Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The End

Four years ago I started this blog.

I didn't know of anyone else who had one . . . wow, has that changed!

This was a daily journal of my life. I found it easy to share stories and pictures of the boys.

The past few months the blog has been quiet because it doesn't feel the same.

I have decided to open a private blog. If you are interested in a mother bragging about her beautiful children and awesome husband then send me your email. If not, see ya!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Today I Heard Good News

August 2009 006

This morning I had an ultrasound to confirm what I have known since early July . . . we are expecting a BABY!   For good reason my anxiety level is out of control and I continually pray for peace of mind.  I wanted to go to the doctor’s office alone and I was expecting bad news.  With my other pregnancies I had lots of symptoms and so far I have felt nothing.  I was beginning to think I had a false positive test and was trying not to get my hopes up. 

As the technician set up the monitors I willed myself not to get teary eyed at the thought of the last time I was in this exact spot.   Even though I was physically alone in the room I had many that were praying for good news and were just as anxious as I was. 

*Sidenote*  Life Transformation Groups(LTG) ROCK!!

In that second there was our little baby moving all around on the screen.  I cautiously asked the lady if there was a heartbeat when she turned the sound up and I was able to hear the perfect heartbeat(153).  I let out a big sigh of relief.  The pregnancy finally became real.  I’m PREGNANT!!!!!! :) 

Baby’s due date is March 7th. 

Let the countdown begin . . .

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Summertime=Lots & Lots of Swimming

December 165 December 170

December 171 December 176

December 177 December 190

The boys love to swim and we bought a soft sided pool this summer that has been a daily activity for them.  Abram is not tall enough to enjoy the big pool, but we still had the plastic pool that we have used for the past two summers.  A third of the time he ends of getting in the pool with his clothes and shoes on.  That is why in these pictures he has his church shirt on.  The boys can play outside and then go back in and change into their swimming suits without my help.  I am to lazy to try and explain to Abram why we need to change clothes, so I just let him swim in what he has on.  You should see how HUGE those Luv diapers can get without exploding!!  One afternoon the boys made Abram’s day by deciding to swim with him.  He LOVED it!  He is very rough and had a blast jumping and sliding with the big boys.   He has no fear of water and goes head first down the slide each time.  Happy swimming!

Summer Zoo Trips Need To Start Early In The Morning

December 142 December 144

December 158 December 161

Uncle John was working in the city for the Women’s Softball Championship and my sister decided to come down for a couple of days to visit.  We invited ourselves along on their adventure to the Zoo.  I got the boys up early so we could take advantage of the Zoo opening at 8 AM.  The first hour was the best of the entire visit.  There were so many animals out roaming around and the temperature was perfect!  It was the first time we had seen so many lions out at one time(there were about seven of them!).  The boys asked for a picture at EVERY statue they could find.  Lucky for me Aunt Amy could see and point out ALL of them!  I have tons of pictures of them posing on them.  I think Uncle John is looking forward to little Ben getting older.  Cooper wanted to use the telescope and I wasn’t about to fork over 25 cents :)  BUT Uncle John would!!  The rest of us were hot so we left them there to catch up.  Ben & Abram walked a lot of the way which was adorable.  I didn’t take a picture of them together standing still!  In every one they are busy going places.  Thanks for letting us crash your zoo trip, we had a great time!

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Summer Storm

December 225 December 228

December 230 December 232

December 235

Last week around 10:30 PM, I was the only one awake trying to catch up on my DVR shows.  It was then I heard the wind pick up so I turned the news on to see what was going on.  The only thing I found was a storm/cool front blowing through.  At that point the satellite goes out and hail begins hitting the windows.  Bella, the dog, freaks out in storms.  She is pacing back and forth and the hail is coming down faster.  It is LOUD when it hits the window and I begin to wonder if it will break the windows.  Brian is woken by all the racket and wonders why I am not watching the news(?)  Stupid satellite. 

Next to go is the electricity.  Great.

As we stumble around looking for a flashlight or candle we hear cracking sounds and we just look at each other in slow motion wondering if we should get the boys up and head for cover!  It was surreal.  The wind/hail/rain go on forever.  The electricity is quickly restored and we try to take a look outside.  All we can see is that the play set is no longer there and two huge trees are down.  Bummer!

The next morning the damage is assessed.  There are no drag marks where the play set had been.  It had been picked up and slammed on its side. 

Brian took the day off work to begin the process of cutting down the two huge trees.  The play set is still sitting there, unmoved.  We aren’t quite sure where to begin with that.

