Saturday, December 27, 2008

The New Finn Tradition


I got this idea from Finn's Aunt K.C. She had a friend who's son was born near Christmas and they made a tradition of taking his picture every year with the same stocking. So, here is Finn's first Christmas stocking photo. :)

Friday, December 26, 2008

Santa

My last day of work was last Thursday on "Polar Express Day." We all wear jammies, the kids get hot cocoa and watch Polar Express and Santa drops of school shirts to all the students.
My 2nd graders came in and I was peeking my head out the door to talk to an across the hall teacher.


"Raise your hand if you think Santa is dead!" a kid hollers. Little 7 year old hands shoot up all over my art room.


Grr! NO Bad mojo in MY ART ROOM!

Mrs. Moran: " You are upsetting me when you talk like that! SANTA is NOT DEAD, so quit even talking about it. If you don't believe in HIM, he won't believe in you." ( I wonder if I can get into trouble talking about Santa like I could if I talked about Jesus?)

This was my first year to be a Santa. My oldest is 3 and she is really getting into Santa's visit, the North poll and the nice and naughty list and all. Brian and I got to set up the living room after she went to bed. (I hope she never finds my blog after she learns to read, or I'm in trouble!) I can definitely say that although its exciting to be a child and wait for Santa, its even more fun to be Santa to your child. I can't explain it. It's amazing. To see their face light up when they open the toys they have wanted so much. One of Ella's was an aquaglobe. She's been asking for one for almost a whole year. It was the first commercial she saw that she actually asked for what was being advertised.

I guess the good thing is, that even though my kids will grow up and realize Santa is "living" through the spirit of people's giving, I hope they learn that Christ was born on Christmas and he still lives through God's giving. I pray that I instill that in them.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Happy Birthday, Finn!


Finn is here!


1 day old! (Daddy bought that bink!)



Sunday, December 21, 2008

Just two drops...

I went for my last visit to the OB on Thursday. Before I left, my nurse practioner made a comment to me when I asked her about my placenta previa. "If you see EVEN just TWO drops of bright red blood, you need to come into Labor and Delivery and get them to look you over.

I heard these words in my head again at about 10:00 on Friday night. (My day of bedrest.) I got ready for bed, went to the bathroom and there they were, the two drops. I thought about ignoring it, because I didn't have any contractions, but I couldn't help it. I had to go in.

How was I to know that nearly an hour after midnight, I'd have my son to hold in my arms! I should have, seeing as he came without warning into my life, why would his entrance into the rest of the world me any different?

Finnian Patrick Moran was born at 12:49 am on Saturday, December 20. He is 8 lb 8 oz and 20.5 inches long. He has a sweet nature like his big sister Ella and looks like his other big sister Ainslie. Well, actually it looks like Brian's head with Ain's round face put on the bottom of it. I see a likening to Mr. Potatohead, myself -- but in a cute way!

Pictures will be here as soon as I can locate my cord that will download them from the computer to the laptop.

Thanks for all your prayers!

Friday, December 19, 2008

1 Day of "bedrest"

I went for my weekly check up yesterday. I had protein in my urine and my BP was so high, they took blood and told me NOT to go to work today. (They don't want a reoccurance of what happened with my pregnancy with Ella, I suppose.) However, it wasn't the laid back, pleasant day you might envision. My poor Baby sitter's daughter came down with STREP, so I kept the girls home with me. Yeah, bed rest just AIN'T what it was 4 years ago when I was a MOTHER TO BE. hm....

I went for my PRE OP blood work tonight. I'll report for my "Graduation" (as my nurse practitioner called it) around 10 on Monday morning.

Please pray for our family.

1. No one gets strep.
2. The girls are OK at my Mom's.
3. My Mom survives.
4. The Boy has a healthy and safe arrival
5. He gets some sort of name... ah!
6. I recover quickly
7. Oh, and I get some sort of Christmas shopping done in between getting ready for all of the baby stuff!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Tag, I'm It!

(I was challenged by my SIL to do this, so here goes!)

1. Open the 4th folder in your computer.
2. Choose the 4th picture in the folder and post in in your blog.
3. Describe the picture.
4. Tag 4 people.

"Green Bear"

This is one of the babies my oldest daughter Ella first toted around EVERYWHERE. I took this picture this summer, while we were having a walk-thru of our new house. I was being silly, but thought I might use it one day in a scrapbook or something to remind her the time she was attached to the "super trio:" Green Bear, Baby (a pink little rattle bear) and purple blankie. Purple Blankie was made by Brian's cousin and given to me at my shower before Ella was even born. She is still somewhat attached to it. But, for a while, El wouldn't go anywhere without the three.

I Tag:
Rhonda, Kahla and KC!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

SNOW!

I CAN'T BELIEVE IT SNOWED HERE YESTERDAY! It started on my way home from work. I rushed to daycare, grabbed the girls, ran in the house and bundled them up as fast as I could. I knew it wouldn't last long! Besides, I have to use these heavy coats that Grandma got the girls at least ONCE before they outgrow them. :) Here are some pictures I got! Enjoy!







Ainslie the Wildcat!

