February 28, 2021

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  • Probably having a dog helped us get to church on time this morning. She had slept until 6:30 which is probably too long for her to go all night without going to the bathroom, so she had wet her crate by the time that Robby put his shoes on to take her out. 
  • That was fine and easily cleanable. So the next activity was to keep her awake until we left for church, make cinnamon roll for the real children and to assure that all people were properly dressed for church-Graham wanted to wear his winter coat (it was 70 this morning), and Whitman has a tendency to forget his shoes.
  • I had nursery duty this morning so I missed church, but Robby said that there was even some confusion about how and why we got there so early. In my little class this morning, we had 4 little boys that cried the first 15 minutes. Soon everyone was calm, and the time went by quickly-not really though-the time drug! I kept watching the service on Facebook to see if they were almost finished.
  • We then ran home to get Ms. Bentley. I think that she had done pretty good while we were gone, but by the time we got back she was pretty upset. We were soon back in the car with her headed to Dana's house. There Bentley met Dana's dogs-Bentley so wanted to play with them, but one was scared of her and the other seemed a bit upset with her being there. 
  • Dana had a huge spread of food to celebrate Grannymom's birthday. We ate and ate and then watched Grannymom open her presents. After that, Grannymom had brought over some old photo albums that everyone enjoyed looking through. 
  • We came home, and after unloading and folding laundry, Robby and I laid down for a nap. Bentley was in her cage-doing a bit of whining-when Reagan came in and rescued her. So why we were sleeping, Bentley was playing, having sitting and shaking lessons, going outside to potty and snoozing-she was having a big ole time.
  • The Wilsons came over for supper so we chatted with them, until they had to go and pick Brett up from church. Then they came back over so Brett could play with the dog for a little bit. When they left though it was not even 9 so we had plenty of time to lounge around and do nothing for the rest of the evening-or maybe even watch a Hallmark movie!

February 27, 2021

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  • Bentley update-she only woke up at 6 this morning again when Robby had to go to the bathroom first. I didn't hear her fussing until Robby had gotten back in bed with her. I leaned up and asked if him if he wanted for me to take her out, and he replied that he just did.
  • That early in the morning, she was a little wide awake and refused to go to sleep. So Robby did get out of bed and play with her (I offered). They played hard with me snoozing and Campbell, who slept on our couch, snoozing as well.
  • Keaton and her buddies were up early-and as soon as we got out of bed, they were in our room ready to play with Bentley. They spent most of their morning playing with her-though they did make time to run an errand with me and to play a few games.
  • Keaton's buddies left around noon, so we pulled out our leftover pizza for our lunches. Robby turned on the Hog game and I pretty much went right to sleep. Well, it was the second half by the time that I got back from helping Reagan with some of her school work. 
  • After my nap, I made the first dessert of the day. As it was baking, I ran to pick up girls for the second nights of sleepovers. However, Robby had an oven mishap so the first dessert was deemed inedible except for us tonight for our dessert.
  • Soon after arriving home, we started on our supper. I was warming it up, and burned that too! Burned food was the theme of the day. However, the chili wasn't too bed-though Robby didn't like the big tomatoes and the onions weren't too cooked. It just wasn't our day in the kitchen! Ha!
  • Before supper started I did remake our dessert, which turned out better. Then we settled in for the evening watching some you tube videos. And let me talk for a minute about this dog-she has become a lap dog-whenever she gets sleepy, she manged to climb right in to some one's lap! We will soon have a 75 pound lap dog!

February 26, 2021

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  • What a wonderful Friday-it started off with Bentley sleeping until 4 this morning. Robby walked by her on his way to the bathroom, and she was being quite, but by the time he came back out, she was making it known that she was ready to potty.
  • She then slept until 7 so we couldn't be any more well rested. As I was laying in bed this morning, I thought that I should keep a list of how many times she pottied in the house today to keep a list...however, by the time I was moving around and completely out of bed, the chart would have said 2-so I opted to not keep a list today. 
  • Since we didn't have school today. I started immediately on my list of chores. There were the normal thinks, plus the I was able to do the treadmill early and even work on some Legos with Anderson. 
  • We haven't done Legos in awhile, and I was wondering if he still enjoyed doing them. When we were cleaning up today though, he said that maybe we should leave them out in case we do some more tomorrow-guess he still does enjoy doing them.
  • I'm not really sure what I did this afternoon-oh, I did work on a cord holder for the camper. But other than that, before I knew it, it was 4 and I was headed to pick up a few of Keaton's friends to spend the night. 
  • I have heard that puppies are supposed to meet 100 people-I believe that Bentley met about 20 of those today during my stops. It took a while, but we were soon home. Keaton immediately headed upstairs with her friends, even though Robby arrived home from dropping Reagan off with pizzas in hand.
  • The rest of us ate with the girls coming down later to grab their suppers and head back upstairs. I have only seen Keaton, her little friends and Campbell a few times-once for me to go and get lemonade from the camper. I don't have much food in there, but what I have had lately, I have had to fetch since our groceries are pretty limited. 
  • When I was walking back from the camper, Campbell was taking Bentley out, and she called to me. She had seen something in the woods. I assured her it was probably a deer, but she said it was smaller. I sent her in and stayed out with the dog. Campbell is a bit skittish outside with the dog at night-Robby watched her on the camera one night and felt so sorry for her! (And we would take the dog out anytime someone asks, but they always want to.)
  • I cooked some hamburger meat for tomorrow's supper which took forever-it was frozen solid and I didn't think about putting it in the microwave. Then I joined Robby and the dog who were sleeping in our bedroom. 
  • We watched some tv-the girls are playing with Bentley now and my plan is to curl up, watch the rest of my Hallmark movie and drink some hot chocolate.

February 25, 2021

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  • Bentley had a wonderful night last night-she went to sleep pretty hard at 10 so we didn't wake her up. She, however, woke us up at 4 in the morning. That was really wonderful. She woke up again at 7 so we really couldn't ask for anything else at all.
  • And I know by saying this, she will be completely horrible tomorrow-but she is really doing good. She goes to her kennel and lays down and will fall asleep. She even will walk to her pillow in the living room and lay down for a little bit. She has started to interact more with us and will even just sit down and watch the madness. 
  • Now the pottying has been decent-we have had accidents of both kinds today. However, she has done wellish. She is just a wee bit unpredictable even when we go out right when she wakes up and right after she plays each time. We will figure it out-and hopefully she will too.
  • I know that Robby and I are a bit more tired the past few days because of the middle of the night potty trips (for the dog-we are used to our own middle of the night potty trips). I am not sure though why our children are so tired though. At 8:50, I had to go around the house waking people up. Of course starting school this late means that we can only do our basics when it is time to work together which makes me a bit sad (but finishing school on time makes me happy.)
  • Whitman was focused today and finished by 11:30. Campbell had a bit extra so it took her longer. Graham has been having a hard time with his math, but I figured him out-if I give him less to do, he isn't overwhelmed and does a better job with it so that is what we will be doing for a while.
  • Keaton was finished first-since they can work ahead, all Keaton had was math and working with me. Anderson is enjoying some easy math which helps him finish sooner. Reagan had one class early this afternoon, but did manage to do more of her work here. However, she does have an essay to write before Monday-yikes!
  • I ran to the grocery store after dropping Reagan off at her class. It is strange-there used to be a rotel shortage, now there is tons of that, but no tomato sauce. I was able to get most of what I needed-though I am pretty convinced that Walmart is quite a bit cheaper (except for sale items.)
  • I ran home to pull out school for the crew and do Bible study with Keaton and Whitman. Then it was to the pregnancy center for a few hours with Keaton. She was happy to help today-we filled bag after bag of diapers before working on folding up clothes. This was Campbell's turn to go today, but she opted to stay home instead-I think she was trying to get more Bentley time in.
  • When we came home, we were soon working on supper. We had brought home leftover rice and beans from Texas, so those were our sides tonight with some chicken and cheese quesadillas. 
  • After supper, I played Catan with Keaton, Whitman, Anderson and Campbell. It was quite interesting-Campbell didn't want to play and was ready to quit, Keaton and Anderson were in the battle for the lead and Whitman, bless him, was paying attention well at first, but soon lost interest. Anderson did win eventually which was good because the game had lasted for a good little bit.
  • Robby made some corn flake cookies tonight that we ate as I worked on the blog. My next order of business is to do some reading. I have two books that I would someday like to finish.

