Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Halloween Festivities

We took Jesse and Ezra to Concord Mills Mall for indoor Trick-o-Treat from 6-7. They have so much going on there, candy, toys, stickers, books, etc. The Police Department even had some officers there passing out candy! The boys had a blast, and it was so safe! Afterwards, Jonathon took Ezra for more candy hunting in a friend's neighborhood. Jesse and I came home and passed out candy to our n'hood kids. There were TONS of kids!! Overall - we have candy overload! We typically don't do candy in our house, so we'll keep it for about 1-2 weeks and then dump it.

Today was also Jonathon's birthday - hard to celebrate his birthday on Halloween with 2 kids; I baked his favorite cake and he enjoyed his cards and gift. His gift is a xbox game that is not yet released, so he got an IOU!! We're celebrating his birthday this Saturday with family.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

The finished product

Here's the pumpkin we carved. I scooped it clean, with the help of Susan who was visiting from CA! Ezra and Jonathon cut and carved it (Jonathon drew the face by hand!) and then we put it outside for all of the trick or treaters to see!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Crafts by Ezra

This week Ezra had 2 days off from school; so we decided to use that time for crafts and some fun learning. Here are two of the crafts he completed. One is a homemade haunted house complete with a door, lantern, windows, bats, pumpkin, ghosts and even a little cemetary, created with construction paper, imagination and an empty OJ container! The other is his little white pumpkin that he picked on his own at the pumpkin patch. We used markers, felt stickers and decorated it together.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Ripped off

This week my Visa Debit card number was stolen! This happens everyday to other people, and now it has happened to us! Over 600.00 in charges. How it happened I have NO CLUE. I know that my bank called me to alert me of unusual activity in my account with my card number, asked me to stop into a branch location to further discuss it and to verify my account charges. Sure enough - TONS of charges were made. Most purchases by internet.

I was to spend the rest of my day on the phone or in person with the bank, the police, and to fill out a crime report on which is the main site for internet/cyber crimes. I've been educated in how this may have happened, but until they investigate and IF they figure out who did this, we may never know officially how it occured. When, Where, Why, Who? We may never know, and I bet they'd get a slap on the wrist at best when caught. I'm frustrated!!

Individual liability is greater with a debit card then a credit card - which means my bank could have held me more liable. I know that I'll pay even closer attention to our bank account activity daily - I already check it once a day most of the time, but now it is absolutely the first thing I will do each day!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

It's potty time ?!?!

Maybe it's not the average blog post... but it is reality! It is early. It is ambitious. It is unavoidable and totally necessary to learn! Jesse's been showing interest and awareness of what goes on at the potty. Needless to say, I'm there - he's there. He hangs out with me, knows how to to flush. Knows what TP is for. Knows... well let's just use tact - he shows signs of awareness. All of which make it necessary for me to get him ready for his own attempts of being a potty goer. So we bought a potty today - and he likes to sit on it (clothed of course) for now. I realize we have a long road ahead before the first attempt - but we will begin to introduce it without any pressure to perform from this point forward. His potty is set up in our powder room, and is obviously mobile. But I thought it was nec. to equip him with some reading material so he can sit and read... even if he's just handing out with me... HA.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Random Tidbits

Random tidbits of what's going on this week and last...

Jonathon has worked on alot of freelance projects recently, and managed to take 2 weeks off of the late night work. His birthday is right around the corner and I'm sure he's looking forward to being older. HA. Outside of our everyday lives, the real excitement for him has been getting a new computer upgrade at work - an iMac with a 24" screen and all of the upgrades. He is THRILLED. You'd think he won the lottery to hear him talk about it. We have a 20" iMac at home, but 4" on a computer screen is something to rave about. Guys and their gadgets.

I picked up a virus and ran a fever on/off over the weekend, but we still had a few outdoor activities, and by Sunday I was feeling much better. This week is work as usual, with a few doctors appointments scheduled for me and the boys.

Ezra is enjoying his birthday gifts, and spent 1/3 of his money on a new pack of hotwheels cars. He's a hotwheels kid now. 100% focused on that hobby. He's teaching Jesse how to use hotwheel cars and brings them down to play with him often. Jesse loves when Ezra gets in the ball pit with him, so they do that sometimes for 30 min at a time! In school, Ezra's doing well - his favorite topic is usually physics. Electricity and Magnets really interest him in the IB class. He also enjoys music class this year - it's not just music class to sing, and play instruments; this year his teacher is really teaching about music, instruments and how they work, etc. In math right now he's working on charts, scales, graphs and range/median and mode. Monday is our conference on report card and 1st quarter review. He seems to enjoy this year more then last, and seems more challenged.

