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Sunday, May 20, 2012

Maddie + Volleyball

This is Maddie's third season playing volleyball.

I am her team's coach. 

You will hear both Katie & Maddie complain about me being the coach sometimes.... (Katie no longer plays on the team.. she is too old for this group!) -- but secretly Maddie sometimes tells me she likes me being the coach. 

Here is Maddie's volleyball picture for this season!  Yes, all girls are wearing those fancy awesome knee socks!


Saturday, May 19, 2012

Maddie's dolphin diorama

A few weeks ago Maddie comes home w/ a set of papers and instructions on making a project of an animal in their habitat.  She picked bottlenose dolphins... naturally.  She does want to become a marine biologist when she grows up, and she is in LOVE w/ these creatures!!

So, she decides to do a diorama.  With a LOT of help from her momma... this is what it looked like after it was done.  :)



She even included Winter!! 

 .... and we got a 100 on the project!  Way to go Maddie Lou!  (and Momma!)

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Another cabin post....

Mike went up to the cabin last weekend, to finish up the ... darn it.... I keep forgetting what it is he did.  I know it starts w/ an S.  I don't know why it's SO  hard to remember this word.  Stirfry? Stucco?  Sheathing?

Ugh.  It'll come to me.

Anyways, he finished one side when the girls & I were with him, and he finished the electrical inside the cabin and the other side (whatever the S word is...).  He took along his friend Justin, and he put Justin to work painting.

Now.... we had two shades of greens picked out.  We decided to go with a mossy color of green.

He said once it was placed on it in large areas, it just didn't look good.  Both Mike & Justin agreed that it looked awful.  So, they went w/ the dark forest green, and he said it looks MUCH better.

I think so too... even though I didn't think so the first time.


He also attached motion detector lights on the walls. 


Yep.. it definitely looks like a cabin now!!


As for what that S word is... I'll have to come back and update it when Mike tells me.  I can't believe it's a word that I keep forgetting over & over again all through this process!!!

Later this year, the porch will probably get started, then we'll add a top to the porch.  :)

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Just ramblings.....

Maddie cleaned the kitchen for me all weekend.  Without asking.  Emptying the dishwasher AND loading it.  Be still my heart.  I hope it continues!

You know you've come a long way in exercising when you can do over 20 push ups without stopping, and most importantly... you no longer pee your pants a little when you are doing the jumping jacks.  Win!!

Katie was really nice to me on Mother's Day!  She didn't even roll her eyes ONE TIME during sacrament!  That's an improvement!  Or rather... was it because it was Mother's Day?

I did have to tell my one *cough* child that mood swings were not allowed on Mother's Day.  Didn't she know that??

A little girl in Primary was explaining that a good chore that she can do for her Mom for Mother's Day was to stay in bed when it's bedtime.  I love it! 

I think I'm falling in love w/ the Fiesta brand of dishes.  I love the idea of having all different colors of plates on my table.  Lime green ... red... orange... yellow.....  love it.  I have 5 bowls, 1 salad plate and 1 dinner plate already.  I'm working on it.  One dish at a time.

....they're only $50 a place setting at Macy's.  Or if you wait, sometimes you can get two place settings for $50.  Y'know.. buy one and get one free?

I finally hopped back on my elliptical yesterday morning.  Turns out the reason why it wouldn't work was because the batteries were dead.  Hmmm..... I could've sworn the batteries were brand new.

Katie made color guard!!!  Am I excited about this?  Am I excited that she now has no life with us, and will be dancing at every single football game this fall??  Am I excited she's about to become a FRESHMAN in .... 15 days?  No.  I propose that all children have to start growing younger, y'know....  backwards in order to prevent them from growing up.  This growing up business has to stop.  Anyone sustain that proposition?  Anyone?

Maddie is also now a safety patrol girl.  She is ecstatic.  I was a safety patrol girl when I was in 6th grade!  I loved it.

We've been getting a LOT of rain here in San Antonio.  It's been greatly needed, especially if we have a super hot, dry summer this year.  The sound of rain has been so peaceful sounding.  Mike came home for lunch while it was still rainingthis afternoon, and I told him that I loved the sound of rain hitting the roof.  He told me I was hearing the dryer.  Oh well... close enough.

and one final note... Mike went to the cabin last weekend and made a very important decision without me.  He changed the color we decided on for the trim around the cabin.  He said the original color looked like puke.  He went with the darker forest green... pictures to come soon!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Fresh Eggs...

Last week I visited a friend's house to pick a few things up.  Before I left, she gave me some fresh eggs from her chickens!  I've never had fresh eggs before!


