Saturday, May 31, 2008

It's stinking hot here

I kept telling Dominique not to eat the sand. It did give her a funny looking goatee.

I made the mistake of telling the kids I'd take them to the park today when I needed to get them out of the house. What was I thinking? The minute I stepped out of the car which was blasting cold air conditioned air on us, I knew I'd made a mistake. There isn't any shade in the play area, so I convinced the duo to have a snack on a bench in the shade, then they swung a little bit. I kept trying to lure them back to the car, but Ivan wanted to go everywhere in the play area. The park was nearly deserted and that should have been another clue that it is not hang out outside weather. There was a big brother with his little and they stayed about 5 minutes saying "it sure is hot" over and over (mostly from the adult- who carried his iced drink everywhere).

The only way to be outside is to be in water. We are fortunate to have a kiddy pool and our neighbor just gave us this slip-n-slide. Tomorrow we are going to a friend's who has an above ground pool.

I did house sit for a while for a friend who lives out of town and got to see some countryside. While it was hot out, I could take refuge in the house. It was so peaceful out there, beautiful green fields framed with forests and deer grazing in a field of wheat. Reminded me of my parent's house. After everyone was gone and I had checked everything out and turned out lights, I heard a sneeze from near the forest's edge. I shined my flashlight to see who may be lurking around and saw a frantic deer bound off. When I told Ivan about it, he thought that was just hilarious that the deer sneezed. I thought it pretty funny myself. Didn't know they could sneeze.

What do you do when it's hot out?

My uncle

Thank you for your prayers for my uncle. Please continue to pray for him. The posts have been removed due to sensitivity.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

9 months is a long time

Funny pregnancy stories:

I ran into a lady at the YMCA who recognized me from subbing her water aerobic class several times during my pregnancy with Dominique. She said: "I know you, you're the lady who is always pregnant". I laughed and told her I was pregnant again. She got all apologetic and said- "well I mean you teach the pregnancy water aerobics class". But I told her that that was fine, that we were excited about the pregnancy.

Then a night later, Ivan asked me if the baby was ready yet. I told him no that it would be a while and he said "will the baby be ready tomorrow then?". It will be a very long 9 months for him. I tried to tell him it would be after Dominique's birthday, summer, fall, his and my birthday and Christmas, but that is so far for him he can not even imagine it.

He has assured me that he will babysit when we have the baby. Now that is too far in the future for me to imagine!

This photo is dedicated to Papa Terry- "the rat takes the cheese" or maybe it was a cute little boy with the munchies.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Friends and fun

Well we made it through Sat. and all our functions, had a nice peaceful Sun. and get to enjoy another day off for memorial day. Brian is mowing the lawn, so Ivan is occupied as chief observer over the next couple of hours. Dominique is on my lap, 'cause she can't stand me being on the computer without her on top of me. I'm not sure how this arrangement will be once my belly takes up my lap, I'm not too crazy about it as it is now.

We got to see some friends yesterday, so I thought I'd post pictures with friends. A while back we went out of town to our friend's who love music and jamming. They invite musical friends out, feed us and they play for fun. The kids brought out some instruments too- a toy piano, drum and percussion pieces and their toy stick. It's nice when they can feel a part of it. Whenever Brian has a gig, Ivan wants to go and play too- and this time he got to.

Dominique and the girls. Mercedes is on the far right, she lives across the street from us and her cousins are the two sisters to the left of where Dominique is. Ale on the end just "finished" chemo which successfully treated her leukemia. She got it when her mom was pregnant with Ana. We have been unofficially adopted into their family.

Ivan loves planes and is of course flying to Canada here. I'm not sure if Dominique is remembering how loud flying is. Their friend Patrick is hanging on for dear life. I told him Ivan doesn't have his flying license.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008


Sweetest moment today: Dominique came up to me and gave me a big, long bearhug and heartfelt kiss.

