Thursday, January 31, 2008


Today we got to have Evan at our house again. He's such a great baby! I think he really liked watching J.T. play with all of his trucks and tractors. Abigail missed out on playing with Evan on Tuesday so we asked if we could keep him until after Abigail got home from school today. She was so excited to see him when she got home.... can you tell?

J.T. wasn't quite sure if he wanted to share Evan with Abigail, but it all worked out....

The kids are already asking when he gets to come back to our house!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

My fun job for today

Guess what I am doing today?

Yes, that's right. We are babysitting. Baby Evan came to our house today while his Mommy and Daddy are at work. Here's the boys, hanging out....

Bottle feeding is a new thing for us, but we did just fine. I was wondering if J.T would get jealous that I was holding and taking care of Evan. So far, so good....

Isn't he so adorable? Andy is REALLY hoping that this will make me want another baby....

Evan is asleep right now, but J.T. keeps asking when we get to wake him up....

Monday, January 28, 2008

Snow day!

Since it snowed yesterday and last night, Abigail's school was cancelled for today. Because of this (and the fact that Andy's mom's school was also cancelled) I decided to keep J.T. home from school too. The kids were all excited about going to Grandma Pam's to play in the snow.... hers wasn't melting as fast as ours was.

Andy and I decided to head out to the hills where a couple of our ranches are located. All of these pictures were taken at a ranch called Dublin Heights. This amount of snow is NOT a regular occurrence... probably only happens every few years. The weather was decent most the time we were there (probably about 36-38 degrees and not raining or snowing).

Our dogs haven't had much experience with snow before. They had a grand time playing in it. This is Patch (on the left) and Molly.

Just a scenic shot....

I really wanted to capture a photo like this of a young calf in the snow. This one wasn't scared off and seemed to even want to pose for me.

Okay now don't laugh, but here I am sitting on the 4wheeler (with Molly) all decked out in my raingear, rubber boots, hat and gloves. Andy said to me, "you look really good in green plastic!" Ha ha...

One more before we left...

Right as we were getting ready to head back to the truck, the dark clouds came in, the sun went away, and it started to snow. I was ready to go home.....

Sunday, January 27, 2008

It's snowing!

Yes, that's right. We get snow about once every 10 years and it's snowing today! This picture doesn't really do it justice though. Who knows if it will stick overnight.... we'll see!

Gentlemen, start your engines!

J.T. and I went to Connor's birthday party this afternoon. It was a race car theme. The boys enjoyed playing with Connor's race tracks and seeing which car won the race. When it came time for Connor to open gifts, each gift giver was able to sit next to Connor and help him open the gift. Here's J.T. and Connor opening a card with some money and a book titled "This is Actually My Party." I thought this book would be perfect because it's about a brother and sister. It's really the brother's party but the sister wants to have things her way.

Here's Connor blowing out his #4 candle.

Aren't they cute! Sara is like me... she doesn't get to be in very many of the pictures.

All the boys had little cars on top of their cupcakes. J.T. thought it was fun to lick all the frosting off the little car.

Connor's grandpa (Sara's dad) races this car. All the kids had a chance to sit in the car and get their picture taken.

Last night

Last night Clint, Christina, and Evan came over for dinner. Evan was asleep when they got here, but as soon as he was awake the kids wanted to hold him.

They had a great time helping take care of him, give him a bottle, etc. I don't know if you can tell from the picture, but Evan has a little John Deere shirt on. J.T. loved that and had to get out all his John Deere shirts and show everyone.

"Mommy" isn't cool

The other day I wanted to surprise Abigail by putting a cute little note in her lunchbox. She was really happy to get the note, but this is what she said to me.... "Even though I call you Mommy, can you put 'Love, Mom' on the note from now on because the other kids were teasing me because it said Mommy." Uh-oh, I guess Mommy isn't cool....

Friday, January 25, 2008

Update on Drake

Thank you all who are keeping Drake and his family in your prayers. Things aren't looking too good for him right now so they need all the prayers they can get. They did some testing and the cancer has spread to his lungs and bone marrow. Apparently the last round or two of chemo actually made things worse. It sure is hard to believe that something that is supposed to be helping actually made the cancer grow.

He is home now and will go back to San Francisco for more testing next week. Sara said they are checking out a clinical trial of some sort. I will try to keep you all posted as I receive new information. Thanks again.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Update on Drake- prayers requested

It's been a long time since I have posted an update about my friend Sara's nephew Drake. Here's a link to the first post that i wrote about him being diagnosed with cancer (about 10 months ago at age 3), in case you don't know... Here's more info about his situation.

I was actually thinking about posting an update today, plus a friend asked me how he has been doing. Everyone thought things were going extremely well, even the doctors. He had a clear body scan in November and he just finished up his last round of chemo this month. He was supposed to start radiation pretty soon and then be done.

Sara called today and said that the cancer has come back. I am so sad and I can't imagine how his family is feeling. Things were looking so good for him. They are doing some more testing but the doctors aren't sure what they can do. Apparently this is a very aggressive form of cancer and the doctors were shocked at how well things were going... it did have the possibility of coming back. I just don't think they expected any of this, especially while he was receiving chemo.

Please keep Drake and his family in your prayers. He can use all the help he can get. Miracles do happen. Thank you so much. I will try to update when I hear more.

Monday, January 21, 2008


I got this from my mother-in-law, Pam. I am not sure who wrote it, but I thought it was a good one...

