October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
  • After two nights of not being able to find Keaton's pacifier, we finally found it last night.  We have others but she just spits them out.  It was a long two nights without it-actually, she doesn't keep them in her mouth for long but long enough to calm down.  So I thought last night would be a breeze with her paci back but instead from 9-12:30ish she was a bit fussy.  Not fussy if she was being held-which made doing dishes and laundry pretty difficult.  She woke up at 3 but fell asleep after only 2 ounces and then woke up at 6.  
  • We had all managed to go back to sleep until Graham came downstairs a little after 7.  He thinks he is something else coming downstairs without asking.  As long as it is after 7 it is fine with me but I would still prefer him ask.  Anyway, by the time we were moving around it was 7:30 and since we need to leave at 7:50 we were a tiny bit late.  I take everyone on Mondays to drop of Reagan and Anderson and this was the first time that I had dropped Anderson off and they were already singing in the hallway.  Graham walked over towards Ms. Wendolyn like he was going to class and then realized that it wasn't his class so he turned back around and headed to me.
  • On our way to Reagan's class, Graham asked if we could go see Pops and when he would be done "tiring."  All Campbell was interested in was carrying Reagan's lunch box though she probably can't do that anymore because poor Reagan said that her candy bag had a whole in it and her corn was spilling and everything was wet.  
  • After dropping them off, Keaton, Graham and Campbell cut fingernails, played train, read a book, did laundry and played trucks and a few games.  When Anderson came home, Graham and Campbell were finished up working on their milk jug ghosts.  Reagan didn't want to go to school today because the others were going to get to do theirs and she was going to miss out.  I tried to explain that she had already done hers and had done more than they were going to get to do but that didn't help.
  • We had lunch and then the boys watched a movie while the girls slept.  I tried to get a few things done and before too long it was time to pick up Reagan.  I saw her class playing on the playground and then lining up to go back inside as we drove up.  She was having fun and was so proud of her Halloween sweater on loan from Lilly.
  • We made it home and were eating some candy when Robby arrived home and we started on carving our pumpkin (yes, we are procrastinators).  Campbell didn't want anything to do with the inside nor did Anderson.  He even left the bar one time when Reagan started throwing it at him (she got this idea from Robby who sneezed it out at Campbell).  After everyone calmed down, we were able to finish our jack o lantern and they were all pretty pleased.
  • Then we just had to wait until trick or treat time and they were so excited they were going crazy.  Finally, it was time to go and we crashed a neighborhood to pick up some candy.  Campbell ran after the big kids with her bucket in hand up to the first house though she didn't know what she was doing.  But by the next house, the girl had it down and would often say thank you as she walked off.  
  • Anderson was all into it this year-running up and down sidewalks and was ready to go all night long.  Grannymom said that this was Robby's favorite holiday and it will probably be Anderson's too.  Next stop was Lilly and Cash's house for some candy and we hit up their neighbor's house along with Grannymom's neighbors too.  We had our jack o lantern shaped pizza at Grannymom's house before moving on to Nonna's house.  
  • Jason was there and had candy for them so they got double at Pops.  We put on our pajamas and then headed home to bed.  Everyone was worn out from the big day...and surprisingly no one was on a sugar high!

October 30, 2011

What you looking at?
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
  • Most of the kids had on something new to us (new, loaned or pulled out from last season) today so getting everyone ready was pretty easy.  Anderson was very proud of his yellow sweater vest, Reagan and Campbell had on new dresses and Reagan even wore her boots.  And Graham didn't much care about his clothes, he was just tickled that he was getting to go to big church to see Pops.
  • Today was Pops retirement recognition and I had told the kids that Pops would be on the stage.  So the van discussion this morning was if Pops would be singing on the stage.  They were all pretty excited to see him on the stage and did well during the service.  We even stayed to watch the second service but we did move towards the back with Nonna.  Anderson was a disappointed that he wasn't going to Sunday school because he said he would miss snack.
  • Sitting in church before it started, Anderson asked me to help him think of things for his Christmas list.  He said that he already had a bb gun on his list and I quickly reminded him that you have to be 8 for that and someone from the pew in front of us added that she thought you needed to be 12 and we should check the internet.  He just suggested that he get it this year and I hide it and give it to him when he is 8-goodness.
  • No one starved though, after picking up the little girls we headed to Cracker Barrel to meet Nonna, Pops, Jason and  Nonna and Pops' friends that had come in for the day.  After lunch, we went to see Grannymom and Grandpa who had been out of town all week.  The kids were pretty excited to see them and when we left, Grannymom passed out a treat.  Graham picked gum and managed to chew it without swallowing it until we made it to Lawson-that is a record for him.  Ha!
  • When we made it home, Keaton was sleeping still in her car seat.  Campbell went to sleep in the car and was moved to her bed.  And Reagan, Anderson and Graham ran upstairs and started playing-well, we took this as a chance to take a nap.  It didn't take too long for them to come downstairs and ask for a movie and then later a snack but overall, it was a pretty nice nap for us.  
  • We had supper and then a piece of candy for dessert.  Since it was near bedtime, the watched one last movie before bed.  A few minutes after we tucked them in, we heard footsteps.  Graham was out of bed running around the room, Reagan was standing in the middle trying to get him back into bed (she's a little mother) and Campbell was jumping on her bed. 
  • It is all quiet now upstairs but we just remembered that we forgot to carve our pumpkin tonight--shhh, maybe no one will remember.  

