Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Letters to Seeley

Seeley boy, you have blown my mind this month!  I can't get over what a big boy you have turned into.  Every single day you come up with something new, and it just makes me so happy.

Even when the new things you learn aren't exactly awesome in Mommy's opinion. Like peeing outside. Yes, I know you're a boy. And yes, I'm sure it's totally awesome to just whip it out whereever you want. I can understand the appeal. But, we really need to work on the timing. Doing your business when no one is around-cool. Doing your business when a parade of cars is going by- not so cool.

But, I'm also beyond excited that you're actually going somewhere other than in a diaper. So, I'm ignoring the sudden interest in peeing outside and keeping my eye on the prize. I'm shooting for a diaper free house, and with the exception of night time we are there! Yay! I've got to admit, I was starting to get a little worried. You just didn't care about potty training, period. There was lots of bribery at our house this month. The promise of some new Batman toys finally convinced you that the potty was pretty cool. Thank you Batman!

And I completely adore you in your big boy undies.

Speaking of Batman- you are all about some Batman here lately. You want to play with your Batcave every single day. And you insist that whoever is playing with you has to "sit in floor". In the exact place you tell us to. And we only get to play with the action figures you give us. You're pretty generous with me; I usually get a Batman and a pretty good villian like Bain. You don't let Daddy play with Batman and I think that's awesome. I like to rub it in! :) Daddy usually has to leave the room when I play Batman with you though. Apparently I don't stay true to the characters. According to Daddy, the Penguin and Mr. Freeze can't team up. Or fight against each other. Or apparently do anything that wasn't previously in a comic book. You and I like to make it up as we go. We're "outside the box" thinkers like that!

You also learned how to operate the Blu-ray player. I've watched The Lorax, Toy Story, Monster House, and Thomas the Train until I know every word. And the songs from The Lorax are pretty catchy, in that annoying can't-get-it-out-of-my-head kind of way. I caught myself humming one today at work.

Other big things in your world lately:

Mud riding.

A sudden obsession with belts.

Rubbing your naked bottom on people. Especially Emma. She screams like you're killing her and you chase her through the house laughing like a loon.

Just being naked in general. Usually from the waist down. Don't ask me how this little obsession got started. I can promise you that you haven't observed it from the rest of us.

 Your smiles and hugs make my day and never fail to make me smile. Thank you for being the sweet boy you are. I love you "this much"!


Letters to Emma

Sweet pea,
A funny thing happened this week when I was going through your Spring wardrobe. You've grown!! How did that happen? We like to tease you because you are so tiny compared to other kids your age, that we tend to forget that you are still growing. So of course I get a harsh reminder when you go to put on your last clean pair of pants and they look like high-waters. (Don't worry, I never let you leave the house like that. Daddy is a different story though.)

A huge first this month was that you lost your very first baby tooth! You were sooo happy! And I just stood there in shock while you reached right into your mouth and yanked it out. Like a big girl. Who pulls her teeth every day. As soon as it was out you started talking about wanting more teeth to be pulled. Luckily I convinced you that you needed to wait before pulling any more teeth.

 We've also been working on some "big girl school" stuff this month. Just some loose ends, like tying your shoes tight, etc. You are beyond excited to be starting in Kindergarten next year. Actually it's a toss up between who is more excited, you or MeMe. MeMe is all over this stuff and has even requested a teacher for you already. Nice little perk of MeMe working at the elementary, right? Mommy is going to need a little time to get used to you being a Malvern Leopard. It just seems weird. But I guess you need to have grown up in "the Cove" like Mama in order to appeciate the weirdness.

T-ball practice has started and you are pumped! It is like night and day from last year. We met with Preslee and her mom and dad to practice last weekend and you were awesome! Your batting has improved so much (and it was really good last year) and you were fielding balls like a pro. Mommy and Daddy were so proud! You seem to like sports quite a bit, and that makes me happy. I want you to be able to enjoy playing as a team and being active and healthy. And of course, you get Hobo Joe's after practice.