But, I do have to say, they are beautiful.  I love all the colors.  Light green.  Brown.  Light brown.  Cream. 


I love all the sizes.  Little sizes.  Big sizes.  Medium sizes.


They do need to be cleaned though.  I was told not to wash them until we were ready to eat them.  There is a protective coat on each of the egg.


Who knew fresh eggs could be so beautiful?


Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Maddie's Poem "The Battle of the Alamo"


As everyone knows... we live in San Antonio.  Home of the Alamo.  So naturally, the schools teach a lot about the Alamo to the kids, and we take field trips to the Alamo!!!

Maddie is finishing up a section of history in her class, and had to write a poem on the Alamo.  (mistakes and all...)  Her teacher wrote:  "100! Nice poem!"  I thought it was pretty well written myself!  Way to go Maddie Lou!

The Battle of the Alamo
by Maddie N.

Here my cries
Here my thoughts
As I shout out to the people

While Santa Anna was riding, I was fighting
Soldeiers charging, running, shouting, rifles firing

While mothers are keeping their children safe, soldiers fight to the death

The Mexican had many soldiers and we were no match for them

While cannons were firing, pounding, smoke and the fire fill the air

When smoke cleared away, we saw soldiers everywhere on the ground

When we visit the Alamo, we get teary
But when we think about them, we remember how they fought

Friday, May 4, 2012

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner!

Congratulations to #36 ....

Julie said...
like waterpik on fb Julie AScott Laws

Julie -- I will be sending you an email!! : )

Thank you everyone for participating!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

it's the little things you say that matters

This morning I was sitting down at the table with Maddie eating breakfast. 

I simply said "how's life?"

She said "fine."

It brought me back to my high school years when my dad and I were the ones in the family up super early for work and school.  High school at that time started at 7:25 in the morning for me, and dad had a long drive to work.  Every morning when I would sleepily walk into the kitchen, my dad is sitting down at the table reading the paper and eating cereal.  I pour myself a bowl of Grape Nuts and I sit down next to him.  No words being spoken, he hands me the Life section of the Kansas City Star.

After a few minutes, he says "how's life?"

I always answered "good"  and then go back to reading the paper and eating my cereal. 
 I don't talk in the morning.

I could count on that conversation every single day for years -- they were two little words, but they sure meant a lot to me.  The words "how's life" to me said "How's it going?  I love you!  Is there anything you want to share with me?  Anything you need to tell me? I'm here for you!"  My dad didn't say all those words, but just a simple "how's life?"

I was thinking this morning after driving home from my exercise class... the little things that I say to my girls.  Will they remember years from now, how every morning since they started school I always said "Do your best!  Make good choices!  and remember I love you!!" as they walked out the door to school?  Or will they remember "pick up your mess!"  "your bathroom is a disaster!" "tell your sister you're sorry!" or "unload the dishwasher!" and some of those other horrible things that moms might say when we lose our temper?

Will they remember that before bed we would have a conversation that alternates between them & I that starts with:

Good Night!
Sleep Tight!
Don't let the bedbugs bite!
If they do you bite them back!
I Love You!
Sweet Dreams!

My mom used to always say that to me when I was a little girl.

It humors me when I read "my mom/dad/grandma/grandpa always said .... ______" and it would be some ridiculous sounding phrase like "the early bird catches the worm" or "keep a nickel between your knees" that makes you really think about what they said and try to figure it out.  I can't recall if my grandparents ever had a saying that would puzzle me.   Sure I remember my grandma saying "do you need to warsh your clothes?" instead of "wash."  I would always answer "I don't warsh my clothes .. I WASH them".  I sure was a smart aleck.  Or even saying "afAghan" instead of "afghan".  That drives me nuts.  I say it "afghan" ... Mike says "afaghan" 

My mom always sang "You are my Sunshine" to my girls when they were little.  I asked them the other day "what was the song Grandma used to sing to you?" ... and they started singing it.   

Then they were clueless when I asked them if there was anything I used to say, sing or do that they remember from when they were little.  Nothing. Nada.  But they remember Grandma's songs!  She had a lot of silly songs... "How much is that doggy in the window" was another favorite of theirs early in their life b/c they barked like dogs.

That being said ... it IS the little things that you say that matters the most. 

I talked to my dad a few days ago.  Guess what I asked him? 
"How's life?"

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

We went to the cabin... Again! Part 2

While we were at the cabin this past weekend, Mike's friend Shaun told me what poison oak looks like.  This is VERY important to me to know .. b/c Mike, Maddie & I have had rashes from the property and we have NO clue what we got into.  Thankfully we have a system down if we do get these rashes, and Maddie's last rash went away after a week or so.  Whew!