February 24, 2021

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  • Well, last night we slept more than the night before. Bentley only woke up 3 times, and one of those times could be considered to be in the early morning It was early morning, but I still was able to play with her after Robby took her out and still take a nap before waking the girls up this morning. Additionally, she whined quite a bit less during the night.
  • We didn't have much time to work together this morning, but we were still able to read our Bible chapter, history, science and one other little book. I am almost 3/4 finished with most of our books this year and am getting ready to finish them all so we can read a few fun things in the mornings.
  • School was fairly uneventful. Whitman didn't focus until I threatened to take away his ipad and put him at the kitchen table. Bless it. He can think of more things to do in the middle of writing one word-it is a wee bit frustrating. 
  • Bentley is still adding a little bit of excitement to school. She does have a decent little schedule-sleep, potty, play and repeat. Our in the house pottying seems to only be times when we were trying to take her to the potty or when she probably should have already gone. So that is where we are there-everyone still adores her, and we have even had fights and tears over who can take her to the potty.
  • For some reason, school didn't end for a while this morning. Reagan had a test on the computer that was causing her to panic. This caused me to be a little behind and it was almost one when I finished working with Campbell and Graham-and they are both the two that don't do the best working later. They like to finish early and start to get stressed if they feel "behind" (I am not sure who they are worried about finishing behind-most kids aren't done with school by 1 anyway.)
  • The Kamps came over to see Bentley for a little bit. She was awake for a little bit while they were here, but she also did a bit of sleeping too. The kids stayed until church time. I was about to walk on the treadmill when Anderson walked by saying that they were going to the bonus room. I took that as a sign from above-and just finished my Hallmark movie from my couch!
  • Soon it was time to get myself ready for church and feed all of these people their first Wednesday night meal. After church everyone usually needs another meal too. I have just snacked all evening long-I told Robby that more than any other night of the week, Wednesdays are the day that I really want a real meal to eat-not fast food, not leftovers, I want something real and warm.  And Wednesday nights, out of all of the nights of the week, are the nights that we don't ever have anything warm and real at all. 
  • After church, there were some games, some snacks, some basketball watching and even chores being done. Well, it is at least my plan to do some chores-I think that dishwasher is about finished so if I can unload that before morning, that greatly helps me out in the morning time.

February 23, 2021

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  • Let's see-I've never had a puppy so I really don't have an idea of what I should expect. It wasn't worse than I expected, yet it wasn't any better at all than I expected. We woke about 4 times to Bentley whining and crying. Robby would put on pants and a coat while I leashed her up. He would take her outside and each time she would potty.
  • Then she would come back into the house and pretty much go back into her crate. Then she would cry and whine for about 3 minutes before getting quiet and going back to sleep. Except the last time-she wanted no part in getting back into the crate. Once we put her in the crate, then she wanted no part in going to sleep and let us know all about it.
  • Robby eventually got up with her and played with her until Campbell and Keaton got up. Campbell eventually took over playing with the dog while Robby, Keaton and I slept for a few more minutes. That was probably the best part of the morning.
  • Soon it was school time. Robby was on a phone call so he couldn't dogsit for us. That was fine because she was already worn out from this morning's play time. She slept in people's laps while I read different books. They would pass Bentley around each time that I switched books.
  • School was crazy-not just kind of crazy, it was super crazy. People would stop what they were doing to play with Bentley, people would fuss about who was and was not playing with them, and some people (Whitman) weren't doing any school at all.
  • Whitman likes to do school like everyone else-all spread out around the house. However, he can't do that because he could sit around all day with math in front of him and never think of even picking up his pencil. He just does best when he is in the room with me so I can prod him every so often to stay on task.
  • Reagan went to Comm Central today. She seemed please that she did some homework during her study hall-sounded like that was the first time that she had ever done any homework then! Everyone joined me when we picked up Reagan.
  • Then we went to Nonna and Pops' house for a few minutes to let them see Bentley. Everyone was good while there-my folks ate lots of cookies and the dog didn't potty in their house so it was a win for everyone.
  • We came home for a few minutes before leaving again for a run to Grannymom's house. Keaton, Whitman and Graham joined us for this trip. We were gone for pretty much most of the night. After leaving Grannymom's house, Robby dropped me off at Walmart to grab some doggie shampoo. 
  • While I was there, he ran to Tacos For Life to get supper to take to some friends. After that, we picked up food for everyone in the car at ChickFilA. Then it was to Kroger to grab some milk for the house-we don't have any food here, but some milk will make most folks happy for another day or two.
  • When we came home, we crafted a sign real quick. The Kamps came down the road for a few minutes to pick up our sign, and then just at bedtime we decided to give the dog her first bath. She wasn't too much of a fan, but she doesn't smell like dog right now! Not sure how long that lasts-a few days? a few hours? just minutes?

February 22, 2021-Snowy Baseball in Arlington and Welcome Home Bentley!

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Well, we have figured out the key to getting our kids to wake up early and leave a hotel by 8. It took us 15 years to find this out. If you are wondering the secret, it is reminding them that the sooner we get to Little Rock, the sooner we can pick up Bentley.

Graham had tried to take a shower in his room last night and didn't get any hot water. All I could think about last night while lying in bed was taking a hot shower. I text Robby after my alarm went off this morning, and he was quick to tell me that it did take a long while but he did eventually get hot water.

So as soon as I stepped out of bed, I turned the hot water on. I am not sure when it did get hot, but since I'm not paying that water bill, I was fine with letting it run. When I did finally check it, it was super hot and I was super happy!

We were ready, I think, before the boys, but they headed downstairs before us. Our hot hotel breakfast is still granola bars so my kids grabbed a few of those. Whitman did grab an apple. Graham took at least a box of granola bars in his pockets. 

We were pulling out of the parking lot by 8:01, and we were surprised that we never really got into any heavy Dallas traffic. There was traffic but for the most part it was not on our roads. It took about an hour, but we were soon at Buccees/

We do like us some Buccees-today Robby splurged and let everyone leave with something. Here's how that all went down-Robby-a pound of brisket for tonight's supper and a super large burrito for his breakfast, me-a cup of hot chocolate with a squirt of hot chocolate syrup in it, Reagan-a huge hoagie style sandwich, Anderson-candy coated cashews, Graham-a tub of Blue Bell ice cream, Campbell-a breakfast burrito, Keaton-trail mix and Whitman-a strawberry popsicle. 

Let's also discuss how most of my people grabbed things that I would have never expected. Reagan getting a hoagie sandwich? Anderson choosing nuts? I didn't even know that Keaton ate trail mix. And Whitman choosing a strawberry popsicle out of a store of options. Campbell and Graham's were the only expected purchases-a burrito and ice cream.

We were soon back on the road. We did make one stop at Walmart for Tony to buy Brett a cord to charge his computer since he is doing virtual school. And I ran inside to grab some buns for our supper tonight. And there weren't many buns to grab-I had already stretched to reach buns on a top shelf when I found my normal (cheap) package of buns and left the store with the last two that they had.

Reagan did her class on the car ride back. The rest of us would keep forgetting and would get a bit nosy. I was able to type some of the blog and read a few magazines as we sailed on down the interstate. We stopped another time for the bathroom and then once again in Benton to grab Anderson from the Wilson's car. 

Now this time, I needed the bathroom, but it was closed (water issues). That wasn't a big deal because we were just planning on going to the next gas station...which was also closed. Yikes! Thankfully, there was a car wash across the street, and we knew right where the bathroom was. 

From there, we were just a few minutes away from our life changing. We picked up our sweet Bentley Rose from Kathy-while Robby was signing papers, all of the kids had already had a turn holding the puppy. I took a few pictures-Robby said I couldn't take more pictures of the dog than of the kids.

On the ride home, we passed the puppy around like a hot potato. Everyone had a turn before we made it into the driveway. As soon as we made it in the driveway, doors were opening and people were piling out of the car. 

Our goal was to find the leash and take her to potty. Can you imagine being a Dennie dog and having 8 people watch you potty in the yard for the first time? She did potty, and we brought her in the house to explore. 

The rest of the afternoon and evening went something like this-we would be productive for a second and then we would sit around and look at the dog. When she did take a nap in the crate, Campbell and Graham stayed in the room with her to make sure she was good. 

We had our supper while she had a snack in her crate later in the evening. She doesn't really like her crate too much and was soon a wee bit upset. Hopefully, she quickly decides that she loves it-preferably before bedtime.

The plan is to watch tv in a little bit while playing with the dog. And really, Robby and I want to keep her up as long as possible so we can play with her some tonight after the dog hogs all go to bed!

