Saturday, May 31, 2008

Let the summer time fun begin!!

Chandler has been begging me to take her swimming since last September when the pool closed at the end of the swimming season. :)

We finally gave in and headed over to our local YMCA.

These are not the best photos in the world, but I think they will give you an idea of how incredibly busy I'm going to be on "pool days".





The girl knows NO FEAR!
I don't want her to be afraid of the water, but I don't think it's too much to ask for a little respect for the dangers of crawling off the side of the pool!!! :)
I really don't think I'll be sitting on the side of the pool much this summer.

If anyone wants to come to the pool with us to watch my kids hang out... let me know!

Chandler could not possibly be more excited about swim lessons starting on Monday.
She was like a little fish today... no "warming up" to the pool this year. She jumped right in as if we have been doing this everyday!

Friday, May 30, 2008

Update on the craze...

I posted about the craze caused by my glasses blog.

I just checked the numbers...
Since Wednesday I have had 624 visits to my page!

Who knew glasses were such a popular search??

I continue to be amazed by this phenomenon!

New to the list since yesterdays blog check:
3 visits from Austria
2 from Lituania
2 from Greece
2 from Romania *Hey Mom! You may meet someone who reads my blog!
2 from India
1 from Serbia
1 from Turkey
1 from Kazaknstan
1 from the Asia/Pacific Region
1 from the Faroe Islands **I had to look this one up!**
1 from the Republic of Korea
1 from Guatemala

**FYI: The Faroe Islands are considered part of Northern Europe. They are an island group between the Norwegian Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, about one-half of the way from Iceland to Norway.
My sincere apologies to any readers from the Faroe Islands.... Be like my husband, Blame it on my public school education! :) Although I doubt the A Beka Book Curriculum had a chapter on The Faroe Islands.

You know *that* tone of voice...

For the past many months I have just been so pleased with how well my girls get along. They are 4 years and 2 months apart in age so I wasn't too sure how well they would do once Riley became "mobile", but they are great. The only squabbles we have had are over Riley pulling one of Chandler's precious Disney Princess Polly Pockets off of the sofa while Chandler is creating some elaborate and deadly cliffhanging scenario in which Prince Charming, Prince Eric or Prince Philip must rescue the Princesses... It usually ends when Chandler gives up one of the 100s 10 that she has to make Riley leave her alone happy. :)

Over the last week I have been wondering how long we can keep us this happy cohabitation.

A few minutes ago Chandler called me from the living room where she and Riley were sharing a bowl of dry Cheerios and enjoying sippy cups of milk....

C: "Mom!" in *that* exasperated tone of voice... the voice that says, "I'm completely OVER this little sister bugging me to death!"
J: "What Chan?" Usually it's nothing so I've stopped running to her every call! :)
C: "Me and Riley is fighting!"
J: "Why are you fighting?"
C: "Because I want you to come in here!"
J: "You are fighting because you want me to come in there and...."
C: "Just come in here!"
J: "Is the fight because Riley doesn't want me to come in there?" :)
C: "No, we are fighting and I need you to come in here!"

Here is what I expect to find...
Chandler on the sofa guarding the bowl of Cheerios and staking out a sizable portion of the sofa and claiming it for the kingdom of Polly Pocket Princesses.
The evil ogre from the nearby wood Riley attempting to climb the walls of the kingdom side of the sofa in an attempt to eat the villagers Cheerios.

I walked into the living room to find....
My girls both sitting in the exact place I left them... on the soft laying side by side watching Curious George on PBS.
The only difference... The shared bowl of Cheerios is now on the end table and there are a few of them scattered on the sofa.

J: "I thought you were fighting."
C: "We are! Riley wants to make a mess with the Cheerios and I won't let her."

This from the child who would spill a whole bowl of cereal, pick up 3 pieces and tell me that she cleaned it up! :)

Thursday, May 29, 2008

WOW!

Ok, have you looked at my flag counter since last night? No? Well you should check it out.

Apparently my latest blog all about my glasses was a hit in countries outside of the U.S.. Why? I don't know. But I had over 150 hits since I posted at 9:54 pm.

Here's the rundown...
36 visits from Germany
34 from the United Kingdom
11 from Canada
10 from France
6 from Australia
5 from Switzerland
5 from the Netherlands
4 from Belgium
4 from Spain
4 from Sweden
4 from Finland
4 from the Czech Republic
3 from Poland
3 from Japan
2 from Croatia
2 from Italy
2 from Denmark
2 from Norway
2 from the Russian Federation
2 from Thialand
2 from Sri Lanka
2 from South Africa
1 from Portugal
1 from Malaysia
1 from Ireland
1 from Indonesia
1 from Hungary
1 from the Philippines
1 from Liechtenstein
1 from Israel
1 from Estonia
1 from Argentina
1 from New Zealand
1 from Brazil

That's 157 hits from countries outside of the U.S. since last night just before 10 pm EST.

