Monday, January 28, 2013

This week at a glance

1.  Fred and I have discovered we like to eat duck.  A man from our church gave us 10 ducks recently.  The first time we ate duck he just got the breast and prepared duck poppers.  This time he prepped the entire duck, you know, minus the feathers, head, etc.  We are going to try roast duck and dressing this week for supper.  I'll keep you posted.  Corndogs will be in the freezer for the kids.  I'm not thinking they will like it. 
2.  I love how different my boys are.  This week in separate conversations with them they expressed an interest in summer camps.  Clayton wants to go to LEGO camp or Robotics camp.  Jack wants to go to basketball camp.  I love it!
3.  Clayton came home the other day with his fourth grade 4H speech assignment.  I remember writing my speech.  It was about friendship.  Ahhh, the memories...I digress.  He came in so excited about the assignment and proclaimed, "Mom, give me some paper and a pencil.  I got this."  I love his spirit and pray he keeps it.
4.  Jack loves basketball.  He scored 10 points at his last game and had 12 rebounds.  He grins the entire time he is playing.  It is the cutest thing ever.
5.  Andrew does not like the vaccum cleaner.  He sits in my room (in fear) while I vaccum.  He came out of my room and asked if I was done.  I told him my vaccum cleaner was broken.  He told me to get some batteries for it.  Think he has been playing the Wii with the big boys?!?

Monday, January 21, 2013

This Week

1.  Fred spoke at an MLK, Jr. prayer breakfast this morning.  It was really a moving experience.  I love worshiping with people of different denominations, backgrounds and skin color.  It was an honor to attend and celebrate. 
 2.  Saturday our church hosted a Ladies Lunch.  Initially, I expected 20-30 people to be in attendance.  By the time Saturday got here we had close to 100 people in attendance.  I was blown away! 
 Here is one of the center pieces.  Isn't that lovely?!?  Please note this was not my idea, nor my creation.  Someone much better than me came up with this. 
3.  Sunday at church Clayton found me in the crowd and randomly gave me a hug.  It melted my heart.  Later he told me he needed to ask me a question.  I don't care what his motive was.  I'll take it.
4.  Jack and I were playing Marion Kart on the Wii this week together.  I am not very good.    He told me I needed to practice more.  I'll have to add that to my list of "to-do's" each day.  I think that will be time well spent. Ha!!
5.  I teach the kiddos at church on Wednesday nights.  Andrew usually comes with me to my class.  One thing we work on is the books of the Bible.  This week I looked up and he was singing along with the other kiddos while we were working on them.  He knows almost all 66 books.  It is amazing what they learn/pick up. 

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Five on Friday

1. We buy our meat from local farmers.  This time we got a ginormous pork shoulder from our hog.  I was just going to put it in the crock pot.  Fred quickly saw what I was planning and put the breaks on my scheme.  He concocted a rub and smoked that thing Tuesday.  We didn't get to eat dinner until about 8 that night because of ball practices, but once we finally ate it was worth the wait.  My, it was good.  Melt in your mouth good. 
2.  They say things come in threes.  We've had our bathroom leak...that's one.  Now, our car...that's two.  I don't even want to know what three is going to be.  I'm thankful that the first two problems could be solved with money.  My mom always told me no problem was too big that could be fixed with money.  I have repeated this to myself several times over the last few weeks. There she goes...

3.  Clayton asked me a science question tonight.  I answered with a not so confident "yes".  To which he responded, "I'll go ask Dad, he's the science guy."  Good job Clayton, you catch on quickly.  As my ACT scores would indicate I am NOT the girl for any science question.
4.  I think Jack liked duck hunting with our friend last week as evidenced by his library book choice.
5.  Andrew and I went grocery shopping the other day while in Nashville.  He got his own cart.  He was so excited, even though he doesn't look like it in this picture. I was excited with what was in the buggy.  I do love a grocery store.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

First week of 2013

1.  Our sanctuary at church has been timeless and tastefully done.  In the past several years though the thirty year old carpet has experienced some wear and tear and the pews take a little faith when you sit down on them.  You know, faith that the pew is going to hold you up.  The time has come for new carpet, pew coverings and reinforced pews.  The process started this week.  Fred says it looks really good.  Pictures coming soon. 
2.  Our friends from Seattle were in the area this week and they stopped by for a visit.  We enjoyed catching up with them and their kiddos.  It made me miss Seattle and our friends there.  I cannot believe we didn't get a picture!
3.  Several months ago Clayton and I were in the car together.  He asked me what I thought about if I had nothing to think about.  I told him that never happened to me.  He then said, "Well, I think about unicorns."  Alright...Fast forward to this week and we were playing a game of Hedbandz as a family.  I was giving cards to everyone and one of the cards was unicorn.  I put it back in the box and Clayton asked why.  I told him it would be too difficult for someone to guess.  He responded very promptly and all in one breath with, "Unicorns are mythical creatures that live in a magical forest far, far away from here."  Ha!  Looks like someone has had some empty thinking time.  (Click here to see the game Hedbandz.)
4.  Jack is playing basketball for the first time.  He loves it.  He grins the entire game, whether on the bench or in the game.  In fact, he smiles so big I don't know how he sees to play.  It is just precious. 
5.  Andrew is a trip while playing the game Hedbandz.  He has to go last.  If he doesn't he just goes around the table and tells what everyone is.  When you are guessing your card, if it takes too long, he'll tell you your card as well.  It is really funny.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

A New Year's Eve Surprise

Our good friends called us up to see if the boys and Fred would want to go duck hunting.  They jumped at the chance!  Our friend provided all the camo, hunting equipment and snacks.  I seriously think they ate the entire time they were hunting.  I told them I would provide the food next time and they quickly declined my offer.  Clayton informed me that nothing was healthy or whole wheat.  I guess my style of snacks are unwanted/unwelcomed in the duck blind.

