Thursday, April 3, 2014

Throwback Thursday!!

Katy 7, Madyson 2, and Mackenzie 3

October 5, 2006

   We traveled out to California for my cousin's wedding in Three Rivers, CA.  It is a beautiful area just at the gateway to the Sequoia National Forest.  My cousin Dennis and his wife own an Inn there and the whole family came and stayed together.

Randy joined us and the wedding was actually at the top of a very large mountain, on an extremely large rock!  Madyson is kind of mad because we did not want her to run around on the rock.  
It's a long way down!

The beautiful bride.

My niece, Courtney, played her violin so sweetly.

   We actually all got pretty sick right after the ceremony.  I think it may have had something to do with altitude sickness.  We just don't have mountains like this in Kansas!

  The reception was in a restaurant just down the street from the Inn.  Some of my wonderful cousins came over and helped watch the girls so I could slip down to the reception for a few minutes.  But I couldn't stay long because I was pretty queasy still.

I love this picture of the kids with my Mom.  We took it in the morning before we left.

And here is Madyson, feeding her cereal addiction!
I guess she felt better!

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Hudson & Beckham's 1st Birthday Smash Cake Photos!

**FYI:  I am the most unorganized Mother in the whole world!!!***

Below are pictures of the boys First Birthday smash cake photoshoot!  Taken in September 2013!!  I wrote this post and then forgot to publish it!!!  

I am weird that way!  


Hudson Charles & Beckham Matthew turned 1 years old on September 2, 2013!  We had a fun family birthday party and barbeque.  The theme was All American Boys!  Because it was, after all, Labor Day!

I will post pictures from that later, but here are pictures taken a few days later with our official photographer Katie Ann Photography!  She did an awesome job and I kind of recreated the original event with a red, white and blue smash cake.

We started out with a few photos of them together just to mark the day.

It was really hot and kind of late in the day but I think the lighting was so terrific!

Hudson was really into it, I think he knew what was coming!  Beckham was a little apprehensive, I know he knew what was coming next!

Then we stripped them down and set the cake in front of them.  This was a couple of days after their actual 1st birthday party, so they had already done the cake thing, but I wanted to get professional pictures done.  Hudson is thinking...I remember this!  And Beckham is thinking...not this again!

Oh yeah...CAKE!!!

Love the colors in this picture!  And their oh so cute, chubby little hands grabbing the frosting!

Hudson couldn't get it in fast enough and needed some help from his brother!

Beckham stayed pretty clean.  Cake is not really his thing...messy is definitely not his thing!

It was a beautiful day and I will always cherish these pictures!

Happy 1st Birthday Hudson Charles and Beckham Matthew!

18 Months Old!

Hudson and Beckham are 18 months old.

They have beautiful eyes!  Beckham's are always wistful, he is the quiet one.  But you know he is really thinking things through.  Sometimes it is hard to see their eyes.  Lately they have been tipping their heads back to see under the long bangs.

Hudson is always happy and smiling!  He does everything really big!  He doesn't just say words, he SCREAMS them!  He doesn't walk down the stairs one at a time, he JUMPS down each step!  He lives life BIG!

At 18 months old, a boy can feed himself!  He doesn't need mamas help anymore!

And he can drink his yogurt if he wants there!

Together they figure out how to get the toy they threw out of their play area back in!  All by themselves!

Of course, it probably helps to have a brothers helping hands!

Hudson and Beckham are both wearing 12 months size in the picture above.  They are getting taller but not too terribly big around.  Hudson has all of his teeth now and Beckham is still growing in his eye teeth.  They wear size 5 shoes and never keep their socks or shoes on in the car!  They are both good aims because Mom has gotten hit in the back of the head with little shoes numerous times!

They say "Bye, nana (for banana), hey, yum, Oh, uh-oh, dog, mama, bubba (word for brother)."  They do not say any of the sisters names, but point them out in pictures or in person when you say one of their names.

If I show Beckham a picture of both he and Hudson and say, "Where is Bubba?"  He points to Hudson.  If I say where is Beckham?  He points to Hudson also!  Of course, he doesn't look in the mirror at himself very much, so he would think that he looked the same as his brother.

When I pick up Hudson, he hugs me very tightly.  Beckham pats me on the shoulder and snuggles under my neck.  Both boys are so loving.

BUT...if they are fighting with each other...Beckham pulls hair and Hudson bites!  Luckily, they also know when they have hurt the other that they have to hug and say sorry..well we are working on that still!

We had to take all of the chairs and the little kitchen out of the play area if no one is in there with them, because they use them to climb up on the table.  Hudson has started using his arms to pull himself up onto the table.  Several times I have been in the kitchen and walked over to check on them and found one of them standing on the table!

They think it is funny...I am getting frustrated!  BOYS!

It doesn't feel like 18 months have gone by.  Thank you Lord for little boys.  They remind us to live and love BIG!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas!!

So wonderful to have so many to celebrate this year!  My Mom is here, Randy spent the night and day with us, and my Mom's cousin Roland and his family came for Christmas Eve dinner!

We are so blessed to have our health, our family and friends, and our Savior's love!

We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Homeschooling during the summer

Since we had so many things go on this year, like welcoming our baby twins Hudson & Beckham!  We ran behind on school stuff, which is basically what has happened every year.  So I just stick to a similar school day routine even during the summer, kind of.

It is different because during the regular school year I just have Katy and Ava Marie home with me.  During the summer I also have Madyson & Mackenzie.  So we include them and just have them do things appropriate to their level of work.

Madyson works in a reading book I purchased at Costco from Sylvan Learning.  It is broken into 3 section, Spelling, Vocabulary and Comprehension.  We try to do one page from each of 2 sections every morning.  Last year she went to summer school at the public school.  She had 2 hours of reading help, 1 hour of art and 1 hour of swimming.  It was great but she really didn't want to go this year because she missed a lot of the stuff we did together as a family.