October 29, 2011

Bobbing for apples!
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
  • Graham's tummy hasn't been too settled lately so it woke him up at 3 and that was about the same time that Keaton was eating.  Soon Graham was tucked back in bed and Keaton was snug in her bouncy.  And in just a few minutes, Graham was right there beside me-he climbed in and we all slept until we heard Campbell stirring on the monitor.
  • Robby went upstairs and him and Campbell laid in Graham's bed for quite awhile until Anderson decided to get up.  Campbell and Anderson ended up with Graham and I and they laid quietly with me for awhile.  Before they got too crazy, I served up breakfast and read a few stories.  During the middle of the first story, Reagan appeared and was quite proud that she had slept the longest.
  • We were pretty lazy most of the morning long.  Graham and then Campbell had baths and then they all played  happily upstairs.  I did have them working hard as well-they helped me empty the pantry since I was reorganizing it. Campbell just spent her time finding things that she wanted to eat.  Keaton tried out her swing for the first time and she liked it a bit but wasn't overly impressed.  
  • After I finished the pantry, everyone helped me make ghost pretzels during lunch.  We had sandwiches and between bites, they each were able to make a few pretzels.  And then after more playing, they helped me make the faces on some of the pretzels.
  • Soon Campbell had a nap, Graham fell asleep watching a movie, Keaton was taking a nap as well and Anderson and Reagan were watching a movie.  Robby and I used that time to straighten the sheds and walk around imagining where our driveway will go.
  • Before too long, Nonna and Pops were knocking on the door with their friends.  Nonna and Pops thought they were going to have to keep Keaton tonight but instead there long time friends from Texas and Rogers were coming to see them.  I just love a surprise.  We showed them all around the house (and even though I had thought they might end up here, I sure didn't try to clean up any).  
  • We then went down the road for a Halloween party.  We started with cooking our hot dogs over the fire-the kids were not impressed with the hot dog business.  And after a bit of playing inside, it was time for games.  Reagan was all into the games and even found a friend to buddy up with.
  • The highlight of the games were when everyone had partners and then wrapped one of them in toilet paper.  Graham was a wrapp-e and he was as still as he could and probably had no idea what we was going on except that it was a game.  Reagan and her friend did pretty good and probably would have been second had everyone continued
  • There was a ring toss game and a throw the ball in the bucket game.  Campbell isn't going to be left out of anything and was in the line ready to play.  She would just throw the ring and bean bag on the floor and the other kids would "oh" or giggle and she would just look up and grin.  She is going to be my comedian.  
  • And then there was bobbing for apples.  I offered to hold Keaton inside so I didn't see all of this but I did step out to see Reagan bobbing.  Campbell was right there beside her, squatting down, trying to pull her head up and even trying to put her head in.  Anderson wisely passed on this game but soon it was Graham's turn-Campbell didn't help lift his head up-when she had the chance she just shoved his head down in the water.
  • They even had a hay ride and Reagan ended up riding on it twice,  She didn't even mind the scary man jumping out at them.  When Anderson got off the ride he was shouting "that was awesome."  I thought Graham would agree but he just shook his head-he didn't like the man jumping out.  Campbell didn't take part in this one but did set on the step waiting on everyone to come back.
  • After making smores it was time to come home.  The kids had had a blast and couldn't wait to get into bed.  We can't either-3 will come early in the morning

October 28, 2011

Fun times at GSFest!
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
  • Keaton ate twice in the middle of the night-or maybe i t was just once.  I am not really sure-there were 2 bottles in the bedroom this morning so it must have been twice.  And it seemed like everyone else woke up in a bad mood.  Anderson could be heard throughout the house yelling and growling at somebody.  Reagan was crying because someone hurt her and I am sure that Graham was doing something but I just can't remember.
  • They did calm down for a few minutes at breakfast and even listened to a story or two.  But right after breakfast, things were crazy again.  Though, my Campbell stayed right beside me most of the day long.  When the others went upstairs after breakfast, she stayed and got the broom out to help me sweep up.  Then I went upstairs to take a shower (further away from Keaton so she could sleep in peace) and Campbell followed me up there too.  Then she said "momma?' and I looked out and she already had her shirt out and was getting in with me. 
  • Next up, most everyone put on their clothes and we started school.  It was just one of those mornings-pretty horrible.  Graham could not obey and Anderson was just a bit defiant.  Campbell just wanted markers and to sit in my lap (or sit on top of Keaton).  Though Reagan did finish her real work but we didn't get through our memory work-I just couldn't take any more.  It did get better later in the day though.
  • Robby came home for a quick lunch and then I headed out to take the kids to Nonna and Pops house.  I had to run to work for a bit and of course I was there longer than I had planned on (nothing can be easy!) but even after picking the kids up, Campbell had a decent nap and the others rested for a bit.  Graham's mood changed and he sat with me while I worked on next weeks school.  He just talked and talked.
  • Before too long, we were loading up again for GSFest.  The kids were uber excited and the kids really enjoyed the rides-the jalopy cars, motorcycles, jeeps, roller coaster, house of mirrors (though Campbell did walk right into a mirror) and the fun house.  Reagan loved the fun house, Anderson's favorite was probably the roller coaster and Campbell and Graham both like the jeeps which went really fast.  
  • Robby stayed to work the next shift but we were home a little after 8.  They all had something to drink and a piece of candy before heading to bed.  Graham's bed must have been really cold because he climbed out 3 times telling me how cold it was.  I tried to explain to him that if he would stay in it would warm up and I guess that it did because he was fast asleep pretty soon.

October 27, 2011

Graham's 1st Visit to the dentist!
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)

  • Tara's away at Bunko so for the early blog readers here's Robby's version:
  • Everyone slept until about 7:00 and then it was time for clothes, teeth and breakfast.  I took the boys to school - they wanted to drive around the church parking lot to see all the rides set up for GSFest but we were already running late.
  • Reagan and Tara did school and Campbell played with candy corn and ate most of it
  • After home school, Tara loaded up all the girls and headed to Nonna's to drop off Keaton and Campbell.  She and Reagan headed to the boys' school for fall parties - games & cupcakes!
  • Then it was dentist time - Graham's first visit to the dentist (he handled like a pro and volunteered to go first); while Reagan & Anderson followed soon afterwards
  • Back to Nonna's for lunch and a bit of time to play before loading everyone up to head to the hospital to see Beebee. Pops went with us and then we saw Papaw Brock and Hank along with Beebee.
  • Next up was heading to Robby's work where he met us for their annual PumpkinPalooza - more candy than our kids ever need, games, very tart limeades and then a quick visit to Robby's office so Keaton could eat and stretch her legs.
  • We headed to Arby's for supper since we had a bit of time before the library's storytime candy walk - they had various storybook characters dressing up and handing out candy.
  • Tara left for Bunko and Robby headed home with the crew.  Everyone wanted one more goodie from their bag - what's more piece of candy after about 20?  Milk, teeth and then it was bedtime and Robby was worn out -- but that meant it was time for Keaton to wake up for a bottle. She stayed up for awhile watching the news with Robby but she was soon asleep.

