Archive for September, 2008

The Arboretum

September 29, 2008

Kasen and I met the Gymboree Mommies and their children today at the Dallas Arboretum.  We used to attend the same Gymboree class, but now that we're all spread out, we try to make an effort to get together.  The Mommies have met several times sans kids, now it was the kiddos' turn for some fun.  And I'm pretty sure they all had a great time.  I know that Kasen was talking about it alllllll day!! LOL

I have way more pictures to share, but this is all I could muster for this evening.  And honestly, aren't these children WAY too cute?! :D

Here they are in no particular order ~

Sweet Adam ~

Tammy & Grant -  Can you tell he LOVES his Mommy?! ;)

Handsome Evan, with those beautiful blues. ~

Cutie Pie Lauren ~ this was the first picture of the day!

My Little Pumpkin, before the face painting!  Stay tuned for those pics!!

Adorable Samantha ~

Precious Helen – I didnt' get many pics of her and her little sis today.  Maybe next time. *wink-wink*
My favorite part of this picture is Helen's fingers. LOL  Can you tell she was having some fun gardening?!

Beautiful Rowan – so happy that I finally made her giggle ~ 

The End . . . for now!! LOL

I hope y'all liked the pics.  Check back for more throughout the week.

We had a fantastic time and I can hardly wait to go back!!

See ya' later!!

Sliding Up

September 28, 2008

Just one picture tonight.  Super busy, super tired and still super sore. :(

Big adventure tomorrow.  Hopefully I'll get some good shots to share.

See ya' later!!


September 25, 2008

She has it . . . in spades!! LOL  Check out that tongue action, just comical. :D

Before I forget, here's the scoop on my doctors' appointments.  One more cortisone injection and my shoulder feels a LOT better.  So, for the past two days, I've been editing, editing, editing . . .but not too much to overdo what my doctor just patched. ;)   Working s.l.o.w.l.y, 'cuz I do NOT want to experience that excruciating pain for quite some time, thank you very much.  I'm pretty sure it will come back until I decide to have the surgery, but I'm delaying waiting and exercising and icing and taking anti-inflammatories and resting, all in the hopes that I may be able to avoid having surgery.  It's a   L . O . N . G.   shot, but I'm willing to try.

Then, the cardiologist appointment last Friday.  My primary care physician was concerned when my EKG showed some extra beats going on with my heart.  He referred me to a cardiologist to be on the safe side.  There, I had another EKG and a heart sonogram.  They discovered that I have mitral valve prolapse (very mild & already knew about that) . . nothing to be concerned about.  So, all in all, great news!!  My ticker isn't as wacky as I thought. LOL

That's it for the big news at our house . . .unless you want to discuss our new dishwasher. LOL  I am thrilled with it, the way it looks, the way it performs, I could kiss it!!  Oh, I, uh, think I have already!!  LOL  The older I get, the more new appliances make me the happiest girl in the world.  Crazy huh?!

Have a GREAT Friday.

See ya' later!!

Time Honored Tuesday

September 23, 2008

I thought it would be fun to travel back in time each Tuesday, thus the first installment of "Time Honored Tuesdays" is born.

These were taken in April of 2006.  Isn't it wild what a chunk she was???  Now, she's this little lean machine! LOL

Love that chewing on her fingers, she's obviously teething here.  It's a lot of work to grow teeth. :D

I'm cracking up looking at those cheeks.  They were SO kissable . . still are, there's just not as much of them. LOL

She was really into her hands – looking at them, feeling them, totally amazed by them.  Oh, and those dimples on her chubby, little hands, can you stand it??!! :)

Have a great Tuesday.  Thanks for traveling back in time with me.

See ya' later!!

Mischievous Monday

September 22, 2008

Good Grief!!  This has already been a crazy day . . and it's only half over.  Thank goodness I'm meeting the girls tonight for a much deserved night out!!  Bring on the fun.

If you have not parented a three year old, you might have NO idea what I'm talking about.  And even if you have, and you do NOT have one as mischievous as ours, you still might have no idea.  So, let me give you a little peek into the start of our week.  Trust me, this is tame . . . yet, still not relaxing by any means.  I do earn my pay that's for sure.  Oh wait, I don't make any money doing this??  Well, I do really, I get paid in kisses and hugs and that's more than money can buy . . . . most of the time! LOL

Monday in the Life of Kasen:

Woke up early coughing and coughing and coughing.  Poor thing.

Crawled up in bed with us and requested food immediately.

