Sunday, August 31, 2008

Labor Day '08

Labor Day 08

Just got back from our annual Labor Day trip to East Texas to see the fam. We all had a great time and got to see tons of people, so try to keep up...

We ran some errands and got out of here somewhat early on Friday since the kids were out of school. Got to Trista and Chris's in Jacksonville in time to go eat Mexican for dinner (which we are all ALWAYS in the mood for!)

The next morning we got up bright and early and headed down the road to Aunt Kathy and Uncle Danny's house and got to see my cousin Raelynn, her baby Karlee who is almost a year old and adorable, my Aunt Judy who just moved to Lufkin, my Nanny and my aunt (we call her Tang-Tang, don't ask). The only problem was, by this time, Hurricane Gustav was rolling in, and all these people live right in the projected path, along the coast of Louisiana, so we ended up eating lunch and they all left early to go home and batten down the hatches.

Then of course, my brother Donnie, his son Donnie (I told you, it gets confusing!!) and his girlfriend Gail came in, but too late to see the rest of the family since they had to haul out of town. It got pretty crazy there with all our family calling from Beaumont, Pasadena, and all that, trying to find places to stay in case they needed to leave, and my Aunt in Lufkin ended up with a house full of people and animals, and the traffic where we were got really bad, they were making the churches into shelters for people already, it was a madhouse.

We went to the lake on Saturday afternoon and spent the afternoon watching Riley wakeboard. He's really gotten better at it, and decided that since he could stay up for a few feet, it was time to start doing tricks. Then we ordered pizza and visited for a while, and the kids passed out pretty quick.
Lake Jacksonville

On Sunday we went back to Aunt Kathy's for lunch and the boys took turns driving the mule around the property until little Donnie found the only hole around and hit it head on, poor thing busted his lip good. They all had a blast playing outside with Superman II (Superman I got hit by a car last year) and climbing all over Uncle Danny's heavy machinery, getting good and dirty. Regan was so exhausted, we weren't even out of Jacksonville before she was passed out in the back seat.

Thankfully, Gustav wasn't as strong as everyone was thinking, and so far, everyone is safe and sound, including David's family who stayed in Morgan City where it was supposed to be hitting dead on. I can't wait to go back again next year though, and hopefully there won't be a Hurricane ruining our plans, and Daniel will get to go with us next time!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Almost 15 Years Ago

I should wait and post these in a couple of weeks, on our official 15th anniversary, but I can't. I finally got a scanner and can bring my wedding pictures into the digital age! I just did a couple yesterday playing around, and it was so good to finally have one of my mom and me on my computer. And I keep looking at these pictures and thinking "Holy Cow we were way too young to get married!!"

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Ringling Brothers


Today we braved the protesters and went to the circus! Gotta love Austin, you'll find people who will protest any and everything. We got there early enough to head to the animal open house and see the miniature horses, the white tigers, elephants, zebras, and Arabian horses. It was about a million degrees outside, so even the animals couldn't keep the kids interested in staying out in the heat. We headed inside to get our usual snow cone in the cute circus cups (Riley got a white tiger, Regan got a light up elephant one) and the hat-full of cotton candy (that was for me!)

It was hard to say what the kids liked best, they really did enjoy all of it, from the tiny dogs and their tricks to the giant elephants and the circus clowns and their crazy antics. Intermission, time to load up on nachos and stuffed white tigers, and as soon as it was over we had to beat it out of there to get to church. It was a busy day, but they had a blast.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Paintball Night

It was kind of a spur of the moment deal, Riley was going with a friend to play paintball, David decided to go and help out, then I went and got a box of chicken for all of us to eat while they play, so we had family night at the paintball field. It was my first time to see my boy under fire. He did pretty good, he got hit a couple of times, but one really good one, right at the base of his stomach, and it hurt. Left a red circle bruise immediately. He loves to play though, and has already asked for a $1500 paintball gun for his birthday (yeah, keep dreaming).

Here he is getting suited up by his "coach":

Here's the boy in action:

Taking a short break:

The injury:

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Slowing Down...

