Sunday, December 20, 2009

All I Want For Christmas

Sugar originally wanted a horse for Christmas. We managed to convince her that Santa wouldn't bring a horse to a family that wasn't prepared and didn't have room for a horse. Well, now she wants a sled. So far, we haven't been able to budge her from the sled request, no matter how many times we say that there's not enough snow in this part of Texas to ride one. She insists that, "She's going to use it for something else!" What? We haven't gotten any kind of answer to that. I guess we need to hire a Santa who can tell her that he doesn't bring sleds to little girls in Texas. Anyone? Anyone? Thankfully, Spice is a little easier to please.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Perceptions Are Funny Things, Aren't They?

We received a notice from Sugar's school last week informing us that vision and hearing screenings were being conducted. I asked Sugar whether she had had her eyes and ears checked. She responded with a very convincing no. We continued to discuss her day at school, when suddenly she exclaimed, "Oh! We played 'The Eye and Ear Game'!" Hmmmm. I asked her to describe the ear game for me. She explained, "First you put on these headphones that are a little bit squeezy. Then you listen for a beep and when you hear one, you raise your hand." She went on to tell me about the eye game: "You stand way back at the green tape. There's robot fingers on the wall and some go this way, some go that way, some go like this and some go like this. *turning her hand to point up, down, left, and right* You have to look at the chart and tell which way they're going." "Sooooo," I asked. "You haven't had your eyes and ears tested yet?" "Mommy!" she replied. "I already told you I haven't had my tests!!!" ***Disclaimer: Sugar passed her screenings with flying colors. This is a photo from last year when she decided to try Paprika's glasses on for size.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

I Can't Believe I Haven't Posted Since August!!!

Wow...it's been a while. A LONG while! I've intended for weeks, *ahem*, months, to put something new up, but it seems that the blog is constantly falling to the bottom of the priority list. Tonight was the Burleson Christmas Parade and we rode the HCCA float along with several other families and Ms. Werner, the school administrator. It was WICKED cold, but we had a great time. Spice LOVED throwing candy out to the other kids on the street, although they had to risk their very lives to get it since her tosses never managed to land very far from the trailer. Sugar took herself right up to have a seat by Ms. Werner and spent most of the parade sitting with her. I was only slightly jealous. Actually, I was quite proud of her. She can be very shy and clingy at times, but it's obvious that she feels very comfortable with her teacher and Ms. Werner. We are so glad that we chose to send her to HCCA!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Our Little Kindergartener

Sugar made the transition into kindergarten last Tuesday flawlessly!. (I, on the other hand, had a little difficulty!) She has a fantastic teacher who has so many amazing things planned for this year and she loves going to class each day. Paprika, once again proving his superior mental capacity, told Spice that she would be going to Grammygarten each day while Sugar was at kindergarten, which seemed to appease her quite nicely. We are so excited to see our Sugar blossom into a confident, independent little girl and we can't wait to see all of the things that she will accomplish this year.

video

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Sugar, The Artist

Sugar loves doing craft projects, whether it involves coloring, painting, foam stickers, or whathaveyou. So when we found The Art Barn this summer (thanks, Michelle!) Sugar was hooked. She has thus far made a bowl for Grammy, a pumpkin plate for Nana (sorry, no photo of that one!),
a rainbow box for her cousin's birthday next month (shhhh!)
and a unicorn box for herself.
I even joined in the fun and made this tile collage cross.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Our First REAL Emergency

On Tuesday night, we experienced our first SERIOUS child-related emergency since Sugar was born a little over five years ago. As we prepared to go to Nana's house after dinner, the girls went out to get in the car ahead of us. Spice took the opportunity to play for a moment and was bitten by some type of ant (we think) as she stood in the grass by our driveway. As I was coming outside, Sugar was racing into the house to tell us that Spice had been bitten. We put some StingEze on her foot, gave her a bag of ice and proceeded to head over to Nana's house. On our 5-minute drive, Sugar began to complain that her 'lip wouldn't go up'. When I looked in the backseat I thought that her lip had gotten numb because she was putting the ice pack on her mouth. As we neared Nana's driveway, she began to complain that her 'eyes were going down'. I looked in the backseat again to discover that her face appeared to be swelling. When we stopped, Paprika jumped out to check her, while I ran into Nana's to find out whether she had any Benadryl on hand. She didn't. So Paprika, being the level-headed, rational person in the family, thought to rush back home and get a hefty dose of Benadryl in her before we attempted to go to the nearest emergency clinic. The Benadryl had the desired effect....her swelling did not worsen...and the CareNow clinic physician prescribed a steroid, which we were able to fill the next morning. Two days later, her swelling has almost disappeared, and she's back to her normal wild self. Thanks be to God for His faithfulness to us and His care for our little Spice! And now here's Spice's version:

video

Friday, August 7, 2009

And They Swam And They Swam All Over The Dam!

