Sunday, March 21, 2010


Katelyn probably won't have an older sibling that passes on old clothing, but her mother dresses her in some pretty old clothes.
Me at six months
The double chin has stuck around.
Katelyn (3 months) in the same dress 28 years later. She actually got a lot of compliments on it at church.
Katelyn loves her teddy bear mobile.

Family Pictures

Almost a year ago, we painted our front hall and hung up a mirror, sconces, and a picture frame. The picture frame has shown off a beautiful field of flowers including the UPC code and brand of the frame. People haven't commented on our class or lack of. It now has a real picture!
I love Katelyn's smile. I have a cute husband too.

I love the way he's looking at her.

The photographer loved this one.

Happy early Easter!
So typical of Katelyn right now.

Our Week with the "Cadester"

This past week I watched my two year old nephew, Cade. My parents took his older brother and sister to Disney World, so he went on his own "vacation to Aunt Sarah's house." He told Grammy it was his turn. I was a little anxious how it would go with two kids. Plus Cade is quite attached to my mom. Minus a few minor things the week was wonderful! Here's a rundown of the week:

Monday found us at my cousin, Brianne's house. Her Ike and Cade are a week apart and play together quite a bit. Her Jacob is a month older than Katelyn. We played at her house and then ventured out to Chick-fil-A. Cade kept calling it Chick-Chick-Chick-fil-A.
Lunchtime at Chick-fil-A is pure madness, super busy. Finding a spot big enough for us was a little crazy. I ended up in the aisle way along with the carrier. People were probably so annoyed with us.
Katelyn was up during playtime, being all cute on a blankie. Lunch proved too much for her as she fell asleep.

FYI, the playyard at Chick-fil-A is not made for two year olds. Cade kept climbing up to the second level, which was fine because I could see him and it wasn't too high. Then he got brave and went up higher. I couldn't see him and he wasn't finding the slide. I finally sent some random eight year old to help him find the slide.
Tuesday was rainy so we spent it at home. Cade was an awesome helper around the house. He would go put stuff away for me, throw away any garbage, pick up his toys, and even helped me vacuum and do some wash.
Tuesday night Israel and I got a glimpse into our future. We had put Cade down for the night. By the way, that's my favorite part of the day: a scripture story, prayers, and reading him books. While I was feeding Katelyn, a noise came from the room, so Israel went to check on him. He was crying that his feet hurt. I let Israel handle it until I was done feeding Katelyn. I'm trying to help him feel better and Katelyn decides to start screaming too. I pass off Katelyn to Israel. As we walked into the living room with two screaming kids, we just looked at each other and laughed. Cade went from his bed, to the couch, back to his bed, and finally I woke up to find him standing in our doorway. He ended up in bed with us. I know most of you are probably used to little knees and feet kicking you through the night. It was a rough night.
Wednesday, we walked to the park. He saw a squirrel and called it a mouse. Later on he decided to chase one of those mice.

Katelyn is a good sport about getting drug around.

After naptime we went to Wal-mart to get stuff for our Green Party. I was going to make a scavenger hunt for a pot of gold, put some food coloring in our dinner, and make a special treat. We were almost done with the Walmart run when Cade lost his lunch in the aisle. What do you do with a kid that has throw-up all down him, a baby with the cart, and a pile left on the floor? I left the pile temporarily and flagged down an employee. Luckily, we were in the baby aisles, so I just got a packet of wipes to clean up Cade. We get checked out and on the way home he does it again in the car. Goodbye green party. Hello 7-up and crackers with a movie. The weird thing was Cade acted perfectly normal. I had a hard time keeping him on the couch to rest. At bedtime he proved he wasn't completely over it. Of course, while all the clean up and such is happening, Katelyn decides to be fussy too.
Thursday we stayed at home to make sure Cade was all better. He was so cute with Katelyn. He wanted to hold her all the time. A lot of times I would read him stories while I was feeding Katleyn. He would get so frustrated because Katelyn would move her feet. He kept telling me, "She kicked me." I kept explaining that babies were learning how to control their legs. One time during the week he told me she did it on purpose. My favorite quote of the week was when Cade said that Katelyn was eating my tummy. Another classic was when Israel got home one night. He kissed me on the shoulder. Cade was eating dinner and told Israel not to bite me.

