Thursday, May 31, 2007

Welcome Saige Elizabeth!

Last night I received a much-awaited phone call from my longtime friend, Deanna. She had just had a baby girl! Welcome Saige Elizabeth to the world! And congratulations to mom and dad, Deanna and Tony, and new big sister, Emily! We are so happy for you all. She was 8 pounds, 0.4 ounces and 20 3/4 inches long. (Hope I got all that info correct).

I went to visit them at the hospital this morning. Deanna and Saige are doing well and are hoping to go home later today. Here is a quick photo of Saige. She is a gorgeous baby with lots of dark hair!

We hope everyone gets some rest tonight because it didn't sound like they got much last night!

We have a performer in our midst!

Last night was the End of the Year Celebration at JT's preschool. The kids came out with their respective classes, sang a few songs, and received a certificate for completing the year. Little did we know that JT likes to be on stage AND sing.... into a microphone! Can you believe it? We have no idea where this comes from, as Andy and I don't like to be on stage or perform in front of a group.

Here comes JT's class...

Here's our little performer singing "Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed." They also sang "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star" except JT pronounces it "Tinkle, Tinkle Little Star."

JT is here with his teacher, Miss Monica, and showing off his certificate (and some of his art in the background)!

I always prefer still photos to a video, but this was one situation where I wished I would've had our video camera. Oh well, there's always next year!

Monday, May 28, 2007

Today I was a photographer!

This morning I had the opportunity to photograph two different families. It was such a great experience. I was nervous this morning... hoping that I would remember all the ideas I came up with ahead of time, hoping I could get my camera to do exactly what I asked of it, hoping that I would come out with some photos that they would like. I am not sure if all these things happened or not...

Here are some of my favorites from my first shoot:

And here are a few from my second shoot:

Saturday, May 26, 2007


I have not been a very frequent blogger lately.... sorry about that. Today we spent the majority of the day working outside in the yard. It wasn't warm, like I had hoped. I bet it wasn't even 60 degrees. I had to wear two sweatshirts when I was outside.

We are hosting a wedding reception luau for our friends, Clint and Christina, coming up in July. There are a few things we want to do, besides the regular yard maintenance, before the party. We planted a few new plants and flowers today.... making progress! There are still quite a few more things I want to get done, but we still have about six weeks left. Hopefully we can do a little more tomorrow...

Monday, May 21, 2007

Busy, busy, busy....

The past weekend was very busy for the Albin family. We had our last branding for the year on Friday, the kids went to Abigail's school carnival on Friday night with a couple of their grandmas, we had teeball team pictures at 7:45 am on Saturday morning, and last but definitely not least.... we had our 11th (almost) Annual Hot Iron Branding Competition and BBQ on Saturday afternoon and evening! What a weekend!

The Hot Iron Branding Competition consisted of 4-person teams that have to rope and brand either two or four calves (depending on whether it was the pro-am or the open event). The winning team members for the pro-am branding were awarded silver belt buckles. The winning team members for the open branding were awarded silver spurs. Here are a few photos I took during the day...

Andy waiting for his turn to compete...

Andy is entering the branding turn with his pro-am team...

Andy is roping the hind legs of the calf...

My dad waiting for the ground crew to finish branding the calf...

The kids always love to play around this water trough. This year we brought out a dump truck, a loader, and some tractors for the kids to play with.

Here is the winning team for the pro-am branding....

The winning team for the open branding and Andy (plus a couple future competitors)...

We hope everyone had a great time this year. We hope to do it again next year.

Monday, May 14, 2007

My Mothers Day....

Mothers Day was pretty quiet and relaxing this year. The kids gave me a few cards so I wanted to share those.

The card Abigail made at school... "Dear Mommy, Thank you for everything you do and how you care for me. Thank you for letting me help with dinner and setting the table. I love you! Love, Abigail."

The card JT made at school was in the shape of a flower. Each petal had something written on it saying why he loves me. The five things were: gives me hugs, gives me kisses, goes to the bank, takes me to work so I can see my dad, lays in bed with me but not all night.

Abigail also wrote a little poem called "My Mommy, Sarah," It went something like this.... "My mommy is pretty all the time. She has beautiful curly red hair. I like it when she wears dresses because she looks even prettier. I like it when she wears necklaces. Her favorite colors are blue, green, and pink. I love mommy. Love, Abigail.

Abigail and JT also made another card that said, "Happy Mothers Day Mommy! You are the best, most wonderful, and most beautiful mommy in the universe. We love you very much! Have a great day! We hope you have a great Mothers Day every year! Love, Abigail and JT."

They keep me on my toes and drive me crazy, but I feel very lucky to be Abigail and JT's mommy!

When Andy asked what I wanted for Mothers Day, I told him what I really wanted was another chance to try for some family photos. Here are some that we took...

Last night, I had the rare opportunity to have dinner with my mom and dad. I can't remember the time it was just the three of us. It was nice to spend some quality time with them since I don't get to do it very often. Hope all of you mothers had a great day too!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Happy Mothers Day!

Happy Mothers Day to all the moms out there!

