Sunday, July 31, 2011

Happy Anniversary Dad & Mom!

Today, dad and mom celebrated their 56th wedding anniversary. Us girls decided it would be easier to go out to eat this time. We met at a local steakhouse restaurant, A.J.'s Steakhouse, for dinner tonight. I think mom and dad really enjoyed themselves. I believe about 19 of us were able to show up plus mom and dad. Our family has gotten so big that it's harder and harder each year for all of us to come together. You should see us at the table. You might have 4 different conversations going all at once. This is because when we do have a get together like this, we have to hurry up and catch up from the last time we saw each other. It's funny. A couple of times, Susan and Maryann were talking to me and all I could say was "I can't hear you."

Mom and dad are doing well for their age.  Dad's as hard headed as always.  I've been concerned as I'm sure my other sisters, about mom's bruising.  I realize that older people's skin gets thin and somewhat easy to bruise, but mom's condition seems to be a little more than that.  She's not on blood thinners, but if she just taps her arms or leg on something, she has a huge bruise.  I believe she goes to the doctor tomorrow.  I thought Maryann told me that the doctor put her on iron, but it was mass chaos as I was asking mom about it.  Mom told me that she wasn't on iron, but I just have to call her tomorrow and find out again. Maryann told me yesterday that mom was concerned about her ankles swelling up again.  They will get as big a softballs at times.  She said that the doctor gave mom some water pills in hopes that it will help the swelling.  Dad has his garden again this year.  Such a HOT year to have a garden, but it keeps him going.  He doesn't do as much as he use to, but he still goes to the gym and piddles around there.  They've gotten at the age where they don't like to go any where but home.  I was surprised that Maryann got them to go out to eat tonight.  The only places they do go is their doctors, church and every now and then, their children's houses to visit.  LOL! 

We were happy to see Nicholas back home from Springhill. He came up from Mobile, picked up his mom and went straight to the restaurant. LOL! I don't see how he does it sometimes. Actually, he spent most of his Summer vacation, working/shadowing down in Louisiana at Tulane University in New Orleans. Right now, his minor will be in Chemistry. He was offered this past Spring to stay at Tulane during the Summer and do chemical research. I can't go into what exactly he did while he was there, 'cause it is way over my head. He was offered a job while he was there. His boss wants him to come back after he graduates next Spring and work in research and get a full ride to Tulane University. His dream job is to be an ER doctor because he likes the action, but who would pass up a paid tuition and job at an upscale university. Plus, he has told me over and over how much he wants to live in Baton Rouge and raise his family there. I think what scares him a little is that he wants to become an MD so bad and he can become that in Louisiana at Tulane, but it will take a little longer than what he had planned.  He has a lot on his plate that's not what he planned and he has to seriously look back and find out what he wants. Personally, I think he should take the deal, but he's got a lot to think and pray about. Please remember him in your prayers.

I hardly ever get to see Ryan and he's been back from Duke for over a year.  He has been working so hard on his graduates through UAB.  Right now, he is finished with the book work and he is currently assigned to UAB hospital for his clinicals.  Maryann tells me that UAB will move the students around to different hospitals throughout the state.  The young lady Ryan is currently seeing was assigned to a different hospital than Ryan.  It's a bummer, I'm sure.  They went from seeing each other all the time at school and studying, to seeing each other every once in a while.  Hopefully, they both will be assigned to the same hospital before the year is up.  I guess they are hoping to get their degree this time next year.  I am so excited for them. 

Natalie gets to move into her apartment next week.  Hooray!  She is so excited to start UAH and basketball season, it's not funny.  Luckily, she will be moving right by our favorite pizza restaurant, MELLO MUSHROOM.  I just love their pizza.  Natalie and I already have plans to meet there for lunch when she doesn't have to study, class or playing basketball.  LOL!  This will probably be a long time.  I'm excited for her.  I think she hates the fact that she won't get to see Nathan as much as she has been, being closer to home. 

