Sunday, February 28, 2010

Layton Loves the Farm...

Layton adores walking through the hay and exploring. He is going to have so many happy memories from his adventures at the farm.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Far Off at the Farm...

There are days at the farm that make me want to move there. Of course, it is in the middle of nowhere, and grocery shopping would be a hassle. Nonetheless, it is so calming to be acres and acres away from every day life.

Friday, February 26, 2010

67% of My Children on Valentine's Day...

Hadley's class had an ice cream social. She didn't really want me there, and she definitely didn't want me taking pictures. So, I only have photos of the other 67% of my children at their Valentine's Day parties.

Ella's class had a sock hop. She got to hula hoop.

And, she got to make an ice cream sundae. She also had to pause to give me the "love bug hands."

Layton was a typical four year old. He would barely hold still for a photo op. He bounced and played and wrestled with his friends.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Still Shooting Herself...

Ella is still obsessed with her camera. She has continued to photograph herself as often as possible.

This is the day she took her camera to show and tell at school. You can see the classroom in the background.

Here she is in her bedroom.

Who stages a fake sleep photo? Ella. And she takes her own picture doing it.

Take one didn't turn out quite as well. She realized that faking sleep is harder than it looks on TV.

I'm not entirely sure what she's doing in this one.

Just smiling all day...

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

This Is Me...

Ella took my picture the first week of February. She caught me replying to a text message. She said my name; I looked up; and she caught me off guard.

I rarely post pictures of myself because of my belief that I am the least photogenic person on earth, so it's kind of a big deal that I am sharing this photo with the world.
I just wanted to give new readers a glimpse of what I look like through the eyes of a six year old.

Monday, February 22, 2010

A Time To Kill...

Euthanasia. It's not a pretty word. It's a controversial topic. Doctors in Canada are backing the 'Right to Die' proposal. You read that right. Doctors are in support of allowing lucid patients to have a say in when their final breath is taken.

Oregon, Washington, and Montana have all decided that assisted suicide is legal. It is illegal in the other 47 states to have another individual assist with suicide. Even in the states where it is legal, criminal liability can only be avoided by taking certain steps. Terminal illness, more than one oral request, and a doctor's prescription are just a few of the many requirements in Oregon.

Jack Kevorkian famously stated that, "dying is not a crime." He also served eight years in prison for assisting a terminal patient with suicide. He was convicted of second degree murder for the death of Thomas Youk who was in the final stages of ALS.

I am in favor of making assisted suicide legal. In light of my other extremely conservative views, this probably comes as a shock to some of you. For others who know me in real life, this is not a shock. I think that life experiences change the way we all view controversial subjects, and my life experiences have lead to a belief that palliative care should include a suicide clause.

Am I saying that I think all terminal patients should be euthanized? No. I am saying that if a lucid patient knows a horrible death is looming, the choice should be theirs. And, if that patient is unable to carry out their wishes alone, I don't think whoever helps them commit suicide should be convicted of murder.

Now I want to hear your feelings. Are any of you in favor of legal assisted suicide?

Sunday, February 21, 2010


Ella took her camera to school for show and tell. She couldn't wait to show it off to all her classmates. When she came home, she had dozens of pictures of her classmates and teacher. She also had one picture of her cousin Charsy. They are not in class together, but they do wait in the same hallway for the end of day car line.

I thought it was so sweet that she wanted to take Charsy's picture at the very end of the school day. Cousin love!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Just In Case...

Just in case any of you were wondering.....

This is what Hadley did while the other two played in the snow.

She came out for a minute, but I asked her to change her shoes. She was wearing her emu boots, and I was unsure what effect the snow would have on them. I asked her to put on some sneakers that could be easily washed. She protested.

Snow Shuts Down The South...Part Deux...

A couple of weeks ago, I mentioned that snow shuts down the South. Well, we've had a little bit more snow since then!!

Layton was a little upset at first because Ella wouldn't play with him.

Ella was eager to run off and have some fun.

This is the most snow we've had in years!! Seriously, it just doesn't snow here!

Friday, February 19, 2010


The hubs loves chicken stew. He loves it in a way that is not describable. He could eat it everyday. Last week, I baked a whole chicken. Ok, I didn't actually bake it. I put it in the crock pot. After that sucker was done and we had eaten it, there was still a lot left over. So, I pulled all the meat off the bones and threw it in a pot with some stew fix-ns. I was able to put three moderately sized containers of stew in the freezer.

I love to have quick and easy things in the freezer. I especially love to have stew in the freezer. It is so easy to heat up, and on days when I don't feel like cooking, I can pull out a quart of stew, dump it in a stock pot, and feed the whole family with ease.

What are some of your favorite foods to cook and freeze for later? I would love to add to my list of "freezes beautifully."

