Monday, March 31, 2008

A twister, a twister!

When I went to pick up Aubrey from school today, it started sprinkling. When we arrived home, it was pouring and windy. I got everyone in the house and maybe 2 minutes later the tornado sirens start to sound. The kids eyes(especially Aubrey's) got very big. I had everyone go into our bathroom downstairs for a little while, called Joey on my cell phone and had him check the internet at his work. We were under a tornado warning-one had been spotted in a storm not too far from where Joey works and it was moving towards where he was and then was expected to come our direction. Luckily, it dissipated before it went too far and we were all fine. But it did worry me a little bit, especially with all 3 kids all by myself! Poor Aubrey-it traumatized her. She is a thinker and a worrier. She didn't want to leave the bathroom, EVER, she said. She wanted to sleep there all night:( Later this evening she kept repeating how that was the first time in her life to hear the tornado sirens "for real" as opposed to the testing that they do on them periodically. I have to admit it was the first time I've ever heard them "for real"too! I didn't grow up in an area where tornados were such a big threat. Ella wasn't scared at all(and of course bragged that fact to Aubrey later). Ella also drew pictures of "twisters" later on for Joey and I, so "that we can always remember the twisters," she said:) And Cali, well, while we camped in the bathroom, she just had fun playing in the toilet...j/k
The picture I posted is from somewhere around Dallas. Those are some crazy lookin clouds! I'm glad they didn't make their way over to us!


It was just me and the girls this weekend(Joey was at Youth Conference as a leader). So, on Saturday just us girls went to Target to do some shopping. Aubrey and Ella saw these shirts and HAD to have them. I have to say, they do look quite fabulous! :)

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Relay for Life

For those of you that hadn't heard or I haven't told, Peter Barr, the boy I had posted about last month passed away just a couple of weeks ago. He was this sweet little 8 year old boy in our ward at church who had been diagnosed with a brain tumor almost a year and a half ago. It was a long battle, a miracle that he lived as long as he did. He served his mission here on Earth and served it well. It was so sad-we attended the funeral together and have shed tears for this families loss. The service was a beautiful tribute to his life. The speakers did awesome. He has touched so many lives and holds a special place in our hearts.

There is a group of people from our ward doing Relay for Life in memory and honor of Peter this year and I've decided to join the team. For those of you who don't know about Relay for Life, the website says, "At Relay, people from within the community gather to celebrate survivors, remember those lost to cancer, and to fight back against this disease. Relay participants help raise money and awareness to support the American Cancer Society in its lifesaving mission to eliminate cancer as a major health issue. During Relay For Life ® events, teams of people gather at schools, fairgrounds, or parks and take turns walking or running laps." I've never done anything like this before. I'm excited and honored to be part of something so important and meaningful this year. The walk is on April 25. I know everyone has been affected by cancer, whether it has been you, a relative or a friend. I feel this is an especially worthy cause. Our team is called "Peter's Polar Bears."(Peter had wanted to "surf a polar bear down an avalanche":)
If anyone is interested in contributing to our team, there is donation info below. Any amount would be awesome! There isn't a minimum donation, you can type in the amount-even $5 would rock! Our team would love to reach the goal and show Peter and his family how many people support and love them. And of course help in the fight against cancer.
To make a donation online, visit my personal page.

Thanks everyone!

Friday, March 28, 2008

Cali's first encounter with the Busy Ball Popper...

Trying really hard to get another ball....

Word Verification

I think its mean when Blogger's word verification box puts a v and a w side by side. Whats first, the v or the w??!!! It always takes me an extra second or two to look and figure it out. Quit wasting my time Blogger.

Word verification's trickery must end.

Just something that was on my mind this morning.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

I think she likes cake

Cali got to party twice this week... that lucky girl! She actually gets to party again this summer-Joey's parents always throw these amazing luaus for their grandbaby's first birthdays. Lucky, lucky girl. Anyways, we celebrated her birthday over the weekend when my family was visiting and then last night we went out for pizza and then had cupcakes at home for her actual birthday. We let her eat cake for the first time on Saturday and she didn't hesitate more than two seconds before cramming a huge piece in her mouth. And she did not disappoint us as far as cute messy baby pictures is concerned. We got plenty of good shots of a cakey faced cutie! Here are some of the celebration pictures....

