Sunday, November 27, 2011

Video of the Week - Week 30 - Parelli

Here is a Q&A with Pat Parelli about the Yo-Yo Game, one of the essential games taught in the Parelli program.  This is an issue I occasionally have with Tommy and so I found the info helpful.  For those of you who have horses and practice Parelli, perhaps you might too!

Project 365 - Days 205-211

Day 205 - July 24


Starting off breakfast with a little Angelina Ballerina on the iPad...

Day 206 - July 25


Swim lessons have begun again and this little girl is loving it!

Day 207 - July 26


Stole this one from last week because I needed a filler but here is Amelia with her great-uncle Darin ;-)  As many of you know, Amelia can be quite shy when first meeting people and while she has met Darin before, it had been awhile, but she warmed right up to him.

Day 208 - July 27


We were at the grocery store after swim lessons and Amelia was tuckered out.  She put her head down on the handle and fell's what it looked like from the top (to give some perspective)


Day 209 - July 28


First fire of the season that hit close to home.  That's the back edge of the fire on the left side of the screen and you can see the trucks and cars of volunteers from the fire department lining the road leading up to it.  This particular fire was directly across the street from the Big Cat Care rescue near our house.  Very scary for fact, this fire re-ignited in the middle of the night and thankfully, the owners' Great Pyrenees dogs started barking, woke them up, and when they discovered the fire had reignited, they called the fire department again.

Day 210 - July 29


Mi-Wah, my high maintenance barn cat, needed his first of several seasonal allergy shots so it was off to the vet.  Like most cats, Mi-Wah does not like going there and apparently, all the cats like to hide in this cabinet door, so the tech opened it so Mi-Wah could climb inside and "hide".  Didn't get him out of his shot though...

Day 211 - July 30


Speaking of cats, here are my other two showing some brotherly love.  They sat there for awhile grooming each other and as it does most times, inevitably turned into a wrestling match!

Friday, November 25, 2011

War Horse

Really excited about seeing this movie.  It comes out on Christmas Day...

Monday, November 21, 2011

Have I mentioned...

That we received updated pictures of our peanut a few weeks ago?  I wish I could show the entire photo but I can't, so here's a smidge...

She doesn't look like a baby anymore - she's growing up!  And she's walking and continuing to get great care and therapy until we can get to China.  

Have I also mentioned that I think we may have decided on a name?  I'm not 100% sure so I'm not going to post it yet.  I like how it sounds with Ava and Amelia, and I like the name by itself, I'm just not sure it fits her.  And it might sound a little bit trendy.  (Of course Ava and Amelia's names have become trendy - not so when I named them - but it may fit in after all!)  We shall see...

We are currently waiting for our homestudy to be approved (it's been achingly slow) and then we will submit our I-800a to immigration.  Then we will wait for our fingerprint appointment and once we have that and it is cleared, then we can send our dossier to China.  I was just SURE we'd have that done by the end of the year but now I'm hoping it's before the end of January!  At times the wait is really hard and other times, I think because we've been through it before and I've been praying like crazy so the Lord is giving me peace, the wait is okay.  If all the approvals come (because nothing is guaranteed) we will get her on His timetable.  Not mine.  And that is a big relief!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Project 365 - Days 198-204

Day 198 - July 17


This was a fun week for our family because we had some of Jason's family come to visit!  Alex and Aston, who are technically Jason's 1st cousins, finally got out here to Texas with their parents to stay for awhile.  The girls were so excited for their visit and they had a blast with them this week!  The big bummer of the trip was that the boys were sick almost the whole week they were here.  They were fighting high fevers and achy joints but were great troopers!  We hung out at the house most of the time just swimming, playing video games, watching movies and relaxing!  This was right before we all left for church so I had to get a shot of them all dressed up!

Day 199 - July 18


As I mentioned, there was a lot of swimming while they were here.  And lots of diving and sliding and jumping...

Day 200 - July 19


This shot cracks me up!  There were several water balloon fights during the week and I happened to catch this shot right before Ava was nailed in the face by Aston.  She wasn't hurt (at least physically - maybe her pride took a bit of a bruising) but she got over it quickly and laughed hysterically when she saw this picture!

Day 201 - July 20


I know it pained Alex to drive this pink dune buggy, but once you're inside, you don't really notice the color that much ;-)  He and Ava had a good time tearing around the property.

Day 202 - July 21


This was taken just before they left.  We all had such a great time and can't wait for them to come back again to visit!

Day 203 - July 22


I had actually taken this picture earlier in the week but needed a filler here.  This is such a cute picture of Alex and so captures what he loves to do (but his parents carefully monitor ;-)  He was so enthralled with the game he couldn't even give the camera eye contact for two seconds so I could snap the picture.  What a ham!

Day 204 - July 23


I discovered this poor little guy up in one of the horse stalls.  Obviously a newborn, I searched and waiting to see if his Mom was going to come back.  Sadly, I found a litter mate that had already passed out a little further out in the grass.  He didn't make it either. It's been one of the casualties of this terribly hot summer, I'm afraid.  There have been lots of stories of other wildlife going into labor early, aborting and abandoning their young because they just can't nurse and care for them.  Poor little guy...