Of course, me and my nieces got to do some catching up regarding baby showers and weddings, while we were at the restaurant. I'm going to wait until after Christmas before I get serious about finding Katie's flower girl dress for Leslie and Chase's wedding. I've been wanting to get with Leslie regarding ideas on how she wants Katie to look and let her know that I expect Katie to take a growth spurt around Christmas, like last year. Thankfully, the wedding isn't until May. YAY! Leslie has been so busy with working at Helen Keller Hospital and school that she has completely left it up to me and my taste regarding Katie's dress and how her hair looks. COOL! Right now, Katie has shot up a size from a 6X to 7 in dresses. I KNOW! I'm hoping once she gets back into gymnastics and P.E., she'll shed some of the weight. So, I'm all ears when it comes to suggestions of places to shop for a nice, pretty white flower girl dress.

I got rid of some of Colton's clothes yesterday. YAY! Whitney came over after her baby shower, hosted by her mother-in-law. I showed her everything we had. She picked out a lot of sweet sweet outfits along with other necessary items that mamas do not need to live without. I think I've introduced to her a few things, she didn't know that she would need. For instance, I gave her my handy bottle warmer that works great on road trips. We had a good time, swapping stories and comparing notes. Maryann and I prepared her for what's to come. She's a nurse, so I'm sure she had some idea of what to expect. Poor Natalie heard it for the first time, apparently, in my Living Room. She finally said that she's having second thoughts about having children now. LOL! We explained that it's not that bad after it's all said and done. Shoot. If I can have two babies and survive, anyone can have them. I'm the biggest wimp there ever was. LOL!

I finally got the animal print ribbon trees finished and ready to deliver. I made Katie two paper globes to hang from her ceiling this afternoon. She loves them! She wants more to hang up, but I think it will be too much. I've got to make Colton's sports paper globes to hang from his ceiling and then I've got to start on the baby shower Thank You notes that will be attached to the chocolate rolled stick pretzels in their gift baggies. I think Natalie said that her and Leslie were going to start on those in a couple of weeks. By that time, I've got to have my 40+ cards finished and ready to tie around the pretzels. YAY! Y'all will have to stay tuned to see them. I used the exact same thank you poem for my baby shower, when I was pregnant with Katie. It is precious!

Y'all stay cool!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Children Stories and Tred Barta

After a long day of cleaning, washing clothes, feeding children, changing diapers, chasing down Colton to get his clothes on for the day or keep him from ripping off his diaper (I'll tell you about this one later). Days like this I do not look my best. I have no makeup on my face, my hair is pulled up in a ponytail, I have mix matched dumpy clothes. At the end of the day, I'm tired, and I can't figure out what happened to my day. Do you know what makes it so worth it? When my babies attack me with hugs and kisses, telling me how much they love me.

As you know I've been making a few ribbon trees for a baby shower for my niece, Whitney. Okay, I'm suppose to make three trees as part of the decorations. We have two finished, but I still have one more to make. I ran out of ribbon, so I've been visiting Hobby Lobby lots the past few weeks. Tonight was no different. When I visited HL the first of the week to pick up some more ribbon, they were out of the brown ribbon that I had been using. Thinking I would have plenty at home, I decided not to purchase a different kind of brown ribbon. Well today as I'm working on the tree, I was running out of the brown ribbon fast and I came to a conclusion that I can't do without the brown. What do I do? Hobby Lobby here I come again. Katie heard that I was going, so she wanted to tag along. She won't admit it, but she LOVES HL. They have a nice supply of Webkins BOOS, which is what she loves to collect now. She's also trying out a few of their craft kits. I got tickled as we got there because Katie out of the blue asked me why I've been going to Hobby Lobby so much lately. It's just the way she said it, as if she was embarrassed to be going into HL again with me. I asked her if she was tired of going, she said "well, yeah." (saying it with attitude) LOL! She changed her tune when I let her buy a craft.

Colton is such a darn cutie. I love two year olds, they are so much fun. If children were not so darn expensive to take care of and if I had more patience, I would love to have another one. When I said this tonight, Doug spoke up and said, "I don't know about that." I told him, "I said, if I have more patience." LOL! Colton with his little cherub face announced to me that he broke my laptop tray. I have a tray that helps vent my laptop when it's sitting on a table or in my lap. Doug said Colton was jumping around on the bed and stepped on the tray. He said he heard a crack, but didn't see anything wrong. I've already had a small crack it in, but I didn't see anything else. Colton all concerned kept saying, "I broked it, I broked it. It okay, you get another one." HAHA! It's amazing how kids automatically say, "it's okay just buy another one." As if money grew in the back yard. LOL! He is so sweet. Even if he had broke my tray, I would have a hard time discipling such an angel. So instead, he jumped on my belly and we laughed at each other making silly noises and faces. LOL!

