Tuesday, December 30, 2008

to infinity and beyond!

Monday, December 29, 2008

addison road

Addison Road rocks. Just in case you needed some music to download with those Itunes giftcards you got in your stocking! :)

Seriously. I can listen to their music all day long. This entire album is amazing. A couple other of my favs are Always Love and What Do I Know of Holy.

lips

Miss Elle finally got her own lit-loss for Christmas. So now when she demands "Lips! Lips!" she can dig her fingernails (or teeth) into her very own lip gloss instead of Mommy's. Bubblegum Lipsmackers. Smells just like I remember.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

christmas time

What a weekend it has been! I'm exhausted and still picking up the pieces from a very fun and blessed Christmas. Cooking (and eating!) yummy food, seeing the kids' faces light up when they discovered new toys, spending time with family and celebrating Jesus' birthday... just doesn't get any better, does it?

Here are a few highlights. The rest of the pictures are up on hewood.

Making cookies for Santa.

Andrew, Laura and I prepared a fancy schmansy Christmas Eve dinner.

Summing up Kyle's year... skateboarding doctor.

Ready for Santa!

Whew! Santa did stop by afterall...

Embry's highlight... the Woody doll he received on Christmas Eve. After that, he wasn't interested in anything... not even Santa's goodies the next morning.

We love TJ and Auntie! It was so fun hanging out with them. I even got some one on one sister shopping time in!

Papaw made Ellie this precious baby bed. Minnie made the bedding. This will be cherished forever.

Grandma and the girls... most of them anyway. It was so good to see everyone.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

happy birthday jesus!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

on my mind

Luke 2: 1-20
In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2(This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3And everyone went to his own town to register.

4So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

8And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. 12This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."

13Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, 14"Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests."
15When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, "Let's go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about."

16So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them.

19But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

Monday, December 22, 2008

looking back


I love looking back at Hayes' pictures when he was the same age as Ellie and Embry. I found this today. 27 months old for both boys. It just makes me want to stop Hayes from growing. That precious little boy seems so long ago. He is such a big boy now. I know I will be saying the same about Embry far too soon.

Friday, December 19, 2008

christmas kids

christmas train

Thanks Grandpa and Nana for treating us to the Christmas Train last night. It will definitely become a yearly tradition!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

donut face

Thanks for the Krispy Kreme G.G.!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

little gym superheroes

Here is Hayes and his buddy Jake. They go to same sports class at the Little Gym on Tuesdays. Tuesdays are the highlight of Hayes' week. I don't know what is more entertaining... watching the boys go crazy in the gym or watching Jake's little sister Paige in the lobby. She could totally take those boys on!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

paci-fied

Monday, December 15, 2008

baked rigatoni cake

Here is a fun dinner to make. It was a hit with all three kids. Let me say that again, IT WAS A HIT WITH ALL THREE KIDS! Yee-freakin-Haw!

The recipe is from Martha Stewart and it is easy and delicious. I altered it just a bit, mainly to omit some of the grease.

Baked Rigatoni Cake


1 pound rigatoni pasta

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 pound ground meat (beef, pork or turkey)

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 (28 oz) can crushed tomatoes

1 cup finely grated parmesan

8 oz shredded mozzarella



*Preheat oven to 400*

*Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add salt if desired. Add pasta and cook until slightly underdone. Drain. Rinse in cold water, and drain.

*Toss pasta with one tablespoon of olive oil and set aside.

*Brown ground meat in large skillet. Drain. Add minced garlic, one teaspoon salt and some pepper. Cook two minutes more. Add tomatoes. Simmer for 20 minutes.

*Butter or spray a 9-inch springform pan with nonstick spray.

*Toss pasta with parmesan cheese. Tightly pack pasta in pan, standing each piece on end.

*Spread meat sauce on top of pasta. I used a blender and pulsed the meat sauce a bit so it would fill up the pasta holes better. Push the sauce down into the holes. Bake 15 minutes.

