Friday, September 30, 2011


Girls have sleep-overs, boys have camp-overs.

Now, I know what you are thinking. You are thinking they should have a camp-out. And under normal circumstances, I would agree. But, I have a hard time sending these boys out back to sleep when it is still in the high 90s and dark outside.

So, we improvised. Joshua pitched the tent in the living room, blew up a big air mattress, and the boys were set! Camping in the cool and air conditioned house.

There were three boys at the camp-over ages two, four, and six. I am either the coolest Mother ever, or the stupidest. I’m still trying to decide.

But seriously, it was fun.

We started out the night making pizza for dinner. All I really had to do was make the dough and these boys did the rest. After they were done making their pizzas, I even talked them into making one for Joshua and me. Child labor can be fun. I just kicked back sipping a mojito on the couch while popping bon bons. Just kidding! Clearly, I was taking pictures. I was dreaming of the other…

The boys did a great job of making dinner and we all ate while watching a movie. Those of you who know me well are wondering; did she really let those three boys eat in her living room? The answer is YES, I did. But, I put down a huge blanket and made them eat on it. I have not TOTALLY thrown caution to the wind!

Little boys choice—we watched Superman, the original.

The big boy was happy with the choice. And after the movie, it was time for showers and the tent.

They all went right to sleep, no problems at all. I was not too surprised, I thought they would all do okay going to sleep. What did surprise me is that none of them woke up in the night. They all slept until about 8 the next morning.

We got up, had breakfast and then were off to the aquarium. We had a great time looking at all the fish, sharks, sting rays, and even an octopus!

After we were done there, we headed over to Chik-fil-a for lunch. As we were heading out the door I received a complement on what a lovely family I had. I smiled and thanked the lady and let her know only one boy was mine. She laughed and said, well, they just look like they could all belong to you and your husband.

All three boys had a great time with each other and we loved having them over.

Some great lines from the boys:

Luke: Eww! Who tooted?

2 year old: Josh!

(Josh was not even in the room)

(while watching Superman)

2 year old: Them are kissing on the lips.

2 and 4 year old: NASTY!!

2 year old: I shot yours ground dead!!

Luke: Can I handcuff you?

4 year old: No!

Luke: Please?!?!

4 year old: okay!!!

And my absolute favorite…the boys had built a fort in the hallway. The 2 year old had gone to the bathroom and did not bother to shut the door.

Luke: The bomb, the bomb. RUN!!

4 years old: Get our friends!

2 year old from sitting on the toilet: Get the baby!!!!

(I could not help but to laugh out loud. I started to ask, but then decided I might not want to really know.)

Thursday, September 29, 2011


Have you ever won a contest?

When I was a kid, I won a hoola hoop contest at the grocery store. My prize was a gift certificate to the store and I promptly went in and bought stationary and pens. I could not have been happier.

The other day Luke noticed a flyer on the table by our front door. On the flyer was a car key and he wanted to know if he could have it. Sure, I said. He then noticed there was some kind of scratch off game on the flyer and he wanted to know if it was okay for him to do it. I told him he sure could. Then, he informed me he could win $25,000!

As we ate dinner, he scratched off the boxes one by one. He became very excited when he had two of a kind, as he needed three of a kind to win. Then his excited blew up and he began yelling that he won.

He screamed, "I WON $25,000!!!"

In my disbelief, I looked down and sure enough, he had three matching symbols. I told him he might have won something, but it was most likely not $25,000.  This did not lessen his excitement one bit.

Josh took the flyer and began reading the fine print. As he did this, Luke noticed that the flyer said to call IMMEDIATELY to confirm your prize if you won. He then started yelling for me to get the phone and call NOW!!!

I decided I would entertain this entire thing and I called.

Sure enough, it was confirmed Luke (or his Mom to whom the flyer was addressed to) was a winner and we needed to go down to this car dealership to claim our prize!

Josh then informed Luke what he won was the CHANCE to participate in another scratch off to win the $25,000. Luke immediately wanted to know if we could go. Sure thing, I told him. You won this scratch off, and I will take you to do another.

A few days later we headed over to the car dealership. Luke had the flyer in hand as we walked in and he could not have been more excited. I tried to manage his expectations and told him that more than likely he would not win $25,000. He said that was okay, he just wanted to play.

After completing a form, they brought us the scratch off. I wished Luke luck and he went to town.