Tomorrow, Whitney, Natalie and Maryann are coming over after Whitney's baby shower that her mother-in-law is hosting. We will go through some of Colton's baby clothes and stuff that she and Maryann would like to borrow or buy off of us. For some reason Doug doesn't find this exciting, so he will be hanging out with his buddy Chuck. I think Colton would rather be hanging with the men as well. (hint) I'm hoping to get the tree finished by tomorrow. Pray for me.

As soon as I finish this project, I've got to get started on Katie's paper globes that she wants to hang from her ceiling in her room. Colton was getting upset because Katie picked out her girlie paper and he didn't get to pick out paper. I know he is only two years old, but some times he doesn't act it. Right off the bat, he grabbed basketball scrapbook paper and wouldn't let me put it back. Ugh! It doesn't cost much to make a paper globe and I've learned what I do for one, I have to do for the other. Colton and I picked out baseball and football paper to go with the basketball. He said he liked it. After these projects, I've got a few other crafts for Thanksgiving. It's our year to host Thanksgiving and I want to make paper cornucopias, filled with goodies to hang on the back of the chairs. I'm finally going to get a Giving Tree prepared for display this year. I've been wanting to make one now for three years and something always comes up and I forget to make them. I also want Katie to make Pom-Pom Turkeys to decorate the table. I think I've got maybe a couple Halloween projects bookmarked to make this year. I just went overboard last year with the Halloween crafts and I don't want to go crazy this year.

Now, I have to tell this Colton story. I've bought Colton the Pull-Ups and we have a potty seat for Colton to start his potty training. I told myself that I'm not going to drive myself crazy (pulling my hair out) like I did trying to train Katie. I started training with her at 18 months and she wasn't potty trained until well after her third birthday. She was that hard headed and stubborn. I have a feeling and I might be wrong, Colton is ready to train. He has shown me signs that he is ready and today was no different. I was fixing my hair when I heard Doug say, "he's taking off his diaper. He's going down the hall. Mom cut him off at the pass." Colton did have his diaper completely undone, but he was telling me that he pee-peed. I didn't get too excited, especially if it was just pee. Right? That is until I looked down the backside. Oops! There is more than just pee-pee in this diaper. Keep in mind, Colton was trying to take the diaper completely off as he is heading to his bedroom where his diapers are kept. I had a hand holding both the front and back end of the diaper, trying to keep it on him until we could get to his room. He knows to lay down on his special rug, so I can change his diaper. He went straight to the rug and just in time I must say. Before bedtime, I had him sit on the potty before getting on his jammies.

Finally, I have to say that Doug and I were surprised to find out that Tred Barta "The Best and Worst of Tred Barta Show" is paralized. Doug was surfin' the channels when he came across Tred Barta show on Versus HD channel. During the Fall and Winter months we use to like watching his show. Like he explains in his intro at every beginning of the show, he loves to fish and hunt and he does it the hard way. He lives in Colorado on his ranch "Longbow." From what I understand, Barta had a trip booked to Alaska. Before he had the opportunity to go, his legs began to fill numb. It wasn't long, he reported that he couldn't move his legs at all. He was rushed to a Denver Hospital. It was here where he found out later that he has a rare blood cancer, which caused him to have a spinal stroke. The stroke caused him to become paralized from the waist down. The doctors sent him off for cancer treatments, but his wife could see that it was getting to be too much for him. He became depressed and not himself, so she got him out of there and took him back home to Longbow Ranch. From there, he has made a challenge to continue doing the things that he loves the most "hunting and fishing the hard way" from a wheelchair. He calls it his new adventure. He hopes to inspire other parapledics to get out of bed and continue doing what they love the most and keep living life to the fullest. I don't know exactly when the injury occurred, but online reports are dated around May 2009. For more information, Click Here.


