Friday, August 29, 2008

Need A Laugh?

Then you are going to love this!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Fun With Numbers

3,370 children's books I have in my collection

2,890 days since Garren and I got married

1,637 days since Gracie was born

1, 520 Books we've read since I got my library card October 2004

$111.00 worth of clothes I got today for $10 at a thrift store bag sale

124 Dresses in Gracie's closet, 10 of which are store bought (from a real store not thrift)
You'd think I would be embarrassed, but I am proud!

50 stuffies in her stuffy basket, and 6 stuffies on her bed. (This doesn't count the 4 leaf and garden trash bags full downstairs! Enough stuffed animals grandma!!!!)

13 years until Gracie graduates high school

Wednesday, August 27, 2008


I have deleted my You Tube account. I found out today from Gracie's teacher that some of the parents at Gracie's preschool were upset about their child being in Gracie's video. I didn't even think about other people even caring about my videos, or that they would be upset. There was no malice involved, but I have decided to delete my account and no longer share videos at all.

I also don't plan to take my camera to her school any more either, so I will just have to rely on what Gracie tells me happened at her school parties and other fun events.

Extremely sad about all of this.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Look What I Found

I got another great find today at the thrift store!

I found a vintage 1977 game: Candyland Bingo. Gracie and I played it this afternoon.

I just love to find old toys, games, and puzzles...and of course dresses. We didn't find any dresses today--but I am grateful for stopping a second time to look on the shelves where they bundle toys like miniatures and McDonald toys.

Monday, August 25, 2008


This morning was a reunion that Gracie has been waiting for, for at least 2 months. Today was the open house for the four year old class at Grasshopper Green.

Gracie was a little shy as we walked in, but she talked to her teachers and sat down to color and later to play.

Since there are 2 classes for the four year olds I was hoping to find out who all would be in Gracie's morning class. As you know Gracie does the best when she knows what is going on. We learned that Carson (from Bible School) would be in that class, and today Jackie's mom told us Joanna would also been in the am class. I am very glad since Gracie talked so much about Joanna. The other kids that were there are apparently in the afternoon class. I opted for the am even though they were pushing the afternoon class pretty hard. I understand kids need to get used to the long day, but I know my Gracie, and she does not do well with change. Besides, Gracie has so much energy, I am not worried about her making through a long kindergarten day.

We stayed and played for a while. So long in fact I had time to fill out all of her paperwork and turned it in right there.

Other friends there to play with: Morgan, Carson, Emma, Jackie & Regan.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

The Smell Of Success

Have you ever smelled crayons, I mean a new pack? Oh how I love the smell of new crayons, and glue, and even freshly sharpened pencils. I know that is clearly weird.

While I dread the big "K" word for Gracie, I actually look forward to taking her to get all of the new things on her list. While she is in preschool she won't need any supplies since everything is provided, and I have to admit while it saves us money, its kind of a bummer.

I have always loved back to school time. Garren swears it was because I loved school. And, I did. I had lots of friends, I got good grades, and school work came easily to me, and most of the time I actually found it to be fun. Poor Garren on the other hand says he hated school and didn't have many friends because "I was a geek."

Based on Gracie's love of doing schoolwork with mommy each day, and the fact that she can't wait to go back to preschool--I am thinking she has more of me in her when it comes to learning. Now, don't get me wrong, you all know how brilliant Garren is (maybe a little too smart), but Gracie and I just enjoy the whole concept of school: shopping for new things, new dresses and clothes, shiny new shoes, friends, and recess. What isn't there to love?!

What got me on this kick? Opening a new box of crayons to color with Gracie that Grandma bought her. I loved the newness so much, I got her 4 more packs to replace her big tub o' crayons we use for tons of different projects every day.

Monday, August 18, 2008

The Cake

As Candice pointed out to me this weekend, I still haven't put up pictures of the week we spent in Lynchburg and Brian's wedding. To be honest, I didn't think many of my readers would even know Brian or be interested in his wedding...but as Candice points out I did make a cake.

As you can see it is clearly not professional, but it was my first attempt at a wedding cake, and my first attempt using fondant. That show "Ace Of Cakes," makes it look so simple. It is NOT THAT EASY. Several attempts later, and a little lopsided--here is Brian and Dawn's wedding cake. I think I will let them order from a baker when they do their formal wedding next year.

You can see my other cakes here (if you haven't already).

Oh, and I will get started on uploading the pictures from that week and leave a link when I finish.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

How About A Spot Of Tea?

Gracie dressed to the "tea" for the annual Church Ladies Tea. I knew that vintage dress I picked out at the thrift store for a $1 would come in handy! Plus, we got another use out of those gloves Grandma insisted she needed for Easter.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Family Saturday

What a great family day we had today!

We started off at the library where we found new books, and even daddy picked out 3 novels; which I am sure he will have finished by weekend's end.

Then, it was off to Costco--the great and glorious home to obscene amounts of...well anything. Believe it or not we got out of there buying only a pineapple! This wasn't really a grocery trip, Garren just loves to take his time and walk around and look at all of the new things they have. The samples are always fun too!

By this time we are all way past hungry, so we decide on a new adventure. Daddy surprised us by pulling in to the Sonic. Gracie and I have never eaten at a Sonic, and we were like children, anxiously waiting the server to bring our food to the car. Gracie was thrilled to be bouncing around the car out of her seat belt and was eying all of the sweet treats on the menu beside her car window. When the food arrived, Gracie giggled and I formed an impromptu tray since the food was very hot. I think we all liked sitting in the car with the windows rolled down enjoying our lunch. (We're pretty easy to excite aren't we!)

