Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The regular freak out

There's always a freak out, right? I mean sometime during the year it's bound to happen, right? This is my week. Why do you ask? Well I got called to be the Primary Chorister....yes you read that right. Chelsea, who has zero musical talent to speak of was called to teach songs to and sing with kids every week at church. Yikes. The good news is that I love the kids and it will be fun to sing with them. I can't help freaking out about the new songs I have to learn and then teach them at the beginning of the year. I know if I prepare enough and pray enough I can do it, but I still want to freak out and pray for so much snow it cancels church until June...

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

I'm feeling a little....

ripe and drained. I haven't had a proper shower since Saturday, gross huh? Although, I shouldn't underestimate the goodness of a sponge bath, it works well in a pinch. Why do you ask? Because Roger found about an inch of water in parts of our basement on Saturday, our hot water heater was leaking. What was so very annoying about it other than the lack of hot water, was that the heater wasn't even four years old. The good news is it was still under warranty. We got a new one for only the price of installation. I'll be thrilled to take a shower later when the water is warm!

For those of you keeping track at home, well really for myself, 2010 hasn't been a great year for household items...

We replaced our fridge in June because it wasn't working. This is the new one.

We replaced our car in August. The old one was working, but needed a lot of repairs.

We replaced our furnace in September. It had been non-functional since March.

And I really hope lastly we just replaced our hot water heater.

Do you see why me and my bank account are feeling so drained? I would be remiss though if I didn't say how truly blessed we are. This has been an overall great year for us. We have learned and done a lot. We are so looking forward to the holidays and the birth of our baby boy (did I mention we found out we're having another boy?) in March.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


Every year after we do three birthdays in a month's time, it shocks me that we still have Halloween to get through. If it wasn't for Grandma Worth's Costume Store, my kids would go as themselves. The kids love Halloween and chose easy costumes.
Ashby was what she called a black ghost. I'm not sure what that means and honestly it was kind of lame, but she loved it.

Avery was a pirate girl. I thought her costume came together pretty well, considering all the time I put into it (about 30 seconds)

Luke was a cowboy. He was really cute with his hat and stick horse, unfortunately he wouldn't hold either one while we trick or treated. It was really cold too, so he had to wear his coat. He looked like the kid without a costume. At least he wasn't 15 and still trying to pull it off.

We carved pumpkins the night before Halloween. The kids did most of the gutting themselves. I loved this pictured because it shows them all getting in on the messy action!

I really would like to make some cute creative costumes for my kids. Maybe if I get it done in July...

Wolf and Delo

My parents were here for Ashby's baptism and stayed for about a week after that. The visit was as usual, too short. We had all kinds of plans, but weren't able to do as much as we wanted. My dad was sick for the majority of the visit, Ashby was sick too as were Roger and I. We still had fun and managed to cram some fun in with all the germs. We took the girls out of school one day so we could go to the zoo. It was the perfect day, not too busy and not too cold.

The polar bear exhibit is seriously so cool. You can see the polar bears from ground level, but they have this cool tunnel that you can go in as well. The bears were extremely playful and put on a good show. I could have stayed and watched them all day, but the kids wanted to see something else....

There was also a tunnel for shark viewing. Luke was digging it, can you tell?

This is the only picture I have as proof that indeed my mom was here. We had so much fun and were so sad to see them go.

When we were all feeling better, my parents, Luke and I drove out to the Flight 93 memorial. It's about 2 hours from here. A permanent memorial is being constructed, but what is there is truly powerful. Here's the plaque that hangs in the overlook area. The overlook area is where the media and most of the investigative crews set up in the days following 9/11. When Flight 93 struck the ground the plane was upside down and going over 500 mph. It immediately burst into flames and created a huge crater. A few days after, a crew back filled the crater and it became the permanent resting place for everyone on the flight. Only family members are allowed on the ground where the plane actually went down. The first phase of the memorial will be dedicated on September 11, 2011.

Here's the field as you can see it from the overlook. That's memorial construction going on in the right of the picture. If I read the plaque right the plane crashed in the field in the middle of this picture, where the little mound of dirt is. What really struck me about this site is that it is truly in the middle of nowhere. It doesn't have a street address. The passengers on Flight 93 were definitely heroes.

What have we done?

While Kevin and Kelly were here, we gave Ethan a hair cut. While the clippers were out I thought we'd give Luke a trim too. Did you know that even though you use the longest clipper attachment it's still really short? I didn't and was very sad to see all the curls go. The cut is growing on me though and I can be almost sure that the curls aren't gone for good.
The before/during. He didn't mind the buzz of the clippers. I was glad it wasn't as traumatizing for him as it was for me. Yes, yes I know it was my idea, but still...

I didn't take an after picture, but this is about a week later. Sorry about the dirty shirt, he just finished carving his pumpkin, doesn't he have skills?

