Friday, April 26, 2013

OETA at the Capitol...aka Curious George

Elmo is starting to have some serious competition in our house. The mischievous monkey Curious George is a new favorite. I must admit, I don't mind him much either. I love that my girl is captivated by the same classic characters I was 20-something years ago. There are just some things that will never change.

So, when I saw the OETA day at the capitol {with a guaranteed appearance by the monkey man, might I add} I knew we needed to try and go. It was a free chance to get out of the house, enjoy the beauty of the capitol, and meet some beloved friends. Plus- we got to get a bit dolled up and put on the cowboy boots in true Okie style.

In awe.

Love the banana face- one of George's treats.

Storytime with one of our state legislators.

Absolutely gorgeous.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


Between the snaps of winter we are having and the short stints of spring, we got to release some ladybugs in the backyard. Did you know you can buy a packet of like 2,000 at your local plant nursery? I didn't - until I started living with a Pre-K teacher. Ladybugs are garden warriors; so get some if you have a slightly green thumb and/or just love the little guys {or ladies} like I do.

MC wasn't too big a fan of touching them or having them crawl on her hands {just like her daddy}, but she loved them from her own safe distance. She warmed up to them and their curious ways after a bit; but, was just as happy watching us crazy ones with them crawling all over our arms and hands.

Road Trippin'

I was glancing through posts and realized that I had yet to write about our road trip to St. Louis last month.

We packed up 4 adults, 1 toddler, luggage, snacks, and lots of on board entertainment in one car to get us through the trek to visit Uncle Gareth and his girlfriend Amanda for Uncle Gareth's 30th birthday.

St. Louis was pretty close to a second home for me growing up- my dad's parents lived there and we would try and get up to see them as often as we could. Alternating holidays and usually a few visits in the summer. There was one summer when we thought we might actually move up there so my dad could work with my grandpa {aka Pop-o}. That summer, we were either coming or going from STL to OKC every Sunday. Thankfully, my brother and I were older and could keep ourselves fairly entertained with books and travel games- we even had one of those awesome conversion vans with a TV and VCR combo. We were big time.

In preparation for the trip I perused the internet and racked my teacher brain {and my mother in law's pre-k teacher brain} for ideas to keep the toddler entertained in her car seat for 7 plus hours {much longer than our previous vacation on a plane with her}. Books, discovery bottles {there are some great ideas for some here}, an old clutch of mine with pockets to explore, bead necklaces, a few of her toys that I held back for a week or two to seem "new" again, and a few other odds and ends. However, we would get one thing out and then after a minute or two of playing with something she would say..."more?" She kept wanting to see what else we had, so things definitely did not hold her attention as long as I thought they would.

The hubs and I were pretty determined to try and entertain her for as long as possible without resulting to electronics {aka iPhone, iPad, or a portable DVD}. However, Ouma brought a portable DVD just in case {smart lady} and we did use it for some times when we needed a break and nothing else was really working usually a few hours into a leg of the trip. Same with the phones. We would watch and play along with her as she worked through puzzles and saw her friends Elmo and George or we would each have a bit of down time. And, even though there were a few moments when we were working hard to keep the little one sane- she really was a trooper and I was impressed by her road trippin' ability.

When it comes to the phone, MC's favorite thing is really just looking at and/or taking pictures. Here are some examples of her handiwork:

Besides the car ride- we enjoyed St.Louis {despite the cold, crummy weather}. We saw Gareth's apartment and listened to both Basset brothers on the piano, we visited the Science Museum, and ate at Rigazzi's on The Hill. Amazing Italian food from STL's version of little Italy. Add in my best friend and her husband--even better.

We also got to tour the Budweiser brewery. It is free! Plus, you get two complimentary samples at the end of your tour. The first leg of the tour is actually very kid friendly- we got to see the clydesdale stables and one of the dalmatians came out to visit. That dog was probably the most calm and people friendly dog I have ever seen- just freely roaming about the place and greeting people. The dog made MC's day. The horsies were nice too. After this portion, you can make a quick exit before the 45 minute portion of the actual brewin'. We took advantage as MC was telling us it was lunch time. Best not to push that one.

Thanks again, STL- until next time. Looking forward to sharing more of my childhood with my sweet ones.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Our Current Normal.