Jesse's toddler talk is coming along, the word of the week is airplane. His vocabulary is exploding, he has so many words that come out clearly, and then there are the toddler words that aren't quite perfected with consonants yet. I guess there's about 30-40 words I understand regularly. Here are a few words that you may hear him say that aren't clear and sound like babble at first, and the interpretation. We're also working on uh -oh spaghetti'o ... he has said uh-oh for months, but I started saying spaghetti'o after it recently so he has his own rendition - sounds like 'busketbio'
  • ai-cane = airplane
  • dird = bird
  • daaw = dog
  • ca = car
  • aint-u = thank you
  • bore = more
  • elt = help
  • dink or tea = drink (no, he doesn't drink tea - he hears us say it!)
  • boo = book
  • dare = bear
  • tassi = passi
  • sack = snack
  • Ez-a = Ezra
  • out sa = outside
  • orse = horse
  • ess-u = bless you
  • nana = banana
  • a'bye, a'bye - rock-a-bye (from a song)

He's moving along at his pace and loving to learn. He stays busy. We've been having playdates about 1 time a week and enjoying outdoors for the afternoon hour that we have for free/errand time daily with our schedule.

That's our amusing world for the week!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Not chilly at all - but we had chili anyway.

I'm 31 years old, and I've never actually made chili!! So today - I embarked on what I thought would be the impossible. Chili. Why impossible, why such a big deal?

  1. I like to make food for my family - more importantly, I like them to ENJOY it.

  2. My husband is picky with chili - he likes it hot.

  3. Ezra is picky with chili - he likes it mild.

  4. Jesse doesn't eat chili - yet.

  5. I'll eat it whatever way - as long as it does not taste like chili powder or cayenne pepper only....

Which brings us to why it seemed impossible... I had all of the right things... the seasonings, fresh onion, chopped tomatoes, kidney beans, pinto beans, ground turkey (we don't do red meat), tomato sauce, chili peppers... I even had a recipe with variations of mild, medium, spicy. So I make it - added extra tomatoes, I like it chunky. It smelled good - and after about 30 min at a simmer, I thought I'd taste it. BLUH. NASTY! Who knew that 2 hours later it would turn out to be 'not so bad'. It could use tweaking, but I think I have a good thing going. My own little format of making chili. Next time I'll add more of this, and that. But it was given the thumbs up by those who matter - and they generally don't eat it if they don't like it in my house. So, it's fall - it's time for chili... minus the weird weather.

To most who read about my little cooking adventure- it probably isn't a big deal. But to me, as a mom and wife - it is. I love making something my family likes. Wendy's chilli isn't made in my kitchen... I add time (not Thyme) and feel good about giving my family healthy food! Thanks for indulging me!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Seeking Volunteers

Ezra's class is collecting for the school year. If you want to help at anytime, you can clip or rip boxtops from your products that have them and mail them to us. Email me if you do not have our mailing address, I will gladly send it! Here's a link to boxtops info:

I realize some of my friends/family participate in this in their own towns, so we understand. Its worth a mention to see if we can get any extras for the school. Thanks in advance!!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Pumpkin Patch

Today we visited the pumpkin patch, and the weather was so nice. It was perfect for pumpkin picking! We picked a pumpkin for carving, and 2 for the kids - Ezra picked his own and Jesse pointed out several he approved of; they also had a junior 'haunted' maze (not really scary at all), one of those big jumping tents, hotdogs, drinks, and hayrides. We had a blast! Jesse was most happy with the dogs that were there, in one of the photos in the collage below you can see him patting at his tummy, signing 'dog'. The pumpkins are purchased on an honor system - they have several sizes lined up with pricing on them, and you just go up and give them your prices for what you believe yours cost. No questions asked. It's really odd to find the honor system around here - or anywhere. We'll have pumpkin carving sometime soon - I'll post a photo of our final product when we're done.