Brad honored request and gave Kasen what she asked for . . . pink milk, just like Lola (from Charlie and Lola cartoon), along with a bowl of Cheerios.

Settled back in bed (with us) and proceeded to spill pink milk and cheerios everywhere.

Watched cartoons while she flipped, kicked and bounced.

No more sleep for us.

Brad got up to get ready for work.

Kasen managed to take out several items from one of my drawers in the bathroom.

She also found three necklace boxes and did a bang up job of breaking one of them.

Brad left for work (super tired) – Kasen was pretty sad for a little while.

Kasen played next to me for a few minutes while I worked on editing pictures.

She then proceeded to close my office door.

I heard rustling in the kitchen.

I went into the kitchen to investigate.  When Kasen is around, quiet is not a good thing! LOL

I found her standing on her step stool, getting cheese out of the refrigerator.  Those refrigerator doors are heavy too.  It really is too bad that she's learned how to open them!

You know, what amuses me most about this picture is not Kasen pulling out two Babybel cheese circles, but the THREE bottles of Tabasco sauce in the door.  Does anybody really need that many bottles???  I guess Brad does, since he's the only one that uses that stuff.  I secretly think he puts that on everything so he won't have to share his food with Kasen!! LOL  He just tells her that it's too hot.  Now, who do you think she goes to next???  Yep, me.  Guess I need to come up with a new strategy to keep little hands out of my food. LOL

Oh boy, I'm so easily sidetracked.  Benefits of motherhood. LOL

Then, Kasen takes the cheese into the bedroom to watch cartoons and I find cheese wrappers all over the bedroom floor and under the bed . . . under the bed???  Oh my!!

I bring in clean clothes from the dryer and go back to put the wet clothes in the dryer.

I return to  clean clothes spread from one end to the other all over the bedroom floor.

Clean clothes are picked up, folded, put away.

Kasen asks for another snack.  I give her a bowl of fruity bunnies.

I jump in the shower so we can hurry and go to the car repair shop.

When I'm ready to go, Kasen brings me a sockful of fruit bunnies.  Yes, she grabbed one of the clean socks from the clean clothes disaster, saved it for herself and made a little snack holder. LOL

I get her ready and head out the door to the car shop . . . where I chased her, said "NO" a thousand times, asked her to listen, and grabbed her hand  TWICE before she pushed the buttons to close the garage doors.  YIKES!!!  I could just see her closing one of those huge metal doors and squishing a car to smitherines.  And yes, I was told that I have my hands full by four different people.  We were in the service shop for less than 10 minutes.

We finally left after much sweating on my part, and headed to the post office to drop off a letter.

Kasen cried that we didn't go inside and begged to go inside another store.

We drove to get something to eat and Kasen yelled so loud that I almost drove off the road.  What is up with the yelling STILL?????

I bought lunch, filled up the car with gas and headed home while Kasen was still crying about not wanting to go home.

Got home and she immediately tried to hit Spike (our cat) because she thought he was going to eat her lunch.

I intervened just in time and we tried to sit at the table together for lunch, but she could not stay in her seat.

Into her high chair she went and we proceeded with lunch.

From there, she tried to throw food at Spike and he did eat some cheese that mysteriously made its way to the floor.

Not two minutes after that, Spike threw up.  Now, I had that to clean up before I could finish my lunch.

Kasen continued to not listen and then she said "WHAT ev-errrrrrr!"  *did you see the steam come out of my ears?* LOL  She has just started this and I have NO idea where she got it, but she uses that word as perfectly as an overindulged teenager, after being lectured by her parents about how many hours they have to work to pay for ONE pair of her designer jeans.

As I was taking a few pictures, this famous "WHAT ev-errrr!" came flying out of her mouth again.

Notice the eyes closing first ? – good move and VERY dramatic! LOL

Then the rolling of the eyes – yep, she's got it down pat!

After telling her that it was rude and I didn't like her saying that, she continued to test the waters.  Oh yeah, did you think she would let it go at that???  No way, she has to test every.single.time.

So, nap time it is.

Potty break first . . . where she broke the toilet paper holder AGAIN.  We've told her to leave it alone since she already pulled it out of the wall, but I guess it's just too tempting to watch it fall out AGAIN!

Off to nap . . . and really, that's where I should be!! LOL

Good thing that Brad is taking over at 5:30 p.m. because I'm punching out my time card and I will definitely be off duty! LOL

See ya' later!!!

