Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Ice Outing

There is an ice sculpture exhibit about half an hour away from our house. I thought it would be neat to get all of Ken's family together one afternoon and go check it out. So we decided that this past Saturday would be a great time to did the rest of the metroplex. We had a fantastic time looking at all of the ice.

Kenley with Uncle Roger while we waited

and waited

and waited.
We finally got in! Here are all 14 of us at the beginning of the exhibit.

We all got to sit on Santa's lap. All of this is out of ice!
All five of us in the icy gingerbread house. This was one of my favorites. Even all of the candy pieces are solid colored ice. It was truly unbelievable.
Julia and Ashlyn on the ice bridge.
Kenley was freezing cold. It was 9 degrees in the exhibit and she just couldn't take it.
Ashlyn coming down the ice slide. Weeeeeeee!

Mom's can still have fun too...Weeeeeeeee! (Check out the ice reindeer)
By the end of the walk through we were all freezing cold and ready to get warm.
One last picture. Poor Kenley was stuffed in my down jacket.

We had to get a picture of Ashlyn with her new best friend. Stephen couldn't get a break. It was so sweet. She cried when they left to go back home.

Christmas Morning

Ken's family came in for Christmas this year. It was the first time that all three cousins have been together. Needless to say Christmas morning was a blast! It was a new experience for Julia because in Germany the children open their gifts on Christmas Eve. It was difficult for her to wait another night and then have to wait for everyone to get situated and ready to open gifts the following morning. We had a great time watching the girls open their gifts this year and I had a great time learning to use my Christmas gift (a new camera!)

Uncle Roger and Aunt Bonita got all three girls a princess nightgown and a crown. Kenley wouldn't take the crown we go again :)

Ashlyn on her new scooter. She kept crashing on purpose...really..she was throwing herself on the sidewalk so she could show me how well her new pads work.

Ashlyn had to lay everything out that she got in her stocking
What a ham!

All the girls opening their stockings

What is better than getting a princess dress for Christmas? Getting three princess dresses and a wand! Thank you Aunt Kim and Uncle Luke!
Kenley opening her gift from Aunt Kim and Uncle Luke. Just happy to have the box!

Julia showing off her new makeup
"Finally, Santa brought Snow White and the horse that I have been calling him about."
We had a great Christmas morning with our girls. We are so blessed to have this family and so blessed to have a Savior whose birthday we remember each Christmas.

Christmas Fun

We have been enjoying our holiday now for about two weeks. It has been a zoo around our house but has been so much fun. My brother and his wife came in a couple of weeks ago with their new baby. It was our first opportunity to meet her. I think she is probably the prettiest newborn baby I have ever seen. She is adorable. My mom and step dad also came up for the day to exchange gifts for the kids. We had our Christmas with Mom, Buddy, Joe and his family and Ashlyn got to play with her cousins. We had a great time just being together.

Friday, November 28, 2008

A Servant's Heart

Sometimes there are things that happen in my married life that make me remember how blessed I am to be married to Ken. Yesterday was one of those days. We had our Thanksgiving dinner on Wednesday evening with some friends so that left Thursday to hang up Christmas lights. We were outside working on getting our lights up (Ken was on the roof, I was supervising) when the neighbor came by and mentioned how good they looked. He said that he wished that he could get his lights up on his peaks, but that he was too scared to get up on the roof to do it.
Sooo...after hours of working with our lights, Ken left to go put the neighbor's lights on his house. Now, keep in mind that the Cowboys played yesterday afternoon. Ken had been looking forward to that day for weeks. But he was still putting lights up when they started so he recorded it and started late. My husband has such a servant's heart and I am so blessed to be married to him. I love you, Bob.

PS. For those of you who are thinking I just called my husband something else, don't be alarmed. That is what we call each other....long story.

A New Do

Like her sister, Kenley is blessed with her daddy's hair. Super fine and grows straight forward. Right into her eyes. We made the mistake of cutting Ashlyn's hair at this age and she looked like a boy for two months. We have decided to just let Kenley's grow wild and pull it back when we need to. Here is our little Pebbles with her new do.

If I Could Save Time In a Bottle

Ashlyn has a good friend that she loves to spend time with. He lives two houses down from us. They have good days and bad days, but it has been awhile since they have spent any amount of time together so these past few days have been great for them. They have been playing at one house or the other and no arguing or fighting has gone on. Quite the opposite in fact. They are so sweet and innocent and then seem so grown up at the same time. Here are some pictures of them playing this week.

Here they are riding their horses together. Notice the look of attitude on my daughter's face in the second picture...sassy!

