My Family

My Family

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Oh I'm in love with

Several posts ago I mentioned that I have been on this organizational kick - yeah, Jason's probably about sick of it.  He never knows where he's supposed to put stuff now - on the counter, in the basket, who knows what the right thing to do is.

Anyway, since I am up early 3 days a week it is sort of difficult to find the right jewelry to wear and keep it dark in the bedroom so Jason doesn't wake up.  Also, the jewelry box just wasn't the easiest thing to find the right necklace.   Here's what I had

I had to empty everything out of the box and clean out.  Jason was a little speechless when he came home to this one day.

I had to come up with something so with the help of some great organizational blogs I came up with this.

I found the cork board at a Thrift Store for $3 and the laundry thing there as well for $2.  Then I spraypainted them white and used spray adhesive to adhere the fabric.  Attached (with the help from my dad and Jason) some inexpensive white cabinet pulls and some other cool closet hooks.

This jewelry organizer makes me so happy everytime I look at it.  It is so easy to see what all I have now.  I sure wish I had done this earlier.

A date night??

Remember my 2011 goals??  Well, a couple of Friday's ago, Jason and I were able to make an attempt at one of them - date night!! My goal is to go on 2 dates a month.  One of the hardest things about date night is babysitters.  Yes, my parents live next door but lately we have been using them a lot - getting off late from work or last minute plans.  So, we were fortunate to find a babysitter - it does help that we teach 12th grade and have had some great girls come through our class.  However, they seem to be getting married and I'm losing them.

Anyway, this particular "date" wasn't really a date but I guess I can still call it one since we had no kids with us.  Our mission for this date - a new PC!!  We have been in need of one for sometime - ours sounds like it is ready to take off.  So, when my work gave us an ipad, as much as I would have loved to have kept it - our need was a new pc so we chose to get a mac.

This is a huge adjustment for us but everyone told us we would love it and so far we do.  We can actually use the laptop and hear the tv at the same time.  Now we just have to learn how to use it.

Of course Apple makes it way too easy and fast to spend money so we were done and trying to find somewhere to eat.  Friday night at Towne Center is very difficult to find somewhere to eat so we tried California Pizza Kitchen.  Very good I must say.  When we sat down, Jason joked asking if we wanted to get a high chair.  Ha ha.

We closed out our night with picking up Jason's Christmas gift at Dicks - his HUGE basketball goal.  Now the fun of trying to install it.

Since this wasn't a "real" date I am already planning the place to eat for our next date.  A post really isn't complete without a picture - I used one from our weekend getaway last year at a great restaurant - Lady and Son's.  Who knows maybe we'll go back there one day - probably not for our next date night though....

Thursday, January 20, 2011

A scrape here and a scrape there

You never appreciate what you have until it is taken away from you.  This is the lesson I have learned over the past 4 years.  For about 15 years I have worn contacts and it was wonderful.  I never seemed to have any issues but always a little chicken to get lasik because I thought why mess up a good thing.

Well, about 9 years ago, Jason and I were in an airport and an opthamologist asked me if my eyes were always that red - well yeah - I thought it was normal.  He told me I should really see an opthamologist when I got home.  Well, of course I didn't think too much about it UNTIL about 4 years ago when I no longer could wear my contacts.  It happened to be about 5 months after Brody was born.  Since I couldn't seem to wear contacts anymore I thought well why not go ahead and get lasik.  Well, that's what I thought!!  

Dr. Chokshi's office had other plans.  After about 30-40 visits later, visits to Mayo, DROPS, DROPS, DROPS, and my tear ducts plugged, 2 weeks ago I had some "nodules" (bumps) on my right eye scraped off.  Yes, scraped with a razor but I was HIGHLY sedated (thank you Jesus). 

The pain that night after surgery was UNBELIEVABLE and I was thinking what in the world did I just do.  When I went in the next morning, my eye was so swollen and I could bearly open it.  I ended up having too small of a contact lens bandage on it so once that was changed out - it felt 100% better.  

I went to the doctor yesterday for of course another check up and am happy to report that my eye is completely healed and the best news I've heard is that in about a month we will be able to try contacts - YEAH!!!!!  I wish you could see the big smile on my face because I am so excited to think I might be able to get rid of these things.
Pre glasses (actually it was on our cruise in Oct 2008 so I was in between wearing glasses and I wasn't pregnant with Trevor yet). 

