Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Two Soccer Players

Two soccer players started their soccer season last Saturday.

One soccer player loves to play.  He loves scoring goals and kicking and making buddies on his team.  He's usually right in the middle of all the action.  (Pictured in white).
He's leading the charge, and possibly scored a goal.
Another soccer player played in his first game, too.

Maybe "played" is a bit of a stretch.  (Pictured center, in white.  As if it were hard to tell.)  I don't think exactly understood how the game was played.  Everyone kept taking the ball from him, and he didn't take it very well.  I guess it's kind of like having 9 older brothers.
Then he did this for a while:

Perhaps the next 6 games will go better for little Aidan.  Or maybe this will be just more money the YMCA makes off of his hopeful parents.  (See:  swim lessons).

Tomorrow we head to Dallas to go to the State Fair, and spend a few days with family and friends and recovering from the fried-food hangover we're sure to have from our afternoon at the fair.  Chicken-fried bacon is being served this year.  Angioplasty, here we come!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

I'm Sorry, Miss Tiffany

The kids went back to school this past week after a week long Ike-induced hurrication.  When I picked Dane up on Tuesday, here is the conversation we had in the car:

Me:  Dane, did you tell Miss Tiffany what happened to our house?
Dane:  Yeah, I did.
Me:  What did you tell her?
Dane:  I told her that a big tree came into our house and water was all over our kitchen floor and consummation was EVERYWHERE.
Me:  What was everywhere? (I almost drove off the road at this point).
Dane:  You know, all that pink stuff that is above the ceiling.  It's EVERYWHERE.
Me:  You mean insulation?
Dane:  Oh, yeah.  Insulation.

So I guess the parent-teacher conference will probably be next week.  And Dane's classmates will go home and tell their parents that they all want to go to Dane's house because there's just consummation EVERYWHERE.

Hey, we don't call it Hotel Ike for nothin'.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

I Will Never Eat Cake Again

This past weekend I made a quick trip up to the Dallas area to go to my sister's bridal shower.  My baby sister is getting married in about 7 weeks (not that anyone is counting down).  I got to see my G.G. while I was there, and enjoyed a church nap with my nephew Zane.  Or maybe he enjoyed the nap while I just held him.  

Um, these church women know how to throw a bridal shower.  Good gravy, did Lindy score a lot of loot.  It makes me want to register for gifts for my birthday.  And the best part of the weekend?  (Other than seeing my grandma and family and sweet sleeping nephew of course.)  Instead of cake at the shower, the Church Women had homemade PIES.  Not Kroger cake.  Homemade pies.  Like, eight of them.  

Pure genius, I tell you.

I didn't get any pictures of my grandma or the rest of my family or even my sweet snuggly nephew Zane. 

Just the pies.

A girl's gotta have priorities.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Survived Ike

We are alive and well after Hurricane Ike, I just wish I can say the same for my house and van (yes, "and van").  A big giant tree uprooted in our backyard and crashed through our house very early on Saturday morning.  Fortunately, we (and Val, Izzy, and baby Joel), were having a big slumber party downstairs when the tree came crashing through our bathroom, closet, and bedroom.  Part of the tree broke off and hit our van, which was parked in the driveway.  

But God is good.  And we are safe.  We have moved out of the house temporarily and are living with my very gracious aunt and uncle about 20 minutes away.  There is extensive roof and water damage in about half of the house, and pieces of ceiling keep caving in.

The van is already at the dealership waiting on the insurance adjuster (which could take up to two weeks, apparently.)  In the van, a large branch went through the back half, breaking the rear window and 2 back windows and flooding the interior with the several inches of rain we received Saturday.  The windshield is cracked, and something is making a very bad noise under the hood when you drive it now.  It's just not looking good for my little blue van.

But we are safe and sound, with wonderfully generous family and friends.  It's been a rough week, one without electricity from Friday night through Tuesday afternoon, unpredictability, filled with family and friends eager to help out in any way they can.  Gas earlier this week was very hard to come by, and most grocery stores are still not fully stocked.  Schools are out at least for the rest of this week, and we have not heard when most of the schools will resume.  (Dane and Aidan go back to their little school on Tuesday.  I told you God is good.)  Some districts in other parts of town are closed indefinitely.  

Dane and Aidan are doing very well with all of this-- it is the "Big Adventure".  Every now and then when Aidan gets frustrated, he will cry "I want to go home".  I just want to hug him and say, "So do I.".  We brought their scooters with us, and every day so far Brandon has taken them on adventures in the walking trails in my uncle's neighborhood.  They come home with stories of acorns and sticks and Ninja Turtles, of course.  There is an abundance of new-to-them toys to play with here, and we have seen quite a bit of our friends in town, since many of us have not had work or school this week.

At this point we really have no idea how long we will be "displaced" by this hurricane.  The tree is finally being removed from the house today, 7 days after it fell.  It will take a crane to remove, and cranes are apparently very expensive and in very high demand at the moment.  As soon as we have power on at the house (I turned it off out of concern for exposed wires, water, etc.), and feel safe that enough of the water damage has been taken care of, hopefully we can move into our guest room while they finish the repairs.  

Thank you to everyone who has been praying for our little family during all of this.  It has been greatly appreciated!  We'll keep you posted. 

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Hotel Ike

Welcome to Hotel Ike!  Located in sunny (sometimes) north Houston area, Hotel Ike was established September 13, 2008.  Come!  Be one of the first guests.  Many hospitable amenities await you.

