Monday, June 28, 2010

Annual Trip

We are leaving this week for the beach and have made it an annual trip. Matt wasn't able to go with us last year as he had already taken his vacation for our Disney trip. Currently he is on a very long vacation until his new job starts. Then he will still be at home doing home study and learning about his new drugs. It's been great having an extra hand.

We are going back to Waterscape in Ft. Walton where we went last year. The kids had so much fun that it was a no brainer!

Last July 2009 at Waterscape. The toddler play area is great!

June 2008 Landry Grace's first beach trip....I decided not to do professional beach pics this trip and from now on will always hire a photographer! Didn't get one good shot! Booked our beach pictures early this year!
This next pic is one of them in a bike buggy. They did great in it and fell asleep. Mom and I rode probably 5 miles out from the condo when LG woke up and screamed the ENTIRE way back. I am sure the people we passed thought I was torturing her somehow. As soon as I picked her up she was fine. Just a little spoiled. I laugh so hard every time I think of this!

This is when Jake was 6 months old. I did hire a photographer but not until late and the only opening she had was a 6AM slot. Yeah it was a little too early!


On Tuesday of this past week we finally completed one of many projects around the house. When we moved here, there was an old swing set on the side of our property with old chains but no swings. I was in Toys R Us last week and finally bought the swings we needed to fix the swing set. The kids were thrilled! And after a couple of runs to Lowes for new chains and bolts, we now have swings!

Landry Grace pushing her big brother

Peach Festival

Another year has come and gone as the Ruston Peach Festival rolled through town this past weekend. It was so darn hot, we really didn't do much other than the pet show and parade. The kids loved them both! So it was worth all the sweat.

Below are the crew at the sweltering pet show. It was so hot I only attempted 1 picture. The rest of the time my rear end was burning UP on the concrete stairs. What we do for our children who DON'T want to leave before the trick category(1.5 hours later)!

Saturday we met up with some friends at the Alpha Chi house. I think it might become tradition as we gathered inside at first and had restrooms when needed. Great idea Katie!

They first saw the parade starting. Thought this was cute.
I have never seen such a picky candy picker-upper. She would study the candy on the ground, only to pick up a few pieces. Of course out of her skimpy findings, almost all of the candy ended up being spit out because she didn't like it. My dainty little girl!
He had a BLAST at the parade! Love this shot.
After it was over and done, Jake sat in the middle of Alabama Street thinking he was going to enjoy his peanuts. Sorry Buddy! Not gonna happen. But I did take a picture......
SUPER grandma! After running 13 miles at 5am and then helping out with the 5K, mom met up with us at the parade. We love having her around all the time!
And after sleeping until 7 am and running 0 miles, I showed up with my children neatly dressed at the parade;)!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Happy Father's Day

I am late posting this and not sure why all of my words are being underlined. Can't fix it and not that worried. We had a great Father's Day. I am so blessed to be surrounded by many wonderful men who have influenced my life greatly. I thank God often for blessing me!!

We had a set back this week....Jake has swimmer's ear and cannot complete his session of swim lessons. I thought about putting ear plugs in, but the doctor suggested I not plus he is in a lot of pain. I doubt he would even let me press something into his ear!

Landry Grace is swimming remarkably well...I really cannot believe how far she has come! She also has lost any fear she ever had of getting into the "big pool". She will jump right in or swim right off the steps. That part I don't really like as I want her to have some fear. Can't always have your cake and eat it too. So we just have to be really careful with her.

We are excited about our upcoming beach trip. We were going to cancel but have decided against it. My mother-in-law is taking us and we are also meeting up with lots more of Matt's family. It should be a lot of fun. But first we have the Peach Festival this weekend to enjoy!

Before we left for church on Sunday. Jake's ear was hurting and Matt looks overjoyed that I am taking their picture!

Playing Jake's new game: Hi Ho Cherry O. OOOOO the many times of picked up those darn cherries!

Landry Grace with her Big D!

And sweet Papaw with his grandbabies. We miss him so much.

Happy Father's Day!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Praise the Lord!

Matt was offered the job shortly after his interview today. We are so humbled by our Lord and give Him all the glory! He will be at home with us until be starts...we are so thankful!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

This and That

Nothing major to post but we have been enjoying this week with Jake hitting a major milestone today. I bought him a different flotation device today that gave him more stability in the water. He loved it and loved the water! I couldn't get him out of the pool!!!! I know it's not the same as swimming alone but I am so excited that he will get into the big pool!!! We went to Sharon's in-laws this morning to hang out and play. They are currently napping and I am blogging. Matt went into his interview at 2:30 and will probably be there for a few hours....biding the time until I hear from him.
Landry Grace swimming with Emma and Abby

The crew...I am so happy for Jake. Look at that sweet smile! He is so proud of himself!

Took some pictures this morning of the kids for a Father's Day present for Matt. My friend Hollie and her mom own Initially Yours and made this dress for is too big and i had to clip it in the did make for a cute picture though. Check out her site for some cute cute clothes and good deals.
We hung out with Landon and Kennedy Hall yesterday at their house and played on their water slide. This picture, hands down, might be one of the cutest I've ever taken. Love it!