Not sure about this hat.
Time to blow out the candles. Hey, wheres the birthday girl? Oh, shes hiding so her sisters have to do all the work:) Good job Aubrey and Ella!

Whats this stuff?

Its very brown. It can only be one of two things, chocolate or.... something else. I'm hoping for chocolate...please let it be chocolate.

Cali never takes small bites. Never. She is our little food crammer.

And this is now Cali's favorite food. "I love it Mommy. Feed me this forever."

Present time!

She loves her new super soft book.

My parents got her the cutest little Baby Gap dress. It looks perfect on her. Notice the excitement in Cali's eyes. Actually, if you look closely, the excitement is about a sticker she pulled off one of the outfits Aunt Tara had bought her:) Very cute outfits by the way Tara. Love them! Anyways, that sticker was seriously one of her favorite gifts!.:)

We got her this toy called a Busy Ball Popper. Its really cool-Ella loved it just as much as Cali did. I have a really cute video clip of Cali playing with it that I'm posting next. That way you can see this bad boy in action.

Another one of my parents gifts was this bobbling penguin. She loves to smack it, hug it and then kiss it. In that order. Here is a cute picture of a big wet kiss.

Here are pictures from last night. I bought cupcakes that had this really bright pink icing. Cali went to town with hers and within minutes had painted herself(her highchair and the floor beneath her) pink.....

Prepare yourself for the next picture.......let me just say I think pink is definitely her color....

I had looked away for 10 seconds and she had gone from picture 2 to picture 3(out of the last 3 pics). Wow, Cali, wow. This is our funniest baby eating cake picture yet. I had the privilege of cleaning her up afterwards. This icing has some serious dye in it! When she woke up this morning, I could swear she still had a pink hue.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Happy 1st Birthday to our Cali girl

Happy Birthday Cali! Cali has been such an added joy and blessing to our lives ever since she entered this world one year ago(that seems like just yesterday!). She has a special little spirit and a warm smile. She is so cuddly and happy. And she always makes us laugh. We don't know what we'd do without this little one in our lives. We love her so much!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Easter Day

I bet you thought I was done posting about Easter.... hee hee hee, I'm not. I have to blog about the rest of the day of course! So, we came home from church and start making Easter dinner(my mom, my sister and me). We cooked ham, potato casserole, corn on the cob, deviled eggs, made a relish tray, and some yummy biscuits. I ask Joey to expand our formal dining room table by putting the leaf in(which we had never done before since we bought it about one year ago). He and my brother Austin start to pull(not even hard yet) and the thing breaks! That piece of crap! See picture below. Word to the wise: do not shop at Rooms To Go. Joey and Austin seriously hadn't even pulled hard at all. It seems as if it was manufactured incorrectly. How could all of these screws simply come out of the table like this with one tug?! It was supposed to slide apart. Frustrating to say the least. So, we just ate at the ugly table in the breakfast area. There went my fancy Easter meal:(Loading up the plates
My sister's dog, Chloe, sitting, waiting and wishing for a bite. Sorry Chloe, keep wishing. After dinner, we decided to do an adult egg hunt. We gave Aubrey & Ella bags of candy-filled eggs and had them hide them around the house while we were in my room waiting. They had a blast hiding eggs for us. Thanks Aubrey & Ella for helping the big kids do a hunt! :) Joey showed no mercy on the hunt. He yelled, "Go!" before everyone was ready(well, before I was ready anyways) and was off. He was the big winner. I was the biggest loser. We even each other out sometimes:)
Then we headed back to church for the annual Messiah performance. I was in the choir this year and it was an awesome experience. It sounded beautiful. Thanks Melissa for doing it with me. It was fun to be in it together.
Then we came home for one more activity- the making of the giant Easter Bunny cookie. Here is Grandma and the girls after the cookie was complete. It looked so cute! (And it was mighty tasty too!)

And thats a wrap.

