Saturday, December 31, 2011

What I Didn't Post

It's 3 am on December 31st.  I'm nursing my baby.  And I've decided I have to catch up on the ol' blog before the new year.  It's been a while.  And I've got a lot to share.  But I haven't edited a photo in two months (coincidentally, that's how old my baby is!) I'm typing one-handed, and I can't see the keyboard (a challenge for anyone, but for those of us who never bothered  to learn typing it's really fun...).  So what I'm trying to say is, here's what I wanted to tell you but didn't.

We had a baby.  I guess I did tell you that.  But it was kind of a big deal.  I love him.

His brothers and his Daddy love him, too.  What is it about seeing your big kids with your new baby?  Pure bliss.  And your husband with his new little one?  Swoon.

 My brother is an artist.  And thank goodness for that, since we had a boy who needed to be Darth Maul for Halloween.  

My house has been taken over by Pokemon.  Camden was having some, let's call them "discipline issues," and needed an "incentive.  He worked hard on his behavior and finally earned the pack of Yu-Gi-Oh cards he'd been wanting.  Upon getting to the store - and figuring out he could get either ten pokemon cards for the price of five yu-gi-oh... we've become a pokemon family.  Mandisa doesn't quite get it.  But she's willing to give it a try for her boys.

I took photos of my sweet little one-week-old Nick.

Then I took pictures of my sweet little two-week-old Nick.

Speaking of two-week-old babies, how many do you know that were already smiling?  Because mine was!  Have you ever seen anything so cute in your whole entire life?  

I kinda like my siblings.  Just a little bit.

Camden played soccer.  He is awesome.  If I do say so myself.  His biggest problem this fall was that sometimes he played too well.  And then his coach would tell him to hold back.  No need to run up the score in U8 soccer...

Jake's class gave a concert.  There is absolutely nothing more entertaining than watching a bunch of third gators stand in front of a crowd.

Twenty-five cents a bag and the chance to use "power tools" means Mommy gets an almost clean yard.

Move over Michaelangelo.  Nick's discovered ceiling fans.  Your Sistine Chapel's got nothing on these things.

Twelve years ago, as I was getting ready to go out one evening, my grandmommy asked me where I was going.  I told her I was going to be Mary at the Temple.  She looked a little shocked and asked, "With who?"  "Dan."  She thought I had said I was going to be married at the Temple, and was just a little surprised since at that point I had only been out with this guy once.  No worries, Grandmommy.  I was just going to freeze my bum off being Mary in the live Nativity.  But I got to look at those pretty blue eyes while freezing my bum off.  And went to be married at the Temple - with Dan - the next Christmas.
This year we got to hold a real live baby.  And we were inside, so no freezing bums.  But he's still got those pretty blue eyes.  And I think his new baby might be lucky enough to have them, too.  Maybe...

Jake turned NINE.  We celebrated with a Harry Potter party.  It was pretty much the coolest party ever.

Camden is - hands down - the best, most attentive big brother ever.  I'm so glad he gets to be one!

And then there's Mandisa, who takes her responsibilities very seriously.

Okay, the baby is going back to bed, and so must I.

Sunday, December 11, 2011


Sorry for the lack of posts lately.
We've been busy doing a lot of this.
And some other stuff,
but mostly this.

Monday, November 7, 2011


Nicholas Alexander

Arrival: Thursday, October 27, 2011
2:03 am
Weight: 7 pounds 4 ounces
Height: 20 1/2 inches

Absolutely perfect.

Thursday, September 22, 2011


Guess who FINALLY lost a tooth!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

There's a heart attack in my future.

Jake has been waiting for years to play football.  Our county league starts at age eight, which seemed like a good age to this mommy.  At least, it did when he was five.  Several years down the road.  Until then, we could stick with soccer and baseball.  I, for one, am much more comfortable with those no-pads-needed sports!

But guess what.  Years do go by, and cute little five-year-old boys do grow up into big kinda-tough eight-year-old boys.  And mommies find themselves registering their babies for the local tackle football league.  Oh goodness.

So, here's where I admit my bad mothering thoughts to all the world.  On Jake's first day of practice - a 100+ degree day in August - I sent him off with his daddy for two hours of real football drills.  I knew there would be yelling coaches and hot sweaty bodies under heavy, uncomfortable pads.  I knew he would get hit and knocked down.  And while I hoped and prayed he wouldn't actually get hurt, I also hoped and prayed that he would hate it.  I had my little speech all planned out.  You know the one... "You made a commitment to the team, and you will play - and give it your all - for the whole season.  But then you never have to play football again."  It would be a teaching moment and my heart would only have to suffer through one season of tackle football.  Oh, and did I mention I really hoped he would sit the bench all season?  It's true.

