Friday, June 29, 2007

Matthew and Texas

First off, I miss my husband! He is in Tennessee right now...selling fireworks. I would like to quote him, "This is miserable work! I am never doing this again. I think we have both learned from this that it is more important to spend time with each other than it is to make money." Amen to that! Poor guy! He is in a place where he knows practically no one, sleeping in a fireworks tent (that doubles as a sauna) every night, rarely showering (nice for the customers, I'm sure), and missing his girls. If you are near Gallatan, TN, please go to his tent. You don't even have to buy fireworks...just sit and talk to him or offer to run the place for a few minutes so he can run to the bathroom. We get to see him again next Friday...only 7 days left!

Nora and I are in Texas...or as they like to call it here, the tropical rain forest. I have never seen so much rain!!!! It is crazy weather! Thankfully, this morning it held off so that Nora could have her first swim lesson. It was a DISASTER! As soon as the teacher put her under water, Nora couldn't quit screaming. I know, I know, a little soon with the swim lessons, but the goal is just to get her used to the water and going under. We go again tomorrow, hopefully she was not traumatized by today! After her lesson, we stuck around for a few more hours and she played in the kiddie pool, which she LOVED!

We are having a great time (total contrast to Matthew's "vacation") with my family! It is so nice to come here and get pampered and have tons of extra help with Nora.

I hope everyone else is blogging world is staying dry.

Monday, June 25, 2007


Today is the first day that I attempted to "do" Nora's hair. Oh yes, she is always sporting a bow. But that is child's play. Today I pulled out the "ouchless" rubberbands! Here is my first attempt:

I improved with my second attempt, but the only way I could capture her cuteness was when she was laying on the carpet. Sixteen months old and she finally has pigtails!

Sunday, June 24, 2007


This week is Vacation Bible School at our church. Matthew and I spent the majority of the time getting our room together. We actually spent more time than we should have...just a couple of over-achievers, I guess (not usually my style either!).

The theme is "From Grumble to Humble: A Journey with the Israelites". (I learned this week how Israelites is supposed to be spelled thanks to Kristy Brown. She said that the "el" represents God (as in El Shadai) and they are not separated. Thanks Kristy!) The room we were in charge of was "10 plagues". We divided a huge room into 8 sections and each section had a plague in it (we combined gnats and flies and locust and darkness). Tonight was the first run through and it went pretty well. The kids kind of went crazy when the got to the "Hail room". I was in the shadows and started throwing crushed ice at them. Pretty funny, but a little chaotic.

VBS runs through Wednesday evening and then Nora and I leave for Texas Thursday morning, bright and early. It should be interesting making the journey all by myself in the car, but I am hoping to leave early enough so that she sleeps and then borrow a friend's portable DVD player for a few minutes of entertainment for her. Usually she will only watch something for about 10 minutes before tuning it out and wanting to play with her toys.

Matthew is leaving before the sun even comes up Tuesday for Nashville...please keep him in your prayers as he travels and is away from us for 10 days. Also, that he does not blow up from being around the fireworks :).

I will try to post pictures of our VBS room soon!

Also, a prayer request, my mom has a friend whose daughter was pregnant with triplets. She delivered them yesterday at 24 weeks and 4 days. The boys (identical) all weighed in at around 1 pound and each was approx. 12 inches long. They have a long battle ahead of them! Keep that little family in your prayers (I believe their last name is Ice).

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Overheard at the park...

This is what I heard a complete stranger say today at the park, "She's not a REAL mom until she has had a boy...look at her, she only has easy!" (By the way, the lady was not talking about me, she was talking about some other mom who was carrying her 3 girls to her car.)

Is she serious?

I didn't realize that it took having a male child to be considered an actual mother. *****I would like to finish this post without anyone thinking that I am about to give away the sex of my next child...there is still a good chance it is either a boy or girl (apparently if it is a boy I am on my way to true motherhood-let's keep our fingers crossed!)*** I simply took offense to this comment because currently, I am a mom to only a girl.

Back in the early '90's I enjoyed a show called "Sister's" (pictured above). For anyone else who ever saw this show, you know that having all girls is indeed not an easy task. These girls were crazy and the situations they found themselves in were interesting to say the least. I'm sure the parents of these girls never thought their life was "easy".