Katelyn sitting up in the Boppy.
Friday we went to the mall. I had to pick up some pictures, so we made an outing of it. We went to the pet store and played in the playzone for a while. Cade was so well behaved the whole time and listened so well. We went to Sweet Tomato for dinner and to get ice cream. I apparently let him drink too much juice. Let's just say he went through two pairs of PJs that night and the sheets and mattress protector made it back into the wash in the middle of the night for a second time that week.
Saturday morning, we made waffles for breakfast. Cade was so cute because he's used to Eggos. He kept asking where the waffles were. I told him that we were making them, but it was too confusing until he saw the finished product. Matt came to pick him up that evening. I think Cade had a good time, but he was so excited to go back to Grammy's house.

Saturday, March 6, 2010


Some people would call us brave. Some people would call us crazy. Some people would call us stupid. After taking the six kids to the museum on Tuesday and having that go fairly well (pictures to come soon--they're on my mom's camera), my mom and I decided to take the kids to the rodeo on Thursday. My mom used to drag seven kids around on her own. I used to keep track of 20-30 kids all day. This shouldn't have been that hard. Maybe it had to do with three of them being two and under. Or maybe it's because only one of them was my kid. Or maybe yet that one of them was nursing and three were in diapers. Or maybe it's because we had worn them out earlier in the week. Maybe it was because there was too much stimuli. With all that said let me tell you about the day we took an eight year old, a seven year old, a five year old, two two year olds, and 3 month old baby to the rodeo.

Each time I leave the house, it gets easier for me. It used to be a huge ordeal to leave the house before 10:00 am. Diaper bag, stroller, feeding schedules, dressing, and other "stuff" all have to be accounted for. I was so proud of myself this morning because I made it to my mom's house (a half hour away) by 9:30. Not only that I had actually done some dishes and cleaned the master bathroom before I left. I was feeling pretty good about the day.

When I got to my mom's house, I fed the baby while my mom finished getting the other kids ready. We loaded the car and were off. The drive downtown was pretty uneventful--listening to a jammin' CD of children's songs and happy chatter could be heard. Katelyn started out a little fussy, which Cade replied to with an irritated "Be quiet baby!" She settled down and things were going great.

Our first indication of trouble could have been when my mom decided to take 610 East thinking it would be faster. We ended up taking the kids on a scenic tour of the east side of Houston complete with a view of the shipping channel. While driving, some kind Houston driver decided to cut my mother off and almost caused an accident. It took minutes for my mom's heart move from her throat to its proper location. We finally got to the Reliant Stadium area after many "Are we there yets" and stopped at a McDonalds. After ordering food which included several special orders (we're not picky), we parked and ate it in the car. My mom had to make two trips back into McDonalds to fix the orders. I also had to feed the baby again. Around noon we were finally parking the car. The next adventure included getting on the tram with all six kids and two strollers taken apart. We were hopeful that Katelyn's wouldn't have to be taken apart as we were planning to sit in the handicapped section. Of course when the tram pulled up people without a stroller or wheelchair were sitting in that row. Grrr. We quickly reassigned jobs. Morgan, you hold the folded up umbrella stroller. Becca, you hold the diaper bag. Anna, don't let go of Colee's hand. Mom, will you hold the carrier while I take down the stroller and don't forget to hold onto Cade who of course wanted to go my himself. We ended up getting on the tram with all the kids and gear sitting in three different rows.

We walked to the ticket booth and finally were there! We looked at the map and saw that we had to hike to the back of the grounds for the kids' section. On the way there we were stopped at the Census booth, which could be a blessing for my brother that doesn't have a job while he waits to start Air Force training. While we were there however we are acquired five back packs and separate plastic bags full of goodies. This didn't seem like a big deal, but ended up just being more stuff to shuffle doing the next tram experience.

At this point, my mom and I still had a pretty good outlook for the day. We were ready to have some fun. We started at Fun at the Farm. The kids started out with a basket and had to gather different agriculture products as they went to stations.

Morgan did a great job pushing Colee around in the stroller most of the day.