Ainslie had her tubes put in her ears today. After her lil' "relaxer" she took a while to get "relaxed" and opted for fighting it. Trying to get down out of Daddy's lap and check things out. If only she would have been like Lil' Charlie across the pre-op area and have gone down happy and quiet. No, Ain had to try to "drug" him under the table so to speak. After she finally DID go out, they rolled her to the operating room.

A short time later they called us back and Dr. Stark told us what to expect and how to deal with the new tubes. He said he'd come get us shortly after Ainslie was awake so we could see her. About 3 minutes after he walked out our little counseling room I heard something that sounded like part "Yeti/Wildcat/Ainslie" but mostly wildcat, SCREAMING down the hall. "I think that was Ain," I told Brian. He laughed.

Ok, were NOT CRUEL parents. But, it is much better to hear a noise that your child usually makes when she is angry instead of hearing sobbing noises of "hurt." So, our Ain was just being our Ain. I guess it was reassuring for us in a way. They called for us to go to her. Her face was extremely red from screaming and after trying to get her to calm down with no avail, we finally left. (She did drink some milk, so that was a good sign.)

The only thing that finally calmed her down was the little piece of candy cane I let her suck on in the car while we dropped her prescription off at Walgreens and ordered her breakfast at Sonic. She gladly ate the tater tots, but NOT from MY hand. They had to be eaten from her own hand.
Just like Ainslie to do things on her on terms.

After a 2 hour nap at home, she woke extremely happy with a smile on her face, asking for Edda. (This is Ella.) :) So, hopefully this tube thing is really going to help her out. Thanks for all the prayers!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Do You know what I mean?

When I say I was playing "heads or tails" with my toilet bowl yesterday?
Um, well if you don't, lucky you. I must admit. It took 30 years for me to experience that kind of illness and I hope it takes AT LEAST another 30 years before I experience it again. Hopefully I won't be 2 weeks away from having a baby either.

guh.

no pictures available, or wanted for that matter!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Bleeding Heart. Bleeding Nose?

As I was flipping through the channels this past weekend, I came upon "Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer" on T.V.

"Stop here, Mommy. I want to watch this," Ella told me.

I was getting excited that she wanted to watch a great old holiday classic. We came in on the part where Rudolph is trying out the reindeer games for the first time. His nose was covered in black and he was talking funny. Then it started making that "woo woo" noise. The black part popped off and shone bright red. (We all know how this goes, right?) The other reindeer start making fun of him and even Santa gives him the cold shoulder.

"I don't want to watch this anymore, Mommy."
"Why, Ella? Don't worry, they are making fun of him, but he's OK, just watch."
"No, his nose is bleeding, I don't want to watch it anymore."
"Ella, his nose is shining like a light bulb. But, he's gonna help Santa, keep watching."
"Oh, no Mommy, his nose is bleeding. I don't want to watch it anymore."

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Ainslie's tubes... if only I meant TUBE TOPS.

Ainslie went to the E.N.T. last week after finishing her 6th round of antibiotics since late June for chronic ear infections. Last Tues. the Dr. recommended her for tubes and told me that even though she just finished antibiotics on Thurs, that she has some clear fluid in her right ear.
By yesterday -- even though there was no sign of fever -- Ainy Poo started tuggin' on both ears and running into things. So, I made a precautionary, "Let's go see Dr. Broussard before you get sick over Thanksgiving weekend and there is not much we can do about it" visit yesterday.

Low and behold -- double ear infection, again -- less than a week later. Guh. So, at least we went and now she's on antibiotics AGAIN, and we hope she'll be well enough at her Pre-Op on the 4th and make it to surgery on the 11th, so we can get it over before baby boy comes on the 22 and Christmas shortly after. (Yes, people, my plate is full!)

Please pray that her ears clear up enough to get her tubes -- and then hopefully on to healthy and happy times. Brian's only fear is that with her equilibrium back to normal she might be even BETTER at climbing things like the couch and the dinning room table. Guh!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

11.17.2001

I got the 7 year itch...not really. More like the "8 months preggers itch."

Brian and I quietly celebrated our 7 year anniversary on Monday. We went out to eat at Carrabba's and then to the mall to buy some gifts for each other! Nice! Quiet! Kid-free!

Kid-free indeed, but funny thing is, we spent most of our time talking about how much we love our kids and how weird life would be without them here. Brian even brought up how he wants more kids... "I know NOW is not exactly the best time to talk about it to you," he said to me in the car. However, my favorite thought about our whole reflection on our marriage and life together is when I mentioned to Brian how very different we are NOW than when we first married.

"Yeah." Brian said. "I guess marriage makes you a 'bigger' person."
Uh, yeah. Several SIZES bigger.... literally. :)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Ready? I think not.

I'm starting to reconsider my thoughts on a "bright" future with my boy. I don't think I am ready for it. I might should refer to it as my "stinky" future.

During lunch duty today, I saw three boys shoving food in their faces and laughing loudly. One kept turning his back on the other two, while the one on the opposite end kept leaning down.

"You can't POSSIBLY be doing what I THINK you're doing, are you?"

They burst out in laughter.

