Thursday, February 28, 2008

The Saga Continues...

You just thought you heard the last of the John Derbyshire incident. David was super excited to tell me that he received an email reply from who else but the one and only John Derbyshire. I was even impressed by this. While this guy's views are sometimes very extreme, David really gets a kick out of his work. This is not the first time David has emailed him. He has commented on his writings and what not. But, it's the first time he got a reply! Very exciting. He emailed him a short blurb about Benjamin "writing books like John Double-Year." This is the reply:

Thank you, David. I could not be more flattered.

I do hope you've explained to him, though, that THERE'S NO MONEY IN IT.


John Derbyshire

(BTW, the 'subject' simply stated...from Derb !!!)

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

John Double-Year

Around the house, David sometimes dons his National Review sweatshirt with a photo of one of their contributors on it. This is the photo on it:

I'm not kidding. This photo is of a man named John Derbyshire. David has always enjoyed his writing and likes to lounge around in this humorous, albeit weird, sweatshirt. Benjamin has really taken an interest in this shirt. When he was really young, he would point to the photo and say "Daddy." I thought this was hilarious. David claimed it was because the man also wears glasses. Sure.
In the last few months, Benjamin has picked up on the fact that this is indeed not a photo of his daddy. David explains that this is "John Derbyshire (many people, including David, pronounce this "DAH-buh-sure"); he tells Benjamin, "he writes books."
Now everytime Benjamin sees the shirt he gets pretty excited..."LOOK! It's John 'Double-Year'.""
This morning Benjamin disappreared into the playroom for quite awhile by himself. I kept asking him what he was doing and he would reply...
"Writing books."
I didn't give it a whole lot of thought until he blurts out later, on his own...."I am John Double-Year. I am writing books. See!"
Looks like we have a budding conservative on our hands.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Party People

Saturday was Jonathan's first birthday party. We had a great time with family and friends and the little guy was in the best mood all day, even with the fact that he had only had a ten minute nap prior to party time!
Here are a few party highlights. I mainly include these as a "digital scrapbook" for myself that I can look back on for years to come!
I did a "Rubber Ducky" theme. His invitation included the following picture with the words..."Our little ducky is turning one...Come & join us for some good, clean fun!"

We ended up having his party at the church building...which I loved doing! Plenty of space and easy to clean up. Here are the two cakes, one just for JonJon to squish...which he had no problem with! (The ducks in the larger cake are "floating" in a bathtub of blue Jell-O! The faucet knobs were made from both small and large marshmallows. The cake did crack en route to the church building, but it wasn't too big of a deal.)

We put together a fun "duck punch" which consisted of blue Kool-Aid, Sprite and lime sherbet along with our floating "party duckies" on top. We also enjoyed sandwiches, chips and "quackers".

The birthday boy with his Aunt Cherie, who along with my brother, got the kiddo more duckie loot than I knew existed!

Benjamin and Bethany enjoying their lunch. Scratch that. Enjoying seeing whose cup could make the most noise when banged on the table! These two are pretty cute together. Benjamin, to everyone's chagrin, certainly planted a big smooch on her before she left the party!

Jonathan is getting the 411 on how to open the birthday presents from his big brother.

Jonathan and pal, Landon, intently studying a new toy.

Jonathan and his friend Abriella "discussing" one of the new duckies.

A first birthday party proves to be a rip-roaring good time for teenagers! Actually, these are our cousins Keaton and Kayla (and my mom) who really were a lot of fun at the party! And a HUGE help with the clean up!

One final pic of the birthday boy...

We love you, "JonJon". We hope you enjoyed your special day.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Happy 1st Birthday, Jonathan!

It's hard to believe, but it's now been a year since little Jonathan Miles came into our world. February 21, 2007, was a day we'll never forget!

Jonathan, you are a wonderful son and brother, and such a blessing to our family. We will always love you.

Your sweet smile and spirit have brought such joy into our home, and we look forward to many more laughs over many more years.

God bless you today and always!