New Babies Will Decrease Your IQ...

My friend Angela just had a baby. A sweet and beautiful baby.

Ella couldn't wait to hold the new baby, Ally.

I couldn't wait to hold the baby either. The thing about babies is that they all have this dumbing effect on me.

You can almost see it on my face in the picture of me holding her. Whenever I hold a baby, my IQ drops by 20 points. I think, for just a moment, that I want to have another baby. The sweet smell of new person. The softness of new skin. It's all so intoxicating.

Then, without fail one of my children will make noise. Layton will fake a burp. Hadley will ask for a puppy. Ella will ask me to hold her instead of the baby. And someone will start to cry.

I will start to feel my brain go back to normal and hand the baby back to its mother. I remember those sleepless nights, strange smears on my shirt, the constant changing of diapers, the hostage like feeling of breastfeeding........and I know that I am done having babies. Having older children is like rehab for women of childbearing age.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Donna Reed vs. Amanda...

Without a doubt, I have mentioned that I am not very good at the whole home maker thing. I am, however, incredibly anal. I insist on ironing everything before it goes in the closets. The mornings are smoother when I can just pull out clothes for the children without pausing to iron them before the nuggets don them for school.

This is the iron I have been using for quite some time now.

I have had numerous irons over the years. I had a really fancy and expensive Rowenta iron a number of years ago. It was wonderful, but I just can't justify spending $100 on an iron when I know that I will use it so much that it's lifespan is less than a year. The Rowenta was a gift by the way.
Anyway, my iron is showing signs that it's demise is near. It doesn't always stay hot, and it leaks water worse than the sprinkler system. Oh, some of you may not know about the time our neighbor's Mercedes died in their garage. The dealership thought it would be okay to tow it out of the garage by driving straight through our front yard. The tow truck took our sod and sprinkler system with it. The point. The point is that I am feverishly shopping for a new iron. Does anyone have any suggestions? Does anyone else insist on ironing everything before hanging it in the closet? Or, have I reached a level of anal that should require therapy?

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

I saw a man with his three small children at the dentist's office. Wow. All by himself. These children were small too. We're talking diaper bags for two of them. One looked close to school age. It is rare that I see a man in a lobby with three that small. There are often dads with older children in the lobby, but rarely is there a man with diaper bags. Is this man interested in the oral health of his children? Is he part of a double income family who agree that each parent should take off work equal amounts of time to care for the children? Maybe his wife is sick. Maybe he is a widow. Maybe his wife is stuck in a meeting. Maybe his wife is stuck in traffic.

I have thought about this man a lot the last few days. His presence in the lobby definitely got me thinking. Jay is a good man. A very good man. He would gladly take all three of the children to the dentist if I asked him too. He has taken them to birthday parties before. Most recently, he took all three to the skating rink for a birthday party while I was on a church retreat. But. If he had his choice between going to work or taking the children to the dentist, I am fairly confident that he would choose work. I can say that he will definitely tell me what his choice would be after he reads this blog post. :)

What would your husband choose if the appointment was on a day when either one of you could go? Would he prefer to take sick children to the doctor or go to a meeting at work? Or, would you prefer to be the one sitting in a lobby catching diphtheria?

We live in a society where women and men are supposedly equals. Women are pushed to have a career, raise polite children, and in the South, do it all with your pearls on. My question is this...both of my parents worked...did that actually improve the quality of my life? Did eating chicken instead of ramen noodles actually improve the outcome of my childhood?

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

She Did What?...

On February 12, 2010 a University of Alabama - Huntsville professor took a gun to a building on campus. She opened fire on her colleagues. Three died, and another three were seriously injured.

In 2009 she was on the cover of "The Huntsville R&D Report" smiling. She and her husband were featured in the local magazine because of their invention of a mobile cell incubation system that was supposed to be a replacement for the petri dish.
After the tragedy happened and her name was released to the media, a number of unsettling facts from her past have begun to surface.
Please keep the survivors and their families in your prayers. Please keep the families of those who did not survive in your prayers.

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Monday, February 15, 2010

Another Favorite Thing...

This is one of my most favorite things in my house. It's a giant green bowl. I have no idea what to put in it or how to use it in an artful way, but I absolutely LOVE it. Like I said before, I am an accountant not a decorator. :)

So, does anyone have any ideas for something fun to put in a huge green bowl?

Friday, February 12, 2010

Layton Learned Table Manners From The Tramp...

Layton loves spaghetti. He wants it for every meal. This is what he looks like before the spaghetti starts to enter his mouth.

This is what happens when he eats spaghetti at home. The shirt had to come off because he had dripped so much sauce on it that it was starting to stick to his chest.