For the last couple of weekends, we've had the pleasure of spending Sunday afternoon swimming in the pool at my brother's best friend's parent's house. Got that? The girls just love going 'swimming', although neither of them can swim yet. Sugar would still rather die than go under water, and Spice isn't too much better about it. However, I am finally seeing some progress and now have hope that maybe one day they will actually be able to swim. Look at Sugar floating on her back and swimming all over the pool! She even jumped into the shallow end by herself. (Okay, I bribed her with the Swan Lake Barbie movie, but it still counts!) There's just a tiny section of Spice doing her thing, but that's because everything you see in that section is everything she does in the pool. She's just gotten comfortable floating with the life jacket in the last couple of weeks...up until then she would have a panic attack when she couldn't touch bottom any more. So she's making progress, too. I predict that we'll have a couple of swimmers next summer!

video

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Little Gymnasts

Every summer for the last three years, Sugar and Spice have gone to the Little Gym for classes. It's one of their favorite things about summer and they really look forward to going to their one-hour class each week. This year I've really been impressed with how much their confidence has increased! Both girls are walking on the high beam without assistance and jumping off the end and both of them can do a basket hang from the bar (hands and feet on the bar). See for yourself!

video

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Spice Strikes Again

So we're in the local Wal Marts one day last week and we picked up a block of Monterrey Jack for some Chile Rellenos that Paprika was planning to cook up (yes, they were delicious!). I was focused on trying to find Sugar a pair of lightweight navy shorts that she could wear under her school uniform jumper. Suddenly Sugar comments that Spice (who was seated in the grocery part of the basket) is 'trying to bite that cheese'. I reach back and take the package away from her to find that Sugar has not quite captured the enormity of the situation with her assessment. This is what I saw:I assure you that I have not altered or intensified the results of Spice's efforts in any way. Notice the teeth marks?! To make matters worse, she continued to try to get the block of cheese back throughout the remainder of our time in the store. I'm thinking maybe I should schedule an appointment with her doctor....I'm sure it's a calcium deficiency.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Sugar Shaker!

Sugar received a hula hoop for her birthday last Friday, which she immediately identified as her favorite gift....along with her Belle doll, her unicorn, her Alaskan doll, her kitty, her new clothes, etc., etc. (She wouldn't want to hurt anyone's feelings, dontcha know!) Anyway, she has been practicing with her new hula hoop every day and doggone if she's not hula hooping already!

video

Sunday, July 12, 2009

A Picture Paints A Thousand Words, Oh Yes It Does!

Both Sugar and Spice have now had their first experience at the wondrous place known as the Build-A-Bear Workshop. I took Spice for her birthday in April after she received a gift card from her uncle. May I introduce you to Princess Aurora Royale? No amount of coaxing could convince Spice that PAR needed any type of clothing, accessories, or other paraphernalia. She finally acquiesced to a small bouquet of flowers on her front right leg, but later had second thoughts and promptly removed it.
And, here is Princess Estella Royale. Sugar sincerely apologizes for the lack of fancy gold and silver sandals, a skirt, and several other items that her cruel mother would not allow her to purchase. Painfully, she was limited to only two additional items of dress and was thus unable to properly adorn her new companion.
Yep, these pics pretty much sum up my girls' personalities.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Cowtown Camera Girl Rocks!

A couple of weeks ago my friend and colleague Nell Valdez, who is not only a super librarian, but also an extremely talented photographer, got some new equipment. She offered a free sitting to someone who responded to her blog post and I won! Last Wednesday I took the girls to her new house (it's beautiful!) so that she could shoot them wearing some tutus that she purchased for her business. Here are a few shots from that session:
After the tutu shots, we went to a nearby ice cream store so that Nell could get some summertime ice cream cone pictures. I haven't seen those yet, but I'm sure that they will be just as good! Nell has lots of interesting ideas and an amazing eye for what will make a fantastic photo, plus she shoots her subjects very naturally so the finished product shows the real expressions and smiles that you love. You can see more photos from our tutu session, as well as more of Nell's work at here blog, Cowtown Camera Girl. Here's the link to the complete session!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Oh, Those Summer Nights!