Wearing the lovely glasses.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Scratching them off the list - one by one

One of my goals for 2011 is to learn how to work my camera better.  I have a nice camera but really just use it as a point and shoot camera, so I really wanted to learn how to take cool pictures with it.

I am happy to say that last night I went to my first photography class at Ritz Camera.  The class was packed and we sat in chairs in the store.  It was Digital Basics and was very informative.  They are offered every week so I'm pretty excited.  They even have a class excursion where we will go downtown Jax and use the skills that we have learned.  It sounds fun.  Hopefully my picture taking skills will get better and I'll be able to document the boys even better.  The teacher even said by the end we shouldn't even have to go to the portrait places to photograph our kids.  We'll just have to see about that.

Thankfully my parents were able to take care of Trevor while Brody went to Jason's basketball game.  What a fun evening and I can't wait to go back.  I'm sure more pictures will show up on the blog - not like there weren't enough to begin with.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Operation clean out

Why is it when a new year starts, I feel that I have to clean out, clean out and even more clean out.  For the past 10 years or so we don't really have plans on New Years Day.  When my Grandmother was alive, New Years Day was her thing.  She cooked a HUGE meal and had everyone over.  It was always lots of fun so of course it is something I miss.  Since I'm not that cook and don't believe in the luck from eating black eyed peas I decided to have operation clean out.

With me being sick for over a week during December, laundry and my closet became quite neglected so I thought there needed to be an intervention.

EVERYTHING came out of my closet and into the bedroom.  I took away 1 garbage bag full of clothes for our garage sale in the spring - I'm sure it should have been more.

Here's the finished product.  It feels so good to have my closet back to normal and that I can actually walk in there.  Let's see how long it will last.  I think the rule needs to be 1 new item in 1 old item out.
This was 1 long tiring day.  I think we did 20 loads of laundry and it took about 3 days to fold and put it all back up.  I NEVER want the laundry to get that bad again.  It is very easy for me to get the clothes washed but it seems it sits in the basket for several days until we have an intervention and it all gets folded and put up.

Maybe this is a start to trying to get my house organized.

Bring on 2011

What is it with a new year and resolutions, goals, etc.  It is so crazy to see the retail areas right now, they are really using this time to try and make a buck with all of the get in shape, better yourself products out there.  I don't go all out and buy all those products but it does get me thinking.  Here are a few goals I would like to see accomplished with my life in 2011. 
  • First and foremost - I would like to have a consistent time with God.  It is so difficult for me to do this because "stuff" always seems to get in the way.  3 days a week I get up so early to get to work that is seems crazy to get up even earlier.  I know morning is the best time to do this before all the "stuff" comes at me so I may try a few it this week.  Since I have a 35-40 minute commute to work I thought I could use that time to listen to uplifting, better myself for God podcasts.  I've already downloaded a few to start this week so we'll see how it goes.
  • I would like Jason and I to start having date nights at least twice a month.  Thankfully we have my parents next door that are willing to keep the kids - usually anytime, but like anything else we always get busy and never seem to have the time.  I really want our marriage to grow and I feel that spending quality time together without kids is a good way for this to happen.
  • I want to be a sweeter person to my kids and husband.  I want to speak words that are kind and not biting.  Why is this so hard to do?
  • I want to spend quality time with my kids - doing things they want to do and helping them have fun.
  • I want to have my house organized - where everything has its place.  I have been reading a lot of organizational blogs that are wonderful and are helping me to get inspired - now if I just can find the time to do it.
  • I want Jason and I to start back on our workout schedule - we've been out of it for about a year now.  I think it's time to start back.
  • I want to learn how to use my camera better and take better pictures.
  • I want to be able to think about others more and what I can do for them
I think this is enough goals for me to try and accomplish this year.  I pray for the best and that I don't get overwhelmed and I can at least get 3 or 4 of them done.

Just so my blog is complete with a picture.  We sure are tired after 2010 so bring on 2011 we are ready.

2010 comes to a close

For about the last 10-12 years we have been getting together for New Years Eve with the Walsky's and the Cruce's - so pre kids as well.  Pre kids we would all go out for a nice dinner and back to one of our houses for games.  Now with kids - dinner out is out of the question so for the past several years everyone has come to our house for dinner and games.  The games have consisted of karaoke, board games, Wii, and Guitar Hero. 

The kids have full reign in the playroom which gives the adults time to play games as well.  Thankfully the kids get along great and have a blast. 