Same thing happens in public. Except he keeps his shirt on. I tried cutting the noodles into smaller pieces and letting him use a spoon. He cries when I do that. I figure that most people would rather see him slurp the noodles than hear him cry. :)

What are your feelings on children in restaurants? Seen but not heard?

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Why Can't Life Stay This Simple...

Last week, the girls were both sick. Hadley was feeling the effects of a nasty cold, and Ella had a nasty case of bronchitis. We didn't leave the house much last week. :)

One day, we had to make a run to the pharmacy. Thank goodness my pharmacy has a drive thru!! At one point, I turned around and saw this sight.

The girls were tired, and Layton was loving on them. It was so sweet!!! I wish that life could always be like this for them.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


In an effort to make my life easier, I have decided to change my comment system from the default blogger to Disqus. With this new format, I will be able to comment directly back to users!! If you use it a little and decide you don't like it, please let me know.


Ella loves with her whole heart. I've never known anyone who loves others the way Ella does. She is very excited about Valentine's Day. Her class is having a sock hop. She is really amped up for it!! Her poodle skirt is red. She has a red scarf for her hair and a lovely set of 50's glasses. I can't wait to post the pictures of my little love bug.

Monday, February 08, 2010

Cheese Wee...Chessler...It's Two...

My beautiful little niece Chesley just had a birthday! She turned two at the end of January. I am still mad at myself for forgetting to take my real camera to the party. All I had was my cell phone. Boo! :(

The birthday girl was precious though!!

And Layton had a little fun with one of the dads at the party.

The girls disappeared to play. When Charsy, Ella, and Hadley get together, the rest of the world doesn't exist to them. They go off on little adventures and make believe games. It is so cute!!

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Sleepy DayDay...

A few weeks ago, I got to watch over Davis while his mother went to run a race. Seriously, he is the easiest little fellow to watch over. As long as he has food, beverage, and a lap to sit in from time to time, he is just peachy! He got cozy in the big chair and fell sound asleep. Ella got her "special blankie" and covered him with it. It was just adorable!!

Friday, February 05, 2010

My Valentine...

Whether he knows it or not, he is my Valentine. Now and Always. I am not a particularly good wife. I am not a particularly good mother. Some have the gift of gentleness; I do not. He loves me anyway.

Thursday, February 04, 2010

You Take A Chop To Lunch...

I took Layton out for lunch one day. He was smug.

It's not often that I take just one child out to a restaurant with me. He was smug.

Then, he turned into wild later tater chop!

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

I Am A Lazy Bum...

Yep. I am a bum. I have accomplished virtually nothing...all week long. Ella has been fighting bronchitis, and both Hadley and Jay had the funky funk. Yes, that is a new medical phrase. It's from the Latin word Funkitous...meaning lots of nasty drainage accompanied by a cough and sore throat. Yes, that was my pathetic attempt at humor.

Last night, I went to the gym with out my brood of sicklings.

Today, I drove to the post office to buy stamps. I also took Layton to and from preschool.

Wow. I am so productive. HA!!!

I am feeling especially lazy because I haven't written an actual post in quite some time. I am the queen of scheduling quicky posts for the future. I would consider giving up the whole autopublish thing for Lent, but I am afraid that a sacrifice of that magnitude would even cause God some concern for my mental health. I have several other contenders for my Lent sacrifice. How about you? Do any of you make a sacrifice during Lent? I did not grow up in a church that pushed self denial. It was always something I chose to do and enjoyed doing. Once while I was in high school, I gave up Spaghettios. This may seem frivolous, but I was a hardcore consumer.

Let's take a vote. What should I give up for Lent this year?

Diet Mountain Dew

Ironing (ok, so maybe this one is actually a wish)

Wal-Mart (wait a minute, I gave up Wal-Mart a while back...after I decided that the Waltons made a deal with the devil.)

French Fries

Booze (this might not be much of a sacrifice. I don't drink much. In fact, I haven't had a drink in the year 2010.)


Let's hear it! What do you think I should let go of for 40 days? Suggestions? Comments?

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Give The Girl Some Wheels...

Ella went roller skating. It was at a birthday party for a friend. She is such a doll.

Does The Apple Fall Far From The Tree?...

We have a neighbor who babysits our children. She is absolutely precious, and I don't know what I would have done without her. She helped the girls paint pictures as a present for Jay. This is a shot of the two of them together.

Ella's picture.

Hadley's picture.

Clearly, they are both LOTS more creative than I am. Maybe I should ask them to decorate my house! :)

Monday, February 01, 2010

When Chesley Got Wild...

A while back, I had to take my little niece to the hospital for a few things. It's a long story, but she is WILD!! The whole time she was obsessed with my cell phone and kept asking me to take pictures with it. This is one of the few that is tolerable. Mostly because I am in all of the pictures with her, and I am the least photogenic person alive.

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