After lunch Daddy gave us a slight tour of what is new in Winchester, and somehow we ended up at Toys R Us. Have you heard that there is a new Ariel movie coming out. Well we have heard all about it for a week now--and now, we will be one of the first to get ours. This straight to DVD movie comes out August 26th, and we reserved our copy while we were at the toy store. Garren thought this would be a great treat for Gracie, but as you can imagine it took several explanations on why we don't have the movie yet, and why she has to wait. Ah, the best of intentions.

At this point it is after 5pm and a sleepy Gracie and an exhausted mommy and daddy head home to relax.

A fun day!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Yo Ho, Ho!

Gracie and I had a pirate adventure all day today...and what jolly good fun.

We started the day with a treasure hunt, complete with 8 clues and a real treasure. Gracie hunted down her prize like a real trooper--although next time I will not do as many clues, because she would get so excited and not think about the clue and would give up way to easily in the end.

Her final clue lead her to a corner in the kitchen which now houses her "I-Can-Do-It-Myself-Box." Getting Gracie to play by herself and decide on her own what to do remains a struggle, so I came up with this ingenious idea. I filled this old potato chip canister (from Cracker Barrel) with play dough, stampers, a mini chalkboard, wipe off books, coloring books, paper, and more. So, now when she can't think of something to do, or I am busy, she can go to the box and get an idea. My plan is to change these things often so nothing becomes boring.

After our treasure hunt we made our own pirate flags. This was definitely her favorite craft. I took one of Garren's old undershirts and cut it in two. We used magic markers to make flags, and since we had a left over dowel rod from staking the tomatoes, I actually put hers on a "flagpole."

After the flag we made our own treasure maps, spy scopes, did pirate-themed school work, made the couch into a pirate ship and played "I spy." It was a fun day, and Gracie is still bouncing from all of our imaginary fun!


If you want to have a pirate day at home:

Old T-Shirt or white bandana. Cut out a large rectangle. If you have a stick, cut three small holes along one side and tie with rope or string to said stick. Use markers or paint to make designs (before putting on stick), although I recommend the markers as paint can bleed through and take a long time to dry.

Treasure Maps:
1 brown paper bag (we used the lunch bags). Cut the bottom off, and cut along one of the folds. Open to make a large rectangle. Make your design with markers or paint (again I recommend markers since you will have to wait for paint to dry.) After design is complete ball up your map 10-15 times each time opening and then balling again--this gives it a worn out look and makes it feel like leather. Next spread smooth and add petroleum jelly. I use a cotton ball and spread over the entire surface (one side is fine) LIGHTLY. I have used too much before and it takes days to fully dry! This makes the map look old and worn and more authentic. Sometimes I tear small parts off the sides for added effect.

Spy Scope:
1 paper towel roll. Wrap a black piece of construction paper around the bottom 2/3 of roll--use tape to fasten (glue takes forever!). Use a piece of yellow construction paper to cover 1/3 of roll. This gives it a 2-D look and is more authentic. Kids can decorate with makers or stickers to personalize.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

She's Getting So Big!

Today she...
picked out her clothes, dressed herself & put on her own shoes
found my missing highlighter
told me several stories she made up herself
carried the grocery bag out of the store and into the car
made a new friend at the playground and ran around on her own
found a way to climb up a difficult part on the playground
closed the car door from her car seat

Monday, August 11, 2008

Some Of My Favorite Words...

"Can I read to you?" --Gracie

First Days Of School

We hope that all of our friends in Tennessee had a good first day of school or first day of a full week of school today.

Jaxon and Ethan started Kindergarten

Nyah had her first day in First Grade

and cousins Cody, Cory & Christian all went back to school as well.

Today was Candice and Elliott's first day with kids in their classroom. We hope everyone had a fun day, and that the parents didn't cry too much. :)

Emily will start Kindergarten in FL on August 18th

DJ, Ryan & Casey head back to class in IL on August 27th

Mariah, & Mallory will return to school on September 2nd, Gracie goes back on the 3rd.

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Tennessee Cheerleader

Gracie to Daddy "I am going to be a Tennessee Cheerleader and I am going to cheer for them every week, and you can watch me on TV."

Daddy: "If you are going to be a cheerleader I will come and see you in person, not on TV."

Gracie: "It will take a long time until I grow up."

Daddy: "No, you are already growing up fast."

Friday, August 08, 2008

Return From Candyland

That's kind of how it looks at Grandma's house. It is this mystical place full of rainbows and lollipops and the rest of the world is just ordinary and sugar-free.

At Grandma's house there is no bedtime, endless trips to Walgreens, pancakes with more whipped cream than butter, ice cream with every meal, endless pretend play, and special treats as far as the eye can see.

Gracie and I are back from our 7 day trek through the candy cane forest and have actually unpacked here plain-'ole-mommy and daddy-house.

I apologize to my loyal readers for the lack of blogging, as Grandma's computer needed some doctoring.

Well, what did we do besides Walgreens and ice cream? Well...mommy made a cake for Uncle Brian's surprise wedding (that we found about about 5 days prior), we met his new wife, Aunt Dawn and had lunch with her, we got 6 pairs of knee socks for school (Target was the correct answer), a new pair of school shoes, we thrift shopped, we played in the pool, made a huge mess...oh, and did I mention meeting Aunt Dawn's 4 of 6 kids? Whew--what a week! Now, you can see why I didn't have much time to blog. :)