Sunday, July 30, 2006

interesting tidbits floating around in my head:

*juju turned himself into a human piggy bank today, by swallowing a penny. annabelle came screaming about it in the living room...apparently it was HER penny. Julian just patted his throat and said, "Mmm, i got money!"

*i had just taken a load of laundry out of the dryer and set it on the couch. i went back to the kitchen to wash dishes and when i went to fold the laundry (all towels and wash cloths) they had all been very carefully folded by bella. she is such a sweet helper.

*everytime julian comes to me for something, he says, "ok. thank you. okay. bye mama. see ya later!"

*julian bit annabelle hard on her chest (right above her little chi chi) she came screaming to me, and after she calmed down, she asked to be taken to see dr. finck. after every crisis, annabelle asks to be rushed to see dr. finck. this kid is getting desperate for candy.

* i'm not a huge fan of the cartoon "Rugrats". I enjoyed watching it occasionally as a teenager, but now that I have kids, i'm not a fan. however, when we were moving, the only vhs tape that we had was a Rugrats tape, and since the VCR was all we had to use, the kids watched a lot of Rugrats. It has quickly become one of Julian's FAVORITE shows to watch and he asks everyday to watch Rugrats. Anyways, there is one part of the Rugrats movie, where Tommy is about to get a baby brother, and this little girl sings a song at the baby shower that goes something like this, "A baby is a gift, a gift from a Bob, a baby is a gift from a Bob, Bob, Bob" (Bob is their misunderstanding of the word, God)
At the grocery store today, my kids sang this song, at the top of their little lungs during the ENTIRE trip. It got a little loud, but it was much better than chasing them around the store while looking for the best strawberries.

*2 of my favorite words to hear julian say, "disgusting" and "delicious". (of course, they sound nothing like that to the untrained ear.) fortunately julian has deemed most of my cooking "deishish".

*yesterday annabelle came to me and asked for a piece of paper. then she needed a pen. then she needed "three, no four would be better" pieces of scotch tape. finally i went into her bedroom to have her pick up her toys, and saw that she had drawn a picture and hung it (with tape) beside her bed. she said, "Momma, it's a picture of me and juju and we're holding hands. now i can see it everytime i wake up."

*a few days ago, it was raining really hard and Luther ran outside. i called him to come in over and over and finally gave up and went to lay back down for another 45 minutes. i woke up to him scratching ferociously on the front door, covered in rain and mud from being outside. he is NOT an outside dog. he glared at me as he shook the water from his fur and disappeared for his first nap of the day. i walked into my bedroom to find him curled up (still wet) in a ball on my pillow and comforter. we had words.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

pregnancy craving of the week:
blueberry bagels and lemonade

oh happy days :)

green cheerios

annabelle's favorite color (for over two months now) is green. (previously orange for almost 2 years) i love the little obsessive way that she sorts through her fruity cheerios to make a pile of green ones.

random little quirks like this prove that she is definitely a product of dustin and me. :)

new photo blog!!!

i am starting a second blog for photography.
it's a lot of fun to put together, but a little time consuming.
i fear that i've neglected the kids for the past two days, so i'm taking a day off to
take them swimming.
i also need to find where dustin put the rest of my photo cd's so i can upload some of my favorites from 2005 to my new site.
i'll still keep up with this one with more personal stuff, but check my photo blog for pictures :)
click here to be taken to my new site :) yippee!!!

Friday, July 28, 2006

For the next 2 weeks, I will be offering photo sessions in the local area at a reduced fee. I will be offering a “Friends and Family” session for $40 (up to 2 people, $10 for each additional person) and will be offering prints at 50% off of my 2006 prices.

Keep in mind that these are on location, natural light sessions only, not studio sessions.

If interested, email me at to set up an appointment. I will email you details of what to expect/wear/etc. If you know of somebody that may be interested, please feel free to share this website or my email with them.

Book quickly, as dates are limited and this offer will end August 10!