Mommy, Daddy, and Benjamin

Monday, February 18, 2008


Today was picture day. We headed to Austin to get Jonathan's one year photos taken. I decided to stop the "every six months" photos at age two and just go to yearly. So, technically Benjamin was just supposed to be along for the ride. But that idea quickly turned into having a "brothers" picture for which I had to bust out the brand new Easter outfits (I know, I forced my kids to wear linen before Easter...the humanity!). However since Benjamin was already dressed up, we did a couple of poses of him, too. It only seemed fair. And I only bought them for myself (one for our house and one for David's office).
The funny thing about this photo session was that Daddy joined us. David hadn't been along on one of these except for once, Benjamin's 18-month shots. I decided to let him be the "parent within arm's reach" while I sat back with the photographer and made funny faces at the kids or said "fix the shirt tail, put your tongue back in your mouth, please don't lick the floor" and lovely sentiments of that nature. David didn't realize what a workout he was in for with Jonathan crawling all over the place. Um, yeah, I didn't plan that out well or anything! :)
The pics all turned out great! Here is the result. Secretly, I think David went along to keep the photo budget under control. Back in August, my mom and I took the boys and our bill got pretty crazy (but, it's memories, right?). And my mom and I together were suckers for all the big portraits they bring out, already framed up and ready to take home with the most dazzling matted and coordinated baby pics you ever laid eyes on. They knew how to get to us.

One thing I really wanted to do was get a picture of Jonathan in the same outfit that Benjamin had his first year pics done in. At the last minute back in 2005, I decided I needed one more photo of Benjamin to specially frame and hang on the wall. I just got one single print just for us to hang in the house and this was the outcome:

And here was the result of Jonathan's:

I followed suit and just bought the one 10x13 to hang on the wall. I plan to put them both side by side in the hallway with the boys' bedrooms and smile every time I walk by.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Happy Birthday, Grandma!

Happy, happy birthday to my mom! Hope your day is just as wonderful as you are! We love you!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Blast from the Past

Yesterday was so much fun. We took the boys to Austin to just play. We headed to a little place called Kiddie Acres that I grew up going to as a kid. Let me tell ya, the place hasn't changed a bit! I am quite sure that Benjamin probably sat on the same exact rides that I sat on-- probably on the same coat of rusty paint! But, that all adds to the charm of this little spot. The weather was beautiful and the crowd was minimal. It turned out to be a great day!

An excellent display of horsemanship

Riding the ferris wheel, like a big boy.

Up, up and away!

Our very own "Sarge"

His favorite ride was the boats.

Jonathan and Daddy
A little church news....
I wanted to ask each of you to say a little prayer for David and I as we are about to embark on something new at our church. We are in training to become small group leaders on Sunday nights. Our church is launching a huge new small group program and we are all so excited about it. We will be leading a group in the Harker Heights/Killeen area and have partnered with some new friends in Harker Heights, Jeff and Therese Marks. They are the sweetest couple and we are really excited to get to know their family better in the weeks and years to come through this new dynamic program. The training will last the next eight weeks and then we launch off into our own groups every Sunday night. Our church is fairly large (someone said this morning's attendance was over 700), and this will be an oppurtunity to meet with just a few families on a regular basis and form some awesome groups. Exciting stuff!
Today was just a great church day in general, not only did we start our life group training, we also heard about the two finalists our church is considering hiring for a full-time preacher. We have been without a preacher since well before we placed membership. After a lot of long hours of research, prayer and leg work, the hard-working search committee put forth these two men. We are all in prayer that God leads us to the right man for this position.
David also taught our young marrieds' Bible class this morning and I thought he did great! Although Jonathan was a bit of a tooty-toot-toot in the worship service this morning, we had a great day with our church family.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Missin' the Wild, Wild West