October 26, 2011

The boys love their sister Campbell!
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
  • Pretty low key day around here.  We have started reading Charlotte's Web at breakfast and am trying to start back reading a Bible story then too.  I tell you, the kids eat more at breakfast than any other time of the day.  I feel like a short order cook though I am not cooking anything.  This is the list of food that was eaten today: pancakes, cereal, bananas, sandwich, clementine and milk.  What will we do when they are teenagers?
  • While I sneaked away to take my shower, they all decided this would be a good time to decorate....the boys' faces. What?!?? Yes, I discovered Anderson & Graham with faces covered in markers.  Needless to say, we spent a bit of time cleaning off their faces.
  • Soon it was time for school, then clothes and then the highlight of the day for most-we made acorn cookies.  We have an oak tree outside that shoots acorns down on to the patio.  It is rather frightening if you are out there (remember the kids wearing their bike helmets on the patio?)  I am even afraid to take the baby out there (remember David and Goliath).  Anyway, the acorns drive Robby crazy so we made the cookies for him.  Campbell just set on the bar stool and ate while Reagan worked diligently making the acorns.  Graham and Anderson did pretty good making acorns but still ended up eating quite a bit.
  • After lunch, we took Reagan to meet Kennedy and they played all afternoon at Kennedy's house.  Ms. Jodee even did Reagan's hair for crazy hair night at Sparks.  Reagan had been planning on how to do her hair for a week and seemed very pleased with the way it turned out.  And tonight was shopping night at Sparks-she bought a picture frame, a pen and a tiny zebra.  Oh what fun and she even said that she saved some money-probably just said that to please me.
  • During the afternoon here at home, I set down on the couch to feed Keaton and when I woke up Keaton was sleeping in my arms and Graham was leaning on my sleeping as well.  It was wonderful and Anderson was watching his movie-it was an educational film. (No, really it was-educational about construction vehicles but educational nevertheless)
  • Awana tonight and then home for a snack before bed.  Everyone was crazy hungry again at snack time.  And they were all talking as quick as they could about Awanas.  Reagan was excited about her shopping and the boys were pretty impressed that I was the one that got to talk to Cubbie during the puppet show.  Kind of nice because usually I am on the other side of the curtain when I am in there and can't see the boys.  Though today, I saw them both come in, sit down and listen intently-now, why don't they do that at home?
  • So I have complaints that there are few pictures of Keaton-here is the reason.  When she is asleep, she is in hiding-seriously, I hide her so no one can find her.  When she is awake, I am feeding her or she is wanting to be held so that leaves me little time to photograph that girl.  Just imagine what Reagan looked like and what Anderson looked like and what Graham looked like and a even what Campbell looked like-that is what Keaton looks like.  

October 25, 2011

Is anyone going to get me?
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
  • As Robby was getting dressed for work this morning, Anderson asked him why his underwear was white and then he asked him if he did not like cartoon characters.
  • Robby took the boys to school while Reagan did school, Campbell colored and Keaton slept and ate.  After our school here, I cleaned and then we went to pick up the boys.  I could see Graham waiting on me and I could tell he was wearing shorts and since I didn't sent him in shorts, I just had a feeling of dread.  But he was the first down the slide today and dried it off with his pants so he changed into his spare clothes.  I didn't need that feeling of dread until later in the afternoon and he started with the same bathroom issues that Campbell has been having (nothing major through and never slowed him down).
  • Against my better judgement we stopped at the library on the way home.  The kids were pretty good and I am sure I am paranoid feeling that every noise echos. But they love picking out books and especially a movie if they have been good.  Of course, we had to change Campbell before and after in the car and Keaton needed a diaper as well but I thought it best to press on and get home despite her screaming the entire way home.  
  • After lunch and a zillion stories, it was time for Keaton and Campbell's naps.  And this meant "school" time for the boys.  The main goal of their school time is for Anderson to work on his reading book and Graham to learn his letters.  But of course, this all has to be done with fun things for everyone.  Graham didn't last too long today and soon disappeared.  It was at least an hour, when I finally thought about checking on him and figured that he was asleep somewhere upstairs.  I peeked in the toy room and saw him lining up his cars on the train tracks playing happily-and I quickly hustled back down the stairs.
  • The conversation this afternoon was: Anderson-Mom, you are going to die first. Me-thank you. Reagan-No, Daddy will he is the oldest.  And then Graham, with this very worried look, asks me, "Daddy is going to die?" They are such confidence builders!
  • A movie and then soon it was supper.  Reagan and Anderson were working on a craft project when Robby arrived home from work and I was quite surprised since I thought it was 4:30 and not 5:30-pretty scary that I lost an hour of the day.  
  • I had bunko tonight so the kids watched a movie and soon Graham was ready to go to bed.  Campbell followed soon after and they were sound asleep when Reagan and Anderson went to bed.
  • Oh, I almost forgot about Robby and my antics last night.  So we decided to finally hang some pictures.  No, he can't use nails yet (still not over that phobia of punching a hole in these walls) so we are using the sticky hooks you see on tv commercials.  Anyway, as Robby was holding a picture up on the fireplace, he leaned it back and it didn't lean like he thought it would-and down it came crashing on his head.  Glass everywhere-thankfully, he has a very hard head and was alright.  After we had that cleaned up and the pictures hung, we had another piece of glass from a different picture laying on the floor.  That is never a good place for glass to be and even though we knew where it was-Robby's foot met that glass.  So we had to pull that vacuum out again.  We probably won't win picture hanging people of the year.