February 21, 2021-Snowy Baseball in Arlington

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It is currently 5:30, and I am already starting on the blog. I am struggling to keep my eyes open right now, and thought that since I had a minute at the hotel, I should type quickly so I would have less to type tonight. Hopefully tonight will not be as late as last night, but we have our beds ready and our pajamas ready here to help out some.

I woke right up at 8 this morning. After a few text to Robby, we found out that this hotel also did not get their breakfast truck in. So they had a table set out with granola bars which is well and good, but those granola bars weren't as appealing as the hot breakfast that the lady told Robby about when he checked in. Surely she knew they didn't have their truck in yet. And when I called last night at 2:30 and asked when breakfast was over, surely that lady had an idea that breakfast wouldn't be served in just a few hours.

That was fine because we can make Ikea cinnamon rolls multiply like fish and bread, and we fed the whole crew with 6 cinnamon rolls. Well, some didn't eat breakfast, and I am sure that some folks found a pop tart. So glad that I thought to pack those when I did my food packing. I was a bit worried about food shortages down here and brought enough peanut butter and tortillas to feed us for the week. We wouldn't be happy, but we wouldn't be hungry.

The kids slept and slept even after I went down to get my granola bars. I felt like I was being watched so I didn't load up my pockets with the bars and just got a few for me. The Wilsons came to our area of town for their Ikea trek.

Robby and I along with Campbell, Keaton and Graham went to meet up with them. Reagan was still snoozing, and Anderson and Whitman were playing their ipads. We quickly found them at Ikea and manged to buy a few more things-including a few more boxes of cinnamon rolls-you just never know when you will need them. And really, they are pretty delicious-sometimes they aren't really great, but these are.

The main reason that we were able to buy a few more things today was because we could actually see the stuff. Yesterday, the crowds were thick and it was hard to walk around. Today, there were about half as many people there.

After walking around Ikea, our next stop was back at the hotel to pick up the others. Then we ran to the gas station in the parking lot for a quick lunch and a fill up. Most folks chose pizza, Graham had a huge breakfast burrito, Reagan had a fruit bowl, and Robby and I had chicken and cheese flatbreads. It was all really good for a quick little lunch.

We then met the Wilsons at Top Golf. My boys have been wanting to go to Top Golf for a very long time. We seem to drive past them in every city that we go to just to tempt them. Today was the day! We had the bays for an hour and were able to hit about 20 balls apeice. 

It is like bowling and some how the balls mark where they go-there are flags which are the targets. So you receive a score if you hit near on of those targets. On my side, Robby was the big winner with Reagan right behind him. Reagan's swing wasn't pretty at all, but she figured it out enough to get her ball to go to the nearest hole and would receive points at just about every swing. Campbell was next with me close behind her.

Robby did take my last few swings-he enjoyed it as much as the big boys. Whitman manged to score a few points and so did Keaton. It was really fun, and I am glad that we were able to go. I am sure that now that we have the bug for Top Golf, we will go again sometime soon.

From Top Golf, we headed to the Fort Worth Stockyards for a little bit. The last time that we were there, the weather was crazy hot. This was perfect-almost a bit chilly for me, but warm for Robby. We were able to see some barrel racing, see the cattle walk down the street and even watch a gun show. 

It is a neat little area which was bustling with people. Now after the Stockyards, we had a dilemma-it was too early to get our supper and head to the ballgame. So we headed to the hotel for a few minutes. That is where I decided against a nap and for writing the blog, just in case it was another late night.

We didn't stay too long at the hotel-I didn't really get too far on the blog, but soon we were driving towards In and Out. I tell you, if I lived in Texas, I think that I would like to own a Whataburger or an In and Out. The lines around these places were wrapped around the buildings every time that we saw one (think ChickFilA).

The In and Out line was no different. We opted to try to eat inside and after waiting outside for a few minutes, we finally were able to go to the counter and order. As we waited on our food, we lucked out into finding a spot for all of us to sit. We ate our food-it was a pretty mixed vote on who liked Whataburger more and who like In and Out-but overall, we are definitely a hamburger family.

Our ball game tonight was supposed to start at 7, but I believe that we arrived at 7:30 with the game starting at 7:45. That was all perfect timing. The big boys were able to sit with the Wilsons closer to the front. We found seats a few sections over-there were less folks there tonight. Our section wasn't packed, and we had room to spread out-as in Keaton was able to do her coloring with out a problem.

I could tell that my big boys were certainly into the game, but really so was Campbell. Whitman would again for from very interested to oblivious to what was happening. He did enjoy shouting, "Go Hogs!" every once in a while. 

We took a while around the top level on the stadium around the time that the Hogs hit a home run and really increased their score. That seemed to happen quite a bit yesterday, so I figure that I might just be not so great luck. It is probably a good thing that I won't be there tomorrow for their last game.

The game went really quickly tonight-3 up and 3 down. It was great! And yes, the Hogs won. Now, there were a few fights that we couldn't see from our section, but the boys were able to see. When Graham was telling us all about them, he did add that he thought all the people involved had been drinking-so glad he can see that leads to nothing good.

It wasn't long before the game was over, and we were heading out-well over an hour earlier than the night before. At the hotel, we were all quickly changed to pjs and even had some ipad time before it was time to call it a night. I believe that plan is to rise early in the morning, so we will see how well that works out!

February 20, 2021-Snowy Baseball in Arlington

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  • Two things that I forgot from last night-on the way here, my head was down doing something, probably looking at my phone, and bam! I immediately thought that we had had a blow out-it was that loud. Instead, we had hit a bird. Robby was as a calm as a cucumber since he had seen it coming and knew exactly what it was. No harm was done-since it hit right in the same spot as our current windshield crack.
  • And last night, Whitman asked for a drink of water. I was in the boys room since it wasn't yet bedtime. We only had a few water bottles left, so I had Keaton get him a glass of water from the sink. On her way back, I was quick to notice that the water was as cloudy as a...cloud. It was nasty. There water had been off so I am sure that is the reason-however, we let him have a precious water bottle.
  • At 4 this morning, Graham and Robby were both up looking for water. Robby said that he couldn't get back to sleep because he was so thirsty since he couldn't find the last water bottle in the ice chest in the middle of the night. So it was no surprise, that this morning Robby and Graham came to our door to tell me that they were heading out to find water. They didn't have to go far and returned with two cases.
  • We slept in quite a bit today. I was awake by 8 and played on my phone until 9 when I started moving around. I got myself dressed before waking up the girls. Around 10:45, we headed to the car and met up with the Wilsons. (Yes, that hotel didn't have breakfast because they didn't get a shipment in-which really is a lousy excuse since you do pay extra for breakfast. I'm sure there is a Sams nearby.)
  • Our first stop this morning-well, really at 11;30 since it took that long to get to Fort Worth, was Joe T. Garcias for lunch. Let's just talk briefly about how large the place is. We have been there years before with the kids and ate in the main building. 
  • Today, however we walked through the main building to the large patio. I thought well, I don't really want to eat outside because it is cold, but the sun is out and there is heaters so I was fine with that. But we kept walking and walking to a huge atrium room. I swear that if 10 people were eating there today, there were 1000 folks eating lunch.
  • And lunch we did eat. Things are family style and as much as I encouraged Reagan to eat her dinner bill's worth, we just couldn't eat it all. We started off with salsa and then cheese dip. Then tostados and then tacos. That was all followed by enchiladas, rice and beans. There were also homemade corn tortillas on the table-Reagan ate one and said that it wasn't bad, but she did want some cinnamon and sugar to go on top. 
  • We ate and ate until we could eat no more. We left with a to go box of rice, a to go box of beans, and a to go box of guacamole. Back at the cars, the big boys headed with the Wilsons-their plan was to check into their hotel and then head to the game before us.
  • Our hotel was about 30 minutes from lunch, and we drove right there. This hotel has only been open a little over a week, so it is pretty swanky. We got our two rooms-yep, we are two room families now. This hotel was on points, so it is fine-but Robby and I still think that camper living is easier and is for us whenever we can.
  • After getting settled, we headed to Ikea which is less than 2 miles from here. Let me tell you, there must not be power outages, water shortages and a global pandemic happening here-because everyone was at Ikea. 
  • Of course, we found a few things-about a 100 dollars worth of stuff. We will have to ride back holding bags, but it was well worth it! We bought 4 shelves for the boys' room, Campbell bought a stuffed dog, Reagan found a coffee mug and a mirror, then were a few leashes, lint brushes and some water bowls. And of course we had to have some cinnamon rolls for later! 
  • After this, we drove all over Dallas looking for a place to wash the car. We found one, but the line was crazy. So we went to another place and did wait in that line. It didn't take long for Robby to wash the car and soon we were headed to meet up with everyone for the ball game.
  • The Hogs were supposed to start at 7-we arrived around 5, and I don't think that our game started until 8:30. That was all well and good because this Globe Life Field has is covered and the temperature was perfect. 
  • There was so much to see and do that the time did seem to pass quickly before our game started. We moved seats, so that took a bit of time to find seats. There were many Arkansas fans so the atmosphere was fun.
  • The game went on and on and on. We were behind, we were ahead, we were behind, we were ahead and on and on. Anderson, Graham and Campbell loved every minute of it. Reagan is not a baseball fame, but she likes for our team to win so she was interested in it. Keaton was a bit bored with it all. Whitman would go from being bored out of his mind to calling the Hogs and dancing to the music. 
  • Robby and I had stuffed our pockets full of snacks, but they did eventually run out. He left with the girls in search of food. He eventually did come back and spent almost as much as our lunch cost on this evening's supper-everyone had half of a coke, half of a bbq sandwich and some mac and cheese. It was plenty though since we were all still fullish from lunch. I will say that the verdict was mixed and half of the Dennies enjoyed their ballfield supper better than their Mexican lunch.
  • In the end around 12:45, the Hogs finally won the game. I am so glad that they didn't tie and have to go to overtime because my kids would have been disappointed if I made them miss overtime. I don't think that I would have done that-but maybe since it is now 2 and my room of girls are still awake and tomorrow will probably be a long baseball night too.
  • Now the game tonight was really fun-I am so glad that they won, but really, we already have gotten our baseball money worth so we could just skip out on tomorrow's game! Not really, we will be there wearing our red. So far the only big activity that I know of tomorrow is breakfast!..hope we wake up in time!

