Wednesday, December 31, 2014

September-December

I love to blog.
I really do.
 
But when you post about finally being content about where God has you and being able to take a deep breathe and let it out, and then you're thrown one of life's greatest tragedies...
 
Life stops.
 
Things that you thought mattered, don't.
And instead of posting to the world about your family, you close off the outside and hold your babies a little closer in your arms... So close you think they're going to melt right into you.
 
  And you question God.
 
And you cry.
 
And the pain reminds you that this is not our home.
But through the tears, deep down inside, you feel an unexplainable hope that His plan is good.
 
And you smile because you know heaven is that much richer.
 
 
In memory of my Belize '02 paint partner and manicure client, my best friend's husband, and my son's best friend's dad.
 
Thanks for the reminder Dustin...
 
For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. Philippians 1:21
 
 
 
And the rest of the year went a little something like this...
 
 
September!
Parker had his first day of Pre-K. He's a pretty cool kid! His teacher told me he's quite popular.

Went to the LA County Fair with the Bairds for school credit.

Took our first trip to Pismo with Shaun's older brother and his family!

Finally, the dunes meet the beach! This I can do!
 
 
October!
The cousins came to visit, which means... Picture Time!

Shaun and I went on a Mexican cruise with nine other couples in our Bible Study class. Amazing!
 
Halloween: How to Train Your Dragon's Snotlout, Toothless, and Hiccup
 
 
 November!
Blake moved to a big boy bed
Isaac had his first season in kid pitch baseball
Isaac turned 7 and had the Baird boys over
Parker turned 5 and had his buddy Nate over
 
Parker started karate in September and already tested to a black striped belt

Glamis with the Villarreals and Lopezes

Celebrated Thanksgiving and birthdays in Arizona
 
 
December!
Our annual trip to Bass Pro Shop to see Santa and play

Free tickets to LEGOLAND? Yes, please!
 
Parker and Nate at their school's Christmas performance. They are quite a show themselves!
 
The boys first (real) time in snow! other than needing a few more layers and better gloves, it was a blast!
 
We welcomed two more boys to our family this Christmas, Mikey and Leo. Redfooted tortoises.
 
 

Friday, September 5, 2014

I Took A Deep Breath... Then I Let It Go


You know how you hold your breath when something is going really well, just waiting for something to go wrong? And then when it’s still good you dig a little deeper in hopes that if you find something not-so-perfect then at least you were hurt sooner rather than later?

That was me not that long ago… At the “Holding my breath” stage… However, now, I feel that I am perfectly in the center of God’s will for my life! So, maybe I'm now in the “truly blessed” stage. However, I’m sure hoping it’s not a “calm before the storm” stage! I’m finding strength daily and it’s hard to keep from smiling! It’s the deep down joy and peace that can only come from Him! And I have it right now! However, I’m confused as to why I want to cry at the same time? Must be that deep!? Totally makes sense, joy that makes you emotional all the way to the core! HA! ;)

The boys’ school option for this year has been a huge relief and a major factor in my contentment. I was fretting a little in the spring with where they were going to go in the fall and how it would work with our busy schedule. I’ll admit, last year was a hard growing year.  Homeschooling was the right decision but, it doesn’t mean it was easy. However, there were dozens of reasons that proved it was right for Isaac! The plan all along was to homeschool Isaac for kinder and then send him to the mosaic program for 1st grade. Well, when I got the call in the spring that Isaac had been accepted, I felt defeated… Like I gave up on teaching him myself. It made me sad and I questioned if this would be the right choice. I felt like every year was a brand new school experience/decision and I was ready to stay in one spot and for that to be the RIGHT spot! Homeschooling was a challenge but, it was a familiar challenge.

Fast forward to today and I couldn’t be more at ease. Isaac is in the mosaic program at RiverSprings. He goes to school M-W-F (8:30-2:40) and T-Th are home study days. The work is given by the teacher which means I don’t have to lesson plan anymore! Woohoo! It is the perfect balance of class and home. There is only one class per grade so it is a very controlled and personal learning environment. We know so many families that attend and parent involvement is through the roof! I was actually a little overwhelmed with setting up all the different ways to correspond with Isaac's teacher! After the first week (last week) I was still “holding my breath.” Is this really as good as I’m anticipating!? But then I read Isaac’s teacher’s introduction letter and realized she is our perfect fit. Isaac has excelled in every single thing he has EVER done. However, there is one area that he is still struggling, reading. Well, his teacher has her masters in Reading Education and is a Reading Specialist. I told Isaac that she is now part of our team in helping him achieve his goals!

