Friday, November 28, 2008

Black Friday

Soooo, did anyone else go out before sunrise to try to snag a bargain? I thought I would try to go to Walmart this morning to buy a TV that they had really cheap. I have never done the Black Friday thing before, so I was SHOCKED at how many people were out shopping at 5:00am!!! The Walmart parking lot was FULL! I did not get there in time to get the TV. It was sold out by 5:20am. It took me 15 minutes to get to the back of the store where the TVs were. As I headed back home, I stopped at Radio Shack, because they had a similar offer. The doors opened at 6:00am, so I had to wait in the car for a little bit. Five minutes before the doors opened, people started showing up so I got out of the car and fell in line. I was the first to the TVS and got one, yea!! Five minutes later a lady came to buy the same TV, and they had to get her the one off the shelf. Can you believe they only had two in the whole store. Anyway, I have a new TV!! It is supposed to be the girls, but I told Mike it is more for me, because it will allow me to move the Wii game upstairs to their playroom instead of having it connected to our big TV in the family room. Merry Christmas to me!!

Allison seems to be on the mend. She is still not eating anything, but she has been drinking, and she has not been sick since about midnight Wednesday night. She always surprises me and throws up two days after I think she is well, so we will see, but she seems better. She is still hanging out in bed and is currently sleeping, so she is not 100% yet. So far the rest of us remain well. I hope we can make it through without anybody else getting sick! I am still paranoid after every one of us got sick a few years ago. That was lots of fun.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Change of Plans

Wow, what a busy last couple of days!! It seems we have been going since Friday. Friday morning I spent all morning running errands-I had to go pick up some Sunday school materials from the regular Sunday school teacher, because she was going to be out of town, and I had to teach in her place on Sunday; I went to the library to get some books for a project that Allison needs to get started on (notice I say needs to get started on); I ran home and did some things around the house; I ran and picked up Rachel from school and met the physical therapist at a nearby park for her to work with Rachel. (I was impressed that not only did I remember to show up for the appointment, but I also remembered to take the tricycle for Rachel to practice riding.)

Saturday we went to Rachel's horseback riding session, raced home and ate lunch and headed to the girls' school for their Fall Festival. I had to work there from 12:30pm-4:00pm. It was a beautiful day and the girls had a good time running around the school playing the games and jumping on the inflatables. We were all tired Saturday night. Allison had a friend that was going to spend the night, but she started feeling bad shortly after we got home from the festival, so she went home around 7:00pm. We all crashed early.

Sunday I got up early to prep for the class I had to teach-nothing like waiting until the last minute, but I was just too tired to do it Saturday night. After Sunday school, we raced home and fed the girls so that they could go to an ice skating party. Fortunately, Mike was able to take Allison and Leah to that, so that I could go to the grocery store. Rachel and I headed to the store and bought all the Thanksgiving fixins'. Sunday evening we had some cake to celebrate my birthday. It is scary how fast 50 is creeping up on me!!!

Monday I headed out to do so Christmas shopping. We just found out that Mike's company is going into the layoff and pay cut mode this month, so I was really looking around for some bargains! The time just flies when your spending money, and before I knew it, it was time to go pick up Rachel. As soon as I got home from shopping and picking up Rachel, I had to straighten the house up because we had company coming from Texas for the evening. That was a short but nice visit, and they left after dinner. Tuesday morning I had to volunteer in Leah's class for a little while. It involves reading with the kids one-on-one, so it is lots of fun. After I got home from school, I started cleaning up around the house to get ready for the company on Thursday. That took all afternoon and of course I did not get close to finishing.

Today, I was planning on getting so more housework done and starting some baking for tomorrow, but last night around midnight Allison woke up and threw up. She and I were up most of the night, and she has been sick all day. She still has not kept anything down. I am hoping that this evening she will be able to at least get some fluids to stay down. Mike and I called everyone today and told them to cancel the plans for tomorrow. That means I won't see my sister over the holiday, but if everyone else stays well, maybe we can have a Thanksgiving dinner with Grandpa and Mary Jane some time over the weekend. I hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday. Enjoy the silly pictures below.

Hat day at school. You cannot see it in the picture, but Allison's hat has a sequin A on it. She thinks it is the cat's pajamas.
Just thought this looked funny and ran and grabbed the camera. Rachel loves to play in the tub.
The girls tell me this is Harry Potter. Who knew he was penguin.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Busy, Busy Busy!!

I cannot seem to get time to sit down and add some new pictures! I have had this picture on the computer for a week and have not had time to sit down and send it.....still don't really, so here it is without commentary. Will try to do more before Thanksgiving!!