We also changed up your asthma medicine this month. We had a scary hospital stay in January and your asthma doctor has decided that the once-a-year trips to the hospital need to stop. Mommy and Daddy agree 100%! You gave us quite the scare! You started having trouble breathing and the hospital in Hot Springs couldn't get your oxygen flow regulated; you were having to work super hard to breathe even on a a whole bunch of oxygen. Mommy was so scared! You wound up being med-flighted to Children's Hosptial in Little Rock and they put you on this high-flow oxygen mask that finally helped get your oxygen level back up. We spent a long 5 days in the hospital, and I discovered that you aren't exactly a good patient any more. It took 2-3 nurses to hold you down for ANY oral medicine. Bless your heart, you are just sick of being sick! I'm really hopefuly that this new medicine will keep us out of the hosital-cross your fingers!


I love you so much my sweet girl! You make me so proud, and happy, and I just love to see your smilig face every day! Don't ever change!


Thursday, March 7, 2013

The power of "to-do" lists

Somehow, over the course of the past forever, the ol' blog has not made it onto my to-do list. So now I have Mom guilt, since this is how I try to chronicle important things for the kiddos. And with every day that has passed, I've been more and more hesitant to pick back up the ol' blog because I am sooo far behind! Who wants to write (or read) about Christmas in March?! Well, that's how far behind I am. So I think if I just wipe the slate clean and start new today, maybe I can do better.

So, I'm creating my own weekly "to-do" list. How pitiful is it that I've got to have a to-do list for EVERYTHING? Well, that's how my life has been lately. Work, grad school, quality time with the kiddos, travel, work, t-ball, gymnastics, work . . . and the list goes on and on. And yeah, I know I mentioned work a million times. It was intentional. With all the craziness going on lately in my world, I've forgotten to do those little things that make me a happy and sane woman. And more importantly, a better mom and wife. I've gotten so bogged down in the day to day junk that it's time for a reality and priority check.

So, as part of my new attitude, here are the things I'm adding to my weekly to-do list:
  1. Take a lunch break, for crying out loud!! This may sound simple, but work has been beyond hectic lately so I can't tell you the last time I haven't scarfed down something while sitting at my desk and working. Not healthy for the mind or body.
  2. Work out 4 days a week, at least. Due to some recent health issues, my weight has gotten out of control. Like seriously out of control. And that crap stops NOW. It's time to do some serious damage control.
  3. Weight Watchers. I'm going to just suck it up and commit. I've been able to lose excess weight in the past (from babies) fairly easily. Not so much now. So, desperate times, desperate measures and all that. Time for a little help.
  4. No homework or work on Sundays. At least until the kiddos are in bed. I officially declare Sunday family day and Lord help the next person who calls my cell on a Sunday with a work related crisis. It will not be pretty.
  5. Blog updates and write-ups for the kiddos. Once a week. Enough said.
  6. Get organized. Chaos drives me crazy, and right now chaos reigns supreme at my house. Closets need organized, papers, bills, etc. So once a week I'll pick an area (or item) and get that crap in line.
I think that is probably enough to keep me busy for a while. And since accountability is key, guess progress reports will be coming soon. Aren't you excited?!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Saying Goodbye

Emma and Seeley,
Mommy's dad, your Papaw, passed away this past month. October 14th to be exact. We were in our car, heading to Little Rock to have family pictures made when I got the call from your Aunt Kerry. It was so hard to tell you both that Papaw was in Heaven and that you wouldn't get to see him again for a very long time (hopefully). You both took the news a lot better than I had expected, for which I'm extremely grateful. Although, Emma, you did have a LOT of questions about why Jesus couldn't bring you to Heaven to visit or let Papaw come back down to Earth for a nice chat every once in a while.  Once I convinced you that you would get to see Papaw again one day, you've been fine.

