Monday, October 27, 2008

Back Where I Come From

I've always liked the song by Kenny Chesney "Back Where I Come From." If it's not ringing a bell, then here are some of the lyrics:

In the town where I was raised
The clock ticks and the cattle graze
Time passed with Amazing Grace
Back where I come from
Now you can lie on a riverbank
Paint your name on a water tank...

The chorus goes goes:
Back where I come from
It's where I'll be when it's said and done
I'm proud as anyone Back where I come from...

Everytime I hear it, it makes me think of home. I loved where I grew up. And I love taking my kids back to my old "stompin grounds." This weekend was no exception.

Mario had to stay behind because he had studying to do. I think he was ready to see us when we got back because he was waiting on his tailgate just looking lonely! About half way home J screamed, "Oh no! We forgot Daddy!" I explained to her why he wasn't coming, but I think she still thought I had forgotten him...

Mo & J practiced drawing turtles when we got there. J is quite the little artist--I'll have to post some of her artwork and get it documented...

Mo put the kids up on one of her saddles in the tack room.

Here's grandad and the kids about to make a scarecrow. A deer had been rubbing on all the pine trees they had planted so we made a scarecrow nearby...

Dad and bubby wrap wire around the tree base...

The kids ready to dress the scarecrow...


Safety goggles...Check.

Mamma's gold ring from high school...Check!

Building a scarecrow is serious business. The ring, for the record, was lost somewhere in the process of stuffing the scarecrow with hay.

Just keep me outside and I'm easy to please...

All of these pictures were taken right next to a wooded area where Dad helped Jamie and I build a sweet fort with moss carpet when we were little...

My little man leading "the pony"...

Sitting on a round bale with J, showing her a one-legged grasshopper. She toted that little basket around all weekend with my old doll ("swingset") from childhood. Swingset came home with us this time.

Here is "the pony," and the subject of the ongoing argument of who the pony actually belongs to...

If this is not love for a pony, I don't know what is! I really wondered if the new would wear off of him. It has been well over a year, and she has not lost interest in Banner. This was acually the day before we left, but I'm pretty sure by the look on this face, she is already dreading going back and leaving him...

Here is someone who is too little to miss Banner yet, but I'm not kidding when he wakes up every morning and the first thing he says when he sits up in bed is, "Horse." This kid L-O-V-E-S horses...

These are just a few of the things we enjoy doing "back where I come from."

Sunday, October 26, 2008

There's Still Time...

If you want to get in on a good giveaway, go to Faith's blog and leave a comment. (Like in the next three hours) Every day last week I kept thinking I would catch my breath and work on a post, but it never happened! :(

But we did have a wonderful stayed tuned for some fun pictures! I know I've said that a couple of times now, and have failed to produce any pictures from the weekend we went up on the mountain or of the day we went to the pumpkin patch. But this time I mean it...and maybe one day I'll get around to posting those other pictures. As for the people who tagged me, I went to the sixth folder but only had three pictures in it...sorry!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

A Great 28th!

October is a wonderful month...with fall in the air and two of my favorite people's birthdays, it's a cause for celebration!

I LOVE old pictures. Sometimes when I am home, I go through boxes of mom's old photographs. I can't tell you how many times I've heard her say, "One day you'll be glad I took these," as we grumbled about having photos made. Now I can sit for hours as I look through pictures from our childhood, or even from before I was born, and appreciate the photo and what it captured. A moment in time that we don't get back, but can only remember and try to retell.

Sometimes looking at photographs will make you laugh--younger looking faces, "stylish" wardrobes, unsightly bangs and other hideous hairstyles. Other times, photographs can make you cry as you thumb through photos from a chapter in your life that was particularly tough, or even a part of your life remembered with much fondness, or as you look into the faces of loved ones that are missed terribly. And often times as you look at photos, you will neither laugh nor cry, but simply smile as you remember something that was worth a photograph!

Of course I don't remember Mario at this age, because I didn't know him then. But here is a photo that makes me smile:

I smile because I look at him and think about all of the wonderful things he would grow up to be! I smile because I am thankful that his parents took the time to love him, teach him, and groom him into a wonderful person that would one day make a wonderful husband for one lucky lady!

This one really makes me smile...ever heard the song by Sonny Burgess called "Cowboy Cool?" Sandra may not have meant to, but momma let her baby grow up to be cowboy cool!

I love so many things about Mario, but let me just name a few. Above all, is his desire to serve the Lord and really walk in a relationship with Him. He is a man of integrity. He is a great artist. He loves a challenge. He loves and values his family. He is a great brother and uncle. He is nice to everyone, even when they are not nice to him. If he sees someone feeling left out, he makes it a point to include them and make them feel important.