Yes, they were smelling his farts. HOLY COW. I don't think I am ready for a boy!
Now, I could convince myself that MY SON will be like .5% of the other boys at my school. Well behaved and quiet -- one who would never use the words "poop, fart, booty or heiney" in school. But, if you know my husband and what he's already done to my 3 year old GIRL, you'll know this is an unrealistic expectation!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Free Starbucks and the "Beautiful Hotdog."

I left work frantic today, worried that I'd have to wait in a sea of people for a gazillion hours just to vote. I got two surprises instead....

I rolled into Miss Carey's to pick up the girls, so I could drop them off at Mom's and go vote. Ella and Ainslie greeted me crankily, as neither had a nap today. (I guess they were on strike, much to Miss Carey's dismay.) As Carey tried to tell me about what happened during the day, Ella was trying to warily get my attention and started crying. As I asked what was wrong she mentioned something about a hotdog. Then, Carey realized what she was upset about. She walked over to the dinning room table and handed me this.


Yes, people, its the end of a hotdog. The end of a hotdog that Ella refused to eat, because she wanted to show it to me, she thought it was beautiful. (The plaid background is my pajama pants.) I love my artsy daughter, we are sensitive, kindred spirits.

After dropping the gals off at my Mom's and thinking I'd wait in a sea of people to vote, I walked in, NO WAITING and voted. WOO HOO! Then I rolled through the Starbucks drive thru for a FREE-post-voting-tall cup of coffee.

Amid the nice surprises, the bad news is, my girls are sick. Ella has a 102 fever tonight and Ainslie has lost her voice, which I am sure is associated with some time of ear drainage, so I guess it's a day at home for me tommorow. Boo!

FAT BOY!


Brian and I went for our 3rd and final ultrasound of our son this past week. The next time we see him with be in the operating room! (Pardon the late posts, I am trying to play catch-up.)

FAT BOY weighs approximately 4 lbs 12 oz, hence the name, "FAT BOY." (I am not so sure he enjoys this name, as he is kicking the living daylights out of my while I type this.) The good news is, that even though he MAY have to wear "husky jeans" in the early years of his life, my BEST FRIEND, Ms. Rooney, is having a girl (YAY!) in March, so FAT BOY will have a built-in girlfriend, whether "Princess Barbie" likes it or not. ("Princess Barbie" is the name Ella gave Rooney's girl the other night when we asked her what we should name her.)

Fat Boy's DVD is SO COOL! You can actually SEE his eyes open and close and its funny to see him opening his mouth wide, biting on his arms and trying to get his toes in his mouth. Our sonogram tech was even able to show us the little fat rolls forming on his legs and the hair on his head. I think he's going to be hair like Ainslie. He even looks like her to me with those chubby cheeks!




We are HALLO-WEENIES

So, I guess we were party poopers last Friday night. Ainslie still hasn't really been up to par with her ear issues, so we got in the wagon and went to 5 measly houses. But, Ella thought she got LOTS OF CANDY! The supreme highlight of her evening is when her Daddy taught her to say, "Trick or treat, smell my feet!"

Here are some pics of "Strawberry Shortcake" and the "Kitty Cat."









Sunday, October 26, 2008

ZOO BOO! 2008

The Lil' Moran family enjoyed our tradition of ZOO BOO today. We took Ella her first and second year, but had to pass with Ainslie just a week old last year. We had so much fun today and got to break in the new wagon that Grammie and Grumpie got Ainslie for her birthday! Hope you enjoy your week!



Thursday, October 23, 2008

OINK! OINK! OINK!

In the dark on the way to work today, I spotted a trailer of black pigs in front of me.

"Look, El, can you see those pigs?"
"What pigs, Mom?" (yes, she calls me 'Mom' now. boo hoo....)
"The ones in front of us. See them, its dark, its hard to see them."

"OINK! OINK! OINK!" (at the top of her lungs.)

"What are you doing, El?"
"I'm talking to those pigs. I don't know why they don't look at me."
"It's because they can't hear you."
"Why, Mom?"
"Because the windows are up and its raining."
"Oh."

Our car turns left, the pigs turn right.

"Where are the pigs going, Mom?" Worrying about the truth of that answer I say, "I don't know."

"What is that smell, Mom?"
"A skunk."
"What is a skunk?"
"A black and white animal that sprays stinky stuff when they are scared."
"What is he scared of?"
"I don't know."
"It's probably the farmer."

I love 3 year olds.

Monday, October 20, 2008

For the love of Ainslie Hope


Brian and I celebrated our second baby's first birthday last Saturday. She officially turned 1 a week ago. I wish I could have blogged about it sooner, but she and I have been sick with some sort of virus/constant ear infection/allergic reaction to the antibiotics since last week. That and being dog tired from being 7 months pregnant has occupied most of my free time
With this party especially, there was something about trying to prove that I love my other children as much as my first. It makes me silly! I don't know exactly WHO I am trying to prove it to, I guess maybe Ainslie when she is older. Although I tried my best, I can't say that the party was as big as a bang as Ella's first. But, I made the cake and the treat bags and the 1 year video and went with it. I think she had fun, other than being sick and conking out before present time. My new tradition is going to always let all the kids open the baby's presents their first year. :)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

God is Everywhere? Everywhere!

