Monthly Archives: March 2017

I’ve had birthdays on my brain for the last month. Both of my daughters were born in March, so I’ve had parties to plan and then host. My birthday is also in March, so I’ve been thinking about that too.

Birthdays are really just personal New Years. I mean, think about it. Your birthday is the anniversary of the day you came into this world. For everyone else on the planet it’s just another ordinary day. But for you? It’s the start of a brand new year!

Your birthday is the day that resolutions should be made. Instead of saying, “2017 is the year that I start (insert goal here),’ we should be saying, “35 is the year I start (insert goal here)”.  Your birthday is the day you should evaluate your life and determine how you’d like to improve your life.

That’s what I’m doing. For the January 1st New Year, I made several resolutions, and I’m proud of how I’m doing with them. I plan on continuing those resolutions as well as taking on my Birthday Resolution.

‘What is my Birthday Resolution?’ you ask.  35 is the year I start having more fun.  I recently read an article in Good Housekeeping magazine titled “I haven’t had this much fun since I was a kid,” and it has stuck with me.  The article was about a woman who had quit gymnastics as a teenager and then decided at age 42 to start taking classes again.  She wrote, “You grow up and leave childhood and fun behind. But why?”.  As I was reading, I kept thinking that this woman has a very good point.

Why do we as adults abandon things we once enjoyed as children?  Why, why? why?  Since reading the article, I’ve been thinking of things I enjoyed as a child and what I could start doing again as an adult. Here’s what I came up with:

  • Riding my bike – I would like to start riding my bike again.  I want to ride for the fun of it and not necessarily for the exercise or to get somewhere.  I want to ride just to ride.
  • Capture the Flag/Scavenger Hunt – Growing up I played Capture the Flag all the time. It would be so much fun to organize a grown up game. I would probably have to Google the rules on how to actually play the game, since I’m pretty sure we just made up our own rules.  I also enjoyed the type of scavenger hunt where you had to go and take pictures of your group with certain things or doing certain things.  My mom always made the best lists. This would be an absolute blast to do now.  I can picture it now – husbands versus wives!
  • Frisbee – Ok, so I didn’t do this much as a kid, but I think it’s fun, so I’m adding it to my list.  I’m pretty sure I have a Frisbee somewhere, so I’m going to dig it out and I’m going to start throwing it around.
  • Camping – I loved going camping with my family as a kid. I remember hanging out in the tent at night listening to the wildlife.  This would be a lot of fun to do with my girls.
  • Skip-It – I loved, loved, loved my Skip-It.  I have had one for a long time and for a long time I haven’t used it.  I sold it in a garage sale last year and I was really sad to see it go.  Now with my Birthday Resolution, I am really tempted to buy me another one.  But this time I would use it!

  • Jumping on the trampoline – I don’t know how many hours I spent on the trampoline as a kid.  We wrestled on it, we flipped on it, we slept on it. It was probably the most fun with the water hose on it.  I have no intention of buying a trampoline, but maybe I can find someone who will let me come over and play on it for a bit.

 

The more I think about my Birthday Resolution, the more excited I get! I am making it my mission to enjoy the above activities, but I do not want to limit myself to those things.  I want to also start having more fun in everyday activities (like pretending the floor is lava or jumping on the shopping cart and coasting down the aisle at the grocery store).

I’d love to hear your comments if you have any suggestions on having more fun!


The movie “Jeff, Who Lives at Home” inspired the title for this post. My two year old loves to read which makes my heart happy! Sometimes I ask her to bring me a book to read to her, but more often than not, she asks me to read to her. And not only that, but I find her all the time just sitting reading to herself.

Now I know that she can’t actually read the words, but she’s looking at the pictures and she’s making up he own stories. Did I mention that this makes my heart happy?

I’ve been taking pictures of her reading lately and I wanted to share a few of them.


I caught her with an issue of Brides magazine…oh, wait…that’s from a George Strait song. I caught Kora with an issue of People:

She reads in the car:

She reads in the boat:

She even reads with a goat! Just kidding. But I should totally find a goat and have her read with it!

Our local library had reading logs to motivate kids to read over the summer. We took in Kora’s reading log at the halfway point to claim our halfway prize – a coupon book for the Great American Cookie Company. This led to a trip to the mall for a free cookie!

After marking the log for 30 days, we took it to the library to claim her prize – a new book!

Here she is showing off her new book to her dad. She is so proud!


Kora’s prize also included a free ice cream from Freddy’s!

Also over the summer we filled out a reading log from HEB.  After completing the log, we put it in an envelope and took it to the post office to mail off.  She was so excited when she received a package from HEBuddy with a certificate and t-shirt!

 

Hopefully Kora’s love for reading will continue as she gets older.  To encourage her, we read every night before bed and we visit the local library frequently.  She thinks she’s such a big shot as she’s browsing through all the books.  I’m hoping to introduce her to chapter books soon.  Any suggestions for good books to hold a toddler’s attention?