There hasn't been a whole lot going on lately, since school started. Bailey got a hair cut, looks like a cute little boy-dog again, minus all the stickers he got into from the field across the street. Our church had a Parent's Night Out and the kids had a blast while David and I went to see Tropic Thunder (that's what David gets for leaving me to make the plans!) He would always prefer to go somewhere and "talk" and I usually want to go see something get blown up. Total role reversal. But the movie was hilarious and we had time for dessert afterwards so we could "talk".

On Sunday we had a girl scout meeting at Texas Jumping Beans so they got to wear themselves out there for a while. We got Karate Kid from the library and watched that, they both really enjoyed it, and I think it's so funny to watch these movies that I grew up with and watch them enjoy them for the first time. My poor brother is gonna have to gear up for another few years of being called "Daniel-son" though.

Other than that, we've been watching the Olympics, the gymnastics are amazing, and it's kind of given Riley a vision of what he's working towards, not that we are pushing him to that level of competition, but it's good to see what you can accomplish with all the hard work that he puts into it. He's still doing 4 hours a week for the gymnastics team, so who knows, maybe 2016 Olympics will be his year. Regan is still in it, but her hearts not really in it like Riley's. She wants to drop it and take horseback riding lessons. I told her she's going to have to wait until it's not 100 degrees every day!

And that's about all that's going on in our corner of the world these days. We have the circus coming up this weekend, and our annual trip to see Aunt Kathy and the lake in Jacksonville, and fingers crossed, a trip to the beach for fall break.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Beauty and the Beast

I had been meaning to take Regan to see Beauty and the Beast all summer and then this was the last weekend and it snuck up on us, so we went tonight, and I was vastly unprepared. I read online about all the do's and don'ts and I packed our blanket to sit on and a little lunch box with some water and snacks, and headed down to Zilker Park about 45 minutes early.

Well, first issue is parking. How is it that no one in this town can figure out how to park in an open field parking lot? There were people blocking paths, exits, parked sideways, it was crazy. I was just glad I was in David's car cause I would have been tempted to run some people down in my truck.

Then we see the hillside is already completely packed with people, exhibit A:

We have a hard time finding a place to put our blanket because NO ONE else read the rules that clearly said DON'T BRING LAWN CHAIRS or if you do, put them at the TOP of the hill. So we end up towards the side which wasn't too bad. We mark our spot with our blanket and lunch box and head to the bathroom and to get the highlight of the evening, snow cones!! Exhibit B:

So we come back with our snow cones to find our spot horrible encroached upon by two guys who look like they could really care less about Beauty and the Beast, AND they were in lawn chairs, but at least they were behind us. Unfortunately, the Smokers Convention decided to come see the play and stand 2 feet away from our blanket. Okay, once the play starts, it should be fine, right? Our seats weren't too bad, we could at least see most of the stage. Exhibit C:

And then after about an hour in, the family in front of us leaves, and you guessed it, lawn chair boys LEAP into position right smack dab in front of us. I couldn't believe it. At that point, Regan was as done as I was and she just looked at me and said, "Can we just go home now?" So we struggled for a bit, scooting to one side of the blanket when the guy would lean one way, then scooting to the other side when he decided to have a conversation with his buddy.

Then the walk back to the car, and trying to find a way out of the maze they called a parking lot. Literally, people parked in the exits, like, they didn't think people might leave early?? It was so frustrating. And Regan was probably pretty tired, she was asleep even before we passed the Austin skyline.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

20 Questions with the Kids

This was a questionnaire a couple of my friends asked their kids, I thought it was cute, so I thought I would see what my kids had to say, and sure enough, they made me laugh. Here ya go:

1. What is something that Mom always says to you?
Riley: I love you
Regan: I love you

What makes Mom happy?
Riley: Good Kids
Regan: Cleaning up

3. What makes Mom Sad?
Riley: When mom and dad fight
Regan: Whenever we watch sad movies

4. What does Mom do to make you laugh?
Riley: Make jokes about Tristan
Regan: Tickle my chin

5. What was Mom like as a child?
Riley: A Girl
Regan: A kid

6. How old is your Mom?
Riley: 36
Regan: I don't know! 54

7. How tall is your Mom ?
Riley: 5 feet (I’m almost as tall as you!)
Regan: Hold on, stand up...(she stands on the couch arm and puts her hand on my head and goes) She's THIS TALL!