It has taken Mommy a long time to write this letter because, honestly, I've been really sad about losing Papaw and sitting down and writing this makes it all seem very real.  So long as I'm doing things, staying busy, and not writing this letter then my dad really isn't gone.  But since tomorrow is Thanksgiving, I've decided that I need to be thankful for the time that I did have with my dad, and thankful for the time the two of you got to spend with him. And since I know that memories will fade, I think its important to put a few down on paper now so that when you get older you can know more about your Papaw and how very much he loved you.

Your Papaw became my dad when I was 11 years old, when he married Nanny. And although he wasn't my "real" dad, he was a dad to me in every sense of the word.  Even after he and your Nanny divorced 10+ years later, he was still my dad and your Papaw.  He would remind me every time I saw him "you know I'm your daddy right?"  And almost immediately following that statement he would get on to me for something. "Well, as your daddy I think you're . . ." not eating right, not getting enough sleep, working too hard, etc. Your Papaw LOVED to worry!

He also loved sweets. That man could live on junk food and Little Debbie cakes if you would let him! And, his favorite pasttime was to just sit on his front porch and wave as cars drove by.  He HAD to be outdoors.  He would get all twitchy if he sat inside for too long. :) In fact, there was not a single person in the neighborhood who didn't know your Papaw. He never met a stranger.

Back in the day, your Papaw was hot stuff at good ol' Magnet Cove High School.  But what can you expect from an All-State football player and ladies man, right? You know how sometimes you think that your parents are exaggerating their "glory days"?  Not the case for your Papaw. He actually downplayed a lot of his football successes by saying it wasn't that difficult to run fast and hit hard. But after meeting a lot of his classmates and hearing stories, your Papaw was most definitely a star. 

Two things happened at his funeral that I think sum up his character quite nicely. First, an old girlfriend from when he was a Junior in high school brought by one of his letter jackets.  Your Papaw was quite fond of saying that he sure wished he had kept at least one of his letter jackets instead of giving them all away to girls. And to girls that he could no longer remember! But that was just his character, he didn't place the least bit of importance on material things. Second, a young (early twenties) neighbor and his wife came to the visitation. I recalled them vaguely from MCHS, but they were several years younger than me and had moved into the neighborhood just a few years ago. They said that your Papaw was the nicest guy they had ever met and that he had instructed his wife that if she ever had any trouble and he wasn't around to go and find your Papaw; that he would help her out and keep her safe.  Your Papaw would help ANYONE out in need, and he wouldn't hesitate to give someone his very last dollar if they needed it. And, I can promise you that I've watched him do it.

But most importantly, your Papaw loved you both. More than you will ever know. He lived for our visits and loved to just sit and listen to you talk. I'm so sorry that he won't be around to watch you grow up. To hassle Emma about boys and just thoroughly embarass you around them like he did to me. I'm sorry that he won't be able to take Seeley hunting, fishing, or camping. And, I'm just so sorry that neither one of you will be able to remember him very well. Your Papaw was not one for pictures; it seemed like every time I would get out the camera for a picture he would turn all Where's Waldo on me and disappear from sight. But, I did manage to find a few pictures of him that I hope will help you to remember him.

January 4, 2003


MCHS Homecoming, 1995
Christmas, 1998

Senior Year, MCHS
All my love,

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Letters to Seeley

My sweet boy,
It occurs to me that I haven't written you a letter in quite some time . . . so how about a "summer wrap-up" since it is supposedly going to be fall here in Arkansas any day now?

Some milestones from this summer:
  1.  You turned 2!! I still can't believe that you're such a big boy!
  2. You officially wear the same size shoe as your big sister. 10. All I can say is you are going to have some ginormous feet little man. Ginormous.
  3. We found out you have an extremely severe allergy to cashews. I hope and pray that I never have to use the epipen. Please! Oh, and I also put the fear of God into your preschool regarding said nut allergy. Mama Bear came out that day for sure. 
  4. You had your first haircut. And possibly your last since it did NOT go well.
  5. I've decided that one day you are going to climb Mt. Everest, make a killing at riding BMX, or be a pro boxer. Or all three. You love to climb on anything that isn't nailed down, ride tricks on your 4-wheelers, and beat the living crap out of your sister.