He is patient with me, patient with the kids, patient with his customers, and patient with his horses. For anyone who is unaware of the time and effort it takes to train a roping horse (pictured above), just know that it is not for everyone. Mario, on the other hand, has the patience of Job. I get impatient just watching.

He appreciates and enjoys the simple things in life, and I really love that about him! He gets excited about lots of things and it just oozes out of him when he talks about something that he is passionate about.

He always enjoys when he has an opportunity to teach younger kids, especially with roping or horsemanship. But it's not limited to those things. When we go to the gym to play pick up ball, he gets a game going with some young kids, and then will invite a guy that no one else wanted on their team to play with us. When we went to the track one day, he ditched me for two young boys that were walking around with a football. Before long, he was drawing up plays for them to run and throwing them the football. When we left, the mother was sitting in her car. She stopped us and couldn't quit thanking him for spending some time with them.

And what's not to love about this side of Mario? I hesitate to say "side" because that's one of the nice qualities about him is that what you see is what you get. But many people who know Mario think he is a little more reserved than this! This was a couple of years ago on our anniversary when he rented a costume and serenaded me -- a HILARIOUS performance with his nephew and another boy as back up singers.

Mario requested dump cake for his birthday. The first time I ever had this was a LONG time ago--Kelly's mom made this when we went to their house for dinner when I was probably still in junior high...My mom makes it sometimes when we come to visit, and Mario loves it. It has cherry pie filling, crushed pineapple, a yellow cake mix, butter, and pecans in it. It's yummy when you serve it hot with a fresh scoop of cold ice cream!

If you've never tried this Blue Bell kind of ice cream, it's really good. My mom put me on to it...

Happy 28th birthday to another special person in my life! I love you so very much, Mario!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Someone Special

Who’d have thought that this young lad
Would one day grow up and be my dad

And who’d have known that this very man
Would yield his life to the call of God’s plan

A husband, a father, grandfather and friend
A leader and servant so well you have been.

Laughter and love and wisdom you share,
With careful instruction of what to beware

Genuine, trustworthy, talented plenty,
Insightful and giving…your qualities are many!

Patient you are when I’ve stumbled like I can,
You’ve proved to be my number one fan.

You can lighten a load with your witty style,
And encourage a person to go the extra mile.

Happy Birthday to someone known as my dad,
We’re celebrating you today--you make us all so glad!

Monday, October 13, 2008

This and That...

This past Sunday, Mario & I taught Jaiden's class again. We have filled in for the last two weeks and the kids have been so funny! In our Stepping Up bible study, we recently had a lesson where Beth asked us to comment on some relationships that we have at church that we wouldn't have had anywhere else. She shared that she had a whole set of girlfriends ranging from ages 7-12 that she talks to each Sunday, and via text message through the week. I had to list this class! (Along with lots of other people that I am thankful for and always look forward to seeing). Mario and I have been subs for this class when needed throughout the last year. I always look forward to seeing them when we are filling in! Last Saturday, one of the sweet little girls just ran up to me at a soccer game and hugged my neck. She had the brightest smile on her face and asked me, "Where's Mister Mario?!" Before I could answer, she spotted him and ran up behind him and tried to scare him.

They are so precious and I love to hear what they have to say!

These pictures were all made from two Sundays ago, but I thought I would share about some of the fun we have been having!

April dressed up as Abraham to tell the kids a story...

The lesson was "I Can Follow God." I was asking them what we used maps for, and explaining that Abraham relied on God, and not a map.

This little girl loved making pretend waffles for Mario...

Here are some of the kids making their silly faces...

Saturday morning, J had a soccer game and then we met up with family and spent the day on a beautiful mountain! We had so much fun enjoying the beautiful weather. I will post some pictures of the trip in a few days hopefully.

Yesterday I went with J's class on their field trip to the pumpkin patch. I will post some photos of that eventually too.

Also, I just wanted to acknowledge that my friend Jana's husband who is in the National Guard is home for a short visit. Jana is the wonderful mother of two precious little boys. She started blogging as a way for her husband to keep up with their everyday lives and feel closer to home during his deployment. I think you should all go here and read her post about him coming home.

It might make you cry.

And it will definitely make you appreciate having your man home and by your side each day. Go read her post and leave her a comment to tell her you appreciate their sacrifices and his serrvice.

Jana, if you are reading this, I'm amazed by your strength. You sacrifice time with your husband and tackle every day with your two little ones--I've never seen you without a smile on your face.