While driving home from the park, I was able to think of a list of reasons why being a parent to a girl (or all girls) is not easier in the long run. Oh, sure, they might be easier in the younger years. They might not be as rambunctious as boys, might not break as many bones, probably won't climb as many things or throw balls through windows, but that doesn't mean that girls are easier for life.

  • many boys do you know that gave their parents the "look" (all you girls know which one I am referring to). That look that you give your parents when you think they are so stupid and have not a brain cell in their head.
  • is going to be a fight, probably, that will last many, many seasons. I can already tell you that in our house, Matthew is going to "be the bad guy" because he will not let Nora walk out of the house past puberty with any skin showing. And I am all for that! But what will Nora probably do? She will be hiding clothes (or makeup or some other "forbidden" luxury) in her backpack and once she gets to school, will go to the girls room and slip them on and return to her "hideous" clothes before she comes home for the day.
  • Puberty...okay, I know that both boys and girls go through this one...but really, I think this is going to be harder on girls and their moms. (I would like to refer back to the bullet "attitude", usually this is when it will kick in). All of a sudden her body is changing. EVERYTHING is changing! And it is just around the time when she becomes aware of boys and that they are no longer disgusting.
  • Crying...and crying and crying. I'm just waiting for Nora to come home from junior high and tell me that her best friend from yesterday just stole her boyfriend from last week and they are telling EVERYONE at school that she still sleeps with her pink blanket AND HER LIFE IS RUINED!!!!!! Please, please, please don't make her go back to school, ever! Yeah, I'm looking forward to that. How many boys do you know that actually make a big deal about stuff like that? No, they are more like, "Hey, I have a football game Friday night."
  • Dating (and learning to say NO!)...a talk and task that I am sure Matthew and I would rather not have to go through. But, that is liking wishing the sky were green all the time-it's not going to happen. As parents of a girl, we are going to have to start sharing important information with her early on. She is special, God has already picked out the perfect husband for her, wait for marriage-it is the greatest gift you can ever give your husband, look for qualities that your dad has in the boys that you go out with...(do you think it is wrong for us to just forbid her to ever date?).
  • The wedding...last time I checked, the bill primarily fell in the laps of the bride.

Okay, I could go on and on. I would like to find that mom in a few years (the one with the 3 girls) and find out how she is doing. She will probably be about ready to pull her hair out because all 3 of her girls smarted off to her several times during the day, one has cried that her mom never lets her do anything, one of the others is fighting with her sister because it is her turn to wear the white shirt, and the last is talking non-stop on the phone to her boyfriend.

Oh, and where will I find the mom that made the ugly statement at the park this afternoon? Waking her teenage son up at noon so that he can mow the lawn, take the trash out, paint the shed, and play video games. I really think in the long run, they might be easier...maybe one day soon I will have an opportunity to compare my girl and my boy...or I might be "saddled" with all girls and never get to experience the true meaning of motherhood. We'll see...

Monday, June 18, 2007

What a wonderful week!

Well, we had a fabulous time at camp! Some things never change...the daily schedule is still the same, most of the meals are the same, you can still send kids "around the mess hall", cabin cleaning is still a part of the daily was good to be in such a familiar setting.

The setting and schedule were about the only familiar parts of the week though. It was totally different for me watching a toddler instead of joining in on all the fun events. Nora had a blast and slept HARD. On most days she would nap for about 3 hours in the afternoon and then sleep, without moving a muscle, for 12-13 hours at night. Every now and then, she would be so worn out that she would nap twice during the day and still be ready for bed at 7:30. At home, she is usually a "12-hourer", but she wakes me up in the mornings at home. At camp, I had to wake her up. She loved the kids, loved the creek, and loved the dirt!

I took over a hundred pictures while at camp and if you want to see them all, click on flickr. Below are a few of my favorites.

She is so excited about starting off her week at camp! She loved her Sunday lunch of lasagna!

Once all the kids arrived, however, she was less sure of how fun it was going to be. All the big kids running around her was a bit overwhelming.

It rained (and I mean POURED) Sunday night, right after dinner, and she had a fantastic time playing in the rain!

Her Aunt Marty came to camp on Monday and was able to stay until Wednesday morning. We were all so glad to see her!!!!!!!

There is a playground at camp (right beside the Pines) that Nora loved playing on. When she got tired of all the campers trying to pick her up and hug here, we would go and play there for a retreat.