October 24, 2011

One more visit to the
pumpkin patch!
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
  • So on the ride to school Anderson asked me what Ms. Amber's daddy was named and I told him Mr. Todd.  And then he told me that Mr. Todd said that he could get a bb gun and we needed to put it on the Christmas list.  I reminded him that you can't have bb guns until you are 8 (that will give me some time to think of a better excuse).  And Reagan was quick to throw in that Santa couldn't come down our chimney anyway because of all of the pumpkins in the fireplace.
  • Thankfully, Jodee needed me to bring her something so Reagan sat in the car with Kennedy for a few minutes before they went in.  That was great because it gave me more than five minutes to get the boys to the pumpkin patch.  This morning, I had hesitated about grabbing our jackets but I did and boy, am I glad I did.  The fog hadn't yet burned off and it was chilly. 
  • We got separated from most of Anderson's class and rode on the 3rd hayride. Graham must have spent alot of time thinking about the story of Bad Bart that they told and when the sherriff told everyone to hurry back to the tractor and leave because Bad Bart was coming-Graham took off running.  He was so skittish the entire time and couldn't even enjoy they maze but Anderson sure did enjoy it and ran through it at least 4 times.  He was always so proud to find his way out (I was also pretty proud to find my way out-talk about claustrophobic-18 inch maze through a privacy fence with a zillion 5 year olds surrounding you.)
  • The train was the biggest hit for Graham and Anderson as well.  They were willing to sit on the train for quite a while and wait for their turn.  Then we picked out pumpkins-just like shopping with a man-they grabbed the first pumpkin they saw and were ready to go.   Though I did set Graham's down and when I came back it was gone so he had to get another one-he didn't care though
  • Meanwhile, Reagan was at school.  Her show and tell today was her pumpkin from her pumpkin patch trip.  I would love to hear her do her show and tells. Wonder what she says and if she just quietly whispers and stares at the floor.  
  • And back at home, Robby was hanging out/working from home with the girls.  He was a little worried about having to keep Campbell quiet while he was on some calls but she entertained herself pretty well-he let her play with some magnets, she sat in Keaton's bouncy, brought Robby diapers and wipes to change her diaper multiple times (no more fruit for her) and then even had a nap.  Keaton busied herself by drinking many, many bottles.
  • Next up was closing on the Gamble house-wow, the lady who bought that house looked at it the day we closed on this house.  Perfect timing-we only had one extra house payment on Gamble.  Now, to start seriously thinking about that garage.  We dropped the van off before going to closing and then I dropped Robby off afterwards.  He still had to wait for awhile but did manage to finish in time to pick Reagan up from school-though Ms. Jodee was ready to pick up Reagan for him.
  • When everyone came home, I had a mess in the kitchen (making many, many breakfast burritos) so I cleaned up, they had at least one snack, played, watched a movie (though Anderson watched movies while Nonna and Pops were here during closing and told me that he had watched way too much tv today-so he didn't watch anymore). 
  • Before long we were having supper and baths.  After bath, Campbell was getting a diaper and Graham looked at her bottom and in a horrified voice asked "what happened to her peepee?"-he thought it was missing!

October 23, 2011

Clementine Decorator Extraordinaire!
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
  • Last Sunday, we ran behind-this Sunday we were crazy early.  Keaton even had time to wake up and have a bottle, the kids had cinna minis (yes, we went out of our way for them), Robby and I had Sonic and then we still had to wait on Sunday school teachers to show up.  
  • If you are a faithful reader and remember that Robby and I have been having a hard time staying awake in church the past few weeks-well, we did better today but there is just something about Sundays that make me so sleepy.  Though the kids were wide awake when we started singing "Holy, Holy, Holy"-a song we have been singing at school and they sang along (a bit)
  • We were in another class for worship care and Graham came with us.  He had been the sweetest child all morning long and continued to be in the new class.  He colored, ran errands with Robby, sat in my lap-just precious.  Now, his brother and big sister had not been so precious this morning before church.  The spoon was never used but I did have to grab it once to prove my point!
  • During our errands, we noticed the car smoking-never a good thing.  It has done it a few times before but we had thought maybe we ran over a bag (plastic burning smell as well) and then the next time we decided it was due to the newly cold weather.  This time it was neither-actually smoking so I thought Robby was going to holler at me to get the fire extinguisher and to hurry-but it wasn't that bad.  After our errands, he tried to take it to a few places and finally found one that could look at it today (gotta have a van to haul around 5 kids).  Needs a part from the dealer so will be a few days and the guy didn't even want Robby driving it home (he did).  
  • Anyway, so the plan tomorrow is for Robby to stay home and keep the girls, while I shuttle Reagan to school and the boys to the pumpkin patch in his car.  Craziness but it will all work-we might just get Grandpa's truck and throw everyone in the back.  We wouldn't even have to mess with seatbelts then.
  • Back at home there was no rest for the weary-Graham and Campbell had taken their naps in the car.  So I kept everyone busy-cleaning the house.  They scrubbed baseboards, cleaned sinks, swept-don't be too impressed but Robby did mention that the house was clean when he came home.  
  • Keaton is my night owl-she sleeps so much during the day and is wide awake (usually happy) at night.  I do hate it because during the day her eyes will be so big and I will go to get my camera and by the time I make it back she is fussing or asleep.  Almost a month old-my time flies.
  • The kids colored for a bit, watched a movie, had supper and before long Robby was home and it was time for bed.  They were pretty wound up and when I went to encourage them to be quiet I asked "who wants to sleep in the closet?"  One hand shot up-Reagan's.  She was the only one who was trying to go to sleep and not talking/screaming.  
  • closet

October 22, 2011

Halloween with the
Thursday Crew!
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
  • As soon as the day started, Anderson was ready to put on his costume.  I forgot to write but yesterday, he had on his jersey, helmet and was holding a football outside.  He looked at Robby and shouted in a deep manly voice "catch, Rob!"  
  • Robby was cleaning out the car this morning and the kids all put on their clothes and then just sat on the steps and watched him work.  Then he ran some errands and they pulled out their lawnchairs to just sit.  I guess they were having a lazy Saturday-too lazy to even play.  
  • Reagan was very happy to see that her ghost jugs had indeed been moved to the front of the house for "everyone" to see.  And she was very excited to see me drawing halloween faces on our clementines.  She was disappointed that I didn't let them do more.  And Anderson, who as I can remember has never had an orange, loved the clementines.  I think they all liked that they peeled them themselves.  
  • Graham and Campbell had a nap along with Keaton this afternoon while Reagan and Anderson watched a movie.  Before too long it was time to suit up in their costumes and get ready for Jacob, Ethan, Hailey, Kennedy, Camryn and Laynie to come over.  My 3 cheerleaders and 2 football players were so excited to see their friends and show off their costumes.  4 girls were cheerleaders (Hailey and Camryn also-Kennedy was not here tonight) and Laynie was Tinker Bell.
  • The kids played outside for a bit and the boys were excited to show off their new house and the trail that Robby made through the woods.  Camryn and Reagan were like two peas in a pod and had a great time playing together.  The kids were too excited about making smores to eat much of their supper but when the adults tried to sneak in some cake, they were ready to eat that (we didn't let them though-they were going to get to have smores)
  • How cool that we were able to start a fire and make smores in the yard.  The kids all sat down while the grown ups did most of the work-the fire was pretty big and it was very dark.  They all eventually got to make one but before my kids haven't likes smores but they sure did tonight (maybe because it was so dark that they couldn't see what they were eating).  
  • Before long, everyone left and we all had another clementine before baths to wash the smoke off and then to bed.  As Robby was cleaning up outside, we overheard our owl hooting in the distance-love that.  We decided that we are going to go camping outback soon.  Wanna come?

