Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Valentine's Day Pinspiration

The kids and I took some time to do a few Valentine's Day crafts today.  First up was some heart stamping, done with a toilet paper roll. For a link, click the picture below.

Shirtless Ryker (I made him strip down to keep his shirt paint free) began stamping.

He seemed to enjoy it and so did Camden.  I had to help Cam so there are no pictures of him in action.

Our completed sheet.
We even used the toilet paper roll and the rest of the paint to make a little paper for Daddy.  The boys adding their fingerprints too because they just couldn't resist getting their fingers in the paint. 

Next up, was this little guy.  Ryker was extremely excited to get to this portion of our crafting. For instructions, go here.

This was very simple and very fun.  I simply folded the pieces of paper in half and traced half a heart shape.  Ryker cut along the lines which was great cutting practice for him.  

I had the computer open to the picture on Pinterest and he just assembled all the pieces and glued them together.  Then colored circles for eyes and added dots to the muzzle.

Our finished product.  Ryker loves him!

Monday, January 28, 2013

Chastain Benefit Dinner

Sunday night we had the privilege of attending a benefit dinner for some new friends of ours, the Chastain's.  My friend Anna went to high school with Cari.  They started visiting our church this fall and we got to know them a bit.  Amazingly enough, I had actually browsed Cari's blog a couple of years ago at the urging of another friend.  This family has had quite a journey.  They lost their first child, a daughter, Caden, at just 8 months old.  Just over a year and a half later, Andy had a massive seizure and a brain tumor was discovered.  After surgery and treatment, he was cancer free. They added two precious boys (Rigg and Ryder) to their family and Andy was healthy until November 2012 when symptoms returned and it was discovered that the tumor was back.  Surgery was performed to remove most of the tumor and he was diagnosed with  a stage 4 malignant glioma and given a 25 to 40% chance of survival with treatment.  He is currently undergoing radiation treatments at The Proton Therapy Center in Bloomington and receiving chemotherapy.  

The journey God has (and has had) the Chastain's on is one that appears to be tragic and heartbreaking (and it is) but it is also glorifying...to Him.  They have chosen to praise God through all of this.  It humbles a heart like mine to see the way they love our God through all their hardships.  So, when we heard some friends were organizing a benefit dinner for them, we made sure we received an invitation.  The evening was absolutely amazing.  The food was great, the turnout was great, the silent and live auctions were great, and the keynote speaker was great.  The greatest thing though, was the assurance that Christ was there.  He was there in the music that was played, He was there in the words and prayers that were said, He was there in the generous giving of His people, and He was there in Andy and Cari's faces.  Like I said, it was truly a privilege to play even a small part in such an amazing night for two amazing people.

If you are interested in reading more about their story, I encourage you to read Cari's blog, to Bring Him Glory at www.andyandcari.blogspot.com.  If you are interested in donating to their trust, you can find more information here.  And, please, add this precious family to your prayer list now!

From L to R: Chad and Amy Sloan, Andy and Cari, Jamie, Anna, and me

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Collin's Birthday Party

Saturday morning was my friend Raendra's son's birthday party.  Raendra was in a Bible study with me a couple years ago and we've managed to stay in touch even though we no longer see each other every week. :(  Collin was just a baby when we started Bible study together and today he celebrated his 3rd birthday!  Times goes so fast!  Her youngest, Cameron, is just a few months older than Camden.  It's such fun to see them together.  Raendra is one of the sweetest people you will ever meet so when she asked if I could reserve the church for the party for her, I didn't hesitate.  It was a rock star theme and it was so cute!  The kids had a great time playing and really enjoyed a game of Freeze Dance.

Here are all the kids.

Collin blowing out his candles.

The Freeze Dance action.:-)

Friday Family Night

Fridays have long been Family Night for us, but this one was a particularly fun one and I actually documented it with pictures!  Go me! :-) First up was pizza (yum!) and then a game.  Ryker got Operation for Christmas and it has quickly become his favorite.  We played a round of that (which I won...holla!) before we got the boys suited up for some baking.

My goofy kid in his awesome apron.

Cam was harder to get a shot of (surprise! surprise!)

He pushed this chair all the way around the counter by himself and climbed right up.  He loves to pretend to eat with his play food in his kitchen and was doing that with the flour container.  Pretty funny.

Baking time!

Daddy got in on the action too.

