Friday, October 30, 2009


well, i haven't posted in what feels like forever because there's been a whole lotta sickness around here. started on monday with burrito, then me on wednesday and of course, noodle couldn't be left out on thursday.

and no, we don't have the swine flu. just a 48 hour virus. totally weird.

i feel like a could write an entire book on my thoughts about and struggles with sickness. i just don't like it. but, i am way behind on just about everything else so i'll save that post for a day when i have nothing to do or talk about.

until then, this picture sure makes me smile, even when i am surrounded by sickies.

doesn't it you?

Monday, October 26, 2009

cougar vs. cougar bball

john had an opportunity to play in a basketball game at school on friday. it was coaches vs. players to kick off the basketball season. john is not a coach but i think based on his performance in donkey basketball last year, they knew he would want to play! even though it was noodle's birthday that day, we knew he would love watching dad play basketball. we are a very competitive family and had fun cheering on daddy.

of course, it was a little confusing as to what to cheer. everyone was a cougar! i think we decided on big cougars vs. little cougars but the boys chose to yell, "go johnny!" it was super fun and the game ended in a tie so everyone was happy.

john had a great time and did not even get injured! hooray! i love being connected to a school and always having a team to cheer on. it was really fun! go cougars, big and small!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Noodle's Spiderman Party

i love doing birthday parties for my boys. and i always let them choose the theme. so it is particularly funny to me when they choose a theme that they know nothing about. case in point: spiderman. neither one of my boys have seen a spiderman movie nor have they really watched a spiderman cartoon. yet, this is what noodle wanted for his birthday party. so funny!

so spiderman we did. and we went easy and low maintenance this year. we held the party at a park just down the street from our school. it is a beautiful and clean park with all the necessary elements: a lovely covered pavilion, restrooms, water fountains, and playground equipment, of course!
and i always pride myself on the cake each year but when we saw this at walmart for a steal of a price, i knew i couldn't do better!

but because noodle is not a fan of cakes or cupcakes, but a lover of cookies, we thought this might be a good option. and i still had the opportunity to decorate with icing!

we invited all of noodle's friends from his bible study class on wednesday so it was another time of super sweet fellowship with our friends from church and their parents.

the pinata was a hit and worked out perfectly. all the kids had a chance to pull a string and when it got back to noodle's turn, he pulled the string that released all the candy! and i had extra candy for those too timid for the onslaught of candy grabbing!

it was beautiful weather which was a little bit of a concern with all the rain lately.

in fact, the kids had so much fun that we saved present opening for when we got back home so that they could continue playing on the playground.

all in all, it was a perfect spidey party with great friends! thanks to all who celebrated with us, family and friends!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Happy 4th Birthday Noodle!

i simply cannot believe that my noodle is 4 years old today (he is holding up 4 fingers in the picture, though one is a little bent!). it seems just like yesterday that you shot into this world faster than my epidural could work. we were a little worried about having 2 boys just 18 months apart, but it has been a huge blessing! you and burrito are the best of friends, and i love it.

noodle, though you will always be my baby, you have already grown up into such a great little guy! you are quite the sports buff and could play basketball all day long if only i had the stamina for that! you love books, and it makes our hearts so happy to see you "read" in the car, in your room, or at the library. you are very smart and are determined to keep up with your big brother. where once you clung to my leg, you are now not afraid to meet and make new friends. you love jesus, and you love to sing songs to him in the car. you amaze us with your love for cartoons and games on the ipod. we call you the "game nazi" because you always want to play a game, and you always win! you are true to your hair color and have many "blonde moments" which always keep us laughing. you are notorious for falling and hitting your much so that we've been tempted to change your name from "noodle" to "knothead!" you love to snuggle with mommy and wrestle with daddy.

noodle we love you so much and celebrate with you on your special day!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

back in business

i'm back in business and it feels good.

this time last year john noticed an ad in a local baby magazine advertising a need for stay-at-home moms or retired women to handwrite mailouts for non-profit organizations. the two requirements were good handwriting and the ability to pick up and drop off the mailouts from their place of business...which just happened to be down the street from our house!

it is a great job and paid for our christmas last year. but i hadn't heard from them since january so i assumed with the downturn in the economy, this little business had not survived.

was i surprised to receive a phone call this weekend from them wanting to know if i was interested in doing this job again!

this first job is relatively easy -- a mailout of 500 due back in 2 weeks. last christmas, during their busiest time of the year, i was doing 500 in 4 days! it takes more time than you would think to stamp all these little envelopes, handwrite a personal message, and address and stamp the outside envelope.

and the time has now come for me to do just that.