Saturday, November 15, 2008


Well, the dentist pulled Leah's tooth yesterday. Leah was none to happy about it and tried to talk the dentist into doing it another time, but the dentist said, "today's the day!" You can see the permanent tooth that was behind the baby tooth is already all the way through. It is set back because the baby tooth was there for so long. Hopefully it will move forward over time. After it was all said and done Leah was really excited to show everybody she had lost a tooth. She was a trooper about it all. She was really scared, but only cried a little.

November 15 and the girls are in the pool. It was pretty warm today, but the pool has cooled off quite a bit, so they were not in it for very long. The water is too cold for Rachel, so fortunately she did not persist about getting in too. Tonight it is really supposed to cool off, going down into the 50s and only warming up into the 60s tomorrow. They won't be in the pool tomorrow!!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

School Pictures

Nothing much happening this week. Leah is on a field trip today to the King Center to see a play. Man, does she stress about following rules....hate to complain about that, but she was driving me crazy last night about what she was supposed to wear and how she was supposed to pack her lunch. She was freaking out that she would be dressed inappropriately (pretty ironic considering how she dresses most days). She also had it set in her mind that she had to have a "disposable" lunch. Often on field trips the teachers ask that the kids bring sack lunches so that they don't have to keep up with their lunch boxes. Leah's class will be at the play during her regular lunch time, so the teacher wanted them to bring their lunches to eat in the classroom when they return. I told Leah that it did not matter what her lunch was packed in , but she would not rest until it was in a paper bag. At one point she said she did not want to go on the trip because she did not know what to do about everything. She did not believe me for a second when I told her I knew what she should do and would make sure she was dressed appropriately and had the right lunch. Anyway, I did get her off to school this morning. I hope everything is going smoothly for her.

Rachel is coming down with a cold. I guess it was inevitable. Every other kid in her class has already had it. She woke up with a runny nose this morning. She has not really had a cold since her tonsillectomy in February, so we will see how she handles it now that she has a bigger airway! Maybe we can get through this without having to use the nebulizer. I did finally get her flu shot a couple of weeks ago, but I have been a bad mommy and not gotten my own or gotten the big girls in to get theirs. I really need to do that soon.

Tomorrow, Allison and Leah go to the dentist. Allison is just going in for a cleaning. Leah is going in for sealants and for the dentist to assess whether she needs to pull a tooth. Leah has one of her bottom teeth coming in behind her baby tooth. She looks a little bit like a shark at the moment with the two rows of teeth. I am not sure if the dentist will pull the tooth tomorrow or not, but I know that she is going to want to do that at some point. She said last month, at Leah's cleaning, that if the tooth didn't loosen up by this visit-and it hasn't- that she would pull it. Yikes!

The big girls got their school pictures back last week. I have not gotten Rachel's yet. They are looking like such big girls. I could not believe that Leah's hair was actually not sticking up in some funny way! Notice she did not smile. She does not like her smile and pretty much refuses to show her teeth-or lack thereof-for the camera. I cannot believe that they start worrying about those kind of things at such an early age!!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Not Ready Yet.....

Today I am trying to get caught up with my laundry. I spent yesterday morning running around. To start the morning off, I realized on the way to the big girls' school, that I had left Rachel's extra set of clothes at home on the bathroom counter....darn it! Then when we got to the big girls' school, we realized Allison had left her backpack at home. The irony of it all is that she put Leah's and Rachel's in the car! I dropped the girls off at their school at 7:40am, but had to take Rachel to her school before I could go back home for Allison's backpack. Rachel has PT bright and early at 8:15am on Mondays, so she could not be late. As I am I a dropping off Rachel, I actually remembered to tell them that she was in big girl panties for the day, for the FIRST time. Remember me saying that I had left her extra clothes at home........well, I told them to call me if they needed them. Rachel had done well over the weekend with going to the potty, so I crossed my fingers and left.

I drove back home and picked up Allison's backpack. It was in the garage!! I don't know how we got out of there with it sitting right in front of us. I got her backpack to her at 8:30am, just in time for her to turn in her math homework! Since I was in Allison's classroom, I did a couple of things for the teacher and headed home about 9:00am. I got home and was able to get a few things done before Rachel's school called. Guess what......she had wet her pants! Of course it really didn't surprise me, but I was hoping she would make it. Soooo, I jumped back into the car and headed back to Rachel's school.

When I was done there, I didn't have enough time to get back home without having to turn right around and go back and pick up Rachel, so I went and did some shopping. I HATE shopping-for clothes that is, but, I had no option. Allison went through her clothes the other day and gave Leah all of her pants that were too short. She was left with two pair of pants. She also only had three long sleeve shirts. She might would be able to make it through the next couple of weeks without new clothes, but the next time it cools off she would be in some serious need of some clothes! I went to Old Navy and Justice and hit the sales racks and did not do too bad. The best thing of all is that Allison actually liked all the things I picked out. You may ask why I didn't wait and take her along too? Well, she hates shopping as much as me and when we have to do it together, it turns into a wretched ordeal!