It was quite a storm!!!

Biggest News of July

December 240December 136 

The week of VBS our 16 MONTH OLD finally decides walking is a good thing and he will now go for it!  It is amazing to see how it ‘just clicks’ and he is off.  Two weeks later he is now considered a 100% walker . . . yeah!!!  Notice the arms?  He is still working on that balance :)  Soooo cute!!!!

A Year in the Making-VBS 2009

December 107

Can you find Wyatt?  The kids came on stage on the last night.  Cooper refused to go and Wyatt tried to hide.

December 105

Wednesday night the kids were invited to sing on stage.  The parents were able to come and watch the final skit of Brutus and Paul and hear what their kids had been up to during the week.  It was a great turn out!

December 099

Each evening Paul & Brutus would visit the kids.  Paul would tell his story about being on house arrest and how important it was to tell others about Jesus.  They were awesome and brought the characters to life for the kids.  I was impressed :)

VBS is very near to my heart.  I love what it brings to our children and the seeds it plants in their young hearts.  The opportunity came my way to coordinate VBS for 2009.  I took a leap and decided to see how God could use me.  Seriously . . . me!  HE can do amazing things and I am glad I put my fears aside of what others would think and jumped.  It was a BLAST! 

We had over a 100 volunteers each evening.  The biggest issue for the week was where to put all those volunteers.  That was a GREAT problem to have!

The kids traveled to the city of ROME and were able to visit with Paul each day and visit the Underground Church where people were worshipping God.  There were awesome crafts, games and the snacks went above and beyond!  Our church really stepped up and came together to bring a wonderful week together. 

I am blessed with an awesome set of friends who helped decorate, set up, take down and MORE to keep my stress to a minimum.  THANK YOU!!!!

December 113

Sunday through Tuesday the kids traveled with their family leaders.  On Wednesday we had family night and offered a free pizza dinner and then met in the auditorium for a short program.  I was NOT prepared to be called up and recognized, but I had no problem when the microphone was handed over :)  There were so many people to thank!  Each team leader did such a great job of getting their area ready that it made my job even better.  I wish I could do more to let those know how much I appreciate them.  You guys ROCK!

As much as I enjoyed VBS I was exhausted when it was over and done with!  Just today I made a trip up to the church office to turn in the last of the items I had used during VBS.  I can now close the book on 2009 . . . we are now moving on to July 2010, EGYPT :)  I will give myself a month before the planning starts again!!

4th of July

December 009

December 003

December 002

This happened over a MONTH ago?  How is that possible?! 

We invited the family over to our house this year and had a big cookout and not so spectacular fireworks show.  My parents, grandparents, younger brother & sister’s families were all able to come.  Dinner was awesome as I tried out not one but TWO different recipes that turned out pretty darn good-if I do say so myself :)  It was a beautiful day outside and the kids had a wonderful time running around and being together.  Brian and Jonathan went to buy the fireworks and when they returned it seems they bought the store out.  They seemed more excited than the kids to start the show.  We still had a couple of hours until it would be dark enough and the time crept by. 

Then the rain started.  Not a little evening rain, but a storm that put a damper on our plans.  We weren’t sure if we would get to light the fireworks this year.

Plan B came about when the rain turned into a drizzle and we headed to the front yard so the smart ones could sit out of the rain :)  As you can see all the kids along with my husband and brother were the only ones to venture out.  I must admit they had some pretty good fireworks!  Abram didn’t last very long outside as he wanted to get into everything, yet still not walking.  He went to bed easily and the fireworks didn’t seem to bother his sleep. 

Everyone except my grandparents spent the night.  I LOVED it!  It is memories like this that will last a lifetime and I am grateful to those that drove up to share those memories with our kids.  I love my family and their commitment to be there for each other.  It was a great 4th! 

Rock Creek Youth Camp

December 022 December 034 

December 038 December 039The first week in July the boys had the opportunity to attend their first day time church camp.  It was from 9-2 for three days.  I volunteered to go as a sponsor since the camp was held at the one I went to during high school.  What great memories I had there and it was fun to go back and see it again as an adult.  Things were different, but strangely the same.  Abram came with me two of the mornings, but Brian was able to pick him up and work from home a couple of days.  I was very grateful.  He is at an age where he is quite the handful!

The boys seemed to have a great time.  Cooper would ignore me whenever I tried to talk to him around his friends.  I was able to see what they were up to most of the day, but the girls were not allowed near the swim area.  Cooper thought that was awesome and was living it up in the limelight.  Wyatt was a bit hesitant and wanted to be at my side as much as possible.  He wanted me to take him to a separate area so he could change before swim time and then meet me to help him change back afterwards.  He did not like to change in front of the other boys.