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Video of the Week - Week 28 - Strength

I even got a video of that little black spider I mentioned in my 365 post - he was incredible!

Project 365 - Days 191-197

Day 191 - July 10


Ava and Amelia will probably never remember a time without FaceTime.

Day 192 - July 11


Another cloud dappled sunset...

Day 193 - July 12


This little black spider was quite amazing.  I found him up in the barn, having freshly killed or paralyzed this poor cricket, who looks to be about 3x his size.  And this little spider was pulling him across the barn floor towards his home (I assume) for dinner.  A little gross but mostly amazing!  

Day 194 - July 13


Amelia was my model for the day as she was SO excited to put on her new dress...

Day 195 - July 14


Did I mention it was hot this summer?  While 104 is not terribly bad, it is when 104 is your average for over 70 days and your lows are the high 80's...yuck...

Day 196 - July 15


The moon was so HUGE and round and gorgeous as it rose on the horizon, I had to get a shot of it...

Day 197 - July 16


One final "before" shot in preparation of the new carpet to be installed!  Yea!!!  I've been wanting this carpet replaced for over 6 years now...better late than never, right?

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Video of the Week - Week 27 - Swimming!

The girls have really made a lot of improvements in their swimming abilities this summer.  Especially Amelia.  A few weeks before I shot this, she was afraid to get her head under the water.  But seeing her friends go under water and gentle coaching from me and her swim instructor, she was making slow steps towards conquering her fear.  But the big difference came when she discovered the styrofoam noodle!!!  Suddenly, all fear was gone - as you will see!

Project 365 - Days 184-190

I didn't mean it to be, but this week turned out to be a creepy, crawly, animal and insect filled week!  If you're squeamish about bugs and stuff, maybe you'd better wait until the next week is posted ;-)

Day 184 - July 3


This has become the popular spot to "chill" during the day around our place.  I usually water this landscaping bed quite well in the morning so the soil remains cool most of the day.  And in the sweltering heat we've been having, whomever gets it first usually stays there most of the day!  Today, it was Mi-Wah...

Day 185 - July 4


Most families go out to watch fireworks on the 4th of July.  No.  Not us.  We work at trapping these monstrous wasps called "Cicada Wasps".  They are a large wasp that are common where you find cicadas as they sting the cicada which paralyzes it, then they drag it into the nest they've burrowed into the ground where their young can feed off it in the coming months as they grow.  Lovely, isn't it?  The males can't sting and they usually leave humans alone but we had become inundated with these wasps!  You couldn't walk out the back door without having to duck and swerve to avoid these large flying beasts!  We had some special family members coming for a visit soon and knew these would not make for a good welcoming party!  So, we did some research online about how to kill these guys but Ava came up with the best and most successful way.  She watched for the wasp to crawl into it's hole, then placed a baby food jar over the top of the hole and waited for it to come back out.  When it flew into the top of the jar, she slipped the lid under the bottom then turned it over and screwed it on.  It is a slow, excruciating death but these are devils, I tell ya!  We had no alternative and Jason and I were happy to let Ava take over this job, which she did happily!

Day 186 - July 5


I told you Ava happily took over this job, didn't I?  Each of those jars holds a dead cicada wasp.  And this was just the beginning.  I think when she was done, she had trapped over 20 of these things...and that's not counting those we swatted out of the air and killed with a tennis racket!!

Day 187 - July 6


This guy came crawling up to our back door in the late afternoon hours.  I think he was a harmless snake but we could not take the chance and he met his demise with my shovel. Thankfully, he wasn't too large that I couldn't handle him on my own.  

Day 188 - July 7


The view I have 4 days a week...

Day 189 - July 8


I told you this was the popular spot...Rosie was the early bird today...

Day 190 - July 9


Rosie has started this terrible habit of cruising our property (and the neighbor's property) and bringing back pieces of dead animals she finds.  Sadly, some poor deer lost it's life and Rosie saw fit to bring back it's leg for a chew toy.  Gross, I know.  But oh how she enjoyed this!!  And you can be assured it wasn't her that killed this deer.  I was skeptical for awhile because as the summer wears on, you will see that she really starts to bring back a lot of items!!  However, after talking with other Great Pyrenees owners, her rescue organization, and just knowing her temperament and inability of one dog to take down a deer, we are confident she is just playing the role of the neighborhood garbage man.  And apparently, my yard is the dump!

Video of the Week - Week 26 - Circle of Life

Turn up the volume on your computer so you can clearly hear Ava give this birth to life analogy...

Project 365 - Days 177-183

Day 177 - June 26

This picture was actually from a few days before while we were in San Antonio but I wanted to include this shot of the girls in front of the Alamo.  "Can you say adobe?  Ah do bee."  Quick!  Name that movie!  We didn't go inside because it was quite hot and everyone was tired and not wanting to cooperate ;-)

Day 178 - June 27

Another gorgeous sunset framed by the leaves of our oak tree...

