Thursday, February 28, 2008

Power of Prayer

If you took a minute to comment on the blog for Leslie, click here to see the effect you're having on this couple.

Thanks.

Hair Cut - Part II

Today was part 2 of Mckenna's recovery haircut after she took the kid's scissors to her hair. Initially I just had it blended in the spots where she cut it so it wasn't so obvious, but we didn't do anything major.

Over the past two weeks I've been preparing Mckenna for the idea of cutting her hair back into a bob like she used to wear it...I always thought it looked cute on her but she had asked to grow it long like Baileigh. We've spent the past year growing it out! A year going through those awkward stages. Just to be back where we started! I'm still a little miffed at her if you can't tell. Oh well...it'll grow again.

Mckenna is happy that her hair will be easy to do, have less tangles, and doesn't look like Eli anymore (a boy in her class...who looks like Ann Jillian!).

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Another favor.

Kids are in bed. Brad is out of town. House is quiet.

Checking in on my blogs.

Again, overwhelmed reading this blog.

Thank you to those of you that stepped up to the plate and took the time to comment yesterday on Leslie's blog and offer words of encouragement.

I'm asking for another favor.

Please do it again. And again. And again.

Please make it part of your daily computer routine.

While we each prepare for tomorrow, this couple prepares to meet with doctors about whether or not they will need to remove Leslie's forehead!

Did you hear that? Does just reading it/thinking it freak you out? Imagine how the feel!

Please continue to leave your comments and let them know that they are being covered in prayer. Please consider posting it on your blog, if you haven't already and leave a link encouraging your readers to also visit their blog and leave a comment.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Please Comment!

Today I learned of a blog that you need to check out. Not because it's funny or entertaining. But because this family needs you. Seriously. They need your prayers. And if you read it they need to know you are praying.

This girl is a fellow Taylor University alumni. I don't know her. But I know that she probably isn't that much different then me. I know that she experienced college at TU and would understand what I mean when I talk about the PA's, the DC, Taylor Time, Hoe's, TOPPIT, etc. I know that if she were my neighbor our two year olds would probably play together. I know that if I sat next to her at a Bible study I would probably find we have a lot in common. I know that while I rush around the house stressed about my daily activities, she is in a hospital stressing about life and death. Perhaps that perspective is why I sit here crying and feeling an overwhelming urgency to get as many people as I know to look at their blog and make a comment.

The blog started back in October by her husband in order to keep people informed on her progress. He continually asks for prayer. I noticed that there aren't many comments. Please, even if you don't normally comment, please take a second to help encourage this scared family and let them know that people are praying for Leslie's healing. And pass the link on to anyone else you know that believes in the power of prayer! It really doesn't matter if you know them, the fact is that any one of us could be Leslie.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Snow Day

Warming Up!


Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Need a Laugh?

There is no reason for this post other then that this video makes me laugh! A lot! And, it's Wednesday. It is definitly worth the four minutes!

Monday, February 18, 2008

Little Gymnist

Last week I had the chance to sit in on Mckenna's gymnastics class. She seems to enjoy gymnastics, but also talks frequently of wanting to try tap and jazz class next. She definitly has a good gymnastics build...the girl has always been solid muscle!
Waiting on her turn.
Her favorite apparatus, the bars (or bar in this case)!
video

Playground Fun

Today's tempertures were close to 70! In the middle of February! And by Wednesday it's supposed to be a high in the thirties and a chance of snow. Go figure.

We took advantage of the warm weather and President's day and had a playdate with our friends Danielle and Emma. These girls were our neighbors the last time we lived in NJ and Danielle was one of Baileigh's first friends. They are a year apart, but share the same birthday. Mckenna and Emma are just 3 months apart.

Baileigh and Danielle, Emma and Mckenna.
Mckenna has no fear at a playground...to a negative! Thankfully this playground has low monkey bars and she was able to practice by herself and without falling very far.

These two are getting so big!

Brooke was content to spend a lot of time in the swing. She thought it was fun to lean forward and watch the ground and pretend she was falling.
video

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Feeling Patriotic

It's been a long time since I've been to a concert like the Toby Keith concert on Friday. Where do all these rednecks hide in NJ? Actually we were minutes from NYC, even stranger. Toby Keith even joked about what a bad rep this part of the US has when it comes to country music and the fact that there isn't even a country music station out of NYC. Despite that fact there were plenty of cowboy hats, big belt buckles and flannel shirts in that arena!