After planting and harvesting their crops, the kids fed the chickens and gathered an egg. There were real chickens outside this building, which the kids loved.
It was quite the ordeal getting pictures of everyone at this sign. Sometimes I'm an idiot all for scrapbooking.
Even Grammy and I got a picture. We don't look like we're posing because we were making sure the younger four kids didn't wander off while Morgan was taking the picture.
Anna milked a cow. I think she was a little confused that water came out of this one.
Cade enjoyed milking the cow too.
At every station we were only supposed to take one product. We were constantly in Cade's basket telling him to put stuff back.
The Sun is in my face picture. At some point during this activity we started smelling a foul smell, not too uncommon at the rodeo until we discovered it was coming from one of our lovely kiddos. After they gathered all their goods, they sold them at the farmer's market and got money to spend at the store. They all ended up with juice boxes. Grammy took the smelly one to change her, which I hear was an experience--all down her back and up her front kind of experience. I stayed with the other kids on a bench and we "people watched," which turned into an I Spy game.
Despite this picture, Katelyn was awesome most of the day. Katelyn was very smiley, taking in all the sights, or sleeping the majority of the day. Katelyn and Anna really bonded. Anna would hold onto the edge of the stroller and make Katelyn smile. I did turn around once to see Anna shaking or rocking her back and forth viciously in her seat. I was worried for a minute that Katelyn would have Shaken Baby Syndrome.
The kids enjoyed the petting zoo. Right before they went in Cade turned and kicked Morgan in the shin for no apparent reason. Grammy said that he had just hit Anna not five seconds earlier. I played mean aunt and told him he couldn't go in the petting zoo with everyone else. I held him screaming and crying while keeping an eye on the two strollers. I got a lot of attention this way. I wasn't extremely mean he did get to go in after he calmed down, counted with me, and apologized to Morgan and Anna.
Our next stop was the Reliant Energy area. We were on our way to the carousel when we stopped. Morgan was very annoyed! Becca wanted to color for the coloring contest, so the other kids did barrel racing and lassoed. The area was small but we were shuffling watching the kids doing the activity, keeping the strollers close, taking pictures, and watching Becca color.
We finally made it to the carousel.

If you look real close in the back you can see me standing between the "twos." That's what I call Colee and Cade.

The girls had enough tickets for one more ride, which they had to agree on. Of course they didn't and we had a lot of pouting because of that.

Cade was a handful this whole time because he was too little for so many rides and only certain ones adults could fit into. Well, kind of fit--it was a tight squeeze. These cars bounced and it was a pretty crazy ride. I laughed through the whole ride. Cade liked using the steering wheel until there would be a big bounce.
We also saw pig races. By this time it was time to feed baby again, and Morgan really wanted to see the horse show. We walked to the other back corner and went in the back way to the arena. We ended up in the horse stalls. A kind gentleman escorted us to the arena. This building was not kid friendly. Every portal had stairs. The idea was I would just feed Katelyn in the arena. I finally asked an employee if there was anywhere I could feed her. She was great and took me up to a hospitality room. Meanwhile, my mom is sitting in the arena with the rest of the kids. Apparently, Cade and Colee both were throwing fits. My mom was so embarrassed. She said the arena was super quiet besides the crazy lady with the screaming kids. We met back up and trekked across the grounds trying to get back to our car. Of course, Grammy had promised the kids a treat before we left, which meant we had to find an ATM. We also had another stink attack which meant another trip to find a bathroom.
We ended up getting Marble Slab ice cream. They had fat free fruit smoothies, so I even got to enjoy the yummy treat.
Becca and her yummy mint ice cream. I stole a spoonful.

I stole a spoonful of hers too.

We got smart toward the end of the day and put Cade in the stroller. We had been chasing him all day.
We had to go through the tram experience again. The day wouldn't be complete without Houston rush hour traffic. As we were weaving through downtown, Anna announces she has to go to the bathroom. Of course, there are no gas stations and then we get on the HOV lane. We're barricaded between two cement walls as the issue gets worse. Even if we got off one of the exits, it meant crossing six lanes of bumper to bumper traffic. Anna was also in the back seat, which meant she had to climb over the babies in the middle seat or the strollers in the very back. Anyway, she ended up peeing in the car. As we get off the HOV lane, the other girls have to go to the bathroom. Meanwhile it's time for Katelyn to eat again and we're not home yet.
As I type this it really doesn't sound that bad, but I was exhausted by the end of the day. We weren't sure anyone had fun because of all the craziness and whining. Anna told her mom it was her favorite thing they did in Houston. The pictures turned out cute too, so in five years we'll just remember that we had a good time. Right?