Friday Funny

While playing with Rick's gloves, Jack yelled, "Daddy, I'm Buzz LightBeer."

We tried to keep a straight face when correcting him and saying, "You mean Buzz Lightyear."

I'm A Woman of Few Words

Jodie tagged me in this Meme. I don't participate in Memes very often, because I can't stand being given rules for my own blog. But Jodie caught my attention with this one. The introvert in me can handle one-worded answers.

The Rules: Easy. Write a one-word answer to each of the questions below.

Where is your cell phone? Kitchen
Your significant other? Couch
Your hair? Frizzy
Your mother? Confidante
Your father? Accepting
Your favorite thing? Time
Your dream last night? Zzz
Your favorite drink? Dr Pepper
Your dream/goal? Heaven
What room are you in? Family
Your hobby? Blogging
Your fear? Vomiting
Where do you want to be in 6 Yrs? Acreage
Where were you last night? Here
Something that you aren’t? Extroverted
Muffins? Mmm
Wish list item? DLSR
Last thing you did? Dishes
What are you wearing? Sweats
TV? Off
Your pets? Sleeping
Friends? Amazing
Your life? Blessed
Your mood? Content
Missing someone? Sure
Drinking? Nope
Smoking? Never
Your car? Broken
Something you’re not wearing? Earrings
Your favorite store? Bed Bath & Beyond
Your favorite color? (just one?!) Blue
When is the last time you cried? Week ago
Who will respond to this? ???
Where do you go to over and over? WalMart
Five people who email me regularly? Rick, Mom, Jena, Judy, Kristin
My favorite place to eat? Restaurant
Place I’d like to be at right now? Mountains

If you want to be tagged, consider it done. Let me know you're playing, so I can check it out.

Yes, I Still Blog

I would really like to know how some of you bloggers post every single day?! It's not that I can't think of topics; I have plenty of ideas in my head.

It's the time. Where in the world do you people find the time to post daily?! Please do share.

Anyway, I have put my to-do list away tonight and am allowing myself time to blog.

What have we been up to? Well, thank you for asking!

Pretty much the usual...schooling, eating, But here are some recent photos. In case my boys ever ask why they don't have scrapbooks (yea, right!), I need to have a photo dump on here every once in a while.

Jackson has suddenly taken an interest in puzzles and was quite proud to have put this one together all by himself a few days ago.
No, the ensemble would not be complete without the hat.

Garrett has loved puzzles for quite some time. When he saw me take Jack's picture above, he hurriedly picked out a puzzle to complete for himself. He is quite proud of the fact that he is working on 60-piece puzzles these days.
I say, "Who cares about the puzzle? Look at that cute pose that I did not have to encourage!"

When the weather is nice, we head to the park to shoot off rockets.
I don't know where my brother found that rocket, but it is the best entertainment ever!

The boys even take turns without fighting. Because if they're not shooting off the rocket, then they watch how high the others' are flying.
Then, Liam does the jig.
Notice he's not wearing his glasses. That would be because all three boys have broken their glasses in the last three weeks. Good times, I tell you.

Some boys have to take timeouts at the park.
But Mommy loves to take pictures of the pouty face. It's a pitiful sight.

And some boys beg Mommy to play baseball.
I oblige most of the time, but not today, sweet boy.

When Daddy is home, we beg him to have a Beatles jam session.
Do you think the Beatles ever had a jam session around the Saturday morning breakfast table? In their pjs? With their Mac revealing their chords?

No? Bummer, because it's a rockin' good time.

Perhaps much of my blogging time is put into keeping this child clothed:
That child is sporting the fourth pair of jeans I've bought him in less than a month, because he wears the knees out in no time. I finally caved and added patches to the insides of those jeans. Maybe he'll wear those for a full month.

When we're not adhering patches to jeans, we're having Preston spend the night and trying to teach him that strawberries and other such yummy foods are our friends.
We try to be a good influence.