February 19, 2021-Snowy Baseball in Arlington

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I slept a bit later than I had wanted to do this morning, but as soon as I did start stirring I hit the ground running. Robby checked the interstate cameras and saw that the roads were fine so our Arlington trip was on go.

I worked on the laundry and dishes while packing my stuff. Then I moved on to packing Whitman and getting the kids to start packing and showering. It was around 12, and I had even started on cleaning the kitchen when Robby called me from outside. 

He had pulled the car out of the garage about 8 feet and was already stuck. He had already tried to dig out, but he was getting no where. He finally had to use the suburban's 4 wheel drive to pull the van....a few feet and then it was stuck again. 

We did this for a good 45 minutes-a few feet and then stuck, pull it out only to move a few more feet again. The goal was to get to the tracks in the road and driveway-and when we were there, we were able to go a few feet until we were stuck once again!

Robby had already driven in the suburban to look at Lawson and had seen that those roads were not just clear, but dry. Robby didn't think that the white van, with its rear wheel drive, would be able to get down our street and up the little hill on Yvonne and then over the hump of snow onto Lawson. So we had to figure out plan B quickly. 

Leaving tomorrow had been an option, but all of this water will turn to ice so we would be in the same pickle with the white van since we would have to leave early. We then decided to use the suburban-less room to pack and one person without a seat.

That was fine since one kid could ride with the Wilsons. Thankfully, we hadn't packed the white van yet. so we left it where it was (it wasn't moving anyway) Robby moved the car into the garage, and we started loading it up. 

I had people start going to the bathroom-you know, we have gotten used to not having to do that. In the camper, we just get in and go-and can just use the restroom anytime we want. Lordy mercy, I am so glad that we abandoned the plans to take the camper early in the week. There would have been no way we could have gotten that beast to Lawson.

We had wanted to pull out at 2, and we just about did. We stopped at the gas station down the road to fill up. That is where the Wilsons met up with us. They offered to come down our street, but we just bet there. Graham jumped in their car and we jumped on the road. 

For the most part, the roads to the interstate were dry. There were some spots that were slush and some wet areas, but we didn't have any trouble. And yes, we went around the big curve very, very slowly. Then we were on the interstate following behind the Wilsons.

We didn't get too far before Robby realized that his windshield wiper fluid wasn't working very well at all. We stopped at Caddo Valley to see if he could clean his windows-they were getting pretty bad with all of the spray from the cars. That all happened with perfect timing because at about that time, Anderson mentioned needing to go to the restroom.

The drive didn't take too long and before we knew it, we were in Texas. The Wilsons had to stop for a bathroom stop and the gas station didn't have gas-that made Robby a bit uncomfortable. Soon though we were making reservations for the night right near Dallas. 

We are actually right after the big lake-we did stop at Buccee's on the way into the town. We left with jerky, sugared pecans, sugared cashews and some Buccees nuggets (I think that is what they are called!-we didn't get into them just yet.) Robby is now on a mission to go to Buccees (that was just our second one to go to) when he has plenty of time to see everything.

We didn't have that much time tonight because we were on a mission to get to the hotel before the temps dipped below freezing. From there, we were only about 20 minutes from the hotel. The Whataburger right in front of the hotel was closed, so we drove about 3 miles back to go to another one.

They were really efficient and soon we were back on our way with all of our food. There is no dining in right now, so we headed back to the hotel to eat there. We quickly noticed on our drive back to the hotel, that those wet roads were becoming slick-we slid a few times so Robby put the car in 4 wheel drive. We weren't too sure if that helped on ice, but it did make us feel better.

After that, we had no problems and were soon unpacking at the hotel. We were indeed pretty thankful that we had not brought the white car-there were a few times when we were driving on ice in parking lots and that booger would have been stuck!

We ate in the lobby of the hotel and then had to walk back to the van on the slippery parking lot to unload. It is chilly out there right now, and I am kicking myself for not bringing a blanket. I guess that I really should have grabbed Whitman's out of the car-he could have used it in the van since my toes were cold the whole time and could use it now sitting in my bed while typing-I'm chilly. 

The Wilsons are upstairs, and the boys are next door to us. Campbell has already had a shower, and Robby has already fixed all of our cords so everything can plug in. I guess that we will have lights out pretty early around here and get some good sleep! Maybe-or maybe I will stay up late reading all of my magazines that I brought.

February 18, 2021

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  • And another snow day! We did our school work this morning and pretty much most of our morning and early afternoon was uneventful. I was surprised that Campbell and Keaton didn't even head outside until fairly late in the afternoon.
  • I did my treadmill walk, and then I headed outside. By this time Campbell and Keaton were outside playing with the neighbor. I made all of the kids come outside ever so briefly just to take a few pictures. Graham and Anderson were just planning on staying outside a few minutes since they just wore shorts. And Graham, bless him, decided to wear flip flops to get to the tree line were I took their pictures. In the pictures it does look like he is about dying of frost bite-he probably lost a toe or two after walking through 15 inch snow in flip flops.
  • Campbell was working on a miniature snow man. Reagan even joined in on making a snow man. I worked with her for a little bit, but golly that was a lot of work. She eventually finished it, even though she wanted it to be much larger. It looked pretty good-though I am getting ready for this snow to begin melting.
  • We about had supper ready when Campbell, Keaton and Graham went out to play with the neighbors for a little bit. They were out for a good long while and came in fairly chilly-though oddly no one headed straight to the shower. 
  • It was really a fairly uneventful snow day around here-we didn't even bake anything. Well, Campbell made about 2 gallons of icing to decorate a tiny little cake. But other than that there was no baking. I did have to make another trip to the camper today to bring in popcorn-yesterday, we ran out of hot chocolate and had to run to the camper to get the extra. I even brought in mac and cheese but the kids were quick to remind me that we are still out of milk.
  • Our weekend plans are incredibly up in the air currently-we may leave tomorrow, we may not. I know I haven't packed a stitch though. I do know that our weekend plans do include a huge grocery order

February 17, 2021

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  • Another school day and another snow day. I will tell you this weather is crazy. I am loving every minute of it, though Robby is getting a bit stir crazy. Now that we are out of milk, I might be getting a bit stir crazy too-no milk means no homemade cinnamon rolls. (That's okay because I am can make them in a few days when this snow is all dried up.)
  • School was much more pleasant today than it was yesterday. Campbell is the only one who has been faithfully doing her zoom Bible study, but today she took a snow day and skipped. I was surprised that the kids didn't head outside earlier, but I guess the heavy snow falling delayed their plans for a little bit.
  • There was cake pop making and decorating by Campbell today along with another cake being decorated by Reagan. I had been waiting on them to clear the kitchen before I started on my cinnamon rolls, but they just never left so I ended up planning on doing it later-though I shouldn't have waited too long because the rest of my milk was used up with hot chocolate and snow ice cream.
  • I was taking a nap upstairs when the girls came bursting in the door telling us that Shannon and Brett were here. We knew they didn't drive but were surprised that they had walked the entire way here. 
  • All of my kids that weren't outside soon headed outside to play with Brett. It took me a while to convince Shannon to come in the house because I didn't want to put on another pair of pants and come out there.
  • They stayed for a good while. When they were ready to walk back home, Robby decided that he better take them. I drove with them along with the shovel in the back of the car just in case. We went slow and made it fine in the 4 wheel drive. But we did go slow-you wouldn't want to go much faster than that for sure. 
  • The snow was still falling when we made it home and started on our supper-chicken nuggets, hot dogs, fried potatoes, crackers and dip and heart shaped cake. We ate and ate and I even have some snow ice cream for later.
  • Whitman did take a 45 minutes shower tonight-I forgot that he was in the shower. Usually he gets out fine by himself, but I guess tonight he forget that he lives on land! I will hate to see our water bill this month! 
  • The plan is for another round of poker tonight-and then I'm headed to bed, this doing laundry all day long is tough work!