Ella has REALLY been into talking about God lately. We talk about how He is EVERYWHERE.
She mentioned one night that He was in the kitchen changing into his pajamas. (my personal favorite. I should have asked what His PJs looked like!)

She also points to Him and talks about him while we're driving in the car. He's usually in the sky on the clouds.

This morning Ella said, "Mommy, God is in your purse."

Ok, yes, Ella. I suppose He IS in my purse. HE IS EVERYWHERE!
Maybe I should clean out the goldfish crumbs and old receipts outta there....

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Why I am not meant to teach in this day and age.

Third Grade Class:

Boy: Boys are better than girls. We can do more than girls and we are smarter.

Girl: Nu, uh. We can do just as much.

Boy: No you can't. We mow the lawn and take out the trash. Girls don't do that.

Mrs. Moran: Girls can do ALL that, and girls have babies. Can boys have babies?

Boy: No.

Girl: Mrs. Moran, last week on EXTRA! They had a story on a man who had a baby.

Sheesh!

Monday, September 29, 2008

I wish I had...

...more time in my life to blog. But, I need sleep more than I need to record the thoughts on my life.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Good Day, Sunshine...

While "living like a refugee," we've had it pretty cushy. Forget the basics of electricity and water, we're talking beautiful Dallas area days with shopping and fun!

Ok, I know we're spoiled. Here are some fun pics from our time shopping the other day. Ella, Ainslie and the Bean, mixed with a beautiful day, proved to be more than I could handle with my camera. We had to stop for pictures.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

"You don't have to live like a refugee..."

...or maybe you do. I would love to blog about my life right now, about how I am temporarily living in my SIL's house in Dallas. However, the people that actually read my blog are most likely without power, so what is the point?

I am thankful that we came to the BIG D for SAM's party, we might not have done so if it wasn't for her, especially after our "RITA evacuation experience." But, the decision to leave has definitely made my family's life a little easier for the mean time.

More later.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Jammie time.

Don't you just want to go cuddle on these babies? I do!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Why I Love Teaching Art...

... because I get to really "talk" to the kids, and hear funny things.

Here are some of the funny things I heard this week.

Kinder: (While lecturing in the front of the classroom:) "Wow, you have really big arms."
Ok, maybe I don't like that one!

1st Grade: (While walking past a table full of boys:) "The only girl I've ever seen naked is my Mamma."

2nd Grade: (While introducing myself to the class:) "Didn't you teach PE last year? Why are you teaching ART now? Do you know about ART?"

3rd Grade: (While explaining that I was having a baby and would be out in Jan and Feb:) "You're having ANOTHER BABY? When are you going to STOP?!?"

I guess by the time they get to 4th grade they have a little more of a filter on them.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Ah, there it is...

The joy and excitement of the first day of school came for me, on Tuesday.

I was worried that I had lost my zest for teaching yesterday. I didn't stay up all night the night before the first day of school. I didn't even pick out what I was wearing for the first day. I came in "on time," not early, for the first morning. I thought it might be me being pregnant and all, but I remembered I was even further along last year than this year.

I couldn't quite put my finger on the reason why I wasn't excited....but, today it came during Kindergarten.

All morning I used a specific analogy to explain WHY I didn't want kids to RUSH through their artwork. I began with asking them a question. "If I made you brownies, how would you rather have them made? In the oven or the microwave?" Everyone said oven. Then I went on to explain that when we make artwork, we don't want to be MICROWAVE artists, we want to be OVEN artists and take our time and do a good job.

This analogy worked AWESOME until I got to kindergarten. When asking the question, the answer came back unanimous, "the MICROWAVE!" "Why?" I probed. "Because they'd be done faster," one kid replied. Leave it to a Kindergartner to leave holes in my theory. "But, it would taste bad," I said.

After explaining they'd get to paint with water and paintbrushes in art this year, the kindergartners broke out in spontaneous applause laced with several "Yays!"

Then, before class was over several of them asked where their brownies were.....

Hmmm.... I love teaching!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Back into the Swing of things.

This past week was a week-long stint of meetings and planning for Brian and I. We were fortunate enough to have my grandparents watch Ella and Ainslie until Thurs. Then, the girls we're taken to their new daycare for the first time on Friday.

I think they did pretty good. I warned Ms. Carey and Ms. Melissa that Ella might not be that enthusiastic about eating her first day. Sometimes it takes her a while to get used to a new environment, and she doesn't always eat so well. I called at lunchtime to check. After playing outside and jumping on the bounce house, she'd come in and had 2 hot dogs and a bowl of mac and cheese. I guess she felt pretty comfortable. ha ha Ha....

Ainslie did OK. She didn't eat or sleep that well all day, but I guess that is to be expected. It's good that both girls have kids their own age to play with, but unfortunate that Ainslie doesn't have the one-on-one attention she got used to this summer. But, I think she'll get into the swing of things eventually.

I didn't even worry too bad last Friday. I held each of the girls in my arms for a while that morning. Prayed for them to be safe, feel loved and have fun at their new daycare, and somehow that put me at peace.

What makes me full of unrest? The fact that my newly-turned 10 month old is full-fledged walking now. It's scary and funny all at the same time. I'll have to post pictures soon.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Ainslie is 10 Months!