And we even dress up for church.
Perhaps this post was a bit random. Maybe it was really a post to appease my mother. Yes, Mom, I do still blog, and I have been taking pictures of the boys regularly.

The Micah Project

There is a 7 year old boy that I want you to meet. Micah has a HUGE heart for hurting people, and he has taken a simple school project of collecting 100 things and turned into his mission to help as many people as he can.

His original plan was to collect $100 to help a homeless man with the purchase of a winter coat and a Bible. But the Lord had far greater plans for Micah's project, and he has already collected nearly $300.

Would you please take the time to read this post to fill you in on Micah's project?

I know Micah's extended family, and I can tell you that they are the "real deal". They will not take your time nor your money for granted. Even if you are not able to send Micah cash, I think you will be blessed by such a young and tender heart.

Friday Funny

On Monday evening, I was making a green bean recipe that calls for brown sugar. Garrett saw me scooping up the sweet stuff and asked what it was.

Me: It's brown sugar.
G: Yuck! I don't like it.
M: Yes, you do. It's sweet. And it's the color of your skin.
G: How did THAT happen?!

Time Flies

Well, hello there, internets. It's Thursday, and I'm just now sitting down to blog. The week just got away from me. I hate it when that happens!

I need to blog about Jack's 4th birthday, now that it's nine days after the fact. Otherwise, I might open my eyes to find he's already turned 5. really need to get on my side.

We don't have a "friend party" but every other year. That would be because I hate planning parties. I'm just being honest.

I'm not that cool mom that comes up with great party ideas. My friend is, and she's the reason we had a firemen theme last year.

Anyway, this is not the year for "friend parties", so we just celebrated a little all day long.

The day began with donuts.
A sugar-filled breakfast might make me a cool mom.

When it came time to dress for the day, I convinced him that he would look like a four year old in this sweater. He fell for it and looked really cute.
He broke his glasses the night before, so I got to see his luscious lashes for a few hours before the eye glasses store was open.

We ran a few errands that day, which to most people sounds like a boring way to spend the day. But my boys love running errands. They enjoy getting out and about. Who wouldn't, when you get to sit back and enjoy the ride while chewing gum and listening to the Beatles?

Later in the day, Jack helped me bake his cake. He was thrilled to help me without having to share the baking duty with his brothers.
Don't turn me in for breaking child labor laws.

Both sets of grandparents came over for pizza and dinner that evening.
Daddy spent the evening quarantined to our bedroom with a stomach bug. He stuck his head out to see the festivities occasionally.
He especially couldn't miss Jack opening his gifts. Speaking of, Jack's favorite gift was this:
Man, did I score BIG with that one! He loves his guitar!

And my boys are now officially 5, 4, and 3. For two more weeks. Until Garrett turns 4. Man, time is flying!

On the Road

My parents often say that Rick has gypsy in his blood, because he can't stay in one place for very long. Living in this house for nearly four years shocks them and practically anyone else that knows my hubby. Maturity has taught him the importance of settling down and living life for today. That and the fact that both sets of parents would kill him if he took our boys away from them...they are what keep us planted here in Fort Worth.

As I mentioned on Monday, Rick had several days off for the holidays. We hadn't planned on going anywhere, but just a day or two before Christmas, he announced that we needed to go see the Aggies play basketball. Any excuse to see his Ags. Any excuse to hit the road.

We drove to Houston to see the Ags beat up on Rice. Here are my little Ags before the game.
How do you like the Aggie hair?
Garrett enjoyed wearing the hair, but he's decided basketball isn't for him. That's alright. I think football and baseball will keep him plenty busy in the years to come.

After the game, we hung out long enough to meet some of the players. Bryan Davis stopped for a photo, and my boys (all 4 of them) were in awe.
I kept telling myself that he wasn't really all that big. But now that I look at the picture, HOLY COW, he's big! He's 6'9". Man, I wonder what life looks like from up there.

