Sunday, May 31, 2009

Locks of Love

This past Saturday, Brenna finally decided to go through with her BIG haircut! We have been talking about donating her hair to Locks of Love for some time now. The last 4-5 times we went to get it done, she chickened out. One of her fears was that no one would recognize her. Brenna's long locks have been part of what has made her Brenna. I reminded her that everyone would notice if she cut off all of her hair. She was still not convinced. But I think after suffering through me brushing her hair and being in tears from the pain she has had to endure from those brushings, she finally cried "uncle".

So Saturday, Brenna and I loaded up in the car and headed to the mall. Normally I don't try to spend a lot of money on haircuts. Brenna usually just needs a trim and Avery's style is not included in my skill level of Cosmetology. But this day was special. After making some phone calls I found out that Snip-It's (Hair salon for kids) participated in the Locks of Love program and would make sure we got the length right and they take care of shipping the hair to Locks of Love. Brenna had a very lovely stylist named Rhonda. Rhonda ended up getting TWO ponytails out of Brenna's thick hair. That was very exciting and made Brenna feel really good about her decision.

I have to say, after the ponytails were cut and Rhonda laid them on the counter while she completed Brenna's haircut, I could not help but think that I was like a body part laying there. It is not my goal to be gross or morbid here, but I could not get that thought out of my head. Brenna's hair was such a part of her and now it was detached and laying there on the counter. Weird, I know.
I promised Brenna that I would not post her final picture until after our Family Reunion this weekend. You just have to wait. Did she keep it long or go even shorter? Is it straight or curly? Check back next Sunday to find out!

Friday, April 24, 2009

In The Clear?

I thought after all of the chaos of the last few weeks, things would clear up and not be so hectic. They did clear up...for a little while.

Brenna enjoyed her Girl Scout Daisy Tea Party. The girls rotated around stations of having their nails and hair done, making a craft, and a snack and even earning one of their petals. After the rotations were done, they sat down for their Tea. Everyone enjoyed some pink lemonade, tea sandwiches and cookies all served on Rose Depression Glass. During their tea they discussed using their manners while at the table and phone etiquette. I think the best part for the girls was being served by the Brownies.

This lovely storm greeted us on our way home from visiting my Dad in Montgomery. Not long after this picture was taken, we were showered with marble-sized hail. It was very loud and scared the kids worse than going through one of those gas station car washes. We were fortunate not to have had any damage.

On some much nicer days, the kids and I enjoyed some time outside. Lily was eating her snack and coloring with some sidewalk chalk. Avery and Brenna shredded some leaves in the back tire of Brenna's bike. Brenna actually came up with the idea when her bike was stuck with the back tire off of the ground. I never understood the point, but it sure did keep the kids busy for a while.

We were also able to sneak in a quick trip to Galveston. We stopped in to eat at our favorite new place to eat called The Spot. It's right on the seawall, the prices are good and so is the food. The island is coming back to life slowly, but surely. They have replaced a good part of the beach along the seawall and many places have reopened. There is still a lot of work to be done. Some of the same piles we saw in December were still there in March. I admire the spirit of those who are rebuilding and will stay on the island to insure the island will return to the way it was before Ike.
We began our planning for Easter and had every one's clothes ready, the eggs and baskets were ready to go and then came Good Friday. I began having some pain in a tooth that had cracked and broken over a year ago. I never had the tooth looked at because the break was not horrible and I was not in any pain, until Good Friday. By mid afternoon, I was in severe pain. The dentist's office closed at 2:00 and the on-call doctor would not go anything for me. We went to the Good Friday service at church and then let the kids go hunt eggs with some friends. I was able to bum some pain medication from my dear friend and waited until Monday to see the dentist. After seeing the dentist, I learned that all of my pain was due to an infection in my tooth that would require a root canal, but not before the infection was cured. The soonest I could get my root canal was one week later. I spent the week on the couch with pain medication. I told several people I would gladly endure labor again if it meant I did not have this pain in my tooth.
This last Tuesday I had my first root canal. Not fun, but no more pain! This Sunday, we will finally have the Easter celebration with our family that we missed. In the clear? I don't know. We'll see for how long!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

One step forward, two steps back.