The two pictures below are blurry because they were taken through the back door window. Sorry, but if they would have seen me they would have stopped dancing...precious.

They could not be cuter together. They look so grown up in this picture. Slow down, time.

Spaghetti Night

I get this weekly email update that tells me how to raise my kids. It has worked well so far I think. Just kidding, but I do get a weekly email telling me about infant and toddler milestones and what to expect. My last one told me that it is now okay to let Kenley start trying to feed herself with a spoon. Tonight we had spaghetti so we thought it would be a good idea to let her have at it. It was priceless. This is the aftermath.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Happy Birthday Kenley!

During my last pregnancy I had wished for a sweet little baby that loved her mommy. On November 19, 2007 my wish came true. Since the day she was born, Kenley has wanted nothing more than to be held and loved on. She would much prefer for me to hold her than to do anything else in this world. It seems like I have held her for most of this past year. I have felt bad at times for complaining about how much I have held her. My arms have ached, truly ached from hours of holding this little baby whose only wish is to be near me. But as I look back on this past year that I have had with her, I think about how grateful I am to have her in my life. I think about how much more my arms would ache if I didn't have her to hold each day. I love everything about this baby. I love her big doe eyes. I love her chubby, kissable cheeks. I love her tiny little nose. I love her long, skinny feet. She is my sweet little angel and I love her so.
We had a party for her this past weekend (will post that later), but we went to dinner tonight with Matt and Shelly to have a small celebration on their actual birthday. I know that I am not the only mother who has bittersweet feelings on this very special day. As I watched her sitting next to me, I thought about how fast this past year has gone for me. It seems like just a few days ago that we brought her home from the hospital. She is growing up right before my eyes. I can't wait for each tomorrow and what it holds, but want to hang on to each today. Here are some pictures from her birthday dinner.
Yummy ice cream!

The family photo

Ashlyn, Julia, and Kenley
Me and my daddy

The two birthday girls

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Holy Cow, Sleeping Beauty!

We had a great time on Halloween this year. Germany doesn't have a trick or treating tradition so Julia got to experience this very American thing with the Rushings. We went to the neighbors house to have chili and let the kids play for a little while. Then right before 7 we left to start trick or treating. Ashlyn was dressed up as Sleeping Beauty. She had waited a long time for Halloween, just looking at Aurora's dress hanging up in our closet. I was going to try to stuff Kenley into the pumpkin that Ashlyn wore for her first Halloween, but that just wasn't going to happen. So Kenley was a cow that we borrowed from Shelly (thank you). Julia was a German teenager. They were all very cute. Aurora's hair didn't last long, but it was cute while it lasted.
Julia doing her thing....just chillin'.
Julia: "Ashlyn, please take a picture with me..."
Ashlyn (in whiny 3 year old voice): "I don't want to take a picture!"
Mommy: "Ashlyn, please stand still so I can take your picture..."
Ashlyn (in whiny 3 year old voice): "I don't want you to take my picture!"
Holy (cute) Cow!

Ashlyn loaded up on the candy and had a blast. It is so much fun to see the number of houses that she makes it to increase each year. Her first year she made it to about 6 houses. We called it quits at about 25 this year. I love these memories!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

One Word Answers

Okay, I was nominated for this fun game by Shelly (thanks) and here are my answers...finally. I have had this done since she sent it to me, but here it is.

1. Where is your cell phone? purse
2. Where is your significant other? sleeping
3. Your hair color? brown
4. Your mother? concerned
5. Your father? gone
6. Your favorite thing? motherhood
7. Your dream last night? worrisome
8. Your dream/goal? motherhood
9. The room your in? hallway
10. Your hobby? scrapbooking
11. Your fear? death
12. Where do you want to be in 6 years? here
13. Where were you last night? home
14. What you're not? apathetic
15. One of your wish list items? vacations
16. Where you grew up? Huntsville
17. The last thing you did? breakfast
18. What you are wearing? sweatshirt
19. Your TV? long-awaited
20. Your pet? Madison
21. Your computer? Mac
22. Your mood? excited
23. Missing someone? Porters
24. Your car? Sienna
25. Something you're not wearing? shoes
26. Favorite store? Gymboree
27. Your summer? fun
28. Love someone? daughters
29. Your favorite color? blue
30. Last time you laughed? yesterday
31. Last time you cried? yesterday

The seven people that I am nominating for this "award" are below. Complete the questionare in one word answers and forward on to seven more (or however many) people. It is quite fun and more difficult than you think. Have fun!

Christi P.
Becky S.

Okay, nominees. Make me proud.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

And year six goes to....