Thursday, July 28, 2011

Quest for #14

Are You Ready For Some Football?

Here's a little teaser for the Bama fans.


Video taken during this year's A-Day game


beginning . . . September 3, 2011

Bama vs. Kent State
at Tuscaloosa, AL
11:21a.m.  CT


Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Check It Out

Y'all have to check this out!

A friend of mine has an online business, "RiffRaff and Butterbean". She specializes in making rag wreath for that special occasion. Angela has given me her blessing to feature her in my "Check It Out" edition.
I love my wreath! RTR! If you're not a Bama (I don't know why not), she also makes other collegiate to suit you.

I first met Angela when Doug and I moved next door to her homestead 16 years ago this November. We've been blessed to get to know her and her adorable parents. Since that time, she's married a respected man and gave birth to W. W is good friends with my daughter. Angela is so talented and creative, which is what brings us here today. I knew she dabbled a little in crafts, but nothing like this until last Christmas. Her and her mom, Mrs. Evelyn, gave Doug and I one of these beautiful Bama wreaths. You probably remember seeing a picture of it at Christmas time. The plaques are wooden and all hand painted. 
Here are some examples of the divided families

Professional Football Editions

Everyday Personalized Wreaths for the front door

All of her orders are custom made just for you.  In order to get in touch with Angela and RiffRaff and Butterbean, Click Here to get access to her Facebook page. She would be glad to give you a quote and answer any questions, you might have.  Be sure and tell her that you heard about her right here. 

All wreath photos are from RiffRaff & Butterbean


Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Animal Print Ribbon Trees

A while back I posted that y'all needed to stay tuned to the animal print ribbon trees, I will be making for my niece's baby shower and evenually her nursery.

Natalie called me this morning to see if she could come over and help me with the ribbon trees. Y'all they turned out exactly the way I had hoped they would. We worked most of the day and finished two out of three trees. They were simple to make, as long as you can put up with the burnt fingertips from the hot glue. LOL! Natalie and I walked away with our battle scars and are very pleased with our creation.

Now I know the professional crafters would sew their ribbons, but I don't have a sewing machine.  Not yet anyways.  HAHA! 

Natalie guessed that we ended up using approximately 2 rolls of ribbon per tree. Now I know that you're probably scratching her head thinking that you see more than 2 different types of ribbon in these trees.  Well, you're right.  I used 5 different patterned and solid rolls of ribbon - giraffe, zebra, leopard, black, and brown.  Natalie cut the ribbon at 4 1/2"; fold the cut ribbon in half - put a little hot glue on the ribbon and fuse together, making a loop.  You want to leave room at the ends of the ribbon to spread them apart, put a little hot glue and stick it on the styrofoam.  Some of the ribbon, we just folded long ways and cut at an angle on each end, to make it look forked on each end; I placed a little glue in the middle of the ribbon and stick it on the styrofoam to where the ribbon ends would stick out.  This project is a little time consuming, but so worth it. 
I painted the pot to resemble a tiger print.  The trunk of the tree is a 1/4" dowel pin, painted black.  Natalie and I were talking about how pretty the trees would be if you add a few feathers. 

Natalie and I enjoyed each others visit so much.  I wish we could more things like this more often, but I know she has her life (work, school and love life). 

Unfortunately, we ran out of ribbon.  So on to Hobby Lobby tomorrow.  YAY!  I told Natalie that I will just take my time getting the last ribbon tree done.  We went ahead and did all the painting and prepping for the last tree, we just need more ribbon to get it finished.  I'm so glad to have most of my work completed.  


Monday, July 25, 2011

Beat the Heat . . . Throw a Party instead!

Summer is far from being over, so there's still time to throw the best party ever.  We've really enjoyed our parties the past couple of months and this mama is officially partied out.  HAHA!  I've found some real cute party ideas to help you beat the heat.  You've just got to check them out.

Martha Stewart has an article online on ways to throw a refreshing Sprinkler Party

Watermelon pops are always great shown here from Tidymom in her "I'm Lovin' It" column

Sprinkler Party

A Pretty Little has the sweetest Popsicle Party ideas. I've definitely got this party idea bookmarked for our social next year.  I love it!
I think these chocolate dipped rice krispy treat pops are so cute for a popsicle party. Instructions and other ideas from Twig & Thistle

Recipe: Banana Pineapple Italian Ice

Summary: This simple, refreshing, frozen summer treat is sure to be a hit.