And lastly, I've been tagged by 3 fellow bloggers to share 7 unique things about myself, so here goes:

1. I had a pet duck as a kid that thought he was a dog. I named him "Webster" to start with, but when he started acting like a dog, my family appropriately renamed him "Rover." He slept in the dog house with our blue/red healer and was eventually hit by a car.

2. There was a period of time when I was a kid that I carried a recorder around with me and recorded everything! This material included but was not limited to interviews with the farm animals and fights with my older sister. One time we had pulled in to the boat factory because mom had to run in to talk to dad. My sister and I were in the car and got into an arguement. The whole spill was recorded and near the end Jamie started threatening to tell mom that I had marked on her new sweatshirt. Apparently I was not smart enough to back off, and it ended with me begging her not to tell, and her screaming, "It's too's TOO late!" We found the tape years later and played it back, laughing until we all hurt!

3. I went to my first basketball camp in the third grade and was never the same. I became consumed with it. I played basketball in college and while it was not easy nor was it always fun, it was the best opportunity and I loved it!

4. I used to like when the coaches got mad at us and made us run because it was fun to run until it hurt. Even if it was six oclock in the morning. I love to run. Always have. Any distance...I just like it!

5. I was a child actress. Before you contact E! trying to get me on "Child Stars--Where They are Now" I should tell you that they were plays written and produced by my sister, her best friend, and our cousin. And they were never starring roles. Once I was a wolf and another time a girl named Miranda who died an untimely death. Perhaps my best preformance was as "Buddy"...a hard core, bad-to-the bone hooligan on their twist of America's Most Wanted.

6. I NEVER watch tv. I couldn't name a single show that comes on any night of the week because it's just never on at our house anymore. We watch dvds with the kids sometimes, but by the time we get to sit down and catch our breath at the end of the day--we'd both rather have a moment of peace and quiet! In fact, each month we talk about just eliminating our dish network bill since we never watch television anymore, but I guess we keep thinking we might miss it then!

7. I am a tea-aholic. I drink tea constanly. It's my favorite drink. Sweet tea is my preference, but I drink unsweet a lot too. I am also very picky about my tea though. I have certain places that I will not order tea from, and then I have several places that rank high up on my places to get tea from!

Now I tag anybody that wants to 7 unique things about themselves!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Kelly's Nursery Tour 2008

So my precious friend, Kelly, is hosting a "Share Your Nursery" tour over at Kelly's Korner.

Okay, so I modified the rules a little because I can't seem to locate the photos of J's nursery when she was a little girl. I didn't have a digital camera at that point, and so somewhere in a box, there are prints and a cd, but when we moved, I'm not real sure where they are and I don't have time to look for them right now. So, I am first posting the photos of Jeryn's Nursery, and at the end of the post, I am including photos of J's big-girl room!

This was one of the first things I did in the nursery. I later added a white shelf and moved the lamp to a dresser...I made the lamp shade with the left over scrap from his bedding. I probably shouldn't say that I "made" it, since all I really did was buy a lamp shade and hot glue the tassle-looking things around it...
Here's what it looked like after I added the little shelf. This is the cedar chest my parents gave me when I was sixteen. It was in J's nursery when she was a baby, and when I did his nursery, I thought it would go perfect in there. I will give it to my daughter one day, but for now it's staying here! The blue things in the corner are hung with fishing line and I just twisted brown and green ribbon around it and tied it with bows. They are mostly used for storing diapers, socks, and washcloths.

This was actually the dresser in J's nursery when she was a baby, except it was white. I painted it chocolate brown, and then painted the drawers and door lime green and teal...

Here is the baby bedding that I had custom made. I had so much fun picking out the fabric and loved how it looked when she finished!

She made me a pillow out of the extra fabric...

I painted these letters and then used those polka-dot brushes from Hobby Lobby to do the polka dots...

These are the cutest thing in the room! My sister painted them for him and I just love them!

I also had this glider recovered to match the bedding, and painted this little night stand to match the dresser.
Here is another lamp shade that I made...

NOW, for the big girl room:

We recently painted this pink accent wall. Her nursery was originally a farm theme with the cutest bedding in the world called "Apple Tree Farm." Because she already had several horses from her nursery, I used them when we went with the horse theme in her current room.

Then I had my friend, Tanner, paint this canvas for her room...(she also painted the one for Jeryn's room with the verse).

Her bedroom suite is extra special to me because it was mine when I was a little girl. When we moved and redid her room, my mom gave it to me for her. Every time I walk into her room, it makes me smile!

This is my favorite piece. I used to sit for HOURS at this desk with the little light on, and now Jaiden loves to do the same.

Thanks for touring! And if you haven't joined in on the fun already, get over to her blog, and post your link! Have a great week!