Wednesday, December 31, 2014


We had a rather laid back Christmas this year. I was blessed with having everything finished several weeks before and so was able to spend more time doing the fun stuff of the season.
We enjoyed each day of the Advent calendar, although we had to shuffle some things around since weather wasn't very accommodating for the two parades on the schedule.

We had our little decorating party and once again the weather wasn't cooperating. It was pouring and a bad thunderstorm went through right before everyone was supposed to come. But thankfully two brave moms ventured out so we still had some kids here to help us decorate our Christmas trees.

Our first Christmas was at Grammy and Gramps on Christmas Eve. 
One of the funnest things about presents is taking these two kids shopping. We'll give them a budget and who they are shopping for and let them go. Sometimes they are spot on with something the person would enjoy. But sometime they are so off the wall that it cracks us up. 
Gramps received one of those gifts. Dominic and Caitlin laughed for the entire week before Gramps unwrapped his gift. It was worth every penny just to see them so cracked up about it. =)

Our second celebration was Christmas morning at our house. We opened presents 
 I wasn't sure how to wrap this gift. So I just wrote this note and put it on top of some books we'd given him. It worked!
and then had our traditional cinnamon rolls. We still had green icing from the decoration party.

Our third celebration was the next day at Grandma and Grandpa's house.
We had a wonderful Christmas vacation and really enjoyed the relaxing time spent with family.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Caitlin's birthday

I honestly can't believe that my baby girl is six years old. It seems like just yesterday that I was rubbing her curly head in the hospital. She's grown into such a beautiful and precious young lady.
She is independent, smart, kind-hearted, and funny. Our family wouldn't be the same without her.
She's my little turtle and I love her so much.

She had been begging for an American girl doll for quite some time. But those dolls are outrageously expensive. She came to sit beside me while I was researching all of the 18' dolls out there and fell in love with a blond Madame Alexander doll. It was only slightly cheaper than the AG, but the reviews said it was just as good. Caitlin was extatic to open that box and see her "baby." She named her Brianna and calls her Bri.

Since this was a "party" year for Caitlin she asked that I bring cupcakes to the school. 
Her only request was that they have lady bugs on them.

We had a family celebration that night. Caitlin requested strawberry shortcake. We still don't have our island (waiting on butcher block that's on back order). So some of the kitchen things are still packed in boxes. I forgot to look for the candles until the last minute and then couldn't find them. Caitlin was fine with blowing out the large ones.
Uncle Jason and Aunt Kim came up and we went out to eat. Caitlin wasted no time in telling the waiter that it was her birthday.
Happy Birthday baby girl!

Thursday, December 4, 2014


Thanksgiving was very low key. My brother and niece came up on Wednesday and we all (except Jon and Leila) ran the race Thursday morning. It was FREEZING cold. It was actually spitting snow, which the kids thought was wonderful.

Dominic ran the 1 mile with Caitlin since I didn't want to wear myself out and Jon hates to run.
In retrospect it wasn't a good idea (more on that later).

We had some friends who were participating as well and the girls ran with them.
The race didn't go as well for Zeb, Dominic, and I. All three of us have asthma and the cold really messed us up. Add the knee problems that Zeb and I are dealing with and it wasn't pretty.
Dominic was already tired from running with Caitlin and that added to the cold made him slow and stiff. By the time he came over the hill to start down he was almost in tears and really in pain from the cold. His muscles were cramping and he was miserable. I felt so sorry for the poor little guy.
Hot chocolate made everyone feel better and we enjoyed the time with friends and family.

We returned to have a wonderful Thanksgiving dinner that also included Grammy and Gramps. It was low-key and unstressful. The perfect holiday.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Chef in training

Dominic absolutely loves everything to do with cooking and baking. He loves watching the shows on tv and he loves the actual cooking part.

I've been slowly teaching him things like pancakes, grilled cheese, and spaghetti. But apparently I was not teaching him the cool stuff fast enough. He asked if he could create his own recipe.

He asked me a ton of questions relating to a pasta dish. Then he sat at the table and had Caitlin running around checking for grocery items so he could add the ones I didn't have to the grocery list.

This was his grocery list.

white sharp cheddar cheese

He had me be his sous chef and created this.
It's a White cheddar cheese sauce. I loved that he wanted two different types of pasta. I was skeptical, but it ended up working out. The recipe is a mixture of my answers to his questions and a recipe he found online. The only problem turned out to be us forgetting the spinach. But I think Daddy was a little happy about that. =)

That was last night. Tonight he had me teach him how to make quesadillas. He did great. Maybe I won't have to cook many meals in my future. =) Although he did mention at supper that he prefers baking to cooking. Guess he's just like me.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Toothpaste and Halloween

This morning I hear a little voice coming from the bathroom -
"Hmm, I have toothpaste all over the back of my shirt! I wonder how that happened?"

I waited until the dear boy had vacated the bathroom before going to inspect.
Toothpaste was ALL OVER the floor, on the tub and my towel BEHIND the area where he would have been standing. It was also in the usual places like the sink, counter, and toilet.

What in the world was that boy doing while he brushed his teeth? On second thought, I don't even want to know.


I received a text one morning from the principle at the kids school. In the text was this sweet photo telling me about how they were holding hands during chapel.


Caitlin had career day at school. When we talked about it she told me she was going to be a princess.
"Caitlin, a princess is not a career."
In a very offended voice I was informed that -
"Princess IS a job."
So I asked her teacher about how much leeway we had with the career. She told me Caitlin could wear her princess outfit and that could be the stay-at-home mom, since SAHM's wore every day clothes. That way those that wanted to be a mom could still dress up.
When Caitlin heard that she decided that she really wanted to be a vet. That way she could work with animals. "Mom, your job isn't very fun."
WELL. . . I enjoy it.

