Monday, December 27, 2010

Good Things Come In 3s...

As if we weren't having enough fun with our wild little boys we decided it was time to add to our family. We got a cat!! Ok, just kidding we didn't get a cat...or any other type of animal. But we did decide to have another baby which is why I'm happy to announce to everyone that........


Yes you read that right! We are expecting our third little bundle of joy in July and we can't wait!! We are thrilled about it and the boys are too! Mason is a bit small to understand but we're teaching him to say baby and Owen is so happy and has spent lots of time contemplating what his predictions will be. Some days he votes girl, others boy and sometimes dolphin! Once he thought I was carrying a whale with a blow hole, but now we've managed to get it back to a baby again. Hopefully that one sticks because I do not want to give birth to a whale that's for babies tend to be big enough already! We are extremely excited and happy to share the news with all our friends and family! Here's a pic from my first ultrasound! Whaddya think...does it look like a girl or boy?

Our third little peanut :)

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Fortune cookie anyone?

"You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have."

I've heard this quote just a handful of times, but was reminded of it tonight after thinking about someone whom I believe to be one of the strongest people I know. I don't know where it came from or who said it first...but just to be clear it wasn't me. I think that a statement like this couldn't be any truer and I'm sure that each of you can probably recall a certain time in your life where you felt like the walls were caving in around you and you'd never get out. I know I've been there myself and yet here I sit to tell you about it today. Whether we've dealt with sickness, finances, heartache, whatever have you...the same goes for all of it. Who knew you could be so strong? If someone told me way back in the beginning of time that throughout my life I would have to overcome such obstacles as I have, I think I would have asked for a redo. Honestly, sometimes life just plain sucks. But if you really think about it, it's just like you always hear..."there's always somebody whose worse off than yourself." And what is that supposed to even mean? Is that supposed to make us feel better to know that people out there are even more depressed and miserable and are suffering through even more difficult trials and tribulations than what we can barely tolerate ourselves? Wow, how horrible to be so self centered. Or maybe it's just to get us to stop complaining about it so could I possibly complain about the leak in my roof when I come face to face with a mother much like myself who has NO roof at all to even complain about right?? Ya, that must be where the saying comes from. Oh and no, my roof isn't leaking-it just fit here so I said it.

Now that I've been rambling on all Debbie Downer-ish, I guess we should take the time to look at it in a more positive light. Like the quote says, we don't know how strong we are until we need to be and should be proud of ourselves when we make it past the challenges we often face. It absolutely amazes me the things that some people experience and yet they go through life with such positivity and are doing their best to live a meaningful life through their struggles. And yet there's others out there who go through difficult times and then there they sit amidst a sea of pain and suffering and are drowning there. If you know someone like this, take the time to throw them a life jacket please!! I hope to always strive to be one of the first kind of people and pray that those who have trouble finding their way again will make it through to see the joy that they're missing. Life isn't easy and as the great Rocky once said, "The world ain't all sunshine and rainbows. It's a very mean and nasty place and I don't care how tough you are, it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain't about how hard you hit. It's about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward."  Rocky was a pretty smart guy is you ask me! So, I think we can all agree that the common goal here is to keep moving forward. No matter how hard life hits...keep getting up and fight. Afterall,  someone out there has been through worse and is probably out volunteering somewhere so it's the least we can do to pick ourselves up and be better off afterwards right? ;) 

And about that woman I admire so much...I'll spare her the publicity of naming her without asking since I'm pretty famous these days haha...but let's just say that she was dealt a pretty difficult hand. She endured what many of us could never even imagine and yet continues to go through her life with such a joy and a genuinely positive outlook. She is an amazing woman and an inspiration to myself and others and I'm proud to call her a friend. If you're reading this and think it's you, it probably is and just know that you are an extraordinary person and I think the world of you! And if you'd like to pretend that I'm referring to the rest of you as well...then go ahead because I think you're all great too! Now when going through your own obstacles, always know that, "everything will be okay in the end and if it's not okay, it's not the end." Alright, alright I'll stop with the fortune cookies now. But it's true, someday we'll be old and sitting in a rocking chair somewhere and look back on our lives with pride! Alright one more, "Just keep swimming!" :)

Until next time...

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Crying and Cookies

Our home has been filled with all of the traditional holiday festivities already and I just can't get enough of it. I hate hate hate the freezing cold weather but as cold as it is, I remind myself that I could be in New England right now and it'd probably be way worse! That always makes me feel better! One of the things we've done that I'm sure most of you've all been doing as well is decorating the Christmas tree. Ours was a little bit more chaotic than the sweet way you'd imagine two little boys placing shiny little things gently on the branches. In fact, our tree right now is a very sore sight to see and wouldn't normally be something I'd allow to be displayed in our house...but I think as I raise two very active little boys I'm beginning to loosen up a little and let things be as they are. Good lesson to be learned I suppose.