Easter Morning

Easter morning was so busy! The kids woke up to find their baskets full of candy, chocolate bunnies, and fun stuff(Webkinz, jumpropes, and charms for their Crocs). Then, they began their egg hunt in the backyard. It was a little chilly outside, but they didn't care. "Anything for candy." Thats our family motto.

Cali contemplating whats in this box. This was Cali's second Easter before she turned one. Weird, right?

The kids testing out their ropes

Cali testing out a plastic egg
Look Dad!
Aubrey looking exhausted already, but that didn't stop her from finding more
Ella getting upset because Aubrey snatched an egg before she did
All is well again I love this picture! A look of surprise and a bad case of bed hair.
Then it was breakfast time, showers, baths, and getting all perdy for church. All morning I felt the weight of having to give my talk upon me. We arrived at church ten minutes early(shocking for us!) and Joey and I took our seats at the front. Then a member of the Stake Presidency comes in. Great. More pressure for me. Hymns were sung and I started to feel calmer. Then after the youth speaker it was my turn and the calm left and I felt my heart start to pound again. I got up, gave my talk, cried through half of it, and then was done. Then I gave a sigh of relief and felt the best I've felt in a long time. I actually think I did alright. I know I looked and sounded nervous, but I felt it was a good talk. I spent a lot of time preparing it and while I was giving it I felt the Spirit. And thats what matters, right? People don't care if I was shaking and about to vomit all over the place. Well, they might have cared if I actually did :) Joey did great too. I was proud of both of us for conquering our fears. So many people were so sweet and complimented us afterwards. Every compliment meant the world to me. I honestly can say this was one of the best Easter experiences I've had in a while. Even though in the morning I was stressed out beyond belief, after sacrament meeting I just felt so happy and at peace. I felt like my Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ were pleased with us too. Preparing this talk brought me closer to my Savior. I really had my mind and heart focused on Christ this Easter season, more than I ever had. I am so grateful for Him, for His sacrifice, His atonement for our sins, and for the wonderful gift of the resurrection.

Here are our beautiful girls in their Easter dresses before church. They looked beautiful.

Happy Easter 2008!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Easter Eve

I hope everyone had a fun Spring Break and a wonderful Easter! We did-we were able to spend it all with my mom, sister and brothers. It was so nice to have my family come and visit us! I was sad this morning when they all had to go. Now back to normal life again.....

Now to blog all the Easter stuff. First, I'll start off with the night before Easter. We did the traditional dyeing of the eggs. Thats always a fun activity the kids look forward to every year. There is always the competition to see whose is the best. I think mine was:) I wrote "One Hot Mama" on my egg. Ella kept calling it the big hot mama egg. I picked out a glitter eggs kit this year and the kids loved how their eggs sparkled. After we were done, we left them out for the Easter bunny to hide along with the candy filled eggs he brings every year.

The girls took their jobs very seriously

The finished product. My how they shine!

Notice the totally smashed looking one at the bottom. Ella dropped this one about ten times as she was dyeing and decorating it. I kept hearing, "Awwwww!" as it rolled across, smashed into or fell off the table :)

Friday, March 21, 2008

Six Flags!

My mom and my 3 brothers are here visiting this week for Spring Break. We decided to brave the crowds and head to Six Flags Over Texas in Arlington. My sister and my aunt Cindy also met us there. So, we had a nice big group. It had been a long time since we've gone to a theme park and we were excited to have some of our extended family with us. It was crowded and there were some really long lines, but we still had a great time. The girls had a blast! Ella was brave and went on her first roller coaster. She was excited at first, but as the ride progressed, the excitement turned into fear and tears:( She exclaimed after riding the kid coaster, "I don't want to ride the Titan!" (which is one of Six Flags craziest coasters-I won't even ride that one). She cheered up though and still went on more rides. Her favorite ride was the swings that spin around. Aubrey loved every ride she went on. She went on her first log ride this trip. It was her first time to go on a ride with a drop and she exclaimed after the drop, "I loved it!" and then went on it a couple of more times. That was definitely her favorite ride. Cali was good all day. She loved just looking at everything around her, snacking on goodies and being held by Mommy,Grandma and Uncle Austin(he is the uncle of preference currently-Austin is enjoying rubbing that into Taylor and Mark's faces:) So, yeah, it was fun, but I wouldn't go during Spring Break again. Joey, Taylor and Mark(the bravest of us all) were only able to ride two of the high thrill coasters because of lines. There were waits up to 2 hours on some of these rides! I can't wait to go again(when its not a holiday or break)!