October 21, 2011

Happy Birthday Pops!
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
  • Campbell was the first one to stir at 6 this morning but she did rest a bit more.  Everyone was stirring by 7 (though Reagan was snoozing peacefully at Grannymom and Grandpa's house until 8:20-she is my sleeper).  
  • I looked at the clock around 9 and realized that we had already had breakfast, finished laundry, gotten ready, cleaned the kitchen, played dominoes, built a Lincoln log cabin and were all heading upstairs to work on pulling out of all of the winter clothes for the kids.
  • The boys played cars while Campbell played near me and Keaton laid on the floor.  At one time, I looked up and saw Campbell carrying a baby doll and then second glance I thought "well, her baby dolls don't have dark hair."  Yep, she was bringing Keaton to me-not the only time it happened today.  Keaton now has to wear one of the old bike helmets here in the house.
  • Reagan came home and had a big time with Grannymom and Grandpa.  She had made a bunch of milk carton ghosts.  Since we don't have an outlet in the front of the house, I displayed them on the kitchen window.  Reagan was disappointed and said that she thought we would put them out front for everyone to enjoy.  Everyone?-we live at the end of a dead end street and our house doesn't even face the street.  The only "everyone" that can enjoy them is the critters walking around at night.  Robby did say that he might still put them out front with a long extension cord for "everyone" to see
  • We did school today and it is hard finding enough things to keep Graham busy.  He gets very mad at me if I don't have him enough stuff.  Though he has taken to Reagan's math blocks so that will keep him busy for a bit.  After school, it was time for the big event-decorating Pops' cupcakes.
  • Reagan had received a cupcake decorating set for her birthday and she was ready to use it.  She had told the boys that they could only decorate 2 big ones and 2 little ones so they were pretty excited about it.  They worked and worked on them.  Reagan probably worked for an hour on each one and was so pleased with all of her creations.  I should send her to the wilton cake class.  The boys took alot of time working too-mostly they were working at getting frosting on their fingers so they could lick it off.
  • Soon it was time to meet Pops, Jason and Nonna at McAlisters to celebrate Pops' birthday.  Campbell ate more mac and cheese than anyone else and Reagan had more coke then anyone else.  After supper, everyone came back to our house for cupcakes and somehow everyone started trying on their halloween costumes.  They are all super excited about halloween and ready to dress up.  

October 20, 2011

A super fun day
at the Pumpkin Patch!
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
  • And again, you would think that I would learn my lesson but Keaton and I were up until almost 2 last night.  Even though she woke up again to eat later in the night, Robby did take one for the team and gave Graham (who wet the bed) and Campbell (who did more than just wet the bed) baths pretty early this morning.  
  • The kids love the barstools and would sit there forever.  So eating breakfast is a pretty slow process and maybe because that is the best spot in the house for tv viewing-even though most of our tvs are now hooked up with netflix, hulu and antennaes.  Robby took the boys to school and also took Campbell with him so I ran around picking up a bit, Reagan packed for Grannymom's house and then we got to work on our school.
  • Reagan was almost finished when Campbell came home.  She immediately saw Reagan working and decided that she needed to "color" too.  Reagan for some reason doesn't sit in the chairs at the table but sits on her knees to work so Campbell moved the chair to sit on her knees-even though she could hardly see.  Campbell was happy as she could be and they both sat there coloring and doing work for a good bit.
  • We then worked on laundry and other things before it was time to load up to get the boys.  One thing we did do was pull out all of the heavy winter coats because we were going to the pumpkin patch and it was cold outside-though we didn't hardly need our light jackets.  I picked up the boys a bit early and they were so excited to head to the patch.
  • They asked how far away it was and I told them about 10 miles which made Anderson ask if it was as far as Disneyworld and then he cut the distance a bit and asked if it was closer than Josh and Zach's house (Mississippi).  They were pretty pleased when we finally arrived there.  Anderson was so ready to go in and couldn't understand why I was making them wait (we were waiting on our group and then we were waiting on our time to go in)
  • The first activity was the pig races and a snack (good thing since it was now 12 and we hadn't had lunch-nor had I packed anything).  Anderson really thought that the pigs were going to jump over the hurdles (all they did was run under the 2 foot hurdles).  Reagan was tickled that the pig she wanted was the one that one and she said that she was the only one screaming for him to win.   Graham was a little timid at first but when he saw the pigs were securely locked in their cages, he moved up to the front row.  Campbell watched with her wide eyes and finally showed some excitement during the last race.
  • Next was the hay ride and Reagan is getting so big-the boys just stick right by my side but Reagan was off sitting with her friends not even worried about if we made it on the ride or not.  They so loved the hay ride but the biggest was the cow train ride.  The girls rode together and the boys decided by themselves that they would ride together.  I did feel it went pretty fast but they seemed to love it.  
  • Next up was playing on the mound of hay and picking out their pumpkins.  Campbell spent most of her time arranging the pumpkins and when I took Graham to the bathroom, Reagan and Anderson picked out the pumpkins that they wanted.  As you probably have guessed, we did get all the ones they had placed around my bag (about 15) - we just took our 4.  
  • I was quite impressed with Motleys and hopefully, we can go there to look at the Christmas trees and take a few pictures.  Next up was taking Reagan to Grannymom and Grandpa's house-Reagan was so excited.  She has been waiting awhile to spend the night.  Campbell was asleep (oh, if you were wondering, Keaton spent the day with Robby who was working from home) in the car so we just all stayed in the car dropping her off.  
  • When we made it home, Campbell finished her nap in the car, Graham and then Anderson and then Graham again played with playdoh until supper.   After supper, Robby was playing a bit in the yard with his leaf sucker-upper (not the official name) and the kids played until they had their lawnmower turn.  Robby doesn't cut when they ride but Anderson felt the need to wear his bike helmet tonight "just in case I fall off"    