Most formidable moment today: I managed to get 4 kids down the street to the dollar store in a wagon and a toddler bike, in and out without anything at all disastrous occuring- it was actually fun for us all.

Worst moments today: all the moments that became a tearful screaming fest (2 or 3 for Ivan over such important matters as the contents of his lunch, Caleb over not getting to ride the bike first, Micah over getting told "no" when he dumped a clock in the toilet, Dominique when she was told to get off of mommy- that mommy is not a jungle gym and another meltdown when she was forced to undress for bath time). The little fashionista doesn't like to take off new or "cute" clothes.

Funniest moment today: we can't remember exactly what Brian said to Ivan-but Ivan's response was "dad, that's cheesy" and it totally fit. I wish I could remember what it was. Sometimes you just need a portable recorder.

I found out that I have an extra long weekend. I won't be keeping the boys Monday and tomorrow I get to have the car- so we can go somewhere- probably the grocery store and maybe a friend's. I actually enjoy going to the grocery store with the kids. There is so much to see and new things to introduce them to or help them learn and it's nice to get out once we've been "in" several days.

We have a crazy, crazy Sat. shaping up with 3 activities again! Morning, afternoon and evening. Hooray for Sundays!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The morning after

The morning after the grands left, Ivan wanted to know where they were and when they were coming back. They were hear a day when I had the foursome and since it was our first pretty hot day, I put up the pool. Terry got suited up also and let Caleb dump water on his head, much to Caleb's delight. Ivan thought it was too wet of an activity! It is hot here today. Yucky hot, don't go outside unless it's in a pool hot. So I set up the pool again. Not sure what I'll do all summer with them. It was ok in the morning, but by afternoon it is miserable. The air conditioner is running and we don't open the blinds. It makes the house a little gloomy dark, but more bearable temp. wise. Brian is watering the lawn as we speak. It's still green, but getting rougher on the feet. Amazingly, our garden is doing great. We are already eating spinach and squash from it and the plants are huge and healthy. He planted it in a shaded area next to the shed under our pecan tree. Hopefully we'll get produce all summer and maybe peaches from our tree this year! All the seeds packets that we planted from say "full sun", but they don't mean West Texas sun. Ours had full sun the other years and all afternoon and evening the plants got baked. Now they get a few hours of sun in the morning and shade for the rest of the day along with the 100+ temps. I know for all of you defrosting up north, this sounds wonderful and I thought so too my first summer or two, but now I realize it's just insanely hot.

Sunday, May 18, 2008


Baby # 3 is on it's way. We've told you all early since we're bad at keeping secrets. She or he should be due right about Brian's birthday. What is the likelihood of another birthday baby?

Friday, May 16, 2008

They're back!

Riding the trolley.

In front of the Alamo.

At sea world.

Well it seems that the trip was a roaring success. Brian and I got to go out two nights in a row- unaccompanied by needy children! Meanwhile Nana and Papa enjoyed treating the kids to the wows of San Antonio. A conversation Brian had with his mom before they left goes as follows.

Brian- "Mom, will you promise me you wont spoil the kids too much?"
Nana- "no"

That about explains it.

Back in Abilene, the tireless grands push the kids around in these little cars like they just can't get enough of them! I understand, they are pretty irresistible.

Nana says the kids didn't cry or get home sick at all. I asked Ivan if he was glad to be at home or wanted to be back at the hotel. He said- at the hotel. Ah well, there is a time for everything. We all passed the test- they can travel away from us!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Everyone's happy vacation

All that warming up the kids worked like a charm. Ivan was getting excited packing even thinking they should take the potty chair in case Dominique wanted to try there, but we decided that since Nana and Papa hadn't brought a U-Haul, we should leave some things at home. They did take water guns, beach towels and swim suits, enough clothes for about a week (in case Nana and Papa decided to keep them a little longer) and books for night time, movies and cds for the ride... As Papa was packing up, the kids kept trying to get into their car seats before it was time. Then they each grabbed a bag (as seen here), went on to the porch and waved to me "bye mom", no tears, no crying- which is a good thing- (right?)