*Sprinkle mozzarella on top. Bake 10 to 15 minutes more, until cheese is pale golden.

*Remove from oven. Let stand 15 minutes. Run a knife around edge to loosen. Release the spring on the pan. Cut into wedges and serve.
You can also just use 2 cups of the sauce when filling up the pasta holes and serve the remainder sauce with the wedges.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

new little friend

This kid cracks me up. The things he attaches himself to. Puppy. Woody. Buzz. His collection of hats. Now an acorn from our front yard.

The friendship began on Friday after dropping Hayes off at school. I convinced Embry to leave the acorn and its hat on the porch and he could get it after his nap. He remembered and Mr. Acorn has been at his side ever since.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

lookin' for trouble

Friday, December 12, 2008

on my mind

1 Timothy 6:10
For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.

Luke 16:13
No servant can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money."

Luke 16:10
Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

well, is ya or ain't ya?

"I have the fiercest headache of my life" was the response I got yesterday when I picked Hayes up from school. Apparently, he had an emotional afternoon. His teacher thought maybe he wasn't feeling good... seeing that the last time he had an emotional day, he was starting to get sick.

But then again, he also has a history of saying he doesn't feel good when things aren't going his way.

He never showed signs of sickness today at home so off to school we went. Today he was a little handsy or should I say... he was hitting. What in the world?

He tells me again he doesn't feel good. He cries the whole 3 minute drive home. As soon as he sees Ethan across the street playing, he's better. And I mean in one second, he goes from crying to "I feel so much better!"

Sorry mister. Momma don't play that game.

So I don't know what is going on. Is he just having a rough patch at school or does he really not feel good? I guess we will wait and see what tomorrow brings.

His song of choice tonight: "Hanukkah, Hanukkah"

"Where did you learn that?"

"From my teacher at school."

"What does Hanukkah mean Hayes?"

"It means Christmas in Spanish."

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

advent conspiracy

worship fully

spend less

give more

love all

What a concept. I discovered Advent Conspiracy through Jane Anne at Gravity of Motion and can't stop thinking about it.

Let it sink in... it would take $10 billion to fix the world's water problem forever. Forever. And Americans alone spend $450 billion on Christmas each year. So basically, over 3,000 children a day could escape death from water born illnesses in exchange for Americans not getting as much stuff under the Christmas tree.

I don't know why this is affecting me so much now, but I'm glad it is. I hope it does you too.

$10 would give a child clean water for life. If you want to donate you can go to Advent Conspiracy's partner Living Water International.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

hijack

Embry the mighty hunter displays his harvest. When questioned about his recent success he said, "I'm just glad that I have the opportunity to share some quality time with my dad and provide supper for our family." He further commented, "Hey pheasant, you eat corn out of the field, I eat corn off of the floor. Say hello to your mother for me."

And yes, I know it's wrong. -kw-

Monday, December 8, 2008

tis the season

I spent Saturday by myself. That doesn't happen very often. I asked Kyle if he would take the kids with him to Blackwell. He was going to hunt so I thought if I could get them to go along (not to hunt, just hang out with the grandparents), I could get all kinds of things accomplished!

And that I did. I started and finished my Christmas shopping in one mighty sweep across 71st Street. God also got something accomplished. He opened my eyes to the shopping madness and made me realize I want no part of it.

God has really been working on my heart with Christmas. As I was dodging in and out of aisles at Toys R Us, I overhead several hateful comments between husbands and wives. At the mall, I listened as a lady yelled at her kid to shut up and if he didn't she was going to find a belt and whip his butt. Seriously. You could just see the stress oozing out of people. All the expectations. All of the money.

As I was filling my cart up with toys my kids don't need, I had the urge to put everything back. What am I doing? We don't need this stuff. We can't afford this stuff. But what would happen on Christmas morning when there was nothing? Hayes wouldn't understand. So there's this battle going on inside of me. I want to shower my kids with gifts but I want to be strong and act on God's urges.