So, today I am hoping to be able to stay home until it is time to go pick Rachel up at noon. You know what........I just remembered that I did not get Rachel another set of clothes to her school again today. Yikes!!! Well, she is in pull ups again, so maybe she won't spill anything on herself. I just decided to wait until the Christmas break to really start pressing her out of the pull ups.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Let the Fun Begin!!

Well, the weekend came and went with its usual speed. Friday afternoon we had no plans for the weekend, other than watching the Alabama football game on Saturday, but that was soon to change. Allison and her friend covertly planned a sleepover. Around 6:00pm I talked with the mom, and she said it was fine for Allison to sleepover. I told the mom that I would feed Allison and send her over about 7:30pm (the mom already had four kids to have to feed and I figured I wouldn't add a fifth). Just before dinner, my sister called and asked us if we wanted to go to Disney's Animal Kingdom on Saturday. Her husband just started working there and get lots of free passes. The weather was going to be perfect, so we said count us in.

At 5:50am Saturday morning we get a call from Allison that she is not feeling well at her sleep over and she wants to come home. Allison is an anxious child and often gets overly excited about things to the point of nausea. A trip to Disney warrants such excitement. I drove down and picked her up, brought her home and put her in her bed. She feel asleep for a little bit and then got up and felt fine. I wish I could have gone back to sleep for a little bit too! Saturday morning, after Rachel's horseback riding, we headed to Orlando. We got to the park around noon. I had packed sandwiches so that we could eat before we entered the park, thus saving about $45 would we spend on lunch in the park! We ate our lunches in the car as we waited on my sister to arrive. With all the Disney passes, we just had to pay for one kid to get in-it was still almost $70, but to think we got a family of five in for that and it is a bargain! The girls had LOTS of fun. They worked up the nerve to ride their first real roller coaster, Expedition Everest. I was so relieved when we found out that Leah was indeed tall enough to ride it. They could not stop talking about it for the next 24 hours. Mike and I tried to keep up with the Alabama game via his iPhone. On the way home we were logged onto a site that kept sending in updates to keep us sort of informed. With three seconds left in the game though it decided to quit refreshing. My sister texted to tell us the game went into overtime. I called her to see what had happened and she told us about the blocked kick. We knew nothing until she texted Roll Tide Roll! With that, I had to call her and get the scoop on what went down. Go Bama!!!! Almost wish I could have stayed home and watched the game......almost.

Sunday we had to get back to the routine. We went to church in the morning, and I had to go to the grocery store in the afternoon. The girls talked Mike into dragging out the kayak and letting them paddle around in the lake behind the house. It turned out to be the excitement in the neighborhood and drew every child within a one mile radius to the lake shore to take a turn paddling around. After the kayaking the kids headed over to the neighbors to swim for a little bit. Whew! We made it through another weekend. Below are some pictures of the weekend.

Welcome to Animal Kingdom!Mike and Rachel at the start of the day.

The African Safari ride was really cool! The girls ride the train.
All the cousins pose with the elephants. Rachel pets the goats.

When this cow bellowed it was REALLY loud. Rachel did not like it at all! The girls at Dinoland. Sunday afternoon kayaking.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Can I cry too?

Oh boy!! Anybody got a place I can come and spend the weekend?! The girls are driving me crazy, and they have only been home from school for two hours. Allison is pretending she does not know how to do her homework-rather convincingly, I might add-because it is time consuming and she does not want to do it. She has been procrastinating now for an hour and has turned on the tears at least once trying to get out of it. Leah had her meltdown right after school, because Mike told her they could go camping this weekend. Despite the fact that he told her it could not be Friday night, she came home from school talking about the camping trip she was going on tonight. Lots of tears when I told her the reality of it! Rachel is also learning the fake cry. Twice today she has tried to use it on me. Just a few minutes ago, I made her put some toys down to wash her hands and she put on her Oscar winning performance. She is pretty convincing too. Do you think I can get away with putting them all to bed at 5:00pm?!?!?

Here Comes Another Weekend

Another week has slipped by. We were not too busy this week. I volunteered in Allison's class on Monday and Wednesday. Wednesday I was in and out in 10 minutes, but Monday I was there for about 2 1/2 hours working on something the teacher needed done immediately. Unfortunately, that was the day of our monthly get together for moms with children with Down Syndrome so I ended up having to miss that. I hated to miss that, because it is always nice to get together with the moms and chat. Next month, I am making the Down Syndrome breakfast my priority!