They called yesterday and Ivan was all excitement and joy telling us about the movies they watched on the way, eating at Old MacDonald's, going on a trolley and boat ride, they were headed to the pool, then supper at the time of the call.

I just talked to them again and they had a blast at Sea World. Ivan's favorite part was the whale and according to him, Dominique liked the dolphins. She got mad with Papa when she didn't get to go on a roller coaster and he told her she was too short. Ivan and Nana rode it twice and it has taken a while for her to forgive Papa- from what Nana tells me.

Tomorrow they are going to Fredricksburg and all of our little vacation will soon come to an end.

It has been fun having a quiet home and no distractions, going out for supper and coffee, watching movies (we rented 4 before we realized we are no longer teenagers that can watch 2 per night). I did wake up at 7:15 to the sound of Dominique crying. I kept telling my brain and ears that she wasn't here and to quit making up sounds, but it really sounded like her.

Here is Papa teaching Ivan how to bat.

Here's my new desktop picture.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Happy Mother's day week

This video was shot at the Erinshire festival a couple of weekends ago, where Brian played and got us free entrance! It is really echoing since he is playing in an old historic church building. I was glad he was in there actually since it was cooler than out on the outdoor stages. He is playing "Classical Gas", by Mason Williams who originated from Abilene. I hope I got that right. Yeah, I'm not Brian's stage manager, as you can tell. But I thought I'd let you guys hear him on the stick, since many have not.

We had a super busy weekend. We went to our friend's first communion and two parties. We were supposed to have some people over, but they canceled at the last minute (seriously- 5 min. before the scheduled time), but that turned out well because I had a meal already cooked for tonight with Nana and Papa Terry here. They drove in today and the kids are bubbling over with unbridled joy. They are really excited about their upcoming trip. The plan is that the grands will take them on a few errands tomorrow, spend the night here again, then take them away Wed. to San Antonio- the river walk, the Alamo and Sea World and be back Fri. sometime. They may stop through Fredricksburg on the way back- a little German town known for it's beer and chocolate, but Nana said this weekend is their lavender festival.

The grands got me a basket of lavender type bath and body stuff saying that for someone keeping up with 4 kids, I deserved some relaxation- ah... Wednesday ;) The quiet will be amazing, the peace will be tangible, the time fleeting. I'm looking forward to it now, but am still a little anxious about how they will do. We've talked it up lots, and I think Ivan understands. Dominique says she wants to go and will be good and that she'll have fun, but all the while she is looking at me out of the corner of her eyes like she is saying- you can't be serious right? At first I thought Ivan would take it hardest, but now I'm wondering how she will be. I guess time will tell.

I always thought my kids would have hair like mine, which is supposedly dominant, like all my other physical traits that they didn't inherit- but I don't mind. Their hair is beautiful and is straight, but with enough curl or body to make for some very interesting creations. I had actually combed Ivan's hair that day, but it wasn't sure which way to go and tried to go several ways at once.

Dominique had just gotten up here, as you can tell. She reminded me a lot of Jenn here from when she was a little girl, especially in the picture with the slight smile.

This is what my Mondays-Wednesdays usually look like. Me and 4 under 4 (years old). This week will be a nice break, with Ivan and Dominique in and out tomorrow and I'll have the other two and Wed. just with the Aim boys. I told them I'd take them swimming at the YMCA. It will also give me a chance to see how they are at swimming to see if I ever wanted to attempt all 4 in the pool with me.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Baier update

I know you are all in suspense to know how the Baiers are doing. They are doing really great- all 4 of them. Lilian Ruth was born to Tighe and Greg at about 4:20pm, today, May 8th, in Abilene. She is 8 1/2 pounds and absolutely gorgeous.

