Monday, September 29, 2008

Our Weekend...

Friday, we had 2 caseworker visits in the afternoon. They both went fine. It was my first time meeting both of them so I was a bit nervous, but all went well. I spent some time talking to Andy about some things as he worked from home in the afternoon to be here for the home visits. Then, Deidra and I went and watched my brother's football game. I was so excited to watch the marching band. I really miss marching band days. Anyway, Red Oak was playing Lancaster and I have to say Lancaster's band was so obnoxious. They never quit playing and everytime I kept going "come on Red Oak, they're on your! My Mom said she had never not enjoyed a game so much because Lancaster's band just played and played and wouldn't give a break and they were LOUD. Sadly, my brother never got to play in the game and we went down afterwards and watched their band march off the field. I overheard 2 Mom's saying how Red Oak just wasn't a marching band and you didn't play on the field with instruments you couldn't march with (she was referring to their pit section). I couldn't help but say that Red Oak's band isn't bad...they had a better half time show than Lancaster, but they do lack sound. My Dad told her that I was in a very competitive marching band and she said that they used to be too and had about a 100 members in their band. I told her that any marching band I knew of had a pit section. My Dad told her that our band took up the whole football field. She still wanted to argue and said that Red Oak's band director literally came from Wal-mart and wouldn't let the kids have any fun. I decided at that point to quit arguing with her. As I was walking away she said that Red Oak needed to get a band director who was qualified. My argument had nothing to do with that as I don't know the situation, all I was trying to tell her that Red Oak wasn't a bad band, they just lack some sound and that any competitive band has a pit section. Oh well!

Saturday we got up and spent the day at the State Fair. We decided last year that we were going to start budgeting specifically for that event. It's huge and so much fun. We got there and there was so much we wanted to see and food that we wanted to try. We'd get the food and share so we could all taste it. We started out with chicken strips and curly fries for the kids, then Andy and I went and got fried grilled cheese and tomato soup dip. We tried fried banana splits, and fried cantaloupe pie and Deidra got frozen chocolate dipped cheesecake and chocolate covered strawberries. Everything was really good! We walked through the arts and crafts booths, the auto show, and took Deidra over to play some games where she got things for her and all the kids. We watched the irish school dancers for awhile and Baby T totally got into it and was clapping to the music and laughing. Little E wanted to sit by the fountain with Deidra, so Deidra walked her over there. Deidra is so good with her. Little E can get very apprehensive and fearful around new situations and people, but if Deidra takes her hand and talks to her she totally calms down. My brother, Jimmie, met up with us over by Big Tex and we walked around with him for awhile. We are trouble makers when we get together. I wanted to meet up with my parents for a bit, but they were on the complete opposite side of the grounds and my feet were hurting so badly by that point (my feet are covered in blisters from the new shoes that I just got) that I couldn't get up the gumption to walk over there. The kids were all really good while we were out and Little E walked everywhere. We asked her after we had been there for 6 hours if she was tired and wanted to rest and she didn't. I was so proud of her! We got ready to go and Jimmie asked if he could get a ride home with us. We called my Mom & Dad to let them know and as we were walking out I realized we never took the kids to the animal barn. Last year we went and got to pet a kangaroo and I'll admit that it's one of my favorite parts of the fair each year, so I can't believe that I totally forgot all about it. I didn't have the strength to walk all the way to the other side of the fair to bring them thougha nd then have to walk all the way back to leave. We were all hot and tired by that point. It is good to see my parents being friendly enough towards each other as well to enjoy each others company. Dad came in this week to help move him and Zach out of their apartment in Austin and it's just really nice to see them getting along. It was nice to sit in the stands and watch my brother's game with both of them and see them laughing and so forth. That's a totally answered prayer right there.

Sunday, we all got up and went to church and I took Deidra to catechism and I went and helped Mom teach her RCIA class. Well, I didn't really help...more like just sat in...and if she needs an errand ran or anything then she asks me to go do it for her. I like to sit in as God speaks to me in classes like that. I think next year I may really formally start helping her out. Deidra makes her first communion this year as well and I would like to help in her class as well. We came home and took a nap and then Andy and I had some stuff that we needed to get done. I worked on laundry for awhile, I re-organized Baby J's closet and took out everything that was too small for him, and Andy steam cleaned the carpets in our room and got rid of the totes that we were just working on unpacking and it looks so much better in there now. Then, I cleaned the downstairs up so he could spot clean the carpets in the living room and play room. I got some more laundry put away and I made dinner that for once everyone really liked (Amish casserole)... We got the kitchen cleaned up and I gave the kids their baths and got them ready for bed so I could enjoy some peace and quiet. Andy called his Dad to check his itinerary. He's flying in the week after next from Sunday-early Wed. morning. We were trying to get him to come in over the weekend so Andy had the time with him, but he's flying to Phoenix to see my BIL and SIL when he leaves here, so he wouldn't change it. Andy's taking his last sick day on Monday when he's here. Andy's Mom comes in this week while we're in San Antonio for our foster parent conference. We're going to pick her up from her sister's house on Sunday and she's staying until Tuesday morning when we have to bring her to the airport. Andy's taking the last of his vacation for our conference and his Mom's visit. It makes me a bit nervous that he's out of days when we still have a couple months' left of the year, but hopefully all will be ok.