This year of course was no different.  We broke out the Guitar Hero and Jason's new Beatles game.  Almost all participated - guitars, drums, and singing.  Tracy LOVES to sing and it is a blast to watch them all having fun.  The kids even tried to join in by setting up their own little band.  So cute to see them in action.

We then played our new Scene It game - Squabble.  It is a male vs female game and is a blast.  We are all pretty competitive but I will have to say that the girls won the game!!  It's pretty impressive what some of us know about the opposite gender.

Because we were so involved with the game we almost missed the ball drop.  We quickly got our Welch's sparkling grape juice and brought in the new year.  Can you believe that all 3 kids stayed awake - Trevor just can't make it - he was down by 9PM (pretty late for him).

This is always a highlight for us - nothing fancy but just good friends getting together for a fun evening.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Christmas Day 2010

Since my last post was SOOO long, I felt that Christmas Day deserved its own post.  Here's what our tree looked like on Christmas morning after Santa left all of his goodies.

Thankfully Brody woke up at his normal time of 7:30 and came into wake us up by telling us Santa left him a soccer goal.  I guess he didn't really look around too much - which I was glad since I didn't really want to miss him seeing all of his presents from Santa for the first time.  Jason and I quickly got up to go out and see what all Santa had left. 

Just what Brody wanted - a Woody costume.  He actually asked for a Buzz and Woody costume.  I kept telling him that he already has a Buzz costume but he quickly informed me that the Buzz was for Trevor.  Santa didn't come through with the Buzz costume but at least Brody got a hat and he loves it.

Showing off his new slippers.

A golf glove - just his size.

Around 8:30, Trevor decided to wake up - he loves his sleep.  He came out to some fun foam blocks just for him.  Of course Brody thought Santa left them for both of them.  He is going to have so much fun with these. 

 Sweet little Trevor not knowing what in the world is really going on but eager to see what is in this sock for him.

Trevor had to take a little break for some yogurt raisins.

Jason got me a Flip Video.  It so little and SOOO easy to use.  I'm sure the blog will have lots of video to come.

Already enjoying to gift from Santa.

Around 10:00 we headed to my parents for breakfast, which was very relaxing since we had already opened presents the night before.  Then back to our house to prepare for an early dinner with Jason's side of the family plus my parents.  Thankfully, I don't have to cook much - I just bought a Honey Baked Ham and everyone else brought sides.  It is great.  We had 12 for lunch plus the 4 kids so it was a packed house.  The tree was packed to with all of the gift giving to occur later that night.

We had to do a makeshift to the table so we could all fit and be one big happy family.

Uncle Bryan trying to get Trevor to eat something besides crackers.  Yeah, he looks like he's going to eat, but no way - he was just kidding.  Thank goodness he's getting nutrition somewhere - not sure where.

With Jason's family we like to take turns opening our presents but with kids it's a little hard to do that.  We set them up in the playroom with their stacks of presents.  They each opened 1 present - taking turns.  Then it was a free for all.  Talk about crazyness.  I had no idea what Trevor was getting who was across the room but thankfully Wendi was assisting him.

Once the kids opened their presents we let them have fun in the playroom and then it was the adult's turn.  We must have opened for at least an hour.  It's so much fun to see what everyone else gets and it makes it last.  After we opened everything up, Jason came through the front door with Nana's gift - a bike.  She was pretty shocked but hopefully will enjoy riding it.

Nana with her 4 boys.

What a wonderful Christmas we had.  God has truly blessed us this past year and I am looking forward to what he has in store for us in 2011.

December in review

Since I can't seem to get caught up with my blog and I cannot stand to get behind because I fear that I miss the little things that happen every day that I really want to capture - here is all of our December / Christmas happenings.
This year I really wanted an advent calendar of some sort for Brody to be able to see how much longer until Christmas.  However, I didn't want to have to put a small gift in each box - too much work for this busy gal.  I found this great calendar from Fisher Price

He absolutely loved putting a piece of the nativity onto the scene each day.  Trevor enjoyed it too - as he would pull them out of the pockets to put in his mouth.  Of course Brody would get so upset - my OCD child where everything has it's place and it's not in Trevor's mouth!!

Brody was all excited to decorate a gingerbread house this year so this is how we started off our Christmas season.  Of course mom had to finish most of it since Brody got a little preoccupied by Dora on tv - I guess I should have turned it off.

With December in our house comes sickness - at least it seems that way for the past 2 years.  Brody came down with a fever on Sunday when we got home from SeaWorld.  Jason and I had to split the day on Monday to keep him - I went into work early and was home by noon and then Jason went off to work.  He seemed to be doing better - no fever so he went to school on Tuesday but just kind of moped around and wasn't himself.  I myself wasn't feeling too great either but hoped it would pass. 

