neat things for the last week of school. Brooke's class had a breakfast for all the kids and parents, to celebrate the end of the year. They had a "special awards" ceremony with just their classes, and handed out unique awards to all the kids. I loved that, since all the kids are great and deserved to be recognized. Brooke was awarded "sweetest smile." Boy is that the truth! All her teachers always commented on how they could be having a bad day and just Brooke's smile would brighten up their mood. They said she was so sweet and friendly..and never met a stranger. I love that about her! Such a sweet spirit. Then the class performed the "Sid Shuffle" for us! If you don't know what that is, look it up on Youtube! Sid is from the Ice Age movies ;) It was ADORABLE and Arnold got it all on video! Brooke said she was so nervous but she did great! 

Then we ran over to Caleb's class (their special things overlapped!) and we got there just in time to see a special slideshow his teacher had put together, of pictures from the year. The background was a sweet song and I started crying just watching it! (yep, I know I am a major sap!) Then after we took tons of pictures, we headed over to the gym to watch the awards ceremony for all the younger grades. Both Brooke and Caleb received AR reading awards. I am proud of them both for becoming such strong readers this year! (I wonder where they got that from?! ;) And after the awards it just so happened it was time for their lunch, so I got to go have lunch with them! And Rachel's was right after, so I got to see her too! It was a fun day, and I know we will look back fondly at all the good memories!

Tuesday the preschool classes had a graduation ceremony! I knew what I was in for, because I went to the ceremonies for Brooke and Caleb, too. I knew I would be a mess.. I should have worn waterproof mascara! Arnold and I were both able to be there to see Rachel.. my mom tried to get there in time, but was late and missed most of it. But we got that on video too, so it's ok! They all marched in together and it was the most precious thing I'd ever seen! What is it about 4 year old in gowns that cover their whole tiny selves and big graduation caps?! You could hear all the parents go "awwww" collectively. There was quite the parent paparazzi set up too ;) Anyway, first thing they sang a song, they had been practicing for a few weeks, called "Oh, what a miracle." Yeah, that is when I lost it! When Rachel spotted us in the crowd she lit up and waved at us! Then they went one by one to get their diplomas. Their "diplomas" were actually a plain piece of paper bundled up and tied with a ribbon. They gave them their real certificates later on, so they wouldn't get messed up! Very smart thinking! After the ceremony we took a lot of pictures, then headed to the library for a reception. They had a slideshow, and some snacks and goodies set up. Rachel ate a snack and talked to a few of her friends.. gave a big hug to her teacher, and then I got to take her home a little early that day from school.. so that was special for her. All in all it was a very special day. It was especially bittersweet because she is the baby of the family!!!

Today was the kids actual last day of school. They only went in for half a day and I picked them up at 11am. I sent in all the kids a card saying thanks for being so awesome this year, and a Target giftcard-- wanted to do a little something to say Thank you! I also bought the kids some popsicles at the grocery store so they could come home and have a little treat after school. When we got home they played outside and enjoyed the day. Their report cards were sent home too, and they were all promoted to the next grade! Now to enjoy our next couple of months of Summertime fun, and get them ready for the next grade! :) 

Caleb with his teacher, Mrs. Parlier

Caleb and his good buddy, Madison. They were so sweet together all year! His teacher said they were always close and she could see a wedding in the future ;) Ha!

Brooke with her "sweetest smile" award. And the teachers gave all the kids water bottles with their names on them, and some koolaid packets and candy. Sweet!

Brooke with her teacher, Mrs. Davis. She is pretty awesome.. except for being a Duke fan!!! ;)

Brooke with her AR reader award

Having lunch with the kids for the last time this year!

 Ready for their last day of school!

My sweet little 2014 graduate!

Brooke and her teacher, Mrs. Corpening. All 3 kids had her. We are going to miss her!

Mom took this family pic of us. I just love it! And yes, I am wearing a dress! Shocker, I know!