Saturday, July 31, 2010

gone golfing

while i went in for a little job training at my new job yesterday, the boys took full advantage of their time with dad and went to the driving range.  while we have lots of plastic clubs, drivers, and putters at home and have put in many hours of perfecting our swing, this was the first time the boys went to a real driving range and used "real" clubs.

many moons ago when john was teaching in fort worth, he also had the privilege of being a golf coach (read: lots of reasons to go to the golf course!).  a generous donor gave him a box full of clubs that had been cut down for kids and those clubs now reside in our attic, just waiting for the day when our boys would be old enough to use them.

i hated to miss this "first," but i know the boys enjoyed doing their golf thing without mom/wife around!
my job training went well, and i was able to conjure up skills i haven't used in 5 years.  i am looking forward to new relationships there and making a little extra money!  i'm going to need some extra money if there's going to be three golfers in this family!

Thursday, July 29, 2010


we've had a few changes around here this week. 

the first change is one that we've been anticipating for 3 years!  thanks to the Lord's provision, we were able to replace our super gross (gross not from us but from the previous owners of this home) carpet this week.  we knew from the minute we moved in that we wanted to change the carpets. there were paint spots and stains that did not come out when we had the carpet cleaned before moving in, not to mention the previous owners had a large dog that was allowed inside.  fortunately we only have carpet in our 3 bedrooms, but carpet can be expensive, and required a chunk of change we just didn't have when we first moved in.  we started saving then but all those dang surprise expenses that crop up kept eating away at our savings, particularly my surprise surgery back in january.

nonetheless, through the Lord's provision, we were able to order carpet a couple of weeks ago.  i won't bore you with the details, but the ordering and installation came with it's own drama and headaches, which eventually led to (after many, many phone calls and lots of patience) the company upgrading our carpet at no further expense to us!  it was installed on tuesday and i'm not sure who was more excited, the boys or us!

here's burrito with the big reveal (and it wasn't even done yet!):
and i know the next 3 pictures will be totally boring but i know our family wants to see what the new carpet looks like in each room, so these pics are for them!
and here's a close up of the carpet.  i'm hoping you don't think it looks like 70's yellow shag carpet!
and for the other big change of the week....drum roll please....


and who doesn't love a before and after shot!  so here's the before (front view and back view):
i'm a little embarrassed to share these because their hair is SO long but we were waiting until the very end of summer so that the haircuts would be fresh for school.  makes sense, right?  just shake your head yes!

and here's the after!  we love the haircuts and can't believe the difference on noodle!  they both look so handsome and so grown up. 
right now that song "time is slipping away" is playing in my head.  i'm so emotional about this growing up thing!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


i'm learning to embrace my now naturally wavy/curly hair.  i've always had super straight, baby fine, limp hair.  but something happened after i had noodle.  my hair went curly, frizzy and unmanageable.  i quickly ran out and bought a straight iron.  i just didn't know what else to do.  that is, until this past week when i discoved some hair gel that actually works for my hair.  i just wash it, squish some gel in my hair, and go.  it's so liberating!  i'm totally excited about having low maintenance hair!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

art project on the cheap

we rearranged the boys' bedroom a few weeks ago (john really loves it when i do this!) and we created a rather blank wall in the process.  i knew a trip to hobby lobby was in our future!

we bought 4 art canvases, some white, orange and blue paint, and a bag of assorted paintbrushes. 

i prepped the canvases by painting them a neutral tan color.
then i gave the boys complete freedom to paint whatever they wanted.  they both chose to do a swirly picture and a picture of circles created by dipping a cup into paint and then pressing it on the canvases.
i failed to take a picture while they were actually painting (and any mother of boys knows why!), but they were quite proud to show off their art work.
as burrito was painting his swirly picture he said, "this is called abstract art.  i learned that from martha (the show on pbs called martha speaks)."  it totally shocked and amazed me.  i knew i loved that show for a reason, ha!

when we finish updating a few more things in their room, i'll take a picture of how they look in their room.  i was quite proud of their artistic endeavors!

