Saturday, January 31, 2009

Everything is more fun with friends

We love going to the zoo and had fun going with our friends the Allred's last week. We stayed for three and a half hours, which is longer than we usually stay, but the kids all had so much fun exploring together.

Kind of silly to go to the zoo and only take pictures with fake animals. Oh well. The kids look cute!

Friday, January 30, 2009

An Orange

Our orange tree yielded it's first fruit ever this year--one orange.

I don't know why this tree is growing so very slowly. We planted it three years ago, and I don't think it could have grown more than an inch or two since then. But we look forward to the day our tree will yield more oranges than we know what to do with!

This year, we cut the orange into fourths and all shared in the bounty of the harvest.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Send your good thoughts my way

Something just happened to me that made me decide to be really blunt and honest here. Okay, it's no secret that I am overweight. I realize that I am carrying around an extra 30 pounds, even though I have lost 22 pounds since October. Recently, I started a training program that you may have heard of called couch to 5k. This program is designed to take someone who does very little physical activity to running a 5k in about 2 months. I am currently in my third week of training for this program, so several times a week I go out running in my neighborhood as soon as Keith walks in the door.

And now to the point of this blog post. Today while I was running, I passed a group of kids, and one of them shouted out, "Look at that fat lady trying to run!"
Yes. This happened to me.
I have not been fat my whole life, and this is the first time something like this has been directed at me. It made me think about people who were overweight as kids--they must have had things like this happen to them pretty regularly. We all know kids can be mean. I have never been known for having thick skin, and I will admit that this really bothered me. At first I just tried to brush it off, but for the rest of my run, I just kept hearing that twerp yelling, "Look at that fat lady trying to run!"
I'm serious about training for a 5k and trying to get in shape, but I am feeling a little frustrated right now.

Thursday, January 22, 2009


Okay, so I'm going to expose myself a little here as the weirdo that I sometimes am. I collect things. I'm not usually even aware that I am going to start collecting things, it just happens, a little bit at a time until, look! I've got 100 Disney Pixar diecast Cars. (I'm hoping my mom won't read this, but of course she will, and she will be appropriately shocked and dismayed by my wanton spending on such trivial things, as am I.)

This particular collection started a couple of years ago when my friend Shauntel mentioned a cute Woody station wagon and Buzz Lightyear spacecar she had bought for her son. It just sounded so stinkin' cute, I had to check it out at the store. When I saw that it was, in fact, extremely cute, I had to buy one for my son, who was nine months at the time. I figured when the time was right and he was old enough to properly appreciate and take care of them, I would give the cars to him.

So started the collection of ages.

Little by little, I started buying new cars each week when I would go grocery shopping. Some of them were exciting finds--"Look, it's the rarely seen Chuki!" "Who was she in the movie?" "Oh, you know, that Asian news reporter that makes a 2 second appearance in the film?" And so it goes.

I had to have all of them. Not just Lightening McQueen, but Bugmouth McQueen, Tar McQueen, Cactus McQueen, Tongue McQueen, Bling-bling McQueen, Dinoco McQueen, Cruising McQueen, Radiator Springs McQueen, Dirt Track McQueen, Night Vision McQueen. If you think I am making this up, I am not. They really do make all of those versions of Lightning McQueen, and yes, I have every one of them. Nevermind that the only noticable difference between Bling-bling McQueen and Dinoco McQueen is the color of the hubcaps, or that Night Vision McQueen is from the one second of film where he tries on nightvision goggles at the army surplus store.
Each of these cars has been carefully preserved in its box. (And yes, I think of poor Stinky Pete, the Prospector, when I see them.) Several weeks ago I brought home Axle Accelerator (no, I don't remember him from the movie either) and Isaac ripped open the package before I could stop him. You better believe I went right back to the store and got a fresh one. And that brings us to "The Problem"--I think of these cars as mine, and I'm really not sure I could ever give them up to a snot-nosed kid who would chew on them, bang them, bash them, and just generally mistreat them. Yes, they are toys, but they are my toys that I've carefully compiled over two years.
If you're lamenting Keith's lot in life, I would just like to take this time to point out that he has become just as interested/obsessed with them as I am, even if he takes a more layed back approach. If he is going to pick something up at Walmart, I don't even have to ask him to check if they have any new cars, although he is not as familar with our collection and doesn't always know which ones we need.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