  6. You also have a huge fascination with guns. Not serial-killer style, more of the generic boys-just-gotta-kill-stuff type of love. Holton has been a big influence on this. You, Holton, and Parker will run through MeMe's house killing each other. Or protecting Emma and MeMe's tea parties from alien invaders, pirates, etc. I love seeing armed sentries protecting the tea party!  Of course, once the juice and snacks come out you and Parker typically leave Holton on sentry duty by himself and dig right in. Apparently all of that pesky war stuff makes a guy hungry.
  7. You've also developed a new way of letting us know when you're displeased about something. You shoot us. You will literally mimic holding a gun and make the pow-pow noise. We're working on curbing this little tendancy since I don't think it will go over well in kindergarten.
  8. While you've always been a shoe lover, boots are now the big thing. You want to wear them with everything. And I do mean everything. (Do you see how many times your boots make an appearance in this letter?!)

  9. Your big boy bed is not such a big bed after all. You toss and turn like a crazy person at night and wind up hitting your head on the toddler bed rails. Sooo, most nights you wind up in bed with Mommy and Daddy. Plus side is lots of extra snuggles. Down side is that I usually wake up covered in drool. :) I see a twin size bed in your near future.
The one thing that hasn't changed this summer is your sweet disposition and ability to wiggle out of trouble. Even when you make me so mad I could just melt into a puddle of pure Mommy fury, you will do something to make me laugh. It is impossible to stay mad at you! And you still give the best snuggles in the whole world. And I absolutely adore your duck face kisses.

All my love,

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Letters to Emma

Sweet Emma,
So much has happened since my last letter that I don't know where to start! I could promise to do a better job of keeping up with these letters, but I think that would be setting myself up for failure. BUT, I will try. Just don't be too disappointed if its another few months before I can get one pulled together. Between you and your brother every second of every day is covered! :)

One biggie over the past few months has been t-ball. You missed your first week of practice because you were in the hospital. Again. My poor sweetie. Maybe one of these days we can go an entire year without spending a week "vacationing" at St. Joseph's Hospital. So, after having missed a full week of practice you were understandably a little nervous about going to practice. And by a little nervous, I mean crying-as-if-your-heart-was-breaking nervous. You flat out refused to go onto the field without me or your daddy. And if the ball came anywhere near you, you just ran the other direction. I'll admit that I was a little concerned about how the season was going to go.

This little trend of crying and fit throwing continued. You wanted to quit t-ball before every practice. Every practice. Twice a week. I think it was traumatic for all of us. But Mama and Daddy insisted that you keep trying. Mainly because you love playing t-ball when its just our family. The new people and crowds were making you nervous. And although it broke my heart to dispense some tough love and FORCE you to go out onto the field I promise I only had your best interest at heart. I don't want you to spend your life getting so worked up and nervous that you miss out on doing something that you enjoy.

And guess what? You LOVED t-ball by the end of the season. You were actually mad when the season was over! The first few games you would still cry when you went up to bat the first time. But all of the parents started cheering for you and Daddy started to help coach the team. This helped build up your confidence a lot. And kiddo, you may be small (the smallest on the team actually) but you are mighty! You can hit that ball like nobody's business! And after overcoming a few line drives to the shins (ouch) and Mama whipping out the tried and true "surprise bag" you even started chasing after the ball when you were in the field. And you know what else? My little leftie can throw the ball too!

Your team even went on to win the championship! And boy was that a rough day! You sweet little babies played FOUR games in a row. By the end of game four you could barely hold your bat upright to swing. Mama can't blame you though, it was 10:30pm. We were all dog tired! But you won! And you got a super big trophy and made some sweet friends. We can't wait until next year.