Saturday is my cousin Jessica's baby shower. It's her first baby and she's had a really rough go of it. Nothing has been easy, but the end is drawing near for her to meet her precious gift from God. Her very dear friend planned the shower for her and asked me to make her cake. I was so excited to participate since I was not able to throw the shower myself.

Then there was last night. Brenna woke up in the middle of the night fighting to breathe. It was an easy diagnosis, croup. I've had experience with croup with Cooper at age 3. It was very scary for him since he was so little. The best thing about an older child having croup is their ability to calm down and not make the situation worse by panicking or crying. I was able to give Brenna some Motrin for her fever and some water and she was able to sleep the rest of the night rather well.

She didn't sound much better this morning, so we went to the doctor. To my shock and disbelief, she also has bronchitis and possibly pneumonia! I've never seen any of my babies get this sick so quickly. She went to school yesterday and really didn't start feeling bad until dinner time.

After a day of running around in the rain and cold from the doctor, to get an x-ray, prescriptions, and Cooper from school. We are finally in our warm home.

I'm sad that I'll miss my cousin's baby shower and I'll miss seeing my Grandmother and Aunts. I'm sad that my baby girl is so sick. I'm sad that I won't be able to make the cake I promised. However, I'm so happy that my family understands my situation and would never get upset with me for not coming. I'm happy that God has provided the provisions to care for Brenna and the resources to make her fell better.

My blog update may take a little longer that I had planned, but it will get there, eventually.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Life Interrupted

You know you need to post on your blog when you husband sends you and e-mail from work telling you how much he misses checking in on it from time to time. My last post, as you can see, was in the middle of December. Since my last post, the following events have transpired:
Check Spelling
Lily's mom attempted to remove her from our home
Several extra activities
Computer Meltdowns
and basic uneventful, non-documented nothingness.

With all of that said, one of my duties today is to start blogging again. I will post yet another "summary" post of events over the last few months and hopefully not wait another 3 months before I post again.

Stay tuned!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Economics Fair

Thursday, Avery participated in the Economics Fair at her school. The students had to think of and item or service to sell, decide on the cost and how much to make and sell them to the students and faculty. During the last few weeks, the students earned "money" to spend at the fair.

Avery chose to make Oreo Balls. We made some of these for Thanksgiving and they were a huge hit. Here is what you need:
1 package Oreos or other cream filled cookie
1 8 oz. package cream cheese for each package of cookies
melting chocolate for coating

Break cookies into a food processer.

Turn on food processor and mix until cookies are ground into fine pieces.

Here is what it should look like. Similar to coffee grounds.

Cut cream cheese into small pieces and add to cookie crumbs. We made two batches using 2 packages of Oreo cookies and 2 packages of cream cheese.

Mix cream cheese and cookie crumbs together. You probably could use a Kitchen Aid mixer to do this step, but I didn't feel like getting mine dirty. Besides, Avery had fun mixing it by hand. I reccomend using latex gloves (you can find them in the baking isle at Michaels and Hobby Lobby). The Oreos leave your fingernails looking like you've been gardening instead of making candy. Make sure you mix this well until there are no longer any loose crumbs.

**CAUTION** What you see here is not any type of animal droppings!! If you choose to play a joke on someone using the Oreo/cream cheese mixture, by all means do. Just make sure you get it on video and send it to me!
Roll the cookie crumb/cream cheese mixture into balls. You decide the size, but let me warn you, if you get them too small people will think you have adopted either a deer or rabbit as a pet and have failed to house train them! I know.....GROSS!!
Let's move on...
That is if I have not grossed you out completely yet...
I'm in a playful mood...
I'm loosing control of what this post is supposed to be about...
Back to the balls...
After you have all of the "dough" made into balls. Refrigerate them until firm. You can also put them in the freezer.
We let ours chill for about 30 minutes and then dipped them into melted white chocolate. You can use milk chocolate too. Wilton even has a peanut butter one that I'm using next time. Be sure not to let them sit in the chocoate too long. The warm chocoate will melt the balls slightly and cause crumbs to end up in your chocoate.

