Thursday, March 31, 2011


I have some pictures that I want to share, but nothing to really say. So, I'll just post my thoughts on these.

OK, really? I bought this for my 11 year old son, because he is a victim of "man-stink." Little did I know that he would actually "get dirtier." Gotta find a way to cover this up. Who knew? Soft porn on a soap bottle.

Again, for my 11 year old. Wash. Attract. Repeat? Seriously?


Not often that you get to look directly at the sun, or take a picture of it without special equipment.

These are out of order, but I'm too lazy to fix them. This is #2 "high-fiving" the opponent after his scrimmage. (We won.)
Running for home. I know it is cruddy, but I was on the phone at the time, saw him running in and tried to talk, cheer, and take a picture at the same time.

Warming up to bat.

Sacked out after a day at Fiesta Texas.

#3 thought about this for several minutes before he decided on the dinosaur. Unfortunately, he had to "decide" based on the new gal.... she couldn't do the shark he originally wanted.

Who is this? We don't really know. The gal was new and pretty limited on her face-painting talent. In fact, this WAS supposed to be Batman. Note the spider......

#4 just got a new hat in a Mexican market in San Antonio.

Me and my hubby, with our 4 boys, along with DH's sister, her hubby and their 2 girls.

#3 got mad and decided to hide. He zipped himself up and finally got stuck. DH had to free him.


#3's ear. This is taken about 2 weeks ago, maybe. Isn't it looking good? In a bit over a month, we will take him in for his 3rd and last surgery. They will sculpt it a bit more and make it look like there is an ear canal.

My new tattoo

You can see 2 ears!!!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


We have been SO busy.

My 2nd son has just started playing baseball. He loves it. We have not had any problems with practices or games..... until this weekend. We have a tournament. BUT, our coach is so awesome. He is OK with the fact that we will not miss church for a game. I know a lot of people don't see it like we do, but the way we see it, God is not going to judge us on our baseball skills. There are more important things. If we teach our children that God is second to baseball.... well, honestly, I don't want to answer for that.

My 4th son is coping with his trauma of a few weeks ago. For several days, he didn't refer to it. The other day, he wrote me a note that said, "I 'mist' you." He was talking about when he got lost. A few days later he really talked to me about his fears. He was so afraid that he wouldn't see me again and that I would not be able to take care of him. He also said he was afraid he would be stuck at Six Flags forever. That poor little guy.

My 2nd son is in Battle of the Books. He has to read about 11 books.... over 1500 pages... by mid-May. Not too hard.... unless you are 10 and in many extra-curricular activities. So, we just keep plugging along.

This past weekend, we had our District JBQ meet. My older 3 competed. My 3rd competed in a division that couldn't get out of District. My older 2 did compete in a tier with the possibilities of going on. My 2nd son's team didn't not make it. My oldest son's team DID make it.

SO, what are we doing in JBQ? My oldest has every award possible, so we are not learning anything new.... we are just practicing for speed and such. (And yes, I do realize I still need to post on that. I want to video a demonstration.) My 2nd son still needs his Master Seal. We will be able to slow down and work toward that. Then next year, he will be in a good position to be a high-point anchor on one of our top teams. My 3rd wants his first seal, so we will work on learning the rest of the 10s. He knows about 100 out of 288 of that point-value. My 4th.... we will start working on the 10s. He knows about 20 of them, but as competition became more intense, his practice time dwindled immensely. As my oldest is "graduating" the program, I will be able to use him to help us practice.

During our District competition, I quiz mastered. That was intense. It was a LOT of fun, though. I LOVE seeing all the kids and getting to know the coaches. Some of these people, I have seen each year for the past 5. They are truly some great friends. I was surprised to be voted "Favorite Quiz Master" for the Achiever Division. It is quite an honor.... especially considering this was my first year QM'ing and I was up against some seasoned QM's.