While the cookies baked, we started a movie.  Ryker chose Despicable Me (which he calls Respectable Me).  This was another Christmas gift and it is becoming a family favorite.  We often quote it at random times. ("Knocked oooover!" "It's so FLUFFY!!!" etc.)  
And just because he's so cute, here's Robert enjoying it too. :-)

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Bubble Bath

I bought some bubble bath for $1 at Target this week and filled up our big tub with some of it and let the kids play.

 To say they enjoyed themselves, is an understatement.

They would've stayed in there for an hour if I'd let them.

Is there anything more precious than your babies all soapy and bubbly smelling like roses (literally, that was the scent of bubble bath)?  

Saturday, January 19, 2013


We had some of Robert's family over for dinner and to see the new house tonight.  Robert's mom and our future sister-in-law couldn't make it because they both had to work and Junior was at his mom's, but everyone else was here.  I made taco soup and Michelle brought some delicious cookies.  After touring the house and eating, we headed up to the bonus room to let the kids play and play Just Dance on the Wii.  It was hilarious and so much fun.  Ryker loves it and is actually pretty good at it.  The guys had a great time and we were all laughing and sweating..it was a good workout. :-)
Dave, Robert, and Ryker did Ryker's favorite: "the robot one"
We finally got Big Robert in on the fun after some coaxing.  Sorry this picture didn't come out great.  I went to lay Cam down and Michelle didn't know how to work my new camera. 

No worries, I was back in time to catch them in action.  ;-)

Check out Dave's facial expression in this one. Hilarious!

We loved having everyone here and having the space to really to enjoy each other and we can't wait to do it again....who wants to come over for a dance party??? 

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Big Boy Haircut

Today was Camden's first big boy haircut.  Ryker was in need of a major trim and Camden's hair is beyond my control so I scheduled him for an appointment too.  Ryker had his first haircut at the exact age that Cam is now, but they are very different children.  Ryker sat completely still in the chair the entire time and never made a peep.  I knew this would not be the case with Camden and was pretty nervous about how it would all go down.  I was also pretty sure I would wind up crying over his haircut once it was done.  I did that once after someone cut Ryker's hair WAY shorter than I wanted and I was so afraid I would embarrass myself by doing it again. Thankfully, it went really well and no tears were shed!

We went to Dawn's new salon in Wanamaker which was so nice.  Ryker went first to "show Cam how to do it".

This was the only picture I got of him in the chair there since he was moving around quite a bit and I was holding the Kindle for him to play with and eventually sitting with him on my lap.  It was a bit stressful, but it was actually better than I had feared.  
I tried (unsuccessfully) to get a picture of Cam in the van, but Ryker wanted his picture taken.  Pretty handsome, isn't he?

Ok, now for the after shots...

Giving him fruit snacks was the best way to get him to hold still for pictures. (And it was still a challenge!)

He is such a ham!

A good side view...she did a great job and I think it looks fantastic.  Sadly, it does make him look like he's 2 already, but it is WAY better than that mess we had going on before. 

My favorite of the day.  This child cracks me up!  

SSMT: Verse 2

It's time for our second verse in this scripture memory journey.  Surprisingly, memorizing the first verse went very well for me.  I just looked at it and ran it over and over in my head throughout my days.  Here is the verse I chose to memorize for the next two weeks:

"You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God."
- 1 Peter 3:4 NLT

Friday, January 11, 2013

Insta Update

1. Hedbanz
2. A special date with Ryker to see Rise of the Guardians
3. Making Christmas cookies with Nana
4. All cozy in their pj's getting ready to head out to the live nativity.
5. Sushi!
6. Jamie's birthday dinner
7. Cutest reindeer ever!
8. 15 Month appt.
9. Reading one of Daddy's textbooks.
L:Ryker R: Camden
We'd have pretty girls, wouldn't we?? lol
Robert's graduation

1. Robert's graduation
2. A Christmas miracle!
3. Teacher gifts
4. Craft Night- Santa beard
5. I made Robert breakfast one day he worked from home.
6. Watching a movie together.
7. Cuddling with Cam watching Elmo
8. Hanging with his girlfriends. ;-)
9. Mom's cinnamon rolls rising by the fire
1. Boxes provide good entertainment
2. Ornery boy on Grandpa's leg on Christmas Eve.
3. He loved his castle!
4. Twinsies
5. Packing...again
6. Dinner with Em and Jenn
7. We got the keys to our new house!
8. Robert insisted on carrying me across the threshold of our new home.  He gives me butterflies. :-)
9. Our completely gorgeous and awesome backyard.
1. Playing with their new train in the bonus room.
2. First memory verse of 2013. 1 Thess. 5:18
3. The gorgeous sunset through our bathroom window.
4. Hudson enjoying our new house.
5. Cowboy Ryker fast asleep.
6. Teeth brushing is serious business.
7. He loves to sweep!
8. Ryker made me a butterfly out of his cutie pieces.
9. Watching a movie with my boys.
Getting some play time outside!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Movin' On Up