They had a bible story each morning, crafts, activity time, swim time and a special activity each day.  I had a fabulous time.  My dream would be to own and run a camp one day.  What a dream job! 

I’ve Got Some Explaining To Do

December 154 Whew. . . summer has flown by and I cannot believe it is August!  The month of July was filled with the boys first daytime church camp, our own VBS, 4th of July, zoo trips and more!  I have finally dug myself out of the all the activities and we are in full swing of school. 

I need a nap.

When looking for a picture for this post I realized I never downloaded all we had done in July.  Over 300 pictures later I am beginning to see how much I need to catch up on. 

Welcome back!  Let the many posts of catch up begin :)

After I take my nap.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

VBS # 2 AND Football Camp

I am still trying to catch up on my sleep from all that was happening LAST week.  My age is quickly revealing itself as it takes me a longer amount of time to bounce back when my schedule is shaken.  BUT(!)  it was a fantastic week!

Tuesday kicked off our 2nd of 4 VBS’s this summer.  My dear friend(love her!)went to this church part of her time at college and her parent’s attend it now.  She had many good things to say about it and although it was 30 minutes away we decided to join her and her daughter this year.  It did not disappoint!  My boys did not know a soul so I was curious to see how they would handle it.  I heard not one complaint from either of them!  Each day they would talk about the classes they visited and what they did.  Since VBS was only three hours long I did not want to waste time driving back and forth so I was able to hang out with said dear friend and was able to talk and talk and talk!  I even had a babysitter for two of those days where Abram could stay home.  This will be on our list to do next year too!

Wednesday my lovely SIL met me after VBS to hand over my two sweet nephews for the rest of the week.  Brian was tasked with finding 10 boys to attend the Adrian Peterson football camp Thursday-Saturday.  What a great opportunity!  Jack is playing tackle football for the first time this fall, so he was one of the first people we called.  Now Jack couldn’t come down by himself, Wyatt  would be left out :)   Joel came along and finished out the week with Wyatt at VBS while the older two attended football camp.

Since Brian was working at the camp he took Cooper & Jack with him each morning as I drove the other two to VBS.  I would then leave straight from there to the football field right when their camp was ending.  Time management at its finest :)  Thursday lunch we treated the boys to an all you can eat buffet at Mazzios, Friday’s lunch at McD’s followed by a yummy, free(for the kids)lunch at Cain’s. 

The boys look exhausted each afternoon I picked them up.  Don’t get me started on the WHITE T-shirts they were given.  I would spray those things down each evening and give them a good washing because they HAD to wear them each day.  Stinky boys!  Surprisingly they would come home full of energy and spend the afternoon swimming.  Each night they were in their beds ASLEEP by 9 PM-some nights sooner!  They worked hard and played even harder.

They both LOVED football camp.  I tried to stay on Saturday, but it was HOT!  I ended up taking the three younger boys to the library for an hour and a half.  I can’t imagine how they made it through for three days straight.  Boys and their love of sports!

June 2009 073 End of the session, last day with their bags full of goodies and the dirty, white T-shirts.

June 2009 056

About 300 boys attended the three day camp from 9:30-12:30.  AD would do pep talks in between training sessions and then a Q & A at the end of the day.  He had many people around him and they did not allow individual pictures to be taken and parents were ask to not even come up to him.  He did visit some of the teams when they were working on skills and help the coach with plays.


June 2009 015 June 2009 020

June 2009 035 June 2009 048

On the first day they were divided into “teams” of about 12 kids.  They put them in lines according to height and then would count them off to determine what team they would be on.  Luckily Brian was there to make sure Jack & Cooper were on the same team.  This made Cooper very happy!  See their sweat bands?  They got those on the second day and their were VERY excited about them.  Those went into the wash along with the T-shirts.  Stinky :)


June 2009 005

What to do in the evenings?  Uncle Brian had PLENTY for them to do each evening.  They went down to the pond to fish the first night.  The next two nights were spent on the four wheelers.  Jack was able to drive his own after a quick lesson and did great.  As bed time grew closer they would choose to swim one last time then watch a cartoon in the movie room.  They were even given FOUR popcicles to eat on the couch.  I think that gave me Aunt/Mom of the year!