Except for the unbearable heat, summer is my favorite time of year. Our schedule, which can be hectic and exhausting during the rest of the year, slows to a crawl. Or maybe it just seems that way because I'm not working! Anywho, today was one of those great summer days. After a relaxing afternoon, we took the girls to Burleson where we had ice cream for dinner....YUM!



















Then we headed over to the park to play until the sun went down.

Sugar and Spice especially love this particular park because it has two play areas separated by a creek, which of course is very nearly dried up at this point in the summer. Crosssing the creek, looking for animals, and throwing rocks in the water are just as fun to them as the slides, swings, and monkey bars. I just love these carefree days of summer....

Monday, June 29, 2009

Spice Does Her Librarian Mother Proud!

I know, I know. Spice is NOT actually READING this book. She has memorized it. But, still....my baby is taking her first steps toward reading and that does my heart so good. Just look at how proud she is!

video

Sugar's First Time Behind the Wheel

While we were in Juneau visiting our dear friends, we were treated to a little boat ride. Sugar took over the captain duties briefly and actually did quite well for her first time behind the wheel. She was quite proud of herself, as you'll see in this video.

video

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Overhead one morning last week....

Sugar: "Mommy, why do you always smell bad?"
Mommy: "I don't know what you're talking about. Do you mean my breath?"
Sugar: "Yes!"
Mommy: "It's probably because I just took my vitamins."
Sugar: "Will you smell better later?"

Gee, I certainly hope so....

III : the time, it does fly...

April 10, 2006

April 10, 2007


April 10, 2008


April 10, 2009

Can my baby really be 3 already?

Monday, April 6, 2009

Boogity, boogity, boogity! or as we saw shoe-polished on the back of a car in traffic...booga dee, booga dee, booga dee,,,

Paprika and I made our first trip out to the Texas Motor Speedway yesterday and it was amazing! The colors of the cars were SO bright...the smell of the fuel burning was SO strong...the roar of the engines was SOOOOO loud....and the cars flew by us at unbelievable speeds. Here's a video that gives you a look at how fast they're moving. You really can't watch straight ahead like this for long, or at least I couldn't, without starting to feel sick.

video

It was a fabulous day, even though the weather was quite cold and windy. You might think sunscreen would not be necessary in such weather. You would be wrong. Paprika and I both look like we've had some serious microderm abrasion on our faces. From a trainee. Who took a break during our treatment. A really long break. Needless to say, we won't forget the sunscreen again! The day ended well as Jeff Gordon won the race...his first win at TMS. And since it was Paprika's birthday and Paprika roots for Gordon...it couldn't have worked out much better than that. Unless of course Tony Stewart or Kyle Busch won.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Spring Break '09

Spring Break was absolutely delightful! I accomplished very little in the way of housework or any home-improvement projects, but I spent lots of time doing things with my baby girls. My niece, Cinnamon, joined us (along with Nana) on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for trips to the zoo, the park, and The Cupcake Cottage, which is owned and operated by my friend and former co-worker, Sandra Bradshaw. The cupcakes she bakes from scratch are DELICIOUS and we really look forward to our much too infrequent visits to her precious shop. If you live in the Fort Worth area, you MUST pay a visit to The Cupcake Cottage! I recommend the baby cakes because you can try several flavors at once. I don't know if Sandra will back me up on this, but I figure four babycakes are equal to one regular cupcake, so.....eat up! It was wonderful to relax, sleep late (7:30!), and spend time with Sugar and Spice. Add to that a massage and pedicure (thank you, Pappyrika!) followed by a lovely dinner with my hubby one evening and you've got a near-perfect spring break. Ahhhhh! And the best thing........summer break is only 11 weeks away!


Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Bye-Bye Diapers!

After a couple of my colleagues were discussing mothers of 3 year olds who had not yet potty-trained their children, I decided that in light of Spice's upcoming *ahem* 3rd birthday *ahem * that I had better get serious about this affair. So we started earnestly working on the potty visits two weeks ago. We had an ENTIRE weekend where we were basically at home, so it was a good time to start....or so I thought. Previous attempts to make this step toward big girldom were met with serious resistance so I wasn't entirely hopeful. However, it seems that the time was right...she didn't protest much at all, and although she had several accidents the first week we seem to be well on our way to the end of the diaper era. She's been accident-free this week and even took herself to the potty last night to poop! Whooo hooo! My baby is growing up....and yes, I'm a little sad about it.

A Recent Exchange....


Mom: (in response to the 100th misbehavior in the last 5 minutes) Spice, you are a train wreck!

Spice: Chooo! Chooo!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Paprika Rocks!