My lil' Ainslie is growing up so much. Aside from developing her own "unique" personality, (if you've been around her lately, you know what I mean) she's physically making leaps and bounds. Her knew record for I.S.T. (Independent Steps Taken) is 10. She even had fun showing off for Dr. Broussard and her nurses last Friday.




She is also starting to warm up to strangers a little more, even smiling at them when deeming them worthy. Your worthiness is totally up to her discretion, as she is showing us more and more that she has quite a mind of her own. Ain also displays her Irish temper when you don't do what she wants you to. She is quite a hoot for only being on the earth 10 months! Roon put it right when she said that Ain seems to be an "old soul."

The Backyardigans LIVE!

Thanks to Grandpa Moran and his work, Brian and I were able to take Ella to see BACKYARDIGANS LIVE!

Ella had an amazing time while Mommy and Daddy had just a "time" fighting through crowds of toddlers throwing temper tantrums. It truly gave us a new appreciation for our 3-year-old's ability to maintain civility in public. We became keenly aware of how UNCOMMON this is. And, I have a feeling that Ainslie will have a chance to bring us back to toddler reality sooner than we'd like.

Ella danced and sang from her seat, waved her fairy wand in the air and had great time! Daddy and I had fun watching Ella, mainly. Don't get me wrong, Backyardigans has the best kid's music on T.V. right now. It's just hard to enjoy Backyardigans Live! when you've witnessed WICKED at Gershwin Theatre on Broadway, but I digress....


Thursday, August 14, 2008

The Snowflake... has a Candy cane?

Today was the exciting 20-week appointment for Brian and I. We went in knowing we'd have an ultrasound and hopefully find out the sex of our newest baby. And to be honest, this ultrasound was different than others in so many ways.

As we got into the ultrasound room, I became nervous about the health of our baby. I guess after seeing so many people have difficulty getting pregnant and having healthy children, I sometimes wonder if I am pushing my luck and that soon the luck will run out. (There was an actual point, about 5 minutes into the ultrasound that I was convinced our child had developed no legs. Yes, thanks R.I. you're rubbing off on me!) But then, the rational part of me realizes these are God's blessings in my life, and I couldn't do anything GOOD enough to actually EVER deserve them, so I am just going to receive these little blessings!

There was also a part of me that considered this "old hat."

We'll go in, they'll smear this goop on my tummy, we'll see that cute baby, then she'll say "It's a another girl!" and Brian will say, "It's another wedding!" But, today my little girl had something strange between her legs!!!! (Yes! Thank God, there are legs!)

I can't believe we are having a little boy!
And aside from the "obvious," look at his cute little profile!


After our appointment, Brian and I went across the street to eat a quick lunch at Wendy's. Near the end of his meal he took a big scoop of left-over frosty, dumped it into his chili cup and mixed together. "This is what boys do," he said. Yippee! I can't wait!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

New School Clothes

Old Navy has great maternity clothes. Bri and I shop online there a lot. And, when you get your clothes in a box on your doorstep, its kinda like Santa visited and left you a Christmas present! :)
I usually don't get so excited about clothes, but I feel I made some good purchases and I am excited about wearing something: A) New and B) Fits and will grow with me as I grow.

Rooney and I also found some cute things at JC Penney last night. She got a cute pair of capris for $10! Wow! Score, Rooney!

I guess that is one of the upsides of "back to school" time. New outfits!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

An open letter to...

Slander requires commenting on a person's name or business when speaking ill or publishing something about them. Which, I have not done. While I have expressed my feelings about the subject of my daycare, I have never shared with my readers the name of that business or its owner.

Furthermore -- The amount paid for holding my children's spots in the summer was a figure offered by my daycare provider at the time. I committed no coercion to get a lower deposit price, I was only paying what was asked of me.

I have no problem paying for good daycare. In fact, I had no problem paying a higher rate for my oldest child after I was told her rate would not be raised. No problem.

I hope this clears up any misgivings you have about me our my character. Not that it matters, since I don't know you and can't respond to you personally.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Scathing Review

As I have been searching for some answer to daycare for my children, I have been extremely nauseated about it. It literally makes me sick to my stomach. And, I don't know what feeling makes me more sick. The thought of having to leave my babies with someone I don't know, AGAIN. Or, the anger I am still feeling toward my old babysitter, the one who has about as much professionalism, communication skills and loyalty as a roll of half-used toilet paper. (OK, weird analogy, but it was the first thing I thought of.)

I thought that leaving a bad review (just after the first GOOD REVIEW I gave her about a year ago) on a yellow pages site would make me feel better. But it didn't. I don't know what else to do other than keep praying for a solution and the right words to say to her when I finally decide its time to have the talk.

It takes all the energy I have NOT to call her and tell her off. Or to make signs and post them all over the city, telling everyone what a fink she is.

If anyone knows me, they know what a champion I am to something I like, or believe in. When I first discovered my old babysitter, I put up signs for her in my workplace. I sung her praises, I got her clients. And where did it get me? Kicked out! GRrrr.... Please pray that I can get over this and get on to find someone even better for my children, and for my sanity!

Monday, August 4, 2008

We Won the Swim Teacher Lottery! Twice!