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

sports for shorties

this past friday was noodle's last sports for shorties class. don't you love that name? so funny. at this last class parents were encouraged to come in and participate. fun, fun.

seriously though, it was fun for me to see noodle in competition mode. he is such a sports lover, and i think quite talented. really. i'm not just saying that because i'm his mother either. he's scrappy like his dad and can throw the ball. and he's a leftie so we're hoping that will make us some money one day! ;)

they did a sampler of several sports over the 8 week class including soccer, football, volleyball, baseball, kickball and basketball. it was great exercise and activity for him, and he loved it!
check out his form for kicking that soccer ball!
here he is trying his hand (or should i say foot) at kickball. and i would like to add, he kicked all 3 shots!

throwing a football....seriously check out his arm. he can really launch one of these things. and the teacher, mrs. adrien, did a great job of talking to the kids about using your whole leg or whole arm when kicking and throwing.

now these are little nerf footballs with what looks like a dart on the end. maybe it helps them fly further, i don't know. but check out this picture. noodle is clearly the shortest and smallest of the class, but he was throwing his football way further than anyone else.

he takes his sports very seriously. as did his dad. and as does his mom sitting in the bleachers.

noodle, i was so proud of your skills and great effort in this class. you were great at sports for shorties!

Monday, October 19, 2009

an october weekend

my favorite weekends this time of year are sunny but cool, full of football and with family. this past weekend was one of those weekends. it seems to have finally stopped raining, a particularly good thing since friday night was our annual school picnic and football game.

the boys had fun with bounce houses, cake walks and face painting. they are a bit famous because all of john's students just love them to death. we cannot walk 10 feet without someone yelling out their names!

saturday was filled with house projects and college football. our clothes dryer has been making a squeeky sound for months now and finally quit working thursday night. so with a little research on the internet, i was able to diagnose the problem, locate the necessary parts and get instructions on how to fix it. john and i completely disassembled the dryer, replace the belt and idler pulley and put it all back together again with success! it is running perfectly, and i think it is even quieter now!

and what's a weekend without a painting project? everyone who knows me makes fun of how often i am painting and repainting a room. and i've been itching to repaint our bedroom. it was a dark brown when we moved in, which was fine for a time, but ended up being a bit too dark for my tastes. so i thought a nice warm yellow would brighten up the space. and brighten it did! too bright and as john grew to like it more, i grew to hate it more. so a few weeks back we finally decided on behr's harbor mist and i absolutely love it! john thinks it looks a little too baby blue. what do you think?

and after busting out that painting project we headed up to my sister's and brother-in-law's house to visit with them and love on my new nephew. he is precious and john couldn't understand why i wouldn't share!

sunday was full of church and fellowship. i am still trying to digest this: my solace (peace) should come from Christ and not from a change in my circumstances. so good, yet i am terrible at resting in the peace that is Christ.

so that's our weekend wrap-up. what are you doing to enjoy this fall weather?

Thursday, October 15, 2009

another noodleism

the other night we were eating dinner....angel hair pasta with zucchini, squash and red bell pepper in a garlic parmesan sauce. cheap, easy and yummy!

i had the boys help me pick out the veggies at the store earlier that day.

so when noodle complained about not liking the onions, i reminded him that they were red bell peppers, not onions. i then asked him if he remembered what the green veggies were called.

he was quiet and you could tell he was thinking real hard. then he exclaimed, "i know mommy! bikinis!"

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

i'm an aunt!

it's now official. i am an aunt!

my sister had her first baby today, a boy, and all are well. he came 9 days early and was actually due on noodle's birthday.

he was born at 11:09 am, weighing in at 7 lbs, 7 oz and 19.5 inches long. he's quite handsome, and we love him already.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

the U2 experience

so i must admit i wasn't overly excited about going to the U2 concert last night. there, i said it. don't hate me. it's just that it takes a lot of work securing a babysitter, preparing the house and kids for a babysitter, driving, finding a parking place among the throngs of people, walking a half mile to the stadium, being smushed in with throngs of beer-drinking people, etc. call me an old woman, but that just doesn't sound all that fun to me. maybe when i was younger.
but i love my husband, and he loves U2, and so i went. and honestly, it was way, way better than what i anticipated. we had a fabulous babysitter (thanks chrystal!), traffic was not bad, parking was a breeze, and i tried to overlook the throngs of people.
(now if i can just get john to wear a hoodie like the edge)

all throughout the concert and even now as i type, i've been trying to formulate a way to describe the U2 experience. bono is a master at what he does. he is a believer and i think he draws people to belief without them even knowing it. it's quite interesting, mysterious and admirable all at the same time. his lyrics are a case in point. if you're a believer then you will recognize the spirituality of his songs. if you're not, you may get it or you may miss it. either way, everyone loves it.