Monday, July 26, 2010

simple summer pleasures

storytime at our local library.  truthfully, this had me a little emotional thinking about how the boys were 3 and 1 when we first started attending this.  our storytelling librarian is quite remarkable.  she is definitely gifted to do what she does, and the kids love her!
lots of riding gators and bikes.  before 9 am in the morning so that we don't burn up!  burrito discovered that he can stand and pedal at the same time.
the big exciting news of the week was the fact that our street is being repaved, and the big work trucks came down the street to remove the edges of the road.  you can see the grated street in this picture.  it made for even more exciting riding!
i love noodle's hair blowing in the wind as he rides.  we go for a haircut on thursday and if i don't chicken out, he won't have hair to blow in the wind much longer!

i love these boys!
eating ice cream at braum's.  i love braum's!  i am glad they have survived and are still around.  eating ice cream is about the only good thing to do (besides swim, but we've exhausted that one!) during the hot afternoons!
i've been enjoying these sweet moments with my boys (in between all the ugly moments of too much together-ness) and the Lord gave me a sweet gift this past week...their school has been delayed a week (there's a new building being built and they need one extra week to finish) so i get one more week with them before school interrupts our together time!  thank you Jesus!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

dear mr. sentimentality

dear mr. sentimentality,

you are making my life rather difficult these days.  while i appreciate the ways you help me to value things from the past (like my grandmother's dining table that now resides in our home) and appreciate things in the moment (like many moments on our recent trip to the beach), you have made me exceedingly weepy as of late in terms of seasons of life.

i know i should be thankful for the Lord's provision in blessing me with a job that seems to work perfectly with our family and schedule, and i am.  and i am thankful for a smooth interview and getting word that the job was mine a few days later.  i am thankful to be able to work for a pediatric dentist that is a believer and is willing to allow me to work only when both burrito and noodle are in school.  i am thankful that the dental office is close and i won't have a long commute.  i am thankful for the opportunity and ability to help ease the financial burden that has been on john for the past 6 years.  i am thankful for the chance to expand my circle of friends and get to know new people.  i am thankful (mostly!) for the ways i know the Lord will use this new season of life to stretch me, teach me and make me trust Him more.

but mr. sentimentality, you are ruining my ability to focus on the good things that this new season of life brings because i am SO SAD to be leaving the season i have known and LOVED for the past 6 years.  this past week with john teaching latin camp has afforded me the time to just be with my boys and enjoy simple pleasures.  we've been going out early (before it hits 100 degrees!) and riding the gators.  we went to the library for storytime and to check out a bulging bag of books.  we've built secret hideouts, we've read lots of books, and we've done art projects.  all the things we've done for the past SIX years. 

how i have loved these times, and i keep telling myself that a new season will bring new rituals and new memories but my heart just can't believe that just yet. 

so all my friends who are moms of little ones the saying i heard so often then i now know to be true:

the days may seem long but the years seem so short.

treasure the days.  treasure the years.  treasure the seasons.  Lord teach me to appreciate them all and move from one to the other gracefully.

Friday, July 16, 2010

the one millionth and one reason i love my husband

without getting all mushy on you, i'll get straight to the point.  i love my husband for lots of reasons and this is just one, fine example.

a few weeks back, the boys heard about the story of the man who built his house on the sand vs. the man who built his house on the rock in children's church.  they came home talking all about it and even singing a little song they had learned. 

here's the story:

Matthew 7:24-29

"Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.  The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.  But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand.  The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash."  When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at his teaching, because he taught as one who had authority, and not as their teachers of the law.

my infinitely wise husband recognized a great teaching opportunity that truly captured burrito's and noodle's attention.  while we were at the beach, john built a little sand castle right on the edge of the waves.  he reminded the boys of this story and literally showed them what these words meant.  you'll note the big house to the right that is built on a foundation of "rock" and then the smaller house on the left built directly on the sand.
here's a closer look.  the house on the sand survived for a bit, as the waves crept closer and closer to it.
and just when we thought the little house on the sand would survive, a big wave came and literally washed it away.
i'll never forget the look on their faces as the bible came alive to them in that moment.  and i'll never forget the sense of gratitude that welled up in my heart to God for this gift of my family.