October 19, 2011

She's a grinner!
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
  • Keaton finished her bottle around 12:45ish, Anderson had a bloody nose at 3ish, Keaton ate again at 4 and then Graham was up at 6:30 because he had "wet his bed" (but just his pull up was wet and not his bed).  Though with all of that we still managed to all stay (semi) in bed until almost 8
  • Robby headed off to work and the rest of us ate breakfast and put on our clothes.  We have bought pancakes from Sams and they have been quite the hit but unfortunately, I couldn't find any more in the freezer today.  So they had to settle with waffles and cereal.  Don't feel too sorry for everyone since they love the waffles or maybe it is the syrup.  We need to get back to making real waffles on Saturdays or maybe for supper one day each week.  
  • Before we left, we did have time for Reagan to do a little bit of work and then I read a story to everyone before all getting in the car to meet Robby.  I hadn't planned my time too well and was cutting it very close to get the kids to McDonalds and then to my doctor's appointment by 10.  But Robby had cut it closer and was just leaving as I was nearing WLR.  We had to meet at the Doctor's parking lot and switched cars.
  • Robby took the kids to McDonalds and they all played for quite awhile.  Until Reagan told Robby that Campbell was poopy.  He probably wasn't in too much of a hurry to change her until Reagan added "and she has it on her hands and is wiping it on her shirt."  Well, that sent Robby and all 5 kids to men's room to change a dirty diaper.  Just imagine the scene-someone using the stall, a poopy Campbell with no changing table, 4 other kids probably touching everything-oh, to have been a fly on that wall!
  • I made it back to McDonalds even after waiting for awhile for my appointment and then a few more minutes to get my flu shot.  By now the kids were eating and Robby was concerned that I had forgotten to give them breakfast since they had each eaten 5 nuggets-usually, we have to plead with them to eat 2 each.  Next Keaton ate and then we loaded up and got in the car.  Reagan and Anderson's seat belts have been contrary lately so I not only have to get back there to buckle Campbell up but also buckle up one of them.  That means I have to buckle up 4 kiddos before we can hit the road.
  • We made it home and Campbell was asleep.  She finished her nap in bed while we did school.  Before long the boys were wrestling so they were banished to my room so Reagan could finish her math and phonics in peace.  Next up was a little cupcake making.  Reagan is very good at cracking eggs but Anderson doesn't want to try at all-he doesn't want to get dirty.  Graham has a unique egg cracking technique-smash the egg on the side of the bowl and then throw it all in the bowl.  Don't worry, the cupcakes will only be slightly crunchy!!
  • Everyone then had jobs-Reagan fed Keaton, Graham dusted while Anderson was my "listener"-probably "runner" would have been a better word for his job-"get the bag" "put this up" "push the chair up"-he did pretty good at listening until I found him trying to take Graham's duster away-guess he was ready to change jobs.
  • After they helped with laundry, we woke Campbell up and had supper.  Before long we were headed to Awanas and Reagan was reviewing her verses in the car-I am afraid that she gets too worried about saying her verses correctly.  But she did get a jewel for her wings tonight and was very pleased.
  • The boys had a good time-especially because of snack.  Keaton stayed with up and Campbell went to her class. When Robby picked her up, I knelt down between her and Keaton and outstretched my arms to greet her...and just as I expected, she ran right passed me shouting "baby, baby"

October 18, 2011

A costume birthday party!
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
  • Robby took the night time feed last night-though in my defense, I did feel pretty horrible when we went to bed with all the yucky head stuff-sore throat, stuffy head and hurting ears.  But I did feel much better this morning.  Anyway, the kids were stirring at the normal time but I overheard them on the monitor wondering if it was really morning since it was still dark outside due to the rain.
  • Robby took the boys to school while Campbell, Keaton, Reagan and I started school here.  Keaton wanted to eat all morning long-actually, that is what she has done most of the day.  Campbell is all about coloring which is great except she wants to use the dry erase markers (too expensive for the 1 year old to use) so we fight constantly about that.  With me and Campbell going round and round about the markers (don't feel bad for her, she has other ones she can use) and Keaton wanting milk-Reagan eventually wrote on her paper "I am havng a bad da"  She wasn't having a bad day and had flew through her work and at the time she only had math to finish.  She has started writing her numbers backwards and now gets confused between 12 and 20.  
  • After our school was over, I ran to get a shower so we could pick up the boys.  It was raining pretty good so we postponed our trip to the library for another day and came home for lunch.  I heated up leftovers and then everyone played upstairs for awhile.  Campbell took a nap and then we had to do school again.  Graham gets pretty upset if he doesn't get to do "homeschool" so I set out 4 things for him and Anderson and then throw out a few fun things for Reagan.  Even though Graham really wants to do school, he is never pleased that I have not given him more work to do.  
  • I tried to make Graham rest in our bed but he ended up getting up.  He did tell me that he thought Keaton would be able to talk when she was born.  I reminded him that Campbell doesn't say that much but he replied with "I thought babies come out of mommy's tummys able to talk"  He then tried to get Keaton to jump rope-she wasn't very good at it.  It was actually a boa that he was using and then he resorted to measuring her to see how much she has grown.  He measured her about every 3 minutes for awhile.
  • Anderson was so proud of his pumpkin that he painted in class today and even told me that he showed the number nine to everyone in his class. He does crack me up-every day when they watch a movie, he sits in the same spot on the couch.  If someone else gets his spot, he loses it.  Reagan has learned to stay away from his spot
  • We worked a puzzle and Graham anxiously awaited on Robby to get home to take him to a birthday party.  It was a costume party and Graham went as Super Man-had his face painted, made a spider, ate a cupcake and pizza.  He just had a big time.  Though Robby probably can't go to many more birthday parties by himself-there was a kid injury tonight (minor tooth related) and he has also been to a party where the paramedics were called.  Maybe he is just bad birthday party luck.
  • While they were gone, we had supper, fed Keaton, read a story and all sat on the couch and watched a movie until Robby and Graham came home.  Then it was lights out for most of the Dennie crew-though Keaton has been snoozing away for awhile and is just starting to squirm out of her swaddle.
  • Oh and I forgot to mention that today, Campbell had been asking to potty and I had been ignoring her but after I saw her open both lids, take her shirt off and stand in front of the potty, I thought I better intervene and at least sit her on there the right way.  I left the room and when I had returned, she did indeed have to potty.  I was quite impressed and she just looked at me like "I told you so"  