February 16, 2021

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  • Another snow day, but also a school day. I let the kids sleep in a little bit this morning, but it didn't take long for everyone to wake up because it was super bright with the sun shining off of the snow. 
  • Campbell and Keaton were on a mission to finish their school and head outside as soon as they could this morning. They even did spelling with each other-that was fine with me and maybe I can teach them how to do spelling with each other from here on out.
  • Now once Whitman realized that people were going outside, he started to melt down. I had him do two more pages before releasing him. Yes, he still has school to do, but yes it only snows once every so often around here. 
  • Anderson was out soon after that. I think that Graham even headed out for a little bit after finishing his school work. When the kids started trickling in, Whitman never came. And he never came and he never came. Word was that he said he knew that when he came in, he would have to work on his school work.
  • Campbell and Keaton eventually joined him back outside, and they played for another hour before he finally did come in. I didn't make him do school work right away, but I did feed him lunch (it was 2 by now) and soon we did some Bible study work since we are a day or two behind.
  • I eventually manged to get on a the treadmill while Reagan was in the kitchen baking. Reagan worked and worked and worked all afternoon long on her frog cake. It is pretty impressive if I do say so myself. She had a picture, and hers is just about as good as the picture. 
  • She headed outside possibly to avoid cleaning the kitchen. By this time in the afternoon the neighbors were out so Campbell, Keaton, Whitman and Graham were also outside. The neighbors went in after 5, so my crew did as well. I am glad to report that we still have not lost any fingers or toes to frostbite-I was certainly thinking that might just happen yesterday. Though Whitman has the hardest time keeping his chin warm and usually comes in because his "chin is cold."
  • We did have a bit of excitement this afternoon when Whitman looked at me and said that there was something dripping on him. Robby and I had both seen the same facebook post moments earlier about someones house leaking so we were standing up staring at the ceiling in no time. Even though we were pretty sure there were no pipes above where Whitman was sitting, Robby still took his flashlight and went looking. After a good search and even feeling the ceiling, we finally decided that Graham who was walking in from outside at the time, must have splashed some water/snow onto Whitman causing the ensuing panic.
  • Supper tonight was chicken nuggets and mashed potatoes. That was a perfect supper to watch while we all watched the Razorbacks in the living room. During half time we set up the dog crate. Man, it is huge-practically takes over my bedroom. Our lives are getting ready to change around here for sure!
  • Maybe that is why I was vacuuming the baseboards today-I am nesting in preparation for a dog or maybe I am just going stir crazy. Either way, I don't feel like this house is clean enough to add one more messy member. We are going to have to go back to a real chore chart around here.
  • After the game was over, I played a few rounds of poker with a few of the kids. I could probably count that as school work since poker could definitely count as a life skill. I guess that I will spend the rest of the evening looking at the weather and looking outside-I have loved the snow and always want more, but maybe this time I don't want anymore...or maybe I do want a lot more.

February 15, 2021

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  • Snow days are hard work! I think that the boys did beat me up, but from upstairs the snow didn't look that deep so they weren't that impressed. As soon as I woke up, I continued to stare at the window from my bed marveling at how fast the snow was coming down.
  • I headed to the treadmill for a little bit-I watched a Hallmark Christmas movie while continuing to watch the snow. We were able to hold Campbell off from going outside until a bit later-she was ready to go out as soon as she woke up.
  • Once I was finished with the treadmill, I started making homemade biscuits and chocolate gravy. When that was nearly finished, I started Robby's sausage gravy. The biscuits were pretty good (can you really beat some Grands biscuits though?), the chocolate gravy was good (and has been good all day long on everything else that I have eaten), and the sausage gray was also good they said (but way too meaty for even Robby.) Overall, our snow breakfast was a success.
  • Next up was going outside. I had been seriously thinking abut us going skiing lately-not anymore. I am done with that. So many clothes, so many people, so many gloves, so many jackets-we almost never made it out of the garage. The first even was a group picture!
  • Then we all migrated to the big hill for some sledding-the snow was really to deep to sled in. We were able to go a little bit, but the effort was not worth the result! We were out for a good while. 
  • When most of us came in, Robby moved the snow off of the Suburban and ended up driving to the Ferguson's house with Campbell and Keaton. They were able to do some sledding over there before slowly coming back home.
  • While they were gone, I went to work on remaking my marshmallows from yesterday. I did make them and we ate them tonight-they were really pretty good. Now, are they worth the trouble when a bag of marshmallows are about a dollar? No, but I am glad that I made them-I can mark that off of the list.
  • After a bit, we all climbed in the car and slid on down to the Wilsons house. Well, there wasn't any sliding-cause I was busy praying. At the Wilsons, we did some sledding and snow surfing. The 4 Wheeler was eventually pulled out and the kids took turns sledding behind it.
  • It was colder over there than it was at our house. Reagan even went inside to warm up-I didn't cause I would have had to have taken my britches off. (I had another pair on though!) Once we came home, I was freezing and most everyone else was-but Campbell and Keaton stayed outside for at least another hour.
  • By the time they came in, most of us had taken showers, and I had dried some wet clothes and done one load of laundry. Right now the second load of laundry is being dried-I guess it is nice to have my laundry already finished for the night, but this snow day stuff makes a lot of laundry.
  • For supper, we heated up our leftovers from the other night-we had fajitas and came home with a box full of leftovers. Tonight, we used those leftovers to feed everyone! It worked our pretty well. 
  • After we cleaned the kitchen, the whole family played two rounds of Mexican Train Dominoes. We play a lot of games, but Reagan and Robby don't play too many games with us so this was a treat. Whitman was in first place and Keaton and I were last places.
  • Next up was snow ice cream making. Some folks ate my homemade marshmallows, but most people didn't even try them! I will say that my snow ice cream was delicious-especially when I scooped some chocolate gravy on top!
  • We still had about an hour until it was finally bedtime for the crew. I believe that Graham is currently taking his 3rd shower of the day-he said he needed to warm up. 
  • Meanwhile, I am walking around the house turning off lights so the power doesn't go out. Keepign the lights off in this house is a full time job-I am the only one who turns off lights and closes cabinet doors!
  • Tomorrow the snow will still be around, plus there will be more snow to get excited about. The currently plan is to do our school tomorrow since we skipped today-I do think that a school day will be easier than a snow day-but I have an idea that tomorrow will be both!

February 14, 2021-Happy Valentine's Day

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  • One way to wake up a lot of children quickly is to mention that it is supposed to snow in the afternoon plus mentioning that there are Valentine's Day presents downstairs really does get people moving. 
  • I am not sure what we did last year or really what we have done other years, but this year everyone did have a little something plus some candy. Sweet Campbell and Keaton did buy a box of candy for everyone plus I had a box of candy for everyone. Then there was a planter for Reagan, Funko pops for Anderson, Graham and Campbell, blue jeans for Keaton and kinetic sand for Whitman. Alyssa and Noah had spent the night so they also had a bag of candy for themselves.
  • I wasn't able to get my Sunday morning laundry folded, but getting us all to church on time, and even before the service started, was considered a win.
  • We had lunch at Grannymom's house after church. We stayed for a little bit chatting and didn't realize that it was sleeting good at our house. The roads were pretty covered on the way home, but I guess they weren't too slippery because we didn't have any trouble. I had wanted to go to the store to pick up a few things-not really because we needed them but because I like the snow excitement and wanted to see the store!
  • Once at home, I did make everyone straighten the house for a few minutes-when we lost power years ago on Christmas day our house was a mess and I never want that to happen again. I am trying to keep the laundry caught up just in case. 
  • Soon though things were back in order, and I was taking my Sunday afternoon nap. Now, while I was napping Whitman came in twice, Keaton came in twice, Campbell came in twice and Graham came in once. So yes, I napped, but i am not too sure how well I napped!
  • Campbell, Keaton and Whitman spent a good deal of time outside playing in the ice and falling snow. They had a blast, but were pretty excited this evening when I found them all a pair of ski pants to wear. Now, I am not sure where we got ski pants from, but I have saved them for a day like this-well, a week like this.
  • There were a few games of dominoes tonight before we pulled our all of our leftovers for supper. We all found something to eat and even have leftovers for later. After supper, I pulled out a recipe that I have been wanting to make-homemade marshmallows. 
  • Keaton and Campbell helped me make them. They have to set overnight so I am not too sure how they will work-but they were a huge sticky mess! I had to work forever to get them off of my mixer, my bowls and my hands. We will see, but probably the bag of marshmallows in my pantry is probably better!
  • Robby and I watched some Grand Ole Opry tonight while Whitman huddled by the heater. Currently, Anderson, Campbell and Keaton are headed out to measure the snow fall!