Another “Awww” Moment

September 21, 2008

I had to share this because it's another one of my favorites from this session.  Aren't those squishy, chubby cheeks just the best?!

So, do you have baby fever now?? LOL

Be back soon with some new pics of my not-so-little pumpkin.

See ya' later!!

Story Time Interrupted

September 19, 2008

This is what I see every night before it's my turn to sing the songs.  Such sweet and gentle moments to always treasure.

Happy Friday everyone.

I'll be back to update about my last doctor's appointment, and then what I find out at my NEXT doctor's appointment this afternoon.  This is the week of doctors' visits for me!!  Wow.

See ya' later!!


September 16, 2008

Can you believe it???  This makes my two hundredth post . . that's a LOT of talking and  LOT of pictures. :D   Well, mostly of Kasen, but hey, who's counting??? LOL

The weekend retreat was great, lots of fun conversation and I did get quite a bit of work done in between the eating and conversing.  All of the ladies were fantastic and it was a blast getting to know them all.  I hope to do it again, but I would only change one thing . . . next time I'll actually scrapbook. ;)   I have an idea for a few pages and I'm hoping to get those put together in between all of my other projects.  I know Kasen will love seeing herself in an actual book . . and not on the computer screen!! LOL

With my shoulder injury, I'm trying to limit my computer time as much as possible.  It's just not getting better, and on the advice of a very intense OT (LOL), I need to alter my ways or it's NEVER going to get better. YIKES!!!  That pretty much scared me into changing how I do everything.  I had already changed quite a few things, but not near enough to make an impact . . . . as certainly evidenced by the continuous throbbing pain.  I'll still be posting on my blog, but it might be sporadic for a while.  I have a doctor's appointment in the morning and hopefully we'll come up with a game plan that will be best for all involved.

It just pains me (literally) that the things that I enjoy the most are causing me the greatest amount of pain . . . . taking photographs and editing pictures.  Well . . . ironing and cleaning too, but there's no love lost there!! LOL  Soooooo, I have to figure this out, so I can get back on track to doing what I love.

I also have a few Kasen cuties that I want to share, but I'll do that at a later time, since my computer timer just went off. LOL

Kasen, enjoying the beautiful weather this afternoon.  Isn't she just beautiful??!!

See ya' later!!

Creative Cottage Retreat

September 12, 2008

Heading out this evening for a retreat . . . well kind of, it's so I can actually get some work done . . without little hands that can, and DO, cause BIG messes. LOL  I'll be editing as many photos as I can while I'm there.  However; the other women at the retreat will be scrapbooking no doubt.  I mean, it IS a scrapbooking retreat.  One of my dearest friends co-owns this place and it's just fantastic.  I haven't had the chance to stay out there, but I've been out there a few times, once so I could take some pictures for them. :)

I'm looking forward to getting a lot of work done, eating food that's still hot, and trying to relax a little bit without stopping what I'm doing to yell "No!" LOL  And the best part . . . adult conversation, UNINTERRUPTED!!  Honestly, I'm looking forward to that the most. :)

Kasen and I had lunch today with a dear friend and I can't even tell you the amount of sentences that were cut off in midstream, thanks to my whirlwind of a tornado.  Precious, yes . . quiet, you've got to be kidding me!! LOL  Yet another reason I'm excited to have a little getaway.  I think it will be good for all of us. :D   Brad, not so much, he's going to be BUSY – wish him luck!! LOL

Here's where I'll be . . . having a blast!!

Have a GREAT weekend!!!!!

See ya' later!!

37 Months

September 10, 2008

Dear Kasen,

Well, you’ve had one whole month of being THREE!!  Lots of changes, lots of bargaining, lots of
love, lots of attitude, and lots of me feeling like you’re growing up way too
fast!  *tears*  Now, when I sing your lullaby, you correct me when I get to the
part about my “sweet baby.”  You say,
“I’m not a baby.  I’m a big girl.”  I always correct it for you and then my added
part always follows . . . . “You’ll always be my baby!”  And you will, even as I held you this
morning while I rocked you, I imagined how tiny you used to be, all snuggled up
in my arms and even though I miss those days terribly, I value each day that I
have with you now.  I enjoy our
conversations, our play time and watching your little mind work overtime.

I think the biggest change for you this last month has been
transitioning from a crib to a “big girl” bed. 
We kept you in your crib for as long as possible, especially since you
didn’t seem to mind and never tried to climb out.  We talked to several friends about when the right time would be
to move you, but the majority said to wait  So we did. LOL  We all went as a family to pick out your mattress, your bedding
and you couldn’t have been more excited. 
That was pretty evident as you bounced from mattress to mattress in the
bedding store, intermittently telling the sales lady to “Be careful” as she
lowered mattresses to the floor.