Since we sold our house at the end of February we have been in a holding pattern, if you will.

Most of our 3 bedroom home is still in Norman, crammed and jammed {as nice and comfortable as possible} into the second largest storage unit the place had to offer.

This isn't even all of it! We filled it to capacity.

The rest of our stuff is with us at my in-laws house as we await our next home {including pictures, records, and a few other items I was afraid could be ruined waiting in a storage unit}.

The sorting of what to store and what to bring with us was somewhat stressful at times, but our family has been more than accommodating. They even set up a playroom and den for us to enjoy some relaxation space,  made room for some of the bedroom furniture we wanted to bring with us, and they even set up a space for me to continue sewing. ;)


Sewing area

What used to be Adam's room was cleared out for us to bring some of the pieces of her bedroom furniture. I added the letters after her birthday to personalize her room a bit.

Since we didn't bring her drawers, a book shelf has been turned into the place to keep her clothes. My mother in law had these pink tubs and I added masking tape labels to help keep everything straight.

Below is part of her outside play area. An old swing set has recently been added. When friends of the OKC Bassets found out we were going to be living with them for a bit, they gave us some things for her to be able to play on and enjoy. The generosity of complete strangers is humbling. Some of the toys and other play things are also Ouma's {my mother in law}. She teaches preschool, so she has lots of things she has collected over the years that are perfect for MC right now.

MC is in her own version of heaven on earth with both sets of grandparents on call. One living with her and one set within a 10-15 minute drive. In fact- I sometimes find that I am able to do more things than I used to be able to do with all of these grown-ups around. ;) And, although it is a constant process of adjusting and communication when you merge two households; the memories of this time will be something we {and hopefully MC} will carry with us always.

 Plus- having my family close by has been an added bonus. We get to see each other a lot easier than planning it out and deciding who will drive the 45 minutes.

We are blessed in so many ways and are thankful for the time and ability to save up for our next home. We only get one chance at this whole family thing, and I am thankful we are lucky enough to have struck it big.

"Pee-tza!" aka Pizza.

Our girl loves her pizza. She seriously can't get enough and asks for it on a regular basis. She can usually down 2 to 3 slices, easy.We indulge her about once a week or every other week. What can I say? We love us some pee-tza too.


All over her face. Yummy.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Easter Joy.

Easter Weekend is filled with....
A Fulfilled Promise.

Dying Eggs for the first time with Nana and Uncle Ray Ray. I loved reliving my own childhood memories with my mom and brother. However, sweet girl was more interested in stirring the colored water/vinegar than dying the eggs themselves. I am sure it will become more interesting as the years go on.

Getting closer to being able to wear pigtails on a frequent basis...when she lets me try.

Round 2 of Dying with Daddy and Ouma. First time for Dad to dye Easter Eggs too.  He even got creative with the crayon. ;)

Listening to Ouma at her church's Easter Egg Hunt. She is so good with story telling and songs. The children are constantly engaged and absorbing all she has to say.

My mom and MC loved it too.

 First Egg Hunt. Interest in this lasted all about two minutes. It didn't help that the hunt was where there were swings and toys galore. All of the 2 year olds were the ones playing and the 3 and 4 year olds were the ones really hunting.


When she met the Easter bunny it was the sweetest/funniest thing. Her eyebrows and coy little smiles were precious. No tears for this girl.

 I actually didn't get pictures of her in an Easter dress- I guess we can put it on again when a nice Spring day comes up to capture it. However, I did capture this moment with Uncle Ray Ray on Easter day. MC currently LOVES getting into our cars and "driving". She presses every button she can reach and focuses on and beyond the wheel. {Don't worry....the car is not turned on.}

But, beyond the festivity - we remember the real reason behind the holiday. A true holy day. A promise fulfilled by our savior. Beginning with Good Friday, not good because Jesus died, but good because we don't have to do so. {taken from my mother in law and a little boy in her preschool class} And, it ends with the promise that Sunday is coming.

 I came across this quote from Martin Luther that I feel describes this weekend we celebrate so clearly. It gives hope and belief to those searching for the practicality behind the supernatural.

"Our Lord has written the promise of resurrection, not in books alone, but in every leaf in springtime."

Thank you Lord, for your promise of everlasting life. For love and renewal.  For the promise that spring is coming.