I'm about to start couponing again. I don't know how the job situation is going to pan out for this year. I have my application in at the boys' school, as well as the secondary campus. However, the schools are being hit really hard this year. I mean.... when things are looking really bad, cut into education because THAT will help. >:-(

Either way, God is good all the time and we know that we will be OK.

Spring cleaning.

Heh..... that's 'bout all I have to say about that. It hasn't happened. I should have put my list online. BUT, I didn't. Needless to say, I'm behind. Of all the things I put on my list, I probably have 1% done. :-( Will be working on it.

I have to start working on Easter parties. I have 2 of them to plan. That won't be a big deal. I will get parents to help.

I have 4... yep, FOUR... teacher luncheons to plan. I will use a few trusted parent/friends to help me. I don't ask just anyone. I don't trust very many people on some of this stuff. I have yet to decide what I'm going to make. It will either be lasagna, enchiladas, or green chile casserole. I will make the main dish and the desserts and have my helpers bring the bread, drinks and salad.

My hubby and I went to see a band that impersonates Queen. It was a LOT of fun.... more fun watching the old farts pretend they weren't old.

I got a new tattoo the other day. I need to take a picture of it. The only picture I have is right after it was done. It is blood-saturated (is that how you refer to it?) and you can't see the color. It is blue.

OK... that is all I have for now. I need to blog on #3's ear.... the money stuff. Also, I need to put up some new pictures. His ear is looking fabulous!

Have a good one!

Sunday, March 20, 2011


I have been having a moment.... or 3....

I don't know. Not really in a funk, but been thinking about a lot of stuff.

I don't think I have been very good at mothering. Now, don't get me wrong. I think I'm a good mom, but I think I have been too lenient with my kids. I love to be able to give to my kids.... to let them have a bit of freedom. BUT, they still need to remain within the boundaries.

I can't say that this is happening with all my kids, but my younger kids, certainly. I don't even think that I'm giving in to their demands, per se. Considering all we are doing with the older kids, it is hard to be.... I don't know..... strict? Maybe? With my younger boys.

They are going to bed too late. They want.... no, they expect, to watch TV while in falling asleep... and THAT drives me crazy! There are other things, but this is what is on my brain, at the moment.

Another thing is the house is OUT. OF. CONTROL! I haven't been working from my "Spring Cleaning" list (all 5 pages of it). Granted, some of it is Spring Break. I'm out of my routine. I have never been a great housekeeper. I haven't been planning my meals. My grocery buying is jacked up. I'm having to run to the store 2-3 times per week... that is a budget killer, in case you are struggling with finances.

Plus, I have a lot of "extra" stuff going on that is eating at my schedule. *sigh*


I have made up my menu through Friday. (See sidebar, top left.)

I have made a Monday list (using some of my "Spring Cleaning" notes).

I have made my grocery list.... and will go to the store tomorrow.

I will TRY to limit what I do and how long I do it. I tend to work on tasks the way I eat.... one thing at a time. The laundry, ALONE, will take me 4 hours. SO, I will use my timer.

I know these are all simple solutions. I just don't utilize them.

I will have to work my butt off while the boys are at school, because my extra stuff is a bit overwhelming.

What are they?

2 piano lessons
1 guitar lesson
1 baseball practice
1 JBQ practice (with the team)
Nightly JBQ practice with the 3 boys (individually)
Edit several training manuals
Read a few books for my son
Sub in 6th grade Wed. afternoon
Help son put together his costume for his wax museum presentation
Meet with (and coach) DS #2's Battle of the Books team

All this is Monday - Wednesday. The GOOD thing is that DH will be home Wednesday. I just hope it is in time for either JBQ or baseball.

Finally, Friday and Saturday, we have our District JBQ Meet. My 3 oldest will be competing. DH will be judging (maybe).... at least traveling with a team..... and I will be quiz mastering.

It will be a fun week.

It will be a busy week.

Wow...... that was a rabbit trail..... sorry.

Friday, March 18, 2011


Did you ever have something happen to you that haunts you? It plagues your dreams? You keep reliving the "what ifs?"

Well, my family had one such event yesterday.