Is there a magic cutoff period when offspring become accountable for their own actions? Is there a wonderful moment when parents can become detached spectators in the lives of their children and shrug, "It's their life," and feel nothing?

When I was in my twenties , I stood in a hospital corridor waiting for doctors to put a few stitches in my daughter's head. I asked, "When do you stop worrying?" The nurse said,"When they get out of the accident stage." My dad just smiled faintly and said nothing.

When I was in my thirties , I sat on a little chair in a classroom and heard how one of my children talked incessantly, disrupted the class, and was headed for a career making license plates. As if to read my mind, a teacher said, "Don't worry, they all go through this stage and then you can sit back, relax and enjoy them." My dad just smiled faintly and said nothing.

When I was in my forties , I spent a lifetime waiting for the phone to ring, the cars to come home, the front door to open. A friend said, "They're trying to find themselves. Don't worry, in a few years, you can stop worrying. They'll be adults." My dad just smiled faintly and said nothing.

By the time I was 50, I was sick & tired of being vulnerable. I was still worrying over my children, but there was a new wrinkle. There was nothing I could do about it. My dad just smiled faintly and said nothing. I continued to anguish over their failures, be tormented by their frustrations and absorbed in their disappointments.

My friends said that when my kids got married I could stop worrying and lead my own life. I wanted to believe that, but I was haunted by my dad's warm smile and his occasional, "You look pale. Are you all right? Call me the minute you get home. Are you depressed about something?"

Can it be that parents are sentenced to a lifetime of worry? Is concern for one another handed down like a torch to blaze the trail of human frailties and the fears of the unknown? Is concern a curse or is it a virtue that elevates us to the highest form of life?

One of my children became quite irritable recently, saying to me, "Where were you? I've been calling for 3 days, and no one answered. I was worried." I smiled a warm smile. The torch has been passed.

PASS IT ON TO OTHER WONDERFUL PARENTS (And also to your children. That's the fun part)

We're learning....

This weekend we worked on teaching Abigail how to ride a bike. At seven years old she should probably already know how, but she hasn't been in a very big hurry and we don't have much pavement on our road. On Saturday we all went outside to practice.

Andy is a much better teacher than I am. I was trying to help her and was running along side her. I wasn't holding on because she was doing so well riding. Stopping, well, that's another story. She's a little wiggly with the handle bars too, so she doesn't always go straight. Anyway, she was starting to run off the road and I couldn't stop her quick enough so she landed in some prickly weeds. Well if you know Abigail, she's *slightly* drama-queenish so it was close to the end of the world. Of course she didn't want to get back on the bike.... somehow Andy talked her into it. Here they come back towards our house. Can you see the not-so-happy look on her face? I guess I should leave the teaching to Andy....

J.T. was also outside trying to ride his bike. He is so used to pedaling his tricycle that this is a little more difficult, especially on the gravel.

On Sunday it rained so we haven't had another chance to get back out there. This week, hopefully, we will....

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Sticky, sticky, sticky

This morning the kids got a little treat.... pancakes from McDonalds! With this, of course, comes the stickiest syrup on this planet! Abigail didn't make too big of a mess. J.T., on the other hand, had to be stripped and taken directly to the bathtub afterwards. Here are a few pictures of him that Andy took.

This is quite a process... you need to put butter on, cut them up into pieces, and then dip them into the sticky syrup.

Then you get to take a bite....

Don't touch anything! Stickiness everywhere.... can you see the drop of syrup dripping off his chin?

Yep, it was good. Yep, it was messy!

Ornament exchange.... a little late

Every year, Abigail and J.T. do an ornament exchange with their friends Hannah and Connor. We all got busy and were a little late exchanging this year. That's okay.... at least we got it done before Valentines Day! Here's the four kids getting ready to open theirs...

The kids had a good time with this. Hannah's was a glass heart, Abigail's was a "S'mores" cowgirl, Connor's was a John Deere tractor, and J.T.'s was a "S'mores" cowboy. Maybe next year we will get this done before Christmas!

She lost another one....

Before we went on our trip to Colorado, Abigail lost another tooth. It had been awhile. In fact, I can't remember exactly when was the last time.... maybe 6 months ago. She had a loose one and thought she would have to take her tooth fairy pillow to the grandparents' house while we were gone. Good thing she lost it while
we were still here.

You probably can't even tell, but the one she lost is on the left side (her right side) next to the big, permanent tooth. She still has quite a few more to go though...

Here's Abigail holding her tooth fairy pillow. She hangs it on her door with the tooth in it, because we've convinced her that it's easier for the Tooth Fairy to find it there (rather than under her pillow).....

It's a good thing the Tooth Fairy came that night.....

I am a terrible....

blogger lately! I really want to do better and I could make the time, but I feel like I haven't had much to write about lately. And it's not like we haven't had things going on..... anyway, I will try to do better. I would like to write something everyday, even if it's something little. It's probably not realistic to expect that, though. I will try to do 4-5 posts a week.... hopefully! Wish me luck...

Friday, January 18, 2008

Favorites from 2007

Last year about this time, I picked out my favorite 5 photos that I took for 2006 and put them here on my blog. I had the intention of doing that today. I have a problem, though. I couldn't pick out just 5 or even 10. I came up with 20! It is very hard to narrow it down. I like all 20 of these photos for different reasons. Some, I think, are great portraits. Others have more personal meanings. Some have been on here before and some haven't. Anyway, here they are....

I hope you like them. It's great for me to see my photography improve over the years. Thanks for looking!