Today was Ella's first day of second session swim class. We are so excited that she gets to have Miss Jenn again! We didn't plan it that way, but we sure feel blessed!

We got there a little late today and when I told Ella to get into the pool at the stairs, she was hesitant. I guess she was surprised by having different kids in the class with her. Last time the other kids were her age, this time they are older. I think it MIGHT have something to do with the fact that one of the kids was wearing a bright blue swim cap. I think it threw her off a bit. It was kinda funny.

On our way home, I heard Ella singing. I turned down the radio. "Oooh. I'm no Superman."
She was singing it over and over. Maybe Brian and I watch too much SCRUBS!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

The Surprise Wedding!

Jessica, one of my best friends in the whole world got married last night.

It was THE COOLEST wedding I've ever been too! It was a surprise!
We got an invitation to a house-warming party about a month ago. When guests got there, they walked into the house and saw tables and chairs set like a wedding reception and a Wedding Cake! Wow!

It was beautiful, and I must say, my friend could NOT have picked a better person for her. He is amazing and loves her so much. You can tell.

Congrats, Jessi and Gian. Now surprise us with some babies! :)

Are You Kidding Me?!?!

I opened my browser tonight and this cute little YAHOO graphic was on my homepage.

Do I REALLY NEED this kind of pressure!?

Do I REALLY NEED to be reminded that I have to back to work soon!?

Thank, A LOT YAHOO! Phooey!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Far and Away

I didn't realize how much I enjoy writing new posts and reading all my friends blogs, until I don't have time to do it anymore! Fortunately, the whirlwind is slowly coming to an end and I am happy to say that we are settling into our new life in our new home.

Brian and I are blessed to have quickly found someone to rent our house, and hopefully, that is a little burden off our backs. Now, to get all this "stuff" into our new house and put away.

The past week has been fun and crazy! My SIL and her 3 kiddos came to stay for several days. Yes people, count it down: 5 kids: ages 4, 3, 2, 1, and 9 months! KC really helped out watching the girls as Brian and I worked on the old house. After they left yesterday, it made 2 kids seems so quiet! :) I guess I got used to 5 running/crawling around here. We had lots of fun, so I thought I'd post some pictures.

C & Ainslie
A & Ella

Ella and The Mighty B in the Great Cheese Stack!


Dave came down one night so KC and he could attend an award ceremony for his sister, Jane. We watched the kids for them, but the most fun part was getting to do KC's hair and make-up. It was my first attempt at an adult up-do and it was crazy! KC has A LOT of hair! :) But, she looked beautiful with those 3 million bobby pins in her hair!











In other news: I am still looking for daycare. My sister's friend, Julie has volunteered to watch them until September for me, but I am still looking for the right, permanent fit for our family. Please keep praying! Thanks!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

MEME

What were you doing 10 years ago?
I was in school, majoring in one of the various majors I “went through” at the time. I was BIG TIME active in Church and working as a Nanny.

Favorite Snacks
Dell Dixie Dill Pickle Hamburger Slices
Rocky Road Ice Cream
Brownies
Chips, Salsa and Queso

To Do List
Sign Ella up for Swim lessons in the AM.
Finish Cleaning out the old house.
Completely move in to my new house.
Have a garage sale on Sat.
Get the old house ready for Rental.
Find a new daycare/babysitter.

Jobs I Have Had
Pappasito’s Hostess
Checker/Stocker at Media Play
Waitress
Nanny
Church Secretary
Youth Minister
Graphic Designer
Art/PE Teacher
Face Painter
Muralist

Places I Have Lived
Pasadena, Northshore, Humble, Spring, League City, The Woodlands, Conroe, ALL TEXAS!

Bad Habits
Procrastination
Picking at pimples – (If you’re gonna confess, Rhonda, so am I!)
Eating crap foods too much
Putting on makeup while driving
Talking too much

5 Random Things People May Not Know
1. I met my husband while working a part time stint as a face-painting elf at Christmas Time.
2. I sleep with the same baby pillow, “puffy pillow” that my Memaw made me when I was a baby, even though it smells like maple syrup. (Much to the disgust of my husband.)
3. I once got “revenge” on someone by pouring saline solution all over their retainer. (Not enough to harm, just enough to annoy. I know, I’m dumb.)
4. I have a Life “To Do” list. Some of the items include: Working as a Graphic Designer, Art Teacher, Photographer, Children’s Book Author. Donating my hair to Locks of Love. See the Grand Canyon. Go to Scotland.
5. I won Columbia University's Gold Circle Award for Editoral writing when I was in college. The article was about Crayola's 100th Anniversary in 2003. I also had a column in my college newspaper called "Written in Crayon." This all happened while I was serving as the paper's photographer. One day a reporter didn't get his article in on time, next thing you know, I have my own column. FUN!

CD's I Would Want If Stranded On An Island:
Tori Amos – Little Earthquakes
Billy Joel – all his CDs
Christopher Cross
Bread
Five for Fighting
Phillips Craig and Dean
Stephen Curtis Chapman

What I'd Do If I Were A Billionaire
Pay off my house/Debt
Pay off our grandparents and parent's houses/debt
Pay for as many IVFs as my SIL and Kahla wanted
Fund my sis’ business and build her a KICK BUTT KITCHEN!
Have more kids/adopt, then travel the world and teach them all kinds of cool stuff!
Build my own Art/Photography studio.
Donate to my home church, March of Dimes, Still Birth Research, Start a Campaign to bring down WALMART!

