Tuesday, March 31, 2009

A Taste of Texas

This past weekend I was very blessed to be able to go back to Texas and be involved in the Annual Ladies Retreat with Second Baptist Church. The only way to explain how I feel right now is to say that My Cup Overfloweth! I was bathed in so much love and laughter mixed with God's Word. It was just incredible....I was left speechless....and my sides still hurt from laughing so much as well as my cheeks from smiling so much. Such precious people have been put on my path!!

The theme of the weekend was Amazing Race. My friend Dena put together a whole race for everyone on Saturday afternoon. There were 14 teams of 4. I was in a team with Tricia, Jen and Hilde. My MIL and SIL ran with us and took lots of pictures. Wait until you see these!

Our team...the name was God's Favorites and our shirts said God's Fave.
Our first challenge was to walk on two boards all at one time. We had to walk from one side of the field to the other. This was actually one of the hardest was tough to work together like this.

Next, we had to race to the game room and put together a puzzle.

Then 2 members of the team had to walk across this log while holding a full cup of water on their head. If you fell off, you had to start again. Tricia and Hilde did it.

Hilde and I jumped in for the next clue. We had to paddle the boat and find the clue attached to the blue buoy. Well, I pronounce the word buoy as boy. There was a high school group that was also out on the canoes. I yelled to Hilde that we had to find a blue buoy (she heard blue boy). She thought this was going to be easy! We saw a boy in a blue canoe, and I was thinking blue buoyant canoe and Hilde was thinking boy in blue canoe and we asked him if he was a buoy/boy. Well, we kind of yelled it at him. He said if there were any doubt! Then we asked/yelled for our clue. He had no idea what we were talking about. And I'm sure he thought we were a little senile! I told Hilde the clue probably meant circle buoy which she was like okay, let's find the circle boy. I knew what I was looking for though and found it and we actually did this one very fast! And with a lot of laughs later we realized how confused we both were. Hilde and I in a boat is never a good plan!!

And then there was the zipline. Hilde had never done it before and I said I would go with her..only 2 members had to do it. Here I am, once the adrenaline has started to pass, on the way up thinking "what have I done??!!!!"

My awesome SIL realized my camera had video and was able to catch this terrifying ordeal for us. Listen as we pass the camera...that is truly a primal scream from the depths of our soul that you hear!
Then we had to run to the dining hall and eat a cricket. Now, it was dead and seasoned but it was still a cricket! Jen grabbed it and shoved it in her mouth and I cannot be outdone so I grabbed it, then Tricia. Hilde at that point was stuck and knew she didn't have a choice. She popped the cricket and we were on our way.
Our team came in 6th out of the 14 teams which I think is pretty darn good. We still had to count rocks and dunk two basketball free throws before we could head to the final pit stop. It was sooo much fun and Dena did a brilliant job putting it together!
After the race I did a mini-session on coupons. I was a little nervous but it was very casual and laid-back and I was able to breeze through it. I had fun doing it and I hope others learned how to save lots of money while listening!
I was exhausted at this point and ended up just sitting in the same chair at my round table until dinner time which was almost 3 hours later. I was so blessed during that time. Different people came up to the table to catch up or introduce themselves and my company just kept revolving. I was worried about how I would fit time in for all of my friends and God really used that time to catch up on some much needed fellowship. It was actually one of my favorite parts of the trip.
On Sunday we packed up and headed back to Baytown. We have a tradition, my friends and I, to stop by the sign and take pictures. And they would not leave until this tradition had once again been fulfilled!
Here I am with my precious MIL and SIL.

My dearest friends in the whole world and I.

This one was taken just for fun and turned out to be my favorite. Three totally different women, with three totally different personalities...God has truly blessed us with each other's friendship.

On the way home we stopped near Brenham to get the wildflower shot. There is nothing like the bluebonnets in Brenham.