Then there’s Parker… The preschool that I really wanted him to go to already had a waiting list by the time I was able to get there and sign him up. Yup, only a few hours into registration day and we were on “The List.” A month or two later, I still hadn’t heard from them and couldn’t get a hold of them (to this day I haven’t had any contact). Soooo I executed Plan B and enrolled him in another preschool. Turns out Plan B should have been Plan A. We met his teachers today and he starts Monday. And to top it off, one of his best buddies is in his class that we thought was going to be in another class! God knows the plans He has for us and it’s so cool to see the details HE places along the way!

And Blake!? Well, he’ll just keep partyin’ and being cute!
First day of first grade!

Home study day working on his "Math about Me" project. He told me blue hair is so cool! And two jackets weren't necessary but, it was a rare, cool morning!

I'll admit, another reason we chose to homeschool is because we wanted to shelter our kids... Keep them in a bubble... Make them weird by sitting with us all day at the kitchen table doing school work! Because this seemed like a much better option than sending them to public school and turning them into convicts!
(Two can play this game!) 
 
Actually, Isaac goes to a PUBLIC school! Today he had to take three items that described himself. He chose a baseball because he loves sports and is athletic. Donatello because he is the oldest brother and likes to create things and a Bible because he is a Christian and has Jesus in his heart. I was so proud of him. He's on a battlefield everyday but, he is armed with the Truth! He has a huge advantage over us adults... He is still experiencing child like faith.

When he hopped in the car today I asked him how his day was. He quickly put his head down and said, "Not so good!" I panicked and figured I'd be getting a call from his teacher. Then he lifted his hand and showed me this! I felt bad for him but, I was relieved too! Poor guy is serious about his monkey bars!
 
Parker with his buddy, Nate! They are only a few weeks apart and have been friends since before birth (if that's possible)! Parker also had his school physical and was a complete champ! He was told two shots were coming so he jumped up on the table and took 'em like a man! He told me they hurt and that he almost cried but, he was fine! He's also 47lbs. which is in the 90/95 percentile.  

Can't forget Blake! He wants everyone to know that he is three and weighs a tiny 33lbs! And while he'll tell you that he's "Just Blake," we all know him as the cutest thing in the world! Slower than molasses which makes him a ninja turtle minus the ninja part but, completely irresistible!   
 
 
See, three reasons as to why I am so blessed, blessed, and blessed! My main man deserves his own post too! I'd fill up a whole blog book just writing about how good he is to me and how thankful I am for him!
 

Thursday, June 26, 2014

6-Twenty-Six-04

Happy 10th Anniversary to Shaun and me!
 
You'll never expect what kind of day we had...
 
I don't want to keep you in suspense for too long so I'll just unleash the juicy details...
 
Shaun worked! And I cleaned our toilets!
 
Well, I also dropped Isaac off at baseball, went to SAMS Club, wiped down the counters, vacuumed, and mopped.
 
Exciting, huh!?
 
Such a romantic anniversary!
 
Never thought I'd spend my ten year with three men... And none of them being my hubby! ;)
 
 
Thankfully, Shaun and I were able to get away a few weeks ago to celebrate AND will be going out tomorrow evening. Here's some pictures of our Laguna Beach trip, just the two of us! Yes, that's right... NO KIDS!
 
All the ways to say 10...

We did a little exploring but, most of the time we were doing.....

.... THIS!!!
Not having to watch little kids run in the water every two seconds was amazing!!!

The sand was so smooth it would squeak between our toes!

Shaun looked up the prices of the houses we were laying by. We thought about trying to buy one but, $15 million was just a tad bit high!

Ummmm... Pizzookie is a must when near the coast!
 
How sweet! Drawing me a heart in the sand!

We got each other rings... Mine is a tiara and his is actually made of some rubber material. His hands are so messed up from lifting that his wedding ring doesn't always fit around his calluses. This one stretches!
 