And......well, , he did not win $25,000.

However, he did win a WalMart gift card! As a consolation prize, everyone received a gift card. The card would have between $5 and $250. Luke was all smiles as he received his gift card.

We walked to the car and once we got in, we called to see how much he had on his card. Luke won $5! Luke let out a scream and was all smiles. $5 or $25,000, he was happy.

I wonder if 20 years from now, he will remember winning his first prize of $5. I hope so.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

A Rarity

A rare thing happened this weekend. I was without my husband and child for TWO days. They decided to have a boys weekend and went Saturday and Sunday to the Ranger game. I tried to think if this has ever happened to me before in the past almost seven years, I could not think of a time.

So, on Saturday, I shopped and had lunch with The Sister. It was fun.

On Sunday, I made treats for my boys. When Josh saw these cupcakes online, he told me I had to make them for Luke, Mr. I love Chocolate so much, but I really, really love Mint Chocolate stuff. Of course, Josh too likes this stuff, so there was something in it for him. And he knows Mint Chocolate is not my thing, so more for them.

When buying the cookies, I came across these super cute Halloween cups.

So when my boys came home from the baseball game, on cloud nine because the Rangers won, and the Rangers are in the playoffs, and Josh Hamilton waved to them….yes, seriously, to them directly as he was leaving the stadium, they saw these sitting on the counter.

I don't like mint chocolate anything, so while these look pretty, I will never know how they taste.

But, my boys say that they are....


That icing should've had a green tint to it.  But, I had forgotten that I used up all the green food coloring at St. Paddy's day....oh well.

I Love Wednesdays

1.  It’s hump day. It is all downhill now until the weekend. I love weekends.

2.  I pick Luke up. I love seeing his sweet face as he jumps in the car. I am the first to hear about his day. Wednesday is Music day for him and there is always a good story about music.

3.  It is web Wednesdays at Papa Johns. For $11 I can buy a large pizza with up to seven toppings. This means that I get online and order dinner while at work and it is delivered to my house about 10 minutes after Joshua is normally home from work.

4.  Because I am not cooking dinner as soon as we get home, Luke does not have to sit at the bar doing his reading homework while I cook. Rather, he is snuggled up to me on the couch reading. This is one of my favorite things in the world right now.

5.  After his homework, since I am still not in the kitchen cooking, I have more time to play with Luke. Here lately, he has been whipping my tail in tennis on the Wii. In the words of our favorite police officer, “Someone needs to beat that boy!” Luke is good. He trash talks too. I have no idea where he learned that. Look out Andre Agassi ….or Pete Sampras……or Andy Roddick….or whoever the current tennis pro is. This boy is good and one day will move from playing in my living room to playing on a for real court!

6.  After dinner, the pizza box and plate cleanup is rather fast. This gives Josh more time with Luke in the evenings too and more time for us all as a family.

I love how God has placed this day of extra time together right in the middle of our work/school week. It is just what our family needs halfway through!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Love Notes

I put love notes in Luke’s lunchbox.

I write things like I love you a lot…..I hope you have a wonderful day……you are the best son ever. Stuff like that.

Then last week, Luke asked if I could put a pen in his lunchbox so that he could write me a note back.

I love a thoughtful child.

I put a pen in his lunchbox the next day.

I started getting love notes back…….Luke loves me……I am the greatest mom on the planet. Stuff like that.

Mommas love to receive love notes too. It’s nice to be appreciated.

Then yesterday I received a note that said he loved me more than I loved him.

So today’s note went a little something like this.

And then I received a note back from Luke that went little something like this.

I am not exactly sure what he is trying to say, but I gather he loves me more than a lot or a bunch.

I love Luke and I love love notes.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Made with Love 2

So, just one day before Josh out shinned me in the kitchen, Luke had declared it the greatest day ever. Why? Because not only did I pick him up from school early last Friday, but I let HIM make cookies that afternoon.

Yeah-- take that Josh!

(Sorry. I am a teeny weeny bit competitive at times. Or, maybe all the time.)

Anyway, when I picked Luke up from school I asked him if he would like to make some of the cookies that Josh and I made and sent to him in South Carolina in July. He said that he would love too, but, instead of just mini M&M candies, could we also put in chocolate chips. That right there just proves there are some things you don’t teach a child, they are just innate in them! Um, yes, honey, that is a great and fantastic idea….why did I not think of that??