In May, Paprika and I will celebrate our 21st anniversary. It’s a special marker to me because it’s the ‘half-way point’ in our relationship. I was just a young thing of 21 when we married, you see. Through the years he has shown me in a myriad of ways how much he loves me. There have been big things….like the cruise for our 10th anniversary, the FLIP video camera he bought me for Christmas, or the total bathroom makeover he gave me for our 20th anniversary. But it’s been the little things, day by day, that continue to win my heart and cement our love for each other. I can’t tell you how many times he’s cleaned up bodily fluids of every variety after one of the girls became ill, had an accident, etc! He is almost always the one who gets up in the middle of the night when there’s a problem. But, I want to share a little incident that took place recently at the Taco Bueno because it perfectly depicts the kind of guy I married so many years ago. We ordered some cheesecake chimichangas, as we are wont to do because no meal is truly complete without a helping of cheesecake surrounded by fried dough. (If you haven’t experienced these little bits of heaven, then I pity you. They are, in a word, divine!) They have recently come out two new varieties of these tasty treats: cinnamon and raspberry. I chose to sample the cinnamon on this particular evening, while Paprika stuck with the original version. Well, when I took the first bite of my yummy dessert, I encountered a discouraging lack of cheesecake filling and an overabundance of cinnamon flavoring. Upon noticing this disturbing turn of events, Paprika immediately took my chimichanga and used it to scoop out part of the cheesecake filling from his own. He did this over and over, each time I took a bite until we finished our dessert. Flowers are nice. Candy is better. But, sharing your cheesecake chimichanga…now THAT’S true love.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Happy Birthday, Ms. Michaela!

Today is my best friend's birthday. Special days like this are bittersweet since she moved several thousand miles away to Alaska. Several thousand miles and a three-hour time difference combined with crazy busy schedules make it difficult to keep in touch as much as we'd like. Talking on the phone and exchanging occasional emails and text messages is not the same as having a girls' night out or getting our families together for an evening. And I won't even go into how great it would be if her teenage daughters were close by to babysit my preschool ones! However, there's one positive thing that such a distance forces upon a relationship. Deliberateness. There's a greater effort involved to maintain the closeness we've built up over 30 years of friendship. We aren't close because it's convenient, because staying in touch is very inconvenient most of the time. We remain a vital part of each other's lives because we both want that and make the effort necessary to do so. Distance also offers the opportunity for some creativity in making these special days as special as they would be in person. I miss you, my friend! Happy Birthday! And in case you didn't get the email, here's a birthday song just for you....
video

The Scariest Words of All

Sugar said something the other day that hit me like a punch in the gut. I know I'm not the first parent to hear these words or the first to feel their effect. In fact, I'm sure that I'll hear similar words from Sugar again and Spice is bound to weigh in at some point, too. I don't even remember what it was that I was doing, but here's what Sugar said as she joined me in my activity: "I'm doing exactly like you, Mommy!" Oh. My. That's sobering, to say the least. I sincerely hope that she doesn't do exactly like me. I pray that she's smarter than I've been. I pray that she's less selfish than I've been. I pray that she's more patient than I've been. I pray that she's less judgemental than I've been. I pray that she's kinder than I've been. Most of all, I pray that she trusts her Saviour more than I have and that her life is marked by a deep faith in God that guides her day by day. Of course, if she still wants to be a librarian when she grows up, that's okay. She's already got the look down.



Thursday, January 1, 2009

It's ALL About the Glitter

Sugar LOOOOOVES glitter. Anything with glitter gets her immediate stamp of approval.


glitter nail polish

glitter crayons


glitter glue



What more could a girl ask for?

Death and Destruction

Spice struck twice during the holidays. The first victim was a Raggedy Ann doll that she received for Christmas last year. Who knew that the little bag of sand used to weight the doll's bottom so that it will sit up could be so easily removed by a two-year old?!? Apparently Spice discovered this. She performed some sort of surgery on poor Ms. Ann during the night and this is what we found on the morning of Christmas Eve:

Thankfully R. A. survived, although she does have a little soreness around her crude 'incision'. I feel sure that Spice dreamt about sleeping on the beach, what with that lovely pile of grit in her bed all night. She keeps talking about how she got her doll all dirty...it was an assadent!

Her next victim was not so fortunate. Alas, after several trips of an airborne nature, Mr. N. Cracker was, as you can see from his expression, profoundly injured and although we did everything we could with the resources at our disposal, we were unable to save him. He was buried quietly in the kitchen trash can with only immediate family in attendance. Spice did not attend the service.

We hope that Christmas 2009 will be celebrated without additional injury or death.