And yes, this is MY man. So don't look too hard or long!
 
~~~~~~~~
 
Knowing that Shaun would be gone today and that we have a busy weekend, I told him that I really wanted to take pictures at the Citrus Park where we had our reception. So, two nights ago (before he left for work) we got all dressed up and took our photographer... The tripod! The boys were absolutely amazing! It's like they understood what these pictures really meant to me! I was in shock!
 
My favorite picture!

The boys were NOT acting for the kissing picture. They were completely disgusted!

Had to throw in some real life!
 
Blake is in a cheesy smile/I'm just going to act silly stage! Sometimes you just need to stick your finger up your nose and go with it!

I didn't even pose them like this. It was THEIR idea to wrap their arms around each other!

Again... These are their poses! Look out ladies... The Higgins boys are little heartbreakers!

And Isaac is quite the photographer... He took these! But, we weren't allowed to kiss!
 
The boys (and I'm very much including Shaun) made the night so wonderful with no complaining! I know I said it once already but, I'm still in shock!

Friday, June 6, 2014

My 32nd Birthday!

My boys made me feel so special this year!
 
Shaun was supposed to work but, took the day off! I'm so glad he did... We rarely get to celebrates holidays on their correct days. However, Shaun goes above and beyond in making sure that I am loved on June 1st every year!
 
Shaun got up with the boys so I could sleep in a little longer. When they heard me up and about I was quickly sent right back to bed. That's when the giggles and the kazoos started... Next thing I know, I've been served breakfast in bed and I'm wearing a tiara!
 
After church I was told to relax some more and then was sent off for a massage. Upon my arrival of coming home, my favorite dinner had be prepared for me!
 
My presents had already been given to me... Well, actually I went shopping for them a few weeks ago... So, all my boys could do was shower me with love! Oh, and pictures.......
 

 




Tuesday, May 27, 2014

It's not swagger... I'm just sore!

 
My boys are constantly moaning and groaning and telling me their back and legs hurt... I have no idea where they get it from!
 
No idea...
 
Weeeelllll..... Maybe I have a little idea.....
 
Ok, it's me!
 
Sore is the new me!
 
Having kids kinda puts yourself on hold. No time to work on improving YOU! For almost seven years my "workout" has been my boys. Non stop cleaning up, up and down the stairs, making food, never sitting down, etc. However, in late March I decided that I wanted a workout for me! So, Shaun and I took the plunge and joined crossfit...
 
It's intense!
 
But we are hooked!
 
Thankfully everyone is so wonderful and they welcomed us right in! Yesterday, for Memorial Day, we did a WOD (workout of the day) called "The Murph." It was in honor of Lt. Michael Murphy who was killed serving our country. It was a mile run, 100 pull ups, 200 push ups, 300 air squats, and finish with another mile run. But, seeing as how that would have killed me, I did half of the pull ups, push ups, and squats. Some hard core crossfitters did the whole WOD with 30-45lbs vests on (the typical weight of the gear that Michael would have worn)!
 
I also love the fact that our boys enjoy being there! They can chill and watch tv/play video games or ride their scooters outside and play hide and go seek. They love swinging on the rings or trying to see how fast they can row. Dodge ball was a big hit with my boys too!
 

some of the kids that come and entertain my kids!

Blake trying to row!

Monday, May 12, 2014

Mother's Day

Shaun worked the three days leading up to Mother's Day. He left early Thursday morning to make it to the "box" for a 5am workout and then we didn't see him again till Sunday morning around 9am! My one request for Mother's Day was a clean house. Sooooo... That meant I got to do it! Took three days and there was lots of re-cleaning but, it got done (well, other than unloading the dishwasher but, I had to leave something for Shaun to do with the boys). I put on a movie for the boys so I could get ready for church. During that time Shaun got home and when I came downstairs I was greeted with...

...cards...

...flowers...

...and presents!
 
They made the morning very special for me! In the pretty wrapping were crossfit shoes and our boxes tank top. I also ordered myself an Origami Owl locket last week! Yes, I'm spoiled! After church we went to lunch and then headed home to relax. Blake napped and the rest of us watched a movie. The boys wanted to throw all the cushions and pillows on the floor and this, of course, lead to more cleaning that I missed. So, I put the boys to work...

Isaac vacuumed one couch and found lots of treasures...

...and Parker did the other!

Then all was peaceful!
 
Thanks for my special day boys!