  • 2 cups unsweetened apple juice (no sugar added)
  • 2 cups mashed ripe bananas (about 4 medium bananas)
  • 1 can (8oz) unsweetened crushed pineapple, undrained
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract)
  • mint, to garnish (optional)


  1. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients (expect for mint).
  2. Pour into an 8 inch square dish.
  3. Cover and freeze for at least 2 hours, just until almost firm.
  4. Transfer to a large bowl, and beat for 2 minutes until smooth and creamy.
  5. Return mixture to dish, and freeze until firm.
  6. Remove from freezer 20-30 minutes before serving.
  7. Garnish with mint leaves.

Quick notes

1/2 cup equals 79 calories
Number of servings (yield): 10
Copyright © 2009-2011 TidyMom.Net.

Popsicle party idea from Sheek Shindigs

I enjoyed prepping and decorating for our little Ice Cream Social.  Click Here if you would like to check out my party.
The above photo idea came from The Celebration Shoppe

There are so many sweet, cool party ideas (big and small) out there.  I hope you have fun preparing for your next get together.  I would love to see what ideas you come up with before Summer is over. 

Star Wars According To a 3 Year Old

I love watching videos of little kids, the things that comes out of their mouths. I get a chuckle asking my kids questions just to hear their response. I found this on YouTube, she is so adorable and I love her expressions trying to explain the movie "Star Wars."

I hope this video puts a smile on your face this Monday.


Saturday, July 23, 2011

Happy 6th Birthday Baby Girl!

Happy 6th Birthday

As you know, Katie hosted a slumber party last night as part of her birthday.  I have no clue as to what time the girls FINALLY went to sleep.  I heard the clock chime, announcing that it was officially 1:00 am.  Yes, in the morning!  I could still hear the girls laughing and talking and I didn't hear anymore clocks going off again after that, so I must have passed out soon after. 

This morning, Doug and I began stirring around 8:00 am.  After I got my shower, I couldn't believe my ears.  I heard the girls talking and giggling.  I just knew they would hang in there until 10:00 am.  I got the breakfast food out on the table, but the girls were not all that hungry until a little later.  Doug shamed me on the breakfast selection.  He expected me to scrabble eggs, cook some bacon, the whole nine yards.  He doesn't know girls too well.  Boys may eat this early in the morning, but not necessarily little silly giggly girls.  I set out cereal, two types of donuts, and strawberry pop tarts.  Doug made some bacon and set out on the table, but I don't think any of the girls touched it.  It wasn't long, the girls' mamas began showing up and heading home.  Out of all the stuff the little girls brought, we only lost "J's" hair bow.  We looked and looked, it's like it just disappeared in thin air.  I've still got my eyes open for it. 

Beings today is the special birthday for Katie, Doug and I spent most of the day with our first born.  As Katie would call it . . . Today was "the day of Katie."  We headed to the FunZone, in hopes to drive Go Carts, but their double carts were out of commission.   Katie being her worried self, asked "what do we do now?"  We stopped by the movie theater to see what would be on today.  We got to see "Cars 2" in 3D and I think it was worth the money.  It was pretty funny and Katie really liked it.  She enjoyed doing a little shopping with us.  One of our locally owned shop, Monograms Plus, had a lot of Hello Kitty products in their clearance room.  Katie and I had fun looking through the stuff.  You would have thought she won the lottery, her hands digging inside the boxes of Hello Kitty stuff.  I ended up getting her for a couple of dollars each, HK necklace, HK ice popicle molds, HK impression rubber ice cube tray, HK bath softeners, and HK sports bottle.  As we were checking out, Katie picked out a Vera Bradley suitcase on wheels.  It was pretty and BIG.  She told her daddy that she really wanted it because it could carry all of her stuff.  LOL!  He asked me how much it would cost.  Well, knowing VB and I noticed the teflon tag on the baggage, I knew it was going to expensive.  I thinking maybe a couple hundred.  Nope.  Doug looked at the price tag and had Katie put it back.  HAHA!  I had to know and he told me $300.  LOL!  Baby girl's got taste.  Very. expensive. taste.  To end the day, we did a little furniture shopping.  Our magazine rack acts like it's about to fall apart.  It's so bad, Colton likes to sit on the top and rock it back and forth.  Guess what?  We got a new magazine/side table and Colton's not allowed to sit on the top of it.  PERIOD.  We needed a chest in Colton's room and I think we got a fairly good deal on one.  I was so excited that I ended up with two empty drawers.  YAY!