It was a time of absolute fear, panic and desperation rolled into one.

My hubby and I took our kids to Six Flags Over Texas to meet some Oklahoma family. Granted, it was Spring Break.... it was insanely crowded (so much so that we were told in the first 2 hours, there was a record-setting 15,000 passing through the gates.)

After a few hours of discussing, waiting in line and riding a few rides, we began moving.... our party of 6 adults and 6 kids. The kids ranged in ages from 13 to 5.

As we were walking toward our next ride, I decided the family needed a potty break. We called ahead to my cousins that we would catch up. I went into the ladies restroom while the boys went with Daddy into the other. I came out and saw #1.....he looked at me and asked, "Where is #4?"

Seeing as how Daddy wasn't out yet, I knew they were together.... and I stated as much.... until I saw Daddy.... without #4.

I lost my heart.

While hand-washing, DH saw #4 dash out.... he called to him to "wait up," but was not really concerned as the 3 older brothers were already out at the stroller. (Yes, we use a stroller for #4 when it is crowded, or there is a lot of walking, so that we can move quickly. In fact the progression is generally: Daddy pushing #4, followed by #1 and #2 and then Mom holding #3's hand and bringing up the rear.)

We..... I mean I am a paranoid parent. I am constantly counting noses, to be sure that we are all where we should be. I don't enter a bathroom alone until I see all the boys are with Daddy.

#4 never made it to the stroller.

He ran out and saw a daddy-look-alike..... and followed him.

We don't know how far he got before he realized it was not Daddy.

When hubby came out, and I realized we no longer had eyes on #4.....

Well, I can't say I panicked right away. I mean, he had JUST. RUN. OUT. He had to be near.


We called.

We looked in the men's restroom.

We looked in the women's restroom.

We looked in the line for the nearest ride (which was right behind the restrooms).

We looked into a crowd of hundreds.

It might as well have been millions.

Throngs of people going this way and that.

And no sign of my five-year-old son.

I pride myself in usually keeping a cool head.

We've had broken bones, busted lips, bloody noses, cracked noggins..... I just don't panic.

I don't recall ever feeling panic.

Until yesterday.

I calmly went to one of the workers to ask the protocol for "missing children."

She told me of the "Lost Parents" office in Looney Tune Land.

I called my cousin. They immediately turned and spread out. They retraced their steps, looking for the cute little blondie in a Buzz Lightyear shirt.

I texted names on my "recent list" with the words, "PRAY! We have lost #4!"

I started to holler his name. I expected him to be right there. I expected the hundreds of people to get quiet. I expect everyone to help me search for my child.

Fact: About 20,000 people in the park and less than a dozen knew he was gone.

I went through all this about 2 feet from my other children..... my cousins and my husband fanned out. We didn't know where to go.

With all the whack-jobs out there..... well..... I can't even put into words my fears.

One of my cousins stayed with my other 3 while I stood in the middle, hollering my son's name, fighting back panic, swallowing the fear, trying to function under the heaviness of desperation.

I have never felt so utterly helpless.


I have never felt..... so.....

I prayed. I didn't even know how. I could think of nothing holy. I couldn't formulate the flowery prayers that sound like they should reach God faster than the simple plea.

All I could say, over and over, was, "Oh, God! Please, Jesus!"

I called my mother..... and almost began to hyper-ventilate, for the first time in my life.

I asked her to pray. She did..... as well as the people in her office.

After about 15 minutes..... or was it 3 hours? My husband called and said, "I have him."

I almost collapsed in tears, pain, weakness, surrender, thankfulness, relief....

I texted all who had been called to pray, and told them our wonderful news.

My other children, when I reached them, all hugged me and said they had been praying. Judging from the looks on their faces.... they had been.

Our son had somehow gone quite a distance, before realizing he was going the wrong way. He started to cry. Thankfully, a Six Flags maintenance worker saw him and took him to the "Lost Parents" office.

Our son, through tears, told the guard his name, age and grade.

And he waited.

I have imagined how it must feel to lose a child.