Well, I'll give you a little insight into how the whole thing went down. We had planned to decorate the tree one night when Eric got home from work but as duty calls, he had to stay late. Once he got home we decided to just put the tree together (yes, it's a fake one in the attic) and save the whole decorating process for a few days later when he would be home earlier. Once that day came around, Eric had to work late again so I decided I was sick of having boxes or ornaments and ribbons lying around asking to be rummaged through by the boys and decided to attempt to do it with them on my own. Big mistake that was! Owen kinda got into the process but was a little protective of the tree. He wouldn't let Mason anywhere near it...and go figure, All Mase wanted to do was rip that tree to shreds. He tried everything he could to pull every ornament, ribbon, light and bell off that tree and when he was told "No!" or pulled away it was the most obnoxious and yet extremely heartbreaking cry you've ever seen. Not to mention the fact that Owen was so mad he kept pushing him away which made things oh so much better...or not at all. But anyways, after about a half hour of refereeing the two of them I realized Mason had done enough crying and Owen had done enough pushing that it was best to call it a night. Off to bed they went and since then our tree has been a complete disaster. Mason has continued his love of ripping apart the tree which led me to keep ornaments on only the very top which he can't reach, and the ribbon strung around the bottom half has been unwrapped and ran through the house with the other end still attached to the tree. It's awful looking...and yet I leave it because I've come to realize that no matter how many times I string everything back up to perfection, it's inevitably going to be undone again so I gave up and am beginning to enjoy the sad looking tree I stare at everyday. It reminds me how crazy and funny those brothers can be when they get going and I don't mind so much anymore.
Owen playing with an ornament and Mase...crying.
Our tree now

Among some of the other holiday festivities we've been partaking in are Christmas shopping until midnight, reading books about Santa, changing the snowflake in the pockets of our December countdown calender, enjoying roasted marshmallows from fires that Eric's building as if he's competing for a prize, and baking Christmas cookies! Yesterday my friend Lindsey had posted on facebook that she and her son Kyle were baking all kinds of cookies. Well, that's all it took was for me to read that and then it was off to the store to buy our own ingredients. Owen requested oatmeal cookies that Nana always makes so I looked it up in my little homemade recipe box from Mom. We set up all our stuff and the boys helped with each step of the baking. Actually Mason didn't really do much helping, he played with measuring spoons and ate crackers while he watched us. But Owen definitely enjoyed doing all of it. He loved tasting all the ingredients and had a hard time laying off the brown sugar. We had tons of fun and the cookies came out AMAZING. It was my first time making those by myself and I am pretty impressed with how soft and golden they turned out. We left some out for Daddy since he was going to be home late and he even told me they were better than Nana's but I didn't tell you that!! Ma, I'm sure he was just kidding so no worries! 
 The baking team
 Owen mixing the cookie batter
He wanted a silly picture before we baked them

As you can see we've been enjoying the holiday season and I hope you're doing the same. If you have yet to indulge in Christmas cookies or sit by a warm fire reading books then allow yourself some time to do it, or find some other way to relax and enjoy this time of year. It only comes once!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Thanksgiving, Part 2

Thanksgiving Day was exactly what it should have been...relaxing. We spent the day at home with our family that was visiting and did the usual Turkey Day festivities. My brother Dave and I spent lots of time in the kitchen cooking the meal for everyone and the kids got to hang out and play together. My niece Lisamarie is an artist if I ever saw one and if she's around you know there is going to be a little crafting going on. She decided to get out all the art supplies and make a turkey hat to wear during dinner. With a little help from her Mom, Steph with making the head and myself with fitting the headband we managed to pull it together. Of course as soon as Owen and Sienna saw how cool she looked they had to have one too. Steph whipped up a little hat for Sienna and I was busy in the kitchen and kept telling Owen I would do his in just a minute. Well, a minute turned into an awful lot of minutes and I kept forgetting until each time he asked if it was done. Just as we were sitting down to eat Owen asked where his hat was and I had to run in the kitchen and make one while everyone was waiting to dig in to the food...but, I pulled through and Owen got to wear a turkey hat! 

Dave made us a ridiculously good New England turkey and by that I only mean he brought it from Massachusetts. Maybe they're better up there than here in the South...? I don't know but it was pretty awesome if you ask me...juicy and flavorful just the way it should be. And he even achieved turkey perfection after having a pierced turkey pan that had to be lined with foil and trayed with a pan to try and keep the juices in...long story short, he tried to sew the turkey up and stabbed it a little too deep...remind me not to let him perform stitches on me anytime soon! haha Just kidding Dave...if I was super desperate on a remote island with no one else around I would absolutely let you stitch me up!! ;o) 

We all enjoyed an awesome meal together and stuffed ourselves til we couldn't move...then fell into the traditional turkey coma just as every good Thanksgiving dinner should leave you with. We relaxed and had one of our many dance parties with the kids in the living room and then finished off their night with baths and bedtime. After the little ones were tucked in their beds the four of us were able to spend the night talking and laughing over some drinks. It was a perfect Thanksgiving and a great way to spend time with family...and the best part is we had leftovers for the rest of the week! Yay for turkey sandwiches!! haha Happy Thanksgiving and hope you all had as nice of a holiday as we did!

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