It was a fun week!  I love this age and it made me remember spending lots of time with my cousins Dennis & Shelly.  They love spending time together and I hope they will develop into life long friends!  Thanks for coming up Jack and Joel. 
sidenote:  Jessica . . .I promise Joel wore a helmet when he rode the 4 wheeler.  he was riding with it on when I went to get my camera.  when I came back outside he had switch to the yellow jeep.  I had him get on again for the quick picture.  :)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Soccer Camp Session Two: 5:30-7:30 PM

June 2009 050

At the end of Wyatt’s spring season of soccer his coach made the announcement that he was paying for each of his 6 players to attend soccer camp in June.  Wyatt started playing on the TIGERS! team last fall and has a good time-which is all we are looking for at this age.  It was a long two hour practice, but Wyatt didn’t come over and complain one time about the heat.  Not to say I wasn’t complaining about it ;)  All 6 of his teammates were there so that made the time enjoyable for him.  This picture was taken on the last night.  The coach was very patient with the little ones and had fun games to practice their skills.

June 2009 045

June 2009 042

At this stage in his life Wyatt is at the mercy of his big brother who dominates him at soccer any chance he gets.  Therefore Wyatt takes that same mentality against others his own age.  He goes after the ball and is in the middle of the action the entire time he is on the field.  Below is a picture of Brian and Wyatt participating in one of the many games the coach had us do.  It was called ‘cowboys and Indians.’ I’m glad Brian was able to make it to practice from work before parents were called to the field, I am NOT a team player ;)

June 2009 038June 2009 035  

Last week 25 hours of our time was spent at the soccer fields.  What did the rest of us do?  I brought a blanket for us to sit on and supplied lots and lots of snacks for Abram.  We found a small tree that provided enough shade that made it bearable to be outside.  A new playground provided entertainment to Cooper each evening.  When that became to hot there was the library right behind us.  Tag team parenting was perfected so it never became to overwhelming for one of us.  I was able to catch up with PAM! each evening as she brought along her son, who is the same age as Cooper. 

All in all it was a success week! 

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Soccer Camp Session One: 9-NOON

Last week Cooper attended his first soccer camp.  It was Monday through Friday at the treeless soccer field.  The first day I had forgotten about it and rolled out of bed around 8:30 thinking it was a lazy Monday.  It was about 5 minutes later I realized we had somewhere to be and the madness began.  Thankfully Cooper was already awake and rushed around looking for soccer balls, cleats and shin guards.  We arrived only 5 minutes late and although he was a bit apprehensive he made his way to met the other campers and his coach for the week.  Coach ‘Rick’ as I called him because I could barely understand a word he said.  He was from Poland and was very strict and expected a lot from his players.  I wondered how Cooper would do, but he LOVED every minute of it.  The first day I braced for fits as I assumed he would be exhausted, hot and thirsty.  He excitedly jumped into the car and said, “I can’t WAIT for tomorrow, but I need to bring a bigger water bottle!”  Poor guy was sent with his usual practice bottle and he told me he was out before the first break :( 

June 2009 026

The campers ranged in age from 6-16 and the first day they were broken into mixed age teams and were given a team name.  Cooper’s was ‘Poland’ and he was adamant that he needed to wear RED(head to toe), every day.  The outfit you see is what he wore each day.  I would wash it each afternoon so it would be ready.  I tried to set out a different outfit that in Cooper’s words weren’t ‘red enough’.  The teams were given points each day if they dressed in their team colors, demonstrated sportsmanship and had good moves on the field.  Cooper thrived on this competition and took it all in as gold. 

June 2009 025

Friday morning the parent’s were invited to watch the World Games that they had been practicing for each day.  Cooper was VERY excited and was up at 6 AM dressed and ready.  Each team was asked to bring a flag to represent their country and the above picture is what we came up with.  Homemade at its finest :)  The picture below shows the first game.  Each team is yelling their country back and forth.  Cooper’s voice is loud and proud with “POLAND!”  Brian was able to make the games too, which was a huge boost for Cooper.

June 2009 008

June 2009 013

Cooper was very aggressive on the field and was not afraid of getting hit with the ball, as I would have been.  He took a beating to the chest and head and never showed fear.  I was quite surprised.  Below is a battle between him and a fourteen year old.  No fear! 

   June 2009 016

June 2009 020

Each team played a total of four ‘games’ and then they had a closing ceremony.  After each game they would all huddle together and recap the highlights of the game.  Cooper was MVP in two of his games and lead scorer in one game.  At closing ceremonies Poland was named the champions and given a team ‘trophy’.  Below is a picture of his team that he had played with all week.  He was proud of the games and can’t wait to go again next year! 

June 2009 023