may we be like the wise man and build our house on THE ROCK and not like the foolish man who built his house on the sand.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

beach vacation 2010: day 4

once again, we were up early and on the road on day 4 of our beach vacation.  the destination this time: san antonio!

i wanted to squeeze in a few more adventures so we decided to head a little out of our way and drive to san antonio.  it has been a few years since john and i have visited and the boys have never been so i thought it would be fun to take them to the riverwalk and ride the riverboats there.
they did not seem to impressed with the boatride, partly due to the uncomfortable humidity and partly due to the fact that we were already so tired from our previous adventures.  when we asked them what they thought about it afterwards they both said they really liked it but you wouldn't have guessed that if you had been there!  we walked around the mall a little bit and then headed for some lunch.  our tummies were hungry and craving some mexican food! 

we were so happy when we saw this place off the highway!
the food was delicious (of course!) and gave us some much needed energy to continue on our trip.  so much so that we decided to act crazy and take these fun pictures just outside of chuy's.
you don't want to cross their path in a dark alley at night! do you?
nonna, the boys specifically told me to put these pics of elvis on the blog for you because they thought you would appreciate a pink elvis!
after chuys, we made like this jet plane and cruised home.  it was a long day but a great trip full of wonderful, fun memories!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

beach vacation 2010: day 3

well, our prayers were answered because we woke up to the sun shining and the rain departing!

i'm not sure who was more excited about going back to the beach, us or the boys!  we quickly ate breakfast, packed a picnic lunch, gathered our beach gear and headed out.  we were there by 9:30 am and only a few people were there.

i talked everyone into these cheesy photo ops.  why is it that beachy towns think you can only decorate in beachy themes and use the same beachy colors?  nonetheless, i wanted to take these pics.
the beach on this day was very different than the beach on our first day there.  on wednesday, the sand was dry and warm, the ocean was gentle and calm.  on friday, the beach was covered in water and seaweed and the ocean was crazy! 

it was quite windy and with the rain from the day before, the tide was higher.  john and i didn't know how this would affect the quality of our time there, but it ended up being great!  the boys loved this new experience of having to jump over the waves as they rolled in, and noodle still talks about how much he loved wearing his life jacket way out in the ocean and letting the waves push him toward the shore.
the boys each had a glass jar to collect beach sand, ocean water and seashells.  they took this job rather seriously and we brought back a nice collection of all 3!
we set up camp on a little dry patch of sand.  i was deeply engrossed in a book and it was so fun to sit and watch my men play in the ocean while i sat in the sun and read.  john entertained the boys this day by pretending to be a sea monster, building a rather impressive sand fort and letting the boys bury him in the sand.
we had packed a snack and lunch so we were able to stay until around 1:00.  despite my best efforts to protect everyone from the sun (we applied and reapplied our spf 50 sunscreen) we all came away with a sunburn on our faces. 
because we rarely get to swim in a big swimming pool, the boys and i braved the mosquitoes and swam at the condo's pool for about 30 minutes when we got back from the beach.  john headed up for a shower to avoid more sun exposure.  the boys had bought these big water squirters while we were shopping in corpus christi the day before, so we had fun shooting each other with those, and i had my chance to play shark with them in the pool.

in the picture above, you can see the views we had of the ocean.  john and i loved sitting in bed at night after the boys fell asleep and listening to the waves crash along the shore.

we had lots of fun but we were exhausted from all that activity.  after getting everyone showered, we had some rest time and then decided to drive to portland to eat at chili's for dinner.  we grabbed some aloe vera on the way back, washed the salt water off the car, and filled up the gas tank to prepare for our drive back home the next day.

but we weren't headed straight home...we had a few more adventures planned.