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Sunday, September 28, 2008

My new best friend...

I decided to try Scrubbing Bubbles Toilet Cleaning Gel to see if it would help keep the toilets looking nice and clean in between my deep cleanings. You just place the gel inside the bowl near the rim with the little gel dispenser and you don't have to touch it again. Each time you flush the toilet, the water dispenses a little gel to clean the bowl and it lasts up to a week. I have to say after using them for a week, I am totally sold. They are awesome!

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Friday, September 26, 2008

Quick Prayer Request

We're meeting our 2 new caseworkers today. I always get nervous when I meet them the first couple of times. Please pray that everything goes well.

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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Enjoying Some Sprinkler Time!

I used Inspired by Dominic Designs A Day Outdoors Mini Kit for this one.

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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Sometimes I think the school can be a bit excessive...

Thursday, Deidra got a warning for not listening to directions during math. I completely understood that.

Friday, her daily folder and her Friday folder got sent home. We have to sign both of them. I forgot to initial her daily folder so yesterday she came home with another warning because her folder wasn't signed from Friday. I wrote the teacher and told her that I had looked at it and saw that she had good behavior, I just forgot to initial it. I didn't see why she would get a warning for something I forgot to do. She said they're trying to get the kids to be held accountable and responsible for making sure their folders got checked. I told her I felt that was a parent's responsibility, not the child's. I understand I have to respect their decision, I just think that's a bit excessive. It was a simple oversight on my part and now I feel horrible that Deidra is being held accountable for it. If they have a week with no behavior marks, they get Fun Friday. Now, because of me, she doesn't get to participate this week.

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A Blessing from a Stranger...

I know that our families/friends don't always understand our desire for having all the children that we have and we get some comments from time to time. Add in all the extra ups and downs that go with foster care and I feel a bit stressed from time to time. Granted, I am very sensitive and I let little things get to me as well that I really shouldn't. Anyway, I dealt with some comments over the weekend and while it hurt at the time, I had a sense of peace come over me at the same time. I had to understand why this person felt the way that they do. I chose to let it go and walk away and I put it into God's hands. When I left church over the weekend, the bulletin was covered with pics of Jesus surrounded by children and that so spoke to me. I know this is our calling and we want what is best for our children.

I went to the gas station yesterday and as I was filling up my van this man says to me "wow, you've got 3 little ones in there." I said "yup, and we just took my daughter to school." He says "my hat is off to you, I know you're busy." I nodded. He said "I bet you don't have any trouble falling asleep at night either huh?" I laughed and said "not at all." He then went on to tell me that he had 7 children...he said he had to do put a load of laundry in before bed each night and he folded it in the morning when he got up and he put in another load before he took the kids to school and then he folded that load when they got home and the cycle repeated itself. I laughed as I totally knew what he meant. It seems like our laundry is never-ending with 6 people. We traded stories while we finished filling up our vehicles and he said "your busy with this many kids, but the Lord sees your efforts and you will be rewarded." The Lord speaks through many people and I felt that he chose that person to speak to me. It more than made up for any negative comment that I had received this weekend and it brought a smile to my face. Thank you Lord for an unexpected blessing. Please continue to bless our family. I ask for blessings for that man and his family as well.

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Thursday, September 18, 2008

Baby J

Our big boy graduated out of speech today. YEAH!

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Wednesday, September 17, 2008

A Field Trip to the Dallas Zoo

I used the Zoology 101 kit by Jen's Designz for these 2 pages.

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My birthday celebration!

Well, I am officially 32. My birthday was yesterday. It was a pretty low key day, but I received some very nice cards and gifts. My Dad and I's relationship has been pretty rocky for a few years now, but he sent me the nicest birthday card that literally made me cry. He handwrote some things on there that were very sweet and meant a lot.

Andy came home from work with a dozen red roses for me. They are striped in lighter shades of red and they were just beautiful. I've never seen roses like that before. Anyway, he also had a birthday cake for Baby T as she turned 2 on Saturday. So, we headed to Applebee's for our birthday dinner. The girls do not wait patiently for food at all, so we had to try lots of distraction techniques while we waited for our food, but once dinner came it was all good. We came home for cake and gave Baby T her presents and I opened my cards and the present from Andy's Mom that she sent. I went to bed feeling very blessed. I was scared to death to turn 30...but I have to say the 30s have been very good to me and I have learned a lot about myself.

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Our 10th Anniversary Celebration

We celebrated 10 years of marriage together on September 12. We were a bit nervous about leaving for our 3-day weekend together with Hurricane Ike hitting Texas. Thankfully, we didn't get much here other than some wind and a little rain. We've had thunderstorms worse than that. But, I was worried and family and friends that we had down in the Houston area. I got word that they were safe and then I felt better.