After they are coated, place them onto parchment paper to let the chocolate set.

This is what happens when you try to sneak a lick or two durinig clean up. Kids, the are always trying to sneak a lick!

After the chocolate has set, you can leave them as is or add some decoration. We used colored melting chocolate to add some festive flare. You could also sprinkle on a variety of toppings before the chocolate has set.

Pretty huh? I must remind you, this is all Avery's. I did not make a single Oreo ball. She did all the work. I did help with some metling. The bowls get hot in the micorwave.

I did help Avery by stamping the tags while she was dipping and drizzling. I also helped her with packaging. I tied on the ribbon and she added the tags.

Avery ended up making 118 Oreo balls. 59 packages of 2 that she priced at $1.00 each. She sold every last one!! Way to go Avery!!!!

Happy Birthday Cooper!

Yesterday, December 18, 2008, my baby turned 5! Whimper, cry, sniff-sniff. Please excuse me while I wipe my eyes and dry my tears. What makes me sad is I have been so consumed with everything I have to accomplish in the next 6 days, I've had little time to reflect that it's been 5 years since the birth of my last child. He has grown into a very bright and loving young boy. I'm not about to call him a young man yet!

All of the birthday kids get to wear a crown on their birthday or birthday celebration day. Can you believe there are two other boys, that are friends of Cooper's, that share the same birthday as Cooper? One of the boys was born in the same hospital! Cooper is the youngest of the three by 8 hours. It was a big deal for all of them. Lily and I took cookies to Cooper's school and shared them with his class.

In keeping with tradition, Cooper was able to choose where he went out to eat for his birthday. Guess where he chose? If the Happy Meal doesn't give it away, I can't help you.

Since there is a play area, and his very best friend does not have any siblings yet, we have invited Grant to join in the fun. They have been missing each other lately. Usually Grant is sick and Cooper has to wait for him to feel better before they can play. This time, it was Cooper who was sick and Grant had to wait for him to get well. This was the first time they were able to play together in about a month.

A couple of years ago Cooper got a little toddler laptop computer for Christmas. Cooper would sit in his bed for a few minutes before he went to sleep and play with his computer. It helped him with letter recognition and sounds, numbers and coordination. Since he had outgrown the toddler version, we gave him an upgrade for his birthday. This one has a real mouse and even a case to carry it in. Tony picked it out and I was very happy with his choice.

We stayed at McDonald's for about 2 hours while the kids played and the adults visited. I was even able to get some work done on favors for Brenna's Christmas party today. I forgot to take pictures before they took them to school. If they bring extras home, I'll post them.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Schlumberger Kids Christmas Party

With all of the excitement we've had over the last couple of weeks, a day of fun with the kids was just what we needed. Schlumberger puts on an annual Kids Christmas Party for the employee's children. They had everything a child would want to do, see Santa, ride rides, eat cotton candy, jump on a moonwalk and pony rides. While we were in line waiting to see Santa, the girls posed for some pictures.
I don't know about your children, but my kids seem to loose their focus when they finally get to see Santa. During our wait I had asked the kids what they were going to tell Santa they wanted for Christmas. Cooper mentioned something about Diego and a train, then it happened. I overheard him telling Santa he wanted a Teddy Bear!

I was very happy with this picture of our kids. We did have Lily with us, but she was not interested in taking pictures at all. This might be our Christmas card, but I'm not sure yet. I would like to get one with Lily in it.

The girls had a good time riding the swings and ferris wheel while Tony and Cooper waited in line for cotton candy. We waited in line a lot today.

The cotton candy arrived just as the girls were finishing up with their ferris wheel ride. By this time things were falling apart a little and it was time to go and get some lunch.
This was my favorite photo of the day!! I tried again to get a picture of all four kids, but Lily and Cooper were not as excited about it as I was.
Now, in between this photo and the next, there was a complete meltdown in the Lily department. We are still dealing with some adjustment issues. So as I tried to manage the situation, Tony took our kids to ride the train.

Although we had several fun moments, I'm not sure this is an event we will frequent. The kids were excited that they were able to see where Daddy's new work was and spend some time doing things that bring them joy.