I'm seeking his direction in how to teach my children the true meaning of Christmas. I want them to have giving and generous hearts. My hope is that one day, they will genuinely want to give instead of receive. Is that an unrealistic goal for kids?

Changes will need to be made. And some have already been made this year. Because we have no other choice financially, there won't be as much. But I'm learning that is a blessing. However, I don't want money to be the reason that stuff doesn't fill up our Christmas. I want it to be the fact that we get it and fill up Christmas with family, giving and celebrating the birthday of this little baby that came down from heaven.

I ran across this. When you really think about what Christmas has come to, can't you just feel God's heart aching? You know he's thinking, "They just don't get it. I gave them the most precious gift and here we are..."

Friday, December 5, 2008

read me a christmas story


I kinda have a thing for children's books. It's no different when it comes to the ones about Christmas. I love picking out a new book each Christmas for the kids. I've gone a bit overboard in the past with buying more than one (two, four, ten) a year so I'm holding off this year. Simply because we have enough... like I'm pretty sure I have got all of the good ones and I need to wait for more to be published. Not really. Well, kind of not really.

If you have favorites, please share them. I would love to get ideas for uh, next year. Here are some of our favorites... you can click on the titles to see the books.

For the little ones:


Crystal Bowman


Crystal Bowman


Joseph Slate


Nola Buck


Kathleen Long Bostrom


Patricia Pingry


For preschool and up:
Hisako Aoki


John Herman


Martin Waddell


Richard Paul Evans


Angela Elwell Hunt


Max Lucado


Richard Schneider

Thursday, December 4, 2008

which one of y'all pooped?

We had a first today. And I know you all are going to be so proud! I know I was.

Someone pooped in the bathtub. Hayes never did this so it was a first for us... or should I say a first for Daddy! I knew he was on bath duty for a reason.

I'm not naming any names because I'm not for sure who actually did the deed. Ellie confessed. She confesses to everything though. That's the thing with twins and poop. Unless you catch one in the act, you've got to sniff out the stinker.

By the way, this picture has nothing to do with the post. I just like it. I didn't think it would be appropriate to take a picture of the crime scene. However, I did take it after the incident... does he look like he just dropped a couple kids off at the pool? I don't know. I'm still bettin' on Miss Elle.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

chocolate goodness

Daddy made hot chocolate tonight and we slurped it down. Hayes told him he was a good cook. Mmm Mmm good!

Hewood has some new pictures if y0u are interested.

chicken and biscuit casserole

A yummy homecookin' dish for the cooler weather. This has been one of our favorites for awhile. I found it on allrecipes.com. It looks like a bit of work but it comes together pretty easily... and it's worth the effort! I usually just buy a rotisserie chicken to save some time.


Come on Joy and Katie! You can handle manhandling the bird! ;)


Chicken and Biscuit Casserole

1/4 c butter
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 c chopped onion
1/2 c celery
1/2 c chopped carrots
1/2 c all-purpose flour
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
2 (14.5 oz.) cans chicken broth
1 (10 oz.) can peas, drained
4 c cooked chicken, diced
2 c buttermilk baking mix
2 tsp dried basil
2/3 c milk


*Preheat oven to 350*

*Lightly grease a 9 x 13 baking dish.

*In a large skillet, melt butter over medium high heat. Cook and stir the garlic, onion, celery & carrots in the butter until tender. Mix in the flour, sugar, salt, 1 teaspoon dried basil and pepper.

*Stir in broth and bring to a boil. Stirring constantly, boil for one minute, reduce heat and stir in peas. Simmer 5 minutes, then mix in the chicken. Transfer mixture to the baking dish.

*In a medium bowl, combine the baking mix and 2 teaspoons dried basil. Stir in the milk to form a dough. Divide the dough into 12 balls. On floured surface, flatten each ball into a circle. Place on top of chicken mixture.