Will my boys be that big???

Coach Turgeon isn't very tall. And he's cool enough to pose with Rick.
Some people have asked if Coach and Rick are brothers. I do see the resemblance, but I assure you that there is zero basketball in our blood.

Yes, Rick is sweating. His brother asked if he was nervous. But no. Rice University needs to figure out how to cool their gym. It was so stinkin' hot in there!

After our fun game, we enjoyed dinner at a Turkish grill. To not find us at a TexMex restaurant or a pizza joint is cause for a kodak moment.
And the boys, I'm so happy to report, ate very well.

Bedtime was not quite so successful. This is the last time we can put all three boys in one hotel bed. They're all smiles in this photo, but I assure you there was much gnashing of teeth while fighting over covers, pillows, bed buddies, and personal space.
They're growing up!

We drove down to Galveston the next morning so the boys could see the ocean. Jack and Garrett have never seen a salty body of water, and Liam doesn't remember a trip to Cancun as a toddler.

The Gulf of Mexico is hardly the ideal beach vacation, but we still enjoyed walking along the water and hearing the waves crash.
The devastation from Hurricane Ike is still very evident.
I didn't take many pictures, but many houses and buildings are still in shambles.

Finally, we took a visit to the Houston Space Center. If you ever have a chance to make a trip to Houston, you need spend at least 1/2 day there. We all enjoyed it.

It was educational, as we toured the old mission control center and the present-day training facilities. There are also educational videos, virtual rides, and a large play scape. Truly, it was a fun place.
Have you ever stood next to a 363 foot rocket? We have!
And it's big, y'all.

It's fun when Rick's gypsy blood gets us traveling. I give him about three months before he has us on the road again.

It's Jack's Day

Today, January 6th, is Jack's fourth birthday.

For those new to my site, he is our middle child, but we adopted him last, as he was closing in on four months of age. We were supposed to adopt him at birth, but his birth mom had a hard time relinquishing him and decided to parent him. By the time he was nearly 4 mos., she decided it was best to relinquish her rights. His adoption story is an amazing revelation of God's sovereignty, and I invite you to read it in its entirety when you have some time. All four parts are located on the right sidebar.

As I was looking through old pictures for this birthday post, I realized one of my worst fears. We have lost some photos. And those photos are of Jack's first few days of life with us. It saddens me greatly. Not only do I not have photos of the first 4 mos of his life, but I've now lost photos of our first few days as the fabulous five.

My mom has a copy of the first picture of he and I together. The quality is horrible, but I have to post it anyway.
That is moments after our attorney's secretary handed him to me. What I remember about those first few moments is how BIG his eyes were. And his 'fro cracked me up.

For those familiar with attachment issues, you'll pick up on how stiff he was in my arms and how he's avoiding my eyes. I picked up on it right away, and I was immediately nervous.

When we took him to our hotel room, he refused to let me rock him or feed him. He only wanted Rick. For some reason, we have this one photo of that night.
Look at his sweet eyes and clinched fists. He was probably so confused by all the change taking place in his little life.

This is a photo of the five of us the next day. When people see this photo, they usually say, "Ami, you look so tired." Oh my word, I was beyond tired and scared out of my mind.
Moments after this photo, Jack began crying inconsolably. I took him to another room and held him close and cried right along with him. And prayed like I've never prayed before in my life. "Lord, I know you brought Jack to be our child. Please, please help him to attach to me."

And I continued that prayer for a long time.

God was faithful. Jack has attached and is a normal member of this family. He can be my most challenging boy, but he keeps me on my knees.

Not every moment in those first months were rough. Here's a shot of his bright eyes along with a grin.
Man was life crazy with two infants and a 2 year old! But look how cute they were!