But here's the kicker.  That first night after his first practice, Jake walked in the house beaming.  I've never seen him so happy - no, overjoyed - about anything.  Ever.  And after a shower - I couldn't actually stay in the same room with him due to the overpowering smell of hot, sweaty boy - he told me how much he loves football.  Later, his daddy told me how practice went down, and yes, my boy got yelled at, and run hard, and hit and knocked down a-plenty.  But my boy also got to hit and knock down somebody else's boy.  And he liked that.

It's been over a month.  Jake's practiced three times a week for two hours at a time.  He's played in two games.  Should have been three, but now we're all sick - except for Camden, of course, who started it all - so the Wildcats had to struggle through last night's game without their star second-string offensive lineman.  Sorry Wildcats.  He really wanted to be there.  And after all these hours of the hardest work this little man has ever had to do, he's even more in love with football.

This mommy's dreams of not worrying about concussions and broken bones and torn whatnots have been successfully dashed.  I've got a lot of worrying in my future.

But when I see that boy's gleefull face, I figure I'll gladly worry.  He sure does love the game.

I think it's a good thing these boys wear helmets.  Because that cute face couldn't possibly cause the fear and intimidation he'd like to instill in his opposing defensive lineman.  But I sure do think it's sweet!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Nightmares and Snotty Noses

See this boy?  Looks all sweet and innocent, right?
Don't let him fool you.
This boy has been having nightmares lately.  Most involve being chased by robbers, and once he's told his mommy the story he can go right back to sleep.
But the other night his nightmare was a little more disturbing.
He dreamed his principal shot him.
And no, we're not going to try to figure that one out all phsychologically and stuff.
Sufffice it to say, he was a little shaken up.
Which means only one thing.
Mom must sleep with the boy - NOSE TO NOSE.  There is no other option.  Or position.
Did I mention that this boy had a cold?
Because he did.
And now that he feels fine, his mom most certainly does not.
Just thought I'd share.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

I had this teacher in high school and she was awesome.  She taught 10th grade English.  She was young - just out of college and a former classmate of my best buddy's big sister.  She drank diet coke like it was going out of style.  She introduced me to Jane Austen and even made us all dress up for a day and act all ettiquette-y.  She really cared about her students.

Then she got married.  So exciting!  And then she had kiddos and stopped teaching so she could stay home for them.  My kind of girl!

And then, last week during our terrible rain and flooding, she lost her twelve-year-old son.

I've been heartbroken for her and for her family.  I've wondered how on earth one can go on, continue functioning, after the death of a child.

In the eulogy she gave at her sweet boy's memorial service the other day (read it here), she answered my question.

She has such love for her children and for the Lord.  She has faith.  And she continues, after all these years, to be an example to me.  I will forever remember that a gentleman should walk on the street side of a lady so she doesn't get hit by the trash - and worse - someone might throw out an upstairs window.  And I will forever remember the love and faith of a wonderful mother.

Please keep this family in your prayers.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

10:00 pm

I thought he went to bed a little too willingly tonight...

Friday, August 19, 2011

Note From an Aunt

You know what I think is really cool?
I've got these nephews.
And they are really into photography.
I always knew they'd grow up and want to be just like their Aunt Jen.
Or not.
So, even though I really can't claim credit,
I'm way proud of them.
Check out James' photo blog here.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

And one last thing...

We mustn't forget
Granny's Famous Last Night Glow Stick Parade.
Riding bikes in the dark.
Lit only by glow sticks.
No family reunion would be complete without it!

Friday, August 12, 2011

The Rest

 Seeing as how we've been home longer than we were actually at our reunion, it's probably about time I finish this up.  So, what else did we do? ...

 Mostly, we hung out.

 We celebrated Aunt Beka''s birthday...

 By doing the Peanuts dance.

 We rescued a turtle.

 We read good books.

 We tie-dyed.

 We ate treats.

 Mayo watched - and occasionally interupted - many a soccer game.

 We made indoor s'mores with Uncle John.

 We  beat the pinata...

 ... wore it as a hat ...

 ... and showed off our model walks.

 We made more s'mores.

In summary, we wore ourselves out!


Every evening after dinner we played soccer.
And every evening after dinner Camden got hurt.
But that didn't stop him.
Because the boy is fearless.
And really, really good.
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