So here is my little vet.
 Apparently the camera inspired them to try out some jumping pictures.


We don't really do the door-to-door thing anymore. It's too much work for mom.
So we usually pick a church trunk or treat. This year we showed up at one at 7:15pm and they were packing up. Their website had said they ended at 9pm. Because everyone felt sorry for the kids they got a ton of candy, but not a lot of fun.

The next one we tried was super crowded, but they had a lot more fun with the games.

For some reason Dominic chose to forgo the outfit and only wore the helmet. ??


Caitlin and her best friends


Dominic and Caitlin have been attending a Lego club at one of the local libraries. But we showed up one day to find out that Lego club had been cancelled until further notice. The kids were heartbroken. So when we got home I gave Dominic a challenge just like he would have gotten during the club meeting. One of the challenges was I asked him to "make me a supper".
This is his version of macaroni and cheese with broccoli.

The club was cancelled because the old librarian quit. But they have a new librarian and she was sweet enough to start the club back up again. The kids were thrilled.


When we got our new kitties I cleaned up the indoor litter box for the kittens to use outside as a bed. Dominic climbed inside with both cats.


Dominic's teacher at school is approximately 6'4. Caitlin, for some reason, wanted to wear his jacket.
Just as a side note - My kids have the coolest teachers. How many people get sweet texts and pictures from their teachers. I love our little school!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Exciting News!!!

We've been so slammed with work and house issues that I've neglected my blogging quite a bit. But I have to take a few minutes to tell you about Caitlin's exciting news.

She can read! 
Once she "got it" she really took off. So now she reads to me every night. She also has a great memory so I have to switch up the books because it doesn't take her long to have them memorized and then she can fly through as she "reads".
We celebrated with Swedish pancakes. The kids have been begging for them since before the fire. So this seemed like a perfect time to say yes.

Monday, November 3, 2014


Caitlin asked me last night if I was going to reproduce. I must have looked at her strangely because she then clarified for me. "You know. Throw that cup in a trash that will use it to make more stuff later."
I guess recycling is a bit like reproducing. =)


Several days ago I had a photo shoot for a family at Dogwood Park. The kids were out of school for fall break so I took advantage of the situation and took some pictures of them.

Caitlin followed me around the park while I checked out lighting. Dominic had his nose in a book so I didn't get as many pictures of him. But who can complain about books?!

My favorite!

Thursday, October 16, 2014


Today was rough!

I came home from meeting Jon for lunch to see Lucy (Caitlin's little kitten) just laying in the road. I beeped my horn at her so she would move. Nothing. And then I knew. She was gone. 

She'd always been slow moving, docile, and scared of nothing. Her getting run over by a car was a fear I'd discussed with the kids. Yet somehow I wasn't prepared for this.

I buried her in the back yard and cried. Then I had to go pick up the kids from school. And we all cried. Caitlin begged me to get her another Lucy. BEGGED! Since I know my daughter so well I'd already been looking around and found a litter of grey and white kittens.

By the time we were able to get over to look at them there was only one little girl left. We came home and I belatedly thought to check and make sure she was a she. She is not. She is a he. We have a little boy.

Meet Alex. Named after Alex T Smith, the author and illustrator of several children's books.
I'm still not sure how I feel about replacing our little Lucy so quickly. She was special. Caitlin carried that little thing around everywhere with her. It was so sweet. But she was heartbroken and wanted another kitten to comfort her. And I couldn't tell her no. And Alex is sweet too. It's just going to take a while for me to adjust.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Silly kids!

 I am loving this age. These two are so fun. This was for a photo prompt that I needed. But since I didn't end up using it, I thought I'd share it here. 


This morning I went in to wake Dominic up. I kissed him, and rubbed his back. Nothing was working. He was as still as a mouse. Then all of the sudden, in a totally awake voice, he says
"Wake me up when alligators are extinct."

What?! His eyes were still closed. It kind of freaked me out and I yelped. And I heard him mutter -
"And make me a sandwich. Hold the mayo."

I have a very strange little boy.


A couple of days ago I was with some friends and was telling a story about Caitlin to illustrate the differences between my children. She told me I HAD to write it down so her future husband would have an idea of what he was getting in to. Once again, I was sure I'd blogged about it, but it isn't there. So here is the story - a bit late.

This summer I watched a boy just a few months older than Caitlin for a few days. The kids get along great and he's a doll to watch. But by the end of the week emotions were a bit high and the kids were tired. My kids were dealing with a torn up house from the fire, company the week before, and late bedtimes.

I'd noticed that Caitlin was crying about everything and had already listened to some disagreements. The boys were outside on the patio playing with some cars when Caitlin wandered out and sat down beside her little friend.

A few seconds later I heard her crying.
"He was thinking mean thoughts about me!"
The poor little guy was looking completely confused. 
"I was thinking about my cars. I promise Ms. Tima."

Apparently Caitlin had seen a look cross his face that she was sure was just like the look he'd had when he'd teased her earlier and her emotions were so close to the top that it just sent her over the edge. She was so sure she knew that he was thinking those teasing thoughts about her.
Poor little guy didn't even know what hit him. :/


When Jon was dry walling the kitchen he allowed the kids to "help". They wanted to make hand prints. So he gave them a space that would be behind the cabinets and let the prints dry. I wrote their names and the date beside it. So now whenever the kitchen is renovated again, 50 yrs from now, someone will find those hand prints.
My babies are growing up. They are able to truly help us. And it's nice to be able to interact with them instead of just take care of them. 
Jon and I are both calling this the sweet spot. They can function on their own with very little help, they are tons of fun to be around, they get such joy out of everything we do with them, they still love to be with us and hug us, and they aren't embarrassed to be seen with us.