Santa visits

We had two Santa visits this year.  The first one was at Tyson's elementary school.  We stood in line for a little while and finally it was our turn. Both kids were really excited to see Santa, so I guess our days of crying Santa pictures are over!  Tyson was asking tons of questions, like where the reindeer are, and where Mrs. Clause was (she didn't make it to this appearance), so he's really paying attention to Santa related things now.  Tyson told Santa he wanted a lego train and a remote control car, and Hailey told him she wanted a Dora dollhouse.  Both kids were really sweet and did great.

Santa #1

The next day, Santa was also coming to Hailey's school.  I tried to time my pick-up so Santa would be gone to avoid confusion, but he stayed past his scheduled time.  This Santa had a really lame Santa suit, and was obviously Mr. John, the P.E. teacher... the kids both recognized him before he even said anything, and he didn't disguise his voice at all either.  Hey, great job on that one guys!!  Sheesh!  Tyson said "Hey, it's Mr. John!" and ran up and gave him a high 5.  Hailey also recognized him and said "Why is Mr. John wearing a Santa costume? It's not Halloween!"  Mr. John never admitted it was him but it was just obvious, and there was no way I was going to try to convince them otherwise.  The next couple of hours were filled with questions about why he did that, etc.  In a way I'm glad they knew who it was, because if it was a different, but believable Santa, that may have caused even more confusion.  For now they just think Mr. John was being silly and/or helping Santa out.

Until next year's Santa adventures...

Mr. John


Wednesday confessions

I had to write something to brighten up the mood a little.  It's been awhile - here's the latest!

We have an elf on the shelf.  He has been out for about two weeks now and I've already forgotten to move him 4 times.  The kids think that he just likes certain spots more than others.  Yikes.  (I DID move him last night, this is his current spot)

The only forms of eggs that I know how to make are scrambled and hard boiled.  No clue how to properly make sunny side up, over easy, or any other form.  What's even better, I didn't even realize this until a few days ago.

Hailey has had a sleeping bag in her bed since December 7th.  It all started because Tyson slept in one when our family came in for his birthday.  She likes it so much that I use it as a bribing tool at bedtime.  If she does a good job, she can keep the sleeping bag.  If she acts up or asks us to come back in multiple times for non-important reasons, we will take it away.  It's working so far.

I got a thank you note to write to someone we don't know very well, and noticed that Hailey had scribbled in it a little. Instead of getting another card out of the box, I wrote my message, and said "Hailey says thanks too!" And pointed to the scribble.

Just some thoughts

Over the past few years I've noticed that certain news items really grab my attention.  It's mostly when I feel that someone innocent has been greatly wronged.  The Caylee Anthony tragedy, the murder of Yeardley Love, the Aurora, CO movie theater tragedy, and now Newtown, CT.  I probably let myself get too involved in following them.  I'm sure every parent has done the same things recently, but I just keep hugging my kids... even more than I normally do.  When I came home on Friday I gave them the biggest hugs and kisses, and told each of them that we're so lucky to have them and how much we love them.  Of course, they had no idea why Mommy was telling them that while they were eating dinner, but Friday's events gave me even more appreciation for those two sweet children that we have.

Yesterday, I went to Tyson's Christmas party in his elementary school classroom.  We live in a safe neighborhood, but as I drove up to the school I saw a police car patrolling the parking lot.  When I walked in the school, there was another policeman inside, and security measures had been heightened.  The office people who were checking the parents in seemed on edge and very nervous.  They're normally cheerful and happy.  That is just sad.  When I walked into Tyson's classroom and saw all the sweet children laughing and having a good time, I couldn't help but think of Friday's events and didn't even want to imagine what that would be like.

I've been checking up on the news and the events related to Newtown daily, and it breaks my heart all over again each time.  I feel terrible for those children, teachers, the families of those who were lost, as well as the children and teachers who survived the attack - you know they will have a hard time as well.

From time to time, certain events make us realize that life is short and unpredictable.  It's easy to get into a daily grind and take things for granted.  Hold your loved ones tightly and remind them every day that they're loved.


Tyson is SIX

Boy, it looks weird to type that!  Our big kid turned 6 last Wednesday!  On his actual birthday, I got to bring him McDonald's during his lunch (at 10:40), which was a blast, and for dinner guess what he chose... McDonald's!  After dinner, we sang Happy Birthday, ate cake and opened presents from us and Hailey.  Yes, we let the kids choose their meals on their birthdays - go ahead and judge!

Me eating lunch with him at school - so fun!

I think he was a tad excited that day... goofball

We're not quite sure if he likes his Lego train set - what do you think??

Over the weekend, a lot of Torno's came in town for Tyson's party at Chuck E Cheese!  As usual, I didn't get everyone in the pictures.  Some of the family was very sweet to stay and hold our tables/ purses so I could roam around and play with the kids/ take pictures!

Tyson always loves this train table

So glad that Uncle Shane, Caleb and Benjamin got to come! Tyson was glued to Caleb the entire time!

Tyson's awesome Kindergarten teacher, Mrs. DeLaPortilla came by for most of the party - SO sweet of her!
These are my not-so-successful attempts at getting the kids in pics - it was super crowded in the eating area. We had 13 kids at the party.

Tyson when he saw Chuck E

Tyson ate up the attention! He was in the perfect spot for Chuck E!

Batman cake - there's no sneaking bites of this cake. Instant blue mouth!

He got a turn in the ticket blaster booth - I love his expression.