The fever came back on Wednesday and I ended up coming home early from work with a fever as well - we were 2 sad kiddos.  Thank goodness Sara Lynn was there to babysit so I could rest.  I was really praying he would be okay for Thursday since that was his Christmas presentation and party at school.  Thursday morning he got up and of course had a fever (I did as well) and was very whiny - so no school for us - home we stayed.  He had been practicing his song and Bible verse so I was very sad that he didn't get to show what he had learned - maybe I'll get it on video one day.

I was assigned to bring cupcakes for his party so I still made them and my sweet dad took them up there.  A bunch of 3 year olds would be highly disappointed with no cupcakes to decorate.  On Friday, I let Brody decorate his own cupcake since he missed his party - yeah poor Trevor in the background not participating.  You would not want to see my house if he took part in this decorating.

Friday night was my work's Christmas party in Ponte Vedra at the owner's house.  Lots of small talk, fancy food for dinner, and presents.  This year we all got ipads - pretty exciting but we returned it to go towards our NEED for a new laptop.  We also got yummy chocolate covered popcorn, gift certificates to Fresh Market, a bakery shop, and a florist.  All very useful and can't wait to use them all.

Saturday night was our church's Christmas presentation - Winter Wonderland experience.  I unfortunately didn't get to hear much of the presentation because I had both kids with me.  Trevor wasn't feeling so good so I didn't want him to be in the nursery and get other kids sick and I THOUGHT Brody could sit through it.  After the first song, Trevor and I were out in the hallway while mom sat with Brody.  I was able to listen to Jason sing a duet and then it was just trying to entertain Trevor and eventually Brody in the hallway.

We headed over to our Family Life Center where some wonderfully talented ladies had transformed it into a Winter Wonderland experience with Santa and all.  We even met Frosty along the way.

Can't believe he actually looked at the camera.
No tears from Trevor but couldn't get a smile out of him for nothing.

Cheesing it up for the camera.

We absolutely LOVE our playroom.  It was one of the best things we did.  I can't even imagine where all the toys would be if we didn't have it.  The playroom was lacking some grown up seating so we found these great bean bags.  The boys LOVE jumping and climbing on them - what a great purchase.

The Thursday before Christmas we headed out to see Granny out at Aunt Joyce's house in Green Cove Springs - it took us almost 2 hours to get there - traffic was terrible.  We had a great meal and just spending time with them.
 The boys minus Trevor at the kid table.

 Pictures with Granny.

 4 of Granny's great grandchildren - looks like some girls are missing.

 Thank goodness Brody got a pillow pet - it was on his wish list.

 Trevor even got one too.

 On the way home we stopped by Chaffee Road and saw these great lights.  They were put to Christmas music and Brody loved it.  Trevor on the other hand slept through them.

We started what may be a new tradition this year - Christmas Eve at my mom and dad's.  Last year Christmas day seemed so rushed at my parents so we thought we would try Christmas Eve there.  I think it worked great.  We had dinner and then my mom read the Christmas story and then we opened presents.  We were able to spend quality time with them - even though we see them all the time :)

Non traditional Christmas dinner - don't worry this wasn't my plate - it was my dads!!

 2 sweet boys

 Not quite a Christmas picture but I was wondering why my shoes looked so fat and I felt a little draft.  When I got to my parent's this is what I noticed.  I guess these are going in the trash.

 My mom reading the Christmas story while Brody is reenacting the story out with parts of the Nativity scene.

 Trying to find their presents.

 A cool suitcase - it even lights up when you roll up.  Of course it was FULL of clothes from my parents.

 We reuse all sorts of boxes in our house - you know we go through plenty of these boxes at our house.

Brody helping PoPo open his presents.

 Dad got the award for the biggest present this year.  He thought he was getting a fire pit which is what the box says but once again we reuse ALL of our boxes so instead he got a Rifle stick.  If you know me I am so not a hunter and made sure to not marry one either so I was quite out of place at Gander Mtn picking this out.

Back at our house getting ready for Santa to come visit.  All dressed in their Christmas pj's

 Christmas cookies for Santa.  I hope Santa didn't get too thirsty because we forgot to leave some milk.
Off to bed the boys went without too much trouble.  Trevor never gives us problems, but Brody likes to get out of the bed multiple times but thankfully he didn't get out too many times that night.