Ashby's festivities

Ashby's birthday was also in October. She's our big eight year old now. She was baptized at church by Roger on her birthday. We were so lucky to have both grandmas and grandpas here as well as several aunts, uncles and cousins. Do you think I took a picture of any of these guests? If you thought I did because that would be smart, you are sorely mistaken. I was just looking through my October photos and it's horrible. I didn't take a picture of anything. I do know that Roger's brothers Bryan, Richard, Kevin and his sister Karen were here with their families. We had lunch after the baptism at church and I can't even tell you how wonderful it was. We had several friends stay with us for both things and their help and support was truly invaluable. I really feel awful I didn't take any pictures, but it was a wonderful day and I hope Ashby will remember it anyway. One thing I would recommend, don't let your daughter ask you to speak at her baptism because you will be crying so hard it will be nearly impossible.
That Sunday was also our primary program. The girls were so excited that so many family members were here to see it. The program was exceptional and added to the great day.
Here she is before church opening her new scriptures. I like Roger in the apron, don't you? We were shredding pork for BBQ sandwiches. He was smart and wore an apron, I was again unsmart and was already in church clothes while shredding and ended up with grease stains all over my skirt. Do you think I changed before church? Sure didn't. I went with the story that it was water and would be drying any minute.

Before the baptism. I can't believe she's eight. Ashby is such a good girl, she is the best example to her siblings and to her friends at school. I am often struck by her compassion and can-do spirit. Ashby we are so proud of you for making the choice to be baptized. I can tell your testimony is growing each day. We love you!!!

Ashby with her new Penguins shirt. After all the fun of the day, we still got to come home have under the plates, cake and ice cream and open presents. Look, look I did get a picture of a visitor... that's Baby J, Karen's daughter. We were lucky enough to have them stay with us for a night.

Luke's birthday

Lukey Lu turned 2 in October. His birthday was on a Sunday and he decided to come into his Terrible Two's in style. He was really unhappy the whole day. I kept demanding that he cheer up, it was his birthday for heaven's sake, but he didn't listen. We sure do love this little boy though even when he's angry. He's a pretty thoughtful little boy and takes time to figure stuff out. He's our snuggliest baby by far. He really, really loves his daddy (I feel for you sometimes Rog.) He also loves trains and cars.
Was it wise to get him a hammer and something to hit with it? I'm not sure, but so far so good.

He could actually blow out the candles and I actually missed it with the camera, but here's the before.

A happy looking birthday boy. Happy birthday Luke, I love you too!

Avery's birthday

I'm so behind and I really want to remember this stuff, so buckle up, here we go!
Avery turned six back in September. I can't believe it. She is a wonderful girl. She loves school, her friends and anything girly. Again this year, we were driving to Virginia on her birthday so we celebrated a day early. She is rather easy going about things like this and she loves to go to Virginia too.

Avery was the recipient of our first pet. She had no idea and was surprised and excited. It's a beta that I named Casper because no one could come up with anything else...

Getting ready to blow out the candles.

Avery on her birthday in new clothes from Grandma. I love you Avery, happy birthday!

Thursday, August 26, 2010


Well it's the end of August and here in PA that means the start of school. Can I just say, for the record, I don't like it, not one bit. Avery started kindergarten yesterday. This means that after the easing in period she will be going to school all day as well. That means both my girls, my helpers, my friends are going to be gone ALL day. Nope don't like it, not one bit. On the brighter side Avery was extremely excited to start school. She has Ashby's kindergarten teacher which is wonderful. Ashby says she isn't excited, but she comes home happy so it can't be all bad. What are Luke and I supposed to do all day without them?
Here's Avery on her first day. She is all skirts and sparkles.

Here's Ashby on her first day, she's all tennis shoes and boy backpacks!

In other changes Avery finally lost her first tooth. She kept waiting and waiting and finally got it out. Her permanent tooth is all the way in behind it. Yikes.

In other sad yet happy yet necessary yet watch Chelsea eat her words news, we traded in our Jeep. I loved the Jeep, but not lately. It had issues that were too expensive to fix and had 168,000 miles on it, so I guess it was time.

We got this instead. It's painful to share with the world because I've always said I would never drive a minivan. Turns out we aren't in a position to afford the Suburban I would like, so this is what we came home with instead. To my credit it's a Honda which we love and it will last forever, which is good or bad if you're me and want something else sometime before 2035.

The timing of the new car couldn't have been better because another big change (pictured below) will be coming on or around March 12th.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

A little ho hum

I really do like the summer, I really do. But at the same time I would like it a lot more if I spent three months in Lake Tahoe or at the ocean. About this time every summer I'm starting to feel ready for the structure and busyness of fall. That's my excuse for not blogging this time... anyway here are some pictures, mostly for my mom!

We had a pretty low key Fourth of July, but there were sparklers, always sparklers.

Roger had a business trip in Cincinnati and invited us to come along. We went to the Children's Museum while he was working. Luke is obsessed with lawn mowers. He was so pleased to see they had these in a toddler area of the museum. He tried to push it up the slide. I was a little sad to put a stop to it because I would have liked to see how far he could have gone.

We actually stayed in Covington, KY which is right across the Ohio River from Cincinnati. This huge bell was in the nearby town of Newport. I couldn't really figure it out, but it was huge so I took a picture. It was called the Peace Bell, so there you go...