This was before water day at VBS last Friday
Landry Grace with Chandler(aka Hank)
I took the kids to Allie Jones' 3rd birthday last Saturday and she had a Minnie Mouse cupcake cake....Jake looked hilarious with his black lips. Didn't bother him a bit.
My high school teammate Jonathan Macaskill was in from San Diego during the Memorial Day holiday and I was so glad I had the chance to visit with him. It's been 2 years since we last saw each other(when Matt and I were in San Diego we had dinner with he and his wife, Carrie). Jon is a Navy Seal and also hoping to qualify for the Boston Marathon in 2011. Hope to see him there!!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

The Breaks and Swim Lessons

Life comes with good news and I'll start with the bad news first. Matt lost his job today along with many others. We were expecting this but weren't certain. He will receive a severance package so that is the upside. The other upside is that we are almost certain Matt is the only person interviewing in Dallas this Thursday with DSI(another pharmaceutical job). His territory is based in Monroe so this would mean we wouldn't have to move and the start date is this would be a HUGE blessing if he gets offered the job. We are continuing to pray for God's guidance and know that his plan is much bigger than ours!

The GOOD news is(drum roll please).......Jake is doing well is swim lessons. I don't expect him to be swimming by the end of next week, but would like him to feel a little more comfortable in the big pool(as opposed to only wanting to swim in the baby pool). He cried some on the first day as did Landry Grace but today was so great I called mom and had her come for the last 10 minutes. When I say they are doing great I mean no crying...they are still very apprehensive in the water which is good. Hoping LG is swimming by the end of the lessons. She is my water baby. I am also proud of Jake, too!

Here they are before we left yesterday:
Giving me the "thumbs-up" before going to the pool...LG is doing the number 1. She can't quite manipulate that thumb!

Actually got a smile out of Jake on day 1 but there were tears right before this picture.
Landry Grace is all smiles
Another boy in their class was screaming(as lots of kids do at first) and this was really upsetting them. This picture captures their anguish....

Day 2........all smiles as they head out to Mrs. Linda's
Jake went in without a hitch!

And LG loved it too!

Sitting and waiting patiently for their turn........

We went to the Cedar Creek pool after this and Jake refused to get into the big pool.....he'll get used to it soon enough. Landry Grace wanted to stay in the big pool and is getting a lot more comfortable with me letting her go as she "swims" by herself.
This week has felt like the first official week of summer without places to be(other than 30 minute lessons) or anyone being sick. We are finally at an age where they can go for an extended amount of time without having to take a nap. It is SO nice to be able to take them places without rushing home for nap time. Yesterday we stayed at Lincoln Parish Park until 2:30 before coming home for naps and today we were out until 1:30 or so...........the kids are worn out and take nice loooong naps. But this has been a long time acoming!! It's hard being a parent but so rewarding at the same time!
On a side note, little LG pretty much has the potty training down pat! We have had our fair share of accidents but she is a pro compared to her brother at this age. When out swimming is when we are most accident prone but other than she is doing well.
Have a good week and I'll keep you posted on Matt's interview.

Monday, June 14, 2010


I have been talking to Jake and Landry Grace about our BIG DAY and it is here! Swim lessons with Mrs. Linda start today and will last for 2 weeks. The pictures below are of Jake at 19 months old....he LOVED the water. Last year I attempted to put him in swim lessons and he was petrified. I went and got him finally after 5 minutes of screaming and he has been scared to death of the water ever since. It makes me sad but I am hopeful that in the next 2 weeks Mrs. Linda can work her magic, maybe even a little. LG is going to and will be in the same class and she is totally fine in the water at this point.

Another plus of living in a small town is that our swim lessons are in our neighborhood so the kids are excited about driving the Barbie car to them! Please say a little prayer for Jake....talking about the situation seems to work with him, so I am praying that he will do OK. As of now, he refuses to get into the big pool and is content with playing in baby pools. Yes, that is OK but I just want him to be comfortable in the water and not so scared....we'll see!!

note: he sure does look awfully close to the board but he did not hit it on the way down. Looks as though he did!!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Out and About

Another week has flown by and find myself yet again trying to catch up on blogging. Last Saturday we went to Anna Mitchell's wedding. My very good friend Mary Catherine was in with her husband from Chicago and I also spent some time with another great friend, Brooke Carroll. She lives in Philadelphia and was in for several weeks and came to Anna's reception with her parents. It is always good to reconnect with people at weddings and this one did not disappoint. Anna was beautiful and we wish her all the best. The reception was so much fun and we stayed almost to the end since we had a babysitter and were able to enjoy ourselves.
Me and Mary Catherine with a favorite teacher of ours, Paula Pardue. She was my fine arts survey and American history teacher. I love her!

Me and Matt with Sarah and Ryan Kilpatrick. You have heard me talk about Sarah as she is my running partner and guess what? They are pregnant!!! Due in January so she is taking some time off from running right now. We are so excited for them!