Once back in Baytown, Mom drove me around to see how the city has changed in the 7 months since we left. I asked her to stop so I could take a picture of my favorite house. I can't tell you how much I loved this house...still do. It was the perfect house for us. I miss it terribly! Look at my pretty roses!

Sunday night we met back up with my girlfriends to have Mexican for dinner. I did a lot of eating of my favorite Texas foods while I was there!! I wanted to see all the kiddos and they were so sweet to take pictures so I could bring them home for the kids to see.

When I moved to Colorado our favorite baby, Hallie Mae, was not even a year old and still just a baby. Now, she is a walking grown up little girl! Oh, so sad! She was just wonderful though and let me hold her and feed her and love on her all through dinner. I think Jimmy was more jealous of this than anything else...we love our Hallie Mae!

I spent the night at my in laws on Sunday night. Mom and I played Skip Bo...of which I am the reigning champ!! Dad had to work nights and when he came in at 5:15 in the morning they woke me up and took me to breakfast at Cracker Barrel (I told you I ate a lot!). It was a great little visit and Dad enjoyed getting to hear all about our weekend and all the updates on my kiddos. Here are the two lovebirds.

And I truly do not have any words to summarize this weekend up. My husband did a marvelous job with our children (I'm pretty sure they are going to tell me to find a job so that daddy can stay home from now on!) and I was able to just sit back and relax and soak up the whole weekend. I cannot believe how many fears I have stared down with God this year and I feel blessed that I've finally calmed down enough to really soak up all of the blessings that have been poured into my life. It's good to be me. And my cup does overfloweth!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Yikes...Where Did The Time Go??

Well, my run with Spring Break is over. I can't believe how fast that went...and how little we did.

Tuesday we all went out for haircuts. James had his Holy Hip Hop in the afternoon and Kaylee went to a friend's house for a sleepover.

Wednesday we went to the library and then picked up a couple of groceries before I leave town for the weekend.

Today Jim is off so we all went to see Race to Witch loved and so did we. Action-packed for a kid's movie! Lots of fun. Oh, and then there is the BLIZZARD we had today??!!! Where did that come from. I've shovelled twice and the kids have had fun playing in the foot of snow we've already received!

Tomorrow morning I leave for the ladies retreat in Texas with my old church. I'm so excited. A little nervous about the weather...hope it lets up enough that my flight isn't cancelled. I'm really looking forward to being in a cabin with my MIL, SIL and best friends. I love girl stuff like that!! Please pray that I have safe travels and that God will use this weekend to transform my life! There is nothing I like better than the fire I get for God after one of these weekends. I'm so pumped just writing about it now!!

I will have the camera with me and will post pictures when I get back. Who knows...I just might do the zip line!! Look at me...all fears out the window! Time to live life and let God take care of the details!!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Spring Break Monday

It's officially Day 1 of Spring Break and I'm already tired! haha I think it's harder to keep the kids busy this year because we were so busy last week with our friends from Texas. I'm sort of feeling the need for a break at this point! I'm going back to Texas for Ladies Retreat this weekend though so rest will come soon enough...and Jim will have to figure out activities with the children for the weekend. mwa ha haaaa

The school had given James and Kaylee three coupons each for free roller skating at Skate City in Westminster. We decided to use them up today...well, three of them anyways. It was a cute place. Good music. Kaylee rode roller blades while the boys and I opted for roller skates. Jagger decided after two laps that he would rather watch from the sidelines and he really enjoyed just watching. I hung out with Jags and we watched James and Kaylee.

They were actually holding hands when I pressed the button. Oh yes they were!!

Mommy wanted some fun pics with her kids. It's so funny to see the faces they made...each so unique.
Kaylee the one that has recently started hating pictures...

James the goofball....

Jagger who loves to be the center of attention until you put the camera on him...

It is impossible to get a good picture of these three together anymore!!!