(i thought this pic was so cool with the edge on the screen and then spotlighted below)
bono is a great humanitarian. i don't think anyone would argue that. i appreciated his continued effort to name the injustices in the world and to charge all of us to do something. i thought it was interesting that he thanked former president george w. bush for the work he did to send medicine to the millions of children dying from aids in africa. he did not mention current president obama. and that's all i'll say about that.
he led the entire stadium in amazing grace. amazing.

he spoke of political prisoner aung san suu kyi of burma and the house arrest she has been under for 14 years as a result of her peaceful pro-democracy leadership. this is a pic of her on the screen and then people from the audience on stage with masks of the burmese people.

and of course, he entertained.

he asked what the audience thought of the spaceship stage with which they were touring. then he made a comment about the cowboys spaceship we were in...a remarkable structure. as was bono's stage. (i like bono's spaceship more)

and let me just say i like bono's video screen way more than jerry's huge screen for the games. i mean, bono's screen moves and morphs into different shapes! jerry's monitor just sits there! :)

my thanks to you bono, the edge, larry and adam for an amazing show. i would almost call it a spiritual experience. you far exceeded my expectations. and thank you jesus for giving us something to sing about.
get on your boots
mysterious ways
still haven't found what i'm looking for
stuck in a moment
no line on the horizon
until the end of the world
unforgettable fire
city of blinding lights
i'll go crazy remix
sunday bloody sunday
walk on
where the streets have no name
with or without you
moment of surrender

Monday, October 12, 2009

what a day!

it began with a parent/teacher conference at 8am: burrito's teacher had nothing but wonderful things to say. thank you jesus.

then to the mundane chores of monday: grocery shopping, vacuuming, cleaning bathrooms, entertaining children.

a surprise email: john passed his comprehensives! surprised to have received the results so quickly, not surprised that he passed!

and tonight: a date out with my husband and bono! we're headed to the U2 concert. along with 50 jillion other people. should be interesting.

what a day indeed...

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Not What My Hands Have Done

i don't know about you but i struggle sometimes. i struggle with believing the right things, self condemnation, sin, etc. the list could go on and on.

i am a little paranoid. i like to check to make sure i've turned off the straight iron one last time before leaving the house. i double and triple check the doors to make sure they're locked.

i am a germaphobe. hand sanitizer is my friend. a good friend.

i wonder if i am messing up my kids with all my idiosyncrasies.

but my main struggles are anxiety and unbelief. i think they seem big to me because they encapsulate so many other struggles. i don't really believe that God is big enough to take care of me and those i love. i don't really believe that all things work together for good. and because i don't really believe those things, i then think that God is going to punish me for not believing. it is a terrible spiral that can easily spin out of control rather quickly.

His Word is the one thing that can point me back in the right direction. this is His Word for me. for my messed up heart. i need it more than i recognize.

and sometimes music can point me in the right direction too. we sang this song in church today and i highlighted the part that jumped off of the bulletin, headed straight for my heart.

Not what my hands have done
Can save my guilty soul;
Not what my toiling flesh has borne
Can make my spirit whole.
Not what I feel or do
Can give me peace with God;
Not all my prayers and sighs and tears
Can bear my awful load.

Thy work alone, O Christ,
Can ease this weight of sin
Thy blood alone O Lamb of God
Can give me peace within.
Thy love to me O God,
Not mine O Lord, to Thee
Can rid me of this dark unrest
And set my spirit free!

Thy grace alone, O God,
To me can pardon speak;
Thy power alone O Son of God,
Can this sore bondage break.
No other work save Thine,
No other blood will do,
No strength save that, which is divine,
Can bear me safely through.

I bless the Christ of God;
I rest on love divine;
And with unfaltering lip and heart,
I call this Savior mine.
His cross dispels each doubt,
I bury in His tomb
My unbelief, and all my fear,
Each lingering shade of gloom.

I praise the God of grace,
I trust His truth and might,
He calls me His, I call Him mine,
My God, my joy, my light.
'Tis He Who saveth me
And freely pardon gives
I love because He loveth me,
I live because He lives!

(Words by Horatius Bonar; Music by Kevin Twit, copyright 2001 Kevin Twit Music)

sometimes when i sing these songs i get distracted by the music and don't really meditate on the words. that is one of the reasons i like to share hymns or songs from church here. reading the words can be such an encouragement to my heart, and i hope to yours.

so when i am anxious this week, i will remember my unbelief and fears are buried in His tomb. that is where they should be, not in my heart. in His tomb.

thank you Jesus.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

when i'm a daddy...

conversation in the car today:

john: burrito will you let me be the daddy (after the one millionth time burrito chimed in with his two cents after john corrected noodle)? when you're a daddy you can talk to your son like that. but you are not noodle's daddy. i am.

burrito: well...when i'm a daddy i'm going to buy my kids donuts every day. lots of donuts. every day.

john: when you're a daddy you will understand why buying donuts for your kids every day is not a good idea.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

preschool days

don't you just love that ridiculous face??? despite the fake smile, noodle was quite excited about going to preschool and wearing a backpack and getting to experience a slice of what his older brother does every day.

i taught preschool a few years ago when the boys were 3 and 1 so noodle doesn't have much memory of it. and that's probably a good thing since most of those days began with a lot of crying and clinging to mommy.

oh what a difference a few years make! i am now subbing when needed at that same preschool and noodle just loves it! the day i actually taught in his class, the bible story was saul's encounter with Christ on the damascus road when he lost his sight. to emphasize the story, we made these eyes out of cookies and fruit. so fun! (for some reason, i couldn't get the picture to flip right)

today was another day at preschool and he loved seeing his buddies again. and i love seeing my boys so happy.