Here are my sweet hunters (and our good friend's dog, Ace):

Both those duck came home with us.  Fred marinated them, wrapped them with bacon and then cooked them in a skillet.  They were delicious!  I am still finding feathers in my kitchen. Nice.

All in all, even with all the sickness, it has been a great break!  We are going to make each day count in 2013!  And...we are going to count down the days until summer break! 

Christmas 2012

Festivities started for us the Saturday before Christmas in Memphis with the Danley (Fred's mother) side of the fam.  Jack was sick and we debated if we should go or not, but we went anyway.  Even with him sick we all had a great time.  This was the first Christmas without Nana so we felt it was important for us all to be there.  However, on the way home Jack seemed to go downhill.  By the time we got back to Paris his fever was over 102 and he was pretty sick.  We knew at this point that he did not have strep, but most likely had the flu.
By Monday he seemed to be feeling better so we made our annual Christmas Eve trip to Cracker Barrel.  It was lots of fun!  As you can see from the picture below I had not taken a shower and it looks like we consumed massive amounts of food.  In our defense we really just had a lot of plates where we shared food.  Ha!
On the way home we thought Jack was back to himself.  Here's the conversation:
Clayton: (In a very annoyed voice)  Mom, tell Jack that Jesus is NOT God's cousin!
I turned around to see Jack grinning from ear to ear.  Does he know how to push his brother's buttons or what?!?  Too funny!
Me to Jack:  Jack, Jesus is not God's cousin.
Jack: (Still grinning and chuckling)  I know.  

We came on home and were met by my family.  Even with Jack still sick they decided to brave our house:  My mom and dad, my brother and his family, my aunt Christie, Aunt Janice and Mun!  We had quite the crew!!  (Mun and Janice did not come until mid afternoon so they are not in the group shot.)

  My brother and his crew left and everyone else settled down for the night.  What a night!  Andrew was afraid of Santa.  Aunt Janice agreed to meet Santa outside instead of Santa coming in our house to drop the gifts off.   This suggestion satisfied him and he went to sleep.  Speaking of sleep...this 1856 square foot house has never had so many people in it!!  We slept in our bed, mom and dad slept in Andrew's bed, Jack slept on the bottom bunk, Clayton and Andrew slept on the top bunk, Christie slept on the dining room couch, Mun slept on the pull out sofa in the playroom and Janice slept on the couch in the living room.  Just think...I didn't even have to blow up a mattress...Ha!!
Around 2:00 am Santa's reindeer did not wake us, but Jack did.  He was sick, sick, sick.  He  was pitiful.  Poor Janice and Christie, they were in the middle of it all.
Clayton woke up first and then proceeded to wake everyone else.  They came in the living room to one present.  The one present had nine presents inside all coded with different wrapping paper.  Upon opening the big present they had to go on a scavenger hunt to crack the code.  They were pretty excited about this.  I got this great idea from our good friends at church.  She is so creative!

The following is Fred's Christmas gift from me.  It is called a "Buff".  Ideally, it covers his head when he is outside without him having to wear a cap.  He really does like it and it provided a few laughs Christmas morning.  
Later that afternoon we headed to Memphis to Christmas at the Shackelfords.  We were greeted with a yummy steak dinner. 

After dinner and a delicious cheesecake we opened presents.  Here Clayton is opening his favorite gift...Lego's.  He has worked on them all break.  He loves a Lego!

As part of the boys Christmas present we took them to a Memphis Grizzlies game the day after Christmas.  It was really fun.  Believe it or not, Jack was STILL sick, but when Santa purchases tickets a month before the event he/she does not know if someone is going to be sick. Sigh.
I say everyone had a good time....Everyone was having fun until the Grizz came out.  Upon his entrance Andrew declared he was ready to go home.  He then proceeded to play the "bathroom card".  We went to the bathroom three times until Fred finally told Andrew that the Grizz was in the bathroom.  Andrew stayed in the arena the rest of the game.  Hey, you gotta do what you gotta do. 

While in Memphis, with Jack still sick, we were brushing teeth before leaving.  I looked down, and to my horror, Andrew was using Jack's toothbrush.  Thirty six hours later, guess who was sick?!?  We thought Andrew was okay, but in about an hour and a half he went from okay to wheezing and struggling to get a breath in.  I took him to the doctor in Jackson and they confirmed that Andrew had  the flu and pneumonia.  He is/was a sick little fella.  I bid the staff of the Jackson Clinic farewell and promised them a visit again on the next major holiday since we seem to always visit them while in Jackson for a celebration.  Pretty pitiful, right?!?

Despite all the sickness we really enjoyed Christmas together!  We tried to spread germs cheer everywhere we went! Grin.  I cherish these days while my kiddos are young.  My prayer is that we will remain close as a family as they continue to grow, that in each season of life we will choose to see the silver lining.  I mean, seriously, how many more holiday's will I get to snuggle a sick baby?!?  How many more years will I have to get up with a sick child in the middle of the night, even if it was Christmas.  Isn't this what future stories are made of?!?  I hope we never forget these details.  I also hope that no one else gets sick. :-)