October 17, 2011

First visit of the season to
the Pumpkin Patch!
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
  • It was quite the morning-we picked up Kennedy at church a few minutes early, then I ran Anderson in, we circled to the back and hung out for a minute, then we all unloaded and took in Reagan and Kennedy (who even got a good bye hug from Campbell and Graham) and then Campbell, Graham, Keaton and I were on our way to the pumpkin patch
  • Graham was so excited and had been talking about it all morning long-this of course made Reagan and Anderson very excited about going to school today (ha!).  They were content though knowing their pumpkin patch day was coming up and Anderson was more than pleased that he was going to get to go twice.
  • At the pumpkin patch, we looked at the animals and Campbell tried to feed the horses (that the sign said do bite).  She was trying to feed them rocks so they didn't take her up on the offer.  Graham was interested in the chickens but couldn't focus because there was a dog nearby-even though he was on a leash (the dog, not Graham) Graham was pretty skittish.
  • Next up they rode on the pedal tractors and Graham climbed on the big hay stack while Campbell cheesed for a head cut-out photo.  She tried to climb on the hay but would fall through a bit so she quickly wanted off.  
  • Before our hay ride, Graham ran and jumped on the swing on his belly and flipped right off-breaking his fall with his chin.  His mouth was full of dirt and blood when he came up.  It didn't take too long to calm him down-once he stopped spitting blood.  It was a good enough fall that I had to check all of his teeth and they were all still there.  This commotion caused Campbell to come right over and check on her brother.  Once she determined he was fine, she headed back over to the jumpy.
  • On the hay ride, Keaton woke up towards the end-it was pretty bumpy.  We had hurried to get on so I didn't have her a paci or a bottle but thankfully, we made it back before she lost it completely.  Graham was so pleased with himself when he found his way out of the trap door in the maze and climbing up the tree house was his favorite.  Last year there was a robber with a little gun show on the hay ride so I warned Graham about it and he spent the rest of the ride with his hands on his ears-and so did Campbell.  
  • They picked out their pumpkins and we headed to the car.  I fed Keaton some of her bottle and then we went to Sonic to kill a few minutes before picking up Anderson.  Keaton finished her milk there and then it was time to get Anderson.  He was tickled that we had him a slushy and even said that his day "was fun."-I usually don't get that much out of him.  
  • Back at home, I did laundry while they all played peacefully and then we had lunch.  It was mac and cheese from and can and even though Campbell gobbled hers down, I tried some and it wasn't worth saving at all.  It was definitely no Paula Deen macaroni.
  • Campbell and Keaton had naps while the boys watched a movie and visited with Grannymom.  Grannymom, Grandpa and Robby ran to pick up a old riding lawnmower.  Robby's grand plan is for me to use it and we can have lawn mower races.  Maybe I will teach those boys how to drive pretty soon.  Soon we all loaded up to go and pick up Reagan.  Reagan said that her day at school went by faster today-that was probably because they did what she loved today-lots of art work.  She even made one picture of me and her coming out of Kroger-her with a balloon in her hand.
  • Imagine how surprised she was when she learned that we were going to Kroger after supper.  Though Robby was the only one to get out since we were in the hood.  Anderson checked with "we are only going to ONE store right?"  It is like we drive all over town, shopping at different Kroger stores. Oh, yeah we do but it does buy much of our groceries!
  • Then we dropped the kids off at Grannymom and Grandpa's house for a few minutes while we ran to Gamble to take down the pictures off of the walls and get them to the garage.  We did bring a few home that we plan on hanging this weekend-no, not with nails.  Robby can't bring himself to do that yet.  And then we have a few for garage sale and then a few that we will save for a bit before we hang up.
  • Back at home, it was bedtime and then kids all crashed-we were never even called back up there.

October 16, 2011

Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
  • Sunday morning and we decided that we need to start moving a bit quicker around here-we needed 20 more minutes.  We still made it to church on time but dropping off 3 before church takes some time.  Though what really takes time was putting pantyhose on the girls-we will have to wake up an hour earlier when Keaton starts wearing them too.
  • Graham was tickled to see that Mrs. Diane had Keaton a present and tonight after supper, he opened it up and then  went to put the bib on her.  He was the cutest thing trying to show it to her-even though she was asleep at the time!
  • After church, we went to Nonna and Pops' house for lunch and then home for a nap-for 4 of us (me, Keaton, Campbell and Graham).  Reagan and Anderson watched a few movies...
  • And Robby spent his afternoon cutting down trees.  Yep, Yardman is still working hard.  When Graham woke up he heard the chainsaw and said "is Daddy cutting down all of the trees?"
  • The kids all went out to play and instead of heading to the dirt pile they headed to where the trees were falling-actually they were already cut so they helped pick up some limbs and then spent the rest of the evening fussing over a golf ball.
  • Keaton now spends her time by the window in our bedroom so we can walk by and check on her when we are outside but she must get a little lonely because she always decides that she is hungry as soon as I pick up a rake (I love her timing)
  • The kids came in before Robby and they were all showered off and eating supper when he came in.  We finished supper, read a book in the tent and then headed to bed.