The day your mattress came in, we had all the bedding
washed, so we all made up your bed and had it ready to go.  We let you jump to your heart’s desire and
took lots of pictures to document the momentous event.  We were a little worried how you would
handle it that first night and yep, there were a few bumps and bruises . . literally.  We moved the nightstand too close to your
bed and when you were trying to get up to find me, you fell and hit your
head.  We felt awful and you cried, “I
couldn’t see you Mommy.  It’s too dark.”  Lesson learned.  We left a little night light on for you, moved the furniture
around a bit, placed pillows on the floor around you and began the night time
routine once again.  You did
GREAT!!!!!!!!  You slept all night long
and when you woke up in the morning, you walked directly into our room and with
sleepy eyes, you asked, “Is it morning?”

Everyone that crosses your path is told about your “big
girl” bed.  I watched you at the store
the other day, telling a little boy about your new bed.  You stood directly in front of him and said,
“I got a big girl bed.”  When he didn’t
respond as quickly as you would have liked, you reiterated, “Did you hear
me????  I got a BIG GIRL BED!” LOL  We’re so happy that you are enjoying the
benefits of growing up, but I do miss that little face peeking out at me over
the crib every morning.  However; those
sweet little feet that go fwap fwap fwap on the cold hard floor every morning,
making their way into our bedroom and crawling up in bed to snuggle with us . .
. makes it all worthwhile.

You know, my favorite conversations with you are in the car,
while we’re driving around town.  I just
love that you notice so many things and you feel free to talk so openly and
about everything.  I soak up those
moments and hope that it’s always our special time together.  Here’s an example of one of our most recent
conversations in the car, and one of my favorites:

Kasen: (looking out the window at all the greenery)  God made those trees.

Me:  He did?

Kasen:  Yeah, he
did.  He make them beautiful.

Me:  Yes, I
know.  He did a good job, didn’t He?

Kasen:  Yeah, he
did.  You see those cars right there?

Me:  Yes, I see them.

Kasen:  He made those
cars too.  He painted that one blue, and
that one red and that one black.

Me:  Well, He didn’t
actually make the cars, but He made the people that made and painted the cars.

Kasen:  Ohhhhh, sorry!

Sooo cute.  It seems
I laugh more in the car lately with our banter than anywhere else.  I love that!!

Along with talking in the car, it’s also where you belt out
several songs.  We get a kick out of you
singing, “Cinderelly, Cinderelly, oh, oh, Cinderelly!”  I think “Lullabye and Good Night” is a close
second.  We never know which words
you’ll come up with on the latter song, but it’s always a nice and unique

You are great at stalling. 
Your newest phrases are “Wait a minute. Wait a minute.  I forgot something.”  Or “Wait a second. Wait a second.  I forgot to show you something.”  Then we see your eyes searching, and can
almost hear your mind clicking, while you buy some time before you figure out
your game plan.  Then, you point to
something you want to eat, or suggest a certain game to play. . . which is
great IF it wasn’t RIGHT before you are supposed to be going to bed, or
anywhere else for that matter.  Another
favorite stalling tactic of yours is saying, “What you SAYED?”  Translation, “What did you say?”  It usually gives you a little more time,
since I explain to you once again what I JUST said.  So, I guess that one is working as well. LOL  Hey, I just realized that we’re totally
getting played from a three year old. LOL 
Man, you’re good!!

They always say that you will see yourself in your children,
and boy do we believe that now.  It
wasn’t that long ago that I would tell you something and you would answer
“What?”  You would keep doing that over
and over and over!!!  Frustrated, I
would say “You heard me!”  And then you
would bust out laughing.  Pretty good
indication that you knew what I was saying!! 
Recently you said something to me and I couldn’t understand you . . . so
I kept saying “What?” in response to you. 
Certainly fed up with me, you said “You HEAR ME!!” LOL  It’s good to know that you actually ARE