8. What is her favorite thing to do?
Riley: Have the kids go to school
Regan: Sit down and watch Beauty and the Beast, Jasmine, and Ariel (um, no).

9. What does you're Mom do when you are not around?
Riley: Play on the computer and watch TV, and sometimes out with your friends but not as much now.
Regan: Work, play with her friends.

10. If your Mom becomes Famous what will it be for?
Riley: Best cooking.
Regan: Because she's so cute (awww)

11. What is your Mom really good at?
Riley: Cooking and driving.
Regan: Exercising (ha!)

12. What is your Mom not really good at?
Riley: Nothing, you’re good at everything.
Regan: Singing (all those years of choir for nothing I guess)

13. What does your Mom do for her Job?
Riley: Work at Omega
Regan: Work so we can get money so we can get food

14. What is your Mom's favorite food?
Riley: I forgot, do you like watermelon? (Uh, no) Okay, tomatoes. (Like them, but not my favorite)
Regan: Vegetables (ha again!)

15. What makes you Proud of your Mom?
Riley: Everything.
Regan: Taking me to a playground.

16. If your Mom were a cartoon Character who would she be?
Riley: Sandy Cheeks from SpongeBob (cause you’re both really good at stuff and have good inventions)
Regan: Wanda (Fairy Godparent)

17. What do you and your Mom do together?
Riley: We go to gymnastics and go to fun places.
Regan: Go play on the playground.

18. How are you and your Mom the same?
Riley: We both like tomatoes.
Regan: We both have friends.

19. How are you and your Mom different?
Riley: I like watermelon and you don’t.
Regan: You're taller and I'm smaller.

20. How do you know that your Mom loves you?
Riley: Cause if she didn’t love me then she wouldn’t be my parent.
Regan: Because I love you.

1. What is something that Dad always says to you?
Riley: Hey, Buddy.
Regan: You're the smartest.

2. What makes Dad happy?
Riley: A good dirt bike rider like me!
Regan: Making his favorite food.

3. What makes Dad Sad?
Riley: A bad, bad kid.
Regan: Not getting his favorite food.

4. How does Dad make you laugh?
Riley: Tells funny jokes.
Regan: He tickles me.

5. What was Dad like as a child?
Riley: Just like me except with a short afro.
Regan: Like Riley.

6. How old is your Dad?
Riley: 37
Regan: 28

7. How tall is your Dad?
Riley: 5’9” (shaved quite a few inches off there!!)
Regan: 30 Feet

8. What is his favorite thing to do?
Riley: Be on the computer.
Regan: Play on the computer.

9. What does you're Dad do when you are not around?
Riley: Go to work
Regan: Goes to work

10. If your Dad becomes Famous what will it be for?
Riley: Biggest Party Pooper
Regan: Because he's awesome

11. What is your Dad really good at?
Riley: Being on the computer
Regan: Playing the guitar (he's never played!)

12. What is your Dad not really good at?
Riley: Making homemade root beer (it tastes like beer)
Regan: Dancing

13. What does your Dad do for his Job?
Riley: He used to work at Dell, he’s a computer geek, he works on computers

Regan: Works on computers.

14. What is your Dad's favorite food?
Riley: Ribs
Regan: Broccoli

What makes you proud of your dad?
Riley: He's an awesome b
Regan: Taking me fun places.

16. If your dad were a cartoon character, who would he be?
Riley: Vicki the babysitter, from The Fairly Oddparents.
Regan: SpongeBob

17. What do you and your dad do together?
Riley: Play paintball and ride my dirt bike.
Regan: Stay home and watch TV, his favorite show.

18. How are you and your Dad the same?
Riley: We both like paintball.
Regan: We eat the same food.

19. How are you and your Dad different?
Riley: He talks trash and I tell the truth.
Regan: I play on playgrounds and he doesn't.