October 15, 2011

Jenna Comes to Visit!
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
  • Graham who is the first usually to wake up around here slept until 8 this morning (while at Nonna & Pops) but Campbell took over his waking up first and started talking around 6 until Reagan and Anderson were up as well closer to 7.
  • Keaton was snoozing well in the closet-probably because she had 3 bottles in the middle of the night.  Her first one she sucked down in a matter of minutes (or I might could have possible been sleeping through some of it) and I laid her back down thinking she was done but she didn't think so.  After that meal, she again decided that she was hungry again at 6.  Just thinking about that makes me want a nap-so glad that is not the norm (oh, I hope that isn't going to be the norm).
  • Dana brought Jenna over to see the house and Keaton and they also had a special delivery-our barstools.  I had painted the first bit and then Dana took over and did the rest with some help from Grannymom and Grandpa.  They look wonderful-I will get a picture soon.  The top part matches my table and blinds and the bottom looks so good with the stainless.  Now I just want to find a chair or two that has a bit of blue in it.  No hurry though.  
  • Anderson and Reagan then went to watch Cash play soccer.  They got very excited about watching him score goals and they were all about keeping score.  Later in the day Reagan said that it was okay if her team lost when they played soccer because you didn't win anything anyway.
  • Back here, I loaded Keaton and Campbell up in the car and headed to Walmart.  Of course one of those little girls was pretty adamant that she didn't want to sit in her car seat or ride in the shopping cart but I won (probably because I bought her cookies and passed them out while we were there.  The cookies quickly put Campbell in a good mood and she spent her shopping time waving and smiling at other shoppers.
  • Grannymom and Grandpa brought Reagan and Anderson back and then Jason brought Graham back and everyone soon headed out to work in the yard.  We even got some work out of Jason today!  Graham later told us that they went to Jason's house "it is the blue one" he told us.  Also he mentioned that Jason didn't have any toys "just books."  
  • While we were working outside, Anderson must have been confused about his days of the week and asked "is this a holiday"
  • Robby told the kids that they could play in the dirt today.  Needless to say, Nonna needs to start buying oxiclean by the case.  They were filthy-seriously, I know I have said that before but today takes the cake.  Reagan did catch one frog and then Anderson caught another.  They are in a bucket out back-let's see if they escape.  The turtle from the other day escaped a few nights ago so they need another pet.  Reagan asked if they could ever have an inside pet.  I told her that we do-Campbell.  And Reagan replied "she not a pet just pesky"-ha, pretty true!
  • Sometime during the afternoon, Anderson had to potty and I told him to just use a tree since he was too dusty to even walk through the house for the bathroom.  Well, Graham couldn't be left out so he joined Anderson.  And then along comes Campbell.  She also didn't want to be left out so she started trying to pull down her pants as well.  Thankfully, she couldn't get them down.  Also when she saw later that the boys didn't have their shirts on, she tried to take hers off as well but again she couldn't get it off.
  • Around 6, we cleaned up and headed out to eat.  This was Keaton's first time to eat out and she stayed awake through all of our meal at McAlisters.  Most of the other kids have gone out to eat the day after coming home from the hospital so Keaton is a little behind but I am sure that she will catch up
  • The kids are still getting used to us living a little further away from West Little Rock and when we made it home tonight, Anderson exclaimed "home at last"

New way of life for Tara (October 14, 2011)

October 14, 2011

6th Year Checkup with
a little help from Campbell!
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
  • Robby said that he would post this if I didn't, so I thought I better write it before he did so you can get my side of the story.  Last night, we decided that we would use some of our bread and make paninis.  Well, it still takes us forever to find anything in our cabinets and drawers so we looked for the longest time until we found the cabinet full of small appliances.  But that panini maker wasn't in there (BTW, this is currently our favorite small appliance!).  I wondered where it could be and then saw the small waffle maker in the cabinet-the same waffle maker that I thought I put in the garage sale.  So if the waffle maker is in the cabinet and the panini maker is missing, that only means that someone got a good deal on my panini maker.  Oh, no worries, I made enough with my garage sale money to re-buy me a panini maker.  
  • And speaking of tattling on myself, I briefly lost Campbell today.  Yep, I am one of those parents.  Robby asked me if I wanted him to ask Grannymom if she could go with me to Reagan's doctors appointment this morning and I said that we would be fine....maybe I did need some help.  Here is what happened, we were getting Reagan weighed and measured and there was other people around as well so it was chaotic (actually it was chaotic without the other people around).  So then the nurse showed us to our room, I pushed Keaton and headed on thinking everyone would follow.  We got in the room, I was talking to the nurse, turned around and counted heads and exclaimed "I'm missing one."  Sure enough, Campbell was in the hallway looking around-another nurse was getting ready to show her to our room.  I am fortunate that the doctor didn't call SCAN to take her away!!  She didn't seem too scarred.
  • Reagan passed her doctor's visit with flying colors.  Martin did asked Reagan a variety of different questions and Reagan just looks at me for the answers.  I had to turn and talk to Campbell (probably whispering to her about never leaving her again) so Reagan wouldn't depend on me.  Martin did ask if Reagan was reading simple words-I just said yes but didn't add that the little thing is reading up a storm lately.  Last year Reagan failed her vision but she passed it fine this year.  Also, Reagan's weight is just in the 10th percentile and her height is in the 20th percentile-we always joke that Campbell doesn't belong to us but maybe with Reagan's 10th percentile weight, maybe she isn't ours.
  • Once we were all home and accounted for, everyone played outside until lunch and then Pops called saying that he was going to pick up Graham to spend the night.  From when Graham heard that until Pops showed up, Graham added stuff to his bag to take-bicycle helmet, 2 pairs of underwear, 2 pairs of pajama pants, pajama shorts, 4 cars-that is just what he packed.  I had already packed his bag when he started adding to it.  He was so excited and even while he was out playing, he would continually run to the driveway to see if Pops was there yet.  
  • At Pops' house, Nonna and Pops told Graham that it was rest time so they sat down to rest too.  Graham was the only one in the house who didn't have a rest.  Nonna and Pops had themselves a nice little rest while Graham played.  He took his rest on the way to Larry's pizza.  When he came home from Larrys, he asked Nonna if they could work in the yard, if they could mow or if they could look in the shed.  That's my little country boy.
  • Though over here, Reagan asked us tonight "when are we ever gonna stop doing this?"  We asked what she was talking about and she replied "working in the yard every night."  That made me think that we have not been out to eat since Keaton has arrived.  I know she is just 2 and a half weeks old but for us that is a record.
  • When we came in tonight, Campbell headed to the bathroom by herself to get into the shower.  She has become well trained to our night time routine.  We then had supper and I asked Reagan what her favorite part of the day was and she said "seeing Graham leave."  She must have seen my face and changed her answer to "seeing Nonna and Pops."
  • After Anderson's shower, I had to cover his little legs in hydrocortisone.  It took practically the whole tube-that boy's legs are covered up in excema.  He said it didn't bother him but told me that most of them were from when he has fallen (nope, mostly excema).  Oh, one more Anderson bit from today-Robby was trying to start a burn pile tonight and had the water hose nearby.  Anderson picked it up to spray and it kicked him back like he had shot a shotgun.  It scared him pretty good and he never went near the water the rest of the day.  Pretty good water pressure around here!