“People misunderstand the whole notion of living FOR the moment versus living IN the moment. To live IN the moment…is being able to live life fully from moment to moment.” ~ Ted Rosenthal

Monday, October 8, 2007

Ezra's 9th Birthday

Today was Ezra's 9th birthday! He's getting OLD! He asked me to make a Red Velvet cake, so I did - it does look like a 2 year old decorated it, note to self - using writing icing isn't a great idea on cream cheese icing!! We decided to go outside to open gifts on the patio - so we put a blanket down and Ezra tore into his gifts while Jesse supervised. He had a good evening, having cake, opening his gifts. He had gifts from us, and some from grandparents to open. Hotwheels is the 'it' thing right now, and he's so glad to have received his track and other goodies!!

After viewing the pictures, I'm making mental notes - need to pressure wash patio; need to pressure wash and paint base of grille...

I spy

Just a day after getting new shoes they were lost! Yesterday when we got home, just before nap, I put Jesse’s shoes in the drawer of the coffee table. Today, before we’re supposed to go meet Ezra for lunch as a surprise at school – I go on the hunt for shoes. They were missing! I literally searched everywhere, or so I thought. Since there are gates downstairs, there’s only so far they could have gone. I went through couch cushions, toybox, toy baskets, even my cabinet that is set aside for Jesse. Nothing!! I had given up 100%... until the afternoon. We arrived home, started dinner, Ezra was doing his homework and as I was reviewing his math work I see something out of the corner of my eyes…. Well – the pictures say it all. Jesse has found a new spot for his shoes.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Mommy Musings

A Jesse moment.... Today Jesse went for nap at normal time - 1045 (new naptime he created) anyway, he was interrupted by a very loud noise, evidently our neighbor Donna went out to mow, and she ran over something, it was very loud and sounded like she broke her mower in the process.... so he slept 1 hour for nap - typically he's 2+ hours daily. So today, I decided to lay down with Jesse. Ordinarily, I wouldn't do this unless Jonathon was home, and he was - so I did. We took a 1 hour nap, I slept longer then him because I woke to find my sweet boy - melting my heart - rubbing my cheek the same exact way I rub his when I need to coax him out of sleep for any reason. He was just barely whispering, some special baby word, and brushing my cheek ever so lightly - and had the most sincere, deep look on his face. I just melted, once I opened my eyes, he kept on with my cheek and said 'hey' so sweet and just smiled at me then hugged and kissed me all over my face with wonderful baby slober!
Normally I wouldn't nap on the bed w/ him at home alone. I've read horror stories and have a strangely morbid fear that if something were to happen to ME during my sleep - he'd be all alone to wonder about the house unsafely - at least he'd be in his crib safe, otherwise. Today with Jonathon here, and the circumstances of a short nap earlier, it was an occasion for me to nap with him. We do that very rarely, and it's so wonderful when we do!!

An Ezra moment.... today we took the boys to Northlake (huge new swanky mall off of 77 near Harris) anyway, it's like Southpark, but more hip - they have a huge toddler play area and it was crowded today. I needed to get Jesse some shoes, he has none that fit. So I went to look for shoes while Jonathon took Jesse and Ezra to the play area. Ezra was in charge of Jesse, he acts like its an imposition, but he really has fun chasing Jesse around that place every time we have gone. It's as huge place, literally the size of a school classroom emptied with permanent fixed toys for toddlers to climb, slide and play on. They played and played, and Ezra was right on Jesse's trail to help him climb, etc. Jesse was running and accidentally bumped another toddler, causing him to fall. The baby cried. Jesse kept going, ignorant to his actions of course; Ezra walked over to where Jonathon was and said “Should I go apologize to that mommy and boy for Jesse since he can't? He didn't mean to hurt him, he did that on accident.” How insightful! He really is growing up so fast.

We have been blessed with two wonderfully sweet boys!!

Friday, October 5, 2007


I'm adding this post to go along with our anniversary – my friend Amy from childhood has been kind enough to find the picture of EXACTLY how my anniversary was spent… she’s one intuitive person to be 4 hours away and having not seen me in years! Thanks Amy, this was truly hilarious to me!

Thursday, October 4, 2007

5 years

Robert C. Dodds - The goal in marriage is not to think alike, but to think together.

I think we’re doing ok at 5 years of marriage and a little over 6 years together. There’s always room for growth, and improving on oneself and as a couple. In 5 years, we’ve faced our share of what others may define as adversity.