Ava Marie is also working on a workbook I got at Costco.  Since she is basically going into Kindergarten, I looked first at the Kindergarten books, but she already knows the stuff they had in there.  Letters, numbers, colors, etc.  She knows all of her letter both lowercase and capitals, and the sounds of the letters and some sight words.

So I just give her things to keep her busy for now, she loves to color.  And then when they are done we read together because that is where she really is, pre-reading.  I have a feeling she will be reading basic Level 1 books by the time school starts!

This was taken before Madyson Claire got her hair done!!

Ava marie kept looking at the pages and saying, "I already know this!"

Katy spends a lot of time in the kitchen.  She loves to bake and even though she doesn't actually like chocolate (I know, how can anybody NOT like chocolate?!).  She still makes a lot of chocolate goodies for the rest of us!! Yea!

Katy does 2 math lessons per day and then reads for at least an hour.  She is trying to keep up with Mackenzie who spends all of her extra time reading.

Mackenzie, you may remember, has been busy with a lot of rehearsals for her show Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.  She is right in the center with the white headband on.  She really had a great time with this show and did a lot of reading backstage.  By the end of June she has read 12 books since school let out.  I am proud of her focus!  She loves mysteries!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

4th of July 2013!

Happy 4th of July!!

This is our annual 4th of July on the Porch picture!  

Usually the girls all have matching shirts or dresses on.  But now that Katy and Mackenzie have grown out of the little girl sizes it is getting harder and harder to find matching clothes.

So thankful to God for my beautiful children!  So thankful for our brave soldiers who fought for our Freedom and are STILL fighting!  Praying for a peaceful 4th of July!  Except for tonight during the fireworks!

Here are some 4th of July on the Porch pictures from the past!



 I can't find the folder that has 2011 or 2012, but I will update this post later with more photos.

Now we are off to Black Bob Bay!  It is a local public pool that is also kind of a water park!  Our friend Karla is going to come and watch the babies while I take the girlies over there for some water fun!  

Then later we are going over to Michaels craft store so the girls can pick out some craft supplies for the newly cleaned up basement/art room!!  I will post pictures of that soon after we have organized all of the new supplies.

On The Menu for Tonight:  Lemon Chicken with Red, White & Blue Ravioli Stars and Broccoli, Cauliflower and Carrots sauteed with onions in olive oil.  For dessert we will be having fresh Blueberries and Strawberries over Vanilla Ice Cream!

For Nighttime Entertainment:  We will be driving over to the Great Mall of the Great Plains for Fireworks!!

I hope you have a wonderful 4th of July too!!  Go USA!!

Monday, July 1, 2013

In regards to the Paula Deen issue...

Read the article at this link first:The Paula Deen Incident: You should know all that is being alleged before defending her.

I have wondered about this whole situation since it started coming up in the news.  I am not one to get too political on my FB or even on my website.  

I am not a huge PD fan, I have watched her show on Food Network a couple of times, but I don't love the Southern Drawl that sounds a little put on to me.  But I didn't NOT like her.  I basically tuned out on most of the press...until I read the attached article.  

It isn't just what this gentleman says in his article that hits home for me.  It is the memory it brings back to me.  About 6 years ago I was involved in a Womens Sorority that was not affiliated with any colleges.  It was basically a way for women to get together and support each other, do service work and have some fun.  

I belonged to my group for about 5 years right up until I began my adoption journey.  I remember when I adopted my first 2 little girls, Katy and Madyson Claire, just after that I attended a day out shopping and lunch with my Sorority Sisters.  One lady was new, she had just moved into the area and was a longtime friend of our Chapter President.  She was from Oklahoma and was talking to the other ladies about growing up in the south.  

She told a story about the town she grew up in and mentioned an area of the town that had "Porch Monkeys".  I remember asking her to repeat herself.  In fact I think I asked her to repeat herself a few times and she finally said, "Yes, I said porch monkeys!  What do you call them?"

I remember I didn't answer her right away, I looked up and down the table we were sitting at to see if anyone else was really listening to this conversation besides me.  I remember several of the ladies looking away as I tried to catch their eye.  Did they not hear her?  Did I misunderstand what she was talking about?

"What is a Porch Monkey?"  I asked her.  Even though I was sure I already knew.  

"You know, black people!"  She spat back at me!

I know my face was flushed and my neck was hot.  I could hardly breathe, let alone get the next words out.  "Why would you say that?"  I shouted!  "Are you crazy?  My daughters are black!  I can't believe you would say that in front of me!"  I know I was standing up at this point, and one of the other ladies put her hand on my arm and told me to sit down and stop yelling.  I was flustered because I had expected the others to be as upset as I was...but they weren't.

I sat there, steaming mad, listening to them pick their conversations back up.  Not one of them looking in my direction or saying anything else to me again.  A little while later the woman who said those things left with her friend, our Chapter President.  Then the rest of us left to drive home.  I had ridden in a car with a few others, we got into the car and started driving.  No one said one word to me.

I, of course had no intention of being a part of their group anymore.  I was just so shocked at the raw form of racism that I had just witnessed.  I was, of course, very naive as that was not the last time I would witness racism. 

That woman reminds me very much of Paula Deen.  She felt that her upbringing, her Southern roots so to speak, entitled her to use that shocking insult.  So at this point I have to say, I don't care where you were brought up or how people spoke when you were a kid, in the dark ages!

Unless you just crawled out from under a rock and want to crawl back in there, you should NOT be using derrogatory names for ANYBODY!  

And if you do...then you will and should suffer the consequences!

Ignorance is not an EXCUSE!!