Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Years!

We were going to have another big shindig like Christmas Eve, but with everyone going out of town, or having made other plans, we ended up having a simple night, which was SO much fun! Kenzie came over, and then Daniel and his girlfriend Nikki and we rocked the Rock Band for a while. It was a lot of fun. We ordered pizza, I made guacamole and queso, and then the guys played some Fight Night, and we all laughed at their expense. It was fun. I got to give my boy Riley a big smooch for New Years, I don't think he appreciates that tradition yet, but David was playing a game, and in deep. Pam and Dave even stopped by with their leftovers from Buca's, tiramasu, YUM!

Here's wishing everyone a happy and healthy new year!

Kris and Jen's Wedding

Kris and Jen got married today, and I took a few pictures. Dave probably got some great ones with the super camera, so I'll update later. But I was watching them and remembering when I first met Kris, he was about 6 years old, and such a cute little thing. Then watching him say his vows and get choked up, it made me tear up! I know they are very much in love, and I hope nothing but the best for them in life!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Bedtime Stories and Park Time

I met Melissa and her kids, Addison and Evelyn, we went to see Bedtime Stories, it was hilarious, and then let the kids run around the park for a few hours. After days of being cooped up playing with their Christmas presents, it was nice to be outside getting some fresh air (and some adult conversation)! And the weather was perfect, so it was an all around great day. They got to feed the ducks, and play until they were worn out.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Basketball Practice

We went to Riley's Upward Basketball practice tonight, and watched him make some good shots, and played with my camera some. They have a devotional at every practice, which is great. Riley's pretty good out there, and their first game is this Saturday, should be interesting!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Dave's Christmas Photos

Dave's Christmas Photos

Here are some more pictures from Christmas Eve that Dave took with his fancy camera! Some of them are really cute, so I'm uploading just a small amount, I think he took over 200! Fun times.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Family Reunion

Family Reunion

Earlier this month, David's family had a family reunion. His Uncle James and Aunt Lola were in from Brazil, so we all met at the Omega office (the only place there was enough room for all of us) and had a feast! It was good to catch up with everyone, several people we haven't seen in years, and we all just LOVE Aunt Lola, she's so much fun, so we had a day full of laughs!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!

It was a rough night last night, waiting for the kids to go to bed so I could wrap the last few presents. We watched A Christmas Story, called Norad to find out when Santa would be in Texas, and then put them to bed around 11, found them trying to sleep on the floor in the game room (the better to hear Santa when he comes) and then yelled at Riley to stay in bed already at 1am.

David then gave me MY present, a nice, new, tiny digital camera. I've been wanting a small one, my old one is just that...old. And big, and clunky. I still want a nice SLR, but I wanted a nice small one I could just stick in my pocket and still take pretty decent pics. This one is a Cannon PowerShot, 10 megapixels, should do me JUST fine!! I tried to figure it all out so I could use it in the morning, but I still have a few things to figure out. I did take a few pictures with it, but I didn't want to mess up and not have ANY pictures of Christmas morning.

Thankfully, the kids didn't wake us up to open presents until around 9:30, so we got a late start. We played a few tricks on them, Riley's first gift was a box of coal, he didn't appreciate the humor, but Regan did! Then we had already taken out his Xbox 360 so David could set it up and have it ready to go, but we replaced it with a brick so it wouldn't just be an empty box. But when he opened it and saw the brick, we told him someone must have stolen the 360 and put a brick in there. He was pretty upset about it, and David was going to just keep opening presents like it was no big deal, but I finally told him that's just mean, so he asked Riley to go get a blanket over by the TV, and he saw the Xbox plugged in there, so he was happy again!

Regan was harder to buy for this year, she hates cleaning her room, so I didn't want anything with parts all over the place. So, for her main gift, she got a Nintendo DS and games to go with it, Arctic Tale, Boogie, Hannah Montana, High School Musical, Mario Kart, Pac Man, Pet Vet, My Little Pony, and a couple others. She also got a couple of games for the Wii, a cat game, Monkey Ball, and Tamagotchi. And, her very own pair of Heely's, which I'm worried a little bit about. She's not the most coordinated kid on the block! She already got mad at the wheels and took them out, and is just wearing them as regular shoes right now.