Being military, it's hard not to appreciate Toby Keith since he is so patriotic and a huge supporter of the USO. It's impossible for me to listen to American Soldier without getting emotional. As a matter of fact, I'm watching TV while I blog and just saw a commercial for next week's episode of Extremem Home Makeover...they do the house of a National Guard member and Toby Keith makes a guest appearance to sing American Soldier and help raise money!

I really appreciate that Toby can say he doesn't necessarily support the war, but he supports our troops. I'm not sure why a lot of people aren't able to make that differentiation. I put a few of my favorites on my playlist. It's not my normal music line up but I've found myself singing them over and over in my head ever since the concert, so enjoy.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Big Dog Daddy!

Yesterday Brad was offered free tickets to tonight's Toby Keith's Big Dog Daddy Concert Tour near Newark. Apparently one of the secretary’s in his program had tickets for her husband for a Valentine's present but her husband recently hurt his back and now they can't attend the concert. The tickets are $75 each and include a VIP parking pass and she insisted that we take them rather then pay her for the tickets. Well, hmm, okay!

I just secured a babysitter which means that tomorrow night we're having a rather spontaneous Valentine's date. I've been fever free since about 5:00 last night. I have a bad sinus thing going on now...but at least it will be loud enough that no one will hear me coughing and sniffing and blowing my nose! I'm not a huge country fan in general, it depends on the artist, but I like Toby Keith and I hear he does a great show so it should be fun. I haven't been to a concert in a long time. I'm glad the tickets and parking are free since the babysitter will cost us $50! Man, I wish we lived near grandparents

Valentine's Dinner

This is the closest thing to a decent picture that I got this Valentine's Day. Brooke is completely uncooperative when it comes to photos...the only reason she is sorta looking at me is because we're at McDonald's and I said "Daddy is getting your food," so she was pointing at Daddy and calling for him (notice her hand). She almost looks blonde in this picture!
By the way...Mckenna's emergency repair haircut reminds me not only of Ann Jillian but of my brother's bowl haircuts back in 1977, 1978, etc. It's so much bangs! I think we're going back to a bob, but the front will still be too short on the sides so I'm not sure how it will look. So much for growing it out for over a year!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Not So Much

I drank this today. Vitamin Water.

Energy.

Energy Vitamin Water.

Yeah, not so much!

Happy Valentine's Day

A year ago today I was blogging in Sydney, Australia.

Today I blog from the couch, still running a fever, still not feeling well...but two pounds lighter then yesterday!

I wonder where I will blog from next year!?

Technically the day February 14 did not exists in my life last year. I left the US on the 13th and due to the time change I arrived in New Zeeland on the 15th of February. I'm not complaining though!

I had saved a lot of last minute errands for yesterday that included picking up a few goodies for the girls for Valentines. That didn't happen since I'm sick. But this morning I gave them the few things I already had after their breakfast of pink milk and cinnamon rolls and they are as happy as can be...it reminds me that I frequently go overboard when it isn't necessary.

My sweet hubby got me flowers and cleaned up the house last night since I went to bed early...that means more to me then any type of present! He also has plans to make me dinner but we're going to wait until tomorrow night since I don't have much of an appetite right now. That means tonight we'll celebrate Valentine's Day in style, at McDonalds! It was the girl's pick...they got Valentine's coupons for free things at McDonald's like baked pies, ice cream, apple dippers, etc. They are very excited to pick out their own treat and hand in their coupons. I will miss the days when they are so easily entertained!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Sick Day

Last night I was feeling achy. I equated it with my weight lifting and exercise earlier in the day. But when I woke up around 2am with a temperature of 103.2, yet chilled to the bone I realized that I wasn't sore from a good day at the gym. I don't know if I have the flu or just some other virus...but it stinks! I have no appetite, I feel a little nauseous, so achy, my throat is sore and my head is throbbing.

I've spent the day trying to parent from a fetal position on the couch. It doesn't work that well. I managed to get Mckenna a ride to and from school...it was her big Valentine's party, so the idea of staying home because Mommy didn't feel like taking her wasn't an option. I usually stand at the bus stop with Baileigh but today I just waved from the house. Brooke destroyed the toy room but she was happy and let me lay on the couch. She kept bringing food from her toy kitchen and wanting me to eat it, then she would say "all bedda? (better)." Whenever I told her Mommy wasn't feeling really good she would kiss my knees and then pat my legs and rest her head in my lap. It was very sweet. The girls all got flu shots so hopefully if this is the flu they will be okay.

Brad gave me some relief by taking the girls out to dinner so I could be alone and rest. I'm getting ready to have my first meal of the day, good ole' Chicken Noodle Soup...we'll see how that goes. I'm optimistic that this thing will only last about 48 hours, and hopeful that I'll at least loose a few pounds!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

ANN JILLIAN!