Thursday, July 27, 2006

my first genuine "cheese-y" smile that juju has given for my camera in a LONG time. usually he avoids my camera like a plague.  Posted by Picasa

not-so-patiently waiting for the train to arrive.  Posted by Picasa

"WOOT WOOT!!!" what juju said during the entire ride Posted by Picasa

juju in the drivers seat of the little train.  Posted by Picasa

bella feeding the little deer (with one ear)
all the animals were in this refuge for a reason, this one was saved from a brush hog accident where it lost its ear.  Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

on sunday we decided to drive up the mountain to have a picnic. we invited amy and sal and baby J (of course) and our friends paul and ashley and their two kids.

the picnic didn't last too long, b/c there is a little scenic train that gives rides around the mountain, and it happened to pass right by our picnic table. of course, my little train lover couldn't handle just looking at the train, we HAD to ride it, so we packed up and headed to buy our tickets.

julian was in heaven. he "woot woot-ed" during the entire ride. his little eyes were so sparkly and happy. annabelle sat next to him, obviously bored. she complained about the heat and about still being hungry. but we couldn't rob julian of his precious train ride. when it was over, the conductor let julian sit in his seat (for a quick picture)

after the train ride, we headed to the wildlife rescue and let the kids pet baby deer, and look (from afar) at a bear (who was in mating season...he was quite restless) lots of squirrels and birds, a crocodile, snakes, bobcats, red and grey foxes (the grey one slept in the tree above our heads) and my favorite...this little owl.

annabelle's favorite part was petting the baby deer and feeding them milk from the bottle. one kept trying to eat her shirt, but she didn't let her fear of being devoured by a fawn get in the way of pretending to be dr. doolittle.

julian grew bored quickly (my kids definitely know what they like and don't like) and tried to get random people to take him back to the train. his ticket was free, so if i was sure he wouldn't try to jump off, i would have just let him ride all day. now that would be a cheap baby-sitter, eh?

on the way to the car, i saw a bird feather. i knew it was something that bella would have thought was cool, but when i showed it to juju he said, "oh." i said, "juju touch it, it's really soft" and so he did and quickly threw it on the ground, exclaiming, "yuck! caca!"

when we got in the car, i told mom about it and bella yelled, "What???? A bird feather!??? You should have kept it for me, for my collection!!!"

yep, my kids definitely know what they like.

p.s. my pictures won't upload on blogger anymore (in 2 days) is anybody else having problems with it??

Friday, July 21, 2006

love sick

We have a joke that we tell eachother all the time. Annabelle usually says, "Mama, I don't like you.....I LOOOOOVE you!" Then she will quickly follow with, "Daddy, You make me sick! LOOOVE SICK!!!"

Julian has quickly caught on and loves to tell his LOOOVE SICK! joke. I was teaching him sign language for "I love you" one day, and I had him repeating after me:
me: "Julian, say 'I'"
juju: "i"
me: "looove"
juju: "sick!"

Anyways, we were at the hospital, on the way to Bella's room and Julian said, "Mama, where's Bewwa?" I said, "Bella's in the hospital because she is sick."
Julian very sweetly asked, "Bella's sick? Love sick?"

Thursday, July 20, 2006

a yucky week

Annabelle was starting to get sick this week, coughing, breathing hard, sore throat. She got sent home from school with a 104 degree fever that developed very suddenly and when my Mom picked her up, she started throwing up.

We took her to see the doctor, who ran tests and x-rays and learned that she had bronchitis. Apparently once you get bronchitis, it stays with you, because she first got bronchitis about 3 or 4 months ago.

He sent us to the hospital overnight, to have an IV inserted and a couple of rounds of steroids, antibiotics and something to get her potassium levels up.

Annabelle was such a trooper. She LOVED the hospital. People kept bringing her popsicles and lollipops, stuffed animals and sticky toys. She recited all of her jokes and sang songs for all of the nurses. She even booked her reservations for next year, saying, "Hey, when i come back next year, can i have some more candy?" The nurse just laughed and said, "hopefully you won't have to come back next year!"