20: How do you know that your Dad loves you?
Riley: Cause if he didn't love me he would yell at me a lot.
Regan: Because I'm the smartest.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

What Mom Does When the Kids are in School...

And no, it's not put my feet up in 100 degree heat. I got a pedicure. And this time, I beat them to the punch and had my eyebrows waxed first. Last time I had a pedicure I had to sit there for 30 minutes while the lady painted my toes and gave me funny looks and said, "You SO bushy!"

Monday, August 4, 2008

First Day of 1st and 4th

Today was the first day of school for Regan in 1st grade and Riley in 4th grade. I was just looking back a year at this post to see how much they've changed in one year, and Regan looks so much more grown up now! What a difference a year makes! Riley is on a new campus now, it's 4th-12th, he's the little shrimp in the big pond, so it will be an interesting year for him. Regan is all about the social hour, she woke up ready to go see all her friends from last year. I woke up and realized we still hadn't gotten new backpacks or lunch boxes, and Riley only has about 2 uniform shirts that fit now! Mom is more unprepared for school than the kids are, which is shocking! It kind of snuck up on me this year. But already it's nice to be back into a routine and I'm hoping my house will start being more clean. Well, a girl can hope, right?

Friday, August 1, 2008

Paintball Hurts!

Riley has wanted to play paintball since he could walk just about. Well, tonight he finally got his chance. He went with Alex and Tristan and some friends, and he had to *pretend* to be 10 (he's almost there) and they played night paintball. I have been telling him for a long time, the first time he gets hit, he's gonna run off the field crying like a little girl, but he wouldn't listen. He's been googling paintball places for weeks, begging me to take him, so he was more than ready to go, and pay the price of getting hit a few times if need be.

Well, as you can imagine, Riley's first time out playing paintball, he wins the first game. I don't know how many kids were playing, but there were teenagers out there too, not just little kids. Of course, I heard it was because Riley was so small, no one could hit him because he fit behind the barricades so well.

But, he did get hit a few times, and he did run off the field crying like a little girl, but that was only because of where he got shot, and let's just say next time Riley plays paintball, he's gonna be wearing a cup.

He won the last game also, but he does have some welps and bruises all over his tiny little body. He wasn't the only kid to run off the field crying either, or the first, I need to clarify that! He's a tough guy. But, I think we've created a monster, he's already begging to go again, and he couldn't stop talking about it, and giving us a play by play in detail of every shot he took all night long. He's all boy, isn't he?

Texas History Museum

With Regan spending the rest of the week at Camp Doublecreek on her own, I decided it was time for some Mother/Son(s) bonding time so we headed to the Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum. Yeah, you can imagine how thrilled the boys were! I was in hog heaven though, I just love history, and David thinks it's some plot of mine just to irritate him (he thinks history is totally pointless), but I would love nothing more than to be a history teacher.

Anyway...first stop, Cracker Barrel for breakfast, then off to the museum to brush the kids up on some book learnin' before school starts back. I think they were pretty fascinated, they liked the guns and swords the most, of course, but we did sit and watch a short film about the Alamo and they enjoyed that, and they asked some good questions and seemed genuinely interested in a few things.

Then we went to the Spirit of Texas Theater, it's a short film on the history of Texas, but the best part is the movie is kind of 4 dimensional, when it talks about the hurricane that wiped out Galveston, there is actually mist and wind and lightening in the theater, and the seats vibrate. There was a part in the movie that talked about rattlesnakes, and a part of the seat cushion pops up and hits the back of your thighs, and I swear, Riley and Tristan flew out of their seats, Tristan did a great Homer Simpson, "DOH!" and people were laughing hysterically. Fun times!

Then we went to the IMAX and saw a movie called Extreme, all about Extreme sports (right up their alley, right?) They showed rock climbers, snowboarders, wind surfers, extreme skiers, lots of incredible stunts and scenery. I think they enjoyed it and most of all learned that history doesn't have to be boring (David)!!