The many faces of Finley Lynn

She is our little smiley girl. Enjoy some of her sweet grins!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

A day at the Zoo

The day after New Year's, I took the kids to the zoo while Keith went golfing with a friend. The zoo was a little bit crowded, but apparently the golf course was much more so. I knew Keith should have just come with us! We still had a lot of fun without him though.
Cute girls in the Wallaby Walkabout exhibit.

Sareny and Isaac both enjoyed climbing around on the giant spiderweb.

They enjoyed going down the slide together.

I love how they are such good friends!

Can you tell in the following pictures which one is Sareny and which one is Isaac? (Isaac couldn't)
Sareny took this cute picture of me and Finn Lynn. Otherwise, I don't get to be in any pictures. :)

And yes, we did manage to see a few animals while we were there, but a lot of our time was just spent in the kid's play areas! I don't mind, however, since last spring I invested in a zoo membership. This is Sareny's last year before she goes to kindergarten and I thought we would enjoy going as much as possible before she isn't home with us during the day anymore.

New Year's Eve

We had a really fun New Year's Eve at home this year. Holli, Johnny, and Rhys were in town visiting from Georgia and they also brought John's mom Christy. Our friends Jay and Shauntel also came over with their two kids.

We decided at the very last minute to have a murder mystery party. Fortunately, we had a bunch of Chinese decorations on hand and we made it to Panda Express just before they closed for some takeout. Some even managed to throw together some decent costumes.

It really was a blast. I think my favorite part was either Jay's raspy drawl, (he was getting over a cold, but it really added to his character) or Johnny's awesome Chinese accent.

Unfortunately, the kids had a little too much fun as well.

We had a bit of a breakdown with the toyroom closet locking system. This picture was taken after a bit of cleanup had already occured, including putting the cushion back on the futon.

While I thought we all looked pretty cute with our costumes and props, leave it to a few cute kids to steal the show!
I gave Isaac first pick on the props, and I was surprised when he picked the fan. I was also surprised that no fights broke out over who got which prop. (I'm kind of missing his curly locks!)
What cuties!

The girls.

By this point in the evening, (maybe 10:00ish) poor Isaac was so tired he just wanted to go to bed and went there happily while the other kids continued to play. The rest of us were just getting started. We ended up talking, snacking, and playing games until about 1:30 am. We had fun taking turns asking questions from the game "Would You Rather," which prompted some interesting discussion.
And lastly, just before bed, the kids left their shoes under the tree. At our house, Mrs. Santa Claus comes on New Year's eve and fills our shoes with nuts and candy. Each person also gets a book and a small toy or something. Anyways, I always loved this tradition growing up--it gave you something to look forward to after Christmas was all over. And that is how we celebrated the new year over here!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Fun at the park

While still at Grammy Jo and Bampa's after Christmas, we took a trip to the local park so the kids could try out their new Christmas presents. Sareny, Isaac, and their cousin Josh all got bikes for Christmas. Another plus about our excursion is that we were all getting, as Grammy Jo put it, "cabin fever," so we enjoyed getting out in the fresh, but very brisk air.

Isaac and Daddy

Joshie and Bampa

Finley was a little sweetie! It was unseasonably cold, but she was still happy as can be. Later the wind picked up and I was holding her with her head pretty much completely covered by a blanket and she didn't even mind a bit.
Keith throwing the airhog
A mishap with the airhog...
Some people threw a football.
Some people had fun on the swings.
Anyway, fun times.