Riley, he pretty much got the 360 and Rock Band 2, which we already formed a band, Dad on guitar, Riley on drums, and mom on vocals, and rocked the house!! That game is SO much fun! He also got a few games to go with it, Call of Duty 4 (more for dad) Army of Two (for dad) some racing games, and a few others. He also got a new pair of Heely's, they match the ones we got Tristan. They also fit mom, so I might have to give them a try soon! If I have a blog post soon about a broken hip, you'll know why!

Dad got to share the 360, and a few clothes and the usual socks and undies that I make sure we all get! I also got my new Coach bag that I'm TOTALLY in love with, that's my gift from Alex, Tristan and Merissa, which was so sweet!!

After we opened presents (which Ricky very much objected too, he's been loving hiding behind them all under the tree) I made my famous Christmas morning cinammon rolls, and then we've just been playing around the rest of the day. I'm still in my pj's, and David JUST changed out of his, so it's been a nice, lazy day!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Eve

What a fun and crazy night! It all started a few weeks ago when David and Alex were talking about how David had always wanted to do a prime rib for Christmas. Alex was saying yeah, that sounds good, and the next thing we know, he uses his connections and gets a HUGE prime rib for us to do on Christmas Eve. Pam and Dave were going to be working so they didn't think they would come until they heard about the prime rib, and we put our order in for Dave's famous mashed potatoes (it's just not a family holiday without them!)

So, then it was going to be Alex and Tristan, us, and Pam and Dave, no biggie. But, I called Daniel and Kenzie, I wanted them to come too, since this is our first Christmas with Daniel in a long time. Then Kris and his fiance Jen didn't have any plans, so they wanted to come too. Then Matt and his girlfriend wanted to come, and she brought two of her kids (one is 5 and Regan's new best friend). Then Daniel called and asked if his girlfriend Nikki could come (why not?) and she brought her son, Hayden, who is 2. And then his friend Matt, who was here at Thanksgiving, didn't have anywhere to go for Christmas so we invited him too. Then Kenzie came with her friend Jessica, who is also her wheels right now. We had a house FULL!!

And as usual, we had plenty of food, we did two prime ribs (once it started growing, Pam got another one, and some ribs) and of course, the famous mashed potatoes, and I made sweet potato casserole for the first time, and a garlic dip that would keep vampires out of the entire state of Texas, and a pumpkin chiffon pie that I got the recipe from Oprah. Yum! The prime rib was SO good, and hopefully a new tradition. Alex also smoked a ham, and David made homemade horseradish, and au jus, and I'm still so full I can't think straight!

Dave took a bunch of pictures with his camera, so I will be adding to this when I get copies of his, but for now, here are mine:
Christmas Eve

Monday, December 22, 2008

Grandma's Blankets!

We got a nice surprise today, Christmas Blankets from Grandma and Grandpa (my dad and stepmom in Ohio). And just in time for some of our coldest days ever! So, here are some pictures of us modeling our new blankets, they are SO soft and SO warm, and they smell SO good!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Christmas Card Fun

Just playing around with some of the pictures, here's 4 that I did...

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Happy Birthday David!

David turned the big 39 today, one more year till he's officially "over the hill"! Riley wants to plan him a huge party then, so that should be interesting. We didn't do much for his birthday though, since it is so close to Christmas, it's hard to do much. Riley made him a cute card, a pop-up and put some money in it, that he said he got out of my wallet "because dad won't keep it if I told him it was MY money". That was sweet. We bought him his very favorite Harry and David pears for his birthday, which the kids were excited to buy, but not carry out of the mall!

Thursday, December 18, 2008


Our church started an Upward Basketball and Cheerleading league, and of course the kids wanted to join, and of course I'm a sucker and think we can do EVERYTHING. Now on Monday's, after Riley is in gymnastics for 2 hours, until 5:30, we rush home, have dinner, and then dad and Riley head off to basketball practice, from 8-9, which is pretty late. And on Thursday's, again after sitting at gymnastics with Riley for 2 hours, David will bring Regan to me (he usually picks her up on Thursday's so I can rush Riley to gymnastics) so we can switch off kids and I can take Regan to Cheerleading from 6-7. Makes for a busy week, but the kids enjoy it, and it's all about them, right? Last night I spent 2 hours fluffing pom poms. The downside? Regan's games to cheer are at 8am on Saturday mornings, so for 2 months I will have NO sleep in days, and sometimes, I live for those sleep in days. Riley's games are around 10-11, so we'll have enough time to grab breakfast at La Madeline and be back for his. Already have it planned out.