(Jack, Liam, Garrett on the night of baby dedication)
Today, Jack is an interesting character. A little more about him:

He is my best sleeper. Night, day, bed, car, glasses or not...almost anywhere he allows himself to be still for more than 5 minutes.
He is my most imaginative child. He can turn the most simple of objects into a game of almost anything. He is also the one to be most macho in his play...always wanting to fight, hunt, or repair something.
In public, he will sit and watch strangers for hours. In this next shot, he had been staring at passengers on a train. I called his name, and he knew it was time to stop staring.
And then, it was time to be a ham. He is our class clown.
He is often more entertained with everyday objects than normal toys. An umbrella kept him from staring on the train.
Notice the "I love you" sign on his left hand. He is frequently found telling us he loves us. Now, if that's not healing from the Lord, then I don't know what is.

And this is one of my favorite recent photos of Jackson.
So handsome. Bright eyes. Beautiful smile.

Happy 4th birthday, Little Man! I love you,


I believe most bloggers have already posted Christmas pictures and moved on. I, however, enjoy being different.

Well, that's a lousy excuse for my procrastination. Actually, I just flat out enjoyed being with my family for the past 12 days. I didn't want to take time to put a coherent thought here on the blog.

Our Christmas was great. It was low-key and fun.

Rick was off from December 24th-28th and then again December 31st-January 4th. Normally, when he takes that much time off, we're on the road for a fast-paced vacation, which is always fun. But it was nice to have him home and to just be. No real plans, except to play with the boys and eat whatever sounded good at any given time.

My parents joined us for Christmas day. Because I still have my kids brain washed to believe that they cannot get out of bed without permission or else!, all of the adults were able to get up leisurely to enjoy their hot coffee (or cold Diet Coke, whatever the case may be) before getting the boys up.

Which also means we were able to have cameras ready for the boys' initial peek at all the Christmas loot.

Here is Liam the instant that he saw the green marble run that he has talked about for months. The same marble run that we told him he could not have until he's six years old.
Parenting does require stretching the truth occasionally. Lord, please forgive me.

But the lie was totally worth Liam's pure excitement. He screamed, "MY GREEN MARBLE RUN! I GOT IT! AHHH!"

Did you see Garrett in the doorway with his hands over his head. He's funny about new situations. He takes them in slowly. Since Christmas only occurs once a year and the idea felt new to him, he was slow to show too much excitement.

But not Liam.
He was elated with everything this year. His excitement was contagious.

Never fear...Garrett did come around and have himself some fun. His favorite gift, hands down, was his Aggie football uniform.
I felt like I might be looking at my future when he played QB with Daddy in the backyard later in the day. Gig 'em, Garrett!

We bought Jack a workbench set complete with tools. Because he loves to play with tools and try to repair things around the house, we thought he would love it. But what does this face say to you?
Excitement? Not so much.

That same workbench is for sale on Craigslist now, because the amount of time he's spent with it: ZERO. Any buyers???

But what did get Jack's happy face was this air hockey table from my parents.

That picture makes me laugh. It's a fake smile, but look how nice of a fake smile it is. He looks too cute, in my unbiased opinion.

Another reason I am so late in sharing our Christmas is this: I am uncomfortable in writing about our Christmas gifts. I don't want anyone to get the idea that Christmas is all about the gifts in our house. Quite the opposite is true.

For the month leading up to December 25, we continually discuss what Christmas is really about with our kids. And Liam seemed to really "get it" this year.

Before we blew out candles for Jesus' birthday cake, I asked the kids to remind us what we were celebrating. And Liam went into great detail about God sending Jesus to live on earth before dying on the cross for our sins. My heart shone with pride over my little big boy who "got it" this year.

I hope you also had a merry Christmas and that you are blessed by Christ's birth.

And I can't wait until my kids are old enough to skip Christmas gifts and go on a family missions trip instead. I couldn't think of a better segue there, sorry. But I would love to skip all the craziness of buying and exchanging gifts. Instead, we would put the money towards a missions trip for the five of us to bless others in far greater need than us. That's where my heart has been on December 25 for the past two years.