The IV was horrible, an intense, anguish filled 10 minutes of Annabelle crying and saying, "That's all that I want! I don't want anymore!" It was rough.

After the IV everything was perfect. She took a little nap while visitors came in and out, bearing gifts. When she woke up she said, "Mom, this is like a birthday party!"

She had to do breathing treatments to try to stop the wheezing, forced breathing she was doing. She had this nebulizer in her mouth that smoked out of the end of it. The nurse told her that she would put it in her mouth and "smoke it". Annabelle said, "But I don't like smoking." We convinced her that it was "good smoke" for little kids. Now it's her favorite thing to do. She would wake up happily at 4 am to "smoke".

She threw quite a tantrum when we told her it was time to go home. She said it was so much fun at the hospital and she loved all the doctors and her "cute little bed" and her popsicles.
Dr. Fink gave her several handfuls of lollipops and sticky toys and she was good to go.

We're home and well now. She is taking lots of medicine, and is not allowed to go outside until her appointment Monday. But she is really looking foward to the appointment at Dr. Fink's office. He's the candy man. When Annabelle was little, she had to visit Dr. Fink once and he gave her a handful of candy (even though she had never had candy before) From that day on, everytime my Mom mentioned Dr. Fink, Annabelle would light up and say, "Ummmm, Dr. Fink!" He definitely lived up to his nickname this time. He sent us home with 12 Blow Pops.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

i'll update soon, just wanted to let you all know we've been in the hospital with bella. she has bronchitis and had to have an IV and lots of meds, but we're home now and well. i'll update with details soon, just wanted to let you all know where we are. :)

Sunday, July 16, 2006

just for fun :)

fun with swim toys :)

not much to say today, i'm tired and missing dustin and ready to not have everything i own in a storage unit.

and for my family, don't you think this second picture looks like Emily and/or Rebekah? i see them in her all the time, but very rarely capture it on film.

Friday, July 14, 2006

These kids love each other. So so much. I wish I could record Julian's excitement when Bella comes home each day. Yesterday I yelled into the bedroom "Julian, come see who is here!"

He came down the hall, sprinting, with his little arms swinging at his sides "BEWWA!! BEWWA!!!" He threw himself at her, knocking her to the ground and just hugged her over and over with little "Bewwa" exclamations every other second.

They love each other. And I love that.

i love something about this photo. i think it's the mixture of the classy pearls and polka dots against the tattooed back and cigar. it's like looking at one of those "What doesn't belong?" pictures.

this was taken at Ty and Sarah's wedding last month. I'm finally done proofing all the photos and hope to show a few here soon.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Annabelle is on cloud 9.

She woke up and dashed around the house, getting dressed, eating breakfast, reminding Tata, "Don't forget my bag! i need my bag!!"
She wasn't even dressed yet and was already headed out the door. She gave me a sweet hug and kiss goodbye and without hesitation, headed to school.

According to Annabelle, she was a little nervous, standing in front of the classroom as her teacher announced, "Class, we have a new student. This is Annabelle and she is four years old."

Annabelle says (every time she tells the story) "I was feeling a little bit nervous, and then a little girl came up to me and made me feel better and then I was really happy because I knew I had a very best friend."

Apparently Annabelle and her very best friend spent the entire day together, hand in hand, riding in the wagon, going down the slide, taking care of the class guinea pig, even going to the bathroom together. Girls start young with the group bathroom breaks, don't they?

I was worried mostly about nap time. She is pretty particular about the order of her bedtime routine (it's Dustin's fault, as he has spoiled her with bedtime back scratches and stories since she was very tiny).

The teacher said, "Annabelle was my BEST napper today. I told her, 'Annabelle, get your blanket and lie down on your cot, it's nap time,' and Annabelle said, "But what if somebody steals my shoes?" The teacher assured her that nobody would steal them if she stowed them underneath her cot. You would think we had stayed in a lot of dangerous homeless shelters or something, with a question like that. She was apparently comforted with the teachers answer, because she laid down and was asleep within minutes.