It looks like all of them came from this page.

Some of you may know how this happened. If you do, please enlighten me! :)

CRAZINESS!!!!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

New Glasses

I wore glasses from the 2nd grade through my sophomore year in college. That spring I went on a white water rafting trip. While rafting down the Ocoee river, our guide intentionally flipped our raft and I lost my glasses.
It was then that I decided I was going to get contacts.
It's not like this was the first time I had thought about contacts. Just ask my mom. She took me for what seemed like every day for a week 2 summers in a row to try to get contacts while I was in high school. I just COULD NOT do it!

After the rafting incident I decided that I had worn glasses long enough and I WAS DONE!

I got the contacts and the eye doctor insisted that I get a back up pair of glasses. I got them, but I could probably count on 1 hand the number of times that I wore them other than right before bed at night.

All those years of having to wear them had made me hate them.

However, this past Easter my whole family got pink eye. You can't wear contacts with pink eye so I had to pull out the dreaded glasses. That's when I realized that my glasses prescription is over 7 years old!

When I went to the eye doctor back in April, I decided that it was time for an upgrade so I got new frames to go with my new prescription.

Here they are...


Brandon and Chandler convinced me to wear them to church tonight so I did. I think it was the first time I've ever worn my glasses and not felt "ugly" and self conscience the whole time. :)

Watch out world...

...here she comes!!!


video

She tried chasing Max, but he was just too fast for her!
Sorry about all of the background noise... no, we were not about to be hit by a car. Chandler was riding her tricycle with the plastic wheels down the neighbors driveway!


video

These videos were taken yesterday just before Brandon came home. Since then she has been practicing and, I am proud to report, is doing MUCH better.


Memorial Day Weekend

Brandon's Mom (Debbie), our sister-in-law (Laniey) and our nephew (Colten) came to visit over the long weekend.

Ready for the photo version of the visit?? There are a bunch of them so I made them small. Click on the photos to enlarge them...

Chandler and Riley helping me clean by wiping down the bathroom cabinets.


Saturday started with a trip out to Dr. Bilbo's farm...

Colten

Have you ever wondered what 20,000 baby chicks look like?
It's hard to tell from this photo, but when you are actually there in the house it is overwhelming... and I don't just mean the smell! :)

Brandon and Chandler with a chick

Chandler and Colten venturing deeper into the chicken house. The chicken scatter when you walk.

Feeding

Saturday afternoon was a trip to the Tennessee Aquarium.


Aunt Laniey and Cousin Colten admiring a tree frog.

I think these are alligators (not crocodiles), but I may be wrong. There is also a turtle up there lounging with them. :)

Chandler and "the world's largest turtle (or tortoise?) shell. The plaque said it was over 100,000,000 years old. I was reading it to Chandler and I made a side comment that I doubted that it was actually that old. Chandler later told someone, "I saw the largest turtle shell, but mommy says it's not really 100 years old!"

Riley spent the trip riding in her stroller.
As long as I stopped occasionally to give her a little attention she was ok.

Me or a friendly plant. Either one was fine with her. :)

This made me laugh! It is a hand dryer in the mouth of a shark!
I wonder how many kids have refused to use it out of fear of losing an arm???

Bubbles... I don't know his actual name so his "Finding Nemo" name will have to do!

And Dory

There was a butterfly garden in the top of the Ocean building. The butterflies were flying all around and if you stopped long enough, one might land on you. In fact, as you are leaving you are instructed to check yourself for hitchhikers! :)

Can't you just see how much my girls love me... and LOVE to have photos made with me!
Chandler told me after the photo that she didn't smile because the butterflies wouldn't land on her!

PENGUINS!!! Chandler had really been looking forward to this part.

She's the same height as an Emperor Penguin.

I'm not sure what kind of penguin this is, but he was striking a pose for us!
None of them swam while we were watching. That was a little disappointing. For the most part they waddled a little and then stood REALLY STILL. Great for photos not so great for little kids!

You may be asking yourself, "WHY?"
Chandler was actually in the center of a tank of water. There was a tube in the middle of a tank for kids to climb up into. What were they looking at??? This.....

I'm terrible at judging the size of things and you know how water and glass distort the images, but I'm going to say that this crab was slightly shorter than the width of my arm span.

The view from under the ocean tank. Yes, that's a shark.