Of course, there is the story behind it all. Greg and Tighe have gotten really tired of hospitals and were desperate to get home, but their leaving was delayed yesterday. Tighe was having good contractions then, but they got irregular later in the day. The plan was that she and her mom were going to leave this morning as Isaiah went in for his last MRI and Greg and Isaiah would come when he had recovered. This morning, they changed plans, leaving Tighe's mom with Isaiah, Greg and Tighe left for Abilene. She had contractions the whole way- lots of intense contractions all 2.5 hours it took to get here. Their car's service engine light also came on and when that last happened, it broke down, so she called telling me that they were on the road and to pray that their car didn't break down. It didn't- thank God! They drove straight to the hospital and Tighe was already dilated to an 8! They are so glad Greg chose to go with Tighe. When I last saw them at the hospital here, Isaiah and his grandmother had not even arrived yet in Abilene, since the recovery took longer than they had anticipated in Dallas. Tighe is looking forward to going HOME tomorrow with her new baby. Isaiah, his grandmother and Greg will get to stay in Abilene tonight, in real beds, in a real home, among familiar things. YEAH!

Isaiah will have to go back Tues. for another MRI (his daddy will take him) and Tighe's mom will stay here with her and the baby. With that test, they will also see the ear specialist and find out what can be done to help Isaiah with his hearing. Pray that a really good solution can be found, or that his hearing improves dramatically before then.

It was a very good day. Tighe looks amazing as you can see and Lily (as they will call her) is stunning. It was nice that they got to be in a different hospital for the birth, in their home town. It was eerie for me as I drove up seeing the helicopter parked at Hendrick, knowing that is the vehicle that whisked Isaiah away in a successful attempt to save his life. I think that few people have lived such a drastically life altering series of events as these last couple of weeks have brought the Baiers- both the saving of their first born and the fight for his life and the birth of their second. They have felt your love and prayers all along and that has made all the difference.

By the way, Greg was saying something about some new wires hanging down bellow the car, saying that he is sure they made it here on prayer alone. They are so relieved to be home and starting this new chapter- with Lily and moving on past the meningitis.

thanks to everyone for all you have done.

Morning swim

It's so relaxing here by Thursdays. We slept in, or at least some of us did. Dominique wakes up everyday at 7:15, about 15 min. before the Aim boys arrive on the days I have them and before I want to wake up on the other days. Brian was up and brought her to bed where she fell back asleep ;) Once we were up, we made waffles, muffins and a horrific mess in the kitchen. Then we walked to the YMCA for a swim in the pool. It was so very nice. Dominique wanted to try swimming without her arm floats, which she can't do. I took my goggles this time and dove under them which they thought was hilarious fun. Dominique can now get in and out of the pool from the side and she likes to do that and kick in the water while sitting on the side of the pool the most.

In this picture, Dominique was playing hide-and-go-seek. She's in Ivan's closet. They still aren't very good at staying hidden and are horrible at staying quiet so they are easy to find.

Did I tell you about the day I had a scare with her? I was in the bathroom when Brian went down the street to mow a lawn. When I came outside, she was not to be found. I looked around the yard, then in the house, then both of those places again. I asked Ivan and he said she was in the shed, so I unlocked the shed and she wasn't there. Finally, I looked down the street and she was about 5 houses away, walking down the sidewalk with her sippy cup, following her dad (who was oblivious to the fact that she'd escaped out the side gate).

Here she is eating her and Ivan's breakfast. They both love cereal, but Ivan rarely finishes his anymore, so usually Dominique will eat hers then slide over to where Ivan was and polish his off too. This day, she thought she'd skip the traveling part and just brought her food next to his. Yes, she did eat two bowls of cereal and half a waffle that day.

We may have to get bongos or something. Ivan has decided that his daddy's bass is his now and that they are a band with daddy on stick and Ivan on bass. Dominique doesn't seem to tire of dancing, but we may have to upgrade her to percussionist some day. She seems to have a natural flair for it.

What is your favorite breakfast foods and drink?