*Bake for 30 minutes. Cover with foil and bake an additional 10 minutes. To serve, spoon chicken mixture over biscuits.

Monday, December 1, 2008

tick in my couch

I was walking through the living room, half paying attention and saw this. I about peed my pants.

"Why did you scream Mom?"

"Because you scared the patooty out of me Hayes!"

"Do I look like a tick?"

"What's a tick?"

"You know, the bug you don't like that drinks your blood."

Uhhh... not the first thing that came to my mind. But ok, a tick.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

happy birthday mom!

Whenever people ask me how I survived the first year with twins, my response always includes: "I couldn't have done it without my mom." Seriously... above and beyond, people. And come to think of the it, she's pretty much been a major player in this circus ever since.

I have always known my mom was special. But you really understand the love and sacrifice when you become a mom yourself. She is always there. Always eager to help. I hope I can be there for my kids like she is for me. What a blessing it is for Hayes, Embry and Ellie to have such a close relationship with their Minnie. I love that they feel so close to her that sometimes they want her instead of me... and you know she digs that.

Happy Birthday Mom! I love you.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

thankful

I'm thankful for God's love. When I begin to think about the uncertainties that we face right now with residency junk and finances, it's comforting to know that even though things change, he doesn't. He is faithful. He is forgiving. He is my shelter.

I'm thankful for Kyle. I'm thankful for the love we have. No one knows me like he does. I'm thankful that after ten years of marriage, we still crave that alone time. I'm not talking about sexy time alone time (Borat anyone?)... ok, maybe I am (ahhhh yeah) but what I meant was ditch the kids and let's hang out alone time. It's the thing I look forward to most.
***fyi... a little awkward for me to admit to seeing Borat right after talking about how much I love Jesus. If you've seen the movie, you'd understand. We were looking for funny. Funny it was... but oh my goodness, can anyone say traumatized?

I'm thankful that I have been blessed with three healthy children. Being a part in the shaping of these little people is truly amazing and I don't want to ever take it for granted.

I'm even thankful for the days my kids drive me crazy. Those trying times remind me that I am the one who gets to stay home with them day in and day out, nurturing and disciplining them... not someone else.

I'm thankful for our families. I can't even put into words my appreciation for what they have done for us. I'm thankful for their love and giving hearts.

I'm thankful for music. I can't imagine a world without it. A song can completely change my mood. I love that music is an outlet for my husband. I love hearing my kids sing and watching them dance to music. I'm thankful that I can turn it up really loud in the car to drown out the whining.

I could go on and on... a place to come home to, a car to get around in, friends, my camera, photoshop, air conditioning, hot showers, internet, online shopping, ipod, contact lenses, spanx, diet coke, sunbutter, ener-g egg replacer, modern medicine, sippy cups, washable markers, kandoo wipes, grocery stores (can you imagine trying to fit growing your own food into your daily schedule?), student loan deferment, life church messages online, mexican food, vacation... ok, ok I think you get my point. No matter how down or unfortunate we feel at times, we really are truly blessed. I am going to try and be better in thanking God for all of his blessings, big and small.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.


Be Thankful
by Nicola Ashcroft

Be thankful that you don't already have everything you desire. If you did, what would there be to look forward to?

Be thankful when you don't know something, for it gives you the opportunity to learn.

Be thankful for the difficult times. During those times you grow.

Be thankful for your limitations, because they give you opportunities for improvement.

Be thankful for each new challenge, because it will build your strength and character.

Be thankful for your mistakes. They will teach you valuable lessons.

Be thankful when you're tired and weary, because it means you've made a difference.

It's easy to be thankful for the good things. A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who are also thankful for the setbacks. Gratitude can turn a negative into a positive.

Find a way to be thankful for your troubles, and they can become your blessings.

Monday, November 24, 2008

so long sucka

And now ya know why my kids are always sick. Sneaking each other's sippy cups, gnawing on the same toys, sharing suckers...