Happiness...

Here are some pictures from my birthday. This is when my SIL and niece, "The Bean" came down from Garland for my surprise party. We spent the next day at the mall, trying to beat the heat!
WOW FACES!

HAPPY CURLY COUSINS!


AIN & AUNT SAM ON THE CAROUSEL!

Apparently...

...loyalty means nothing anymore. And, I'd like to go into this in more detail. But, seeing as I am SUPER UPSET about the situation right now, I might say things I regret.

Please pray for our family, we are in need of daycare and I am a nervous WRECK!

If you know of anyone in the Conroe area who is looking to provide daycare for 2 children (and a 3rd after January) please let me know. I might also be interested in someone coming to the house and being a "nanny" of sorts. So, if you know someone, PLEASE let me know

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Through HER eyes and out HER mouth...

We spend the majority of our child's quiet beginnings wondering what they think about things. Do they like the way that tastes? Do they like cuddling as much as we do? Do they prefer the color blue or red? It seems as of late I am starting that all over again with my Ainslie. She has what you might call a "baby poker face." She isn't quite as expressive as Ella is, and I sometimes wish I could tap into that little head of hers. Its quite apparent that the wheels are turning, (and usually in a direction that leads to trouble for me) but it's a mystery until the dog howls, the channel on the TV mysteriously changes or an electric plug gets licked.

My Ella on the other hand is developing her speech at such a rate, that there isn't much we don't know about what she thinks, how she feels or how she sees her world. It's funny how we spend so much time wishing our babies could talk to us, and then when they do, we spend most of our time telling them to be quiet, or use their inside voice. I guess if I just developed the ability to let everyone know exactly how I feel, I'd be loud about it too.

Back when I was a late teen I worked at a daycare. My favorite and longest stint there was taking care of the 3-turning-4-year-olds. I mainly loved it because that is the age you get the freshest view of the world. "Fresh from God, but old enough to speak," I guess. You never know whats going to come out of their mouths, and I used to love to come home and tell my Mom all about the funny things the kids would say to me. And now that I have a 3-year-old of my own, its even more fun!

About 2 weeks ago, on our way to VBS, we were stopped at a red light at an overpass. "Mommy!Mommy! Look! Teeth," I heard Ella yell from the backseat. Teeth? Where on EARTH could there anything out here that looked like teeth?
Then, I figured it out. Paint roll marks in a pattern on the side of the overpass bridge DO look like teeth, but what adult would think that? (FYI: I wasn't so good as to whip my camera out right then, but I did think about it later and decided I should take a picture to remember it later! It was at a red light, don't worry!)

That same week Ella spent every afternoon walking through the church parking lot at VBS talking about cookie crumbs. It took me about 2 days to realize that she was talking about the gravel that made up the church parking lot. I spent most of my adolescent life walking in and out of that parking lot and my Ella spends 1 second and notices "cookie crumbs."

As much as it saddens me, I know she'll outgrow this phase. Too soon, I imagine. I can only hope she holds on to that wonderful point of view for as long as she can.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Wow!

Will wonders never cease? I amazed at life sometimes.....
Hope your day was blessed. Mine was. :)

Friday, July 18, 2008

Moving Pregnant In the summer...

....totally reeks. I mean it. But, taking a cue from Kahla and Roon, here are the things I am thankful for.

1. Healthy babies -- even if I wish they WEREN'T so mobile at times.
2. New house!
3. Hard working husband.
4. Great Best Friends.
5. Supportive Mom with great decorating sense.
6. Air Conditioning.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Surprise! We're Moving!

Well, after a lot of searching and praying, Brian and I closed on our new house today. I haven't advertised very much about the new house out of fear it would fall through and we'd be stuck here for a while. However, God has blessed us and now if he'll just help us through the move! Tommorow is painting day. I'll post pictures soon!

Yay! Yay! Yay!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Big 3-0!

Well. I turned 30 today. My family and friends surprised me yesterday with a party at my FAVORITE place to eat, CARRABBAS!

Brian tricked me and told me he would take me yesterday AND today. Piggy, I know. But, I was gettin' jived on going twice! Blame it on pregnancy. Anyhoo -- I am happy to say that going once with friends and family is just as good as going twice (especially when your S.I.L. gives you her leftovers!) Hee heee hee. JK.

After a sleepover with Sam and the Bean last night, we headed to Ella's swim lessons today and then to the mall for lunch and a carousel ride. It was a nice, relaxed birthday, even if it was EXTREMELY hot!

My thoughts on being 30:
Having a birthday that ends in an "0" is a lot like attending a funeral. It really makes you think a lot about where you have been in your life, and where you are going. And A WHOLE lot has changed for me since my last "0" birthday. Meeting the love of my life, Marriage, College Graduation, "real" job, my puppy, My 2 babies, my 3rd pregnancy.... it seems like the meatiest part of my life has happened in the last 10 years: the get up and get going part. I can only imagine what the next 10 years will bring. I can only hope to be so blessed.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

God Loves Me!