So, we went to the store and bought us some M&M and chocolate chips.

Luke made these all on his own, I think the only thing I did was put them in the oven.

First up, he measured out the flour. Doing well there kiddo!

Next up we have the butter.

Now here you will see that Luke has a different method of opening up butter. He likes to set it in his lap. Different, but who are we to judge. Who’s to say that a little shirt lint will not be the ingredient to push these cookies over the top?

Get some brown sugar.

Then some regular sugar.

Oops, that is my hand on the left. Seems I did assist a little. I would like to point out that my Grandpa made that container the sugar is in. I love it.

Crack and egg.

Luke is awesome at cracking eggs. You also need one egg yolk. I did the separating part too. Pretty much, I lied when I said Luke did these all by himself. Sorry.

Get some vanilla.

And then do that weird wrist action thing when dumping it into the bowl. I don’t think I could do that move if I wanted too.

Dump in your melted (or in our case, not so melted) butter into the mix.

Another side note, Luke made that bowl for Josh when he was one. My Mom and I helped him.

Mix it all up!

And look cute while you are doing it. And in your mind, remember what an AWESOME Mom you have!

Since we tweaked the recipe a bit, we used half a cup of the M&Ms.

Eat a few because you can.

And then half a cup of the chocolate chips.

How pretty!!

Mix it up with your CLEAN hands.

And here is when I proved that yes indeed, there are dumb questions. I know teachers tell you there aren’t but they lied.

I asked Luke, would you like to make the small cookies like Daddy and I did, or would you like to make giant ones. I could tell by the look on his face he was thinking, why on earth did y’all send me tiny cookies when I could’ve had some the size of a baby’s head???

THE GIANT ONES!!! He screamed.

Yep, that was a super dumb question. But, I rock anyway because he is making cookies.

Measure out the cookie dough. Pull apart and then set on top of each other on the cookie sheet.

Yes, we ate raw cookie dough. We survived and it was good.

Cook those yummy huge cookies.

And then remind yourself that this day is the greatest day ever!

Please make these cookies. They are greatness.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

He Outshined Me

I know that parenting is not a competition, it’s a doubles game. But, sometimes, one parent tends to outshine the other. And in our house, we recognize this. Points are given when they are earned.

But sometimes, your outshining moments, while nice and spectacular are not unexpected. For instance, Joshua took Luke to meet Josh Hamilton. Luke was able to talk to him, get his photo taken with him, and obtain an autograph. Josh clearly outshined me that day. He was the best parent ever. But, did anyone really expect that I would take Luke to do this? No.

Then there are those times when you outshine your spouse in areas that you are not supposed to. That is what I recently had to deal with. {sigh}

Saturday morning Joshua took care of giving Luke some breakfast. I had no problem with that—thanks. In my mind, he was pouring a rocking good bowl of cereal or something else equally not that magnificent or impressive.

When I walked into the kitchen, Joshua comes over with my camera and shows me this.

I noted a couple of things real fast:

   1.  My husband is so proud of himself that he went and got MY camera and took a picture.

   2.  My husband is so proud of himself that he showed me the picture before Luke could
        even comment on the greatness of his breakfast that morning.

Um, it is okay to outshine me in sports, but in the kitchen? No -- this is my domain. However, it was so cute and nifty, that I had to give him some points for it. I’ve been making that kid Toaster Strudles for I don’t know how long and I have never, not once, even thought about writing some cute message on top. In fact, I am just hoping that I squeeze the icing on top in such a way that it is not too messy for Luke to eat!

Luke did come to tell me how Daddy had written his name on his breakfast! I know sweetie, Daddy showed me a picture. Very cool.

He outshined me…..on my turf.

I may be down, but I’m not out.

So, on Tuesday morning, I made the Toaster Strudle with a new purpose. I too can write cute messages. I decided to write the following: I (heart) you. And I filled in the heart.

I stepped back and took a look. It was not pretty and did not deserve a picture, so I did not take one. I put it up on the bar for Luke and hoped for the best.

His lack of an immediate response made me start to think that perhaps even my super smart and artsy fartsy son might not be able to decipher what was written. {sigh…. again} After a few very long minutes, he said, “I love you too Mom!”

Whew! I was saved…sort of.

“I know it is not as good as Dad’s. And that’s okay.” (but really, it’s not)

“No Momma it’s…..good.”


Now I am down AND out.