Thanks to my friend, Kathy, I will be able to sleep tonight! I have been obsessed with trying to remember the name Ann Jillian! THANK YOU!!
This is the mystery actress that Mckenna's haircut reminds me of...she would have been so trendy in 1980!

She played "Cassie" the blond, wise cracking sexy waitress in a nice restaurant on the top floor of the skyscraper on the NBC comedy It's A Living. It's all coming back to me now. I remember watching that show. It was on from 1980-1982...why I was watching it at the age of 6-8 is something my mom would have to account for.
My mind is at rest. I'm at peace. Thank you, Kathy. I can now return my focus to pondering the time-dependent failures in the Weibull lognormal exponential distributions and how they demonstrate reliability and maintainability in complex systems.

Oh wait...that is what Brad is currently studying. I'm going to return to folding clothes and watching Extreme Home Makeover.

The New Hairdo

This morning Mckenna got her hair cut in attempts to repair the damage from the haircut she gave herself yesterday. I had intended on taking pictures but my brain wasn't fully functioning at that point in the morning so I took a few photos in the car afterwards before we went to church.

The girl did a nice job and was great with Mckenna...but I don't care for the style but it was really our only option. I could have had it cut shorter in the back in attempts to make it a modified bob but Mckenna was upset about getting it cut today (ironic, huh!) so we went with the least drastic change for now. Essentially it frames her face in a tapered cut and we took about an inch in a half off the back and added layers to blend with the layers she gave herself!

The cut reminds me of an actress from the late 70's early 80's...she had white blond hair and it was cut very similarily. She was in a TV sit com. Anyone know who I'm talking about...I can picture her but can't remember her name.

Anyway...it's fine for now and I'm trying to let my frustrations go. There is a big chunk over her right ear that is only about two inches long, thankfully it is hair closer to her scalp and there is longer hair on top of it so it's hidden while it grows out. I'm going to give it until the end of March and then we'll trim it again to help blend it or cut it shorter in the back and change the style.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Self-Inflicted Mullet

Mckenna cut her hair today.

Nice.

She was alone in the basement working on crafts and had her kid's scissors with her. I'm not sure what her thinking was...she told me that she just wanted to trim her bangs...she also said at one point that she wanted her hair a little shorter around her face so she could see out the windows of the car better...I have no idea what was going on in her little mind!

This is her second hair cutting incident. About a year ago she trimmed the hair of our friend's little boy. I frequently remind her about scissor safety and what we do/don't do with scissors. I guess it fell on deaf ears.
She basically cut around her face. You can look at the pictures from the previous post (Tea Party) that were taken earlier this morning and see the difference. It used to be one length with the exception of her bangs. It's all choppy on the sides now and I'm not sure what the hair style solution is going to look like.
In about 7 weeks the girls are all going to be flower girls in my sister-in-law's wedding. Mckenna told me she wanted to grow her hair longer, like Baileigh, so she could wear it up with flowers in it in the wedding! Not sure that is going to happen anymore...at least the wearing it up part, I'm sure I can still manage a flower.
She even cut a little off the back...I guess that means possibly tapered around the face and shorter in the overall length with layers. I can't really imagine what else we would do.
My friend gets her daughter's hair cut in the house of a neighbor who used to work in a salon. I called her to see about getting something set up for tomorrow afternoon or Monday. All we could work out was first thing tomorrow morning before church so we'll have some type of resolution soon.
The remains of her salon debut.
Never a boring day with Mckenna!

Tea Party

Today the girls went to a birthday party at a local tea house. They were very excited about this party and have been anticipating it all week.
The "Tea Lady" painted their nails, put blush on their cheeks and some type of powder with sparkles on their hands and arms.
I love tea cups. I don't know what it is about them...I have a small collection of them...they are really girlie (unlike me) and don't really fit with any of the other types of things I like to decorate with. But nonetheless, the only thing better then one teacup is an entire collection of eclectic teacups.
The Tea Lady taught the girls proper tea edict. The girls were all very attentive and fascinated with all that apparently is involved in correctly consuming tea. At times I thought her name should be "The Tea Nazi" instead of Lady...but I know she had good intentions...she is just very serious about her tea!
The finger sandwhiches were a hit (probably because they were pb&j instead of tuna fish and egg salad like the adult's sandwhiches) as well as the cookies and lemon tea.
I'm sure we'll be playing tea party even more then normal after this afternoon. At least they'll now know the proper way to play!