I really appreciate my mom for everything she does for my family and I. When I was growing up, she was always supportive of whatever I wanted to do. She has always been non-judgemental and a great listener. She is a wonderful grandma ("Ma") to my kids. I am very lucky to have such an amazing mom and hope to do as well at motherhood as she has. Thanks Mom... I love you! Here's a picture of my mom and I when I was a baby...

Friday, May 11, 2007

Little bit of hope for Drake

I just spoke with my friend Sara (Drake's aunt) and they had some good news this week. First, the doctors decided not to do a bone marrow test because the stems cells they harvested were cancer-free. Second, the test where the dye is injected into his body (can't remember the name of this) showed that the tumor has shrunk by 70%!!!!! This is after two rounds of chemo. He started his third round of chemo yesterday and will hopefully be able to come home on Wednesday. The prayers are helping... thank you! Keep 'em coming!!

Thursday, May 10, 2007

The kids branding

Andy had eight calves that needed to be branded so he decided to make it a branding for the kids (Abigail, JT, TJ, and Zane). Andy and Chris helped the kids on the ground while Jodie and (another) Andy roped the calves. And I was the photographer (big surprise there!). We took things slow so the kids could be involved. Here are a few I took...

The ground crew...

JT looks like he's supervising...

Abigail's chance to brand one... with a little help from JT and Chris...

Use your muscles, JT...

Poor Zane... and no that isn't mud on his hand!

The kids lost interest about half-way through, but that's okay. It was still great to have them be involved in a slower, safe setting. Andy's already planning next year's kids branding...

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

More tests for Drake

Thank you to all of you keeping Drake in your prayers as he battles his cancer. He is going back to San Francisco for a few more tests, including another bone marrow test. He recently had a stem cell harvest, which the doctors will put back into his body after the chemo treatments are done. Later this week, he will have another chemo treatment.... I believe this is the third one. Please continue to keep Drake and his family in your prayers. Thank you.

Teeball season started

The 2007 season of teeball started this past Monday. Andy and Clint are coaching again this year. Abigail and Isaac are both on the team. We have nine 4, 5, and 6 year olds, and our team is called the Mariners. The first game on Monday was held in Rio Dell and it was 86 degrees at 6:30 pm!! Talk about shock for the kids (and the parents)! Our second game was Tuesday night in Fortuna and it was probably 55 degrees... major weather change!

Here are a few shots from this week's games...

Coach Andy trying to explain the reason for the game... to hit the ball!

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

My lil' cowpokes

We went to another branding this weekend and the kids had a great time. The weather was beautiful and being at this particular ranch brought back really great memories from when I was growing up. We used to go out to this ranch for the branding every year. My sister and I (and our friend Meaghan) played in the creek and enjoyed the sunshine.

Andy went out for the whole weekend and the kids and I drove out on Sunday. There is this great bridge that you have to drive over to get to the corrals. The kids loved it! Here are a few I took that day....
Abigail recently got a cowboy (I guess I should say "cowgirl") hat from her Papa Walt....

Friday, May 4, 2007

The best thing about Santa

So Abigail says to me today, "Do you know what is the best thing about Santa? He brings us presents and our parents don't even have to pay for them." Hmmmm.....

Thursday, May 3, 2007

For all the stay-at-home moms out there

I feel very lucky that I get to stay home with my kids. Even though I consider myself more of a "work-at-home" mom, I still feel like I have a full-time job. The following came from an email I received today. This is for anyone that thinks that stay-at-home moms don't keep busy all day. And no this is not directed at Andy... I think he has a pretty good idea about what goes on around here during the day!

"A man came home from work and found his three young children all outside, still in their pajamas and playing in the mud. Many empty food boxes and wrappers were strewn all around the front yard. The door of his wife's car was open, as was the front door to the house.... and there was no sign of the family dog.

Proceeding into the entry hall, he found an even bigger mess. A lamp had been knocked over, and the hall throw rug was wadded against one wall. In the front room the TV was loudly blaring a cartoon channel, and the family room was strewn with toys and various items of clothing. In the kitchen, dirty dishes filled the sink, breakfast food was spilled all over the counters, the 'fridge door was open wide, dog food was spilled on the floor, a broken glass lay under the table, and a small pile of sand was spread by the back door.

He quickly headed up the stairs, stepping over toys and more piles of clothes, looking for his wife. He was worried she might be ill or perhaps that something serious had happened. He was met with a small trickle of water as it made its way out the bathroom door. As he peered inside, he found wet towels, scummy soap and more toys strewn all over the floor. Miles of toilet paper lay in a heap.... and toothpaste had been smeared over the mirror and the bathroom walls.

As he rushed to the bedroom, he found his wife still curled up in the bed in her pajamas, reading a novel. She looked up at him, smiled sweetly, and asked how his day went?? He looked at her in total bewilderment and asked, “Good Grief!! What happened here today?”

She again smiled and answered, “Well, you know every day when you come home from work and you ask me what I do all day?”

“Yes” was his incredulous reply.

She answered, “Well, today I didn't do it”

-Author Unknown

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

JT's fortune

Tonight we had take-out chinese food with my parents. The kids were pretty excited about getting their fortune cookie after dinner. We all took turns reading our fortunes. Of course JT wasn't able to read his fortune so when we asked what his fortune said he said, "It says eat this cookie." Pretty smart kid!