I have felt the fear when, in a store, they travel an aisle or 2 over, without my knowledge. But, that fear is often laced with frustration that my child disobeyed and left my side.

This didn't happen.

He didn't do anything wrong,

WE didn't do anything wrong.

He just got confused and followed the wrong daddy.

Could it have been worse?

I can't..... no, I WON'T imagine possible outcomes.

I'm just thankful.


Tuesday, March 08, 2011


I am not Catholic. I don't hold to any of the liturgical denominations.... is that what you would call them? Anyway, I have never really considered Lent.... never observed/practiced it. I don't observe Ash Wednesday. But, I DO celebrate Easter. Though Christmas is my favorite holiday, Easter is the one I hold as most important.

OK.... tangent..... coming back.

Anyway, I have never even considered Lent. I didn't know if I thought it was wrong or right.... I just never.... thought about it.

Until 2009.

February 25, 2009 was Ash Wednesday. The night of February 24, I knew I was being told to stop drinking Dr Pepper. I don't take a direct word from God lightly. The irony of being told to start on Ash Wednesday is not lost on me.

Ash Wednesday and Lent of 2010 came and went. Like I said, we don't observe it.

Well, this year, I decided to do something.

I did a bit of research to see if it was Biblical. I can't find it in the Bible. But, I can't find evidence of a church choir, either. It doesn't have to be in the Bible, for my peace of mind.... but I have to be sure that it is not prohibited, in any way, or for the wrong reasons. And.... I think it is OK.... for me..... for this year.

In the Bible, there are many times that "fasting" is discussed. Fasting can be done in various forms and for various reasons. My reasons? To give up something that I feel is addictive. To grow closer to God. To discipline myself.

I have chosen to give up caffeine.

I don't drink sodas as much as before, though I do still enjoy a Dr Pepper or Coke a few times a week. I drink sweet tea everyday.... not in the quantities that I used to drink Dr Pepper, but enough that I miss it if I hit about 10:00 a.m. without it.

I have told my kids. They will help me. My hubby has decided to join me. He is working on cutting out sweets. Both of these changes will help us to be healthier. That is a good thing.

So, whether you observe Lent, or fasting, at this time of year or any other, I pray that you are doing it for the right reasons and that you achieve your goal.

And, as always, God bless you.

Friday, March 04, 2011


Matthew 24: 37-19 ~ As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.

OK.... seriously. Do you listen to the news? Do you SEE what is going on?

I remember when I was little, I made a comment to my mother about Jesus coming back soon. I don't want to say she blew it off.... but she did tell me, basically, that it was all "relative" and that "soon" could be another 2,000 years.

Ever since I was little I have always thought that Jesus would return BEFORE I live long enough to die of natural causes. I'm SO convinced of it, in fact, that part of me does not expect my kids to leave home. That being said, I feel the push to MAKE SURE my kids are ready.

Maybe what my mother said is true.... maybe we still have awhile. Maybe I will live to see great-grandkids and then die. Well, if that's the case, then I need to MAKE SURE my kids are ready. :) The longer we are here on this earth, the more chance we have of: confronting evil, witnessing to the loss, believing in miracles, spreading the gospel..... all things we are supposed to do, anyway.

I don't consider myself a "watcher." In fact, one blog that I DO read.... well, she calls herself a "watcher." I call her a "whack-a-loon." But, DUDE! How can you ignore what is going on? One only needs to listen to one segment of the news to know that our time is limited. Thank God, for that!

Mark 13:32 ~ But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.

A lot of people use this verse..... maybe as an excuse.

TRUE..... we do not know the day or the hour. BUT, we do know the season. God didn't just push us out to wait without giving us something to look for.

So what do we look for?

Increase in evil
Increase in knowledge
Rumors of Wars
Return of Jews to Israel
False prophets
False messiahs

What season do YOU think we are in?

Do not be like an ostrich with it's head in the sand. Ignoring the event will not delay the event. And, believe me.... this is ONE bus you do NOT want to miss.