Speaking of listening, this has been a HUGE goal of
yours.  We ask that you listen to us AND
comply.  What a novel idea, eh?!  We know that you hear, “You don’t listen!”
several times throughout each day and we are working like mad to tell when you
DO listen.  Reward the good, reward the
good, that’s our mantra.  When I asked
why you were on a timeout recently, you hung your head, slowly shaking it back
and forth, then pursed your lips and said, “I just DON’T listen.”  As I watched you talk to a little girl at
the shoe store, I realized that you take way more in than we even realize.  This little girl asked if you wanted to be
her best friend.  You were more than happy
to take that role and then you started talking about your mothers.  Once again, I saw you hang your head as if
getting into trouble and say “My Mommy gets mad I don’t listen.”  First, I cracked up, and then the sadness
followed.  It truly broke my heart that
you know I get angry with you.  We’re
always trying to find that line between raising a child that will be
respectful, nice, caring, and compassionate, but be firm enough with you, that you
are not ungrateful, unkind or impolite. 
You see, we have to show you that we are angry with your behavior
because it’s not acceptable.  It is
definitely sinking in, but each day I notice more and more that our moods
affect you, and we never want you thinking that we are unhappy with you . .
just the behavior.  Seriously, it’s

It was the end of an era this past month, your Gymboree
classes have now ended.  I have really
missed taking you to your play class every Wednesday morning . . and I have
missed the Mommies as well. ;)   You
continue to ask about Miss Linda (your Gymboree teacher) and you still ask
repeatedly if we are going to Gymboree class. 
You were actually too old to be in the last class, but I kept you in
because some other mothers with older children continued through the summer as
well.  Now that you’re a big girl, we
had to move on.  This morning we
attended your first gymnastics class at The Little Gym.  You could not have been more excited, calling it "dyn-natiks."  I really played it up and told you how much
fun it would be, that I would be there, but I would be on the other side of the
glass, watching.  Every Gymboree class,
I was right by your side and I had to gulp a LOT today while watching you play
in a new environment without me.  I know
it sounds silly, but I didn’t want to miss being by your side, hearing your giggles
and cheering you on.  When you were
closer to the glass, I heard you say to the teacher “I do it by myself!”  I guess that statement is not reserved just
for me! LOL  Then I watched you hang on
the bar with your hands and feet, look upside down for your teacher and yell
“Look at me!!”  I was so relieved that
you were enjoying yourself.  It was
clear that you loved it because you did NOT want to leave.  We were the last to head out the door and
you have asked all afternoon if we can go back tomorrow.  Yes sweetie, we’re going back, but it will be
one whole week.  I signed you up for the
fall session, so we’ll be going back a LOT!

Mother’s Day Out is back in session and we are BOTH happy
about that.  Me, to have some time to
make appointments, work, pay bills . . . and you, because you get to play,
play, play, with all your friends.  As
we were driving home on Tuesday, I asked how your day went and then I asked you if
you were nice.  You answered, “Not to
Natalie.” LOL  Of course, I investigated
further, only to find out that you put a baby blanket on her head.  Now, this is where it gets interesting.  I have asked you a few times what she said
and it’s always a different story, but it always has the same emphatic angry
tone, mimicked by you.  One time she
said “That’s not nice.  Don’t do
that.”  Then it was “Don’t do that again
missy!”  And lastly, “No Kasen, NO, NO,
NO!”  However; when I ask you what you
said to her, that part remains exactly the same . . . you say “I’m sorry.”  I question, “Then what did Natalie
say?”  “Nothing, she doesn’t say
anything.”  Oops.  When I asked if you were nice to everyone
else, you smugly said “I was nice-nice to Connor!” LOL  I wonder if he has any idea that he has such
an admirer. LOL  Even through all that,
I commended you for telling the truth and asked you to be nice to
everyone.  Tomorrow you will be
attending Mother’s Day Out once again, so we’ll see. *wink-wink*

It’s been an exciting month for all of us.  Last month we should have had your birthday
party, but we keep delaying it for many reasons.  We are thinking that we’ll wait until your Mae Mae and Papa are
here, so they can join in the fun.  We
realize that next year, the gig is up and you’ll actually know that we’ve been
slacking on having your birthday party later and later.  And that’s good too.  It will keep us honest! LOL

I never feel like I have much to say and then, here I am,
four pages later. LOL  There are so many
special things about you that I never want to forget and even though this
monthly letter is hard for me, I’m enjoying reading about previous months
already.  I hope you’ll enjoy it as
well.  As we tucked you into bed
tonight, along with your stuffed dog, Sophie, your polar bear and your tiny kitty, I
felt love overflowing . . . . . and exhaustion beyond belief. LOL  That’s the way it works, lots of love
wrapped around moments of insanity . . . .and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I love you to the moon and back.

Love, Mommy