February 13, 2021

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  • It wasn't too much of a restful Saturday morning for us. Our alarms started ringing at the same time. Today, Robby and I were both hitting snooze for a good while before we did get out of the bed. I walked around waking up the upstairs people-I think the kid count here last night was 8, and even though some of them have changed, we still have 8 tonight.
  • I made muffins for the crew this morning, and quite a few were eaten before we left. Robby took Keaton, Campbell and Whitman to Grannymom's house while I took Kennedy, Alyssa, Reagan, Anderson and Graham to church.
  • I met back up with Robby and we met the Wilsons as well. We headed downtown for the RV show. It was chilly on our walk to the convention center-I was even glad to have my mask on. We looked in 235 different campers. I will say that by the end of the morning, they all started to look the same.
  • We then had supper at Burgess-Robby and I split a muffeletta and catfish. It was a pretty good lunch! Afterwards, Robby picked up the kids while I headed home in my car. I straightened some while waiting on them to come home. 
  • Then we watched the basketball game-well, Robby watched the game, and I had a wonderful nap. It was a great nap-I think that I sleep better during basketball games. Hopefully, the same thing doesn't apply to baseball games since we hopefully will get to go to some next week.
  • After the baseball game, I ran with Robby to pick up our free Chickfila from receipt day a few weeks ago. When we came home, Campbell, Keaton and I ran to Bath and Body with Shannon to spend her coupon. We didn't buy anything but smelled everything in the store!
  • We were home for a little bit when I headed to pick up the church kids-the Wilsons were back over so Shannon rode on that trip with me. That little quick trip took almost an hour and we came home with one extra kid. 
  • Currently, it is 10:45 and lots of people here are showering and lots of people here are about to go to bed! Hopefully, I am one of them!

February 12, 2021

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  • Whitman came in our room pretty early this morning. It was around 7-we could tell that he briefly did stop in the living room and turned on the heater before coming in our room. He must have been tired because he was soon back asleep...and stayed sound asleep in our bed until 10:30. He didn't even wake up when Graham came in looking for Whitman-I guess he wasn't in his bed, and he wasn't in his normal ipad watching spot so Graham was checking on his brother.
  • We didn't do any school today officially. Anderson had some to do to catch up, and Reagan had something she was supposed to do (but I am guessing she didn't.)  And I guess that I should have done Bible study with Keaton, Whitman and Campbell, but we will have to catch up and do that tomorrow.
  • I went upstairs around 11 to wake up Campbell just as she was coming out of her door. Today was her turn to do some cooking so she was happy to get started even before she had any breakfast. We baked a little bit-I will say baking with her is pretty easy. She does the work and I do the clean up just as soon as she finishes adding an ingredient.
  • Soon I was leaving the house with Graham, Anderson, Campbell and Reagan. Reagan wanted to go shopping at Target, Anderson needed to pick up his Valentine's Day present, Campbell never passes up an opportunity to spend money, and Graham never passes up an opportunity to leave the house.
  • The browsing at Target went fine. Graham found a Funko Pop which we bought and as we were in the car leaving, he realized it was broken-so we turned right around and returned that. Then Walmart-oh, Walmart. I went in with the intentions of spending about 25 dollars (Anderson's present, a few groceries, Valentine's day candy and a can opener.) Well, I left the store after spending 80 dollars-I guess it could have been a lot more since I refused to buy fried chicken at the cash register for Graham.
  • I had just shut my eyes to take a nap when my folks showed up to pick up the littles. Graham and I did run down the street with them for a second, before they left for some major cooking with Campbell, Keaton and Whitman.
  • Soon after that, I left with Graham, Anderson and Reagan to take them to church for their weekend retreat. I am not sure if you can call it a retreat since they aren't spending the night but they were there until 9:30 tonight and will be tomorrow as well,
  • We met the Wilsons to eat supper tonight-our first choice was closed so we ate Mexican which was pretty good-Robby and I had more leftovers than we actually ate. Then we topped our meal off with a cinnamon roll from Cinnaholics (not really that good, overpriced and not too friendly workers-skip it and go down the street to Cinnamon Creme.) Robby and Tony went next door to get some Cold Stone Creamery, and just as it always is-it was still good. 
  • We then walked around Walmart for a minute-the boys were oogling some grills. Then it was time to pick up our littles while Sara brought home the bigs plus a few extras.

February 11, 2021

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  • It didn't take long at all to wake everyone up this morning-the ground was covered with white. Now, it was white with ice, but everyone was excited. I still wanted to do our school work for the day-now, I normally probably would have skipped school today, but with the blizzard that they are predicting next week, I thought I better take advantage and squeeze another day in.
  • We did our morning reading, and then everyone was released-Graham, Campbell and Whitman went outside for quite a while. Anderson and Keaton went out for just a few minutes. Keaton has never ever enjoyed the snow or cold weather. I can remember when she was small crying in the snow because her shoe fell off. I had to carry her back to the house while trying to keep her little wet, socked foot warm.
  • The kids did trickle in and most everyone was still finished with their school work by noonish. As soon as Campbell, Keaton and Whitman were finished they returned outside and played out there until at least 2 or even after. They had so much fun playing with the neighbor kids. When they did come in for good, Campbell was the only smart one to head to shower to warm up for good.
  • Robby and I made some cookies this afternoon after I walked on the treadmill. Ha! Yep, I was standing there eating cookie dough just minutes after getting off the treadmill. Maybe that all canceled each other out.
  • I am not sure how the afternoons can sneak by-well, I did do my dreaded task of pulling out school for the week. Honestly, it doesn't take too long so I shouldn't abhor it like I do. Whitman and Keaton's school I should probably prepare a month at a time while the others sometime have things that change from day to day so I can't get too far ahead.
  • We braved the icy roads (they weren't icy-well, a few spots we couldn't see well enough to know if they were dry or not) to eat supper at the Wilson's house. They had bbq and cheese dip, and we brought salad, baked potatoes, mashed potatoes and cookies. We just had ourselves a big feast.
  • We watched a design show which made me sour-I can organize and make lists, but some things I just can't do. Afterwards, we watched a Yellowstone documentary and left when the otter was eaten-oh, it was a big and exciting night!

February 10, 2021

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  • Today was Valentine's party day so my kids were ready to do school this morning to get the morning over with so we could get to the main event of the day. School went really well-Campbell even joined her Bible study zoom a little bit late. 
  • Reagan did much better on her math today. Forever, her math takes her about a week to understand, but when she gets it, she finally does get it. On the other end of the spectrum, Whitman's math is super simple-skip counting right now so he is loving it.
  • Robby ran with Graham to get his hair cut early this afternoon. Graham has been wanting his hair cut for a while-I can't really tell much of a difference, I thought that it looked really good this morning. Now it looks just a good, but is a bit shorter.
  • While they were gone, Keaton and I braved the cold attic to do some more work up there. Actually, it wasn't that cold in the attic, but we still worked fast. We didn't get rid of much today, but we did do a bit of moving of junk around. Someday I will get rid of some more things, but today was not the day.
  • At 2, we met Graham at Sara's house. She was the brave one willing to host our Valentine's Day party. There were 27 and a half kiddos there today (1/2 because Jennifer is just about ready to have baby Kate any day now.) 
  • Everyone brought something that they loved. We displayed them all in the garage, and it was so much fun to see. There were recipes (chocolate gravy), toys, books, musical instruments and even food. We brought a stuffed green lizard (Reagan), a Lego set (Anderson), a Funko Pop (Graham), a cereal box (Campbell), a can of beans (Keaton), magnetic rocks (Whitman) and a recipe (me.)
  • Sara had games for everyone to play, and we migrated through her house playing different games. When it was supper time, we started scooping the soups that some of the mom's had made. We had taken cookies for everyone's desserts.
  • The original plan was for us to all eat and then hurry to church. However, the church had already cancelled so we didn't have to rush off. The Lawson road dads even swung by to eat a bite of soup, and we just made it a Valentine/Snow Day party.
  • The Snow Day party continued with the Wilsons coming over for a bit tonight. We did a lot of checking the weather along with watching some cooking shows. We even sampled my shower brownies that we made from the cooking show. 
  • It is now bedtime and my crew is pretty wound up-like it literally sounds like they were bouncing off of the walls upstairs. I guess they had a wee bit too much candy today!