Chandler "rock climbing"

There was a great little "shelf" for kids to climb on. It was like a little cave so once they got in there, they had fish all around and above them.

Riley checking out the fish.

Chandler and the fishies


These were just too funny not to include... Check out Riley's faces!




When we finished our tour, Chandler got the chance to play in the water...


Then we walked a few blocks to Chili's for dinner.

On the way, Chandler took a little "boat ride"

On the way home from Chattanooga, we stopped to pick up "The March of the Penguins" to help round out our animal filled day.

Sunday was church out at the new property followed by a church wide picnic.

Colten and Riley enjoying some sunshine.

We had a great visit and we hope Gran, Aunt Laniey and Colten get to come back soon!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Whatever it takes...

to keep them HAPPY!!

I don't know what it's like at your house on the 14th of each month, but at our house IT'S TIME TO GO GROCERY SHOPPING!!!
By the 14th of each month we have random items in our cabinets and even more random items in the refrigerator and freezer. Sometimes we can pull a meal out of the strange assortment, but who am I kidding?!?! I'm not an amazing a good cook so if I have to think too much it's probably NOT going to happen! :)

Anyway, so yesterday was the 14th. The girls and I had errands to run and we were still out as it grew closer to 4:30. I started thinking about what I could possibly pull together for dinner... Brandon gets home a little after 5:00 AND we have to be at the church at about 6:15. By the time we got home it would be almost 5:00.... it just wasn't going to happen!

I called Brandon (thank the person who invented the cell phone!). I explained our current time/location situation and we decided to meet at Zaxby's for dinner.

The girls and I got there a few minutes before Brandon so I ordered for us and got a table. By the way, if you haven't tried the Kickin' Chicken Sandwich Meal... I recommend it. I'm not a huge fan of spicy food so I get it with the wimpy sauce (as opposed to the crazy hot stuff) and the ranch on the side. :)

Once we finished eating we had a little time to kill so we just sat. Sometimes it is nice to JUST SIT! I don't feel like I get to do that very often! :)

The girls were getting a little restless so we gave them a sandwich to-go box to play with. No, we did not waste a perfectly good to-go box. It was what Chandler's cookie came in. I made sure it wasn't the super greasy one that her grilled cheese and fries came in!





Monday, May 12, 2008

Wanna Win Free Stuff?!?

Check out my hair bow website....

Bows by the Miles

I'm giving away a Patriotic Package worth $19.50 (even more than that if you consider the fact that you don't have to pay shipping!).

Go check it out!! Enter for a chance to win!! GOOD LUCK!!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

What a difference a year makes!

I started looking through old Mother's Day photos and here's what I found.... A year makes a BIG difference!

Mother's Day 2007

Mother's Day 2006... Chandler getting ready for the Cherub Choir. Since you can't see her face I posted this photo...

Mother's Day 2006

Somehow we managed to completely miss Mother's Day 2005. That must have been before our digital camera days! :)

2004. So it's not actually on Mother's Day... we managed to miss it this year as well, but it was taken the same week. We took it on our web camera.

Mother's Day 2003. My first Mother's Day and also soon after my graduation from Lee University.

Mother's Day 2008

Happy Mother's Day from our family to your's!

Here's a little bit of what happened at our house this weekend....

Riley was feeling generous and decided to make me a nice mug of hot chocolate... she knows it's my favorite!

"Hey Mom!"

"Oops! We're all out!"

I only have myself to blame... remember the birthday cake she tried to make for me?

Well, I STILL don't have my cabinet doors back on my cabinets!
I have a goal: My mother-in-law (Debbie), my sister-in-law (Lainey), and my nephew (Colten), are coming to visit in a few weekends so I MUST have them back on before they get here... Well, before Colten gets here. There's no telling what kind on concoctions he and Riley might cook up!

This morning the Cherub Choir sang at church. The Cherub Choir is made up of kiddos ages 2-5. I am their fearless leader (Actually I'm quite scared of them. I just try not to let it show. Some of them can smell fear!!).
The kids did AMAZING! I was so proud of them... No photos, but I'll try to get a video posted... eventually!
It was a little bitter-sweet. This was Chandler's last performance with the Cherub Choir. Once the kids start Kindergarten they move up to the Children's Choir. :(

Lunch at O' Charley's and then home to RELAX! :)

I received some great cards, some much desired items for my kitchen, and a new watch. :)

I realized as it was nearing bedtime that I didn't have a single photo of me and my girls so we had a QUICK photo shoot.

Me and Chan. Please ignore the spots all over the mirror!! GROSS!

Me and a VERY HAPPY Riley just before bedtime!

All in all a GREAT DAY!
Hope your Mother's Day was just as great (if not better!). :)