In June we had to make this rather unfortunate upgrade. Our fridge just stopped working, so we had to replace it. We knew we wanted a new fridge, but I didn't want one right now. There's still the business of the furnace that we need to replace, but I guess your food has to stay cold too.


After. We got this bad boy at the Sears Outlet. It's all dented, but who cares? The price was right and we have kids that dent stuff, it fits right in.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

The gargantuan post of things I consider to be both fun and exciting

Here's my unintentional once a month posting and it's chock full of goodness.
May was one of the busiest months we've had. Ashby was playing soccer and softball, Avery was playing t-ball and having dance class once a week. Roger was working a lot and I went to Utah for a week. There are only a few pictures, but trust me we had a good month.
June brought the end of school (YIPEE!!!). Summer has already been eventful and fun. We look forward to more sleeping in, playing outside and doing other summery things.

Look at my all way cooler than me siblings. Aren't they all so beautiful and handsome. I went to Utah for a week because my sister Katie (far right) had some surgery and needed help with her rugrats. I'm not going to lie to you, it was so fun to be away for a little while. Roger took the week off stay home with our kids. Katie and I had so much fun and I got a good dose of my other sisters and brother too.

Avery participated in her year end dance recital. And look Kevin, Kelly and Ethan were there too. We were very glad to be done with dance class and the recital was a great note to end on.

Try not to shudder in horror, but this, people, is my bathroom. Yes it's carpeted, why? Who knows. Note the red towel near the toilet. We had a leaking toilet a few months back and that section of the carpet had to go. I mean really you can only go up from here right? Did you note that I said Kevin and Kelly were here? They never get to come with out being put to work.

This is what they accomplished. Isn't is so great you could cry? Maybe that's just me. There is more to do in this bathroom, but if nothing else got remodeled, I would still be happy. I feel so much joy every time I go in there, I can hardly stand it. Did you know tile could make a person so happy?

We went camping last weekend at Rocky Gap State Park in Maryland. The weather cooperated and we had so much fun. There was a lake so we spent most of the day Saturday swimming. The kids had fun, well I know the girls did and Luke well he's a different story. There was always something going on that made him unhappy, at least he's cute.
This was our little cabin and we also had a tent pad. The bathrooms were just off and to the right, overall it couldn't have worked out better.

Luke ate sand and drank the lake water.

See that canoe? It's holding Kevin, Ashby, Avery and Roger. I think they had fun and no one fell in.

I hope there's much more of this this summer. Being outside and sharing a snack, is there anything better?

Monday, May 17, 2010

Girl, you really got me now

Avery: Life is really hard sometimes.
Me: That's true, but it's also really good sometimes too right?
Avery: Yeah, like especially on pay day.
Me: Yeah that is pretty great.
Avery: Because then you get money.
Me: I like it when we get money.
Avery: But life is really bad when you get in a tornado.
Me: ?????
Avery: That happened to me once.
Me: ???? (comprehension slowly coming)
Roger: She's talking about the game of Life.
She had me going for a while there. Turns out my five year old is not turning into a tiny philosopher, thank heavens!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

This happened

on Monday. I was downstairs, the kids were upstairs, I heard Luke screaming and went up and saw this.

It reminded me of this. Avery at exactly the same age fell and hit her face on the corner of the coffee table. Good heavens she's cute.

It also reminded me a little of this. Ok I wasn't exactly the same age, I was fourteen. Brienne Burkinshaw hit me with her shoulder and almost broke my nose, this was the souvenir. We were practicing a lift at a dance competition when it happened. There was blood everywhere and I had to sit out the competition. It made me look tough for 4.3 seconds in my life. On a side note, Roger likes to say I looked sickly skinny in this picture. For the record, I've never been sickly skinny, I was 5'8" already and weighed about 145 lbs. I've always been an ogre, but thanks for the thought Rog.

Friday, April 9, 2010

I'm off next year

This year on and around Easter we:

Wore new garb to church,

dyed and glittered eggs,

hunted for eggs at Avery's school and

at Brackenridge Park.

Did you notice the girls' haircuts? Have I ever mentioned how much their hair vexes me? I've finally come to the conclusion that since it's a little curly it will never look polished, it refuses to be tamed. They both wanted their hair short and I've never been so grateful. It's easy to comb and looks OK too.

Not pictured was Ashby's First Grade Easter Party. Turned out the room mother was out of town and the ONE other mother that will volunteer had to work. I was all alone on this one and it caused me a large amount of mental distress. It was this party that I'm blaming not one, but two forgotten Visiting Teaching appointments. Straight to Hades for me, but at least the first graders had fun. (I think, I didn't do an egg hunt for them and many of them voiced their displeasure, but they got to squirt water out of big syringes, that's got to count for something right?) This level of activity for a holiday that isn't Christmas is very much an over achievement for me and is unlikely to happen again. Good thing I have the pictures to prove it to the Future Therapists of America!

On another fun note we celebrated Roger's birthday

and went to Buck night at the Bucs game. Even though your $1 tickets are at the very top, we still enjoyed ourselves and the Pirates won!

Look, I was there too!

P.S. Would anyone be interested in me sharing the games and crafts I've done for school parties? I always have a hard time coming up with stuff, even on the internet. Let me know.