February 9, 2021

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  • School was fairly usual this morning. As soon as we were finished reading, Reagan busied herself getting ready for school. Robby dropped her off around 10:30. She has two classes today, but she enjoys staying all day.
  • Whitman finished his work a bit before noon only leaving Graham still working. His math is taking him forever right now. I actually enjoy his math now, but he would feel completely opposite. 
  • When I did finish all of my school work, I pulled out everything we needed to roll out our sugar cookies that we made earlier in the week. Graham, Campbell and Keaton all helped roll out the dough. We ended up making almost a hundred heart shaped cookies. 
  • The girls and Whitman did their Bible study, and then I worked n mine. Afterwards, Keaton and I worked on the upstairs attic. It is a mess-like just open the door and throw stuff in it mess! We did get half of the attic fairly organized. 
  • I had intended to work on the attic all week long, but the upcoming chilly weather has caused me to want to finish earlier in the week before I have to wear a parka to work up there. I also wanted to work on the Legos some more this week. However, the Legos are pretty good-so probably just working on some would mean building some more with Anderson. I am okay with that, but I am not sure if he would want to do that!
  • I did walk on the treadmill for a bit before hoping in the car to go and get Reagan. She was ready and waiting when I pulled up. Actually, she had been waiting since I left the house. Her class was out early, but she didn't mind waiting too much since I bought her some fries and a shake on the way home.
  • Once at home, Campbell, Keaton and I iced the cookies. We just dipped the cookies in red, pink or white icing, and they were pretty yummy looking. Soon the Hogs were on, and we were pulling out everything from the fridge for supper. 
  • Most everyone found something. I didn't get in the kitchen early enough to get a roll, but I did have a pretty great salad-more toppings that lettuce! The kids cycled through the showers this evening after the game-tomorrow is our Valentine party and church so everyone needed to smell decent!

February 8, 2021

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  • Mondays are pretty crazy days around here and today was not any different. We started school pretty much on time. Things went pretty well today. And an update, I have been doing Whitman's spelling book with him. It will take up absolutely forever to finish it, but we are doing it.
  • Reagan was busy all day with her stuff. I will say that Algebra 2 is kicking our butts! We will get it figured out though, and that will make me happy! I just don't remember math as well as I should, or maybe this is all the new math. 
  • When we did finish school, I went to town working. I had the homeschool moms over for Jennifer's baby shower, so the first order of business was cleaning the house. At 1:15, the kids had to report downstairs and everyone went to work. Of course there was lots of complaining about no one even going upstairs and no need to clean their bedrooms-but that is one of my favorite parts since now the whole house is cleaned....even upstairs.
  • I worked all day on getting salad and baked potatoes toppings-I should list all of the toppings that I had, but I am too tired. I did have it all though and it was worth all of the chopping, pouring and stirring that I did. 
  • Robby helped make our dessert for the evening-a three layered brownie which was delicious. So yes, the whole crew worked all day long on getting ready for this evening. Anderson and Graham did have a little bit of a break when they went to their D group at church.
  • Soon though folks were arriving, and Robby and the kids were headed out the door with their pot of chili. They hung out at the Wilson's house for the evening. Keaton was in heaven because she was able to help Shannon do some organizing.
  • I think the shower people all enjoyed themselves and had a good time. The food was all good, and the conversations was even better. The girls stayed until after 10, and Jennifer left with a trunk full of diapers. 
  • The kids and Robby came home just as everyone was about to leave. The kids were fairly quiet as they came in! Once everyone left, Robby helped me clean up and soon the house was neat and clean, but the laundry basket and dishwasher are all running over!

February 7, 2021

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  • This morning before church I had time to fold the laundry and empty the dishwasher-those two things are a mark of a great morning. We were soon trying to find out spot at church. This week the Crafts took our spot, and we ended up in the balcony wings. I will say that sitting there kind of reminds me of going to church in Florida last February.
  • After church we headed to Nonna and Pops' house for lunch. Noah tagged along with us so the kids were happy to have a buddy with them. They showed him how to play the game 20 Questions after lunch today. Today I won by quite a bit! I usually don't do that great, but Keaton and I made a pretty good team.
  • On the way home, we dropped off Noah, and then Robby and I jumped into action. We made cheese dip and rice krispy treats with the help of Campbell. Then we rushed out to do some speed shopping. We had a few things to pick up at Walmart and even found a blanket for the puppy dog for a dollar!
  • Next up was meeting the Wilson's for some camper shopping-not camper shopping for us, but for them. We weren't able to get them to spend a lot of money today, but maybe soon. We shopped for an hour or so and walked into about 10 different campers and one we even saw 3 different times (It was actually my favorite.)
  • Once we returned home, Robby started on my dessert for tomorrow while I worked on boiling an egg. Well, I did more than that, but yep that was about all that I finished. We were soon leaving for head to our Super Bowl party.
  • The Kamps had tacos, and we brought cheese dip. Aaron had lots of games to play and prizes to win. I sure didn't win anything-well, I did win a pack of gum (I don't chew gum.) We even played a few board games while watching the game. 
  • We stayed until the end of the game. Then we came home and started cooking again. Robby worked on the dessert some more (one more step left to do tomorrow) while I cooked some meat. Soon the kids were heading to bed and I was working on the blog and catching up on some youtube watching.

February 6, 2021

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  • This morning was kind of a bit crazy-everything happening at once. People were calling, people were leaving, people were texting and we were trying to make our grocery order at the same exact time. It all worked out though and soon our day had been planned for us.
  • I left first-well, actually Kennedy left first-then I ran out to go to a consignment sale with Jennifer. Robby reminded me that I have been to one when Reagan was just a baby or maybe even before she was born. But goodness gracious, I had never seen anything like it. This was just half price day so things had been well picked over.
  • However, I still left feeling good about our purchases. I left with 2-3 Build a Bear outfits, a sweater for Keaton, shoes for Whitman for much later and an ACT practice book all for 12 bucks. Keaton and Whitman are really the only ones who could wear any of the clothes there, and my people are really out of toys, but I did enjoy looking at everything. 
  • Meanwhile, the girls were at the house hanging out with Laynie and Camryn for a little bit before they went home. My boys were down the road helping Aaron. Robby had to be there at 11, and I think that the boys were a good bit of help-well, the big two were helpful. Whitman was living his best life jumping on the trampoline and chasing chickens with a stick.
  • When I came home, I grabbed Campbell and Keaton, and we headed to the Kamps for a few minutes. I didn't stay too long because it was chilly to me and I had nothing to do except watch the men folk work. I took Whitman home and left the girls there.
  • At home, Whitman had lunch-it was 1 or 2 by this time so he was hungry. Then I shooed him to the shower because he was pretty filthy. Meanwhile the others came in and all headed to the leftover pizza in the fridge.
  • I made sugar cookie dough for later in the week, and then Robby and I worked on his closet/pantry for a few minutes. Aaron dropped off Noah for the night, and when he left we went to town making potato soup. We few weeks ago while camping we made my dad's potato soup recipe. Tonight we made my grandmother's recipe. It was pretty good so we were pleased with it along with the cornbread that I made.
  • The Wilson's came over and hung out for a bit. We watched some camper shows. some cooking shows and they even helped with unload our grocery delivery. The delivery lady called Robby to ask where our driveway was. He went outside and couldn't see her down the street-she then said that she could see our camper....she had drive behind the house. Yep, behind the house-it is a wonder that she didn't get stuck or fall in a septic tank hole.
  • Since Noah was here the kids stayed up a little bit later. Whitman is sleeping in our room so Noah can have his bed-though I am not sure if Noah is sleeping in Whitman's fort or not! I had planned on watching some more cooking shows tonight, but I guess I will have to pass since Whit is still awake and really, a 7 year old probably shouldn't stay up until midnight-hope he doesn't snooze during church tomorrow.