On a roadtrip with my family, I drove past a road sign that indicated that Sour Lake, Texas was 11 miles away.  I joked with my husband that I wouldn’t want to live in a place called Sour Lake.  A couple of hours later, we came upon a sign for Plaquemine, Louisiana and my husband asked me if I’d rather live in Plaquemine.

While I know you are not supposed to judge a book by its cover, I am solely judging these towns by their name.  I have nothing against either town, and I’m sure they are both lovely places to live.  I just find the names of the towns to be unappealing and yet a little amusing.

Knowing there had to be other towns with humorous names, I decided to do a little digging.  Here is my Top 15  list of Places I Don’t Want to Live (based on name alone!).

  1. Toadsuck, Arkansas
  2. Slaughter Beach, Delaware
  3. Sopchoppy, Florida
  4. Waldo, Florida  – I could just imagine meeting someone and telling them I was from Waldo.  “Where’s Waldo?” they would ask. That would get old.
  5. Grimes, Alabama
  6. Grosse Tete, Louisiana
  7. Licking, Missouri – Who’s doing the licking?
  8. Nag’s Head, North Carolina
  9. Coward, South Carolina
  10. Yellville, Arkansas
  11. Shinglehouse, Pennsylvania
  12. Eek, Alaska
  13. Between, Georgia – I imagine the conversation about telling where you live goes something like an Abbott and Costello “Who’s on First” act.
  14. Blandville, Kentucky
  15. Boring, Oregon – This place does not sound fun.

 

While I was looking at maps and names of cities and towns, a few names struck me as curious:

  • There seems to be as many states with a town called Baldwin as there are Baldwin brothers.  And there are a lot of Baldwin brothers.
  • There is a town in the state of Wisconsin called Wyoming (which is also the name of a state).  It could be quite confusing to tell someone that you are from Wyoming when you are actually from Wisconsin.
  • California is home to a town named Zzyzx.  What is that about?
  • Fifty-Six is the name of a town in Arkansas.
  • Pennsylvania has several names that I find funny – Forty Fort, Hop Bottom, and Moosic (which sounds like a Sandra Boynton book to me) are my favorites.
  • Florida is home to a town named Howey-in-the-Hills.  I’d like to know more about this Howey guy.
  • We all know of Paris, France and Miami, Florida, but are you familiar with Paris, Idaho or Miami, Arizona? People might get excited to hear that you live in Paris until you tell them that you live in Paris, Idaho.
  • I also wonder about the feelings of the single people living in Romance, Arkansas.  Or the extraordinary people living in Normal, Illinois.

 

While I started off thinking that these were places that I didn’t want to live, I’m now very curious about all of these places and kinda want to visit them all!

 


My parents were babysitting my brother’s three boys this weekend, so when I decided to visit with my two girls, it turned into a full time circus! It would have been entertaining to be a fly on the wall watching three grown adults trying to attend to all the needs of a 4 year old, 3 year old, 2 year old, and 2 babies. It would make for a great episode on some sitcom like I Love Lucy or The Dick Van Dyke Show.

Mealtime was probably the most harrowing. Each of the three bigger kids gobble up their favorite food on the plate and then quickly asks for seconds. “More pancakes, please!” says one kid. Adult delivers more pancakes. “More strawberries, please” says another kid. Adult delivers strawberries. “More pancakes, please,” the third kid chimes in. About the time the adult can deliver more food for the third child, the first one chimes in again.  All this is happening while the youngest baby is being bottle fed and the crawling baby is either A) trying to steal food off the bigger kids’ plates (while the bigger kids are screaming about what is happening); B) crying and screaming that she wants food; or C) climbing on something she shouldn’t be climbing.  Can’t you just picture Lucille Ball throwing pancakes to one kid like a Frisbee as she is chasing a crawling baby around the kitchen?

Between meals, was less hectic, but equally entertaining.  Similar to Maxwell Smart, Nannie battled the KAOS by inventing Independent Free Time, which I found to be a genius idea.   A timer was set and the kids got 15 minutes of free time to do what they wanted without being bothered by the adults! Sometimes the timer ‘accidentally’ got set for 25 minutes.  Oops!

The kids enjoyed their Independent Free Time but always seemed to want to play with whatever toy someone else had.  If Kid 1 and Kid 2 were arguing over a toy and you suggested Kid 2 play with another toy, Kid 3 would automatically run get the suggested toy and start playing with it.  This is easily an episode of The Three Stooges.

The crawling baby had one agenda this weekend: climb on top of the toy table. She would climb on top of the table and then an adult would come get her down.  Approximately two seconds later, she was back on the table.  Her determination was maddening…. and a bit comedic.


She also kept us laughing by her new method of getting around – she has started walking around on her knees.  It looks like it would be painful, but she seems to enjoy it. In my mind I’m picturing either the cantankerous Archie Bunker or the deadpan Bob Newhart making some commentary about this baby’s actions.

The whole weekend was full of sitcom worthy moments that kept me laughing.  We had some Andy Griffith teaching moments, some Seinfeld activities about nothing, and best of all, we had some Happy Days!