For those of you who don't know, Ken and I have an anniversary tradition. Each year we take turns planning a trip for our anniversary. But the one who is planning the trip doesn't tell the other one about it. Everything is a total surprise until the day of the trip. This year was Ken's turn. He did a great job keeping it a secret from me. I had no idea where we were going. And Julia proved to be very good at keeping secrets. She had been telling me for quite some time that she had no idea where we were headed and she had known for awhile.
We left early (very) last Friday morning and flew to Seattle. We met Randy, Delia and Brynn for hamburgers at Red Mill (I think). They are listed as a top 10 burger joint by someone important. The hamburgers were very good but the company was better. This was my first time to meet Brynn. She is so cute. After lunch, I went back to the room to take a nap while Ken exchanged our car because the radio didn't work...only to get a car that the tire was flat. So...while I watched HGTV in the room, Ken took the car to get the tire fixed...welcome to Seattle. Then we met Randy and Delia downtown for dinner at this great Fondue restaurant. Well, I am assuming it was great. We didn't have reservations and were told that we couldn't be seated for three hours. No big deal, we were just happy to get away. PF Chang's sounded good anyway. So we went to PF Chang's. They didn't have any tables available, or pagers for that matter. But we could come back in an hour and 15 minutes and get our pager to wait for a table. At this point we were all chuckling a little bit. So we all went and shot a couple of games of pool and came back to eat dinner. It was a fun evening.
On Sunday we spent the entire day shopping. We went to the world famous Pike's Market and I got to see the guys throw the fish. It was so neat! The market was a really neat experience. There was tons of food, flowers, local artwork and even purses made out of nothing but duct tape!
On Monday we drove a hour or so from Seattle and went on the Northwest Trek...somewhat of a Seattle safari. We rode on a tram through a 435 acre wildlife park. We got to see grizzly bears, moose, elk and other great wildlife native to the area. We even got to see a skunk, which we wouldn't get to see again until...well, we got home (that story coming right up).
Tuesday we went back downtown and rode the 520 ft (I think) Space Needle. Thanks, but no thanks on that one. Holy cow that thing is so high. I was getting sick from feeling the movement at the top. They said that it only moved an inch for every 10 mph of wind...that was enough. After coming down (not soon enough) we headed back to the airport and home to see our girls. It was SO hard to be away from them.
About the skunk...we were so tired from our trip and looking forward to just coming home and relaxing, which we did. Then right before we went to bed (so we thought) Ken let Madison out to go potty. Before Ken realized that she was trying to make friends with skunk, she had already been sprayed. It was the most disgusting thing I have smelled in my entire life. We spent the next hour bathing her (I quit counting after the sixth bath) and trying to get the smell to go away. It didn't work. I think I finally got the smell out last night. Gross. The Seattle trip was great fun and I so enjoyed getting to spend time with Randy and Delia. I wish that we could see you guys more often. We miss you! Seattle is a beautiful city and has breathtaking scenery. Thanks for the surprise, Ken. Happy anniversary, I love you.
Here are some pictures of our trip.

For any of you keeping up on our anniversary tradition, here is our count so far:

First: Gatlinburg, Tennessee
Second: Ashville, North Carolina and the Biltmore Estate
Third: Napa Valley, California for a wine country tour
Fourth: Tampa, Florida Busch Gardens and the Tampa Zoo
Fifth: Ft. Worth, Texas

We have so much fun with our anniversary tradition. I am not sure which one is more fun, planning the trip or being surprised. Either way, we both enjoy getting away and hanging out together by ourselves.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Ashlyn's First Dentist Visit

When you are a big three year old you get to go to the dentist. So Ashlyn had her first appointment today. I looked like the typical scrapbooking mother taking my child into the dentist at 7:20 am with my camera. Ashlyn was less than impressed with this, but let me take several pictures. As some of you know, Ashlyn took quite a spill a couple of weeks ago at the babysitting co-op at our church. She skinned her nose and knocked both of her top front teeth loose. We had a dentist at our church look at her teeth and he said we were fine to wait until her appointment. Her teeth are still loose and are starting to turn a little darker color which is normal (so I am told). Her dentist said that they will probably tighten back up and all will be fine...whew! I thought I would share with everyone the pictures of our big girl going to her first dentist appoinment. I have to say that I am so proud of her. Everyone that worked with her was saying that she did so good. They said they usually don't get all of the x-rays with a three year old and that all of her were perfect. She was so grown up about everything.

In the parking lot before. We let her take her
blanket because she was nervous. So cute.

Still sleepy in the waiting room

Looking a little nervous

I have sunglasses now...I'm good.

Getting her teeth cleaned. Holding "Mr. Thirsty"

Waiting on x-rays

That was easy...and I get a goody bag!