I don't know what it is about Craig Morgan's new song International Harvester, but it makes me miss Muleshoe so much. Not many p-p-p-p-plowers driving down 190 here. I miss dear friends and small town life. I miss getting pulled over on Highway 84 and ten minutes later having the cell phone ring and someone saying "I saw you get pulled over....hehehe."
I hate that I haven't met one of my best friends' babies yet. I miss taking Benjamin up to the school to see Hollye and the fish. I miss supper at Hollye and Gary's house (Hollye, I now make blueberry muffins regularly because of YOU!). I miss the "moms with new babies" parking at the United. I miss Benjamin running thirty miles an hour down "the ramp" in the church building on the way to the Wednesday night meal. I miss living thirty seconds from church. I miss going to see "the water" after worship service (some of you know exactly what I am talking about). I miss Lenda's & Charlotte's Mexicorn dip and how hot they could get it! I miss doing Meals on Wheels with Deborah in every kind of weather imaginable. I miss Dianne leaving make-up in my mail box. I miss Koti's dogs chasing my car all the way out her driveway. I miss fixing supper with Trae, Jean, Misty, Dana and Lynn (and trying to watch two toddlers at the same time!). I miss all of the girls in sorority (hi, Faith, Annie & Kyra and all of you sassy girls). I miss when Melanie used to live there, too, and how we would head over to Clovis for dinner with our favorite Chinese friends.
I can still close my eyes and imagine every nook and cranny of our old house. I miss how the floor in the nursery creaked every time I went to check on a sleeping baby. I miss watching the football games, both from the stands and from my dining room window. I miss the yellow bathroom. I miss the planter box out front. I miss the mailman scaring me when I was at the kitchen sink-- he got me everytime with the loud bang of the metal lid closing.
If you have a chance to listen to the song, please do. Although it may initially come off as a bit hokey, I don't think it is at all. I love every word of it and think of Gary Hooten with a bit of a chuckle when I hear it.
Don't get me wrong, I love it here, too. And I am so blessed with wonderful new friends at church. It's just hard to leave behind a place so very dear.
See you Mules in five weeks!

Monday, February 04, 2008

Development Everywhere!

I noticed Tommie had a similar pic on her blog, so today as I was driving by the new Starbucks, I stopped for a shot (a photo, the place is still not open, no espresso shots yet!). When we moved here during the summertime, we didn't realize all of the development that was about to begin, literally all around us. This sign is about to go up on the finally almost finished Starbucks (they have been building it FOREVER!). In the background, you can see a huge construction project which is set to open in July. It will include a big ol' Target (I'm not excited about that or anything), a Barnes & Noble, a movie theater, Bed, Bath & Beyond, a Chick-fil-A, Dick's Sporting Goods and more. Way cool, huh? And only five minutes from my driveway.
I sometimes try to convince David that we need to think about moving down the road to Belton to be closer to church and all of our friends there. Today, I realized that I need to enjoy this while I can! A bunch of my girl friends from church came over to "my neck of the woods" today. We met at the gymnastics place for "Open Gym" for the kids. Everyone was excited to go to lunch over here at our Taco Bueno! I realized that this place has a lot to offer. Even though I wouldn't mind moving twenty minutes east, I realize now that this is great while I am here. David's theory is that once the new Target opens, nothing will budge me from here. Maybe he's right!
On a side note, when we came home from our morning of fun, we found Daddy here. Sick. With that darn tummy bug. Please pray that this nasty stuff leaves our house once and for all. We need to get out there and enjoy all this place has to offer!

Friday, February 01, 2008

Cooped Up!

The last couple of days we have been cooped up again due to illness. Jonathan starting getting sick Wednesday night, was one sad kiddo yesterday, and is recuperating today. I took him to the doctor and was told it was some sort of virus and would have to run its course. Sometimes I wish everything could be treated with a prescription and have an identifiable name/cause. But, we're letting it run its course and he seems to be improving (and sleeping again!).
My parents have been helping me out the last couple of days since our little guy got sick. It is so hard for me (mentally) to take Benjamin to the doctor's office and make him sit in the "sick patient waiting room" for half an hour when he isn't sick. Especially since our current (but not for long) doctor's office is always packed. Towards the end of our waiting room stay, it became standing room only with hacking, coughing, gagging coming from every direction. It was about all I could handle as a somewhat (self-confessed) germ-a-phobe. There is not enough Purell in all the world for that situation.
I love talking to my good friend Deborah about these types of things because she'll make excellent points that I wouldn't think of on my own. The other day we talked about how "there is always, ALWAYS someone much worse off than you are." And she is so right. A friend of ours in Muleshoe just went through a seven-month cancer battle with her eighteen month old. Could you imagine? Deb has kept me informed of them all the way and I have been amazed at the strength and courage this family has endured. Their daughter is now in remission as of last week-- what a praise!
So all in all, we have so much to be thankful for.