February 5, 2021

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  • No school Fridays are my favorite day of the week (well, next to Thursdays.) I had a huge list today, and everyone worked pretty hard to help me knock it out. 
  • We have a Valentine's Day party scheduled so everyone had to work on their Valentines. Keaton and I finished the school room closet. And I even did some work on the Legos all by myself...and would you guess what I heard this evening: 
  • The sound of Lego's dumping.  I rushed into the mud room while shouting, "What's that sound?" It was Reagan and she promised that she would clean it up-apparently, she was building something. Now, she did clean it up fairly well, but not like I would have liked. Oh, well I plan on working on it some more tomorrow.
  • I have a few more things on tomorrow's list-but my main goal is life is for the whole house to be clean at the same time. I just don't think that is ever going to happen though.
  • I did run to Walmart with the boys and Campbell and Keaton. Whitman was not too happy to be in the store, so he was the keeper of the list and would tell me how many things we had left. We were honestly in the store for less than 30 minutes so he had nothing to complain about at all.
  • We found some jeans for Keaton and some Valentine's day presents for most everyone else. Then we headed to Nonna's house for a few minutes. It just so happened that she had just returned from the cookie lady's house with fresh cookies when we showed up. I am not sure how that happens but we have done that on more than one occasion.
  • We stayed there for a bit and then as we were about to leave-Graham decided that he needed a rotary phone lesson. It took all of us to realize out that the old phone couldn't dial out anymore. But we did enjoy watching the kids try to figure out how it worked.
  • Once at home, I didn't have much downtime because soon Kennedy was arriving to spend the night as she does almost weekly. Then Laynie and Camryn came-along with their folks. Robby ran to get pizza while the grownups went to eat out.
  • Our reservations were for 8:30-that was as early as we could get it. We thought that we might could get in a bit earlier, but that didn't work at so we were eating late like city folks. The cornbread and the menu were the best things on the menu that we had. Now, my red beans and rice was good, but not incredibly flavorful. And Robby's mac and cheese was not much better than a box. The conversation was still good, and we still thoroughly enjoyed our evening.
  • We made it home around 10, and the kids were still going strong. Anderson convinced Graham around 10:30 to go outside and play basketball. I think that my upstairs crew is getting ready to head to bed and hopefully the other group will soon as well.

February 4, 2021

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  • It was certainly nice today during school knowing that today was the last day of school for the week. Though I never like the idea of me having to pull out everyone's school work hanging over my head. That is something that I certainly dread more than I should.
  • We zoomed on through school. Whitman is loving life right now since he is beginning multiplying. He is now working on numbers times 0 or 1. He is breezing through things and hopefully will for a while.
  • It didn't take too long for most folks to finish. I have realized that even when I don't have much left to do, it is best if I just don't start any big projects because as soon as I do, someone will finish and need my help. So I had a fairly light morning.
  • I took Reagan to school along with Campbell and Keaton. We stopped at the Dollar Tree to pick up a few things and then ran into Target so Keaton could spent the last bit of her Target gift card-don't be surprised but she bought candy.
  • Then we hurried to pick up Reagan. I was home then long enough to work on the school room closet some before I headed along with Keaton to the pregnancy center. There weren't many clients there today, but there were lots of worker bees. We still found things to do and enjoyed it there.
  • Robby was working on supper when I came home-biscuits, sausage, monkey bread and scrambled eggs. Having monkey bread anytime other than Christmas morning is a huge deal around here. It was delicious and we pretty much devoured everything.
  • Andrew came over for a few minutes tonight to get a bit more of the wood-bit by bit we are getting rid of it. I worked on the kitchen some and even pulled out a few folks school for next week before I just kind of laid on the couch and had myself a nap at 8-gracious. I might just be a little bit tired!

February 3, 2021

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  • We started school a few minutes earlier than usual around here so that was a win. I was able to read everything in my pile which makes my heart happy. Then it was time to start on school. Today went a bit slower-Campbell did her Bible study zoom plus Graham has been working super slow lately, so I was still sitting working on school at nearly 1.
  • I stayed busy this afternoon-we worked on Legos some along with more work on the school room closet. Keaton is loving my organizational kick right now. My goal is to have the school room closet finished this week and start on the upstairs attic next week. The Legos will take another week or more. (Or honestly, the Legos could take years!)
  • I have been on an organizational kick lately, but what I really need to be on is a cleaning kick. Robby bought me a cleaning handbook (which I asked for) for Christmas, but I have just looked at it once before working on the shower. Cleaning just doesn't sound like as much fun as organizing. I guess I will eventually finish organizing this place so I will be forced to start over or start cleaning.
  • Robby, Graham, Campbell, Keaton and Whitman went to Grannymom's house for a few minutes. While they were gone, I may or may not have had a nap before I walked on the treadmill and finished my Hallmark movie from yesterday. 
  • They returned home with Arby's for supper. We gobbled it down before heading to church for the evening. The kids so enjoy their Wednesday night activities. Now, I don't have as many buddies there with me so I am a bit lonely.
  • When we came home, Robby and I headed to the Wilson's house for a few minutes to chat while the kids all stayed home. The girls were busy making cotton candy for their snack. And I will say, that not only did they eat the cotton candy, but they also completely cleaned up the machine. 
  • Once we were home, I made out my list for the next day before the kids headed to bed.

February 2, 2021

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  • My alarm was buzzing away this morning, but it didn't help me one bit since it was on silent! Ha! That was fine though because I still managed to wake up in plenty of time to start our school off. We did our morning reading before starting on individual work.
  • Bless Whitman's heart, he had the same amount of school work today as yesterday, but it took him twice as long. About the time that he had finished his school work, Keaton and I were cleaning the school room closet, and Whitman found the boys' old snap circuits. He played with those until it was super time.
  • Keaton spent quite a bit of time organizing today. She helped me with the school room closet. And she also worked on Whitman's desk along with some of Campbell's desk. I guess that I probably should start hiring her out!
  • Reagan spent most of her day at school. Her ride was even a bit late so she didn't make it home until after 4:30. When we called her down for supper, she was even starting to take a nap. I guess a full day of school wore her out.
  • Anderson and I worked on the Legos' today. We had been rebuilding sets pretty frequently last April and May. I am sure that we rebuild at least 10. For some reason we stopped, leaving a mess. Now, part of my motivation for cleaning up is the new puppy-but I sure do enjoy it too (Almost as much as Keaton.)
  • Graham took a long while on his school today. Math is giving him fits right now. I've learned that we have to take a step back occasionally and review and then move on-or he starts to loose it...which makes me start to loose it too.
  • Campbell did some painting today today, and she did very little organizing or straightening! Ha! That's my girl! 
  • We had some frozen pizzas for supper before all gathering in the bonus room to watch one episode of Keaton's new favorite show-The Brady Bunch. After watching one episode, we watched another episode before making cotton candy with Keaton, Campbell and Whitman's new cotton candy machine!

February 1, 2021

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  • It was kind of an odd day around here. Since Campbell and Keaton were at their sleepover this morning, we didn't do our normal work together stuff. That meant that everyone started on their school work about 30 minutes earlier than usual.
  • This meant that by 11, even Whitman was finished with his school work. I started working on cleaning up the school room. That is my main goal this week along with organizing the legos. I'm trying to get rid of a few things and get this place dog friendly. 
  • And really, there are so many things that Robby and I said that we would never do and just about all of those we are now doing-we said we wouldn't have a ton of kids, we said we wouldn't homeschool, we said we wouldn't have a camper, we said we wouldn't have an inside dog-and now look-house full of kids, homeschool, a camper and a dog coming. 
  • We played a game pretty much as soon as the girls came home from their party. Then there was some chores happening around here-vacuuming, organizing Whitman's desk, still putting away some Christmas presents, washing sheets and even more work on the school room.
  • All of that was done, and I still had time for a nap. Actually, I was waiting to use the treadmill and went upstairs to shoo Robby out of the bonus room. He didn't take my hint to leave so I just took a nap up there. 
  • After my nap, I did walk on the treadmill and I think that Robby enjoyed my Christmas movie. Hmm. I still have half to finish on that movie and I guess I will tonight. For supper, we worked on the fridge-basically, everything was pretty old so luckily we were left with enough spaghetti for supper. I made some cheese toast to help stretch things out and all left full.
  • We plan on making some cookies later tonight, but that might mean that Robby and I will have to get out of our comfy chairs.