In a little over 6 years of togetherness total – we’ve had a lot to think about ‘together’ as Dodds says in his quote above. On Jonathon’s birthday, the same year we met and began our relationship – my dad had quadruple bypass. Jonathon held my hand, and showed me understanding though a tough time, right from the very start. Not too long after that, Jonathon was in a pretty nasty car accident and managed to be ok with little injury. Then we were onto a nasty, emotional battle for custody of Jonathon's son, which ended in our favor and honestly, for the best – literally a miracle (for any father to get custody – IS a miracle now that we’re aware of the ‘justice’ system first hand) - at marriage I became a mom! January of 2005 Jonathon goes for a check up because he’s short of breath helping a friend move, and is ordered to do a stress test, at which he has a heart attack – we find ourselves at 2pm that afternoon making a decision together for major heart surgery. Life for us, changes… 5 months later, a total surprise and blessing, we’re pregnant! My pregnancy, while high-risk, was a pure joy, and ended with a quick visit to the O.R. after 20+ hours of trying to get the baby here the ‘regular’ way, our son was stubborn and not at all positioned right! There have been 2 deaths of grandparents on Jonathon’s side of the family. My step-mother loses a long, hard, and courageous battle to cancer. And then, my brother passes away unexpectedly this year.

It may seem to others looking in that we’ve really had our emotional fill. I can say, first hand – that for each of the struggles, have come equal blessings. We have two healthy, happy kids. We learned early on in our marriage, that you hold close to you those that you love; and we should take no day for granted. We have our health, and we’re more conscious of our daily habits because of what’s happened in our lives, and in the lives of those we love. We have each other, and we’ve stuck by each other during our ‘better or worse’ moments thus far. It would seem that we can face anything! We sure try!!
On our wedding announcements, on a whim – I chose a old verse as the quote. It couldn’t be more fitting for our lives.

Grow old along with me, the best is yet to be… ~Robert Browning

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

What's in a word?

There are a few blogs that I follow weekly, this was posted recently and it caught my attention. I’ve always thought that words like this can become overused, and lose their meanings to a degree. Each person has their own feelings on what sacrifice is – this blogger really put this into perspective in a unique way and made me think. I thought I’d post it, more just to revisit the word and it’s said/understood meaning. For me personally, the blogger really achieved his/her intent – in making me consider the word’s meaning and value for what it means to me.

This is another one of those words that is used so commonly, I sometimes think that what a sacrifice is may be lost to an extent.

From a dictionary, you will basically get this:
1) The giving up of something for the sake of something else having a higher claim.
2) Loss incurred for selling something for less than it's value.
3) To surrender or give up , or permit injury for the sake of something else.

This does define the very basics, but when something becomes sacrificial, it has fuzzy edges and a whole lot of opinions.

When we decide to have children and give until it bleeds, is it a sacrifice? When does child care and raising become a sacrifice? (or does it at all?) If only one of the couple wants children and the other doesn't at all, does the latter sacrifice a good part of their life?

When does care of another become a sacrifice? I know several people who have virtually given up what anyone would call a normal life for another. If you ask them they will tell you they wouldn't have it any other way out of their love for the person. Would that still be a sacrifice? There are points where this does become sacrificial, right?

For those who are not wealthy, but still give heavily economically, is that a sacrifice? Or is it only sacrificial when it takes something from the family? Or is it even then if all are in agreement?

If I join the military, wanting to risk my life for my country and am killed or wounded, is it a sacrifice? Or did my family sacrifice instead, or did both?

If someone or some thing has a higher claim than I and I give, am I sacrificing?

How do you define a true sacrifice? Is it when you don't want to but do anyway? Is it when you do want to but it takes too much? I know there are thousands of situations and examples, but when does anything become true sacrifice?

Monday, October 1, 2007

Fall is finally here!

With the official beginning of fall recently, and this weird weather pattern - I am waiting patiently on the cooler days, fall colors, etc. I was looking through some pictures from last year this time, and found this beautiful shot of the leaves changing in our neighboorhood entry. I'm so glad that October is here!!! I love this time of year, fall leaves (beginning to change a bit now), more comfortable temperatures, holidays just around the corner. This month we’ll celebrate 4 family birthdays, in order: Hannah (10/4), Ezra and Denise (10/8), Jonathon (10/31). We will celebrate our 5th year anniversary 10/4, and then the fun of decorations, costumes, and candy on Halloween! It’s one of my favorite times of the year!!

This year we’re going to a few festivals for October, there’s a special Hallow-Fest at Carowinds and I think we’re going to go in the next 2 weekends. Ezra’s school is doing a FunFest next weekend as well, so we’ll pop in to participate in the fund raising there too. Happy Fall to everyone!