Day 179 - June 28


I couldn't help myself and had to give Rosie another shave job.  I'm not sure it helps her feel any cooler in this record-setting heat wave!

Day 180 - June 29

Ava and Amelia have this app on their iPad's where they can listen and read stories about the Disney princesses.  In fact, they can upload their own photos so they can be one of the princesses!  I just think this one of Amelia as Snow White is so funny and cute!  Had to post one!!

Day 181 - June 30

Another 2-week session of swim lessons successfully completed by my little fishes!

Day 182 - July 1

We spent some time at our friend's house swimming and grilling to celebrate Kelly's birthday.  Despite the heat, the spa felt nice as the evening cooled down...

Day 183 - July 2

We bought a new cast-iron bench for the front patio recently and I just loved this shot down the front of the house - everything looks so lush and green though not for long thanks to the continuing drought and heat!!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Video of the Week - Week 25 - Father's Day!

This is a short, but sweet, video of the girls surprising Jason on Father's Day with the homemade rocket...

Friday, October 28, 2011

Project 365 - Days 170-176

Trying to get caught up before the end of the century (is this a re-occurring theme?)

Day 170 - June 19th


Father's Day 2011...and the girls wanted a picture with their Daddy and the rocket ship Ava made for him out of a soda bottle!  What I notice about this picture is that Ava looks so grown up!  It's something about her haircut and the way it's laying so perfectly...

Day 171 - June 20th


We had a pretty powerful thunderstorm roll through and I caught these images of lightening.  This one is a little freaky because you can see the clouds swirling above it and it looks like such a thick, intense bolt of electricity!!

This one too was pretty intense though it was by accident - hence the off centered picture!

Day 172 - June 21


As I said in my previous post, swim lessons were starting again and I was so glad I had those short bobs on the girls!  Ava loved her swim lessons again this year.  She's pretty much at the top of what they teach her in organized lessons - they were lobbying pretty hard for her to join the swim team but in the end, she decided to just swim for fun in the pool at home!

Day 173 - June 22

I think I mentioned earlier that Ava purchased this planner several months ago and she keeps it up at the barn, like I do with my planner where I keep all my horse info and records.  So when she is up at the barn, she records what she does in her planner!  (Girl after my own heart!)  When cracks me up about this day is that she was keeping close tabs on a mouse trap Jason had set in the big barn and noted that she had checked on that too...funny!

Day 174 - June 23

We finally coordinated our schedules with our friends, the Joiners, and headed down to the JW Marriot in San Antonio for an extra long weekend!  It was a nice getaway and of course, the girls had a blast!  This was taken our first evening there - it was a nice balmy evening - not humid, perfect weather really, and the girls were out playing on a big lawn while we all waited for dinner.  Sweet shot of these sisters!

Day 175 - June 24

We went into San Antonio the next day our friend, Matt, who has been to San Antonio many times, gave us the tour of the Riverwalk.  This old church was off the Riverwalk near a shopping area.  Ava sat and posed for me and I got some neat shots...

Day 176 - June 25

One of the big draws of the JW Marriot is the big water park they built for their guests.  They had several water slides, several pools, and cute kiddie area.  Even though this slide was rather tame, Amelia was too scared to go down unless I was holding her.  Then she thoroughly enjoyed the ride!


Way back at the beginning of summer, June 18th to be exact, when the heat was increasing daily, several weeks of swim lessons had been scheduled and many days were going to be spent in the pool, I talked the girls into getting "summer" haircuts.  This was a little scary for me because since June 1, 2009 (Amelia's Gotcha Day), Amelia had never had a hair cut on her head.  Never.  We had been working so hard at growing it out.  But, I thought angled bobs for the girls would be cute and cool for the summer.  Here is what they looked like before:

I don't know why she was looking at Ava like that, but I think Amelia's expression is so cute!

Pretty long, right?  That's why I was SO scared!!  But we set off for Sweet and Sassy.  Unfortunately, our favorite hair stylist who used to cut Ava's hair in the angled bob a few years ago, no longer worked there.  So we were putting our trust in a new girl (who was the manager but still...)

Ava went first but I wasn't so nervous because I knew what to expect...


Amelia was second and I have to admit, I gasped a little when she took those sharp shears and cut off Amelia's long ponytail...I didn't get a picture of it, but each of them had 8 inches cut off!!!


And here they are afterward!  I absolutely love this cut on Amelia.  I thought it might make her look older but it made her look more like a baby and I love it!!  And I think it's equally cute on our eight-year-old Ava.  Grandma was along and splurged for the feathers in their hair...something Ava had really been wanting.  They get a lollipop after a haircut and Amelia couldn't help but dive in - wouldn't even take it out for a quick picture!!  We stopped at Panera on the way home for a quick dinner and I snapped these cute photos of the girls...


These haircuts proved so useful as the summer progressed.  No fits brushing through tangled hair and so easy to wash and dry after the pool!  We might make this a summer tradition!

Blog Design by April Showers