School Parties

Since I'm the room mom for both kids, I got to plan the parties for both classes. Talk about FUN! Regan's class had a pajama/breakfast party, so the parents brought fruit, bagels, muffins, etc. and we all ate breakfast and then had some craft time where we made ornaments with their pictures inside, Christmas cards for the parents, and a few other crafts. Then they got to get their blankie or stuffed animal and watch Polar Express.

When the movie started, I booked it to the pizza place to grab pizza's for Riley's class (and I need to remember in the future that just because MY 10 year old doesn't eat much, certainly doesn't mean OTHER 10 year olds don't eat much!) and they decorated cookies, made some ornaments and cards, and then went outside to play in the freezing cold that we happened to be having that day. Then early release and Christmas break is ON!

Regan's party was much more chaotic (being that they were K-1) so I didn't get any pictures of her in her new SpongeBob Christmas jammies, but I did get some of Riley at his party.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Gingerbread Houses

Regan's Brownie troop had a gingerbread event at a local church. We got to go and decorate our very own Gingerbread House and have a hot dog/chili dinner. The kids had a great time, we let Riley decorate one side, Regan the other side, and they were both...interesting. Riley found a reindeer candy and a Tootsie Roll and, well, boys will be boys, he made it look like the reindeer just pooped the Tootsie Roll. Regan made her rooftop into a pattern, which she says more like "patteren" it's cute. They had a great time, no Christmas season is complete without a Gingerbread House, right?

Here's Regan and her side:

And here's Riley and his side:

Friday, December 12, 2008

Christmas Card Pictures!

This has GOT to be my least favorite part of the holidays. It always starts with good intentions, and before 5 minutes are up, I'm yelling like a raving lunatic for everyone to frickin' smile already! It's crazy. You wouldn't think it would be that hard with just us 4, but it is. And especially hard is trying to find someone who is a competent photographer to come over and take a picture of the 4 of us together, and coordinate schedules, etc. So, I'm left with two options, just have the kids on the Christmas card pics, which I normally do strictly because I've run out of time and other options, or like tonight, try and see if Riley can take a decent picture of me and David. Trust me on this one, he can't. Not for lack of trying though, so I have to give him credit for that, he just had his hand over the flash in the ones where I didn't look crosseyed, or he got mostly the wall as background, and not the tree.

So, here is our Christmas card preview. I got the kids together, and then they each wanted to do their own little photo shoot, and then I let them make some silly faces for the outtakes.

The photos (the "good" ones):
Christmas Pictures

Of course now I have to pick ONE for the Christmas card, that's the other hard part!

Riley's photo shoot, which I'm surprised he got into as much as he did, but he really wanted to have his picture taken, so I ran with it:
Riley's Photo Shoot

Regan's photo shoot, which has her dad really worried, cause she came up with these poses ALL on her own:
Regan's Photo Shoot

And the outtakes, no photo shoot is complete without letting off a little steam, right?

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Let it Snow! {Texas Style}

The kids were pretty shocked to wake up to some white powder! Granted, it's not much, but hey, around here, we'll take what we can get! Riley bundled up, he's into wearing hats now that he has such short hair, today's hat du jour was a Santa Hat, complete with Santa scarf, and Tony Hawk hoody, and was out the door before breakfast to play in it. Of course, he was right back inside in about 2 minutes with frost bite! Regan was a little more skeptical, but she went out briefly, she's just not a morning girl (takes after her momma!)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Old Settler's Park

Regan's class went on a field trip to Old Settler's Park to study nature. They've been learning about soil and seeds, and so after our picnic lunch, they each got a sock to wear over their shoe to see if they picked up anything interesting on our nature walk, and they each got a baggie to collect different items, nature items. Some of the fun was deciding if an item was nature, or man made. Another fun thing was using Porta-Potties for the first time, since the bathrooms there had been burned down, or struck by lightning or something, so that was interesting.

We did find lots of interesting things on our nature walk, lots of acorns, feather from the ducks and geese, different types of leaves, rocks, and even some honeycomb! And what started out as a nice, hot day at the park, 80 degrees, sweaty kids, turned into a windy cold front as we left, the kids were nearly getting blown away, crazy Texas weather!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Christmas Traditions

We decorated the tree tonight, with Alvin and the Chipmunks in the background (nothing makes it feel more like Christmas to me than hearing ALVIN!!!) I love that the kids are so into it, pulling each ornament out, asking what it is, where it came from, what special meaning there is behind it, and I love more that most of them DO mean something now. It's not just a box of shiny stuff that I bought cause it looked nice.