So Shaun walked me through our trail behind our house -- and I now know what to avoid!  I walked the girls through the trail as well, and they are in the know as well!  Mike went around the trail and sprayed weed killer on all the weeds and other things -- b/c our beautiful trail we worked SO hard on, managed to get overgrown again in a matter of a month of weeds.


Meanwhile, at Shaun's property, he planted a lot of different types of fruit trees:  peaches, pear & apples.  His peach tree is already showing some babies!!


However. ... this next "fruit" is not a baby of mine.  This is a grapevine... and those babies are grapes.  Now, I'm not sure what type of grapes they are -- but the general rule is if the birds don't eat them, chances are they're poisonous.  But, this is what grapes generally look like in the beginning!  I have grapevines growing ALL over the property.  They are a menace!!!

We made hamburgers for dinner one night, and followed up with a S'mores dessert!  Maddie took her place as the "one who prepares the s'mores" -- while Katie and Madison labored over the fire with the marshmallows.  Our favorite candy to use so far is the peanut butter cups.  Yumm!



and finally we all sat down and enjoyed the pleasant weather -- while Shaun & the girls tossed a football around.  I started watching Madison catch the ball -- and boy oh boy is she quite the catcher!  she had so many awesome catches (or near attempts to catch!) -- that I shot quite a few pictures of her creativity!! 


Here is my favorite of all...

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Went to the cabin... again

Last weekend we had a three day weekend (hello Fiesta!) -- so we took the girls plus Katie's BFF Madison to the cabin.  When we left a month ago from spring break, the green leaves were just starting to bloom on the trees.  When we woke up Friday morning, there was a forest before my eyes!!!  Right next to the cabin was a lovely ... grapevine starting to grow.   These grapevines irritate me to no ends, b/c they wrap themselves around all the trees and continue growing.  It's a pain to get rid of (but lots of fun to try to pull it down!) -- so when I spotted new grapevines coming out of the ground, I pulled them immediately.


Decisions... decisions!

Mike went up to the cabin a few weeks ago and placed a coat of stain on the cabin.  He doesn't want me to show spoiler pictures yet -- as he wants to unveil it at the right time.  But, after we arrived for the weekend, I told him I wasn't feeling the light yellow we placed at the bottom of the cabin (the stain turned out to be a LOT darker than we thought!).  He agreed -- and so we took a trip to Lowe's to find a different color.  We decided on a green -- and had samples made of two different shades.  One is a type of mossy green, and the other is a dark forest green.  The pictures do not do it justice at all... but we are going with picture #1 (the mossy green). 



We Ride ATV's
One of the things the girls absolutely love at the cabin is riding the four wheelers.  However, since the soil is mostly sand ... they get dust and dirt ALL over the place when they drive past the cabin.  So, Mike has a sprinkler going when they drive (and at other times so we can get grass growing) so the sand/dirt isn't kicked up as badly.  The girls are getting a bonus water park fun while ATV'ing!



I got behind Maddie and rode on a neighbor's property full of beautiful trails. 
I snapped this one of Katie & Madison driving around.

This weekend was Madison's first time on a four wheeler.  Imagine my laughter when they stopped for a second, and I asked Madison "uh.. can you see?"  She said "nope" and readjusted her helmet!



Trimming Trees

Another thing we do while at the property is trimming trees or bushes.  Since spring was showing its lovely beauty -- we had lots of new branches sprouting everywhere in places we had previously trimmed, so we set about cleaning up those trees.  Again!


Katie & Madison went to work trimming and cleaning up trees for us. 
We always wear long sleeves to do this job.  Always. 
We learned the hard way when we come home full of rashes ...
so even though we may sweat a lot more, our arms are protected!


I made things a lot easier for them and hooked up a cart behind the four wheeler so I could just tow the branches back to the fire pit.  Before this system, we had to walk the branches ALL the way down the property.  The work is NEVER done.  Ever. 
You will hear the whining in my girls' voice when I announce it's time to trim.  "ohhhh Mom!"


While Katie, Madison & I were working on that, Maddie was helping Mike build a picnic table! 
We didn't have a table inside, so we normally eat w/ our plates in our lap. 
It was so nice to be able to sit down to a table and eat! 



If at first you can't get the nails out....

then place the board on the ground and figure out another way...


Ta-Da!!  It is slightly a little bigger and taller than a normal picnic table --
none of our feet touches the ground when we sit at the table!  :)
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