These are friends from RHS class of '97: HeatherHay Reeder, Kim Hood Audi, Anna Mitchell Cox, me, Molly McMahone Stone, Mary Catherine Warner Foret, and Angie Colvin Taylor

I have been helping out with VBS at our church this week but went down with Lori Golden to Baton Rouge yesterday to help celebrate and surprise her husband Russ for his 40th birthday. She had some help with friends of hers that live in BR, the Naders'(you may remember Breaux from FCA at Ruston High), and Tommy and Margo(Tommy works with Russ). Matt met us in Baton Rouge at Walk On's for a fun dinner and then we(Matt and I ) headed to Marksville to spend the night. We got home this afternoon and thanks to my parents who kept Jake and Landry Grace while we were gone.
Lori and Russ.....yes, Lori was my senior English teacher and Russ coached football at during my time at RHS and now Russ is Matt's boss(until Tuesday that is!). We have come full circle!
The group at Russ' birthday surprise: Craig and Kristen(Holland's brother and sister-in-law), Lori and Russ, me and Matt, Tommy and Margo, Breaux and Holland Nader

And just to bring you up to date on Matt's job, he will find out Tuesday whether or not his current company, Takeda, will keep him on as a sales rep. He did get another interview with a pharmaceutical company next Thursday and they are flying him out to Dallas. We are praying that all will go well and that this is God's plan for us. This job's territory is Monroe and surrounding areas so we wouldn't have to move. A potential blessing.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Great Wolf Lodge

It seems like a while since my last post so I am attempting to do this during nap time. Last Sunday, Mom asked me if I wanted to take the kids to the beach for several days. Since our New Orleans trip with the kids was canceled due to Matt's potential layoff with his company, we opted to go. After much discussion, mom and I decided to go to Dallas and visit the Great Wolf Lodge. It was a little closer and Jake was still not 100% feeling well and I thought he would shake the virus by the day we left(Tuesday). Landry Grace's bug lasted almost 5 days so I figured Jake would be better by day 5.... this decision was not my finest moment as a parent. But he was a trooper and did great for the most part.

We only spent 1 night because it is pricey yet you can go into the water park at 1, check in is at 4, and then you can play all the next day. We left around 9:30 Tuesday morning and stopped in Shreveport to run a few errands, getting us in Grapevine around 3pm. My kiddos are pretty good travelers so that always helps. Our room was ready when we got there so after checking in and putting our suits on we headed to the indoor water park. There was plenty of stuff for toddlers to do! They could ride a couple of "big" water slides but since there was no lap riding, I knew neither one of mine would do it alone. They enjoyed the toddler area and the lifeguards are plenty. They are strict and I like that. It was very warm inside which was good for LG as she always gets cold when swimming. She still managed to get a little cold on day 2 but we went outside to swim and warm up a little.

After a couple of hours Jake was done...he still didn't feel great and I hated that we rushed going over to Great Wolf but there wasn't much we could do at this point. After hanging in the room for a bit we decided to eat at the Rainforest Cafe. It was a 3 minute drive from the lodge and there was a train they rode on. Jake was in a great mood for that but otherwise didn't feel well. We made it back just in time for the 8:15 story time and that was pretty uneventful but at least the kids enjoyed it.

The next day Jake slept until 10....another bad sign. One good thing about the room is that it had a semi-wall that acted as a barrier and he slept on the pull out couch. LG slept with me and mom had a bed to herself. We were able to not make too much noise and I took LG down to the lobby while he slept. There is a lot to do other than the water park but mine were not old enough to really understand(arcade, spa for kids, ice cream shop, pizza, etc.) so we didn't spend much $$ other than our lodging.

When Jake finally got up we packed everything up and loaded the car as check out was at 11. He seemed in a much better mood than the night before but it was short lived. He played in the water for an hour and was ready to go. LG had an absolute blast and cried when we finally left around 2. I know if Jake had felt better he would have had a better time but it wasn't his fault. I felt bad for having him there and underestimated this silly bug. We got home around 6 on Wednesday and again the kids did great on the trip home.

Sooo, now that i have received the award for "What not to do with your sick child", it is Friday(8 days after he first got sick) and he is finally back to his old self. I am already talking to Matt or possibly mom again about going back in August for a night. The great part about the trip was Texas schools weren't out yet. The crowds weren't bad at all and I even had time to go down several water slides. They were fun! I've heard that the lines can get extremely long and that would not have been fun!

When we first got to the lodge. Jake normally is the one who won't take pictures...but I got this!
Here we are playing in the toddler area. There is also an area with larger slides and areas to play in but we mainly stayed here. There is also an outdoor pool that they enjoyed.
At the beginning of Day 2

Rainforest Cafe in the Grapevine Mall

They loved this little train. Love their faces in this picture! They were SO excited!

These jet skis that sprayed water were their favorite. Hands down!

Love capturing moment!! Priceless!

Playing in the fountains with Big Mommy! I love that she is retired and gets to spend so much time with us.
Did baby girl love the wave pool or what?? For a while anyway;)....a big wave did us in!!

We have a lot going on during the next several days with weddings and birthday parties. Matt has 2 interviews next week. One on Monday and another on Tuesday, so we are praying that one of those jobs is in the Lord's plans. Hope you have a great weekend and we'll be back soon!