To end the night, Katie, Colton and I went through the things she got for her birthday.  I think Doug and I got most of the clothes for her.  The other two outfits, she tried on to make sure that they fit.  They looked so sweet on her.  She received two board games from my mom and dad.  You have to understand that Katie's not a good sport when it comes to playing games of any kind.  Doug blames me for letting her won most of the time, when we play games.  My intensions were that I had hoped that it would instill confidence in her.  I guess I was wrong.  Well, she wanted to play her new "Operation" and "Sorry" games tonight.  She got a little mad at me and wanted to cheat a little, but it wasn't too terrible.  We even did one of the crafts, she received, together.  Allison - she loved the sticky mosiac!  I will have to get her more of these.  I never knew they existed, FUN.  She's already got us making bracelets tomorrow.  HAHA! 

I would say that Katie had a superb birthday. 

Friday, July 22, 2011

Katie's Tangled Slumber Party

Eventhough Katie's birthday isn't until tomorrow, we celebrated it today with her little friends. After thinking and talking about it for the past few months, she really wanted some friends to spend the night. The only thing, she wanted to invite every single friend she has. Yeah, that's a lot of people and I don't know half their parents. So, we came to an agreement. She would invite four friends. I would take them to Air It Out at FunZone and they could have a slumber party.

I hate the fact that I forgot my camera when we went to Air It Out. If you're not familiar with AIO, it's a building filled with inflatables that they kids can play on in air conditioning. YAY! Thank goodness my friend, Allison, brought her camera and took a few pictures for me. THANK YOU ALLISON! Your my angel. I paid for the girls to play for an hour, so I was shocked when they were ready to go before time was up. They played so hard, I guess they were wiped out. 

I invited family members to meet us at the house for cake and ice cream. Katie was so happy to see almost everyone here, waiting on her. She was too excited to do the cake and ice cream, so we went straight to the gifts. YAY! I just had Katie sit in the floor, over to the side and the little ones sat around her. Can you say CHAOS?!? It was fun, but I have no clue as to who gave her what because she was going through everything so quick. The gifts were passed around from person to person and I never really got to check everything out. I guess that's what tomorrow is for. LOL!

The girls are absolutely loving the slumber party. We've had some role playing, dancing, singing, playing "Operation" and we are ending the night by watching "Tangled" and going through their goody bags. HAHA! We'll see how late they actually stay up. 

Happy 6th Birthday Katie!

Blowing out the candles

We put the inflatable mattress and Katie's twin bed mattress in the floor.  We wanted to make sure there was enough room for everyone.  The next challenge was "who's going to sleep next to Katie?" 

As you can see, Katie got in the middle and J sleeps on the good mattress. 

The girls jumping around and dancing to music

It's a Jam-ma Party!


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Photo Shoot with My 1st Client

This past weekend, I got a great surprise phone call from my niece, Whitney. As you may know, she is expecting her first child in October. I felt so honored to be asked to take photos of such a precious moment in Whitney's life. Outside of my little family, Whitney was my first client.

Our photo session took less than an hour at one of our parks, Sportsman's Lake. I couldn't get over all the different natural back drops available at the park. Whitney's sister, Natalie, came and helped out a lot. We had such a good time and oh my gosh was it hot.

Whitney and Natalie came back to my house to preview the photos taken. She seemed to really like them. She doesn't work Sunday, so we've made an appointment for her to come over after church and go over which pictures she wants to order.

To check out more photos of Whitney, click the link below.

Attention Mamas!

Don't Forget . . .
Tax Free Holiday starts August 5-7 for Alabama