The kids have been bugging me forever to do some finger painting. Tonight we finished dinner and pretty much had a night of nothing ahead of us, so I pulled out the materials and let them have at it. Of course, they were done in 30 minutes (Jagger only last 10 because he hates his hands to get dirty). Well, at least it's done now and we can say we've done it...I have the pictures to prove it!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

A Visit From Home!

For the last ten days we have had some of our dearest friends from TX staying with us. My girlfriend, Jen Jen and her two kids, Emily and Ally came to CO to spend their Spring Break with us. We were so blessed to have them and had a wonderful week of fun and laughter.

I am posting as I did when my in-laws were in for Christmas. I posted backwards so that as you read them you will read them in the order of actual events.

I hope you enjoy the stories and the pictures. Nothing can compare to the wonderful memories that were made though!

Thanks for being patient waiting for the posts until they left. I have learned how quickly visits go by and put all posting, and even most cleaning, aside until the visit was over. I am sadly learning that life goes by way too quickly, kids grow up way too fast and we have to do what we can to slow down and make sure that we take in as much as possible!

Swimming, Swimming, in the Swimming Pool!

On Sunday we decided to take the kids on our first an indoor pool at the Broomfield Recreation Center. We had no idea we were in for such a fun day! Four hours of swimming, sliding and playing without one child asking to go home. We took one break to eat the lunches we had brought with us but that was it. And it only cost us $28 for all 7 of us! At the end of the week this would still go down as one of our favorite things we did this week!

I am holding Jagger up in this picture...he's not just floating on water as it looks. Jagger LOVED the slide. My legs hurt for three days from all of the steps I had to walk up!

Museum of WOW

On Tuesday we packed up our lunches, picked James up from half-day Kindergarten and headed to Lafayette, CO to visit the WOW Museum. I have to say, I was not that impressed at first. It's really a small place compared to what I was expecting (and I was expecting more along the lines of a Children's Museum). The kids kept finding more things to do though and eventually we had spent almost two and a half hours there. I would definitely recommend to at least try it for ages 5 and under...there just is not enough to keep the older ones entertained. I would even just say ages 2-5. Anyways, the kids would say they had a good time.

This was a cute little sandpit they had inside.

James manned the phones at the bank station they had...which was by far their favorite place and where we spent the majority of our time.

Jagger's favorite spot was the block area.

Jen and Emily decided to go checkout what was outside. Unfortunately, they locked themselves out when they went! After I took a picture and laughed at them for a few minutes I let them back in.

The dress up area...Emily, you are simply goorrgeeouuss!

Back at the bank station. They were able to put the money into the tube thing and send it to the other side. So fun!
Ally spent so much time here she finally went and got a chair for her to sit on! haha

The art room...the little girl between James and Jagger was not with us. We used Em's head to block her out...hahaha! The kids made St. Patrick's decorations and then we brought the supplies home for Kaylee to make one too. We decorated the french doors in the dining room, made a chocolate cake with green icing and that was our St. Patty's celebration!

Big pirate ship by the front door.

Jagger wanted to bring this costume home so bad. I'm thinking we will be looking for one, albeit a much cuter one!, on ebay for a birthday present.
So, while it was not my most favorite place, the kids did enjoy playing for the afternoon.

Little Buddies

On Thursday morning Jimmy took me to an eye doctor appointment (there might be more on that in another post) in Denver. All of the other kids were at school and Jen just had Jagger and Ally at home with her. She was able to get some really cute pictures of our cuties.

And the best was saved for last!

School Days

On Thursday, the last day of school before Spring Break starts here, Kaylee was allowed to bring Emily to school with her. They both had a lot of fun...Kaylee got to show Emily all the ways that the school is different from TX and Emily got to see what Kaylee is learning. Very fun.

BTW...they are both wearing St. Patrick's shirts because so many kids were out sick on St. Patrick's Day that they had to move their little party to Thursday afternoon. The girls loved getting to be "twinkies" at school together.