There's some of my favorites cause they're cute, my Dr. Seuss One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish, it just looks neat cause they are all hanging and look like they are swimming. My red toy robot (both given to me by my mother-in-law who knows I'm just a kid at heart!) And then the more meaningful ones, all the kids pictures, including Daniel and Kenzie, as paper angels, Regan made a baby Jesus in a walnut shell in Pre-K, which is adorable, the ornament with Jake's picture inside, the dough ornaments we all painted one year, the ones bought the years the kids were born, etc. I just love taking them all out each year and showing them to the kids and hopefully one day they will have some of these same ornaments and they will be telling their kids about them, where they came from and what they mean to them as well.

Our tree is by no means the most beautiful tree on the block, but it's certainly the most beautiful one in my eyes.

"She Cut Off All My Curls!"

After gymnastics I took Riley to get his hair cut, I thought I would work him gradually to the short cut he has to have for his meet in February, but he doesn't like it at ALL! He was so upset that she cut off all his luscious curls, poor thing, but I think he looks nice.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

The Tree is UP!

But nothing is on it...yet. Baby steps.

Friday, December 5, 2008

The Unity Tree

Unity Tree

Tonight was the kid's school play, The Unity Tree, which was about cats and dogs and basically a "why can't we all just get along" message. It was very cute, the kids all did a great job. Regan didn't like the song that her class sang, so she wasn't all into it, but she got up there and participated, which was good. Each class was either cats or dogs, and both my kids were lucky enough to be dogs, but then Regan had to take it a step further and be a "pink poodle". I told her she might be the only one there, and sure enough, my girl rocked it. She was saying as we walked in with her hands in the air, (High School Musical-style) "I look FAB-U-LOUS!" Shaking her tail all the way. She's so funny.

Riley just wanted to be a brown chihuahua, but didn't want to wear the paper ears, and sorry to say his sister got all my hard work, after that, I lost inspiration, so he got knee socks on a headband, but I guess it was fine since he wore his bright orange cap over them anyway! But the 4th graders had a dance off, and it was so cute, and he actually danced in it, I was surprised. He's normally too shy to do something like that, but it wasn't like it was break dancing or anything, it was pretty tame. The "cats" did the electric slide, and they were so cute! (I think they won the dance off).

But it was a really cute play, they did a great job. And, the best part, Book Fair is officially OVER! I just have to spend one more day packing it all up.

Another Crazy Week

This has been another crazy busy week for me, I hate getting behind in blogging, but hopefully you'll understand!

Book Fair is going on at the school now, and I'm the chairperson, because I absolutely LOVE Book Fair!! So, that required setting up Book Fair over the Thanksgiving Break, and I'm such a softie, I didn't want to ask anyone to help me cause it was the break and I didn't want anyone to have to take time off their break to come up to the school, so I was up there by myself (David did have to come get some heavy boxes, and move some shelves around) and of course, the kids were there to ahem, "help".

Monday morning dawns and guess what? No Book Fair volunteer! I was scheduled to sub all week, I had volunteers scheduled to work almost every shift and about half of them didn't show up, great! So, it just turned into mass chaos and I was running around like a chicken with my head cut off all week. Thankfully, Monday and Tuesday, I was subbing for the ACE teacher, which is a lot of back and forth, so I was able to check in on the Book Fair often.

Wednesday and Thursday I was the Pre-K assistant/office assistant which is helping out the Pre-K teacher when they go from place to place (the Pre-K tends to wander) and then helping out in the office so the other office staff can have lunch, and just get stuff done, which this week had a lot of stuff to get done, so we were so busy, both days we worked through lunch.

Thursday night was an Art Show/Science Fair planning meeting, with Book Fair running also, so I just stayed at the school from 7:30 in the morning till about 7:30 that night, it was super busy and we sold a ton of stuff so that was nice, but I was exhausted, and thankfully, when it was over, we went to dinner with Mimi and Papa and I didn't have to worry about going home to cook dinner!

Friday, I worked all morning in Pre-K, those little guys are SO cute. Makes me miss my old days in Hong Kong as a Pre-K teacher, but not too much. They sure make me laugh though, they are so adorable, and just so tiny. We had a great time, and of course, back to Book Fair for me, to straighten up, and this time, I only had to stay till 2, which worked out well becuase I had to run to Walmart and the Dollar Store to get the stuff to make Regan's Pink Poodle Costume, get home and make it, and get back to the school by 6! Don't forget to breathe...