Thursday, February 07, 2008

A Crazy Day

I'm worn out and it's only 5:14! It was a hectic day...it started with my Mom's Time Out resuming after our holiday break. That means getting some type of baked good or egg dish preparred and hot out of the oven to take to our group and the kids loaded up by 8:45am (a difficult task for our household considering they usually wake up around 8:30!). Overnight I decided that I thought Mckenna had strep throat (thanks to my friends blog and her tidbit of info...she had a ton of red dots in her throat, but no other symptoms...until a fever today)...so she came along this morning but camped out in another room and watched a movie during my meeting instead of going to her classroom.

After our meeting I had to rush Baileigh home to get the bus with about 3 minutes to spare, then turn around and head to the Dr.'s office. We ate lunch in the car somewhere in between. After an official diagnosis of strep throat and a perscription in hand we ran an errand or two and headed home. As I write this it doesn't sound like much but things that normally go smoothly didn't which I think added to everything. Brooke threw a fit trying on shoes which is very unlike her. Then on the way home she cried the entire 25 minutes instead of her normal happy self. Are you thinking what I'm thinking as I type this...perhaps I'll be blogging tomorrow about her getting strep throat!

Mckenna and Brooke both napped while Baileigh was at school (Mckenna hasn't napped in about 8 months!). I managed to get a girl from the neighborhood to come over to stay with the girls while they slept and I ran Baileigh to ballet after school, so that helped my stress level a little. It's usually a 15 minute trip, one way. However, on the way to ballet I noticed that the oncoming traffic was really backed up...ridiculously backed up. There ended up being an accident near my route that had traffic backed up for miles. I told my sitter I would be home in 30 minutes max...so I had to figure out some other route home so I wouldn't be sitting in traffic for an hour.

I've finally sat down for a few minutes to read emails and check some blogs...that is another story! Apparently something has started preventing my blog to automatically update new posts, even my own...and every time I check I have to allow popups and refresh etc. It's also effecting my spell checker and uploading photos. It's a pain...but I'm glad to know you guys are still blogging...I didn't realize the issue existed for a week and I just thought everyone was on a posting vacation!

I just realized that I've been so distracted by my busy day that I forgot Brooke is 23 months old today...last month before the big "2's"...wow, that went fast! More on that tomorrow...hopefully. If it isn't a crazy day.

I also forgot LOST is on tonight! I hope I'm still awake by then!

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Where I'm Having Dinner!


Mmmmmmmm!!!!

Monday, February 04, 2008

Weekend Recap

I'm back from what turned out to be an incredible weekend! I was fortunate enough to spend the weekend with 7 amazing women...and then as a community and in our personal relationships with God.

Here is our motley crue packed in the Suburban...I thought that it was pretty ingenuise to look at the screen of my digital camera in the rear view mirror so I could take a fairly centered photo! There was some concern as to whether or not we would be able to fit not only the eight of us in the car...but more specifically our luggage and the months worth of snacks, water, movies and games that we felt necessary to bring. We managed though and if we would have gone off in a ravine we could have survived for at least a week watching movies, snacking, playing cards...and probably gaining weight!
The retreat was at a Christian camp/resort called Sandy Cove in North East, Maryland. This is a view of the facility from the dock...it's a pretty setting on the Chesapeake Bay. This is almost exactly where I did one of my triathlons this past summer...I found it hard to believe that I had swam in that water just months prior! This is the entire gang...8 out of the 10 women from our mini-church attended the retreat. I was friends with the majority of this group the last time we lived in NJ and was just getting to know a few of the other gals as we moved away to WA. It's been a treat to be able to return and jump back in their lives and truly pick up where we left off. When I first began this post...about 10 hours ago...I had intended on transitioning at this point to talk about some of the things I learned over the weekend. But today has been exhausting. It's hard to explain how difficult it is to come back from a retreat. It's not necessarily the transition to the reality of parenting, the house, the schedule, etc...rather it's the transition from an environment focused on getting to know God better to the reality of a society that constantly tells me to focus on myself. It was nice to live in a bubble for a few days...now it's popped and I'm adjusting to having my feet on the ground again.


Friday, February 01, 2008

Retreat!

Right now I'm wrapping up all my loose ends as I prepare to head out of town for the weekend. In a few hours I'll loading up the Suburban and driving 8 of us to Maryland for our churchs' annual women's retreat. It's been so nice to have this event on the calendar and know that Brad would be home to be with the girls...I signed up for a retreat once in WA that I had to back out of because he ended up being deployed.

I'm very excited about getting away for the weekend, having some fun girl time, and having an agenda that centers around growing more in my relationship with God and enjoying myself!