Annabelle said, "It was my best school day ever!" and is adamant that she go back tomorrow. It's a class field trip day to the library and she is so very excited.
And the snickerdoodle cookies at snack time is a pretty strong incentive to go back as well...

Monday, July 10, 2006

happy birthday poppy!!

today is poppy's birthday. we already celebrated, b/c he knew he would be out of town on his actual birthday, but bella is insisting that we have birthday cake when he gets back home.

i read the most wonderful tribute to him tonight on my Aunt Valerie's blog. I started out laughing so hard, reading each little memory aloud to mom. a few minutes later, mom walked into the kitchen to find me with a mascara streaked face. she said, "i thought it was funny?"

it is funny. but so very touching. i love my dad so much, and appreciate all he is to our family. you can read Valerie's blog here.

we love you poppy, and are eagerly awaiting your arrival...and the cake. :)


my little girl is starting preschool tomorrow. the excitement in this house is overwhelming. Luther is even excited and he hasn't yet realized that he will be alone with me and his torturer-Julian-tomorrow.

she has all her clothes picked out and the blanket that she will sleep with at nap time. She has her breakfast planned and has already decided on all the things that she will play with.

i hope she is not disappointed. julian and i are going to miss her so very much.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

we went to the park a couple of days ago, and within minutes, we were swarmed with kids. everywhere.
annabelle approached a little girl who looked about Annabelle's age and said, "Hi, I'm Annabelle and I'm 4."
The little girl in VERY baby-talk gibberish said, "I's free (3) I wike de swide (i like the slide)" and then after a bit more babble, bent over and showed annabelle her butt, and said something like,
"Dis is my butt. i sit on it to swide." And then laughed maniacally and ran away.
Annabelle shrugged her shoulders and said, "Whatever. Crazy girl."

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Julian can't stop kissing Jocelyn. He loves her so much and i think she is pretty fond of him as well. Today he and Annabelle were fighting over a toy (which usually ends in his eruption of anger filled babbling screams) but today, it ended very quickly...because he spotted Jocelyn in the bouncy seat across the living room. he said, "baby Jocelyn, need kiss." He forgot about the toy and ran to her, smothering her with kisses. She makes him a better man :)

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

we spent the evening at my aunt sharon's house. my aunt sharon is notorious for her homemade butterfinger ice cream. it is my absolute favorite in the world, and makes such few appearances that i attempt to eat 6 months worth at a time (while saving a little for the others who are awaiting the special treat)

Julian spent the evening chasing amy, salomon and his cousin Drew around on their 4 wheelers. he even got to ride a couple of times with Salomon and then just played on Drew's for the rest of the evening. (that is, when he wasn't destroying all of Drew's lego collection and shaking the plastic ball that contained Drew's pet hamster, Lulu. I apologized, but how far can an apology go when your son has just potentially inflicted brain damage on one's pet hamster?) i like this picture of Julian on the 4 wheeler. Juju is looking seriously cool while wearing his "I do all my own stunts" t-shirt.

we watched fireworks, but both kids were not so interested. they used the time in between lighting of the next firework to say, "watch this run!" and then ran around the yard as fast as they could, obviously burning off some nervous firework energy. finally, they retired inside to watch cartoons and annoy the hamster. (leaving me to miss all the good fireworks except for the last one, in which Drew strapped an over-sized GI Joe to a missile, which tipped over and shot straight at a bush, erupting in an on-ground explosion of pink and white crackly light)

on the way home, we saw fireworks in the distance and Julian proclaimed, "oooh, wow!" apparently fireworks are much more magical from the backseat of an Expedition, while driving through Arkansas at 60 mph.

the best part of the day (besides the ice cream...nothing trumps the ice cream) was spending a little time with Baby Jocelyn. She is just a jewel, and I'm going to be quite angry if baby #3 isn't at least as calm and easy going as baby Jocelyn is. The best part, was that when I hold baby Jocelyn, everybody else has to chase my children. I try to keep her happy for as long as possible, which isn't too hard.

here's some eye candy for you all on this happy 4th of July...