We moved!!  We are in our new house and are so happy to be here!  We closed Friday, December 28th.  Unfortunately, not everything went according to plan...in fact, it was pretty crazy.  Our furnace wouldn't stay on the first night, even after having someone come out twice.  He would get it going and it would start to warm up, only to turn off by itself after a while.  We moved everything in on Saturday.  Camden also started getting really sick Friday night and I had to leave in the middle of the day Saturday to take him to the doctor.  Poor guy was running a really high fever, and having asthma symptoms again.  I stayed at Mom and Dad's with the kids that night while Robert tried to get some work done around the house.  The furnace was still out, but with the help of the fireplace, the oven, the dryer, and some space heaters, it was about 60 degrees downstairs.  Camden had a rough night, but the fever finally broke the following morning.  Mom watched the boys for me for a few hours in the morning so I could get some work done at the house.  The part they needed to fix the furnace finally came in on Monday and they got the house nice and toasty.  The boys and I came over after I got done cleaning Aunt Karen's house and we settled in for our first night in our new house!

We still have a long way to go to get settled in.  Most everything is unpacked (other than some decorations that haven't found a home yet) and organized.  We have one painting on the wall in our bathroom and we've hung curtains in the bedrooms and family room.  That's all the further we've gotten right now.  We have a long list of work to do and I am trying desperately to silence my Type A personality that is screaming at me to get it all done...NOW!  Fact of the matter is, between the kids and every day tasks like laundry, dishes, cleaning, and cooking, there isn't much time for anything else.  I manage to get about one "project" in getting this house settled every day and I'm counting that as a win for now.  We spent last Saturday running errands, including a very long visit to Lowe's with a very long list.  Sunday was jam-packed and this weekend isn't looking much different.  Praying for some time to get stuff done soon!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Potty Training?!?!

Christmas Eve Camden walked into the bathroom, lifted both the lid and the seat on the toilet, lifted up his shirt and stood right next to it like he was peeing.  Nana took off his diaper and let him sit on the toilet.  He immediately began pushing...and he pooped!  Later that day, same thing. Next day, did it again.  He has continued to do this at least once a day since.  He usually doesn't poop and only pees a tiny bit, but he gets something out every time.  It is hilarious and so funny to me!  The kid refuses to talk, but completely gets this bathroom thing and is very adept at communicating that he wants to sit on the potty.  I am by no means attempting to actually potty train him right now.  I'm just allowing him to sit when he shows the desire.  The way he pushes and the faces he makes are priceless!
Daddy helping him at Nana and Papaw's right before we moved

Me laughing at his crazy faces today.  (He had on pj's at the time, so we had to strip him naked)

Kennedy Christmas

After Grandma and Grandpa's anniversary party, the whole family headed over to their house to celebrate Christmas.  We had pizza and snacks and leftover desserts from the party and the kids opened gifts.  We had a great visiting with everyone and the kids had so much fun playing together.

Part of the crew getting ready to open gifts.

Ryker got this really cool game that he loves.

Camden was getting his diaper changed so I didn't get pictures of him opening his gift.  He got a Fisher Price dump truck that sings and bounces...pretty cute and he loves it!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

60th Anniversary

Grandma and Grandpa celebrated 60 years of marriage December 20th.  We threw an open house to celebrate at church today.  We had some gorgeous cakes, cookies, and punch to share with the guests.  About 150 people came through.  It was great to see so many friendly faces from both our family's past and present.  What a blessing my grandparents have been to so many people.  Their lives together are a true testament to a godly marriage.  I am so thankful for the legacy of faith that they have built and so blessed to be a part of this amazing family.  I love them both so dearly and was thrilled to celebrate and honor them and their marriage today.

Here they are on their wedding day.  Such a good looking couple!  Must be why their descendants are so good looking. ;-)

Here they are 60 years later.  What started as 2 has grown to 50 (with one more coming in April)...amazing!