Tuesday, I went and cast my vote. I was pleasantly surprised to not have to wait in line at all. That was totally unexpected. I had left my whole morning open, and I went as soon as I could, after I got the kids to school, so that I could vote without the kids hanging on me. Rachel has no patience for standing around!

Wednesday and Thursday I tried to get some things done around the house. I am really trying to stay out of the stores and save up some money for Christmas. I cannot believe it is coming up so fast! The girls have started working on their lists for Santa!

This morning I remembered to take my camera to school when I dropped Rachel off. She has started asking to carry her backpack into and out of the school. I think it is so funny to see her carrying that backpack, because it is as big as she is!! Below you see her walking down the hall with her load!!

This weekend I hope to watch Alabama beat LSU! Roll Tide!!

Rachel heads to class with her HUGE backpack!
Rachel rides Gypsy last Saturday. We finally got a helmet that is small enough for her little head, so now she can see where she is going. Notice the stirrups. That is as short as they go and she still cannot reach them.
Just had to take a picture of the marigolds. I planted about six little plants almost two years ago. They have long since gone, but the flowers keep reseeding the area, and they are blooming like crazy!! I have three trees in the back yard and only planted the flowers around one of them, now I have a little rogue plant coming up in one of the beds around another tree. Here in Florida, annuals become perennials.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Trick or Treat!

Can you believe it is November? I cannot believe that we have started into the holiday season. Hope everyone had a happy and safe Halloween. The girls had a great time. Thursday we carved the pumpkins-or shall I say I carved the pumpkins. Allison and Leah helped clean out the pumpkins for a little bit, but after that, Allison headed back outside to play. Leah hung out with me a little longer and drew all the faces for me, but after a while she deserted me too. Rachel would have nothing to do with it from the start. As soon as she saw the insides of the pumpkin, she said, "Done", and left the kitchen. Leah wants to roast the pumpkin seeds so I had to separate the seeds from the pulp after we were done with the carving. The seeds are still sitting out on the counter waiting to be roasted. I printed a recipe off the computer on how to roast them, but if anyone has any words of wisdom about roasting pumpkin seeds, please feel free to share.

Yesterday the girls were really excited about trick-or-treating from the time they got up. Before she left for school, Leah pulled her costume out of the closet. When I asked why she was getting it out so early, she stated that she did not want to forget about it and go out without it. I told her that was probably not going to happen-although if she has a memory like me, anything is possible I guess. The girls got home from school really wired. I spent abut two hours pressing Allison to get her homework done. It was not much, but she just could not stay focused. Grandpa arrived at the same time the girls got home from school, so that added to the girls' excitement. At about 5:30pm we started getting the girls ready for the evening. Rachel and Allison were easy, but Leah needed makeup. My newest Halloween lessons are that white face paint is not as easy to put on as one would think; hair really sticks in white face paint; and money spent on a wig is wasted because it is "TOOOOO IIIITCHHYYYY" to wear for very long. The weather was beautiful! For the first time since we have moved down here, we were able to go trick-or-treating without sweating. I actually was able to wear a long sleeve shirt. It was neat to have a little cooler weather for the holiday.
Today, we all got up and took Rachel to her horseback riding session. She was so excited to finally get to go again. Grandpa was still with us, and Allison' friend had spent the night and was still with us too. After the horseback riding, all seven of us loaded up and took Grandpa out to eat. His birthday was Thursday, so we treated him to lunch. Each time I go out to eat with the kids, it reminds me of why I don't do it more often. Allison is my Mom's and Dad's revenge on me. I am a picky eater, and she is as bad as I ever was. Of course she did not like what she got, and she had to pout about it all through the meal. The rest of us enjoyed ours, though. When we got home from lunch, Grandpa packed up and headed home; Allison's friend had to go home; and Mike had to go into work. So now it is just us girls hanging out around the house doing nothing. It has started raining off and on outside so we are just staying in.

Pumpkin carving. Note to self, since the kids are not that interested in pumpkin year one pumpkin should do!

The recipe calls for 1 1/2 cups of pumpkin seeds. Do you think we have enough?

The finished product. The pumpkin on the left is supposed to look like Spongebob, with the emphasis on "supposed to."

Elvira at age six. Notice I gave up on the white paint on her neck. She had reached her limit on standing still, and I had reached my limit with trying to make her stand still. The look is nothing like we had imagined in our heads. I always wondered why the kids with white face paint always looked so, I know!
A cheerleader, a vampire, and an alien are ready to go!
The trick-or-treating posse is assembled. Notice the little dog in the front in her Halloween shirt?

Rachel had a good time going through the neighborhood. She will probably expect candy every time she walks through the neighborhood now.
I thought this was a funny play on the lawn flamingo....only in Florida!
Home with the loot!!!