Friday, we went and picked Deidra up from school and then we started dropping the kids off to where they were staying for the weekend and then we took Deidra to my Mom's work so that we could drop her off with my Mom. Then, we came home to change and we went to The Melting Pot for dinner. I had asked Andy if he thought we needed reservations and he didn't think so. We got there at 7 and they had to put us down for an 8:45 pm dinner as that was their first available opening. So, we wound up going to Sam's Club to walk around and check out a couple things. We headed back and ordered our dinner. They presented us with our own private little cubby hole to eat our dinner as well as an Anniversary card from all the waiters. We ordered and I had a bit of an embarrassing moment with our waiter while ordering (if you wnat to hear it just email me...but we giggled about it afterwards). We ate some really great food and were very stuffed by the time we were done. We got home about midnight and checked radar before heading to bed.

Saturday, I woke up at 6 am as the sounds of the wind picking up woke me. I came downstairs to check radar and went and got Andy up as well. We stood outside for a bit and then came back inside. We decided to get ready for breakfast and so we headed for IHOP. Breakfast was good and everyone was talking about the hurricane as it was due to hit by us later in the day. We left and the wind had really picked up then and we were watching the cloud bands come over us. We came home to pack for our hotel stay. We drove in to Dallas and made a couple stops along the way, including Fadi's for lunch, and then headed for our hotel. We stayed at the Magnolia Hotel in Dallas. and we found our suite was much bigger than our first apartment that we shared together. lol. It was really nice with a living room, kitchen, bedroom, and a huge bathroom. We loved it! They brought us a dozen chocolate covered strawberries and a bottle of champagne and we had matching very fuzzy and soft robes on our bed with a CD of love songs. They had complimentary happy hour at the hotel and then we went for a walk in the rain. Andy said it reminded him of the day he proposed although it was the completely wrong city and we weren't walking along the beach...but it was raining then too. Anyway, I had to go to the bathroom and nobody had public restrooms so we had to head back to the hotel. We wanted to watch a movie, but for some reason we couldn't get it to work and so I wound up falling asleep on the couch while he watched Man vs. Wild. Romantic huh? lol. Anyway, our bed was really comfortable and we slept really well. I asked Andy if he thought the hotel would notice if we tried to fit the mattress in the elevator when we checked out. lol.

Sunday, I woke up early and headed in to watch the news. I watched the hurricane coverage and I started crying while watching it. I felt so bad for those people. I woke Andy up around 8 and we ordered breakfast...I got some pound cake french toast that was to die for and he got a Mexican breakfast burrito that he really liked too. We vegged out for awhile and then we checked out so that we could go to church together at the Cathedral. After church, we wound up going to visit all the animals at the pet adoption center, we did some thrift shopping for our ebay business, and then we decided to head for my Mom's to pick up Deidra. Then, it was time to go get the kids from the other 2 places that they were. We came home and fed everyone and then got them ready for bed. They welcomed us back to reality really quick. lol. It was really nice to get away and we really had a good time together. It was nice being able to talk without interrruptions and to just have fun together.

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Tuesday, September 09, 2008

A Deidra Funny...

my silly girl made stuff for Grandparents day for school today and my Mom went up to school and had lunch with her. My Mom called to tell me that she enjoyed herself and that Deidra made them cards and she put on there things about her grandparents. She put on my MOm's "My Grandma is as pretty as a flower." and on my Dad's she didn't know what to put so with her fill in the blank she put "My Grandpa is as handsome as a dog." My Mom chuckled and hoped my Dad wouldn't take it the wrong way as Deidra didn't mean any harm by it. I thought it was hilarious. He'll just have to stop and realize that she's only 7. lol

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Sunday, September 07, 2008

I'm surprised!

I've been doing my gourmet foods since Nov. 2005 and they just listed in their September newsletter that I was in their top 20 of ladies. I never expected that one. Wow! Not bad since I only sell online. I've talked about doing craft shows, but just haven't had the gumption to do so.


Friday, September 05, 2008

Old pics and weight loss...

I was recently emptying out some old totes looking for pictures that I had hung up on the wall and I came across my senior picture from high school. I hung it on my family wall and decided that I waas going to use it as motivation to lose this weight that I've gained since I graduated. Of course infertility treatments and pregnancy and a hypothyroid all contributed, but I'm not making any excuses anymore. I am determined to get this weight off.

Then, I was at my Mom's and she's been trying to purge a bunch of stuff and she found old homecoming pics of me. All I could think of was "man, to be that skinny again" and "oh to be that young again."

I was just telling Andy the other day that I really miss high school and marching band days sometimes.

I will see my old high school weight again...I am determined now!

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Thursday, September 04, 2008


Baby T is literally attached to me all day long or she gets really insecure. She's the one that lets me love on her the most and she has started to smile and giggle away when I love on her. Little E has been the one to hold back and if I asked her if I could give her a hug she would say "no." I respected that and didn't push her. Today Baby T fell and I was kissing the boo boo on her elbow all better and Little E said "I want kisses too." She came over and gave me a hug and I kissed her cheek and she kissed me back. I told her "I love you" and she said "what?" I told her I love you again and she asked me "what?" again. I said I love you sweet girl. She came back and gave me a hug while I had tears streaming down my cheeks.

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