At least they are sharing, even if it's germs.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

ellie goes goth

Daddy knows how to do a lot of things. But makeup? Not one of them.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

thanksgiving break

Kyle is working tonight and gets off tomorrow morning for a nice long Thanksgiving break. Like over a week break. I know. Crazy, right? Trust me, he'll get to make up for it with working Christmas. We'll take what we can get. We can't wait to spend time with him. He has been gone way too much lately. He has worked overnight three nights in the last week.

I guess we should be thankful at this point that he still has a place to work. Kyle said something last night that stuck with me. He said he can't let himself worry about the hospital drama, he can only focus on the things that are certain... like taking boards in December and improving his surgical skills.

I'm tellin' ya, God has really been working on our faith in the last year. How liberating it is to turn your worries over to him and trust him with your future. How comforting it is to have a husband who reminds me of that when I let the worry begin to creep in.

fun fact... I snapped this picture of Kyle while he was scrubbing the garage floor with gasoline.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

happy birthday dad!

video
So here is the kind of guy my dad is... he is coming to my house on his birthday to lay tile in our bathroom. That's my dad. Always looking out for his girls. Papaw, we will try and be on our best behavior. Riiiiiight. Love you!

workin' girl

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

here kitty, kitty

While unloading groceries from the car last night, I walked into the kitchen to discover a cat. Well, hello there kitty, what can I do for ya? I had to hold him outside while Kyle closed the garage door because the little thing was determined to make his way back in.

When Kyle left this morning at 6, I heard meowing in the garage. Sure enough, Mr. Cat managed to get back in. Poor guy is probably hungry... or cold... or lonely. I'm hoping he didn't belong to the people that just moved out next door.

He was hanging around to greet Embry, Ellie and I when we got back from dropping Hayes off at school today. This is how much my kids have been around cats... they were scared and running away and then became brave enough to offer him leaves. You know, like the hungry caterpillar.

Please cat, go back home or find someone who can take you in. I don't know how much longer I can not feed you. Kyle would shoot me if I did!

on my mind

Philippians 4:6,7
Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

Friday, November 14, 2008

seriously paula?

I love Paula Deen recipes. Every recipe I have tried has been delicious. But seriously girl, this one is a little too much. A hamburger with fried eggs, bacon and Krispy Kremes for the bun? I better not let Hayes see this. Hamburgers, eggs and doughnuts? Oh my! He might just lose his mind! Maybe Paula found her inspiration from the Luther Burger.

I don't know, maybe I shouldn't knock it until I've tried it but it makes my stomach hurt just thinking about it.

my little girl

My little girl makes me smile...

everytime she sings her abc's. She tilts her head to the side and sings, "abdb abdb abdb abdb."

when she runs. If there was ever someone that ran like a girl, it's Miss Elle.

when she exclaims, "I did it! I did it!" It is one of her most common phrases these days. She is so proud when she figures something out. Her other common phrase is "bad girl!" She yells that at anyone who she becomes frustrated with. That however, does not make me smile.

the times when she wants to be held. She will find her blankie and paci and come looking for me, rubbing her blankie to her ear.

when she wants to pray before dinner. She reaches for our hands and says, "Pay, Pay." Tonight she closed her eyes, threw her head back and said, "God! Food. Amen!"

when she says hello to everyone she sees and continues saying it until the person acknowledges her. Good for her! One of the things that really irritates me is when a person doesn't say hello back to a child. What is wrong with people?

after I take the trash out to the garage, I come back in the kitchen and she is waiting for me with a new trash bag. She is such a good little helper. She sees me get the broom out of the closet and she runs to grab hers. She loves to help with the dishes and laundry too. Of course you never see the boys doing any of this. Typical. Boys.

I am so thankful God has blessed me with this sweet and spunky little girl.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

it's beginning to look a lot like christmas

decisions, decisions

 
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