Nora loved the water! On Monday, after the big rain Sunday, she had to change clothes 5 times because every time she found a puddle, she would plop down in it and get soaking wet...she had so much fun!

We went on the Indian Slides hike...Nora did great on the way up, but once her and Matthew started going down, she was not happy! I decided not to go down, being 6 months pregnant and all.

This was Nora main mode of transportation around camp. Our cabin was all the way at the very top of camp, so the stroller came in very handy if we wanted to go swimming, or go to the gym, or go to the craft shed, or get a get the point.

Nora decided to be Miss Independent and feed herself for most meals. This was usually how she looked at the end of them. Oh well, we were at camp!

We were in a cabin with no tub, so it was a shower each evening for our little girl. She seemed to enjoy the water falling down on her head :).

Camp is building a new dining hall!!!!! This is the front of it (it looks out over the softball field). It is so nice inside! We are actually going back to camp on July 14th for the dedication of it.

So, all in all, it was a great week. We were all exhausted when we got home. Yesterday, after church, we all took a nap over 2 hours long...very needed! We made some great memories and are already looking forward to next summer.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Starting our busy summer...

Well, it is looking like our summer is going to be super busy! Today was Matthew's first full day out of school and so far we have been to the first of 2 swim parties for the day. Tomorrow we leave for a fun-filled week at...CAMP TAHKODAH!!!!

We LOVE Camp Tahkodah! It is in our blood. We both started going to camp when we were 8 years old. We met at camp when I was 16 and Matthew was 18 and, 10 years later, we were married there. Matthew was the assistant director for several years and director for a year before we moved to Northwest Arkansas. We haven't been back for an extended stay in 3 summers, so we are looking forward to it. (The picture is from our wedding, I love the reflection off of the water! No, we did not exchange vows on the bridge and then jump in afterwards :), it was just a good photo op. before the actual ceremony began.)

Nora is going with us and I'm sure is going to stay very dirty most of the time. She is going to really enjoy all the dirt, rocks, sticks, and kids! I don't think she will go off of the rope swing this year, but maybe we can toss her off of the bridge :). If nothing else, I am sure she will take super naps!

We will be gone a week (although the session we are going to is a 2-week session, we will only be there the 1st week) and then Matthew will leave for Nashville, TN on the 2oth of June. He will be gone for 18 days! This is the longest that we have ever been apart in our marriage...I'm sad about that! He will going to TN to run a fireworks tent (for those of you in Gallatan, go to his tent to buy your 4th of July explosives). The money is good and with a 2nd baby entering our world soon, we can use it!

While Matthew is gone, Nora and I will be hanging out at home and helping with VBS at our church. The Thursday that VBS is done, we will be heading to Texas to visit my family. It will be nice to go and see them (and to get some help with Nora!). My mom has already scheduled swim lessons for Nora and I am sure we will do many other fun-filled things while we are there.

In July, we will mostly be at home (yea!). We are going to visit Matthew's mom for a few days and start getting organized for a new baby. We will be painting our front bedroom and re-doing the guest bathroom (to make it more "kid" friendly). We hope to be able to do all of our redecorating without giving away the sex of the baby...I think we can do it :).

I leave for my girl's weekend (in Nashville) the last weekend in July (soooooo looking forward to that!) and then when I get home, we are heading to Hattiesburg, MS to see Matthew's dad and going with the Brown family to Orange Beach, AL for a week (soooooooo looking forward to that also!). When we get back from the beach, Matthew starts back to school.

Whew! It is going to be a busy summer, but I'm really looking forward to it (minus the days away from Matthew)! I think Nora will be really fun this summer. She is already loving being outside (she is so tan already) and showing definite interest in our little swimming pool.

I'll update about camp when I return next week. I hope to have a lot of good pictures! Enjoy your week everyone. This picture has nothing to do with is just Nora enjoying her favorite afternoon snack...marshmallows. I know, I'm a horrible mom feeding her such an unhealthy snack, she eats vegetables all the time too! I just think her little grin is cute.

Monday, June 04, 2007

15 month pictures

Nora had her 15 month pictures taken about a week ago...these were two of my favorites:

I can't believe how big she is getting! We are so blessed to be her parents!

You can see them all by clicking here.

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