You also decided this past month that you didn't want to keep your earrings any longer. Why? Because we needed to change them out and it was the absolute end of the world. I kid you not. An hour and a half later and we FINALLY had both earrings changed out. You are seriously destined to win an Academy Award for your dramatic displays. (Obviously you kept your ears pierced. But it was very touch and go there for a while. Another five minutes of trying to get you to hold still and I would have thrown up my hands.)

We also found out that you are allergic to eggs. Ugh! On the bright side, you're not allergic to dogs anymore! But this does mean that you can't eat cake, ice cream, or anything else with eggs in it. You were not pleased at all to lose Friday Donut Days. Sorry my little sweet pea, but I'm still on the search for a donut recipe that is egg-less. Since I can substitute applesauce in for eggs in cakes, maybe I can do the same for a donut. We'll see. You've been really good about the food restrictions due to the allergy. The only time it seems to bother you is when we're at a birthday party. I'll bring you a little cup of sherbert and you're usually ok with it.

You continue to surprise me at how well you take situations like that. You are such a trooper. Sometimes I feel guilty because it seems like you've had to grow up a little faster than some of your friends, and you've had to go through more tough times. It always reminds me though of how lucky I am to have you and how God must surely have special things in store for you. How can He not? You are without a doubt the funniest, loudest, silliest, and sweetest little girl that I know.

I love you my little Monkey Doo!

Friday, June 1, 2012


Here lately the ol' blog has been bumped down in the priority list, and its got good company.  Other things that have been dumped at the bottom of my "to-do" list include: pedicures, sleep, hair maintenance, craft projects. . .  sigh.  Basically anything to do with personal favs and preferences. LOL. We have just been crazy busy!

This is one reason:

T-ball and softball have taken over our weeknights and lives.  We're at the ball fields three days a week; Emma plays twice a week and Jeremy helps coach, and hubs plays one night a week.  I'm actually a little jealous because I wanted to play softball too this year but couldn't swing it because of my summer class. (Which is yet another reason I have no time for anything fun.) But it's ok. Hubs' team is a little accident prone.  I'm thinking I need to join a different team.  Then I can kick his butt and gloat about it. (Yes, competition plays a major role in our marriage.)
Did I mention I have a summer class too?  Ugh.  Two nights a week from 6pm-10pm.  This girl hasn't gotten into bed before Midnight in over a month.  The bags under my eyes think it has been closer to two months but my poor brain is too confused to argue about it.

Work has also been really busy.  Which is awesome, but here lately I've been working straight through lunch. Which means no gym, and this mama needs some gym time to cope with stress.  So I've promised myself that in June the gym will be bumped up the priority list again.  I'm also thinking about buying a little seat for my bike so that Seeley can go with me on bike rides.  Sounds like a good way to get some exercise and little-man time all at once, so we'll see.

Spring cleaning fever also hit me this month.  Better late than never right?  I'm feeling super accomplished.  I bleached the white siding on our house so that it sparkles. (FYI- I loathe white siding. It is evil and getting painted asap.)  For the first time in 7 years I washed the outside windows. LOL. It's amazing what a difference that made! Did some painting outside on our front door and shutters, painted the utility room, and did some landscaping.  Go me!

One major upcoming change in our house is that the hubs is going back to school.  He's talked about being an RN for YEARS, especially with all of Emma's health issues, but never pulled the trigger.  I finally told him the other day to suck it up and go.  So kind and loving of me right?!

Yes, it will suck for three years while he goes to school full-time and works part-time. 
Yes, homework is hell after being out of school for a while. 
Yes, we'll have to do some extra juggling between homework, school, work, and kids. 
Yes, we'll have to forego some "extras" while he's in school (bye-bye Hogs tickets).
 BUT, it will be worth it in the end. 

So, as we speak he's signing up for classes and taking his entrance exam for the nursing program.  I'm super proud of him and praying that one of his classes is "bedside manor."  LOL. 

Letters for the kids to come soon.  I hope. :)