Just watch for falling brick!  Hardhats are available for back porch excursions.
The Master Suite boasts a brand new skylight (and it's getting bigger every day!) directly above a lovely queen size bed.  Enjoy the rustic sounds of birds chirping and squirrels scurrying in the rafters above you.  Truly a once in a lifetime experience.

Adjacent to the Master Suite is the spacious Master Bath.  Watch your head in the shower!  Those planks and tree branches can really smart!  Enjoy showering by moonlight here at Hotel Ike. 
Or, soak in our relaxing garden tub (located on the left side of the picture).  Also boasting a lovely new sky light, please watch your head as you are getting in and out of the tub.
Need a place to hang your coat?  Just put it in the Master Closet.  Two brand new skylights were just put in for your coat-hanging enjoyment.  Just make sure it's a rain coat you're hanging, because it is very wet here at Hotel Ike.

Before you turn in, please enjoy a unique dining experience in our Dining Area.  Located directly beneath the Master Bathroom, our Dining Area boasts tree-side views, ceilings that just look like they're caving in, and a lovely wet tile flooring.

Outdoors (don't forget your hard hat!), enjoy a lovely view of the neighboring property before taking a dip in the pool.

Did someone say pool??

So, grab the kiddos and come on over to Hotel Ike!  We will have rain boots and liability release forms ready for you upon your arrival.

This advertisement brought to you by State Farm Insurance.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Excuse me, it is fall now.

The weather channel has not gotten the message that fall is upon us.  It is September, and though it may still be 94 degrees outside, fall schedule is underway at our house!

The boys had their first day of school last week.  Dane did great, and his teacher is sending extra reading work home because he's ready to start reading, and the rest of his class is not quite there yet.  He is very excited about this, and after 2 days of school he came home and announced to me that "I can read now, Mom."  Aidan's doing well in school, also.  Much fewer screaming fits so far than last year.  His sweet teacher noted on his daily report that he had an "outburst" at nap time because he didn't want to get on his mat.  I love that she called a screaming, irrational fit an "outburst".  It makes it sound like Aidan was simply having a minor disagreement...

Here is the first day of school pictures that was only achieved with some donut-bribery:

Dane's eyes are closed as he envisions Shipley's chocolate iced donuts.

The boys are both in YMCA soccer this year.  One weekly practice each on two separate nights, with games on Saturdays for the next six (or is it eight?) weeks.  Good grief.  Brandon is leading a small group one night a week, and a high school D-group another night a week.

Off I go to spend some quality time in Ike-preparation. ;)

Monday, September 8, 2008

What. On. Earth.

"Aidan, a brain is really hard, but soft when you take it out."

--Dane Christopher, as said at the dinner table

Is it supposed to be soft when you take it out?  Maybe I'm cooking it too long...

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Donald Miller Is

There's this guy who writes some books and his name is Donald Miller.  Apparently, his friends call him "Don".  He wrote a little book you may have heard of called Blue Like Jazz.  And several others.  Well, he has a blog.  And you have to scroll down and read the post about him and Barack Obama e-mailing back and forth to each other.  

Please do not interpret the previous sentence as a political statement in any way, shape, or form.  It is not.

But you should read the post.  Very very funny.  

The Greatgrandsons

My GG (my dad's mom) will add her 5th great-grandson in a few months.  

And no great-granddaughters.  Just a bunch of stinky little boys.  

Do you know how difficult it is to get a good picture of 4 boys under the age of 5?
Meet Zeke, Dane, Aidan, and Baby Zane.  This was taken immediately after Aidan's birthday party, and Dane was still a little bitter about not getting the Michaelangelo nun-chucks that Aidan opened.  He's making the same face as Zane.  

Maybe Zane was also bitter about the nun-chucks.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Aidan's Birthday Party Part 1

Sunday afternoon during the Gulf Coast Evacuation of 2008 (Hello, Gustav), we were having a big ole' birthday party for my newest three-year-old.  We do very laid back birthday parties.  The boys like inviting all their church friends, and we like inviting all our local family, so we just had everyone over to the house for some cake and a good old fashioned water gun fight.  Almost 20 kiddos and a few wet daddies and mommies played outside with the water guns, Slip n Slide, and about 100 water balloons while the rest of the family and grown ups stayed inside enjoying the tepid air conditioning that decided to go out for a few hours before the party on Sunday.

Lovely timing.  

I think the kids would have stayed outside for several hours if we had not brought them inside for additional birthday party activities.  Even the cheap-o Slip n Slide was a big hit.

Aidan got a hold of a big water gun and it took him a while to figure out which direction to point it:
He went to the Michael Phelps School of How To Wear Your Swimsuit Uncomfortably Low:
After about an hour of water fun, we brought the kids in for some present opening, where Aidan brought in quite the impressive toy-haul, and Dane tried to steal all of the presents.  He also got these cool light-up Diego shoes:
I wonder how old he will be when I have to stop buying practical things I would have gotten him anyway, and wrapping them up and calling them presents.  Do I have a couple more years left?

Finally, CAKE TIME!!  Aidan ended up with a cute Kung Fu Panda cake, and it DISAPPEARED into the throngs of hungry mouths at our house that day.  There was a lot of cake, and not a single piece leftover.
Blowing out candles...

I love the kiddo in the shades in this picture.  His future's so bright, man.
I'll post more about the party and all the fun accompanying family time later this week.  I need to go check on my overly quiet children.  I'm pretty sure they are eating gum for breakfast...