Ella told me out of nowhere today, "Mommy, God loves you."
Ella Grace, you are proof that He indeed does! :)

Held up.

Just know your being held up in prayer. I know the day is getting closer and God is reminding me more and more to hold you up. I woke up and its 3:45 am and I can't get you off my mind. There is this song, I haven't heard in years, but parts of it are running through my mind while I think of you.

"He gives beauty for ashes, strength for fear,
gladness for mourning, peace for despair."

I woke up overcome with a vision so powerful, I know it was more than a dream, it was the future. I woke up unable to breathe, the vision was so strong, I just laid there in bed, tears streaming down my face, holding my breath, struck by this vision of you.

Jesus was holding you in His arms, but you didn't hold him back. He had his arms wrapped around you and your head was on His shoulder. He was stroking your hair and rubbing your back like a Daddy comforts a hurt child. When he let His arms down I realized He had given you your son back. You were holding him in your arms and your eyes were full of tears. You held him and looked at him like a Mother looks at her child when she sees him for the very first time. And Henry was looking at YOU the same way. :) You caressed his hands and his face with wonder.

I realized that the tears I am crying for you right now are tears of joy. Tears of joy for what will come even as we don't understand where we are right now. Even though you are experiencing the very hardest thing a person can do: give God your child at the beginning of his life; God will give Him back. I know it, I've seen it. I can't wait to see it again!

Praise God!

Friday, July 11, 2008

The poop saga continues....

I was changing Ain's diaper this morning and she had a little rash. My cream was in the other room. So, I cleaned her up and left her sans diaper to help air it out, I suppose. As I went to get the diaper cream, Ella yelled for help on the computer. I got sidetracked and 5 minutes later I came out of the computer room to get the cream. When low and behold I see my 8 month old munchin' down on her own feces. After a lot of screaming and freaking out, a call to my mom and a thorough bath, I realized it would be OK. I remembered that one of my nieces ate her own poop, and she's fine. :) Sorry, no video or film available of this event.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Swim Lessons & VBS

Ella started swim lessons yesterday morning. She also began her week long VBS yesterday afternoon. While this all sounded AWESOME in theory a couple of weeks ago during planning, after two days in I have started to wonder why! :) The heat and hauling 2.5 babies is started to take its toll on me, and it only Tues!

Anyhoo -- some funny little stories from our experience so far.


Ella LOVES swim class! She learned how to blow bubbles in the water, and do the "cheese pizza." (You need to ask her to demo the next time you see her.) I didn't get to see everything up close, but I did overhear her telling her swim teacher Jenn that she couldn't put her face all the way under the water because it was to "sweaty." :) Ha ha ahha .... She did better today. After some coaching from Dad and a little pool side prayer with me before class, she did stick her whole face in the water -- once. Then, she told Jenn that was enough for today. She was too busy. After 10 minutes of class it started thundering and everyone had to get out of the pool. Ella did not take this well and started chanting RAIN RAIN GO AWAY! I guess she was expecting all the kids to join in.



Later that afternoon, we headed for VBS. Ella really had fun. There was assembly at the beginning where she sang and danced and saw puppets, then at the end they all came back to assembly to do it again. The first time, I sat with her in the pew at the front of the church. But, the last time, I let her sit by herself with her class. At one point, she decided to stand on the pew to dance. Her teacher told her to get down, so she did, but as soon as her teacher turned away, Ella tried to climb up on the pew again -- in swooped Mommy! I came the aisle and whispered in her ear, "NO MA'AM!" I am hoping this will set some sort of standard for Ella. That she will always think that I can see what she's doing and thinks twice before doing anything wrong. I can only hope. :) She was, of course, the tallest kid in her class, but she was very well behaved other than the pew incident. I think she's having fun. More later!


Ella and her Bucket of Treasures!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Peanut Butter and Jammin'

Ella has been a bit BORED this summer. So, I have taken it upon myself to enroll her in as many cheap or preferably FREE activities I can find! The Market Street in The Woodlands is offering Peanut Butter and Jammin' for kids 3 - 10 every Saturday morning in July. So, we went on our first outing yesterday and she had so much fun. Her favorite part was of course the lovely ladies from SWEET AND SASSY who were doing Princess Make-overs. The girl doing her makeover asked is she wanted to get her hair done. Ella was being a little shy, so then she asked,
"Do want to get your hair done like a Princess and your nails painted?" Oh yes! Ella jumped at the nails painted part! She lost all shyness after that. After working a while on her hair, the girl asked her who her favorite princess was. "Me." Ella said. :) I guess there's nothing wrong with a little self-confidence, right? She can't wait until next Saturday!
Princess Hair Do!

Make Up!


Finished with glitter star and all!


And because she's coming into her own and all, I thought I'd put a cute little pic of Ainslie on here. She sure is learning to smile at the camera! :)

ME:

My photo
I have 2 lovely daughters and 2 handsome sons, who keep me very busy and a husband who keeps me grounded. I received my BA in Graphic Design Communication in 2003. A year and a half later after working in corporate America as a graphic designer and living through my OWN REAL LIFE "OFFICE SPACE" I got certified as art teacher. I have been teaching since the fall of 2004.