Papa, Jammy, Aunt Amber and Lily (sweetest baby ever)

This was his general expression upon opening any Lego gifts :)

If you own Lego stock, we all helped keep it in business this week - you're welcome!
We sure love this big boy a ton, and it was (and still is) so much fun to see him so excited about all of his birthday activities and his gifts.  This year is the most excited he's been about his birthday.  Happy Birthday Tyson!


Thanksgiving Feasts

Yes, I know it's December and I'm way behind.  But, I was lucky to be able to attend both kids' Thanksgiving feasts at their schools.  Tyson's was just a feast for the kids with some songs (video below!), and was ADORABLE.  Hailey's was a traditional Thanksgiving feast at her school.  Both kids were so happy to have a parent there so I was really grateful that I got to go!

 Tyson's was first - the kids dressed up as pilgrims or Indians and ate picnic type food with pie

Here's the video of all Kindergarten classes performing their two songs - you can't see him at first because he's on the other side of his teacher in the black shirt. You can start to see him better around the 45 second mark.  And man... do we need a new video camera.

Hailey's was the next day - notice her employee badge? I think she'd prefer school over work if she knew :)

She doesn't have her own personality or anything. Not at all.


November... so far

November started out with my cousin Michelle's wedding in Austin.  Nick and I went by ourselves, which was fun - we couldn't remember the last time that only the two of us did something together.  It was probably 12 years ago or more!  It was a fun wedding and we got to see some of our out-of-state family again!

We had some fun in the photo booth!
Tyson's soccer season ended. Just like the spring season, his first goal scored was in the last game of the season.  It was a nice one that sailed into the back right corner!

Tyson is on the left, going after the ball

This is what playing goalie looked like for our team this season - basically no action because we destroyed everyone :)

The supportive little sister

"Good game!  Sorry we scored tons of goals (not really)!"
The end of the year party was at a local Mexican restaurant.  They had an outdoor patio with an inflatable slide, which the kids kept piling on.  Hailey was right in the mix with the bigger kids - poor girl came away from that with some bruises - but she was laughing the whole time!

Most of the team - one is missing (only 8 this time!)

An unexpected attraction - mechanical bull! We assumed the kids were too little but the guy operating it made it go really slowly for them. They loved it!

We took Tyson to the pediatrician a few weeks ago and we just happened to mention that he's a good artist. He loves to draw! She said they are having patients make all of the paintings for their new office, and she gave Tyson an art packet to make his own painting! There were certain guidelines, and limited colors, so this is what he came up with. It will be framed with a plaque with his name and age on it in the new office!

"Flying Fish"
Last weekend, some of our college friends decided to throw an impromptu guys weekend and go camping.  Kyle and Micah came to our house on Friday night on the way down.  Micah got in some good forced reading quality time with Hailey!  She warmed right up to him even though she hasn't seen him in months.

After the guys left, the kids and I headed down to Boling, TX to visit Kelly and Jude!  They're living in a nice house with tons of land behind it.  We had a great time playing with Jude, and mommy and Kelly stayed up WAY too late having fun and talking that night after the kids went to bed (totally worth it though)!
Taking a mini-nap on the way there
Checking out Jude's play house

Watching a movie with popcorn - our attempt to calm them down

Showing off their tattoos!


Happy Halloween 2012

Happy Halloween! It gets more fun each year with these kiddos.  This year was the first time Hailey had the energy to last more than 5 houses or so.  It was a blast. Before we left, "candy master" Daddy reminded them of the rules for trick-or-treating: Say "trick or treat" and then "thank you" after you get candy, and don't walk on people's grass.  Tyson followed the rules 100% and Hailey did about 70%, we reminded her the other times ;)

They were both allowed to wear costumes to school - within certain guidelines of course.  Their capes are "flying" in this pic.

We're ready to start trick-or-treating! Hailey decided to be supergirl sans cape (it got lost at school somewhere :() instead of her butterfly princess she had been talking about for weeks.  Ninja Tyson was in character most of the night!

Our attempts at getting a non-cheesy smile out of supergirl didn't work too well ;)

Pumpkin #1, designed completely by Tyson

Pumpkin #2, cutout chosen by Hailey (it's supposed to be a cat but looks lizard-ish, HA!)
We had a great time and came across a house that was completely decked out in life-size creatures.  One of them was a person in a gorilla costume, who luckily had the sense to not scare the little ones... only middle school and up!  (whew...)

Happy Halloween!!



We had a few Halloween parties before the big day - first up, Trunk or Treat at the kids' school last Friday (Hailey's preschool, Tyson's after-school program).  We loved this event because it was fun, short, and sweet.  I think we were there for 30 minutes and did everything there was to do!

checking out the fire truck that was there (ninja is in stealth mode behind the butterfly princess)

On Saturday, we headed to Steve's company picnic, which just happened to be at the Zoo this year, and also happened to be during Zoo Boo... perfect!  The kids got to wear their costumes again, and got airbrush tattoos, and spoiled with cotton candy and other goodies.

After we hung out at the picnic for awhile, we did our usual carousel ride, checked out some of the animals, and then our friends Doug and Amy suggested riding the paddleboats.  We've been there so many times and have never thought of doing that!  It was fun - at one point we raced, and guess who won?  Not the guys boat!

Girls boat! She had fun, promise!

There's my happy girl

Guys boat!  Tyson had fun steering them around :)

The kids on our every-visit train ride. First time riding together.

Hey! We actually took a picture together! Even if it was a self-portrait :)