Also, I forgot to explain those train pics of sad Ella. She got upset because she didn't get to sit in the part of the train she wanted to. Kids.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Talks and talks and talks...oh my!

Our family is getting hit hard core in the speaking department. This past Sunday, Aubrey gave her first talk in primary. She was a little bit nervous, but I was surprised at the confidence she had and her willingness to do it. I think having read the scripture a couple of weeks ago really helped her. She knew she could do it. She did a fantastic job and we are so proud of her! Now it is our turn.....uggghh.

I made the mistake a couple of week ago of telling a couple of friends, Melissa and Emily, how Joey and I haven't had speaking assignments since we were married. I knocked on wood right then and there, but I didn't knock fast enough. This past Sunday we were asked to speak on Easter Sunday. I feel so stressed out right now!!! I am not good at public speaking, I shake, my mind becomes a mess and I just get so nervous I could puke. And the fact that it is Easter Sunday doubles the pressure. Its only one of the most important days of the year! Aye. I feel like my talk has to be good, really good. I don't want to disappoint. I'm having family come to visit this week, we are celebrating Cali's birthday, and I still have Easter errands to run. So, the stress level in my brain is high. I'm posting about this to ask for some extra thoughts and prayers my way. For some people, public speaking is not a big deal. For me, it really really is!

I just keep thinking to myself-Aubrey did it. Aubrey was nervous, it was scary for her, and she just did it. She didn't complain. She knew it was something she was asked to do, something that was important, and she overcame her fears and did it. And when she was done, she was beaming and proud. And I know thats how I'll be when I'm done. I know I'll be happy. I know I'll be blessed for it and I know many will be proud, including me. Aubrey has set an example for me-now I have to do the same for her. The Lord asks us to do things that are hard sometimes, but not things that we cannot do. And he blesses us for doing it-I know that. Thanks Aubrey for being a big girl and showing me that I can do it too. When I grow up, I want to be just like you:) I love you!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Our three little leprechauns

Note to self: From now on, wear green pajamas to bed the night before St. Patrick's Day. Your husband will have no mercy and will wake you up with a pinch if you don't.

Hope everyone had a great pinch-less St. Patrick's Day.....unlike me.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Don't take food from a baby. Baby will get angry.

The night of Joey's birthday we all went to Pei Wei Asian Diner for some delicious dinner. While we were there, Cali did the usual cramming of food into her mouth and actually shoved an entire wagon wheel cracker into her mouth. It looked like it wasn't a good idea, so Joey tried to take it out. She clenched down on it really hard and was determined not to let it go. Well, Joey won, and Cali was not happy as you can see from the pictures. Am I a horrible mom for taking pictures of this? Joey thought I was. She wasn't choking! I just thought it was funny...sheesh. Now he's glad I did because we were laughing and laughing the other night looking at the pictures. You are welcome Joey. Anyways, here are some more pictures from Joey's birthday dinner and celebration~
Earlier that evening...when all was well.

Tara, I love your face in this picture. Ella's got quite the look goin on too.

Cake time at home. Aubrey did a good job of helping Joey blow out his candles:) Notice the Tranformers plates. We like to do themed birthdays for both old and young:)
A kiss for the birthday boy

Ella had it in her head that she wanted to make her own goodie bags. Aunt Tara helped her and they turned out so cute. There were even little pockets in the back to put candy in. Good job ladies!
Joey reading Aubrey's card. Cali trying to grab it so she could eat it.

The next morning Cali crawled straight for the streamers. She had so much fun hitting them and pulling them. It didn't take her long before she ripped one and then shortly after this picture was taken, tried to eat it. She is quick. If it can fit in her mouth, it will go there.

Also, is this not the best version of the song "Celebration" you have ever heard? I laughed so hard when I heard this.